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Aircraft (Airplane) Radio Receiver Electronic Circuit / Kit

Listen to aircraft radio conversations with this aircraft radio receiver that operates in the 220 - 400 MHz (MegaHertz) band.

Screenshot: Aircraft (Airplane) Radio Receiver Electronic Circuit / Kit

It's a lot of fun to listen in on airplane / aircraft communications, and this electronic circuit gives you a feasible alternative to the very expensive commercial radio scanners that are available on the market. Awesome for us hobbyists!

This aircraft receiver electronic circuit was first published in the Think Tank column of the Sept. 1995 issue of Popular Electronics, and it looks very simple to build, with only about 20 electronic components.

Inductor L1 is 2 turns of 22 AWG magnet wire would on a 5/32 drill-bit, and it can be stretched or otherwise modified to change the operating frequency. R5 effectively adjusts receiver sensitivity.

I know that some commercial aircraft have moved their frequencies to digital, and thus this circuit may not work, however I also know that there are some places in the world that still use the old analog frequencies - so this is still good for something. Perhaps one of our more knowledgeable visitors could comment on this issue of aircraft frequencies?

Circuit Components:
  • R1, R3 - 47K 1/4W Resistor
  • R2 - 10K 1/4W Resistor
  • R4 - 4.7K 1/4W Resistor
  • R5 - 5K Linear Taper Pot
  • R6 - 2.2K 1/4W Resistor
  • C1, C2, C3, C6 - 0.001uF Ceramic Disc Capacitor
  • C4 - 2.2pF Ceramic Disc Capacitor
  • C5 - 1pF Ceramic Disc Capacitor
  • C7 - 15uF 15V Electrolytic Capacitor
  • C8 - 18pF Variable Capacitor
  • D1 - 1N82 Diode
  • Q1 - 2N918 NPN Transistor
  • L1 - See Notes
  • L2 - 1.8uH Inductor
  • ANT1 - Approx. 18 Inch Wire Antenna
  • MISC - PC Board, Wire, Knob For C8
Alternate References:
Scottfs says: (March 24 2008, 2:18pm)

Brilliant text!, guy

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