Monitoring Aviation Band Communications

KB9VBR aviation band airband j-pole antennaA big segment of the scanner community is centered around listening to aircraft communications that happen on the ground and in the air. Living near a major airport, these transmissions can be quite numerous; but even in less populated area you can hear a plethora of signals. Air to ground signals can carry several hundred miles as you listen to planes flying in uncontrolled space. If you are near an airport, FBO, runway, or airstrip, the ground communications can be just as interesting.

My airband J-Pole antennas work great at picking up aviation signals. Most airband listeners tend to gravitate towards discone antennas. While discones work great for scanning because of their broad band nature, they aren’t necessarily the best choice for the aviation band. The Aviation band J-Pole antenna has two distinct advantages over discone and quarter wave antennas.

First the antenna is a half wave by design, so it has more gain than a discone, up to 3db more in most cases. Discones have a spherical radiation pattern, so they pick up signals from all directions equally. The J-Pole’s pattern is more doughnut shape; that is it slightly favors the horizon as compared to the sky. The doughnut shaped pattern works better for aviation as it will give you the advantage of receiving the FBO and ground operations. VHF signals are line of sight, so you’ll have no problem picking up in-flight signals regardless of the antenna style.

The airband J-Pole antennas are custom tuned for the aviation band, so they work equally well for receiving and transmitting a signal. They are usually set to Unicom, but can be tuned to any frequency of your choice at time of order.

Get an airband J-Pole antenna and let your aviation listening soar to new heights.