Description

Beacon Mini-TX is a TX-only mini version of Super-Beacon. Mini-TX is particularly good for tracking weight-sensitive mini- and micro-drones.

The latest hardware version of Mini-TX makes is very easy to connect with PixHawk as well because it has a dedicated 6-pin socket on the board. With just two wires (UART TX and ground), it is possible to get the location data from the Mini-TX to PixHawk and make the PixHawk believe it is connected to a real GPS.

Comparison of Mini-TX to Super-Beacons:

  • Mini-TX is a TX-only beacon – it can transmit ultrasound but can’t receive it. Super-Beacons and Beacons HW v4.9 is dual-use beacons – they can receive and transmit ultrasound
  • Mini-TX is smaller and lighter: 47x42x15mm & 25g vs. 55x55x33mm & 62g (or 55x55x64mm with antenna). Size is the key advantage of Mini-TX. Without battery and housing – the bare board with transducers – it weighs just 6.4 grams
  • Battery – 250mAh vs. 1000mAh in Super-Beacons and Beacons HW v4.9. But Mini-TX has a new, more efficient ultrasonic TX module; thus, battery lifetime in TX mode is even superior to the Beacon HW v4.9
  • Tested battery lifetime with 8Hz – 96h. With a lower update rate – nearly proportionally longer
  • Mini-TX (newer hardware Ver. 2) has a micro USB (virtual UART) output for connectivity to the Dashboard or, for example, Raspberry Pi, and it also has an additional 6-pin socket for the external UART connectivity, for instance, with PixHawk
  • Mini-TX, like Super-Beacons, has a 6D IMU
  • Embedded antenna in Mini-TX – smaller size, but smaller radio coverage ~50m
  • Ultrasound signal from Mini-TX is slighter weaker than that of Super-Beacons, but it still reaches 30m. The range depends more on the ultrasound frequency than on the difference between Mini-TX and Super-Beacon
  • Mini-TX has only a 31kHz frequency. On request and for larger quantities (a few 100s of pieces), we can produce Mini-TXs with several other frequencies as well
  • Mini-TX supports license-free 915MHz ISM band (US) and license-free SRD band 868MHz (EU), i.e., the 433MHz (EU band) is not supported and not planned. However, it is possible to use an external 433MHz with minor modifications, if needed

Description

Beacon Mini-TX is a TX-only mini version of Super-Beacon. Mini-TX is particularly good for tracking weight-sensitive mini- and micro-drones.

The latest hardware version of Mini-TX makes is very easy to connect with PixHawk as well because it has a dedicated 6-pin socket on the board. With just two wires (UART TX and ground), it is possible to get the location data from the Mini-TX to PixHawk and make the PixHawk believe it is connected to a real GPS.

Comparison of Mini-TX to Super-Beacons:

  • Mini-TX is a TX-only beacon – it can transmit ultrasound but can’t receive it. Super-Beacons and Beacons HW v4.9 is dual-use beacons – they can receive and transmit ultrasound
  • Mini-TX is smaller and lighter: 47x42x15mm & 25g vs. 55x55x33mm & 62g (or 55x55x64mm with antenna). Size is the key advantage of Mini-TX. Without battery and housing – the bare board with transducers – it weighs just 6.4 grams
  • Battery – 250mAh vs. 1000mAh in Super-Beacons and Beacons HW v4.9. But Mini-TX has a new, more efficient ultrasonic TX module; thus, battery lifetime in TX mode is even superior to the Beacon HW v4.9
  • Tested battery lifetime with 8Hz – 96h. With a lower update rate – nearly proportionally longer
  • Mini-TX (newer hardware Ver. 2) has a micro USB (virtual UART) output for connectivity to the Dashboard or, for example, Raspberry Pi, and it also has an additional 6-pin socket for the external UART connectivity, for instance, with PixHawk
  • Mini-TX, like Super-Beacons, has a 6D IMU
  • Embedded antenna in Mini-TX – smaller size, but smaller radio coverage ~50m
  • Ultrasound signal from Mini-TX is slighter weaker than that of Super-Beacons, but it still reaches 30m. The range depends more on the ultrasound frequency than on the difference between Mini-TX and Super-Beacon
  • Mini-TX has only a 31kHz frequency. On request and for larger quantities (a few 100s of pieces), we can produce Mini-TXs with several other frequencies as well
  • Mini-TX supports license-free 915MHz ISM band (US) and license-free SRD band 868MHz (EU), i.e., the 433MHz (EU band) is not supported and not planned. However, it is possible to use an external 433MHz with minor modifications, if needed

Additional information

Frequency

915/868MHz (US/EU)

Questions and Answers


Hessam
3 years 6 months ago

Hi, I have purchased this module and need to have its 3D model to add to my design. Would you please send me a link to get it ? Thanks.

24 days 15 hours ago

https://marvelmind.com/download/ => https://marvelmind.com/pics/marvelmind_products_PDF_STEP_STL_PNG.zip

Other helpful photos, PDFs, 3D models, CAD files, STLs, STEPs, and archives:

Marvelmind products photos – many photos of different Marvelmind Robotics’ products in high resolution – ZIP archive
Marvelmind products documentation – Marvelmind products’ dimensions, mounting holes in several formats (PDF, STEP, STL, PNG) – ZIP archive

Brandon
2 years 8 months ago

Is it possible to output the location of the beacon to Pixhawk using the micro-USB port on the Mini-TX?

2 years 8 months ago

Yes, it is possible. But an external converter board must be used, for example: https://www.hobbytronics.co.uk/usb-host-serial or similar.

Mini-TX and Mini-RX are small and don’t have dedicated UART or SPI pins. Super-Beacons and Beacons HW v4.9 or Modem HW v4.9 or Super-Modem or Industrial Beacons have them.

roger mccoy
2 years 5 months ago

would this work if you upsize it to say 50x? Would it work on a drone so big you could sit it in and fly down the highway? Could it control the x & Y axis movement over a 100 miles distance?. Thanks, Roger Mc

2 years 5 months ago

We are focusing on indoor positioning and GPS denied areas. Thus, for outdoor, you better use RTK GPS.

Yes, it is possible to control X,Y,Z, but, again, within the size of the map, which is usually up to 100-200m indoor. The map would consist of multiple submaps each – up to 30m size.