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APRS Station PHGR Calculator with examples of results...

You can use this page to generate the PHGR code to put in your APRS station's beacon text. PHG stands for Power Height Gain. Some APRS software uses the code to display a coverage circle around your station showing what coverage you should have under normal conditions. This code is especially important for I-Gates and Digipeaters for coverage mapping. Just type in your actual values over the samples and press calculate to get yours.

Radio TX Power Watts
Antenna Gain dBd
Beacons TX Per Hour
Comment (Optional)
Height Above Local Terrain (AGL, not ASL)
Antenna direction

Calculated beacon text based on your input:

PHGR Calculator © 1999-2008 Andy Pritchard, M0CYP

In some programs, like UI-View, just copy and paste the result at the beginning of your beacon comment field under station setup. If you are using this code with a standalone TNC Digipeater, a properly formated LT buffer line will incorporate the PHG code as this example will show: "LT 2 !2749.45NS08215.60W_PHG74606/W3,FLn Riverview, FL".

Shown below is an example of how AGWTracker decodes the PHG code based on the questions asked above and draws a coverage circle around our KG4YZY-10/-11 APRS Digi & I-Gate site in Port Richey, FL. It is relatively accurate, given that at 200ft above ground level, it plots about 15-20 miles radius coverage (approximately 4/3's earth with the offset antenna) for the site. At the same time, we can see overlap with other nodes around ours.


But how accurate is PHG calculations or range based on these simple questions? Pretty good in most cases. PHG clearly cannot see mountains or other obstructions. Comparing it to a coverage plot generated by Radio Mobile, which does take terrain into account (pretty flat in Florida), these two do match pretty well as show below.


Since APRS is a packet radio mode that requires a bit more signal to maintain full quieting, the area in solid light blue is where coverage will carry on this map mobile, which is about -78.5dBm RSSI. You'll note that the area in question matches up pretty close to the coverage map displayed above from AGW Tracker from the PHG code.

We hope these examples show the importance of PHG, and how useful the information can be. Still have more questions about PHG or digipeater setup in the New Paradigm? Just contact us, we're always happy to help.

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