Support / FAQs
¶ How much does Stratus cost?
¶ What are the features of the various Stratus receivers?
|FEATURE||STRATUS 1||STRATUS 1S||STRATUS 2||STRATUS 2S|
|Subscription Free ADS-B Weather||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|Built-in WAAS GPS||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|ADS-B Traffic - 978 MHz (UAT)||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|ADS-B Traffic - 1090 MHz (ES)||✓||✓|
|Backup Attitude (built-in AHRS)||✓||✓|
|Flight Data Recorder||✓||✓|
|Stratus Replay: Allow your iPad screen to sleep yet never miss a weather report||✓||✓||✓|
|Pressure Altitude sensor||✓|
|Compatible with ESG panel-mount ADS-B transponder||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|USB Type C Connector||✓||✓|
|Improved thermal performance: automatic fan keeps Stratus cool||✓||✓|
|All-day battery life||Over 8 hours||Over 8 hours||Over 8 hours||Over 8 hours|
|Optional remote ADS-B antenna||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|Optional remote GPS antenna||✓||✓|
|Enhanced ADS-B reception||✓||✓|
Wi-Fi security settings:
¶ Which iPads and iPhones are compatible with the Stratus receivers?
For iPads, you will need an iPad 2 or newer or any iPad Mini. For the iPhone, we strongly recommend an iPhone 5 or newer. You will need ForeFlight version 7.2 or newer.
¶ How do I connect to Stratus?
You connect to Stratus via WiFi. Each Stratus creates its own WiFi network, to which you can connect multiple iPads, iPhones, or iPod Touches.
¶ Can more than one iPad connect to Stratus?
Yes. In fact, every iOS device running ForeFlight Mobile in the cockpit can connect to Stratus and see the same weather unfold.
¶ How do I update the Firmware on my Stratus receiver?
Turn the Stratus on and then open Apple Settings, tap WiFi, and connect your iPad or iPhone to the Stratus WiFi network.
Now, open ForeFlight Mobile and go to the Devices view and tap the Stratus button. Next, tap the “Tap to Update” text on the Firmware row to begin the update. Once the update is complete, tap the “Close” button to return to ForeFlight Mobile. Please watch our Stratus: Updating Firmware video below.
NOTE: Before beginning the update process, make sure that your iPad or iPhone AND the Stratus each have enough battery power to run for at least 15 minutes. If you are unsure, plug each device in to an appropriate charger.
¶ What weather products are available?
Stratus receives and transmits to ForeFlight Mobile CONUS NEXRAD, regional high-resolution NEXRAD, METARs, TAFs, TFRs, AIRMETs, SIGMETs, NOTAMs, pilot reports, and winds/temperature aloft. Each product is nicely integrated with ForeFlight Mobile's Airports and Maps features.
¶ Can I get traffic information using a Stratus ADS-B receiver?
Yes. The first generation Stratus receives traffic on the 978 MHz (UAT) frequency and the second generation receives it on both the 978 MHz and 1090 MHz (ES) frequencies.
The traffic you see on ForeFlight Mobile is ADS-B traffic. ADS-B traffic only includes the air-to-air traffic received directly from another aircraft and traffic rebroadcast to your aircraft from an ADS-B ground tower. Air-to-air traffic reports are only reported from ADS-B Out equipped aircraft. ADS-B Out must be installed in your aircraft, and cannot be provided by a portable device like Stratus. Few aircraft are currently ADS-B Out equipped.
You will only receive ADS-B traffic from a ground tower if two things are true:
1) your aircraft, or another one nearby you, is ADS-B Out equipped, and
2) you are in communication with an ADS-B ground tower.
Remember, ADS-B traffic, even at its best, is not a complete picture of nearby traffic and is not a substitute for looking out the window when fulfilling your responsibility to see and avoid.
¶ Where should I place Stratus in my aircraft?
A snap-in mount is included with Stratus. Additionally, a suction cup mount is available for purchase from your Stratus retailer. Both the ADS-B and the GPS antennas are inside your second generation Stratus allowing for no wire operation. However both antennas can be remoted if desired which offers a wide variety of mounting options. If using the snap-in mount to place Stratus in your aircraft, the mount should be placed on the glareshield as close as practical to the pilot and copilot seats to help prevent overheating as it will be easier for Stratus to draw the cool air from the cabin through its fan. If you are using Stratus with the AHRS app Stratus Horizon, you should mount Stratus so that it is perpendicular to the back of the aircraft; parallel to the aircraft’s centerline.
¶ Does Stratus provide GPS location information?
Yes. Stratus includes a WAAS GPS receiver and will provide GPS information to ForeFlight Mobile. Since Stratus is battery operated and can operate for up to 8 hours, Stratus will keep a constant GPS signal and make that available to ForeFlight Mobile. Stratus will not provide GPS information to other applications.
¶ Do I need an external ADS-B antenna?
Most pilots will not require an external antenna and can thus operate completely "wire-free". Stratus includes a specially tuned, high-performance internal antenna that will get good reception in many aircraft. Some aircraft, however, may require an external antenna due to signal attenuation caused by the aircraft. If you find you need an external antenna, you can pick one up from Sporty's.
¶ Do I need an external GPS antenna?
The external GPS antenna is an optional accessory for your second generation Stratus. Stratus contains an internal GPS antenna that will be sufficient for many pilots. The external GPS antenna; however, provides many more options for placing Stratus in your aircraft and resolves reception issues caused by heated windshields. You may purchase an external GPS antenna.
¶ Are there any subscription fees associated with ADS-B weather?
No. ADS-B is not subscription based. Stratus does, however, require a current ForeFlight Mobile subscription, which you can purchase on our Subscription Purchase page.
¶ Is Stratus Battery Powered?
Stratus includes a battery that will provide continuous power for up to 8 hours, which contributes to making Stratus operation "wire-free" for most pilots. You can charge stratus using the included wall charger or using an accessory like the Scoshe 12V DC power adapter. Some laptop USB ports will also provide sufficient power to recharge Stratus.
¶ What version of ForeFlight Mobile is required to support the Stratus ADS-B receiver?
Version 5.1 or higher is required to support Stratus 2.
¶ Is Special Use Airspace status provided?
¶ Will Stratus’s battery charge if is both plugged-in and operating in an aircraft?
Yes, Stratus will still charge its battery when running but only if it is plugged into a high-capacity 2.1 Amp charging source and only if the battery temperate is between 0 and 40 degrees C. If it is plugged in but the battery is too hot or too cold then Stratus may continue to operate but the battery will no longer charge to protect it from damage.
¶ Does it matter what USB cable I charge Stratus with?
Yes, the included 3 foot USB cable is designed to enable optimal charging speed. Many other 3 foot USB cables contain lighter gauge wires and they will not be able to deliver as much power resulting in longer charge time. Similarly, a longer cable is not able to supply as much power as a shorter one and will also result in longer charge times.
¶ Does Stratus’s battery have a finite life?
Yes, Stratus contains a Lithium-ion battery. If stored and operated in its published temperate range its battery should last a long time and be capable of being fully discharged about 300 times before requiring service.
¶ Will Stratus charge off of a laptop?
No, laptops generally only supply up to 1 Amp of power per the USB 2.0 standard. Stratus, like an iPad, requires a 2.1 Amp power source for it to properly charge.
¶ Can I damage Stratus’s battery if I store or operate it outside of its rated ranges?
Yes, operating and storing a lithium-ion battery when it is too hot will cause permanent damage and void Stratus’s warranty. A fully charged lithium-ion battery stored at 60 C for three months can permanently lose as much as 40% of its capacity. Because of this it’s important not to leave Stratus in a hot aircraft or automobile when it’s not being used.
¶ Does Stratus work outside of the United States?
Although the GPS function will work anywhere, the Stratus receives ADS-B data from ground-based towers broadcasting on UAT (978). This service is not available outside of the United States.
¶ Can other apps use the GPS connection provided by Stratus, like the Maps app?
No. The GPS signal can only be used by apps like ForeFlight that communicate directly with Stratus.
¶ I looked on your coverage map and noticed that ADS-B is not available in all of the areas I fly. Do you know when it will be available in specific areas of the country?
The FAA expects to have full coverage in the United States by early 2014. Information regarding the location of future ADS-B stations is not shared with ForeFlight, however.
¶ Does ForeFlight Mobile work with any other ADS-B receiver?
No. Currently, we only support Stratus.
¶ How can I troubleshoot Stratus running with ForeFlight Mobile?
Hear are a few items to check:
- Make sure you are running the latest version of ForeFlight Mobile, see this on how to update
- Keep ForeFlight Mobile running and the device screen on at all times when using Stratus, when the device screen is turned off, or another application is running, ForeFlight Mobile will NOT receive Stratus data updates.
- Check the status of Stratus in the Devices view in ForeFlight Mobile. Make sure it shows 1 or more stations are being received. When you are on the ground it is common for 0 stations to be received. If you are receiving no stations when airborne, and are in the coverage area, please check the positioning of the Stratus device.
- Verify that your device's date, time, and timezone are set correctly. Use the main Settings app to check that, under the General option.
- Sometimes restarting ForeFlight Mobile can help.
- tap the home button below the screen
- double tap the home button to bring up the app switcher
- tap and hold the foreflight icon in the app switcher then tap the red delete icon that appears
¶ Does Stratus receive ADS-B weather on the ground?
Maybe. ADS-B behaves similarly to a VOR. Generally, unless you have an ADS-B station on the ground at the airport, you will need some altitude to begin receiving ADS-B broadcasts. 1000 feet AGL is usually sufficient but is still dependent on the proximity to the ADS-B stations.
¶ Does Stratus work in helicopters?
Yes, Stratus is usable in a helicopter, provided there adequate ADS-B coverage in the area you are flying to mitigate potential signal blockage due to flying at low altitudes.
¶ Can I dim the Stratus LEDs for flying at night?
Yes, you may dim or brighten the LEDs using the LED Brightness slider on the Stratus status page within ForeFlight Mobile. That can be found in the More view, under the Devices option.
¶ Does ForeFlight Mobile need to be running to receive ADS-B data?
Yes, in order for ForeFlight Mobile to receive and save weather and NOTAM data from Stratus, it must be running. If the iPad/iPhone screen is turned off using the sleep/wake button on the top of the device, ForeFlight Mobile will no longer receive ADS-B data. ForeFlight Mobile must be shown on the device screen to be able to receive data, but screen brightness can be turned down to save battery.
¶ Are there any temperature concerns when using Stratus?
Yes, Stratus will turn itself off if the battery temperature reaches -20 C (- 4 F) or + 65 C (+ 149 F) to prevent battery damage. It is designed to be operated between 0 C and 35 C. The battery is located in the bottom of the unit, so avoid placing on hot surfaces when able.
¶ Does Stratus work with other applications? What should I do after my Stratus stops working properly after using an unsupported application?
ForeFlight and Appareo do not recommend or advise using the Stratus device with unsupported third party applications that have attempted to reverse engineer the interface. If you do use Stratus with an unapproved third party application, the following instructions will be helpful in order to overcome the problems you are about to encounter. 1. Reboot your iPad after using Stratus with the unsupported application and then re-connect to the Stratus network. 2. Launch ForeFlight to resume normal Stratus operations. 3. Do not activate the unsupported application while connected to Stratus, which would then require steps one and two to assure normal operations. If you do attempt to use Stratus with an unsupported application, you will need to reboot your iPad after each use of Stratus with the unsupported application, and then re-connect to Stratus. Failure to do so has been shown to disable use of Stratus in some cases, among other issues. Unauthorized companies making claims that they "support" Stratus are in our opinion misleading. They are not endorsed or supported by AFS, LLC (the joint venture that makes the product, of which ForeFlight is a member) and therefore we cannot confirm or verify any unsupported app maker's claim to deliver a safe and reliable experience. Unsupported applications are known to: * Display inaccurate or incomplete ADS-B information. * Display inaccurate flight parameters (e.g. AHRS information). * Create a denial of service to Stratus functions.
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