Our objective in this project was to design an Antenna/Transmitter module to communicate with Low Earth Orbiting (LEO) amateur Satellites in the sky. We based our design specifically for the OSCAR satellites AO-51, FO-29, AO-27, and FO-20.
System Hardware and Software Design Overview:
The overall System Hardware and Software components can be summarised as below:
- Antenna array for transmitting and receiving radio signals.
- Horizontal and vertical rotators.
- Relay circuits for directional control of horizontal and vertical rotators.
- Transformers to step down the AC power supply to 24V DC.
- Microcontroller to interfere with the relay circuit and the computer software.
- Coaxial cables, power cables, CAT5 cables, serial cables etc.
- Joystick for manual control override of the antenna array.
- Radio for signal transmission and reception.
- Modem/TNC for encoding/decoding data packets.
- Adjustable DC power supplies to power upthe Radio, Modem and Microcontroller.
- Amplifiers for the relay circuit.
- Amplifiers for Signal Amplification.
- Client side software for broadcasting co-ordinates to the server and interfacing with satellite coordinate software.
- Server side software for controlling the antenna array.
- Terminal software to connect to the TNC/modem and monitor dataflow.
- Assembly software for programming the microcontroller.
- Satellite co-ordinate tracking software.
Source: The University of Utah
Authors: Junsung cho | Vinh Pham | Suresh Subasinghe