Testing The Beacon

On Tuesday July 26 the radios that will be used as communication devices on MURSAT1 arrived.  We will use off-the-shelf amateur radio equipment that will be case modded inside the TubeSat shell.  So we had these radios in our hands and that is something really tempting for children 25+.

Christian has a working setup of the beacon transmitter so we figured a way to radio-test the beacon.  Use the radio transmitter’s microphone, hold it close enough to the beacon speaker and transmit the signal across the table using a free frequency.  The receiver was hooked up to a netbook which ran a copy of fldigi to decode the CW beacon.  The experiment was conducted and supervised by licensed radio amateur Bernhard (call sign OE6EOF).  Here’s the result:  Beacon Test.

You can replay that to fldigi and should get the following result:


The N could be called the header and is currently used to tell whoever is listening how long a “.” and a “-” are (which is of importance for software trying to decode CW).  Following you find Bernhard’s call sign and next is a counter – mainly used to test counting and base 32 encoding.  The F3M represents the number 5996.  The last character is a checksum.  Now, the checksum here should be G, but a bug in the current implementation calculated an A. Beacon specs and further details will be published soon (probably on our Wiki).


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