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Re: Satellite tracking programming ideas



Ham Radio Deluxe has a satellite component that does full doppler
tuning, and it ought to be added to this discussion. I believe it
works the same way as described below. However, it has a 'transmit'
button which, in many circumstances, needs to be pushed to provide
reliable operation. I believe under other circumstances, one can use
the PTT on a transmitting radio to indicate a transmit.

There's a trade-off here in two-radio operation. HRD does not require
a restart when switching modes from U/V to V/U (and v. v.); however,
it does require the software transmit. SatPC32 will allow you to use
the PTT switch on the transmitting radio to indicate transmit for the
doppler tuning, but you need to restart the program when going from
U/V to V/U.

HRD does have one feature that I have always really liked, and that I
would love to see added to any other program with doppler tuning. It
is common to have these programs indicate the groundstation frequency,
which of course the radio should read. HRD also (or instead?) shows
the frequency *at the satellite*. From a user's standpoint this is
much more useful: it tells you if you're off the band edges of the
transponder, and if two users have this information, they can compare
it. (I once early in my use of linear transponders asked the person I
was chatting with what frequency their software said they were on on
the bird, and he was quite perplexed. I've since realized that most
software doesn't provide this information.)

Anyway, that one piece of info would, to my mind, be a great use of
the SatPC32 real estate. Perhaps it could be the subject of another
toggle switch, like the one that switches between AOS countdown and
UTC.

In any case, a big thank-you to the folks who work on these projects.
You are an invaluable addition to our corner of the hobby.

73, Bruce
VE9QRP



On Jan 18, 2008 3:16 PM, Erich Eichmann <erich.eichmann@t-online.de> wrote:
> Hello Phil,
> you wrote:
> > This requires some manual intervention in that I have to stop the
> > automatic tracking, turn the knob and then restart the tracking. This
> > could take a
> > few seconds which would mean that the tracking could be a few seconds
> > behind.
> > The alternative is to click on an up / down tuning arrow which will stop
> > the tracking and adjust the received frequency. Clicking on a restart
> > button
> > would restart the tracking. I think that's the way satpc32 works.
> >
>
>
> SatPC32 works similar as Instant Tune (see Anthony Monteiro's detailed
> answer):
> With SSB sats the program polls the RX VFO once per second. If the result is
> equal with the previous one the user hasn't moved the VFO knob or tuned the
> frequencies via mouse or keyboard. Then the program can update the
> frequencies for Doppler correction if necessary.
>
> If the values are different the user has moved the knob or tuned the radio
> via mouse or keyboard. The program then postpones a possible Doppler
> correction.  It waits until it gets two equal values again (that means the
> user has stopped moving the knob). Then it calculates the frequency change
> the user made and recalculates and sets the new TX frequency like your
> program does and automatically continues with Doppler correction.
>
> So, no manual intervention is necessary.
>
> The program updates the radio frequencies for Doppler correction when the
> higher one of both frequencies has changed by a certain amount of Hertz.
> This "interval"  can be selected separately for SSB and FM sats (typically
> 50 - 100 Hz with SSB and 300 - 500 Hz with FM sats).
>
> Good luck with your project.
>
> 73s, Erich, DK1TB
>
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Phil" <phillor@telstra.com>
> To: <amsat-bb@amsat.org>
> Sent: Friday, January 18, 2008 8:26 AM
> Subject: [amsat-bb] Satellite tracking programming ideas
>
>
> > Thank you for reading this.
> >
> > I'm currently marooned because of flood water, and likely to be so for at
> > least another week, so to pass some time I decided to upgrade my satellite
> > tracking program. Disappointingly, playing with the current satellites in
> > this country is pointless so the programming exercise is purely academic.
> >
> > Originally, my tracking program displayed the link frequencies but I
> > decided
> > that was unnecessary since the radio has a perfectly good display itself.
> > So
> > to make frequency corrections, due to hardware errors, or to listen to
> > another part of the downlink I simply used the radio's tuning knob. The
> > program detected that the receiver's frequency had changed and calculated
> > a
> > new uplink frequency.
> >
> > This requires some manual intervention in that I have to stop the
> > automatic
> > tracking, turn the knob and then restart the tracking. This could take a
> > few
> > seconds which would mean that the tracking could be a few seconds behind.
> > The alternative is to click on an up / down tuning arrow which will stop
> > the
> > tracking and adjust the received frequency. Clicking on a restart button
> > would restart the tracking. I think that's the way satpc32 works.
> >
> > I've probably got too much time on my hands and both methods seem to work
> > equally well. Does one method have an advantage over the other?
> >
> > The update interval has to be fairly short so that a manual frequency
> > change
> > can be quickly detected. I'm currently updating the radio based on time.
> > The
> > alternative is to update based on frequency, say every time the higher
> > frequency changes by 20Hz. This would lessen the number of radio updates
> > during periods where the Doppler effect is at a minimum but does it matter
> > if the radio is undated unnecessary? The rotator bearing is updated every
> > ten degrees but that's to lessen mechanical fatigue.
> >
> > Regards,
> > Phil.
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Sent via AMSAT-BB@amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.
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> >
>
>
> _______________________________________________
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