Monday, August 6, 2012

Monitor Curiosity with Cheap SDR ?

Perhaps you have read about hams using cheap USB TV tuner dongles as a basis for software defined radio.

It’s a very neat project that opens the door to a whole bunch of radio experimentation.

Here is a hack-a-day blog that provides a pretty good getting started guide. It includes the ins and outs of setting up the GNU radio software.

Once you have that going, give it a test drive:

---------- Forwarded message ----------
>From: Trevor .
Date: Mon, Aug 6, 2012 at 4:47 PM
Subject: [FUNcube] 437 MHz - Curiosity - Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Frequencies
To: FUNcube Group

My thanks to someone who emailed me earlier this evening.

Curiosity transmits around 401 MHz but the transponder on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) has a CCSDS Forward Frequency in the 437 MHz Amateur-Satellite Service band.

We well know that 435-438 MHz is shared with the Military but 432-438 MHz is of course a Space SAR Band and I understand General Space usage extends beyond that.

This paper describes the operation of the MRO (see page 34 onwards)

73 Trevor M5AKA

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