Showing posts from June, 2020

New Technology for 2020 ~ Life after Field Day

Moving forward by 64 Years from 1956
July 6, 2020 ~ An SDR in your Garage!
A regular reader to this blog shared that he is developing a greater use of a Raspberry Pi to assume more of the workload in a configuration similar to my RADIG.

In the RADIG the RPi3 does the Software part of the SDR. But everything else remains as "analog blocks".
One of those blocks is the USB Synthesizer/controller from SDR-Kits LLC in the UK. Essentially this block is a small board with a ATTiny 45 (or 85) microcontroller and a Si570 along with some voltage regulators and other small components. This board connects to the RPi3 via USB and responds to I2C commands so that at least three important functions are accomplished (there may be more).

First is changing the frequency of the Si570 whose output is at 4X. Downstream is a 74AC74 on the main RADIG Board that creates two quadrature LO signals at the operating frequency (read divide by 4). Secondly commands from Quisk like PTT are translated via a swit…

New Technology for 2020 ~ Software Defined Radios for Field Day

Preparing for Field Day ~2020June 27, 2020 ~ FD is Here!

We had an amazing FD with six total contacts including one on FT-8. I know you are snickering; but that is the most contacts I have ever made on any FD in the last 61 years!

I spent my whole allotted hour for the operation with 25 minutes wasted on my tripod Vertical antenna. It just wasn't hearing anything so I simply tapped into my 40M Delta Loop and then the spectrum lit up. Thus that is six contacts in about 35 minutes. As I always say -- the antenna is more important than the rig. More proof of that today.
But there were some proof of concept pieces to my FD (Fun Day) foray. First and foremost I now have a way to totally power my RADIG from 12 VDC including the RPi3 and the 7" HDMI. Secondly I forced myself to permanently mount the RADIG on a metal plate versus the haphazard bread board. So those were two very positive outcomes resulting from FD.
Thirdly if I would really want to operate portable say from an outdoor pa…