Tracking

 

 

 


 

Introduction

On this page there is information about:

 

Checklist

Console

  • Start your radio - AirSpy, SDRplay, NetSDR+Downconverter, ...
     

Satellite Tracking

  • Options (refer to the Options page):
    • Set your home location - indicated with a  marker.
    • Enable Doppler correction (used for frequency correction).
    • If using a rotator make sure it is configured (DDE, Nova or Orbitron).
  • Select a satellite (below).
  • Enable satellite tracking - the first button in the Home pane of the ribbon bar.
     

 

 


 

Selecting A Satellite

Press the Select button in the Home pane of the ribbon bar, the Select Satellite window is displayed. By default all satellite definitions in your TLE data files are available (see Options), restrict this list by favourite definition or visibility. Filter the list by entering text in the Filter field - this is case-insensitive.

Highlight an entry in the list, then press Select.

Satellite List

Add your selected (current) satellite to the Satellite List in the ribbon bar by pressing Add Current. The satellite list is a convenient way of quickly accessing your most frequency used satellites.

Frequencies

For the current satellite you define a list of frequencies (both receive and transmit) and optionally a home URL. Press Organise to display the definitions for the current satellite. Define as many entries as required.

The ribbon bar is updated with these definitions when the satellite selection changes.

Auto Apply

Check the Auto apply 1st entry options to load the first entry in the receive and/of transmit list when a satellite is selected. If you use this option then you will not need to set the receiver to the correct mode and frequency, something easily forgotten.

In this example Receive is enabled.

 

 

Automatic Scheduler

This option enables the tracking of and switching between more than one satellite.

Example

There are three main satellites used for APT weather images: NOAA 15, 18 and 19. Each transmits APT on a different frequency, so ideally the software:

  • Changes frequency when a satellite becomes visible,
  • Updates the rotator information to tracking the satellite,
  • Priorities reception if two or more satellites are visible at the same time.

Starting

Select Automatic Scheduler from the ribbon bar's Home pane - the Automatic Scheduler pane is displayed. The contents of the pane are initially empty because you haven't defined a scheduler, so click the Schedule button to display the Schedule window.

The Satellites list is populated from the Satellite List in the ribbon bar.

  • Refresh - adds new entries.
  • Delete - removes selected entries.
  • The order in the list is also the priority ranking.

To filter the passes select a minimum pass elevation, for example 10 degrees.

Priority

When two or more satellites are visible at the same time the satellite with the highest priority takes precedence. Lower priority passes will be truncated and may even be removed from the list if no longer visible.

Switching

Use this option to switch to the next pass before the satellite is visible - this is important if using a rotator as a rotator may typically require up to 60 seconds to change position.

Operation

When you select On in the Automatic Schedule window the list is refreshed, showing passes for the previous one hour and next twenty-four hours. In addition, you see the text Auto Schedule ✓ is shown in the main window.

The list is refreshed every hour, so you can leave your system unattended for as long as needed.

 

Passes

Use the Passes window (selected from the view pane of the ribbon bar) to display the next passes for one or more satellites.

You select either:

  • A specific satellite,
  • The current satellite, or
  • All satellites in the Satellite List.

Use the Min elev drop-down to filter out passes with very low peak elevations.

Use the slider under the map to see the satellite's footprint at any part of the currently selected pass.

 

External Radio

This software supports an external radio such as the FT-991, IC-706 or any other radio which can be controlled via a serial port.

The radio display is selected from the View pane of the ribbon bar.

The window tracks the radio's frequency and optionally applies Doppler correction for the current satellite.

Do NOT start a radio in this window and start the External Radio built into the console window - they will conflict with each other!

To Do

The external radio support will be extended to provide full tracking between transmit (radio) and receive (SDR) frequency, as part of this a more advanced display will be written. This is planned for 2018.