Monitor SpaceX Rocket Launches With Software-Defined Radio

The amateur radio community has exploded with activity lately especially in the software-defined radio (SDR) area since it was found that a small inexpensive TV tuner could be wrangled to do what only expensive equipment was able to do before. …read more

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Capstan Winch Central to This All-Band Adjustable Dipole Antenna

The perfect antenna is the holy grail of amateur radio. But antenna tuning is a game of inches, and since the optimum length of an antenna depends on the frequency it’s used on, the mere act of spinning the dial …read more

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3D Print Your Next Antenna

Building antennas is a time-honored ham radio tradition. Shortwave antennas tend to be bulky but at VHF frequencies the antenna sizes are pretty manageable. [Fjkaan’s] 2 meter quadrifilar helicoidal antenna is a good example and the structure for it can …read more

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Fixing nRF24L01+ Modules Without Going (Too) Insane

nRF24L01+ module fixed about as well as it can be, by adding an appropriate capacitor on the PCB antenna, and a 1.0 uF capacitor across the power pins for good measure.

Good old nRF24L01+ wireless modules are inexpensive and effective. …read more

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The $50 Ham: A Cheap Antenna for the HF Bands

So far in the $50 Ham series, I’ve concentrated mainly on the VHF and UHF bands. The reason for this has to do mainly with FCC rules, which largely restrict Technician-level licensees to those bands. But there’s a financial component …read more

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Starlink Satellite Dish X-Rayed to Unlock RF Magic Inside

When [Kenneth Keiter] took apart his Starlink dish back in November, he did his best to explain the high-level functionality of the incredibly complex device in a video posted to his YouTube channel. It was a fascinating look at the equipment, but by his own admission, he wasn’t the right …read more

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Indoor Antennas Worthy of 007

Many ham radio operators now live where installing an outdoor antenna is all but impossible. It seems that homeowner’s associations are on the lookout for the non-conformity of the dreaded ham radio antenna. [Peter] can sympathize, and has a solution based on lessons of spycraft from the cold war.

[Peter] …read more

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“Smellicopter” drone uses live moth antenna to sniff out targets

No matter how good we humans have made something, chances are nature did it better millions of years ago. Rather than compete, it’s often better to tap into the natural version – and that’s exactly what scientists have done with the Smellicopter, a dro… Continue reading “Smellicopter” drone uses live moth antenna to sniff out targets

Literally Tearing Apart a SpaceX Starlink Antenna

While SpaceX’s constellation of Starlink satellites is nowhere near its projected final size, the company has enough of the birds zipping around in low Earth orbit to start a limited testing period they call the Better Than Nothing Beta. If you’re lucky enough to get selected, you have to …read more

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