S55W as Multi/Multi in EA PSK63 2013 Contest

I had a lot of fun last weekend in EA PSK63 Contest. Members of S55W contest team have a lot of RTTY experience but contesting with low power PSK63 is another story. We were very pleasantly surprised how 50W are just enough for a great race. And we were not so impressed with some distorted signals on the band.

EA PSK63 Contest

Call: S55W
Operator(s): VASJA, S53NW, S55O, S56G, S57LR, S59JL, S50YL, S50XX
Station: S50XX

Class: Multi-Op HP
QTH: Vogrsko
Operating Time (hrs): 24

Summary:
Band QSOs Mults
-------------------
80: 164 44
40: 276 71
20: 332 79
15: 218 69
10: 18 15
-------------------
Total: 1008 278 Total Score = 600,758

Club: Slovenia Contest Club

17 new radioamateurs ;)

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Žane, S57CT, Kristjan, S50XX and me (as official ZRS examiners) were very pleased to promote 17 new radioamateurs on 20th of February at Radioklub Ajdovš?ina S59AAN . They all passed N class exam. Congrats! Soon they will take part in another course and we’ll greet fresh bunch of full licenced hams on all bands!

Raspberry Pi as rtl_tcp server (“remote radio sampler” for SDR)

Radioamateur high speed data links in my area are underutilized :) We have several webcams (capable of streaming H.264) , some servers, APRS gateways, a very busy Skimmer connected to dx cluster network … but all this rarely generate more than couple of Mbit/s. This evening I combined Raspberry Pi with USB DVB-T dongle into high performance network traffic generator. The initial idea was different :) I wanted to experiment with SDR stuff on R_Pi. I compiled rtl-sdr from osmocomSDR (http://sdr.osmocom.org/trac/wiki/rtl-sdr) . My USB DVB-T fob is a Sencor SDB522RT , a simple gadget that works well under various operating systems. After plugging-in the USB dongle I started rtl_tcp (with parameter -a and IP address of R_Pi … otherwise rtl_tcp defaults to localhost IP) and fired up SDR# on Windows7 machine. Selecting “RTL-SDR/TCP” as a source and configuring IP address of R_Pi before pressing Play was enough to connect SDR software to remote “converter”. Sample rate of 2048000 samples per second (about 2 MHz “window”) generates about 33 Mbit/s or 4.1 MB/s of network traffic … and this could be used in performance network testing :)

Raspberry PI with rtl_tcp feeding data to SDR#

Raspberry PI with rtl_tcp feeding data to SDR#

Upper right window is a SSH (terminal) session with R_Pi .

 

Fighting inverter noise

Last EUHFC contest from my summer location JN65UX was not eco-friendly. I don’t have grid power here (yes, I’m posting this from nice cool porch ;) ). The cabin is solar powered at for least two decades now but this is still an ongoing project. I pulled out old 1,5 kW chinese generator because my new inverter make all radioamateur band useless. Normaly I work QRP directly on 12V house wiring, but EUHFC doesn’t have this category. So for 12 (plus…) hours I polluted the peaceful wood with monotone brbrbrbrbrbrbrrrr.

It’s time to find a solution to RFI inverter problems and first results from today are very good.

Before the noise covered all bellow S 9 +40 dB on 80m band
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With filter … wow … I can follow the S5 net on 3,605 MHz :) … 160m is still useless, 80m could go for local traffic and big contests, 40m also …. but 20m and up are completly clean!
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Not for producion use :) 220 V contacts are exposed during the tests!
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my Raspberry Pi arrived yesterday

I ordered Raspberry Pi (Farnell) on 1st of March, 2012 … and little creature arrived yesterday (29th of May, 2012). I have rather busy schedule this week but few minutes were strapped here and there to first switch on the toy :) There is no remote access configured on debian image and I connected RPi to the only HDMI display in the household. Looks amazingly well  on 45″ monitor ;) With ssh daemon started and powered with HTC smartphone charger now runs as a “headless” server on home network.