The FUNcube Dongle is a simple USB receiver covering approximately 60MHz to 1,700MHz. FUNcube dongle support is in the Beta kit 1.4 build 770 and higher. http://www.funcubedongle.com
The SDR-RADIO.com software provides full support for the dongle including:
- Setting frequency,
- Satellite tracking,
- Doppler compensation and
- Rotator support - data for external rotator software supplied via DDE.
Later the console will include more FM bandwidths and demodulation of common digital modes used on satellites.
From the Windows pane in the ribbon bar select FUNcube Dongle.
All available dongle parameters can be updated, for example receive frequency and IF gain.
If the signal display in the waterfall / spectrum scope is excessively high use the Sound / Recording window to adjust the soundcard input level.
The FUNcube Dongle is part of AMSAT-UK’s FUNcube satellite project. The Dongle is designed to allow anyone to try their hand at reception of satellites like FUNcube anywhere on Earth as part of a global educational collaboration project collecting information from space. http://www.funcubedongle.com/?page_id=2
A problem with satellite reception is the Doppler effect; the received signal must be offset in frequency to compensate for shift caused by the Doppler effect (the perceived change in frequency resulting from the relative movement of the source and receiver).
The built-in satellite tracking provides:
- A map of the current satellite's track drawn over the earth's surface.
- The observer and satellite's position.
- The Range-Rate which is combined with the receive frequency to calculate the frequency compensation which must be applied to the data received from the dongle.
Doppler compensation is applied to the IQ data received from the dongle using a high-precision numerically controlled oscllator (NCO).
The software also provides optional support for rotator software which uses a DDE server. The formats available are Nova and Orbitron which cover the most popular software programs.
A pass prediction display is included in the program options.