Date of application: 02/19/2023
Project description: Construction of headless (ethernet/web -controlled) ARISS (Amateur Radio on the International Space Station) HamVideo receiver for installation in the Goonhilly-99 ground station (3.7m X/Y S-band/X-band antenna.)
Goonhilly-99 was successfully used as a main ground station for HamVideo in school contacts during Tim Peake's Principia mission in 2016 and also assisted with HamVideo downlinks from many other schools contacts from the International Space Station until the failure of the HamVideo hardware in 2018.
With the recent repair of the HamVideo transmitter unit and the planned re-launch of the hardware to the ISS in April 2023, Goonhilly Earth Station has again offered best-effort availability of the Goonhilly-99 antenna, with an RF S-band interface.
This project therefore aims to assemble a HamVideo receiver. The receiver shall primarily be based around the Minitiouner V2 hardware and LongMynd software, hosted on a Raspberry Pi 4.
An SDR shall also be integrated to provide a concurrent spectrum view, and potentially the capability for I/Q capture, and I/Q replay in a loop-back mode for receiver testing outside of active passes.
The receiver system shall be designed for remote operation, to be operated remotely over a VPN through SSH/Web interfaces.
The receiver is intended to be integrated into the "HamVideo Merger" distributed ground-station system used to provide error-free video to ARISS School Contacts, and so shall also provide a reference platform for the integration of the Longmynd receiver software and dependent projects (eg. Portsdown, Ryde) into the HamVideo Merger system.
All hardware and software built/developed in this project shall be open-source (with the exception of passwords/private keys), and so shall be available for others wishing to assemble their own similar system.
One or more CQ-TV articles shall be authored at a suitable time(s) to document the construction, integration, and operation of the receiver.
Integration of the receiver into the ground station may require on-site assistance by other BATC members, for which future bursary applications may be completed.
Disclosure: Phil Crump is an employee of Goonhilly Earth Station Ltd. Construction of this receiver will be done in personal time, however some work required for integration with the ground station may be undertaken by Goonhilly Earth Station Ltd. The receiver may be demonstrated and discussed by Goonhilly Earth Station Ltd., however in all cases BATC would be given due credit for support of the project.
Benefits to ATV community: Provision of hardware to allow the Goonhilly-99 antenna to be used to support ARISS school contacts, both in the UK, Europe, and around the world.
Provision of hardware to aid the ARISS organisation with potential debugging / troubleshooting of the HamVideo downlink.
Construction and documentation of example hardware for reception of ISS HamVideo downlink (CQ-TV article, community availability of all hardware/software developed/used.)
Further development of the Longmynd software (used in Portsdown/Ryde), in particular for HamTV reception.
Further mutually-advantageous collaboration between BATC and Goonhilly Earth Station (author's opinion.)
Total amount of funding requested: £296
Details of costs / items: 2x Schaffner IEC EMI Filters: £30
2x Meanwell RS-25-5 Power Supply: £22
SMA RF Splitter: £20
Raspberry Pi 4 + microSD card + FLIRC Case: £80
Minitiouner parts from BATC Shop: £62
Other Minitiouner components: £10
2U 390mm Steel Rack Box: £62
Professionally printed BATC logo/label decals/stickers for box: £10
Other sources of funding: LimeSDR Mini donated previously by Lime / ESA.
Non-essential extras funded personally by M0DNY:
- Power Supply management board
- Front Switches/Indicators
- Front touchscreen
Minor expenditures funded personally by M0DNY:
- Wiring / Cabling
- Board / box mounting hardware (bolts, standoffs, etc.)
Interfacing work funded by Goonhilly Earth Station.
Timescales / Milestones: Soft requirement for assembly and basic functionality: Demonstration of functionality at ARISS International Meeeting: Late April 2023
Hard (but unconfirmed date) requirement for assembly and installation in Goonhilly-99 ground station: Repaired HamVideo on-orbit commissioning: May 2023 (subject to SpaceX launch of Axiom Mission 2 with John Shoffner, who is expected to conduct the commissioning)
Hard requirement for Operation: Support of UK ARISS School Contact in Broadstairs, Kent - October 2023.
Look forward to the future ARISS activity!