|Frequency:||438.625 MHz (71.9 Hz CTCSS)|
|Output power:||10 Watt|
|Antenna:||Diamond X5000, 45 meter high|
|Location:||Technical University Eindhoven, Electrical Engineering building|
The purpose of the experiment is to build a station that, fully automatically
makes audio news bulletins from hamradio clubs available in Eindhoven
As far as I know, the automatic distribution of bulletins is new;
they are transmitted elsewhere, but that's usually manual.
Moreover, those transmissions often block repeaters, which frequently are not suitable (timers, etc). This station does not use a repeater, and therefore doesn't block one either. (the antenna is shared with PI6EHN, the 23 cm repeater of Eindhoven).
|Tuesday||21.00||ARRL Audio News|
|Wednesday||21.00||RSGB News Broadcast|
|Saturday||14.00||ARRL Audio News|
|Saturday||15.00||RSGB News Broadcast|
|Sunday||14.00||ARRL Audio News|
|Sunday||15.00||RSGB News Broadcast|
In addition to the schedule above, it is possible to have a bulletin transmitted on request, using DTMF commands. The following commands are available:
|*2#||ARRL Audio News|
|*3#||RSGB News Broadcast|
|*5#||PA0DLO satellietbulletin sunday eve 22.00|
The creation of an automatic station wasn't easy.
Software typically expects users to click on buttons, which obviously
was not possible here.
This station uses software that allows fully automatic operation
without operator intervention.
The software also automatically fetches and refreshes the audio bulletins; this wasn't always easy as some web designers clearly didn't have automatic operation in mind.
Also, the audio formats gave a few challenges. MPEG 2 layer 3, also known as 'mp3' is preferred as it gives good audio quality with the low bitrate of 16 kbit/sec, certainly for narrowband FM. Realaudio format is also possible (thanks to the Software Development Kit of Real Networks), but this format doesn't add much functionality to the bulletins and somethimes makes things more difficult.
The experiment is located at ESRAC, at the Technical University Eindhoven. For the construction and the operation, I owe many thanks to ESRAC, PA0SHY, PA0IB, PE1BEY, PA0SON, PD0HOT, VK3ESM, Matthew Campbell, packet comittee van de VERON afdeling A13, Amateur Radio Museum Jan Corver, and many others.
Here is a picture-tour (big!).
73, Geert Jan PE1HZG
mail: pi8ehv (at) qsl.net