Receivers for Radio Telescopes
Below are examples of SDRs and traditional radio receivers that are used for radio astronomy and satellite observing.
Software-Defined Radio (SDR) Hardware
- SDRs based on Realtek RTL2832U and Raphael Micro R820T Digital Video Broadcasting Terrestrial (DVB-T)
Receivers using USB
- 2+ MHz capture bandwidth
- The RTL2832U streams 8-bit I+Q data into the PC using USB.
- Frequency Range (approximate) 25MHz - 1750MHz
- Female MCX Antenna Connector
- Very low cost ~$20
- Low cost SDR to learn about using a SDR with software
- In the USA NooElec is a good source for the SDR receivers & up converter.
- Antenna Scanner Ant-Base 30-1300 Mhz by Antennacraft, includes 50 feet of RG-6
- FM trap is used to remove the strong FM stations from overloading the SDR.
- Radio Shack FM trap, See the frequency response in the reviews.
- MCM Electronics FM trap
DVB-T (R820T) with SDR# V188.8.131.523 at 28 MHz showing the CB and 10 meter Ham bands using the Scanner Ant-Base 30-1300 Mhz by Antennacraft and Radio Shack FM trap. Notice the CW transmissions at the center-right of the bottom blue spectrogram widow. Click on the above screen for full resolution screen capture.
- Start using the DVB-T (R820T) with SDR# software before trying other software.
- A good overview of the
SDR# install process with RTLSDR
- First use the quick installation script (sdr-install.zip PC bat file) on SDR#
downloads to download the files to your pC.
- Next use Zadig to configure the PC USB driver.
- Radio Astronomy Projects with the DVB-T (R820T)
DVB-T (R820T) with SDR# V184.108.40.2060 at 1,200 MHz showing the solar radio emission from the Itty Bitty Radio Telescope LNB output. Notice the 6 dB rise in signal strength (yellow band in the bottom blue spectrogram widow) as the radio dish is positioned across the Sun. The spectrogram window vertical axis is time and the horizontal axis is frequency. Click on the above screen for full resolution screen capture.
- Other Sources of Information
- Airspy SDR
- A new SDR expected in 2014 with a 10 MHz capture bandwidth.
- With an up converter it may make a great Jupiter and solar spectrum analyzer for 18 MHz to 28 MHz.
- Other radio astronomy uses include 1420.4 MHz hydrogen observations
- Used with the LNB (950 MHz to 1450 MHz) output of the
Itty Bitty Radio Telescope.
- Yahoo! Groups Airspy
- RFSpace lowest cost SDR.
- 196 KHz capture bandwidth
- Yahoo! Groups SDR-IQ
- FUNcube SDR for satellite observing
Software-Defined Radio (SDR) Software
Digital Signal Processing (DSP)
Traditional Receivers for Radio Astronomy
© 1998-2014 David Haworth