23 Oct 2012

Low cost weak signal work from VLF to light

Well, I do get about a bit - in the spectrum that is!
  1. At the moment I am running a test transmission on 8.977188kHz (precisely) to G3WCD who is trying to detect my VLF beacon in a 22uHz (yes micro-Hertz) bandwidth over several days. Chris is 32km away.
  2. I am running WSPR on 28MHz with 200mW and, for the second day running, my QRP signals have reached Australia.
  3. In 2 weeks time (when the grandchildren have gone home) I will be resuming my over-the-horizon QRSS tests on 481THz (red light) using my high power beacon and more sensitive detector. The signal is too weak to see by eye, yet the sensitive kit can detect it.
All three of these have one thing in common: the circuitry to do them all is very very simple and the kit cost just a few pounds to build.
Over-the-horizon 481THz optical signal from G4HJW last winter
In each case though the processing power of a PC is used to help extract weak signals from deep in the noise. Luckily the software in each case is absolutely free: Spectran and Spectrum Lab for VLF and optical frequency detection and WSPR software for the WSPR tests.

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