In SDR we trust !

Software Defined Radio (SDR for short) is a new approach to design and deploy communication systems. It basically boils down to implement in software functions that are commonly found on ASICs (Application Specific Integrated Circuit). This is made possibly thanks for the ever-growing power of today’s CPU and also to the increasing popularity of FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Arrays).

In the SCS Programme, we believe that SDR is an important technology for space communications. Our experimental lab is equipped with cutting edge SDR technology such as the Vector Signal Transceiver from National Instruments. Another example is our “all digital”  low earth orbit satellite Earth station that has been designed by students and faculty staff. Thanks to its SDR-based weather receiver, we observe in real-time weather conditions when NOAA POES satellites such as NOAA-18 fly over Europe.

So yes, in SDR we trust !

NOAA18 flying over Europe (southbound) on the 19th of September, 2013
NOAA18 flying over Europe (southbound) on the 19th of September, 2013. Reception, demodulation and image decoding done on a NI USRP 2920 + LabView. Still some margin for improvement on the decoding side.