GPS and digital modes

Many digital modes (such as WSPR and FT8) require reasonably price clocks which may be assisted by GPS technology.

Hans G0UPL  observes that WSPR does not require GPS. However:

1) WSPR requires precise frequency, the transmission must be within the 200Hz WSPR sub-band.

2) WSPR requires precise timing: transmissions start on the 2nd second of even minutes, +/- a few seconds. An ordinary crystal or worse still, the ceramic resonator on some Arduinos, will not provide sufficient timing accuracy to run WSPR for long.

A GPS is a very convenient and easy way to achieve both of these objectives. On the Ultimate3S kit the latitude and longitude are also converted to Maidenhead Locator which is encoded live, into each WSPR transmission. Something that is necessary if you want to use WSPR for tracking something (ship, balloon) for example the Canadian C3 expedition

Speaking of which: Jim N2NXZ’s U3S-22 balloon (running modified Ultimate3S firmware) reached Kazakhstan today. For the second time! It’s already been flying for 23 days, at a little over 9,000m altitude, and completed one world circumnavigation! See for details and live tracking (using WSPR) during daytime. Big congratulations to Jim!


KD8CEC version 1.061 with WSPR released

Ian KD8CEC has released  Version 1.061 of his µBITx firmware.  You can read more about it here.  This version provides support for WSPR and has several bug fixes.
You can download Hex files and source code for compilation in the Arduino IDE from github here:
Ian says he is currently experimenting with various applications for the uBITX.

uBITx gets WSPR in Firmware

Ian Lee, KD8CEC,  has released a new (Beta) version of his µBITX Firmware CEC Version 1.04.   This version adds the WSPR TX mode.  It still needs wider testing before a release version is posted.  Ian is looking for beta testers who have a µBITX, can install his firmware and his PC Software – uBITx Manager that allows for easy configuration of firmware settings, and know how to use WSPR.

The WSPR function has been squeezed into the small programming space of the µBITX (32Mb) including the station callsign, location(2alpha, 2 number), dB and frequency information to be used for transmission.

As a field portable unit, you only need to bring the µBITX and antenna  to transmit WSPR as all information is already contained in the rig (no computer is required).  You do not need to make any modifications to your uBITX to use WSPR.

For more information, visit Ian’s website at: