[amsat-bb] Re: 10' dish radio astronomy?

Tom Clark, K3IO K3IO at verizon.net
Wed Oct 18 12:48:56 PDT 2006

You might be interested in the SRT (Student Radio Telescope) activity
initiated by the Haystack Observatory. Take a look at
http://www.haystack.edu/edu/undergrad/srt/index.html. It is based on a
7' (or larger) TVRO dish and the web site contains technical details and
suggested projects. About 100 high schools and colleges and a few
intrepid amateurs have made SRTs. All the hardware and software for the
SRT is open source. Also note the SRT bulletin board at

For folks who want to purchase SRT hardware, check out
http://www.cassicorp.com/; however I note that the last time I checked
with Cassi, their delivery times were ~6 months.

CASSI makes a nice az-el antenna mount and Haystack has also used the
Polish Alfa-Spid rotor (VE6JY and
http://www.alfaradio.ca/alfaspid.html). Both use DC motors which
provides for high torque at a slow, steady drive speed. You might be
interested in the az-el positioning controller for ~24VDC motors -- just
click on "Upgraded Ground Controller" at
While there, also pick up the Functional Block Diagram to get an idea of
the scope of the project.

By way of "truth in advertising", I have had a strong professional tie
with Haystack and their projects for 35+ years -- especially in VLBI and
Geodesy areas (see http://www.haystack.edu/), and I now serve on their
Board of Trustees, so don't expect me say anything bad!

73. Tom

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