SAT Auto Tracking simple rotator controller


Rotator controller with Microchip PIC16F88.

 

You can choose one of three types of position sensors shown below.

   Built-in 10Bit A/D converter:

   Most economical. Satisfactory to most of your needs. Ten bucks for Auto Tracking.

   12-Bit A/D converter (MCP3208):

   For precision operation.

   External:

   For future expansion, such as rotary encoder.


SAT tracking software.

   This tracking controller keeps looking for strings of AZxxxx and ELxxxx out of sent string by

a SAT tracking software.  exxxf is numeric characters which shows direction in degree.

   I am using eNova for Windowsf.

Some other software might be operational with this auto tracker, but not tried yet.
 

Hardware

   Photo shown below is my tracking controller built in a plastic case.

   Itfs my sloppiness. Metal case shall be recommended to prevent RF interference.

   12-Bit A/D shown on the photo is not necessary in most of cases.


Circuit board Schematic diagram


Wiring Diagram

Description of the circuit

Download Firmware  

   Extract eAutTrack.hexf out of downloaded zip file which is the firmware program file.

   Program your firmware, PIC16F88, with a PIC programmer.

  

Download Application, Track Parameter Handler eTrackPrm.exef.

System requirements: Windows 95 or later.

Extract downloaded zip file.  Double click  'TrackPrm.exe' to execute.

Operation of the application. Test and setup the firmware.


Sample photo of the application.

Only Azimuth: 0  360,  Elevation: 0  90 degree are written on the tracking table.

[AutoCalc.] button will calculate and fill all the intermediate values.

Then, [Firm Write] button programs tracking table data in the EEPROM of your firmware.



Operation of  Auto Tracking Controller.

    Close the application eTrackPrm.exef, prior to execute Nova for Windows, otherwise Nova can

not open the COM port to send strings to your auto tracking controller.

   Execute Nova for Windows and choose eAntenna rotator setupf in the eAuto Trackingf menu.

   Click Interface tab.

   Choose NovaComm1 or EasyComm1 of Rotator Interface. Either one is operational.

   Serial Port must be the COM No. of your PC.

   Click Advance tab.

   Baud rate must be 9600.

   Update interval is 1000 in my case.  Auto tracking controller ignores strings sent by Nova until

your antenna reaches destination.

With Above, Start/Stop Auto Tracking of Nova for Windows will be effective. 

External position sensor.


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