Scalable design of software defined receiver gives opportunity to use multiple antenna array for signal reception from Cubesat satellites. Cubesat development teams around the word are limited by signal reception from their home stations or by volunteers who contribute by received data sets. These amateur LEO satellite reception methods can easily be improved by the use of multiple fixed antenna array and beam-forming algorithm on reception station.
Satellite Observer allow tracking of satellites and automatic signal capture for subsequent decoding with the aid of some instruments in MLAB project. Satellite Observer helps solving typical issues with signal reception from small sized satellites with limited transmission power.
Satellite transmission power of Cubesats (as example) is so small a high gain directional antenna is typically needed for proper signal reception and telemetry recording. This makes necesary satellite tracking and accurate orientation of the antenna in real time.
Obtaining satellite orbit parameters in order to orientate the antenna require hard calculations and precise measurement althought it is easily miss predicted. Besides, the error increases with orbit proximity to Earth as Satellite Observer is based upon low Earth orbit satellite technology.
In the situation described, if we do not have a steerable directional antenna we can use a multi omnidirectional antenna creating a synthetic directional antenna numerically.
The main objective of Satellite Observer is the autonomous capture of signal from small satellites and the subsequent decoding. It keeps track of the trajectory, continuously updated of Doppler shift and tunes the receiver.