JAERO: A RTL-SDR compatible decoder for Inmarsat AERO signals

AERO is a system that provides a L-Band satellite based version of VHF ACARS (Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System). ACARS is typically used by ground control and pilots to send short messages and is also sometimes used for telemetry. With JAERO and an RTL-SDR these signals can be decoded.

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RTL-SDR Direct Sampling Mode

The RTL-SDR software defined radio can be told to run in a mode called “direct sampling mode”, which with a small hardware mod allows the dongle to tune to the HF frequencies where ham radio and many other interesting signals are found. This means that no upconverter circuit is required.

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Analyzing GSM with Airprobe/GR-GSM and Wireshark

The RTL-SDR software defined radio can be used to analyze cellular phone GSM signals, using Linux based tools GR-GSM (or Airprobe) and Wireshark.

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Decoding Inmarsat STD-C EGC Messages

With an RTL-SDR dongle, a cheap $10 modified GPS antenna or 1-2 LNA’s and a patch, dish or helix antenna you can listen to Inmarsat satellite signals, and decode the STD-C NCS channel which contains information such as search and rescue (SAR) and coast guard messages as well as news, weather and incident reports.

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Decoding Digital Voice (P25, DMR, NXDN, D-STAR) with DSD+

Learn how to decode digital voice communications like APCO P25, DMR MotoTRBO, NXDN and D-STAR with DSD+ and an RTL-SDR dongle.

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Cheap AIS Ship Tracking

Large ships and passenger boats are required to broadcast an identification signal containing position, course, speed, destination, and vessel dimension information to help prevent sea collisions. This system is known as the “Automatic Identification System” or AIS for short. AIS can be decoded with an RTL-SDR dongle and right software.

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Decoding Meteor-M2 Weather Satellite Images in Real-Time

It is now possible to decode the Meteor M2 weather satellite images in real time on Windows using an RTL-SDR and a plugin for SDR#.

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Receiving NOAA Weather Satellite Images

Everyday multiple NOAA weather satellites pass above you. Each NOAA weather satellite broadcasts an Automatic Picture Transmission (APT) signal, which contains a live weather image of your area. The RTL-SDR dongle combined with a good antenna, SDRSharp and a decoding program can be used to download and display these live images several times a day.

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Receiving Meteor-M N2 LRPT Weather Satellite Images

The Meteor-M N2 is a polar orbiting Russian weather satellite. With an RTL-SDR an appropriate antenna, you can receive and decode its image downlink and download LRPT weather satellite images.

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Receiving Weather Balloon (Radiosonde) Data with RTL-SDR

Use your RTL-SDR to decode data from weather balloons (aka Radiosondes) that are launched twice daily by meteorological agencies all around the world.

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BeagleBone Black Image File with RTL-SDR + GNU Radio + More

A ready to go Ubuntu 14.04 image file for the BeagleBone Black that contains various SDR related resources for the RTL-SDR and other SDRs like the HackRF has been released by KD0CQ. The BeagleBone Black is a small embedded PC that is powerful enough to run many SDR software programs. The image file is very useful as installing some software like GNU Radio on an embedded PC can be very tedious. Below is a list of software included in the image file.

  • GNURadio 3.7
  • keenerd’s rtlsdr bundle
  • gqrx
  • multimode (having issues compiling, will contact author. Prob compatibility issues with gnuradio 3.7)
  • LTE-Cell-Scanner
  • LTE-Tracker
  • multimon – Pogsac Pager Decoder
  • rtl_flex_noX – Flex Pager Decoder
  • SuperKuh’s Dongle Logger – pyrtlsdr – Fast version
  • rtl_433
  • SDR-J
  • rtl_sdr wide spectrum analyzer
  • DSD 1.7
  • RTLAMR
  • RTL_FM_Python
BeagleBone Black
BeagleBone Black

5 comments

  1. James Moreton

    This is the best news ive heard since i bought a raspberry pi and realised it wouldn’t run gnu radio
    then i got a beaglebone black and stumbled on this and i was like Yeeeeeeeeeey!!!
    thanks heaps for taking the time to compile this image its like Christmas is here already

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