XRIT Decoder for GOES Satellites: Supports Airspy R2/Mini and SDRplay RSP2

Over on his blog USA-Satcom has released his XRIT (LRIT/HRIT) decoder for GOES satellites. The software requires a licence and costs $100 USD. GOES-13 (East), GOES-15 (West) and the new GOES-16 are geosynchronous orbiting satellites that broadcast very nice high resolution weather images of the entire visible disk of the earth. The transmit their LRIT/HRIT signals at about 1.7 GHz at fairly weak power, which means that a good LNA and dish set up is critical to be able to receive them. A dish size of about 1 meter, or an equivalent grid or Yagi is recommended as the lowest starting point.

GOES Full Disk Image of the Earth
GOES Full Disk Image of the Earth

USA-Satcom’s decoder is Windows based and comes with a nice GUI. Some portions of the code are based on the Open Satellite Project created by Lucas Teske. It currently supports the Airspy R2/Mini and the SDRplay RSP2 software defined radios.

The software is not free, it costs $100 USD for the licence. To help curb illegal distribution of his software which has been rampant in the past, USA-Satcom also requests that you show some proof of a working setup which is capable of receiving the GOES signal before inquiring about the software.

If you are also interested, USA-Satcom did an interesting talk at Cyberspectrum a few months ago, and he has also recently uploaded his slides.

Screenshot of USA-Satcoms GOES XRIT decoder.
Screenshot of USA-Satcoms GOES XRIT decoder.

7 comments

  1. Mario

    Gotta’ say that full disk image of the earth is pretty impressive. Imagine that you’d need some details in setting up a 36 inch (Ku band?) dish and LNB (or circularly polarized antenna at the feed?), plus azimuth and elevation data to hone in on the satellite of interest. Pardon my ignorance, but still sounds interesting.

  2. Drone

    $100 PLUS you must PROVE you can receive the signals FIRST?!! Pffft…

    Aren’t there a bunch of free programs/libraries already out there for the likes of APT, LRPT/LRIT, HRPT/HRIT etc? I’ll venture to guess this $100 XRIT stuff is probably in large-part just repackaged work by others. Take a look at the satsignal.eu page for a start.

  3. Anonymous

    Has anyone else used any of the open satellite project code? It looks like it may be able to do a lot what this does and this uses some of the code from that.

  4. Rupert

    You all say you are going to produce some open source software “one day” when you have the time. That’s great, but while you are getting around to it at least people have an option, $100 is not a lot of money compared to the time it would take to code something yourself.

  5. Anonymous

    Stopped reading at “costs $100”
    This software better do everything including clean my house for $100

  6. Alyx

    Outside of the reach of me and i’m a little bummed i can’t adapt the code but i assume this was difficult and being the being only bit of software in its field i suppose the cost makes sense

    if i can get some good pulls from GOES at some point i’ll probably attempt making some FOSS that does a similar thing if i ever get the time

  7. Simon

    If there’s one thing I hate about the Amateur Radio community, it’s the fetish towards making software closed source. The benefits of open sourcing a piece of software far outweigh that of making it closed source. Similarly, you can still make money off of a piece of open source software.

    While GOES is an area I would like to get into, I think I’ll be looking into making my own open source AIO toolkit for GOES when the time comes.

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