Category: Applications

Raspberry NOAA V2 Edition 2023 Image Released

Thank you to Manuel Lausmann for submitting news about the release of the "Raspberry NOAA V2 Edition 2023" image for Raspberry Pi's. This image has been created by Jochen Köster (DC9DD), and contains a few enhancements over the previous image, mainly by including a program that allows users to create composite images of images from the Meteor weather satellites. Manuel writes:

This is based on the well-known Raspberry Noaa V2. In this image, however, the latest MeteorDemod has been added, which makes it possible to generate composite images, which was previously only possible under Windows with Meteorgis.

Furthermore, the image has an additional FTP uploader. The image was created by Jochen Köster DC9DD. It's available from today. This image is also part of my off-grid station in Northern Norway.

Download link for the image: https://www.qsl.net/do3mla/raspberry-pi-images.html

Here is a link to the Facebook group for the image: https://www.facebook.com/groups/raspberrynoaav2edition

Here is a link to ranged from my off-grid station where this image is running: https://usradioguy.com/science/off-grid-apt-lrpt-satellite-ground-station

An example of a composite image from multiple Meteor satellite images.

Car Hacking in the Mr Robot TV Show Explained

Over on YouTube David Bombal has uploaded a video titled "Warning! This is how cars are hacked. Just like in Mr Robot." which explains how the car hacking scenes in Mr Robot worked. Mr Robot is a TV drama series about cybersecurity hackers, and it is known for portraying realistic hacks and scenarios. Back in 2019 we posted about an episode where they used a HackRF and Raspberry Pi to jam a garage door, before using the HackRF as an IMSI catcher. RTL-SDRs were also briefly used in some episodes.

David's video goes into greater detail about how realistic the hacking concepts displayed in the Mr Robot series are and if they would work in real time. In this video he goes into particular detail about car hacking. He uses a HackRF and RTL-SDR and demonstrates attacks like jamming, and signal replay.

This video is a part of a series exploring the hacks shown on Mr Robot. The full playlist can be found here.

Warning! This is how cars are hacked. Just like in Mr Robot.

Guglielmo FM and DAB Receiver Software Updated to V0.4

Thank you to Marco Greco for writing in and noting that V0.4 of his Guglielmo software has recently been released.

Guglielmo is a Linux (and now Windows) based RTL-SDR FM and DAB tuner software that supports SDRs including the RTL-SDR, Airspy, SDRplay, HackRF and LimeSDR. It is designed to be an easy to use program designed for media users, rather than hobbyist technical users.

The latest additions in V0.4 include support for MPRIS controllers, support for the SDRplay V3 API and support for Windows building (although at this time there appears to be no binary file available).

The AppImage can be found here https://github.com/marcogrecopriolo/guglielmo/releases

Guglielmo: Screenshot of the DAB Interface

KrakenSDR Field Reports and Software Updates

We've recently published an update about KrakenSDR field reports and software updates to our KrakenSDR CrowdSupply page. We are cross posting here as well. This update provides some demonstrations of the KrakenSDR that users have uploaded, and provides some updates on some new software that we have been working on.

Also as we'll note shortly in a separate post, we wanted to highlight that our website for direct sales of KrakenSDR and antenna sets is now live at our KrakenSDR shop. Please note that we only have a limited number of KrakenSDRs that we can sell directly, and once they run out, all other sales must go through CrowdSupply.

Field Reports

User YouTube Demonstrations

Frugal Radio

In this video Frugal Radio unboxes and tests his KrakenSDR and Krakentenna's on a vehicle. He is able to come to the location of two unknown transmitters within minutes.

KrakenSDR Unboxing / Prep & Setup device & antennas : Part 1

KrakenSDR - WOW! Amazing Direction Finding Tests : Part 2

F4IPO Demo

In this video F4IPO demonstrates his ability to use a KrakenSDR and Krakentennas to locate a TETRA transmitter within 5 minutes.

KrakenSDR : recherche d'un émetteur TETRA

DragonOS Kraken Pro Cloud Mapper Demo

In this video Aaron, creator of DragonOS demonstrates two networked KrakenSDR devices being used with DF-Aggregator and an alpha version of our Kraken Pro Cloud Mapping software (introduced further below). One KrakenSDR is fixed, and another is on a moving boat. He is able to track a beacon on land.

DragonOS Focal Direction Finding w/ KrakenSDR + Boat (Steam Deck, GS66, DF-Aggregator, Kraken Dash)

F1MIJ Demo

In these videos F1MIJ provides multiple screen recordings of the KrakenSDR Android App in action during a drive.

video 2 KRAKENSDR HAM-TETRA LILLE

Vidéo 3 KRAKENSDR HAM-TETRA LILLE

KrakenSDR sur la fréquence du relais de Valenciennes ( Vidéo N°2 )

Manuel Lausmann Unboxing Video

In this video Manuel Lausmann unboxes the KrakenSDR.

Ein Kraken aus Texas

Matt Blaze Twitter Thread

In this Twitter thread Matt Blaze @mattblaze describes his experience with the KrakenSDR and shows that he was able to determine the location of a 103.5 MHz transmitter. Matt notes that apart from some hardware limitations, his experience with the KrakenSDR is even better than with his extremely expensive high end R&S DDF007.

@cemaxecuter Twitter Demos

Aaron (whom we mentioned earlier) has also been heavily posting on Twitter showing how he's been successful at getting his KrakenSDR running on a SteamDeck, a new type of handheld gaming device from Valve.

He also briefly demonstrates the KrakenSDR being used as five independent receivers in SDRAngel.

Website Release

We also wanted to note that we now have our website live at www.krakenrf.com. This is mostly a marketing and general overview website. All the technical documentation and guides will remain on the GitHub Wiki.

KrakenSDR Forum

We have also now released our KrakenSDR forum at https://forum.krakenrf.com. If you have general questions, or support inquires please post there rather than through email so everyone can learn. If there are specific software bugs, please continue to post those as GitHub issues.

Kraken Cloud Pro Alpha Release

We are now releasing an early alpha version of our online 'Kraken Cloud Pro' service. We want to note that this software is still in ALPHA status. That means that all the intended features are not yet implemented, and that it may have multiple bugs. We also do not guarantee any uptime for this service at this time.

Kraken Pro Cloud is our online cloud mapping solution for KrakenSDR devices. It allows you to upload KrakenSDR direction finding data onto our central server, so that you can combine bearing data from multiple geographically distributed KrakenSDR devices. With the right geography of the receivers and transmitter, this allows you to instantly determine the location of a transmitter without needing to take multiple readings with a vehicle.

Documentation on the use of Kraken Pro Cloud is available on our Wiki at this page.

You can also do offline analysis of log files collected from the Android App or recorded via the Web GUI.

Kraken Pro Cloud Timelapse Demo

As part of the testing of the service we recorded a timelapse of a KrakenSDR station tracking a weather balloon.

The above is a video of a simple timelapse demo of the system tracking a weather balloon from a single station. Because it's only a single station, the red estimation dot can be ignored. The yellow dot indicates the actual GPS location of the weather balloon. Once the weather improves we'll be setting up a distributed two-station test.

One interesting thing to note is how the KrakenSDR tracks the balloon accurately, until the elevation angle between the antenna and balloon goes above 45 degrees which happens when the balloon rises higher and comes too close to the station. At this angle the antenna array can no longer track the balloon correctly. Once the balloon falls to a lower altitude and the elevation from the antenna is less than 45 degrees accurate tracking resumes.

In the near future we will be uploading more demonstrations like this with multiple stations set up.

niliBOX: Software for Managing RTL-SDRs and other Radios Locally and Remotely

niliBOX is a multiplatform software package in beta release that can be used to manage radio devices such as Icom radio scanners and RTL-SDRs remotely or locally. It is the evolution of the older 'PCR Anywhere' software which was specifically designed for controlling Icom Radio scanners.

Over on YouTube user Danny Shortwave And Radio DX has uploaded a video demonstrating the RTL-SDR module being used in niliBOX with his RTL-SDR Blog V3 SDR. He writes:

niliBOX developed a software for various models of computer controlled radios and also for the RTL-SDR software defined radio. I will demonstrate this by running the software while tuning the mediumwave stations. The antenna I'm using is the MLA-30 active loop antenna. This is their first initial release of this software. I will make a series of videos showing this program working. Stay Tuned. This is Version 1.0.0

They currently have Windows 64 Bit. Tested on Windows 7, 10 and 11. They also have Linux version, tested on Ubuntu and Centos 64 Bit. And also a Apple Mac version, tested with MacOS 10.14, 10.15, 11 and 12. They are also coming soon with Android and IOS versions.

Brief Demonstration of new niliBOX software for the RTL-SDR V.3 SDR USB Dongle

ADS-B Radar Android App Updated with Open Street Maps

Thank you to James Mainwaring for letting us know about the latest update to his "ADS-B Radar (RTL-SDR)" Android App. The update brings an Open Street Map (OSM) display, allowing for aircraft to be directly plotted on the map.

As before the app works with an RTL-SDR directly connected to the Android device, and also has a radar like display.

James also has other apps on the Google Play store for FM Radio, Airband and Ham Radio listening.

ADS-B Radar App for Android

HackRF Opera Cake Released: A Rapid RF Switching Board

Back in 2016 Michael Ossmann, founder of Great Scott Gadgets and creator of the HackRF released schematics for 'Opera Cake', a rapid RF switching add on board for the HackRF. We also saw back in a January 2018 post how Opera Cake was capable of being used as the switching hardware for Pseudo-Doppler direction finding. Up until now Opera Cake has only been available as a schematic, for advanced hackers who could produce and build the board themselves.

Earlier this week Opera Cake was released for sale via various resellers in the US, UK and EU. The pricing from the US reseller is US$190.

Opera Cake is an antenna switching add-on board for HackRF One that is configured with command-line software either manually, or for automated port switching based on frequency or time. It has two primary ports, each connected to any of eight secondary ports, and is optimized for use as a pair of 1x4 switches or as a single 1x8 switch. Its recommended frequency range is 1 MHz to 4 GHz.

When HackRF One is used to transmit, Opera Cake can automatically route its output to the appropriate transmit antennas, as well as any external filters, amplifiers, etc. No changes are needed to the existing SDR software, but full control from the host is available.

Opera Cake also enhances the HackRF One’s use as a spectrum analyzer. Antenna switching works with the existing hackrf_sweep feature, which can sweep the whole tuning range in less than a second. Automatic switching mid-sweep enables the use of multiple antennas when sweeping a wide frequency range.

Opera Cake connected to multiple antennas
Opera Cake connected to multiple antennas

A WebUSB Based RTL-SDR Aircraft ADS-B Decoder

Over on GitHub @devdevcharlie has uploaded open source Javascript code for creating an ADS-B Aircraft Radar system entirely within a web browser. The code makes use of the Web USB API, which enables USB devices like RTL-SDR dongles to connect directly to the code running in the web browser.

In her blog post, Charlie explains her code in greater detail, noting that it draws inspiration from AirplaneJS and rtlsdr.js. She explains how the Web USB API works, how to process the raw ADS-B data, and what her final setup looks like.

A demo site that you can use to directly connect to your RTL-SDR is available here.

In the past we've seen other WebUSB projects, like "aprs-sdr" which creates an APRS repeater system using a HackRF.