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Please note that this site is currently under constant construction and revision since January 2016. Please check back regularly to see new or updated news, activities and missions.

Mini Satellite-Antenna Rotator MkII

In the May 2016 edition of Amateur Radio magazine, we described the design and construction of a mini satellite-antenna rotator. It used some small DC motors and a novel combination of 3D magnetometers and accelerometers to provide absolute azimuth and elevation feedback. Since then, we have received over 90 requests from readers for additional construction details and we know of a handful of units which have been successfully built and tested.

The original rotator was designed for quick set-up and portable operation at our primary school Amateur Radio clubs. It is very light-duty and can only be used with a small, dual-band, hand-held antenna. Some readers asked us if the rotator could be scaled up for a larger, permanent satellite antenna installation at home. Specifically, one which could handle two, much longer, cross-polarised Yagis, for 2m and 70cm, mounted on either side of the rotator.

This article describes the mechanical design and construction of the MkII mini satellite-antenna rotator including some improvements to the original electronics and software packages.

The full article, to be published in a future edition of Amateur Radio magazine, is here.

The construction details are here.

Here is a picture of the prototype Mini Satellite-Antenna Rotator MkII:

Mini Satellite-Antenna Rotator MkII