What is WSPR ?.
WSPR (pronounced “whisper”) stands for “Weak Signal Propagation Reporter”. It is a protocol, implemented in a computer program, used for weak-signal radio communication between amateur radio operators. The protocol was designed, and a program written initially, by Joe Taylor, K1JT. Software is now open source and is developed by a small team. The program is designed for sending and receiving low-power transmissions to test propagation paths on the MF and HF bands.
WSPR implements a protocol designed for probing potential propagation paths with low-power transmissions. Transmissions carry a station’s callsign, Maidenhead grid locator, and transmitter power in dBm. The program can decode signals with S/N as low as −28 dB in a 2500 Hz bandwidth. Stations with internet access can automatically upload their reception reports to a central database called WSPRnet, which includes a mapping facility.
*Please note that you may need to be a licensed radio ham to use WSPRnet.*
So lets get started, What you will need is a Raspberry pi 2/3, a RTL-SDRv3 dongle and a antenna suited for shortwave frequencies eg a long wire and the RTL-SDR drivers check here for more information on how to install the drivers.
- sudo apt-get install build-essential cmake libfftw3-dev libusb-1.0-0-dev curl libcurl4-gnutls-dev ntp
- git clone https://github.com/Guenael/rtlsdr-wsprd
- cd rtlsdr-wsprd
Thats the software compiled and ready to run..
./rtlsdr_wsprd -f 14.0956M -c #### -l #### -a 1 -d 2 -S
The above command will run the reporting program on the wspr freq for the 40meter band, ‘-c’ is for callsign, enter yours here and remove the ####, ‘-l’ is your grid square locator remove the #### and enter yours ‘-a 1’ is auto-gain ‘-d 2’ is to enable direct sampling Q branch for the RTLSDRv3 dongle and the ‘-S’ is for single pass mode (if you dont do -S you may get signal 11 errors).