Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Seminar on Antenna Development by ACE GS team

An ISTE approved two weeks short term training program on "Recent Trends In Antenna & Wireless Communication" (14th June 2016 -24th June 2016) was organized by Department of Electronics and Telecommunication Engineering, Atharva College of Engineering, Mumbai. 
The training program was targeted towards academicians, scientist, researchers, faculty members interested in the field on antenna & wireless communication to enhance their knowledge and research skills.
Atharva Satellite Ground Station team collaborated in the training program on 14th June, 2016, by presenting a session on:
  • Working of an antenna
  • Antenna parameters
  • Yagi Uda antenna structure and working
  • Design process of Yagi Uda antenna
  • Fabrication process of Yagi Uda antenna
Apart from this, the distinguished alumni from Atharva College of Engineering and from the previous generation of the Ground Station team, Mr. Anoop Tiwari and Mr. Priyank Salot, presented a session on:
  • Projects undertaken by Atharva Satellite Ground Station
  • Plasma antenna structure and working
  • Plasma antenna designing process
  • Plasma antenna fabrication process
Also, the team showed the Ground Station setup to the audience of the training program to give an insight about our tracking and data acquisition process.

Mr. Anoop Tiwari giving insights on Plasma Antenna

Mr. Priyank Salot giving presentation on Antennas

Faculties from various colleges attended this seminar

Miss. Aishwarya Wahane giving presentation on Antenna Development

AD8302 Test Sucess and Visit to IIT-B

Date: 15th July 2016
A very important day for history of ACE-GS when the chip AD8302 which is used for detecting phase change for RF frequencies 145.98 Mhz and 437.455 Mhz was finally characterized and tested.
The day began with a warm welcome from the Pratham Team and discussion regarding the work of Pratham. Various thoughts were exchanged between teams about the project. Pratham team gave us insight on the launch of the satellite, their deadline and work they are conducting. After the discussion we carried on the testing procedure of our AD8302 chip. We started our tests with help of RF function generators, multi meters. We were able to get correct values as expected in datasheet of the AD8302 module. Both the chips were verified and tested at their facility and We would like to thank the whole Pratham team for facilitating this visit. Their immense support has helped ACE GS to be ready for Pratham Project.

Team working on the testing of AD8302 chip

RF function generator used for testing
AD8302 Chip and Function Generator used for testing

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Lightning Fast 5G is here

5G is still in implementation phase but the 5th generation of Atharva Satellite Ground Station is already here. After a rigorous process of team selection, the energetic team of 5th Generation of ACE-GS has been selected. With new energy and new dreams the team will undergo training under various topics ranging from communication to fundamentals of EM waves. The remaining projects will be undertaken by Aishwarya Sansare and Ketkee Kambli from the 4th Generation and the new team.

The new members joining are:
1. Harshita Singh -BE EXTC
2. Ishani Engineer - TE ELEC
3. Saniya Vichare - TE ELEC
4. Vijetha Jogu-TE ELEC
5. Omkar Phadke- TE ELEX
6. Gaurav Kundu- TE EXTC
7. Kavan Raval -SE ELEC
8. Nikita Patil- SE EXTC
9. Gaurav Raje - SE ELEX
Along with them from the previous team
1. Aishwarya Sansare- BE EXTC and
2. Ketkee Kambli -BE EXTC 

We congratulate all the selected members and wish for their bright future.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Tracking Satellite Success

We started the new year with a target to complete link by fabricating antennas for both VHF and UHF band.
Research was undertaken by Team. Team a lot of papers and gained lots of insights on the following topics:
1. Protection of antennas from weather and degradation.
2. Design of Yagi Uda antenna in various methods,
3. Fabrication of Yagi Uda antenna in various methodology.

Apart from these topics we sat down and fixed a method to fabricate the antenna and complete the link setup and start receiving beacons from satellites.

During this period we found out that the essential part of fabrication is accuracy. Also, for a good SWR and Bandwidth the dipole is an essential part. The folding was undertaken by the indigenous brains inside the team who can build a solution in minutes. The folded dipole was then constructed using a former.

We got to work and fabricated 2 Yagis- 1 Antenna for 145Mhz and 1 Antenna for 437 Mhz and tested it with SWR meter. We did open air test and found the bandwidth of our antennas being huge for 145 Mhz. We got 1:1 SWR for frequency range of 140 Mhz to 150 Mhz.

In a same way we fabricated the 437 Mhz yagi and found a good bandwidth in open air test from 433 Mhz to 440 Mhz. We also used our Kenwood TM-V71A radio to listen on VHF band. We heard a conversation of HAMs on 145Mhz (Matheran Repeater).

In pursuing this endeavor we would like to thank the faculties and assistants in workshop lab for helping out.

Tracking Swayam Satellite

Swayam is satellite initiative of College of Engineering,Pune which was launched by ISRO on PSLV-C34 Launch Vehicle from Sriharikota,India along with 19 other satellites.
Swayam had a overhead pass over Atharva Satellite Ground Station on Sunday 26th June 2016 at 21:50. The link setup for this includes a handheld yagi antenna and Kenwood TMV71A
The team developed a unique type of single plane yagi made up of Wood Boom and aluminium rods as elements. This design was simulated on 4NEC2 had an advantage of being lightweight. It was mounted on a pivoted stand and moved around manually. This handheld type yagi had a gain of 14dB and had 9 elements for frequency of 437 Mhz. The fabrication and design was done solely by members of atharva satellite ground station.

The beacon signal was in form of CW morse code and was recorded on kenwood tmv71a transceiver. The recording of the same you can listen to here: Swayam Beacon

This gives us the assurance of proper working of the complete link and antennas. The team is now planning to track many such satellites in near future. 

Friday, October 30, 2015

AGS visit to Pune

Pune visit team, from Left to Right: Ketkee Kambli,
Samuel Jacob Sir, Akshay Patil, Vikas Anaokar,
Pragnesh Panchal, Sandipan Das and Aishwarya Sansare
We the team members of Atharva Satellite Ground Station went to Pune on 4th August, 2015 with the purpose of visiting College of Engineering- Pune (COEP), Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) - Pune and Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) to gain some knowledge pertaining to balloon satellites and atmospheric parameters measurement. We were a group of seven people including our project guide Prof. Samuel Jacob who accompanied us to the venture. Since the team is currently working on a balloon satellite project, APSARHA-1, this visit was necessary to understand the new technologies and methods used in advancements for a balloon satellite. We intended to meet experts and scientists in this field who could guide us to our way to launching our balloon. Also from visits and experiencing a live balloon launch if possible we would be sure that we are going on the right track. Visiting COEP was with the intention to have better contacts with other student satellite projects, know more about there ground and exchange knowledge amonsgt both of us.

As per our schedule, we visited COEP on the first day of our stay i.e. 4th August, 2015. There we saw their Robotics Lab, Fabrication Lab and also interacted with the SWAYAM team. We also went on to have a look to their ground station setup and had an interesting discussion on antennas, their characterisation techniques and their tracking mechanisms On-site, their team gave us a demo by tracking and recieving the beacon of a satellite that was passing by at range. We had a great time interacting with the students, they were very cooperative and helpful.

Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology
The next day i.e. on 5th August, 2015, we visited IITM, Pune. This was the most interesting and informative part of our visit. We met Dr. Chakraborty who told us about different atmospheric parameter measurement techniques, such as measuring the ratio of different isotopes of gases in the atmosphere. He showed us the equipment they use for the measurements. We also met Dr. G. Pandithurai who guided us and gave us information about the procedure to be followed for the launch of APSARHA. Luckily, we happened to witness the actual weather monitoring balloon's launch by IITM as well. It was quite a wonderful experience. Moving on, we also saw their data acquisition system which automatically plots the graphs of all the measured parameters.

On the final day of our stay, i.e. 6th August, 2015, we visited IMD-Pune, where we met Mr. Satish Banker. He showed us the ozonesonde and the radiosonde circuits that they use. Also, he explained to us briefly about the calibration process of the ozonesonde and its principle of working. We came to know that though the technology IMD uses is a decade old, it was very accurate in fulfilling the payload. Furthermore, we went on to see the pilot balloon launch which measures the wind speed, it was nothing but the Helium balloon with a long rope attached to it, the rope had two red flags on it, when the balloon was set uplift, technicians just had to track the distance covered by the red flags in equal intervals of time to get the speed of wind. This pilot balloon launch takes place twice a day. We got to know about various instruments for parameter measurement used on ground, such as the Stevenson screen, rain gauge, seisemometer. With this our visit came to an end.

Team at IMD-Pune

Thus this visit to Pune was very fruitful, where we got to know a lot of things about atmosphere parameters, their measurement techniques, ozonesonde, permissions required for the balloon launch etc. This visit also helped us build contacts and interact with very qualified scientists and like minnded students who are experts in their fields, including a healthy exchange of knowledge . We hope to make use of this knowledge gained in our projects and future ventures.