Interests and experiences
Greencube / IO-117 is a small satellite that caries a UHF (435.310 MHz) Digipeater. As the satellite has a large footprint (satellite is around 5800 Km above the earth) it is a effective way of contacting "far away" places. The footprint (coverage) of the satellite is around 13.000 Km.
Andy, UZ7HO makes a very nice "Soundmodem" for Greencube, it decodes and encodes the digital traffic using the soundcard of a PC.
Andy also make a "terminal program" for sending and receiving messages from Greencube (via the "Soundmodem"). I had the idea to make a new terminal program that would give me a couple extra features, and that also would allow me to discover "not worked before" stations, new grids etc. The terminal program interfaces with N3FJP logprogram, ACLog. ACLog is a very nice logging program that can have its userinterface customized to fit your specific taste and need.
ACLog also have API interface where you can query and inject data in ACLog.
The Terminal program uses this API (via a TCP/IP socket interface) to check if a received callsign has already been worked or not (checked via QRZ.COM). If the station has included a (maybe temporary) grid in his CQ call, the Terminal program sees this and will also check if this grid already has been confirmed or not on QRZ.COM. If either the station has not been worked before, or if the grid the station broadcasts in its CQ call, has been confirmed before or not. These stations are clearly marked in the "Dupelist" list, using color codes. Voice messages will be emitted (can be configured).
The Terminal program can also log QSO's local in a ADIF file, this file can then later be imported into your favorite logging program.
The newest version (from 188.8.131.52) can also use the ADIF file for checking if a grid and/or a callsign has been worked before. This makes it independent of ACLog!
The Terminal program will also allow you to log your QSO's to a ADIF file for import into your favorite log program.
You can also log a contact to any N1MM TCP compatible program (N1MM logger, Swisslog etc)
PLEASE NOTE: some of the screenshots on this page are from "older" versions of the terminal program, so they might not be 100% accurate (more features are added to the program once in a while)
Thanks to Andy, UZ7HO for his soundmodem and original terminal program.
Also big thanks to my good friend, Paolo, IK3ITB for testing, suggestions and bug finding :)
The program contains two windows:
The large one to the left is called the "Traffic window". The one on the right is called "Dupelist".
The Traffic windows shows all incoming and outgoing messages. Different types of messages are shown in different colors. These colors can be changed by clicking on the small colored reactangles below the traffic window.
The "Normal" color is for ordinary traffic, messages from other stations.
"To me" colored messages are messages that has my callsign in the "To" field of the messges.
"CQ" colored messages are messages that contains the text "CQ" in either the "To" field or inside the actual message.
"My TX" color is messages that have been transmitted via the Terminal program.
The window on the right, the "Dupelist" is a list of all callsigns that have been received (callsigns in "From" field in the traffic window (excluding any messages from my own callsign). The different callsigns in the dupelist are colored in different colors depending on the status of the callsign.
The "Dupe" color is callsigns that have already been worked and confirmed in ACLog (f.ex by LoTW etc).
"Grid" coloroed callsigns are callsigns that are in a grid that has not yet been confirmed (or worked).
"COSI" is a callsign that exists in the "COSI list" of callsigns, this list can be maintained by pressing the button "Edit COSI" just above the dupelist window. The COSI (Callsign Of Special Interest) can be used to mark certain callsigns that you want to look out for, it can be a rare DX station, a buddy etc. You can select if the callsign will be searched in the From, To and/or message. Any combination of these can be selected in the COSI dialog.
As already explained, all these colors can be defined by clicking on each of the colored rectangles below the two windows.
The top of the screen contains some simple statistics. The number of unique calls in the Dupelist window, statistics for the number of transmissions, number of times "my own" transmissions has been digipeated from the satellite (and that my station actually has received), number of times I have succesfully sent a "CQ" message etc.
The dupelist contains a list of all callsigns heard (since Terminal program was started, or the list cleared by pressing "Clear list" button).
Each line shows the callsign, elapsed time since the call was heard transmitting, the number of CQ calls the station has made and the current satellite elevation based on the grid the station reports.
Each line will be shown in a color. These colors can be defined by clicking on the 4 colored rectangles below the dupelist.
In this list, we can see that most of the callsigns are with white backgrund. This means they are "dupe", callsigns that have already been worked and confirmed.
If a callsigns is green ("Initial") it is a callsign that has not been worked before. The red callsign with the "Grid" color, is a station that is in a grid that has not been confirmed (the grid included in the message from the station). The station can actually very well have been worked before, but the terminal program has detected that the station is in a new (not confirmed) grid.
It does so by looking in the messages from the station, checking if a grid locator is in there. If there is a grid locator in the message, this is being checked in the selected log program (in Settings), if not already confirmed, the line will be colored in "Grid" color (red in this case).
Lets say the callsign MY1CAL is listed on QRZ.COM as located in JO45. And lets also say that I already worked this station and that the QSO was confirmed.
Lets also say that MY1CAL send out a CQ like this:
"MY1CALL CQ JO44 looking for NA"
The terminal program detects that "JO44" in the message is a grid, it checks ACLog (or TCP Log) if JO44 has already been confirmed, if not, it will paint the line in "Grid" color (red) signaling to the user that this callsign needs to be worked (for a new grid).
Please also note, that if a callsign has already been worked (in a new grid) but the station has for some reason not confirmed the QSO, the next time the terminal program is running and it sees this callsign (or another callsign from the same grid), it will alert you by painting the line in "Grid" color. This will continue until someone of your QSO partners confirms this grid.
Whenever a new call, a new grid or a callsign in the COSI list is detected, a voice message will be played (can be disabled in Settings).
The settings should be pretty to understand. You can set the IP address of the PC for both the UZ7HO soundmodem and for the various logging options. The port number for the Soundmodem must match the one set in Soundmodem program (default port 8100). The settings for ACLog are pretty simple, just remember to enable "API server" for ACLog (see the configuration section for my SatPC32 to ACLog program). If you set "Grid" to your current grid, the main screen will show the Az/El of the satellite from your position. The TLE data box is data for Greencube/IO-117 so that the current elevation for each callsign in the Dupelist can be shown.
Below is a typical view. The light blue lines are for IK3ITB, that callsign is in the COSI list and will be highlighted in both the traffic window and the dupelist.
The pink lines are from stations calling CQ (CQ in "To" or "Message" fields). In the dupelist, EA7KI is in green ("Initial"). That is a station that I have not worked before, but his grid has already been confirmed by another station I have worked. SP6IWQ is in a grid that I is not yet confirmed, in this case I have already worked the station, but no confirmation yet from the station. All the "dark gray" lines in the dupelist ("Dupe") is stations that have already been worked (and confirmed)
Double clicking the "To" field will send the callsign to ACLog so it is ready for logging.
Pressing "Escape" when the "To" field is active will clear the entryfields of ACLog.
Double clicking a callsign in the Dupelist will copy the callsign to the "To" entryfield.
Double clicking a line in the traffic window will copy the "From" callsign to the "To" entryfield.
Right click on a selected line in the traffic window OR on a callsign in the Dupelist, will bring up a context menu where you can send the callsign to ACLog (just as if you entered the callsign in the "Call" field in ACLog.
The program can be downloaded below, BUT!
I ONLY ASK, THAT IF YOU LIKE AND USE MY PROGRAM, PLEASE donate whatever amount you see fit
to Andy, UZ7HO (see his website for info). I don't want anything, send it to Andy instead !!
NOTE: You can have both this terminal program as well as the original UZ7HO Client program running at the same time in parallel!
The terminal program is built on .NET Framework 4.8!
REMEMBER to download at least version 184.108.40.206 of ACLog on the "Beta" page of N3JFP page!
2023-03-29 Greencube Terminal program (Windows), Version 220.127.116.11
20230329 Version 18.104.22.168
20230326 Version 22.214.171.124
20230319 Version 126.96.36.199
20230317 Version 188.8.131.52
20230315 Version 184.108.40.206
20230314 Version 220.127.116.11
20230312 Version 18.104.22.168
20230305 Version 22.214.171.124
20230301 Version 126.96.36.199
20230224 Version 188.8.131.52
20230222 Version 184.108.40.206
20230221 Version 220.127.116.11
20230221 Version 18.104.22.168
20230220 Version 22.214.171.124
When sending a callsign to ACLog, the following fields are also set (thanks to N7BT):
PROPMODE = SAT
SATNAME = IO-117
BAND = 70
MODE = PKT
RSTS = 599
RSTR = 599
20230218 Version 126.96.36.199
Better handling of Text-To-Speech errors
20230211 Version 188.8.131.52
Added context menu in traffic and dupelist with "add callsign to COSI list"
Changed the "Normal" default color on traffic list to true white (was 0,0,0,0 before)
TXDelay can not be set higher than 10 seconds (to remove possibility of "store and forward" QSO's)
20230210 Version 184.108.40.206
First test version