The WABMS (World Arduino Based Meteor Scatter)

The experience of Rambo took us to realize an observatory that:

Like any observatory, it records data relating to the area of visible sky and is not able to observe below the horizon.

That means that meteor showers can be seen or lost, depending on the location of their radiant in the sky. So the beginning or the end of a shower can become invisible leaving only part of the phenomenon.

To overcome this drawback we are thinking about a kind of “world meteor scatter” that, at least in a first test phase, will involve only three observers all located in the northern hemisphere with different longitudes between them of at least 120°.

- Three observatories in the northern hemisphere -

In order to this goal we have created a fourth Rambo version 6.1, based on the new Arduino Yun board instead of Arduino One.

In this new version the sound section is identical to the previous one; like Rambo 3.0, it records the data file on SD card but sends it automatically to a web server every 24 hours.

Potentially, this version can be placed at any site in the world and it don’t need any human attendance.

Obviously, for running this experience all the technical conditions that allow the operation of an amateur meteor scatter quite similar to “Rambo” are necessary.

These conditions are:

the existence of a far (hundreds of kilometers) strong transmitter CONSTANTLY ON AIR on VHF, a military or televisive;
a Yagi directive antenna (from 4 to 9 elements) mounted in vertical polarization in a fairly unobstructed area with azimuth equal to the direction of view of the transmitter and declination that focus on a vertical midpoint of the line between Tx and Rx at about 100 km altitude;
a receiver with high input sensitivity that can be tuned in SSB mode to 1000 Hz below the carrier (USB: Upper Side Band) and audio output squelch independent;
basically: anyone who listens the meteor echoes and records them with "spectran" or similar software has the minimum conditions necessary to make a copy of RAMBO;
an ANALOG power supply (and therefore not a switcher) able to feed all the devices 24 hours 24;
the surrounding has to be not heavily radiopolluted and not too close to transients sources affecting the electric network dued to industrial causes or similar (switches, electric motors of great absorption, generators of electric discharges etc.). In these cases an excellent solution could be a solar panel and a battery;
a web access to exchange data.

The better longitudes for this experiment would be around 130 and 250 degrees because our observation site would complete the triangle.

Anyone who wants to try to create a small global network can try to make a copy of RAMBO.

For this purpose it is sufficient to contact us (see about us page). We can send the sound card, both to be assembled and already pre-assembled and tested and the software: the Arduino sketch and the scripts for reading and interpreting data.