University of Alberta observatory domes

Radio Operation

"Thank you so much for visiting our class on Friday! The kids loved it...they thought it was pretty cool to meet a "real" Astronomer! Thanks again, Janine"

Learning about your receiver

The Receiver Team's job is to understand how the FM radio  in your observatory works, including the connections on the back and the settings controlled from the front panel. They must work with the Software Team to ensure the 

receiver is  connected to the sound card of the recording computer and with the Antenna Team to ensure the antenna is connected correctly. Follow the link at the left to see how to operate the radio itself.

The team should do the following tasks:
Learn what the frequency ranges are on the FM band that are clear of local radio stations. For example, you might find that there are no radio stations that can be heard between 88.1 to 89.5 on the radio. Note the beginning frequency (eg 88.1) and the last frequency in the band that is clear from the bottom to the top of the FM band.
Listen to the AM band on the radio, searching from the bottom to the top of the band and note the frequencies that have radio stations on them. Note any characteristics of the band that you hear (static, smooth, stereo, etc.).
Do the same observation of the FM band, noting the sound characteristics of the band and how it is different from the AM band. You can do this at the same time you are scanning the FM band for clear frequencies.

If you have already done these exercises as part of your homework, then use the results of your homework to compile a list of characteristics of both bands, and identify clear frequencies on the FM band.


Copyright 1999-2015 by Sky Scan, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. 

We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the 

Edmonton Centre of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Department of Physics (University of Alberta)

and the

Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada

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