Kata Kovács and Tom O’Doherty

Antenna 2: Heather

August 18, 2016
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As part of the research for a new work, we have built one antenna, and named it Peter. Our second one will be named Heather.

She’s a logarithmic periodic dipole antenna — one that will get a stronger signal in a narrower field than Peter. For Heather, we needed some basic materials: a 3-meter-long wooden stick, some cables, and a few other things we picked up at our trusty local Toom Baumarkt. We were again following the results given by Ajarn Changpuak’s antenna calculator.

Today is Thursday, August 18th. Tomorrow morning, very early, there will be a pass of the LES-1 that could potentially be audible. We’re planning to build the antenna, and then get up in time for then LES-1’s pass and try to get some signals.

The Heavens Above website gives fascinating information about all kinds of space-related things, and in particular, it allows anyone to track different satellites from anywhere on earth. So, this means that we can know exactly when the LES-1 passes above Berlin. We also get nice charts like these so we can know where to point our antenna.

So here’s how we built it:

First, measure out and cut the lengths of wire that will be used as the elements on the antenna.

Measuring and cutting wire

Then, attach the central element to the big long stick (to use the technical term), and measure out the points to attach the side elements.

Top of the big long stick

Start soldering the elements into place…


…and finish it all off with some blobs of hot-glue.

Ok, time to go up on the roof.