Category Archives: Talk

CUWS Talk – Feb 14th 1900 – GNU Radio: A toolkit for the Wireless World

The talk will be from 1900 in the Bateman Auditorium at Caius College on Thursday Feb 14th. All are welcome.

Derek Kozel is an officer in the GNU Radio project, president of the Cardiff University Amateur Radio society, and a PhD researcher at the Centre for High Frequency Engineering. He operates as MW0LNA primarily on the microwave bands and has a strong interest in Free and Open Source Software and enabling the use and understanding of wireless digital communications by students and in Amateur Radio.

The way we send information, whether voice, text, images, or video, has been evolving since Samuel Morse’s telegraph in 1836. As these systems become more advanced the standard electronics tools and knowledge which have been the Amateur Radio operator’s standard toolkit must be accompanied by software components. Together the analog, digital, and software are used to enable the modern communications modes such as Digital Video Broadcast (DVB), JT65 for moonbounce, FreeDV which has brought digital voice to the HF bands, and the wide variety of other new and exciting protocols.
GNU Radio ( is a free, graphical, software development toolkit that provides signal processing blocks to implement software-defined radios and signal-processing systems. It can be used with external RF hardware to create software-defined radios, or without hardware in a simulation environment. This talk introduces the software, demonstrates assembling complete transmit and receive systems, and shows a few examples of advanced applications.

APRS Talk on Thursday 1st March

Our very own Rob Chipperfield will be talking about APRS (Amateur Packet Reporting System). Find out how those strange noises on 144.800MHz carry everything from position data to weather reports to text messages.

The talk will start at 1900 in the Bateman Auditorium, Gonville and
Caius College (see here for location in the college). Doors will be open from 1840. Afterwards (about 2000) we will adjourn to the Maypole for food.

18th November: “Mobile System Overview: How mobile networks are built.” talk

On 18th November, Gavin Nesbitt (M1BXF), Technical Co-ordinator of the Cambridgeshire Repeater Group and Project Manager at IOTAS, a successful cellular testing company, will speak to us on the title “Mobile System Overview: How mobile networks are built.”

“I shall give a brief overview of the development of 3GPP technologies from GSM to LTE and how they interconnect. The presentation will give examples of ingenious design plus strengths and weaknesses of each technology used. See how complex making a phone call really is and what myriad of mechanisms are used to keep your mobile data flowing within a mobile cellular network.”

The talk will start at 1900 in the Bateman Auditorium, Gonville and Caius College. All are welcome.

“Sunspots and the Solar Dynamo” talk

This Thursday (4th February) sees our first speaker meeting of term.

Professor Michael Proctor from the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics will speak on “Sunspots and the Solar Dynamo”.

“Professor Proctor will describe the physical and periodic properties of sunspots covering their magnetic characteristics and average 22 year cycle. He will describe the knowledge of surface and sub-surface solar behaviour gained from helio-seismography and the latest thinking on the underlying mechanisms responsible for generating the intense toroidal magnetic fields implied by the periodic appearance of sunspot pairs.”

The talk will start at 1900 in the Bateman Auditorium, Gonville and Caius College (see map for location in the college). Doors will be open from 1845. I look forward to seeing as many of you as possible there.

Following the speaker meeting on Thursday, there will be an informal CUWS gathering at the Maypole (see map
for location) from 2000. I hope you will be able to make it for a drink and a chat.

Good luck to those taking licence examinations tomorrow.

Best wishes,


“Supersonics, RF Harmonics, Digital Electronics and Teddy Bears” Talk

The poster for the combined CUWS and Caius Engineering Society talk by CU Spaceflight on “Supersonics, RF Harmonics, Digital Electronics and Teddy Bears” can be found here.

This promises to be a fascinating overview of the CU Spaceflight project with insights into some of the technical challenges the team has faced and how they’ve overcome them to make the project such a success. The speakers will touch on rocketry, ‘near-space’ ballooning, digital radio communication, global positioning and much more.

The talk takes place on Thursday 5 March at 7.00pm in the Bateman Auditorium at Caius College. Entry is free and non-society members are most welcome to attend.

More information about the project can be found on the CU Spaceflight website.

The presentation which Henry, Ed and Fergus gave at the talk can be downloaded as a pdf file here.