Are we on a brink of a new technological breakthrough?

There is a short article in the Nature magazine by a Danish team of researchers about ‘Optical detection of radio waves through a nanomechanical transducer’.

In other words, a resonant nano-scale capacitor is fed with a radio signal. A radio signal induced oscillations in this capacitors make it vibrate – like a tiny micro piezo-mechanical quartz. The oscillations are then read using reflected laser light so it works like an up-conversion with optical spectrum used for IF (intermediate frequency) and detection.

I believe, it should be fairly possible to print such up-converters fairly cheap on a silicon wafer – a tiny solid-state laser (LED), photo-diode, and reflecting radio-detecting surface so the application possibilities are endless – e.g. software-defined nano antenna arrays, imaging in gigahertz/terahertz spectrum, highly accurate 3D scanners, ultra sensitive receiver front-ends, etc

See full article about this discovery at U of MD website:

HSMM Mesh on Raspberry Pi

Broadband-Hamnet™ (formerly called HSMM-Mesh™)  is a high speed, self discovering, self configuring, fault tolerant, wireless computer network that can run for days from a fully charged car battery, or indefinitely with the addition of a modest solar array or other supplemental power source. The focus is on emergency communications.

In its current form it is built using the Linksys WRT54G/GL/GS wireless routers and operates on channels 1-6 of the 2.4GHz ISM band, which overlaps with the upper portion of the 13cm amateur radio band. Other platforms and bands are in development at this time. Next will be Ubiquiti equipment with others supported as development resources permit.

It’s fairly easy to flash an old Linksys WRT54G router with HSMM-Mesh (now called BroadbandHamnet-v1) firmware. The downside is that the routers are fairly old and not that easy to find anymore. Plus, they are fairly limited in functionality. It would be more interesting to put mesh software on a microcomputer such as Raspberry Pi or BeagleBone which I did.

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Get on the Air

Came across an old article I wrote some time ago for VA3CTA and decided to crosspost it here. The article was addressed to the newly licensed hams.

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