Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Logging Satellite Contacts to LOTW

Getting your logs into Logbook of the World can be tricky. There's several fields that are different from HF contacts, and of course the old idea of transmitting on a different frequency than you receive can be hard to grasp sometimes. Never fear however, there is always the chance for better living thru technology.

I present to everyone, a stripped down version of the 'automatic logger' that I use, written in Perl. First thing to remember, I am an engineer, I'm not a coder.. that said I've realized that coding helps me do my day to day work better, faster and easier, so sometimes I do code.  I like Perl cause it's very much an engineer's language.. it's coarse, gruff, to the point, and while somewhat less than elegant, it gets the job done. So consider this a 'Beta' version.. It's a variation of what I use, and I've tested it pretty thoroughly, but you might still introduce something I wasn't prepared for.

The script is pretty simple, it takes a CSV file (which you can make up in notepad, or alternatively and a bit easier excel) and converts it into the proper ADIF file for instant upload to LOTW via TQSL. The fields are as follows:

Your-Call, TheirCall, Date, Zulu Time, Bird, My Grid, Their Grid

In an excel sheet it looks like this:

In a generic text .csv the same files looks like this:

Doesn't really matter, just get those fields in there. 

Leave the first line alone - the script will pop it out of there. It's pre-configured to grab 'sat-logger.csv' as the file, but you can change that too if you want, also the output will write to satlotwupload.adi by default, but like everything that's customization too.

If you're a Linux user like me - you should be able to handle it from there. If you're a Windows User I highly recommend Strawberry Perl for making .pl files extensible, or I may make it into a .exe one of these days too (watch this space).

Standard Code disclaimers here - Offered in Open source, no warranties, guarantees, or support offered - use it if you like, if not, that's cool too.

Click Here to Download Example Spreadsheet

Click Here to Download Perl Script

Questions or Issues? Hit me up on Twitter @KG5CCI.

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