ARDUINO BASED ANTENNA ROTATOR – PART3 – Software tracking update

This new version, December 2020, is compatible with EASYCOMM antenna protocol.
After getting in touch with PstRotator (tracking software) developer, he kindly gave me the solution I was searching for, in order to send back the antenna position to be displayed in the software. He also generously gave me a license for his software, thank you very much.

In the Easycom2 protocol, the software sends the target position to the controller, like
AZxxx.x ELxx.x
There is no fix length for the coordinates.
The software asks for the current antenna position by sending
AZ EL
And the controller should respond with
+xxx.x xx.x
where the first is the azimuth, then the elevation. There is no fix length, but the decimal is mandatory, even if it is 0. Like +23.0 5.0

This Arduino version is compatible with all tracking software that uses EasyComm protocol / 9600 bauds.
PstRotator, WXtrack, HRD, MacDoppler… Even WXtoIMG can control the rotator. Orbitron needs the plugin listed below.
It accepts 0-180º elevation, but rotate the antenna accordingly, for max. 90º elevation.
This is a little bit complicated, but if I was to do it again, I would discard the LCD and the manual commands. I’d put 2 LED’s for motors supervision, and the rest of movement and monitoring would be done by the software.
Beware that the mechanical part is the really tricky one.
There’s also a variant for interfacing with existing switch-boxes of the commercial rotators (also works with AC motors), and one for 180º elevation rotators. Just give me a shout.

Thank you very much to all who sent me feedback, helping to make this project more reliable.

Orbitron DDE Azimuth Elevation To Serial

Arduino code

PstRotator tracking software

PART1 – SOFTWARE AND PROTOTYPING 

PART2 – HARDWARE, BOARDS AND MOTORS

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