An Azimuth and Elevation controller for U100 (pulse type) Rotors


  (I decided to open up these pages to share what is here and motivate me to  finish documenting this project)

Well, I couldn't resist. Even though there are a few  projects out there showing how to control  rotors using programmed controllers of one sort or another  I have decided to give it a shot myself. Why would I do this if there are already good projects for this? Well I have attempted to list the top few answers to this question so I will remember myself !

  1. I am interested in LEO satellites and don't have enough hands - LEO operators will understand this!!
  2. I like to play with ATMEL micro-controllers and this is a good project for one
  3. I had a lot of time on my hands- when I started the project anyway
  4. I am interested in the challenge of calibrating and keeping inexpensive pulse type rotors synchronized

Anyway -  it seemed like a good idea when I started!


So one needs a rotor to play with. The venerable Alliance U100 was my choice. Why? It was relatively inexpensive  and Norm (Norm's Rotor Service) seems to have an ample supply of them. By the way; I have no affiliation with any rotor manufacturer or parts supplier.

 Before I forget; this is the most important thing I discovered about the U100 rotor and the voltage you apply to it!

So enough of this -> on to the project details


By The Way

I make these notes for myself. I put it on the WEB to share what I have done with others. But I may take shortcuts and use options that are not appropriate for everyone. I will put details here that may allow you to duplicate what I have done and you are certainly welcome to do so. But these pages are not a recommendation and carry no guarantee. Use at your own discretion and risk.

-------  Update   Jan. 5th 2010  -----

Looking back on my notes I see that I started this project back in October of 2006! As I type this update it is January 5, 2010.  It didn't take me that long to get it working. We have been using it for our club's field day for the last 3 years.  I have just not been motivated to put the "finishing touches" on it; if you know what I mean. So I have decided to share it on my WEB site as is. It certainly works and we have used it every year for field day since the first version.  I just keep getting distracted by other projects.  So, I plan to put everything here to enable someone to make one of these if you choose to. I realize that some of the details are a bit spread around but I think there is enough here to be successful.

However, this is a project that requires building experience and  knowledge of microcontrollers.

The following document will be helpful if you are interested in this project ->  An AZ EL rotor controller Application