The Society of Amateur Radio Astronomers (SARA)

Sources of Components, Software, 
and General Radio Astronomy Info

Rev. 6/24/03


Jeff Lichtman

Steve Kostro, Box 341A, RD1, Frenchtown, NJ 08825 (908) 834-1304 also
offers a catalog of hard to get parts for microwave builders. Steve Kostro's company
Down East Microwave's website is .

Another Interference logging program is : Scanner Wear by Radio Control Systems
at It drives an Icom R8500, R7000, R7100, R10, AR3000, AR8000,
and Opto456/535.

Computer Software:

Chuck Forster has a Mac based data logging and analysis program.
The software is free.  If you want to record your own data, Chuck has a
complete computer based logging system and analysis package that uses
the Radio Shack digital voltmeter with computer interface.  This DVM unit
sells for $129 at Radio Shack.  The software is free.

Jim Sky, P.O. Box 3552., Louisville, KY 40201 has a new book (The Radio
Astronomy Teachers Notebook, 1991) compiling a wealth of recent
information on RA and RA projects.  Jim says his articles are aimed at
teachers, but I am sure the information would be helpful to a newcomer.
Jim also has some computer simulation software including Radio-Sky
Planetarium and Radio-Jupiter programs. He also sells a data collection
program which will work with many A-to-D converters.
Jim Sky operates the RadioSky Publishing web site.

Dr. Michael Valdez,
4625 Scott St., Davenport, IA  52806 (319) 391-6862 has various computer
software programs and is our computer software chair.

Robert Gray, 3071 Palmer Square, Chicago, IL 60647 offers a calculator for
various RA data for $5.

Computer Bulletin Board:

Greenbank Computer BBS (304) 456-2172 This is a free BBS with support for
the 40 foot telescope at Greenbank.  Log on to obtain information files
and sample data.  This BBS may or may not be active in the future.

Publications and General Information for Radio Astronomy

SARA has a Program Guide and Source List, 1989 summary of Papers and a
Book of RA Computer Programs.  Contact Vince Caracci 247 N. Linden St.,
Massapequa, N.Y. 11758 (516) 798-8459.

The ARRL Handbook for the Radio Amateur published by The American Radio
Relay League 225 Main St., Newington, Conn.  06111 (203) 666-1541 Ask for
a listing of publications, they have many how-to books that are a must if
you plan to build RA equipment, but lack the technical background.

VHF Propagation Handbook published by Nampa Offset Printing, Inc., 312
12th Ave. So., Nampa, Idaho 83651 This book was written by a SARA member,
Jim Stewart.

Jeff Lichtman
PMB 321
1802 N. University Drive.
Plantation, FL 33322
954 838-0495".

Radio Astronomy for the Amateur by Heiserman.  Reported out of print.  May
be dated information.  ISBN 0-8306-5714-2.  TAB Books Co., 13311 Monterey
Lane, Blue Ridge Summit Pa. 17214 (717) 794-2191.

The Handbook of Solar Monitoring (1975) by Carl Chernan.  TAB Books Co.,
13311 Monterey Lane, Blue Ridge Summit Pa. 17214 (717) 794-2191.  Out of
print.  ISBN 0-8306-9984-8.

Radio Astronomy (1966) by J. Kraus.  Listed as being available through
Mc-Graw Hill and Cygnus Quasar Books P.O. Box 85, Powell, Ohio 43065 (614)

Antennas (1988) by J. Kraus.  Cygnus Quasar Books P.O. Box 85, Powell,
Ohio 43065 (614) 548-7895 (College level)

Radio Astronomy and How To Build Your Own Telescope (1963)  by John
Heywood, ARC Books.  Out of date and out of print but check your library.

Total Eclipses of the Sun (1984)  by J.B. Zirker, Van Nostrand Reinhold Co.  ISBN

Math Books That Can Be Applied To Radio Astronomy

DFT/FFT and Convolution Algorithms  by C.S. Burrus and T.W. Parks. John
Wiley-Interscience is the publisher.  ISBN 0-471-81932-8.

Celestial Basic by Eric Burgess. Sybex Inc. 2344 Sixth Street, Berkley CA
94710.  ISBN 0-89588-087-3.

SETI and General Reading Books

Our Cosmic Universe (1980)  by J. Kraus.  Cygnus Quasar Books P.O. Box 85,
Powell, Ohio 43065 (614) 548-7895 (High School level).

Big Ear (1976)  by J. Kraus.  Cygnus Quasar Books P.O. Box 85, Powell, Ohio
43065 (614) 548-7895 (Interesting reading).

Cosmic Search (1/79 to 1/82)  All 13 back issues reported available through  Cygnus
Quasar Books P.O. Box 85, Powell, Ohio 43065 (614) 548-7895 (Interesting

Return To A New World April 1990 issue of Astronomy magazine.  Prospects
for the Galileo mission to Jupiter.

Seeing the Unseen Sun January 1990 issue of Astronomy magazine.  Prospects
for the solar probe Ulysses.

Unveiling the Hidden Milky Way November 1988 issue of Astronomy magazine.
Good explanation of how radio astronomers map the Milky Way.

Serendipitous Discoveries In Radio Astronomy Great collection of
interesting papers.  Available through NRAO Greenbank Observatory, P.O.
Box 2, Greenbank, WVA 24944 (304) 456-2011.

At The Edge of The Universe (1983)-   Universe Books,  ISBN 0-87663-433-1.

The Milky Way (1976) Bart Bok and Priscilla Bok, Harvard University Press,
ISBN 0-674-57501-6.

The Physics-Astronomy Frontier (1980) F. Hoyle and J. Narlikar, W.H.
Freeman and Co.  ISBN 0-7167-1160-5.

The Search (1977) Frank Stilley Cygnus Quasar Books P.O. Box 85, Powell,
Ohio 43065 (614) 548-7895.

Construction Articles:

Plans and specifications, including PC board artwork for a simple to build
DC amplifier circuit.  The artwork has been designed to accommodate first
time PC board constructors, and those new to electronic construction.  The
same board can be used for amplifying, spanning and offsetting your
detected DC detector signal.  The board is set up to convert antenna
position to a proportional DC voltage that can be read by any computer A/D
unit.  Send $2.00 to Chuck Forster.

Computer Signal Recording Equipment:

Radio Shack Digital Volt Meter.  Outputs simple text file data, very easy
to write programs for this unit.  Serial port control so will work with
any computer that has a serial port.  Works with Doctor Data logging
program. Provided at no cost from Chuck Forster.  Runs on Mac operating system.

Ms-Dos users will like this one!  Complete hardware and fantastic software
package, all you need to get moving.  8 bit version offered as of 6/93, 12
bit version on the way.  George Jones, 538 Vista Grande Circle, Charlotte
NC 28226-3656 (704) 543- 9315.  Approximate cost $139.

If you like to program but do not want to build A/D hardware try Maxim's
new MAX 132 evaluation kit for only $95.  Comes in kit form, has serial
port communications.  Call (800) 998-8800 and order Max132EVKit.  Not sure
how long this will last!

Interference Logging Equipment and Software:

Delta Research, P.O. Box 13677, Wauwatosa, WI 53213 (414) 353-4567.  Has a
signal logging program for $299 plus shipping.  An additional $99 buys and
A/D unit for the R-7000 or similar receivers.  All program modules require
an Icom R- 7000 receiver or similar unit.