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Remote Sensor Data Transmission from Antarctica to Spain with a Long-Haul HF Ionospheric Link
* 1 , 1 , 1 , 1 , 1 , 1 , 1 , 1 , 2
1  GTM - Grup de Recerca en Tecnologies Mèdia, La Salle - Universitat Ramon Llull
2  Observatori de l’Ebre, CSIC, Universitat Ramon Llull

Published: 22 June 2015 by MDPI in 1st International Electronic Conference on Remote Sensing session Posters

The geophysical observatory in the Antarctic Spanish Station Juan Carlos I (BAE), on Livingston Island (62.6S, 60.4W), has been monitoring the magnetic field in the Antarctic region for more than fifteen years. In 2004, a vertical incidence ionospheric sounder was incorporated to the observatory, which brings a significant added value in a region with low density of geophysical data. A High Frequency (HF) communications system was installed in 2004 in order to transmit the geomagnetic station recordings throughout the year, due to the fact that the BAE is only accessible during the austral summer. As the power supply is very limited when the station is not accessible, we had to design a low-power HF transceiver with a very simple antenna, due to environmental restrictions. Moreover, the flow of information is unidirectional, so the modulation has to be extremely robust since there is no retransmission in case of error. This led us to study the main parameters of the ionospheric channel (Signal to Noise Ratio -SNR-, delay spread, Doppler spread and availability) with narrowband and wideband soundings, and the design of modulations specially adapted to very low SNR scenarios with high levels of interference. In this poster, a review of the design of our remote geophysical observatory and associated transmission system from Antarctica to Spain (12760 km) during the last decade is presented.

Keywords: geomagnetic sensors, ionosphere souding, HF link, propagation, modulation, channel availability, observatories, remote sensors