Skip to content


Open Access

Digital beacon receiver for ionospheric TEC measurement developed with GNU Radio

Earth, Planets and Space200860:BF03353137

Received: 19 August 2008

Accepted: 22 October 2008

Published: 13 November 2008


A simple digital receiver named “GNU Radio Beacon Receiver (GRBR)” was developed for the satelliteground beacon experiment to measure the ionospheric total electron content (TEC). The open-source software toolkit for the software defined radio, GNU Radio, is utilized to realize the basic function of the receiver and perform fast signal processing. The software is written in Python for a LINUX PC. The open-source hardware called Universal Software Radio Peripheral (USRP), which best matches the GNU Radio, is used as a frontend to acquire the satellite beacon signals of 150 and 400 MHz. The first experiment was successful as results from GRBR showed very good agreement to those from the co-located analog beacon receiver. Detailed design information and software codes are open at the URL


Total Electron ContentDigital ReceiverSlant Total Electron ContentBeacon SignalTotal Electron Content Measurement