Ars Electronica 1998
Festival-Website 1998
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Festival 1979-2007


(Two Line) Orbital Elements

'Dietmar Offenhuber Dietmar Offenhuber

romanticism for data fanciers and ham radio fans, watching sunsets and satellite launches – staging and making perceptible the activities and patterns of motion of "invisible" forms of technology that seem to be capable of independent action.

the user has the opportunity to follow the race of NOAA 14 and meteor 3-5 – two earth observation satellites, one american and one russian – during a live-transmission from the on-board cameras of the two orbiters.

two receiver units are provided, each consisting of a hand-held antenna, coaxial cable, receiver and a laptop with sound card.

a simulation calculated from the orbital data offers an overview of the activities taking place and depicts them acoustically.

the work’s technical basis is the public-domain program "wxsat" by christian h. bock, which uses a low-cost soundcard to enable radio signals from weather satellites and fax stations to be demodulated. the pd program "stsplus" by david h. ransom is also employed.