PA-100D Remote Control & Status Monitoring

Software developed by Adrian

PA-100D Remote Control & Status Monitoring

Postby 5B4AIY » 03 Nov 2016 17:40

Build 3 - 26/MAR/2017
Build 1 has been removed, and replaced with Build 3. Whilst playing around with the remote commands I discovered that if the manual band change command was incorrectly formatted, then an erroneous display would result. This version of the firmware uses more robust error checking to ensure that illegal band and gain settings are rejected.

I was asked if it would be possible to remotely control and monitor the operation of the amplifier. This version of the firmware incorporates such a feature. In order to use this feature you will need to connect to the amplifier's serial port, and in the User Configuration menu select the REMOTE mode, and set the port speed. A direct serial port connection will naturally be limited in distance depending upon the speed, but in the case for which this method was intended, the user wished to operate over an Ethernet link, and used a RS-232 port on his Ethernet adaptor. In addition, you will need some form of display program capable of parsing the status string from the PA-100D, as well as capable of sending the commands in the correct format. The original person requesting this feature used Javascript to implement this task.

Although this version of the firmware can be safely loaded over the previous release, if you wish to return to the previous version, because of the additional configuration value used for the REMOTE mode selection, IT IS ABSOLUTELY VITAL THAT PRIOR TO RE-LOADING THE PREVIOUS VERSION THE AUTO-DETECT MODE IS SET TO 'F-SENSE', AND THE SERIAL PORT MODE IS SET TO 'OFF' AND THESE SETTINGS ARE SAVED! If the mode is left with REMOTE selected, then this will return to TEST when the previous firmware is loaded, but if it is set TEST then this will provoke a fatal Memory Trap Error. You have been warned! No harm will come to the amplifier, but in order to correct the invalid memory address you will need to reset the amplifier to its default state. This of course will reset all the calibration and configuration data. You could also reload this version of the firmware, then reset the serial port mode and save it, and then restore the previous version, which would preserve your existing settings.

Remote Control & Status Reporting
(For full details, please see Anex D of the User Manual)
Select the F-Sense mode, and then select the REMOTE serial port mode in the User Configuration menu.
Commands take the form:


Where C is a command letter which may be followed by a parameter, which is a single decimal digit in the range 0 - 9.

Valid commands are:
A - Select Auto band select mode.
Bn - Select Manual band n, where n is 1 - 9. 1 = 160m, 9 = 10m.
C - Attempt to cancel any alarms.
Gn - Select Gain n, where n is 1 - 4.
O - Select the Operate mode.
Pn - Power Off. If n = 0, power off without saving the current state. If n = 1, save the current state.
R - Request current status.
S - Select the Standby mode.

Status Report Format
The amplifier will respond to a status request by transmitting a string similar to this:

O:A:T:C: 5:1:1.0:14.09: 8.1: 27.2: 26:0: 0

O - O operate, or S standby state.
A - A auto band, or M manual band select.
T - T transmit, or R for receive.
C - C Centigrade or F Fahrenheit temperature scale.
5 - Current band, in this case, 20m, formatted as 2 digits, right justified.
1 - Current gain setting, G1.
1.0 - SWR, 1.0:1 formatted as 2 digits, 1 decimal place.
14.09 - Supply voltage, V, formatted as 4 digits, 2 decimal places, right justified.
8.1 - Amplifier total current, A, formatted as 3 digits, 1 decimal place, right justified.
27.2 - Output power, W, formatted as 4 digits, 1 decimal place, right justified.
26 - Heat-sink temperature, Centigrade in this case, formatted as 3 digits, no decimal places, right justified.
0 - Fan speed, Off in this case, formatted as a single digit. 1 = Slow, 2 = Medium, 3 = Fast.
0 - Alarm, none, formatted as a 2-digit hexadecimal number. Bitmapped alarms.

This firmware incorporates some other minor low level improvements.

73, Adrian, 5B4AIY
PA-100D v3.00c Build 3 (C-Source+HEX Load File+User Manual).zip
Remote control feature added, now with more robust error checking.
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