Preparation

Pre-Activation

Before you use SOTAmāt in-the-field, you need to pre-register a personal configuration that both the SOTAmāt server and your SOTAmāt mobile app agree on. In the field you’ll communicate a command to the SOTAmāt servier (via monitoring stations and PSKreporter) by sending a special callsign suffix. A suffix is too short to communicate all the information needed to self-spot (for example: mode, frequency, association, region, and summit ID). By pre-registering a configuration you are telling SOTAmāt how to expand your callsign suffixes into full SOTA spots or SMS messages. These configurations are per-user (per call sign): your suffixes don’t mean the same commands as mine.

For example, if I send the encoded FT8 message:

AB6D AB6D/1FDG

The SOTAmāt service might automate spotting me on SOTA as:

AB6D on W6/NC-423 14.277 SSB [SOTAmat.com by FT8] Freq +/- if QRM. (via KF7PRQ via AB6D)

NOTE: every time you change your configuration on this web site, you must also input the new configuration into your mobile app. Even a minor server-side change can cause all suffixes to re-map. This web site and your mobile app need to fully agree on your configuration such that they will agree on the meaning for a particular suffix. The current version of the mobile app is designed to work fully offline and thus does not automatically synchronize to the web server configuration when it changes. You must sync manually. Normally you create a configuration once for the region(s) you live in and never need to change it. [A future version of the mobile app may be smarter and auto-sync when internet is available.]

Follow the links below to pre-register a configuration before your trip:

SOTA Regions
Specify the Summits-On-The-Air (SOTA) Association Regions that contain the summits you plan to activate.
POTA Locations
Specify the Parks-On-The-Air (POTA) Program-Entity Locations that contain the parks you plan to activate.
Modes / Bands / Frequencies
Specify a set of base-frequencies (defining your “bands”) and modes (ex. SSB, FM, CW, etc.) you’ll want available, and then specify a sequence of frequency steps for each that will be available to you in the field.
Messages and Commands
Specify SOTAmāt commands you can execute from the field (optional). For now the only supported command is to send pre-defined one-way SMS messages. Many other commands are not yet implemented.

The SOTAmāt suffix encoding allows for approximately 1,000,000 unique suffixes. Out of the ~1.7M possible 4-character suffixes, there are many suffixes that are not used by SOTAmāt. The system avoids all suffixes that would be a valid country-prefix (since that would falsely indicate that you are operating remotely in one of those countries), all suffixes that fall on Google’s list of published worldwide “bad words” (swear words, etc.), all suffixes that have special meaning to the USA FCC (ex. AE, AA, AG, etc.), and all suffixes that are found in open-source dictionaries of common English words (ex. “TOOL”, “HELP”, “SOS”, “RED”, etc.). If you find additional “bad suffixes” in use by the system, please email the administrator to have them removed from the system.

Your pre-registered count of possible “summits” (add up all the maximum summit-ID’s within all the association-regions you selected) multiplied by your total pre-registered frequency steps (sum all steps from all selected “frequency-mode” definitions), added-to the count of your pre-registered “commands” (ex. SMS messages) should be less than roughly 1,000,000.

In other words:

(((TotalSOTAsummits + TotalPOTAparks) * TotalFrequencySteps) + TotalCommands) < 1,000,000

Below we show your current pre-registered totals and how they are derived.