[Bill Meara] has discovered an easy way to listen to amateur “cube-sat” satellites using a cheap SDR Dongle.
The DVB-T SDR Dongle comes in at a whopping thirteen bucks, and the highly sophisticated antenna (pdf) is made from a bit of copper wire and uses aluminum wire for the ground plane.
Once he had everything hooked up, [Bill] went to the Heavens Above website to see when satellites would be passing over him. He was able to lock onto the Prism Satellite, and then a couple other cube-sats that were launched from Russia and Istanbul.
While listening to the Japanese FO-29 satellite at 470 MHz, the Doppler Shift was noticeable ,verifying that he was indeed tuned in to a device in low Earth orbit. Be sure to check out his blog for more details, not to mention the video below where you can hear the Doppler Shift for yourself.