Hands-On SDR Experimentation: SDR Challenge – Identifying Mystery Waveform Using Simulink and RTL-SDR

During this evening event, the audience will be tasked with identifying a “mystery waveform” that is being generated in their vicinity.  Using MATLAB/Simulink and the RTL-SDR platform, both of which will be provided during this event, each team will be given several partially completed models and some details of the mystery waveform.  The objective of this challenge is to add the remaining functionality to the models provided and leverage the RTL-SDR in order to classify the received signal and potentially even decode the signal.

The learning outcomes of this event include:
  • Obtaining an understanding of the MATLAB/Simulink software environment and its capabilities.
  • Gaining knowledge on how MATLAB/Simulink interfaces with the RTL-SDR device.
  • Experience hands-on real-time wireless experimentation using MATLAB/Simulink and the RTL-SDR in a controlled wireless scenario.
Given the limited number of computer workstations and RTL-SDR platforms available, this event has a registration limit of 30 individuals (teams of 3 individuals will be formed at this event).


Mike McLernon has been with The MathWorks since 2001.  He currently serves as a manager overseeing the development of communications and SDR products.  He has worked in the communications field for nearly 30 years, in both the satellite and wireless industries. Mike received his BSEE from the University of Virginia, and his MEEE from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Ethem Sozer is a principal software engineer at MathWorks Inc. in Natick, MA. He specializes in software development for signal processing and communications toolboxes to support SDR. Previously he was a research engineer at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he developed underwater acoustic communication hardware and software platforms. He has bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Middle East Technical University, and a Ph.D. from Northeastern University.