Detailed doppler measurements show that TianYi 2 (TY 2) is
object 43155, 2018-008A. TY 2 is a payload in the satellite
XiaoXiang 2 (XX 2). Downlink: 435.350 MHz.
Detailed doppler measurements show that TianYi 6 (TY 6) is
either object 43157, 2018-008C, or 43158, 2018-008D. TY 6 is
a payload in the satellite QuanTuTong 1 (QTT 1).
Downlink: 436.100 MHz.
Currently the separation between objects 43157 and 43158 is
less than 1 second.
Worked Fer IW1DTU yesterday at 09:08 UTC via AO-92 in L/V mode over
Good signal using transverter +20W PA directly under a 23 element yagi
Unfortunately the transverter IF is on the same satellite downlink band so
I can't hear myself but I am working out this issue.
Here a short QSO video
TNX to AO-92 Team
73, Rocco IK8XLD
Not being especially familiar with microwave equipment, I came across a type
of connection which is currently a mystery to me. I know it is a
connection, but I'm not sure if it is a connector.
In seeing pictures of some microwave PA's, sometimes a fine pin or pins are
on the chassis for voltage connection. But, is it a connector? If so, what
kind? (with that I can Google my way to more information)
I'm guessing the connection is special to ensure insulation and the
integrity of chassis shielding(?), but I can't seem to find the mating
female connector (if that pin is indeed a connector and not just a
I'm guessing the BB won't allow images inside a message, so there are some
s-extras.596138/ (scroll down over half way).
Not being even close to needing an amp-I just got my Arrow ant. but haven't
even make a contact yet <grin>-I still must have interest or I wouldn't be
daydreaming by looking at antennas, LNA's, transverters, and PA's online.
Just worked AO-92 L/V mode for the first time.Glad to see the old 1269 board in my TS-2000x still works after all this time of no satellites with this mode!!!!!I am using TS-2000x, M2 beam antennas on both bands, computer control with MacDoppler/Mac computer, Yaesu 5400B rotors.Signals were weak to strong on this 30 degree elevation pass (orbit 132).I worked N8HM, KE4AL, WB8RJY, N8TL, VE4AMU. Perry WB8OTH
sent from my Apple Macbook Pro
AMSAT NEWS SERVICE
The AMSAT News Service bulletins are a free, weekly news and infor-
mation service of AMSAT North America, The Radio Amateur Satellite
Corporation. ANS publishes news related to Amateur Radio in Space
including reports on the activities of a worldwide group of Amateur
Radio operators who share an active interest in designing, building,
launching and communicating through analog and digital Amateur Radio
The news feed on http://www.amsat.org publishes news of Amateur
Radio in Space as soon as our volunteers can post it.
Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to:
ans-editor at amsat.org.
In this edition:
* Dr. Junior Torres de Castro, PY2BJO SK
* AMSAT Membership Deal and Getting Started
* Upcoming club satellite presentations (and hopefully demos...)
* Zhou Enlai Student Satellite to Launch
* AO-92 camera results
* N8RO Logs 488th US Grid - Earns Grid Master Award #8
* Updates to AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution for 1-16-2018
* Fox-1 MPPT Developers Interviewed on HamRadio360 Podcast
* ARISS News
* Satellite Shorts From All Over
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-021.01
ANS-021 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 021.01
>From AMSAT HQ KENSINGTON, MD.
January 21, 2017
To All RADIO AMATEURS
Dr. Junior Torres de Castro, PY2BJO SK
It is with great sadness that the Directors and Officers of AMSAT-
North America announce the passing of Dr. Junior Torres de Castro,
PY2BJO. According to his son, Allan Kardec, Junior passed away on
January 17, 2018 in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
A very active radio amateur, Junior was a great collaborator of
LABRE (The League of Brazilian Amateur Radio Transmitters) serving
for a time as its President. He was also a founder of BRAMSAT, the
Brazilian AMSAT group as well as an active member of the AMSAT-NA
Board of Directors during the early 1990s.
But, perhaps what Junior will be best remembered for among the rest
of the world's amateurs was his work with AMSAT-NA in helping to
build (and financially underwrite) Brazil's very first amateur radio
Called "DOVE short for "Digital Orbiting Voice Encoder", the
satellite was successfully launched on January 22, 1990 on an Ariane
4 rocket from the European Space Agency's Kourou Space Center in
French Guiana. Besides the main payload, that launch also included
three other AMSAT MicroSats along with two larger UOSats. Surrey
Satellite Technology in England built the two larger satellites.
Junior's vision for his DOVE satellite was to provide a strong 2m,
audio FM downlink signal ("This is DOVE in Space") that could be
easily received by educational institutions around the world.
Downlink telemetry was via 1200 Baud AFSK, AX.25 packet radio, a data
format that was easily decoded with receivers and TNCs that were very
popular among radio amateurs at the time.
When told of Junior's passing, Jan King, W3GEY, a founding AMSAT
Director and AMSAT's Vice President of Engineering during the
MicroSat project said that, "I'm very sorry to hear about Junior. He
certainly made the 4 MicroSat mission happen. He was a very important
part of AMSAT and a fond memory for me."
Likewise, Former AMSAT-NA BOD member Bob McGwier, N4HY, noted that,
"This is a sad day. Junior was a great guy, full of life, and he
loved AMSAT. It was a pleasure for me to help build his MicroSat for
him. When I became an AMSAT employee for getting these spacecraft
done, Junior paid the bills."
Another MicroSat Project team member, Jim White, WD0E, noted that,
"This is indeed sad news. It was a pleasure to work with him on DOVE.
He was a very warm and generous person and not only conceived of and
funded DOVE, but also a receiver for the 60-foot radio dish that the
Table Mountain the Deep Space Exploration Society was refurbishing.
He was always tinkering and building things at his house near Sao
Paulo. He even dreamed of building a round swimming pool that, when
drained, would double as a radio astronomy dish! During the time his
DOVE satellite was sending "This is DOVE in space" audio from orbit
we received nearly 200 SWL cards from around the world, all of which
we shared with him. Needless to say, he was absolutely delighted."
At ANS deadline, funeral arrangements for Junior were still pending.
But word was received that his funeral and interment was to be in at
the Gethsemane Cemetery in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
[ANS thanks Keith KB1SF/VA3KSF for the above information]
AMSAT Membership Deal and Getting Started
Just a few reminders for all the new folks joining us:
AMSAT membership supports the organization and construction of new
satellites. Right now, we are offering a free PDF copy of our Getting
Started with Amateur Satellites with every new on-line membership.
This is -the- primer for getting on the sats, and is updated every
year. See https://www.amsat.org/product-category/amsat-membership/
AMSAT also sells both the popular Arrow Antenna satellite models and
the M2 LEOpack antennas. Sales also benefit AMSAT projects.
[ANS thanks AMSAT Office for the above information]
Upcoming club satellite presentations (and hopefully demos...)
Philip N4HF announces a couple of presentations he'll be doing.
1) Blue Ridge ARC (Henderson County NC), Tuesday March 6, 7pm.
http://radioclub.org/ (this club has also started streaming club
meetings via TeamViewer; the demo, if it happens, will be outside
2) Haywood County ARC (NC), Thursday April 12, 7 pm.
http://kw4p.org/ (Meeting place is incorrect on the website, but
hopefully that will be updated in the next few days)
Philip states he will be at one hamfest under the AMSAT banner, and
possibly two, in the next couple of months. He will be announcing
those when the info is finalized.
[ANS thanks Philip N4HF for the above information]
Zhou Enlai Student Satellite to Launch
The 2U CubeSat Zhou Enlai, developed with primary and middle school
students, is expected to launch on Friday, January 19, 2018
The satellite is named after the first Premier of the PRC. Zhou
Enlai held office from October 1949 until January 1976.
A report on Xinhua Net says:
The satellite was sent from its production base in Huai'an Youth
Comprehensive Development Base in east China's Jiangsu Province to
Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China's Gansu Province
Monday, where a CZ-11 solid fuel rocket is scheduled to put it into
Twenty teenagers who participated in the development project
accompanied the transport group to the launch center and will witness
Zhang Xiang, chief designer of the satellite, said that the nano-
satellite, weighing 2 kilograms, is set to run in sun-synchronous
orbit. Equipped with a HD optical camera, it can capture space photos
with the highest resolution among those shot by other Chinese
satellites for scientific education purpose.
Zhang said that the students had taken their spare time to join the
development and groundbased simulation performance of the satellite,
and had learnt to assemble and practice voice data transfer and
"A scientific satellite like this is like a teacher in space,
carrying cameras or spectroscopes to study the upper atmosphere or to
shoot space pictures of the stars. Students can grasp the mystery of
the universe through the messages transmitted by the teacher," said
Zhang, a professor with Nanjing University of Science and Engineering.
Read the full story at
The IARU satellite pages list a 2U CubeSat called HA-1 with FM
transponder and SSTV developed by the Teenagers Amateur Radio Center
of Activity in Huai'an. Zhou Enlai may well be the new name for this
[ANS thanks Southgate ARN for the above information]
AO-92 camera results
For those that have not been following AMSAT on Twitter or Facebook,
we have done a few camera runs with AO-92 with very good results. A
pass this morning yielded 4 good images, two of which I have located
their position on the ground. The images can be seen at:
Some side by side comparisons with Google Earth and NOAA images can be
Congratulations again to Virginia Tech, and thanks for providing the
camera experiments for AO-92 and Fox-1Cliff!
[ANS thanks Drew KO4MA for the above information]
N8RO Logs 488th US Grid - Earns Grid Master Award #8
Congratulations to Ron Oldham, N8RO, to log his last grid needed
to have worked via satellite all 488 grids in the Lower 48 United
States. Ron's message on the amsat-bb reads, "On Sunday [January 14]
I was able to log the last grid I needed to complete the 488 US grids.
I would like to publicly thank Doug, N6UA, for going out of his way
to help me get DN23 in my log. Without the efforts of many portable
satellite operators like Doug it would not be possible to achieve
this accomplishment. Many thanks to all of the operators that
helped me throughout the years."
Ron also noted the Top 10 portable satellite operators who's efforts
have provided opportunities for contacts including:
ND9M - 332
K8YSE - 273
AC0RA - 234
W5PFG - 205
WC7V - 126
WD9EWK - 117
KA6SIP - 108
NJ7H - 89
A5CK - 710
KB5WIA - 610
KB0RZD - 6
On January 17 Damon, WA4HFN announced, "Congrats to Ron,N8RO for
earning Grid Master Award #8". The Grid Master Award is given for
confirmed satellite contacts with all 488 U.S. Grids." These awards
are available at no cost but Damon requests that you make a donation
to AMSAT-NA. For more information visit the web site:
[ANS thanks Ron, N8RO via the amsat-bb, and Damon, WA4HFN for the
Updates to AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution for 1-16-2018
Here is the current tracking status for AO-92 and PICSAT.
Updates to AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution
Nico Janssen, PA0DLO, by detailed doppler measurements has confirmed
the identity of the AO-92 and PICSAT from the 1-12-2018 0358 GMT
India PSLV-C40 launch. They have been added to the AMSAT-NA TLE
PICSAT - NORAD CAT ID 43131
AO-92 - NORAD CAT ID 43137
The following objects have been dropped from the AMSAT-NA TLE
OBJECT A - NORAD CAT ID 43111
OBJECT B - NORAD CAT ID 43112
OBJECT C - NORAD CAT ID 43113
OBJECT D - NORAD CAT ID 43114
OBJECT E - NORAD CAT ID 43115
OBJECT F - NORAD CAT ID 43116
OBJECT T - NORAD CAT ID 43128
OBJECT U - NORAD CAT ID 43129
99934 - NORAD CAT ID 99934
Please modify your tracking program as required.
To receive AMSAT's Keplerian Element updates directly to your e-mail
box subscribe at:
[ANS thanks AMSAT for the above information]
Fox-1 MPPT Developers Interviewed on HamRadio360 Podcast
Cale, K4CDN, interviewed the Salmi brothers, Brent, KB1LQD, and
Bryce, KB1LQC, on the HamRadio360 podcast. Brent and Bryce are
the developers of the Maximum Power Point Tracker (MPPT) used
in the Fox-1B, Fox-1Cliff, and Fox-1D cubesats. The MPPT is the
controlling interface between the solar panel with the electrical
system of the Fox-1 satellites in such a way that the conditions
for maximum power are always met when needed.
Cale, Brent and Bryce also discuss their Open Source Digital Radio
company, Faraday RF.
Listen to the HamRadio360 podcast at:
[ANS thanks Cale, K4CDN, and HamRadio360 for the above information]
+ A Successful contact was made between Higher National School of
Computer Science and Systems Analysis (ENSIAS), Rabat, Morocco
and Astronaut Mark Vande Hei KG5GNP using Callsign NA1SS. The
contact began 2018-01-03 13:52 UTC and lasted about nine and a
half minutes. Contact was telebridge via VK5ZAI].
ARISS Mentor was Eskil SM5SRR.
+ A Successful contact was made between Prva srednja informaticka
škola, Zagreb, Croatia] and Astronaut Scott Tingle KG5NZA using
Callsign NA1SS. The contact began 2018-01-18 08:46 UTC and lasted
about nine and a half minutes. Contact was telebridge via VK6MJ.
ARISS Mentor was Marco 9A8MM.
Upcoming ARISS Contact Schedule as of 2018-01-20 01:00 UTC
Quick list of scheduled contacts and events:
Naka Junior High School, Kakamigahara City, Japan, direct via 8J25D
The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS
The scheduled astronaut is Mark Vande Hei KG5GNP
Contact is a go for: Mon 2018-01-22 10:23:21 UTC
Contact is direct with 8J25D and should be audible over Japan and
The English School, Nicosia, Cyprus, telebridge via W6SRJ
The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS
The scheduled astronaut is Mark Vande Hei KG5GNP
Contact is a go for: Wed 2018-01-24 10:35:45 UTC
[ANS thanks ARISS, Charlie AJ9N and David AA4KN for the above
Satellite Shorts From All Over
+ MONTSERRAT, VP2M. Daniel, KD9HNL is QRV as VP2MDH until January 29.
Activity is on various FM satellites. QSL via LoTW.
[ANS thanks ARRL DX news for the above information]
+ AMSAT-NA President Joe Spier K6WAO Interviewed in February QST
Read Steve Ford's WB8IMY interview of AMSAT-NA President Joe Spier
K6WAO in Frebrauary's QST. The interview which, appears on page 69
of the issue, covers Joe's amateur radiocCareer, his vision for the
future of AMSAT-NA and amateur satelites in general, challenges on
the horizon, prospect of HEOs and geostationary amateur satellites.
[ANS thanks QST for the above information]
+ More background on the satellites aboard the PSLV-C40 flight:
[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]
+ NASA Social Media event
[ANS thanks NASA for the above information]
+ Jerry Buxton N0JY VP Enginneering On HamTalkLive
On January 18, Thursday night at 9 pm Eastern time, Jerry Buxton,
N0JY the vice president for engineering at AMSAT was interview on
the HamTalkLive webcast to talk about the process of building
amateur radio satellites, and the latest on the newest bird, Fox
1D which just arrived in space last week!
If you miss the show live, you can listen on demand 24/7/365.25
https://www.spreaker.com/show/ham-talk-live - select episode #98.
[ANS thanks HamTalkLive.com for the above information])
In addition to regular membership, AMSAT offers membership in the
President's Club. Members of the President's Club, as sustaining
donors to AMSAT Project Funds, will be eligible to receive addi-
tional benefits. Application forms are available from the AMSAT
Primary and secondary school students are eligible for membership
at one-half the standard yearly rate. Post-secondary school students
enrolled in at least half time status shall be eligible for the stu-
dent rate for a maximum of 6 post-secondary years in this status.
Contact Martha at the AMSAT Office for additional student membership
This week's ANS Editor,
EMike McCardel, AA8EM
aa8em at amsat dot org 75
Now that was cool!
73 - Dino KL0S
> On Jan 20, 2018, at 8:30 PM, Wendy and Terry Osborne <wandtosborne(a)gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Folks,
> Live streaming of today’s launch attempt has just started:
> Hope the boats stay out of the way today.
> Terry ZL2BAC
The Icom AG-series of mast mounted pre-amplifiers for weak-signal and satellite work are now legacy (I believe Icom has discontinued recently). A lower noise figure of the active device (FET, MMIC) is important for satellite work (sky), than weak-signal work (noisy terrain/earth).
High noise-levels with the AG-series are often attributed to a Failed FET or an improper FET replacement by an earlier owner.
Newer FETs have ESD / static protection, while older designs — DID NOT !
Nearby lightning strikes can damaged the FET on the AG-series pre-amps.
Central States VHF Society annually performed Noise Figure tests on a variety of devices.
This may be useful, as you examine modern devices or recent surplus.
The Icom mast-mounted pre-amplifiers (AG-25, AG-35) used the dual-gate Toshiba 3SK121 Dual Gare FET (discontinued). Schematics and manuals for the Icom AG-series are available via the Internet.
MODS.DK has the parts list and hand-drawn schematic for AG-35 (1999),
the othe file AG-25 etc. Instructions has schematic for AG-25 (last page).
Toshiba 3SK211 — GaAs MES FET, Dual-Gate, UHF, 10V, Idss>20mA, Up<4V
Icom AG-series (brochure)
In 2012 and 2013, Earl Andrews, VE3AB (Netty Electronics)
did comparison testing of various Dual Gate FETs, used by Icom, Yeasu, and Kenwood since the late 1970s.
Earl also noted Eastern Asian counterfeit products (various FETs), largely from China.
The Phillips/NXP BF981 being a common bad Chinese export (March 2014 & June 2015)
RF Parts — Low Noise FETs
As far as a MMIC swap, I have not seen anything posted (YouTube, Icom boards, amsat-bb reflector), BUT that does not mean it has not be attempted or accomplished.
Beginning this month — Corey Abercrombie, N4NGZ, acquired the exclusive rights to manufacture, sell and repair the existing DownEast Microwave, Inc. (DEMI) VHF/UHF Transverter product line and all past VHF/UHF transverter products.
Q5 Signal, LLC
17704 County Road 455
Montverde, FL 34756
Corey may be a source for current production UHF/Microwave devices, now or in future.
Jay Rusgrove, W1VD owner of Advanced Receiver Research (ARR) has a number of excellent Gallium Arsenide low-noise preamplifiers (LNA’s).
The ARR MSP144VDG-160 and MSP432VDG-160 models are often recommended for fixed satellite earth stations.
High Performance, 160 Watt Mast Mounted, Amateur Radio Preamplifiers
From: Bill Acito <w1pa(a)hotmail.com>
What's the opinion/consensus of the older ICOM AG series, as an
economical alternative? Can they be updated, with say, a different MMIC?