From AMSAT Vice President – Engineering Jerry Buxton, N0JY:
Thanks go to W5SAT, who applied the amateur radio spirit of
exploration and innovation to helping find out “what’s up?” with
We appreciate his work and immediately applied it to our processes as
we discover/recover RadFxSat-2.
Why was it not heard or found week ago? There could be an unexplained
behavior such that it could not and was not able to occur until the
other day. Our stations attempted transponder use under various
conjectured and commanded states throughout this period as part of the
exploration of the anomaly, but did not detect any signals. They were
able to confirm their signals the night of the 27th.
Following that we turned attention to the beacon, as you know. We
have not discovered the beacon yet and we have contacted some top
class “big gun” stations, asking for their help. The signal will
obviously be pipsqueak and may not even be there. The drive to find
it, or if it is not detected then to take possible actions to activate
it, is the information in the telemetry that is paramount to knowing
through satellite data exactly what is going on. We asked you that
the transponder not be used because any power to signals in the
transponder downlink is power stolen from the beacon strength. We
have asked everybody to listen, as from the beginning, to help find it
and find status and solutions faster. It may sound boring or useless
but it is at the heart of every satellite launch and commissioning
phase and perhaps the biggest part the general satellite community can
play in the lifetime of the satellite. The payoff is important to all
of us, and I invite anyone to join the hunt and share in the enjoyment
of – whatever happens.
I can’t say what we will be doing tomorrow for sure, we will be
looking for any reports and telemetry as more and larger stations join
and because we have seen behavior that is not clearly understood.
Procedures and conclusions that are not carefully thought out could
result in losing what we have now. It is comparable to NASA taking
careful time in dealing with anomalies (barring safety-related
issues). Very importantly, we will be watching to see if anyone
captured anything at all from the telemetry in the beacon. All you
have to do is hunt and catch one frame and you are a hero in this
game. Your help is greatly appreciated.
Unless there is some big news over the weekend, I expect that Monday
evening would be the next opportunity for a short update, time