AMSAT NEWS SERVICE ANS-027
ANS is a free, weekly, news and information service of AMSAT North America, The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation. ANS 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 satellites.
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In this edition: * New V/US Mode Operational on AO-51 * AO-16 Reconfigured for Voice Operations * AMSAT at Orlando Hamcation * AMSAT-DC Meeting Announcement * AMSAT President Testifies Regarding Antenna Restrictions * ARISS Status - 21 January 2008
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-027.01 New V/US Mode Operational on AO-51
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 027.01 From AMSAT HQ SILVER SPRING, MD. January 27, 2008 To All RADIO AMATEURS BID: $ANS-027.01
On January 25th, AO-51 was switched to a new mode. Currently both the S band downlink of 2401.200 and the 435.300 downlink are on and tied together to the 145.920 receiver. This creates a single repeater that can be heard on either downlink. In the past the satellite power budget would not allow simultaneous S and U downlinks for more than a few moments, but the current no eclipse season allows us try try this new combination. The L/U BBS and U band telemetry will be off during this period, except for brief periods when command stations will be collecting telemetry. During these passes, the S band downlink may be shut off temporarily.
Give this new mode a try this weekend. If you like using S-band AND working lots of stations, this mode is for you. Currently we plan to run this mode through the end of the month.
73, Drew KO4MA AMSAT-NA VP Ops
[ANS thanks Drew, KO4MA, for the above information]
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-027.02 AO-16 Reconfigured for Voice Operations
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 027.02 From AMSAT HQ SILVER SPRING, MD. January 27, 2008 To All RADIO AMATEURS BID: $ANS-027.02
Since AO-16 was recovered approximately 6 months ago, the command team has attempted to reload the satellite software almost a dozen times without success. Subsequently a series of memory tests were performed which points towards a hardware failure which prevents restarting the spacecraft software successfully. This team included Bruce Rahn WB9ANQ and Jim White WD0E advising Mark Hammond N8MH as the primary groundstation. Mark put in many early hours during the multiple reloads and test sessions, with Bruce, Jim, and others advising. Thank you to all involved for your hard work.
After the conclusion that the spacecraft computer system was damaged and as discussions about decommissioning were taking place, Jim recalled a series of low level commands included in the spacecraft design by Tom Clark, K3IO during construction. One of these commands allows an uplink receiver to be directly tied to a downlink transmitter. The twist is that the uplink is regular FM but the downlink via the BPSK transmitter is DSB (Double Sideband). Mark placed the satellite in this mode early this week and some testing was undertaken. The satellite hears VERY well, and the reduced bandwidth by using either USB or LSB on the groundstation receiver allows for a very robust downlink. Tuning the downlink is just like on a linear transponder, meaning it is tight and with fast Doppler. Uplink tuning is not required, just as with the FM mode V/U satellites. QSOs were made between N8MH, WD4ASW, KO4MA, K5QXJ, and WA6FWF. My personal observations include being able to access and hear the satellite within one degree of the horizon, much lower than any other current bird for my QTH. This should be an easy satellite with omni antennas and a 70cm preamp.
With that explanation, I'm happy to open the satellite to general use on voice for a test period. Please submit reports either to the -bb or to [email protected] . The uplink is 145.920 FM, and the downlink is 437.026 SSB +/- Doppler shift. Please restrict your uplink power to a reasonable level, and do not transmit without being able to hear the downlink. All the general single-channel guidelines apply. Enjoy this bird's new life!
[ANS Drew, KO4MA, for the above information]
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-027.03 AMSAT at Orlando Hamcation
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 027.03 From AMSAT HQ SILVER SPRING, MD. January 27, 2008 To All RADIO AMATEURS BID: $ANS-027.03
AMSAT will have a large presence at the Orlando Hamcation. It will remind some people of Dayton. The Orlando Hamcation has grown in size and prominence in the U.S. After all, it is in a horrible place for Winter in the U.S.!
The following AMSAT board members and officers will be there:
AMSAT President Rick Hambly, W2GPS AMSAT President Emeritus, Tom Clark, K3IO (ex-W3IWI) AMSAT Executive V.P. Lee McLamb, KU4OS AMSAT V.P. Operations, Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA AMSAT V.P. Field Ops, Gould Smith, WA4SXM AMSAT V.P. Engineering Bob McGwier, N4HY
Some of the above are board members. Additionally, board members Lou McFadid, W5DID and Barry Baines, WD4ASW will be in attendance. Barry Baines is our new Eagle/Intelsat project manager.
AMSAT has been granted prominent times and rooms for presentations. AMSAT is bringing the operational SDX and will soon thereafter put an SDX based linear transponder on the air covering much of the state of Florida and in a prominent place in Maryland. Additionally, one of the SDX will be in use in Europe thanks to a generous offer and help from Viktor Kudielka. AMSAT will hold engineering planning meetings here for engineering management. This was decided because so many of these people were going to be in attendance anyway. Please come hear about Eagle and Phase 3 E in Orlando. I hope to see you there Feb. 8-10!
[ANS thanks Bob, N4HY, for the above information]
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-027.04 AMSAT-DC Meeting Announcement
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 027.04 From AMSAT HQ SILVER SPRING, MD. January 27, 2008 To All RADIO AMATEURS BID: $ANS-027.04
We will meet in Pioneer Hall at the Historical Electronics Museum. Same place as last year, same time as last year, for one more time.
WHO: YOU are invited! Amateur radio operators, students, educators and the public are all invited.
WHAT: Talks, demos, tutorials and socializing about amateur satellites and balloon experiments in the greater mid- Atlantic USA area. A full day of activities.
WHEN: Saturday, March 15, 2008, starting at 11:00 A.M. local.
WHERE: Historical Electronics Museum (HEM) at 1745 West Nursery Road, Linthicum, Maryland 21090 (near BWI airport). In Pioneer Hall. HEM directions at http://www.hem-usa.org/
WHY: Fun, education, public service, cool stuff, and more fun.
HOW: Talk-in on 146.760 MHz (107.2 Hz PL on some receiver sites)
WEB: See http://patkilroy.com/amsat-dc/ for late breaking news. Download the AMSAT-DC-2008 flier PDF from the N8PK web page to share as widely as you can. Thank you!
[ANS thanks Pat, N8PK, for the above information]
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-027.05 AMSAT President Testifies Regarding Antenna Restrictions
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 027.05 From AMSAT HQ SILVER SPRING, MD. January 27, 2008 To All RADIO AMATEURS BID: $ANS-027.05
On January 24, 2008 AMSAT President Rick Hambly W2GPS testified before the Maryland State Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee in support of Senate Bill 80 that would prohibit "homeowners associations from restricting or prohibiting the design, placement, screening, height, or use of specified amateur radio equipment." It is hoped that we will also get a hearing before a House committee in a few weeks. There was no opposition to this bill during the hearing, unlike previous years. For more information see http://mlis.state.md.us/2008rs/billfile/sb0080.htm and http://n3ij.home.comcast.net/.
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-027.06 ARISS Status - 21 January 2008
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 027.06 From AMSAT HQ SILVER SPRING, MD. January 27, 2008 To All RADIO AMATEURS BID: $ANS-027.06
1. ARISS School Contacts Status
Due crew schedules onboard the ISS, no Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) contacts are planned at this time. The ARISS team expects contacts to resume once STS-122 launches in early February.
2. Astronaut Training Status
On Wednesday, January 16, Russian cosmonaut Oleg Skripochka, RN3FU, participated in a simulation of an Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) school contact. The Kenwood D700 radio in the JSC Service Module mockup was used for the contact. Skripochka spoke with the training support team who participated as students, asking Oleg questions about space and his visit on ISS. He is currently scheduled as an Expedition 17 backup crew member.
3. ARISS Annual Report Posted
The Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) FY2007 Annual Report has been posted to the ARISS section of the AMSAT Web site. See: http://www.amsat.org/amsat/ariss/Papers/Annual%20Reports/ ARISS_Annual_Report_2007_Final.pdf
4. Gail Borden Library Wins Award
The Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin, Illinois was one of five libraries to win the 2008 John Cotton Dana Library Public Relations Award. The library won the award for its "Space: Dare to Dream" exhibit. A highlight of the exhibit, which ran for four months during 2007, was an Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) contact. The Summer Reading program resulted in an increase in program participants, library card registrations and material circulation.
[ANS thanks Carol, KB3LKI, 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 additional benefits. Application forms are available from the AMSAT Office.
73, This week's ANS Editor, Lee McLamb, KU4OS ku4os at amsat dot org