AMSAT NEWS SERVICE ANS-358
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.
Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to:
In this edition:
* AMSAT Receives $25,000 Matching Funds Challenge * AMSAT SKN ON OSCAR 2013 In Memory of W1BIH/PJ9JT * AMSAT-UK Introduce Electronic (PDF) Membership * Track Santa with NORAD and AGI on December 24 * Satellite Shorts From All Over
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-358.01 ANS-358 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 358.01 From AMSAT HQ SILVER SPRING, MD. December 23, 2012 To All RADIO AMATEURS BID: $ANS-358.01
AMSAT Receives $25,000 Matching Funds Challenge
AMSAT President Barry Baines, WD4ASW says that we have received a matching funds challenge! An anonymous donor will match up to $25,000.00 for Fox. Now is the time to take advantage of this opportunity to double your donation.
Barry wrote, "We end 2012 with significant progress made on the development of Fox-1. A formal proposal to launch Fox-1B was sub- mitted to the NASA ELaNA (Education Launch of Nanosatellites) program on November 19, 2012. NASA is expected to announce in late January or early February 2013 those projects that have been selected. This is our second ELaNA submission, and we believe the merits of this proposal are even stronger than our original Fox-1 proposal."
Fox-1B will incorporate the flight spare of Fox-1 and is a joint project with the Institute for Space and Defense Electronics (ISDE) at Vanderbilt University. The official project name is "RadFXSat" and the ISDE payload is designed to advance the art of understand- ing the effects of space radiation on electronic components.
We have requested a launch in the second half of 2014 and a 650 km sun-synchronous orbit that is the same as we requested for Fox-1. As AMSAT VP-Engineering Tony Monteiro, AA2TX points out, "Fox-1B is AMSAT's first satellite with science as its PRIMARY mission. This is very exciting as it potentially opens up new opportunities for free launches. Of course, the satellite also carries a ham radio FM transponder and we expect to be able to operate the transponder and science payload simultaneously." There is significant work to be done in systems engineering, software development, satellite construction and testing to prepare Fox-1B for launch.
During the 30th Annual AMSAT Space Symposium, Tony and the Fox En- gineering team gave a number of presentations on the development of Fox-1 with extensive documentation of Fox-1 placed in the Proceed- ings in order to make this material 'public domain' and thus be able to present it openly. We still expect a launch opportunity in the second half of 2013. To continue these projects, we need the extra resources offered by the matching gift. We hope we can count on your commitment and generosity at this time of giving.
There are several ways you can double your donation to keep Amateur Radio in Space:
Members have received a form in the mail to fill out and return. Please do so today!
Go the AMSAT Store and make a donation
Your generous contribution to AMSAT to support AMSAT and Project Fox now will help ensure that our common dream of keeping amateur radio in space will, indeed, become a reality.
[ANS thanks the AMSAT Office for the above information]
AMSAT SKN ON OSCAR 2013 In Memory of W1BIH/PJ9JT
You are cordially invited to participate in Straight Key Night on OSCAR 2013, conducted by AMSAT for all radio amateurs throughout the world. This year's event is dedicated to the memory of John Thompson, W1BIH/PJ9JT, who passed away in 2012, aged 96. Although known primarily as an HF DXer and contester, John was also active on OSCAR, mostly on CW.
As always, SKN on OSCAR is simple and informal. Just operate CW through one or more satellites on 1 January 2013 (0000 to 2400 UTC), using a straight hand key. There is no need to send in a log, but all participants are encouraged to nominate someone they worked for Best Fist. Your nominee need not have the best fist of anyone you heard, only of those you worked. Send your nomination to w2rs at amsat.org. A list of those nominated will appear in ANS and the AMSAT Journal.
[ANS thanks Ray Soifer, W2RS, for the above information]
AMSAT-UK Introduce Electronic (PDF) Membership
AMSAT-UK is pleased to announce that they can now offer Electronic E-membership at a reduced rate.
AMSAT-UK initially produced a short bulletin called OSCAR News to give members advice on amateur satellite communications. Since those early days OSCAR News has grown in size and the print quality has improved beyond recognition. Today, OSCAR News is produced as a high-quality quarterly colour A4 magazine consisting of up to 40 pages of news, information and comment about amateur radio space communications.
The new E-membership will provide OSCAR News as a downloadable PDF file and members will have the freedom to read it on their Tablets or Smartphones anytime, anyplace, anywhere.
An additional advantage is that the PDF should be available for download about 1-2 weeks before the paper copy is posted.
E-membership should be especially beneficial to Overseas members who have suffered from high postal charges and long delivery times.
The AMSAT-UK membership year runs from January 1 to December 31. Why not take the opportunity to renew your 2013 membership as an E-member.
Renew your AMSAT-UK membership as an E-member here http://shop.amsat.org.uk/shop/category_8/Existing-Members-Renewal.html
Join as a new E-member here http://shop.amsat.org.uk/shop/category_9/Join-Amsat-UK.html
E-members can download their copies of OSCAR News from http://www.amsatuk.me.uk/on
[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]
Track Santa with NORAD and AGI on December 24
'Tis the season for Santa tracking at www.noradsanta.org. The highly popular NORAD Tracks Santa website will once again follow Santa's annual journey around the world, updating every three to four minutes and showing new movies captured by NORAD's special Santa Cams about once an hour.
A long-time supporter of the program, AGI provided NORAD the 2D and 3D Santa trackers this year. The fun starts at 2.a.m. EST (0700 UTC) on December 24, when website visitors can watch Santa make preparations for his flight. Then at 6 a.m. EST, actual tracking begins. So, fire up the computer, grab your family and friends this December 24 and spend the day tracking Santa at the NORAD Tracks Santa Web site.
Happy Santa tracking!
[ANS thanks AGI for the above information]
Satellite Shorts From All Over
+ Congratulations to Ken Holland, KC9TTR for attaining his ARRL VUCC Satellite Award #236. Ken thanks all the operators who helped him achieve this, especially portable operators in grids away from home.
+ On December 9 the Breeze-M upper stage of Russia's Proton heavy lift rocket failed, placing Yamal 402 telecommunications satellite into a too-low orbit. News from Russia indicates the satellite was rescued by raising its orbit over four firings of its own engine fuel reserves.
+ The ISS orbit was increased by almost 2.5 kilometers in a test of the station's new emergency debris avoidance system. The new sys- tem, known as the Pre-Determined Debris Avoidance Maneuver (PDAM), addresses the situation where dangerous debris is detected with little advance warning, down to as little as three hours from the approach. The emergency avoidance maneuver was performed by the engines aboard the Russian Progress freighter docked at the sta- tion. The engines can be fired as little as 140 minutes before a dangerous debris approach.
+ Watch a youtube video as Canadian Space Agency Astronaut Chris Hadfield trains in the Soyuz Simulator: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=qL1dfdE_RFI There are good interior views of the Soyuz.
+ NASA released a 64-frame movie of asteroid Toutatis generated from data by Goldstone's Solar System Radar on Dec. 12 and 13: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=d7SroliSXuY
[ANS thanks everyone 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 Office.
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 information.
73, This week's ANS Editor, Lee McLamb, KU4OS ku4os at amsat dot org