AMSAT NEWS SERVICE
The AMSAT News Service bulletins are a free, weekly news and infor-
mation service of AMSAT, 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 commun-
icating through analog and digital Amateur Radio satellites.
The news feed on http://www.amsat.org
publishes news of Amateur
Radio in Space as soon as our volunteers can post it.
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In this edition:
* First Element of ARISS Next Generation Radio System Readied for
Launch on SpaceX CRS-20
* ARISS SSTV Event Planned for December 28 - January 1
* Reminder: AMSAT CW Day on January 1
* Changes to AMSAT TLE Distribution for December 26
* Upcoming Satellite Operations
* Satellite Shorts From All Over
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-363.01
ANS-363 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 363.01
From AMSAT HQ KENSINGTON, MD.
DATE December 29, 2019
To All RADIO AMATEURS
First Element of ARISS Next Generation Radio System Readied for
Launch on SpaceX CRS-20
During this Holiday Season, when the spirit of giving and receiving
gifts reigns high, ARISS received a special gift and delivered a
phenomenal gift to the international community. This occurred on
Thursday December 19, 2019.
Our international gift to all—students, STEM education, the public and
the amateur radio community—was the historic transfer of the first
Interoperable Radio System (IORS) flight unit, serial number 1001, to
NASA Johnson Space Center for launch on SpaceX CRS-20. The special
gift received by ARISS was the approval from NASA Safety to launch the
IORS on SpaceX CRS-20 and stow the radio system on the International
Space Station. December 19, 2019 was truly a banner day for ARISS!
The IORS is a foundational element of the ARISS next generation radio
system and is an incredible engineering achievement by the ARISS
hardware team. This first element delivery will support easier radio
mode transitions and enable new, exciting capabilities for hams,
students and the general public. The IORS will include a higher power
radio, an enhanced voice repeater, updated digital packet radio (APRS)
capabilities and slow scan television (SSTV) capabilities for both the
US and Russian segments. The IORS consists of a special, modified
JVCKenwood TM-D710GA transceiver, an AMSAT-developed multi voltage
power supply and interconnecting cables.
This first flight IORS will be installed in the ISS Columbus module.
A second flight unit is expected to be launched sometime in 2020 for
installation in the Russian Service module. A total of 4 flight units
and 10 total units will be built by the ARISS hardware team to support
on-board flight operations, training, operations planning and hardware
testing. Future upgrades and enhancements to the next generation
system are in various stages of design & development. These include a
repaired Ham Video system (currently planned for launch in mid-to-late
2020), L-band (uplink) repeater, ground command operations capability,
LimeSDR signal reception, a microwave “Ham Communicator” and Lunar
Gateway prototype experiment.
While yesterday was truly an historic milestone, it should be noted
that there is still much “heavy lifting” work to be done to prepare
the IORS for Operations on ISS. ARISS has 92 engineering requirements
and our operations Phase III safety review to complete. The space
agencies take a position of “Trust but Verify.” Thus, these
engineering and safety “verifications” all need to be closed out
before the IORS can be unstowed and turned on. This will be the ARISS
hardware team’s focus over the next few months.
Also, please remember that ARISS is almost entirely run by volunteers.
So donations to the ARISS program for next generation hardware devel-
opments, operations, education and administrative functions are always
welcome. Please go to https://www.ariss.org/donate.html
if you want
to contribute to our efforts!
In closing, ARISS would like to thank the outstanding contributions of
the IORS hardware development team on an incredible radio system.
ARISS would like to thank our sponsors and donors for helping us
realize the IORS hardware systems. On behalf of the ARISS team, we
would like to wish you all a joyful and prosperous Holiday Season —
Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and Happy New Year!!
Ad Astra! To the Stars!
Frank Bauer, KA3HDO
ARISS International Chair
AMSAT V.P. for Human Spaceflight Programs
[ANS thanks Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, AMSAT Vice President - Human Space-
flight and ARISS International Chair for the above information]
Purchase AMSAT Gear on our Zazzle storefront.
25% of the purchase price of each product goes
towards Keeping Amateur Radio in Space
ARISS SSTV Event Planned for December 28 - January 1
ARISS is planning an SSTV event featuring commemorative images. This
event is currently scheduled to begin on December 28, 2019 at 11:00
UTC and ends at 18:20 UTC on January 1, 2020. Please make note that
sometimes changes may occur in the crew work schedule that could
affect our SSTV transmission dates and times, so frequently check our
ARISS Facebook and Twitter accounts shown below for any updates before
and throughout the event.
Transmissions will be sent at 145.800 MHz FM in the SSTV mode PD-120.
Once received, images can be posted and viewed by the public at
and you can
receive a special SSTV ARISS Award for posting your image. See
for details. Also for simplicity, we
have added a new information tab for SSTV events, under the General
Contacts pulldown menu at www.ariss.org
[ANS thanks Dave Jordan, AA4KN, ARISS Public Relations for the above
Reminder: AMSAT CW Day on January 1
You are cordially invited to take part in AMSAT CW Activity Day 2020
sponsored by AMSAT for all radio amateurs throughout the world. The
2020 event will be held in memory of Larry Brown, W7LB, and
Keith Pugh, W5IU. Among their many contributions to AMSAT, they were
the AMSAT 20-meter net for many years.
Participation is easy. Just operate CW through any Amateur Radio
satellite on 1 January 2020. Use of straight keys or bugs is
encouraged but not required. If you use AO-7, please observe the QRP
rules currently in effect for that 45-year-old satellite. May it be
with us for many years to come!
[ANS thanks Raphael Soifer, W2RS, AMSAT Senior Advisor for the
The digital download version of the 2019 edition of
Getting Started with Amateur Satellites is now available as a
DRM-free PDF from the AMSAT Store. Get yours today!
Changes to AMSAT TLE Distribution for December 26
This week's AMSAT TLE distribution reflects the following two
satellite name changes per ANS Bulletin 356.01 dated December 22,
SMOG-P (Cat. ID 44832) is now MO-105 (Magyar-OSCAR 105) and ATL-1
(Cat. ID 44830) is now MO-106 (Magyar-OSCAR 106).
(Per Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA AMSAT VP Operations / OSCAR Number
The following Amateur Radio satellite has been added to this week's
FloripaSat 1 - NORAD CAT ID 44830 (Taiyuan Space Center launch,
(Thanks to Nico Janseen, PA0DLO, for satellite identification.)
CAS-6 was launched as a piggyback satellite on TIANQIN-1 on December
20, 2019 via a CZ-4B launch vehicle from Taiyuan Satellite Launch
Center. Still awaiting a satellite signal, thus the CAT ID has not
been positively identified as yet. More later.
[ANS thanks Ray Hoad, WA5QGD, AMSAT Orbital Elements Manager for the
Need new satellite antennas? Purchase Arrows, Alaskan Arrows,
and M2 LEO-Packs from the AMSAT Store. When you purchase through
AMSAT, a portion of the proceeds goes towards
Keeping Amateur Radio in Space.
Donate to AMSAT Tax-Free From Your IRA
Are you over 70-1/2 years of age and need to meet your IRA's Required
Minimum Distribution for 2019? Consider making a donation to AMSAT!
Under the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015, individuals
over 70-1/2 years of age may make direct transfers of up to $100,000
per year from a traditional IRA to an eligible charity without
increasing their taxable income. Consult your tax advisor or
accountant to make certain you are eligible.
AMSAT is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit educational and scientific
organization whose purpose is to design, construct, launch, and
operate satellites in space and to provide the support needed to
encourage amateurs to utilize these resources. AMSAT's federal tax ID
Upcoming Satellite Operations
Dec 27-30 EM90 N4DCW – vacation style (Twitter: @MWimages)
Dec 27-30 EL86 K4WPX FM
Dec 30 EM94 (overnight) – vacation style (Twitter: @MWimages)
Dec 30-Jan 01 EL87/88 K4WPX FM
Jan 02 EM58/68 WB9VPG Midday passes on AO-91/92
Wyoming (DN71,DN72,DN81,DN82) December 31, 2019
Doug, N6UA, and RJ, WY7AA are teaming up with special guest operator
Ron, AD0DX, to activate the DN71, DN72, DN81, DN82 grid corner on
December 31st. Plan is to be there for the morning FM passes and stay
until they get bored. FM and SSB.
Mississippi River Delta (EL58) January 4, 2019.
Ron AD0DX, Brian KG5GJT, and Robert KE4AL will operate as W5M/mm from
the mouth of the Mississippi River (EL58) on January 4th. This will be
a 6-hour activation from approximately 1430z to 2030z, on FM and
Further information will be posted as it comes available.
Labrador (GO11 +) January 19-27, 2019
Chris VE3FU, Dave VE9CB, and Frank VO1HP will be active as VO2AC in
the 2020 CQ160 CW contest, January 24-26, from Point Armour
Lighthouse, in Labrador. If time permits before the contest, they may
be active on FM satellites from GO11 as VO2AC or VO2AAA.
Depending on weather and timing of passes, you might catch them on FM
satellites as they make their way from FO93 to GO-11, passing through
FO92, GO02, GO13, GO12, and GO22 along the way, but no promises. They
will also make the reverse trek on January 27.
Big Bend National Park (DL88) March 16-17, 2020
Ron AD0DX, Doug N6UA, and Josh W3ARD will operate from Big Bend
National Park to put grid DL88 on the air. Details will be added here
as they come available, but you are more than welcome to keep an eye
on their individual Twitter feeds: https://twitter.com/ad0dx
, and https://twitter.com/W3ARDstroke5
Please submit any additions or corrections to ke4al (at) amsat.org
[ANS thanks Robert Bankston, KE4AL, AMSAT VP - User Services, for the
AMSAT, along with our ARISS partners, is developing an amateur
radio package, including two-way communication capability, to
be carried on-board Gateway in lunar orbit.
Support AMSAT's projects today at https://www.amsat.org/donate/
Satellite Shorts From All Over
(@Zarya_Info) reports that on Dec 18 at ~01:00 UTC,
the Meteor M2-2 meteorological satellite collided with an item of
space debris and entered a tumble. This event reduced orbit SMA by 1
km and height from 813 x 815 km to 811 x 814 km. The satellite is now
stabilized and communicating. Damage is being assessed.
+ Mike Thomas, KB8BMY, has made a video for those of you wanting to
take the next step to Linear Ham Radio Satellites. He shows how he put
his station together: My Linear Satellite Setup / KB8BMY / How to Set
Up a Portable Linear Station:
+ Satellite antennas don't need to be very high, but tower safety is
always a good topic for amateurs: https://zerofalls.org/
+ Ohio/Penn DX Bulletin #1445 listed these two satellite activations:
7X, ALGERIA. Members of the "Association des Radio Amateurs Tunisiens"
(ARAT) are traveling to Algeria to conduct a joint Low Bands DX-
pedition with five members of the "Amateurs Radio Algeriens" (ARA)
between December 28th and January 2nd (2020). The team is led by Afif/
7X2RO and Ash/3V8SS/KF5EYY, and will also includes Ahmed/3V1B/KG5OUE
(22 years), Marwa/3V8CB (24 years, YL), Mohamed/7X3TL (27 years),
Mohamed/7X5FG, Redha/7X5QB and Abdelghani/7X2TT/M0NPT. The operators
will be focusing on working as many stations as possible on 160 and 80
meters as well as the other HF bands and Satellites. Modes will be CW/
SSB/FT8. QSL via 7X2RO and LoTW.
There will be ClubLog Live Streaming. For more details on how to help
and/or LF skeds, E-mail Ash at: ash.kf5eyy at gmail.com
Your financial support will be used to cover youngsters' costs.
VO2, CANADA (Zone 2). Operators Chris/VE3FU (VO2AC), Frank/VO1HP and
Dave/VE9CB (VO2AAA) will be active as VO2AC during the 2020 CQWW 160M
CW Contest (January 24-26th) from the Point Amour Lighthouse, the
tallest lighthouse in Atlantic Canada, on the south coast of the rare
Labrador (LB) multiplier. Point Amour is located in the southeast part
of CQ Zone 2, and has a salt water path from NE clockwise through SW.
The team will be putting in a serious Multi-Op/High-Power effort as
VO2AC. Expect some pre contest activity as VO2AC, VO1HP/VO2 and VO2AAA
on 160m as they get their wire vertical array and beverage working;
they will especially be looking for JA/Asia on CW and FT8. If time
permits, they may also be active before the contest on 80m, 60m, 40m
and the FM satellites (AO-85, AO-91 and AO-92) from Grid GO11.
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
73 and remember to help Keep Amateur Radio In Space,
This week's ANS Editor,
Paul Stoetzer, N8HM
n8hm at amsat dot org