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.
Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to:
ans-editor at amsat.org
You can sign up for free e-mail delivery of the AMSAT News Service
Bulletins via the ANS List; to join this list see:
In this edition:
* AMSAT Auction Celebrating the 45th Birthday of AO-7 Now Live
* November 18 Marked 2nd Anniversary On Orbit for AMSAT-OSCAR 91
* November 21 Marked 6th Anniverary of AMSAT-UK's AO-73 FUNcube-1
* Proposed FCC Auction of C-Band Increases Competition for Allocations
* Satellite Operations From the Queen Mary on December 14
* Donate to AMSAT Tax-Free From Your IRA
* Open Source 'APRS to Discord' Bridge Project Begins Testing
* ARISS Activities
* Upcoming Satellite Operations
* The Voyage Home: Japan's Hayabusa-2 Probe Heads Back to Earth
* Satellite Shorts From All Over
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-328.01
ANS-328 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 328.01
From AMSAT HQ KENSINGTON, MD.
To All RADIO AMATEURS
AMSAT Auction Celebrating the 45th Birthday of AO-7 Now Live
As announced in ANS-321, AMSAT is auctioning off a set of gold-plated
AO-7 cufflinks and a 50th Anniversary AMSAT lab coat (size 42R). The
auctions are now live on eBay and will conclude shortly after 02:00
UTC on November 26, 2019.
Please bid today at https://www.ebay.com/usr/amsat-na
100% of the proceeds of this auction will go towards Keeping Amateur
Radio in Space.
Looking ahead to the future AMSAT tweeted a quick summary of projects
1. The University of Washington's HuskySat-1 carrying an AMSAT VHF/
UHF linear transponder was launched to the ISS on Cygnus on Nov 2.
After leaving the ISS, Cygnus is expected to deploy HuskySat-1 on
or about Jan 13.
2. After completing its science mission, HuskySat-1 will be turned
over to AMSAT and the transponder will be made available for ama-
teur use. AMSAT is also working with other CubeSat builders on
3. RadFxSat-2 (Fox-1E), carrying a VHF/UHF linear transponder and
radiation experiments for Vanderbilt University, is complete and
awaiting launch on the first commercial flight of Virgin Orbit's
LauncherOne no earlier than 1Q 2020.
4. The GOLF program is progressing nicely. The target delivery/inte-
gration date of GOLF-TEE is 3Q 2020. More details about the GOLF
program are available in the AMSAT Engineering Report from the 2019
Space Symposium. https://youtube.com/watch?v=WWwvhuIaiBA
5. The ARISS next generation InterOperable Radio System is planned
for launch to the ISS on the SpaceX CRS-20 mission, scheduled for
6. The AMSAT CubeSat Simulator project led by Alan Johnston, KU2Y and
Pat Kilroy, N8PK, is generating much interest. Simulators are avail-
able for loan for classrooms or events and work is underway to dev-
elop CubeSat Simulator kits. http://cubesatsim.com
7. How can you help these projects succeed? Please consider volunteer-
ing, joining, donating, and/or purchasing items from the AMSAT
[ANS thanks Paul Stoetzer, N8HM, for the above information]
November 18 Marked 2nd Anniversary On Orbit for AMSAT-OSCAR 91
Happy 2nd Anniversary, AMSAT-OSCAR 91! At 09:47:36 UTC on Novem-
ber 18, 2017, RadFxSat (Fox-1B) launched on a Delta II rocket
from SLC-2W at Vandenberg Air Force Base and became AMSAT-OSCAR 91.
RadFxSat (Fox-1B), a 1U CubeSat, is a joint mission of AMSAT and
the Institute for Space and Defense Electronics at Vanderbilt Uni-
versity. The Vanderbilt package is intended to measure the effects
of radiation on electronic components, including demonstration of
an on-orbit platform for space qualification of components as well
as to validate and improve computer models for predicting radiation
tolerance of semiconductors.
AMSAT constructed the remainder of the satellite including the space
frame, on-board computer and power system. The amateur radio package
is similar to that currently on orbit on AO-85.
RadFxSat (Fox-1B) was sent aloft as a secondary payload on the Unit-
ed Launch Alliance (ULA) Delta II rocket with the Joint Polar Satel-
lite System (JPSS)-1 satellite. RadFxSat (Fox-1B) is one of five
CubeSats making up this NASA Educational Launch of Nanosatellites
(ELaNa) XIV mission, riding as secondary payloads aboard the JPSS-1
Uplink: 435.250 MHz FM (67.0 Hz CTCSS)
Downlink: 145.960 MHz FM
Satellite health and experiment telemetry are downlinked via the
Data-Under-Voice (DUV) subaudible telemetry stream, which can be de-
coded using the FoxTelem software.
Visit the AMSAT-OSCAR 91 web page at:
Make sure you have the latest AMSAT frequencies using the page at:
[ANS thanks AMSAT for the above information]
November 21 Marked 6th Anniverary of AMSAT-UK's AO-73 FUNcube-1
This week AMSAT-UK and the FUNcube team recalled the events on launch
day. A very short time after the launch from Yasny in Russia and with-
in a few minutes from deployment, the very first frame of data from
the low power transmitter on board, was detected and decoded by ZS1LS
in South Africa. He was able to relay the data over the internet from
his Dashboard to the Data Warehouse and the numbers, appeared, as if
by magic, at the launch party being held at the RSGB National Radio
Centre at Bletchley Park.
After a very brief check out, the FUNcube team were able to switch
the transmitter to full power, again at the very first attempt, and
were quite amazed at the strength of the signal from the 300mW trans-
mitter on 145.935 MHz. The transponder was then switched on and suc-
The team finished the day with a request to AMSAT-NA for an Oscar
number and were delighted to receive the AO73 Oscar 73 designation!
Since then, FUNcube-1, with a launch mass of less than 1kg, has oper-
ated continuously with only a very few interruptions. In excess of
32000 orbits, 750 million miles travelled, and with more than 7 mil-
lion data packets downloaded and stored in the Data Warehouse.
The spacecraft is presently in continuous sunlight and to convert as
much of the sun’s thermal energy into RF (to help keep it cool), it
remains in continuous high power telemetry mode. We anticipate this
situation will continue until early May next after which the team
expect to have 3 months with some eclipse periods.
Of course, EO88 – Nayif 1 continues to operate autonomously with the
transponder active when in eclipse and JO99 – JY1Sat, which includes
image downloads, and which was launched just under a year ago, also
remain active on a 24/7 basis.
The FUNcube team still receive many requests for Fitter message up-
loads for school events…please contact us by email to
operations(a)funcube.org.uk giving us at least two weeks notice.
The FUNcube team continue to be very grateful to all the many stations
around the world that continue to upload the telemetry that they re-
ceive to our Data Warehouse. They really need this data to provide
a continuous resource for educational outreach.
Dave Johnson, G4DPZ, network administrator for the FUNcube Data Ware-
house provided this update for users of the FUNcube Dashboard Soft-
ware, "The server addresses warehouse.funcube.org.uk and
data.funcube.org.uk are no longer operational. If you have FUNcube
Dashboard(s) using the URL data.funcube.org.uk, please change it to
as forwarding will no longer take place."
+ FUNcube email group https://groups.io/g/FUNcube
+ FUNcube Forum http://forum.funcube.org.uk/
+ FUNcube Website http://www.funcube.org.uk/
[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]
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!
Proposed FCC Auction of C-Band Increases Competition for Allocations
In an IARU News Release by Dave Sumner, K1ZZ and posted by Rick Lind-
quist, WW1ME on November 18 via the ARRL-IARU(a)groups.arrl.org list he
reports that the Plenary session to approve texts to be included in
the Final Acts was scheduled to end at noon Thursday, November 21 and
delegates at WRC-19 faced a daunting workload as the conferees try to
reach consensus on several remaining issues including the agenda for
the next WRC.
Small Satellites which are increasingly commercial have been granted
access to the space operations bands at 137/149MHz away from amateur
The amateur secondary allocation at 5725-5850 MHz, which includes an
amateur-satellite C-band downlink at 5830-5850 MHz, is the subject of
an unresolved conflict over parameters for wireless access systems
including radio local area networks. 5 GHz Wi-Fi will see most expan-
sion below amateur radio in the 5150-5250 band reducing it impact on
our 5725-5850 range.
An article published by CNBC, also on November 18, a news item by
Michael Sheetz, "Satellite stock Intelsat drops 40% after FCC 5G dec-
ision", discusses increasing pressure in the United States due to a
proposed public auction of 280 megahertz of the C-band spectrum. This
article can be accessed in entirety at:
Sheetz reports that FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said in a tweet that his
agency “must free up significant spectrum” for 5G telecommunications.
The FCC said it expects to begin a public auction of C-band to happen
before the end of 2020, a blow to satellite operators using the valu-
The FCC Chairman's tweet on the subject can be accessed at:
Four commercial satellite operators, including Intelsat, provide
C-band services in the U.S. to about 120 million households. The FCC
wants to repurpose the C-band spectrum for 5G and an auction is ex-
pected to raise tens of billions of dollars. But a public auction
would see the proceeds go to the government. The commercial C-band
satellite operators have organized as the 'C-Band Alliance' to oppose
a public auction of these frequencies. The C-Band Alliance has been
pushing for a private auction. The group has given a proposal to the
FCC where the satellite operators would keep some of the proceeds
while paying taxes on the sale, as well as contributing at least
$8 billion to the U.S. Treasury and possible helping fund a rural
[ANS thanks Dave Sumner, K1ZZ, Rick Lindquist, WW1ME, the IARU and
CNBC for the above information]
Satellite Operations From the Queen Mary on December 14
AMSAT will be supporting the "Ham Radio Day Aboard the Queen Mary",
an on-air event which will include satellite operations from the RMS
Queen Mary, on Saturday, 14 December 2019. The Queen Mary is at the
Port of Long Beach in California, grid DM03vs. The satellite opera-
tions will take place from the Queen Mary's Sports Deck, next to the
W6RO Wireless Room.
Visitors are welcome, and hams with a copy of their valid amateur
license can board the ship for free on 14 December - a $40 value!
QSL cards will be available from the Associated Radio Amateurs of Long
Beach (ARALB), using the process detailed at:
Satellite contacts do not require the QSO number mentioned on this
page. W6RO does not use Logbook of the World.
Additional information about the event posted by The Associated Radio
Amateurs of Long Beach and the Queen Mary:
The Associated Radio Amateurs of Long Beach and the Queen Mary invite
you aboard the legendary ocean liner for Ham Radio Day Aboard the Queen
Mary on Saturday December 14th. Our world-famous station W6RO will be
fully staffed all day. Come visit the station, take a turn as a guest
operator, or work us on the air and earn our special 40th Anniversary
QSL card. In addition, we will have the following special activities:
+ Static displays of the Queen Mary's vintage maritime radio equipment.
+ On-air demonstrations of ham radio 'go-kits' at locations around the
+ Demonstrations of 'eclectic communications gear', including an Aldis
lamp and semaphore flags.
+ Demonstrations of satellite ham radio, with actual contacts being
made through satellites in orbit.
Basic admission to board the ship is FREE for licensed radio amateurs
this day. Simply show your current amateur radio license at the Hotel
entrance and come aboard! The free boarding offer is subject to the
+ A valid FCC license document must be presented. (QM personnel will
not look you up in the FCC database, QRZ, etc.)
+ Non-licensed friends and family members are not included.
+ Free boarding of the ship does not include admission to the Queen
Mary Christmas event.
+ Free boarding does not include parking. Normal parking rates apply.
For an alternative, ride the free Long Beach Transit Passport bus,or
try LBT's AquaBus or AquaLink boat shuttles to get to the Queen Mary.
We're looking forward to seeing YOU on board! 73
[ANS thanks Patrick Stoddard, WD9EWK/VA7EWK, and the Associated Radio
Amateurs of Long Beach and the Queen Mary]
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
Open Source 'APRS to Discord' Bridge Project Begins Testing
Harold Giddings, KR0SIV, reports on an on-going open source project
called the 'APRS to Discord bridge'. The Discord network supports
text and voice chat, project documentation and source code for dev-
elopers, gamers, and makers in an open source environment. For more
information about the Discord network see https://discordapp.com/
The APRS to Discord bridge, by Alexandre Rouma (@WhatsTheGeekYT on
twitter), is designed to connect APRS traffic from terrestrial and
spacecraft sources with user's servers on the Discord network. The
software, still under development, is pretty simple at the moment
but will be open source (Node.js). The design will allow amateur radio
groups to set up their own node for bridging an APRS callsign/message
to their discord server. It is written in a way that requires the bot
operator to validate amateur operators with a special role in Discord
preventing illicit use by non-licensed operators.
Source code can be found here:
Harold also hosts the SDR-centric 'Signals Everywhere' channel on
[ANS thanks Harold Giddings, KR0SIV, for the above information]
+ Lakeside Elementary School, West Point, UT, telebridge via IK1SLD
Contact was successful: Mon 2019-11-18
+ Istituto San Paolo delle Suore Angeliche, Milano, Italy and
Istituto Comprensivo Di Merone – Mons. A. Pirovano, Merone, Italy,
telebridge via W6SRJ
Contact was successful: Thu 2019-11-21
+ MAOU Lyceum No. 39, Nizhny Tagil, Russia, direct via TBD
The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be RSØISS
The scheduled astronaut is Alexander Skvortsov
Contact is go for 2011-11-30 14:15 UTC
A reminder that the deadline to submit proposals for ARISS contacts to
be scheduled between July 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020 is coming up on
November 30, 2019. For more information visit https://www.ariss.org/
Possible RSØISS - Inter MAI-75 SSTV activity is tentatively planned
for Dec 14 – 15, 2019. Details will follow later, the organization
of this SSTV event depends on the necessary EVA activities. No SSTV
can take place during EVA activities.
[ANS thanks Charlie Sufana, AJ9N, and David Jordan, AA4KN, ARISS opera-
tion team members, 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
Upcoming Satellite Operations
Nunavut, Canada (ER60) November 11 - December 6, 2019
The Eureka Amateur Radio Club, VY0ERC, will be on station, the Polar
Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory, November 6th through Dec-
ember 11th. They have some house keeping duties to perform on arrival
and just before they leave, not to mention that it's wicked cold up
there (-25 to -35C not counting windchill), so keep an eye on the
VY0ERC twitter feed for announcements on when they plan to step out-
Key West (EL94) December 3-6, 2019
Tanner, W9TWJ, will be vacationing in Key West December 3rd - 6th. Key
word is vacation, but he will jump on some FM satellite passes to act-
ivate EL94 for those that need it or just want to chat. Watch Tanner's
Twitter feed for further announcements: https://twitter.com/twjones85
Hawaii (BK19, BK28, BK29, BL20) December 21-28, 2019
Alex, N7AGF, is heading back to Hawaii over Christmas. This will be a
holiday-style activation, with special empahasis on the grid that got
away - BK28. Keep an eye on Alex's Twitter feed for further announce-
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/
The Voyage Home: Japan's Hayabusa-2 Probe Heads Back to Earth
By Kyoko Hasegawa - Tokyo
Japan's Hayabusa-2 mission to the asteroid Ryugu received its orders
to head for home on Wednesday, November 13. Next, on November 18 it
broke free of the asteroid's gravity. It will fire its main engines
early next month en route to Earth, JAXA said.
Hayabusa-2 is carrying samples that could shed light on the origins
of the Solar System. It took the probe three-and-a-half years to get
to the asteroid but the return journey should be significantly short-
er because Earth and Ryugu will be much closer due to their current
Ryugu's orbit ranges from .96 AU to 1.41 AU with a period of 474 days,
coming within just 95,400 km of Earth at its closest (just 1/4 LD),
but is currently 1.7 AU away. Hayabusa will spend the next year clos-
ing that distance to Earth and will eject its sample capsule into the
atmosphere in December 2020. After the departure burn Hayabusa-2 had
changed it's orbit to a 0.96 x 1.41 AU x 5.9 deg heliocentric orbit.
Hayabusa-2 is expected to drop the samples off in the South Austral-
ian desert. Under the current plan, Hayabusa-2 will boldly continue
its journey in space after dropping off its capsule to Earth, and
might "carry out another asteroid exploration," according to JAXA.
Access the full article (and photo) at:
[ANS thanks SpaceDaily.com
for the above information]
Satellite Shorts From All Over
+ AMSAT has received the sad news on the passing of Brian Kantor,
WB6CYT (SK). Brian was one of the co-founders (with Phil Karn,
KA9Q) of AMPRnet, the TCP/IP over amateur radio network. Brian
continued to manage it until his passing. Brian recently creat-
ed and served as chair and CEO of Amateur Radio Digital Commun-
ications (ARDC), a charitable foundation funded by the sale of
unused AMPRnet IPv4 addresses. ARDC promotes STEM education and
amateur radio digital development through scholarships and by
funding the development of open source hardware and software.
Brian will be sorely missed and impossible to replace. Memorial
arrangements will be announced when known. via Phil Karn, KA9Q)
notes the contribution of Daniel Estévez, EA4GPZ,
with the location of the impact site of China's Longjiang-2 satel-
lite on the moon: https://tinyurl.com/ANS-328-EA4GPZ-LunarImpact
The article notes, "Among amateur astronomists and citizen scient-
ists, Daniel Estévez is a well-known figure. In addition to being
an amateur radio operator with a PhD in Mathematics and a BSc in
Computer Science, Estévez is also an amateur spacecraft tracker."
+ Roland Hesmondhalg spoke on public radio station WFIT with FL Tech
Professor Ken Ernandes, N2WWD, and two senior students Luiz Fernando
Leal and Antonio Masturzo about the amateur radio project on the ISS.
Did you know you can use amateur radio to talk to astronauts in space?
Ken Ernandes is part of the team building the next upgraded communi-
cation station to be flown on the ISS this coming year. The program
is primarily intended by NASA to promote STEAM in schools. There is
an application process to get a scheduled school contact and he
would be happy to work with any body on the application process.
Listen on the link at: https://tinyurl.com/ANS-328-WFIT-Interview
+ NASA released their latest software catalog offering FREE NASA
Technology software packages that are applicable to academic
research, engineering development, business applications & more!
NASA Press Release: https://tinyurl.com/ANS-328-NASA-Software-Press
Access the software at: http://software.nasa.gov
+ Explore student STEM opportunities, downloads, mission information
and Artemis Student Challenges on NASA's STEM Engagement pages at:
- then - try your hand at
driving a Mars rover: https://spaceplace.nasa.gov/explore-mars/en/
+ John Brier, KG4AKV, wrote, "A woman in Israel recently contacted
me about including some of my videos in a video she was going to
make about how to view the ISS. Well, she just uploaded that video
and I have to say, it is pretty good:
(To turn on English subtitles while viewing YouTube on the web/
desktop, click the CC button in the bottom right corner of the
video. On mobile, tap the three dots in the top right and then
tap captions) - via John Brier, KG4AKV
+ Paul Wade, W1GHZ, author of the W1GHZ Microwave Antenna Book says
he has added an update of Chapter 7, Slot Antennas, and included
an improved 32-bit version of the HDL_ANT program for Windows 7
and 10. Access the book at: http://w1ghz.org/antbook/preface.htm
Click on the 'Table of Contents' link to continue.
(Paul Wade, W1GHZ via the microwave list)
+ Scott Manley posted a video showing the effect if all satellites
in orbit were visible. There are over ten thousand satellites in
orbit, but only the largest ones in low earth orbit are visible
in the hours just after sunset and before sunrise. What would the
sky look like if you could see everything in space? He took satel-
lite data and rendered a view of the night sky for an 'average'
viewer in North America. View the satellites at:
(via Scott Manley's YouTube channel
+ Voyager's transmitters use just 23 watts, roughly the same as an
incandescent refrigerator bulb, yet we are able to interpret the
0.1 billion-billionth of a Watt that makes it to earth from 11
billion kilometers away. An article at wired.com
+ AMSAT-LU (Argentina) plans to operate their WSPR buoy when it is
deployed between November 25 through December 12, weather condi-
tion permitting. The WSPR beacon will transmit on 14.095,6 MHz
with 900 mW, callsign LU7AA. The beacon will be active for 2 min-
utes ON followed with 8 minutes of standby. They appreciate WSPR
reception reports to wsprnet.org
which will qualify you for an
award certificate: http://lu7aa.org.ar/wspr.asp
Project page can be found at: http://amsat.org.ar/?f=boya
APRS tracking can be found at: http://aprs.fi?call=lu7aa-8
+ Versions 1.46 and 1.47 (to address a bug fix) of the Magic-Eye
Plugin for SDRSharp has been released:
This plug-in adds an old-style "Magic Eye", or "Cat's Eye" to
software (available via www.airspy.com
) This release adds an analog-
style SNR Meter. This Plugin, is compiled for 32bit platform, with
.NET Framework version 4.6. It may not run on SDR# versions older
than r1362 (14 Sept 2015) - via airspy.com
+ If you've been kept up at night trying to find a solution to the
chaotic three-body problem access a paper, "Newton vs the machine:
solving the chaotic three-body problem using deep neural networks"
- and if you're not sure
what is the significance of this check out an explanation posted
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 behave and to help keep amateur radio in space,
This week's ANS Editor,
JoAnne Maenpaa, K9JKM
k9jkm at amsat dot org