AMSAT NEWS SERVICE
The AMSAT News Service bulletins are a free, weekly news and infor-
mation service of AMSAT North America, 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 communicating through analog and digital Amateur Radio
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
In this edition:
* First picture from ESTCube-1 ham radio CubeSat
* NEE-01 Pegasus 910 MHz TV Camera in Action
* Ecuador Pegasus CubeSat fears over space debris crash
* Argentinian CubeSat CubeBug-1 was also hit by space debris.
* NASA History Program Office Fall 2013 Internships
* Registration for the 5th European CubeSat Symposium (3-5 June 2013)
* NASA Seeks Academic Partners for SmallSat Technology Collaboration
* Satellite Applications Catapult Hackathon
* Amateur Radio Satellites for Emergency Communications
* NASA looking for far-out ideas
* Update: Museum Ships Weekend Special Event Station KK5W Satellite
* ARISS News
* Satellite Shorts From All Over
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-146.01
ANS-146 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 146.01
From AMSAT HQ SILVER SPRING, MD.
DATE May 26,
To All RADIO AMATEURS
First picture from ESTCube-1 ham radio CubeSat
The first picture taken
by the amateur radio CubeSat ESTCube-1 in space has been released.
ESTCube-1 was launched from Kourou in the Caribbean on May 7 at 0206
UT on an ESA Vega rocket into a 704 km orbit.
The hard work of the first two weeks has paid off and the CAM team,
leaded by the University of Tartu Computer Technology graduate
student Henri Kuuste has this to say: The camera works perfectly and
so do all the other subsystems, needed for taking the photo. The
first image was captured on May 15 over the Mediterranean Sea,
showing the sea, Sahara desert, and Tunisia.
On Monday, May 13 the whole ESTCube-1 team was invited to the
reception of the rector of University of Tartu to celebrate the
success of the satellite. Watch the video (in English) at
ESTCube-1 was built by students at the University of Tartu. The main
mission of the satellite is to test electric solar wind sail
technology, a novel space propulsion technology that could
revolutionize transportation within the solar system. It will deploy
a 10 meter conductive electrodynamic tether and the force interacting
with the tether will be measured.
The technology is based on the electrostatic interaction between the
electric field generated by the satellite and the high-speed
particles being ejected from the Sun. A spacecraft utilizing this
method would first deploy a set of electrically charged wires, which
allow to generate an electric field over a large area. This area
effectively forms a "sail" that can be pushed by the charged
particles by being diverted by it and therefore transferring momentum
to the craft.
ESTCube-1 uses these frequencies:
437.252 MHz - CW beacon, callsign ES5E/S
437.505 MHz - 9600 bps AX.25 telemetry, callsign ES5E-11
Electric solar wind sail
EstCube on Facebook
[ANS thanks Southgate Amateur Radio News for the above information]
NEE-01 Pegasus 910 MHz TV Camera in Action
NEE-01 Pegasus (Pegaso) the first of two HD TV CubeSats built in
Ecuador launched on a CZ-2D rocket from the Jiuquan Space Center on
Friday, April 26 at 0413 UT.
The 1U CubeSat 10x10x10 cm) was built in Ecuador and carries a 0.9
watt output 720p HD TV transmitter on 910 MHz (an amateur radio band
in some countries).
EarthCam has teamed up with the Ecuadorian Civilian Space Agency to
deliver what EarthCam describe as an amazing viewing experience from
an orbiting satellite. You can view the NEE-01 Pegasus SpaceCam
online at http://www.earthcam.com/world/ecuador/ecsa/
NEE-01 Pegasus (Pegaso)
[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]
Ecuador Pegasus CubeSat fears over space debris crash
BBC News is reporting that at 0538 UT on Thursday, May 23 Ecuador’s
new NEE-01 Pegasus 910 MHz CubeSat collided with debris from a S14
Soviet rocket launched in 1985.
The satellite was some 1,500 km east of Madagascar at the time of
the impact. Pegasus, launched less than a month ago, is the first 1U
CubeSat to carry a HD TV transmitter and deployable solar panels. The
basic satellite is just 10 by 10 by 10 cm but, when deployed, the
solar panels have a span of 70 cm.
Ronnie Nader with Elisse Nader and CubeSat Ecuador’s first Astronaut
Ronnie Nader is quoted as saying “Pegasus could be damaged or
spinning out of control, but because it’s still in orbit, we have
He had said earlier that it could take up to 48 hours to ascertain
possible damage using radar.
Read the BBC News story at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-
May 23, 0700 UT: Ronnie Nader posted “Survived the event, but we are
almost sure of side impact with particles, tomorrow [May 23 ECT?] we
will see the state of Pegasus, but we are still in the sky, still
May 23, 1600 UT: Ronnie Nader tweeted “Now we are sure that there
[was] particle impact“.
The BBC report that the Ecuadorian Government contributed $700,000
towards the launch costs of the 1U CubeSat. It was launched on April
26, 2013 into a 660 km orbit on a CZ-2D rocket from the Jiuquan Space
Educational outreach is an important part of the project. The
Ecuadorian Space Agency EXA is partnering with schools in Ecuador as
part of the ASTERIA Program, in which students will use the satellite
in their curricular and extra curricular activities.
902 – 928 MHz is an amateur radio allocation in some countries.
NEE-01 Pegasus 910 MHz TV Camera in Action
NEE-01 Pegaus HD TV CubeSat
[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]
Argentinian CubeSat CubeBug-1 was also hit by space debris.
One of the companions of PEGASUS, the Argentine satellite CubeBug-1
also reported changes in the tilt of its orbit and confirmed at least
1 particle impact. The Argentine team reported a slight change in the
inclination of the orbit of the NEE-01 PEGASUS product of this
collision, however to the issue of this newsletter we can not confirm
this information to make more measurements, if this is confirmed
could slightly alter satellite overpass schedules on Ecuadorian
territory, the Space Operations Directorate EXA works to adjust the
new orbital calculations and check the magnitude of this change.
The Space Operations Directorate EXA is analyzing the data collected
at each step of the satellite to determine if you can recover the use
of the satellite and will have a report ready to expose to the media
on Monday May 27 at 10h00 in the ECU911 Samborondon.
CubeBug-1, NEE-01 Pegasus and TURKSAT-3USAT (Mode J Linear
transponder) were all deployed from the same launch vehicle on April
See the EXA report at http://www.exa.ec/bp52/
Google English http://tinyurl.com/q8wdql2
[ANS thanks M5AKA and Agencia Espacial Civil Ecuatoriana for the
NASA History Program Office Fall 2013 Internships
The NASA History Program Office is seeking undergraduate and graduate
students for fall 2013 internships. The History Program Office
maintains archival materials to answer research questions from NASA
personnel, journalists, scholars, students at all levels and others
from around the world. The division also edits and publishes several
books and monographs each year. It maintains a large number of
websites on NASA history.
Students of all majors are welcome to apply. While detailed prior
knowledge of the aeronautics and space fields is not necessary, a keen
interest and some basic familiarity with these topics are needed.
Strong research, writing and editing skills are essential. Experience
with computers, especially hypertext markup language, or HTML,
formatting and social media (Twitter and Facebook) is a plus.
Intern projects are flexible. Typical projects include handling a
variety of information requests, editing historical manuscripts, doing
research and writing biographical sketches, updating and creating
websites, creating Twitter and Facebook entries, and identifying and
Applications for fall 2013 internships are due June 1, 2013.
For more information, visit http://history.nasa.gov/interncall.htm
If you have questions about this opportunity, please contact Bill
Barry at bill.barry at nasa.gov
[ANS thanks NASA for the above information]
Registration for the 5th European CubeSat Symposium (3-5 June 2013)
This is a final reminder for you to register at reduced rate for the
5th European CubeSat Symposium to be held on 3-5 June 2013 at
Kindly keep in mind that the registrations that will be received
after 27 May will be charged at a higher rate.
The preliminary programme and all other details are published at the
web site www.CubeSatSymposium.eu
[ANS thanks Cem O. Asma, PhD for the above information]
NASA Seeks Academic Partners for SmallSat Technology Collaboration
NASA is seeking small spacecraft technology project proposals from
U.S. colleges and universities that would like to collaborate with
Small spacecraft, or smallsats, represent a growing field of space
research and operations in which universities often have led the way
in technology development. Smallsats, some of which are as small as a
four-inch cube, are not expected to replace conventional spacecraft,
but sometimes can provide an alternative to larger, more costly
spacecraft. Smallsats can serve as platforms for rapid technology
testing or specialized scientific research and exploration not
otherwise possible. Smallsats also can be developed relatively quickly
and inexpensively, and can share a ride to orbit with larger
NASA expects to competitively select approximately 10 proposals. Each
team will form proposal partnerships with researchers from any of
NASA's field centers. Awards for each project will include as much as
$100,000 ($150,000 for teams of more than one school). Proposals
submitted in response to this NASA cooperative agreement notice are
due June 5, 2013.
In addition, NASA will fund the time for NASA employees to work with
each selected team. Project funding is for one year with the potential
to continue for a second year. Proposed projects could include
anything from laboratory work to advance a particular spacecraft
technology to flight testing of a new smallsat. For example, projects
might focus on a technology area such as propulsion, power or
communications, or on a smallsat capability, such as formation flight
or satellite rendezvous.
Details of the opportunity and instructions for submitting proposals
are provided in a Cooperative Agreement Notice that is available
online at http://tinyurl.com/cb3mqdw
For additional information on the Small Spacecraft Technology Program,
The Small Spacecraft Technology Program is part of NASA's Space
Technology Mission Directorate, which is innovating, developing,
testing and flying hardware for use in NASA's future missions. For
more information about NASA's investment in space technology, visit
Questions about this opportunity should be directed to Rachel Khattab
[ANS thanks NASA for the above information]
Satellite Applications Catapult Hackathon
The Satellite Applications Catapult is hosting a Satellite
Applications Hackathon event on the weekend of 8-9 June 2013. It will
take place at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus.
The two-day ‘technology development’ event is part of a series of
activities to help generate innovative ideas and solutions in
response to several challenges set by the Catapult or its associated
partners. Hackathons offer an innovation platform to enable people to
work together to solve challenges using space technologies, and
exploit the benefits for both space and other markets sectors, eg.
transport, healthcare, natural resources, etc.
The Hackathon is open to anyone who would like to participate –
software developers, engineers, technologists, scientists, designers,
artists, educators, students and entrepreneurs – anyone who has a
passion to help change the world.
To register for the Hackathon, please go to
catapulthackathon.eventbrite.co.uk or email
For more Information visit
[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]
Amateur Radio Satellites for Emergency Communications
Grupo de Radioaficionados para Operaciones Satelitales (GROS)
Coordinator Raydel Espinet CM2ESP comments on the use of amateur
radio satellites for emergency communications and describes how an
amateur satellite was used in a Civil Defense exercise on May 18-19,
About the topic of satellites and emergencies I think satellites are
an option very important to consider when there is no more available.
In case of HF propagation blackouts or poor conditions and when local
VHF and UHF repeaters fails, satellites can bring help, specially
from light weight battery run portable stations.
Here in Cuba we do every year an emergency rehearsal exercise named
“Meteoro” which is organized by Cuba’s Civil Defense to simulate
catastrophes and other actions relevant to the upcoming hurricane
This weekend (May 18th and 19th) was held the 2013 Exercise, like
always Cuban Ham Radio Operators are invited to participate as an
important asset during emergencies. But by first time ever on the
Civil Defense National Headquarters were is installed amateur station
CO9DCN we do a short and simple satellite demonstration to the Civil
The short demo was just a simple “hello” exchanged between CO6CBF
(Hector) in Cienfuegos Province and CM2ESP/Portable (Raydel) in the
Headquarter’s backyard. Hector had done previous years demos for his
province’s civil defense authorities, but this was the first time a
demo was done at the National Civil Defense Headquarters. As HF
propagation was terribly bad that day due to the recent solar flares
the Civil Defense Authorities were very pleased with our short demo
proving that satellites can be an alternative when ground and
ionospheric propagation are disrupted.
The Press publish a short report about the amateur radio importance
on emergencies and there is also a short mention in paragraph three
of the very first satellite contact.
The news report can be found at
It is in Spanish only, but Google translator works fine
On the picture featured on the news report from the Cuban News
Agency you can see CO9DCN Club Station (Defensa Civil Nacional –
National Civil Defense) being operated by CO2OT in digital modes and
CO2JC in voice communications. The satellite demo was done portable
on the backyard on Sunday at 14:10 UTC during a SO-50 pass, the press
arrived one hour after the satellite pass so unfortunately there is
no photo available.
[ANS thanks Raydel, CM2ESP for the above information]
NASA looking for far-out ideas
NASA is looking for far-out ideas. NASA's Innovative Advanced
Concepts (NIAC) Program is seeking Phase II proposals for
continuation of promising studies selected during the first phase of
the visionary program.
The NIAC program funds cutting-edge concepts with the potential to
transform future aerospace missions, enable new capabilities, or
significantly alter current approaches to launching, building, and
operating aerospace systems.
"Creating the technologies needed to keep our explorers -- robotic
and human -- alive and well is a terrific challenge, and these
transformative concepts have the potential to mature into the
solutions that enable our future missions," said Michael Gazarik,
NASA's associate administrator for space technology in Washington.
"NASA's early investment and partnership with creative scientists,
engineers and citizen inventors from across the nation holds the
potential to pay huge technological dividends and help maintain
America's leadership in the global technology economy."
NIAC's Phase II opportunity continues development of the most
promising Phase I concepts. These are visionary aerospace
architecture, mission, or system concepts with transformative
potential, which continue to push into new frontiers, while remaining
technically and programmatically credible. NIAC's current portfolio
of diverse efforts advances aerospace technology in many areas,
including science, aeronautics, robotics and manufacturing.
Recent NIAC Phase II studies have included a concept for "printable
spacecraft," which could be manufactured using additive manufacturing
technology that creates 3-D objects from computer designs. Spacecraft
electronic components could be "printed" layer upon layer on flexible
materials, advancing the functionality and availability of components
needed for space missions. Another study is examining the feasibility
of using high temperature superconducting magnets as a potential form
of radiation shielding in space.
"Phase II proposals are especially exciting because they can provide
the opportunity to bring real breakthroughs one step closer to
implementation," said Jay Falker, NIAC program executive at NASA
NASA will be accepting NIAC Phase II proposals of no more than 20
pages in length until July 9. Selection announcements are expected
later this year. This solicitation is open only to current or
previously awarded NIAC Phase I concepts. Complete guidelines for
proposal submissions are available on the NIAC website at
NASA expects to initiate approximately five new Phase II studies
this year. The number of awards will depend on the strength of
proposals, availability of appropriated funds and selected mix of
Phase I and Phase II awards. Selected proposers will receive as much
as $500,000 over two years to further analyze and develop their
NIAC is part of NASA's Space Technology Mission Directorate, which
is innovating, developing, testing and flying hardware for use in
NASA's future missions. To view the NASA NIAC Research Announcement
for this solicitation and for more information about the agency's
Space Technology Mission Directorate, visit: http://go.usa.gov/R1N
[ANS thanks Southgate Amateur radio News for the above information]
Update: Museum Ships Weekend Special Event Station KK5W Satellite
The Brazos Valley Amateur Radio Club (BVARC) will participate in the
Museum Ships Weekend Event on June 1-2, 2013 from Pelican Island
(IOTA NA-143) near Galveston, Texas. Currently 90 ships worldwide
are registered to participate in the event and it is expected that
additional museum ships will register before the event begins. In
2008 the BVARC satellite team was the first museum ship to use OSCAR
satellites. Last year at least a half dozen museum ships joined us
on the OSCAR satellites.
This year the KK5W team will launch a balloon on Saturday morning,
June 1, 2013. Previous balloons launched by the South Texas Balloon
Launch Team have reached an altitude of over 111,000 feet and have
traveled as far east as South Carolina. This balloon will carry a
70cm to 10m linear transponder with center frequencies of 433.500 MHz
and 28.600 MHz. The balloon can be tracked on
<http://www.aprs.fi>www.aprs.fi by entering the identifier N5BPS-11
(the USS Cavalla's wartime call sign was NBPS). Working the balloon
transponder is just like working a satellite but with no Doppler
BVARC plans a full 2-day operation on the HF bands. Operation on
OSCAR satellites is planned for daytime passes on Saturday, June 1,
2013. The BVARC satellite and balloon team consists of AMSAT members
Andy MacAllister, W5ACM, Allen Mattis, N5AFV, Charlie Keng, K5ENG,
Carl Hacker, WC5WM, Thomas Krahn, KT5TK, and Mike Scarcella, WA5TWT.
We encourage any interested satellite operators to volunteer to
operate on the OSCAR satellites if you live near a participating
museum ship. Join in and be part of this worldwide event.
If you hear KK5W on during MSWE 2013 give us a call. QSL with SASE to
KK5W, Brazos Valley Amateur Radio Club, PO BOX 2997, Sugar Land, TX
[ANS thanks Allen F. Mattis for the above information]
+ Congratulations to Expedition 34 Commanader Chris Hadfield
KC5RNJ/VA3OOG for his successful return to earth. Chris dedicated
himself to bringing space science to students around the world.
Notable are the 23 ARISS contacts in which he participated.
Successful ARISS Contacts
+ Yellowknife R.C.M.P. Headquarters Yellowknife Northwest
Territories Canada 2013-05-12 17:55 UTC
A succesful International Space Station school contact was conducted
between participants at Yellowknife R.C.M.P. Headquarters,
Yellowknife, NWT, Canada and Expedition 34 Commander Chris Hadfield,
KC5RNJ/VA3OOG, on 12 MAY 2013 at approximataely 17:55 UTC. The
duration of the contact was approximately 9 minutes and 30 seconds.
The contact was be a telebridge between NA1SS and k6DUE. The contact
was audible over the Eastern U.S. and adjacent areas.
Yellowknife is the capital city of Northwest Territories in Canada's
north and has a population around 20,000. Yellowknife is found on
the north shore of Great Slave Lake and on the west side of
Yellowknife Bay, near the outlet of the Yellowknife River.
Yellowknife is known as the "diamond capital of North America"
because there are three mines near our city.
This event in Yellowknife brought in many areas of their community.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police detachment was the host for this
event. Their commanding officer started the event by greeting all
who attended. The event was blessed before the contact by one of the
respected Elders. Students from ages 6-17 asked the questions. They
were from local schools, the Side Street Youth Center, and families
of police officers. This was a huge celebration of our community
+ Participants of the first phase of the qualifying round of the
World "Man will fly away, come back a hero" in Podolsk, Russia had a
successful 2013-05-15 07:41 UTC The contact was direct via RN3DOM
with Expedition 35 Cosmonaut Pavel Vinogradov RV3BS using station
+ Anacapa School Santa Barbara, California USA 2013-05-22 17:43 UTC
A successful International Space Station school contact was
conducted between participants at Anacapa School, Santa Barbara, CA
and Expedition 35 Astronaut Christopher J Cassidy KF5KDR on 22 May.
The event began at approximately 17:43 UTC. The duration of the
contact was approximately 9 minutes and 30 seconds. The contact was
direct between NA1SS and N6KTH. The contact was audible over portions
of the west coast of the U.S.
Anacapa School is an independent, co-educational, college
preparatory day school for junior high and high school students.
This year they have a total of 65 students in grades 7-12. Through
academic and experiential learning, they encourage students to
integrate critical thinking, creativity, integrity, and compassion in
order to develop the potential of each individual in our diverse
The Anacapa Near Space Exploration Club - KK6BBL was founded in 2010
by Anacapa students. The first team designed and built Anacapa
Amateur High-Altitude Balloon 1 (AAHAB-1), which launched on May 22,
2011, returning stunning still images from an altitude of 91,122 feet
over the California Central Coast. In 2012, a second team consisting
of new and returning crew members built off of the success with a
second near space probe, AAHAB-2. Team AAHAB-2 set even more
ambitious goals including a live Amateur Television video downlink,
high-definition recording, radiation sensors and live APRS telemetry.
On May 5, 2012, AAHAB-2 returned to Earth after a project record-
breaking flight peaking at more than 111,814 feet above the surface!
This year a new group of students are busy preparing for the ARISS
contact, developing new designs and earning their Amateur Radio
Following the success of the two balloon probes and their acceptance
into the ARISS / TFS program last summer, they decided to make space
exploration the focus of their annual Synthesis Unit for the 2012-
2013 school year. This means that all of the students at Anacapa
have spent many hours over the past few months taking an in-depth
look at the space program's past, present and future by doing
independent research and hearing from expert speakers like NASA
Astronaut Rick Linnehan who visited us in January. Students are
presently in the process of finalizing the Synthesis product which is
a report of their findings.
Other areas schools were asked to join them on the day of the
contact so they might share this "million dollar moment."
+ Upcoming ARISS Contact Schedule as of 2013-05-25 21:00 UTC
ATR International Youth Forum - “Growth points”, Altai Krai
Belokuriha, Russia Contact is a go for Tue 2013-06-04 21:15 UTC
ARISS is requesting listener reports for the above contact. Due
to issues with the Kenwood radio that are not fully understood at
present, the Ericsson radio is going to be used for these contacts.
ARISS thanks everyone in advance for their assistance.
[ANS thanks ARISS, David AA4KN and Charlie AJ9N for the above
Satellite Shorts From All Over
+ SPUTNIX is granted a license for space activity
SPUTNIX has been granted has been granted a license by the Russian
Federal Space Agency for engaging in space activity, namely: creating
and modernizing small automatic space vehicles for scientific and
+ The three planets converging in the Western skyy just after sunset
May 25-28 are Jupiter, Venus and Mercury.
+ NASA-Built Nanosatellite Launch Adapter System Ready For Flight
Nanosatellites now have their own mass transit to catch rides to
space and perform experiments in microgravity. A new NASA-designed
and developed satellite deployer, dubbed the Nano Launch Adapter
System (NLAS), is scheduled to demonstrate the capability to launch a
flock of satellites into space later this year.
+ First precise MEMS output measurement technique unveiled
The commercial application of MEMS, or micro-electro-mechanical
systems, will receive a major boost following the presentation of a
brand new way to accurately measure the power requirements and
outputs of all existing and future devices.
The cheap and easy to apply technique will be presented for the
first time at the TechConnect World Conference 2013 by a research
team from Laboratoire national de metrologie et d'essais (LNE) in
France. The researchers believe it will help manufacturers improve
product performance, develop new functionalities, reduce energy
consumption of mass production, respond to market demands for
miniaturization, and increase reliability of MEMS devices around the
+ Plug-and-Play technology for microsatellites has been
SPUTNIX specialists within the work on creation of a microsatellite
platform TabletSat have assembled and tested the onboard control
system equipment based on Space Plug- and-Play Architecture (SPA)
specifications. This set of open standards has been developed by the
American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, AIAA, jointly
with the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory, AFRL.
+ May Edition of MilsatMagazine is available online
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
This week's ANS Editor,
EMike McCardel, KC8YLD
kc8yld at amsat dot org