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:
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In this edition:
* ISS MAI-75 SSTV Activity Planned For Aug 4-5
* AMSAT Awards Update
* How Many Satellite Awards Have Been Issued?
* VUCC Awards-Endorsements for August 2020
* First Demonstration Of Orbit Control On A 1U CubeSat
* Burns Fisher, WB1JF, Featured Speaker at AMSAT SA Symposium
* NASA to Provide Coverage of Astronauts' Return from ISS on SpaceX
* ARISS News
* Upcoming Satellite Operations
* Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
* Satellite Shorts From All Over
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-215.01
ANS-215 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 215.01
From AMSAT HQ KENSINGTON, MD.
DATE 2020 August
To All RADIO AMATEURS
ISS MAI-75 SSTV Activity Planned For Aug 4-5
Russian cosmonauts will transmit amateur radio Slow Scan Television
(SSTV) images from the International Space Station (ISS) during August
4-5 on 145.800 MHz FM (likely using PD-120).
On July 9, ESA Education had Tweeted: “We are expecting the ISS to
transmit pictures in the next weeks for the 45th anniversary of the
Apollo-Soyuz test project. This is a perfect opportunity to try this
activity for yourself!”
Apollo–Soyuz was the first international space mission, carried out
jointly by the United States and the Soviet Union in mid-July 1975.
An announcement made July 27 on the ARISS SSTV Blog says: The final
crew schedule for the week of Aug 3-9 was released recently and it
showed a MAI-75 activity scheduled for Aug 4 and 5. This is soon after
the Space X Demo-2 undock so changes to that event could impact the
The current dates and times of the planned activity are as follows:
Aug 4 (12:25-18:10 UTC) is setup and day 1 operations.
Aug 5 (11:15-18:45 UTC) is day 2 operations and close out.
This is the Moscow Aviation Institute SSTV experiment that is active
for orbital passes over Moscow, Russia. It has traditional been PD-180
or PD-120 and transmitting on 145.800 MHz.
Source ARISS STV Blog http://ariss-sstv.blogspot.com/
The ISS puts out a strong signal on 145.800 MHz FM and a 2m handheld
with a 1/4 wave antenna will be enough to receive it. Many FM mobile
and base station rigs can be switched been wide and narrow deviation
FM filters. For best results you should select the filter for wider
deviation FM (25 kHz channel spacing). Handhelds all seem to have a
single wide filter fitted as standard.
The space agency ESA has released a video ‘How to get pictures from the
International Space Station via Amateur Radio’ along with a collection
of Tutorial videos explaining how to receive ISS Slow Scan TV (SSTV)
pictures for different computers and mobile devices
Read the Raspberry Pi article Pictures from space via ham radio
ISS SSTV info and links https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/iss-sstv/
[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the AMSAT office
is closed until further notice. For details, please visit
AMSAT Awards Update
Here are the awards issued in the last two months.
The AMSAT Satellite Communicators Award is given to any operator for
having made their first contact:
Anthony Rizi, NR1Z
Edward Hartzel, W3HMK
James Brooks, KB3EFH
Vilanova University ARC, W3YP
Robin Shelley, G8VVY
The Oscar Satellite Communications Achievement Award is for working 20
contacts on any satellite:
Anthony Rizi, NR1Z, #628
Angus Alexander, KJ7KOJ, #629
The AMSAT Sexagesimal Satellite Communications Achievement Award is
given for 60 satellite contacts:
Stephan Greene, KS1G, #187
Casey Tucker, KI7UNJ, #188
The AMSAT South Africa Satellite Communications Achievement Award is
for 25 different stations on Phase 2 (LEO) satellites:
Anthony Rizi, NR1Z, #US230
Casey Tucker, KI7UNJ, #US231
Angus Alexander, KJ7KOJ, #US232
The Robert W. Barbee Jr., W4AMI Satellite Operator Achievement Award
is awarded for the submission of 1,000 satellite contacts on OSCAR-6
or later satellites:
W4AMI Award (1,000-4,000)
Mitchell Whitman, N4DCW, #110
Mark Johns, K0JM, #111
David Hoffman, KL1XI, #112
Phillip Sauvey, AK7DD, #113
Dennis Love, N7EGY, #114
Kell Bodholt, KI7UXT, upgrade to 2000
AMSAT Rover Award is based on a point system and is awarded to those
who put grids on the air away from their home QTH:
GridMaster Award is presented to those who confirm QSOs with all 488
grids in the Continental U.S.:
To see all the awards visit http://www.amsat.org
and click on
Services then Awards.
[ANS thanks Bruce Paige, KK5DO, AMSAT Director Contests and Awards for
the above information]
How Many Satellite Awards Have Been Issued?
When Bruce Paige, KK5DO, AMSAT Director Contests and Awards, was asked
by a ham last week how many awards he has issued, his response was,
"You know, I really had no idea." Paige took over doing the AMSAT
awards in May, 2001. Most of the awards have computer records. However,
the Satellite Communicator Club award, he did not start keeping track
of until 2003.
So, you ask, how many awards has he issued? Paige says,
"Satellite Communicator 407+ but my records only go back to 2003
South Africa Satellite Communication Achievement 167
AMSAT Satellite Communication Achievement 273
Sexagesimal (60 QSOs) 64
Century (100 QSOs) 24
W4AMI (1,000 QSOs) 81
W4AMI endorsements (each additional 1,000 QSOs) 66
W4AMI 5000 (5,000 QSOs) 25
and if I added correctly, it comes out to 1,165 plus whatever Satellite
Communicator awards were issued in 2001 and 2002. That's a lot of
certificate paper, a lot of ink and a bunch of envelopes and stiffeners
to get them safely to their owners."
Do you have one on your wall? If not, maybe you should submit for one
or more so that one day I will hit 2,000 or 3,000 who knows. Visit the
awards page at https://www.amsat.org/awards-2/
[ANS thanks Bruce Paige, KK5DO, AMSAT Director Contests and Awards for
the above information]
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.
VUCC Awards-Endorsements for August 2020
Here are the endorsements and new VUCC Satellite Awards issued by the
ARRL for the period July 1, 2020 through August 1, 2020.
Congratulations to all those who made the list this month!
WOW! Long list this month!
CALL July August
W7QL 478 510
WI4T 301 461
N7EGY 405 456
PS8ET 350 434
AF5CC New 425
N9FN 303 403
HP2VX 351 377
WB7VUF 319 370
KC9UQR 301 332
W4ZXT 252 327
WA9JBQ 326 326
W4DTA 263 275
AK7DD New 255
N1PEB * 138 255
K4RGK 175 214
VE6WK New 207
S57NML 179 205
AC9O 108 204
YV1DIG 146 200
AA4FL 181 187
N3CAL 160 171
WD9EWK (DM23) 137 152
N7AME 128 148
WB7QXU New 140
K3HPA 102 128
VE2NGO 100 128
HB9WDF New 114
N5EKO 102 108
KP4RV 100 105
XE1R New 105
KB9STR New 104
N2ZN New 103
IK1IYU New 101
KF6JOQ New 101
N5MIG New 101
LU3FCA New 100
M0KDS New 100
N6RVI New 100
* For some reason, this call dropped off the list from February to now.
If you find errors or omissions. please contact me off-list at W5RKN
at W5RKN dot com. This list was developed by comparing the ARRL .pdf
listings for the two months. It's a visual comparison so omissions
are possible. Apologies if your call was not mentioned.
Thanks to all those who are roving to grids that are rarely
on the birds. They are doing most of the work!
[ANS thanks Ron Parsons, W5RKN, for the above information]
First Demonstration Of Orbit Control On A 1U CubeSat
The University Wuerzburg Experimental Satellite 4 (UWE-4) successfully
used its propulsion system in order to conduct orbit control. The 1U
CubeSat, developed and built at the Chair for Robotics and Telematics,
is equipped with the electric propulsion system NanoFEEP which has been
developed by TU Dresden.
Several manoeuvres have been performed within 11 days between June 23
and July 3, 2020 such that the altitude of the CubeSat was reduced by
more than 100 meters, compared to an average of 21 meters with natural
decay. This marks the first time in CubeSat history that a 1U CubeSat
changed its orbit using an on-board propulsion system.
As chance would have it, the team of UWE-4 received a conjunction data
message (CDM) in the morning of July 2, 2020 from the United States Air
Force’s 18th Space Control Squadron. A conjunction of UWE-4 with a non-
operational Iridium satellite (ID: 34147) in the morning of July 5,
2020 with a minimum range of about 800 meters was a threat to the
safety of UWE-4. An analysis has shown that the altitude of UWE-4 would
already be below the Iridium satellite at the time of conjunction. Thus
the on-going altitude lowering manoeuvre could only improve the situa-
tion and can be considered as a collision avoidance manoeuvre. No furt-
her CDMs have been issued regarding this possible conjunction. An anal-
ysis of the orbit of the two spacecraft after July 5, 2020 results in
a closest approach of more than 6000 meters.
Lowering the altitude of a spacecraft in low earth orbit (LEO) is
equivalent to a reduction of its lifetime, since satellites in LEO
usually burn up during re-entry due to the friction with the Earth’s
atmosphere. Thus, this experiment is a concept demonstration of a de-
orbiting manoeuvre shown at the smallest class of spacecraft in LEO.
Today, there is no commitment to carry a propulsion system for space-
craft. However, due to the vastly increasing number of satellites in
mega constellations such obligations are being discussed in the space
agencies of several space faring countries. The experiment of UWE-4
presents a de-orbiting solution for the fraction of space debris of
operational but unused satellites of today and for the mega constella-
tions of tomorrow.
[U.S. regulations make the ability to de-orbit a requirement for HEO
amateur satellites in the future -- Ed.]
Stay tuned for more updates on UWE-4 and the upcoming launch of NetSat,
a formation flying nano-satellite mission from the Center for Telema-
tics which is expected to be launched September 2020!
Kind regards, The UWE-4 Team
UWE-4: First NanoFEEP thruster ignition
UWE-4 435.600 MHz
[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]
Burns Fisher, WB1JF, Featured Speaker at AMSAT SA Symposium
AMSAT of South Africa (AMSAT SA) has converted its annual Space Sympo-
sium into a live online event to take place from 08:00z to 17:00z on
Saturday 22 August with a lunch break to have your sandwiches at home.
Burns Fisher, WB1JF, IHU Software Engineer and key volunteer in the
construction of the Fox1 series of satellites, will join the symposium
from the USA with two presentations. In one of his papers Burns will
present a small, easy-to-deploy telemetry station called Fox-in-a-Box,
a good way for amateurs to get started in satellite telemetry collec-
tion with a modest investment.
There will be features about AMSAT OSCAR 7, the longest operating ama-
teur satellite, as well as about SATNOGs and how to track and decode
thousands of small satellites in orbit with simple hardware/software
requiring minimal outlay. Dr. Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, and his team will
present the latest developments in the AfriCUBE project.
To book, visit www.amsatsa.org.za
. Members of the SARL or AMSATSA and
may register before 15 August for a cost of only R30. Non-members may
register prior to this date for a cost of R100 (approximately $6 U.S.)
but the AMSAT SA website only offers instructions for registration via
postal mail. Contact AMSAT SA to explore other possible options.
[ANS thanks SARL News and JoAnne Maenpaa, K9JKM, for the above informa-
Want to fly the colors on your own grid expedition?
Get your AMSAT car flag and other neat stuff
from our Zazzle store!
25% of the purchase price of each product goes
towards Keeping Amateur Radio in Space
NASA to Provide Coverage of Astronauts' Return from ISS on SpaceX
NASA will provide live coverage of activities leading up to, during,
and following the return of the agency's SpaceX Demo-2 test flight with
the agency's astronauts Robert Behnken, KE5GGX, and Douglas Hurley from
the International Space Station.
The duo arrived at the orbiting laboratory on May 31, following a suc-
cessful launch on May 30 on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from NASA's Ken-
nedy Space Center in Florida.
NASA and SpaceX are targeting 7:34 p.m. EDT Saturday, Aug. 1, for un-
docking of the Dragon "Endeavour" spacecraft from the space station and
2:42 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 2, for splashdown, which will be the first re-
turn of a commercially built and operated American spacecraft carrying
astronauts from the space station.
Coverage on NASA TV and the agency's website will begin at 20.30z on
Aug. 1, with a short farewell ceremony on station and resume at 21.00z
with departure preparations through splashdown and recovery at one of
seven targeted water landing zones in the Atlantic Ocean or Gulf of
Mexico off the coast of Florida.
Watch at https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/#public
[ANS thanks NASA for the above information]
Amateurs and others around the world may listen in on contacts between
amateurs operating in schools and allowing students to interact with
astronauts and cosmonauts aboard the International Space Station. The
downlink frequency on which to listen is 145.800 MHz worldwide.
ARISS is very aware of the impact that COVID-19 is having on schools
and the public in general. As such, we may have last minute cancella-
tions or postponements of school contacts.
The most recent contact was with the American School of Rio de Janeiro,
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Multi-point telebridge via ON4ISS on Thursday,
2020-07-30 at 16:41:42 UTC. The scheduled astronaut was Chris Cassidy,
KF5KDR. The contact was successful, and the recording may be found at
[ANS thanks Charlie Sufana, AJ9N, one of the ARISS operation team men-
tors for the above information]
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/
Upcoming Satellite Operations
Do you need Hawaii? NH7WN on AO-7 Most days. Reach out for a schedule.
EN57, EN56, EN67, 8/2 – 8/8:
N8MR, will be in EN57 from August 2nd through August 8th. He may also
activate EN56 and 67. Roving will be holiday style.
DM97/98 & EM08/09, 8/29 & 8/30:
Super Rover @AD0DX is heading out for the Kansas QSO party and N0E.
More to come.
AD0HJ, is heading out again for the South Dakota Super Rove Part I
Rove Map: Grids DN74, DN75, DN84, DN85, DN94, DN95, EN04, EN05, EN14,
EN15, EN16, and EN17. July 31st through August 7th. See the Twitter
post at https://twitter.com/AD0HJ/status/1284669314637930499
passes and times.
Then as if that isn’t enough, there is more: South Dakota Super Rove
Part II Rove Map: Grids DN73, DN82, DN83, DN92, DN93, EN02, EN03, EN12,
EN24, and EN25. August 17th through August 21st.
Please submit any additions or corrections to Ke0pbr (at) gmail.com
[ANS thanks Paul Overnfor, KE0PBR, AMSAT rover page manager, for the
Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
Want to see AMSAT in action or learn more about amateur radio in space?
AMSAT Ambassadors provide presentations, demonstrate communicating
through amateur satellites, and host information tables at club meet-
ings, hamfests, conventions, maker faires, and other events.
Due to COVID-19, many hamfest and events around the United States have
been cancelled or postponed. While we make every effort to ensure the
information contained below is correct, there may be some that we
missed. We wish all of you safekeeping and hope to be at a hamfest
near you soon.
A copy of the AMSAT hamfest brochure is available for download from:
This color brochure is designed to be printed
double-sided and folded into a tri-fold handout.
To include your upcoming AMSAT presentation and/or demonstration,
please send an email to ambassadors (at) amsat (dot) org.
[ANS thanks Robert Bankston, KE4AL, AMSAT VP-User Services for the
Satellite Shorts From All Over
+ Technical papers are solicited for presentation at the ARRL/TAPR
Digital Communications Conference (DCC), September 11 - 13. Due to
the coronavirus pandemic, this year's conference will be held online.
Papers will be published in the Conference Proceedings; authors do
not need to participate. Submit papers by August 15 via email to Maty
Weinberg, KB1EIB. (ANS thanks ARRL for the above information)
+ AMSAT-UK has announced the OSCAR Satellite QSO Party, aimed at en-
couraging radio amateurs around the world to get on the air and make
contacts via satellite during summer in the Northern Hemisphere.
While points are given per contact, AMSAT-UK says the OSCAR Satellite
QSO Party is not a contest. The event starts at 0000 UTC on August 1
and continues until 2359 UTC on September 22.
(ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information)
+ W5KUB's high-altitude balloon went down around July 21 between Green-
land and Norway after 72 days aloft and more than three trips around
Earth. "It got stuck in the Arctic for several weeks, making loops,"
Tom Medlin, W5KUB, said. "We are getting ready to launch W5KUB-21,
an SBS-13 balloon with lithium polymer (LiPo) battery. Testing on
ground is showing that we are getting 24-hour tracking. We hope to
launch that in the next week or two."
(ANS thanks ARRL for the above information)
+ NASA's latest rover, Perseverance, launched to Mars on July 30 carry-
chips with 10.9 million names submitted by people all over the world.
Anyone can sign up to send their name on a future Mars mission at
(ANS thanks NASA for the above information)
+ Kerry Banke, N6IZW, was featured in an article published in the La
Mesa Courier newspaper of La Mesa, Calif. on July 24. The article
highlighted Kerry's association with ARISS, particularly his work on
the new special power supply that converts the space station power
to the levels that are required by ham radio equipment aboard the
ISS. See the full story at https://lamesacourier.com/space-radio/
(ANS thanks Clint Bradford, K6LCS, for the above information)
+ NASA and its international partners have assigned crew members for
Crew-2, which will be the second operational SpaceX Crew Dragon
flight to the International Space Station as part of NASA?s Commer-
cial Crew Program. Crew-2 is targeted to launch in spring 2021. NASA
astronauts Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur will serve as space-
craft commander and pilot, respectively, for the mission. JAXA (Japan
Aerospace Exploration Agency) astronaut Akihiko Hoshide, KE5DNI, and
ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Thomas Pesquet, KG5FYG, will
join as mission specialists.
(ANS thanks NASA for the above information)
+ The 34th Annual Small Satellite Conference, SmallSat 2020, is going
virtual, August 1-6, 2020. Admission is free of charge at:
(ANS thanks The Orbital Index for the above information)
+ The public disclosure copy of AMSAT's 2019 IRS filing (Form 990) has
been posted to the AMSAT website at:
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, Mark D. Johns, K0JM
k0jm at amsat dot org