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
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In this edition:
* AMSAT Announces Candidates for 2020 Board of Directors Election
* AMSAT Announces GridMaster Award
* CAS-6 Online
* Amicalsat - Aurora Pictures
* Raspberry Pi FUNcube Satellite Telemetry Decoder Now Available
* ORI Announces ARRL Foundation Grant Award
* ORI Announces YASME Foundation Grant Award
* 38th Annual AMSAT Space Symposium and Annual General Meeting Moving
to Virtual Event
* Upcoming Satellite Operations
* ARISS News
* Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
* Satellite Shorts From All Over
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-173.01
ANS-173 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 173.01
From AMSAT HQ KENSINGTON, MD.
DATE June 21, 2020
To All RADIO AMATEURS
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the AMSAT office
is closed until further notice. For details, please visit
AMSAT Announces Candidates for 2020 Board of Directors Election
The nomination period for this year's AMSAT Board of Directors
election ended June 15. The following candidates have been found to
have their membership in good standing and their nomination
credentials in order:
Howard DeFelice, AB2S
Mark Hammond, N8MH
Jeff Johns, WE4B
Robert McGwier, N4HY
Bruce Paige, KK5DO
Paul Stoetzer, N8HM
This year, AMSAT will be electing three voting members of the Board
of Directors. These will go to the three candidates receiving the
highest number of votes. In addition, there will be two alternates
chosen, based on the next highest number of votes received.
Further details regarding the mechanics of the election will appear in
ANS in the near future. Ballots will be mailed to the AMSAT membership
by July 15th based on a membership list that will be generated as early
as July 1. Members are encouraged to use the AMSAT Membership
Portal at launch.amsat.org
to verify that their membership is in good
standing and their mailing address is correct.
[ANS thanks Brennan Price, N4QX, AMSAT Secretary, for the above
AMSAT Announces GridMaster Award
Bruce Paige, KK5DO, AMSAT Director and Contest and Awards Manager,
announced AMSAT is now the official sponsor of the GridMaster Award,
effective June 15, 2020. This award was first introduced in 2014 by
the Star Comm Group. AMSAT thanks Damon Runion, WA4HFN, and
Rick Tillman, WA4NVM, for not only developing and sponsoring this
award since its inception, but, also, entrusting AMSAT with the honor of
carrying on this important award for the benefit of the entire AMSAT
The GridMaster Award is available to all amateurs worldwide who submit
proof with written confirmation of contacts with each of the 488 maidenhead
grids located within the 48 contiguous United States of America.
Two-way communication must be established via amateur satellite with
each grid. There is no minimum signal report required.
Contacts must be made from the same location, or from locations no two
of which are more than 200 kilometers apart. The applicant’s attestation
in the award application serves as affirmation of abidance to the distance
rule. There are no endorsements and no recognized tiers of progression;
however, amateur operators may apply for and be granted multiple GridMaster
awards, when operating from separate and unique 200-kilometer circles.
A numbered and dated certificate will be awarded to each person who qualifies
for the award at no cost. In addition, awardees may purchase an engraved
plaque to commemorate their achievement.
Since its introduction, ten amateur satellite operators have claimed
the title of Grid Master:
01 John Papay, K8YSE
02 Doug Papay, KD8CAO
03 Rick Tillman, WA4NVM
04 Glenn Miller, AA5PK
05 Clayton Coleman, W5PFG
06 Alvaro De Leon R., XE2AT
07 Fernando Ramirez, NP4JV
08 Ron Oldham, N8RO
09 Randy Kohlwey, WI7P
10 Frank Westphal, K6FW
So, who will be awarded AMSAT's GridMaster Certificate No. 11?
Are you up for the challenge?
Please visit amsat.org/gridmaster/
for further details.
[ANS thanks Bruce Paige, KK5DO, AMSAT Director of Contests and Awards
for the above information]
The CAS-6 V/UHF antenna has been deployed today. Due to some OBC failures,
CW beacon and GMSK telemetry are not working properly. At present, only the
carriers are transmitted on the two frequencies, the linear transponder has
been put into operation. We will then try to diagnose and then determine
whether the CW and telemetry data stream transmission can be recovered.
CW Telemetry Beacon: 145.910MHz
AX.25 4.8kbps GMSK Telemetry: 145.890MHz
U/V Linear Transponder Downlink: 145.925MHz, 20kHz bandwidth, Inverted
U/V Linear Transponder Uplink: 435.280MHz
1 44881U 19093C 20170.81187924 -.00001118 00000-0 -13581-3 0 9991
2 44881 97.9575 246.8556 0015830 36.2280 323.9959 14.81412013 26893
[ANS thanks Alan Kung, BA1DU for the above information]
AMSAT's GOLF Program is about getting back to higher orbits, and it
all begins with GOLF-TEE – a technology demonstrator for deployable
solar panels, propulsion, and attitude control. Come along for the
ride. The journey will be worth it!
Amicalsat - Aurora Pictures
The Vega rocket (VV16) was scheduled to launch from Kourou on 19 June
2020 01:51:10 GMT with 53 satellites on board. Due to wind conditions
this launch has been delayed until at least 21 June.
One of the satellites that will be leaving is the Amicalsat satellite
built by the CSUG (Centre Spatial Universitaire Grenoblois). The
measurements made by the satellite will be available to all. They
will allow radio amateurs to use them for propagation predictions.
The project's website (in English) has just been put online:
The Amsat-Francophone supported this project:
Software (Linux & Windows) is provided for decoding the telemetry and
sending it to the database (SatNogs). The user manual is available (in
*Beacon* *Frequency* *Modes* *Callsign*
UHF 436.1 MHz AFSK 1200 RS17S
S band 2,415.3 MHz GFSK 1000 kb/s
Reports are welcome. Thank you for your help.
[ANS thanks Christophe Mercier, AMSAT-F Chairman for the above
Purchase AMSAT Gear on our Zazzle storefront.
25% of the purchase price of each product goes
towards Keeping Amateur Radio in Space
Raspberry Pi FUNcube Satellite Telemetry Decoder Now Available
The FUNcube Team has announced the availability of FUNcube CubeSat sat-
ellite telemetry decoder software for the popular Raspberry Pi computer
The original FUNcube telemetry decoder and Dashboard was designed to
run on Windows devices and the FUNcube team did publish the telemetry
format in accordance with the Amateur Satellite Service traditions and
requirements. The Team had planned to opensource the Telemetry Decoder
and provide an implementation on Linux, but several new missions after
the original FUNcube-1 delayed their plans somewhat.
Late 2019, the Team had the opportunity to develop a low power/low im-
pact ground station, based on Docker containers, for use at the Neu-
mayer III Antarctic base at DP0GVN. This led us to evolve the code such
that it would run on a Raspberry Pi.
The Linux implementation is suitable for use on Raspberry Pi versions
from 2B+ to 4 and with a FUNcube dongle (Pro or Pro+). The software
will tune a dongle to search for and track all three FUNcube compatible
spacecraft currently operational. The Telemetry Decoder is configured
with five active decoders operating concurrently so it can deal with
situations where more than one of the spacecraft are overhead at the
The decoder and warehouse uploader run as a Docker container for con-
venience shell scripts have been provided to launch the container in
one of two modes:
• “Interactive Mode” is when the Telemetry Decoder operates in the fore-
ground , when FUNcube compatible telemetry is received, the correspond-
ing hex data is displayed on the terminal screen.
• “Background Mode” allows the telemetry decoder to run as a Docker
image in the background where it operates much like any other back-
ground service on Linux. This mode allows for the automatic restarting
of the telemetry decoder after a shutdown or reboot of the Raspberry
Pi, therefore making it suitable for a remote deployment situation.
*Both modes, when connected to the internet, will upload the received
data to the FUNcube Data Warehouse and the totals displayed on the
Ranking Page in the normal manner.
*Uploading to the warehouse requires online registration with the FUN-
cube Data Warehouse.
All the code for the telemetry decoder, and the scripts to build the
Docker images, are now published online under a GPL Open Source
License at the FUNcube-Dev GitHub account
Alternatively, it possible to buy a pre-formatted microSD card for the
Pi from the AMSAT-UK shop at https://shop.amsat-uk.org/
Full instructions PDF can be downloaded from
FUNcube Data Warehouse http://warehouse.funcube.org.uk/missions
[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]
ORI Announces ARRL Foundation Grant Award
ORI, a 501(c)(3) dedicated to open source research and development in
amateur radio, has been awarded a $3,000 grant from the ARRL
Foundation. This grant, the maximum amount, will be immediately
applied to Phase 1 of the Digital Multiplex Transponder research and
development program. This grant allows hardware prototypes for broad-
band microwave digital payloads to proceed much more quickly.
Established in 1973 by the American Radio Relay League, Inc. (ARRL) as
an independent and separate 501(c)(3) organization, the ARRL
Foundation administers programs to support the Amateur Radio
Funded entirely by the generous contributions of radio amateurs and
friends, ARRL Foundation administers programs for Amateur Radio award
scholarships for higher education, award grants for Amateur Radio
projects, and award special Amateur Radio program grants for The
Victor C. Clark Youth Incentive Program and The Jesse A. Bieberman
Meritorious Membership Program.
[ANS thanks Michelle Thompson, W5NVY, CEO and Director, ORI for the
ORI Announces YASME Foundation Grant Award
ORI, a 501(c)(3) dedicated to open source research and development in
amateur radio, has been awarded a $30,000 grant from the Yasme
Foundation. This grant completes the Phase 1 fundraising campaign and
allows ORI’s communications prototype work for geosynchronous and
interplanetary amateur radio satellites to proceed.
The Yasme Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation
organized to support scientific and educational projects related to
amateur radio, including DXing (long distance communication) and the
introduction and promotion of amateur radio in developing countries.
Yasme supports various projects relating to amateur radio, with an
emphasis on developing amateur radio in emerging countries and
encouraging youth participation in amateur radio.
The Yasme Foundation makes supporting grants to individuals and
organizations providing or creating useful services for the amateur
radio community. Regardless of originality or novelty, Yasme supports
these programs in order to further the development of amateur radio
around the world.
[ANS thanks Michelle Thompson, W5NVY, CEO and Director, ORI for the
38th Annual AMSAT Space Symposium and Annual General Meeting Moving
to Virtual Event
The 38th Annual AMSAT Space Symposium and Annual General Meeting
in-person event scheduled to be held in Bloomington, Minnesota has
been canceled. The event will be shifted to a virtual, online
platform. This comes after a decision made between AMSAT's Senior
Leadership and Board of Directors in response to the ongoing
COVID-19 pandemic. While AMSAT recognizes the national challenges
related to recent events in Minneapolis, they have no bearing on the
Symposium decision whatsoever. We anticipate holding the 2021 Annual
Space Symposium at the previously announced 2020 venue.
The in-person event was scheduled to occur Friday, October 16 through
Sunday, October 18. As the 2020 virtual event plans are developed,
they will be announced via the usual AMSAT channels.
[ANS thanks the AMSAT Office 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.
Upcoming Satellite Operations
+ Quick Hits
DN65/66 (Sunday 6/22/2020) N7EGY
+ Major Roves:
DL88: Ron (@AD0DX) and Doug (@N6UA) are making another run at the
elusive DL88 in Big Bend National Park, TX. As we know they tried
this grid back in March, and due to the mud couldn't get to the
grid, so never ones to quit, off they go again. Today the tentative
date is Monday July 6, 2020. They will be using the K5Z call sign.
More information is available at the K5Z QRZ Page.
Please submit any additions or corrections to ke4al (at) amsat.org
[ANS thanks Paul Overn, KE0PBR, 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/
ARISS lets students worldwide experience the excitement of talking
directly with crew members of the International Space Station, inspir-
ing them to pursue interests in careers in science, technology,
engineering and math, and engaging them with radio science technology
through amateur radio.
No upcoming events reported
The ARISS team continues to test and firm up a plan to transform ARISS
contacts and how ARISS interacts with youth and education institutions.
ARISS will provide distance learning with every student and staff mem-
ber in their own homes (even quarantined).
[ANS thanks ARISS for the above information]
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 meetings, hamfests, conventions, maker faires, and other
Due to COVID-19, many hamfest and events around the United States have
been canceled 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.
*No events currently scheduled
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
+ Diwata-2 (PO-101) has been active daily to provide emergency access
during the COVID-19 pandemic. Check https://twitter.com/Diwata2PH
for the daily activation schedule
[ANS thanks DIWATA-2 Ground Team for the above information]
+ The following satellite has decayed from orbit and has been removed
From this week's AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution: 1KUNS-PF - NORAD
Cat ID 43466 (Decayed from orbit June 11, 2020 per
+ A new organization, the National Radio Society of Ireland (NRSI) has
has been newly founded this year, 2020. Membership is open to all
amateur radio operators and shortwave listeners who are either full-
time residents or who have, in the past, spent a minimum of two
months in Ireland as a visitor. NRSI became member association of
the European Radio Amateurs' Organization (EURAO) on June 11. For
details, see https://www.nrsi.ie
[ANS thanks EURAO 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
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,
Casey Tucker, KI7UNJ
ki7unj at amsat dot org