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[jamsat-news:1184] * SpaceNews 22-Nov-99 *
SB NEWS @ AMSAT $SPC1122
* SpaceNews 22-Nov-99 *
MONDAY NOVEMBER 22, 1999
* NEW OSCARS AWAITING LAUNCH *
Amateur Radio's newest satellites are on the launch pad awaiting liftoff from
Vandenburg Air Force base in California on December 7th. Preparations are
going well, and all payloads were encapsulated last Friday. There will be
several amateur-radio payloads on this launch, including JAWSat, OPAL,
STENSat, and ASUSat-1.
ASUSat-1 has a 9600 baud G3RUH type communications system. The uplinks
are in the VHF band, and the downlink is in the UHF band. From the operating
perspective, any station capable of working UO22/KO23/KO25 should be able to
work ASUSat-1 with no problems.
After launch, the ASUSat-1 satellite will wake up in a power-safe mode.
In this mode, it will send status beacons in both text and binary form using
AX25. Groundstations having 9600 baud packet radio capabilities should be
able to monitor text messages identifying the satellite and reporting uptime.
Users of Pacsat satellite groundstation software (PB, SatLink, WiSP, etc.)
should be able to capture telemetry frames from the spacecraft as raw KISS
The ASUSat-1 team would greatly appreciate if the amateur satellite community
could help the team out by listening for ASUSat-1, and recording the telemetry
received and sending it over to the team by email. Current elements indicate
that the team we will have the first good pass after about 9 hours. The team
would appreciate hearing reports indicating that the brid has survived launch
and is alive, well, and on the way. IN fact, the team is particularly
interested in any Pacsat groundstation in the Phoenix, Arizona area that
can supply the team with telemetry should their groundstation experience
ASUSat-1's downlink frequency is: 436.700 MHz
Planned orbit: 100 deggree inclination
Planned altitude: 750 Km
Contact: Assi Friedman (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Additional information is available at the ASUSat-1 web site:
[Info via Assi Friedman, KK7KX/4X1KX]
* OSCAR-11 NEWS *
During the period 18 October to 14 November 1999 reliable signals
have been received from OSCAR-11's 145.826 MHz VHF beacon.
The Z-axis attitude correction counter has now reached its limit of
1024, which has stopped further firing of the magnetorquers. This
means that the attitude of the satellite is being controlled solely
by the action of the gravity boom gradient. The tendency of the
satellite to slow down its rotational speed has not occurred this
time. In fact the rotational speed has slightly increased. This is a
safer condition than than a decreasing speed, and is helping to keep
the satellite spinning. The current rotational period is -242
seconds (0.248 revs/minute) compared with the usual period of around
350 seconds (0.171 revs/minute). Ground control action to reset the
counters is expected in the near future.
The battery voltage during daylight passes has remained consistently
high. The average value observed was 13.9, with a range of 13.8 to
14.0 volts. The higher value being observed many times.
The internal temperatures have risen by about one degree during
this period. They are now 7.4C and 5.6C for battery and telemetry
The single WOD survey of channels 1, 2, 3, 61 (magnetometers) dated
15 July 1999 has again been been transmitted. This shows an increased
spin period of about 450 seconds, which was measured at the time when
the WOD was started. This was quickly corrected by the attitude
control system, when it was operational.
Reports of the Mode-S beacon have been received from Dave G3SBP and
Reg VK2RW. Dave uses an SBS2000 down converter into an ICOM R9000
receiver, and a G3RUH design dish. Signals were S2. Reg uses a 20
turn RHCP helix into a Swedish down converter from Parabolic. Signals
were just above the noise. Many thanks for those reports.
OSCAR-11's operating schedule remains unchanged:
ASCII status (210 seconds)
ASCII bulletin (60 seconds)
BINARY SEU (30 seconds)
ASCII TLM (90 seconds)
ASCII WOD (120 seconds)
ASCII bulletin (60 seconds)
BINARY ENG (30 seconds)
The ASCII bulletin is currently a static message, detailing modes and
frequencies of all the amateur radio satellites.
There are additional status blocks after each bulletin is transmitted,
and between ASCII TLM and WOD.
The Mode-S beacon is ON, transmitting an unmodulated carrier, but
telemetry indicates that it has partially failed, and delivering half
power. This beacon is a useful test source for those testing Mode-S
converters, prior to the launch of P3-D. However, the signals are very
weak, and there is a lot of Doppler shift. Users should also note that
the polarization of OSCAR-11 is LHC. Even if you can't hear OSCAR-11,
your equipment may still be OK for P3-D.
Any reports of reception of OSCAR-11's 2401 MHz beacon would be most
welcome, and should be directed to Clive Wallis at: email@example.com.
OSCAR-11's 435.025 MHz UHF beacon is normally OFF. However, it can
sometimes be heard when the satellite is being commanded by ground control,
ie. within range of Guildford, UK. When the 435 MHz beacon is transmitting,
the 145 MHz beacon is normally OFF. The data transmitted is mainly binary.
Listeners to OSCAR-11 may be interested in visiting a web site designed by
Clive Wallis, G3CWV. The site contains details of hardware required and some
software for capturing data, and decoding ASCII telemetry and WOD. There is
an archive of raw data (mainly WOD) for analysis, which is continually being
expanded, as new data is captured. Also included are some audio files,
examples of each type of data transmitted by OSCAR-11, each one plays for
about ten seconds. There are also examples of Mode-S reception. All the
audio files are zipped, so that they can be played off-line. These should
help listeners identify the various types of data, and give an indication
of the signal quality required for successful decoding.
The URL is:
[Info via Clive Wallis, G3CWV (firstname.lastname@example.org)]
* OSCAR-22 NEWS *
Chris Jackson reported that UoSAT-OSCAR-22 was unavailable on Thursday last
week during the morning passes over the UK due to a software reload to make
the satellite Y2K compliant. On Friday, the attitude control software and
payload control software was reloaded, but this had no impact on users of
[Info via Chris Jackson, G7UPN / ZL2TPO]
* CALL FOR PAPERS *
The 15th AMSAT-UK Colloquium, "Amsat Space 2000", will be held at Surrey
University, Guildford, Surrey, U.K., from Thursday 27 July to Sunday 30
AMSAT-UK invite authors to submit papers, about amateur radio space and
associated activities, for this event and for the "Proceedings" document
which will be published at the same time. Coordinators normally prefer
authors to present the papers themselves rather than having someone else
read them in the authors' absence, but "unpresented" papers are also
welcome for the document.
Offers of Papers should be submitted as soon as possible; the final date
for full documents to be received is mid-June 2000 in order that the
"Proceedings" document be available to participants. A second (and final)
call for papers will issue about March 2000, probably at the same time as
Colloquium booking information becomes available.
Submissions should be sent *ONLY* to G3RWL, via the following routes:
Internet e-mail: email@example.com
Packet Radio: G3RWL @ GB7HSN.#32.GBR.EU
Terrestrial mail: R W L Limebear G3RWL
60 Willow Road
Enfield EN1 3NQ
(no fax available)
AMSAT-UK also invites anyone with requests for Program Topics to submit them
as soon as possible to G3RWL. Invitations for any papers on specific subjects
will be included in the future call. Obviously planners are hoping for many
presentations about the new Phase 3D satellite but they *still* want to hear
about other activity areas.
Additionally, AMSAT-UK will be running sessions specifically for beginners
to amateur satellite operating on the Saturday; volunteers are requested to
speak to these sessions.
73 Richard G3RWL
Colloquium Program organizer
* INSTANTTRACK Y2K FIX *
John, F6HCC, reports that the InstantTrack satellite tracking program is
not Y2K compliant, and after 31-Dec-99 it will not be possible to load orbital
elements into the program's database.
To resolve this problem, John modified a program written by G3RWL that adds
100 to the number of the year and converts the 2 line in AMSAT format elements.
After conversion, it is possible to load orbital elements in AMSAT format
with InstantTrack and the calculation is correct.
This program named "CVITK" is available on the packet network or can be
received from John via e-mail at the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org
[Info via John, F6HCC]
* RHODE ISLAND ROCKET LAUNCH NEWS *
In a heartbreaking development, the payload that supposed to be launched via
rocket from the coast of Rhode Island last week was found to be unstable when
all components were packed in a styrofoam box and powered by the lithium
battery. This was by far the most heavily tested and double-checked payload
that the launch team had ever put together, so the last minute glitch and
launch cancellation was disappointing.
[Info via Hank Riley]
* FEEDBACK/INPUT WELCOMED *
Comments and input for SpaceNews should be directed to the editor
(John, KD2BD) via any of the paths listed below:
WWW : http://www.njin.net/~magliaco/
PACKET : KD2BD @ N2TDU.NJ.USA.NA <-------- New address!
INTERNET : email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
SATELLITE : AMSAT-OSCAR-16, KITSAT-OSCAR-25
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