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[jamsat-news:1360] * SpaceNews 06-Nov-00 *
SB NEWS @ AMSAT $SPC1106
* SpaceNews 06-Nov-00 *
MONDAY NOVEMBER 6, 2000
* PHASE 3D LAUNCH UPDATE *
Phase 3D was recently mounted atop the Ariane 5 launcher, along with
the much smaller STRV-1C and 1D satellites. Last week, the large
PAS-1R communications satellite was placed aboard the launcher.
A view of the entire payload can be found at the following URL:
Phase 3D is scheduled to launch 01:07 UTC on Wednesday 15-Nov-00.
The Radio Club of Kourou's FY5KE has announced plans to broadcast
the Phase 3D launch on 14.315 MHz in French "and probably in English."
The FY5KE transmission will start at approximately 15 minutes prior to
launch and will end about 45 minutes later when the satellite reaches
AMSAT-NA Vice President of Operations Keith Pugh, W5IU, reports that
details are being worked out for an AMSAT-NA P3D Launch Information Net
to run "live" during the launch. Keith reported that "at a minimum, the
net will include several HF stations and bands." The current plan is to
start about 15 minutes before launch and carry through separation of P3D.
The U.S. net will be based on the live Arianespace satellite feed from
the launch site and will also contain commentary by key AMSAT officials
associated with the launch. According to W5IU, "dissemination of the
launch information will be by the Houston AMSAT Net connection and
by key HF stations, led by WA3NAN on their Shuttle re-transmission
frequencies. Additional HF stations and frequencies will be added
to fill in North American coverage."
The Houston AMSAT Net connection will also be available via the
Internet using the Real Audio format.
The AMSAT launch team Internet web site has been popular with satellite
operators around the world. The site now features several new
photographs showing Phase 3D being placed aboard the Ariane 5
launch vehicle. To visit the site, point your browser to:
The following is the estimated State Vector and Keplerian Elements for
the AMSAT Phase 3D spacecraft. The vector data was computed from
Arianespace orbital parameters at the time Phase 3D is scheduled
to separate from the Ariane 5 upper stage. The Keplerian Elements
were computed, in turn, from the vector.
Vector format = 10107
Satellite Name: Phase 3D
Catalog Number: 93400
Epoch MET: 0.02896990700
EFG E: 6252.236120 km
F: 5149.974174 km
G: -641.751706 km
Edot: -2.65855591 km/s
Fdot: 8.08211797 km/s
Gdot: -0.94209054 km/s
ndot/2 (drag): 0.00000001545 rev/day^2
nddt/6: 0.00000E+00 rev/day^3
Bstar: 2.51416E-05 1/Earth Radii
Elset #: 1
Rev @ Epoch: 1.50414245998
Launch Window Opens: 2000-NOV-15 / 0107 UTC
Phase 3D separation: Launch + 00:41:43
The following Keplerian elements were computed from this vector and
the scheduled date and time of the launch window opening. Updated
Keplerian elements will be computed from the vector, based on changes
to the scheduled or actual launch time.
1 93400U 00320.07549769 .00000002 00000-0 25142-4 0 12
2 93400 6.5000 257.0516 7357001 175.9721 5.5347 2.02548574 12
Satellite: Phase 3D
Catalog number: 93400
Epoch time: 00320.07549769
Element set: 1
Inclination: 6.5000 deg
RA of node: 257.0516 deg
Arg of perigee: 175.9721 deg
Mean anomaly: 5.5347 deg
Mean motion: 2.02548574 rev/day
Decay rate: 1.54500e-08 rev/day^2
Epoch rev: 1
Note that "93400" is a temporary Catalog Number. A Permanent Catalog
Number and International Designator will be assigned when Phase 3D is
launched. The satellite name will also be updated with the next
sequential "OSCAR" designator.
These Keplerian elements represent a pre-launch estimate of Phase 3D's
initial orbit. The orbit will change significantly over the first year
the spacecraft is on orbit. Updates will be provided for significant
[Info via the AMSAT-NA News Service, and Ken Ernandes, N2WWD]
* MIR TO BE DUMPED IN FEBRUARY *
According to the Associated Press, a senior Cabinet official said late
last month that the Mir space station will be dumped early next year,
leaving no hope for the survival of the last symbol of Soviet space glory.
Russian news agencies reported that plans are underway to bring the Mir
down into the ocean at the end of February.
Earlier this year, the station had won a new lease on life when the
Netherlands-based MirCorp signed a lease agreement and provided some
funds to keep it aloft, but Russian space officials have grown increasingly
skeptical about MirCorp's ability to raise the money needed to keep the
station in orbit. Mir has been quickly losing altitude since its latest
crew left in June, and Russian space officials have said it's necessary
to raise the orbit now so that the 130-ton station doesn't fall out of
control. The uncontrollable plunge of Mir would be a nightmare that
Russian space officials need to avoid at all costs, since heavy fragments
of the station could conceivably fall on populated areas.
The Russian government has pledged to devote its scarce space funds to
the new International Space Station, a 16-nation project led by the United
States, and has been under an intense pressure from NASA to dump Mir.
[Info via Roy Neal, K6DUE]
* ANTARCTICA DX SATELLITE TRIP *
On October 31, Ronald Ross, KE6JAB, began a two month expedition in the
mountains of Queen Maud Land in Antarctica. Ron will be assisting Polar
Explorer Alain Hubert in his wall climb of Holtanna, a 5000 foot peak.
Similar to his trips in the past, Ron will be taking along an Amateur
Satellite Radio Station in order to transmit text and images from Antarctica
back to a website in San Francisco. Messages will be distributed through a
mailing list and images will be posted on the web site. Ron will try to
send a travel report and a new image each day.
In addition, Ron will be taking two APRS enabled weather stations with him.
They have been built by Ron and 3 students of Professor Twiggs at Stanford
University. The weather stations will transmit data via SUNSAT to an
Antarctic ground station or igate. The weather data should show up on
Those not active on the Pacsats can subscribe to Ron's mailing list by
following the instructions found at the following URL:
Please check out Ron's website at http://www.thistle.org to find out
more about the trip.
[Info via Ronald Ross, KE6JAB]
* TIUNGSAT OPEN FOR USE *
All commissioning has been completed on TiungSat and the spacecraft is
now open for amateur use.
Currently the downlink is operating at 9600bd, although this will be
switched to 38k4 in the coming weeks. When this is done, the downlink
will not be on at all times since we will operate using the high power
transmitter which consumes considerably more power than the current
transmitter. The same system as employed on UO-36 will be employed to
allow amateurs to switch on the downlink from their groundstation as
The imaging systems are still being calibrated and not all images will be
available for download. The command stations in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
(9M2MCS) and Surrey, UK (G7UPN) will restrict downloading to images that
are of reasonable quality. Controllers will only restrict access to
images that are cloudy or otherwise used only for calibration purposes.
Since the images from TiungSat should be the primary interest, uploading
is restricted to command station use only.
The imaging system has a Ground Sampling Distance (GSD) of approximately
70m in 3 bands, and a wide angle camera with a GSD of approximately 1km.
The following information should be entered in your groundstation software
for TiungSat -:
Broadcast callsign MYSAT3-11
Uplink frequencies 145.850 MHz / 145.925 MHz
Downlink frequency 437.325 MHz
[Info via Chris Jackson, G7UPN]
* RS-13 IN MODE KT *
Several reports have confirmed that the RS-13 satellite is now operating
in Mode KT, meaning that both the 2-meter and 10-meter downlinks are in
operation. The 2-meter beacon is on 145.863 MHz (+/-), and the 2-meter
transponder downlink seems to be between 145.860 MHz and 145.900 MHz.
The uplink passband is between 21.260 MHz and 21.300 MHz.
* FUJI-OSCAR-29 NEWS *
On a pass at 0000 UTC on 07-Nov-00, OSCAR-29 was switched from the
Digitalker mode, and into Mode JA. The currently operating schedule
is as follows:
Tue 07-Nov-00 -to- Thu 16-Nov-00 Mode JA
Fri 17-Nov-00 -to- Sun 26-Nov-00 Mode JD 1200 bps PSK mailbox
Mon 27-Nov-00 -to- Thu 07-Dec-00 Mode JA
[Info via Kazu Sakamoto, JJ1WTK]
* ON-LINE DSP SATELLITE TRANSCEIVER PROJECT *
A mail reflector for those interested in designing a DSP-based
satellite communications transceiver project has been established
The list is a discussion area for RF, Software, System related project
discussion. Additional message dedicated areas will also be activated
as required. Please use this first area as one for general discussion
topics relating to the project.
To join the list - point your web browser to:
The list name is dsp-radio
If there are any questions, please e-mail Simon, GM4PLM at:
If you are in any way interested in this project, please subscribe.
It does not matter whether you have the technical skills to design and
build a transceiver or not. There will be plenty to do for anyone who
would like to help.
The first things that need to be done are:
1) Promote the new email reflector. If you know someone who may be
interested in such a project please encourage them to join us on the
new reflector. If you are a member of another reflector, club, net,
association, etc. and this project would be relevant, please help
promote the idea.
2) Collect information on previous and current work done on software
defined radios and DSP radios. No need to reinvent the wheel, lets build
on what has already been done. If there are other groups with related
projects, we should see if there are synergies that can be leveraged.
3) Start thinking about a wish list of features, specifications, etc.
This project is by no means a done deal. It is in the early stages of
determining it's feasibility. Hopefully, enough interest can be generated
to find a team of volunteers to make it a reality.
[Info via Simon Lewis, GM4PLM, and Darrell Bellerive, VE7CLA]
* FEEDBACK/INPUT WELCOMED *
Comments and input for SpaceNews should be directed to the editor
(John, KD2BD) via any of the paths listed below:
MAIL: John A. Magliacane, KD2BD
Department of Engineering and Technology
Brookdale Community College
765 Newman Springs Road
Lincroft, New Jersey 07738
PACKET: KD2BD @ WB2COP.NJ.USA.NA
INTERNET: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
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