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[jamsat-news:3090] ANS-190 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins
AMSAT NEWS SERVICE
ANS is a free, weekly, news and information service of AMSAT North America, The
Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation. ANS 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 satellites.
Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to:
In this edition:
* New AO7 Distance Record Set Twice This Week
* Italian HF Special Event Commemorates Apollo Space Program
* Listen for ARRL TI-2: Space in the Classroom Satellite Contacts
* University of Florida SwampSat CubeSat Plans for December 2012 Launch
* Satellite Presentation at University of Missouri on July 20
* Near Space Balloon Flight Ham AK4JG Named Newsline Young Ham of the Year
* ARISS Status - 2 July 2012
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-190.01
ANS-190 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 190.01
From AMSAT HQ SILVER SPRING, MD.
July 8, 2012
To All RADIO AMATEURS
New AO7 Distance Record Set Twice This Week
On July 2 at 0955Z Bill Dzurilla, NZ5N operating from Slovakia as
OM3BD (grid JN88) reported a successful contact via AO-7 Mode B
with Wyatt Dirks, AC0RA (grid EN31). The GPS-measured distance be-
tween grids JN88 and EN31 is 7849 km. Bill wrote, "Wyatt did all
the hard work by waking up at 0300 his time, driving to a hill an
hour away from his home, setting up his station, and working me be-
fore sunrise. It appears that an even longer distance is attainable,
and Wyatt is looking for a suitable place from which we can try be-
fore I leave Slovakia in mid-July."
Prior distance records set via AO-7 included:
+ PY5LF and ZS6BB 7630 km
+ PS8RF and ZS2BK 7694 km
+ K3SZH and PY2OV 7738 km
+ ZS6BB and EA6SA 7766 km
+ PY5LF and K3SZH 7843 km
+ OM3BD and AC0RA 7849 km (July 2 record with AC0RA in grid EN31)
+ OM3BD and AC0RA 7903 km (July 4 record with AC0RA in grid EN41)
On July 4, Wyatt, AC0RA woke up early and this time drove 150 miles
to EN41 and set up his portable station. A contact, lasting 30 sec-
onds, with OM3BD extended the distance record to 7903.55 km.
The theoretical maximum range of AO-7 is estimated at 7907 km.
Recordings, pictures, and further info at
[ANS thanks and congratulates Bill Dzurilla, OM3BD/NZ5N and
Wyatt Dirks, AC0RA for the above information]
Italian HF Special Event Commemorates Apollo Space Program
ARI, the Associazione Radioamatori Italiani, and their club station
IQ1TW announced a special operating award "Apollo Space Program -
>From the Earth to the Moon" for contacts between July 1 - July 31,
2012. This is to commemorate and keep alive the memory of the space
program which has revolutionized the life of mankind.
To qualify for the award you need to have confirmed contacts with
the ARI Headquarters Station IQ1TW and any three stations from this
list: IZ1UMD, IZ1RFU, IZ1XBB, IZ1WVX, IZ1LBH, IK1WGZ, IZ1RGY, IZ2SMV,
On July 20, the anniversary of the first moon landing, a confirmed
contact with IQ1TW (without the necessity of the other 3 contacts)
will qualify you for the award.
The special event stations will operate with 200 watts using dipole
and vertical antennas.
Full details, including a list of the planned HF operating frequen-
cies and modes, log and confirmation information, rules, and appli-
cation instructions are posted on the ARI web pages:
[ANS thanks Associazione Radioamatori Italiani and the DXNL Bulletin
#1786 -Jun 27, 2012 - for the above information]
Listen for ARRL TI-2: Space in the Classroom Satellite Contacts
The ARRL Teachers Institute - Space in the Classroom is this coming
week - July 9-12. The Institute will meet in Dayton, Ohio and is
sponsored by the Dayton Amateur Radio Association. Additional sup-
port from ARRL ETP donors and Yaesu make this program possible.
The TI-2 Space curriculum focuses on the nuts and bolts of setting
up and operating a satellite ground station. This serves as excel-
lent preparation for a scheduled contact with the ISS through the
Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) program.
But it also provides instruction for continued use of satellites
and other man made space assets to explore naturally generated sig-
nals, space and a variety of topics.
The course is 4 days: the first half will be setting up and learn-
ing to operate the ground station, the second half will be practice
making satellite contacts and instruction in using space borne assets
in the classroom. Participants will receive all the equipment neces-
sary to set up a basic satellite ground station.
Matt Severin, N8MS will be instructing the Teachers' Institute. He
will have 8 teachers learning how to set up and operate ground sta-
tions. They plan to operate from about 1200 to 2000 UTC each day,
give or take a few hours. Our primary amateur radio satellites will
be AO27, SO50, FO29, and VO52. They will try to capture data and
telemetry from the many cubesats currently operating. Amateur satel-
lite operators are invited to take a moment to say hello and work a
few of the teachers in Matt's group.
Full details of the ARRL TI-2: Space in the Classroom program can
be found on-line: http://www.arrl.org/ti-2-space-in-the-classroom
[ANS thanks the ARRL and Matt Severin, N8MS for the above information]
University of Florida SwampSat CubeSat Plans for December 2012 Launch
A cubesat called SwampSat, built by students at the University of
Florida, was recently unveiled. They also demonstrated the operation-
al satellite to Florida's Lieutenant Governor.
SwapSat is planning on a ride to orbit on the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket
into a 450 km orbit with an inclination of 45 degrees in the December
The SwampSat downlink will transmit 1 watt of RF on 437.385 MHz, 1200
bps AX25 packet radio. The University of Florida video of SwampSat
can be viewed at:
For more information see also:
UF shows off its small satellite:
Gator Amateur Radio Club http://www.gatorradio.org/
University of Florida Small Satellite Design Club (SSDC)
[ANS thanks the University of Florida and AMSAT-UK for the above
Satellite Presentation at University of Missouri on July 20
Attention amateur radio operators near Kansas City, Missouri!
On July 20, the Hams in Space Team will be giving their Satellite
Presentation at the University of Missouri, Kansas City's Communi-
versity. Communiversity is the University's Community Education
Program available to anyone from the community who wishes to attend.
Randy Schulze, KDŘHKD wrote, "We're preparing this presentation to
be enjoyed not only by Licensed Hams but also to members of the gen-
eral community as a means of putting Amateur Radio's best foot for-
ward, through information about at least one of the fun and amazing
things that can be done with Ham Radio! If you plan to attend this
presentation, please register early. If the anticipated attendance
exceeds the capacity of the presently scheduled class room, the Uni-
versity may be able to make arrangements to move the presentation
to a larger class room."
The University of Missouri Kansas City Communivarsity Web Site is:
http://www.umkc.edu/commu. You will find all of the registration
Randy concluded, "So spread the word to your friends; Hams and Non-
Hams alike! Register to attend the Hams In Space Presentation at the
University of Missouri, Kansas City, Communiversity, and help put
Amateur Radio's Best Foot Forward while at the same time supporting
an Outstanding Community Service!"
The class schedule is:
7:00 PM, Friday, July 20, 2012
Communiversity; University of Missouri, Kansas City
Flarsheim Hall, Room 260,
5110 Rockhill Road
Kansas City, Missouri
The Hams in Space web page can be found at:
[ANS thanks Randy Schulze, KDŘHKD for the above information]
Near Space Balloon Flight Ham AK4JG Named Newsline Young Ham of the Year
ERIN KING, AK4JG, NAMED 2012 AMATEUR RADIO NEWSLINE™
"YOUNG HAM OF THE YEAR"
(Santa Clarita, California) - Erin King, AK4JG, a 17-year-old from
Columbus, Georgia, who re-founded her high school's radio club and
then lofted a ham radio-carrying balloon to over 90,000 feet, recov-
ered the flight data and used it to produce a truly striking video
of that flight, has been named as recipient of the 2012 Amateur Radio
Newsline Young Ham of the Year Award.
Erin is the daughter of Paul, K4ETY, and Patricia King. She has two
siblings: Brandon, age 16 and Rachel, age 15. Erin became a licens-
ed radio amateur in 2009 and now holds an Extra Class license. She
is a member of the ARRL, the Columbus Amateur Radio Club, and the
Russell County Radio Club. She enjoys operating on local VHF and UHF
repeaters as well as phone and digital modes on the High Frequency
amateur radio bands. She is looking forward to mastering Morse Code
as her next amateur radio challenge.
Erin became interested in amateur radio after joining a club at her
high school dealing with robotics and then ham radio-equipped high-
altitude balloon launches. This school group has participated in
FIRST Robotics competitions, and Erin has twice been Team Lead for
Programming. The club also launches several high-altitude balloon
missions each year, in a program called DREAMS. They have flown var-
ious scientific experiments as part of these missions, in addition
to planning, building, and integrating radios, Global Positioning
System (GPS) units and TNCs to track and recover the balloons. To
facilitate these activities, the group's sponsor, Luther Richardson,
KI4AOJ, has encouraged the students to obtain their amateur radio
A subset of this group, including Erin, has participated in the Mass-
achusetts Institute of Technology's (MIT's) "InvenTeam" competition,
designing and building a portable lightning detector and early warn-
ing system. In addition, Erin re-started the Columbus High School
Radio Club and served as its president for the past two years. The
club was active in the 1950s and '60s, and Erin's great-grandfather
(the original K4ETY) was one of its mentors at that time. The new
club obtained the callsign W4CHS (Columbus High School) and has been
active on the air.
Erin's involvement with amateur radio and FIRST Robotics has helped
fuel her interest in science and engineering. Last year, she applied
for early admission to both Georgia Tech and MIT; she was accepted
to both and will be attending MIT this fall.
Inside the shiny tube which contained Erin's MIT acceptance letter
was a note suggesting that the students "hack" their tubes, meaning
to do something cool with them, in a long-standing tradition of MIT
hacks or stunts. Erin chose to send her tube to near-space.
Drawing on her ballooning experience, Erin planned, built, integrat-
ed, and tested a complete new tracking setup to fit into the very
small shipping tube. The payload consisted of two GPS units, two
custom-made antennas, one Argent Data OpenTracker+ kit (which Erin
built), one handheld radio, and a fellow ham's Byonics Pocket Track-
er, a self-contained 100-milliwatt tracker/radio combination in an A
ltoids® tin. Erin also talked her mother into letting her use mom's
brand new GoPro Hero HD video camera.
With the assistance of a group of hams from the Columbus Amateur
Radio club, Erin launched her balloon from Lumpkin, GA. A couple
of hours later, she and the tracking team successfully recovered
it, along with the complete HD video record of the flight. Erin
took this video, as well as other photos and videos taken of the
launch activities, and compiled it into an 8-minute presentation,
complete with background music. She posted it to YouTube, and put
a link to it on the MIT hack-the-tube site. According to YouTube
statistics, Erin's video has been viewed thus far in excess of
82,500 times. (see <http://tinyurl.com/ak4jg-space-video>).
This past May, Erin was invited to participate in no less than three
forums and sessions at the 2012 Dayton Hamvention. These included
the 25th anniversary "Youth Forum," the "Ham Radio Town Meeting" and
an "ARRL Expo" presentation where her video was screened.
The 2012 Amateur Radio Newsline™ "Young Ham of the Year Award" will
be presented on Saturday, August 18th at the Huntsville Hamfest in
Huntsville, Alabama. As the 2012 "Young Ham of the Year," Erin will
receive -- courtesy of Yaesu USA -- an expense-paid trip to the
Huntsville Hamfest, along with a gift of Yaesu brand ham radio equip-
ment. CQ magazine will treat her to an expense-paid week at Spacecamp
Huntsville, and will present Erin with a variety of CQ products. Ama-
teur Radio Newsline™ will provide Erin with a commemorative plaque at
the award ceremony. Once again, the cost of year's plaque has been
underwritten by Dave Bell (W6AQ), President of DBA Entertainment Inc.,
Hollywood, California. Heil Sound Ltd. will also be presenting Erin
with a ham radio-related gift.
[ANS thanks Amateur Radio Newsline for the above information]
ARISS Status - 2 July 2012
1. Virginia Contact to be Rescheduled
The ARISS contact that was scheduled with the Virginia Air and Space Center in
Hampton, Virginia on Tuesday, June 26 was not successful due to ground station
issues. ARISS will try to reschedule this event for the week of July 23.
2. ARISS Contact Featured at STEM Conference
On Thursday, June 28, an Amateur Radio on the International Space Station
(ARISS) contact was held between Expedition 30/31 crewmember André Kuipers and
students attending the STEM Solutions Youth Summit which was part of the U.S.
News STEM Solutions 2012 conference in Dallas, Texas. Telebridge station K6DUE
in Maryland provided the radio hookup. The contact, a highlight of the event,
provided youth the opportunity to ask Kuipers about life and work in space.
Leland Melvin, Associate Administrator for Education, and Charlie Bolden, NASA
Administrator, attended the conference.
[ANS thanks Carol, KB3LKI, 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
This week's ANS Editor,
Lee McLamb, KU4OS
ku4os at amsat dot org
Via the ANS mailing list courtesy of AMSAT-NA