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[jamsat-news:1242] * SpaceNews 20-Mar-00 *
SB NEWS @ AMSAT $SPC0320
* SpaceNews 20-Mar-00 *
MONDAY MARCH 20, 2000
* OSCAR-11 NEWS *
OSCAR-11 has clocked up another year in orbit, and celebrated its
16th Birthday on March 1st. Despite a few minor problems which have
arisen during its long existence in the very harsh environment of
space, the satellite still remains in good working order.
Congratulations to the UoSAT team!
During the period 15 February to 16 March 2000 good signals have
been received from the 145.826 MHz beacon, although on one occassion
signals were rather weak, and had to be decoded manually.
There has been another increment in the dates displayed by the
satellite. The date in the hardware generated telemetry is now three
days advanced, and the software generated dates are now one day
advanced. This glitch occurred between 26 to 29 February. Possibly
it's a leap year problem in the hardware chip used to generate the
date. Ground control may be able to correct the software generated
dates, but not the hardware generated date.
The battery voltage during daylight passes is unchanged. The average
value observed was 13.8, with a range of 13.4 to 14.1 volts.
The internal temperatures have decreased by one degrees C. They are
now 3.8C and 2.2C for battery and telemetry electronics respectively.
A single WOD survey of channels 10, 20, 30, 40 (+Y, -X, +X solar array
currents, array voltage), dated January 06 has been transmitted. Note
the year of this WOD survey is incorrectly displayed as 99. This
survey clearly shows the solar eclipses, and a spin period of 340
The operating schedule is 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. Users should also note that the
polarisation of OSCAR-11 is LHC. Even if you can't hear OSCAR-11,
your equipment may still be suitable for P3-D reception. Any reports
of reception on 2401 MHz would be most welcome, and should be directed
to Clive Wallis at: email@example.com.
The 435.025 MHz 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
Listeners to OSCAR-11 may be interested in visiting a web site dedicated
to this satellite. 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]
* PB/PG VERSION 1.4 FOR LINUX *
Bent Bagger, OZ6BL, has released version 1.4 of PB and PG for Linux,
and has uploaded the release to metalab.unc.edu. The file name is
pbpg-1.4.tar.gz, and should be found in the /pub/linux/apps/ham
subdirectory shortly. The file may also be downloaded from
The updated documentation is found in the file named README.
The following changes have been made since version 1.3:
* The programs are no longer installed SUID. This removes
a security hole that existed in previous versions.
* The build process is based on the use of the ax.25 library
(ax25lib). Use version 1.3 if you are on a version of Linux
that does not support ax25lib. If you want to remove the
security hole from earlier versions, change the two lines
in the Makefile that install the programs to read:
install -g root -o root -m 0755 -s pb /usr/local/bin
install -g root -o root -m 0755 -s pg /usr/local/bin
The following is (still) believed to be an incorrectness:
Sometimes PB will send requests for directory fills when it is
not needed. Bent has only seen this with AO-16 but it has been
reported to occur with KO-25 as well.
PB and PG for Linux are program used for download from and upload to
digital satellites (Pacsats) supporting the FTL0 protocol. This software
allows you to directly communicate with the Microsat series of satellites.
It provides a Curses (Ncurses) based user interface. It features automatic
directory fill requests and simple, rules based file download requests.
Version 1.4 will work with kernel revisions 2.2.13 or higher.
[Info via Bent Bagger, OZ6BL]
* SUNSAT NEWS *
Due to an improvement in its power budget, Sunsat's Mode B repeater
will now also be enabled on most weekday evenings. A schedule of the
active passes can be found at <http://sunsat.ee.sun.ac.za/ham1.htm>.
GPS data is currently collected on Mondays. It takes as much as
twelve hours to fully recover the state of charge after these
experiments. Hence the repeater will not be active on Mondays.
This service will continue if it does not affect daily housekeeping
activities or the functioning of other payloads. Please note that a
software update will take place soon and that the GPS schedule is
being reviewed. Weekday activations might be cancelled without prior
warning. However, weekend schedules will be adhered to as before.
A summary of Sunsat's modes and frequency allocations is available at
<http://esl.ee.sun.ac.za/~lochner/sunsat/modes.html>. As indicated,
specific modes may be scheduled for special events. Please make the
arrangements well in advance.
[Info via Johann Lochner]
* AMSAT-NA CALL FOR PAPERS *
AMSAT-NA 2000 Symposium Chairman George Caswell Sr., W1ME, has released
the first call to authors who wish to submit papers for presentation
and publication in the proceedings of the 2000 Symposium.
The 18th AMSAT Annual Meeting and Space Symposium will be held
October 27-29, 2000 (Friday-Sunday) at the Holiday Inn West, in
Topics covering the diverse aspects of Amateur Radio satellite disciplines
are sought from throughout the entire AMSAT community. If authors do not
wish to present a paper, but have a topic of interest, they are asked
to submit the topic and arrangements can be made for presentation and
publication in the proceedings. With the imminent launch of Phase 3D,
it is expected that many of the topics will center around AMSAT's most
ambitious satellite project.
Key deadline dates for authors are:
May 1, 2000: Tentative call due. Authors should submit the name and
title of their paper to W1ME via e-mail or postal mail.
June 1, 2000: Final due date for one-page abstracts. When submitting
abstracts, authors should include a time preference for when they want to
actually present their paper. Authors will be advised by e-mail or postal
mail shortly after June 1, 2000 regarding whether their paper has been
accepted or not.
August 1, 2000: Camera ready copy due. This is the final due date for
authors to submit camera-ready copy of papers (authors are urged to
submit their papers in advance of this deadline). Upon receipt, papers
will only be superficially edited and will generally be printed as
Authors are asked to refer to past proceedings for a grammatical layout
of papers. Authors are also requested to provide an electronic copy
(preferably in any version of MS Word or WordPerfect) in the event a
disaster is spotted and can be corrected at the last minute.
In September, authors will be provided with a tentative Symposium agenda
that will provide an agenda for presentations. Each presentation will be
limited to approximately 20 minutes.
Please send abstracts and papers to Symposium Chair:
George Caswell Sr., W1ME
16 Westwood Avenue
Scarborough, Maine 04074
More information is available at the following URL:
[Info via the AMSAT-NA News Service]
* AMSAT-UK CALL FOR PAPERS *
The 15th AMSAT-UK Colloquium, "Amsat Space 2000", will be held at Surrey
University, Guildford, Surrey, U.K., from Friday 28 July to Sunday 30
AMSAT-UK invites 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. Organizers normally prefer
authors to present the papers themselves rather than having someone else
read them in the authors' absence, but they also welcome "unpresented"
papers 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.
Submissions should be sent *ONLY* to G3RWL, via the following routes:
Internet e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
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. Obviously, organizers 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.
Other information can be found on Amsat-UK's Colloquium web pages at:
[Info via Richard, G3RWL]
* 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 @ N2TDU.NJ.USA.NA
INTERNET: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
SATELLITE: AMSAT-OSCAR-16, KITSAT-OSCAR-25
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