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[jamsat-news:1377] * SpaceNews 27-Nov-00 *

* SpaceNews 27-Nov-00 *

BID: $SPC1127


		 	MONDAY NOVEMBER 27, 2000

Bill Tynan, W3XO, past AMSAT-NA President and current Chairman of the Board
had the following to say about the successful launch of AMSAT-OSCAR-40:

Following its successful launch at 0107Z November 16, 2000 the spacecraft
so many have been working on for the past 10 years, now has a new name.
We have been calling it Phase 3D for far too long.

Henceforth it will take in place in the long line of OSCARs, satellites
built by the Amateur Radio community for the Amateur Radio community
throughout the world.

Dr. Karl Meinzer, DJ4ZC Project Leader for Phase 3D, has officially
requested it be given an OSCAR number, and under the authority vested in me
by our new AMSAT-NA President Robin Haighton, VE3FRH to be the "Keeper of
the OSCAR Numbers", I hereby christen our newest, and proudest bird,
AMSAT-OSCAR 40.  It is certain to be known as AO-40.

AMSAT-OSCAR 40 is dedicated to the memory of one of its principal builders
Werner Haas, DJ5KQ and operates under the call sign DP0WH, the "WH", of
course being Werner's initials.

Congratulations and thanks to all who participated in any way to this
wonderful achievement.

73 ES CU on AO-40.

The following AMSAT-OSCAR-40 status report was received from AO-40's
beacon by Eric Cottrell, WB1HBU:

AMSAT OSCAR 40  **STATUS REPORT FROM DJ4ZC**  (2000-11-20)   

1. AMSAT OSCAR 40 had a perfect launch on Nov. 16 and was       
   injected into a nominal orbit.                                  

2. Transmission of telemetry from OSCAR 40 on 70cm was expected 
   3h after launch. But we ran into a problem with the 70cm        
   Tx. Consequently the spacecraft was switched to use the 2m      
   middle beacon as downlink for telemetry. This required a        
   "repeater program" in IHU-2 which was uploaded.                 

3. After communication was established, the health of        
   OSCAR 40 was analysed and everything testable at this stage     
   except for the 70cm Tx was found to be nominal and fine.        

4. The attitude control system then was calibrated and torque   
   operations were started to take the attitude to 270/0.  This  
   reorientation should be finished in a few days. Then we are     
   ready for the first planned orbit change (400N-mtr) resulting   
   in 50000 km apogee altitude. The attitude will also allow a...  
   thorough study of the 70cm Tx problem with the hi-gain ant.  

5. The two 2400 MHz transmitters were operated and are ok.      

6. Pictures from the separation sequence are being downloaded   
   and will shortly be available on our website. There we will     
   also show the test-schedule for some first amateur operations.  

7. Steps after 1st orbit change: test the electric propulsion   
   system and then use it to further increase appogee altitude     
   using the arcjet before the big i-change.   

   --73s Karl--

The AMSAT-NA News Service reported last week that the AO-40 command
stations have been quite busy lately as general housekeeping tasks have
been underway to verify the health of the many complex systems onboard
AMSAT OSCAR-40 - all with very good results.

P3D Project leader Dr. Karl Meinzer, DJ4ZC, informed AMSAT-NA that
following the successful launch and injection into nominal orbit,
initial telemetry from the satellite was expected on 70-cm at about
the 3-hour mission mark.  This did not happen and consequently the
spacecraft was switched to use the 144 MHz middle beacon as the main
telemetry downlink.  This required a new program to be uploaded into
P3D's IHU-2 system.

After new software, communication was established and the health
of AO-40 was analyzed and tested. DJ4ZC happily reported "except
for the UHF transmitter, everything was found to be nominal and
working fine." The attitude control system was then calibrated and
torque reorientation operations started, which are still underway.
Both 2400 MHz transmitters were successfully operated and pictures
from the separation sequence are now being downloaded and will
soon be available.  Several images are currently available at:


The first planned orbit change will soon take place and that should
result in a 50,000 km apogee.  This will allow a thorough study of the
70-cm transmitter problem using P3D's hi-gain antennas (which) would
then be available.

After the first orbit change is completed a test the electric propulsion
Arcjet system will take place (and) if successful, it will be used to
further increase the apogee of AO-40.

AMSAT-NA President Robin Haighton, VE3FRH, reported that "plans
are in place to make AO-40 available for a limited period of general
Amateur Radio use possibly within a week or two."  This provisional
operation would involve "one or two bands at a time," said VE3FRH.
Details of the limited test period will be announced by an official
AMSAT bulletin and via the AO-40 telemetry beacon.

Bob Nielsen, N7XY, reports that Thomas Sailer has written a multi-platform
AMSAT-OSCAR-40 telemetry demodulator that uses a soundcard for signal
decoding.  The program is open source, runs under Linux, Sparc Solaris,
and Win32 with DirectX.  It uses MMX if available, and requires no tuning
(the center frequency can be anywhere between 1.2 kHz and 2 kHz).

It may be downloaded from:


[Info via Bob Nielsen, N7XY]

Ronald Ross, KE6JAB, is in Antarctica again and sending text and photos
back from the Blue 1 Base in Antarctica via UO-22 satellite.  Go to the web
site at http://www.thistle.org/, take the a2k link and the "Latest Images
and Messages From Antarctica" link to read his messages and see photos.

[Info via Roy, W0SL]

International Space Station commander William "Shep" Shepherd, KD5GSL,
reports that he was able to take a few minutes out of a busy schedule to
start general QSOs with the ham community.  Shep says that he was able
to speak with a few lucky hams last Friday, 2000-11-17.

With the recent arrival at ISS of a Progress automated cargo craft, the
crew's work pace will redouble.  With the planned launch of the STS-97
to the ISS on November 30th, the Expedition One crew will be working
long hours to prepare for the arrival of space shuttle Endeavor carrying
a large new solar panel for the ISS.

More information about Amateur Radio on the ISS is available at the
http://ariss.gsfc.nasa.gov/ web pages.

[Info via Will Marchant, KC6ROL]

AO-27's TEPR states were reset on the morning of November 25, 2000, as

TEPR 4   18
TEPR 5   36

[Info via Chuck Wyrick, KM4NZ]

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/
MAIL:       John A. Magliacane, KD2BD
            Department of Engineering and Technology
            Brookdale Community College
            765 Newman Springs Road
            Lincroft, New Jersey 07738
INTERNET:   kd2bd@amsat.org, magliaco@email.njin.net

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