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[jamsat-news:2883] ANS-290 AMSAT Weekly Bulletins


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:
* ARISSat-1 Info Added to AMSAT Web
* 2010 AMSAT Symposium Proceedings Added To Online Store
* FUNCube Dongle Development Status
* Gpredict 1.2 released
* ARISS Status - 11 October 2010

SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-290.01
ARISSat-1 Info Added to AMSAT Web

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 290.01
October 17, 2010
BID: $ANS-290.01

Thanks to the ARISSat-1 team for providing a copy of their
Symposium presentation materials. Links to the following have
been posted at http://www.amsat.org.

1. ARISSat-1 color frequency guide
2. PDF copy of ARISSat-1 Overview presentation slides (~1MB)

Lots more information will be published in the AMSAT Journal.

ARISSat-1 will have these features ...

. Mode U/V (70 cm Up, 2m Down)
. Linear
. Inverting (Tx LSB, Rx USB)
. 16 kHz bandwidth
. Can be worked with QRP transmitter and omni antennas

Digital Beacon
. BPSK-1000 w/FEC by Phil Karn KA9Q
. Legacy mode 400 BPSK (P3 type)
. Telemetry Data
. Experiment Data
. PC/Mac demodulator & decoder software will be available

CW Beacon
. Call sign = RS01S
. CW Telemetry (subset)
. Call signs or names of developers
. CW1 or CW2 identifies BPSK mode

FM Audio
. Call sign = RS01S
. Voice Telemetry (subset)
. SSTV in Robot-36 format
. Voice Greetings

Voice Greetings
. 24 different greetings
. Mostly children
. Special one from Yuri Gagarin
. Secret word
. 15 different languages
English Spanish Russian French
Italian Dutch Swedish Japanese
Chinese Catalan Bengali Portuguese
Hebrew Nepalese German

[ANS thanks the ARISSat-1 team for the above information]


SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-290.02
2010 AMSAT Symposium Proceedings Added To Online Store

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 290.02
October 17, 2010
BID: $ANS-290.02

The 2010 Symposium Proceedings have been added to the AMSAT Online

Please be aware that it is heavy and shipping overseas will be
expensive. Martha will add the shipping charges at time of mailing and
notify you of the exact amount for postage.


click on Online Store in the left margin

[ANS thanks Bruce, KK5DO, for the above information]


SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-290.03
FUNCube Dongle Development Status

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 290.03
October 17, 2010
BID: $ANS-290.03

Howard Long, G6LVB, reports that he is enormously gratified by the large volume
of interest shown the FUNcube Dongle over the past few weeks. With so much
interest being shown, Howard took some time to provide an update about the
development progress.

The FUNcube Dongle was originally designed to be 
an accessible way to be able to
receive amateur satellites, most notably AMSAT-UK's forthcoming FUNcube cubesat
(http://www.funcube.org.uk). What does accessible mean? Essentially we mean
both low cost and easy to setup. The original target market is, and remains,
what Howard calls, "the unconverted", those, 
particularly in education, who need
a means of being able to practically introduce and demonstrate real space
technology in a hands-on way.

When the work on FUNcube was distributed, Howard 
was given the task of coming up
with the ground segment, and the result is the FUNcube Dongle.

As it's tuned out, the FUNcube Dongle has the added bonus that it's a
VHF/UHF and low microwave equivalent to the well-known Softrock in an
integrated plug and play package. The intention is to have two models, an
entry-level frequency-restricted version targeted at the educational market,
and a full blown Pro version that seems to piqued the interest of many radio
amateurs, radio astronomers and short wave listeners.

In précis, it includes an integrated front end filter, LNA, quatrature LO,
zero-IF quadrature downconverter, dual 16 bit ADC and USB soundcard. In it's
simplest of forms, it's SMA in, USB out. It's also compatible with pretty
much any software that works for the Softrock, for example LinRad,
Spectravue, M0KGK and Rocky.

The passband is 96kHz, tuneable from 64MHz to 1,700MHz. The tuning is via a
USB HID interface meaning that as well as your favourite soundcard SDR
program, you'll need a little app supplied with the FUNcube Dongle to
control the centre frequency or you'll end up only listening to Howard's
favorite FM broadcast station ;-)

It's also compatible with XP, Vista , Windows 7 in 32 bit and Vista and
Windows 7 in 64 bit. Initial testing on the Mac and Ubuntu 32 and 64 bit
shows compatibility too, however the frequency control
application for those platforms has not been written yet.

So, no USB drivers are required!

To keep people informed going forward, a blog has been established at:

Also there's a video of the first pre-production unit at:

Projected availability of the first production batch of the Pro version is
December 2010. Pricing is subject to assembly costs, but to give you
indicative pricing we are working on an initial price of the Pro version to
be circa USD150/GBP100.

[ANS thanks Howard, G6LVB, for the above information]


SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-290.04
Gpredict 1.2 released

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 290.04
October 17, 2010
BID: $ANS-290.04

Alex Csete,  OZ9AEC, reports that after one year of development, bug fixing and
testing it was decided that it was time to make a new release of Gpredict. This
release features several new features such as the rewritten layout engine as
well as lots of bug fixes.

The new layout engine allows any combination of views to be created in a NxM
grid, see an example screenshot:

The sky at a glance widget has been improved to look nicer and to be more
interactive. Moving the mouse over a pass pops up an info widget showing
info about the pass. Clicking on the pass brungs up the pass details

The info pop-ups have also been added to the map view and the polar video.
Moving the mouse over a satellite will show the current position of the
satellite as well as time until next AOS or LOS. You can see a demo video

The new release can be downloaded from
Currently only the source package is available. Binary packages for Windows,
Mac and various Linux distributions should become available shortly.

Thanks to everyone who has contributed to this release!

[ANS thanks Alex, OZ9AEC, for the above information]


SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-290.05
ARISS Status - 11 October 2010

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 290.05
October 17, 2010
BID: $ANS-290.05

1. IRSEA Contact Successful

An Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) contact took place
between IRSEA, a non-profit Institute of Research and Education, in Bisceglie,
Italy and Doug Wheelock, KF5BOC on the ISS on 
Tuesday, October 5, via telebridge
station K6DUE in Greenbelt, Maryland. Michele Mallardi, IZ7EVR introduced the
ARISS event with a presentation to an audience of 100 students and visitors.
Obscurations from the ISS structure may have 
hindered the contact, allowing time
for five questions to be answered. The contact was part of a professional
education program, “Promotion of the 
characteristics of the Puglia region” which
dealt with space communications, space life, space achievements, advantage of
space research, use of man-made satellites and the International Space Station.

2. ARISSat-1 Safety Review this Week

The Johnson Space Center Payload Safety Review Panel will perform a Phase 2
flight safety review of ARISSat-1 on the mornings of Wednesday and Thursday,
October 13 and 14 in Houston.  Participation in 
the review will include U.S. and
Russian ARISSat team members as well as RSC-Energia safety specialists.

3. Challenger Learning Center Opens Ham Station

On Monday October 4, a satellite ground station was opened at the Challenger
Learning Center (CLC) in Oregon, Ohio. The 
station will pique students’ interest
in math and science and will allow the youth to contact the International Space
Station. CLC will provide lesson plans and activities on amateur radio and will
use the system during camps and workshops.  The Toldeo Blade posted a story on
the event. “Kids wired to learn to operate ham radios” may be found at:

4. ARISS Facebook Page Status

Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) has generated some
interest since it launched its Facebook page at the end of August.  To view, go

[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 additional benefits. Application forms are
available from the AMSAT Office.

This week's ANS Editor,
Lee McLamb, KU4OS
ku4os at amsat dot org

Via the ANS mailing list courtesy of AMSAT-NA