[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][JAMSAT Home]

[jamsat-news:3082] ANS-155 AMSAT News Service 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:
ans-editor at amsat.org

* Nominating petitions for the election of upcoming open seats on *
* the AMSAT-NA Board of Directors must be received at the AMSAT   *
* Office by June 15, 2012. The details of the nominating process  *
* are posted on the AMSAT front page news at http://www.amsat.org *

In this edition:
* STEM Education Identified as Critical for Continued Rides to Space
* AMSAT-NA Board of Directors Nominations
* AMSAT-UK Colloquium 2012 Second Call for Speakers
* Successful ARISS Contact as Northland Preparatory Academy Calls ISS
* Multiple CubeSats Autonomously Docking May Build Large Satellites
* LVB Tracker Boxes in Stock at the AMSAT Office
* 13cm Band Rules Expanded to Allow MedRadio Adjacent to Satellites
* Funding Availability Key to Final Acceptance in QB50 Project
* AMSAT at Ham-Com, 8-9 June, Plano, TX, Special Event K5P
* Satellite Shorts From All Over

SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-155.01
ANS-155 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 155.01
June 3, 2012
BID: $ANS-155.01


STEM Education Identified as Critical for Continued Rides to Space

The AMSAT Forum at the 2012 Dayton Hamvention featured news of the 
educational opportunities for AMSAT to contribute to the innovation 
in attracting and retaining students in science, technology, engin-
eering and mathematics, or STEM, disciplines. Educators have identi-
fied STEM programs as a priority in strengthening the Nation's future 

"Education is important to us", said AMSAT Vice-President Educational 
Relations Mark Hammond N8MH, "It's a part of our mission and vision."
Mark noted several key points of AMSAT's support for STEM education:

+ AMSAT is a non-profit volunteer organization which designs, 
  builds and operates experimental satellites and promotes space 

+ AMSAT works in partnership with government, industry, educational 
  institutions and fellow amateur radio societies. 

+ AMSAT encourages technical and scientific innovation, and promotes 
  the training and development of skilled satellite and ground sys-
  tem designers and operators.

As evidenced by this year's acceptance of AMSAT's Project Fox cubesat
in the NASA "Educational Launch of NanoSat", the ELaNa program, we
were selected on our merit in support of NASA strategic and educa-
tional goals. Education is quickly becoming critical for our ride 
to space.

The recently formed Educational Partnership between AMSAT and ARRL, 
including NASA is looking for help. We need to develop an education
program on the ground starting now. We have resources already avail-
able for STEM education in both the K-12 classroom and at the Uni-
versity level while our satellite builders work on the next flight.

For example, the huge collection of telemetry data collected during 
the recent ARISSat-1 flight is available on our FTP server. This data 
presents an opportunity for the utilization of satellite data in the 
classroom (through plotting, graphing, analyzing). 

An immediate need is for volunteers to collect and organize existing 
STEM related lesson plans and ideas from the web, useful to K-12 edu-
cators and relevant to amateur radio and satellite. Critical steps 
such as this will allow ARISSat-1 telemetry data to be used in the 
classroom. Similar lesson plans and ideas can be used for educational 
purposes in future satellite missions, such as Fox-1 and Fox-2. 

To support this effort specific tasks have been identified and now
volunteers are needed to support:

+ Educators: We need lesson plans/ideas related to satellites and 
  amateur radio. ARISSat-1 telemetry data needs to be used in the 
+ Educators: sign up for ARRL Teacher's Institute program!
+ Web content person for AMSAT's education web pages.
  o Also to maintain a calendar of amateur radio youth events.
+ Archivist/publicist of satellite educational activities (photos, 
  stories for AMSAT Journal, press, videos).
+ Mentors and ground station operators (with equipment!) for ARISS 
+ Look for opportunities to engage youth, and document it (photos, 
  articles, AMSAT Journal, press).

To volunteer contact Mark directly at n8mh at amsat.org. The AMSAT-EDU 
mailing list is the place to exchange education project ideas and to
learn how to help with our educational outreach. Information on how
to join the AMSAT-EDU list can be found on the AMSAT web at:

AMSAT's vision is to deploy satellite systems with the goal of pro-
viding wide area and continuous coverage. AMSAT will continue active 
participation in human space missions and support a stream of LEO 
satellites developed in cooperation with the educational community 
and other amateur satellite groups. This is a path to getting Fox-1
in orbit, and our future Fox-2, ARISSat-2, -3, -?

Again, the key contact is AMSAT Vice-President Educational Relations 
Mark Hammond N8MH - n8mh at amsat.org.

[ANS thanks Mark Hammond, N8MH for the above information]


AMSAT-NA Board of Directors Nominations

It is time to submit nominations for the upcoming open seats on the
AMSAT-NA Board of Directors. A valid nomination requires either one
current Member Society, or five current individual members in good
standing, to nominate an AMSAT-NA member for the position.

Three directors and two alternate directors have terms expiring this
year. The director seats open for election are held by Tom Clark,
K3IO; Lou McFadin, W5DID; and Gould Smith, WA4SXM. The alternate dir-
ector seats open for election are held by Mark Hammond, N8MH and
Patrick Stoddard, WD9EWK.

The three nominees receiving the highest number of votes will be
seated as regular board members with two year terms. The two nom-
inees receiving the next highest number of votes will be seated as
alternate directors for one year.

Written nominations, consisting of names, calls and individual signa-
tures, should be mailed to: AMSAT-NA, 850 Sligo Ave #600, Silver
Spring, MD, 20910. They must be received no later than June 15th. No
other action is required.

Nominations may also be made by electronic means including e-mail,
FAX, or electronic image of a petition. Electronic petitions should
be sent to MARTHA@AMSAT.ORG or faxed to 301-608-3410, and also must
be received by June 15th. If using any electronic submission, there
is a second, verifying step:

   traditional written petition MUST be received at the AMSAT-NA
   office at the above address within 7 days following the close
   of nominations.

[ANS Thanks AMSAT Secretary Alan Biddle, WA4SCA for the above


AMSAT-UK Colloquium 2012 Second Call for Speakers

This is the second call for speakers for the AMSAT-UK International 
Space Colloquium 2012 which, due to the Olympic & Paralympic Games, 
will be held the weekend of September 15-16, 2012 at the Holiday 
Inn, Guildford, GU2 7XZ, United Kingdom.

AMSAT-UK has posted details of the 2012 Colloquium at:

AMSAT-UK invites speakers, to cover topics about micro-satellites, 
CubeSats, nano-sats, space and associated activities, for this event.

They are also invited to submit papers for subsequent publishing on 
the AMSAT-UK web site. We normally prefer authors to present talks 
themselves rather than having someone else give them in the authors' 
absence. We also welcome "unpresented" papers for the web site.

We appreciate that it is not always possible to give a firm indica-
tion of attendance at this stage but expressions of interest would 
be appreciated.

Submissions should be sent *ONLY* to G4DPZ, via the following routes:

+ e-mail: david dot johnson at blackpepper dot co dot uk
+ Postal address at http://www.qrz.com/db/G4DPZ 

AMSAT-UK also invite anyone with requests for Program Topics to sub-
mit them as soon as possible to G4DPZ. Invitations for any papers on 
specific subjects will be included in the future call. Likewise if 
anyone knows of a good speaker, please send contact and other infor-
mation to G4DPZ.

AMSAT-UK http://www.uk.amsat.org/ 

[ANS thanks Dave Johnson, G4DPZ and AMSAT-UK for the above information]


Successful ARISS Contact as Northland Preparatory Academy Calls ISS

On Thursday, May 24, students from Northland Preparatory Academy in
Flagstaff, Arizona participated in an Amateur Radio on the Interna-
tional Space Station (ARISS) contact with Joe Acaba, KE5DAR on the 

Approximately 550 students, staff and administrators, as well as Dr. 
Jeffrey Hall, director of the Lowell Observatory, and the mayor were 
in attendance. The contact complemented a Science, Technology, Engin-
eering and Math (STEM) curriculum. Video of the event, including Dr. 
Hall's presentation, has been posted on-line. 
See: http://spacescienceteaching.blogspot.com/

The Arizona Daily Sun ran an article on the event which may be found 
here: http://tinyurl.com/ISS-AZDailySun (azdailysun.com)

[ANS thanks Carol, KB3LKI, and the ARISS Status Report for the Week
 of May 29, 2012 for the above information] 


Multiple CubeSats Autonomously Docking May Build Large Satellites

This week AMSAT-UK, SpaceRef.com, and SSTL have announced plans to 
develop the 'STRaND-2' mission at the University of Surrey and Sur-
ey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL). This mission will test a 
novel in-orbit docking system based upon XBOX Kinect technology 
that could change the way space assets are built, maintained and 

STRaND-2 (Surrey Training, Research and Nanosatellite Demonstrator) 
programme, following on from the smartphone-powered STRaND-1 satel-
lite that is near completion. Similar in design to STRaND-1, the 
identical twin STRaND-2 satellites will each be a 3 unit Cubesat. 
Components from the XBOX Kinect games controller to scan the local 
area and provide the satellites with spatial awareness on all three 

SSTL says on their web site, "The STRaND-2 twins will be separated 
after launch. After the initial phase of system checks, the two sat-
ellites will be commanded to perform the docking procedure and, when 
in close proximity, the Kinect-based docking system will provide the 
satellites with 3D spatial awareness to align and dock. Other appli-
cations for STRaND-2 include the safe removal of space debris and 
spacecraft maintenance, with a low cost "snap-on" nanosatellite pro-
viding backup power, propulsion or additional on-board computing 

SSTL Project Lead Shaun Kenyon says, "We were really impressed by 
what MIT had done flying an autonomous model helicopter that used 
Kinect and asked ourselves: Why has no-one used this in space? Once 
you can launch low cost nanosatellites that dock together, the pos-
sibilities are endless, like space building blocks."

Dr. Chris Bridges, Surrey Space Centre Project Lead says, "It may 
seem far-fetched, but our low cost nanosatellites could dock to 
build large and sophisticated modular structures such as space 
telescopes. Unlike today's big space missions, these could be re-
configured as mission objectives change, and upgraded in-orbit with 
the latest available technologies."

Referenced web sites:
http://tinyurl.com/Strand2-News (www.sstl.co.uk)

[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK, SpaceRef.com, and SSTL for the above information]


LVB Tracker Boxes in Stock at the AMSAT Office

Martha says she now has LVB Tracker boxes in stock at the AMSAT 
Office.   The cost is $200 plus $20 shipping. 

The AMSAT Store Website is currently down due to technical issues so
you can place your order via these routes:

+ Call Martha at the AMSAT Office (301-589-6062) 10:00 AM-6:00 PM EDT
+ Fax - 301-608-3410
+ Mail - AMSAT, 850 Sligo Ave #600, Silver Spring MD 20910

The LVB Tracker is a rotator interface designed to to be used as an
interface between tracking software and the Yaesu 4500/5500 series 
of Az/El rotators.

Here's why you want one:

+ Several physical interface options including RS-232, USB and
  TCP/IP over 10/100 Ethernet (tested by not implemented)

+ Uses standard EasyComm and Yaesu GS-232 protocols

+ Cross-platform compatibility - Windows, Linux, BSD, Mac

+ Compatible with existing real-time prediction programs such as
  SatPC32 and Nova

+ Open source

+ Integrated firmware programmer for easy installation and upgrade

Watch a demo of the LVB Track Interface with Yaesu G-5500 rotator at:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ePw-ReMRwA (does not use the AMSAT 

[ANS thanks Martha at the AMSAT Ofice for the above information]


13cm Band Rules Expanded to Allow MedRadio Adjacent to Satellites

The ARRL is reporting in a First Report and Order and a Further 
Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ET 08-59) released on May 24, the 
FCC decided to expand the Part 95 Personal Radio Service rules to 
allow medical devices to operate on a secondary basis in the 2360-
2400 MHz band. International amateur satellite operations are allo-
cated between 2400-2450 MHz, adjacent to the new devices.

The new allocation is  Medical Body Area Networks (MBAN) which pro-
vide a way for health care facilities to monitor their patients via
wireless networks. Because use of these frequencies will be on a 
secondary basis, MBAN stations will not be allowed to cause inter-
ference to, and must accept interference from, primary services, 
including radio amateurs who operate on a terrestrial primary basis 
in the 2390-2395 MHz and 2395-2400 MHz bands.

The ARRL has posted their full analysis and report at: 
http://tinyurl.com/13cm-Medical-Allocation (arrl.org)

[ANS thanks the ARRL for the above information]


Funding Availability Key to Final Acceptance in QB50 Project

The QB50 Project, funded by the European Commission, plans to orbit 
50 CubeSats separated by a few hundred kilometers and carrying iden-
tical sensors to study Earth's lower layers of the thermosphere/ion-
osphere and study effects of satellite re-entry. All 50 CubeSats will 
be launched out of Murmansk, Russia, into a circular orbit with 79 
degree inclination at 320 km altitude in the first half of 2015.
Full details are published at: https://www.qb50.eu.

The project is run by an international consortium under the leader-
ship of the von Karman Institute (VKI) near Brussels. The Call for 
Proposals for CubeSats carrying the standard sensor package which
may also include additional experiments closed on April 30, 2012.
VKI reports the response to this Call resulted in proposals for 70 
CubeSats from 38 countries in the following categories:

+ 53 standard 2U CubeSats for atmospheric science.

+ 7 proposals for In-Orbit-Demonstration (IOD) 3U CubeSats for test-
  ing new technologies or minitaurised science sensors which also 
  include the standard science sensors.

+ 5 proposals for IOD 3U CubeSats which do not include the standard 
  science sensors.

+ 1 proposal for IOD 2U CubeSats which also include the standard 
  science sensors.

+ 4 proposals for IOD 2U CubeSats which do not include the standard 
  science sensors.

+ 2 proposals for interdisciplinary science.

VKI, with the help of external reviewers, is now in the process of 
evaluating the 70 proposals, aimed towards a selection of 50 Cube-
Sats to be flown on QB50.

VKI wrote in the 31 May 2012 issue of the QB50 Newsletter, "The 
availability of funding for developing a CubeSat will be a critical 
issue in the selection process. At this stage, it is not known which 
proposals will actually be able to obtain the required funding. The 
final selection of 50 CubeSats can only be made once the availability 
of funding is established. CubeSat teams who submitted a proposal 
should now contact their national funding agencies and/or industrial 
sponsors to obtain the funding. The process of securing this funding 
should be completed by 1 October 2012 with the signing of a 'Contrac-
tual Agreement' between the university and VKI." 

In the coming months, VKI will support the CubeSat teams in their 
efforts to obtain the funding, e.g. by sending a 'Letter of Support'.
It is not expected that all 70 CubeSat teams will be able to sign 
the Contractual Agreement by 1 October, therefore, the de facto down-
selection from 70 to 50 CubeSats will be made based on securing the
funding by each team. 

In some cases, funding agencies will only be able to provide a part 
of the funding. Teams who only received approval for part of the fund-
ing should consider the possibility of collaboration with another team 
that also received only a part of the requested funding.

[ANS thanks The QB50 Project and von Karman Institute for the above


AMSAT at Ham-Com, 8-9 June, Plano, TX, Special Event K5P

AMSAT will have an AMSAT Booth, Satellite Demonstrations, and two 
Satellite Talks at Ham-Com in Plano, TX, on 8-9 June 2012. The talks 
will be given by Douglas Quagliana, KA2UPW/5, and Keith Pugh, W5IU.  

This year there will be a Special Event activity (sponsored by the 
Plano Amateur Radio Klub) associated with Ham-Com and the call sign 
will be K5P.  AMSAT's Satellite Demonstrations will be conducted us-
ing K5P as part of the Special Event. Additional details about Ham-
Com are available at: http://www.hamcom.org/

If you attend Ham-Com, drop by and see us. In addition, if you can 
spare an hour or two, we could use the help in the AMSAT Booth and 
doing the Demos.

We plan to work as many of the following Satellite Passes as possible:

Ham-Com 2012 Demos

Grid EM13pb

Min El = 10 deg

Time Zone UTC
 WinAos   QTH: -96.7/33.1   T#: 12577   Sat.: 7 [Standard]
     Day     Object       AOS (U) LOS Period maxEl   AZ
 08.06.2012  VO-52        13:53 14:00    07   39  031 - 172
 08.06.2012  VO-52        15:30 15:34    04   14  319 - 259
 08.06.2012  HO-68        15:41 15:54    13   48  029 - 176
 08.06.2012  HO-68        17:29 17:40    11   28  350 - 238
 08.06.2012  FO-29        18:43 18:56    13   64  020 - 184
 08.06.2012  AO-27        18:44 18:51    07   22  118 - 018
 08.06.2012  SO-50        20:08 20:15    07   19  008 - 100
 08.06.2012  AO-27        20:23 20:32    09   35  196 - 331
 08.06.2012  FO-29        20:30 20:38    08   18  332 - 248
 08.06.2012  SO-50        21:48 21:56    08   43  317 - 174
 WinAos   QTH: -96.7/33.1   T#: 12578   Sat.: 7 [Standard]
     Day     Object       AOS (U) LOS Period maxEl   AZ
 09.06.2012  VO-52        14:10 14:17    07   66  019 - 184
 09.06.2012  AO-07        14:11 14:19    08   16  336 - 268
 09.06.2012  HO-68        15:24 15:36    12   35  034 - 164
 09.06.2012  HO-68        17:12 17:24    12   36  355 - 227
 09.06.2012  FO-29        17:50 17:59    09   23  048 - 148
 09.06.2012  AO-27        18:18 18:22    04   12  084 - 036
 09.06.2012  FO-29        19:34 19:46    12   51  359 - 213
 09.06.2012  AO-27        19:54 20:04    10   66  174 - 343
 09.06.2012  SO-50        20:36 20:44    08   47  345 - 134
 09.06.2012  AO-07        21:21 21:30    09   17  091 - 015

Come see us or talk to the AMSAT Team!

[ANS thanks Keith Pugh, W5IU for the above information]


Satellite Shorts From All Over

+ Venus will pass in front of the sun on 6 June 2012. Bob Bruninga,
  WB4APR will be in Japan to observe the event. He has created a web
  page, "The 2012 Transit of Venus using HAM Radio" including a list
  of selected calling frequencies, see:

+ The 2012 AMSAT Annual Meeting and Symposium will be held at the 
  Holiday Inn, Orlando (Florida) Airport on October 26-28, 2012.
  The First Call for Papers has been issued. The Symposium Team
  requests a tentative title of your presentation as soon as poss-
  ible, with final copy to be submitted by October 1 for inclusion 
  in the printed proceedings. Abstracts and papers should be sent to 
  Dan Schultz, N8FGV, at n8fgv@amsat.org. Watch for the latest 2012
  Symposium information to be posted on the AMSAT web at:

+ The UK Space Agency has released a YouTube video celebrating the 
  UK's 50 years in space: http://tinyurl.com/UK-50-In-Space

+ Eric Knaps, ON4HF built an arrow antenna for working the FM sat-
  ellites. Photos posted at: 

+ ESA astronaut Andre Kuipers published a photo gallery during the
  arrival and docking at the ISS of the SpaceX Dragon resupply ship.
  See: http://tinyurl.com/Dragon-Photo-Gallery (UniverseToday.com)

+ A 50 minute interview with Neil Armstrong made this year is now 
  available. The video is split into 4 parts which can be seen at: 
  http://thebottomline.cpaaustralia.com.au/ (Trevor, M5AKA)

+ The May 20 annular eclipse was photographed by NASA's Lunar Recon-
  naissance Orbiter as it turned its camera to look back home. Images
  of the Earth with the Moon's fuzzy shadow are posted on-line at:
  http://tinyurl.com/LROC-Eclipse (UniverseToday.com) For eclipse
  photos from Earth check out: 

+ There are two new Hamvention 2012 music videos on YouTube produced 
  by Joe Eisenberg, K0NEB. One is called Hamvention 2012 "Band On The 
  Run" and the other is titled Hamvention 2012 "Gimme Dat Ding." To 
  find them just put the word joehusker into the search YouTube search 

[ANS thanks everyone 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
information. And with that please keep in mind the tidal forces of 
the Moon (and the Sun) don't only act on the oceans, they act on the 
land as well. If you stand on the equator, the land beneath you will 
go up and down by as much as 21 inches (55 centimeters) over the 
course of a day.

This week's ANS Editor,
JoAnne Maenpaa, K9JKM
K9JKM at amsat dot org

Via the ANS mailing list courtesy of AMSAT-NA