AMSAT-NA Announces New Fox Satellite Launch in 2015

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fox antennas extended

Fox-1C

AMSAT is excited to announce a launch opportunity for the Fox-1C Cubesat. AMSAT has teamed with Spaceflight Inc. for integration and launch utilizing Spaceflight’s SHERPA system to a sun-synchronous orbit in the third quarter of 2015.

Fox-1C is the third of four Fox-1 series satellites under development, with Fox-1A and RadFXsat/Fox-1B launching through the NASA ELANA program. Fox-1C will carry an FM repeater system for amateur radio use by radio hams and listeners worldwide. Further details on the satellite and launch will be made available as soon as released.

AMSAT has an immediate need to raise funds to cover both the launch contract and additional materials for construction and testing for Fox-1C. We have set a fundraising goal of $125,000 to cover these expenses over the next 12 months, and allow us to continue to keep amateur radio in space.

Donations may be made through the AMSAT webpage at www.amsat.org, by calling (888) 322-6728 or by mail to the AMSAT office at 10605 Concord Street, Kensington, MD 20895, USA. Please consider a recurring, club, or corporate donation to maximize our chance of success with this mission. Also watch our website at www.amsat.org, follow us on Twitter at “AMSAT“, or on Facebook as “The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation” for continuing news and opportunities for support. AMSAT is a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation and donations may be tax-deductible.

You may donate here via PayPal.  Donations will be marked specifically for Fox-1C.  Note that PayPal usually allows you to donate with a credit card, even if you do not have a PayPal account.  However, PayPal requirements differ depending on your country.  We have no control over this issue.

 

You may also contribute through a special “crowd sourcing” fund.  At present we are unable to take contributions through the “crowd sourcing” fund widget.  This is due to an issue at PayPal which they assure us will be corrected within 24 hours.  You can make a contribution directly through the PayPal donate button.  We regret the inconvenience, and appreciate your patience.

SHERPA-Q3-2015

Spaceflight Inc.’s SHERPA system with integrated cubesat dispensers

 

EVA Photos of Chasqui-1 Deployment

Roscosmos EVA photo Chasqui-1 deployment. Click for full size image.

Roscosmos EVA photo Chasqui-1 deployment. Click for full size image.

The Russian Space Agency, Roscosmos announced that a nano satellite with the designation, NS-1 was hand-launched during a space walk that began at 14:00 UTC Monday, August 18, 2014.

The satellite is also referred to as the Peruvian Cubesat Chasqui-1 and weighs 1.5 kg. The satellite’s main mission is to serve as a platform for testing micro-electronics and optical devices used in cubesat applications.

Close-up of Chasqui-1 during deployment. Click for full-size image.

Close-up of Chasqui-1 during deployment. Click for full-size image.

Its secondary mission is to operate as an amateur radio satellite. It’s transmit downlink is 437.025 MHz. The craft will send information in CW mode. It also transmits images stored in memory, photos taken by two on board cameras and will send telemetry. Data transmissions will use either 1200 bps AFSK AX.25 or 9600 bps GMSK modes.

(Photo source: Sergey Samburov)

Fox-1 Update – Slow Speed Telemetry

The Fox-1 series of satellites feature a slow speed telemetry, with 200 bps data being sent along with the transponder audio or voice ID activity.  This allows telemetry to be sent continuously during normal transponder operation while QSOs are taking place.

The slow speed data is contained in the audio spectrum below 300 Hz.  Using DSP techniques, high pass filtering is applied to the uplink signal and voice IDs, low pass filtering is applied to the telemetry audio which is generated by the IHU, and the combined audio is sent on the downlink as the voice and data.  Forward error correction added to the downlink stream provides data recovery for up to 1/4 second signal fades.

Fox-1A slow speed telemetry

Screen print of actual Fox-1A downlink slow speed telemetry received over the air on a FUNcube Dongle Pro+ with SDR# and a decoded/displayed with command line version of the AMSAT ground telemetry decoding software used in our testing

The slow speed data on Fox-1A contains four different payload types: Current telemetry readings, High telemetry readings, Low telemetry readings, and Vanderbilt University radiation experiment telemetry.  The payloads are transmitted in a scheduled rotation that delivers one payload or frame about every 5 seconds.  Current telemetry is thus received every 15 seconds, experiment telemetry is received about twice every 15 seconds, and high or low telemetry received once every minute (alternating minutes between high and low).

The telemetry contains many satellite health and operation values, including readings such as solar panel output, battery voltages, temperatures from various areas of the satellite, IHU performance, and the Penn State University MEMS gyro experiment data.

AMSAT will be providing free GUI software for decoding and displaying both slow and high speed telemetry from the Fox-1 series of satellites, as we get closer to launch.  The software will be similar to the user software that was provided for ARISSat-1.

Space Symposium Auction Announced

Greetings Amateur Radio in Space Enthusiasts!

2014 AMSAT Symposium

2014 AMSAT Symposium

At this year’s AMSAT Space Symposium, we are trying a few new things and we hope you will enjoy them.  One exciting facet we are adding this year is an auction.  All proceeds from the auction will support AMSAT’s two major initiatives—the development and launch of the FOX satellite series and the ARISS program.

As we prepare for the auction, we are asking for your help in donating specialty items for auction (minimum value $100) that will attract symposium attendee’s attention and get them bidding up the item price.  If you have any items that are ham related (no boat anchors please), items of historical value, space related and/or autographed items, or even sports tickets or time shares, we would love to get your donations.  Think out of the box on this—what exciting things would you like to see in this auction?

If you have something to donate to the Symposium auction, please send an e-mail to Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, who will work with you on getting your item or items into the auction.   Frank’s e-mail address is ka3hdo at verizon.net

This auction, while adding a fun experience to the AMSAT Space Symposium experience, will also serve to keep amateur radio’s spirit thriving in space through its donations to FOX and ARISS.

On behalf of AMSAT, I thank you for your donations in advance.  And I encourage each of you to attend and participate in this year’s AMSAT Space Symposium to be held in Baltimore Maryland Oct 10-12.  For more information, see:

http://www.amsat.org/?page_id=1555

73 from Your Symposium Committee Co-Chairs:

Frank Bauer, KA3HDO and Janet Bauer

2014 Symposium Commemorative Shirts Available for Order

2014 Annual Symposium

2014 Annual Symposium Logo

This year AMSAT will again have the popular commemorative polo shirts featuring the 2014 Symposium logo.  These shirts will not be available through the AMSAT Store.  Orders must be received by 10 September in order to have them available at the Symposium.

You may download the order form.

2014 AMSAT Symposium Commemorative Shirt Order.

Note that the order form shows the logo from last year.  These shirts will have the new 2014 logo shown above.  The lettering will be white on blue shirts, blue on white shirts, with the red number on both.