How to Write for the AMSAT Journal

SeptOct2013_CoverThe AMSAT Journal is continuously searching for news, articles, and photos related to all of the activities of amateur radio in space. In the past this has included satellite development, satellite history, ground stations, antennas, hardware development, software. We find that many items related to SDR, VHF, UHF, and microwave operating or roving are directly applicable to satellite operations.

Educational outreach has been identified as a key area which AMSAT may use to leverage launch opportunities. The Journal welcomes news, photos, and articles of ARISS contacts, University research and development, and STEM programs.

Amateur satellite operators have the gear and expertise to also receive interesting transmissions from non-amateur spacecraft and EME. Articles discussing how this is done are useful to our readers discovering they can do more with the station they have built.

The deadlines for each AMSAT Journal, which is published six times per year, are:

1.January/February       December 20
2. March/April            February 20
3. May/June               April 20
4. July/August            June 20
5. September/October      August 20
6. November/December      October 20

Our editors will work with you to finalize your article for publication. Please send the following:

1. Electronic copy of your article in any of the popular word processing formats (MS-Word, OpenOffice, plain-text Notepad, etc.) PDF files containing a custom layout with embedded graphics cannot be used.

2. Your text must be single column wide. You do not need to do any formatting to make it appear in the 3 column layout of the finished magazine. We have to remove all your hard work of pre-formatting before publication so save yourself the problems of trying to get columns to line up, etc.

3. You may send a copy of your article with the photos where you recommend they appear with the text but this is not the version that will be published. This gives the editors some cues to maintain continuity with photos/captions and text.

4. We require a text-only copy your article. Embedded photos will not publish during the layout process. You can leave in a reference in the text related to the photo associated with that point in your article as shown here:

… text … text … text … text … text … text …
… text … text … text … text … text … text …

(Insert Graphic 1234 here)
Figure 2.  Sample Lorem Ipsum Text

… text … text … text … text … text … text …
… text … text … text … text … text … text …

5. Send a separate text file with the captions to each of the graphics.

6. Send photos and graphics as separate files. Use as high resolution pixel format as you can. The preferred graphic format foe the Journal is JPG.

The Journal can publish additional graphic formats including GIF, BMP, and PNG. Contact the editor before submitting these formats.

Note that a photo which appears nicely on a web page does not publish well on the high resolution finished magazine product. Photos from digital cameras in mega-pixels work well. You do not need to compress or shrink the file for us.

7. If you use printed circuit board software or schematic drawing programs we can usually import a PDF copy of the diagram into the publishing software. Please do not send PDF formatted copies of the article however.

8. We can freely republish papers you have submitted to prior AMSAT Symposiums. If you have a good idea that you would like to get out the AMSAT Journal is an excellent way to expand your audience. We find that 200-300 copies of the Symposium Proceedings are distributed. The AMSAT Journal reaches 4000 additional satellite operators.

9. If your article was previously published in another AMSAT organization’s Journal, or magazine (QST, CQ, CQ VHF, etc.) we will work with you to secure the permission to republish your work.

Our Journal editors will be happy to work with you to assist getting your article published. We can help you develop an idea into a finished article as well as a ready-to-print submission. Ask us via e-mail and we can get rolling with your article.

During the preparation process it is quite likely that an editor working on the article might personally contact you with questions and suggestions. Those suggestions might include extra pictures or maybe additional references, keeping in mind that some readers might not have an extensive background on the topic being discussed.

Send your articles and photo/graphics files as attachments to e-mail to the AMSAT Journal Editor.