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Another view



Robert Oler WB5MZO wrote:

>In the end I hope we recover AO-40.  If we dont then a long and sober group
>think about what we want the sats to do and what capability we want in the
>sats should be in the AMSAT membership and this board.  My personal pick
>would be that we would have 2 or 3 Oscar 10's (and the launch oppurtunities
>were there had we had a bird) as oppossed to one that someone could hear on
>their J pole.  Yeah that might cut some people out but it also might
>motivate them to get in...it did me.


I also very much hope they recover AO-40. It would be a terrible loss to 
those who spent so much time and energy (not to mention money) to make it 
work.

But during this pause, it may be a good time for the whole satellite 
community to think about what it wants to accomplish. There are so many 
possibilities, with or without AO-40.

There are those who have the money and the expertise for the large antenna 
arrays on VHF and UHF and up, but as Robert Oler said, it definitely does 
"cut some people out". If we want to get new people involved, we should not 
require the beginner to build up an AO-10 capable station.

I think we should have a few of the RS-10/11 class satellites - whether or 
not we cover AO-40.

Remember Mode-A?

What fun it was working Mode-A CW on OSCAR and RS satellites, and I learned 
a lot, too. I listened to AMSAT nets on 75 Meters and wrote down the 
reference orbits as they were read over the air. Then I calculated AOS/LOS 
with a hand calculator and "tracked" the pass with the "OSCARLocator". A 
10-meter dipole and a small 2-meter beam mounted at a fixed 45 degrees 
elevation and I worked all over the US and even a few DX stations.

Other things are possible, too, but keep at least some of it on a level 
that provides a reasonable chance of success without maxing out the credit 
cards. (Yes, I know you can build stuff a lot cheaper - assuming you have 
the knowledge, manual dexterity, and eyesight to do it - which I do not.)

With today's technology a Mode-A bird could be be more sensitive and more 
powerful and worked with a mobile/portable setup so those of us who are 
stuck with the antenna restrictions have a shot too.

Just my 2-cents worth.

73 and Happy Holidays to all ...
Rip K3XO

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