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On my 3rd QSO on AO-40 I worked a VK station.  This was my
first DX (i.e. really long distance) satellite contact, and I've
been working Satellites as my primary "fun" mode for over
7 years.  Due to limits in my station, mostly the size of
the antennas, I could never hear the other P3 birds far enough
out to work anyone that I couldn't also work far easier on one
of the LEO birds.  It took AO-40's S-band transmitter and a
converted MMDS/Drake/Grill setup tucked onto my low-profile
antenna structure to snag VK.

Even my very first QSO on AO-40 was to Robin in Toronto, similar to
my previous distance record of California to New York on RS-10.

Microwave and LEO are a doppler nightmare - I have yet to find UO-11
on S-band, and even with computer control, making contacts that way
wouldn't be fun at all.

In my opinion, the high orbit satellites and the use of UHF and
microwave bands naturally go together, and are essential for both
"advancing the state of the art" and just making the widest
variety of contacts possible.  AO-40 is a tremendous success already,
and there are still systems that haven't been turned on yet.

As for the new bird, let's not judge all propulsion systems as too
risky from the unfortunate experience last December.  We (hopefully)
still have the ArcJet, and, pending its success shortly, would
recommend such a device on future proposals just for the orbit
tweeking insurance that it provides.  And the opportunity for a
high inclination high orbit bird, as AO-40 was intended, is still
unmet.  Perhaps a solid rocket could be used for the inclination
change, if a restartable high-thrust liquid is too complex?

Just my thoughts...

Greg  KO6TH

>From: "Bruce Paige" <kk5do@arrl.net>
>Reply-To: kk5do@arrl.net
>To: aMsat-bb@AMSAT.Org
>Subject: Re: [amsat-bb] AMSAT has a SECRET!
>Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 12:22:26 -0500
>From:           	"Vince Fiscus, KB7ADL" <vlfiscus@mcn.net>
>Subject:        	Re: [amsat-bb] AMSAT has a SECRET!
> > It better have a Phase III type orbit if they want my support. I'm tired 
> > LEO's. There's no DX on them.
> > kb7adl
>what an odd statement. i work dx on uo14 and ao27 all the time. cuba, costa
>rica, mexico, st marten, st lucia, bahamas, gaudalupe, ecuador, panama, el
>salvador, jamaica, brazil (the others off the top of my head have escaped
>whre you trying to say that you are unable to work enough dxcc countries 
>your location to earn dxcc satellite or your intent is to work dx because 
>enjoy talking to and learning about different cultures.
>Bruce Paige, KK5DO                    Internet: kk5do@arrl.net
>Houston, Texas                                  kk5do@amsat.org
>AMSAT Awards Manager                            kk5do@amsatnet.com
>ARRL Awards Manager (WAS, 5BWAS, VUCC), VE
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