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Re: JUly 2001 President's Letter



>- After reading the above decisions, I am concluding that a huge part
>of world's Ham population has been excluded from the possibility of
>operating this new bird due to the high tech specifications and the
>cost involved, as well as the removal of V/U capabilities.  TDMA looks
>very much like an elitist project.  Further, and for hams outside USA,
>the difficulties to get hardware at reasonable prices, will
>drastically reduce participation. Unfortunately AO-40 has serious pro-
>blems and we lost AO-10's replacement

I'd like to know why you feel this way. One of my major motivations
for proposing this project is to reduce the size of the antennas
required to work amateur satellites with good results. Thanks to
restrictive covenants, the enormous (and costly) antennas required by
the current generation of amateur communications satellites constitute
far more of an "elitist barrier" than the complexity of any digital
scheme.

I also fail to understand why hams outside the USA should have
difficulties getting the required hardware at reasonable prices. That
is, if you consider the cost of ordinary amateur transceivers to be
reasonable, as they're by no means cheap. Most of the signal
processing will be implemented in software running on commodity PCs,
and I think it's fair to expect commodity PC hardware to get even
cheaper and more readily available than amateur transceivers.

Phil
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