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Re: RE: Mars? Why not P3x in moon orbit...?

Hello Jeff.

I dont have any problem with what you write but I dont know that it really 
effects the amateur radio satellite community.

I agree that we would get more launches (maybe) if we had a lot of sats that 
could ride on experimental satellites.  It isnt all that easy however.  Most 
"test launches" need something with the mass and mass distribution of a real 
communications satellite.  They may fire them off with concrete but the pour 
it in a way that it looks a lot to the launcher like a satellite.  Hence it 
strikes me that if we had "small sats" that could replace the ballast then 
there are  a lot of test fire oppurtunities.

I dont see that the ARiane experience in terms of the satellite replacing 
some of the rocket components has bought us or ARiane a great deal.  Perhaps 
I have missed something here but I think that the circumstances which gave 
AO-40 its ride have yet to repeat themselves...IE I dont think that AMSAT is 
supplying hardware to Arianespace for Ariane launches.

I am not aware of a payload where the amateur radio communications 
experiment is the prime communications platform.  There are some like AO-27 
that have amateur payloads on them...so I could see the analogy that if we 
could somehow hitch a ride on a commercial Geosat (we wont be able to the 
excess mass would go to fuel) or something like a GOES then it might be 
possible to get a satellite that carries an Amateur payload.

I dont see the sense of supplying an amateur radio package for a satellite 
that doesnt end up having a amateur radio communications package.  Likewise 
I think that any group that did that (had a ham package as its prime 
communications link for someother platform) would be nuts.  Comm packages 
are not "all" that expensive in terms of the satellite game and they are 
usually designed to be as "low mass" as possible (read small antennas) 
because the real mass goes to the prime payload.

So where do I think amateur sats are going?

Small.  I think that there will be two types....cansats and trash can sat 
(in size) that will go into GTO and stay there and that they will be very 
narrow purpose birds in a small mass.

Robert Oler WB5MZO Houston TX

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