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Can DXing save AMSAT?

The planned launch of P3E will correspond roughly with the bottom of the 11-year solar cycle.  HF DXing will be miserable.  Satellite operators can attract a LOT of attention, respect, and hopefully new members from the HF DXing community if we work lots of great DX on TWO HEO satellites while HF propagation stinks.  It's a shame that Eagle won't also be launched just as the solar cycle is hitting bottom.  Redundancy and greater access time of two or more HEO satellites is the key to convincing the HF DX community that satellites are viable enough to justify investing in a satellite station.  AMSAT would be in good financial shape if one tenth of North America's active HF DXers joined AMSAT.  We could also attract frustrated "wannabe" DXers who live in areas where they aren't permitted to put up big HF antennas.  DXers are historically very willing to spend money on their stations and give generously to "enablers" such as DXpeditions, and hopefully AMSAT.  I don't have any f!
 acts to support this opinion, but I suspect that the typical satellite DXer contributes to AMSAT far more generously than the typical FM satellite operator.  AMSAT should target potential new members who are able and willing to support AMSAT.

To summarize, there are two key ingredients to motivate a larger portion of the HF DXing community to become AMSAT contributors:
1. We need at least two reliable HEO DX satellites.
2. We need to get most DXpeditions to be active on HEO satellites.

I'm trying to help #1 by being a member of the Presidents Club and by voicing (and voting) my opinion that HEO satellites should be AMSAT's top priority.  I'm working on #2 by having a set of loaner AO40 antennas for DXpeditions, and by publicizing satellite DX activities.

Wayne Estes W9AE
Mundelein, IL, USA
Sent via amsat-bb@amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.
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