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Launch Anniversary for OSCAR I

Greetings from Project OSCAR.

Today, December 12th, marks the 45th anniversary of the Launch of 
OSCAR-1.  This also marks the 45th anniversary of amateur radio in space.

OSCAR was built by the Project OSCAR Amateur Radio Club which remains the 
oldest amateur radio club devoted entirely to amateur satellites.  OSCAR 
was successfully launched from Vandenberg AFB in California.  The satellite 
carried a 140 mW VHF transmitter that transmitted a beacon in the 2 meter 
band at 144.983 MHz. OSCAR transmitted a simple "HI-HI" Morse Code stream, 
the speed of which was controlled by a temperature sensor inside the 
spacecraft.  It was too fast to copy at times.

OSCAR was battery powered as solar cells and battery chargers were not 
really within the reach of amateurs at that time.  It discharged its 
batteries three weeks later on January 1 1962.

570 Amateurs in 28 countries reported receiving the OSCAR beacon and sent 
contact reports to the Project OSCAR team, who used a mainframe computer to 
compile data on radio propagation, orbit and thermal design.  This data 
later led to design improvements when OSCAR II and III were launched.

OSCAR re-entered the atmosphere January 31, 1962 after 312 revolutions.

To learn more about OSCAR I and the Project OSCAR please visit:


Emily Clarke,
VP, Project OSCAR

W0EEC - CM87tm
AMSAT Area Coordinator - San Francisco Bay Area
http://www.projectoscar.net    http://www.PlanetEmily.com

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