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SSETI Express update



The AMSAT-UK  SSETI Express team are delighted to announce that the S band
transmitter unit has now been "accepted as flight-ready" by ESA at their
ESTEC facility in the Netherlands. It is the first sub-system to achieve
this!

The S band transmitter is intended to provide the project with a 38k4
downlink for telemetry and camera data and also become part of the planned
single channel U/S voice FM transponder which is expected to be activated
within a couple of months of launch.

The transmitter, which incorporates its own power supply, TNC and
telemetry/telecommand circuits is built into a robust box which has been
provided by the students at the University of Wroklaw in Poland. It has
weighed in at just under 1.5 kilogrammes. The satellite is expected to have
a mass of a little over 50 kilogrammes when completed and when the nitrogen
tanks have been charged.

Unfortunately due to technical problems not associated with SSETI Express
satellite, a launch date has not yet been confirmed - late summer 2005 is
the best current estimate.

Meanwhile a wonderful record of the project is available at www.sseti.net -
click on express. The site has a live webcam showing the satellite under
construction in the cleanroom, there is a large collection of integration
photographs and the download section has the first voice call made through
the transponder late last year. There is also the current fully detailed
"integration logbook" available for download - it is a large file but makes
a very good read for satellite enthusiasts. I am sure that it is the first
time that the details of this process have been made publicly available!

best 73

Graham Shirville G3VZV
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