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President's Letter



All,

 

As I prepare for the series of AMSAT meetings that will take place in
Pittsburgh this week I have been reviewing the accomplishments of the past
year and the challenges of the coming year. I am pleased with the progress
of AMSAT's organizational and infrastructure improvements and with the
progress of the two satellite projects, P3E and Eagle.  For the coming year
I am committed to focus AMSAT's activities primarily on the completion and
launch of P3E, the construction of the Eagle space frame and implementation
of the Eagle Software Defined Transponders (SDX), at a minimum. 

 

The changes in AMSAT's organizational structure have created many new
opportunities for members to actively contribute to the growth and
advancement of our organization. Our members are working on teams that are
dedicated to areas of excellence such as finance and fundraising, marketing
and field operations, technical and scientific, office management, external
affairs, operations, human spaceflight, and record keeping. We have a great
group of volunteers working in these areas and there is always room for more
people.

 

Our infrastructure has improved in a number of ways, most notably the
rollout and constant upgrade of AMSAT's new Web site and on-line store and
the overhaul of our accounting practices. Other improvements are in process
and will be brought on line as time permits such as the AMSAT Information
Management System (AIMS) and member only services.

 

The P3E project is a very exciting one that holds great promise for the
return of AMSAT to the benefits of high earth orbit satellites.  This
project is being led by AMSAT-DL, as have all the HEO satellite projects.
AMSAT in North America is contributing substantial manpower and funding to
P3E and is committed to the success of the project and to our close
relationship with our good friends and colleagues in AMSAT-DL. I am
personally a member of AMSAT, AMSAT-DL and AMSAT-UK. 

 

The Eagle project is maturing to the point that we will soon be ready to
build the space frame and start assembling some of the payload modules like
the Internal Housekeeping Unit and the U/V and L/S software defined
transponders. Nearly all of the work that we are doing in support of P3E
will also be used in Eagle so we will maximize the benefits of having
cooperated on P3E.  As with any new satellite design there are design issues
and uncertainties.  Let there be no mistake that these are normal and health
parts of the design process as we balance the science, engineering,
technology and mission requirements for Eagle.  The Eagle team is large,
diverse and excited about what they are doing.  New qualified volunteers are
being added to the team on a regular basis.  Status reports are appearing in
every issue of the AMSAT Journal.

 

This coming year will be one of improved communication. There will be an
effort to expand our communications beyond the official outlets, the Journal
and AMSAT News Service. You will see more reports on the AMSAT-BB message
board and we will improve the content and timeliness of the information on
the AMSAT Web site, especially on the Eagle pages. 

 

The annual membership meeting will be held Friday evening, October 7th, at
8:00pm Eastern Time and is open to the membership. This meeting will be
recorded and both audio and video will be placed on AMSAT servers soon after
the meeting.  The meeting will also be broadcast on the AMSAT EchoLink
conference. If you have questions and cannot be there please submit them by
e-mail (details to be announced on ANS). We may also be able to take
questions from EchoLink's text messaging window, if we can get someone in
the meeting to operate the computer.

 

AMSAT is an exciting and vibrant organization with a great deal to offer our
members.  No organization is perfect but we have a fabulous Mission and
Vision and we are performing to those promises. I encourage those who need
more information or clarification to gain a better understanding of what we
are doing and why it is important and exciting to contact me or any of the
other Board members and Officers. Contact information is on the AMSAT Web
site at http://www.amsat.org/amsat-new/AboutAmsat/officers.php. 

 

Rick

W2GPS

AMSAT President
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