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Mir Amateur Radio status: October 1, 1998

Mir Amateur Radio Status:  October 1, 1998

by Miles Mann WF1F,
MAREX-NA (Manned Amateur Radio Experiment, North American Division)

The Crew of the Mir station have been kept busy with normal station keeping
 and other
routine experiments.  The crew have not had much time for amateur radio
voice contacts.
However they have been taking time to read and reply to some of the
hundreds of mail
messages they keep getting via the Personal Mail System (PMS).

The PMS has been on line over 80% of the time over the past few months.
The crew does
have to shutdown some of the Amateur Radio experiments periodically
(docking, EVA, etc.).
The down time for the PMS is usually only for a few days at a time.  There
is the
possibility of a 1-3 day shutdown during the Progress 40 docking later this

The PMS system consists of the following hardware:
Kenwood TM-733 Dual Band transceiver
Kantronics KPC-9612 (running at 1200 baud)
Larsen Dual band mobile antenna (2m/70cm)
Frequency/Mode: 145.985 FM Simplex

There has been a lot of access of the mail box over the past few weeks.
For more information, check out the how to work Mir articles in the web
pages below.
And remember, the PMS system is designed to support only 1 user at a time.

All others should patiently wait for the person using the mail box to log
out <<D>> before you attempt to connected to the PMS.  The only active
log-in port is
R0MIR-1,  the other port R0MIR is a dead port and should not be used.

SAFEX-II Repeater:
I have not heard any reports of activity since last summer.  I am
interested in
hearing 70cm signal quality reports.

Next Rocket Launch:  Progress 40
The Mir supply rockets are called Progress rockets.  Every 4-8 months a new
Cargo rocket is launched to Mir to bring new supplies to the crew. The next
rocket going to the Mir Space Station is tentatively scheduled to launch
October 25, 1998.  The rocket will contain the typical supplies, Food,
water, fuel
and equipment to support the on-going experiments on Mir.  And there is the

possibility of two new Amateur Radio Projects.

The Amsat-France Sputnik RS-17-2 and the MAREX-NA Slow Scan Television
have both been approved for Mir flight status.  Both projects are completed
are waiting a flight opportunity to Mir.  The information I received this
is that both projects are in the process of being backed in flight
Both projects will then be then taken to the Progress launch site in
for launch.
After the Progress is loaded with all of the high priority cargo

ís such as
water, fuel, experiments, etc.).  The inventory manifest will be review to
see if
there is any extra space left
in this Progress cargo rocket.  If space is available, then one or both of
projects may be flown.  We will not know for sure until after Progress 40
It is completely understandable that other higher priority cargoís may
prevent the
Amateur Radio projects from flying on this mission.  I hope that everyone
will be
understanding if the projects are moved to a different launch date.

The MAREX-NA Mir SSTV (Kenwood/Tasco) system has been certified for use on
Mir and
the approval to fly has been signed.  The IARU has suggested operational
for the SSTV system of 437.975 FM Simplex.  This frequency was chosen to be

compatible with all of the existing Amateur Radio equipment on Mir.

The specific launch date for the SSTV project has not been chosen at this
There are currently 3 options:
Progress Cargo Rocket October 25, 1998
Progress Cargo Rocket February 99
Manned Soyuze spring 99

Sputnik RS-17-2
Do you remember RS-17-1 last December 97?  It was a very popular Beeping
satellite which
was tossed out the door of Mir last year.  RS-17-1 beeped for over 6 weeks
and was heard
by thousands of people around the world.  An identical RS-17-2 was also
to Mir last year and is still on board Mir.  Later this year, the internal
electronics will be swapped out
with a new electronics module/batteries and then launched from Mir.  More
will be released later this fall.

Mir Crew Members:
The current crew consists of:

Current Crew
SOYUZ TM-28 arrived at Mir on August 16. Mir Soyuz TM-28 crew consisted of
Avdeyev, Gennadiy Padalko and Yuri Baturin.  (Sergei and Gennadiy both
training on the MAREX-NA SSTV system in Star City).

Mir Visibility:
Mir will be visible in the evening skies over North America most of this
It will appear as a bright star moving very fast.  The best viewing times
between 1 - 3 hours after your local sunset. Use your own tracking program
search the web for visibility listings.

The Russian Service module of the International Space Station (ISS also
unofficially Alpha) will contain 4 antenna feed-through ports dedicated
for Amateur Radio Antenna Access.  The Russian Docking Adapter will also
2 antenna feed-through ports dedicated for Amateur Radio Antenna Access.
When the
first ISS crew arrives, they will already have ports to use for Amateur
Ports 1,2 and 3 are tentatively planned for 144,435, 1200 mc, and port 4
for HF
(10, 15 and 20 meters).  Ports 5 & 6 will be for UHF and SHF bands.
Now the fun begins, and the designing of projects to use the ISS antenna
is under development.
We will publish more details as they become available.

Web Page information
For general information about some of the Mir Projects, check the web page

     http://www.ik1sld.org/mirex.htm  OR

For information about the MAREX-NA SSTV project, check the web page at:


Copyright 1998 Miles Mann, All Rights Reserved.  This document may be
freely distributed via the following means - Email (including listservers),
Usenet, and WorldWideWeb.  It may not be reproduced for profit including,
but not limited to, CD ROMs, books, and/or other commercial outlets without
prior written consent from the author.

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Miles WF1F