Special Bulletin: November 19, 1997

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RS-17 Telemetry Survey

Several AMSAT-France is asking radio amateurs around the world to help collect telemetry from RS-17 on Saturday, November 22, and Sunday, November 23, 1997.

This data will help AMSAT-France in verifying the parameters of the thermal model of the microsat that was computed before the launch. This information will also be used in the design of the AMSAT-France microsat project, named Maelle.

The internal temperature of the satellite can be measured from the tone of the "beep-beep" sound transmitted twice per second. In order to get precise measurements, the frequency of the tone should be measured to an accuracy of +/- 1 Hz.

Bernard Pidoux, F6BVP, of AMSAT-France suggests directly recording the beacon using the tape recorder function of the Windows-95 program (through a sound card) connected to the audio output of a VHF receiver seems to work best. The receiver should be set in FM mode on 145.820 MHz, compensating for doppler effect during the satellite pass. The audio should also be unsquelched during the recording.

In order to keep the data to a manageable level, numeric samples should be performed at 8 kHz with 8 bits precision in mono mode. One or two seconds of beacon recording with a strong signal are needed. Save your .WAV file and note the date and precise UTC time of capture. If you have a program than can accurately measure the audio frequency, please also provide the value of the tone in Hz. If you cannot measure the audio frequency, just send the WAV file in ZIP format. The size should not be more than 16 kb (1 or 2 seconds at 8 kHz, 8 bit samples in mono).

Reports can be sent by packet radio to:

or by Internet e-mail to

At this time AMSAT-France has received reports of the tone frequency ranging from 1255 to 1300 Hz (corresponding to temperatures between 23 and 33 degrees Celsius).

[ANS thanks Bernard Pidoux, F6BVP, for the information that went into this bulletin item.]

[Please send your Satellite or News reports to ANS Editor B.J. Arts, WT0N, via e-mail, at or to]

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This AMSAT News Service special bulletin was edited by AMSAT-NA Executive Vice President Keith Baker, KB1SF,