March 8, 1998

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NY Times Article

As announced in ANS Special Bulletin 064.01, AMSAT was included in a feature article about Amateur Radio and the Internet in the Thursday, March 5th edition of the New York Times newspaper.

The article was centered around AMSAT-NA Executive Vice President Keith Baker, KB1SF, and written by John Verity, a New York Times feature writer. The story examined the links between the amateur radio hobby and the Internet, and how amateur radio and AMSAT have both expanded and exploited those links over the years. The AMSAT web site was included (along with others) as a source of information on the amateur radio satellites.

The AMSAT-NA bulletin board was active with comments about the story, several excerpts of which are included here:

Mark, K0MDJ
"Congratulations to Keith Baker who was featured in an excellent and large story on Amateur Radio. Great press for ham radio in general and for AMSAT in particular. The story was well-written, almost completely accurate, and exceptionally positive."
Jim, K4PYT
"I was amazed at the author's journalistic skill and research. I think the article reflects the various facets and developments in ham radio today, and was especially positive about the satellite side of  the hobby."
Eric, W3DQ
"Very nice job."

The story is still available (as of this bulletin release) at the following URL:

[ANS congratulates AMSAT-NA Executive Vice President Keith Baker, KB1SF, and thanks all those who commented on the article]


The Mir International Amateur Radio Experiment team (MIREX) would like to announce an Automatic Packet/Positioning Reporting System (APRS) test on March 10, 1998 beginning at 1455 UTC, ending at 1655 UTC. During those times APRS stations are encouraged to use the Digital Repeater (R0MIR) aboard the Russian space station.

This two hour experiment will cover approximately 99% of North America on the two selected orbits of the spacecraft.

MIREX is hoping that amateur radio stations and schools across the nation will join in the experiment. Schools and amateur stations without APRS can still participate. As an example, school students could plot the reported positions on a paper map or wall plot by using the Internet web site. Using the Internet, students will see APRS beaconing stations across the country, available at the following URL:

MIREX reports this experiment has been in the planning stage for some time and the team hopes it will serve as a step for other experiments.

Mir PMS Frequency: 145.985 MHz FM Simplex.

Mir Digital Repeater callsign: R0MIR

MIREX requests that after the experiment has concluded APRS packet transmissions should not be used via Mir until further notice.

[ANS thanks Dr. Dave Larsen, N6CO, MIREX President and MIR QSL Manager, Bob Bruninga, WB4APR, and Frank H. Bauer, KA3HDO, AMSAT VP for Manned Space Programs for this information]

Washington DC Area AMSAT to Meet

Satellite operators and space enthusiasts are invited to the Maryland-DC area AMSAT Meeting and Space Seminar. The gathering will take place on Sunday, April 19, 1998, starting at 1:00 p.m. in the auditorium of the newly remodeled Visitor Center at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.

The keynote speaker will be Dr. Rick Fleeter, WA8VGK, founder and CEO of AeroAstro, a small satellite and space transportation company.

All topics at the seminar relate to amateur radio and the amateur space program, as well as high altitude balloon and aerospace experiments. The format is a combination of presentations, informal 'show 'n' tell' demonstrations and a social hour. The first presentation on the agenda and the keynote address are especially valuable to beginners. The entire afternoon will be great fun!

As a special bonus, just before the main program begins, Martin Davidoff, K2UBC, author of the highly acclaimed Satellite Experimenter's Handbook, will be on hand to sign copies!

The GSFC Visitor Center will be open to the public during this event between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Visitors can enjoy a NASCOM and Hubble Space Telescope Control Center tour starting at 11:00 a.m., or the model rocket launches at 1:00 p.m. The new Educator's Resource Center (ERC) is also available to those gathering material(s) for students.

Directions and other information is available using the following URL's:   (or)

Volunteers are needed to help make the event a success, including repeater talk-in, sign-in table, official photographer, secretary, video and more. Contact the event host, Pat Kilroy,, for more information.

Donations will be accepted to offset the associated seminar costs.

[ANS thanks Pat Kilroy, WD8LAQ, MDC AMSAT Area Coordinator, for this information]

Call for Papers

The 16th Annual AMSAT Meeting and Space Symposium will be held October 16-18, 1998 at the Park Inn International Hotel in Vicksburg, Mississippi. This is the first call to authors who wish to present papers at the Symposium and be printed in the official Proceedings document. The subject matter should be topics of interest to the amateur radio satellite community.

One page abstracts are due no later than June 1, 1998, and authors will be advised by June 15th regarding whether their paper has been accepted. Camera ready copies of the accepted papers are due no later than August 15, 1998.

Papers will only be superficially edited and will generally be printed as submitted. Authors are requested to provide an electronic file, preferably in any version of Word or WordPerfect.

Abstracts can be sent to:

  Malcolm Keown, W5XX,
  14 Lake Circle Drive
  Vicksburg, Mississippi 39180

Malcolm is also available via e-mail at the following address:

Proceedings of the Symposium will be printed by the ARRL and made available at, and after, the event.

Information regarding Vicksburg area attractions and details on  arrangements for the 16th Space Symposium and AMSAT Annual Meeting can be found at the following URL:

For additional information please contact:

  Eddie Pettis, N5JGK
  114 Terrace St.
  Vicksburg, Mississippi 39180

Eddie is also available via e-mail at the following address:

[ANS thanks Eddie Pettis, N5JGK, for this information]

W2T Special Event Station

As part of the 5th anniversary of This Week In Amateur Radio, special event station W2T will be active. Bruce Paige, KK5DO, has been authorized to use the special callsign for satellite operation during a 24 hour period on Saturday, March 14, 1998.

According to Bruce, it has been several years since he was a contributor to This Week In Amateur Radio, sharing the 'EZ-SATS' portion of the show. "I feel honored to be able to help my friends at TWIAR during their celebration and I will be active on all the analog satellites I can work during the 24 hour time period," said Bruce.

Stations making successful contact with W2T via satellite should QSL to K2SMA.

[ANS thanks Bruce Paige, KK5DO, Houston AMSAT Area Coordinator for this information]

Internet Photo Page

Wayne Grove, K9SLQ, of Bluffton, Indiana, tells ANS that he has started a digital 'photo album' of many of the active satellite operators on his Internet Web site. Wayne, who has an extensive background in SSTV, already had an established Internet site when he first thought about adding more satellite information. With his love for slow scan television, adding digital pictures of satellite operators was something K9SLQ felt very comfortable in doing.

Wayne invites all operators to view the photo Web site using the following URL:

In addition, Wayne invites all satellite operators to submit a .GIF (or) .JPEG format photo via e-mail to K9SLQ at the following e-mail address:

Wayne reports if stations do not have the means to capture a computer graphic file, they can send a snap shot print to K9SLQ and he will scan the image. He asks all operators who send electronic or regular mail to him to please include name, callsign and e-mail address. If mailed photographs are to be returned, please include sufficient return postage.

Mail your photograph to:

  Wayne Grove, K9SLQ
  1025 W. Lancaster St.
  Bluffton, Indiana 46714

[ANS thanks Wayne Grove, K9SLQ for this report]

KC5HBR Retires from Astronaut Corps

US astronaut Jerry Linenger, KC5HBR, who was aboard the Mir space station for 122 days, has retired from the astronaut corps, according to NASA sources. Linenger will pursue private interests.

KC5HBR was aboard the space station when a fire broke out just over one year ago, ignited by oxygen-generating 'candles' used on the spacecraft. The fire, a collision with a Progress supply rocket last summer, several computer failures, and other problems made international news and led some officials to question sending additional US astronauts to train aboard Mir.

Linenger, a physician and a captain in the US Navy, was aboard the Russian space station from January to May 1997.

[ANS thanks NASA and the ARRL for this information]

Weekly Satellite Report

Mir . SAFEX . RS-12 . RS-15 . RS-16 . FO-20 . KO-23 . KO-25 . AO-27 . FO-29 . AO-10 . UO-11 . AO-16 . DO-17 . WO-18 . LO-19 . UO-22 . IO-26


(PMS 145.985 MHz FM, 1200 baud AFSK)

Operational. The new modem is a Kantronics KPC-9612 Plus, Revision 8.1. Please note the command set for this TNC is different than the previous Mir TNC. MIREX suggests a copy of the KPC-9612 manual may help in understanding the changes.

An APRS test is scheduled for March 10, 1998 beginning at 1455 UTC, ending at 1655 UTC.

MIREX has created an Internet Web page containing information regarding Mir and the various ham radio experiments taking place from the space station. Please check out the pages for pending and proposed projects. URLs are:

[ANS thanks the MIREX team for this information]

SAFEX, Mir 70cm Repeater

(Uplink 435.750 MHz FM, Downlink 437.950 MHz FM, Subaudible tone 141.3 Hz)
(QSO mode Uplink 435.725 MHz FM, Downlink 437.925 MHz FM, Subaudible tone 151.4 Hz)

Operational. The SAFEX II installation has been utilized recently in QSO mode.


(Uplink 145.91-145.95 MHz CW/SSB, Downlink 29.41-29.45 MHz)

Operational, mode KA. The 15m ROBOT is operational.

RS-12 has been seeing recent heavy activity and good DX possibilities.


(Uplink 145.858-145.898 MHz CW/SSB, Downlink 29.354-29.394 MHz CW/SSB)

Operational. CW appears to be the most successful mode on RS-15.


At this time, only the beacons are operational.

Transponder information:

Uplink = 145.915 - 145.948 MHz
Downlink = 29.415 - 29.448 MHz
Beacons = 29.408 , 29.451 MHz
Pwr 29 MHz Down = 1.2 W / 4 W

Beacon 1 = 435.504 MHz
Beacon 2 = 435.548 MHz
Pwr 435 MHz Beacons = 1.6 W


(Uplink 145.9-146.0 MHz CW/LSB, Downlink 435.8-435.9 MHz CW/USB)

Operational. FO-20 in mode JA continuously.

[ANS thanks Kazu Sakamoto, JJ1WTK for this information]


(Uplink 145.85, 145.9 MHz FM, Downlink 435.175 MHz FM, 9600 Baud FSK.)

Operational. HB9AQZ reports some problem with the 145.850 MHz uplink frequency. The 145.900 MHz uplink remains nominal, and Jim, AA7KC, reports KO-23 operating normally.

[ANS thanks Jim Weisenberger, AA7KC, for this report]


(Uplink 145.980 MHz FM, Downlink 436.5 MHz FM, 9600 Baud FSK.)

Operational. Jim, AA7KC, reports KO-25 operating normally.

[ANS thanks Jim Weisenberger, AA7KC, for this report]


(Uplink 145.85 MHz FM, Downlink: 436.792 MHz FM)

Operational. Widely used especially during weekend passes.

[ANS thanks Michael Wyrick, N4USI, AO-27 Control-op for this update]



(Uplink 145.9-146.0 MHz CW/LSB, Downlink 435.8-435.9 MHz CW/USB)


(Uplink 145.85, 145.87, 145.910 MHz FM, Downlink 435.910 MHz FM 9600 baud BPSK)

Operational. Currently in mode JA. Kazu, JJ1WTK, reports an error has occurred in the digital operating platform and FO-29 has been returned to JA status for now. No operational schedule or status update has been listed on the JARL Web site for the satellite.

[ANS thanks Kazu Sakamoto, JJ1WTK, for this report.]


(Uplink 435.030-435.18 MHz CW/LSB, Downlink 145.975-145.825 MHz CW/USB)

Operational. Despite brief moments of deep QSB, AO-10's downlink signals have been excellent (even at apogee), with heavy stateside and DX activity. Now is the time to be active on this bird. Jon, N0JK reports working VR98LC on March 4th for his first ever Hong Kong QSO via satellite. Mike, N1JEZ worked special event station ON50CRB and also reports a QSO with GD0TEP.

AO-10's apogee has continued to move into the northern hemisphere. Apogee will continue to rise higher to the north for the rest of 1998, peaking in December.

W4SM has updated his AO-10 web page, use the following URL:

[ANS thanks Stacey Mills, W4SM, Jon Jones, N0JK, and Mike Seguin, N1JEZ, for this update]


(Downlink 145.825 MHz FM, 1200 baud PSK. Beacon 2401.500 MHz.)

Operational. During the period of January 14th, to February 16, 1998, Clive, G3CWV, reports good signals have been received from the 145.826 MHz beacon. Any reports of reception of the 2 meter beacon or on 2401 MHz should be sent to

The telemetry is nominal.

[ANS thanks Clive Wallis, G3CWV, for this information.]


(Uplink 145.9, 145.92, 145.94, 145.86 MHz FM, 1200 bps Manchester FSK; Downlink 437.0513 MHz SSB, 1200 bps RC-BPSK 1200 Baud PSK. Beacon 2401.1428 MHz.)

Operational. The S band transmitter is off.

Time is Sat Mar 07 11:59:49 1998 uptime is 1266/06:29:43.
Array V 21.092 V +5V Bus 4.968 V
+8.5V Bus 9.034 V +10V Bus 11.300 V
Bat 1 Temp 4.839 D
Bat 2 Temp 7.260 D
RC PSK TX Out 0.442 W

Total Array C= 0.411 Bat Ch Cur= 0.005 Ifb= 0.052 I+10V= 0.292
TX:010B BCR:83 PWRC:59E BT: A WC:25 EDAC:9A

Information about telemetry values and WOD files can be found at

[ANS thanks Miguel A. Menendez, EA1BCU, for this report.]

DO-17 (DOVE)

(Downlink 145.825 MHz FM, 1200 Baud AFSK. Beacon 2401.220 MHz)

Operational. The DOVE S band beacon is on. The 2 meter transmitter is on (145.825 MHz). Telemetry is being sent about every 30 seconds. A scanned image of Dove's QSL is available at the 425DXNews Web Site:

[ANS thanks Jim White, WD0E, for this update]


(Downlink 437.104 MHz SSB, 1200 Baud PSK AX.25)

Not operational. WO-18 is in MBL mode after a recent software crash. Attempts are being made to find and correct the cause of the suspected seasonal crashes.

[ANS thanks the WO-18 Command Team for this news.]


(Uplink 145.84, 145.86, 145.88, 145.9 MHz 1200 bps Manchester FSK; Downlink 437.125 MHz SSB, 1200 bps RC-BPSK.)

Operating normally. The telemetry is nominal.

Time is Sat Mar 07 11:19:14 1998  uptime is 990/21:14:04.
+Z Array V      22.608 V  +X (RX) Temp    -2.113 D
RX Temp         -0.991    D  Bat 1 Temp       1.813 D
Bat 2 Temp       1.252    D  +Y Array Temp    4.057 D
+Z Array Temp   -3.235  D  RC PSK TX Out    0.830 W

Total Array C= 0.234 Bat Ch Cur= 0.020 Ifb= 0.023 I+10V= 0.197
TX:019 BCR:81 PWRC:36E BT:3C WC: 0

General information and telemetry samples can be found at:

[ANS thanks Miguel A. Menendez, EA1BCU, for this report.]


(Uplink 145.9 or 145.975 MHz FM; Downlink 435.120 MHz FM 9600 Baud FSK.)

Operational. Chris, G7UPN reports UO-22 is operating normally.

[ANS thanks Chris Jackson, G7UPN / ZL2TPO, Groundstation and Operations Manager of UO-22, for this report.]


(Uplink 145.875, 145.9, 145.925, 145.95 MHz FM, Downlink 435.822 MHz SSB, 1200 Baud PSK.)

No report is available at this time.

[Please send your Satellite or News reports to the ANS Editors at, or to new ANS Editor Dan James, NN0DJ, at]

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This week's AMSAT News Service bulletins were edited by AMSAT News Service Editor Dan James, NN0DJ,