June 28, 1998

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NASA Time Line Requires SAREX to Back Off STS-95

The Space Amateur Radio Experiment (SAREX) payload originally scheduled to fly on Shuttle Mission STS-95 this October has been removed, along with nine other payloads from the flight manifest due to tight constraints on the crew's payload activity timeline.

Flight managers, after reviewing all of the planned STS-95 activities, concluded that there was a need to reduce the overall manifest and took the action of removing SAREX and some other secondary payloads. This action was done to insure sufficient time to accomplish the major objectives of the flight and insure the overall success of the busy mission.

NASA expressed regret at having to take this unfortunate action, in particular, having to delete educational activities from STS-95. NASA, SAREX, ARRL and AMSAT were in the throes of planning the activities for STS-95 when the official word came concerning the mission. Four US schools that had been selected for SAREX QSO's will now be first in line for consideration on future missions, such as STS-93 and the International Space Station.

All future shuttle missions are heavily loaded with activities that revolve around building the International Space Station. But SAREX has an imminent place in NASA's future plans for the few shuttle missions that will support it, such as January's STS-93. The SAREX Working Group is looking at another mission for 1999 that may be suitable, too. SAREX also continues to have a big place within NASA's International Space Station plans, which involve a temporary and a permanent Amateur Radio station onboard.

[ANS thanks Frank Bauer, KA3HDO and the SAREX Working Group for this information]

Thank You from DJ4ZC

AMSAT-NA recently received a note of thanks from Dr. Karl Meinzer, DJ4ZC, AMSAT-DL President and Phase 3D Project Leader. The note reads as follows:

"After the announcement about our launch situation, I received a little under 400 letters until now. I wish to express my appreciation for the support and suggestions that were mailed to me, and I find it impossible to answer all these letters individually. All letters I received were very encouraging and not a single real complaint was voiced.

This really taught me two things. The amateur community, and in particular the AMSAT community, is looking forward to the launch of P3-D as a real enrichment to our service and they understand the difficulties in securing a launch of a 600 kg spacecraft in a highly competitive environment. Second, the people waiting and wanting this spacecraft are a formidable bunch!

I take real encouragement from these letters and it once more has taught me why I am doing all this. So, I want to say thanks for all the expressed support and all the suggestions. I am proud to serve the AMSAT community."

(Signed) Dr. Karl Meinzer, DJ4ZC, AMSAT-DL President and Phase 3-D Project Leader.

To Karl's words of appreciation, AMSAT-NA President Bill Tynan, W3XO and Vice-President Keith Baker, KB1SF added their thanks for the very strong outpouring of support shown by AMSAT members and others in recent days. "Your comments, helpful suggestions as well as messages of understanding and support have been most helpful to us as we continue our search to find a safe and affordable launch for Phase 3-D," said KB1SF. "With such strong support within the Amateur Radio community, we can, and will make it happen!"

[ANS thanks Dr. Karl Meinzer, DJ4ZC, Bill Tynan, W3XO and Keith Baker, KB1SF]

NASA Forms Office in Russia to Assist in ISS Preparations

NASA tells ANS it has formed the Office of Human Space Flight Programs, Russia, to oversee the transition from the Phase One Shuttle-Mir program to the assembly and operation of the new International Space Station (ISS). Astronaut Michael A. Baker will lead this office. Baker has flown four shuttle missions, including his most recent flight as commander of STS-81 (aboard Atlantis) in January 1997.

Baker will be NASA's lead representative to the Russian Space Agency and its contractors on operational issues as part of NASA's Human Exploration and Development of Space (HEDS) initiative. This places Russian liaison for all human space flight operations and initiatives under one office and consolidates preparations for the assembly of the ISS, including mission operations, crew training, logistics and technical liaison activities with Russian space organizations.

Representatives of all nations involved in the ISS have agreed to officially target a November 20, 1998 launch for the first station component and to revise launch target dates for the remainder of the 43-flight station assembly plan. Although the new dates move the launch of the first station component from June to November, the target dates agreed upon for many major station milestones during the latter portions of the five-year assembly plan are little changed. In addition, several enhancements to the station's assembly have been made, including an exterior 'warehouse' for spare parts.

The International Space Station partners have set an April 1999 target launch date for the Russian Service Module. The first station crew--Commander Bill Shepherd, Soyuz Commander Yuri Gidzenko and Flight Engineer Sergei Krikalev--will be launched aboard a Russian Soyuz spacecraft in the summer of 1999 to begin a five-month inaugural stay. Launch of the U.S. laboratory module is set for October 1999.

Full details of the current ISS assembly sequence are available in a NASA fact sheet. This fact sheet and more information on the International Space Station are available at the following URL:

[ANS thanks NASA for this information]

70cm Commercial Interference

Reports from Guatemala indicate that commercial land mobile stations are currently being licensed in the 430 - 440 MHz band -- against International Radio Regulations. These stations may cause harmful interference to stations in the amateur-satellite service operating between 435 - 438 MHz.

Any amateur station experiencing interference from what appears to be a Guatemalan land mobile station should gather as much information as possible about the intruder including; call sign, frequency, emission type, and if possible, the content of its transmission(s). Also, note the date, time, and call signs of the other amateur station(s) you are attempting to communicate with.

Amateurs should report all of this information to your national IARU member society so that a formal complaint may be lodged through appropriate diplomatic channels.

[ANS thanks Art Feller, W4ART for this information]

ANS in Brief

ANS news in brief this week includes the following:

Weekly Satellite Report

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


SAFEX II 70cm Repeater
Uplink 435.750 MHz FM with subaudible tone 141.3 Hz
Downlink 437.950 MHz FM
SAFEX II 70cm QSO Mode
Uplink 435.725 MHz FM with subaudible tone 151.4 Hz
Downlink 437.925 MHz FM
Packet Radio PMS
Uplink/Downlink 145.985 MHz FM, 1200 baud AFSK

The current crew onboard Mir are Talgat Musabayev and Nikolai Budarin. They speak and read Russian only. Any messages addressed as personal to R0MIR will not be understood unless it is in Russian. MIREX is again allowing R0MIR-1 for store and forward message traffic.

The PBBS is running a Kantronics KPC-9612 + V.8.1 TNC. The commands are similar to most PBBS and BBS systems.

MIREX President N6CO reports he recently mailed 130 Mir QSL cards.

[ANS thanks Scott Avery, WA6LIE, and the MIREX team for Mir status information]


Uplink 145.910 to 145.950 MHz CW/SSB
Downlink 29.410 to 29.450 MHz CW/SSB
Operational, mode KA.


Uplink 145.858 to 145.898 MHz CW/SSB
Downlink 29.354 to 29.394 MHz CW/SSB

RS-15 has apparently lost its TLM beacon.


The 435 MHz beacon (only) is operational. Attempts to command the Mode A transponder on have been unsuccessful.


Uplink 435.030 to 435.180 MHz CW/LSB
Downlink 145.975 to 145.825 MHz CW/USB

The satellite continues to work quite well with many active stations. DX continues to be heard and worked daily.

Stacey Mills, W4SM, has more information about the satellite at the following URL:

[ANS thanks Stacey Mills, W4SM for his AO-10 status information and web site]


Uplink 145.850 MHz FM
Downlink: 436.792 MHz FM

AO-27 TEPR States are currently:
4 = 36 = 18 Minutes
5 = 72 = 36 Minutes

This means AO-27's transmitter turns on 18 minutes after entering the Sun and stays on for 18 minutes. AO-27's transmitter is turned off at all other times during the orbit. N4USI reminds stations that this happens on every orbit, approximately 14.2 times a day. The current TEPR settings will cause the satellite to be on during the daytime at northern latitudes.

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


Uplink 145.900 to 146.000 MHz CW/LSB
Downlink 435.800 to 435.900 MHz CW/USB

Operational. FO-20 in mode JA continuously.

[ANS thanks Kazu Sakamoto, JJ1WTK for his FO-20 status reports]


Voice/CW Mode JA
Uplink 145.900 to 146.000 MHz CW/LSB
Downlink 435.800 to 435.900 MHz CW/USB
Digital Mode JD
Uplink 145.850, 145.870, 145.910 MHz FM
Downlink 435.910 MHz FM 9600 baud BPSK
Not operational, the satellite is in JA (voice) mode.

Kazu, JJ1WTK, tells ANS that OBC bit errors were again detected and the on-board computer reset. Investigation of bit error frequency continues.

The FO-29 command station is now asking for reports from radio amateurs who can confirm the value of channel 2A, the 5th item transmitted in CW after 'HI HI'. The normal value of channel 2A is '00'. Reports will be appreciated (in e-mail) addressed to:

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


Uplink 145.850, 145.900 MHz FM
Downlink 435.175 MHz FM, 9600 Baud FSK

The satellite is exhibiting optimum performance.

[ANS thanks Jim Weisenberger, AA7KC for this report]


Uplink 145.980 MHz FM
Downlink 436.500 MHz FM, 9600 Baud FSK
Not operational.

The satellite is exhibiting optimum performance.

[ANS thanks Jim Weisenberger, AA7KC for this report]


Downlink 145.825 MHz FM, 1200 baud PSK
Beacon 2401.500 MHz

During the period of 16-May to 14-June reasonable signals have been received from the satellite. A single WOD survey of channels 1, 2, 3, 61 (magnetometers) has been transmitted. A quick plot of this WOD showed reasonable agreement with the theoretical field and nominal attitude.

Beacon reception reports should be sent to:

In response to many requests for information about methods of decoding OSCAR-11 signals, a package of hardware information has been added to the satellite web site. The site also contains some software for capturing data, decoding ASCII telemetry and WOD information. The URL is

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


Uplink 145.900, 145.920, 145.940, 145.860 MHz FM, 1200 bps Manchester FSK
Downlink 437.0513 MHz SSB, 1200 bps RC-BPSK 1200 Baud PSK
Beacon 2401.1428 MHz.)
Operating normally.

The AO-16 command team has authorized an APRS experiment on AO-16 to explore the use of the 1200-baud PACSAT for APRS position/status reporting. The test periods will run each Tuesday from 0000 to 2359 UTC.

The telemetry is nominal. The S band transmitter is off.

Time is Sat Jun 27 12:26:49 1998 uptime is 1378/06:54:02
Bat 1 V          1.324 V  Bat 2 V          1.365 V	
Bat 3 V          1.374 V  Bat 4 V          1.342 V  	
Bat 5 V          1.369 V  Bat 6 V          1.363 V  	
Bat 7 V          1.389 V  Bat 8 V          1.379 V	
Bat 1 Temp     0.603 D  Bat 2 Temp    1.209 D	
IR Detector    255.000 C	RC PSK TX Out    0.472 W	
Total Array C= 0.249 Bat Ch Cur=-0.015 Ifb= 0.065 I+10V= 0.255
TX:010B BCR:84 PWRC:59E BT: A WC:25 EDAC:E3

General information and telemetry 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
Currently non-operational.

The 145.825 MHz and 2401.220 MHz downlinks are off the air. Command stations are reported to be working on the problem. No additional information is available at this time.


Downlink 437.104 MHz SSB, 1200 Baud PSK AX.25
Currently non-operational.

WO-18 is in MBL mode after a software crash. No additional information is available at this time.


Uplink 145.840, 145.860, 145.880, 145.900 MHz 1200 bps Manchester FSK
Downlink 437.125 MHz SSB, 1200 bps RC-BPSK
Operating normally.

The telemetry is nominal.

Time is Sat Jun 27 11:27:45 1998 uptime is 1102/21:22:35
Bat 1 V          1.389 V  Bat 2 V          1.401 V	
Bat 3 V          1.425 V  Bat 4 V          1.404 V  	
Bat 5 V          1.423 V  Bat 6 V          1.496 V  	
Bat 7 V          1.408 V  Bat 8 V          1.388 V	
Bat 1 Temp   -1.552 D  Bat 2 Temp    -0.430 D	
BCR Set Point  130.123 C  RC PSK TX Out    0.520 W	
Total Array C= 0.349 Bat Ch Cur= 0.183 Ifb= 0.018 I+10V= 0.108
TX:100 BCR:38 PWRC:333A31 BT:34 WC:35

General information and telemetry samples can be found at:

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


Uplink 145.900 or 145.975 MHz FM
Downlink 435.120 MHz FM 9600 Baud FSK

More information on the satellite is available at the following URL:

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


Uplink 145.875, 145.900, 145.925, 145.950 MHz FM
Downlink 435.822 MHz SSB, 1200 Baud PSK

Telemetry is reported as being downloaded on 435.822 MHz at 1200 baud PSK. No additional information is available at this time.

[Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to the ANS Editors at, or to 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,