August 15, 1999

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ISS Update

NASA tells ANS that flight control teams in Houston and Moscow continue to monitor the health of the International Space Station systems, reporting no significant problems on board other than a balky battery that currently is not being used for electrical power.

Plans continue to be finalized for the tests later this month to rehearse the docking of the Zvezda service module with ISS, currently planned for November. The test will have the station maneuver to the desired docking orientation followed by activation of the Kurs automatic docking system. Zvezda will serve as the early living quarters for the crew as well as providing life support and command and control capability.

Routine activities this week included completing battery capacity restoration in Zarya. This procedure fully drains and then recharges batteries to maintain as long a life as possible on the units. Capacity restoration of the batteries is performed about every six months to minimize charge memory, similar to the maintenance of rechargeable batteries used in many ham radio communication items.

The possible degradation seen in battery number one continues to be monitored and the battery currently has been removed from the electrical bus. A replacement battery and associated electronics may be carried to the station on the next Shuttle assembly mission, STS-101, now targeted for launch in December. The crew of STS-101 is also scheduled to install four ham radio antenna packages (HF, VHF, UHF, and L/S band) on the outside of the ISS modules during a mission spacewalk. STS-101 will also carry the initial VHF and UHF ham station which will employ both FM voice and packet. This initial station will be left on the space station for use by future crews.

On the ground, a command server problem has been solved that briefly prevented command transfer from Moscow to Houston. Though the Russian Mission Control and ground stations remain the prime means for commanding to the ISS, the Unity node's early communications system can be used through NASA's tracking network as a backup. An inadvertent file prevented the two servers from 'talking' to one another, but the problem was corrected within a day.

The International Space Station is oriented with Unity pointed toward Earth and Zarya pointed toward space in a slow spin to conserve fuel and maintain an even temperature for both modules. ISS is flying in a slightly elliptical orbit with a high point of 249 statute miles and a low point of 236 statute miles, circling the Earth every 92 minutes. The complex has completed 4,132 orbits since the launch of Zarya last November.

[ANS thanks NASA and SAREX/ARISS member Will Marchant, KC6ROL, for this information]

LU1AHC Silent Key

ANS is saddened to report the death of Arturo Carou, LU1AHC, who recently passed away in Houston, Texas after a short illness. A memorial ceremony was held August 11th.

Arturo devoted much of his life to satellite operation and was very instrumental in helping place AMSAT-Argentina's first satellite -- LuSat -- into orbit. He was a founder and permanent member of AMSAT-Argentina. A long-time promoter of satellite activity, LU1AHC published satellite timetables long before the advent of the personal computer or software tracking programs.

AMSAT-NA President Keith Baker, KB1SF, told ANS "this is very sad information. Arturo was a key part of the LuSat project. His presence among us will be sorely missed." Pedro Converso, LU7ABF, AMSAT-Argentina Vice President, reported Arturo was "always a gentleman despite his multiple activities that included management in several civil organizations. He represents the impulse that brought Argentina into Amateur Radio satellite activity. We miss you Arturo, but will never forget."

[ANS sends the condolences of the entire satellite community to the family of Arturo Carou and thanks AMSAT-NA President Keith Baker, KB1SF, for this information]

ANS in Brief

ANS news in brief this week includes the following:

Weekly Satellite Report

Mir . RS-12 . RS-13 . 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 . TO-31 . GO-32 . SO-33 . PO-34 . SO-35 . UO-36


SAFEX II 70cm Repeater
Uplink 435.750 MHz FM with subaudible tone 141.3 Hz
Downlink 437.950 MHz FM
Seldom operational.  No operation in 1999 has been observed.
SAFEX II 70cm QSO Mode
Uplink 435.725 MHz FM with subaudible tone 151.4 Hz
Downlink 437.925 MHz FM
Seldom operational.  No operation in 1999 has been observed.
Packet Radio PMS
Uplink/Downlink 145.985 MHz FM, 1200 baud AFSK

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

Ham radio activity aboard Mir has greatly increased in the last several weeks as the three person crew prepares to return to Earth. Mir is soon to be left in a stable orbit with only essential systems running. All amateur radio activities will cease and the equipment will be turned off before the crew leaves. The final fate of the space station has not been formally announced.

Stay tuned to ANS for further developments.

French astronaut Jean-Pierre Haignere, FX0STB, has used almost every moment of his free time recently in an effort to contact as many Earth bound ham operators as possible in the short time remaining before the crew returns home. Reports of successful QSO's or packet/SSTV activity have been reported by many stations on AMSAT BB.

The QSL manager for FX0STB is:

Radio Club F5KAM
QSL manager Mir
22 rue Bansac
63000 Clermont Ferrand

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


Uplink 145.910 to 145.950 MHz CW/SSB
Uplink 21.210 to 21.250 MHz CW/SSB
Downlink 29.410 to 29.450 MHz CW/SSB
Downlink 145.910 to 145.950 MHz CW/SSB
Beacon 29.408 MHz
Robot Uplink 21.129 MHz, Downlink 29.454 MHz

Last reported to be semi-operational, beacon only.


Uplink 21.260 to 21.300 MHz CW/SSB
Uplink 145.960 to 146.000 MHz CW/SSB
Downlink 29.460 to 29.500 MHz CW/SSB
Downlink 145.960 to 146.000 MHz CW/SSB
Beacon 29.504 MHz
Robot Uplink 21.140 MHz, Downlink 29.458 MHz

Last reported in mode KA (10m downlink, 15m and 2m uplinks).

RS-13's Robot CW auto-transponder is currently active. For confirmation of an RS-13 Robot contact, send your QSL card along with the Robot QSL number to:

  Radio Sport Federation
  Box 88

Kevin, AC5DK, has information about RS-12/13 that contains a simple explanation on how to operate on the satellite, including a forum for operators to exchange information, pose questions or even set up skeds via RS-12/13.

AC5DK's RS-12/13 Satellite Operators Page:

AC5DK's RS-12/13 Satellite Forum:

RS-12/13 command is now in the hands of Alex Papkov, in Kaluga City, Russia.

[ANS thanks Tony, AB2CJ for RS-13 Robot QSL info]


Uplink 145.858 to 145.898 MHz CW/SSB
Downlink 29.354 to 29.394 MHz CW/SSB
Beacon 29.352 MHz (intermittent)
SSB meeting frequency 29.380 MHz (unofficial)
Semi-operational, Mode A (2m uplink, 10m downlink)

Dave, WB6LLO, has operating information for both RS-15 and RS-13 on his personal web site. In addition to satellite data, antenna information and AMSAT-NA Jewelry Contest information is also featured. The WB6LLO web site URL is


Uplink 435.030 to 435.180 MHz CW/LSB
Downlink 145.975 to 145.825 MHz CW/USB
Beacon 145.810 MHz (unmodulated carrier)

Masa, JN1GKZ, reports his web page shows the current AO-10 spin period and spin rate (by measuring the beacon with FFTDSP software). The JN1GKZ web site can be found at

Stacey Mills, W4SM, has more information about the satellite at

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


Uplink 145.850 MHz FM
Downlink: 436.792 MHz FM

The satellite is performing well with heavy use on the weekends.

The TEPR (Timed Eclipse Power Regulation) states were reset on 20-June-99 as follows:

TEPR 4 is 42 and TEPR 5 is 78.

[ANS thanks Chuck Wyrick, KM4NZ, and Michael Wyrick, N4USI, for AO-27 information]

JAS-1b FO-20

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

FO-20 in mode JA continuously.

FO-20 continues to function quite well.

[ANS thanks Kazu Sakamoto, JJ1WTK for the 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
Semi-operational, rotated with digital mode and digi-talker. See schedule below.
Digital Mode JD
Uplink 145.850, 145.870, 145.910 MHz FM
Downlink 435.910 MHz FM 9600 baud BPSK
Semi-operational, rotated with analog mode and digi-talker. See schedule below.

Kazu, JJ1WTK, tells ANS that the FO-29 operational schedule (announced by the JARL) is as follows:

through Aug 23 (Mon) JA
Aug 23 (Mon) - Aug 26 (Thu) JD1200
Aug 26 (Thu) - Sep 9 (Thu) JA

Mineo, JE9PEL, has updated his FO-29 satellite telemetry analysis program. The software will automatically analyze all digital telemetry from the satellite such as current, voltage and temperature. The JE9PEL FO-29/software update is available at

[ANS thanks Kazu Sakamoto, JJ1WTK, for the FO-29 status reports]


Uplink 145.980 MHz FM
Downlink 436.500 MHz FM, 9600 Baud FSK

Jim, AA7KC, reports KO-25 is performing well with good downlink efficiency.

[ANS thanks Jim Weisenberger, AA7KC, for KO-25 status information]


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

Carol, W9HGI, reports UO-22 is performing within acceptable limits. W9HGI operates the West Coast Packet Satellite Gateway (WSPG) for the Worldwide Packet Network (WPN).

More information on the satellite is available at

[ANS thanks Carol Byers, W9HGI and Chris Jackson, G7UPN/ZL2TPO for UO-22 status information]


Downlink 145.825 MHz FM, 1200 baud PSK
Beacon 2401.500 MHz

OSCAR-11 status remains unchanged. During the period 15-June to 16-July-1999 consistent signals have been received from the 145.826 MHz beacon. Battery voltage during daylight passes has remained fairly constant with a range of 13.2 to 13.9 volts. Internal temperatures have remained fairly between +0.2C and -1.0C for battery and telemetry electronics respectively. Magnetorquer spin correction counters show nominal counting rates.

The operating schedule is unchanged.

ASCII status (210 seconds)
ASCII bulletin (60 seconds)
BINARY SEU (30 seconds)
ASCII TLM (90 seconds)
ASCII WOD (120 seconds)
ASCII bulletin (60 seconds)
BINARY ENG (30 seconds)

The ASCII bulletin is currently a static message, detailing modes and frequencies of all the amateur radio satellites.

More information on OSCAR-11 is available at the following URL:

[ANS thanks Clive Wallis, G3CWV, for OSCAR-11 status 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. S-band beacon off.

Telemetry is as follows:

Time is Sat Aug 14 12:18:29 1999 uptime is 1791/06:37:40
+10V Bus        11.100 V  	+X (RX) Temp     6.654 D
RX Temp         -4.237 D  	RC PSK TX Out  0.472 W
RC PSK BP Temp   1.814 D  	RC PSK HPA Tmp   3.024 D
+Y Array Temp   -2.422 D  	+Z Array Temp   19.967 D
Total Array C= 0.305 Bat Ch Cur=-0.007 Ifb= 0.069 I+10V= 0.259
TX:010B BCR:88 PWRC:59E BT: A WC:25 EDAC:4E

General information and telemetry WOD files can be found at

A complete collection of WOD graphics corresponding to the year of 1998 can be found at

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


Uplink 145.840, 145.860, 145.880, 145.900 MHz 1200 bps Manchester FSK
Downlink 437.125 MHz SSB, 1200 bps RC-BPSK
Currently semi-operational.

No BBS service -- EA1BCU and ANS have not received any updated information for several months. The digipeater is active.

Telemetry is as follows:

Time is Sat Aug 14 11:20:49 1999 uptime is 378/21:46:11
+X (RX) Temp      0.692 D  	RX Temp            -0.991 D
RC PSK TX Out   0.659 W  	+Y Array Temp   -3.235 D
Total Array C= 0.111 Bat Ch Cur= 0.000 Ifb= 0.045 I+10V= 0.113
TX:017 BCR:85 PWRC:62D BT:3C WC: 0

General information and telemetry samples can be found at

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


Uplink 145.925 MHz 9600 baud FSK
Downlink 436.925 MHz 9600 baud FSK

ProcMail V2.00G has been released by G7UPN. This software permits the processing of image files from TO-31. ProcMail V2.00G is available for downloading on KO-23 and KO-25. It also has been posted to the AMSAT-NA FTP site at the following URL:

[ANS thanks Chris Jackson, G7UPN/ZL2TPO, for this report]


Downlink frequency not established.
The satellite is not currently available for uplink transmissions.

PANSAT, developed by the Naval Postgraduate School, was launched from the shuttle Discovery. PANSAT spread-spectrum digital transponders will be available to amateur radio operators in the near future along with software to utilize this technology. The PO-34 command station is located in Monterey, California.

Dan Sakoda, KD6DRA, PANSAT Project Manager recommends 'The ARRL Spread Spectrum Sourcebook' as a good place to start in understanding the spread-spectrum scheme.

For more information, visit the official PANSAT web site at:

[ANS thanks Dan Sakoda, KD6DRA, for this information]

SunSat SO-35

SunSat was launched February 23, 1999 aboard a Delta II rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. SunSat stands for Stellenbosch University Satellite and takes it name from the South African university whose students constructed the payload.

The second 'test' of SunSat in FM repeater mode took place on 11-July-99 and was quite successful with many stations active and a large number of contacts made through the bird.

The SunSat package includes 1200 and 9600 baud digital store-and-forward capability and a voice 'parrot' repeater system that will be used primarily for educational demonstrations. The satellite has two VHF and two UHF transmit-receive systems.

For more information on SunSat, visit the following URL:

[ANS thanks Garth Milne ZR1AFH, for this information]

UoSAT-12 UO-36

Downlink 437.025, 437.400 MHz

UoSAT-12 was successfully launched on April 21, 1999 from the Russian Baikonur Cosmodrome. UO-36 carries a number of imaging payloads, digital store-and-forward communications and mode L/S transponders.

The satellite is not currently available for general uplink transmissions.

UO-36 has been transmitting 9600-baud FSK telemetry framed in a VLSI format using a downlink frequency of 437.400 MHz. Chris, G7UPN, reports UO-36 is also transmitting on 437.025 MHz at 38,400 (38k4) baud. Presently the BBS is still closed.

S-band high speed downlink commissioning continues at rates between 128kb/s and 1Mb/s.

VK5HI TMSAT viewer software is available on the AMSAT web/ftp site at

Further information on UO-36 is available from:

[ANS thanks Chris G7UPN/ZL2TPO, and the University of Surrey, for this information]

The following satellites are in orbit but are non-operational at this time:


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

No additional information is available at this time.

DO-17 (DOVE)

Downlink 145.825 MHz FM, 1200 Baud AFSK
Beacon 2401.220 MHz

DOVE stopped transmitting in March 1998. The 145.825 MHz and 2401.220 MHz downlinks are off the air and the satellite has not responded to ground station control.

No additional information is available at this time.


Downlink 437.104 MHz SSB, 1200 Baud PSK AX.25

WO-18 is reported to be in MBL mode after a software crash.

No additional information is available at this time.


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

Unknown status. ANS has not received any recent updates concerning the status of IO-26.

No additional information is available at this time.

TechSat-1B GO-32

Downlink 435.325, 435.225 MHz
HDLC telemetry framed so a TNC in KISS mode will decode it

Unknown status. ANS has not received any recent updates concerning the current status of GO-32.

The TechSat-1B micro-satellite was successfully launched from the Russian Baikonur Cosmodrome on July 10, 1998.

Last reported, the satellite does not have a continuous beacon, but does transmit a 9600-baud burst every 30 seconds (for about 3 seconds in length), currently on 435.225 MHz.

The TechSat team has also constructed a home page about the TechSat bird. To view the site, point your web browser to:

No additional information is available at this time.


Downlink 437.910 MHz FM 9600 Baud FSK
The satellite is not currently available for uplink transmissions. Recovery efforts have been unsuccessful.

SEDSAT-1, signifying Students for the Exploration and Development of Space Satellite number one, was successfully launched and placed in orbit on Saturday, October 24, 1998.

For more information on SedSat-1 visit the satellite web site at the following URL:

No additional information is available at this time.


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

Not operational. The downlink transmitter has not been operational for any normal communication for several months.

ANS has learned (from HL0ENJ) that satellite downlink telemetry shows one of KO-23's battery cells to be very unstable.

[ANS thanks Jim Weisenberger, AA7KC, and KyungHee Kim, HL0ENJ, for KO-23 status information]

ANS would like to thank Mike Seguin, N1JEZ, ANS principal satellite investigator, for helping provide current satellite information for ANS.

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.