September 12, 1999

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Task Force for Future Technology

AMSAT-NA President Keith Baker, KB1SF, has been asked to be a member of a working group to explore the future of amateur radio technology. Under direction of the American Radio Relay League, the working group along with a technology task force will explore ideas and proposals for new technologies to carry amateur radio into the next century. "It is a great honor for me to represent AMSAT-NA on this group," said KB1SF, adding, "I am looking forward to becoming an integral part of a forward-looking team that's now helping to chart the future of our great hobby." Also appointed to the working group is long-time ANS contributor Rich Moseson, W2VU.

The ARRL Board of Directors created the Task Force and the companion Technology Working Group last January, and ARRL President Rod Stafford, W6ROD, has appointed a number of leading amateurs to serve on both panels. The Task Force and the Working Group will work hand-in-hand to identify, evaluate, and promote the most promising 21st century technologies for amateur radio.

Chairing the Task Force is ARRL First Vice President Steve Mendelsohn, W2ML. ARRL Laboratory Supervisor Ed Hare, W1RFI, will serve as ARRL HQ staff liaison to both committees.

The Task Force invites information and concepts on a wide range of technologies with the potential to improve amateur radio and welcomes the submission of ideas and proposals from all parts of the amateur community. The information gathered will be used to help formulate League policy recommendations on a wide range of technical issues.

Amateurs are welcome to submit ideas using the form on ARRLWeb at (or) via e-mail to Suggestions are requested by November 30, 1999.

[ANS congratulates KB1SF and W2VU and thanks the ARRL for this information]

ISS Update

The International Space Station's systems continue to function normally this week with no major problems.

Troubleshooting has continued on one of the Space Station's six batteries. This battery is scheduled to be replaced and may be returned to Earth for examination. Flight control teams in Houston and Moscow continue to analyze data related to electronics associated with the battery.

A pump test scheduled for next week will transfer nitrogen through portions of the Station's propellant system. The test is designed to monitor the electrical system as it supports the pump and to check the function of the pump itself. In late October the pump is to be used to transfer propellant among the tanks aboard the Space Station and prepare it for subsequent docking with the Russian-built Service Module.

The Service Module will be the third element of the Space Station and is now scheduled for launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in November.

The 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.

The Space Station is in an orbit with a high point of 244 statute miles and a low point of 234 statute miles, circling the Earth every 92 minutes. The complex has completed more than 4,550 orbits since launch of Zarya last November.

Space Station viewing opportunities worldwide are available on the Internet at

[ANS thanks NASA 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


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

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 schedules 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.


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)

Clare, VE3NPC, reports working Kimio, 8J1RL (operated by JA9BOH) via AO-10 for the first VE/8J1 QSO. Ken, WA1QXR and Mike, N1JEZ also report working Kimio. 8J1RL is located at Syowa Station, Antarctica (69.00S - 39.58E). Schedules with 8J1RL are welcome, arrange via JH3BJN ( Look for Kimo's CW downlink near 145.890 MHz.

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. Chuck, KM4NZ, recently reset the TEPR states on AO-27 at approximately 15:25 UTC on September 3, 1999.

TEPR 4 is 34 and TEPR 5 is 70

[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 is in mode JA continuously.

FO-20 continues to function quite well. Tony, AB2CJ, has been QRV on FO-20 SSTV.

[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 Sep 21 Digitalker
Sep 21 - Sep 22 JA
Sep 22 - Oct 4 Digitalker
Oct 5 - Oct 7 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

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.

AO-16 has operated continuously for over 1,800 days since its last software reload.

AO-16 telemetry is as follows:

Time is Fri Sep 10 21:58:50 1999 uptime is 1818/16:17:13
+X (RX) Temp    -9.078 D  	RX Temp          5.444 D
Baseplt Temp      2.419 D  	RC PSK BP Temp  -5.448 D
RC PSK HPA Tmp  -2.422 D  	+Y Array Temp  -22.390 D
PSK TX HPA Tmp  -5.448 D  	+Z Array Temp  -14.524 D
RC PSK TX Out    0.599 W  	+10V Bus        10.400 V
Total Array C= 0.000 Bat Ch Cur=-0.395 Ifb= 0.182 I+10V= 0.230

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. The digipeater is active.

LO-19 telemetry is as follows:

Time is Fri Sep 10 22:38:29 1999 uptime is 406/09:03:51
+X (RX) Temp   -10.526 D  	RX Temp         -0.430 D
Total Array C= 0.008 Bat Ch Cur=-0.252 Ifb= 0.122 I+10V= 0.136
TX:016 BCR:1E PWRC:62D BT:3C WC: 0

Variations are observed in the RC PSK TX Out power, between 0.127 and 0.547 watts in the same work window.

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:

PanSat is the featured cover article in the July/August issue of the AMSAT-NA Journal (written by KD6DRA and N7HPR).

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

SunSat SO-35

Semi-operational. Modes of operation and uplink/downlink frequencies have yet to be officially established.

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 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.

SunSat has been in mode-J recently. Walter, IW8ZGH, reports working RU6BL with very strong signals. Geoff, VK3JDG, reported a S-9 pass. North American stations active on SO-35 included K5OE and KK5DO. KK5DO, recorded the U.S. pass. Listen to the pass in RealAudio at

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. The S-band downlink frequency has not been announced.

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:

Mir Space Station

Ham radio activity aboard the Mir space station came to a close on August 28, 1999 as the crew returned to Earth, leaving the station unmanned. Mir is in a stable orbit with only essential systems running. All amateur radio activities have ceased. Currently, the station is being prepared for re-entry sometime in the first quarter of 2000. However, the final fate of the space station has not been formally announced. Stay tuned to ANS for further developments.

Current Amateur Radio equipment aboard Mir includes:

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
Not operational.


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.

Mineo, JE9PEL, reports he has again received minimal telemetry from the satellite recently, dated August 30, 31 and September 1st.

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

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 two (or more) of KO-23's battery cells to be very unstable. Ground control stations are operating KO-23 with only minimum systems. Attitude control has been lost and power failures are being experienced every two months. Control stations will try to verify current power status during September and decide if recovery is possible.

[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, with help from AMSAT Executive Vice President Robin Haighton, VE3FRH.