AMSAT-NA AMSAT News Service

September 19, 1999

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Mir Status

Several news agencies are reporting that Mir's central computer along with other dedicated systems have now been switched off in an effort to save energy on the orbiter. The space station may also see other systems taken 'off line' during the next six months of unmanned flight.

Russian ground controllers waited until after the station's last permanent crew returned to Earth and also allowed Mir's interior to completely dry before switching temperature controls to a minimum, safe level. With the main computer switched off, Mir's orientation system will now allow the space station to rotate freely in orbit. Controllers will adjust the station's position in orbit if they see energy or temperature levels dropping below the safe minimum.

Energy conservation is needed to allow enough power to be available for the docking of a final crew in February or March of 2000. This 'cleanup crew' is expected to spend about a month aboard the station as they gradually lower Mir's orbit. Under the current schedule, immediately after the cosmonauts leave, ground controllers will lower the orbit of the 140-ton station and allow it to burn it up in the atmosphere, guiding any remnants into the Pacific ocean. AMSAT News Service should note, however, the final fate of the space station still has not been formally announced.

All amateur radio operation on board Mir came to a close on August 28, 1999 as the last active crew returned to Earth.

AMSAT France was actively involved in the FX0STB operation on Mir by French astronaut Jean-Pierre Haignere. During his 6-month stay on the station Jean-Pierre made a number of two way voice contacts (along with SSTV transmissions) to the great pleasure of ham stations around the world and the school children of many countries.

In order to provide a FX0STB confirmation card, AMSAT-France is currently designing a special QSL card. In order to receive this card, stations are invited to send a QSL request including:

AMSAT-France suggests using the following address:

AMSAT France
FX0STB QSL Manager
14 bis rue des Gourlis
F-92500 RUEIL-MALMAISON
France

AMSAT-France also recommends a self addressed envelope with the proper International Reply Coupon(s) for return postage.

[ANS thanks AMSAT-France, Florida Today and SpaceDaily for this information]

Zvezda Service Module Update

The Zvezda Service Module, the cornerstone of Russia's contribution to the International Space Station, is currently scheduled for launch on or near November 12, 1999. The launch will take place from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

The 'official' launch date will be set at the conclusion of a joint program review between NASA and the Russian Aviation and Space Agency along with the General Designer's Review of launch preparations by RSC-Energia in Moscow.

The program review will take place in late September.

Zvezda is the Russian-built module that will serve as the early living quarters for the first resident crew and will provide control of the ISS until the arrival of the U.S. built 'Destiny' laboratory next year.

The European Space Agency is providing the Data Management System (DMS) or 'brain' of the Russian service module. ESA's contribution to Zvezda covered the development of an on-board computer hardware and software system and associated ground systems. Finished in October 1997, the DMS is the first delivery of ESA flight hardware within the International Space Station program to another international partner.

Ultimately, ESA's Data Management System will not only control the service module itself, but also perform overall control, mission and failure management of the Russian Segment of the ISS, along with providing overall guidance and navigation functions for the entire station complex itself.

Stay tuned to ANS for further ISS updates.

[ANS thanks the European Space Agency and Florida Today for this information]

AMSAT-NA BOD Election Results

AMSAT-NA Corporate Secretary Martha Saragovitz recently announced the results of the latest Board of Directors election for the Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation (AMSAT-NA). Martha tells ANS a total of 1,242 AMSAT-NA members cast ballots in this year's election.

The results are as follows:

Dick Daniels, W4PUJ 1,118 votes
Bill Tynan, W3XO 1,049 votes
Robin Haighton, VE3FRH 1,005 votes
Barry Baines, WD4ASW 993 votes
Mike Gilchrist, KF4FDJ 569 votes

Dick Daniels, W4PUJ, Bill Tynan, W3XO, Robin Haighton, VE3FRH, and Barry Baines, WD4ASW, were elected to serve on the Board for a two year term. Mike Gilchrist, KF4FDJ, will serve as the alternate until the next election. The newly elected board members will join their counterparts in San Diego at the site of the AMSAT-NA annual meeting, which follows the upcoming AMSAT-NA Symposium.

ANS congratulates all the candidates and salutes their dedication to AMSAT and to the worldwide Amateur Radio satellite community.

[ANS thanks AMSAT-NA Corporate Secretary Martha Saragovitz and Bill Hook, W3QBC, 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

RS-12

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.

RS-13

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
  Moscow
  Russia

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: http://www.qsl.net/ac5dk/rs1213/rs1213.html

AC5DK's RS-12/13 Satellite Forum: http://www.hotboards.com/powerforum/pwrforum.exe?who=rs1213

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

RS-15

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 http://home.san.rr.com/doguimont/uploads

AO-10

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

Kimo, 8J1RL has been active from Syowa Station, Antarctica. Operation will continue to the end of January 2000. Schedules with 8J1RL are welcome, arrange via JH3BJN (jh3bjn@amsat.org). Look for Kimo's CW downlink near 145.890 MHz. QSL to:

Kimio Maekawa
67-9 Shimo-Asoujima
OONO-FUKUI 912
Japan

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 http://www.din.or.jp/~m-arai/ao10/beacone.htm

Stacey Mills, W4SM, has more information about the satellite at http://www.cstone.net/~w4sm/AO-10.html

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

AO-27

Uplink 145.850 MHz FM
Downlink: 436.792 MHz FM
Operational.

Mike, N1JEZ, was recently active from Bailey Island, Maine (FN53).

Chuck, KM4NZ, recently reset the TEPR states on AO-27 (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
Operational.

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]

FO-29

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.

Mike, N1JEZ, has confirmed FO-29 is currently in digi-talker mode.

Mike, KF4FDJ, has put together a very informative document on FO-29, addressing analog, digital and digi-talker modes. To obtain a copy e-mail Mike at: kf4fdj@amsat.org

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 http://www.ne.jp/asahi/hamradio/je9pel/

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

KO-25

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

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

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

UO-22

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

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 http://www.sstl.co.uk

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

OSCAR-11

Downlink 145.825 MHz FM, 1200 baud PSK
Beacon 2401.500 MHz
Operational.

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:

http://www.users.zetnet.co.uk/clivew/

[ANS thanks Clive Wallis, G3CWV, for OSCAR-11 status information]

AMSAT-OSCAR-16 (PACSAT)

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.

General information and telemetry WOD files can be found at http://www.ctv.es/USERS/ea1bcu

A complete collection of WOD graphics corresponding to the year of 1998 can be found at http://www.ctv.es/USERS/ea1bcu/wod1998.zip

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

LUSAT-OSCAR-19

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.

General information and telemetry samples can be found at http://www.ctv.es/USERS/ea1bcu/lo19.htm

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

TMSAT-1 TO-31

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

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:

http://www.amsat.org/amsat/software/win32/wisp

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

PANSAT PO-34

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:

http://www.sp.nps.navy.mil/pansat/

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. ON1DLL, VK3JDG and WY4D were active on the transponder. Bruce, KK5DO, has recorded several SO-35 passes in RealAudio, check out the following web site to listen: http://www.amsatnet.com.

For more information on SunSat, visit the following URL:

http://sunsat.ee.sun.ac.za

[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 ftp://ftp.amsat.org/amsat/software/win32/display/ccddsp97-119.zip

Further information on UO-36 is available from: http://www.sstl.co.uk/

[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.

RS-16

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
Non-operational.

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.

WEBERSAT (WO-18)

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

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

No additional information is available at this time.

ITAMSAT IO-26

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:

http://techsat.internet-zahav.net/

No additional information is available at this time.

SEDSAT SO-33

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 http://www.seds.org/sedsat

No additional information is available at this time.

KITSAT KO-23

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 ans-editor@amsat.org, or to ANS Editor Dan James, NN0DJ, at nn0dj@amsat.org.

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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.

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