June 16, 2002

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FCC NPRM on Orbital Debris

The FCC have issued a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM), concerning orbital debris which comprise a wide range of objects, as small as paint flakes and as large as dead spacecraft, rocket bodies and break-up debris from exploded spacecraft.

In space, because of the high relative velocities involved, even some of the smaller objects, particularly those greater than 0.1 mm in diameter, are capable of producing significant impact damage. For debris objects larger than 1 mm in diameter, impact damage can include significant structural damage to a satellite. Objects larger than approximately 1 cm in diameter can produce catastrophic damage to other space objects.

A group of AMSAT-NA experts is to meet and develop a response to the NPRM after consultation with ARRL and input from our colleagues in other AMSATs. To get a PDF copy (42 pages) of the NPRM go to

[ANS thanks FCC and AMSAT for this information.]

S-Band Frequencies in Danger!

The AMSAT-NA Board of Directors is reviewing the large number of un-licensed systems which are being activated in the 2.4 GHz band. These systems are being used for high speed digital communications.

Although these systems are not licensed they are permitted to operate (under Part 15) with low power (100mW or 1W spread spectrum). AMSAT-NA and ARRL are to meet in order to develop a joint strategy about S band, as both organizations anticipate that interference may become a problem area as more of the unlicensed equipment becomes available, and could start using higher power. Currently there are two amateur satellites (UO-11 and AO-40) operating transmitters in the 2.4 GHz band and both OSCAR-Echo and Eagle are being designed to have transmitters in S Band.

In addition there are various ATV systems and other amateur communication systems around 2.4 GHz.

If you have experienced interference with your 2.4 GHz reception of AO-40 from one of these digital systems, please send details to

[ANS Thanks AMSAT-NA President, Robin Haighton VE3FRH for this above information]

Second Call for Papers (repeat item)

ANS has announced the 20th Space Symposium and AMSAT-NA Annual Meeting, scheduled for November 7-11, 2002 in Fort Worth, Texas. The event will chronicle recent and future amateur radio satellite technology developments, including an electronic surplus stores tour on November 7th; a Field Operations breakfast and a tour of the Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company on November 10th; and the AMSAT-NA Board of Directors Meeting November 10th.

This is the second "Call For Papers" to be presented during the 2002 Symposium.

Papers may be presented by the author during the Symposium, or simply offered for inclusion in the Symposium Proceedings publication.

The subject matter should be of general interest to amateur radio operators involved in satellite communications. Suggested topics include; operating techniques, antenna design and construction, spacecraft design and construction, current mission status, proposed satellite missions, telemetry acquisition and relay, satellite microwave projects, etc.

A brief abstract of the proposed paper (in outline format) should be submitted as soon as possible. The final date for abstracts is July 8, 2002. Copy-ready papers must be received no later than August 26, 2002.

Electronic submittal is preferred. The format must be either MS Word compatible or in plain text. Please e-mail your electronic submittals to Doug Howard at

[ANS thanks Keith Pugh, W5IU, the 2002 event chairman]

STS-111 News Release

The information contained in this report is a compilation of the last 24 hours of new updates. Older items are removed daily during the mission.

Time Posted News Item
6/15/2002 7:34:59 Following a brief farewell between the crews, hatches were closed between Endeavour and the International Space Station at 7:23 a.m. Central time, marking an end to almost eight days of operations between the ten astronauts and cosmonauts to continue the assembly and maintenance of the complex and to deliver the new Expedition Five crew for the start of its 4 1/2 month stay on board the ISS.

Endeavour is scheduled to undock from the ISS at 9:32 a.m. Central time, with landing at the Kennedy Space Center planned for 11:59 a.m. Central time, 12:59 p.m. Eastern time on Monday.

6/15/2002 4:19:38 With all the major objectives of the STS-111 mission accomplished, Endeavour's astronauts will bid farewell to the new Expedition Five crew and undock from the International Space Station today, leaving ISS Commander Valery Korzun and Flight Engineers Peggy Whitson and Sergei Treschev to begin their 4 1/2 month stay on board the complex.

After final farewells and the closing of the hatches between the two vehicles, Endeavour will undock from the ISS at 9:32 a.m. Central time as the two craft fly over western Kazakhstan, not far from Russia's primary launch site at the Baikonur Cosmodrome.

The initial separation will be provided by springs that will gently push the shuttle away from the station. When Endeavour is about two feet away from the station and the docking devices are clear of one another, Pilot Paul Lockhart will fire Endeavour's steering jets to begin slowly moving away.

[ANS Thanks A.Z.Rowe and the AMSAT Sarex team for this information.]

ANS in Brief

ANS news in brief this week includes the following:

Weekly Satellite Report

Link to the weekly report on satellite ...

All Satellites
ISS . RS-12 . RS-13 . RS-15 . AO-10 . UO-11 . UO-14 . AO-16 . DO-17 . WO-18 . LO-19 . FO-20 . UO-22 . KO-23 . KO-25 . IO-26 . AO-27 . FO-29 . TO-31 . GO-32 . SO-33 . PO-34 . SO-35 . UO-36 . AO-40 . SO-41 . SO-42 . NO-44 . NO-45 . MO-46

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

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This week's AMSAT News Service bulletins were edited by AMSAT  President Robin Haighton, VE3FRH.