AMSAT-NA AMSAT News Service

June 8, 2003

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AO-40 Update

As of 2003 June 5, AO-40's attitude was ALON / ALAT = 342 / 0.

The passband schedule has been shifted slightly to correspond with the changing attitude as shown in the table below.

N  QST AMSAT AO-40          SCHEDULE                2003-06-01
                MA      002   030   130   244   002
                ---------7-----1-----5-----0-----7
                S2/K-Tx  |  S  |  S  |  S  |  S  |
                MB       |  *  |  *  |  *  |  *  |
                RUDAK    |     |     |     |     |
                V/U-Rx   |  U  |  U  |  U  |  V  |
                Uplink   |     | UL1 |     |     |

[ANS thanks Stacey, W4SM, for the above information]

PCSat2 Testing Continues

PCsat <=> PCSAT2 constellation test success.

On 02 June 2003 PCSAT2 (fully configured flight prototype) was rolled out onto the plaza for the 1210z pass of PCsat for a dual-satellite constellation test. Since PCSAT2 was in its normal flight configuration (but sitting on the ground), this would demonstrate the range over which the two spacecraft could communicate on orbit between their whip antennas. The results were excellent!

PCSAT2 was set to transmit a packet via PCsat once every 20 seconds. Both birds on 145.825 MHz. These packets normally compete with other user packets. Since the channel is contention based 100% throughput is never expected. But a success means that the two spacecraft can communicate over that range. There were 7 other spacecraft users at the time.

TIME     AZ  EL RANGE   Comments
-------- --- -- ------- ------------------------------------
08:10:18 Finished commanding PCsat into proper mode for test
08:10:29 107 49 1024 km Success
08:10:49 095 48 1040 km not heard
08:11:05 087 46 1066 km Success
08:11:25 078 43 1112 km not heard
08:11:45 070 39 1173 km Success
08:12:05 064 36 1246 km not heard
08:12:25 059 32 1329 km Success
08:12:45 055 29 1420 km Success
08:13:05 051 26 1510 km not heard
08:13:24 049 23 1616 km not heard.  Blocked by Rickover Building

Then it rained again. The PCSat2 team had been waiting to do this test for almost 2 weeks. At this time it is not known if the ultimate range is about 1500 km or whether we could have heard more if the building had not intervened. There was no success before the time shown, as that time was spent commanding PCsat to the proper mode. It will be at least 2 weeks before there is another opportunity for this type of testing.

Bob Bruinga, WB4APR, adds, "We hope others that are building small AX.25 packet satellites will consider including a TNC digipeater on 145.825 to add to this amateur satellite constellation."

Bob also reports that PCSAT2's July launch has been delayed to January pending resumption of Shuttle flights.

[ANS thanks Bob, WB4APR, for the above information]

Field Day Planning for AO-40

A-40 should return to ALON/ALAT = 0/0 about June 20th. We can stay at ALON/ALAT = 0/0 until early October, when another cycle of attitude changes will have to start. A typical passband schedule for ALON/ALAT = 0/0 is MA 40 to 210. This has the passbands active when the squint is approximately 30 degrees or less. Barring an unforeseen problem, plan on a similar schedule for field day. AO-40 will be visible by all of North America at the start of field day, Saturday June 28th This is all based on making it back to 0/0 by June 20th. We should at least be close to that value by then, though the perigee eclipses are making it slow going to advance ALON.

[ANS thanks Stacey, W4SM, for the above information]

FO-29 Data Requested

The JARL FO-29 command station is carefully considering options to turn on FO-29's transmitter because it is not clear why FO-29 became silent. The command team would like to receive reception reports. If you hear FO-29, please report the time (UTC), location, signal strength etc. to Masa, JN1GKZ at jn1gkz@qsl.net or to the AMSAT-BB. Masa will pass the reports on to the command station.

Telemetry data recorded on 31 May and 1 Jun just before FO-20 became silent would be very helpful as the command team's attempts to determine what happened on FO-29.

[ANS thanks Masa, JN1GKZ, for the above information]

This Week's News in Brief

Weekly Satellite Report

Link to the weekly report on satellite ...

All Satellites
ISS. RS-12. RS-13. RS-15. RS-20. AO-7. AO-10. UO-11. UO-14. AO-16. LO-19. FO-20. UO-22. KO-23. KO-25. IO-26. AO-27. FO-29. GO-32. SO-33. PO-34. UO-36. AO-40. SO-41. SO-42. NO-44. NO-45. MO-46. AO-49. SO-50


Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to the ANS Editors at ans-editor@amsat.org

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This week's AMSAT News Service bulletins were edited by AMSAT News Service Editor Lee McLamb, KU4OS, ku4os@amsat.org

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