February 15, 2004

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Echo Launch Delay

Due to a delay in the delivery of the primary payload to the launch site, I have been informed that the launch of Echo has been delayed by some 3 months. The "official" launch date is now June 29 2004.

I assume that this new date is the start of the new launch window which may last several weeks. As and when more information becomes available I will keep you informed.

Robin Haighton VE3FRH
President AMSAT-NA

[ANS thanks Robin, VE3FRH for the above information]

ARISS Status

Articles on U.K. School Contact

Mike Foale, KB5UAC, generated much excitement over his January 28 ARISS contact with The King's School. The BBC ran an article on Foale's contact, entitled 'Old boy calls school from orbit.' To view the article, see

The ARRL also ran an article on Foale's contact entitled, 'Foale Speaks via Ham Radio to Students at his Alma Mater.' See:

An audio recording of the contact is available on the ARISS-Europe website. Go to Under Archives, click entry 31/01/2004. Video of the contact can be found at:

Texas School Contact, a Big Success

James Bay Elementary School in Houston, Texas made contact with the ISS on Wednesday, February 4. The students asked 18 questions, of which two of these were asked by Mike Foale's son. Audio of the contact is available at The James Bay entry is located toward the bottom of the page.

Expedition 9 Crew Change

NASA announced a crew change for Expedition 9. Mike Fincke will replace Leroy Chiao and will be the ISS science officer and flight engineer. Gennady Padalka, RN3DT, will be the Expedition 9 commander. Fincke has expressed interest in earning his amateur radio license prior to launch so that he may participate in the ARISS Educational Outreach Program.

ARRL Article on Columbia Memorial

On February 3, ARRL ran a Web story about NASA dedicating a memorial to the Columbia crew members entitled, "NASA dedicates memorial, Martian landmarks to shuttle Columbia crew." See:

Phase 1 Hardware Status

The ARISS team is taking additional steps to get the Phase 1 packet capability fully operational again. Kenneth Ransom, of JSC, has drafted an email to Mike Foale to inquire as to the status of the computer system on the Phase 1 system in the FGB.

Phase 2 Radio System Engineering Checkout Passes

ARISS Russian delegate Sergej Samburov, RV3DR, reported that Engineering Checkout tests were run during a pass over Russia on February 2. The ARISS U.S. team is still working on scheduling its pass to checkout the Kenwood Radio System.

[ANS thanks ARISS for the above information]

2004 AMSAT-DC Meeting and Space Seminar

WHO All ham radio operators, students and educators are invited.
WHAT Talks, demos, tutorials and socializing about amateur satellites and balloon experiments in the mid-Atlantic area.
WHEN Sunday, March 21, 2004, starting at 12:00 noon EST.
WHERE NASA GSFC Visitor Center auditorium, Greenbelt, Md. 20771
WHY Fun, education, public service, cool, and more fun.
HOW Talk-in on 146.835 MHz WA3NAN/R and on APRS map.
HOST Pat Kilroy, N8PK,
WEB See for late breaking info.

The local AMSAT members invite all space enthusiasts to the next Maryland-DC area annual AMSAT Meeting and Space Seminar. Students, educators, experimenters and all amateur radio operators are welcome. We start at 12:00 noon this year. Mark your calendar for Sunday, March 21. Same place as last year, namely the Visitor Center auditorium at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) in Greenbelt, Maryland.

The topics relate to the amateur space program, amateur radio, homebrew electronic projects, high-altitude balloon experiments, telemetry and related items.

The format is a combination of presentations, informal "show 'n' tell" demonstrations and a social period. Normally the first presentations and the keynote address are designed to be especially valuable for the beginner satellite operator.

Informal talk-in is on WA3NAN/R 146.835 MHz Greenbelt. The Visitor Center phone number is 301-286-8981.

Donations will be accepted to help offset the associated seminar costs. Free paved parking is available on site.

Map and directions:

Note: From Soil Conservation Service Road turn west onto Explorer Road. The meeting place coordinates are roughly N 38° 59' 34.8", W076° 50' 48.8".

Unlike previous meeting years, the NASA GSFC Visitor Center and the Gift Shop is NOT open to the general public on Sunday.

DUE TO SECURITY RESTRICTIONS observed at this facility, our meeting here is contingent upon the national Homeland Security Level being no higher than ELEVATED (Code Yellow) on the meeting date. See or for the security level in effect.
Information and late breaking news can be found at

This meeting is open to all. Please forward this message, print this out, post it and SPREAD THE WORD.

Hope to see you there!

Pat Kilroy, N8PK
AMSAT Area Coordinator (MDC Section)

[ANS thanks Pat Kilroy, N8PK for the above information]

AMSAT Journal Mailed

I have been informed by our mailer that the January/February issue of The AMSAT Journal will be mailed from suburban Maryland today (2/12/04 Ed.)

[ANS thanks Martha, AMSAT Manager for the above information]

Echo Satellite Integration Web Site

A web site has been created which shows the integration and lab testing of the Echo satellite. It contains images of the modules and on-air recordings of the testing taken in December 2003 at SpaceQuest in Fairfax, VA

The site can be found at:

The Integration Team expressed their thanks to the following for their support during integration:

The webpage author is KE4AZN and maybe contacted at

[ANS Editor, Dave, G4DPZ]

Weekly Satellite Report

Link to the weekly report on satellite ...

All Satellites
ISS. RS-12. RS-13. RS-15. 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

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This week's AMSAT News Service bulletins were edited by AMSAT News Service Editor Dave Johnson, G4DPZ,