AMSAT-NA What's New

For what's really new, see the latest issue of the AMSAT News Service bulletins.


The list below points out interesting new pages that you might otherwise miss. It doesn't include minor adjustments to pages, routine updates of current news pages, or new articles featured on the home page. For recent updates to the downloadable software from FTP.AMSAT.ORG, see the software change log.


May 14, 2004
The original user's manual and software for the Kansas City Tracker is now available for download.
April 4, 2004
The Telemetry Format Specification for AMSAT-Echo has been released.
February 18, 2004
The enabling document for the AMSAT Endowment Fund Committee (pdf), created by the Board in December 2003, has been added to the AMSAT-NA Information page.
January 15, 2004
The AMSAT Journal Author's Guide has been added to the AMSAT-NA Information page.
July 16, 2003
AMSAT's audited financial statement for 2001-2002 has been added to the AMSAT-NA Information page.
July 12, 2003
AMSAT's tax returns for 1999-2001 have been added to the AMSAT-NA Information page.
July 12, 2003
QSL card inserts to help AMSAT find new members have been added to the membership page.
March 18, 2003
Reprints of the December 1974 AMSAT Newsletter featuring AMSAT OSCAR-7 are now available on the books catalog page.
January 27, 2003
A FAQ on Using Amateur-Satellite Service Frequencies has been contributed by Art Feller, W4ART.
September 17, 2002
An archive of AMSAT Regulatory Filings was added a few weeks ago, and has been updated today.
September 11, 2002
The Am1601 is a FPGA-based processor for IPS to be used aboard future spacecraft. The Programmer's Reference manual is now available.
September 4, 2002
An IPS (Interpreter for Process Structures) page has been added, including information about obtaining a language reference manual and IPS emulators for DOS and Windows.
May 23, 2002
There are two new InstantTrack tutorials, concentrating on automatic updating of Keplerian elements.
April 17, 2002
Items from the AMSAT catalog can now be ordered online.
February 23, 2002
Added a CD-ROMs page to the AMSAT-NA catalog.
February 9, 2002
Updated Satellite Summary, Brief History of Amateur Satellites, and Future Amateur Satellites. Created new satellite pages for TiungSat-1, SaudiSat-41, and SaudiSat-42. (N7HPR)
November 5, 2001
Added a hardware page to the AMSAT-NA catalog. AMSAT now distributes the Kansas City Tracker/Tuner.
March 5, 2001
Future Satellites web page updated with links to CESAR-1 and CubeSat projects.
March 4, 2001
The system (web, FTP, email, everything) was inaccessible from sometime on Friday until mid-afternoon (PST) today. The DNS server (on a non-AMSAT machine provided by our hosts) had crashed. The problem has been resolved. Some email to mail aliases may have been lost or "bounced" with an error message to the sender, but mostly it should have just been delayed. Sorry for any inconvenience.
February 12, 2001
Tips on Downloading Keplerian elements for InstantTrack are now available.
February 2, 2001
Mailing list web archives are now available.
November 19, 2000
A page about AO-40 (Phase 3D) telemetry has been added.
November 16, 2000
A page containing AO-40 (Phase 3D) Keplerian elements has been added, with regular updates by Ken Ernandes, N2WWD.
November 5, 2000
A new InstantTrack page is now available, together with the release of version 1.50 of that program. The InstantTrack FAQ has also been updated for the new release.
January 26, 2000
A list of AMSAT Area Coordinators is now available by FTP. Also, a toolkit of presentation material for use in giving talks about AMSAT is available.
January 25, 2000
Ray Soifer's new AO-27 FAQ is now available.
January 18, 2000
The first preliminary information on the 2000 Space Symposium and AMSAT-NA Annual Meeting is now available.
November 7, 1999
An explanation of AO-27 TEPR states has been added.
July 8, 1999
Registration forms are now available for the 1999 Space Symposium and AMSAT-NA Annual Meeting in San Diego.
June 19, 1999
A new 30th Anniversary cloth patch has been added to the trinkets catalog.
April 9, 1999
AMSAT A to Z, an alphabetical keyword-based index of the AMSAT-NA web pages, is now available to help you find stuff more easily.
February 3, 1999
James Miller, G3RUH, has added four more articles to his collection.
January 31, 1999
The Spacecraft Information pages have been updated for the first time in a long while, thanks to Steve Bible, N7HPR.
January 22, 1999
The Articles of Incorporation, Certificate of Incorporation, original Bylaws, and current Bylaws have been added to the AMSAT-NA Information page.
September 3, 1998
We're now providing an easier-to-remember URL as a jump point to the AMSAT-SM (Sweden) web pages.
July 5, 1998
The mailing list services are now automated via Majordomo. The mailing list info pages have been updated to reflect the changes.
May 19, 1998
A description of one-line "Charlie" format Keplerian elements has been added to the Keplerian elements formats page.
February 14, 1998
An extensive set of Frequently-Asked Questions about InstantTrack is now available on the FAQs & Intros page.
January 31, 1998
The High-Altitude Balloon page has been updated by its new volunteer maintainer, Hank Riley, N1LTV.
January 17, 1998
A Who's Who page has been added to the AMSAT-NA organizational info. Thanks to Bruce Paige, KK5DO, for the suggestion.
November 2, 1997
The WWW server software has been upgraded to the latest and greatest stable release (Apache 1.2.4). The cookies you've complained about should be gone now. Please let me know if you discover any new problems.
September 16, 1997
The new (not so new anymore, really) Amateur Radio's Future Today sticker and patch design is now visible on the trinkets catalog page.
July 5, 1997
A few of the Houston net scripts have been updated by Bruce Paige, KK5DO.
June 20, 1997
The system is running a new version of the operating system (BSDI 3.0) and a new version of the Web server (Apache 1.1.3) now. There have been a few kinks, but I think they have been worked out. If you have any problems, send mail to KB5MU.
June 15, 1997
The AMSAT News Service bulletins are now formatted for reading on the Web. The plain text versions are still available too.
May 25, 1997
The Field Day Rules have been updated for 1997. There are no substantive changes from last year's rules.
May 20, 1997
Bdale Garbee, N3EUA, has updated the P3D Rudak page to include more photos taken by Lyle Johnson, WA7GXD, of Rudak testing in April 1997.
May 1, 1997
Bdale Garbee, N3EUA, has updated the P3D Rudak page to include a set of photos taken by Lyle Johnson, WA7GXD, of Rudak testing in late March 1997.
April 7, 1997
Jim White, WD0E, has contributed an article entitled The Case for Polarization Switching to the collection of FAQs and Intros. It explains why you might want to have circularly polarized antennas that can be switched between left-hand and right-hand circular polarization.
March 22, 1997
In February 1997, the AMSAT-NA Board of Directors approved this Background Information for Prospective Owners and Operators of Satellites Utilizing Frequencies Allocated to the Amateur-Satellite Service.
March 22, 1997
The Amateur Satellite Resource Guide featured recently has been updated with a fancier .PDF file provided by N1JEZ.
March 19, 1997
Thanks to Gould Smith, WA4SXM, the AMSAT Journal Index has been updated through February 1997.
February 27, 1997
A questionnaire on the AMSAT Internet services is now open for business for a limited time.
February 6, 1997
In case you're among those wondering why the Keplerian elements for AO-10 are so old, an explanation from Stacey Mills from the AMSAT-BB mailing list has been posted.
February 6, 1997
Doug Howard, KG5OA, has put together an extensive page of information and links about high-altitude balloons.
February 2, 1997
Initial information on the 1997 Space Symposium is now available, with a call for papers.
January 4, 1997
A bug fix to the grid-square converter. The center-of-gridsquare logic was screwed up. In addition, conversions to degrees-minutes-seconds now always get exact answers, instead of being off by a few seconds due to roundoff.
December 17, 1996
If you had trouble with those RealAudio files (see next item), please try again now. You may have to clear out your browser's cache for the fix to take effect.
December 15, 1996
The Sounds from the First Satellites feature page has been updated to make the sounds available in RealAudio format, which is much smaller than the old format. The half-rate OSCAR-1 sample was also rebuilt, and may be compatible with more player programs now.
December 1, 1996
The presentation The View From Below: Thoughts on P3D Groundstations made by Ed Krome, KA9LNV, at the 1996 Dayton Hamvention and the 1996 AMSAT Space Symposium is now available for your use in making Phase 3D presentations. It is available in a variety of file formats for your convenience; see the 00readme.txt file in the FTP directory for details.
November 24, 1996
An improved subject index for the Satgen bulletins is now available.
November 18, 1996
NASA Keplerian elements for AO-13 are now available and updated at least daily by Ken Ernandes, N2WWD, and Dennis Caton, KF0JT.
October 20, 1996
Pages for Fuji OSCAR-29 and Mexico OSCAR-30 have been added to the Satellite Summary pages by Steve Bible, N7HPR.
October 19, 1996
An update to the GPS and Rudak pages for Phase-3D by N3EUA.
October 14, 1996
AMSAT-NA's Comments on the Discussion Paper published by the IARU's Future of the Amateur Service Committee are now available, along with the Board of Directors meeting minutes discussing them. Thanks to Ray Soifer for providing the text.
October 5, 1996
I found a source (the Celestial WWW [now CelesTrak) for the infamous Spacetrack Report No. 3 (1.1 megabytes in PDF format), the NORAD report that defines the common mathematical models used to predict satellite orbits. Most amateur radio tracking programs use a simplified version of the simplest model described in this highly mathematical report. I've copied it to this site, and added a link on the Keps page.
August 17, 1996
A number of AMSAT Press Releases have been furnished by Keith Baker, KB1SF.
July 28, 1996
Information on awards sponsored by AMSAT-NA has been added, courtesy of Mike Scarcella, wa5twt@amsat.org.
July 14, 1996
There is a new paper describing the development of the Magnetic-Bearing Momentum Wheels. The paper was presented at the International Symposium on Small Satellites in Annecy, France. DL1FDT
June 2, 1996
A minor ease-of-use improvement in the grid-square converter. The text input fields (especially the minutes and seconds fields of the latitude and longitude) were exact-size, which meant that if your browser defaults to insert mode in text fields, you could type your value and it would look right, but actually your value would have been appended to the default value, leading to confusing results. I made the fields a little wider so you can see when that happens.
May 31, 1996
Uh ... fixed another bug in the grid-square converter. The previous fix didn't work the *first* time you used it. I've had reports of problems with some Web browsers; if you are having any trouble now please let me know, and tell me which browser(s) you are using.
May 30, 1996
Fixed a bug in the grid-square converter. It wasn't handing South latitude or East longitude when converting lat/lon to gridsquare - it was folding everything into my quarter of the world. Thanks to Don Ferguson for point out the error.
May 27, 1996
As an exercise, I have cobbled together a Web-based grid-square converter. Please check it out and let me know what you think.
May 25, 1996
The Field Day page has been updated to the 1996 rules, from the May/June 1996 AMSAT Journal article by Andy MacAllister, WA5ZIB.
April 21, 1996
I've finally put the new Phase3D pages into the public, for everyone to see. I was working on them since November 95, mostly during my stay in Orlando. The new pages are far from perfection - in fact there is much more to do - but it is a beginning. DL1FDT
April 11, 1996
I cribbed the Rules for Using the AMSAT OSCAR QSL Bureau from the AMSAT Journal article by Walt Rader, WA3DMF.
April 4, 1996
Steve Bible has revamped the Future Amateur Satellites page to include more of the current projects going on worldwide. Let him know if he missed any.
April 2, 1996
Steve Bible has revamped the Brief History of Amateur Satellites page, adding history up through the present.
March 7, 1996
A status report (with pictures) of the JAMSAT SCOPE Project to build cameras for Phase 3D is now available, courtesy of Kasia Shigekazu, JG2BVO, JAMSAT director.
January 21, 1996
A link to the SouthEast Michigan AMSAT Net page was added to the section on local AMSAT nets.
January 21, 1996
A few links to AMSAT-DL and the AMSAT-DL Journal have been scattered around.
January 21, 1996
A few of KO-23's images have been added, with a reference on the KO-23 page.
January 21, 1996
A picture of JAS-2 from JARL News has been added to the Future Satellites page.
January 21, 1996
A picture of the old spaceframe design for Phase3D has been added to the Phase 3D page. New line art of Phase 3D (courtesy of Christian Hollmann, SM0CRT) is used as a banner.
January 21, 1996
Ongoing AMSAT projects are now given billing on the main page. A new page for SAREX gathers together some links for SAREX-related pages, including a new page contributed by Bill Bard, WD4IXI, which lists shuttle audio relay frequencies. The entry for the TAPR/AMSAT DSP-93 project is just a link to the page on TAPR's site.
January 1, 1996
A brief project overview and some CPU board pictures have been added to the Phase-3D GPS Receiver page.
December 18, 1995
A reference to the Phase-3D GPS Receiver page was added to the Phase 3D page. The Rudak-U design review information and pictures have moved here from their former home at Garbee and Garbee.
December 14, 1995
The beginnings of a Phase-3D GPS Receiver page, with a few photos from the on-going integration activity in Colorado.
December 11, 1995
To make it easier to find out about updates to software, I've added a change log for downloadable software. If you're interested in the latest and greatest versions of amateur satellite software, check the log regularly. This supplements the existing index of downloadable software, which is also updated regularly.
November 12, 1995
A couple of pictures of the Propellant Flow Assembly have been added to the Phase 3D page, courtesy of Dick Daniels, W4PUJ.
October 24, 1995
Ken Ernandes, N2WWD, has agreed to maintain the current Space Shuttle orbital data on line during missions. The data is available in Vector format, NASA 2-line format, and AMSAT format, and should usually be very current.
September 17, 1995
One more article by Howard Sodja, W6SHP has been added to the collection of articles about amateur satellite topics. This is probably the last for a while.
September 8, 1995
One more article by Howard Sodja, W6SHP has been added to the collection of articles about amateur satellite topics.
September 7, 1995
Two more articles by Howard Sodja, W6SHP have been added to the collection of articles about amateur satellite topics.
August 20, 1995
A few more pictures from the Phase 3D lab from Kai Siwiak, KE4PT, are on the Phase 3D page. Thanks and apologies to Kai; he gave me these pictures two months ago.
August 19, 1995
Two articles by Howard Sodja, W6SHP have been added to the collection of articles about amateur satellite topics.
August 2, 1995
AMSAT WWW services have moved to a new host. Instead of relying on the generosity of Qualcomm for Web service, we now have our own server. It's a 486DX2-80 running BSDI, and it's located in the machine room at UCSD. This machine is also handling AMSAT's mailing list services and FTP archives. This means you can use a shorter URL for AMSAT's main page now: http://www.amsat.org is now all you need.
July 24, 1995
A new page giving a bit of information on the AMSAT-NA office features a photo of a key member of our office staff.
July 24, 1995
More information on the 1995 AMSAT Annual Meeting and Space Symposium is now available, taken from the advertisement in the May/June AMSAT Journal.
July 23, 1995
There's one new article, How to Work the Packet Robot on the Shuttle, and one updated article, How to Work the Russian Sputniks, in the collection of scripts from the Houston AMSAT net.
June 10, 1995
Updated Spacecraft Information pages. Included more links to related pages on this server and outside web servers. Included links to Harold Price's, NK6K, History of the Microsats pages. Thanks to James Miller, G3RUH, for AO-13 links. - N7HPR
June 7, 1995
Information on the 1995 AMSAT Annual Meeting and Space Symposium is starting to come out.
June 3, 1995
This is actually just a routine update, but it might be easy to miss. There are once again scheduled dates for the AMSAT Operations Net on AO-13 and the ZRO Test on the page of AMSAT regular activities.
May 28, 1995
I've converted most of the images on most of the pages to interlaced, since that seems to be preferred these days. If you disagree, or if you have problems with the images, please let me know. I've also converted the logos to transparent backgrounds.
May 27, 1995
A small compilation of addresses and phone numbers of suppliers of amateur satellite equipment is now available.
May 27, 1995
The AMSAT Field Day rules have been added to the page of regular AMSAT activities.
April 8, 1995
The entire archive of Satgen Bulletins by John Branegan, GM4IHJ, has been added to the collection of articles on amateur satellite topics. These bulletins have been sent out weekly on amateur packet radio since 1989, and we have them all. Thanks to John for making these articles available.
March 26, 1995
Scripts from the Houston AMSAT Net have been added to the collection of articles on amateur satellite topics. Thanks to Bruce Paige, KK5DO, for providing these scripts.
March 24, 1995
A list of dial-up BBS systems that carry satellite-related information is now available courtesy of Bill Hook, W3QBC. Bill also provided updated information about AMSAT nets.
March 19, 1995
Back issues of the AMSAT News Service and KD2BD's SpaceNews are now indexed. Start from the News Bulletins page.
February 1, 1995
A brief description of RS-15 telemetry has been released by RS3A.
January 16, 1995
Thanks to the hard work of Steven Bible, N7HPR, the collection of information on all the amateur satellites is now open for business.
January 15, 1995
We've started a collection of FAQs and introductory articles by various authors. The first contributions are Satelites by Ramón Santoyo V., XE1KK, in Spanish, and Amateur Satellite FAQ by Stephen Holmstead, N7TQL.
January 15, 1995
Keith Baker, KB1SF, and Dick Jansson, WD4FAB, presented a paper entitled Space Satellites from the World's Garage -- The Story of AMSAT at the National Aerospace and Electronics Conference in Dayton, Ohio in May 1994.
January 15, 1995
A short essay entitled What is AMSAT? by Keith Baker, KB1SF, has been added as an adjunct to the AMSAT-NA info page.
January 9, 1995
A new page describes AMSAT's regular activities. These include local and regional AMSAT nets, the AMSAT Operations Net on AO-13, and the ZRO test.
January 9, 1995
Feature article for January: a short biographical sketch of Ron Broadbent, G3AAJ, who was recently named a Member in the Order of the British Empire.
January 9, 1995
There are now a couple of Macintosh programs in the software archives. We've also added more Windows programs, updated a few programs, and added a couple of miscellaneous DOS programs. New contributions are still solicited.
December 9, 1994
Feature article for December: an inspirational piece by Dave Mullenix, N9LTD, on visual observation of the Russian space station, entitled Mir Is Coming For Christmas!
November 25, 1994
We now have an index to all the software available by anonymous FTP from FTP.AMSAT.ORG. The index is organized along the same lines as the FTP directories, and includes brief descriptions of all the files.
November 23, 1994
The AMSAT Catalog now includes books and AMSAT trinkets as well as software.
November 19, 1994
The Keplerian elements page now features a tutorial on Keplerian elements and an explanation of the formats used in the elements files. Thanks to Franklin Antonio, N6NKF, for letting me steal text from the InstantTrack documentation.
November 18, 1994
Seventeen of the first photographs taken by UOSAT OSCAR-22, identified and rated by Harold Price, NK6K, are now indexed here.
November 13, 1994
James Miller, G3RUH, has begun to upload his collection of articles for your reference. Thanks, James!
November 9, 1994
The Related Information page now has references to the announcement of the Houston AMSAT Net and a related photograph.
November 3, 1994
At Pat Kilroy's suggestion, we've added links to the NASA Parts Project Office (NPPO), where WD8LAQ works, and the NASA Electronic Packaging and Processes Branch (NEPP). These NASA offices have some useful information on electronic parts for use in spacecraft design. Or at least so Pat tells me.
October 31, 1994
We now have some nice photos of the Phase 3D spacecraft under construction in AMSAT's Spacecraft Integration Facility in Orlando, Florida.

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