ANS-059 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins for Feb. 28, 2021

The AMSAT News Service bulletins are a free, weekly news and information service of AMSAT North America, The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation.  ANS publishes news related to Amateur Radio in space including reports on the activities of a worldwide group of Amateur Radio operators who share an active interest in designing, building, launching and communicating through analog and digital Amateur Radio satellites.

The news feed on http://amsat.org publishes news of Amateur Radio in space as soon as our volunteers can post it.

Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to ans-editor at amsat dot org.

In this edition:

  • Tausat CubeSat with U/V FM Transponder Ready for Deployment from ISS
  • AMSAT-DL Operators Track Mars Probe
  • AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution for February 25, 2021
  • IARU Coordinates Frequencies for Two New Satellites
  • 23cm Band in the Spotlight with Regulators
  • The Perseverance Parachute’s Secret Code
  • Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
  • Upcoming Satellite Operations
  • ARISS News
  • Satellite Shorts from All Over

 

SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-059.01
ANS-059 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 059.01
From AMSAT HQ  712 H Street NE  Suite 1653, Washington, DC 20002
February 28, 2021
To All RADIO AMATEURS

Tausat CubeSat with U/V FM Transponder Ready for Deployment from ISS

Tausat, a 3U Cubesat is currently aboard the ISS and is scheduled for deployment in February. The CubeSat was built by the Herzliya Science Center in Israel. It carries two payloads, one being a university student research project that will examine physical space radiation. The experiment will be active for about three months. The second payload is an Amateur Radio U/V FM transponder. The UHF beacon will transmit 9k6 BPSK AX25 telemetry on a downlink frequency of 436.400 MHz. Watch for upcoming details.

[ANS thanks the IARU for the above information.]


                        Join the 2021 President’s Club!
   Score your 2″ 4-Color Accent Commemorative Coin with Polished Gold Finish,
   Full Color Certificate and Embroidered “Remove Before Flight” Key Tag
                             By donating today at
             https://www.amsat.org/join-the-amsat-presidents-club/
                          You won’t want to miss it!


AMSAT-DL Operators Track Mars Probe

Members of the German AMSAT organization, AMSAT-DL, in cooperation with the Sternwarte Bochum Institute in Bochum, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany, have been using the Institute’s 20-meter (65.6 foot) diameter dish antenna to listen directly to signals from probes in Mars orbit.

Signals have been copied from Tianwen-1, the Chinese spacecraft currently in Mars orbit, and from EMM/Hope, the Emirates Mars Mission, which is also orbiting Mars. Both spacecraft are transmitting in the 8.4 GHz band.

Recordings of the signals can be heard on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=413DdMua8ec&feature=emb_imp_woyt and regular updates can be seen by following @amsatdl on Twitter.

The Bochum Observatory dish was constructed in 1965 as part of the ground support network for the Apollo missions. Weighing in at 140 tons, it is protected from weather by an air dome 40 meters (131 feet) in height. In 2003, amateurs helped renovate some of the equipment, adding phase-locked receivers in the 2.3 GHz, 5.8 GHz, and 10.4 GHz amateur bands, as well as an 8.4 GHz receiver. There is also an S-band, 2.4 GHz amateur transmitter running 250 Watts PEP.

In 2006, the dish was used to copy signals from the Voyager 1 spacecraft at a distance of nearly 15 billion kilometers. Since 2009, AMSAT-DL operators have used the dish regularly to copy NASA/NOAA weather satellites. Also in 2009, the dish was used to copy planetary radar echoes bounced off the planet Venus. Since 2001, the dish has copied signals from at least a dozen different deep space probes, including Tianwen-1 and EMM/Hope.

In the summer of 2002, AMSAT Germany officially began planning and preparing to send its own space probe to the red planet. It is supposed to fly around Mars as a radio relay, take pictures, carry out scientific experiments and deposit a payload on the surface of Mars. The goal is to create a probe that can be received on amateur radio frequencies using a 2 to 3 meter parabolic antenna. Images and data would be displayed directly on your own computer with the appropriate software.

This ambitious plan is a long-term goal of AMSAT-DL, and the work of amateurs tracking the current Mars orbiters at Bochum Institute provides valuable experience toward reaching this goal.

[ANS thanks AMSAT-DL for the above information]


AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution for February 25, 2021

Ray Hoad, WA5QGD released updated TLE data on February 25, 2021 and is available for download at:
https://mailman.amsat.org/hyperkitty/list/[email protected]/

Also noted by Ray is that the following satellite has decayed from orbit and has been removed from
this week’s AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution:

PWSat 2 – NORAD Cat ID 43814 (Decayed 2-23-2021 per Space-Track).

For newcomers wondering about TLE’s, they are two-line element set (TLE) is a data format encoding a list of orbital elements of an Earth-orbiting object for a given point in time, the epoch. Using a suitable prediction formula, the state (position and velocity) at any point in the past or future can be estimated to some accuracy. For more information, see the Wikipedia article at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Two-line_element_set

[ANS thanks Ray Hoad, WA5QGD for the above information.]


Need new satellite antennas? Purchase Arrows, Alaskan Arrows,
and M2 LEO-Packs from the AMSAT Store. When you purchase through
AMSAT, a portion of the proceeds goes towards
Keeping Amateur Radio in Space.
https://amsat.org/product-category/hardware/


IARU Coordinates Frequencies for Two New Satellites

The International Amateur Radio Union assigned coordinated frequencies for two upcoming Amateur Radio Satellites.

– FSI-SAT1
The Institute of Future Science at the Happy Science University in Japan will fly FSI-SAT1, a 1U CubeSat carrying a SSTV camera for transmission on an FM downlink as well as multispectral wavelength cameras and reception equipment for an infra-red uplink. A UHF downlink at 437.175 will operate CW, analog SSTV, 9k6 GMSK and 1k2 AFSK. A sun synchronous orbit at 500/560 km is planned.

– JAGSAT
The University of Alabama will fly JAGSAT, a 2U CubeSat designed to measure plasma electron density in the upper F layer of the ionosphere between 400-800 km. The mission will be used to study space weather monitoring, specifically to understand and predict the effects of RF scintillation on Amateur Radio and other communication signals. A UHF downlink has been coordinated at 437.325 using 9k6 2-GFSK modulation with AX.25. JAGSAT is planned to be deployed from the ISS with other ELANA-37 missions in the second quarter of 2022.

More information on both satellites is available at: http://www.amsat.org.uk/iaru/

[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information.]


23cm Band in the Spotlight with Regulators

The Chair of IARU Region 1 Spectrum Affairs, Barry Lewis G4SJH, reports on the meeting of the ITU-R Working Party 4C (WP4C) on February 15-19 which discussed the amateur radio allocation at 1240-1300 MHz.

On the IARU Region 1 site he writes:

During the week February 15–19, the preparatory work for WRC-23 agenda item 9.1b continued in ITU-R Working Party 4C (WP4C). The WRC agenda item has initiated technical studies on coexistence between the radio navigation satellite service (RNSS) and the amateur services in the 23cm band. As usual, the IARU participated in the meeting and delivered key information on amateur activities in this important microwave band. This information is vital to ensure the amateur services are realistically represented in the studies as they move forward.

It remains vital that national amateur communities present their views on the importance of this band to their national regulators in a consolidated and consistent manner.

To assist with this the IARU-R1 is developing supporting material that member societies can refer to when addressing the topic with their national regulator.

The work on this topic will continue throughout the year and beyond both in ITU-R and in the regional telecommunications organizations and the IARU is committed to ensure every organization understands the amateur position on this important microwave band.

Source IARU-R1 https://www.iaru-r1.org/2021/23cm-band-in-the-spotlight-with-regulators/

The ITU-R WP4C Summary Meeting Report notes “The only administration that can be considered supportive towards proper treatment of the Amateur Services in this work is Germany”. Read the report at:
https://www.iaru-r1.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Report-from-WP4C_Feb-2021.docx

[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information.]


AMSAT’s GOLF Program is about getting back to higher orbits, and it all
begins with GOLF-TEE – a technology demonstrator for deployable solar
panels, propulsion, and attitude control. Come along for the ride. The
journey will be worth it!

https://tinyurl.com/ANS-GOLF


The Perseverance Parachute’s Secret Code

A secret coded message was hidden on the gigantic parachute used to land the Perseverance rover safely on the surface on Mars. And no, it wasn’t a clandestine message to the Martians. It was a message of inspiration for us humans. But it also came as a challenge.

During a news briefing on February 22, Allen Chen, the entry, descent and landing lead for the mission revealed there was a secret message in the parachute.

“In addition to enabling incredible science, we hope our efforts in our engineering can inspire others,” he said. “Sometimes we leave messages in our work for others to find for that purpose, so we invite you all to give it a shot and show your work.”

Puzzle lovers around the world quickly went to work, and it didn’t take long.

Adam Steltzner, Perseverance’s chief engineer, confirmed “the internet” had cracked the code late Monday night on Twitter.

Hidden in the 70-foot (21-meter) parachute’s red and white pattern was a binary code with the phrase “Dare mighty things” – a famous expression from President Theodore Roosevelt, espoused by those who work at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The outer rings of the pattern also feature GPS coordinates for JPL’s offices in Pasadena, California: 34°11’58” N 118°10’31” W.

Chen later confirmed on Twitter that the code was the brain child of systems engineer Ian Clark, who helped conduct tests of the supersonic parachute, as well as performing several other tasks for the Perseverance rover team. Clark is a crossword hobbyist, and said only about six people knew about the coded message before this week.

Chen expressed how grateful he is for the ability to work with such creative people at JPL. “It’s a feeling of being very fortunate at the end… that I get to work at a place with people who are both great engineers and great people, and we still get to dare mighty things together,” he said at Monday’s briefing.

Secret messages on the rovers are not new. The Curiosity rover has holes in its wheels that creates marks in the Mars regolith that spells out “JPL” in Morse Code.

It was also revealed that Perseverance bears a plaque depicting all five of NASA’s Mars rovers in increasing size over the years – reminiscent of the decals on cars that portray the family riding inside.

Deputy project manager Matt Wallace said more hidden “Easter eggs” should start showing up on Perseverance when more images of the rover itself are taken and beamed back to Earth.

“Definitely, definitely should keep a good lookout,” he said.

[ANS thanks Universe Today for the above information]


Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events

– AMSAT Ambassador and ARRL registered instructor Clint Bradford, K6LCS has the following streaming presentations scheduled:

03/10 – Trenton, New Jersey
03/11 – Clearwater, Florida
03/13 – QSO TODAY 2021 Virtual Convention
03/16 – Palm Springs, CA
03/20 – Bonham, Texas
04/01 – Orem, Utah
06/15 – East Massachusetts

More information at: http://www.work-sat.com.

[ANS thanks Clint Bradford, K6LCS, for the above information.]


Want to fly the colors on your own grid expedition?
Get your AMSAT car flag and other neat stuff
from our Zazzle store!
25% of the purchase price of each product goes
towards Keeping Amateur Radio in Space
https://www.zazzle.com/amsat_gear


Upcoming Satellite Operations

– EM54; March 4-7, 2021
@K8BL will be in EM54 3/4 – 3/7.

– EL86, EL96; March 7-14, 2021
Spring Training Rove! KX9X will be heading down to Ft Myers, FL the week of March 7 for some sun and baseball. Will activate EL86 & 96 holiday style for sure, possibly a couple other grids as well. Linear/FM. Details soon.

– DN04/05/14/15/24/25/27/28/34/35/37/38/47/48; March 4-10, 2021
W7LT traveling to DN04/05/14/15/24/25/27/28/34/35/37/38/47/48. Schedule is subject to change due to weather and other unforeseen circumstances. Will try to stick to it as best he can. Follow him at:
https://twitter.com/WL7T_/status/1364676616002052101.

– CM93; May 15, 2021
N6DNM claims a very long shot on CM93 but you “might want to put it on your calendar…if you can figure out where it is. For #SOTA folks, that would be W6/SC-336, Santa Rosa Island, activated only once before.

– Please submit any additions or corrections to ke0pbr (at) gmail (dot) com. List updated February 21, 2021.

[ANS thanks Paul Overn, KE0PBR for the above information.]


ARISS News

+ Upcoming Contacts

– Newcastle High School, Newcastle, WY
Multi-point telebridge via NA7V
The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS.
The downlink frequency is presently scheduled to be 145.800 MHz.
The scheduled astronaut is Mike Hopkins, KF5LJG.
Contact is go for Monday, March 1, 2021 at 16:20:56 UTC. (76 deg)
Watch for live stream at: https://youtu.be/qdQlKQK5mT4.

– Peace Corps, Chisinau, Republic of Moldova
Telebridge via NA7V
The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS.
The downlink frequency is presently scheduled to be 145.800 MHz.
The scheduled astronaut is Mike Hopkins, KF5LJG.
Contact is go for Wednesday, March 3, 2021 at 13:09:23 UTC. (27 deg)
Watch for live stream at: https://m.facebook.com/PeaceCorpsMoldova/
and https://m.facebook.com/UTMoldova/.

+ Completed Contacts

– John F Kennedy High School, Denver, CO
Multi-point telebridge via NA7V
The ISS callsign was NA1SS.
The downlink frequency was 145.800 MHz.
The astronaut was Mike Hopkins, KF5LJG.
Contact was successful on Wednesday, February 24, 2021 at 18:41:13 UTC.

– Bishop Guertin HS, Nashua, NH
Multi-point telebridge via AB1OC
The ISS callsign was NA1SS.
The downlink frequency was 145.800 MHz.
The scheduled astronaut is Shannon Walker, KD5DXB
Contact was successful on Friday, February 19, 2021 at 17:56:36 UTC.

– Estes Park Elementary School, Estes Park, CO
Multi-point telebridge via N0FH
The ISS callsign was NA1SS.
The downlink frequency was 145.800 MHz.
The astronaut was Shannon Walker KD5DXB.
Contact was successful on Friday, February 26, 2021 at 17:09 UTC.

+ The latest information on the operation mode can be found at https://www.ariss.org/current-status-of-iss-stations.html

[ANS thanks Charlie Sufana, AJ9N for the above information.]


Satellite Shorts from All Over

+ Inside Sunsat — A Look Back at the First-Ever South African Satellite

The South African satellite Sunsat was launched aboard a Delta II rocket from Vandenberg Air Base on February 23, 1999. The Sunsat mission introduced the era of space exploration in South Africa, and even on the entire continent. The satellite was constructed by post-graduate engineering students at Stellenbosch University. Niki Steenkamp, a member of the Tech team with Dragonfly Aerospace, was involved in the Sunsat program. He recently shared how the university project grew to a full-fledged mission, proving to be a unique experience for future space engineers and pioneered South African space exploration. Read the story at:
https://dragonflyaerospace.com/inside-sunsat-the-first-ever-south-african-satellite/

[ANS thanks Dragonfly Aerospace for the above information.]

+ Media Hit: JAXA to Deploy Mauritian satellite MIR-SAT1
The satellite was designed by a team of Mauritian Engineers and an experienced Radio Amateur from the Mauritius Amateur Radio Society in collaboration with experts from AAC-Clyde Space UK. Read the full article at:
https://www.broadcastprome.com/news/satellite/jaxa-to-deploy-mauritian-satellite-mir-sat1/

[ANS thanks Broadcast Pro Middle East for the above information.]


Not an AMSAT member? Join now at https://launch.amsat.org/

In addition to regular membership, AMSAT offers membership in the President’s Club. Members of the President’s Club, as sustaining donors to AMSAT Project Funds, will be eligible to receive additional benefits. President’s Club donations may be made at https://tinyurl.com/ANS-PresClub.

Primary and secondary school students are eligible for membership at one-half the standard yearly rate. Post-secondary school students enrolled in at least half-time status shall be eligible for the student rate for a maximum of six post-secondary years in this status. Contact info at the amsat dot org for additional student membership information.

73,
This week’s ANS Editor,
Frank Karnauskas, N1UW
n1uw at amsat dot org

ANS-052 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins for February 21, 2021

AMSAT NEWS SERVICE
ANS-052

The AMSAT News Service bulletins are a free, weekly news and information service of AMSAT, The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation. ANS publishes news related to Amateur Radio in Space including reports on the activities of a worldwide group of Amateur Radio operators who share an active interest in designing, building, launching and communicating through analog and digital Amateur Radio satellites.

The news feed on http://www.amsat.org publishes news of Amateur Radio in Space as soon as our volunteers can post it.

Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to: [email protected]

You can sign up for free e-mail delivery of the AMSAT News Service Bulletins via the ANS List; to join this list see: https://mailman.amsat.org/postorius/lists/ans.amsat.org/

In this edition:

  • Replays of AMSAT Presentations at HamCation Available
  • FO-29 March Operations Schedule
  • VUCC Awards-Endorsements for February 1, 2021
  • Changes to AMSAT TLE Distribution for February 18, 2021
  • ARISS News
  • Upcoming Satellite Operations
  • Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
  • Satellite Shorts From All Over

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 052.01
To: All RADIO AMATEURS
From: Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation
712 H Street NE Suite 1653
Washington, DC 20002

DATE 2021 Feb 21

Join the 2021 President’s Club!
Score your 2″ 4-Color Accent Commemorative Coin with Polished Gold Finish,
Full Color Certificate and Embroidered “Remove Before Flight” Key Tag
By donating today at
https://www.amsat.org/join-the-amsat-presidents-club/
You won’t want to miss it!

Replays of AMSAT Presentations at HamCation Available

AMSAT participated in the 2021 Virtual Orlando HamCation on Sunday, February 14, 2021. Replays of the presentations are available on YouTube:

AMSAT CubeSat Simulator – Dr. Alan Johnston, KU2Y, AMSAT Vice President – Educational Relations
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J0eLHJ9vuqc

AMSAT: Onward and Upward – Robert Bankston, KE4AL, AMSAT President
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n974-Jpuu2I and continuing at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NaX19ohrd-I

AMSAT Engineering Updated – Jerry Buxton, N0JY, AMSAT Vice President – Engineering
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lcQqP-IRlcI

[ANS thanks AMSAT for the above information]

FO-29 March Operations Schedule

All times are UTC
The operation is until UVC (under-voltage control) operates. The battery dates from 1996, and cannot be fully charged. Note that this seldom allows for operation over North America.

DD on times
6 00:45- 02:30-
7 01:35- 03:20-
13 01:20- 03:05-
14 00:25- 02:10-
20 01:55- 03:40-
21 01:00-
27 00:45- 02:30-
28 01:35- 03:20-

[ANS thanks Akira Kaneko, JA1OGZ, for the above information]

VUCC Awards-Endorsements for February 1, 2021

Here are the endorsements and new VUCC Satellite Awards issued by the ARRL for the period January 1, 2021 through February 1, 2021. Congratulations to all those who made the list this month!

CallJanFeb 
WA4NVM15571568
WD9EWK (DM43)630632
VE7CEW501555 
NM3B481553 
N9FN499526 
N7EGY502501??
ND0C450500 
AC9O359475 
W0NBC435437 
PV8DX373412 
KF6JOQ353403 
AK7DD376390 
W8LR300328 
S57NML205291 
K5ZM179277 
VE4MM227263 
VU2LBW246260 
VE6WQNew232 
KV4TNew219 
DG7YEONew217 
KF0QS115205 
NA1ME175200 
W4ALF102200 
WD9EWK (DM41)176187
WA8ZID126176 
DG3YJBNew103 
HB9GWJNew102 
VE6BMXNew102 
AA8CH (EN84)New101
AB0XENew100 
KN4ZUJNew100 
KS4YTNew100 

If you find errors or omissions. please contact me off-list at <mycall>@<mycall>.com and I’ll revise the announcement. This list was developed by comparing the ARRL .pdf listings for the two months. It’s a visual comparison so omissions are possible. Apologies if your call was not mentioned. Thanks to all those who are roving to grids that are rarely on the birds. They are doing most of the work!

[ANS thanks Ron Parsons, W5RKN, for the above information]

Need new satellite antennas? Purchase Arrows, Alaskan Arrows,
and M2 LEO-Packs from the AMSAT Store. When you purchase through
AMSAT, a portion of the proceeds goes towards
Keeping Amateur Radio in Space.
https://amsat.org/product-category/hardware/

Changes to AMSAT TLE Distribution for February 18, 2021

The following satellite has been added to this week’s AMSAT TLE Distribution:

UVSQ-SAT – NORAD Cat ID 47438.
Thanks to Joe Fitzgerald, KM1P, for this satellite identification.

Editor’s Note: Per Nico Janssen, PA0DLO, the identification of UVSQ-SAT as object number 47438 is not yet certain as the distance between objects 47438 and 47437 is less than 25 km. It may take several more weeks for the objects to separate enough to determine which is UVSQ-SAT with 100% certainty.

[ANS thanks Ray Hoad, WA5QGD, AMSAT Orbital Elements Manager, for the above information]

AMSAT’s GOLF Program is about getting back to higher orbits, and it all
begins with GOLF-TEE – a technology demonstrator for deployable solar
panels, propulsion, and attitude control. Come along for the ride. The
journey will be worth it!

https://tinyurl.com/ANS-GOLF

ARISS News

The next contacts are probably going to be via the Kenwood TM-D710E radio located in the Service Module. You may or may not notice a difference in signal when compared to the Kenwood TM-710GA that is in the Columbus module.

John F Kennedy High School, Denver, CO, Multi-point telebridge via NA7V
The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS
The downlink frequency is presently scheduled to be 145.800 MHz
The latest information on the operation mode can be found at https://www.ariss.org/current-status-of-iss-stations.html
The scheduled astronaut is Mike Hopkins KF5LJG
Contact is go for: Wed 2021-02-24 18:41:13 UTC 48 deg

Watch for live stream at: https://youtu.be/1RgszX0npbQ

The latest information on the operation mode can be found at https://www.ariss.org/current-status-of-iss-stations.html

The latest list of frequencies in use can be found at https://www.ariss.org/contact-the-iss.html

[ANS thanks Charlie Sufana, AJ9N, one of the ARISS operation team mentors for the above information]

Want to fly the colors on your own grid expedition?
Get your AMSAT car flag and other neat stuff
from our Zazzle store!
25% of the purchase price of each product goes
towards Keeping Amateur Radio in Space
https://www.zazzle.com/amsat_gear

CAPE-3 CubeSat Launched

The University of Louisiana (UL) at Lafayette student-built CAPE-3 satellite was launched on January 17. A 1-U CubeSat, CAPE-3 includes a “digipeater and experimental UHF adaptive radio.” An AX-25 telemetry downlink has been coordinated on 145.825 MHz and a 1k2 frequency-shift keying (FSK) downlink has been coordinated on 435.325 MHz, “which may burst to 100 kHz bandwidth,” according to the IARU Amateur Satellite Coordination page.

CAPE-3 is the third cube satellite in the CAPE series. The primary educational mission is to allow grade-school classrooms to access the Smartphone CubeSat Classroom, and run interactive experiments through an experimental smartphone ground-station grid.

The secondary mission is to perform scientific experiments involving radiation detection and take pictures of Earth.

The solar-powered spacecraft, created by UL Lafayette’s CAPE Satellite Team, was launched with nine other CubeSats as part of NASA’s Educational Launch of Nanosatellites (ELaNa) program. A Virgin Orbit LauncherOne rocket attached beneath a wing of a customized Boeing 747 was dropped high above the Pacific Ocean. It climbed about 225 miles above Earth and then ejected the satellite.

Information on the ElaNa program can be found in PDF format at https://www.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/atoms/files/lsp_elana_20_fact_sheet.pdf

The CAPE satellites are named for the university’s Cajun Advanced Picosatellite Experiment program, designed to prepare students for careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.

[ANS thanks the ARRL for the above information]

Upcoming Satellite Operations

****Watch Twitter, there are lots pop-up roves happening lately, and I can’t keep this page updated with all of them.****

Spring Training Rove! KX9X will be heading down to Ft Myers, FL the week of March 7 for some sun and baseball. Will activate EL86 & 96 holiday style for sure, possibly a couple other grids as well. Linear/FM. Details soon.

N6UA: I’ve had enough of the arctic zephyr … I’m headed south. I don’t have exact details yet – but the plan is to rove to DM74 for passes on February 19th. I’ll be overnight, so plenty of opportunities. Probably headed down via the “7s” and home into the “8s”

CM93 Possibility: N6DNM Very long shot, but might want to put it on your calendar for May 15th, if you can figure out where it is and for SOTA folks, that would be W6/SC-336, Santa Rosa Island, activated only once before.

[ANS thanks Paul Overn, KE0PBR, AMSAT rover page manager for the above information]

Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events

AMSAT Ambassador and ARRL registered instructor Clint Bradford, K6LCS, is certainly keeping busy!

He reports these upcoming satellite presentation dates …

02/17 – St. George, Utah
02/23 – Franklin, Indiana
03/10 – Trenton, New Jersey
03/11 – Clearwater, Florida
03/13 – QSO TODAY 2021 Virtual Convention (https://www.qsotodayhamexpo.com/)
03/16 – Palm Springs, CA
03/20 – Bonham, Texas
04/01 – Orem, Utah
06/15 – East Massachusetts

… and more being scheduled.

Think a 90-minute lively, informative, and fun “How to Work the Easy Satellites” Zoom presentation would be appropriate for your convention or club? Always includes are overviews of the ARRL, AMSAT, and ARISS … and pre-presentation questions are solicited and welcome.

Send Clint an email or call!

Clint Bradford K6LCS
http://www.work-sat.com
909-999-SATS (7287)

[ANS thanks Clint Bradford, K6LCS, AMSAT Ambassador, and Paul Overn, KE0PBR, AMSAT Events Page Manager, for the above information]

Satellite Shorts From All Over

+ Virgin Orbit published a Payload Profiles video that showcases AO-109 (RadFxSat-2). The video is available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M2VSpX0vWJI&feature=youtu.be

+ The Mars 2020 Perseverance rover successfully landed on Mars on February 18, 2021. AMSAT-DL tracked signals from the cruise stage until the rover separated approximately 10 minutes before landing on their 20 meter dish at the Bochum Observatory. A replay is available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m36CQLyS1Lo

+ EO-88 (Nayif-1) celebrated its 4th birthday on February 14th. Carrying a FUNcube linear transponder, the satellite continues to provide a high power telemetry downlink when in sunlight and a linear transponder for amateur radio operations in eclipse.

+ Several new products are available on the AMSAT Zazzle store, including a set of coasters, a watch, a t-shirt featuring the AMSAT round logo, and more. Check out the new items! 25% of the purchase price goes towards Keeping Amateur Radio in Space. https://www.zazzle.com/amsat_gear

+ All issues of The AMSAT Journal dating back to 2014 are now available to AMSAT members on AMSAT’s new membership portal. The 1969-2013 archive will be added at a later date. All editions of AMSAT’s Symposium Proceedings are also available for members. If you’re a current AMSAT member, get logged on today. If you are not yet a member, consider joining today at https://launch.amsat.org/

+ The 2020 edition of AMSAT’s Getting Started with Amateur Satellites is now available on the AMSAT store. A perennial favorite, Getting Started is updated every year with the latest amateur satellite information, and is the premier primer of satellite operation. The book is presented in DRM-free PDF format, in full color, and covers all aspects of making your first contacts on a ham radio satellite. The digital download is available for $15 at https://tinyurl.com/2020GettingStarted. The print edition is $30 plus shipping and is available at https://tinyurl.com/GS2020Print

 

In addition to regular membership, AMSAT offers membership in the President’s Club. Members of the President’s Club, as sustaining donors to AMSAT Project Funds, will be eligible to receive additional benefits. President’s Club donations may be made at https://www.amsat.org/join-the-amsat-presidents-club/

Primary and secondary school students are eligible for membership at one-half the standard yearly rate. Post-secondary school students enrolled in at least half time status shall be eligible for the student rate for a maximum of 6 post-secondary years in this status.

Join AMSAT today at https://launch.amsat.org/

73 and remember to help Keep Amateur Radio in Space,

This week’s ANS Editor,

Paul Stoetzer, N8HM
n8hm at amsat dot org

ANS-045 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins for Feb. 14, 2021

The AMSAT News Service bulletins are a free, weekly news and information service of AMSAT, The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation. ANS publishes news related to Amateur Radio in Space including reports on the activities of a worldwide group of Amateur Radio operators who share an active interest in designing, building, launching and communicating through analog and digital Amateur Radio satellites.

The news feed on http://www.amsat.org publishes news of Amateur Radio in Space as soon as our volunteers can post it.

Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to: [email protected]

You can sign up for free e-mail delivery of the AMSAT News Service Bulletins via the ANS List; to join this list see: https://mailman.amsat.org/postorius/lists/ans.amsat.org/

In this edition:

  • What Is Keeping The NA1SS Amateur Station Off The Air?
  • AMSAT OSCAR-109 Update
  • Virtual HamCation Is this Weekend – Don’t miss AMSAT!
  • AMSAT 2021 President’s Club Welcomes New Members
  • Happy New Year on Mars!
  • Satellite Operating Awards Available
  • AMICALSAT Award Certificates Deadline Approaching
  • Changes to AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution for February 12, 2021
  • NASA Awards Contract to Launch Initial Elements for Lunar Outpost
  • ARISS News
  • Upcoming Satellite Operations
  • Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
  • Satellite Shorts From All Over

ANS-045 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 045.01
To: All RADIO AMATEURS
From: Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation
712 H Street NE Suite 1653
Washington, DC 20002

DATE 2021 Feb 14

What Is Keeping The NA1SS Amateur Station Off The Air?

Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) and its partners are troubleshooting what is keeping the NA1SS amateur station off the air.

ARISS became aware of the problem after an attempted contact with a school in Wyoming, between ON4ISS on Earth and astronaut Mike Hopkins, KF5LJG at NA1SS, had to abort when no downlink signal was heard. ARISS has determined that the problem is not with the radio equipment on board the ISS Columbus module.

ARISS-International Chair Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, explained that during a 27 January spacewalk to install exterior cabling on the ISS Columbus module, the coax feed line installed 11 years ago was replaced with another built by the European Space Agency (ESA) and Airbus. It included two additional RF connectors to support the Bartolomeo payload-hosting platform installed last spring on Columbus.

“On 26 January, prior to the EVA [extravehicular activity], our Columbus next-generation radio system was shut off and the ISS-internal coaxial cable to the antenna was disconnected from the ARISS radio as a safety precaution for the EVA,” Bauer said. “During the spacewalk, an external four-connector coax feed line replaced one with two RF connections. This change was made to allow ESA to connect ARISS and three additional customers to Bartolomeo, as compared to ARISS and one additional RF customer,” Bauer explained.

With the spacewalk completed, the ISS crew restarted the ISS amateur radio station on 28 January, but no voice repeater or automatic packet repeater system (APRS) downlink reports were heard and no downlink signal was heard during an attempted scheduled school contact either. Bauer said that because the exterior cable is not an ARISS cable, ARISS is working with ESA and NASA on a way forward. “NASA has opened a Payload Anomaly Report on this issue. We have talked to both the NASA and ESA representatives,” Bauer said.

[ANS thanks Southgate Amateur Radio New for this excellent summary of previously reported information]


Join the 2021 President’s Club!
Score your 2″ 4-Color Accent Commemorative Coin.
This gold finished coin comes with
Full Color Certificate and Embroidered “Remove Before Flight” Key Tag
Donate today at
https://www.amsat.org/join-the-amsat-presidents-club/
You won’t want to miss it!


AMSAT OSCAR-109 Update

The RadFxSat-2/Fox-1E CubeSat has been designated as AMSAT-OSCAR 109 (AO-109). AMSAT engineering and operations teams appreciate the satellite community’s cooperation to date and reiterated their request that users not attempt to use the transponder until further notice. “The proper identification will allow further characterization of the satellite’s condition through additional testing,” AMSAT concluded.

RadFXSat-2/Fox-1E was launched on January 17 on Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne, which carried 10 other satellites into space. AO-109 carries an inverting linear transponder, with uplink at 145.860 MHz – 145.890 MHz, and downlink at 435.760 MHz – 435.790 MHz. Telemetry will downlink on 435.750 MHz.

[ANS thanks AMSAT Director and Fox Command Team member Mark Hammond, N8MH, for the above information]


Virtual HamCation Is this Weekend – Don’t miss AMSAT!

HamCation 2021 is a virtual ‘Online Only’ event this weekend, Saturday and Sunday, February 13th and 14th.

AMSAT will provide three virtual presentations on Sunday:

* 10:00 AM (EST) AMSAT CubeSat Simulator, Alan Johnston KU2Y, AMSAT VP of Educational Relations

* 12:00 AM (EST) AMSAT, Onward and Upward, Robert Bankston KE4AL, AMSAT President

* 1:00 PM (EST) AMSAT Engineering Update, Jerry Buxton N0JY, AMSAT VP of Engineering.

NOTE: > All times are Eastern Standard Time (UTC -05:00)

Be sure to check out the full schedule for other topics of interest.

https://www.hamcation.com/forums-speakers

[ANS thanks AMSAT President Robert Bankston, KE4AL, for the above information]


Need new satellite antennas? Purchase Arrows, Alaskan Arrows,
and M2 LEO-Packs from the AMSAT Store. When you purchase through
AMSAT, a portion of the proceeds goes towards
Keeping Amateur Radio in Space.
https://amsat.org/product-category/hardware/


AMSAT 2021 President’s Club Welcomes New Members

The following new members of the AMSAT 2021 President’s Club have been added as of January 31, 2021. We thank them for their generous support and helping to keep Amateur Radio in Space!

Core Level
Gerald Buxton, N0JY
Dale Peer, KF7ZBK
Alston Simpson, WA5TJB
Carl Starnes, W4EAT
Richard Steegstra, K1LKR

Bronze Level
Anton Giroux, KF3BX
Edward F. Krome, K9EK

Silver Level
W. Fisher, WB1FJ
Mark Hammond, N8MH
Joseph Lynch, N6CL
Ronald Parsons, W5RKN
David A. Vine, WA1EAW

Gold Level
Barry Baines, WD4ASW

Titanium Level
William Brown

All members receive a full color certificate, 2″ commemorative coin with four accent colors and gold polished finish, and an embroidered “REMOVE BEFORE FLIGHT” key tag. Members at Silver level and above receive a handsome acrylic desk plaque and tickets for symposium events.

Join the AMSAT 2021 President’s Club today at https://www.amsat.org/join-the-amsat-presidents-club/.

[ANS thanks Frank Karnauskas, N1UW, VP-Development for the above information.]


Happy New Year on Mars!

The countdown to a new year is in many ways a defining moment for our lives on Earth. Our age, our seasons, filing our taxes, all depend on the duration of Earth’s orbit around the Sun. On Mars, there are no yearly tax returns, but as the planet also orbits around our Sun, time on Mars is similarly measured in years. However, there are some significant differences between a year on Mars and a year on Earth. February 7, 2021 marked what scientists here on Earth consider the start of Year 36 on Mars. Let’s look at some similarities and differences between a year on the two planets:

* One year on Mars equals 687 Earth days. It takes almost twice as long as our Earth to orbit the Sun. This means your age would be a lot less if you lived on Mars! If you would like to feel younger, just divide your current age by 1.88 and casually mention to your friends that that’s your real age…on Mars.

* A Martian day is defined, like on Earth, as the time it takes for the planet to make one revolution around its axis. This is called a sol. A sol is only slightly longer than an Earth day: 24 hours and 39 minutes.

* Mars has four seasons: winter, spring, summer and autumn. They are defined by the planet’s position along its orbit around the Sun. The Martian New Year begins with the northward equinox (northern spring, southern autumn). As Mars travels through its yearly trajectory, the planet’s axial tilt causes the northern hemisphere to receive more sunlight during the northern summer, and the southern hemisphere to receive more sunlight in northern winter – just like on Earth. Unlike Earth’s seasons however, the seasons on Mars are not of equal lengths. This is because the orbit of Mars around the Sun is more elliptical than that of Earth. For example, the northern hemisphere spring (southern hemisphere autumn) lasts the longest, 194 sols, and the northern hemisphere autumn (southern hemisphere spring) is the shortest season at 142 sols.

* Mars’ elliptical orbit can have important consequences. During southern spring and summer, Mars swings by the sun closer and faster. The resulting increase in luminosity heats up the atmosphere, causing turbulence to lift up very fine particles from the Martian soil. For this reason, the second half of a Martian year is often marked by fierce dust storms that can sometimes become planet-wide.

* Like on Earth, winters are cold and summers are warm on Mars, but the planet’s overall temperature is a lot cooler, it has a yearly average temperature of minus 60 degrees Celsius. The planet experiences different weather phenomena throughout the seasons. A weather phenomenon that reappears every year around the southern spring and summer is the Arsia Mons Elongated Cloud, a cloud of ice crystals that can reach up to 1800 kilometres in length. It repeats for at least 80 sols and then disappears again during the rest of the year.

* The Martian calendar began fairly recently compared to the one on Earth. The count started in Earth year 1955. This first Martian year coincided with a very large dust storm in its second half, aptly named ‘the great dust storm of 1956.’

If you’re looking for a reason to celebrate, here’s to a Happy New Mars Year!

[ANS thanks the European Space Agency for the above information]


Satellite Operating Awards Available

Awards are a big part of amateur radio in all of its various manifestations, and the same is true for satellite operations. There are a number of awards that are available for all your hard work on the satellites. AMSAT sponsors a number of these awards, and others are available from other amateur organizations. You may not have even known about some of them, and may have enough QSL cards to qualify now!

AMSAT’s Satellite Communicators’ Club award is given to any operator for having made their first satellite contact. To apply for this, and other AMSAT awards, you should go to the AMSAT.ORG online store and purchase the award. After completing your purchase, email the AMSAT Awards Manager, kk5do AT amsat DOT org that you have made the purchase and supplying the necessary proof of contacts.

The Oscar Satellite Communications Achievement Award is for working 20 contacts, on any satellite or combination of satellites, in 20 different states, DXCC countries or Canadian Call Areas. Those that have the RAC CANDADAWARD or ARRL WAS with satellite endorsements, may submit a copy of their certificate as proof of working the 13 Canadian Call Areas or 50 U.S. States. All QSOs must be completed from locations separated by no more than 50 miles or 80 kilometers.

The Oscar Sexagesimal Award is the same as the Oscar Satellite Communications Achievement Award but is given for 60 contacts. All the qualifications and costs are the same.

Next there is the Oscar Century Award. This is the same as the other two awards but is for 100 contacts. Qualifications and costs are the same. Please note that the previous 3 awards are aggregated. Once you have worked your 20, that applies towards your 60 so you only need 40 more contacts. The same is true for the 100, once you get your 60, you only need 40 more for your 100.

The AMSAT Rover Award is given to those intrepid souls who make our grid counts possible. It is based on a rather complex point system, which is detailed at https://www.amsat.org/amsat-rover-award/

Finally, AMSAT offers the Robert W. Barbee Jr., W4AMI Satellite Operator Achievement Award. It is awarded for the submission of 1,000 satellite contacts on OSCAR-6 or later satellites. There is an endorsement for each additional 1,000 and a special certificate at 5,000.

For details on each of the AMSAT awards and how to apply for them, see the AMSAT website at https://www.amsat.org/awards-2/

In addition, the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) offers many of their operating awards with satellite endorsements for those who complete the necessary contacts exclusively using satellites. These include the VHF/UHF Century Club (VUCC) for working 100 different grid squares, and the Worked All States (WAS) for confirmed contact stations in each of the 50 states. Those up for a particular challenge can shoot for the Worked All Continents (WAC) for contacting stations on each of the 8 continents, and DX Century Club (DXCC) for contacting 100 different DXCC countries on satellite.

For details on the ARRL awards, begin the search by consulting http://www.arrl.org/awards/

Satellite operating success can earn some impressive wallpaper!

[ANS thanks Bruce Paige, KK5DO, AMSAT Awards Manager, for the above information]


AMSAT’s GOLF Program is about getting back to higher orbits, and it all
begins with GOLF-TEE – a technology demonstrator for deployable solar
panels, propulsion, and attitude control. Come along for the ride. The
journey will be worth it!

https://tinyurl.com/ANS-GOLF


AMICALSAT Award Certificates Deadline Approaching

Diplomas for the AMICALSAT satellite are being sent out. If you have not yet requested yours, you can do so before 28/02/2021.

The satellite has been active since September 3, 2020. The launch of the Vega rocket went well. According to the project team, the commissioning of the satellite is in progress and is proceeding normally. The team has succeeded in stabilizing the satellite and is beginning to test image capture and retrieval.

The contributions of radio amateurs have been very important for the project. This has contributed to the commissioning of the satellite. In the case of AMICALSAT, it is possible to send telemetry to the dashboard hosted by the Satnogs network via

  • a Satnogs station
  • the AMICALSAT Decoder software provided by AMSAT-F at https://bit.ly/3pdTvcm
  • the software edited by DK3WN (TLM Forwarder)

Data from AMICALSAT Decoder is also sent to the AMSAT-F database (https://amsat.electrolab.fr/). To date, more than 42 radio amateurs from all over the world have contributed more than 28,000 telemetry frames.

In order to thank the radio amateurs who have sent telemetry via AMICALSAT Decoder software before December 31, 2020, AMSAT-F will issue a diploma.

Rules for issuing the diploma

The diploma in electronic format will be given to all radio amateurs or earphones that have received data from the Amicalsat satellite and sent these data to the AMSAT-F database with the “AMICALSAT Decoder” software.

Depending on the number of data received on the AMSAT-F database (https://amsat.electrolab.fr/), the nature of the diploma will be different depending on the number of frames received before December 31, 2020 23:59 UTC :

  • GOLD Diploma for persons having sent more than 5000 frames to the AMSAT-F database.
  • Silver Diploma for those who have sent between 2500 & 4999 frames to the AMSAT-F database.
  • Bronze Diploma: for those who have sent between 500 & 2499 frames to the AMSAT-F database.
  • Diploma without mention for persons having sent between 1 & 499 frames to the AMSAT-F database

The request for a diploma is done by sending an email to [email protected] indicating your callsign or the name given in the AMSAT-F database to send the data.

Only the received frames actually registered on https://amsat.electrolab.fr/ will be taken into account.

[ANS thanks Christophe Mercier, AMSAT-F president, for the above information]


Want to fly the colors on your own grid expedition?
Get your AMSAT car flag and other neat stuff
from our Zazzle store!
25% of the purchase price of each product goes
towards Keeping Amateur Radio in Space
https://www.zazzle.com/amsat_gear


Changes to AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution for February 11, 2021

RadFxSat-2 (Fox-1E) has been renamed as AO-109 in this week’s AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution as follows:

AO-109 – NORAD Cat ID 47311.
As of February 7, 2021 RadFxSat-2 (Fox-1E) was designated AMSAT-OSCAR 109 (AO-109) by Mark Hammond, N8MH, AMSAT Director and Command Station.

The following satellite has been added to this week’s AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution:

YUSAT-1 – NORAD Cat ID 47439.
Thanks to Nico Janssen, PA0DLO, for this satellite identification.

[ANS thanks Ray Hoad, WA5QGD, AMSAT Orbital Elements Manager, for the above information]


NASA Awards Contract to Launch Initial Elements for Lunar Outpost

NASA has selected Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) of Hawthorne, California, to provide launch services for the agency’s Power and Propulsion Element (PPE) and Habitation and Logistics Outpost (HALO), the foundational elements of the Gateway. As the first long-term orbiting outpost around the Moon, the Gateway is critical to supporting sustainable astronauts missions under the agency’s Artemis program.

After integration on Earth, the PPE and HALO are targeted to launch together no earlier than May 2024 on a Falcon Heavy rocket from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The total cost to NASA is approximately $331.8 million, including the launch service and other mission-related costs.

The PPE is a 60-kilowatt class solar electric propulsion spacecraft that also will provide power, high-speed communications, attitude control, and the capability to move the Gateway to different lunar orbits, providing more access to the Moon’s surface than ever before.

The HALO is the pressurized living quarters where astronauts who visit the Gateway, often on their way to the Moon, will work. It will provide command and control and serve as the docking hub for the outpost. HALO will support science investigations, distribute power, provide communications for visiting vehicles and lunar surface expeditions, and supplement the life support systems aboard Orion, NASA’s spacecraft that will deliver Artemis astronauts to the Gateway.

About one-sixth the size of the International Space Station, the Gateway will function as a way station, located tens of thousands of miles at its farthest distance from the lunar surface, in a near-rectilinear halo orbit. It will serve as a rendezvous point for Artemis astronauts traveling to lunar orbit aboard Orion prior to transit to low-lunar orbit and the surface of the Moon. From this vantage, NASA and its international and commercial partners will conduct unprecedented deep space science and technology investigations.

NASA’s Launch Services Program at Kennedy will manage the SpaceX launch service. The HALO is being designed and built by Northrop Grumman Space Systems of Dulles, Virginia, and the PPE is being built by Maxar Technologies of Westminster, Colorado. NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston manages the Gateway program for the agency. NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland is responsible for management of the PPE.

Learn more about NASA’s Gateway program at: https://nasa.gov/gateway

Learn more about NASA’s Artemis program at: https://www.nasa.gov/artemis

[ANS thanks NASA for the above information]


AMSAT, along with our ARISS partners, is developing an amateur
radio package, including two-way communication capability, to
be carried on-board Gateway in lunar orbit.

Support AMSAT’s projects today at https://www.amsat.org/donate/


ARISS NEWS

Amateurs and others around the world may listen in on contacts between amateurs operating in schools and allowing students to interact with astronauts and cosmonauts aboard the International Space Station. The downlink frequency on which to listen is 145.800 MHz worldwide.

Due to antenna problems reported earlier, upcoming ARISS contacts are probably going to be via the Kenwood TM-D710E radio located in the Service Module. You may or may not notice a difference in signal when compared to the Kenwood TM-710GA that is in the Columbus module.

A contact with Bishop Guertin High School, Nashua, NH, multi-point telebridge via AB1OC, is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 19 at 17:56:36 UTC. The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS and the scheduled astronaut is Shannon Walker, KD5DXB. Maximum elevation will be 33 degrees. Watch for live stream at: https://youtu.be/0-Dsel4_7gM

Congratulations to NA7V for his first ARISS contact as an ARISS telebridge station! The contact with Red Hill Lutheran School of Tustin, Calif. was completed on Wednesday, Feb. 10. Astronaut Mike Hopkins, KF5LJG, operating with the station callsign of NA1SS, made contact at 18:26 UTC on a pass with maximum elevation of 65 degrees. Congratulations to the Red Hill Lutheran students and Mike!

The latest information on the operation mode can be found at https://www.ariss.org/current-status-of-iss-stations.html

[ANS thanks Charlie Sufana, AJ9N, one of the ARISS operation team mentors for the above information]


Upcoming Satellite Operations

Quick Hits:

****Watch Twitter, there are lots pop-up roves happening lately, and I can’t keep this page updated with all of them.****

Spring Training Rove! KX9X will be heading down to Ft Myers, FL the week of March 7 for some sun and baseball. Will activate EL86 & 96 holiday style for sure, possibly a couple other grids as well. Linear/FM. Details soon.

N6UA: I’ve had enough of the arctic zephyr … I’m headed south. I don’t have exact details yet – but the plan is to rove to DM74 for passes on February 19th. I’ll be overnight, so plenty of opportunities. Probably headed down via the “7s” and home into the “8s”

AD0HJ will be in EN23 2/11 & 2/12.

KE0PBR: EL87 Holiday Style FM only Week of 2/14… Might want to reach out if you need it.

Major Roves:

CM93 Possibility: N6DNM Very long shot, but might want to put it on your calendar for May 15th, if you can figure out where it is and for #SOTA folks, that would be W6/SC-336, Santa Rosa Island, activated only once before.

Please submit any additions or corrections to Ke0pbr (at) gmail.com

[ANS thanks Paul Overn, KE0PBR, AMSAT rover page manager, for the above information]


Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events

AMSAT Ambassadors provide presentations, demonstrate communicating through amateur satellites, and host information tables at club meetings, hamfests, conventions, maker faires, and other events.

[ANS thanks Paul Overn, KE0PBR, AMSAT Events page manager, for the above information]

QSO Today Virtual Ham Expo; March 13,14 2021
The second QSO Today Virtual Ham Expo will be held on March 13-14, 2021. There is an Amateur Radio speaker track and AMSAT will have a virtual booth during the event. Advance tickets are now on sale. More information at: https://www.qsotodayhamexpo.com/

[ANS thanks Virtual QSO Ham Expo for the above information.]


Satellite Shorts From All Over

+ NASA will provide live coverage on NASA Television, the agency’s website, and the NASA app of the launch and docking of a Russian cargo spacecraft to the International Space Station beginning at 11:15 p.m. EST Sunday, Feb. 14. The unpiloted Russian Progress 77 is scheduled to launch on a Soyuz rocket at 11:45 p.m. (10:45 a.m. Monday, Feb. 15, Baikonur time) from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. (ANS thanks NASA for the above information)

+ U.A.E’s Hope (Al Amal) orbiter arrived at Mars on Feb. 9, firing its thrusters for 27 minutes to successfully enter Martian orbit. The U.A.E. is the first Arab country, and the fifth overall, to reach the planet. Meanwhile, China’s Tianwen-1 entered Martian orbit on Feb. 10 for a period of checkout before a planned release of its instrument-laden lander and rover sometime in May. And next week, on Thursday, Feb. 18, NASA’s Perseverance rover will slam into Mars’ atmosphere at hypersonic velocities and eventually find itself sitting alone on the surface seven minutes later (hopefully all in one piece). The Mars fleet is arriving! (ANS thanks The Orbital Index for the above information)

+ After an incredible 43 years and 22 billion kilometers, Voyager 1 and 2 are still delivering science (which takes 21 hours to reach us at the speed of light). Using data from both craft, scientists have found evidence for electrons getting reflected off of shockwaves created by our Sun’s coronal mass ejections, which then spiral along interstellar magnetic field lines while accelerating to great speeds (scientific paper at https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.3847/1538-3881/abc337). (ANS thanks The Orbital Index for the above information)

+ NASA announced Feb. 9 it wants to obtain a seat on the next Soyuz mission to the International Space Station, launching in just two months, to ensure a U.S. presence on the station in the event of any commercial crew delays. There are no known issues with SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft, one of which is currently docked to the station for the Crew-1 mission. “Experience has shown that new launch capabilities may encounter unanticipated delays or difficulties maintaining initial schedules,” NASA noted. (ANS thanks Space News for the above information)

+ If there’s an advanced extraterrestrial civilization inhabiting a nearby star system, we might be able to detect it using its own atmospheric pollution, according to new NASA research. The study looked at the presence of nitrogen dioxide gas (NO2), which on Earth is produced by burning fossil fuels. In their study, the team used computer modeling to predict whether NO2 pollution would produce a signal that is practical to detect with current and planned telescopes. They found that for an Earth-like planet orbiting a Sun-like star, a civilization producing the same amount of NO2 as ours could be detected up to about 30 light-years away. Since NO2 is also produced naturally, scientists will have to carefully analyze an exoplanet to see if there is an excess that could be attributed to a technological society. (ANS thanks Space Daily for the above information)

+ U.S. astronauts living aboard the ISS orbital outpost, on Feb. 14, will break the record for most days in space by a crew launched aboard an American spacecraft, NASA said. “They will surpass the record of 84 days set by the Skylab 4 crew on Feb. 8, 1974”, NASA said. Four flight engineers – Shannon Walker, KD5DXB, Soichi Noguchi, KD5TVP, Victor Glover, KI5BKC, Mike Hopkins, KF5LJG – docked the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft to the US module last November. (ANS thanks Space Daily for the above information)


/EX

In addition to regular membership, AMSAT offers membership in the President’s Club. Members of the President’s Club, as sustaining donors to AMSAT Project Funds, will be eligible to receive additional benefits. Application forms are available from the AMSAT Store.

Primary and secondary school students are eligible for membership at one-half the standard yearly rate. Post-secondary school students enrolled in at least half time status shall be eligible for the student rate for a maximum of 6 post-secondary years in this status. Contact info [at] amsat.org for additional student membership information.

73 and Remember to help keep amateur radio in space,
This week’s ANS Editor, Mark Johns, K0JM
k0jm at amsat dot org

ANS-038 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins for Feb. 7

The AMSAT News Service bulletins are a free, weekly news and information service of AMSAT, The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation. ANS publishes news related to Amateur Radio in Space including reports on the activities of a worldwide group of Amateur Radio operators who share an active interest in designing, building, launching and communicating through analog and digital Amateur Radio satellites.

The news feed on http://www.amsat.org publishes news of Amateur Radio in Space as soon as our volunteers can post it.

Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to: [email protected]

You can sign up for free e-mail delivery of the AMSAT News Service Bulletins via the ANS List; to join this list see: https://mailman.amsat.org/postorius/lists/ans.amsat.org/

In this edition:

  • RadFxSat-2/Fox-1E Is Designated AMSAT-OSCAR 109 (AO-109)
  • SN9 Starship Test Launch: Otherwise successful test ends in a fireball
  • CAPE-3 Updates and iGate Request * First QO-100 satellite contact from Indonesia
  • ARISS Call for Proposals: Contacts for January to June 2022
  • Changes to AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution for February 4, 2021
  • ARISS News * Upcoming Satellite Operations
  • Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
  • Satellite Shorts From All Over

ANS-038 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 038.01
To: All RADIO AMATEURS
From: Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation
712 H Street NE Suite 1653
Washington, DC 20002

DATE 2021 Feb 07

RadFxSat-2/Fox-1E Is Designated AMSAT-OSCAR 109 (AO-109)

On January 17, 2021, the RadFxSat-2 cubesat was launched on a LauncherOne vehicle off the coast of California. RadFxSat-2 is a joint mission of AMSAT and the Institute for Space and Defense Electronics at Vanderbilt University. The satellite carries a telemetry beacon and a linear transponder, along with radiation effects experiments. The telemetry beacon has not yet been heard, but the transponder is partially operational at reduced signal strength. Work continues to recover the telemetry beacon and characterize the transponder with the goal of opening it for general use. AMSAT hereby designates RadFxSat-2 as AMSAT-OSCAR 109 (AO-109).

Testing and characterization of RadFxSat-2/AO-109 continues. After user reports and additional verification that the linear transponder is at least partially functioning with a low level downlink signal, the Engineering and Operations teams made the official designation. Of the several objects have been suspected (D, C, and M), with Object C being suggested recently by Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA. Recently, these satellites have sufficiently spread apart to allow testing to determine which object is RadFxSat-2/Fox-1E.

During the 2 Feb 2021 0240 UTC passes, command station Mark Hammond, N8MH, compared Objects D, C, and M for the “best fit” for received signals with Doppler correction on both the uplink and downlink frequencies for each of the candidate objects. Objects D and M were quickly eliminated from further consideration, due to poor frequency predictions of Doppler correction compared to observed signals. The clear best fit is Object C, which is known OBJECT C, INTELDES 2021-002C, and NORAD CAT ID 47311. Therefore, AMSAT is happy to identify Object C/2021-002C/47311U as RadFxSat-2/Fox-1E and make the designation AO-109. Thanks to Alan Biddle, WA4SCA, for support during the identification.

The Engineering and Operations teams appreciate the community’s cooperation thus far and affirm the request that users do not attempt to use the transponder until further notice. The proper identification will allow further characterization of the satellite’s condition through additional testing.

(ANS thanks Mark L. Hammond, N8MH, AMSAT Director and the Engineering and Operations Team for the above information)


Join the 2021 President’s Club! Score your 2″ 4-Color Accent Commemorative Coin.
This gold finished coin comes with Full Color Certificate and
Embroidered “Remove Before Flight” Key Tag
Donate today at
https://www.amsat.org/join-the-amsat-presidents-club/
You won’t want to miss it!


Another Starship Test Launch: SN9 test ends in a fireball

On Tuesday, February 2, Starship serial number 9 (SN9) completed SpaceX’s second high-altitude flight test of a Starship prototype from our site in Cameron County, Texas.

Similar to the high-altitude flight test of Starship serial number 8 (SN8), SN9 was powered through ascent by three Raptor engines, each shutting down in sequence prior to the vehicle reaching apogee – approximately 10 kilometers in altitude. SN9 successfully performed a propellant transition to the internal header tanks, which hold landing propellant, before reorienting itself for reentry and a controlled aerodynamic descent.

During the landing flip maneuver, one of the Raptor engines did not relight and caused SN9 to land at high speed and experience a RUD.

The full description and a video of the test launch may be found at: https://bit.ly/3avfkPC

[ANS thanks SpaceX Public Relations for the above information]


Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the AMSAT office is closed
until further notice. For details, please visit
https://www.amsat.org/amsat-office-closed-until-further-notice/


CAPE-3 Updates and iGate Request

Rizwan Merchant, KF5BNL, reports: “It seems CAPE-3 is indeed healthy in orbit. Our power system seems to be working as intended and UHF transmitters seem healthy. However, we’re suspecting the VHF radio is dead on arrival. We’ve not seen any indication of it functioning in orbit, which aligns with a fear we had prior to integration.

The CAPE-3 team is devising plans to begin testing individual subsystems on the satellite to gauge the health of those. This might take a few more weeks to validate and provide an update on what capabilities we can still carry out, as we update our ground systems.”

Additional updated information on CAPE-3 may be found at: https://bit.ly/2O6t1Nj

Rizwan continues: “If anyone is able to switch their iGates, or make a UHF iGate to help track CAPE-3 email packets, we’d be really grateful for the help! We’ve turned on one at our University as well. 1.) We are expecting UHF APRS on 437.325, the same as what our FSK and AX.25 packets are coming across on. 2.) From what I can tell, our NORAD ID is 47309. 3.) Currently we are having some issues commanding CAPE-3 from our University lab, so once we are able to transmit commands, we’ll be able to set the APRS emails to come across more often, and begin experimenting the tweeting function to see if it works as we intended.

I’d like to thank everyone who’s helped so far! We got our first email packet from W7KKE-13 earlier this evening (approximately 00:45 UTC Saturday, 02/06/2021).

The SatNOGS network is getting packets fairly regularly: https://bit.ly/3q9LQgR

[ANS thanks Riswan Merchant, KF5BN, for the above information]


Need new satellite antennas? Purchase Arrows, Alaskan Arrows,
and M2 LEO-Packs from the AMSAT Store.
When you purchase through AMSAT, a portion of the proceeds goes towards
Keeping Amateur Radio in Space.
https://amsat.org/product-category/hardware/


First QO-100 satellite contact from Indonesia

Indonesia’s national amateur radio society, ORARI, reports on the first contacts from Indonesia via the Qatar-Oscar-100 geostationary satellite transponder

The contacts took place on Thursday, January 27, 2021. Those involved were Farid Farhan YC1HVZ, Remco den Besten PA3FYM and Rene Stevens PE1CMO.

ORARI’s report says a team from the Telkom University Telecommunication Engineering Student Association (HMTT) led by Farid Farhan YC1HVZ, succeeded in conducting the first contact from Bukit Moko (Grid square OI33UD), Bandung, West Java with a satellite elevation of 0.8 degrees at an altitude of 1200m+.

Additional information is available at: https://bit.ly/3jgIC8B

[ANS thanks Southgate Amateur Radio News for the above information]


ARISS Call for Proposals

New Proposal Window is February 15th, 2021 to March 31st, 2021 February 2, 2021 — The Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) Program is seeking formal and informal education institutions and organizations, individually or working together, to host an Amateur Radio contact with a crew member on board the ISS. ARISS anticipates that the contact would be held between January 1, 2022 and June 30, 2022. Crew scheduling and ISS orbits will determine the exact contact dates. To maximize these radio contact opportunities, ARISS is looking for organizations that will draw large numbers of participants and integrate the contact into a well-developed education plan.

The deadline to submit a proposal is March 31st, 2021. Proposal information and more details such as expectations, proposal guidelines and the proposal form can be found at www.ariss.org. An ARISS Introductory Webinar session will be held on February 25th, 2021 at 8 PM ET. The Eventbrite link to sign up is: https://ariss-proposal-webinar-spring-2021.eventbrite.com

Additional information may be found at https://www.ariss.org/

[ANS thanks David Jordan AA4KN ARISS PR for the above information]


AMSAT’s GOLF Program is about getting back to higher orbits,
and it all begins with GOLF-TEE – a technology demonstrator for
deployable solar panels, propulsion, and attitude control.
Come along for the ride. The journey will be worth it!

https://tinyurl.com/ANS-GOLF


Changes to AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution for February 4, 2021

The NORAD Cat ID for RadFxSat-2 has been updated in this week’s AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution as follows:

RadFxSat-2 – NORAD Cat ID 47311. Mark Hammond, N8MH, (AMSAT Director and Command Station) has identified RadFxSat-2 as OBJECT C, NORAD CAT ID 47311. OBJECT C was determined to be the “best fit” for RadFXSAt-2 and OBJECTS D and M were eliminated as contenders. RadFxSat-2/Fox1E has been designated AO-109 as reported above.

The following satellites have also been added to this week’s AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution:

SOMP 2b – NORAD Cat ID 47445.
IDEASSat – NORAD Cat ID 47458.
Thanks to Nico Janssen, PA0DLO, for these two satellite identifications.

[ANS thanks Ray Hoad, WA5QGD, AMSAT Orbital Elements Manager, for the above information]


Want to fly the colors on your own grid expedition?
Get your AMSAT car flag and other neat stuff from our
Zazzle store! 25% of the purchase price of each product goes towards
Keeping Amateur Radio in Space
https://www.zazzle.com/amsat_gear


ARISS NEWS

Upcoming ARISS Contact Schedule as of 2021-02-06 04:30 UTC

Sterling MS, Ashburn, VA, multi-point telebridge via ON4ISS. The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS The downlink frequency is presently scheduled to be 145.800 MHz The latest information on the operation mode can be found at https://www.ariss.org/current-status-of-iss-stations.html The scheduled astronaut is Shannon Walker KD5DXB. Contact is go for: Tue 2021-02-09 14:44:48 UTC 66 deg

Watch for live stream at https://youtu.be/qVhBweqjCo4

Red Hill Lutheran, Tustin, CA, telebridge via NA7V . The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS . The downlink frequency is presently scheduled to be 145.800 MHz The latest information on the operation mode can be found at https://www.ariss.org/current-status-of-iss-stations.html The scheduled astronaut is Mike Hopkins KF5LJG. Contact is go for: Wed 2021-02-10 18:26:15 UTC 65 deg.

Amateurs and others around the world may listen in on contacts between amateurs operating in schools and allowing students to interact with astronauts and cosmonauts aboard the International Space Station. The downlink frequency on which to listen is 145.800 MHz worldwide.

[ANS thanks Charlie Sufana, AJ9N, one of the ARISS operation team mentors for the above information]


AMSAT, along with our ARISS partners, is developing an
amateur radio package, including two-way communication capability,
to be carried on-board Gateway in lunar orbit.

Support AMSAT’s projects today at https://www.amsat.org/donate/


Upcoming Satellite Operations

Quick Hits:

N6DNM: There will be a quick run at CM88/89 on Sun 7th, and a good chance of an attempt at CM79 on around Feb 12-13 (if wx holds) . Details will follow.

Major Roves:

CM93 Possibility: N6DNM Very long shot, but might want to put it on your calendar for May 15th, if you can figure out where it is and for #SOTA folks, that would be W6/SC-336, Santa Rosa Island, activated only once before.

JD1BQA activation of Ogasawara: Takio Hata, JH3QFL, plans to activate Ogasawara (AS-031) from May 1 to 7 as JD1BQA. QRV on 160, 80, 40, and 6m on FT8/FT4, and via the RS-44 satellite (CW). QSL via JH3QFL (d).  (Reported in DXNL 2235 – February 3, 2021 DX Newsletter)

Please submit any additions or corrections to Ke0pbr (at) gmail.com Updated 02/3/ 2021

[ANS thanks Paul Overn, KE0PBR, AMSAT rover page manager, and JoAnne Maenpaa, K9JKM for the above information]


Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events

Want to see AMSAT in action or learn more about amateur radio in space? AMSAT Ambassadors provide presentations, demonstrate communicating through amateur satellites, and host information tables at club meetings, hamfests, conventions, maker faires, and other events.

AMSAT Ambassador and registered ARRL instructor Clint Bradford K6LCS has a couple Zoom presentations lined up to begin 2021. In the first week of February, an “abbreviated” presentation was given to a Southern CA ARES group. Later in the month, a “normal” show will be presented. There are up-to-five spots available for you to attend! Just send Clint an email message for details.

Would a 90-minute informative, personalized-to-your-club, FUN presentation on working the “easy” satellites would be appropriate for your club? Send Clint an email message, and let’s book a date! Contact: Clint Bradford K6LCS k6lcs at ham-sat dot info 909-999-SATS (7287)

[ANS thanks Paul Overn, KE0PBR, AMSAT Events page manager, for the above information]


Satellite Shorts From All Over

+ After a successful launch in December, on 2 Feb. 2021, UVSQSat switched mode from 1200 BPSK(G3RUH) to 9600 BPSK(G3RUH). Frequencies for UVSQSat are telemetry on 437.02 MHz with callsign LATMOS-1 and the repeater: 145.905 MHz Uplink, 437.02 MHz Downlink More information on the UVSQSat mission may be found at: https://bit.ly/3oOPYRy (ANS thanks Christophe Mercier of AMSAT Francophone for the above information).

+ Two astronauts working outside the International Space Station on January 27 installed a European Space Agency data relay antenna and connected four of six cables to partially power a new ESA experiment platform. But the two cables they were unable to connect to the Bartolomeo platform will need to be connected later. Unable to resolve the cable trouble, they capped the two balky connectors and used tie-downs to hold all the cables in place. (ANS thanks SpaceFlight Now for the above information)

+ An update to the IC-705 Satellite Memory .CSV file has been posted at the AMSAT-SE website. Lars, SM0TGU, has fixed a bug in the PO-101 settings and has added 5 offsets for each of the FM birds. The 5 offset memory settings should make it easier to track the doppler shift of those satellites if an operator is in the field. The revised memory settings files are available at: https://www.amsat.se/2020/11/12/satellite-memory-file-for-ic-705/ (ANS thanks Lars Thunberg, SM0TGU of AMSAT-SE for the above information)

+ Twelve bottles of Bordeaux wine and dozens of vine shoots are back at home in southwest France after spending months on the International Space Station (ISS) for an unusual astrochemistry experiment. The red wine and 320 mature shoots known as canes arrived February 1 after their return to Earth via a Dragon capsule operated by SpaceX. They will be analysed at the Institute of Vine and Wine Science in Bordeaux to see how the stresses produced by zero gravity affect both grape growth and the finished product, which could spur new agricultural research. (ANS thanks Space Daily for the above information)

+ Sixty more SpaceX-owned Starlink internet satellites rocketed through a moonlit winter sky over Cape Canaveral aboard a Falcon 9 launcher early Thursday, while another Falcon 9 stood on a different launch pad a few miles away to loft another 60 Starlink payloads Friday. The first stage’s landing punctuated the fifth trip to space and back for this booster, and it broke a record for the fastest turnaround between flights of a SpaceX booster, besting the previous mark of 38 days set last month.(ANS thanks SpaceFlight Now for the above information)

+ Diplomas for the AMICALSAT satellite are being sent out. If you have not yet requested them, you can do so before 28/02/2021. The request for a diploma is done by sending an email to [email protected] indicating your callsign or the name given in the AMSAT-F database to send the data. (ANS thanks Christophe Mercier of AMSAT Francophone for the above information)

+ The first private Chinese company to reach orbit met with failure Monday (Feb. 1) during its second attempt to go to space. iSpace’s four-stage Hyperbola-1 rocket failed after liftoff while attempting to carry the cubesat-sized Fangzhou-2 (Ark-2) satellite into space. Media reports indicate the launch attempt happened around 0815z from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in the Gobi Desert. (ANS thanks Space.com for the above information)


In addition to regular membership, AMSAT offers membership in the President’s Club. Members of the President’s Club, as sustaining donors to AMSAT Project Funds, will be eligible to receive additional benefits. Application forms are available from the AMSAT Store.

Primary and secondary school students are eligible for membership at one-half the standard yearly rate. Post-secondary school students enrolled in at least half time status shall be eligible for the student rate for a maximum of 6 post-secondary years in this status. Contact info [at] amsat.org for additional student membership information.

73 and Remember to help keep amateur radio in space,
This week’s ANS Editor, Jack Spitznagel, KD4IZ
kd4iz at frawg dot org