ANS-293 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins for October 20


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 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.  You can sign up for free e-mail delivery of the AMSAT News Service Bulletins via the ANS List; to join this list see:

In this edition:

  • 2019 AMSAT Symposium Underway! Livestream Available
  • AMSAT Board of Directors Announces 2019 Officers
  • AMSAT-UK Colloquium Videos Available
  • Cubesat Simulators Launched
  • Changes to AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution
  • Upcoming ARISS Contact Schedule
  • Upcoming Satellite Operations
  • Satellite Shorts From All Over

2019 AMSAT Symposium Underway! Livestream Available

The 37th Annual AMSAT Space Symposium and General Meeting has begun, and will continue through Sunday, October 20, 2019, at The Hilton Arlington in Arlington, Virginia. Sessions are being live streamed at

The AMSAT Board of Directors met just before the Symposium, Oct. 16-17, at the same hotel.

The Symposium, which celebrates 50 years of AMSAT, features OSCAR Park –- a display of satellites from throughout the history of amateur radio in space. Paper presentations and the AMSAT Annual General Meeting will also be featured. The schedule of presentation is available at:

[ANS thanks Paul Stoetzer, N8HM, AMSAT Executive Vice President for the above information]

AMSAT Board of Directors Announces 2019 Officers

These are the results of the 2019 AMSAT Board of Directors meeting vote for Officers:

  • Joe Spier, K6WAO, of Reno, NV, as President
  • Paul Stoetzer, N8HM, of Washington, DC, as Executive Vice President
  • Jerry Buxton, N0JY, of Granbury, TX, as Vice-President Engineering
  • Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA, of Brooksville, FL, as Vice-President Operations
  • Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, of Towson, MD, as Vice-President Human Spaceflight
  • Robert Bankston, KE4AL, of Dothan, AL as Vice-President User Services
  • Frank Karnauskas, N1UW, of Burnsville, MN as Vice-President Development
  • Alan Johnston, KU2Y, of Philadelphia, PA as Vice-President Educational Relations
  • Brennan Price, N4QX, of Vienna, VA, as Secretary
  • Robert Bankston, KE4AL, of Dothan, AL, as Treasurer
  • Martha Saragovitz of Silver Spring, MD, as Manager

The Board of Directors appointed officers for the new year at its meeting in Arlington, Va. on Wednesday, Oct. 16. Officers are selected by the Board from among the AMSAT membership, based on expertise and experience.

[Thanks to the AMSAT Board of Directors for the above information]

Purchase AMSAT Gear on our Zazzle storefront.
25% of the purchase price of each product goes towards
Keeping Amateur Radio in Space

AMSAT-UK Colloquium Videos Available

Videos of the presentations given at the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium, which was held as part of the RSGB Convention in Milton Keynes, October 12-13, 2019, are being made available on YouTube.

The first of the videos is the fascinating presentation on the WUSAT-3 CubeSat project given by Professor Julia Hunter-Anderson of the University of Warwick which highlights the potential use of CubeSats for wildlife tracking. Other presentations are expected to be uploaded in the coming weeks.

The AMSAT-UK videos are located on their YouTube channel at

AMSAT-UK wishes to thank the British Amateur Television Club and Wouter Weggelaar, PA3WEG, for their work in recording, editing and uploading these videos.

[ANS thanks Trevor Essex, M5AKA, and AMSAT-UK for the above information]

Cubesat Simulators Launched

Dr. Alan Johnston, KU2Y, Vice President – Educational Relations has announced the general availability of the AMSAT Cubesat Simulators. Speaking at the 37th Annual Space Symposium, Alan reports that since the prototype Cubesat Simulators were introduced at Hamvention in May, 2019, the simulators  have undergone testing and final release.  Among the schools testing the simulators was Bishop O’Connell High School in Arlington, Virginia.  Science and Engineering teacher Melissa Pore presented to the symposium audience her experience with using a simulator in one of her engineering clubs and how her student benefited from their use.

A Cubesat Simulator is a self-contained satellite model that reports solar cell performance via standard AFSK 1200 BPS AX.25 telemetry. The telemetry can be decoded with a simple SDR ground station.  A Cubesat Simulator package consists of the 1U simulator, a halogen work light to simulate sunshine, and a motorized rotating turntable that mimics the satellite tumbling through space.  The four  loaner packages are packed and shipped in a hard case.  The simulator is shipped prepaid while the user pays return shipping.

Persons interested in borrowing a CubeSat Simulator for a local presentation is encouraged to contact Alan at KU2Y at amsat dot org.

[ANS thanks Alan Johnston, KU2Y, AMSAT Vice President – Educational Relations 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.

Changes to AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution

The following Amateur Radio satellite has decayed from orbit and has been removed from this week’s TLE distribution:

  • TNS 0-2 – NORAD CAT ID 42914 – Decayed 10/15/2019 (per Space-Track).

Last week a number of “N”s were present in a few TLEs which caused some programs to reject those TLEs. Note: Some (but not all) of the raw TLEs from SpaceTrack have plus signs (+) which are not necessary. All plus signs (+) in the TLEs are routinely changed to a blank space.

Last week all plus signs were incorrectly changed to the letter “N”. This was due to a change in the formatting program and a typing error that substituted a “N” instead of a single blank space everytime a plus sign was present. That problem has been corrected and should not be an issue in the future.

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

The Fox-In-A-Box Raspberry Pi SD card for setting up a Raspberry Pi-based
telemetry station for the Fox-1 satellites now supports the Raspberry Pi4.
Get yours today on the AMSAT Store!

Upcoming ARISS Contact Schedule

  • Due the crew EVA schedule some ARISS contacts may need to be rescheduled.
  • An International Space Station school contact was completed with participants at Science & Technologie e.V. event: Science Days, Teningen, Germany on Thursday, Oct. 17. The event lasted approximately 9 minutes and 30 seconds, direct between OR4ISS and DN1EME. The contact was audible over Germany and adjacent areas on the 145.80 MHz downlink.
  • Istituto Comprensivo Statale “Diego Valeri”, Campolongo Maggiore, Italy, direct via IQ3RW and Istituto Comprensivo Ladispoli1, Ladispoli, Italy, direct via IKØWGF, the ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be IRØISS and the scheduled astronaut is Luca Parmitano, KF5KDP. The contact is go for: Saturday, Oct. 19 at 10:27:13 UTC (26 degrees) Watch for live stream from IQ3RW side of the contact at:  Watch for live stream from IKØWGF side of the contact directly on the AMSAT Italia youtube channel:
  • I.I.S. “Ciampini-Boccardo”, Novi Ligure, Italy, direct via I1LJV and I.T.I.S. “Magistri Cumacini”, Como, Italy, direct via IZ2MCC, the ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be IRØISS. The scheduled astronaut is Luca Parmitano, KF5KDP. Contact is go for: Friday, Oct. 25 at 10:24:39 UTC

The ARISS webpage is at

[ANS thanks Charlie Sufana, AJ9N, of the ARISS operation team 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

Upcoming Satellite Operations

  • St. Lucia, October 19-28, 2019
    Jay, AA4FL, will be in St. Lucia for the J68MD CQWW SSB Contest Team. Jay will be doing OSCAR satellite operation as J6/AA4FL, by schedule as he is visiting vacation style in varying locations. His schedule will depend on shifts as a team member of the CQWW  J68MD team. E-mail per QRZ to coordinate both FM simple SATs and SSB linear transponder bird QSO schedules.  Radios will be a FT-817ND and FT-818ND for full duplex operation using an Arrow II antenna.
  • Oregon, DN04, October 21, 2019 
    KI7UNJ will be QRV on Oct. 21, from 1653z to 1910z, FM only.
  • Colombia, through October, 2019
    The special event stations J500LDV, 5J500D, 5J500L, and 5J500V will commemorate the 500th anniversary of Leonardo da Vinci’s death on the air until the end of October. QRV on 80 to 10m on CW, SSB, digital modes, and via satellite. An award program will be available as well. QSL via HK3VHZ, LoTW, eQSL.
  • Texas, EL06, EL16 and adjacent grids, November 2-9, 2019
    Ron Bondy, AD0DX, reports on Twitter that he will be flying to San Antonio and hopes to activate as many as 10 south Texas grids. Watch Twitter @ad0dx for details.
  • Hawaii (BK19, BK28, BK29, BL20) December 21-28, 2019 
    Alex, N7AGF, is heading back to Hawaii over Christmas. This will be a holiday-style activation, with special empahasis on the grid that got away – BK28. Keep an eye on Alex’s Twitter feed for further announcements:

Please submit any additions or corrections to ke4al (at)

[ANS thanks Robert Bankston, KE4AL, AMSAT Vice-President of User Services for the above information]

Satellite Shorts From All Over

  • The AMSAT Office will be closed on Monday, October 21 as the AMSAT Symposium wraps up.   (ANS thanks Martha Saragovitz, AMSAT Manager, for the above information — you deserve a day off, Martha!)
  • Astronauts Christina Koch and Jessica Meir carried out history’s first all-female spacewalk Friday, floating outside the International Space Station and successfully installing a 230-pound replacement battery charger in the lab’s solar power system. The historic excursion was carried out in a blaze of public interest that rose all the way to the White House.   (ANS thanks Spaceflight Now for the above information)
  • NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine has named Douglas Loverro as the agency’s new associate administrator for the Human Exploration and   Operations Mission Directorate. Loverro succeeds former astronaut Kenneth Bowersox, who has been acting associate administrator since July. Previously, Loverro spent three decades in the Department of Defense and the National Reconnaissance Office developing, managing, and establishing national policy for the full range of national security space activities.   (ANS thanks for the above information)
  • SpaceX is seeking approval to add up to 30,000 more satellites to its Starlink broadband network, on top of 12,000 spacecraft already authorized by U.S. government regulators, according to filings submitted to the International Telecommunication Union.   (ANS thanks Spaceflight Now for the above information)
  • Possibly related to the previous news item, LeoLabs announced that they plan to build four additional radar installations for tracking space debris. Their current installations can track objects down to about a 10 cm diameter, but with their new installations they’ll theoretically be able to track objects as small as 2 cm. In general, current radar systems tend to be limited on the lower end to objects in the 5-10 cm range. Systems like LeoLabs’ and the U.S. Air Force’s upcoming Marshall Islands-based Space Fence will improve coverage, but still won’t see the 128 million objects from 1 mm to 1 cm, which have the potential to disable or completely destroy a satellite.   (ANS thanks The Orbital Index for the above information)
  • Soviet cosmonaut Alexei Leonov, who became the first person in history to spacewalk in 1965, has died aged 85. He went on to become the commander of Soyuz-Apollo, the first ever joint US-Soviet mission in 1975. Leonov died at Moscow’s Burdenko hospital on Friday, Oct. 11 after a long illness.   (ANS thanks 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 office.

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 Martha at the AMSAT office for additional student membership information.

This week’s ANS Editor,
Mark Johns, K0JM
K0JM at amsat dot org