ANS-194 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins for July 12th

AMSAT NEWS SERVICE
ANS-194

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: ans-editor at amsat.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: http://www.amsat.org/mailman/listinfo/ans

In this edition:

  • AMSAT Leadership Explains 2018-2020 Legal Expenses
  • Update on HO-107 (HuskySat-1)
  • AMSAT-DL Proposes LunART – Luna Amateur Radio Transponder
  • Buffalo Soldiers Special Event on the Satellites
  • Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
  • Upcoming Satellite Operations
  • Upcoming ARISS Contacts
  • Satellite Shorts from All Over

SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-194.01
ANS-194 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 194.01
From AMSAT HQ KENSINGTON, MD.
DATE July 12, 2020
To All RADIO AMATEURS
BID: $ANS-194.01

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/

AMSAT Leadership Explains 2018-2020 Legal Expenses

On July 10, 2020, AMSAT President Clayton Coleman, W5PFG, sent the following letter to AMSAT members regarding legal expenses incurred during the 2018-2020 timeframe. The letter was co-signed by Dr. Tom Clark, K3IO, Martha Saragovitz, Keith Baker, KB1SF, Robert Bankston, CPA, KE4AL, Jerry Buxton, N0JY, Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA, Dr. Mark Hammond, N8MH, Bruce Paige, KK5DO, and Paul Stoetzer, N8HM.

https://tinyurl.com/ANS-194-Letter

[ANS thanks the AMSAT Office for the above information]

Update on HO-107 (HuskySat-1)

AMSAT Vice President – Engineering Jerry Buxton, N0JY, posted the following update on HO-107 (HuskySat-1) on the AMSAT-BB:

While it is disappointing that the transponder did not see a longer period of use following the science missions, the overall HuskySat-1/HO-107 project and mission were quite beneficial for our
partner and for AMSAT. The HuskySat-1 team were able to command their satellite and experiments and receive the telemetry they sought, and AMSAT was able to work through the extensive process of making a new design for a “black box” radio module that can be integrated into a non-AMSAT spacecraft and fly in the space environment.

The LTM (Linear Transponder Module) on HO-107 worked for over three months after HuskySat-1 came alive following its deployment. The failure of the LTM came during or just after a period of full sun where LTM temperatures reached over 80 degrees Celsius.

While licensed and operated as an amateur radio satellite by AMSAT during the transponder use, there are some facts that set HO-107 apart from our Fox-1 CubeSats and other AMSAT satellites.

1. It’s not our satellite. We have no control and may not have any insight into how a partner actually uses the LTM. While we see the LTM temperatures and many of the other typical data fields that we downlink to FoxTelem regarding LTM health, data such as temperature of the host environment as well as other specific information like power and the state of the other systems in a host satellite may or may not be available to us. Whether LTM is operated within design limits is entirely up to the host.

The University of Washington HuskySat Labs team was very cooperative with us on this mission, however there are things regarding their mission that we do not know because they are processing and studying their data for use in their thesis and classes and preparing it for release in a specific way typical of such an institution today. AMSAT is generally more forthcoming with information about our missions but what we can and have said about this mission is determined by UW. That is really no different to certain aspects of our own missions. Most members are likely familiar with the vague wording I provide for some of our launch timelines and that is the result of the same thing, in the owner of the launch vehicle or LSP/APIC determining what we can say to the public and when.

2. HO-107 was the first ever use of a new product, the AMSAT LTM. The LTM idea was first put forth at the AMSAT leadership strategic planning meeting in 2017 and is now coming into availability for other non-AMSAT CubeSats to fly amateur radio on their mission.

HO-107 is the pilot production of LTM and was developed in partnership with UW HuskySat-1. It was the first CubeSat radio module designed and built by AMSAT for use in other host CubeSats, and UW was key in working with us through the design and processes needed to provide such a module. They did not buy it as, nor did we give it to them as an “off the shelf” product as we plan to for future LTM production. LTM was developed from the Fox-1E linear transponder design, and provided in a partnership with UW that started in November 2014 when we made an agreement with University of Washington to fly an amateur radio on their CubeSat mission. Overall, the HuskySat-1 team were quite happy with the telemetry and command performance even with the LTM anomalies showing up toward the end of their experiments. In the process of getting HuskySat-1 to orbit several students became interested in amateur radio, and we have already had preliminary
discussions of future joint mission plans.

The ability to provide more LTM to new and future partners will increase the number of orbiting satellites carrying amateur radio, at a low cost to AMSAT and the partner, keeping amateur radio in space even as we develop newer and more capable satellites. There is no doubt that HO-107 was a success in many ways beyond the operational life of the transponder.

As usual, the AMSAT Engineering team of volunteers deserve the praise for putting yet another amateur radio in space be it in our own satellite, or in a partner satellite!

[ANS thanks Jerry Buxton, N0JY, AMSAT Vice President – Engineering, 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

AMSAT-DL Proposes LunART – Luna Amateur Radio Transponder

AMSAT-DL has submitted a proposal to the European Space Agency to place an amateur radio communications link on the Large European Lander. This system would support direct communication with earth through amateur radio frequencies in the microwave bands, support University and Student Payloads with direct access to their experiments, allow Radio Science for a huge community of radio amateur operators and scientists worldwide. It would also provide an important back-up communication capability and capacity during emergency or when the ESA network is busy.

More details can be found at https://tinyurl.com/ANS-LunART

AMSAT wishes our friends at AMSAT-DL the best of luck on their proposal. This would be a great resource for amateur radio should it come to fruition.

[ANS thanks AMSAT-DL for the above information]

Buffalo Soldiers Special Event on the Satellites

In honor of Buffalo Soldiers Month and to commemorate the formation of the United States Army 9th and 10th Calvary Buffalo Soldiers Regiments the Texas Parks and Wildlife will take part of a worldwide amateur radio special event on July 25th – 26th, 2020. Transmissions will begin transmitting at 8am CST Saturday morning July 25 and will end 8pm CST Sunday July 26. Commemorative QSL cards and Certificates will be available (see the callsign W5W or W5B at the QRZ.com web site for QSL information).

Operations will be held on:

Voice 10, 15, 20, 40 and 80 meters
Digital FT8 on 20, 40 and 80 meters
CW on 20, 40 meters
Satellite

Listen for the FCC assigned callsigns: W5W or W5B

Shortwave Listeners (SWL) are encouraged to participate.

For those without amateur radio privileges to transmit or listen in, please join us Saturday July 25 at 1pm CST on Facebook Live, look for Buffalo Soldiers Program – Texas Parks and Wildlife, for participation and a chance at a special QSL Card and Commemorative Certificate.

For additional information about the Buffalo Soldiers legacy and an excellent video history about the Buffalo Soldiers with commentary from Judge Joe Green please visit www.qrz.com and enter W5W or W5B into the search box.

[ANS thanks Rudy Hardy, W5HRH, 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
https://www.zazzle.com/amsat_gear

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.

Due to COVID-19, many hamfest and events around the United States have been canceled or postponed. While we make every effort to ensure the information contained below is correct, there may be some that we missed.

No events are currently scheduled. We wish all of you safekeeping and hope to be at a hamfest near you soon.

[ANS thanks Robert Bankston, KE4AL, AMSAT Vice President – User Services, 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/

Upcoming Satellite Operations

Quick Hits:

EM57 & EM67 (Saturday 7/11 & 7/12) N4DCW may also stop in EM58, passes posted on his QRZ page.
FN45 & FN46, VE2FUA, 7/12 & 7/13: Chris is heading out to a little known (to rovers at least) called Maine. Might want to get him while he is there.
DN44, 7/13 – 7/17, @N7AGF FM for sure may bring linear gear if it fits.
FM13 & FM03, 7/12 & 7/13, Wz4M is heading out Holiday Style
EN20/30 Line, July 28-31, KX9X : Sean is moving quickly towards his VUCC/R award by heading out again for two more grids. Watch his Twitter for details.
DM97/98 & EM08/09: Super Rover @ADoDX is heading out for the Kansas QSO party and N0E. More to come.

@WY7AA is heading out again!!!

Mon. 7/13 Drive day possible FM passes from DN63
Tues – Sat. 7/14 – 7/18 SSB and FM passes from DN64 Burgess Junction, WY. Some HF POTA K-4534 Big Horn National Forest
Sun. 7/19 Travel day no sats, but internet updates
Mon 7/20 SSB and FM passes from DN67/68. Every pass from about 16:00 – 04:00
Tues 7/21 SSB and FM passes from DN57/58. Every pass from about 16:00 – 04:00
Wed. 7/22 Travel day no sats
Thurs 7/23 SSB and FM passes from DN55/56. Every pass from about 16:00 – 04:00
Fri 7/24 SSB and FM passes from DN65/66. Every pass from about 16:00 – 04:00
Watch his QRZ page for details and updates.

Please submit any additions or corrections to ke0pbr@gmail.com

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

Upcoming ARISS Contacts

Quick list of scheduled contacts and events:

Don Bosco Haacht Technisch en Beroepsonderwijs, Haacht, Belgium, Multi-point telebridge via AB1OC

The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS
The scheduled astronaut is Chris Cassidy KF5KDR
Contact was successful: Fri 2020-07-10 10:49:51 UTC 27 deg (***)

International Aerospace School, Ufa, Russia, direct via TBD

The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be RSØISS
The scheduled astronaut is Ivan Vagner
Contact is go for Fri 2020-07-17 19:10 UTC

[ANS thanks Charlie Sufana, AJ9N, ARISS Operations, 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/

Satellite Shorts From All Over

+Congratulations to Kevin Manzer, N4UFO, on earning AMSAT GridMaster Award #12 for working all 488 continental US grids. Kevin notes that it took him just over five years, from 2013-2018, to accomplish this goal. More information regarding the GridMaster Award can be found at https://www.amsat.org/gridmaster/ (via KK5DO and N4UFO)

+F4DXV and R9LR have set another new satellite distance record – this time on LilacSat-2. The 4,561 km QSO occured on 10-Jul-2020 at 04:23 UTC. Records are listed at https://tinyurl.com/ANS-SatDist (via F4DXV and N8HM)

+An article about the first amateur radio communication system in lunar orbit, aboard LO-94, has been published at https://tinyurl.com/ANS-194-LO-94 (via BG2BHC on Twitter).

+Congratulations to KP4RV for being the first station in Puerto Rico to receive the VUCC Award on amateur satellites (via KF7R on Twitter).

+The European Space Agency recently published a how-to video regarding reception of ISS SSTV pictures. An ISS SSTV transmission is expected within the next few weeks in commemoration of the 45th anniversary of Apollo/Soyuz: https://youtu.be/HtC-BPcMruA

+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 AMSAT Folding at home team continues to climb the rankings. Now in the top 900 of all teams at the time of this writing, the team has grown to 48 members with 67 active CPUs within the past 50 days and includes 12 members in the top 100,000 of all users. Alex Free, N7AGF, is our top contributor with over 159,000,000 points credited to AMSAT’s team. For more information about the Folding at home project and how you can contribute to scientific research, including the fight against COVID-19, see https://foldingathome.org/. AMSAT’s team number is 69710: https://stats.foldingathome.org/team/69710

/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. 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 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-187 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins for July 5th

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: ans-editor@amsat.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: http://www.amsat.org/mailman/listinfo/ans

In this edition:

  • Successful Launch of BY70-2 With FM-to-Codec2 Transponder
  • AMSAT Responds to Allegations of Unauthorized Legal Expenses
  • New Satellite Distance Records Set
  • VUCC Awards-Endorsements for July 2020
  • Virginia Air and Space Center Discontinues KE4ZXW Demo Station
  • AMSAT 2020 Board of Directors Election Upcoming
  • CAS-6 Becomes TO-108, Confusion Ensues
  • San Diego Microwave Group Discusses ARISS Possibilities
  • ARISS News * Upcoming Satellite Operations
  • Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
  • Satellite Shorts From All Over

SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-187.01
ANS-187 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 187.01
From AMSAT HQ KENSINGTON, MD.
DATE 2020 July 05
To All RADIO AMATEURS
BID: $ANS-187.01

Successful Launch of BY70-2 With FM-to-Codec2 Transponder

Wei Mingchaun, BG2BHC, reports on Twitter that BY70-2 was launched on July 3 at 03:10z from Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center on a CZ-4B launch vehicle. BY70-2 will serve as a replacement for BY70-1, a 2U CubeSat which launched on December 26, 2016. Due to a booster failure, BY70-1 was placed in an elliptical orbit with a low perigee and the satellite’s orbit decayed in February 2017.

Unlike BY70-1, which carried an FM transponder, BY70-2 carries an FM-to-Codec2 transponder similar to the ones on board LO-90 and Taurus-1. More information about working this type of transponder can be found in an article entitled “Digital Voice on Amateur Satellites: Experiences with LilacSat-OSCAR 90” by Paul Stoetzer, N8HM, in the January/February 2019 issue of The AMSAT Journal. The article can also be found on the AMSAT website at https://tinyurl.com/ANS-166-BY70-2.

BY70-2 is in a sun-synchronous orbit with an altitude of approximately 500 km. As a replacement, the satellite is sharing BY70-1’s IARU coordination and ITU API notification. The uplink frequency is 145.920 MHz and the downlink frequency is 436.200 MHz.

[ANS thanks Wei Mingchaun, BG2BHC, 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/


AMSAT Responds to Allegations of Unauthorized Legal Expenses

The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation (AMSAT) has been made aware of public comments alleging financial mismanagement in the form of “unauthorized” legal expenditures. AMSAT takes these allegations very seriously and in full disclosure, has investigated these claims for many months.

AMSAT’s corporate records give a full accounting of all expenditures and are provided to its Directors upon request, in compliance with our governing documents and law of the District of Columbia (D.C.) Our office remains closed due to COVID-19, where those documents reside. Furthermore, AMSAT complies with IRS rules for 501(c)(3) disclosure of public financial documents, such as the Form 990 available on the AMSAT website. Financial review and accounting services from a third- party firm of Certified Public Accountants are utilized by the corporation to ensure governance to best practice and law.

The Corporation vehemently denies false statements alleging “unauthorized” expenditures.

On behalf of AMSAT,

Clayton Coleman, W5PFG President

[ANS thanks Clayton Coleman, W5PFG, AMSAT President, for the above information]


New Satellite Distance Records Set

Two new distance records have been established in the past week! New records are added regularly to the AMSAT Satellite Distance Records page: https://amsat.org/satellite-dist

Jérôme LeCuyer, F4DXV, and Vladimir Vassiljev, R9LR, have claimed the distance record on TO-108 (CAS-6) with a 4,458 km QSO on 28-Jun-2020 at 10:11 UTC between JN04ft91dd in France and MO27qf72nd in Russia. Congratulations to Jérôme and Vladimir!

Also, congratulations to Alain Combelles, TR8CA, and Philippe Chateau, EA4NF, for a new AMSAT distance record on the CAS-4A Satellite on 27-Jun-2020 at 13:30 UTC. The contact was completed between IN80fl in Spain and JJ40ql in Gabon.

These are the latest in a series of new records set over the past few months, including:

  • EO-88 – 4,086 km. F4DXV in JN04iu <> VO1FOG in GN37in. 02-Apr-2020 at 23:20 UTC.
  • PO-101 (FM) – 5,128 km. EA4SG in IN80cp77em<> R9LR in MO27qf72nd. 06-May-2020 at 23:03 UTC.
  • RS-44 – 8,357 km. W5CBF in EM30jf35qi <> DL4EA in JN48ko94cw. 26-May-2020.
  • AO-92 (L/V) – 4,202 km. OA4/XQ3SA in FH17lv <> XE1MEX in EK08mu. 03-Jun-2020 at 04:07 UTC.
  • AO-27 – 5,682 km. E21EJC in OK03fp <> R9LR in MO27qf. 09-Jun-2020 at 23:45 UTC.
  • XW-2B – 4,978 km. KE9AJ in DM79iq47 <> FG8OJ in FK96ig17. 20-Jun-2020 at 11:14 UTC.

Congratulations to all of these operators for their patience and their operating skill.

[ANS thanks Paul Stoetzer, N8HM, AMSAT Executive Vice-President, 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/


VUCC Awards-Endorsements for July 2020

Here are the endorsements and new VUCC Satellite Awards issued by the ARRL for the period June 1, 2020 through July 1, 2020. Congratulations to all those who made the list this month!

CALL June July
N0JE 637 652
WD9EWK(DM43) 600 612
NS3L 551 575
KI7UNJ 510 527
AD0HJ 425 450
KE8FZT 400 428
AA4QE 305 408
K5IX 375 402
ND0C 346 377
KC9UQR 275 301
WA9JBQ 275 300
N4YHC 250 270
W4DTA 261 263
KA9P 212 259
KS1G 170 233
KE0WPA 200 229
VU2LBW 114 200
N3CAL 100 160
K7TEJ 102 126
N7ZO New 116
AC9O New 108
DJ3GZ New 108
WD9EWK(DM45) 100 106
K3HPA New 102
WA9WUD New 102
KI5HHK New 101
N8URE New 101
KD9NGV New 100
KP4RV New 100
W8LR New 100

If you find errors or omissions. please contact me off-list at W5RKN [at] W5RKN.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]


Virginia Air and Space Center Discontinues KE4ZXW Demo Station

The Virginia Air and Space Center in Hampton,Virginia has ended its twenty-five year relationship with the KE4ZXW Amateur Radio Demonstration Station. Robert Griesmer, Executive Director and CEO of the Virginia Air and Space Center has directed that the KE4ZXW Amateur Radio Demonstration Station located at the Virginia Air and Space Center (VASC) be disassembled and removed from the Center by June 30.

In his June 5, 2020, update Mr. Griesmer advised the following to the KE4ZXW group: “I am writing to you to inform you that, after careful consideration, we have decided to discontinue the Ham Radio Station Exhibit effective July 1st upon the re-opening of the Center.” Randy Grigg, WB4KZI, president of the Amateur Radio group, thanked the volunteers who have supported and operated the station for the last 25 years.

The station has spent the last quarter of a century demonstrating the use of Amateur Radio, its applications as a STEM Activity, communications skills and communications through amateur satellites to school groups. The station also made contacts to the International Space Station.

The KE4ZXW Amateur Radio station’s equipment has found a new home with K4KDJ, the Virginia Tech Amateur Radio Association in Blacksburg, Va.

[ANS thanks ARRL for the above information]


AMSAT 2020 Board of Directors Election Upcoming

The nomination period for this year’s AMSAT Board of Directors election ended June 15. The following candidates have been found to have their membership in good standing and their nomination credentials in order:

  • Howard DeFelice, AB2S
  • Mark Hammond, N8MH
  • Jeff Johns, WE4B
  • Robert McGwier, N4HY
  • Bruce Paige, KK5DO
  • Paul Stoetzer, N8HM

This year, AMSAT will be electing three voting members of the Board of Directors. These will go to the three candidates receiving the highest number of votes. In addition, there will be two alternates chosen, based on the next highest number of votes received.

Further details regarding the mechanics of the election will appear in ANS in the near future. Ballots will be mailed to the AMSAT membership by July 15th based on a membership list that will be generated as early as July 1. Members are encouraged to use the AMSAT Membership Portal at https://launch.amsat.org/ to verify that their membership is in good standing and their mailing address is correct.

[ANS thanks Brennan Price, N4QX, AMSAT Secretary, for the above information]


CAS-6 Becomes TO-108, Confusion Ensues

At the request of CAMSAT and the CAS-6 team, Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA, AMSAT VP Operations & OSCAR Number Administrator announced last week that CAS-6 (TQ-1) would receive the official designation of TQ-OSCAR 108 (TO-108).

Since that designation, TO-108 was added to the AMSAT Live OSCAR Satellite Status Page at https://www.amsat.org/status/ However, an entry for CAS-6 also remains on that page. Further, AMSAT TLE distributions continue to list the satellite as CAS-6 (NORAD Cat ID 44881).

Operators should be aware that the designations CAS-6 and TO-108 both refer to the same satellite, and should be on the lookout for changes in the naming on websites and in TLE distribution sets. It many take a week or two before consistent naming filters through all systems.

Frequencies for the intended radio amateur mission are:
• CW Telemetry Beacon: 145.910 MHz
• AX.25 4.8kbps GMSK Telemetry: 145.890 MHz
• U/V Linear Transponder Downlink: 145.925 MHz, 20 kHz bandwidth
• U/V Linear Transponder Uplink: 435.280 MHz, Inverted

Operator reports indicate that the transponder is active only for brief intervals of about 2 seconds, spaced approximately 5 seconds apart. With patience, and quick transmissions, QSOs have been completed.

[ANS thanks Mark Johns, K0JM, 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


San Diego Microwave Group Discusses ARISS Possibilities

Participants in the San Diego Microwave Group’s (SDMG) 29 June 2020 Zoom meetup discussed the possibility of the AREx broadband digital microwave design being potentially deployed on the International Space Station (ISS).

Since the project has focused heavily on high earth orbit, geostationary orbit, and the lunar opportunity with Gateway, the challenges of low earth orbit (ISS) now need to be addressed. This will be an ongoing process. Here’s what participants recommended at SDMG:

Since there are LEO constellations up to and including Ka band, the tracking and doppler have been done. It’s just a question of learning the requirements, design patterns, limitations, and techniques.

Since the project already incorporates the near-space communications recommendations from Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS), little has to be done in that regard.

HamTV on ISS is at 2.4 GHz, which while lower than the projected 5 GHz and 10 GHz, has all the other aspects of broadband digital. There is plenty to be learned from those experiments, and meetings are being set up to begin to collaborate with the principals of HamTV on deeply appreciated advice & next steps.

There was strong advice to eliminate antenna pointing. Use of an antenna system in space and on the ground that does not require tracking would dramatically increase adoption. With Adaptive Coding and Modulation, all sorts of systems can be accommodated. However, a ground station that does track can use a directional antenna with a lot more gain, and get a much higher bit rate, while a station with a 120 degree field of view would get a lower bit rate, but would not have to track at LEO. This needs thorough link budgeting.

There are several link budgets in Jupyter Notebook in progress at https://github.com/phase4space/payload-dmt Others interested in helping here are most welcome.

Testing for human rated spacecraft incurs a substantial increase in engineering, paperwork, and time requirements. Putting the equipment outside instead of inside does not eliminate the testing requirements. This is going to require advice/direction from ARISS.

Space heritage of this type, where equipment is an external payload only requiring power, makes hosted payload options easier to negotiate. There are 5-6 GEO missions going up in the next 3 years that could be targeted.

Doppler is a factor here, and SDMG participants received strong recommendations about talking with particular ARISS team members with experience. SDMG will be learning from and incorporating their advice in the very near future.

[ANS thanks Michelle Thompson, W5NYV, Member of the AMSAT Board of Directors, for the above report]


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.

Scheduled contacts and events:

Don Bosco Haacht Technisch en Beroepsonderwijs, Haacht, Belgium, Multi-point telebridge via AB1OC. (A multi-point telebridge contact means that each student will be on the telebridge from their own home.) The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS, and the scheduled astronaut is Chris Cassidy, KF5KDR. The contact is go for Friday, July 10 at 10:49:51 UTC (27 degrees maximum elevation).

ARISS is very aware of the impact that COVID-19 is having on schools and the public in general. As such, we may have last minute cancellations or postponements of school contacts.

[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:

Email from @KS1G: K2B (VA, me) and K2F (MD) are both on sats for the 13 Colonies event through Tuesday evening. K2F told me K2A (NY) is also on. He will also post schedules to twitter!!!

DN08, 7/4 & 7/5, @KC7JPC, John is heading out roving. Yippeeeeee!!!!

DN18 / DN28, 7/11: KI7UXT and KC7JPC

EM57 & EM67 (Saturday 7/11 & 7/12) N4DCW may also stop in EM58, passes posted on his QRZ page.

FN45 & FN46, VE2FUA, 7/12 & 7/13: Chris is heading out to a little known (to rovers at least) called Maine. Might want to get him while he is there.

FM13 & FM03, 7/12 & 7/13, WZ4M is heading out Holiday Style <- Updated Grids

EN20/30 Line, July 28-31, @KX9X : Sean is moving quickly towards his VUCC/R award by heading out again for two more grids. Watch his Twitter for details.

Major Roves:

@KM4LAO is heading out on 7/3 – 7/9 through Texas, Colorado and Kansas. FMs for sure and maybe linears. The tentative schedule is as follows: 7/3 (evening) – 7/4: DM95 7/5: DM86/96 gridline and possibly DM85/95 line as well 7/6: DM87/88 or DM97/98 gridline based on family schedule 7/6-7/9: DM87 Details will be posted on Twitter @KM4Ruth

@N5BO is heading out into the Murder Hornet territory: EM43/44 on 7/3 Starting at 15:05 EM53/54 on 7/4 Starting at 14:54 EM52 on 7/5 Starting at 16:37 Click here for pass scheduled and frequencies

@WY7AA is heading out again!!! Starting July 13th DN63 (Some Day passes) DN64 fir a few days of fly fishing then DN55 – DN68, and getting home on July 31st….

** Postponed ** DL88: Ron (@AD0DX) and Doug (@N6UA) are making another run at the elusive DL88 in Big Bend National Park, TX. As we know they tried this grid back in March, and due to the mud couldn’t get to the grid, so never ones to quit, off they go again. Today the tentative date is Monday July 6th, 2020. They will be using the K5Z call sign. More information is available at the K5Z QRZ Page.

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

[ANS thanks Paul Overnfor, KE0PBR, AMSAT rover page manager, 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.

Due to COVID-19, many hamfest and events around the United States have been cancelled or postponed. While we make every effort to ensure the information contained below is correct, there may be some that we missed. We wish all of you safekeeping and hope to be at a hamfest near you soon.

Current schedule:

Shelby NC Hamfest (Contact N4HF for info or if you want to help.) Phil Jenkins, N4HF, is planning to present a forum – and set-up/man an info table – at the Shelby NC Hamfest Friday/Saturday Sept 4 & 5. (the ‘fest runs Sept 4-6, but he’ll probably only be there Friday and Saturday). Demos possible if additional volunteers step up.

A copy of the AMSAT hamfest brochure is available for download from: https://bit.ly/2ygVFmV This color brochure is designed to be printed double-sided and folded into a tri-fold handout.

To include your upcoming AMSAT presentation and/or demonstration, please send an email to ambassadors (at) amsat (dot) org.

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


Satellite Shorts From All Over

+ There has been further work on trying FT8 for EME, this time on 1296. It turns out that, contrary to the original news item, the Doppler spread on the lower bands is not an issue, since the energy distribution of the EME signal is mainly concentrated in a much narrower spectrum than the maximum total Doppler spread. This means that it can work probably with little degradation on bands up to and including 1296, under most circumstances. For a writeup of this work please see http://bobatkins.com/radio/FT8_EME_1296.html (ANS thanks Charles Suckling, G3WDG, via Southgate ARC, for the above information)

+ Two ISS astronauts, including newly-arrived Bob Behnken, KE5GGX, performed a spacewalk to replace batteries on the outside of the station (and dropped a handheld mirror which promptly became the newest piece of space debris). (ANS thanks The Orbital Index for the above information)

+ Hackster recently featured a nice little project using a Raspberry Pi to display the current location of the International Space Station (ISS) and its trajectory over time, using an ePaper Display, ProtoStax Enclosure and some Python code. See https://bit.ly/2Ao9HVa (ANS thanks to hackster.io and JoAnne Maenpaa, K9JKM, for the above information)

+ The Space Science Center at Morehead State University (Kentucky) is accepting applications for a full-time position as a Space Systems Engineer – Software Engineer. For details and to apply, see: https://moreheadstate.peopleadmin.com/postings/9284 Please note: The preferred closing date has passed, but they are still accepting applications! (ANS thanks Morehead State and JoAnne Maenpaa, K9JKM, for the above information)

+ The Benchmark Space Systems team is excited to sponsor and present a complimentary “Propulsion Systems 101” workshop Wednesday July 8 at 1:00 p.m. EST (1700z) The workshop will provide satellite integrators and constellation developers with a broad overview of propulsion technologies and their associated operational capabilities. Register at: https://www.lrainstitute.com/event_post/0720-propulsion-systems/ (ANS thanks Benchmark Space Systems and JoAnne Maenpaa, K9JKM, 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 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 6 post-secondary years in this status. Contact Martha at the AMSAT Office for additional student membership information.

73 and Remember to help keep amateur radio in space, This week’s ANS Editor, Mark D. Johns, K0JM

k0jm at amsat dot org

AMSAT Responds to Allegations of Unauthorized Legal Expenses

The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation (AMSAT) has been made aware of public comments alleging financial mismanagement in the form of “unauthorized” legal expenditures. AMSAT takes these allegations very seriously and in full disclosure, has investigated these claims for many months.

AMSAT’s corporate records give a full accounting of all expenditures and are provided to its Directors upon request, in compliance with our governing documents and law of the District of Columbia (D.C.) Our office remains closed due to COVID-19, where those documents reside. Furthermore, AMSAT complies with IRS rules for 501(c)(3) disclosure of public financial documents, such as the Form 990 available on the AMSAT website. Financial review and accounting services from a third-party firm of Certified Public Accountants are utilized by the corporation to ensure governance to best practice and law.

The Corporation vehemently denies false statements alleging “unauthorized” expenditures.

On behalf of AMSAT,

Clayton Coleman, W5PFG
President

ANS-180 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins for June 28th

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: ans-editor@amsat.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: http://www.amsat.org/mailman/listinfo/ans

In this edition:

  • AMSAT Symposium Proceedings Now Available to AMSAT Members
  • Ham Talk Live Episode on Satellite Etiquette
  • ASEE Presentation on CubeSatSim
  • CAS-6 Becomes TO-108, Added to AMSAT TLE Distribution
  • AMSAT Announces Candidates for 2020 Board of Directors Election
  • ARISS Volunteer VK5ZAI Named Member of the Order of Australia
  • Upcoming Satellite Operations
  • ARISS News
  • Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
  • Satellite Shorts From All Over

SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-180.01
ANS-180 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 180.01
From AMSAT HQ KENSINGTON, MD.
DATE 2020 June 28
To All RADIO AMATEURS
BID: $ANS-180.01


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/


AMSAT Symposium Proceedings Now Available to AMSAT Members

All editions of the AMSAT Symposium Proceedings dating back to 1986 are now available as a benefit of AMSAT membership via the Member Resources section of our new membership portal at launch.amsat.org.

If you’re a current member and have not yet logged on to the portal, please do so to ensure that your information is accurate in the database and check out the online resources we have made available to all members, including Proceedings, all issues of The AMSAT Journal dating back to 2014, and a printable frequency chart listing currently available amateur satellites.

If you’re not a current member, now is a great time to sign up. Visit https://launch.amsat.org/ today!

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


Ham Talk Live Episode on Satellite Etiquette

Popular internet podcast “Ham Talk Live!” this past week featured an episode on Satellite Etiquette. The podcast, which uses the format of a radio call-in show, streams live on Thursdays at 9 p.m. Eastern Time (0100z in the current Daylight Time regimine), can be replayed on You- Tube at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCF1FnCczwUikw1aKsTqMR9g as Episode 218.

Podcast host, Neil Rapp, WB9VPG, conducted interviews with Kevin Zari, KK4YEL and Robert Bankston, KE4AL, AMSAT Vice President – User Services about basic satellite operating etiquette as well as how to conduct satellite operations special event stations, such as roamers and during events such as Field Day.

[ANS thanks @HamTalkLive on Twitter 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/


CAS-6 Becomes TO-108, Added to AMSAT TLE Distribution

The CAS-6 (TQ-1) microsatellite was launched December 20, 2019 on a CZ-4B launch vehicle from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center, China. CAS-6 (TQ-1) was developed by the Chinese Amateur Satellite Group (CAMSAT) and in cooperation with China’s commercial satellite manufacturer. CAMSAT completed the design and manufacture of the amateur radio payload, and manages the on-orbit operation of the payload. The satellite carries CW and digital telemetry beacons and a linear transponder. The deployment of the amateur antennas was delayed due technical and COVID-19 issues, but was completed on June 20, 2020. Currently the beacons are carriers only, and the transponder operates with about 2 seconds on and 5 seconds off.

At the request of CAMSAT and the CAS-6 team, AMSAT hereby designates CAS-6 (TQ-1) as TQ-OSCAR 108 (TO-108). We congratulate the owners and operators of TO-108, thank them for their contribution to the amateur satellite community, and wish them continued success on this and future projects.

Frequencies for the intended radio amateur mission are:

  • CW Telemetry Beacon: 145.910 MHz
  • AX.25 4.8kbps GMSK Telemetry: 145.890 MHz
  • U/V Linear Transponder Downlink: 145.925 MHz, 20 kHz bandwidth
  • U/V Linear Transponder Uplink: 435.280 MHz, Inverted

Operator reports indicate that the transponder is active only for brief intervals of about 2 seconds, spaced approximately seconds apart. With patience, and quick transmissions, QSOs have been completed.

CAS-6 (NORAD Cat ID 44881) has been added to the AMSAT distributions of Two Line Element (TLE) sets beginning from June 25, 2020. Watch for possible future changes to the satellite name in future TLEs.

[ANS thanks Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA, AMSAT VP Operations & OSCAR Number Administrator; Ray Hoad, WA5QGD, AMSAT Orbital Elements Manager; and Alan Kung, BA1DU, for the above information]


ASEE Presentation on CubeSatSim

At this week’s American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE) virtual national conference, AMSAT’s VP of Educational Relations, Alan Johnston, Ph.D., KU2Y, presented a paper on the use of the AMSAT CubeSatSim in the classroom. His paper “The CubeSat Mini Project: Experiences with an Introductory Freshman Electrical and Computer Engineering Course” described the use of the CubeSatSim in the spring of 2019 at Villanova University.

In addition to building CubeSatSims, the students also built tape measure Yagi-Uda antennas, tracked amateur radio satellites, and listened to Morse code telemetry using SDRs. The CubeSatSim is a low cost satellite emulator that runs on solar panels and batteries, transmits UHF radio telemetry, has a 3D printed frame, and can be extended by additional sensors and modules. It can be built for about $200. Details about the design and use of the simulator are in a series of articles in the AMSAT Journal. More information on the AMSAT CubeSatSim is available at https://cubesatsim.org or by contacting Alan at ku2y at amsat dot org or on Twitter @alanbjohnston.

[ANS thanks Alan Johnston, KU2Y, AMSAT VP Educational Relations for the above information]


AMSAT Announces Candidates for 2020 Board of Directors Election

The nomination period for this year’s AMSAT Board of Directors election ended June 15. The following candidates have been found to have their membership in good standing and their nomination credentials in order:

  • Howard DeFelice, AB2S
  • Mark Hammond, N8MH
  • Jeff Johns, WE4B
  • Robert McGwier, N4HY
  • Bruce Paige, KK5DO
  • Paul Stoetzer, N8HM

This year, AMSAT will be electing three voting members of the Board of Directors. These will go to the three candidates receiving the highest number of votes. In addition, there will be two alternates chosen, based on the next highest number of votes received.

Further details regarding the mechanics of the election will appear in ANS in the near future. Ballots will be mailed to the AMSAT membership by July 15th based on a membership list that will be generated as early as July 1. Members are encouraged to use the AMSAT Membership Portal at launch.amsat.org to verify that their membership is in good standing and their mailing address is correct.

[ANS thanks Brennan Price, N4QX, AMSAT Secretary, 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 Volunteer VK5ZAI Named Member of the Order of Australia

Veteran Amateur Radio on the International Radio Station (ARISS) volunteer Tony Hutchison, VK5ZAI, has been honored as a Member of the Order of Australia in Queen Elizabeth’s Birthday Honours List. Hutchison was recognized “For significant service to amateur radio, particularly to satellite and space communication.” The Australian Government’s Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet noted that Hutchison is one of 10 official ARISS telebridge stations to the International Space Station, as well as a HamTV ground station.

Hutchison’s station has served as the ham radio contact point for ISS crew members to speak with schools and groups on Earth via ham radio, when a contact location is not within the footprint of an ISS pass. The students connect via a teleconference line from their school to the telebridge station, and then with the astronaut using ham radio.

Hutchison provided communication support for contacts with Australian astronaut Andy Thomas, VK5JAT/VK5MIR, during Thomas’s tour on the Russian Mir space station, and he enabled the first school contact with Mir in 1993. As part of ARISS, he helped 65 schools prepare for ARISS contacts and used his telebridge station for 58 ARISS contacts throughout the world. He is a member of AMSAT-VK.

“Tony’s been an ARISS mentor for years, and was lead of Australia’s mentors,” ARISS-International Secretary Rosalie White, K1STO, said. “He enjoyed talking to the Mir crews long before.” White said that Hutchison, who is in his early 80s, remains involved in the ARISS program. Licensed in 1960, Hutchison became interested in satellite communication in 1965 with OSCAR-3.

“Although I received the honour, I would like to share it with all team members I work with,” Hutchison said. “If it wasn’t for the work that all the ARISS-International volunteers do, this award would never have been given.”

An investiture ceremony is tentatively set for this fall.

[ANS thanks ARRL for the above information]


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.

Largely due to summer school holidays, no contacts are currently scheduled.

[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

Upcoming Roves: Quick Hits:

CM86, 6/26. W6KSR: Will be on a few passes on Friday from CM86,

EM19, 6/27 & 6/28 KE9AJ : Will be at the farm with FM and Linear gear.

FM25 and Maybe FM26, @KM4LAO Now though 6/28. Ruth will be at the beach, no schedule yet!

EM58/EM59, 6/29 @KX9X will be heading out to the grid line between 14:00 and 22:00. Watch his twitter feed for updates. <Updated

EM57 & EM67 (Saturday 7/11 & 7/12) N4DCW <-Change of grids!

FN45 & FN46, VE2FUA, 7/12 & 7/13: Chris is heading out to a little known state (to rovers at least) called Maine. Might want to get him while he is there.

Major Roves:

@WY7AA is heading out again!!! Starting July 13th DN63 (Some Day passes) DN64 fir a few days of fly fishing then DN55 – DN68, and getting home on July 31st….

DL88: Ron (@AD0DX) and Doug (@N6UA) are making another run at the elusive DL88 in Big Bend National Park, TX. As we know they tried this grid back in March, and due to the mud couldn’t get to the grid, so never ones to quit, off they go again. Today the tentative date is Monday July 6th, 2020. They will be using the K5Z call sign. More information is available at the K5Z QRZ Page.

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

[ANS thanks Paul Overnfor, KE0PBR, AMSAT rover page manager, 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.

Due to COVID-19, many hamfest and events around the United States have been cancelled or postponed. While we make every effort to ensure the information contained below is correct, there may be some that we missed. We wish all of you safekeeping and hope to be at a hamfest near you soon.

Current schedule:

* Shelby NC Hamfest (Contact N4HF for info or if you want to help.) Phil Jenkins, N4HF, is planning to present a forum – and set-up/man an info table – at the Shelby NC Hamfest Friday/Saturday Sept 4 & 5. (the ‘fest runs Sept 4-6, but he’ll probably only be there Friday and Saturday). Demos possible if additional volunteers step up.

A copy of the AMSAT hamfest brochure is available for download from: https://bit.ly/2ygVFmV This color brochure is designed to be printed double-sided and folded into a tri-fold handout.

To include your upcoming AMSAT presentation and/or demonstration, please send an email to ambassadors (at) amsat (dot) org.

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


Satellite Shorts From All Over

+ Rohit Bokade, VU3OIR, has started a petition requesting a change to the Amateur Radio license in India to permit all grades of license to use the amateur radio satellites. In India, holders of the Restricted grade of license (VU3 prefix) are not permitted to use amateur radio satellites or communicate with the International Space Station. (ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information)

+ NASA’s Perseverance rover is getting ready to launch to Mars in July, and it’ll carry some very special messages with it. We already knew about the 11 million names and the statement “explore as one” written in Morse code. NASA revealed last week it’ll also take a tribute to health care workers all the way to the red planet. The Perseverance team installed a small aluminum plate showing Earth on top of a serpent-wrapped rod, a nod to the ancient Rod of Asclepius symbol for medicine. NASA said the plaque commemorates the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and pays tribute to the perseverance of health care workers around the world. (ANS thanks cnet.com for the above information)

+ NASA has agreed to allow its astronauts to fly on reused Crew Dragon spaceships and Falcon 9 boosters beginning as soon as SpaceX’s third launch of a crew to the International Space Station, a mission expec- ted to launch next year. The space agency has modified its contract with SpaceX to permit reuse of spacecraft and rocket hardware. NASA had not previously approved the use of previously-flown spacecraft and rockets on missions carrying the agency’s astronauts into orbit. NASA said the contract modification allows for the extension of the Crew Dragon’s Demo-2 test flight — which launched May 30 with astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken, KE5GGX — from two weeks to up to 119 days. (ANS thanks SpaceflightNOW for the above information)

+ NASA announced this week that it will rename its Washington headquarters after its first black female engineer, Mary Jackson, whose story was told in the hit film “Hidden Figures.” Jackson was a research mathematician who was later promoted to become the agency’s first black female engineer. The move by NASA comes as weeks of protests in the United States have sparked a national reckoning about systemic racism and racial inequality. (ANS thanks Space Daily for the above information)

+ Congratulations to Drew Blasbrenner, KO4MA, who has been awarded the first AMSAT issued GridMaster Award (#11)! The GridMaster award is available to all amateurs worldwide who submit proof with confirmation of contacts with each of the 488 maidenhead grids located within the contiguous United States of America. Contacts must be confirmed in writing, preferably in the form of QSL cards or via Logbook of the World (LoTW). This award was first introduced by Star Comm Group in 2014. AMSAT thanks Damon Runion, WA4HFN, and Rick Tillman, WA4NVM, for not only sponsoring this award since its inception, but, also, entrusting AMSAT with the honor of carrying on this important award for the benefit of the entire AMSAT community. (ANS thanks Bruce Paige, KK5DO, AMSAT Director, Contests & Awards, for the above information)

+ The San Diego Microwave Group will hold a Zoom meeting this Monday, June 29 at 7 p.m. U.S. Pacific Time (0200 UTC on June 30) with a presentation by Michelle Thompson, W5NYV, concerning challenges of placing an amateur microwave payload in space. Microwave on the ISS was raised as a possibility this past week from the ARISS/AREx hardware summit meetings. The San Diego Microwave Group meeting is a regular technical roundtable on amateur microwave activities, questions, operations, and experiments. Join Zoom Meeting ID: 819 2711 2936 using Password: 487697. (ANS thanks AMSAT Board Member Michelle Thompson, W5NYV, for the above information).

+ Congrats to Joe Werth, KE9AJ, and Burt Demarcq, FG8OJ, for setting a new distance record on XW-2B on June 20. This was also the longest QSO recorded on any of the XW-2 series of satellites. FG8OJ located at FK96ig17, to KE9AJ at DM79IQ47 is 4,978 km. (ANS thanks Paul Stoetzer, AMSAT Executive Vice-President, 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 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 6 post-secondary years in this status. Contact Martha at the AMSAT Office for additional student membership information.

73 and Remember to help keep amateur radio in space,
This week’s ANS Editor, Mark D. Johns, K0JM

k0jm at amsat dot org