Return of Experimenter’s Wednesday to AO-85

With the recent popularity of Slow Scan Television (SSTV) from the ISS, AMSAT Operations is bringing back Experimenter’s Wednesday to AO-85.

On a trial basis, we invite users to exchange pictures using Robot36 SSTV mode via the FM repeater on AO-85 during UTC Wednesdays. Please identify prior to beginning transmissions, and only send when the uplink is clear.

SSTV image received via AO-85 by N8HM during an AMSAT test

Stations are requested to only uplink if they have a reasonable expectation of maintaining a full-quieting signal for the duration of the image transmission. Smaller stations are encouraged to focus on receiving the images.

Please don’t send questionable or provocative images. If in doubt, pick another one. Expect all ages to be participating.

Feedback is encouraged, and comments may be directed via email to me at ko4ma@amsat.org.

[ANS thanks Drew KO4MA for the above information]

RadFxSat (Fox-1B) Gets the Official OK for Flight

The RadFxSat (Fox-1B) Mission Readiness Review was held Saturday morning, April 29th, at the Cal Poly campus in front of a board representing Tyvak, Cal Poly, and NASA.
The purpose of the review is to verify that all requirements are met for a safe and successful launch and deployment. Vice President Engineering Jerry Buxton, N0JY, presented 81 PowerPoint slides covering all of the ICD (Interface Control Document) requirements, mission, operations, and deorbit.
At the conclusion of the presentation including questions answers, the panel unanimously approved RadFxSat as ready for flight. The next milestone will be integration into the P-POD with launch scheduled NET (No Earlier Than) September 23, 2017 aboard a Delta II at Vandenberg AFB.

RadFxSat/Fox-1B Flight Model

RadFxSat Passes Post-Shock Tests

In a late night session Tuesday, the Short Functional Test was performed on RadFxSat and showed that the CubeSat is functioning well after the shock testing.

The test was streamed live on YouTube and the archive is available for viewing, at http://www.YouTube.com/c/n0jy/live.

2016-10-05

 

RadFxSat is the first of the four Fox-1 CubeSats built to date to be subjected to shock testing, which was necessary for qualification to fly on the Delta II ELaNa XIV Mission scheduled to launch March 16, 2017.  Being the first shock test experience we were cautious about what the result may be.  While Fox-1s have previously been subjected to and passed other tests such as vibration testing, each type of environmental test is significantly different.

The Short Functional Test, along with the previously reported Aliveness Test, is conducted before each environmental test is performed (shock, vibe, bakeout) and after the final environmental test is finished in order to determine that the Fox-1 CubeSat is functioning nominally prior to testing and is still functioning nominally after each test.

Short Functional Test (SFT) verifies the operation of the IHU, battery, transmitter, receiver, experiment, telemetry, and command systems through 51 steps of actions, measurements and observations.

With the successful completion of the SFT the Fox Team performed the Preflight Procedure.  This procedure places the IHU in the launch state so that it is configured as it will be during launch, for the next environmental test.

It looks like Hurricane Matthew will cooperate with our plans to travel to Boston on Sunday, October 9, so the next stop is NTS in Boxborough, MA for the final environmental testing which includes vibration and bakeout.  Live streaming of the environmental tests will not be possible due to ITAR and camera restrictions at the test facility, but streaming of the Short Functional and Aliveness tests and the preparation of RadFxSat for some of the testing may be available from the hotel room if the timing is such that they are performed outside the test facility.