Antares PhoneSat Cubesat Launch Now Planned for April 21

Photo credit: Orbital Sciences Corporation

Three PhoneSat cubesats will be aboard the Orbital Sciences Corporation Antares(TM) rocket from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility (WFF) in eastern Virginia. Orbital Sciences reports on their website the soonest that the Antares rocket can be ready to retry the launch is April 19. The launch on April 20 was postponed because of unfavorable weather conditions. The next launch attempt is currently scheduled for April 21 at 2100 UTC. The launch will be broadcast on NASA TV. The April 17 launch attempt was scrubbed.

Phonesat carries an amateur radio payload on 437.425 MHz, was chosen as one of the winners in the Aerospace category for the Popular Science magazine “Best of What’s New 2012” awards. The PhoneSat is a technology demonstration mission consisting of three 1U CubeSats intended to prove that a smartphone can be used to perform many of the functions required of a spacecraft bus.

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STRaND-1 signal reports requested

chris_bridges_with_strandDr Chris Bridges from the Surrey Space Centre has advised that the amateur radio beacon on their STRaND-1 CubeSat, the first UK CubeSat became intermittent over the Easter weekend. STRaND-1, was launched on February 25 at 1231 UT on the PSLV-C20 rocket from the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Satish Dhawan space centre. Both Mike Rupprecht DK3WN and Nader Omer ST2NH have reported that no signals have been heard since Sunday.

Radio amateurs are asked to listen for STRaND-1 transmitting a 9k6 bps AX.25 signal around 437.568 MHz (+/- Doppler) over the next few days. Please report any positive results to C.P.Bridges[at]


STRaND-1 telemetry beacon…d-1-telemetry/

STRaND-1 videos

Merritt Island High School Mission Selected for NASA Cubesat Launch Initiative

Photo of the combined MIHS, Cal Poly, and NASA teams as they did their first integrated testing of the StangSat satellite at Kennedy Space Center.

Information Week published news of the Merritt Island High School team who developed StangSat.

The fourth round of selections in NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative also included a team of high school students at the Merritt Island High School in Brevard County, Florida. They plan to build a cubesat containing two accelerometers to measure the amount of vibration in the Poly Picosatellite Orbital Deployer, or P-POD case that holds the cubesats during launch and then deploys them.

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First Satellite Contact Between Cuba and Ireland on FO-29

Hector, CO6CBF

Congratulations to Hector Martinez, CO6CBF and Joe Murphy, EI5EV for completing the first satellite contact between Cuba and Ireland on April 3, 2013 on FO-29.

The distance between CO6CBF and EI5EV is 6955.1 km. Both stations had a 66 second window within the FO-29 footprint. Hector wrote, “Doppler is always in play. We did the calculations based on the great feature implemented on SatPC32 V12.8b using the option of seeing the frequency you are at the satellite receiver. This was our common reference point. I was very satisfied when I heard Joe exactly on the frequency I was expecting!”

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