[amsat-bb] Polar Tracking LEO Satellites ... ?

Rob pabutusa at gmail.com
Sun Sep 1 15:38:04 PDT 2013

I'm looking to put together a quick an easy portable tracking system for
LEO birds .... maybe something for field day use or an ISS school contact

Basically looking to do polar tracking with one rotor and a manual set
declination angle ....

Thoughts are:

- rotor that can swing 180 degrees (-90,+90)
- set the rotor to the half way point (0 degrees)
- position the whole apparatus so that it's pointing at the azmith and
elevation of the highest point on the pass
- position the rotor to -90 for a west to east pass or +90 for a east to
west pass
- calculate the length of the pass and time the rotation so it sweeps 180
degrees in that period

I'v been googling this topic till my eyes cross .... saw some data about
folks trying to do polar tracking of Ao-40 a while back ... but that was a
tad different considering Ao-40 is (was) in a high elliptical orbit ...

Does anyone have advice ... or a link to some data .... calculations ...
like how to convert az/el to something like (but not) declination/ra ????


--> Rob, KA2PBT

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