[amsat-bb] US barriers to orbit (Re: Amateur communication satellites)

Bryan Green bryan at kl7cn.net
Wed Jun 29 19:33:25 UTC 2016

1. Yay. More satellites. 

2. HF? Really? Huh.

3. Net-net: see 1.

-- bag

Bryan KL7CN/W6
bryan at kl7cn.net

On Jun 29, 2016, at 12:28, Robert Bruninga <bruninga at usna.edu> wrote:

>>> Within the US, when someone like Bob, WB4APR, tries to build amateur
>>> communication sats, he runs into needless obstacles from FCC and NTIA.
>> Expand, please.
> The FCC had held up our Advance Notice (API) filing on the Naval Academy's
> last 5 Amateur Satellites (2 in orbit!) in a disagreement over whether
> Amateur Satellites built by students at the Service Academies can be
> amateur or must operate under NTIA rules in Federal Bands.
> Since the 5 satellites all had 2-way ham-user transponders on them on 2m
> and 70cm, the NTIA disagreed and said it was an FCC part 97 operation.
> FCC said it had to be Federal (and back and forth).  Note, we CANNOT get
> an "Experimental license" from the FCC, because it is true, that our
> institution is Federal.  But when  our students build an Amateur
> Satellite, it does not matter who built it, what matters is how it is
> Finally, I think the paperwork was accepted by the FCC for OPERATION in
> support of users in the Amateur Satellite Service and we have our fingers
> crossed that they will forward the API Notices to the ITU.
> To avoid any recurrence of this debate, our next student experimental
> satellite will be a bent-pipe HF linear transponder like the early AMSATS
> with uplink on 15m and downlink on 10m.
> We walk a fine line...  In order for DOD to launch it, the experiment has
> to have some educational value to DOD.  In order for us to be able to
> build something useful and economical at the undergraduate level, it needs
> to be amateur.   So by proposing an HF transponder for our next project,
> The Feds have NO SATELLITE allocations in HF, but the Amateur Satellite
> Service does. Therefore if they want to let us learn anything about HF
> satellites, then they have to let us operate it in the Amateur Satellite
> Service where there will be plenty of "users" to exercise it.
> So it will be a 100% amateur radio satellite for all hams worldwide and
> what we learn from it will have value to understaning HF satellites.
> Again, fingers crossed.  This would be a 2018 satellite at the earliest.
> LESSON LEARNED:  Don't let anyone but the Amateur Satellite Control
> operator get involved in the paper work.  He files the paperwork and he
> takes the responsibility for ON/OFF command as required by the FCC.
> Bob, WB4APR
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