[amsat-bb] AMSAT Demonstration Station at the Dayton Hamvention Recap

PY5LF py5lf at falautomation.com.br
Fri May 27 13:05:23 UTC 2016

Congratulations , you did it very well !

2016-05-27 0:31 GMT-03:00 Paul Stoetzer <n8hm at arrl.net>:

> Good evening,
> This was my first year running the AMSAT demonstration station at the
> Dayton Hamvention after Keith Pugh, W5IU, had run it for many years.
> After volunteering at the demo station the past couple of years, I
> knew what to expect: a poor horizon to the north (due to the arena),
> high levels of RF (including lids running FM simplex inside the
> satellite subband on 2m), and lots of fun demoing satellite operation
> to curious newcomers as well as meeting many satellite operators I've
> worked on the satellites in person.
> The core of the demo station was similar to past years. I brought my
> pair of Yaesu FT-817s (known fondly among many satellite operators as
> a Yaesu FT-1634) as well as a Windows 10 tablet and a FUNcube Dongle
> Pro+. The antenna was an Arrow II 146/437-10BP and I also brought a
> cheap Optera camera tripod. In addition, John Papay, K8YSE, brought
> his Icom IC-910H, laptop, and Arrow antenna on a speaker stand with a
> mount that allowed a smooth way to change polarity throughout the
> pass. With this mix of equipment, we were able to demonstrate several
> methods of satellite operating: computer controlled Doppler tuning of
> a transceiver designed for satellite operating, manual Doppler tuning
> with a pair of VHF/UHF all-mode transceivers, and use of an SDR
> receiver with a VHF/UHF all-mode receiver for full-duplex operating on
> linear transponders.
> The demo area was up and running by the time the outdoor areas of the
> Hamvention opened at 8:00am on Friday morning. Our first pass was an
> XW-2A pass at 8:17am, with K8YSE operating his IC-910H and KD8CAO
> running the antenna. The demos were generally a two man operation with
> one operator at the radio and one serving as the antenna rotor. After
> this pass, we listened to the 70cm PSK31 signal from NO-84 and a few
> packet bursts from the ISS using the FUNcube Dongle Pro+ and Windows
> 10 tablet before a pair of AO-85 passes and an XW-2F pass operated by
> K8YSE.
> By special request, the AO-73 transponder was activated a day area and
> was available for Friday morning's demos. I operated the 10:51am pass
> with my pair of Yaesu FT-817s. A video of this pass is available on
> the AMSAT North America Facebook page:
> https://www.facebook.com/groups/7828379515/permalink/10154235785829516/
> Later, I operated an SO-50 and FO-29 pass with that pair of FT-817s as
> well, but had to fight strong desense. After those two passes, I
> grabbed a diplexer I had brought and placed it on the 2m transmit side
> (to filter out the third harmonic from the transmitter) and
> experienced no further desense problems with my setup. PY5LF captured
> part of the SO-50 pass on video:
> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVPb1a9NqxQ K8YSE then operated the
> rest of the FO-29, AO-7, and SO-50 passes that afternoon.
> On Saturday morning, we opened with listening (and decoding a bit) to
> the PSK31 beacon on NO-84. Unfortunately, we did not have HF transmit
> capability. The signal from NO-84's PSK31 transponder is very good and
> I highly recommend anyone who can transmit on 10m at 25-50 watts and
> receive a 70cm FM signal give it a try.
> After working an XW-2F pass with the pair of FT-817s, I decided to
> give the SDR receiver a try and made one QSO each on XW-2C and XW-2A
> using the SDR as a downlink receiver. This was the first time I had
> tried doing this and it was fun, though I definitely need some more
> practice with it! I also tried the SDR receiver on AO-73 and FO-29 and
> made a couple of QSOs.
> Shortly after the ARRL Youth Forum ended around noon, a large crowd
> began to arrive at the demo area. Nine-year old Hope Lea, KM4IPF, who
> had given a talk at the Youth Forum operated a pass of SO-50 around
> 12:19pm and made many QSOs from coast-to-coast. A video of this pass
> is available from the AMSAT North America Facebook page:
> https://www.facebook.com/james.g.lea/videos/10154297928734363/
> After the SO-50 pass, we made several QSOs on FO-29 and then listened
> to the SPROUT digitalker. The SPROUT digitalker is generally active on
> Saturday passes. A video of this pass is available here:
> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4FRNZkMb5yM
> K8YSE then operated the Saturday afternoon passes of FO-29, AO-7, and
> AO-85 with his Icom IC-910H setup. Highlights included several of us
> passing around the microphone to work Paulo, PV8DX, in Brazil.
> We got an early start on Sunday morning, operating a pass of AO-85 to
> the northeast using my dual FT-817 setup just prior to 8:00am.
> Although I was the only person in the demo area, I made three QSOs on
> AO-85, holding the antenna myself and leaning over the table to
> operate the radio. After this, I operated a pass of XW-2F around
> 8:30am. For the 8:44am XW-2A pass, ARRL Media & Public Relations
> Manager Sean Kutzko, KX9X, took the microphone and made several QSOs
> on that pass while I pointed the antenna. Although I did have a tripod
> for the antenna, I was simply using the stock camera tripod mount and
> had no way to adjust polarity. Since polarity is so critical while
> operating satellites, the operators who pointed the antenna while
> using my Arrow generally took the antenna off the tripod and held it
> in their hand for quick polarity adjustments. K8YSE's speaker stand
> mount demonstrated a good way to mount an Arrow antenna on a tripod
> while retaining adequate control over polarity.
> The next pass after this was a low western pass of XW-2C where I made
> several QSOs. At 9:37am, we operated a pass of AO-85 and made QSOs
> from coast-to-coast. A video of AMSAT VP of Operations Drew
> Glasbrenner, KO4MA, at the microphone is available at:
> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xrmzym39X5E
> I would note that we were using a pair of FT-817s, barefoot, on that
> pass and were able to make several QSOs with just 5 watts, mostly full
> quieting. Though AO-85 can often take a bit more power to get in to,
> QSOs using 5 watts and an Arrow antenna are very possible.
> Passes of SO-50, AO-73, and FO-29 rounded out the demos for the
> Hamvention and we were QRT at 12:12pm on Sunday, but not before
> working MI6GTY in Northern Ireland on FO-29. It was nice to get Europe
> in the log from the Dayton Hamvention demo station and it was our last
> QSO of the 2016 Hamvention.
> The AMSAT demo station has been a fun place to spend a majority of the
> last three Dayton Hamventions and I would encourage all satellite
> operators and those curious about satellite operation to visit the
> station outside of Ball Arena (near the ARRL and AMSAT booth areas)
> next May. Volunteers and guest operators are always sought!
> A few pictures are posted on the AMSAT North America Facebook page:
> https://www.facebook.com/groups/7828379515/permalink/10154235785829516/
> (The AMSAT North America Facebook group is very active - in fact,
> traffic has likely surpassed the traffic on the AMSAT-BB. If you are
> not a member, I would encourage you to check it out
> https://www.facebook.com/groups/7828379515/?qsefr=1)
> Thanks to the following for volunteering at the demo station (and
> apologies if I missed anyone):
> Mark Hammond, N8MH
> Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA
> John Papay, K8YSE
> Doug Papay, KD8CAO
> Art Payne, VE3GNF
> Wyatt Dirks, AC0RA
> Michael Kirkhart, KD8QBA
> John Brier, KG4AKV
> Jeff Griffin, KB2M
> Hope Lea, KM4IPF
> Sean Kutzko, KX9X
> Thanks to the following for providing equipment for the demo station:
> Mike Young, WB8CXO (Batteries)
> Keith Pugh, W5IU (DC power distribution)
> 73,
> Paul Stoetzer, N8HM
> Secretary, AMSAT-NA
> Washington, DC
> P. S. I did not keep logs at the demo station, though I will remember
> if I worked you! If you need a card or LoTW upload for EM79, please
> let me know.
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