[amsat-bb] Re: Satellite user "communities"
vk3jed at gmail.com
Wed Dec 12 12:51:34 PST 2007
At 06:28 AM 12/13/2007, Bob Stewart wrote:
>With the "range war" that's going on right now, it
>seems like there are at least two communities of
>satellites users: one that wants simple, easy to
>use transponders and doesn't mind the windows
>of availability (and perhaps enjoys it for the added
>simple technical challenge), and another that wants an
>HF band type of experience with perfect propagation.
>There may be other subsets that I haven't noticed, yet,
>but these seem to be the two main groups. Both have
Agreed. For us in the Southern Hemisphere, there's also the issue of
having someone to work. FM sats attract a few, but once you get
outside of the major countries (i.e. VK, ZL), finding anyone with
70cm gear gets very difficult. On the linear birds, I did have some
success on FO-29 once at a hamfest satellite demo (I don't have the
gear to do U band myself, unfortunately, as I know there are some
locals on VO-52). On RS-12/13, the only QSOs I had were pre-arranged
with locals on 2m before the pass. Obviously, a HEO is of more
interest in these parts, given that it's thousands of miles to any
other country with significant satellite activity. Excercise, grab a
globe of the Earth, draw a circle 6000km radius, centred on Melbourne
and note the countries inside the circle. For satellites with 2m
uplinks, exclude anywhere that can only be reached when Indonesia is
in the footprint. And note that very few of the Pacific island
nations have any 70cm gear on them, so they'd be relying on satellite
DXpeditions to activate them. Count the remainder... ;) (Note, the
problem with Indonesia is a population in the hundreds of millions
and a high level of long range cordless phone usage - UO-14 was a
dogpile of phone calls whenever Indonesia was in the footprint).
Back in the early 90's, I did have a bit of fun on RS-10/11 using a
jury rigged setup. :)
So far, my experiences have been:
RS-10/11 - Some VK activity, I miss this bird, it was a lot of fun.
RS-12/13 - Some pre-arranged QSOs, didn't seem quite as sensitive as
10/11. Some Asian QRM noted in latter years, but could fit QSOs in between.
SO-35 - a LOT of VK/ZL activity, with some P29. Another bird I
really miss, this was a very fun one to work, and could be reached by
a HT in unusual situations (Sat QSO from a train anyone? - Yes, I've
done that MANY time! ;) ).
UO-14 - some VK/ZL/P29 activity, 3D2 reported by others. Performance
limited by Asian QRM on the uplink and lack of receive sensitivity of
AO-51 - Some VK/ZL activity, issues similar to UO-14
SO-50 - I haven't worked anyone on it, though have tried a few passes.
FO-20/29 - One or two VK QSOs at hamfest demos.
VO-52 - Haven't worked, due to lack of U band SSB gear (and no
hamfest demos in recent years). U/V operation holds promise, and I
know of several regular users in this region.
AO-7 - Another one I haven't tried, since its resurrection.
73 de VK3JED
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