[amsat-bb] Re: Eagle and AO40

John B. Stephensen kd6ozh at comcast.net
Sat Feb 24 13:04:04 PST 2007

I wouldn't call Eagle another AO-40. Eagle has an AO-13-like linear 
transponder plus a new transponder that will allow the use of smaller ground 
station antennas. AO-40 attempted to solve the antenna problem by making a 
higher power 1980-technology linear transponder whose transmitters then 
failed. Eagle is much more conservative by using linear transponder power 
levels more similar to AO-13. The new transponder will make use of modern PC 
technology in the ground station to allow the use of lower RF power levels.

The explosion of the AO-40 rocket engine was due to procedure rather than 
technology. AO-10 and AO-13 had the same engines. The same human error won't 
be made again.



----- Original Message ----- 
From: <jim at beeson.cc>
To: <AMSAT-BB at amsat.org>
Sent: Saturday, February 24, 2007 18:07 UTC
Subject: [amsat-bb] Eagle and AO40

>I am curious at the thoughts of current satellite users.  As I read the 
>AMSAT Journal and see the progress of the Eagle Project, it reminds me of a 
>few years ago when another "do it all" satellite was being planned - AO40. 
>Amateurs are pumping thousands of dollars and time into this project.  I 
>remember I followed AO40 with great excitement, not to mention spending a 
>few grand upgrading my station to be ready for this "super bird".  And 
>after all the things that went wrong after the launch, I thought - never 
> So my question is basic:  why spend all this money and wait years for 
> something that might end up another catastrophe?  Why do we have to try 
> and design a bird that does it all?  We all know the more complex the bird 
> the more room for failure.  Why not just pop out another AO13 - or 
> similar?  I can't tell you how many hours of fun I had with RS10/11.  And 
> with the way things are in amateur radio now, who knows if there will be 
> anybody even interested in this by the time Echo finally is useable.
> Just a thought.  I would like to hear yours now please.
> Jim Beeson
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