[amsat-bb] Vol 4, Issue 188 Packet Satellites?

Robert Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Mon Apr 20 21:51:51 PDT 2009

> Does anyone do Satellite packet? 
> If so what kind of TNC is needed. 

As a tangential response, our next satellite which will do the
same APRS packet relay as PCSAT and the ISS will use the new
Byonics all-on-a-board Packet TNC/Radio/Telemetry system.  This
makes it possible to build a packet satellite out of a single
3.4" square board and 5 NiCd' batteries and that is all you need
for a tiny APRS satellite.

The board is called the MT-TT4 which is a Microtracker APRS
system.  It has a transceiver, and not just a transmitter.  It
has all the functions of a KPC-3 including APRS digipeating,
APRS telemetry and it even has a KEYBOARD interface and a
MULTI-LINE text display for APRS messaging.  See

We are ordering a bunch of them on the APRS Space Channel of
145.825 and hope to encourage other schools and universities to
consider including one of these packet transponders in their
missions.  If we can get up to a dozen of these in space, we
will have almost global coverage 24 hours a day from anywhere on
the planet!

> Can a Kam KPC-3+ used for VHF packet work?

Absolutely.  It is one of the best TNC's for setting up an APRS
digipeater.  Look at the USA map in this month's QST to see the
whole USA coverage map for APRS.  If your area does not have
good converage, please consider setting up a digipeater to serve
travelers when they are in your area.

> Are there many birds that forward messages 
> around the globe like years
> ago when pacsats were famous?

Not really, but the ISS, and PCSAT and the others we hope to fly
do something similar, but the messages are not "forwarded" but
are LIVE anywhre on the planet.  Any packets relayed in the
footprint, are picked up by volunteer grounds sattions and fed
live into the internet where they go everywhere on the globe.
Then the go from the internet back to RF in the area of the
intended recepient.  Please take a look at this Universal Ham
Radio Text Messaging System:  www.aprs.org/aprs-messaging.html

> Thanks
> mike
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