[amsat-bb] Re: Mars Rover Program
kl7uw at acsalaska.net
Sun Jan 11 12:05:34 PST 2009
The rovers operate on UHF links to their orbiting companion which
link to earth on mw frequencies to my understanding. I haven't
specifically researched all of the missions so one probably can get
more certain information from mission websites or from JPL, which
administers most of the missions.
in 1996 Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) was launched to Mars and is an
orbiter. It carries 437-MHz equipment for communicating with
rovers. JPL involved hams in characterizing the 437-MHz system
shortly after launch. That helped the mission folks to gather real
time data on how well it would work as a planet-to-orbit link. QST
had an article outlining this mission at the time.
A yahoo group called amateur-DSN is a good place to ask your
questions, as this is a international group who build earth stations
attempting to receive signals from space probes such as the Mars
missions. Typically, they try for the orbiters that have higher gain
antennas and more RF power. The rovers used off the shelf UHF radio
modems which probably only output a few watts to low gain or omni
antennas. However, I do recall seeing a dish on the rovers so that
may indicate mw backup links that might possibly be detectable by
Later this year I will be looking to add 8415-MHz receiving equipment
to my 16-foot dish with the object to try recovery of carrier signals
from some of these probes.
73, Ed - KL7UW
At 09:37 AM 1/11/2009, Curt Nixon wrote:
>Just watched the Nat'l Geographic Special on the Mars Rovers--Spirit and
>Opportunity. Great program !!
>Has anyone here been able to rcv any of the signals from them? Any
>Sent via AMSAT-BB at amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.
>Not an AMSAT-NA member? Join now to support the amateur satellite program!
>Subscription settings: http://amsat.org/mailman/listinfo/amsat-bb
More information about the AMSAT-BB