[amsat-bb] Re: Please help us Track the FASTRAC satellites once they are launched Nov. 19th!!

Lightsey, Glenn lightsey at mail.utexas.edu
Tue Nov 16 10:51:09 PST 2010

Hi Drew,

Thanks so much for your help and encouragement.  I am the FASTRAC faculty adviser, but it really is a student built and operated satellite.  Many of the students who have worked on FASTRAC have amateur radio licenses, and it was our hope to engage the global amateur radio community in our project from the beginning.  After launch on Nov. 19, the best way anyone can assist us is by tracking our signal, and uploading any data you collect to our web site:  (http://fastrac.ae.utexas.edu/for_radio_operators/users/phpBB3/frontpage.php).  

Once you are registered on our web site, we will track how much data is collected by individuals and you can view health and status information about each of our satellites (FASTRAC-1 and -2, also known as Sara Lily and Emma).  

After the main experiment is done, amateur radio operators can use the satellites as two-way digipeaters for as long as they remain operational.  

I want to point out on your AMSAT web page that I believe you have the total mass listed twice for both FASTRAC-1 and 2 (57 kg).  The satellites start out together as a single unit (57 kg) but will separate after a few weeks of operation on-orbit, so the masses of the individual satellites are roughly half the total mass (28.5 kg each).

We really appreciate all the advice and help that we have received from the amateur radio community over the years.  Now, with a little bit of good luck, it will soon be time to enjoy the result!


Glenn KE5DDG.

-----Original Message-----
From: Andrew Glasbrenner [mailto:glasbrenner at mindspring.com] 
Sent: Monday, November 15, 2010 8:25 PM
To: Sebastian Muñoz; Lightsey, Glenn; Amsat-BB
Subject: Re: [amsat-bb] Please help us Track the FASTRAC satellites once they are launched Nov. 19th!!

Congratulations on making it to this point. The next week I'm sure will 
be full of anticipation waiting for that rocket to lift off!

One of the things I think is so great about your project, from what I 
have read and been told, is that you've incorporated a secondary amateur 
two-way digipeater capability into your satellites. As I understand it, 
you plan to operate this after your primary mission is completed? It 
might be a great motivation to the AMSAT folks on amsat-bb to hear some 
details of this planned operation, as I'm sure others like myself are 
particularly interested in helping out student satellites that give back 
to the community. With so many new student satellites, it's rare to see 
one that may eventually be open for everyone to use, and that is to be 
commended and rewarded with support. So, if you don't mind, let the 
folks at amsat-bb at amsat.org know what your plans are in this regard.

On a separate note, I've started and entry on the AMSAT-NA satellite 
status pages for FASTRAC-1 and -2 
(http://www.amsat.org/amsat-new/satellites/futures.php), and hope to 
fill in the details over the next few days. Please, once your satellites 
reach orbit and operate, apply for an OSCAR number from AMSAT-NA and 
join the fleet of amateur radio satellites 
(http://www.amsat.org/amsat-new/satellites/futures.php). I'll also ask 
that your Keplerian elements get included in the AMSAT distribution 
list. Please let me know if there is anything else the amateur community 
can do to help.

73, and good luck,
Drew KO4MA
AMSAT-NA VP Operations

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