[amsat-bb] Re: ""you may as well use Skype..."

Gordon JC Pearce gordonjcp at gjcp.net
Fri Feb 4 00:03:59 PST 2011

On Thu, 2011-02-03 at 13:49 -0500, Diane Bruce wrote:

> > 
> > The focus put on KISS station in a way to recruit new satellite operator is not bad if this new operator goes beyond his KISS station IMHO.
> Yes, but when I innocently asked if anyone had done a survey to see
> if this was happening, I was flamed unmercifully on amsat-bb.
> The answer I did get was "of course it does!". It would be nice
> to see a proper survey proving this is happening.

It doesn't in my case.  I have *no interest at all* in operating
satellites that require a complex fixed station with computer tracking
and tuning.  None.  Doesn't interest me one bit.

The fun part is communicating via simple inexpensive satellites, with
simple inexpensive hardware that you can make at home.  Really, you
could probably make the satellites at home too.  I've got some scrap
GP340s around here that I could gut and stick in a box.  Lob that out of
the ISS at an opportune moment and it would work.  Not for long, maybe
not very well, but it would work.

> > There is new modes actually growing DSTAR, DRM, DIGITAL VOICE (FDMDV) is this can be an alternative to those who wants something else? or 
> > will we be facing with this alternative, overcrowded single channel satellite pass? Where is the place for experimenting on the actual LEO 
> > fleet? Our licence was not created for "experimenting"?
> The reality is, LEO is all we are going to be able to afford. I do not
> see the thousands upon thousands of amateurs willing to put up the $$
> to put another HEO like AO-40, in the near future anyway. And yes AO-7
> is still going, but is really sick sounding. The only short term realistic
> answer is more LEOs as I see it. But please, not another FM bird please.
> There is absolutely no reason we couldnt put a simple linear
> translator up and allow FM on one frequency, such as India does.

Exactly.  No-one is going to fly your HEO satellite unless you pay them
a *shitload* of money.  You can get away with cheap (sub-£20,000)
flights to orbit because there is a certain amount of "wasted space" on
things that fly "proper" satellites up so you can squeeze in a thing the
size and weight of a sugar bag very nearly for free.  The satellites
used for satellite TV broadcasting are roughly the size and weight of a
Volvo.  How much do you think it costs to park a Volvo 22,000 miles
away, when the gravity well is working against you?

No doubt someone is going to pipe up with the idea of launching APRS
digipeater sats, which is fine if you want to drive around going "Here I
am! Here I am! Here I am!" but not so great if you want to talk to
people.  It would be a start, though.  I like the idea of a linear bird
with an FM "slot", that would be good.

Really we all need to start backing Iran's space programme.  They
launched the Omid sat reasonably successfully - it flew, it worked, and
we could hear it down here.  You can look on wikipedia and listen to the
telemetry downlink I recorded with my TH-F7E and a 3-ele yagi.
Geographically they're in an okay place for launches, and I bet they
could use the cash.  Of course certain nearby neighbours will have a
shitfit about the ZOMG TERRORIST possibilities, but even with that borne
in mind I'd rather have them inside pissing out.

Gordon MM0YEQ

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