[amsat-bb] Re: Ham Sats Dead?
clintbradford at mac.com
Tue Oct 4 01:17:35 PDT 2011
>> ... I don't think much of "education" as a reason for hamsats ...
I am a school tech support volunteer for NASA and the ARISS program. I am glad to see that we received more than 100 applications for five slots for ISS contacts the first part of next year. That means there are more than 100 principals and more than 200 teachers who are exposing their thousands of students to this aspect of amateur radio. An upcoming ARISS contact in San Diego alone will have 480 students and 40 educators in the room.
And there are many educators "using" and including the FM LEOs and related topics in their lesson plans.
>> ... It had some value a few decades ago but much less now with an internet where kids can surf far more interesting information then whatever ham radio has to offer ...
I hear this "The Internet is killing amateur radio ... " allegation all over the place. Never any facts or evidence is ever offered ... a great teacher can stimulate a classroom ,,,
>> ... I was President of a local school board ... and while educators would take space station contacts because that is what they do...the educational value was rated as low...and I think it is ...
Wow ... Why would a similar district have wonderful lesson plans and get excited about this technology for their students - while yours found it boring?
>> ... Really there is "nothing" unique about talking to the astronauts on ISS using ham radio either directly or through a telebridge ...
We're really on opposite sides here. You cannot tell that to the 600+ audiences of assembled kids that have participated in the ARISS contacts. Pick out ANY YouTube video of an ARISS project - and you will see joy on faces ... that suppressed excited applause when the ISS astronaut first responds ... and wild applause after the last transmission. I find it difficult to believe that a quality educator could make that experience boring and ordinary.
>> ... Why is AMSAT floundering? Easy answer...they have no product that interest people with large investments in amateur satellite gear ...
I didn't realize AMSAT was "floundering." But put that aside - No, we don't have a new HEO bird on HF for you. As soon as AMSAT can raise about US$550K for one, you can fire up your sat gear again. But there's a value in the LEOs - I have been invited to show 'em off more than 20 times each of the past four years to clubs and hamfests. There IS an interest in working the LEOs.
>> ... and what they do they have proven functionally incompetent at ...
I am just sitting here and smiling, knowing that AMSAT's "incompetent engineers" have AO-51 up and running at almost 900mW for us - that's with one dead battery cell, and another at about 0.1V ... running past its expected life expectancy.
>> ... I should give them a pass on Suitsat2 because they dont have a clue about how to deal with the Russians...well thats more incompetence.
>From what I researched on my own (as I am not on the ARISSat-1 team in any manner), I saw broken promises and unannounced/unexpected changes in scheduling/testing/deployment - hardly anything you could blame AMSAT for.
But excuse me - I have another "Request for NASA Surveys" from another ARISS school contact that I need to send to NASA this evening ...
And so it goes.
Clint Bradford, K6LCS
More information about the AMSAT-BB