[amsat-bb] Re: Launch Costs (was-re: AMSAT-BB Digest, Vol. 7, Issue 312)

B J va6bmj at gmail.com
Mon Sep 24 17:29:34 PDT 2012

On 9/24/12, Bob- W7LRD <w7lrd at comcast.net> wrote:
> What if we convince a consortium of educational institutions they need a
> HEO. Do educational institutions have to pay the going rate?


If my alma mater is an indication, it might be a waste of time trying
to convince a lot of educational institutions to put anything into
orbit, let alone an amateur radio satellite.

Several years ago, I attended an alumni function hosted by the
department where I studied for my last 2 degrees (a master's in
electrical engineering and a Ph. D. in electrical and computer
engineering).  I asked the chairman at the time why there was no
interest in amateur radio in the department, figuring that it has
covers many of the topics taught by the professors there plus it's a
fun activity in which the students could use the technical knowledge
that they learned.

His answer was along the lines of "no interest" or "not popular".  In
other words, amateur radio doesn't bring in large research grants and
corresponding bragging rights which the department could use against
its competitors at other universities.  Since it doesn't have the same
pizzazz as, say, nanotechnology or wearable computers, why bother?
Besides, isn't amateur radio obsolete technology?  (Of course, it
didn't surprise me that he didn't know what D-STAR was.)

However, I'd bet if a "leading" university would get involved in
amateur radio satellites, a lot of engineering and physics departments
would be falling all over themselves trying to get one into orbit.

Meanwhile, my alma mater wonders why it's been years since I donated
any money....


Bernhard VA6BMJ @ DO33FL

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