[amsat-bb] ANS-284 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins

Joseph Spier wao at vfr.net
Sun Oct 11 05:35:36 UTC 2015

The AMSAT News Service bulletins are a free, weekly news and infor-
mation service of AMSAT North America, The Radio Amateur Satellite
Corporation. ANS publishes news related to Amateur Radio in Space
including reports on the activities of a worldwide group of Amateur
Radio operators who share an active interest in designing, building,
launching and communicating through analog and digital Amateur Radio

The news feed on http://www.amsat.org publishes news of Amateur
Radio in Space as soon as our volunteers can post it.

Please send any amateur satellite news or reports to:
ans-editor at amsat.org.

In this edition:

* Fox-1A Launched at 0549 PDT on October 8, 2015
* AMSAT-NA VP-Engineering on NASA TV
* AMSAT's Fox-1A Receives AO-85 Designation
* Fox-1A Launch Commemorative Issue of the AMSAT Journal - Free
* Lapan ORARI (LAPAN-A2) Receives OSCAR Number IO-86
* ISS CubeSats Deployed Monday, October 5
* LQSat Launched on Monday, October 5
* AMSAT at Pacificon 2015
* AO-85 (Fox-1A) FM Voice Transponder Activated
* AO-85 Update
* New OSCAR Status Page
* AMSAT Events
* ARISS News
* Satellite Shorts From All Over

SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-284.01
ANS-284 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 284.01
DATE October 11, 2015
BID: $ANS-284.01


Fox-1A Launched at 0549 PDT on October 8, 2015

Launch and Deployment was Successful!

PE0SAT, ON4HF, and R2ANF heard signals on the first pass!

Video of liftoff

Keplerian elements:
1 99992U          15281.53437500  .00015007  00000-0  15580-2 0 00009
2 99992 064.7657 291.6734 0216442 282.3705 182.7702 14.73904028000019

AMSAT’s Fox-1A launched as part of the GRACE (Government Rideshare
Advanced Concepts Experiment) auxillary payload on the NROL-55
mission October 8, 2015 from Vandenburg AFB on an Atlas V vehicle. The 
occurred at 5:49 AM PDT, with the NASA TV webcast starting at 5:29 AM 
has released this factsheet about the mission:

General information on Fox-1A is available in the downloadable

FoxTelem software for decoding and submitting telemetry has been made
available for download at

Keplerian Elements: We will provide the Keplerian elements (aka Keps or 
to enable you to track Fox-1a as soon after launch as we get them (and are
cleared to release them). The information will be placed on
http://www.amsat.org/amsat/ftp/keps/current/nasabare.txt .

INITIAL COMMISSIONING PERIOD: Initially the transponder will not be
on and will not respond to uplinks. Please do not attempt to uplink while
we check out the satellite and commission it. We will publicize when we have
opened the transponder to general use. You should expect the checkout 
phase to
last for a minimum of several days and possibly for several weeks.

What To Listen For: During the initial checkout period and when the
satellite is in range, every two minutes you will generally hear about 5
seconds of data followed by a few seconds of a voice ID (and possibly a 
data packet). You may occasionally hear ‘data’ mode which Chris, G0KLA, has
famously described as sounding like an old-fashioned telephone modem. If you
should happen to hear what appear to be QSOs, please resist the temptation
to join in before the commissioning period is over.

Please Send Telemetry Reports and Data: We would love to have you
collect and upload as much data as you can, and to give any other kind of
report on the amsat-bb mailing list (which some of the Fox team will 
You can also report hearing or not hearing it on

You can upload data using the FoxTelem telemetry program that we recently
released. (Check the “upload to server” box in the properties/preference 
More data will help us do the checkout faster! Remember if you hear the
“telephone modem” sound, you must switch FoxTelem to high-speed mode 
Similarly FoxTelem must be in low-speed mode at other times.

We are planning a special award to the person who submits the first
data from the satellite (by which we mean the earliest downlinked mission
elapsed time), so get your rigs ready!

As part of the preparations for the launch and activation of
this new satellite, AMSAT is making our “Getting Started With The
Amateur Satellites” book available for a limited time as a download with any
paid new or renewal membership purchased via the AMSAT Store. This offer is
only available with purchases completed online, and for only a limited
time. A perennial favorite, Getting Started is updated every year with the
latest amateur satellite information, and is the premier primer of satellite
operation. The 132 page book is presented in PDF format, in full color, and
covers all aspects of making your first contacts on a ham radio satellite.

Please take advantage of this offer today by visiting the AMSAT store and
selecting any membership option. While there, check out our other items,
including the M2 LEOpack antenna system, AMSAT shirts, hats, and other 
Thank you, and see you soon on Fox-1A!

[ANS thanks AMSAT-NA for the above information]


AMSAT-NA VP-Engineering on NASA TV

Radio amateurs Jerry Buxton, N0JY and Courtney Duncan, N5BF were on
the panel at a NASA prelaunch briefing on Wednesday, October 7.

Participants in the news briefing discussed several of the specific
CubeSats aboard the National Reconnaissance Office’s NRO-L55 mission. 
Four of
the CubeSats are NASA-sponsored and nine are NRO-sponsored, one of which
was developed with NASA funding. The mission is scheduled to launch Oct. 
8 from
California’s Vandenburg Air Force Base.

The panel comprised:
• Richard Welle, director, Microsatellite Systems department at The 
• Tim Olson, principal investigator for BisonSat, Salish Kootenai College,
Pablo, Montana
• Morgan Johnson, team lead for the ARC CubeSat, University of Alaska,
• Jerry Buxton, N0JY Vice President, Engineering, for AMSAT Fox-1
• Courtney Duncan, N5BF, principal investigator for LMRST-Sat, NASA’s Jet
Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California


Jerry described the Fox-1A mission and science, and answered questions.

[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]


AO-85 OSCAR Number Assigned for Fox-1A

William (Bill) Tynan, W3XO, AMSAT-NA OSCAR Number Administrator has 
issued the
following release:

I have been informed of the successful launch today, October 8, 2015
of the AMSAT-NA-built Fox-1A CubeSat. I am also informed that the satellite
has been heard by several amateurs in various countries.

This successful launch comes after years of diligent and dedicated
work on the part of AMSAT-NA volunteers including Tony Monteiro, AA2TX, who
became a silent key in March, 2014.  It was Tony who spearheaded and 
guided the
work on all AMSAT-NA CubeSats until his untimely passing. Thus, it is only
fitting that this spacecraft be dedicated to his memory.

Following Tony’s death, the work of completing and preparing for launch
fell to Jerry Buxton, N0JY, who took over Tony’s post of AMSAT-NA’s Vice
President for Engineering and saw to Fox-1A’s successful completion and its
preparation for launch.

All of those who had a part in designing, constructing and testing Fox-1A
and its various subsystems are to be congratulated for jobs well done.

Since Fox-1A was properly coordinated through IARU as an Amateur Radio
satellite, has been successfully launched and its signals have been
received; I, under the authority vested in me by the AMSAT-NA President, do
hereby issue to Fox-1A the designation AMSAT-OSCAR-85, or AO-85.

May AO-85 serve the radio amateurs of world for many years to come.

[ANS thanks Bill, W3XO, and AMSAT-NA for the above information]


Fox-1A Launch Commemorative Issue of the AMSAT Journal - Free Download

Congratulations to AMSAT's Fox-1A team on their successful launch, orbital
deployment, and activation of the Fox-1A satellite. (Now to be known as 

AMSAT has produced a free, commemorative issue of the AMSAT Journal
highlighting the Fox-1A launch success. This full color PDF issue can be
downloaded from our current top news story, "Fox-1A launch 5:49 AM PDT on
October 8, 2015" at http://www.amsat.org. A direct link to this news item is

If you aren't already a member of AMSAT this issue of our magazine will give
you an inside look at the best ham radio club in the world. You'll read 
and see
the dedicated efforts of the Fox-1A team that got us to October 8. Please
consider joining AMSAT to support our series of launches coming in 2016 and

[ANS thanks AMSAT-NA for the above information]


Lapan ORARI (LAPAN-A2) Receives OSCAR Number IO-86

William (Bill) Tynan, W3XO, AMSAT-NA OSCAR Number Administrator has
issued the following release:

AMSAT-NA has received information from YE0EEE of the successful launch,
September 28, 2015 of an Indonesian Amateur Radio satellite, Lapan ORARI

According to the information I have, this satellite meets all of the
requirements to receive an OSCAR number, including IARU coordination.
Accordingly, by the authority vested in me by the AMSAT-NA President, I 
confer on this spacecraft the designation Indonesia OSCAR- 86. or IO-86.

Dirgan, YE0EEE, and all who had a part in the design, construction, test 
launch of IO-86 are to be congratulated. May this Amateur Radio spacecraft
have a long and useful life serving the amateurs of the world.

The following response was received from Dirgantara, YE0EEE from AMSAT-ID:
Many thanks for good news. I, the AMSAT-ID Team, and LAPAN are all very 
about the new Oscar number. By today, I will have informed all the ORARI

Link to AMSAT-UK article on LAPAN-A2 launch

[ANS thanks Bill, W3XO, and AMSAT-NA for the above information]


ISS CubeSats Deployed Monday, October 5

Two Danish CubeSats carrying amateur radio payloads were successfully 
from the International Space Station (ISS) on Monday, October 5 at 1405 UT.
Originally launched to the ISS on August 19, 2015, the two CubeSats, 
and GomX-3, were deployed from the ISS Japanese Kibo module airlock 
using the
Kibo robotic arm.

After deployment the CubeSats stated transmitting signals to Earth that 
can be
picked up by anyone with common amateur radio equipment. The frequencies to
listen on are:
• AAUSat-5 – 437.425 MHz with 30 WPM CW beacon every 3 minutes and 9600 bps
GMSK packet every 30 seconds
• GomX-3 – 437.250 MHz with 1200-9600 bps GMSK data using CSP protocol

AAUsat-5 is a 1-Unit CubeSat built by students at Aalborg University. The
primary mission is to test an improved receiver for detecting Automatic
Identification System (AIS) signals emitted by ships. Down on the 
ground, these
signals are short-range, operating mainly on a ship-to-shore and 
basis, leaving large spans of the world’s oceans uncovered. But signals also
travel up to orbital altitude, opening up the prospect of worldwide 

GomX-3 is a 3-Unit CubeSat which aims to demonstrate new radio technology. A
reconfigurable software-defined radio receiver will intercept L-band 
spot beams
from telecom satellites in geostationary orbit, to provide independent
measurements of their signal strength and quality. This receiver can also be
re-purposed to receive any other L-band signal, such as navigation satellite
signals or radar beams.

A receiver will pick up Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Broadcast (ADS-B)
signals automatically broadcast by civilian aircraft, to build up an 
of regional air traffic. Additionally there is a high data rate X-band
transmitter developed by Syrlinks. The CNES X-band ground station in 
South America, will be used to demonstrate the link.

The GomX-3 amateur radio payload uses a NanoCom AX100 UHF transceiver and
ANT430 antenna.

Mineo Wakita JE9PEL in Japan reported receiving the GomX-3 beacon in Japan
from 1505-1510 UT on October 5 and Luciano Fabricio PY5LF reported hearing
GomX-3 in Brazil at 1605 UT. Jan van Gills PE0SAT in the Netherlands 
AAUSat-5 at 1800 UT.

The two spacecraft may have a lifetime of around 7 months before they 
burn up
in the Earth’s atmosphere.

GomX-3 telemetry beacon

AAUSat-5 telemetry beacon

ESA article CubeSats set for Monday Release (with video)

ESA invites radio amateurs to listen for AAUSat-5 CubeSat

[ANS thanks ESA and AMSAT-UK for the above information]


LQSat Launched Monday, October 5

LQSat was launched into a 656 km sun synchronous orbit at 0413 UT on 
October 7 from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center (JSLC) in Inner 
Mongolia on
a Chang Zheng 2D (CZ-2D) rocket.

The satellite was developed by researchers and students at the Changchun
Institute of Optics, Fine Mechanics and Physics (CIOMP) and carries an 
radio payload.

LQSat is technology demonstrator measuring 40x40x60 cm with a mass of 50 kg
and carries a 2 m resolution camera as the main payload.

The IARU coordinated downlink frequencies are
• 437.650 MHz at 0.5 watts (27 dBm) with either 25 WPM CW or 4800 bps 
   packet data
• 2404 MHz at 1 watt (30 dBm) using 1 Mbps QPSK

Launch report

[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]


AMSAT at Pacificon 2015

AMSAT will participate at Pacificon on October 17, 2015 in San Ramon,
California. The ARRL Pacific Division's Conference, Pacificon 2015 will 
be held
in the Marriott, 2600 Bishop Drive in San Ramon. The host for Pacificon is
the Mount Diablo Amateur Radio Club (MDARC).

Alan, WA6DNR will be representing AMSAT with a table and Michael, WA6ARA 
be giving a forum presentation titled, “Satellites - Amateur Radio's 
Micheal's forum presentation will be at 1100 PDT, October 17 in the San 
Marriott's Pleasanton Room. Say Hi Hi to both!

If you're on the west coast and cannot make it to Dayton for the AMSAT 
Symposium, Pacificon is always a fun alternative with swap meet, forums,
dinner, events, and Gordo West.

Further details on Pacificon  are at:

[ANS thanks Alan Bowker, WA6DNR for the above information]


AO-85 (Fox-1A) FM Voice Transponder Activated

The 435 to 145 MHz FM voice transponder on AO-85 was activated during 
October 9 allowing many contacts to be made. Among those active on the
satellite was 9-year-old Hope KM4IPF. Hope is the daughter of Michelle 
and James WX4TV, other radio amateurs in the family are Hope’s elder sister
Faith WA4BBC and brother Zechariah, WX4TVJ. Her younger sister is 
studying for
her license.

In this video Hope KM4IPF describes her first AO-85 (Fox-1A) contact

Fox-1A Real-time track and Orbital Predictions (click on Draw Footprint to
show coverage area)

Read the Fox Operating Guide to find out how to set up your handheld 
radio to
work the satellite

Note: If your rig has selectable FM filters use the wider filter for 5 kHz
deviation 25 kHz channel spacing.


[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information]


AO-85 Update

AO-85 is still being tested. Please note that while AO-85 is in Transponder
Mode right now, we have not officially commissioned her and testing is 
underway. Part of the testing involves observations in Transponder and Data
Modes.  We may switch out of Transponder Mode at any time without notice,
until we are done testing.

If AO-85 is in Safe Mode or Data Mode when it passes and you were expecting
Transponder Mode, don't be surprised or angry!

[ANS thanks AMSAT Vice-President for Engineering Jerry, N0JY for the above


New OSCAR Status Page

Thanks to the efforts of Joe KM1P and Pete 2E0SQL, and with the permission
of David, KD5QGR, we have set up a copy of the OSCAR satellite status 
page at

This page will be maintained by multiple volunteers, including myself, and
we will be able to add and delete satellites as required, as well as keep
information links current. It will take a few days to populate the database,
but please begin using this page as soon as possible. In the near future the
old page will point to this one for a while, until people get used to the
new address.

There are still some satellites to add and delete, so this will be a work in
progress for a bit. First and foremost we will delete the reentered sats,
and add Fox-1A for next Thursday!

[ANS thanks Drew, KO4MA for the above information]


AMSAT Events

Information about AMSAT activities at other important events around
the country.  Examples of these events are radio club meetings where
AMSAT Area Coordinators give presentations, demonstrations of working
amateur satellites, and hamfests with an AMSAT presence (a table with
AMSAT literature and merchandise, sometimes also with presentations,
forums, and/or demonstrations).

*Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, October 16-18 2015, AMSAT Symposium in
Dayton OH (Dayton Crown Plaza)

*Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, October 16-18 2015, ARRL Pacific Division
Convention (Pacificon), San Ramon, California

*Saturday, 7 November 2015 – Oro Valley Amateur Radio Club Hamfest in 
Marana AZ

*Saturday and Sunday, 7-8 November 2015 – Stone Mountain Hamfest and ARRL
Georgia Section Convention in Lawrenceville GA

*Monday, 16 November 2015 – Tri-City Amateur Radio Association meeting in
Goodyear AZ

*Saturday, 5 December 2015 – Superstition Superfest 2015 in Mesa AZ

[ANS thanks AMSAT-NA for the above information]



Successful Contacts

October 6, 2015

*   A telebridge contact via LU1CGB with students at Corpus Christi Catholic
School, Chambersburg, PA, USA  was successful Tue 2015-10-06 16:29:32 UTC 33
deg. Students received answers to 18 questions from astronaut Kjell 

Listen to a recording of the contact:

School Information
Corpus Christi Catholic School is a K - 8 Roman Catholic Elementary School,
located in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania. With an enrollment of 215 
students and
17 full-time and 3 part-time faculty members, Corpus Christi School is
committed to the pursuit of excellence in Catholic education. The school
strives to be on the cutting edge of technology with Smartboards in every
classroom, two computer labs, iPads, and Chromebooks.  Students in the 
grades participate in weekly swim lessons at the local YMCA. Intermediate
grades place a strong emphasis on STEM related concepts and careers. Grades
four through eight have background knowledge of NASA starting with 
Gemini and
continuing onto Mars.  In 2013, three teachers were selected to be on the
Reduced Gravity Flight through NASA Explorer Schools.  This experience
increased the entire students’ awareness of space flight and experiments 
conducted in microgravity on the International Space Station. Middle school
students are able to expand their curriculum by traveling to major 
cities such
as Pittsburgh, Washington DC, and Williamsburg, VA.  Scores on standardized
tests are above the national average.  School pride runs deep with the
students, faculty, staff and parents.

*   A direct contact via 9M2RPN with students at Sekolah Kebangsaan 
Taman Tun
Dr Ismail (1), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, was successful Fri 2015-10-09 
UTC 47 deg. The scheduled astronaut was Kjell Lindgren KO5MOS.

Video Link of Contact

School Information
Our first ARISS contact was made in 2007 when, Malaysia's first Astronaut
Shiekh Muzapher went on board the ISS. We made 5 direct contacts when, 
some 80
school children talked to him and asked questions.  Since then it has 
become a
highly sought after yearly event which is tied up with the Prime Minister's
Space Challenge Trophy.  This year we will be making our 8th yearly 
Since the schools do not have ground stations, they make use of Satellite
Ground Station at the National Planetarium established in 1995 under the 
sign of 9M2RPN. The schools are the nurseries to produce future 
astronauts and
space scientists.  The forthcoming contact in October 2015 provides the 
on experience and the seeding operation for tomorrow's space scientists.

Upcoming Contacts

*    A telebridge contact via IK1SLD with students at Bay View Elementary
School in Burlington, Washington, USA is scheduled for Wed 2015-10-14 
UTC 59 deg.

School Information
Bay View School in Burlington, Washington has been serving kindergarten
through eighth grade students in the Burlington-Edison School District 
for 22
years. Named after the small community of Bayview, which was later 
by the town of Burlington, it serves mainly in-district neighborhood 
This year 562 students are enrolled. The town of Burlington is 66 miles 
of Seattle, Washington. Located at the intersection of two major highways,
Burlington serves as a retail and commercial hub for the region. Industry is
mainly agricultural, retail, and commercial.

Over the past three years, Bay View has committed to becoming a school of
inquiry. Through inquiry and collaboration, Bay View’s purpose is to nurture
compassionate, creative, knowledgeable growth-minded world citizens, who 
dreams and positively impact the future. Bay View continually inquires to
understand one essential question. What do we need to understand, commit 
to and
implement to prepare students to be career, college, and/or world ready 
for the
21st century? This journey has led them to begin creating concept-based 
of inquiry at each grade level. Multi-disciplinary and 
intra-disciplinary units
support school-wide connections through inquiry. The opportunity to ask
questions of astronauts on the ISS was pursued as an experience that could
spark students’ interest in space, engineering, technology, mathematics, and
support a school-wide inquiry.

for information about upcoming contacts as they are scheduled.

[ANS thanks ARISS, and Charlie, AJ9N for the above information]


Satellite Shorts From All Over

AMSAT Highlighted in This Week at NASA

Fox, amateur radio, and AMSAT are briefing featured this week in the short
weekly news update “This Week at NASA.”


[ANS thanks Frank, KA3HDO for the above information]

Magazine Archive

Free (hams like free!) access to electronics and radio magazines from the
past. Something to read while waiting for that next AO-85 pass ...
Hover mouse over Broadcast & Consumer for a menu
Hover mouse over Consumer Electronics then Popular Electronics & Similar

The old issues download as PDF files. Gotta try it on my tablet to see if it
works in the little room down the hall ...

[ANS thanks JoAnne, K9JKM for the above information]

AMSAT Symposium / VUCC/WAS QSL Card Checking

Bruce Paige, KK5DO, AMSAT Director Contests and Awards reports that if you
have any cards you would like checked for VUCC/WAS, I will be at the 
I will give preference to satellite contacts first before I check other
bands/modes. If you are going to have cards checked, I prefer the list 
be in
Grid Square order using an Excel spreadsheet or Word doc with the second
column being the call sign worked. Place all your cards in the same grid
square order as the list with any cards that contain multiple grids at 
the end
of the stack. If you have lists (from Yuri, etc), I can go through them as

[ANS thanks Bruce, KK5DO for the above information]

NASA to Announce Selections for Small Satellite Launch Contract

October 07, 2015
NASA to Announce Selections for Small Satellite Launch ContractNASA will 
a news conference at 1 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, Oct. 14, at the agency’s 
Space Center in Florida to announce the outcome of the Venture Class Launch
Service (VCLS) competition. The news conference will air live on NASA
Television and the agency’s website.
The participants are:
• Garrett Skrobot, Educational Launch of Nanosatellites (ELaNa) mission 
lead for the Launch Services Program (LSP) at Kennedy
• Eric Ianson, associate director of NASA’s Earth Sciences Division in 
the Science Mission Directorate at the agency’s headquarters in Washington
• Mark Wiese, flight projects office chief, NASA Launch Services 
Program, Kennedy Space Center
• Representatives from the selected launch service providers

[ANS thanks NASA for the above information]

See you in Dayton! - Joe, K6WAO



In addition to regular membership, AMSAT offers membership in the
President's Club. Members of the President's Club, as sustaining
donors to AMSAT Project Funds, will be eligible to receive addi-
tional benefits. Application forms are available from the AMSAT

Primary and secondary school students are eligible for membership
at one-half the standard yearly rate. Post-secondary school students
enrolled in at least half time status shall be eligible for the stu-
dent rate for a maximum of 6 post-secondary years in this status.
Contact Martha at the AMSAT Office for additional student membership

This week's ANS Editor,
Joe Spier, K6WAO
k6wao at amsat dot org

More information about the AMSAT-BB mailing list