[amsat-bb] PicSat Requests Amateur Radio Assistance to Capture/Upload Telemetry

JoAnne K9JKM joanne.k9jkm at gmail.com
Sun Jan 21 17:30:09 UTC 2018

[ANS Ed. Note] - The PicSat team is active on Twitter with status updates,
mission information, and a request, received today, for amateur radio
assistance to capture telemetry and upload the data. We'll repeat this
request in the next AMSAT News Service Bulletins - but that is next weekend
- so here is a copy to the amsat-bb in case anyone can help them out sooner


PicSat Requests Amateur Radio Assistance to Capture/Upload Telemetry

Cubesat PicSat was launched on the same PSLV-C40 flight from India
that delivered AO-92 to orbit. PicSat is a nano-satellite aimed at 
observing the transit of the young exoplanet Beta Pictoris b in 
front of its bright and equally young star Beta Pictoris, and at 
demonstrating an innovative technological concept to use optical 
fibres for astronomical observations from Space.

The cubesat contains an embedded FM transponder. It will be avail-
able when possible during the mission. 

Frequency information:
Uplink FM     145.910 MHz   1750 Hz tone when in amateur mode
Downlink FM   435.525 MHz   9k6 BPSK AX25 Data and FM voice 
                            when in amateur mode

A description of the telemetry and related information are available on

This week the PicSat team requested amateur radio assistance to 
capture and upload telemetry packets from the satellite. Beacons 
received from all over the world are especially useful to monitor 
the status of satellite along its orbit (and not just when it is 
above our own station). Science data are obviously useful for the 
science mission. And all other packets, even when they do not look 
like much, can be of great importance! For example, we often receive 
satellite acknowledgements to our commands from ground station in 
France or Europe which are listening at the same time as us. It may 
look useless, but it is not. We regularly miss those packets our-
selves, so it is good to have other people receiving them and sending 
them to us.

There are three ways to send your data. The options for your upload 
will become available on your profile tab after registration at their
website: https://picsat.obspm.fr/connexion?locale=en.

Full details of the packet uploading procedure are posted at:

+ Fast upload beacon: mainly intended as a way to directly upload
  a beacon by copy/paste when you receive, and to get an immediate 
  overview of the satellite status. When you are a new user, this 
  is also the only way you can upload a packet. Upload one beacon 
  successfully, and you will have access to the other methods!
  This page accepts a hexadecimal string, like "0123456789ABCDEF" in 
  which whitespaces and upper/lower case are ignored ("01 23 45 67 
  89 ab cd ef", or even something like "0 1 234 56789 aBc dEf" will 
  be accepted). The hexadecimal string must represent the AX.25 packet 
  (without flags), possibly KISS encapsulated (starting with "C0 00" 
  and ending with "C0")

+ Upload data: this can be used to upload files containing multiple 
  packets at once. The files are stored on our servers, and processed 
+ SiDS requests: This will be implemented in the near future.

PicSat shares a similar orbit with AO-91 since they were both deployed
at approximately the same time. PicSat has been included in the 2 line
Keplerian Elements distributions. On-line orbit predications for PicSat 
can be found at: https://picsat.obspm.fr/operations/orbital-map?locale=en.

[ANS thanks the PicSat Team for the above information]

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