[amsat-bb] AO-51 V/S Mode Ops, Some Observations

Robert Felt robertfelt at bellsouth.net
Thu Aug 21 08:20:25 PDT 2008

Thanks AMSAT for placing the AO-51 is V/S mode last week. 

It was the first time I have operated any S-band downlink. The AO-51 was really quiet on S-band downlink, not a lot of people yelling on top of each other and background noise was nil. 

I made some good  QSOs including - N8BBQ,  WB8OTH,  N5UXT,  N5AFV,  KD8CAO,  N8TLV,  N5ZNL... and heard a lot more, but was too focused with the doppler to make contact. 

My station : 
On the receive side I am using a home brew antenna based on a 36" "BBQ" grill with a 5 turn helix feed, connected directly to a model UEK-3000 down converter (by SSB) , into my AOR AR-5000A3 receiver. 

The transmit side was with my Icom-910 into a 11 element yagi. 

Antenna: My old Kenpro 5400 rotator was controlled through the LVB interface using NOVA software on my laptop. I used the frequency utility in the NOVA s/w to calculate and display the doppler on the down link, which varied from +50 to -35 KHz on most passes!! The doppler really keeps you busy on S-band, as there is no CAT output (just display) on the NOVA software, and you have to crank in the doppler manually. NOVA tracking software is very powerful and user friendly, but lacks radio CAT output.  I would like to someday find a software program with the same or comparable look and feel as NOVA, but with CAT rig control interface in addition to the standard rotator interface. (SATPC is ok but has the look and feel (GUI) of an old 1980s DOS program). 

Is there a good CAT program rig control that I can run in the background while running NOVA for ant control and display?

Anyway, Thanks AMSAT. Lets do this again some day. 

73'  de KB5YZG

Bob Felt
1403 5th Ave West (EM85)
Hendersonville, NC 28739

email - kb5yzg at amsat.org

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