[amsat-bb] Help sought - amateur satellite service vs D-star

Geert Jan de Groot pe1hzg at xs4all.nl
Tue Sep 8 14:24:53 PDT 2009


I apologise for the intrusion of my first message on this list - 
consider me an incidental lurker, incidental AMSAT-UK colloquium
visitor, and incidental easysat user.
I just don't have the cycles to do more, sorry.

I ask your assistance in the following matter.

In the Netherlands, 436-440 MHz is secondary to the amateur
and amateur sat service. The folk experimenting with D-star
on 70cms use a fairly large shift of 9.4 Mhz, resulting in
a typical setup of 430.400-430.600 in and 439.800-440.000 out.
Unattended stations (like D-star repeaters) do require a special
license here. 

Recently, issuing of unattended licenses has come to an extreme halt 
because the Dutch regulator has started to allocate frequencies 
around 439.500 and upwards for Differential GPS (DGPS). 

The Dutch amateur community contests
the use of this frequency for DGPS, claiming it is in violation
with ITU allocations. Amateur clubs in neighbour countries,
*as well as telcom regulators in those countries*, agree on 
this matter and believe AT-EZ is mistaken. 
But AT-EZ are also stubbern, and supposedly fear damage claims from
systems already deployed.

The net result is that currently, no D-star repeater license is issued
because the output frequency proposed cannot be licensed for unattended use,
according to the regulator.

The D-star community, having fear of not being able to use their equipment,
is now proposing to use a shift of 7.4 MHz shift: input ~430.400-430.600,
output 437.800-438.000. 
The output obviously collides with the amateur radio satellite service,
but the proposal does not mention this at all, nor does it mention
any remedy for this interference, which the amateur radio service
would inflict on itself, on a worldwide (at least European) scale.

I don't need to explain what a 'local hole in allocation'
does for the worldwide sat service, no?

Not to mention, if the Amateur Radio Service doesn't take it's own
protection seriously, why would regulators need to take these
interference concerns seriously?

I believe this plan is very poorly thought-out and should be
rejected and complained upon on an International scale. 

I believe that the amsat community should respond on this matter.
I also believe that our IARU-contacts should be used to fix this proposal.

So far, the only information I found on this, is in Dutch, so you may
need to babelfish things:

There are 2 amateur radio clubs in the Netherlands.
One is VERON (IARU representative), the other one is VRZA.
While VRZA is not an IARU representative, both VERON and VRZA
have bi-annual meetings with the Dutch regulator
(which, I must admit, have been in better spirit in the past 
than they are now, because of the DGPS issue, but I digress)

The plan, as described on the URL above, claims that the VRZA
"thinks this proposal is a good idea".

I kindly ask AMSAT folk, and especially those with IARU contacts,
to express their concerns about this proposal.

The person championing the proposal is PA0HWB, pa0hwb at amsat.org
(I realize the irony of Hans using the AMSAT alias to damage
the amateur sat service..)

For VRZA, I believe the best contact is the chair PG9W, pg9w (at vrza.nl).
For VERON, I think PB0AOK (at veron.nl) is probably a good place
to send mail to. 
You probably have better contacts than I have - please use them.

I apologise for this lengthy message but hope this crazy proposal
can be dealt with appropiately.

Thanks in advance, 73

Geert Jan PE1HZG

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