[amsat-bb] Re: All Satellites (Alan P. Biddle)

Mark VandeWettering kf6kyi at gmail.com
Fri Sep 25 15:15:57 PDT 2009

> At a SmallSat conference I attended on behalf of AMSAT this summer, I was
> amused at the casual assumption by a researcher that 50, Five Oh, cubesats
> could be launched as part of an upper atmosphere project using ham
> frequencies for the downlinks.  (They would have a lifetime of only 3-4
> months.)  Jan King, W3GEY/VK4GEY, who does coordination of satellite
> frequencies, gently but firmly brought them down to earth a bit.
> On the one hand, we get new hams with interests in space communications from
> these projects, but on the other we need to prevent the de facto
> appropriation of needed frequencies.  A fine line to walk.
> Alan

The thing that worries me the most is that the de facto appropriation of
our amateur satellite frequencies seems very likely if we continue along a
path which keeps us from filling those slots with payloads of our own.  All
this complaining about cubesats and the use of amateur frequencies for
telemetry is kind of pointless if we aren't using those frequencies and have
no prospect of using those frequencies in the foreseeable future.

It seems to me that coordinating 50 cubesats for four months could be
a tractable
problem, depending on the precise nature of the signals and their orbital
spacing.   It's not like there is a huge number of operational amateur
that they'd have to avoid.

Mark K6HX

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