[ans] ANS-082 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletin
n1uw at gokarns.com
Sun Mar 22 00:14:19 UTC 2020
AMSAT NEWS SERVICE
The AMSAT News Service bulletins are a free, weekly news and
information 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 satellites.
The news feed on http://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 dot org.
In this edition:
* AMSAT President Urges Members to Renew/Donate Now
* AMSAT Treasurer's Report Posted
* 2020 AMSAT Academy Cancelled
* IARU Announces R2 Satellite Communication Workshop 31 May 2020
* AMSAT-BR Announces QO-100 FT8 QRPp Experiment
* Changes to AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution for March 19, 2020
* Upcoming Satellite Operations
* Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
* ARISS News
* Satellite Shorts from All Over
SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-082.01
ANS-082 AMSAT News Service Weekly Bulletins
AMSAT News Service Bulletin 082.01
>From AMSAT HQ KENSINGTON, MD.
March 22, 2020
To All RADIO AMATEURS
AMSAT President Urges Members to Renew/Donate Now
AMSAT President Clayton Coleman, W5PFG has put out a call for new and
renewing AMSAT members to act now and register online.
Coleman says, "All things considered, cancellation of Hamvention 2020
was the right thing to do and we recognize the difficult decision
that the Dayton Amateur Radio Association Executive Committee had to
"The cancellation of Hamvention will have a dramatic effect on the
well-being of many vendors and associations that serve the Amateur
Radio community. AMSAT is no exception. Hamvention has always been
a major fund-raising tool for both recruiting and renewing members
as well as selling AMSAT branded merchandise, software, books and
antennas. The loss of this important venue has the potential to
adversely affect the projects that AMSAT has underway already and
planned for the months and years ahead.
"This is a very exciting time for Amateur Radio in Space with the new
Interoperable Radio System for ARISS, the GOLF satellite program,
updating member services and launching our Youth Initiative. It has
been many years since we have seen this kind of excitement and
interest in space communications. We would hate to lose that
momentum and fall behind.
"I am asking everyone to act now and join or renew their AMSAT
membership NOW while it is on our minds. Your immediate willingness
to act will help strengthen AMSAT and help ensure our mission of
'Keeping Amateur Radio in Space'. There are membership
opportunities for everyone to consider:
- Basic Membership from $44
- Student Membership from $22
- Additional Household Memberships from $22
- School and Club Memberships from $80
- QRO Membership from $80
- Lifetime Membership $880 (or only $74/mo. For twelve months)"
Coleman also adds, "And, while you're at it, don't be afraid to kick
in a few extra dollars with a one-time or sustaining donation to
AMSAT's general operating fund. Especially appreciated are those
Amateurs who can make an extra difference by contributing to the
President's Club with contributions of $120 or more. Whatever you
can contribute, please understand that every dollar counts.
"Additionally, with Hamvention's cancellation, we lost the
opportunity to personally greet and thank all of AMSAT's membership
and to share our enthusiasm for the upcoming year. Watch for
upcoming news on our plans and launches for 2020. We'll be talking
[ANS thanks Clayton Coleman, W5PFG, AMSAT President for
the above information]
Purchase AMSAT Gear on our Zazzle storefront.
25% of the purchase price of each product goes
towards Keeping Amateur Radio in Space
AMSAT Treasurer's Report Posted
During the AMSAT Board of Directors meeting held March 17, 2020
Robert Bankston, KE4AL, AMSAT Treasurer presented a report to the
board members. Bankston said," Now that Ive had a few months to
settle into my new position as AMSAT Treasurer and spend a little
time digging through the numbers, I thought it was time to share what
I have found and set the record straight about some of the
misinformation that is being spread about AMSATs financial position.
" Despite rumors and misquotes of AMSAT being on an unsustainable
path, lets look at where we really are and how we are doing.
- Over the past ten years (2010-2019), AMSAT has averaged a $34,357
- increase in net assets (what most people refer to as profits)
- Our combined revenues over expenditures (profits) for the past 5
years (2015-2019) were $110,962, which includes launching 4 amateur
satellites into space, readying RadFxSat-2 (Fox-1E) and the ARISS
InterOperable Radio System for flight, and getting started on GOLF
and Lunar Gateway projects.
- In 2019, AMSAT generated $756,256 in revenues with $617,425 in
"Year to year fluctuations are generally a result of timing
differences between project fundraising efforts and when AMSAT needs
to spend money. In addition, AMSAT maintains its reserves in
investment accounts, which are subject to market price fluctuations
and must be included in our financial statements.
"2018 is a perfect example:
- AMSAT authorized a $62,055 payment to NASA, which was not
reimbursed until 2019.
- AMSAT spent $62,397 on the initial hardware development for GOLF.
- AMSAT launched two satellites in 2018, Fox-1D (AO-92) and
Fox-1 Cliff (AO-95).
- AMSAT had to report a $77,128 fair market value loss in investments
(which was fully recovered in 2019)."
Bankston adds, "Dont get me wrong there is certainly room for
improvement. I have already identified and started to implement cost-
saving and budgetary control measures that can and will make us more
efficient. As AMSAT Treasurer, it is my job to safeguard AMSATs
resources from both fraud and waste, and I intend to do exactly that.
I look forward to what more we can achieve."
In his report Bankston also summarized a number of other financial
- Membership revenues continue to rise and have increased 65.68% in
just that past 5 years, all without any increase in dues rates for
- New memberships, renewals, life memberships, and AMSAT Store
purchases for the first three months of 2020 are on track to exceed
the same revenue sources for 2019.
AMSAT is fully committed to financial transparency. Its financial
statements and regulatory informational reports (Form 990's) are and
have always been publicly available. Furthermore, to add confidence,
an independent certified public accounting firm reviews AMSAT's
financial statements and includes their report with our financials.
AMSAT financial reports and related documents are available online at
AMSAT is on a solid financial footing and headed in the right
direction. AMSAT started this year with over $134,000 in cash and
over $591,000 in investments. The level of its reserves, its ability
to generate more revenues than expenses, and its ability to continue
to grow its members has AMSAT fiscally positioned to accept whatever
challenges and opportunities tomorrow brings.
Bankston concluded his report by saying, "AMSAT does not expect to
fully fund itself with membership dues. Member dues are meant to
cover member services and benefits. Funding for everything else
must come from other sources.
"In 2019, member dues accounted for only $134,570 of AMSATs total
revenues. The remaining $621,686 came from the kind hearts of our
donors and the incredible work of our volunteers seeking out new
revenue streams and securing grants to further support our mission.
"We, at AMSAT, are keeping our promise to Keep Amateur Radio in Space
and doing so in a fiscally responsible manner."
This report including graphs and charts can be seen at
[ANS thanks Robert Bankston, KE4AL, AMSAT Treasurer for the above
2020 AMSAT Academy Cancelled
Due to the unfortunate cancellation of the 2020 Hamvention, the AMSAT
Academy has also been canceled. Registrants will be notified
directly with refund information.
[ANS thanks Robert Bankston, KE4AL, Vice President User Services for
the above information.]
Need new satellite antennas? Purchase Arrows, Alaskan Arrows,
and M2 LEO-Packs from the AMSAT Store. When you purchase through
AMSAT, a portion of the proceeds goes towards
Keeping Amateur Radio in Space.
IARU Announces R2 Satellite Communication Workshop 31 May 2020
This 3-hour online workshop is an opportunity for all English
speaking Radio Amateurs in IARU Region 2 and specifically the
Caribbean to meet and share their experience with amateur satellite
communications. No prior experience in satellite communications is
Tentative workshop agenda will include:
- How to get started in satellite communications
- A practical demonstration using inexpensive and simple components
(Handy and portable Antennas)
- Useful tools, helpful tips, techniques and websites to find
information on how to get started
- Explain the different components of a ground station for more
advanced users (LNA, Cross-Polarized Antennas, phased lines,
coaxial loss at VHF and upper frequencies, equipment, SDR's, etc.).
- Using satellite communications as a way to encourage young people
to become Amateurs and generate connections and projects with local
universities, college and schools in STEM programs
- Attendees are all Amateurs interested in satellite communications,
whether experienced or wanting to learn how to get started.
Workshops General Information:
- Working language will be English for both workshops.
- Preference will be given to amateurs in the Caribbean.
- Workshops will start at 1400 local time (AST/ET, 1800 UT).
- Access will be via Zoom, an easy to use online conference tool
available on a number of platforms.
- Agenda and information on how to participate will be sent to
registered participants in mid-May.
Registration for the online workshop can be found at
[ANS thanks the IARU for the above information.]
AMSAT-BR Announces QO-100 FT8 QRPp Experiment
AMSAT-Brazil is organizing a reverse beacon FT8 QRPp experiment/
contest via the QO-100 geostationary amateur radio transponder.
The first ten spotted stations with lower SNR will receive a
Certificate of Accomplishment. The dead line will be May 1, 2020. To
qualify, the SNR must be lower than -18 dB (as measured by the FT8
decoder). The receiver will be active on Saturdays and Sundays from
12:00 UTC to 24:00 UTC and will be tuned to 10.489540 GHz with a
3.5 kHz bandwidth. All stations calling CQ will be logged.
The objective for the project is to incentive low power
experimentation through the QO-100 narrow band transponder. Stations
participating in the experiment are welcome to send a brief
description of their setup, including information about RF power
output, hardware and software setups, antenna type and gain, photos,
etc. to the email address py2sdr at gmail dot com.
[ANS thanks AMSAT-UK for the above information.]
Changes to AMSAT-NA TLE Distribution for March 19, 2020
Ray Hoad, WA5QGD reports, "I am pleased to announce that AMSAT-NA's
request to re-distribute TLE elements from Space-Track website has
been approved for the period April 1,2020 to April 1, 2021. Our ODR
(Orbital Data Request) to re-distribute the Space-Track TLE's was
approved by Air Force 18 SPCS on February 27, 2020 (Received
March 12, 2020). Thanks to Air Force 18 SPCS, Perry Klein, W3PK
and Joe Fitzgerald, KM1P for their help in this yearly process. We
are 'good to go' for another year."
The following Amateur Radio satellites have been removed from this
week's TLE distribution:
EO-79 - NORAD CAT ID 40025 - Non-operational
UKube-1 - NORAD CAT ID 40074 - Non-operational
AO-85 - NORAD CAT ID 40967 - End of Mission
[ANS thanks Ray Hoad, WA5QGD for the above information.]
Upcoming Satellite Operations
+ River Bend Wireless Rove (EN22,EN33,EN34,EN42,EN43,EN44)
April 2-4, 2020
Mitch AD0HJ is looking to add six more grids to his rover basket just
before the April 4 AMSAT presentation/demonstration at the River
Bend Wireless and Mechanical Society in Faribault, MN. Mitch will be
activating the EN43/EN44 grid line on April 2nd, the EN32/EN42 grid
line on April 3, and the EN33/EN34 grid line on April 4, 2020.
Watch Mitchs Twitter feed as the dates approach for a detailed
schedule at https://twitter.com/AD0HJ.
+ From the Mountains to the Bay (CM88,89,98,99; DM09,19,29;
DN00,01,02,10,11,20,21) April 12-21, 2020
RJ, WY7AA, is hitting the asphalt again, roving from Wyoming to
Vacaville, CA. Hes attending a class from April 15-19, so most of
the roving will be outside of this time. Grids to be covered include:
CM88,89,98,99; DM09,19,29; DN00,01,02,10,11,20,21. Specific pass
details will be posted on WY7AA QRZ page and Twitter
(https://twitter.com/WY7AA) as the trip approaches.
[ANS thanks Robert Bankston, KE4AL for the above information.]
Hamfests, Conventions, Maker Faires, and Other Events
- May 2, 2020 Arrowhead Radio Amateurs Club Hamfest, Superior, WI
- May 2, 2020, Cochise Amateur Radio Association Hamfest,
Sierra Vista, AZ
- May 8-9, 2020 Prescott Hamfest, Prescott, AZ
- June 12-13, 2020, Ham-Con, Plano, TX
Be sure to check this page and event organizers for cancellations!
To include your upcoming AMSAT presentation and/or demonstration,
please send an email to ambassadors at amsat dot org.
[ANS thanks Robert Bankston, KE4AL for the above information.]
+ Completed Contacts
Turkey Space Camp, Izmir, Turkey, telebridge via W5RRR.
- The ISS callsign was NA1SS.
- The astronaut was Drew Morgan KI5AAA.
- Contact was successful on Thursday, March 19, 2020.
- In an ARISS first due to COVID-19, all of the questions were
pre-recorded by the students and no students were on site during
+ Upcoming Contacts
SPDW Voortrekker Movement, Oranjeville, South Africa, direct
- The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS.
- The scheduled astronaut is Drew Morgan KI5AAA.
- Contact is go for: Friday, March 27, 2020 at 09:47:49 UTC.
Amur State University, Blagoveshchensk, Russia, direct via RKØJ??.
- The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be RSØISS.
- The scheduled astronaut is Oleg Skripochka.
- Possible contact on Tuesday, March 31, 2020 at 2020-03-31 08:50 UTC.
"ARISS is very aware of the impact that COVID-19 is having on schools
and the public in general. As such, we may have last minute
cancellations or postponements of school contacts. As always, I will
try to provide everyone with near-real-time updates."
[ANS thanks Charlie Sufana, AJ9N for the above information.]
Shorts from All Over
* AMSAT February 4, 2020 BoD Minutes Available Online
The minutes for the AMSAT Board of Directors meeting held on
February 4, 2020 are now available online for viewing at
[ANS thanks the AMSAT office for the above information.]
+ Sean Kutzko New Article: Upgrading to Linear Satellites
Wondering what to do after working the FM birds? Sean Kutzko, KX9X
has updated his series of satellite operating tips with "Satellite
Basics (Part 3): Upgrading to the Linear Satellites". Covering
everything from equipment suggestions to proper tuning procedures,
this information-packed article can be found at
[ANS thanks the Sean Kutzko, KX9X for the above information.]
+ Hamvention Announces Refund Information
The Dayton Amateur Radio Association has made the following
announcement regarding Hamvention refunds:
"Due to unfortunate cancellation of Hamvention 2020, we know that
tickets, inside booth spaces and flea market spaces have been
purchased. These purchases have been made by online credit cards,
mail order checks and purchased from our outside vendors. All refunds
will be through the same method of purchase. All credit card sales
will be refunded to the original card used to make the charge. All
check and cash sales will be refunded by check. We anticipate all
refunds completed as soon as possible but not later than August 1."
Further information is available at https://hamvention.org/.
[ANS thanks DARA for the above information.]
+ Australis OSCAR 5 Book Available in the U.S.
Australis OSCAR 5 - The Improbable Story of Australia's First Private
Satellite book (second edition) is now available in the U.S. The
book details how, in the 1960's, a group of University of Melbourne
Science and Engineering students and one Law student banded together
to build a satellite in their spare time.
You can order the book directly from the publisher at
[ANS thanks Owen Mace for the above information.]
+ FUNCube TLM Receive Antenna Available
AMSAT-UK is pleased to offer a simple, low cost antenna system, for
use with a FUNcube Dongle (or any other receiver) to receive the
FUNcube telemetry signals. Based around a Winkler Crossed Dipole
antenna, this kit includes the antenna, a RF cable (2m long) for
connection between the antenna and a FUNcube Dongle, and a USB cable
(approximately 1.8 m long) for connecting the dongle to a computer.
Ordering information is available at
[ANS thanks Graham Shirville, G3VZV for the above information.]
+ Remote Display over USB for Kenwood TH-D74
Many operators love their Kenwood TH-D74 handheld for satellite
operation but there is always room for improvement. Tony Milluzzi,
KD8RTT offers plans for an external remote display that connects to
the radio's USB port. The device is based on a Raspberry Pi Zero W
and a 16×2 LCD. The complete plans are available at
[ANS thanks Tony Milluzzi, KD8RTT for the above information.]
+ Amateur Radio Satellite Spreads Fight Coronavirus Message
Indonesias national amateur radio society ORARI reports the ham
radio satellite LAPAN-A2 (IO-86) is being used to send a Fight
Coronavirus message using APRS. A translation of the ORARI post says,
Stay Healthy, Stay at Home #LawanCorona.
See the complete story at https://tinyurl.com/ANS-082-Coronavirus.
+ M2 Pathfinder Satellite Launch Imminent
M2 Pathfinder satellite's next launch window is reportedly no earlier
than March 29, 2020. The M2 Pathfinder is a collaboration between
the University of New South Wales (UNSW) Canberra Space and the
Australian Government. The M2 Pathfinder will test communications
architecture and other technologies that will assist in informing
the future space capabilities of Australia. The satellite will
demonstrate the ability of an onboard software-based radio to
operate and reconfigure while in orbit.
The mission has been named Dont Stop Me Now in recognition of
Rocket Lab board member and avid Queen fan Scott Smith, who recently
Complete information on the mission is available at
[ANS thanks Terry Osborne ZL2BAC for the above information.]
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
additional benefits. Application forms are available from the
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
student rate for a maximum of six post-secondary years in this
Contact Martha at the AMSAT office for additional student
This week's ANS Editor,
Frank Karnauskas, N1UW
n1uw at amsat dot org
Sent via AMSAT-BB at amsat.org. AMSAT-NA makes this open forum
available to all interested persons worldwide without requiring
membership. Opinions expressed are solely those of the author
and do not reflect the official views of AMSAT-NA.
Not an AMSAT member? Join now to support the amateur satellite
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