Enhanced FUNcube-1 Dashboard App now available

Ciaran Morgan M0XTD - Image credit Mike Rupprecht DK3WN

Ciaran Morgan M0XTD – Image credit Mike Rupprecht DK3WN

This weekend saw the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium take place and Jim Heck G3WGM and Ciaran Morgan M0XTD together gave a presentation on the FUNcube-1 CubeSat mission.

The presentation included the announcement of a new version of the FUNcube-1 Dashboard. This has greatly improved decoding performance for weak signals – especially for Dongle users. Additionally the Dashboard can now activate the Bias-T pre-amp power from the Dongle.

The new version can now be downloaded and the guidance notes have been updated to provide full information about it.

All users are encouraged to install this new version to improve their system performance and further increase the amount of data being captured in the Warehouse.

Reports will be very welcome on the FUNcube forum http://forum.funcube.org.uk/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=195

Dashboard App – Telemetry Decoder http://funcube.org.uk/working-documents/funcube-telemetry-dashboard/

Data Warehouse – Telemetry Archive http://warehouse.funcube.org.uk/

Murray Niman G6JYB Appointed RSGB Spectrum Chair

Murray Niman G6JYB

Murray Niman G6JYB

Following the advertisement of the position of Chair of the Spectrum Forum the RSGB Board have appointed Murray Niman G6JYB to the position.

Murray is no stranger to spectrum matters having held the post of RSGB Microwave Manager, since January 2007. He succeeds the former Spectrum Chair John Gould G3WKL who is now RSGB President.

2006 – Murray Niman G6JYB Appointed RSGB Microwave Manager
http://www.southgatearc.org/news/december2006/new_rsgb_microwave_manager.htm

UK Space Agency: UKube-1 Success

UKube-1 CubeSat at Clyde Space

UKube-1 CubeSat at Clyde Space

The UK Space Agency (UKSA) report on the successful launch of their first CubeSat earlier this month.

With regard to the AMSAT-UK FUNcube-2 sub-system carried by the satellite the UKSA say:

“As well as providing a fantastic opportunity for innovative UK companies and UK academics to collaborate on a national space project, UKube-1 is also useful for training the next generation of space engineers and includes an education payload intended to support STEM initiatives. The payload consists of a tiny radio transmitter for science education and a materials science experiment from which school students can receive data which can be compared to results obtained from similar reference experiments in the classroom. The system, funded by volunteer members and friends of AMSAT-UK, is called FUNcube-2.”

Read the full story at
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/successful-launch-for-uk-space-agencys-first-cubesat-mission

ARISS contact planned with ESA Space Camp, Fleetwood, UK

International Space Station - Image Credit NASA

International Space Station – Image Credit NASA

ARISS educational radio contact is planned with ESA Space Camp, Rossall School, Fleetwood, UK. The event is scheduled for Tuesday, July 29 at 14:01:13 UT . It will be a telebridge contact operated by W6SRJ in California.

A video from the event will be webcast at http://www.batc.tv/streams/arissuk/

International_Space_StationThe contact will be broadcast on EchoLink AMSAT (node 101 377) and JK1ZRW (node 277 208) Conference servers, as well as on IRLP Discovery Reflector 9010.

This annual camp is organized by the ESA Space Camp Committee takes place in a different European country each summer for 2 weeks. This year the camp takes place between 27 July and 10 August where 185 young space explorers aged 8 to 17 will meet each other in the UK at Rossall School. The children come from the following ESA establishments (UK, France, Spain, Italy, The Netherlands and Germany).

This will be the 20th Space Camp organised by ESA. This year the children will also be involved in celebrating this milestone with marking 50 years of ESA. Children, their parents and educators from the area will join the ESA campers on this special celebration day.
Rossall is a boarding school situated on a beautiful 160-acre site, there is plenty of room for extensive sports and cultural facilities, including a swimming pool, squash and tennis courts, as well as a fitness room and a climbing wall.

International Space Station ISS with shuttle Endeavour 2011-05-23The ESC 2014 programme will feature a balanced mix of sports such as flag rugby, lifeguarding, kayaking and martial arts. The theme for camp will be ‘Reach for the Stars!’ Well-equipped IT labs, classrooms and an on-site planetarium will be instrumental in setting up a space education programme that will keep the children motivated with new and exciting hands-on activities and educational tasks involving space-related themes, as well as learning about the culture of the host country.

As with all ESA Space Camps, there will be specific emphasis placed on socialisation and respect among the participants. We hope to make the camp a really unique experience for juniors and teenagers who are in the process of becoming citizens of a multicultural society.
This ARISS contact will mark a highlight in the space education programme as children will be learning about many aspects related to man’s endeavours to reach for the stars!

Students will ask as many of following questions as time allows:
1. Zachary (12): What has been your biggest challenge since being in space?
2. Noemi (11): On Earth bubbles in sparkling water (or cola) float upwards, but in the ISS, there is no up and down. Which direction do the bubbles go in sparkling water (or cola) on the ISS?
3. Kai (9): If you could change one thing on the ISS, what would it be?
4. Caroline (8): How do you sleep and for how long?
5. Lisann (10): Do you need sunscreen in space?
6. Nassim (8): Why do we have plenty of oxygen on earth, but not enough in space?
7. Auriane (10): Do you see time passing by in space? Do you have the same feeling of time duration (days & nights)?
8. William Baker (12): Can you give us an example of some added safety procedures or precautions you must take in doing everyday tasks while on the ISS?
9. Eduardo García (8): Why is there no oxygen outside the ISS?
10. Sonia ERNST: How long does it take to go around our planet?
11. Damien (9): What were your last thoughts when leaving earth?
12. Tristan (8): How do you keep your clothes clean on the Space Station with so little water?
13. Marie (8): Are there any seasons on the ISS?
14. Emil (8): What do you do for fun on the ISS?
15. Charles (13): I have been fascinated by the film “Gravity”. How realistic is the film? Is space crowded by debris and therefore so dangerous?
16. Roxane (10): How many switches are there inside the spacecraft, and do you know what all of them do?
17. Andrew (13): Is it highly stressful to be in space?
18. Ella (9): How do you have a bath when the water goes everywhere?
19. Benjamin (11): How do you dispose of the waste?
20. Luca (13): How are medical surgeries done in space if a specialized doctor is not available?
21. Lena (11): How is it in the ISS, when you arrive the first time? Was the journey comfortable?
22. Giulio (10): What would you like to achieve that you haven’t yet?
23. Eveline (9): I’ve been practicing various types of sports the last years, and now I still do judo. What sports can you practice in the International Space Station, a weightless environment?

ARISS is an international educational outreach program partnering the participating space agencies, NASA, Russian Space Agency, ESA, CNES, JAXA, and CSA, with the AMSAT and IARU organizations from participating countries.

ARISS offers an opportunity for students to experience the excitement of Amateur Radio by talking directly with crewmembers onboard the International Space Station. Teachers, parents and communities see, first hand, how Amateur Radio and crewmembers on ISS can energize youngsters’ interest in science, technology and learning.

73,

Gaston Bertels, ON4WF
Chair ARISS Europe
http://www.ariss-eu.org/

ARISS http://www.ariss.org/

ISEE-3 Spacecraft Presentation in Guildford on Saturday

ISEE-3 - ICE Spacecraft - Image credit NASA

ISEE-3 – ICE Spacecraft – Image credit NASA

Achim Vollhardt DH2VA and Mario Lorenz DL5MLO from AMSAT-DL Bochum will be giving a presentation on ISEE-3 (ICE) from 1:50-2:40pm (1250-1340 GMT) on Saturday, July 26 at the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium at the Holiday Inn, Guildford, GU2 7XZ. The event is open to all.

It is hoped to have a live demonstration of telemetry reception from the spacecraft during the presentation.

The International Sun-Earth Explorer (ISEE-3) is a NASA spacecraft that was launched in 1978 to study Earth’s magnetosphere. It was repurposed and renamed the International Cometary Explorer (ICE) in 1983 to study two comets and has been in a heliocentric orbit since then, traveling just slightly faster than Earth. It’s finally catching up with Earth from behind with the closest approach expected in August, 2014.

Since NASA no longer has the capability to receive and command the spacecraft a group of amateurs, with NASA’s permission, decided to do it for themselves.

Bochum Amateur Radio Facility

Amateur Radio Facility at Bochum

On March 1-2, 2014 radio amateurs at the Bochum Amateur Radio Facility in Germany were able to detect the beacon signal from the spacecraft over a distance of 43 million km. After some changes to the ground equipment and aligning the receive antenna to the predicted position in the sky, the 2 GHz beacon signal could positively be identified due to its frequency, the position in the sky and the frequency shift due to the radial velocity (Doppler shift).

The 20m dish at Bochum was used to receive the signals. In 2003, AMSAT-DL converted this former industrial monument into a fully functional groundstation for deep space probes. Since 2009 the facility is being used by volunteers almost full time as ground receive station for data from the STEREO mission with its two spaceprobes monitoring the sun from different viewing angles.

In June Dennis Wingo KD4ETA and other volunteers succeeded in commanding the spacecraft using the Arecibo dish in Puerto Rico.

Admittance to the Colloquium is £10 a day. You can register in advance at http://shop.amsat.org.uk/shop/category_10/Colloquium-2014-Fri-25-July-to-Sun-27-July.html registration can also be done on the day.

The schedule and map is at http://amsat-uk.org/colloquium/colloquium-2014/

Live video streaming http://amsat-uk.org/2014/07/23/batc-to-webstream-space-colloquium/

BATC to Webstream Space Colloquium

BATC Logo SmallVolunteers from the British Amateur Radio Club (BATC) will be streaming the presentations from the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium which takes place July 26-27 at the Holiday Inn, Guildford, GU2 7XZ. The event is open to all.

The dedicated BATC members have been recording and streaming the Colloquium for over 7 years.

Watch the International Space Colloquium presentations on Saturday, July 26 between 10:00 and 17:30 BST and on Sunday, July 27 between 09:00 and 16:00 BST (GMT +1) at
http://www.batc.tv/streams/amsat2014

The programme for the Colloquium is available at http://amsat-uk.org/colloquium/colloquium-2014/

Further information on the BATC is available at http://batc.org.uk/

144 MHz band to be used for Commonwealth Games

Ofcom-logo-col-tThe RSGB report that four 25 kHz bandwidth channels in the 144 MHz band between 144.00 and 144.100 MHz will be used at the Commonwealth Games from July 22 to Aug 4.

Following negotiations with the RSGB to minimise the impact on radio amateurs, Ofcom has announced that it will temporarily authorise up to four 25 kHz channels, 144.000, 144.025, 144.075 and 144.100 MHz, for the period July 22 to August 4, 2014, to support the operation of the Commonwealth Games. The frequencies to be used specifically exclude 144.0500 MHz (CW Calling Frequency).

Usage of this spectrum by Commonwealth Games users will be in the vicinity of Glasgow games venues and will be limited to handheld equipment operating on a maximum of 5W ERP. Ofcom emphasises that use of Primary Amateur spectrum is only for the specified time period and does not constitute a change of usage.

Ofcom are aware of the very short notice and will authorise this usage on a “non-interference, non-protection basis”.  Amateurs in the Glasgow area are requested to avoid these frequencies until 4th August.

Further information at http://rsgb.org/main/blog/all-regions/region-1/2014/07/22/channels-144mhz-band-used-commonwealth-games/

Goodbye HAMSAT-VO52 – Rest In Peace

HAMSAT VO-52

HAMSAT VO-52

AMSAT-India’s satellite VO-52, launched on May 5, 2005, ceased operation on July 11, 2014. For over 9 years it proved to be a valuable communications resource for the amateur radio community.

Mani VU2WMY posted the sad news:

Dear Friends,

With heavy heart, I sadly convey, that our little angel ‘HAMSAT VO-52’ would no more be able to offer her services to the ‘Amateur Radio Fraternity. HAMSAT VO-52 succumbed in Space on 11th July 2014, while she was on her 49,675th orbit, due to the failure of on-board lithium ion batteries that have met their end of life.

Although her desires were to be at work with other systems and sub-systems working normal as per the latest telemetry received, the on-board computer recurring to ‘Reset’ mode due to the failure of batteries is preventing her to do so.  Hence, it is decided not to expect any more meaningful and reliable services from HAMSAT VO-52.

Since 11th July, every best possible effort has been put in by the spacecraft controllers here in ISTRAC Bangalore to revive her back to life and to help her with work load, so she won’t be swamped when she returns, but with no luck.  Though it is hard, the HAMSAT VO-52 designers and controllers insist that the time has come to let the little angel free in space to go drifting on her own from their care and custody.

Thus, today 21st July 2014, ISRO have decommissioned ‘HAMSAT-VO52′ officially.

We all here in ISRO do definitely hope that ‘HAMSAT VO-52’ worked tirelessly and was a good friend to the ‘Amateur Radio Fraternity’ around the World. We are sure that HAMSAT was loved by all who worked through her. Though, we are deeply saddened by the loss of HAMSAT VO-52, but she will never be forgotten and far from our hearts, minds and memories.

HAMSAT VO-52 will always be remembered by all of us here in ISRO as one of the greatest satellites of ours.

Dear ‘HAMSAT’, looking at the sky, we all say ‘Good Bye’ to you. You’ll be greatly missed. Rest in Peace.

Nevertheless, at this point of time, on behalf of the World Amateur Radio Fraternity, we thank each and everyone who contributed to the great success of ‘HAMSAT’.

Particularly, our sincere thanks to the Chairman ISRO, Dr. K. Radhakrishnan, past chairmen Dr. Kasthurirangan, Dr. G. Madhavan Nair, Director-ISAC Dr. S.K.Shiva Kumar, past ISAC Directors Dr. P.S. Goel, Dr. Shankara, Dr. T.K. Alex, Director-ISTRAC Shri. B.S. Chandrasekhar, scientific secretary Dr. Koteshwar Rao, Project Director-Shri. J.P. Gupta, Deputy project Directors, Mission Director-Shri. R.Suresh, Operations Director-Shri. Parimalarangan and each and every person directly or in-directly contributed.

At this point of time, we also thank AMSAT-India and in particular, lateShri. Nagesh Upadhyaya-VU2NUD,  Shri. B.S. Gajendra Kumar-VU2BGS, Shri. Prathap Kumar-VU2POP, Air Commodore. Subramanian-VU2UV, Shri.  V.P. Sandlas-VU2VP, Dr.R. Ramesh-VU2RMS, Shri. Nitin-VU3TYG, Mr. Williams Leijenaar PE1RAH and each and every member.

Pasted below is the message from Mr. R. Suresh, Mission Director:

HAMSAT, the first small satellite by ISRO has been Decommissioned after nearly a decade of service to the World Ham community.

A true masterpiece among small satellites, designed for one year mission life, but exceeded all expectations by serving for almost 10 years. A truly autonomous satellite, with “Zero maintenance“ in terms of Mission operations, it provided a springboard to test many new concepts such as BMU. LI-ion based power system, automatic Spin rate control and Auto SAOC for maintaining the Satellite attitude without any ground commanding.

HAMSAT known as “OSCAR-52” among the Amateur HAM operators has been very popular because of its high sensitivity receiver and strong transmitter. Indian Radio Amateurs on many occasions conveyed to us that they have been greatly honored to share the adulations showered on ISRO and INDIA by the International Radio Amateur for gifting this wonderful satellite “HAMSAT”.

I take this opportunity to applaud the HAMSAT teams at ISAC, ISTRAC and other centre for their efforts and  support, which has made ISRO proud among the HAM users across the globe.

R,SURESH
MISSION DIRECTOR
HAMSAT

—-
Mani [VU2WMY/KJ6LRS]
Secretary & Station-In-Charge
Upagrah Amateur Radio Club VU2URC
ISRO Satellite Centre

Book Now for International Space Colloquium and CubeSat Workshop

AMSAT-UK Logo

AMSAT-UK Logo

The AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium will be held this weekend of July 26-27, 2014 at the Holiday Inn, Guildford, GU2 7XZ, UK. The event is open to all, admittance is £10 per day, this can be paid on the door or you can register in advance.

There will be a beginners satellite session run by Carlos Eavis G0AKI on Friday afternoon at 3:30pm.

Details at http://amsat-uk.org/colloquium/colloquium-2014/

If you plan to be a day visitor but wish to attend the Gala Meal on the Saturday evening you can book it at http://shop.amsat.org.uk/shop/category_10/Colloquium-2014-Fri-25-July-to-Sun-27-July.html (Please note that we need to give the hotel 48 hours notice for the dinner, so booking will close on Wed)

The BYOB ‪CubeSat‬ Workshop takes place at the Surrey Space Centre, University of Surrey, Guildford (1 km from the Holiday Inn) on Friday, July 25. The day will include ad-hoc tours to SSC’s cleanroom, ground–station, and new CubeSat experimentation facilities.

You must register in advance to attend the BYOB CubeSat Workshop. Information on Free registration is at http://amsat-uk.org/2014/07/15/byob-cubesat-day-july-25-free-registration/

Fox-1C CubeSat to Fly on SHERPA

SHERPA in Orbit - Credit Spaceflight Inc

SHERPA in Orbit – Credit Spaceflight Inc

AMSAT is excited to announce a launch opportunity for the Fox-1C CubeSat. AMSAT has teamed with Spaceflight Inc. for integration and launch utilizing Spaceflight’s SHERPA system to a sun-synchronous orbit in the third quarter of 2015.

AMSAT FOXFox-1C is the third of four Fox-1 series satellites under development, with Fox-1A and RadFXsat/Fox-1B launching through the NASA ELANA program. Fox-1C will carry an FM repeater system for amateur radio use by radio hams and listeners worldwide. Further details on the satellite and launch will be made available as soon as released.

AMSAT has an immediate need to raise funds to cover both the launch contract and additional materials for construction and testing for Fox-1C. We have set a fundraising goal of $125,000 to cover these expenses over the next 12 months, and allow us to continue to keep amateur radio in space.

Donations may be made through the AMSAT webpage at www.amsat.org, by calling (888) 322-6728 or by mail to the AMSAT office at 10605 Concord Street, Kensington, MD 20895, USA. Please consider a recurring, club, or corporate donation to maximize our chance of success with this mission. Also watch our website at www.amsat.org, follow us on Twitter at “AMSAT“, or on Facebook as “The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation” for continuing news and opportunities for support. AMSAT is a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation and donations may be tax-deductible.

Please donate now to fund launch and construction costs for the next Fox satellite!

Source: AMSAT-NA https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Radio-Amateur-Satellite-Corporation-AMSAT/328833500472670

SHERPA to deploy CubeSats in LEO or GTO
http://amsat-uk.org/2014/07/16/sherpa-to-deploy-cubesats-in-leo-or-gto/

Drew Glasbrenner KO4MA will be giving a presentation on the Fox CubeSats to the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium which is being held at the Holiday Inn, Guildford, GU2 7XZ on July 26-27, 2014. The event is open to all, further details at http://amsat-uk.org/colloquium/colloquium-2014/