FUNcube Whole Orbit Data available for download

AO-73 (FUNcube-1) - Image credit Wouter Weggelaar PA3WEG

AO-73 (FUNcube-1) – Image credit Wouter Weggelaar PA3WEG

From the early planning stage of the project we decided that we would make telemetry information from the AO-73 (FUNcube-1) CubeSat available to end users.

Since deployment the FUNcube Data Warehouse has displayed the latest data:
• Reatime
• Whole Orbit
• High Precision
• Fitter Messages
and of course the upload rankings. Additionally we have made available small csv files for WOD and HiRes.

Starting October 14, we will be making all captured WOD available as weekly csv files.

Please see: http://warehouse.funcube.org.uk/wod.html?satelliteId=2 for the link to the downloads page. It currently up to 26/6/2014 (32 files)

The files are on average:
• 9706 lines (expected 10080) ~ 96.3% capture
• 905 KB

We will play catch up over the next few days and then automate the process.

It it really intended for consumption by an analytical suite such as MatLab, or a DIY one, in a language of your choosing. However, it can be simply graphed in Excel or Open Office Calc.

Feedback would be appreciated.

Enjoy!

73 Dave, G4DPZ

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

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

New UK Amateur Radio 146 MHz Allocation

New Ways of Amateur CommunicationsThe RSGB VHF Manager John Regnault G4SWX gave a key presentation to the RSGB Convention on October 12 about the new amateur radio allocation at 146 MHz.

John said the future use of this band is very much in our hands. If we merely use it for more-of-the-same (conventional modulation and uses) then future use will not be viewed very favourably.

He suggested we should use the band imaginatively, with digital modes and/or new services that would not sit easily within the existing band. Digital ATV with 500 kHz bandwidth, Digital Voice, Spread Spectrum, Data Services along with things not yet widely thought of are the type of activity that is desired.

Developers of wideband modes may face challenges in ensuring their emissions are contained within the new band. Some wideband modes currently used on 1240 MHz have sidebands just 30 dB down that extend over a wide range, this would not be acceptable on 146 MHz.

Bandwidth tailoring will be imperative to ensure no RF extends into the weak signal satellite segment at 145.8-146.0 MHz (the Lunar 4M JT65B beacon uses 145.980 MHz). Narrow band users on 147 MHz must also be protected from any increase in the noise floor.

John asked that those trying new things on the band should report the work they do even if the experiment is a failure. His contact email address is vhf.manager<at>rsgb.org.uk

It may even be that successful exploitation of the new band could lead to further release to amateurs of much needed VHF spectrum!

Download the 146 MHz PowerPoint Slides here

Download the 146 MHz PDF Slides here

The new allocation has both Geographical and ERP restrictions. The Ofcom statement on the allocation can be seen at http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/binaries/consultations/vhf-143-169mhz/statement/VHF_Release_statement.pdf

At the end of October Full licence holders will be able to obtain an NoV for 146  MHz operation from the RSGB online NoV page at http://rsgb.org/main/operating/licensing-novs-visitors/online-nov-application/

 

Amateur Radio Licence Review

RSGB Colour LogoThe Radio Society of Great Britain General Manager, Graham Coomber G0NBI, has issued this statement on the Ofcom amateur radio licence review.

We held our regular meeting with Ofcom last Thursday and, as you will know, Ofcom attended the Convention at the weekend. Feedback from those events is that

• Only 300 or so people have responded to the consultation document so far.
• Ofcom will be relying heavily on the volume and content of the responses as evidence of what the amateur radio community feels about the proposals.

Whilst we published some explanatory notes on the website soon after the document was released, it is apparent that many amateurs have not yet read the document which is far from straightforward in several places.

We are thus today publishing further guidance together with suggested responses to the key questions www.rsgb.org/ocguidance

There is now just one week before Ofcom’s consultation period ends (20th October) and thus time is of the essence. This note is to ask for your personal support as follows.

Please make sure that you respond to Ofcom.

Please make contact with your club chair (if you belong to a club) or any other amateurs that you are in contact with and urge them to do the same.

Many thanks,

Graham Coomber, G0NBI
General Manager
Radio Society of Great Britain

4M Lunar Payload in Practical Wireless Magazine

Cover November 2014.inddThe November issue of Practical Wireless (PW) magazine, in the shops now, devotes three pages to the 4M amateur radio lunar payload which will transmit JT65B on 145.980 MHz. Beijing plan to launch the payload on October 23. The article, written by Colin Redwood G6MXL, is well worth reading.

PW magazine also carries the popular columns World of VHF by Tim Kirby G4VXE, Data Modes by Mike Richards G4WNC and Emerging Technology by Chris Lorek G4HCL.

It is understood that postal copies of Practical Wireless can be purchased using a Debit or Credit card by ringing +44 (0)1202 751611 Monday – Thursday 8.30am – 4.00pm.

Practical Wireless magazine http://www.pwpublishing.ltd.uk/practical-wireless-latest-issue/

PW World of VHF on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/worldofvhf

Unforgettable day schoolchildren spoke to an astronaut in space

Reid Wiseman KF5LKT - Image credit NASA

Reid Wiseman KF5LKT – Image credit NASA

The Southend Echo reports on the contact between pupils at Winter Gardens Primary School in Canvey, Essex and the International Space Station.

The contact took place on October 8 having taken two years of preparation. It was organised by the South Essex Amateur Radio Society and involved a link-up with an amateur radio station in California, W6SRJ, who relayed the signal to and from the ISS while it was traveling over the USA at 27,600 km/h. The children were able to speak to astronaut Reid Wiseman KF5LKT who was using the ISS callsign NA1SS.

The newspaper article includes a picture of the school pupils with Pete sipple M0PSX, read it at
http://www.echo-news.co.uk/news/11526478.The_unforgettable_day_schoolchildren_spoke_to_an_astronaut_in_space/

Read a report on the contact at
http://www.essexham.co.uk/news/iss-winter-gardens-2014.html

Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS)
http://www.ariss.org/contact-the-iss.html

South Essex Amateur Radio Society
http://www.southessex-ars.co.uk/
https://www.facebook.com/pages/South-Essex-Amateur-Radio-Society/348979385223793

The Roy Stevens, G2BVN, Trophy awarded to Gaston, ON4WF

Gaston Bertels ON4WF - ARISS Contact

Gaston Bertels ON4WF conducting an ARISS contact

The IARU Region 1 Roy Stevens, G2BVN, Memorial Trophy was awarded to Gaston Bertels, ON4WF, for his meritorious service to amateur radio over many years. Gaston was the chairman of the Eurocom Working Group and then the chairman of the ARSPEX Working Group. Gaston, aged 87, has decided to step down as ARSPEX WG chairman.

Gaston received a standing ovation when the award was announced.

AMSAT-UK add their congratulations and respect for all his hard work in IARU Region 1 and with the organisation of the ARISS School contacts, as well as his Chairmanship of ARISS-EU and, for a time, of ARISS-International.

Gaston was instrumental in getting DATV antennas for 1260 and 2400 MHz installed on the International Space Station (ISS), see http://www.southgatearc.org/news/march2007/ariss_antenna_donations.htm

Gaston Bertels ON4WF Graham Shirville G3VZV and astronaut Frank De Winne ON1DWN at the European Parliament

Gaston Bertels ON4WF, Graham Shirville G3VZV and astronaut Frank De Winne ON1DWN at the European Parliament

6th European CubeSat Symposium

Swiss Space Systems S3

Swiss Space Systems S3

The 6th European CubeSat Symposium will take place from October 14-16, 2014 at Estavayer-le-Lac in Switzerland.

The Symposium has attracted more than 100 abstracts submitted from 31 different countries. Von Karman Institute and Swiss Space Systems are proud to support the CubeSat community by coorganising this leading CubeSat event in Europe, for the first time in Switzerland.

Von Karman Institute continues to act as the coordinator of the World’s most ambitious CubeSat Project QB50, whereas Swiss Space Systems is designing an innovative launcher specifically for small satellites to bring the launch costs to 25% of today’s market value.

The symposium abstracts are available at
https://www.cubesatsymposium.eu/download/BookOfAbstracts_6th_European_Cubesatsymposium_2014.pdf

6th European CubeSat Symposium https://www.cubesatsymposium.eu/

Silverstone B-64 balloon still flying

Track of the B-64 balloon

Track of the B-64 balloon

The B-64 balloon launched at 06:51 GMT on July 12, 2014 from Silverstone is still in the air flying at just over 12,000 metres and transmitting on 434.500 MHz Contestia 64/1000 and also APRS.

B-64 envelope - Image credit Leo Bodnar M0XER

B-64 envelope – Image credit Leo Bodnar M0XER

On Saturday, October 3 Phil Heron MI0VIM reported decoding data while it was over the North Atlantic ocean, coming up to the 6th time it would pass the United Kingdom on it’s continuing journeys around the world.

B-64 was built by radio amateur Leo Bodnar M0XER, he made both the plastic foil envelope and the solar powered transmitter payload which weighs just 11 grams.

Leo has utilised some clever techniques storing positions when the balloon is out of radio contact then later transmitting a log file of previous locations in the comments field of the APRS packet. This enables a fairly complete path to be built up. B-64 only stores 5 days worth of data, where you get a straight line on the track it has been out of radio contact.

See the B-64 track at
http://habhub.org/mt/?focus=B-64

July 31 B-64 completes first journey around the world
http://amsat-uk.org/2014/07/31/434-mhz-balloon-b-64-completes-epic-journey/

Useful balloon links
http://amsat-uk.org/beginners/balloons/

B-64 transmitter payload weighs just 11 grams - Credit Leo Bodnar M0XER

B-64 transmitter payload weighs just 11 grams – Credit Leo Bodnar M0XER

4M lunar ham radio payload shipped

4M payload under test

4M payload under test

Ghislain Ruy LX2RG reports the 4M Lunar flyby amateur radio payload was shipped on Thursday, October 2 and he departs for the Xichang Satellite Launch Center on Sunday, October 5.

He says the lifetime of 4M is quite an unknown: it may be as short as 100 hours (so at least to the Moon) and could extend for some weeks if the attitude is favorable.

It is now known that the spacecraft will not re-enter the Earth atmosphere after the flyby but instead enter a wonderful orbit. You will find information animations and some JT65B test files at

https://cloud.luxspace.lu/public.php?service=files&t=33c4a21c09ba3736a55fc09896e463f6

The launch will be transmitted by CNTV/CCTV: http://www.cntv.cn/ or http://english.cntv.cn/ or http://english.cntv.cn/live/p2p/index.shtml

LX2RG says the team are setting up their ground station, and are especially looking for southern hemisphere stations: ZS, VK and ZL, Southern America continent mainly, as they will be placed first hand for the early hours.

Launched is planned in a narrow window at 17:59:xx UTC on October 23 and flyby is to occur nominally on October 28 at 00:33 UTC.

4M is planned to start transmissions at 19:17 UTC, possibly with 10 minutes additional delay.

K1JT has developed a special version of WSJT. In addition of all the features of the standard version, it includes also the display and logging of the dT to three decimal places and the logging of the manual offset that can be entered in JT65B modes. This version should be used by all who wants to participate to the ‘Multilateration’ experiment.

The participant to this experiment should also make sure that the clock of their PC stays synchronized to the UTC time. Desired accuracy should be within 1ms and within 10ms at the very least. Use of NTP synchronizing software is a must.

The special version can be downloaded with the following links:
http://physics.princeton.edu/pulsar/K1JT/WSJT_10.0r4336a.exe
https://cloud.luxspace.lu/public.php?service=files&t=2720825f74104b31ebd699dcc0fd6268

The LuxSpace ground station comprises 2 x 8 element crossed Yagis from Joachims antenna (with an improved design to lower the back lobe), a SSB.de LNA and Yaesu antenna rotators.

Best regards.

Ghislain Ruy LX2RG
Email ruy@luxspace.lu with “4M Amateur” in the subject

Read the paper 4M Mission: a Lunar FlyBy experiment
http://tinyurl.com/4M-Mission-V3

EME 2014 slides: 4M, A Moon Flyby Mission
http://tinyurl.com/4M-slides-eme2014

Manfred Memorial Moon Mission (4M) http://moon.luxspace.lu/

4M-LXS Lunar amateur radio payload
http://amsat-uk.org/2014/09/01/4m-lunar-payload/

UK schools contact with International Space Station

Astronaut Alexander Gerst KF5ONO

Astronaut Alexander Gerst KF5ONO

On Wednesday, October 8 at 10:08:49 UT there will be an ARISS contact between astronaut Alexander Gerst KF5ONO on the International Space Station (ISS) and students at the Winter Gardens Primary School, Canvey, Essex and Pilton Bluecoat School, Barnstaple, Devon.

The ISS will be over the USA at the time and they will be making use of an amateur radio Telebridge Ground Station in California, W6SRJ, to actually make the link to the Space Station.

South Essex Amateur Radio Club (SEARS) http://www.southessex-ars.co.uk/