The successful amateur radio lunar payload 4M launched on October 23 has generated a number of articles, the latest is in The Daily Beast.
Read The Daily Beast article about the first privately-funded spacecraft to travel the Moon at http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/10/26/luxembourg-and-china-team-up-on-private-mission-to-the-moon.html
Since its launch 4M has been transmitting the digital mode JT65B on 145.980 MHz. The signal was first picked up 79 minutes after launch by Roland Zurmely PY4ZBZ in Brazil. The signal was very weak as 4M flew around the Moon but radio amateurs still managed to copy it. 4M is now heading back toward Earth.
Ghislain Ruy LX2RG has provided some additional information on the 4M project:
This project is entirely funded by our company [Luxspace], with strictly no commercial purpose. It means also that it had to be cheap, fast, efficient. In the partner page, you will find all those partner companies that have provided their services for free or at reduced cost. http://moon.luxspace.lu/partners/
I had only 6 months to set it all up, starting from blank page or quite so. I mean all really. And on top of that a mission from my boss: take the youngest by the hand and lead them to success. Done. I have repaid what I have been given by the elders when I was a beginner.
Here are at Luxspace, we are quite a lot of skilled high level engineers, and to say the truth, we do not object having fun on top of that.
LSE space offered for free to deal with all the data handling and setup all the website, data base, and so on. They did it in a very few months, and choose the most practical way for them in order to be in time and operational. And we are. As simple as it is.
We have learned a lot during these 6 months, and the last 6 days have been quite an education also.
The next mission will integrate all what was discovered and learned. My homework this week is to write it all down. Now, it is Java, and that’s it. Could have been better, but it works as expected or so, and that’s what counts. Fine tuning will come later.
Believe or not, I knew nothing of JT65B 7 months ago. We have put it all in a small microprocessor, including SDR !
Read the 4M blog at http://moon.luxspace.lu/blog/
For tracking information just enter your latitude and longitude at http://moon.luxspace.lu/tracking/
Lunar Ham Radio Payload Launched https://amsat-uk.org/2014/10/23/lunar-ham-radio-payload-launched/
ARRL – Radio Amateurs Report Hearing 4M Moon Orbiter JT65B Signal