AMSAT-UK

PicSat Requests Ham Radio Assistance to Capture/Upload Telemetry

Artist’s impression of PicSat in space

The CubeSat PicSat carrying an amateur radio FM transponder was launched on the same PSLV-C40 flight from India that delivered AO-92 to orbit.

PicSat is a nano-satellite aimed at observing the transit of the young exoplanet Beta Pictoris b in front of its bright and equally young star Beta Pictoris, and at demonstrating an innovative technological concept to use optical fibres for astronomical observations from Space.

The CubeSat contains an embedded FM transponder. It will be available when possible during the mission.

Frequency information:
Uplink FM 145.910 MHz 1750 Hz tone when in amateur mode
Downlink FM 435.525 MHz 9k6 BPSK AX25 Data and FM voice when in amateur mode

A description of the telemetry and related information are available on
https://picsat.obspm.fr/data/telemetries?locale=en.

This week the PicSat team requested amateur radio assistance to capture and upload telemetry packets from the satellite. Beacons received from all over the world are especially useful to monitor the status of satellite along its orbit (and not just when it is above our own station). Science data are obviously useful for the science mission. And all other packets, even when they do not look like much, can be of great importance! For example, we often receive satellite acknowledgements to our commands from ground station in France or Europe which are listening at the same time as us. It may look useless, but it is not. We regularly miss those packets ourselves, so it is good to have other people receiving them and sending
them to us.

There are three ways to send your data. The options for your upload will become available on your profile tab after registration at their website: https://picsat.obspm.fr/connexion?locale=en

Full details of the packet uploading procedure are posted at:
https://picsat.obspm.fr/contributing/send-packets?locale=en

+ Fast upload beacon: mainly intended as a way to directly upload a beacon by copy/paste when you receive, and to get an immediate overview of the satellite status. When you are a new user, this is also the only way you can upload a packet. Upload one beacon successfully, and you will have access to the other methods!

This page accepts a hexadecimal string, like “0123456789ABCDEF” in which whitespaces and upper/lower case are ignored (“01 23 45 67 89 ab cd ef”, or even something like “0 1 234 56789 aBc dEf” will be accepted). The hexadecimal string must represent the AX.25 packet (without flags), possibly KISS encapsulated (starting with “C0 00” and ending with “C0”)

+ Upload data: this can be used to upload files containing multiple packets at once. The files are stored on our servers, and processed daily.

+ SiDS requests: This will be implemented in the near future.

PicSat shares a similar orbit with AO-92 since they were both deployed at approximately the same time. PicSat has been included in the 2 line Keplerian Elements distributions. On-line orbit predications for PicSat can be found at https://picsat.obspm.fr/operations/orbital-map?locale=en

Follow PicSat at https://twitter.com/IamPicSat