The UKube-1 satellite was successfully launched on Tuesday, July 8, 2014 at 1558 UT from Pad 31/6 at Baikonur in Kazakhstan. The 145.840 MHz beacon signal was received by the UKube team in Chilbolton at 19:16 UT.
It had been expected the first signal would be received over South Africa at about 18:52 UT but no signals were heard. The UKube team at Chilbolton and radio amateurs across the British Isles and Europe anxiously awaited the satellite coming within range, when it did a strong signal was heard from the satellite. The FUNcube-2 beacon on 145.915 MHz was also activated and received well.
Practical Wireless magazine VHF columnist Tim Kirby @G4VXE was one of the radio amateurs listening, he tweeted “Pleased to receive CW from UKube-1 on the first pass over the UK”.
UKube-1 carries a set of AMSAT-UK FUNcube boards which provide an educational beacon for use by schools and a linear transponder for amateur radio communications. Presently, commissioning of the spacecraft is continuing, and there may be future occasions when the 145.915 MHz FUNcube telemetry transmitter will be activated during this period. The transponder is not expected to be available until later in the mission.
The first to submit UKube-1 telemetry data to the FUNcube Data Warehouse were:
The current UKube-1/FUNcube-2 Rankings can be seen at http://warehouse.funcube.org.uk/ranking.html?satelliteId=1
The UKube team has asked that all stations continue to monitor the downlinks and where possible to forward their reports as follows:
– CW beacon on 145.840 MHz to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
– FUNcube telemetry (when activated) on 145.915 MHz – your existing dashboard will not display properly (except for the Fitter Messages!) but it WILL be forwarding it to the Warehouse correctly and the data will be very useful for the team.
Dashboard App – Telemetry Decoder http://funcube.org.uk/working-documents/funcube-telemetry-dashboard/
Data Warehouse – Telemetry Archive http://warehouse.funcube.org.uk/
UKube-1 Nominal Frequencies:
• 145.840 MHz Telemetry downlink
• 145.915 MHz FUNcube subsystem beacon (145.916 MHz reported)
• 400 mW inverting SSB/CW linear transponder
– 435.080-435.060 MHz Uplink **
– 145.930-145.950 MHz Downlink
(** Note: Transponder Uplink may be 14-15 kHz higher than nominal frequency so tune around)
• 2401.0 MHz S Band Downlink
It is reported the transponder uplink is desensitized when the beacon is active.
Bob Beatty WB4SON suggests these UKube-1 Doppler.SQF entries for SatPC32 tracking software:
Satellite tracking https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/satellite-tracking/
Watch UKube-1 over Brazil June 19, 2016 at 14:33 UT by Fabricio Luciano PY5LF
Watch UKube-1 CubeSat payload animation
Watch the launch vehicle integration of UKube-1 and the other satellites
Watch the Soyuz roll out
Watch the launch
Dr Helen Walker gave a presentation UKube-1: technology, mission and operations at the 2015 AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium in Guildford. You can watch it at
Peter Goodhall @2E0SQL made this recording of UKube-1 CW and Data
UK Space Agency announcement https://www.gov.uk/government/news/successful-launch-for-uk-space-agencys-first-cubesat-mission
UKube-1 Launch Information https://amsat-uk.org/2014/07/03/ukube-1-launch-information/
UKube-1 (United Kingdom Universal Bus Experiment 1)