ARISS Closer to Launching New Radio System

International Space Station – Image Credit NASA

The ARISS team took a giant step closer to flying the new ARISS Interoperable Radio System to the International Space Station, having met a major milestone.

Lou McFadin, W5DID, and Kerry Banke, N6IZW, travelled to the NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) in Houston, Texas, in mid-February for preliminary testing of Banke’s breadboard version of the ARISS Multi-voltage Power Supply. The two worked alongside JSC engineers and JSC EMC lab personnel, putting the specially built power supply through its paces, checking against US and Russian space specifications for Power Quality and Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) preliminary tests.

The result:  Outstanding news-the ARISS Team can move on to the next step, fabrication of prototype and flight units.  The JSC engineers disclosed that the ARISS breadboard power supply was the first hardware to have passed all of the space agencies’ tests!  They said the very professional ARISS Team certainly knew hardware development and design.

Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) logoARISS-International Chair Frank Bauer thanked Banke and McFadin for the multiple days spent putting the unit through the serious battery of NASA and Russian preliminary electrical tests.  Banke expressed pleasure with the results: “I was looking to come away with what we needed to move forward. We achieved that.”  He was impressed with the support he and McFadin received from the testing group, and said key players on those teams who are also ham radio operators, commented that they find equipment brought in that is supported by ham radio operators, to earn particularly good marks.  McFadin asserted that the Multi-voltage Power Supply’s fine test results are due to ARISS’s team working very well together and being very experienced.

The completed testing of the breadboard unit means McFadin can now purchase expensive space-certified parts so the final prototype/flight power supplies can be fabricated.  He and Banke now know that when the final, even more rigorous tests are done, the units will pass with flying colors.

Watch for more news stories on the hardware and the fundraising campaign to help support the costs associated with designing, building, and testing the new ARISS radio system-the Kenwood D710GA and Multi-voltage Power Supply. Those wishing to contribute toward the final fabrication and flight tests are highly appreciated and asked to go to the AMSAT website, to click on the “ARISS Donate” button.  Or visit the donation page on the ARISS website,

Contributions are tax deductible. Those who contribute $100 or more will receive the handsome ARISS Challenge Coin.  If you or your ham club or place of employment wish to make a highly substantial contribution, contact Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, at

Source ARISS News Release 17-04

Frank Bauer, KA3HDO was on the Ham Talk Live podcast discussing ARISS and
the gear aboard the ISS. The link to the podcast is:

CAS-4A and CAS-4B Launch Expected – Frequencies Coordinated

XW-2A satellite launched September 19, 2015

XW-2A satellite was launched September 19, 2015

CAMSAT has worked closely with a Beijing Government aerospace contractor to build two satellites with amateur radio linear transponder payloads. IARU record a launch had been planned for March 31, 2017 from Taiyuan into a 524 km orbit with an inclination of 42 degrees.

Both will carry a 435/145 (U/V) 20 dBm (100 milliwatt) SSB/CW linear transponder, a 2m CW 17 dBm (50 mW) telemetry beacon and an AX.25 4.8 kbps GMSK 20 dBm (100 mW) telemetry downlink.

The two micro-satellites will also carry optical remote sensing missions. Planned to be 494x499x630 mm dimension regular square shape and approximately 50 kg mass with three-axis stabilization system.

These frequencies have been coordinated by the IARU Satellite Frequency Coordination Panel:

• Linear transponder downlink 145.870 MHz, emission designator 20K0V8WWF, output power 20 dBm
• Linear transponder uplink 435.220 MHz
• CW telemetry beacon 145.855 MHz, emission designator 100HA1AAN, output power 17 dBm
• GMSK telemetry 145.835 MHz, emission designator 16K0F1DCN, output power 20 dBm

• Linear transponder downlink 145.925 MHz, emission designator 20K0V8WWF, output power 20 dBm
• Linear transponder uplink 435.280 MHz
• CW telemetry beacon 145.910 MHz, emission designator 100HA1AAN, output power 17 dBm
• GMSK telemetry 145.890 MHz, emission designator 16K0F1DCN, output power 20 dBm

IARU Satellite Frequency Coordination pages

Nayif-1 Status Report and New Dashboard

UAE Nayif-1 CubeSatThe Nayif-1 (EO-88) CubeSat has now been in orbit for more than two weeks and all systems continue to operate nominally.

The power budget is positive, the spin/tumble rate is acceptably low, on board temperatures are perfectly okay and, importantly, the educational/amateur transponder switching is taking place autonomously as  planned.

More than 250 stations around the world have provided telemetry to the Nayif Data Warehouse and the FUNcube Team are extremely grateful to them for their invaluable support.

The experts have now formally allocated Catalog Number 42017 to Nayif-1 (EO88) and the TLEs can now be downloaded from Celestrak – TLEs

New Dashboards

The FUNcube Team have now updated the Dashboards for both Nayif-1 and FUNcube-1 so that they display only the telemetry received from the individual spacecraft that they are designed for. This will help users to display only the correct information and graphs and reduce confusion. Whilst they only display the data from ONE spacecraft, they will, as now, receive and decode the data from all FUNcube payloads currently in orbit and automatically submit it to the relevant Data Warehouse.

The new Dashboard for FUNcube-1 (ver 1044) can be downloaded from here: FUNcube Dashboard Installer 1044

The new Dashboard for Nayif-1 (ver 1040) can be downloaded from here: Nayif-1 Dashboard Installer 1040

Additionally some command line parameters have been added to enable the programmes to auto-start with the desired parameters.  These are:


Some notes on how to implement these parameters can be found here: funcube-dashboard-autostart

Nayif-1 Data Warehouse

Ham radio satellite transmits Vice President’s message

Nayif-1 Launched

OSCAR Number for Nayif-1

Nayif-1 CubeSat - Credit Wouter Weggelaar PA3WEG

Nayif-1 CubeSat – Credit Wouter Weggelaar PA3WEG

OSCAR Number Administrator Bill Tynan W3XO has announced that the Nayif-1 CubeSat has met all the requirements necessary to be issued with an OSCAR number.

In accordance with the request sent to the AMSAT-NA Board of Directors for an OSCAR number for the UAE CubeSat, Nayif-1, and the statement that all of the conditions for an OSCAR number have been met, I hereby by the authority vested in me by the AMSAT-NA president, do convey on Nayif-1 the designation Emirates Oscar 88 or EO-88.

Along with the rest of the Amateur Radio satellite community, I hope that EO-88 will meet all of its objectives.

I wish you and your group the best of luck in this and future endeavors to keep Amateur Radio in space.

OSCAR Numbers Policy

Ham radio satellite transmits Vice President’s message

Nayif-1 Launched

Bristol 434 MHz balloon launch

UBSEDS18 Solar Powered BalloonWeather permitting there will be a 434 MHz pico balloon launched from Bristol on Tuesday, February 28 at 0830 GMT.

Richard Meadows M0SBU from University of Bristol Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (UBSEDS) writes:

This launch is using a 1.5m envelope and the attempted float altitude will be about 12 km.

The payload is a new tracker design that uses an AX5043 radio. It will be transmitting pips, RSID and Contestia 16/1000 on 434.635 MHz USB, once every two minutes. Callsign “UBSEDS23”.

Between the Contestia transmissions the AX5043 radio will also be used to transmit GMSK at 24 ksymbol/s, centered on 434.637.5 MHz. It’s 4×4 interleaved, R=1/2 convolutional K=5, HDLC framing, whitened etc. as per the AX5043 manual.

This is concatenated with RS(255,223) to mop up some burst errors. IQ recordings of this might be useful so that the data can be extracted once a software decoder exists. Callsign “UBSEDS23G”.

Track the balloon online at


Useful High Altitude Balloon links

Richard M0SBU who is involved in the UBSEDS project took the amateur radio training courses run by the Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society (CARS) at Danbury in Essex. Further information on the courses is available from the CARS Training Coordinator, Christopher G0IPU
Tel: 07908-107951
Email: training2017 at

What is Amateur Radio?

Find an amateur radio training course near you

Ham radio satellite transmits Vice President’s message

UAE Nayif-1 CubeSatThe National newspaper reports a message by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, is being beamed across the world from space as the first to be transmitted by the UAE’s Nayif-1 satellite.

The National says:

Nayif-1 was launched February 15 from Satish Dhawan Space Centre in India and is being tracked by a team of scientists at a control centre at American University of Sharjah.

The country’s first nanosatellite is transmitting the message in Arabic which reads: ‘The renaissance of peoples, nations and civilizations starts with education; and the future of nations starts at their schools.’

Nayif-1 was developed by UAE students - Image credit The Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre

Nayif-1 was developed by UAE students – Image credit The Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre

Nayif-1’s main mission objective is to send and receive messages on amateur radio frequencies.

The nanosatellite boasts a number of advanced features, most notably it is programmed to transfer messages in Arabic.

Fatma Lootah, deputy project manager of Nayif-1 at the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre, said the transmission was a landmark moment for the team.

“There is a large community of amateur radio operators and if Arab operators get this message in their own language I think a lot of them will be inspired,” said Ms Lootah.

At AUS, seven engineering students collaborated with the space centre in the designing, building, testing and operating of Nayif-1.

Read the full story at

The telemetry data mentioned in the article can be found at

Nayif-1 Launched


Nayif-1 team members after completion of the assembly and integration of the CubeSat

Nayif-1 team members after completion of the assembly and integration of the CubeSat