AMSAT-EA Hades PocketQube
Spain’s national amateur radio society URE says SpaceX expect to launch the EASAT-2 and Hades satellites in December 2020.
AMSAT-EA, the URE satellite group, is building the satellites together with the European University of Madrid. The launch has been managed through the space broker Alba Orbital based in Glasgow.
EASAT-2 and Hades will be launched into a sun-synchronous orbit between 500 km and 600 km and their main function is to act as analog and digital repeaters for radio amateurs. There is also a camera for SSTV transmissions provided by the Czech Republic that has already flown on the United States Marine Academy PSAT-2 satellite, and has now been adapted to fit into the PocketQube satellites.
Both satellites are based on the PocketQube 1.5P (7.5 x 5 x 5 cm) architecture and represent an evolution of the previous GENESIS platform, whose GENESIS-L and GENESIS-N satellites are expected to fly before the end of the year with Firefly, in a joint collaboration with Fossa Systems and LibreSpace, which also launch their own satellites, all of them within the Picobus dispenser, developed by the latter.
IARU has coordinated these frequencies:
• Hades – uplink 145.925 MHz, downlink 436.888 MHz
• EASAT-2 – uplink 145.875 MHz, downlink 436.666 MHz
IARU Satellite Frequency Coordination pages http://www.amsat.org.uk/iaru/
Source URE https://tinyurl.com/SpainURE
The 69th meeting of CEPT ECC Working Group SE-40, held June 23-25, discussed the amateur radio 1240-1300 MHz band, the meeting documents are now available.
Several contributions were received for the ECC Report dealing with the coexistence between the radionavigation-satellite service and the amateur service in the frequency band 1240 – 1300 MHz. The contributions were incorporated in the draft ECC Report. The CPG arrangements for the preparation of WRC-23 for AI 9.1 topic b) was noted.
The Russian Federation noted:
1240-1260 MHz is by the GLONASS system
1260-1300 MHz are used by EU’s Galileo, Beijing’s Beidou, Japan’s QZSS and is planned to be used by Korea’s KPS.
Among the documents available in Input, Info and Minutes are:
• SE40(20)052 Amateur Repeaters – IARU-R1
• SE40(20)051 Section 2 update WI_39 – IARU-R1
• SE40(20)050 Annex Draft report RNSS Amateur – Russian Federation
• SE40(20)049 Suggestions for RNSS and Amateur Service Compatibility – Russian Federation
• Info 1 Amateur repeaters 23 cm – IARU-R1
• Info 3 Letter to SE40 chairman on updated of ITU-R M.1092 – European Commission
• SE40(20)56A3 (1) Draft Report Amateur vs RNSS
Download the meeting documents from
The European Space Agency (ESA) website has published a proposal by radio amateurs from AMSAT-DL for LunART (Lunar Amateur Radio Transponder): a Communications Platform on the Large European Lander to support communication and payload experiments.
Peter Gülzow DB2OS and Matthias Bopp DD1US say a LunART Communications Platform on the Large European Lander will support direct communication with earth through amateur radio frequencies in the microwave bands, support University and Student Payloads with direct access to their experiments, allow Radio Science for a huge community of radio amateur operators and scientists worldwide. It would also provide an important back-up communication capability and capacity during emergency or when ESA network is busy, for example during non-critical times.
Read the proposal at https://ideas.esa.int/servlet/hype/IMT?userAction=Browse&templateName=&documentId=81f70b2b01f6993c1b76fb6b572ee6c5
Longjiang-2 / LO-94 in Lunar Orbit
Nature carries an article about the spacecraft Longjiang-2 / Lunar-OSCAR 94 (LO-94), built by students at the Harbin Institute of Technology, that carried the first Amateur Radio communication system to operate in lunar orbit.
As a part of China’s Chang’e-4 lunar far side mission, two lunar microsatellites for low frequency radio astronomy, amateur radio and education, Longjiang-1 and Longjiang-2, were launched as secondary payloads on 20 May 2018 together with the Queqiao L2 relay satellite.
On 25 May, 2018, Longjiang-2 successfully inserted itself into a lunar elliptical orbit of 357 km × 13,704 km, and became the smallest spacecraft which entered lunar orbit with its own propulsion system. The satellite carried the first amateur radio communication system operating in lunar orbit, which is a VHF/UHF software defined radio (SDR) designed for operation with small ground stations.
This article describes and evaluates the design of the VHF/UHF radio and the waveforms used. Flight results of the VHF/UHF radio are also presented, including operation of the radio, performance analysis of downlink signals and the first lunar orbit UHF very-long-baseline interferometry (VLBI) experiment.
Read the article at https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-020-17272-8
Cartoon movie – Longjiang-2 / LO-94: Journey to the Moon
The space agency ESA has released a video ‘How to get pictures from the International Space Station via Amateur Radio’ along with a collection of Tutorial videos explaining how to receive ISS Slow Scan TV (SSTV) pictures for different computers and mobile devices.
Did you know that astronauts on the International Space Station send pictures from space to ground over amateur radio that you yourself can get at home using your computer? ESA show you how to get them, step by step.
The video features radio amateur David Honess 2E0XDO (ex-M6DNT).
Watch How to get pictures from the International Space Station via amateur radio
See these Tutorials on how to receive SSTV pictures from the ISS for specific operating systems such as Windows 10, Apple iOS & Mac OSX, Android, Raspberry Pi, etc
YouTube Tutorials Playlist https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HtC-BPcMruA&list=PLbyvawxScNbt5Mjfty4Ik-Tt6du-6N5jD
Read the Raspberry Pi article Pictures from space via ham radio
ISS SSTV info and links https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/iss-sstv/
What is Amateur Radio? http://www.essexham.co.uk/what-is-amateur-radio
Free UK amateur radio online training course https://www.essexham.co.uk/train/foundation-online/
Weather Satellite Reception
Sasha M6IOR and Sophie M6NYX have made available a Guide for the reception of NOAA satellite images using software defined radio on Windows or MacOS.
The guide suggests a few ways to receive an Automatic Picture Transmission (APT) from active National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) satellites in the 137 MHz band.
Read the guide at https://publiclab.org/notes/sashae/06-26-2020/diy-satellite-ground-station