FUNcube-1 / AO73 Update

The Queen's Platinum Jubilee 2022Many will be aware that FUNcube-1 has been transmitting a special Fitter message to commemorate her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee earlier this month.

Everyone who receives this message and uploads it to the Data Warehouse using the Dashboard can generate a certificate to remember this historic event. The special message includes a link to a website that has the full instructions. It is intended to keep this message active until the end of June.

The spacecraft’s orbit continues to run near the sun’s terminator and this is resulting in less than optimal solar power generation. The battery bus voltage is now centering around 7.45 volts rather than the 8+ volts that we have seen for many years. We believe that this reduced voltage level may be due to a combination of factors, illumination levels, battery and/or solar panel degradation or, possibly, gradual changes in some component values within the EPS. It is also possible that the high spin/tumble rates that we experienced over the recent months may be involved. Our thanks to to Colin VK5HI and his team for continuing to keep track of this issue for us.

Operators may have noticed that the spacecraft is now in high power telemetry mode when in sunlight and in receive only mode during eclipse. Although the transponder is not currently active, with the rapid fading presently being experienced on the downlink, the high power telemetry setting will assist listeners to decode the data more easily.

We continue to be extremely grateful to all those stations who continue to contribute their data to the FUNcube data warehouse. The information you are providing is invaluable to the FUNcube to team and will greatly assist us in managing the spacecraft through its “middle age” after more than eight years in space!

AO-73/FUNcube-1 Fitter Message for The Queen’s 70th Jubilee Celebration

The Queen's Platinum Jubilee 2022In June 2022, Her Majesty The Queen becomes the first British Monarch to celebrate a Platinum Jubilee after 70 years of service.

AMSAT-UK has decided to send a special Platinum Jubilee greetings message via FUNcube-1 (AO-73). Anyone who receives this message and uploads it to the Data Warehouse using the Dashboard can generate a certificate to remember this historic event.

AO-73/FUNcube-1 is transmitting the Jubilee Fitter message on the BPSK Telemetry beacon which has a nominal frequency of 145.935 MHz +/ Doppler.

The AO-73/FUNcube-1 Dashboard App can be downloaded from
https://funcube.org.uk/working-documents/funcube-telemetry-dashboard/

Data Warehouse http://data.amsat-uk.org/missions

Online tracking of AO-73 https://www.n2yo.com/satellite/?s=39444

AMSAT-UK Colloquium 2022 – Call For Speakers

Kents Hill Park Conference Centre Milton Keynes MK7 6BZ

Kents Hill Park Conference Centre Milton Keynes MK7 6BZ

This is the first call for speakers for the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium 2022 to be held as part of the RSGB Convention on October 8-9 at the Kents Hill Park Conference Centre, Timbold Drive, Milton Keynes, MK7 6BZ.

https://amsat-uk.org/colloquium/

AMSAT-UK invite speakers, about amateur radio, space and associated activities, for this event.

Submissions should be sent via e-mail: to dave at g4dpz.me.uk

AMSAT-UK also invites anyone with requests for Program Topics to submit them as soon as possible.

Likewise if anyone knows of a good speaker on subjects of interest to the audience, please send us details.

AMSAT-UK Space Colloquium October 8-9

Kents Hill Park Conference Centre Milton Keynes MK7 6BZ

Kents Hill Park Conference Centre Milton Keynes MK7 6BZ

AMSAT-UK is very happy to announce the 2022 AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium will be held as part of the RSGB Convention on October 8-9 at the Kents Hill Park Conference Centre, Timbold Drive, Milton Keynes, MK7 6BZ.

The weekend event attracts an international audience that ranges from those involved in building and operating amateur radio satellites to beginners who wish to find out more about this fascinating branch of the hobby.

Booking for the RSGB Convention is at https://rsgb.org/main/about-us/rsgb-convention/

Booking for the AMSAT-UK dinner on the Saturday evening at the nearby Hilton Hotel is here

Details of the event can be found at https://amsat-uk.org/colloquium/

CAS-10 CubeSat has an Amateur Radio Transponder

CAMSAT’s CAS-10 is an 8U CubeSat that will carry an Amateur Radio VHF to UHF linear transponder for SSB communications.

A follow on mission from CAS-9 and also known as Hope-4 (XW-4) CAS-10 is an 8U CubeSat, approx 228 x455x 100mm, with a mass of 12kg. The satellite will carry:

1. A VHF uplink and UHF downlink linear transponder with a bandwidth of 30kHz. This transponder will work all day during the life cycle of the satellite, and amateur radio enthusiasts around the globe can use it for two-way radio relay communications.

2. A camera, and the pictures it takes are stored in the flash memory on the satellite, we have designed a simple remote control system based on DTMF, and amateur radio enthusiasts around the globe can send DTMF commands to download the camera photos.

3. A CW beacon to send satellite telemetry data, which is also a feature that is widely welcomed by amateur radio enthusiasts.

4. A AX.25 4.8k/9.6kbps GMSK telemetry downlink

Planning a launch in November 2022 from Hainan Launch Center using a CZ-7 launch vehicle into a 400km circular 42.9 degree inclination orbit.

Source IARU Satellite Frequency Coordination Status pages http://www.amsat.org.uk/iaru/

Ofcom Consultation: Space Spectrum Strategy

Ofcom are holding a public consultation on their proposed strategy for managing radio spectrum used by the space sector.

Ofcom say:

Supporting the growing use of cutting-edge satellite technology to offer innovative services for people and businesses, is at the heart of Ofcom’s new proposed space spectrum strategy.

The space sector is expanding rapidly, with the number of space launches increasing by almost 60% between 2017 and 2021.

Companies such as OneWeb and SpaceX are deploying large numbers of new satellites – known as non-geostationary orbit (NGSO) satellite systems. Meanwhile, universities and start-ups are using smaller satellites to test and trial a range of exciting new projects.

Our proposed space spectrum strategy sets out our priorities for how we will help the sector deliver even more services in the coming years, while making sure it uses spectrum efficiently.

Supporting the growth of satellite broadband

Thousands of NGSO satellites orbit the Earth constantly, tracked by satellite dishes as they move across the sky, to provide broadband to homes and businesses in remote locations.

But these innovative news services need radio spectrum to work – and that’s where Ofcom comes in.

Our job is to make sure this spectrum is used efficiently and manage risks of interference between different spectrum users. So our space spectrum strategy sets out where we think we can make the biggest difference over the next two to four years, building on the licensing changes we introduced last year.

This includes considering options for future access to UK spectrum that could boost the capacity of satellite services, such as additional access to the 14.25 – 14.50 GHz band, as well as pursuing improvements to international NGSO rules.
Protecting vital Earth observation services

Earth observation satellites are playing an increasingly important role in collecting data on climate change. For example, they use radio waves to monitor changes in the natural world, such as the changing thickness of ice in polar regions. These systems also help other industries, such as agriculture, the emergency services and weather forecasting.

Part of our job is to help ensure Earth observation systems are protected from interference from other spectrum users.
Safe access to space

The rapidly rising numbers of space objects and proposals for mega-constellations has led to concerns across the space community about the potential for space debris.

Our role is to make sure there is appropriate spectrum available for systems that support the safe use of space, such as radar systems that track the many objects in space.

Helen Hearn, Ofcom Interim Spectrum Group Director, said: “While spectrum might be alien to some, we all rely on these invisible radio waves every day. And they’re vital to the rapidly growing space industry.

“So as the next generation of satellites beam down vital information to us, we’re playing our part to help the sector continue its journey and make sure these enterprising pioneers have the launchpad they need.”

The consultation closes on 24 May 2022 and we aim to publish our final strategy later this year.

Consultation document
https://ofcom.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0024/233853/consultation-space-spectrum-refresh.pdf

Further details anf response form at
https://www.ofcom.org.uk/consultations-and-statements/category-2/space-spectrum-strategy