RSGB awards Louis Varney Cup to Dave Crump G8GKQ

Dave Crump G8GKQ

Dave Crump G8GKQ

At the RSGB AGM held on Saturday, April 24, 2021 the Society awarded the Louis Varney Cup for advances in space communications to Dave Crump G8GKQ.

Dave accepts this award as Chair of the British Amateur Television Club. His leadership of the BATC community, both in the UK and overseas, has been instrumental in enabling the QO100 satellite wideband transponder to be fully utilized with many new DATV systems being developed since the launch of the spacecraft.

This award acknowledges the exciting and significant contributions made by many members of the BATC, both in terms of software and hardware.

RSGB 2021 Awards and Trophies

Info on the QO-100 Geostationary satellite transponders

Space meeting to be streamed via ham radio geostationary transponder

Es'hail-2 Qatar-OSCAR-100The 2nd Amateur Radio Space Meeting, taking place in Nanterre, Paris, March 9-10, will be streamed live via the Digital Amateur TV transponder on Es’hail-2 / QO-100 geostationary satellite.

A Google translation of the AMSAT-Francophone post says:

AMSAT-Francophone and Electrolab have deployed a ground station to operate the QO100 transponder in DATV.

The “broadcast DATV” team led by Yannick Avelino and with the support of Evariste F5OEO has developed the station that will broadcast live the conferences of the second amateur radio space meeting March 9-10, 2019. The team was in contact with AMSAT-DL and AMSAT-UK for permission to operate the satellite during these days.


Meeting information and Schedule of talks

Digital ATV co-ordination on Es’hail-2

Narrowband DATV image (150 kHz bandwidth) via QO-100 Noel G8GTZ Feb 14, 2019 at 0950 GMT

Narrowband DATV (150 kHz bandwidth) via QO-100 sent by Noel G8GTZ Feb 14, 2019 at 0950 GMT

AMSAT-DL has agreed to a proposal by the British Amateur Television Club (BATC) for the use of the bottom 100 kHz of the wideband transponder (10491 – 10491.1 MHz) for ATV co-ordination purposes.

The announcement on the BATC Forum says:

This is on an experimental only basis and stations must keep their power levels to a minimum and certainly not exceed power levels greater than 15dB above the noise floor as shown on the Goonhilly spectrum monitor.

This is sanctioned on an experimental only basis and AMSAT-DL reserve the right to move the WB beacon towards the band edge or implement DVB-S with a wider rolloff which would render the frequencies unsuitable for this purpose.

So another challenge but should be manageable and prove a useful facility although we do see the chat being the major tool for reports and contacts.

73 Noel G8GTZ

BATC Forum Announcement

Es’hail-2 WebSDR

Es’hail-2 Wideband amateur radio transponder operating guidelines

Es’hail-2 amateur radio information

See the Satellite Forum for additional information

ISS HamTV now transmitting on 2395 MHz

Samantha Cristoforetti IZ0UDF with ISS HamTV Transmitter

Astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti IZ0UDF with ISS Ham Video Transmitter

Friday, May 1, 2015 the Ham Video transmitter on board the Columbus module of the International Space Station was powered on and started transmitting in “Blank Transmission” (BT) mode.

HamTV Antennas at ARISS Telebridge Station IK1SLD in Casale Monferrato, Italy

HamTV Antennas at ARISS Telebridge Station IK1SLD in Casale Monferrato, Italy

In this mode, the transmitter is operated without camera. The digital TV signal is fully formatted, but the content of the video is black and the content of the audio is at zero level. From a technical perspective, the BT signal is all that is needed for testing and fine tuning ground stations.

The European network of chained ground stations is presently nearly complete. Six ground stations span the continent in “X”  formation. For each ascending pass over Europe, four stations provide about ten minutes of solid copy and the same is true for descending passes:

– Ascending passes: Lisbon (Portugal ==> Poitiers (France) ==> Casale Monferrato (North Italy ==> Kolo (Poland)
– Descending passes : Cork (Ireland) ==> Poitiers (France) ==> Casale Monferrato (North Italy ==> Matera (South Italy.

The chained ground stations are streaming the digital video to the BATC server (British Amateur Television Club). BATC set up a multiviewer page, accessible at:

The page shows all six streams from the chained  ground stations. Each view can be maximized to full screen and the audio of each stream can be set to level or muted.

International Space Station - Image Credit NASA

International Space Station – Image Credit NASA

Presently, active stations stream technical data provided by the software developed by Jean Pierre Courjaud F6DZP. Several data are most interesting to observe:
–    the “constellations”, which visualize the QPSK (quaternary PSK) modulated signal
–    the  digital Signal/Noise ratio = MER (dB) (Modulation Error Ratio)
–    the control LEDs that change from red to green on decoding the digital signal.

The Ham Video transmitter frequency is 2395 MHz and the symbol rate is 2.0 Ms/sec.
More information is available at:

The Ham Video transmitter will stay on as long as on board operations permit. When the ground stations will be operating reliably, the Ham Video transmitter will be used to enhance ARISS school contacts. Uplink will remain VHF audio only. This operational mode is dubbed ARISS Ham TV.

Gaston Bertels – ON4WF
ARISS-Europe chairman

ARISS FSTV gallery

HamTV Transmitter in the ISS Columbus Module

HamTV Transmitter in the ISS Columbus Module

Amateur Radio TV and CW Beacons for ISS

The minutes of the ARISS International Monthly Teleconference for June 19 carry this report on the status of the amateur radio equipment for the ISS Columbus module.

Kenneth [N5VHO] reported that an onboard power issue somewhat impacted ARISS radio operations. The air purifier for the ATV [Automated Transfer Vehicle] has needed to be plugged in, recently, in the Service Module (SM). The ARISS radio in the SM was turned off while the purifier was being used. The radio is turned on by the crew for school contacts and when the crew gets on the air for random contacts, as Astronaut Kuipers has done in the past few weeks. The ATV will be docked at the ISS until late September.

Gaston [ON4WF] said the HamTV project is progressing. There have been discussions with ESA about the possibility of adding extra units to the HamTV transmitter that is being developed by Kaiser Italia. This is acceptable in as far as the KI unit under construction does not need to be modified.

A so called “Video Beacon” will be added externally to the HamTV unit. This beacon will allow automated DATV transmissions more or less permanently. The content of these DATV transmissions will be uploaded from the ground through existing channels and transferred to the Video Beacon on request. This function will also be used for educational purposes. Moreover, astronauts could record footage and load it into the Video Beacon for automated transmission.

Another additional unit will be a CW beacon transmitter delivering a small band low power signal (100 mW) on a frequency nearby the HamTV frequency. This beacon will transmit permanently and use the second ARISS L/S-band antenna. This offers ground stations signal reception with large S/N margins, facilitating antenna tracking and signal acquisition, especially at the beginning of a pass. The CW Beacon will transmit telegraphy signals, alternating its identification (call sign), a continuous carrier and possibly some telemetry comprizing onboard parameters (temperature, pressure, humidity, ambient sound level, etc.).

Lou W5DID suggested that we may be able to power it from the packet module already on the ISS, making it simple to operate.

ESA is being asked to address the cost of the Safety Package and testing such as EMI tests and outgassing tests for these additional units, but development and manufacturing will be supported by ARISS. A cost estimate is being developed for our team to build the units. A funding campaign will be set up to collect donations to cover the cost.

Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS)

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