As announced August 21, 2013 the Ham Video transmitter is onboard the International Space Station and stored in the Columbus module.
September 10, 2013 we informed about the Experiment Sequences Test (EST) and the Simulations performed by the European Space Agency in collaboration with ARISS.
September 20, 2013 we announced the Ham Video Launch Campaign and described a simple station for Ham Video reception.
The Commissioning of the Ham Video transmitter needs to cover different configurations involving 2 antennas, 4 frequencies and 2 symbol rates. As announced earlier, the signals transmitted during the Commissioning steps will be received by the Matera ground station, located in south Italy (see HamTV Bulletin #2).
Moreover, during the Commissioning period, the Ham Video transmitter will transmit permanently for several days (weeks). This will allow ground stations to test their equipment and to provide useful information concerning the efficiency of the transmitter.
For these transmissions, no camera will be used. The so-called “blank” transmissions will nevertheless provide a complete DVB-S signal, as described hereafter.
We hoped that the Commissioning of the Ham Video transmitter would be planned October 2013. It appeared that the “Flight Rules” regarding ARISS activities, which cover VHF and UHF transmissions, needed to be updated for S-band.
Writing Flight Rules and having them verified, accepted and signed by all parties involved is a process that takes time. ARISS matters have low priority among the countless activities that populate the International Space Station. Unforeseen events, such as the recent failing of a cooling system, evidently cause further delay.
Finally, the January – February 2014 time frame seems a reasonable guess for the Ham Video Commissioning.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year !
Gaston Bertels, ON4WF
December 22, 2013
HamTV Bulletins are available at www.ariss-eu.org
See left side column : HamTV Bulletin 4 (with annexes)