Introduction to satellite tracking and listening

Orbitron Screenshot

This video covers the basics of satellite tracking using the free Orbitron software.

Watch Introduction to satellite tracking and listening part 1 of 2

Watch Introduction to satellite tracking and listening part 2 of 2

Watch Satellite tracking example using HO-68 and Orbitron

Orbitron satellite tracking software

SimpleSat Look Down satellite tracking software now available

SimpleSat Look Down is a free easy to use software app for satellite tracking.

Written by Tom Doyle W9KE it includes a satellite look down window that displays the view from the satellite looking down at the earth as it moves along.

It uses .NET 4 and runs on Windows 8, Windows 7, Vista and XP.

Tom has released this collection of videos that explain how SimpleSat Look Down works:

Watch SimpleSat Look Down – best viewed full screen HD

Watch SimpleSat Look Down – Setup  – Best Viewed Full Screen HD

Watch SimpleSat Look Down – General Operation – Best Viewed Full Screen HD

Watch SimpleSat Look Down – Rotor Setup – best viewed full screen in HD

You can download SimpleSat Look Down from

Working the FM-Sat SO-50

Saudisat SO-50

Saudisat SO-50

Simon 2E0HTS has released a video that shows him making contacts via the amateur radio satellite SO-50.

This satellite carries an FM transponder that receives signals on 145.850 MHz and retransmits them on 436.795 MHz (+/- 10 kHz Doppler shift). Operation is a little more complex that some other satellites since the transponder needs to initially be activated by a CTCSS (PL) tone of 74.4 Hz which starts a 10 minute timer and then a 67 Hz tone is used for the contact.

The order of operation is: (allow for Doppler as necessary):
1) Transmit on 145.850 MHz with a tone of 74.4 Hz to arm the 10 minute timer on board the spacecraft.
2) Now transmit on 145.850 MHz (FM Voice) using 67.0 Hz within the 10 minute window.
3) Sending the 74.4 Hz tone again within the 10 minute window will reset the 10 minute timer.

You can set the memory channels in your handheld as follows:
Ch     TX              RX            CTCSS
1     145.850     Timer Reset 74.4 Hz
2     145.850     436.805       67 Hz
3     145.850     436.800       67 Hz
4     145.850     436.795       67 Hz
5     145.850     436.790       67 Hz
6     145.850     436.785       67 Hz
At the start of the pass tune to 436.805 and then decrease the frequency during the 10+ minute pass.

Watch Simon 2E0HTS working CT2GOY, F0FVK, SP5XSD & EA6SW/portable 6, via SAUDISAT 1C SO-50

Simon 2E0HTS Ham Radio Operator Blog

You can read Howard G6LVB’s SO-50 article at


N2YO Real Time Satellite Tracking

Satscape Satellite Tracking Software

John Heath G7HIA’s article  ‘Getting started on amateur radio satellites’ can be downloaded from