IARU issue Amateur-Satellite Service spectrum requirements

IARU_LogoThe IARU has released a revised edition of Spectrum Requirements for the Amateur and Amateur-Satellite Services.

The document mentions the need for the expansion of the 20m band from 14000-14350 kHz to 14000-14400 kHz which was the spectrum originally allocated to amateurs at the 1927 Washington Conference. No expansion to the 14 MHz Amateur-Satellite allocation is planned.

The IARU seeks expansion to 250 kHz of the Amateur-Satellite Service allocations at both 18 and 24 MHz.

A harmonized allocation for the Amateur-Satellite Service is sought at 50-54 MHz, to bridge the gap between 28 MHz and 144 MHz but it should be noted the IARU plans for a harmonized 50 MHz band at WRC-18 are for the Amateur Service only not Amateur Satellites.

The document notes that because of the crowding of the existing band 435-438 MHz with uncrewed amateur satellites and crewed space stations, it is desirable to study expansion of the band. This is exactly what the IARU were saying over 8 years ago, as yet they do not appear to have actually studied band expansion. See the 2008 IARU Spectrum Requirements document.

Regarding the existing 1260-1270 MHz Amateur-Satellite Service allocation the IARU say they seek the deletion of the “Earth-to-space only” restriction. They note that WRC-2000 allocated the band 1240-1300 MHz to the radiodetermination-satellite service for space-to-space use. In addition, WRC-2000 allocated the band 1260-1300 MHz to the radiodetermination-satellite service for space-to-Earth use such as for the European Galileo positioning system. These actions do not change the Amateur and Amateur-Satellite Service allocations but present new sharing situations and potential operating restrictions.

Due to the high level of interference from license exempt devices substitute spectrum for the Amateur-Satellite Service 2400-2450 MHz allocation is sought.

It seems the IARU no longer any intends to seek a global Amateur-Satellite Service allocation at 3400-3410 MHz.

There are no plans to improve the status of Amateur-Satellite allocations at 5 or 10 GHz.

Download the Spectrum Requirements document from

Download the Summary Record of the IARU Administrative Council meeting held in Viña del Mar, Chile, October 7-8, 2016 http://www.iaru.org/administrative-council-meetings.html

ESEO Project Update October 2016

Dr Chris Bridges 2E0OBC and Pete Bartram from Surrey Space Centre with the AMSAT-UK payload and some of the ESEO electronics

Chris Bridges 2E0OBC and Pete Bartram from Surrey Space Centre with the AMSAT-UK FUNcube-4 payload and some of the ESEO electronics

A team of three from AMSAT-UK and Surrey Space Centre visited Forli in Italy in mid-October where the Engineering Model of the ESEO satellite is being assembled.

ESEO, The European Student Earth Orbiter, is a 50 kg satellite from ESA Education incorporating payloads from AMSAT-UK and Universities around Europe.

The AMSAT-UK FUNcube-4 payload will provide a 1260/145 MHz FM transponder and 145 MHz 1200 bps BPSK telemetry beacon to provide a telemetry downlink that can be easily received by schools and colleges for educational outreach purposes. The data will be displayed in an attractive format and provide stimulation and encouragement for students to become interested in all STEM subjects in a unique way.

The target audience is primarily students in Secondary and Higher education, the project includes the development of a simple and cheap “ground station” operating on VHF frequencies in the Amateur Satellite Service. The ground station would comprise an omni-directional antenna feeding a FUNcube DonglePRO+ SDR receiver which will receive the signals direct from the satellite and transfer the data to specially developed graphical software running on any Windows laptop.

David Bowman G0MRF holds the ESEO bottom plate during the fit check of the L band patch antenna

David Bowman G0MRF holds the ESEO bottom plate during the fit check of the L band patch antenna

During the visit to Forli, the team began work integrating the AMSAT-UK payload into a FlatSat version of ESEO at the facilities of Sitael, who are the prime contractor for the mission. One of the main objectives was to check communication between the payload’s CAN bus, the ESEO On-Board Data handling system (OBDH) and the science payloads. Until now the communication between units, using the CAN-Open protocol had only been simulated as each part of the satellite had been assembled in a different part of Europe. After a tense few hours and a few inevitable refinements to the firmware, data started flowing as planned and another milestone had been achieved.

When on orbit, the ESEO AMSAT-UK payload will transmit telemetry on 145.930 MHz at 1200 bps for educational outreach in a similar way to the FUNcube-1 satellite (AO-73). Additionally, In the event of a failure of the main 2.2 GHz S-Band transmitter, the payload will act as a redundant communications system for transmitting science data. To achieve this the payload can increase its transmission rate to 4800bps.

The team also carried out a fit check for the circular polarised L band patch antenna and checked out the L band to VHF FM transponder.

The flight model of ESEO is due to be delivered at the end of  the 2nd quarter of 2017. An Invitation to Tender for the launch has been issued by ESA.

Watch An RF look at ESEO by David Bowman G0MRF

2016 International Space Colloquium Presentations Playlist

ESEO https://amsat-uk.org/satellites/communications/eseo/

A Geosynchronous Ham Radio Satellite

AMSAT members with the 5 GHz and 10 GHz Phase 4B geosynchronous satellite

AMSAT members with the 5 GHz and 10 GHz Phase 4B geosynchronous satellite

Gary Pearce KN4AQ has released a video of the Digital Communications Conference presentation by Bob McGwier N4HY about the AMSAT payload for a geosynchronous satellite.

Possible coverage of Geosynchronous satellite 74 degrees West - Credit Bill Reed NX5R

Possible coverage of Geosynchronous satellite 74 degrees West – Credit Bill Reed NX5R

AMSAT-NA is developing a “hosted payload” for a spacecraft that Millennium Space Systems (MSS) of El Segundo, California, is under contract to design, launch, and operate for the US government. The satellite’s potential footprint could extend over the US from the Mid-Pacific to Africa.

The amateur radio payload will comprise a Software Defined Transponder capable of supporting many different modes, including analog SSB.

Gary Pearce KN4AQ writes: We’ve been hearing about a Geosynchronous satellite for the Western Hemisphere for a while now, but not many details. In this episode from the DCC, project leader Bob McGwier N4HY fills in a lot of blanks. There’s no launch date yet, and maybe not quite enough info to start building your ground station (a ‘Five & Dime’ setup – 5 GHz up, 10 GHz down), but you can start thinking about it.

HRN 272: A GeoSync Ham Radio Satellite for the Americas – from the DCC on Ham Radio Now

What does a geosynchronous orbit look like?

Previous editions of HamRadioNow http://www.youtube.com/user/HamRadioNow/videos

Amateur Satellite 5.7 GHz LNA



The AMSAT-NA site carries a picture showing the mechanical prototype of the 5.7 GHz Low Noise Amplifier which will be used in the Phase 5 Lunar and Phase 4B Geosynchronous amateur radio satellite projects.

Unfortunately US Federal Government ITAR legislation prevents them disclosing any technical information about it.

The International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) inexplicably applies to amateur radio satellites. It threatens US radio amateurs with jail terms or six figure fines if they cooperate with amateurs outside the USA on satellite projects. Cooperation includes talking about or publishing on the web certain information regarding amateur radio satellite systems.

The AMSAT-NA 5.7 GHz LNA page can be seen at http://www.amsat.org/?p=5519

5 GHz / 10 GHz amateur radio transponders are planned for the Heimdallr spacecraft expected to launch in September 2018 into a Lunar orbit. Further information is at

ITAR – Section 1248 Report Released

AMSAT Wants Amateur Radio Satellites Off US Munitions List

University students shown amateur radio

VHF demonstration by Rajesh Vagadia VU2EXP

VHF demonstration by Rajesh Vagadia VU2EXP

AMSAT-India Regional Coordinator Rajesh Vagadia VU2EXP reports on the ‘Ham Radio – Practical Insight’ session given to 150 students at Parul University.

Wonderful hands on session on ‘Ham Radio – Practical Insight’ was conducted at prestigious Parul University – Baroda (Gujarat, India) on September 8, 2016. Around 150 Engineering (EC) student & faculties participated in the program & gain knowledge on the subject.

Faculty member making a 145 MHz FM contact

Faculty member making a 145 MHz FM contact

In-depth Presentation on Ham Radio, Interesting Ham Radio Events, Video Documentary & SSTV Live demo was carried out by Rajesh Vagadia VU2EXP. Students were excited to see line by line SSTV transmission on the projected screen. To learn with fun, students were allowed to make collective noise during transmission to observe their effect in the SSTV reception!!!

Number of technical & general queries satisfied in Q&A session. Sunny VU2PMU Shared his Ham Experience & Sardool VU2OPX Selected few student with small Quiz.

VHF Demo (Modulation test) was nicely carried out by GIAR team member Ankit VU3NMQ, Sardool VU2OPX, Sunny VU2PMU & myself. Student & faculties learnt the potential of Ham Radio hobby & enjoyed the event at the fullest.

I thank my fellow hams for their kind support and also thankful to Prof. Jay Patel & Prof. Niraj Tever from Parul University to nicely coordinate the event.

Wish this Ham event act as small SPARK (ignition) & in future some of the student may fly high in World of Amateur Radio!

Thanks & 73’s

Rajesh P. Vagadia – (Rajkot – INDIA)
Regional Coordinator
West India Zone
AMSAT-India http://amsatindia.org/

Some of the students at Ham Radio Practical Insight session at Parul University

Some of the students at Ham Radio Practical Insight session at Parul University

Amateur Space Communication Talks at RSGB Convention

Professor Cathryn Mitchell M0IBG University of Bath

Professor Cathryn Mitchell M0IBG University of Bath

There is an impressive line-up of speakers for the RSGB Convention, taking place in Milton Keynes Oct 7-9, and amateur space communications feature prominently.

Presentations during the weekend include:
• Sat 10:45 The new world of amateur satellites by Graham Shirville G3VZV
• Sat 12:00 Try amateur satellites by Peter Goodhall 2E0SQL
• Sat 14:40 Inspiring the next STEM generation 10 amateur radio contacts with Tim Peake GB1SS by Ciaran Morgan M0TXD & Susan Buckle UK Space Agency
• Sat 15:45 Making the Tim Peake GB1SS contacts a reality by Graham Shirville G3VZV & Noel Matthews G8GTZ
• Sun 13:30 Space Weather by Prof. Cathryn Mitchell M0IBG

The full schedule and booking information are available on the RSGB Convention page at http://rsgb.org/convention

Twitter #RSGBconv2016