New XW-2 satellites – linear transponders active

CAMSAT XW-2A formerly known as CAS-3A

CAMSAT XW-2A formerly known as CAS-3A

Nine XW-2/CAS-3 amateur radio satellites were successfully launched on Saturday, September 19, 2015 at 23:01:14 UT on Beijing’s new Chang Zheng 6 (CZ-6) rocket from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center (TSLC) in Shanxi.

Six satellites (designated XW-2A to XW-2F) carry 435/145 MHz U/V linear transponders for SSB/CW communications, LilacSat-2 (CAS-3H) has a V/U FM voice transponder and APRS. The other two satellites DCBB (CAS-3G) and NUDT‐Phone‐Sat (CAS-3i) only have telemetry downlinks.

The satellites were deployed into a 528 km by 551 km 97.5 degree inclination orbit. The NASA Orbital Lifetime Software provides an indication as to how long the satellites might remain in orbit before reentry into the Earth’s atmosphere:
• XW-2A = 8.5 years
• XW-2B/2C/2D = 9.2 years
• XW-2E/2F = 8.5 years
• LilacSat-2 = 18.2 years

The frequencies used by the satellites are here. Some satellite frequencies fall outside the international amateur satellite bandplan, so please be aware of local terrestrial users.

David Bowman G0MRF reported “Good signals from CAS3-F at 07.00 UTC  over Europe. Managed QSOs with SP5ULN in KO02  and F1AFZ in JN17 using the special event station at GB0RWC (Rugby World Cup).”

XW-2 / CAS-3 Satellite Frequencies PDF

For the latest status reports join the AMSAT Bulletin Board at
http://www.amsat.org/mailman/listinfo/amsat-bb

Further information on the XW-2 (CAS-3) satellites is at
https://amsat-uk.org/satellites/communications/camsat-xw-2/

LilacSat-2 https://amsat-uk.org/2015/09/20/lilacsat-2-linux-telemetry-decoding/

Online orbital predictor (select XW-2) http://www.amsat.org/amsat-new/tools/predict/index.php

Satellite tracking information https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/satellite-tracking/

Adding new satellites to SatPC32, Gpredict and Nova
https://amsat-uk.org/2013/11/23/adding-new-satellites-to-satpc32/

SatPC32 doppler.sqf http://www.pe0sat.vgnet.nl/2015/xw-2cas-3-launch-information/

NASA Orbital Lifetime Software http://orbitaldebris.jsc.nasa.gov/mitigate/das.html

CAMSAT XW-2 Satellites – Launch Information

Chang Zheng 6 CZ-6 rocket

Chang Zheng 6 CZ-6 rocket

UPDATE: Launch was postponed by one day due to technical reasons now Saturday, September 19 at 2300 UT.

Alan Kung BA1DU has posted this launch information for the XW-2 (CAS-3) satellites:

Launch time: 23:00:00 UT on 2015-09-19
The satellites should separate from rocket at 23:15:14 UT on 2015-09-19

The first pass over the mid-USA is expected at 00:05 UT on Sunday, September 20 and they should be in range of the UK at 05:21 UT – Frequencies Here – It is expected that initially only the telemetry beacons will be active. For the latest information check the AMSAT Bulletin Board.

The satellites will be launched on Beijing’s new Chang Zheng 6 (CZ-6) rocket from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center.

It is understood the CZ-6 is carrying at least nine satellites with payloads operating in amateur bands. They include six satellites (designated XW-2A to XW-2F) with 435/145 MHz linear transponders for SSB/CW communications, and one satellite, LilacSat-2 (CAS-3H) with an FM voice transponder and APRS. The frequencies to be used by the satellites are here. Some satellite frequencies fall outside the international amateur satellite bandplan, so please be aware of local terrestrial users.

XW-2A should operate in a sun-synchronous orbit at an altitude of about 450 km, with the other satellites at an altitude of about 530 km.

Please send reception reports to the AMSAT Bulletin Board (sign up at http://www.amsat.org/mailman/listinfo/amsat-bb) amsat-bb@amsat.org or #amsat on Twitter.

Predicted Two-Line Element (TLE) for tracking:

XW-2(CAS-3)
1 99999U          15262.96885748  .00004985  00000-0  28395-3 0 00005
2 99999 097.4712 270.8252 0010383 266.0522 270.6644 15.12847565000015

WEI Mingchuan BG2BHC says:  LilacSat-2 website http://lilacsat.hit.edu.cn/ and telemetry decoder based on GNU Radio https://github.com/bg2bhc/gr-lilacsat are now available. A Live CD is coming soon.

Further information on the XW-2 satellites is at
https://amsat-uk.org/satellites/communications/camsat-xw-2/

Online orbital predictor (select XW-2) http://www.amsat.org/amsat-new/tools/predict/index.php

Satellite tracking information https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/satellite-tracking/

Adding new satellites to SatPC32, Gpredict and Nova
https://amsat-uk.org/2013/11/23/adding-new-satellites-to-satpc32/

SatPC32 doppler.sqf http://www.pe0sat.vgnet.nl/2015/xw-2cas-3-launch-information/

Three ham radio launches planned by Beijing

Beijing's CZ-5 launcherBeijing is thought to be planning three separate launches of satellites carrying amateur radio payloads in the next few weeks.

The launches were highlighted on the Social Media site Weibo and have been discussed on a space flight forum.

On September 19, 2015 the new CZ-6 rocket is expected to launch from Taiyuan carrying nine satellites with amateur radio payloads. Six XW-2 satellites will carry 435/145 MHz SSB/CW transponders. LilacSat-2 will have a 145/435 MHz FM transponder along with APRS. The DCBB satellite will have 9600 bps GMSK telemetry in both 145 and 437 MHz and the NUDT-Phone-Sat will have a 437 MHz 9600 bps FSK telemetry downlink.

Another new launcher, CZ-11, is Beijing’s first solid-fuel rocket. Planned to launch on September 25 from Jiuquan it will carry three satellites with amateur payloads: Tianwang-1A (TW-1A / SECM); Tianwang-1B (TW-1B / NJUST-2); Tianwang-1C (TC-1C / NJFA-1). They were developed at the Shanghai Engineering Center for Microsatellites.

The Jilin-1 Earth Observation constellation is planned to launch on October 5 from Jiuquan on a CZ-2D. It is reported there may also be a satellite with an amateur radio payload.

Weibo MyHamPlace post http://www.weibo.com/2315793200/CyEQpoJms

Discussion forum for Beijing’s launch schedule
http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=5060.1320

XW-2, LilacSat-2, DCBB and NUDT-Phone-Sat satellites
https://amsat-uk.org/satellites/communications/camsat-xw-2/

New CAMSAT Satellite CAS-2

CAMSAT CAS-2 at Friedrichshafen Ham Radio 2012 Event – Image Credit ARRL

The first CAMSAT amateur radio satellite CAS-1 (aka XW-1, HO-68) carried a linear transponder and proved very popular with radio amateurs world-wide.

Fan Shaomin BA1EO with CAS-2 A1

Fan Shaomin BA1EO with CAS-2 A1

CAMSAT and students at the Qian Youth Space Academy have been working on the next satellite CAS-2.

The launch of CAS-2 is planned for 2014 into a 1000 km orbit with an inclination of 12 degrees. This orbit means it may not be receivable in those countries at high latitudes.

It is understood that most of the room in CAS-2 will be taken up by the primary (non-amateur) payload and it has only been possible to fit a single channel FM amateur transponder in the satellite.

The announcement of May 20 indicates that two separate CAS-2 satellite structures are being built – A1 and A2.

Further information in Google English can be seen at http://tinyurl.com/CAMSAT-CAS-2-Satellite

The CAMSAT delegation to Ham Radio 2012 in Friedrichshafen was led by Gong Wancong BA1DU. A group picture taken at the CAMSAT and AMSAT-DL stands and a picture of the engraved glass plaque that CAMSAT presented to AMSAT-DL can be seen on the AMSAT Deutschland Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.420116544697800.90571.168177559891701&type=3

Randy Hall K7AGE visited Beijing in March 2008. Among the people he visited was Fan Shaomin BA1EO.

Watch Randy’s video which provides an insight into amateur radio in Beijing. The BA1EO visit is at 12:55

Read more about Ham Radio in that part of the world from Larry’s, KH6ITY, article at ARRL – http://www.arrl.org/news/cq-china

ARISS unable to do Beijing contacts http://tinyurl.com/ARISS-Cancel-Beijing