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Chasqui-1 deployment from ISS

Vie, 08/15/2014 - 20:22

Oleg Artemyev releases the Chasqui-1 CubeSat

On August 18, 2014 at 14:00 UT the Russia Cosmonauts on the International Space Station (ISS), Alexander Skvortsov and Oleg Artemyev, opened the hatches of the Pirs docking module and to start Extra Vehicular Activities (EVA).

Engineer Ing. Margarita Mondragon and Chasqui-1

One of their tasks was the deployment of the Peruvian satellite Chasqui-1, a research satellite designed to standard CubeSat dimension by the Peruvian National University of Engineering (Universidad Nacional de Ingenieria (UNI)) in collaboration with the Southwestern State University (SWSU) in Kursk.

Chasqui-1’s batteries were charged by the Russian Cosmonuats inside the ISS during August 14/15.The satellite was successfully deployed by Oleg Artemyev near the start of the EVA at 14:23 UT.

Chasqui-1 was developed with the intention of improving their satellite technology through the design and testing of a small satellite. Its facilities include two cameras, one in visible and the other in infra-red. Other facilities include communication in the amateur radio band and control systems for its power, thermal and embedded management of its components.

Peruvian CubeSat Chasqui-1

Chasqui-1 will provide a number of functions that include taking pictures of the Earth. From an academic perspective it will facilitate collaborations among various faculties and research centres of the university to train students and teachers with real world experience in satellites. It will also generate opportunities to work with other universities in the world which in turn will lead to technological advances in the aerospace industry of Peru.

The 437.025 MHz beacon (+/- 10 kHz Doppler shift) can transmit either 1200 bps AFSK AX.25 or 9600 bps GMSK. As of August 23 no signal from the beacon had been heard.

Chasqui-1 as a small dot against the Earth, seconds after Oleg Artemyev sent it spinning – Screenshot Jonathan McDowell

On August 19-20 there may be a relay of the Chasqui-1 signal transmitted from the ISS on 145.800 MHz FM using the callsign RS02S. This relay should provide a strong signal with reduced Doppler receivable even on handheld radios.

Listen for Chasqui-1 and the ISS online using the SUWS WebSDR, further details at

Find out when you can hear the ISS and Chasqui-1 which is currently in close proximity at



Twitter @chasqui1

R4UAB Chasqui-1

Watch Hand deployment from ISS of Peruvian satellite Chasqui-1

SUWS VHF/UHF/Microwave WebSDR moves to new site

Vie, 08/15/2014 - 15:44

Antenna’s at SUWS WebSDR site in Farnham

The Southampton University Wireless Society SUWS VHF/UHF/Microwave WebSDR has now moved to its new site in Farnham.

You can use the free online SUWS Web Software Defined Radio (WebSDR) from your PC or Laptop to receive the International Space Station (ISS) and the many amateur radio satellites transmitting in the 144-146 MHz or 435-438 MHz bands.

The WebSDR also provides reception of High Altitude Balloons in the 434 MHz band and coverage of the microwave 10368-10370 MHz band.

144 MHz prototype helix antenna

Martin Ehrenfried G8JNJ has equipped the SUWS WebSDR with omni-direction helix antennas for both 144-146 MHz and 432-438 MHz which have proved effective for both high altitude balloon and satellite reception.

The SUWS WebSDR is located at Farnham not far from London, 51.3 N 1.15 W, listen to it at

Martin says this about the special satellite antennas “I had been experimenting with single turn ‘twisted halo’ design, and decided to try stacking them to see if I could achieve more gain. Modelling suggested that a stretched 3 turn helix with a helix circumference of approx 1/2 wave length and an overall length of 1/2 wave at 70cm, and fed with a gamma match at the centre would offer reasonable gain, an omni-directional pattern and mixed polarisation.”

Full details of the antennas are available at

A presentation by Phil Crump M0DNY on the SUWS WebSDR will be streamed live to the web from the UKHAS Conference on Saturday, August 16, see

UKHAS 2014 Conference Live Video Stream

Jue, 08/14/2014 - 22:48

Dan Bowen K2VOL

The UKHAS conference on Saturday will be streamed live and the radio amateurs giving the presentations will if time permits take questions via the web.

The annual UK High Altitude Society (UKHAS) conference at the University of Greenwich in London attracts those interested in learning about building and flying High Altitude Balloons or in tracking their 434 MHz signals.

There is an impressive line-up of speakers in addition to which there will be workshops, demonstrations along with amateur radio exams.

Morning Sessions

09:30 Assembly – Coffee / Tea + Biscuits
10.10 Introduction – James Coxon M6JCX and Anthony Stirk M0UPU
10.20 Predictor – Daniel Richman M0ZDR and Adam Greig M0RND
10.50 Advanced superpressure balloon technology – Dan Bowen K2VOL
11.30 SUWS WebSDR – Philip Crump M0DNY
11.40 UK Ham Radio Airborne Operation Update – Steve Randall G8KHW
11.45 Break
12.00 $50SAT Low cost satellite- Stuart Robinson GW7HPW
12.45 Introduction – Noel Matthews G8GTZ
13.00 Lunch / Show and Tell

Afternoon Sessions

Combination of workshop/lectures.

Main Lecture
14.30 STM32+DSP – Adam Greig M0RND, Jon Sowman M0JSN, Matt Brezja M6VXO
15.30 UKHASNET – James Coxon M6JCX

Side Room
14:30 Pi In The Sky – Anthony Stirk M0UPU and Dave Akerman M0RPI
15.30 Amateur Radio Exams

The video streaming will be available on Saturday, August 16 at

UKHAS Conference

Dnepr Launch Planned for October

Jue, 08/14/2014 - 17:25

Dnepr Launch November 21, 2013 – Credit ISC Kosmotras

According to an ITAR-TASS report the launch of a Russian-Ukrainian conversion rocket Dnepr (RS-20) with Japanese satellites, should take place in early October from the Orenburg region, southern Urals.

On Wednesday, August 13, when asked by ITAR-TASS whether the plans had not been affected by Japanese sanctions against Russia a source in the Russian Military Industrial Commission said “The launch is scheduled for the beginning of October. There have been no cancellations so far”.

The rocket will orbit five Japanese satellites, including four micro ones. “The satellites will be brought to Russia on August 20,” the source said, adding that this year’s third Dnepr launch was scheduled for December.

The Dnepr rocket conversion programme was initiated in the 1990s by the presidents of Russia and Ukraine to convert RS-20 Voyevoda ICBMs for civilian uses.

Dnepr rockets are launched from Baikonur, Kazakhstan, and the Yasny Launch Site of the Russian Strategic Rocket Forces in the Orenburg region under a joint project commenced by Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan.

The Dnepr rocket is a three-stage liquid-engine vehicle. Its takeoff mass is 210 tones. The first two stages are the regular stages of the RS-20 rocket and have not been changed. The third stage has been worked on to improve its flight control system.

The rocket is injected from an RS-20 silo by propellant gases. Its engine turns on after the whole vehicle has come out of the silo. The rocket is made by the Ukrainian company Yuzhmash in Dnepropetrovsk.


The five satellites are understood to be:
• ChubuSat 1
• Hodoyoshi 1
• Tsubame

23 cm band and WRC-2018

Mié, 08/13/2014 - 13:15

paper to be discussed at the IARU Region 1 Conference in Varna-Albena, Bulgaria, September 21-27, 2014 highlights the threat to continued amateur radio usage of our 23 cm allocation which is now being used by the Galileo GPS system. The amateur 23 cm allocation includes a key Amateur Satellite Service uplink band at 1260-1270 MHz.

Michael Kastelic OE1MCU, Chair of the IARU R1 VHF/UHF/Microwave Committee has written the paper VA14_C5_36 which says:

After the last reports and slides received by the author, it seems that radio amateurs will lose the 23 cm band in the near future. That is the reason for this late proposal.

We can be optimistic, but more than a small piece of spectrum for near band communication will not survive. Also the enthusiastic testing with ATV on 70 cm is not a replacement for 23 cm, because this will cause disturbance to our amateur satellites and all cars will stay locked if the ISM band is used.

GNSS – Credit Microwave Journal

Radio amateurs need a new allocation (like 1300 -1310 MHz) for the agenda of the World Radio Conference 2018 (WRC2018) so that amateurs get back spectrum near the existing 23 cm band.

Further it is proposed to engage the EC after WRC-2015 to bring this theme to the
agenda for WRC-2018 with high priority

Read the paper at

Potential Interference To Galileo From 23 cm Band Operations

Up until now there have only been four Galileo test satellites in orbit which have been used to validate the system. The first two satellites of the operational Galileo GPS constellation were launched on August 22, 2014, they will be followed by further launches over the next 3 years. 

During the initial test phase two German ATV repeaters were shutdown due to interference to a user’s Galileo receiver, they were:
• DB0QI which was 18 km from the receiver
• DB0ITV which was 55 km from the receiver
It is thought both repeaters were running an ERP of just 15 watts, but the ERP figure has not been confirmed.

It appears that all 23 cm repeaters in Austria have been shutdown.

Alessio Sacchi IZ4EFN posted the following information regarding the situation in Italy on the AMSAT Bulletin Board:
Few weeks back I spoke with a member of the Italian CC, as our club was going to add a 1296 MHz port to a local repeater. He said Alenia Space has submitted strong warnings regarding possible interference with Galileo and he anticipated it could be hard to get a frequency assigned in that portion of the spectrum in the near future.

IARU R1 VHF/UHF/Microwaves discussion forum

Other VHF/UHF/Microwave papers for the Conference can be downloaded from

RAGazine now available for download

Mar, 08/12/2014 - 09:38

Volume 2 issue 1 of the free BAA-RAG radio astronomy publication RAGazine is now available for download.

In this edition:
– VLF quarterly observing report
– Simple equipment for SID observations
– Intro. to radio objects that can be detected by the amateur radio astronomer
– The man who made maps of the moon (poetry)
– UKRAA update
– Long baseline interferometry with unmatched SDRs
– Diurnal variation of VLF signals
– Hydrogen Line Obs. Group (HLOG)
– SIDI, the Simple Digital Interferometer
– Receiving moon-bounce signals from the GRAVES radar

Download this and previous issues of RAGazine from

Join the BAA-RAG Yahoo Group at

Ham radio goes around the Moon

Lun, 08/11/2014 - 20:21

Full Moon 2010 – Credit Gregory H Revera

Towards the end of the year radio amateurs will have the opportunity to receive what must be the ultimate DX from a ham radio payload transmitting the data mode JT65B as it flies around the Moon.

Beijing plans to send a lunar orbiter around the Moon carrying a 14 kg battery powered payload known as 4M-LXS which was developed at LuxSpace. The amateur radio payload will transmit a JT65B signal on 145.990 MHz which can be decoded by radio amateurs using the free WJST software.

The orbiter is one of the test models for Beijing’s new lunar probe Chang’e-5, which will be tasked with landing on the moon, collecting samples and returning to Earth. The launch, planned for 4th quarter 2014, is aimed at testing the technologies that are vital for the success of Chang’e-5. The orbiter will be launched into Lunar Transfer Orbit (LTO) then will perform a flyby around the Moon and re-enter the Earth’s atmosphere after 9 days.

Delivery convoy – Image credit Xinhua

The orbiter arrived by air in Xichang, Sichuan on Sunday, August 10 and was then transported to the Xichang Satellite Launch Center.

Beijing to test recoverable moon orbiter

IARU Satellite Frequency Coordination Pages

Free WSJT Software


Dom, 08/10/2014 - 19:03


Founded in 1975 AMSAT-UK is a voluntary organisation that supports the design and building of equipment for amateur radio satellites.

AMSAT-UK initially produced a short bulletin called OSCAR News to give members advice on amateur satellite communications. Since those early days OSCAR News has grown in size and the print quality has improved beyond recognition. Today, OSCAR News is produced as a high-quality quarterly colour A4 magazine consisting of up to 40 pages of news, information and comment about amateur radio space communications.

The new lower-cost E-membership provides OSCAR News as a downloadable PDF file giving members the freedom to read it on their Tablets or Smartphones anytime, anyplace, anywhere.

An additional advantage is that the PDF should be available for download up to 2 weeks before the paper copy is posted.

AMSAT-UK FUNcube Mission Patch

The Membership year lasts for 12 months starting on January 1 each year.

If you join after July 31 of any particular year, then you will receive complimentary membership for the whole of the following year, i.e. join on August 10, 2014, and you have nothing more to pay until Dec 31, 2015.

Take out an Electronic membership here

E-members can download their copies of OSCAR News from

A sample issue of OSCAR News can be downloaded here.

D-STAR satellite repeater test 437.050 MHz

Dom, 08/10/2014 - 17:24

TabletSat-Aurora in Space – Credit Sputnix

A test of the D-STAR Parrot Repeater on the TabletSat-Aurora satellite is expected to take place during Monday, August 11 on 437.050 MHz (+/- 10 kHz Doppler shift).

TabletSat-Aurora – Credit Sputnix

TabletSat-Aurora launched with 11 other satellites carrying amateur radio payloads from Dombarovsky near Yasny on Thursday, June 19, 2014.

The D-STAR GMSK Parrot (Store and Forward) Repeater can store up to 8 seconds of voice message and runs 0.8 watts to a whip antenna.

There are two other transceivers on the satellite, they transmit GMSK telemetry data on 435.550 MHz and 436.100 MHz. Their power can be varied by command from the ground station between 0.8 and 2.0 watts. TabletSat-Aurora is also a downlink on 8192 MHz.

Dmitry Pashkov R4UAB reports the test on his website at

Description of TabletSat-Aurora in Google English


Dnepr Launch for D-STAR Satellite

Satellite Tracking

Online WebSDR for VHF Satellites

Jue, 08/07/2014 - 14:17

144 MHz prototype helix antenna

You can use the free online SUWS Web Software Defined Radio (WebSDR) from your PC or Laptop to receive the International Space Station (ISS) and the many amateur radio satellites transmitting in the 145.800 – 146.000 MHz band.

Martin Ehrenfried G8JNJ has equipped the SUWS WebSDR with omni-direction helix antennas for both 144 and 432 MHz which have proved effective for both high altitude balloon and satellite reception.

The SUWS WebSDR is located at Farnham not far from London, listen to it at

Martin says this about the special satellite antennas “I had been experimenting with single turn ‘twisted halo’ design, and decided to try stacking them to see if I could achieve more gain. Modelling suggested that a stretched 3 turn helix with a helix circumference of approx 1/2 wave length and an overall length of 1/2 wave at 70cm, and fed with a gamma match at the centre would offer reasonable gain, an omni-directional pattern and mixed polarisation.”

Full details of the antennas are available at

WebSDR for 144, 432, 1296 and 10368 MHz

Reception of UKube-1 FUNcube-2 Beacon on FUNcube Dongle SDR

Mié, 08/06/2014 - 16:39

FUNcube Dongle Pro+ Software Defined Radio

Many stations, who have their FUNcube Dongle Software Defined Radio (SDR) setup to automatically receive telemetry signals from FUNcube-1, will have noticed that they are now also seeing the telemetry from the FUNcube-2 sub-system which is flying on-board the UKube-1 CubeSat.

UKube-1 CubeSat (with FUNcube-2 sub-system) – Image credit Clyde Space

The FUNcube telemetry transmitter has been enabled on 145.915 MHz (+/- Doppler) as part of the commissioning program for UKube-1 which is presently underway.

Whilst the existing FUNcube-1 Dashboard does not correctly display the FUNcube-2 telemetry, it is forwarding the data correctly to the Warehouse and this is greatly appreciated by the team.

The FUNcube team are not yet able to release a FUNcube-2 specific Dashboard App, they are, however, working to provide a fully functional FUNcube-2 page on the Data Warehouse as soon as possible.

In the meantime please continue to listen and, where you are able, to keep the data flowing to the Data Warehouse – many thanks for your support.

Dashboard App – Telemetry Decoder

Data Warehouse – Telemetry Archive

FUNcube Dongle LF/MF/HF/VHF/UHF Software Defined Radio

AMSAT to use FundRazr Crowdfunding

Mar, 08/05/2014 - 22:12

AMSAT have announced that they are using the FundRazr crowdfunding platform to raise donations for the Fox-1C CubeSat.

AMSAT is excited to announce a launch opportunity for the Fox-1C Cubesat. AMSAT has teamed with Spaceflight Inc. for integration and launch utilizing Spaceflight’s SHERPA system to a sun-synchronous orbit in the third quarter of 2015.

Fox-1C is the third of four Fox-1 series satellites under development, with Fox-1A and RadFXsat/Fox-1B launching through the NASA ELANA program. Fox-1C will carry an FM repeater system for amateur radio use by radio hams and listeners worldwide. Further details on the satellite and launch will be made available as soon as released.

AMSAT has an immediate need to raise funds to cover both the launch contract and additional materials for construction and testing for Fox-1C. Please help us to continue to keep amateur radio in space.

Fox-1C Fundraiser

Amateur Radio Exams at UKHAS Conference Greenwich

Mar, 08/05/2014 - 21:03

Dan Bowen K2VOL

Make sure you book for this years International UKHAS conference at the University of Greenwich in London on Saturday, August 16. There is an impressive line up of presentations by radio amateurs.

The UK High Altitude Society (UKHAS) conference attracts those interested in learning about building and flying High Altitude Balloons or in tracking their 434 MHz signals.

The conference is open to all, you don’t have to have flown a High Altitude Balloon, you’ll probably get more out of it as a total beginner as there will be a huge wealth of experience in the room you can speak to.

There is an impressive line-up of speakers in addition to which there will be workshops, demonstrations along with amateur radio exams.

Morning Sessions

09:30 Assembly – Coffee / Tea + Biscuits
10.10 Introduction – James Coxon M6JCX and Anthony Stirk M0UPU
10.20 Predictor – Daniel Richman M0ZDR/2E0DRX/M6DRX and Adam Greig M0RND/2E0SKK/M6AGG
10.50 Advanced superpressure balloon technology – Dan Bowen K2VOL Balloon Scientist Google Loon Project
11.30 WebSDR – Philip Crump M0DNY
11.45 Break
12.00 $50SAT Low cost satellite- Stuart Robinson GW7HPW
12.45 Introduction – Noel Matthews G8GTZ
13.00 Lunch / Show and Tell

Afternoon Sessions

Combination of workshop/lectures.

Main Lecture
14.30 STM32+DSP – Adam Greig M0RND, Jon Sowman M0JSN, Matt Brezja M6VXO

Side Room
14:30 Pi In The Sky – Anthony Stirk M0UPU and Dave Akerman M0RPI

Main Lecture
15.30 UKHASNET – James Coxon M6JCX

Side Room
15.30 Amateur Radio Exams

Further information and tickets at

Amateur Radio Village at EMF 2014

Mar, 08/05/2014 - 16:22

EMF 2012 badge of attendee Graham Shirville G3VZV

There will be an amateur radio village and special event station GB2EMF at the Electromagnetic Field EMF 2014 event taking place August 29-31 at Bletchley near Milton Keynes.

EMF 2014 is a festival for anyone interested in radio, electronics, space, homebrewing, robots, UAVs, 3D printing, DIYBio, Internet culture or pretty much anything else you can think of. It is a volunteer effort by a non-profit group, inspired by European and US hacker camps like Chaos Communication Camp, HAR, and toorcamp.

Imagine a camping festival with a power grid and high-speed internet access; a temporary village of geeks, crafters, and technology enthusiasts that’s lit up by night, and buzzing with activity during the day. Over a thousand curious people will descend on the friendly open space to learn, share, and talk about what they love.

Over a long weekend, you can expect to see a huge variety of talks across three stages, a slew of workshops, as well as music, games, and installations dotted around the site.

Attendees are invited to set up their own villages — camps within the camp — where like-minded people can camp together and put on their own activities. The hard-working EMF team of volunteers will supply you with power and internet to your tent.

The special event station GB2EMF will be run from the Amateur Radio Village, it had been hoped to have a 70cm/2m crossband FM repeater operational during the event but it looks as though Ofcom licensing issues may preclude this.

At each EMF event the organisers try and give the attendees a great camp badge. Not just a ‘Hello my name is” sticker but a nice fun piece of technology that they can take away and use after the event.

EMF 2014 takes place August 29-31 near Newton Longville, just South of Bletchley, Milton Keynes, MK17 0BU.

EMF 2014
Twitter @emfcamp

Report on the EMF 2012 event

NASA Announces Next Opportunity for CubeSat Space Missions

Mar, 08/05/2014 - 14:35

Space X Dragon Spacecraft

NASA is opening the next round of its CubeSat Launch Initiative, part of the White House Maker Initiative, in an effort to engage the growing community of space enthusiasts that can contribute to NASA’s space exploration goals.

The CubeSat Launch Initiative gives students, teachers and faculty a chance to get hands-on flight hardware development experience in the process of designing, building and operating small research satellites. It also provides a low-cost pathway to space for research in the areas of science, exploration, technology development, education or operations consistent with NASA’s Strategic Plan.

Applicants must submit their proposals electronically by 4:30 p.m. EST, Nov. 25. NASA will select the payloads by Feb. 6, 2015, but selection does not guarantee a launch opportunity. Selected experiments are slated to be flown as auxiliary payloads on agency rocket launches or be deployed from the International Space Station beginning in 2015 and running through 2018. NASA does not provide funding for the development of the small satellites and this opportunity is open only to U.S. non-profit organizations and accredited educational organizations.

One goal of the CubeSat Launch Initiative is extend the successes of space exploration to all 50 states by launching a small satellite from at least one participant in each state in the next five years. To this end, NASA is particularly focused this round on gaining participation in the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and 21 states not previously selected for the CubeSat Launch Initiative. These states are: Arkansas, Delaware, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Washington, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

CubeSats are in a class of research spacecraft called nanosatellites. The base CubeSat dimensions are about 4x4x4 inches (10x10x11 centimeters), which equals one “Cube,” or 1U. CubeSats supported by this launch effort include volumes of 1U, 2U, 3U, and 6U. CubeSats of 1U, 2U and 3U size typically have a mass of about three pounds (1.33 kilograms) per 1U Cube. A 6U CubeSat typically has a mass of about 26.5 pounds (12 kilograms). The CubeSat’s final mass depends on which deployment method is selected.

To date, NASA has selected 114 CubeSats from 29 states, 17 of which have already been launched. Nine more CubeSats are scheduled to go into space in the next 12 months

For additional information about NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative program, visit:

Joshua Buck
Headquarters, Washington


Online Amateur Radio Satellite Predictor

Mar, 08/05/2014 - 10:08


Pedro Converso LU7ABF reports that AMSAT-LU have developed an online satellite prediction page which quickly provides on a single screen most data required for the amateur radio satellites and includes active maps and graphics.

The predictor allows selection of your location and satellite and shows current and future satellite passes.

The online satellite predictor is at

ISEE-3 Presentation Video Now Available

Dom, 08/03/2014 - 12:25

ISEE-3 – ICE Spacecraft – Image credit NASA

Mario Lorenz DL5MLO and Achim Vollhardt DH2VA from AMSAT-DL Bochum gave a presentation on the ISEE-3 (ICE) spacecraft to the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium in Guildford, on July 26, 2014.

The video of the presentation which included a live demonstration of telemetry reception from the spacecraft can now be viewed on the web or downloaded to your PC. The presentation slides and a recording of ISEE-3 telemetry are also available.

The International Sun-Earth Explorer (ISEE-3) is a NASA spacecraft that was launched in 1978 to study Earth’s magnetosphere. It was repurposed and renamed the International Cometary Explorer (ICE) in 1983 to study two comets and has been in a heliocentric orbit since then, traveling just slightly faster than Earth. It’s finally catching up with Earth from behind with the closest approach expected in August, 2014.

Since NASA no longer has the capability to receive and command the spacecraft a group of amateurs, with NASA’s permission, decided to do it for themselves.

Amateur Radio Facility at Bochum

On March 1-2, 2014 radio amateurs at the Bochum Amateur Radio Facility in Germany were able to detect the beacon signal from the spacecraft over a distance of 43 million km. After some changes to the ground equipment and aligning the receive antenna to the predicted position in the sky, the 2 GHz beacon signal could positively be identified due to its frequency, the position in the sky and the frequency shift due to the radial velocity (Doppler shift).

The 20m dish at Bochum was used to receive the signals. In 2003, AMSAT-DL converted this former industrial monument into a fully functional groundstation for deep space probes. Since 2009 the facility is being used by volunteers almost full time as ground receive station for data from the STEREO mission with its two spaceprobes monitoring the sun from different viewing angles.

In June Dennis Wingo KD4ETA and other volunteers succeeded in commanding the spacecraft using the Arecibo dish in Puerto Rico.

Links to the ISEE-3 presentation video, slides and a recording of the ISEE-3 telemetry signal are at

Watch 2014 ISEE-3 Reboot Trajectory by Mike Loucks


RF Design Stand at AMSAT-UK Colloquium

Sáb, 08/02/2014 - 05:00

A delegate from the University of Surrey at the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium, Guildford

The RF Design stand of Kevin Avery G3AAF is a regular feature of the annual AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium in Guildford and we were glad to see him again this year.

As usual the stand was packed full of precision calibrated noise sources, low noise ampifiers, noise gain analysers and other equipment for frequencies up to 11 GHz.

The company also specialises in
● High power RF generation, e.g. CO2 laser plasma power supplies
● Solid state RF power amplifiers to 10kW from LF through UHF
● Short range wireless devices, e.g. Social Alarms

RF Design Amateur Radio and Radio Astronomy products

RF Design

Videos of the presentations given at the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium can be seen at

G3YJO becomes Chair of Surrey Space Centre

Vie, 08/01/2014 - 19:06

Professor Sir Martin Sweeting G3YJO

Professor Sir Martin Sweeting G3YJO is to take up the position of Chair of Surrey Space centre (SSC), Professor Guglielmo Aglietti takes on the role of Director of the Centre.

“SSC has been steadily expanding its staff and activities and my new role as Chair will enable me better to help with the strategic research planning and external relations, as well as mentoring our staff and students – all of which is needed to take the Centre to even greater heights,” said Professor Sir Martin. “SSC grew from the original ‘UoSAT Unit’, a small research group I formed some 35 years ago as a PhD student. Its subsequent growth and international reputation established by the hard work of our excellent staff and students during these decades, alongside the remarkable success of Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL), has been a source of great satisfaction to me and benefit to the University.”

“I am truly honoured to have been given the opportunity to lead the Surrey Space Centre, and I would like to thank Professor Sir Martin Sweeting and Professor Jonathan Seville for their trust in my capabilities, and all the colleagues in the Centre for their support,” added Professor Aglietti. “I believe that SSC staff is our greatest asset and I am very fortunate to work with such talented colleagues, who made the success of SSC, creating the largest and best known UK academic institution working in space engineering.  I believe that our partnership with SSTL and Airbus is best positioned to bridge the gap between academic research and industrial applications.  I am excited about working with my colleagues in my new position to ensure SSC’s continuous success.”

Professor Jonathan Seville, Dean of Surrey’s Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences, concluded, “I would like to take this opportunity to thank Martin for his many years of dedicated service as Director. SSC has shown substantial growth over the years with many notable successes under his leadership. Space continues to be a ‘flagship’ activity for the University. I look forward to working with Guglielmo in his new role and hearing of the continuing achievements of the Centre.”

Surrey Space Centre



434 MHz Balloon B-64 Completes Epic Journey

Jue, 07/31/2014 - 20:36

B-64 Flight Path July 12 to July 31, 2014

At about 16:30 GMT on Friday, July 31, the solar powered B-64 balloon launched by radio amateur Leo Bodnar M0XER crossed the 1 degree West longitude line completing its circumnavigation of the northern hemisphere in just over 19 days.

Oliver M6ODP receiving B-64 at St Michael’s Mount

The balloon, flying at an altitude of 12 km, completed its transatlantic crossing and came within range of Cornwall in the morning. Oliver De Peyer M6ODP happened to be visiting St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall at the time. He used his Kenwood TH-F7E handheld to receive an APRS packet from the balloon.

As the day progressed B-64 moved from just south of Cornwall up the English Channel and radio amateurs and listeners from Manchester to Nantes in France were able to receive the 10 mW Contestia 64/1000 and APRS signal on 434.500 MHz.

B-64 passed over the Isle of Wight and floated over Bognor Regis and across Kent heading out into the North Sea near Herne Bay. As of mid-day Saturday it was still flying and transmitting over Sweden and being tracked by members of AMSAT-SM.

B-64 APRS packet received by Oliver M6ODP

Leo Bodnar M0XER launched his balloon carrying an 11 gram transmitter payload from Silverstone in the UK at 06:51 GMT on July 12, 2014. While Leo’s earlier balloons had been foil type party balloons B-64 was a  plastic foil envelope that he made himself.

Using the amateur radio APRS network and the UKHAS network the location of B-64 was tracked as it traveled over Europe, Siberia, with a brief sojourn across North Korea, before heading out over Japan and across the Pacific Ocean. It then briefly entered the United States before swinging north into Canada.

It was heard in Greenland by Peter Thulesen OX3XR and on Friday morning finally came within range of the British Isles.

B-64 plastic foil envelope – Image credit Leo Bodnar M0XER

Leo has utilised some clever techniques storing positions when the balloon is out of radio contact then later transmitting a log file of previous locations in the comments field of the APRS packet. This enables a fairly complete path to be built up. B-64 only stores 5 days worth of data, where you get a straight line on the track it has been out of radio contact.

See the track of B-64 at or at

Leo Bodnar M0XER balloons

Members of the Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society received the signal from B-64. Just 4 weeks earlier, thanks to Chris Stubbs M6EDF, the Society had launched a balloon CARS-1 from their meeting venue. That balloon didn’t have solar power so the signal only lasted for about 10 hours. CARS training organiser Clive G1EUC reported receiving a strong signal from B-64.

B-64 transmitter payload weighs just 11 grams

Clive is currently taking names for the next amateur radio Foundation course which starts on Thursday, September 4. If you’d like to join the course or wish to find out more about the hobby give him a ring on:
Tel: 01245-224577
Mob: 07860-418835
Email: training2014 at

What is Amateur Radio ?

The UK High Altitude Society (UKHAS) Conference takes place Saturday, August 16, 2014 at the University of Greenwich in London

Further 434 MHz balloon links at

Typical 434 MHz solar powered payload – Image credit Leo Bodnar M0XER