URESAT-1 – A chess playing ham radio satellite

“……………….One of the projects that is confirmed is a chess game that will allow radio amateurs to play having as an opponent the on-board computer sending FSK frames with the movements, to which the on-board computer will answer in its telemetry. Several radio amateurs are working on the project and if it is completed by the time the satellite is due to be delivered, it will be included………………” Read more – HERE .

Forest-Side State College Girls Pick Up Signals From MIR-SAT1

Forest-Side College ‘Satellite’ Girls

Mauritius’ first satellite has aroused overwhelming enthusiasm among students at Forest-Side State College.  the 1st school in Mauritius to have decoded MIR-SAT 1, using a Ground-station and appropriate software.

They are the second school in Mauritius to be equipped with a simplified ground station donated by Radio Amateurs.  Vickram Mungul, (3B8BBD) and physics teacher at this school is pleasantly surprised to see the girls’ extraordinary enthusiasm.

“The girls were very motivated, honoured and wanted to know more about the project,” he recalls. The  Girls’ interest in this Mauritian satellite started over a year ago when they were gradually exposed to the operation of satellites and their importance. Since knowledge about satellites is not widespread in Mauritius, they were first introduced to the NOAA satellite and decoding through the use of appropriate software was explained.

“We were not sure of ourselves at the very beginning as this is a new subject. But, little by little, we learned new things. This is what motivated us to learn more, ”says Christa Gunnoo. She now understands  how to communicate with international satellites, but especially what is taught in her physics classes.

Receiving telemetry from the Mauritian satellite was not an easy task for the college. Several tests had to be carried out. Once the tests were completed, there was no sign that the Groundstation was going to acknowledge the first signals.

Aïshani Beeharry-Panray, a Grade 12 student, explains that three software programs are essential for communication. The first concerns the radio, Tracking and the decoder. “The software allows us to know when the satellites will pass over Mauritius and its elevation. We also receive audio and images, ”she says.

The software the girls use is free. They made their own antenna using PVC pipes, solder, pieces of aluminium and glue

SOTA Fun On Microwave

During ‘On-Air’ chats, members of WoSARS often hear me describe some of the fun that can be had on microwave frequencies; especially for myself 13cms (2.3/2.4GHz) whilst out Activating a SOTA summit.

These escapades evolved from the creation of the GM13 GROUP of likeminded amateurs in 2017.

CLICK – For Further Information

Following the successful launch and operation of OSCAR 100 in 2018/19; this has opened up the opportunity to predictably work distant stations around Europe, Asia, Africa and even South America. Using the Satellite’s 13cms UP and 3cms (10GHz)  DOWN translator; some of our hardy band of SOTA-microeers have put together kit to access this facility.

GM/SS-037 Hart Fell – G(M)4VFL- Microwave Kit (19/05/21) [PIC – G4VFL]

Andrew’s GM/SS-037 – LOG

Andrew G4VFL was an early adopter of this challenge (see WoSARS Web March 2020 Article – HERE ) along with his ‘partner-in-crime’ Nick G0HIK; they have been progressively ‘knockin’ off summits in LD (Lake  District) and SS (Southern Scotland).

G/LD-024 Pike O Blisco – Nick G0HIK Operating (19/05/21) [PIC – G0HIK]
Now not having quite the enthusiasm of the ‘twosomes’ as to lugging dishes up summits, I do however benefit from potential Summit-to-Summit’s S2S’s, utilising my 8 ele Bow-Tie and SG transverter (2W out) and the gain of the dishes at the other end.

GM/SS-142 Scawld Law – GM4COX’s 8 El Bow-Tie (19/05/21) [PIC – GM4COX]
Popping down to just below the 2.4GHz UP Oscar frequency (2399.950MHz), it is possible to work Point-to-Point (S2S) utilising the high gain of the dishes – with the majority of the contacts being made on FM (of course falling back on SSB/CW on marginal paths).

GM/SS-100 Croft Head – GM4COX Bow-Tie on Walking Pole (19/05/21) – see end of this Post for design information [PIC – GM4COX]
And Wednesday 19th (May) this week, saw us all heading out on a predetermined series of Activations; an LD for Nick (and Chris M0KPW), and SS’s for Andrew and myself.

Predicted Path Profile – G/LD-024 to GM/SS-037 [PIC – G4VFL – CLICK to View]
Path Routes – G/LD-024 to GM/SS-037,100, 142 [PIC – GM4COX – CLICK to View]
So why not join us. Just bring along your kitchen microwave to a suitable top – you never know who you’ll work. 🙂

And I’ll leave the last word to Nick:

“……… Hi Guys,

Thanks for the contacts today, it was staggering how strong you both were. I think GM/SS-037 was 110km and GM/SS-142 was 99km. Sorry we could not stay around for your 2nd one Jack …………..”
EDIT: 10/06/21 – The design for the 8el Bow-Tie has been added to the GM13 Site. If you would like a copy please email gm4cox@gmail.com (file size 4MB)

OSCAR 100 – DATV Beacon Frequency Change

Extracted off GB2RS – 29th March

“The DATV beacon on the QO-100 satellite has changed frequency and symbol rate to allow more space on the transponder for other users. The new transmission is on 10491.5MHz with a symbol rate of 1500kS, DVB-S2, FEC 4/5. A new band plan is being developed and will be published on the Wideband Spectrum Monitor https://eshail.batc.org.uk/wb/ as soon as it is finalised.”

Checkout OSCAR 100 – HERE .

Andrew – G4VFL Takes 25000 Kms (or there abouts) To Activate English Summit On 13cms

I was working Andrew – G(M)4VFL on GM/SS-056 on 13cms (2.3GHz) FM last week and he happened to mention that earlier in the week he had worked VU (India) to activate G/LD-030. I was intrigued – of course via OCAR 100 – HERE . 13cms Up & 3cms down.

I asked him if he had a picture, and indeed he has forwarded a nice shot.

Andrew – G4VFL Working OSCAR 100 From G/LD-030

Now does anybody fancy working out the path distances? 🙂




Snips – News For Scotland – 26th May

The news headlines:

  • New propagation prediction tool released
  • Cricket World Cup Radio Marathon is imminent
  • New forum for Easy-100 satellite upconverter

The RSGB’s Propagation Studies Committee has released a new propagation tool for amateurs. Based on the ITU’s ITU RHF PROP program, the new tool is the work of programmer and Committee member James Watson, HZ1JW.

There has been a great deal of interest in the Easy-100 DIY upconverter for geostationary satellite QO-100, which was published in the June edition of RadCom. A special interest group has now been created for discussions and support at groups.io/g/easy-100 where all are welcome to join.

Dementia Awareness Week will be run by Alzheimer’s Scotland from the 3rd to the 9th of June. Peter, MM0NQY will be operating GB2DAW during this time to help raise the worldwide amateur community’s awareness of dementia.

Next Saturday and Sunday sees this year’s Museum Ships weekend.

M0PAI will be active from the 1st to the 8th of June on the Isles of Lewis and Harris, IOTA reference EU-010,  and the Isle of Skye, as MM0PAI/p. He will be active all week on 80m to 2m, including 4m SSB, and on FT8. New references for World Flora Fauna will be activated, there will also be WAB references up for grabs and possibly some SOTA activations depending on weather.

Ric, LA/DL2VFR, Friedrich, LA/DL4BBH and Klaus, LA/DL7UXG will be active from the Vesteralen Islands  (in Norway, north of the Arctic Circle), EU-033, from the 27th to the 31st of May, and from the nearby Lofoten Islands, EU-076, on the 1st to the 5th of June. They will operate CW, SSB and FT8. QSL via their home calls, Club Log and eQSL

The 48 hour CQ Worldwide WPX CW contest is in full swing, ending at 2359UTC tonight. Using CW only on the 1.8 to 28MHz bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Tuesday the 432MHz FM Activity Contest will run from 1900 to 2000UTC, using FM only. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 2000 to 2230UTC. The exchange for both contests is signal report, serial number and locator.

Also on Tuesday, the SHF UKAC  will take place from 1830 to 2130UTC, Using all bands on the 2.4 to 10GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Thursday the 80m Club Championships CW leg will run from 1900 to 2030UTC. The exchange is signal report and serial number

Next weekend will see the lower parts of the bands very busy for the RSGB CW National Field Day, which is part of the IARU Region 1 Field Day.

Cockenzie & Port Seton Amateur Radio Club is running MM0CPS today for Port Seton Gala Day. More information from Bob, GM4UYZ, on 01875 811 723.

Edinburgh & District Amateur Radio Club will have an operating evening on Monday. Next Saturday sees a club meeting and social evening. Contact Norman, GM1CNH, on 07740 946 192 for further details.

For more news visit GB2RS – HERE .

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