HAMSAT (or VUsat) is the latest Amateur Radio satellite in orbit. It is India’s first.

“We congratulate all who have worked for the hamsat and its successful launch,” said Sandip Shah, VU3SXE, AMSAT-India’s treasurer, who was at the control center in Bangalore, India, for the May 5 launch. The satellite went aloft from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) SHAR in Sriharikota.

Going into space with the 42.5 kg HAMSAT was the primary payload–the 1560 kg Indian remote sensing satellite, CARTOSAT-1. The spacecraft were placed into polar sun synchronous orbits at an altitude of 632 x 621 km with an equatorial inclination of 97.8 degrees.
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P3E satellite design

AMSAT-DL reviews P3E satellite design: An international team gathered in Marburg, Germany, in late January to review progress on the Phase 3 Express (P3E) Amateur Radio satellite–essentially a scaled-down and less-complex version of the now-defunct AO-40.

The meeting focused on the design of the integrated housekeeping unit (IHU-3) computer and the “CAN-Do interface.” AMSAT-NA is a partner in the P3E high-altitude, elliptical-orbit satellite, a prelude to the ambitious Mars-orbiting P5A spacecraft, and AMSAT-NA

President Rick Hambly, W2GPS, was among those attending the gathering January 26-30. Being developed under AMSAT-DL leadership, P3E will provide a test bench for technology under development for the subsequent Mars mission. Launch is planned sometime before the end of 2006. The P3E satellite will offer both analog and digital communication on VHF through microwave.

There’s more information on P3E and P5A on the AMSAT-DL Web site

Useful life of UO-22 satellite appears over

According to AMSAT-UK, the UO-22 satellite is not in good shape and its useful life may be over. The Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL) Ground Station control center has tried several times in recent weeks to reactivate the satellite, AMSAT-UK reports. The satellite did come back to life briefly following one attempt, but other tries have failed completely.
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A congratulatory greeting via ham radio from the crew of the International Space Station was among the highlights of the 2004 AMSAT-NA Symposium and Annual Meeting October 8-10 in Arlington, Virginia.

The gathering, for the first time held in conjunction with this week’s Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) International delegates meeting, attracted upward of 200 attendees–among them some of the best-known names in the amateur satellite world. Fincke joined the celebration vicariously by working ARISS Ham Radio Technical Manager Kenneth Ransom, N5VHO, during an ISS pass October 9.
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AMSAT board election

The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation has announced the results of its 2004 Board of Directors election.

Tom Clark, W3IWI, Lou McFadin, W5DID, and Paul Shuch, N6TX, were the top three vote getters, earning new two-year seats on the AMSAT-NA Board of Directors.

Shuch displaced Bruce Paige, KK5DO, who becomes first alternate; the second alternate is Steve Diggs, W4EPI. Clark and McFadin were AMSAT Board incumbents, while Shuch is new to the Board. Other AMSAT-NA Board members include President Robin Haighton, VE3FRH; Executive Vice President Rick Hambly, W2GPS, Gunther Meisse, W8GSM, and Barry Baines, WD4ASW.

AMSAT-NA holds its 22nd Space Symposium and Annual Meeting and October 7-10 in Arlington, Virginia.

AMSAT Lab building is Hurricane Charley victim

Structural damage to the airport hangar housing the AMSAT Laboratory in Orlando–caused when Hurricane Charley made its way across Florida August 13–has led authorities to condemn the building.

The storm, with winds of 100 MPH or greater, passed directly over the Orlando Executive Airport, which is home to the Lab. AMSAT now must begin a search for a new facility to support development of the Eagle satellite project.
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New Amateur Satellite Project

AMSAT-UK has announced that an Amateur Radio transponder will be part of the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Student Space Exploration and Technology Initiative (SSETI) “Express” satellite.

Onboard will be a 2.4 GHz transmitter and a 437 MHz receiver. The pair will be turned into an amateur FM voice transponder after the transmitter serves initial telemetry duty. “These frequencies will enable the many amateurs who already have AMSAT OSCAR 40 equipment to use it in an exciting new way,” AMSAT-UK Chairman Martin Sweeting, G3YJO, said. He told participants at the 2004 AMSAT-UK Colloquium July 30-August 1 that AMSAT-UK has arranged with the ESA to provide–at very short notice–an S band transmitter for the SSETI Express.
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