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Tag Archive: amateur

Mar 18 2015


Published on Jan 16, 2015

MTN Global’s latest brand commercial tells the story of a little boy who discovers, via MTN’s world class internet, that it is very simple to build a homemade radio that will allow him to actually speak to an astronaut in space. He tries and fails and tries again, using the New World of MTN to embark on a journey of discovery that takes a rather unexpected turn. Because that’s the thing about discovery, there’s always more to discover.

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Jan 12 2015

A Taste of Amateur Radio

Published on May 8, 2014

A four minute overview of what today’s UK amateur radio has to offer and how to get started. Features extracts from special events, ISS contacts, field days and a Foundation training course. Two and seven minute versions also available. More videos at



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Aug 03 2014

A Day In The Life of Ham x264

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Jul 10 2014

Amateur Radio Field Day in Kansas City MO

  Here is one amateur radio (ham) field day operation in Kansas City (MO) in 2014.

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Jun 25 2014

CW Field Day Message on 630 meter band–474 khz

Date: Mon, 23 Jun 2014 09:52:57 -0700
From: John Langridge <>
Reply-To: John Langridge <>
Subject: CQ FD! 2014! de WG2XIQ

To: “” <>
Greetings Cowtown club!  I wanted to extend this on-air demo opportunity to you and your group at Field day!
Starting with Field Day 2013, I transmitted a CW field day message on the 630-meter band for demonstration purposes to stations around the Texas area.  Let me be clear that this was not the ARRL’s Field Day message.  I hope to do it again this year, weather permitting, and wanted to let you know about it since I know you have low band enthusiasts out that direction.  Last year’s operation was amazingly successful and the message was copied as far away as Salt Lake City, Utah, using rigs and antennas set up for ham bands at a Field Day site.  All this was done with 1 Watt ERP and a short base-loaded vertical!
The plan will be to run the message on 474 KHz CW starting Saturday morning, June 28, around 8am and it will run through the end of Field Day on June 29, sometime after 1pm CDT.  I hope to run it at 15 minute intervals starting at the top of each hour and expect the message to run 5-10 minutes in length.
In addition to my station, there will be other Part 5 experimental stations around the US following suit with their own messages.  Below is a list:
WG2XKA in VT         472.5 Khz CW
WG2XJM in PA         473 KHz CW
WD2XSH/20 in OR    475 KHz CW
WG2XIQ in TX           474 KHz CW
So why do this?  We are hoping to show the value of the band, both in groundwave and skywave coverage.  The groundwave signals will outperform anything we have available to us under part 97 and the skywave, particularly during the winter, will surprise you, often times being reported thousands of miles from the transmitter site (I was heard in Europe and Alaska quite often last winter and make regular coast-to-coast QSO’s on CW and digital modes on 630-meters).  There are so many misconceptions about what goes on below the AM Broadcast band and we hope to provide opportunities for individuals at their club’s field day operation to experience the band first hand. Summer is not the best time to do this, but week keep signals on the band all year long and make QSO’s all year long.
Whatever antennas and rigs you might have hooked up for your operation, simply tune them to one of the frequencies above and see what you hear.  Again, I will be on 474 KHz CW and plan on running at a 15 minute interval if everything works out.
If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to contact me directly via email.
73 and I hope your group has a wonderful Field Day 2014!
John Langridge KB5NJD / WG2XIQ
Duncanville, TX – EM12MP
PS:  I *may* offer a certificate to those that report my signal around the Texas area so reports, whether copied by ear or software are very welcome!

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Jun 25 2014

ARRL Field Day 2014

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Jun 25 2014

Possible ISS Contacts on Field Day 2014

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 175.01 
DATE June 24, 2014 
BID: $ANS-175.01 

Possible ISS Voice Contacts on Field Day 
David Jordan, AA4KN, ARISS Public Relations 

Current discussions between the ARISS team and NASA suggest the 
possibility of voice contacts with the International Space Station 
(ISS) during Saturday’s ARRL Field Day activities this coming weekend. 

In a June 23 email, Kenneth Ransom, the ISS Ham Radio payload 
developer, stated “I have received a response from astronaut (Reid) 
Wiseman that he is willing to try and work some stations on Saturday
Pass times begin very soon after the start of Field day.” Wiseman 
would operate under the call sign, NA1SS. Should Alex Gerst 
participate, he would use the call sign, DP0ISS. 

If voice operation does occur, It will likely take place from the 
Columbus (COL) module using the standard Region 2 uplink frequency of 
144.49 MHz and 145.800 MHz for downlink. It’s expected that the packet 
system will be operational on 145.825 MHz during periods when the crew 
is not available. 

It’s not clear whether any of the Russian crew would participate from 
the Russian module, but if so, they would be directed to use 437.550 
MHz for any contacts using the call sign RS0ISS. The COL would also be 
available to their crew using the VHF frequencies above, if Wiseman is 
not operating. 

Listed below are approximate pass times and a chart showing ISS passes 
for the Field Day weekend. The pass times shown are not definite, 
scheduled times with the crew. They may or may not be able to support 
these times. And, updates to this tentative plan will be released as 
they become available. 

Saturday, June 28
+ N. America (18:11-18:33 UTC
+ Hawaii (19:36 – 19:47 UTC
+ N. America (19:48-20:10 UTC

This news release including a color map showing all ISS passes for 
Field Day weekend for North America can be viewed on-line at: 

[ANS thanks David Jordan, AA4KN, ARISS Public Relations for the above 

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Jun 18 2014

FUNcube-3 payload launch

The FUNcube team anticipate that the Dnepr launch of the amateur radio FUNcube-3 payload on the QB50p1 CubeSat will take place as previously stated.
This Thursday is the day!
To be precise, lift off is expected to take place from Yasny on June 19, 2014 at 19:11:11 UT and the deployment of the various payloads will take place over the Indian Ocean in a similar fashion to the launch of FUNcube-1 last November.
Pre-launch Keplerian elements / Two-Line Elements (TLEs) have not yet been made available but the details of the initial 145 MHz CW transmission format for both QB50p1, and its near twin QB50p2, can now be seen at
QB50p1 carries an inverting linear UV transponder with 400 mW output provided by AMSAT-NL and which is similar to that on FUNcube-1.
• 145.815 MHz 1200 bps BPSK telemetry
• FUNcube inverting 400 mW SSB/CW transponder
– 435.035-435.065 MHz Uplink LSB
– 145.935-145.965 MHz Downlink USB.
QB50p2 carries an UV FM transponder and FX25 data transmitter from AMSAT-F. It is expected that these payloads will be activated after the science missions have been completed.
• 145.880 MHz 9600 bps BPSK telemetry beacon
• 145.840 MHz 9600 bps FSK FX25
AMSAT-UK will be monitoring the launch event and watching for signal reports on the #cubesat IRC channel throughout the evening. A web client is available at
FUNcube website
FUNcube Yahoo Group
FUNcube Forum

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Jun 11 2014

Ham Radio: Two QB50 satellites with ham radio payloads delivered

The QB50 project has reached another crucial milestone. The first two QB50 satellites have been delivered for shipment to the launch site after a successful flight acceptance test campaign
The satellites will form the QB50 Precursor mission that seeks to de-risk and validate key technologies of the QB50 main flight that will be performed in the coming years.
The launch is planned for June 19, 2014 from the Russian ICBM base at Dombarovsky near Yasny on a Dnepr rocket manufactured in Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine.
The satellites will be put into a 650 km Sun Synchronous Orbit (SSO).
The following payloads were integrated into the ISIS satellite platforms:
• INMS Payload from MSSL, UK
• QB50 ADCS system from SSC, UK
• Thermocouple experiment from VKI, Belgium
• AMSAT-NL 435/145 MHz linear transponder (FUNcube-3) from AMSAT-NL, The Netherlands
• FIPEX Payload, University of Dresden, Germany
• QB50 ADCS system from SSC, UK
• Thermocouple experiment from VKI, Belgium
• AMSAT-Fr 435/145 MHz FM voice transponder from AMSAT Francophone, France
QB50p1 (FUNcube-3) will have a VHF 9600 bps BPSK telemetry downlink plus a separate payload from AMSAT-NL. This will comprise of a linear U/V transponder similar to that already flying on FUNcube-1 with an output of 400 mW.
• 145.815 MHz 9600 bps BPSK telemetry beacon
• Inverting SSB/CW linear transponder 400 mW PEP
– 435.035 – 435.065 MHz Uplink LSB
– 145.935 – 145.965 MHz Downlink USB
QB50p2 will have a VHF 9600 bps BPSK telemetry downlink plus a separate RF payload from AMSAT-F which will comprise of a FM voice transponder with UHF uplink and VHF downlink. It will also transmit FX25 telemetry at 9600 bps.
• 145.880 MHz 9600 bps BPSK telemetry beacon
• 145.840 MHz 9600 bps FSK FX25
The project was executed to an unprecedented timeline. Formal Kick-Off was in October 2013 and all hardware from the different partners was delivered for integration into the satellites in January 2014. This means that two satellites were delivered in just over 6 months. Furthermore, with a precursor launch scheduled in June, launch and operations will commence within 9 months of project Kick-Off.
This fast-track project shows how successful a close cooperation between academic institutes and experienced companies can be. With ISIS’ experienced team of engineers that design and build nanosatellites on a regular basis (ISIS remains on track to delivering 1 satellite system per month in 2014), throughput times of nanosatellite projects can be shortened significantly.
The upcoming launch of the QB50 precursor satellites will also be the first satellites to be launched that were funded through the EU’s FP7 space technology programme, in which a number of innovative small satellites will be launched in the coming years to demonstrate new European space technologies.
The lessons learned from the QB50 Precursor development and operations have already led to many recommendations to further improve and streamline the QB50 main flight. All teams involved in QB50 stand to benefit from the experiences gained over the last months.

QB50 Precursor Flight
AMSAT-UK Colloquium announcement…_delivered.htm


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Jun 11 2014

Ham Radio: KickSat Sprite deployment may not happen

An unexpected reset of the master clock on KickSat may mean that the deployment of the 104 Sprite 437 MHz satellites will not take place before the KickSat CubeSat burns up in the atmosphere
Radio amateur Zac Manchester KD2BHC has posted this update:
First off, I’d like to sincerely thank all of you for your support over the past two years. KickSat has been a success up to this point because of you.
As those who’ve been keeping up with the telemetry data coming in from KickSat on our mailing list may have noticed, the packets we’ve been receiving have changed in the last couple of days. This was due to a hard reset of the “watchdog” microcontroller on KickSat – the sort of “reptile brain” of the satellite that manages turning on and off the rest of the subsystems and keeps the master clock.
It appears the reset happened some time in the morning of Wednesday, April 30th. The reset doesn’t seem to be the result of power issues (the watchdog should run until the batteries reach 5.5 volts, and they’ve been holding steady around 6.5 volts). Instead, it seems the likely culprit was radiation.
One consequence of the watchdog reset on KickSat is that the spacecraft’s master clock was reset, thus also setting the deployment countdown for KickSat back to 16 days. That would put the deployment some time in the morning of May 16th. Unfortunately, it looks like KickSat will most likely reenter and burn up before the 16th.
We’ve spent the last couple of days here at Cornell trying to think of every possible contingency, but it seems there aren’t very many options right now. KickSat’s uplink radio, which we could use to command the deployment, can’t turn on unless the batteries reach 8 volts, and it doesn’t look like they’ll reach that level in time.
While the situation looks a little bleak, there is still some hope that the batteries may recharge sufficiently to command the satellite. There is also a small chance that KickSat could remain in orbit until the 16th, at which point the timer would set off the deployment as originally planned.
We’ll continue tracking KickSat over the next few days with the help of the ham community, so that we can keep track of its battery voltage and the Sprite deployment status. I’ll post updates here, as usual, but you can also see the latest data as it comes in on our mailing list.
Thank you again for your support. I promise that this won’t be the end of the KickSat project.
– Zac
Kicksat Wiki
KickSat mailing list!forum/kicksat-gs
Kicksat Updates

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