Recent comments

  • ISS Radio Report   1 year 11 weeks ago

    This is my reception of Thomas Pesquet FX0ISS talking to students via F8KGY from Lycée Hélène Boucher, Thionville, France. Thu 2017-04-27 08:53 UTC

    https://dl.dropbox.com/s/vccj64l45a6sgjv/27042017_085309.wav?dl=0

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0JQfNK2Y70

  • Unattended beaconing via ISS a scourge on ham radio   1 year 12 weeks ago

    Hi David!

    I tried posting a reply to your post on Friday, but it disappeared from the site. I'll try again now...

    You said, "Because Packet Radio on ISS switched to UHF for too long". Too long? Since using the TM-D710G transceiver in the Russian service module wasn't apparently an option to keep ISS packet on 145.825 MHz, the options seemed simple enough: (1) Put the UHF radio into service for packet, for however long it takes to get a replacement radio up to the ISS, or (2) go without packet from the ISS. I am glad ARISS was able to have packet operational for a few months on UHF. It was a different challenge, and almost none of the unattended stations that clog up 145.825 MHz made it to 437.550 MHz. Having the UHF frequency available allowed me to experiment with different antennas, and transmitter power, on that band with a signal that was much stronger than almost any other amateur satellite currently in orbit.

    Although some operators in North America, and apparently many more across Europe, didn't try working ISS packet on 437.550 MHz - it was workable. It took changes to the stations - at least a group of memories to deal with Doppler for those using HTs and FM mobile radios, and maybe a different antenna. If operators decided to not try UHF packet - who's fault is that? There were a few who figured out how to use the UHF frequency. Obviously not nearly the number of those who showed up on 145.825 MHz in the past week, but there were operators around.

    Unless the replacement VHF radio suffers a failure like the original VHF radio, I don't expect that ISS packet will switch back to 437.550 MHz. That's a shame, in a way, given that so many think that iSS packet is only for squawking a beacon - or (too) many beacons - during ISS passes. Some stations do that much more often than most of the others, which is evident from looking on ariss.net since packet moved back to 145.825 MHz just over a week ago.

    I understand how most operators have been happy to see ISS packet switch back to 145.825 MHz. On this forum and in other places, I have seen some who express opinions similar to me about how 145.825 MHz gets clogged with these beacons. I hope you're successful with your project, David. Keep in mind that trying to use the packet BBS on the ISS is generally considered poor form, a poor use of the ISS packet system. Especially considering how busy passes over Europe have been in the past few days.

    73!

    Patrick WD9EWK/VA7EWK
    http://www.wd9ewk.net/
    Twitter: @WD9EWK

  • Unattended beaconing via ISS a scourge on ham radio   1 year 12 weeks ago

    Because Packet Radio on ISS switched to UHF for too long, many users overload the waves like hungry people starved of food for a long time throwing themselves on supermarket. I think this situation will not continue in the future because they will end up being satiated.

    I'm using Packet radio for educational reasons because contacting the crew with voice is reserved to an elite and is to expensive : We have to Schedule the contact some years before, antennas needs to be moved by site and azimuth rotator(still unaffordable) , many cables and so on...

    I usually send my APRS position until it is repeated by ISS. At this moment I know that the Station hear me and I connect to the BBS with my students to leave a symbolic message to the crew that I know they will probably not read. But we succeed the challenge and hope they will read the 2 lines message from students which realize their dreams and prove themselves that we we want, we can. Most of my students comes from hard social context and this challenge help them to continue their efforts to build a best future and believe in school to get a social rise.

    Actually I'm trying to improve transmission with QFH antenna and I send many APRS data for the tests but not every second. But I'm happy that Packet switch back to VHF because despite Doppler correction and many antennas (omni-directional, Egg-Beater, QFH, I only succeed in one or two APRS and it was very very hard to be repeated. So I know that most of you are bored with this amount of beacons but I prefer this situation than reading on the forum : "Active OK but not many users heard".

    The best deal would be to have both VHF and UHF so everybody would be happy. Anyway, Before Thomas Pesquet, the French astronaut comes back to Earth, please don't ask to switch again on UHF and give my educational project a little chance to succeed like i did last June. I've been working since 2 years with UZ7HO for Doppler correction with my old and best transceiver Yaesu FT-847 on Linux system so my project works.

    Have a look at my videos available on YouTube and on my website at http://f4bpp.raidghost.com and read the Press paper about my project. Last June the French Astronaut wasn't on ISS and now that he is, this would be the consecration of my work. To reach my goal, I need that the Packet frequency stay on VHF. So don't ask to come back to the last frequency if you want to support my project. The only thing we should ask from everyone is the respect of the good sense. Don't mislead the target.

    Thanks for reading.

    David (F4BPP).

  • Unattended beaconing via ISS a scourge on ham radio   1 year 12 weeks ago

    Hi Patrick,

    Well the links speak for themselves and you do have a point about the UHF time frame and how the Doppler effect comes into play. As for NO-84 - I am getting ready to try it so you may hear me on there if I am lucky (ha ha ha).

    73
    Jerry W8LR

  • Unattended beaconing via ISS a scourge on ham radio   1 year 12 weeks ago

    On the other end, Clayton... if HAM radio contacts (via ISS) would be easy and no problem at all, then thís would become disheartening and boring in the end. So I have concluded for myself: HAM radio amateurs (must) love QRM/QRN! HI

    ;) Marc, PD4U

  • ISS Radio Report   1 year 12 weeks ago

    Good copy of ISS Exp 51 docking with ISS at 13.23 UTC on Thurs 20th. This is my received audio on 143.625mhz for comms heard over Exeter IO80gr using THD74 HT + Arrow-2 antenna. https://dl.dropbox.com/s/tkw4ezva7imhxpg/20042017_132304.wav?dl=0

  • Unattended beaconing via ISS a scourge on ham radio   1 year 12 weeks ago

    Hi Jerry!

    I disagree with your comment about how the situation with the beacons would be the same on UHF as on VHF. Over five months of the ISS digipeater on UHF more than proved this would not be the case. The main issue for the beacons is that someone - or something - would have to adjust the UHF frequency to deal with Doppler. In some cases, the antenna used for VHF would not work, or not work as well, for UHF. It's really easy to set up a station on a single channel, without needing a computer or other mechanism to adjust the transmit and receive frequencies - even if those frequencies are stored in memory channels.

    If you looked at ariss.net over the time UHF was active, there wasn't as much activity over the continental USA, and it was like most of continental Europe went on a five-month holiday from ISS packet. Compare that with the dramatic increase in activity last Friday and Saturday (14-15 April), after the VHF radio was turned on. Hopefully some of those stations didn't keep beaconing, while the ISS was operating on UHF.

    Yesterday (Tuesday, 18 April), there was a station in the eastern USA that was copied through the ISS digipeater at a rate that was - at times - a packet every 2 to 3 seconds. This was excessive, and especially so if there was an operator at that station. W5PFG wrote two messages on the AMSAT-BB list about this station yesterday, including packet captures from two passes over the continental USA:

    http://amsat.org/pipermail/amsat-bb/2017-April/063010.html

    http://amsat.org/pipermail/amsat-bb/2017-April/063011.html

    According to posts in other forums, this station has been contacted in the past about excessive beaconing, and the responses were generally dismissive. Before the school QSO today, I didn't see that call sign on any North American passes this morning or early afternoon.

    On one ISS pass last night, I copied K1WY in grid FN31, Connecticut. This station was 3564km away from me, and this would have been a nice one to break current distance records for QSOs made through the ISS digipeater. With the congestion on the 145.825 MHz frequency over the past few days, being able to make a QSO like that is only a dream...

    Hope to work you again sometime. I see NO-84's digipeater is back on, and maybe we can make it work on an ISS pass using 145.825 MHz.

    73!

    Patrick WD9EWK/VA7EWK
    http://www.wd9ewk.net/
    Twitter: @WD9EWK

  • Unattended beaconing via ISS a scourge on ham radio   1 year 12 weeks ago

    Patrick,

    Being new to working the ISS and making my share of mistakes along the way I have found that coming from UHF, which was my first exposure to working the ISS, to trying to work through the ISS on VHF has been most disheartening. I had read many comments about how VHF was loaded with unattended beacons and that it made it hard for anyone who is LIVE to even make a contact with another LIVE person. Listening to beacon stations that continually transmit every 2 seconds is unbelievable and even making a simple live QSO is a miracle.

    I wish for UHF now ... but UHF would eventually end up being the same as VHF if it stayed on UHF. It is just so annoying listening to 5 beacon stations on a pass and each of them beaconing every 2 and 3 seconds .... "what an ever lovin mess".

    Jerry W8LR

  • Unattended beaconing via ISS a scourge on ham radio   1 year 13 weeks ago

    Clayton,

    Thanks for posting this comment here. I agree 100%. Nobody would think of setting up an unattended station to periodically transmit a call sign and location to an FM or SSB/CW satellite, but it is acceptable for the digipeaters in orbit? That was an advantage for having the ISS packet on 437.550 MHz - almost none of the unattended stations operated on that frequency, leaving it clear for stations trying to work each other.

    73!

    Patrick WD9EWK/VA7EWK
    http://www.wd9ewk.net/
    Twitter: @WD9EWK

  • ISS on Kenwood D710 - Help!   1 year 13 weeks ago

    Hi

    There is now no need to program memory channels for split frequency on your D710 as the ISS radio packet digipeater is now back on VHF 145.825 Mhz FM and doesn't require the doppler correction.
    Use Data Band A (default) Menu 601. Set DCD SENSE to IGNORE DCD you can either close squelch or open the squelch fully to hear weak signals. Packet Path set to Others and Path: ARISS.
    If your radio has GPS Enable GPS so it's blinking. Set Beacon to Manual and press beacon button to transmit your GPS beacon.

    It's best to use Kenwoods free programing software (requires PG-5G cable) to easily program memory channels and APRS User Phrases etc. The software download can be found here:
    http://www.kenwood.com/i/products/info/amateur/software_download.html

  • ISS Radio Report 42820   1 year 13 weeks ago

    This is my reception of astronaut Thomas Pesquet FX0ISS talking to students from College Roger Martin Du Gard, Bellême, France via F6KCO 15:21 UTC over Exeter IO80gr using THD74 HT + Arrow-2 antenna

    https://dl.dropbox.com/s/b6mvfqedpm4hfdj/14042017_211915.wav?dl=0

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CB2DdGmME34

  • ISS on Kenwood D710 - Help!   1 year 13 weeks ago

    The ISS APRS packet digipeater is back on 145.825Mhz heard over Exeter at 13:48 UTC and heard IR0UGN-1

  • ISS on Kenwood D710 - Help!   1 year 13 weeks ago

    #ARISS radio likely to change from UHF (437.550 MHz) to VHF (145.825 MHz) packet in the next 24 hours. #hamradio #iss #AMSAT #ARRL as tweeted by RF2Space

  • Russian Cosmonaut Day (12 April)   1 year 13 weeks ago

    No Russian ham activity currently on the short term schedule out through April 24.

  • ISS Radio Report 42675   1 year 13 weeks ago

    Athens-Palaio Faliro-Greece

  • ISS on Kenwood D710 - Help!   1 year 14 weeks ago

    Hi!

    G7HCE's post beat mine by a few seconds. I wrote that document on the AMSAT web site, and it does not mention using two VFOs in any radio, but to program a group of memory channels. G7HCE also added some information specific for your radio, so you can get it working with the ISS packet on 437.550 MHz until things change back to 145.825 MHz.

    Have you tried just listening to the ISS packet as the station passes over you? Start at 437.560 MHz early in the pass, then tune down and end up on 437.540 MHz near LOS. How well do you copy the packets? Make sure you use the VFO that is the data band in your TM-D710.

    73!

    Patrick WD9EWK/VA7EWK
    http://www.wd9ewk.net/
    Twitter: @WD9EWK

  • ISS on Kenwood D710 - Help!   1 year 14 weeks ago

    Hi

    You need to use free Kenwood MCP-6A programming software for editing memory channels and make sure the box is ticked to use the Split Channel function when editing the memory channel for Receive and Transmit frequencies. Set each memory channel as per Patrick WD9EWK/VA7EWK shown in previous post.

    Use Data Band A (default) Menu 601. Set DCD SENSE to IGNORE DCD and open the squelch fully to hear weak signals. Packet Path set to Others and Path: ARISS
    Enable GPS so it's blinking. Set Beacon to Manual and press beacon button to transmit your GPS beacon.

    Omnidirectional antenna is poor on UHF and is best when passes are below 30-deg and unusable for overhead passes.

  • ISS on Kenwood D710 - Help!   1 year 14 weeks ago

    Hello, I have had the same problem to detect the ISS. I programmed for each PM, the frequency of Rx in A and Tx in B, as explained in
    http://www.amsat.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/ISS_Packet_Ope...

    I also defined the DATABAND as A: Rx B: Tx, in menu 601 for each PM.
    But I still can not hear the ISS !!

    I'm using a 5.5dB omnidirectional antenna and the TM-D710. I would like to know how was the APRS configuration with which you detected the ISS.

    Thank you so much

  • HamTV - NEWS april 2017   1 year 14 weeks ago

    HamTV Status

    In principle, the HamVideo DATV transmitter is permanently transmitting from Columbus, the European ISS module. The camera is not activated. These so-called “blank transmissions” are used by ground stations for fine tuning their setup.

    For different reasons, blank transmissions must be interrupted now and then.

    Scheduled “power downs” are published here.

    HamVideo is presently in Blank Transmission mode.

    http://www.amsat-on.be/hamtv-summary/

  • ISS on Kenwood D710 - Help!   1 year 15 weeks ago

    ISS Packet Radio currently UHF 437.550 Mhz

    ISS radio to be swapped out and returned to VHF 145.825 Mhz tweeted from RF2Space

    It takes 30 minutes of scheduled time for the swap vs. 5 min. for the power on. Should get swapped by middle of April.

  • ISS on Kenwood D710 - Help!   1 year 15 weeks ago

    I guess I got it figured out! I was using 437.550 without the Doppler correction that I am now aware of...I have a lot to learn about APRS! Thanks for the report and the encouragement!

    Steve KA1OWC

  • ISS on Kenwood D710 - Help!   1 year 16 weeks ago

    Hi!

    I saw KA1OWC on the ISS pass around 0245 UTC this evening (Monday 27 March, on the UTC clock). You figured out the path needed for the ISS digipeater to retransmit your packets, and I saw your position packets on my TH-D74A HT here in Arizona. You can see a picture of my HT's screen with your call sign and location at:

    https://twitter.com/H0UND_radio/status/846197218646253569

    Were you only operating on 437.550 MHz, or did you have a group of memory channels programmed as listed in this AMSAT document:

    http://www.amsat.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/ISS_Packet_Ope...

    I was using H0UND (H-zero-UND) as my "call sign" on that pass, with my WD9EWK call in the comment sent with my position packets. My greyhound was out in the yard during that pass, so I use that "call" when she is around. Did you copy those packets, or see anything else coming back from the ISS on that pass?

    Until the ISS crew puts a VHF radio in place and turns it on, we'll have ISS packet on UHF for a while longer. How long - nobody knows, or nobody is saying when the change will be made.

    73!

    Patrick WD9EWK/VA7EWK
    http://www.wd9ewk.net/
    Twitter: @WD9EWK

  • Problem getting digipeated via SIS and PSAT   1 year 16 weeks ago

    Yes something not working properly in the Yaesu. Still its old and even a factory reset has not corrected it.
    Good contact today via PSAT. Fun stuff. Must add a few more phrases to use.
    ISS is getting ealier and may make an effort tonight to try it.

  • Problem getting digipeated via SIS and PSAT   1 year 16 weeks ago
    Re:

    Hope you are feeling better now. Yes something not quite right with the Yaesu somewhere.

    Managed to receive your ack0 today during qso on PSAT NO-84 at 11:05UTC so at least you tHD72 is working well.

    20170325110643 : G7HCE-7]APK004,PSAT,ARISS*,qAR,G7HCE-6::M0KKA-7 :QSL and 73's via PSAT{1
    20170325110603 : M0KKA-7]APK003,PSAT,ARISS*,WIDE1-1,qAR,G7HCE-6::G7HCE-7 :ack0
    20170325110532 : G7HCE-7]APK004,PSAT,ARISS*,qAR,G7HCE-6::M0KKA-7 :Hi from IO80gr via PSAT - TH-D74{0
    20170325110518 : G7HCE-7]UP4RXV,PSAT,ARISS*,qAR,G7HCE-6:`y9'l#0K\]Around Exeter IO80gr via PSAT --- TH-D74^
    20170325110510 : M0KKA-7]UQRYVP,PSAT,ARISS*,WIDE1-1,qAR,G7HCE-6:`w44l!qK\]73 DE M0KKA CRIS IO91=

  • Problem getting digipeated via SIS and PSAT   1 year 16 weeks ago

    Well done. I didn't make it as I have been a little ill this week and not up to the usual service..

    Might have worked out the issue with the Yaesu. It's a bit flakey and will only tx with ARISS as the path with the call sign set with no SSID. Even then it seems to not emit a signal even with a full meter deflection and a red tx status light in manual setting.

    Used the D72 to monitor it and sure enough the first ID was ARISS..

    Cris

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