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12 May 2019
Amateur Radio Today is
Mondays 18:30 CAT
Membership/Renewal application form
SA AMSAT EZINE
To request a trial copy send your email address here with trial copy in the subject line
*Denotes that the person has made several donations over time. Thank you
Marinus Brand ZS6BM
Ronald Verweerdt ZS6RVC
AMSAT SA AND SARL JOINT VHF WORKSHOP
Horizontal vs Vertical antenna polarisation – the debate
Attend the next joint SARL and AMSAT SA VHF workshop on 20 July 2019 and join the debate about Horizontal versus Vertical antenna polarisation for long distance VHF communication. The subject has for several years been surrounded by arguments that Vertical polarisation surpasses Horizontal Polarisation in achieving long distance communication on VHF with equal opposite arguments.
Dick Coates ZS6BUN has carried out extensive technical paper research and reviewed experiential data from world-wide resources and will present his findings and share his own experiences at the workshop.
Other discussions at the workshop include: Update on the Bethlehem and Karoo two metre beacon projects, the West Coast propagation phenomena, and three quick fire 10-minute sessions covering the Reverse beacon project, increasing levels of the HF noise floor a growing concern and why VHF and UHF have an important future in Amateur Radio.
The workshop will be held at the SARL National Amateur Radio Centre from 08:30 and ends at 13:00. Midmorning light refreshments will be served. The registration fee is R50 for SARL and AMSAT SA Members and R100 for non-members. To register click here for the form and here for the programme
AMSAT SA Dual Band Yagi now available
The first 200 were sold under an introductory offer. The price has increased to R300 for AMSATSA and SARL Members and R450 for non-members. The yagis are available again.
The antenna has a 50-ohm designed driver. The Yagi has a unique element called a ‘Open Sleeve’ which is a director very close to the driven element. The driven element is sized for 2M. When operating on 70cm the ‘Open Sleeve’ acts as part of the driven element on 70cm (Third harmonic of 2M).
The original concept was developed in 1946 by Dr J T Bolljahn of the Stanford Research institute but was not introduced into amateur radio until the 1950s. The AMSAT SA version is based on a design by DK7ZB with modifications by WB5CXC. More details and order form here.
Available for export with minimum 6 units in one shipment.. Ask for a quote for shipping to your destination.
Order and pay by EFT and collect at the VHF workshop at the NARC on 9 February 2019. No cash sales are available at the NARC
JO97 Launched and operational
On December 3rd, 2018, JY1Sat was launched on a Falcon 9 vehicle from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. Part of Spaceflight’s
SSO-A: Smallsat Express launch, JY1Sat is a project of the Crown Prince Foundation of Jordan. Telemetry has been received and decoded around the world since the launch.
It had been designated Jordan-OSCAR 97 (JO-97)
The telemetry downlink frequency is 145.840 MHz, this will use the usual FUNcube standard 1k2 BPSK format. The linear transponder, for Single Sideband (SSB) and CW modes, will downlink on 145.855-145.875 MHz and uplink on 435.100-435.120 MHz. The transponder is inverting so Lower Sideband (LSB) should be used on the uplink and Upper Sideband (USB) on the downlink.
Es'hail Sat launched successfully
SpaceX successfully launched the Es’hail-2 satellite on Thursday, November 15 from Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Liftoff occurred at 20:46 UTC, and the satellite was deployed to a geostationary transfer orbit (GTO) about 32 minutes after liftoff.
The downlink frequency is 10 489.550 to 10 489.800 MHz with the centre of the band being 10 489.675 MHz. Vertical polarization will be used.
The preferred modes of operation will be SSB and CW. 5 Watt uplink power to a 60 to 75 cm offset dish should be more than sufficient for the uplink. The transponder will also be fitted with a “LEILA” (LEIstungs Limit Anzeige) input power limiter to ensure fair play and that the AGC of the transponder is not triggered (hogged) by a single, high power transmission, thus reducing the sensitivity of the satellite. In short, running higher uplink power than necessary will be counterproductive,
A detailed paper was presented by Hannes Coetzee ZS6BZP at the 2018 AMSAT SA Space Symposium. Plans are being made to have a live demonstration at the 2019 AMSAT SA Space Symposium on 16 March 2019. Down the ZS6BZP paper here.
An SDR CUBESAT ON THE CARDS
Partial populated transponder board
AMSAT SA has announced that parallel to its analogue Kletskous CubeSat, the group is working on a digital project featuring a Software defined transponder. Called AfriCUBE, the CubeSat will use the same space frame as KLETSKOUS . Anton Janovsky is current building a prototype transponder. AMSATSA is inviting persons interested in becoming part of the development team to send their details to .
Meanwhile the development and final construction of the AMSAT SA KLETSKOUS is plagued by electronic component obsolescence. This forces unwanted design changes to be made to ensure that when the time comes to construct the final launch unit, the main components are still available.
The KLETSKOUS team decided to freeze the design of KLETSKOUS and purchase a quantity of devices to proactively mitigate future obsolesce. This decision will also speed up the process of putting a final satellite on the table. “Every time we change designs to mitigate for the discontinued components, it is like starting the design a fresh, often creating new problems that have to be solved”, Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP said. “By freezing the design, in other words making a final decision on the main specialised devices to be used, we will be able to speed up the process of putting a flight ready unit on the table.”
KLETSKOUS is not a textbook design. Most of the sub-components that will make up KLETSKOUS are designed and being built by the volunteer team. “We do not have the finances to go out and purchase sub-units and simply wire them up.”, Coetzee said.
2019 AMSATSA Space Symposium 16 March 2019
Papers will be available soon. Click here
More Kletskous Progress
A flight-ready solar panel for Kletskous.
The solar cells are glued to the PC board using conductive silver epoxy. This is done under vacuum to prevent bubbles being formed in the epoxy. Bubbles may burst in the vacuum of space, fracturing the paper thin glass solar cell and destroying it in the process.
Become a partner in space
Donate to the AMSAT SA Kletskous fund and become a partner in space
Please make your contribution. You may pay directly into our account electronically. Please send the payment details with your name, callsign, email and postal address to email@example.com.
All contributions will be acknowledged on this page (Scroll down). Donations of R500 or more will be acknowledged with a certificate.
AMSAT SA, ABSA Menlyn, Branch code 632 005
RS, the component supplier in South Africa has become
a component sponsor for the KLETSkous project.
TRAX SPONSOR PCBs for KLETSkous More about TRAX
Avnet : a broad line supplier of semiconductors, passives, magnetics, enclosures, optoelectronic, GPS / GSM, interconnect, electromechanical, embedded products and components