Fox-1A launch today

08:05 Fernando Luiz de Souza 0 Comments





The amateur radio FM transponder CubeSat, AMSAT Fox-1A, will be among 13 CubeSats flying as secondary payloads on the NROL-55 mission

The launch should take place at 1249 UT (5:49am PDT) on Thursday, October 8 on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. NASA TV is expected to cover the launch starting at 1229 UT (5:29 PDT).

Fox-1A is a 1-Unit CubeSat carrying an FM repeater that will allow simple ground stations using an HT and an “Arrow” or “Elk” type antenna to make contacts using the satellite.
Data Under Voice (DUV) is used to send 200 bps FSK telemetry data at the same time as FM audio. This is achieved by making use of sub-audible frequencies below 200 Hz.

On the AMSAT Bulletin Board Burns Fisher, W2BFJ has provided this information:

Initially the transponder will not be on and will not respond to uplinks.  *Please do not attempt to uplink while we check out the satellite and commission it*.  We will publicize when we have opened the transponder to general use.  You should expect the checkout phase to last for a minimum of several days and possibly for several weeks.

During the initial checkout period and when the satellite is in range, every two minutes you will generally hear about 5 seconds of data followed by a few seconds of a voice ID (and possibly a second data packet).  You may occasionally hear ‘data’ mode which Chris, G0KLA, has famously described as sounding like an old-fashioned telephone modem.  If you should happen to hear what appear to be QSOs, please resist the temptation to join in before the commissioning period is over.

AMSAT-NA would love to have you collect and upload as much data as you can, and to give any other kind of report on the amsat-bb mailing list (which some of the Fox team will monitor) http://www.amsat.org/mailman/listinfo/amsat-bb

You can also report hearing or not hearing it on http://www.amsat.org/status/

You can upload data using the FoxTelem telemetry program that was recently released by Chris Thompson G0KLA. (Check the “upload to server” box in the properties/preference page).  More data will help us do the checkout faster!  Remember if you hear the “telephone modem” sound, you must switch FoxTelem to high-speed mode manually.  Similarly FoxTelem must be in low-speed mode at other times.

AMSAT-NA are planning a special award to the person who submits the first data from the satellite (by which we mean the earliest downlinked mission elapsed time), so get your rigs ready!

Information on the free Fox telemetry decoder software is at
http://amsat-uk.org/2015/09/23/fox-telemetry-decoder-software/

Read the Fox Operating Guide at
http://www.amsat.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/FoxOperatingGuide_May2015_Hi.pdf

Payload information and the latest TLEs
http://cubesat.net/index.php/missions/upcoming-launches/155-nrol55-launch-alert

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