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China Set to Launch Several Amateur Radio Satellites this Summer

05/26/2015

CAMSAT has announced that the CAS-3 amateur satellite system is nearing completion, and six Chinese amateur satellites will be launched in mid-July.

“All six satellites are equipped with substantially the same Amateur Radio payloads, a U/V mode linear transponder, a CW telemetry beacon and an AX.25 19.2k/9.6k baud GMSK telemetry downlink,” the CAMSAT announcement said. CAMSAT said that each Amateur Radio complement has the same technical characteristics, but will operate on different 70 centimeter uplink and 2 meter downlink frequencies.

CAMSAT said it has worked closely with DFH Satellite Co Ltd, a Chinese government aerospace contractor, to complete the project. “All the satellites are currently conducting final testing and inspection,” CAMSAT added. Four of the satellites are described as “microsatellites,” while three are listed as CubeSats.

CAMSAT said a Long March-6 rocket will carry the satellites into orbit. The launch will take place at Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center. CAS-3A will have sun-synchronous orbits of about 450 km, while the other satellites have sun-synchronous orbits of about 530 km.

“The launch will carry total of 20 satellites,” CAMSAT said. “Three other satellites named as CAS-3G, CAS-3H, and CAS-3I involved in Amateur Radio from other agencies of China will share the same launch.”

CAMSAT said it was assisting the Chinese government with frequency allocation and coordination and would announce additional details.

CAS-3A (microsatellite architecture)

Dimensions: 400×400×400 mm (20 kg)

Stabilization: Three-axis stabilization system with its +Y surface facing Earth

Antenna: Deployable antenna, one 0.25 λ monopole VHF antenna on +Z side and one 0.25 λ monopole UHF antenna on the –Z side, close to the each edge of satellite body

Call Sign: BJ1SB

CW Telemetry Beacon: 50mW, 22 WPM

U/V Mode Linear Transponder: 100 mW, 20 kHz bandwidth, inverting

AX.25 telemetry: 100 mW, 19.2k/9.6k baud GMSK

CAS-3B, CAS-3C and CAS-3D (microsatellite architecture)

Dimensions: 250×250×250 mm (9 kg)

Stabilization: Tree-axis stabilization system with its +Y surface facing Earth

Antenna: Deployable antenna, one 0.25 λ monopole VHF antenna on the +Z side and one 0.25 λ monopole UHF antenna on the –Z side, close to the each edge of satellite body

Call Signs: BJ1SC (CAS-3B), BJ1SD (CAS-3C), BJ1SE (CAS-3D)

CW Telemetry Beacon: 50 mW, 22 WPM

U/V Mode Linear Transponder: 100 mW, 20 kHz bandwidth, inverting

AX.25 telemetry: 100 mW, 19.2k/9.6k baud GMSK

CAS-3E and CAS-3F (CubeSat architecture)

Dimensions: 110×110×110 mm (1.5 kg)

Stabilization: Spinning stabilization using permanent magnet torquer

Antenna: Deployable antenna, one 0.25 λ monopole VHF antenna on the +Z side and one 0.25 λ monopole UHF antenna on the –Z side, close to the each edge of satellite body

Call Signs: BJ1SF (CAS-3E), BJ1SG (CAS-3F)

CW Telemetry Beacon: 50 mW, 22 WPM

U/V Mode Linear Transponder: 100 mW, 20 kHz bandwidth, inverting

AX.25 telemetry: 100 mW, 9.6k baud GMSK

Meanwhile, AMSAT News Service has reported via Mineo Wakita, JE9PEL, that Beijing will be launching other satellites carrying Amateur Radio payloads in July. According to AMSAT-UK, the CAS-2A1 and CAS-2A2 satellites will be combined into a binary star system for Amateur Radio communication and education. “There will be a radio link between the two satellites when the satellites are in suitable positions in their orbits, so that Amateur Radio communication coverage can be extended,” AMSAT-UK reported on its website.

CAS-2A1

Dimensions: 270×270×250 mm

2 meter CW telemetry beacon, 100 mW

2 meter AX.25 digital telemetry beacon, 500 mW

2 meter FM voice beacon, 500 mW

U/V mode linear transponder: 50 kHz bandwidth, 500 mW

L/S mode linear transponder: 200 kHz bandwidth, 320 mW

U/V mode APRS repeater

CAS-2A2

Dimensions: 270×270×250 mm

70 centimeter CW telemetry beacon, 100 mW

70 centimeter AX.25 digital telemetry beacon, 500 mW

13 centimeter CW telemetry beacon, 200 mW

3 centimeter CW telemetry beacon, 200 mW

V/U mode linear transponder, 500 mW

LilacSat-2 (Harbin Institute of Technology)

Dimensions: 20×20×20 cm (11 kg)

Uplink: 145.825, 145.875 MHz

Downlink: 437.200 MHz beacon, 437.225 MHz FM/APRS

Other spacecraft include Tiantuo-3 (TT-3), from the National University of Defense Technology, and ZDPS-2, a nanosatellite mission of the Microsat Research Center, Zhejiang University. — Thanks to CAMSAT, AMSAT News Service, Mineo Wakita, JE9PEL, and AMSAT-UK

 



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