First Chinese Amateur Radio Satellite Now in Space
AMSAT China (CAMSAT) reports that at around 0230 UTC on December 15, China launched its first Amateur Radio satellite -- named XW-1 -- into space. The microsatellite -- a secondary payload aboard the CZ-4C rocket launched from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center -- was launched into a Sun-synchronous orbit with an apogee of approximately 1200 kilometers. XW-1 successfully reached orbit at 0253 UTC. Members of the XW-1 launch team reported they received a beacon from the satellite shortly after the satellite deployed. In the first few days, the XW-1 team will work on the satellite’s FM and store-forward transponder mode and its linear transponder mode. Once those tests are complete, they will upload a new flight program to set up the payload schedule. The satellite’s communications payload includes a beacon and three crossband transponders operating in FM, SSB/CW and digital modes. Uplink and downlink frequencies can be found on the CAMSAT Web site. For the latest Keplarian elements for XW-1 and other satellites, check out the W1AW Keplarian Bulletins.