ARRL

ARRL Satellite Bulletin ARLS004 (2011)

SB SPACE @ ARL $ARLS004
ARLS004 Hams Invited to Track Satellites

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Space Bulletin 004  ARLS004
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington, CT  March 16, 2011
To all radio amateurs

SB SPACE ARL ARLS004
ARLS004 Hams Invited to Track Satellites

In November 2010, five research satellites were carried to orbit
aboard a Minotaur V rocket from Kodiak Island, Alaska. Two of these
satellites -- FASTRAC 1, known as "Sara Lily" and FASTRAC 2,
referred to as "Emma" -- entered orbit as a single nanosatellite,
but on March 15, scientists sent the command to have them separate.

According to FASTRAC Student Program Manager Sebastian Munoz,
KE5FKV, students at the University of Texas will be confirming the
separation as the satellites pass: "We started one of the most
exciting phases of our project by separating both of our girls so
that they can compute on-orbit real-time relative navigation
solutions while both of them are freely drifting from one another."

Munoz said that they will continue to update the satellites' two
line elements (TLEs) on their website for those radio amateurs
interested in tracking the two nanosatellites. "I want to thank the
ham community all over the world for supporting our project," Munoz
said. "Your support has been incredible and we really value it. We
really appreciate all of your help so far and we hope that we can
continue to count on it."

The FASTRAC website with the current TLEs can be found at:

http://fastrac.ae.utexas.edu/for_radio_operators/users/phpBB3/predictedorbit.php
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