The first of the new birds to be launched will be the amateur radio satellite HORYU-2 built by students at the Kyushu Institute of Technology. Its mission is to take pictures of the Earth using a small C-MOS camera called SCAMP that was developed by the University of Surrey in the UK. The SCAMP camera takes a 640x480 pixel picture in the popular JPEG format. That means from 700 km altitude, one pixel corresponds to 1.6 km. HORYU-2 will be followed in July by the transport of several items to the International Space Station. This mission will deliver the Japanese Experiment Module Small Satellite Orbital Deployer or JEM along with the Japanese CubeSats WE- WISH, FITSAT-1 and RAIKO. These CubeSats should be deployed from the ISS in September using the JEM and robot arm. FITSAT-1 may be the most interesting of these. It will use a neodymium magnet for attitude control. It will also have multiple downlinks. These include CW on 437.250 MHz, AX.25 on 437.445 MHz and a 4 watt high speed data transmitter on 5840 MHz. The latter is capable of sending a 640 by 480 VGA JPEG image in 6 seconds. In addition to its other experiments, FITSAT-1 will also carry a set of high power LED's that will be driven with 100W pulses to produce extremely bright flashes. It is hoped, will be observable by the unaided eye or with small binoculars from the ground. Both the 5840 MHz and optical downlinks have a high power consumption so it may be that they are only activated only over Japan. In December the TSUBAME satellite is planned to be launched on a Japanese H-IIA booster. It will carry a CW beacon on 437.250 MHz and AX.25 packet at 1200 and 9600 bit per second telemetry on 437.505 MHz. The remaining satellites will be placed into orbit on subsequent flights.
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
HOW TO READ PROPAGATION NUMBERS
The A index [ LOW is GOOD ]
- 1 to 6 is BEST
- 7 to 9 is OK
- 11 or more is BAD
Represents the overall geomagnetic condition of the ionosphere ("Ap" if averaged from the Kp-Index) (an average of the eight 3-hour K-Indices) ('A' referring to amplitude) over a given 24 hour period, ranging (linearly) typically from 1-100 but theoretically up to 400.
A lower A-Index generally suggests better propagation on the 10, 12, 15, 17, & 20 Meter Bands; a low & steady Ap-Index generally suggest good propagation on the 30, 40, 60, 80, & 160 Meter Bands.
SFI index [ HIGH is GOOD ]
- 70 NOT GOOD
- 80 GOOD
- 90 BETTER
- 100+ BEST
The measure of total radio emissions from the sun at 10.7cm (2800 MHz), on a scale of 60 (no sunspots) to 300, generally corresponding to the sunspot level, but being too low in energy to cause ionization, not related to the ionization level of the Ionosphere.
Higher Solar Flux generally suggests better propagation on the 10, 12, 15, 17, & 20 Meter Bands; Solar Flux rarely affects the 30, 40, 60, 80, & 160 Meter Bands.
K index [ LOW is GOOD ]
- 0 or 1 is BEST
- 2 is OK
- 3 or more is BAD
- 5 is VERY VERY BAD
The overall geomagnetic condition of the ionosphere ("Kp" if averaged over the planet) over the past 3 hours, measured by 13 magnetometers between 46 & 63 degrees of latitude, and ranging quasi-logarithmically from 0-9. Designed to detect solar particle radiation by its magnetic effect. A higher K-index generally means worse HF conditions.
A lower K-Index generally suggests better propagation on the 10, 12, 15, 17, & 20 Meter Bands; a low & steady Kp-Index generally suggest good propagation on the 30, 40, 60, 80, & 160 Meter Bands.
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