Saturday, July 31, 2010

VU2SWG heard in South Africa - on HO - 68 - A New record Distance????

Below is the text of the message posted on SARL discussion board on XW-1 (HO-68)

Great going Shankar - Wish you many more DX - and wishing ourselves also the same :P
Working the XW-1 Satellite

Printed from: SARL Discussion Forums
Topic URL:
Printed on: 31/07/2010
Reply author: ZS6BNE
Replied on: 28/06/2010 10:09:41

A message from Hal , ZS6WB off ZS-Sat.

The HO-68 FM pass on Sunday morning, 27 June at 27/0552 utc was fun and although not all the stations  expected to be on turned up for the pass, the satellite performance was every bit as good as was expected.

As the satellite came over the horizon VU2SWG was heard by ZS6WB in contact with Jim, VQ9JC/MM (MI62) in the Chagos Islands, but by the time the QSO had been completed the very short window to India had closed. The next station heard was ET3SID in Ethiopia calling CQ but Sid was apparently not hearing other stations. Other stations that joined in during the pass included FR1GZ (LG79), ZR5JT (KG61), ZS2BK (KF26) and ZS6BNE/P (KG33). All stations heard today on the satellite were very strong with the exception of VU2SWG.

The pass was excellent and hopefully we will have more passes of this type scheduled in the future.

A report was received from Shankar, VU2SWG in Bangalore, India (MK82TW) telling a bit about his station. He was using a Yaesu FT-8800R transceiver running about 25 watts out with a Diamond X510M Base Station Antenna. It was fantastic that he was heard using his omnidirectional antenna over the 6848 km between his QTH in India and ZS6WB.

A report was also received from Jim, ET3JD reporting that he was monitoring but was not set up to transmit. He heard an Indian station that was probably VU2SWG, VQ9JC/MM but he had his hands full of  equipment and wasn't able to record any of the calls he heard.

We will watch further HO-68 schedules closely and try to set up schedules with stations in areas where there are good DX opportunities.

73 de Eddie ZS6BNE
SARL Member
LARK (ZS6LRK) Chairman / QSL Manager
RaDAR Operator
SARL Discussion Forums :

© 1997-2009 South African Radio League

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Goldmine Holiday for VU2SWG


Today 1/2 day off from MQTH - gave way to a goldmine on AO51

1st pass @ 1630IST E21EJC, ND9M/MM, HS3ANP. Heard VU2GSM and UP??WFF or EFF
2nd pass @ 1800IST VU2DPE, ND9M/MM,A71CV, VU2MUD, Heard VU2GUR calling ND9MM. Heard UP??WFF or EFF

Today I want to create a record with VO52 + SO50 tonite if time + HQTH QRL permits + outside WX

All QSO today made with Hand held Wouxun with standard rubber ducky single radio only.

73 & gud dx
Shankar VU2SWG

Copied from the email received from Shankar

June 2010 AO-51 Schedule

June 1 - June 21 10:40Z
FM Repeater, V/U
Uplink: 145.920 Mhz FM, PL 67Hz
Downlink: 435.300 Mhz FM

June 21 10:40Z - June 24 09:35Z
FM Repeater, V/S
Uplink: 145.880 Mhz FM
Downlinks: 2401.200 Mhz FM

June 24 09:35Z - June 27 06:40Z
FM Repeater, V/U
Uplink: 145.920 Mhz FM, PL 67Hz
Downlink: 435.300 Mhz FM

June 27 06:40 - June 27 22:00Z
FM Repeater, V/S
Uplink: 145.880 Mhz FM
Downlinks: 2401.200 Mhz FM

June 27 22:00Z - July 5
FM Repeater, V/U
Uplink: 145.920 Mhz FM, PL 67Hz
Downlink: 435.300 Mhz FM

73, Drew KO4MA
AMSAT-NA VP Operations


Thursday, May 27, 2010

5 Years of HAMSAT - an interaction with ISRO.

On the occasssion of HAMSAT (VO-52) completing five years in orbit ISRO-ISTRAC had invited some members of AMSAT India and general Users of HAMSAT to attend the HAMSAT MMB (Mission Management Board) and user meet at ISTRAC , Bengaluru.

Senior officials from ISAC and ISTRAC addressed the gathering. Data was shared on the five years of operations of the HAMSAT and the data shows that the satellite is in good health and will provide many years of service to the Amateur radio community. We were also introduced to the people behind HAMSAT - and it was an eyeopener!!!! So many departments and divisions who have helped make HAMSAT and keeping tabs on its health.

The officials are very happy with the performance and usage of HAMSAT and are happy with the fond title HAMS have given HAMSAT - "THE DARLING OF AMATEUR RADIO OPERATORS"

I had the opportunity to make a presentation on OSCAR's and HAMSAT usage. The presentation had information on what as OSCAR means to a HAM, what interested them to take up communiation through satellites, the equipment and station setup requirements, the limitations, shack and equipment phots, etc which was well received.

SWL Ganeshan from AMSAT India who is the designer of the HAMSAT II Xponder presented his design to the ISRO audience and also shared inititial information on his cubesat transponder which is under development.

VU2WMY, Mani of VU2URC presented future plans for payloads with Amateur Radio capability and the possible elevation slots and its effective coverage - which was interesting

We had a guided tour of the Tracking and command facilities at ISTRAC and understood how the Tracking,Telemetry and command is done for the satellites including HAMSAT. This was really impressive and the infrastructure truly world class.

We were well taken care of - fantastic lunch, snacks and hospitality.

I would like to thank ISRO- ISTRAC for this oppurtunity,hospitality and Upagraha Radio club (VU2URC) for their help.

Hams who attended the meet were - VU2UV, VU2POP, VU2RMS, VU2PCP, VU3STJ, VU2SWG, VU2GUR, VU2ABS, VU3TYG, VU3BJZ, VU2GZ, VU2DPE, VU2RVJ, VU2WMY, VU3PSZ and other HAMS working with ISRO.

Saturday, May 22, 2010


Popularly called the “SAT-Guru” – OM Guru has been active on the Satellites for a decade now – starting under the tutelage of OM Bindu – VU2IR (SK) during 2000.

He has at present worked through 8 Satellites with more than 2000 QSO’s and has recorded and reported reception of the Digitalker aboard FO-29. The Impressive list of satellites and the number of stations contacted are :

UO-14 – 35 VU + 5 DX = 1137 QSOs
SO-35 – 13  VU + 7 DX = 90+ QSOs
SO-50 – 4 VU + 1 DX = 15 QSOs
AO-51 – 25 VU + 20 DX = 235 QSOs
VO–52 – 44 VU + 8 DX = 525 QSOs
SO-67 – 3 VU + 2 DX = 7 QSOs
HO-68 – 7 VU + 4 DX = 11 QSOs.

He has contacted the following DX countries:
Thailand, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia and ND9M both from the International Waters and from Diego Garcia.  

He uses a FT-2600 M VHF Base and a FT – 530 UHF handy for both terrestrial and satellite use.

He has a set of four Antennae – 2 for VHF and 2 for UHF

1  VHF - Slim Jim for Vertical polarisation                   1 VHF - Dipole for Horizontal polarization                       

2 UHF - Slim- jim and Dipole on the same mast - seperate cables.

He has been instrumental in coaxing a lot of us into taking to the BIRD HUNTING – working the OSCARs.

Thanks Guru – “SAT-GURU” for showing us that we too can work the OSCARs with simple setup – a lot of dedication – and a Zeal to learn.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

AO-51 Schedule for the Month of May

May 17 - May 30

FM Repeater, V/U
Uplink: 145.920 MHz FM
Downlink: 435.300 MHz FM
67 Hz PL Tone Required

3, Drew KO4MA

AMSAT-NA VP Operations

Source :

Friday, May 7, 2010


I recently had an idea of running a series of posts giving details of the station setups of the HAMS frequently or regularly working through the OSCARs.

The main intention is to spread the awareness of the basic requirements required to work the OSCARs.  It is also to dissolve any misconcept Hams may have as regards the expertise required to establish contacts through the OSCARs.

I therefore requested a few of the HAMs to send in their station details so that we can create a comparative catalogue of different working setups and their success stories.

First is this series is from OM Jayant - VU2TQC.

Rigs used are:-

a) Yeasu FT 60R ( Dual Band VHF/UHF Handy; max. power output 5w).
b) ICOM 2200 (VHF Rig, max power output 65 watt)

The antennas which he uses are:-

VHF:- 5/8 (from VU2GT), di-pole (home brewed using stainless steel radio whip)
UHF :- Slim Jim (home brewed using 5 mm brass rod), dipole (home brewed using 6mm aluminum rods)

The dipole on top - the slim jim suspended from the cross boom

He has been having QSOs through satellites using di-poles in case of overhead or near overhead (65 degrees and above). For other lower angle passes, he uses the slimjim for UHF and 5/8 for VHF.  He has worked on VO-52, AO-51, SO-50 quite regularly and has had successful QSOs with DX stations - EX8MLT KYRGYSTAN and UK8GDW UZBEKISTAN.  One big advantage being in the cetral part of the Indian sub-continent.

And this is the operator operating from his rooftop - with a beam.

You will be able to follow his Satellite activity on on his blog (Click Here to go to his Blog)

Thanks Jayant for sharing your details.  I am sure this will be of motivation to others who want to come on the OSCARs