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Old 29-12-2019, 05:24   #1
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a silly question but = SSB

As we sailed down to the Cape Verdes from the Canary Islands we saw what we think was the Space Shuttle overhead. Now not being a fully mentally person I thought hey maybe I can call them on the SSB. I have an Icom 802 on board with a 140 turner and my ham call sign is KI4SRY.

OK laugh but then again. Now some of you guys are really smart on this stuff so any thoughts?
thanks
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Old 29-12-2019, 05:42   #2
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

Greetings,

I am curious as what year this space shuttle siting occurred as the program was retired, I believe, in July of 2011.

As to being able to communicate with them via SSB, I havenít a clue.....because......I ainít so smart.

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Old 29-12-2019, 05:55   #3
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

Hi Chuck-
I am not really smart (either?) but I am also interested.
A local HAM radio club is having a couple AMSAT guys visit in January.

Looks like 2m/70cm FM stuff.

from https://www.ariss.org/contact-the-iss.html

A typical ground station for contacting the ISS station includes a 2-meter FM transceiver and 25-100 watts of output power. A circularly polarized crossed-Yagi antenna capable of being pointed in both azimuth (North-South-East-West) and elevation (degrees above the horizon) is desirable. But successful contacts have even been made with vertical and ground plane antennas.

​Visit the the "Beginners" sections of the AMSAT-NA or AMSAT-UK websites for information on getting started with all modes of amateur radio satellite operation.

Frequencies in Use

The following frequencies are currently used for Amateur Radio ISS contacts (QSOs):
Voice and SSTV Downlink: 145.80 (Worldwide)
Voice Uplink: 144.49 for ITU Regions 2 and 3 (The Americas, and the Pacific and Southern Asia)
Voice Uplink: 145.20 for ITU Region 1 (Europe, Russia and Africa)
VHF Packet Uplink and Downlink: 145.825 (Worldwide)
UHF Packet Uplink and Downlink: 437.550
UHF/VHF Repeater Uplink: 145.99 (PL 67 Hz)
UHF/VHF Repeater Downlink: 437.80

For a description of ITU regions, consult the ITU map.

Most ARISS operations are split-frequency (each station uses separate receive and transmit frequencies). The downlink is the earth station's receiving frequency. The uplink is the earth station's transmitting frequency. Earth stations can listen to the downlink frequency and transmit on the uplink frequency when the ISS is in range and crew members are on the air. Please do not transmit on the ISS downlink frequency.
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Old 29-12-2019, 06:21   #4
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

The Amateur Radio Club at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, WA3NAN, retransmits the air-to-ground Space Shuttle communications on shortwave frequencies. The best reception on each frequency will vary based on the time of day. The frequencies are:
3.860 mhz
7.185 mhz
14.295 mhz
21.395 mhz
28.650 mhz
Some Space Shuttle missions also carry amateur radio transmitters called SAREX (Shuttle Amateur Radio Experiment). As the schedule permits, amateur radio operators can have their call sign confirmed directly by an astronaut. When the flight crew is busy, a "computer packet module" will automatically transmit a computer message. For further information on the SAREX program frequencies, contact the American Radio Relay League, 225 Main Street, Newington, CT 06111, (860) 594-0200. A SAREX Worldwide Web Page from the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center may be found at http://www.nasa.gov/sarex/sarex_mainpage.html
Much more ➥ Receiving Space Shuttle Astronaut Voice Communications
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Old 29-12-2019, 06:36   #5
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

Quote:
Originally Posted by chuckr View Post
we saw what we think was the Space Shuttle overhead.
Do you mean international space station .... rather than space shuttle?

If you really mean space shuttle ... it was a “ghost of Christmas past” and probably not on on the radio . Or there have been a couple “shuttle like” military craft - unmanned I believe.

Gord, I would think your post might have used past tense?
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Old 29-12-2019, 06:47   #6
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

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Originally Posted by Breaking Waves View Post
... Gord, I would think your post might have used past tense?
Indeed.

The shuttle made its final landing July 21, 2011.
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Old 29-12-2019, 06:50   #7
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

That's receiving within the ham HF band. Marine SSB channels are in the same frequency range, but marine SSB radios are prevented from transmitting on the ham frequencies and vice versa, unless a ham radio has been "opened" to transmit on marine SSB frequencies, a mildly illegal act that has been the topic of many threads on this forum.

As for transmitting to the ISS, your HF radio of either type does not cover the frequencies, and NASA/FCC would be sorely annoyed if you were to interrupt their traffic with yours.

-K4TKL
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Old 29-12-2019, 08:29   #8
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

SSB is a mode of amplitude modulation used principally for voice in the 3 to 30-MHz bands as well as in VHF for weak signal work.

The International Space Station is in low-Earth orbit at about 250-miles, and the path would be line-of-sight. To make an amateur radio contact at a distance of 250-miles line-of-sight is not particularly difficult on any frequency available to radio amateurs in their HF or VHF allocated bands. For example:

At 145-MHz the path loss for 250-miles will be perhaps -124 dB.

Assuming 100-Watts and 6 dBd antenna gain (400-Watt ERP) or +56 dBm from the ground station, the signal level at the ISS would be about -67 dBm, which should be easily received and copied.

Of more difficulty will be the coincidence of the ISS being overhead and the crew being engaged in making amateur radio contacts. The amount of time the ISS is in view from any particular Earth location at a high elevation angle is quite limited. Further, if a gain antenna is used it must track the movement of the ISS, as its apparent motion in the sky is quite rapid.
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Old 29-12-2019, 08:42   #9
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

HF radio (SSB) works over great distances because the signal is reflected by the ionosphere, in particular the F2 layer which extends to 200 miles. The ISS flies above that, so most likely the signal will first be attenuated by the D layer, then reflected by the F2 layer and will never reach the ISS. Depending on the sunspots this can change but it will be very unreliable. You need higher frequencies to penetrate the ionosphere, I think.
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Old 29-12-2019, 09:42   #10
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

You can connect with the ISS with a handheld but a bit more power is beneficial. They have packet, occasional slow scan tv and voice. Itís all 2m for the most part but a simple vertical will work. There are better antennas but probably not practical. Itís a good idea to pack a dual band mobile anyway. de VE3UIN
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Old 29-12-2019, 10:03   #11
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

I think that you are talking now about times in which the crew of the ISS is doing PR conversations on ham radio. That's not the same as giving them a call on their active ground communication frequency. You don't want to interrupt them, if you could, just as someone is saying "Houston, we have a problem."
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Old 29-12-2019, 10:54   #12
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

Quote:
Originally Posted by tkeithlu View Post
That's receiving within the ham HF band. Marine SSB channels are in the same frequency range, but marine SSB radios are prevented from transmitting on the ham frequencies and vice versa, unless a ham radio has been "opened" to transmit on marine SSB frequencies, a mildly illegal act that has been the topic of many threads on this forum.

As for transmitting to the ISS, your HF radio of either type does not cover the frequencies, and NASA/FCC would be sorely annoyed if you were to interrupt their traffic with yours.

-K4TKL

Not quite right. A marine SSB can operate legally on the amateur radio bands. And the Icom 802 is set up to do that. The opposite is not true. It is illegal to transmit on the Marine SSB frequencies with a modified amateur radio.
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Old 29-12-2019, 11:12   #13
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

Quote:
Originally Posted by Breaking Waves View Post
Do you mean international space station .... rather than space shuttle? If you really mean space shuttle ... it was a ďghost of Christmas pastĒ...
We have time travelers among us. As everyone knows, time travelers prefer to travel by sailboat...which is a form of time machine...you leave one day, and arrive at your destination many days into the future.

And if you want to go back in time...just turn off your electronics, or shut off your entire electrical system. You'll turn back the clock 100 years or so.
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Old 29-12-2019, 11:52   #14
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

Putting aside the various problems of signal level, path loss, attenuation or reflection in ionosphere layers, and crew availability, the principal problem of communication with the ISS is going to be the chance the ISS is in view from your location with an elevation angle 15-degrees or higher

The ISS orbit is 250-miles high. At that height the amount of the total Earth surface from which the ISS appears in the sky at an elevation angle of 15-degrees or higher is only 1.4-percent.

The chance that at a particular moment the ISS will be in view with at least 15-degrees elevation angle from a random point on Earth is correspondingly low.

To further diminish the probabilities, the nature of the ISS orbit must be considered and your location must be considered. The ISS orbit is only inclined 51.6-degrees, which means its ground track on Earth is never higher in latitude than 51.6-degrees North or South. If you are in latitude higher than 51.6 North or South, the chances of the ISS being in view is just about zero.

For some background on nadir angles from satellites, and percentage of earth surface as a function of orbit height, see

http://continuouswave.com/forum/view...p=16968#p16882
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Old 29-12-2019, 12:14   #15
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Re: a silly question but = SSB

I seem to remember that an Extra Class license (I used to have one: AB6KL) was required to speak with the shuttle. Is it the same for the ISS?
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