DIWATA 2 Test (March 2019)

Here’s a demonstration on how I used an FT60 with power of 5W to access Diwata 2 satellite during its testing phase. In the video, I have successfully made contact with stations in Pangasinan and in Okinawa, Japan, from Sta. Rosa, Laguna. Notice how I tracked the satellite using a home-brewed antenna.

To learn more how to access amateur radio satellites, head directly to Satellite Communications. To view all posts on amateur radio, click here.

Related links:
AMSAT PH Satellite Demo
Satellite Demo with the Philippine Navy
Satellite Demo on CNN Philippines
Satellite Demo at a local Hamfest

To view all posts on amateur radio, click here.

Night Sky in Focus
Astronomy and Amateur Radio
© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)

Advertisements

Sta Rosa Council participates in Satellite JOTA

The Sta Rosa Council in Laguna participates in the first-ever satellite contacts between Philippine scouts as part of the 2019 Jamboree on the Air (JOTA) held on October 19, 2019 in Sta. Rosa, Laguna. Contact is achieved by beaming a radio signal on to a passing satellite and using it as a relay to reach distant stations like Malaysia and Japan. A total of 19 scouts from various schools in Laguna participated in the event.

Special thanks to the following stations who made contact with DX1DAC: DU4PGS (Catanduanes), DV2JB (Pangasinan), 9W6ZUL (Malaysia), 4G1AGI (Cabuyao, Laguna), 9M4SJQM (Malaysia), 4G1DWE (Manila), and JR6DI (Japan).

Direct Amateur Communications (DX1DAC) and AMSAT Philippines (DX1O) served as the host radio clubs for the satellite JOTA event. JOTA is the largest world-wide annual scouting event which promotes communication among scouts through the use of amateur radio equipment.

Related links:
AMSAT PH Satellite Demo
Satellite Demo with the Philippine Navy
Satellite Demo on CNN Philippines
Satellite Demo at a local Hamfest

To view all posts on amateur radio, click here.

Night Sky in Focus
Astronomy and Amateur Radio
© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)

AMSAT Philippines Satellite Demo (Sept 2019)

More than 50 amateur radio satellite enthusiasts attend two live satellite contact demonstration conducted by the AMSAT Philippines, Inc., Stamina4Space, and Holy Angel University, on September 28, 2019, in Angeles City, Pampanga. The live demo events were part of an amateur radio satellite seminar and antenna workshop.

The video recordings below show the two demo events featuring voice communications via AO-91 and PO-101 (DIWATA2) satellites. The official AMSAT Philippines, Inc. call sign DX1O (Delta X-ray One Oscar) was used during the event, with Anthony Urbano (DU1AU) as the operator.

Demo No. 1
Satellite: AO-91 (Fox-1B)
Time: 04:09 to 04:24 UTC
Elevation: 51 deg
Operator: DU1AU (Angeles City)

Contacts (13 stations):
4I1AGI (Angeles City)
4I1DIT (Angeles City)
7J1ADJ (Japan)
9M16KING (Malaysia)
9W8VWW (Malaysia)
DU6DKL (Negros)
DU6REN (Iloilo)
DU6XBP (San Carlos City)
DU9JJY (Cotabato)
DV2JB (Pangasinan)
DV4SMA (Naga City)
DV8VMI (Cotabato)
DW3UKN (Angeles City)

Demo No. 2
Satellite: PO-101 (Diwata 2)
Time: 04:46 to 4:59 UTC
Elevation: 38 deg
Operator: DU1AU (Angeles City)

Contacts (9 stations):
9M16KING (Malaysia)
9W8VWW (Malaysia)
DU6REN (Iloilo)
DU6XBP (San Carlos City)
DU9JJY (Cotabato)
DV4SMA (Naga City)
DV8VMI (Cotabato)
DW1ZWS (Quezon Province)
JA6PL (Japan)

AMSAT PH extends its appreciation and thanks to the stations who participated in the 2 satellite demo events. Official DX1O QSL cards were also given out.

Related links:
Satellite Demo with the Philippine Navy
Satellite Demo on CNN Philippines
Satellite Demo at a local Hamfest

To view all posts on amateur radio, click here.

Night Sky in Focus
Astronomy and Amateur Radio
© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)

Satellite Demo with the Philippine Navy

I was invited to conduct a live satellite demo at the Philippine Navy as part of the exit presentation of DOST-Balik-Scientist CDR Leo Almazan USN (ret) at the Pascual Ledesma Naval Station in Cavite, Philippines. We’ve accessed DIWATA2 (PO-101) and had successful contact with JA6PL (Japan), DV2JHA (Pangasinan), and DU1ELT (Cotabato).

Naval Sea Systems Command
We used DIWATA2 satellite to bounce a signal from our location in Cavite, to other radio operators in Pangasinan, Cotabato, and as far away as Japan. Copyright: Naval Sea Systems Command, Philippine Navy

For this demo,  I used a home-brew portable satellite radio setup and a DIY satellite antenna.

Related links:
Satellite Demo on CNN Philippines
Satellite Demo at a local Hamfest

To view all posts on amateur radio, click here.

Night Sky in Focus
Astronomy and Amateur Radio
© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)

QSL Card from DX1O

During the DIWATA 2’s (PO-101) testing phase, a special call sign was heard on the satellite: DX1O of AMSAT Philippines. Shortly after a successful QSO with DX1O, I have received the special e-QSL card below:

DX1O QSL Card

Later I found out that I was one of the first few stations to make a successful contact via DIWATA2 and was given an award for it. Thank you DIWATA2 Team and AMSAT Philipines!

For more posts about QSL cards I’ve received from fellow hams, click here.

To learn how to access satellite repeaters, head directly to Satellite Communications.

Night Sky in Focus
Astronomy and Amateur Radio
© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)

Satellite QSL Card from BG5UTE (China)

I have received these cards from BG5UTE (China), for our contact on various satellites on April and May, 2019. Shi sent me a QSL-card confirming each of our first contacts in AO-91, AO-92, SO-50, and PO-101 (DIWATA 2). The cards’ cover features a photo of an Iridium satellite flare taken by BG5UTE himself! Thanks for these cards, I’ll be sending mine soon!

For more posts about QSL cards I’ve received from fellow hams, click here.

Interested in a paper QSL-card exchange? Catch me on one of the satellites, then send me an email:

4i1awn@nightskyinfocus.com

To learn how to access satellite repeaters, head directly to Satellite Communications.

Night Sky in Focus
Astronomy and Amateur Radio
© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)

STAMINA 4 SPACE awards DIWATA 2 Testers

Prior to the service announcement, a small group of volunteer amateur radio operators worked with the engineers from STAMINA4SPACE Program (formerly named as the PHL-MicroSat Program) to test the full capabilities of DIWATA2’s Amateur Radio Unit. The scope involves testing the receiving (RX) and transmitting (TX) capabilities of the satellite both for voice mode and data mode. It also includes determining the kinds of antennas, the clarity of voice communication, and how much power is actually needed to access the satellite.

Plaques of appreciation were awarded to the first 10 stations to ever access DIWATA 2, and certificates for those involved in the testing efforts.

First 10 Stations to make a successful QSO via DIWATA2 Satellite

  1. Jharwin Barozzo, DV2JB (Phillippines), formerly DV2JHA
  2. Anthony Guiller Urbano, DU1AU (Philippines), formerly 4I1AWN
  3. Joseph Petruff, 7J1ADJ/JR6 (Japan)
  4. Afer Shi, BG5UTE (China)
  5. JS6DRQ (Japan)
  6. Iji Yoshitomo, JA6PL (Japan)
  7. Brian Santos, DU1MS (Philippines)
  8. JR6DI (Japan)
  9. Hong Liu, BH4ESB (China)
  10. Stanley Sumping Anak Albert Bejie, 9W8DNX (Malaysia)

For assisting with the testing efforts and achieving one of the firsts QSOs via DIWATA2, special awards were given to

  • Percival Padilla, DV1XWK (Philippines)
  • Lee Castor Canono, D8BVK (Philippines)
  • Veronica Catherine Anak Nohan (9W8VWW, Malaysia)

The awards were given on April 26, 2019, at the Electrical and Electronics Engineering Institute Bldg., University of the Philippines, Diliman, Quezon City, through AMSAT Philippines president Atty. Eduardo Victor Valdez, PHL-50 project leader Dr. Marc Caesar Talampas, and  STAMINA4SPACE program leader Dr. Joel Joseph Marciano Jr.

The testing team will continue to assist the STAMINA4SPACE program in monitoring the status of DIWATA2’s Amateur Radio Unit.

To learn how to access the DIWATA2 satellite, head directly to Satellite Communications.

Night Sky in Focus
Astronomy and Amateur Radio
© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)

Accessing Satellites at Low Elevation

In a recent test I’ve conducted with my portable satellite radio setup, I’ve successfully accessed the following satellites even at elevations of only 1 to 2° (very near the horizon!): AO-91, AO-92, IO-86, SO-50, and PO-101 (DIWATA2).

Satellite’s Elevation

A satellite on the horizon is described to have an elevation of 0° (degree) and a satellite directly overhead has an elevation of 90°. A pass may have an elevation anywhere from 0 to 90°.

Low Elevation Pass Satellites
Using a DIY antenna and a portable radio setup to access satellites that are very near the horizon

Establishing Contact

While there are many factors leading to a successful low-elevation contact, the following appears to have the greatest impact:

1. Use of a well-tuned and very directional hi-gain antenna
2. Proper pointing of antennas to satellites (use a smartphone)
3. Correct polarization of antenna elements (twist until you get the best signal)
4. Use hi-power when necessary (10W)

Have you done this test lately? How low an elevation can you access the satellites? If you want to make contact with distant stations via satellite, the only way to do that would be to access satellites when they are very low in the horizon.

To learn how to access satellite repeaters, head directly to Satellite Communications.

Night Sky in Focus
Astronomy and Amateur Radio
© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)