Last chances to hear ARISSat-1 are rapidly approaching.
A reminder that if you have been putting off working through the ARISSat-1 repeater, receiving SSTV pictures, or submitting telemetry, the next few weeks will be your last opportunity to be a part of this satellite’s history. Since deployment in August, ARISSat-1 has descended about 60 km, and is currently losing more than 1.5 km per day. The rapid rate is partially the result of the recent solar activity on the atmosphere, significantly increasing the drag. The predictions by several individuals and groups are all converging toward a reentry in January or February, 2012. Heating will become significant before then. Remember, good telemetry in this period provides invaluable information to the engineering team, to be used in future projects.
The orbit period changes about 30 seconds per day, and that will increase steadily. Be certain to update your tracking program Keps from Space-Track or CelesTrak before each pass. They issue revised versions 3-5 times daily. As the descent continues, this will become even more critical to copying the telemetry beacon, especially unattended.
73s, Alan WA4SCA
This picture is the decay rate calculated by DK3WN
Now that the submissions are complete for the Chicken Little Contest, AMSAT is announcing a new contest: Catch the Last ARISSat-1 Telemetry. With luck, we will have real time data to go along with the final reentry. While telemetry sent by e-mail is valuable and requested, the contest will be judged solely on data sent through the official ARISSatTLM programs directly to the Internet telemetry server.
How do I enter? Simple. Just submit ARISSat-1 telemetry over the Internet using either ARISSatTLM telemetry program. You can use the PC version or the MAC version of ARISSatTLM. You are automatically eligible.
Are there separate categories for entrants? No.
How is the winner determined? The call, or name, in the last block of data received by telemetry server wins.
How will the winner be announced? Via the usual AMSAT News Service, and on the Chicken Little Contest site.
If ARISSat-1 fails sometime before reentry, does it count? Yes! Engineering data is essential input for future projects!
What do I get if I win? A certificate in PDF format suitable for framing, and the gratitude of the ARISSat-1 team.
In short, just keeps those telemetry blocks flowing!
Remember: you can see the latest ARISSat-1 telemetry at ARISSat-1 realtime telemetry
Mark L. Hammond [N8MH]