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Re: AO-10 observations

AO-10 fans, 

I suggested that the bird was tumbling due to the way it's acting.  In
the past when 
the signal takes a big drift downward in frequency and disappears, it was
the bird would lose sunlight.  As when it goes into eclipse at night.  I
was timing the
fadeouts  on THursday morning, and it was taking about 3 minutes  from a
peak to the next signal peak.   So you have to work fast!  Try to make a
QSO in the 
minute and a half or so when the signals are "up".  

Here's something that worked pretty good:  If you get your QSO started
and there's 
a fadeout,  stay on frequency and wait.  Check for your downlink to come
back every 
15 or 20 seconds or so.  When you start hearing yourself again,  get back
with your
station and complete the QSO.  Hopefully he will  still be there.  I had 
4  QSO's 
yesterday, and the stations stayed on frequency.  We were able to
complete all 
the QSO's using this method.

This phenomenon seems to occur when the bird is in the same general area
the sun ( as viewed on the Instant Track screen).  Maybe the angle the
sun is 
hitting the bird is not optimum?  Then if the bird is turning around,
it's getting to 
where the sunlight is not hitting the solar panels at all?  It seems like
when the 
bird is distant  east or west from the sun as viewed on the map, it does
not do 
this, or it doesn't fade completely away, the signal just goes up and
slowly from strong to weak and back to strong again.

I guess the bottom line is don't give up!  And if you haven't tried it,
give it a try. 
You can work REAL DX on AO-10, even under these conditions.   And 
remember this one stays in range 10 or 11 hours sometimes!  Not 10 or 
15 minutes of  panic  like on the  FM birds!  VE5SWL was on last week 
running an  HT on the uplink, keying it on CW!  And he was making 
it!  So don't get the idea that your equipment won't work for  AO-10.

John, K6YK


On Thu, 18 Jan 2001 14:46:28 EST K5OE@aol.com writes:
>> Then last weekend I noticed the QSB was so bad I could not detect 
> the beacon at times, even at near-perigee (under 15,000 km).  You 
> would get about 1 minute of QSO time, then a quick shift in 
> frequency (down about 1.5 kHz), then absolute silence for about 3 
> minutes.  This cycle seemed consistant Saturday through Monday.  
> K6YK suggested to me it was "tumbling" at a bad angle for the solar 
> panels, which sounds reasonable since the frequency shift is exactly 
> what you hear a few seconds before it goes into eclipse.  Let's hope 
> it starts tumbling back the way it was last month.
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