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Re: Eagle and AO40

At 09:07 AM 2/24/2007, jim@beeson.cc wrote:
>I am curious at the thoughts of current satellite users.  As I read 
>the AMSAT Journal and see the progress of the Eagle Project, it 
>reminds me of a few years ago when another "do it all" satellite was 
>being planned - AO40.  Amateurs are pumping thousands of dollars and 
>time into this project.  I remember I followed AO40 with great 
>excitement, not to mention spending a few grand upgrading my station 
>to be ready for this "super bird".  And after all the things that 
>went wrong after the launch, I thought - never again.
>So my question is basic:  why spend all this money and wait years 
>for something that might end up another catastrophe?  Why do we have 
>to try and design a bird that does it all?  We all know the more 
>complex the bird the more room for failure.  Why not just pop out 
>another AO13 - or similar?  I can't tell you how many hours of fun I 
>had with RS10/11.  And with the way things are in amateur radio now, 
>who knows if there will be anybody even interested in this by the 
>time Echo finally is useable.
>Just a thought.  I would like to hear yours now please.
>Jim Beeson


First let me state that this is my personal opinion, and I'm not 
affiliated with any satellite project team.

I share your concerns and hope that we do not go down that road 
again.  I too, invested in my home station heavily.  More so, many 
invested heavily into AO-40!
The circumstances at the time of AO-40 were a one-time opportunity 
for a great ride into orbit that could support a "does-all" satellite.

But time passes and the technology and even parts availability for 
re-building a AO-13 is not there (exception to be noted in a minute - 
so, hold that thought).
Therefore it makes sense to build with current technology and better 
parts...hoping our project team members have not lost track of 
lessoned learned the hard way.

P3E is pretty much a AO-13 cookie-cutter special.  Well, not exactly, 
but the space-frame is, I understand.  So this will be the satellite 
you ask for (sort of).
Eagle will not be out of the same cake-pan, time moves one, and also 
the rides change.  In fact no one knows what the ride will end up 
being (team probably has a list of wannabes, or is that 
wanna-go's).  The issue is that rides are years off, so its not the 
bird holding us up.

Also, changed is the RF environment making some of the old satellite 
modes less effective (or prudent to use).  This is actually a bigger problem.

Be assured that neither P3E or Eagle are close to being another 
AO-40.  One will be somewhat similar to AO-13, the other all-new.
As I read my Journal, I read that several lessons were being applied.

Ed - KL7UW
  BP40IQ   50-MHz - 10-GHz   www.kl7uw.com
144-EME: FT-847, mgf-1801, 4x-xpol-20, 185w
DUBUS Magazine USA Rep dubususa@hotmail.com

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