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I am VERY impressed with the description of FalconSat3 in the AMSAT News 
Service special bulletin ANS-056.07.  With a frame that is roughly 24 
inches on a side, it should get enough solar energy for powerful 
downlinks.  Perhaps the downlink will be similar to UO-14.

Has anybody heard an estimate of the time duration of the science 
mission?  That is, how long might we have to wait for the amateur 
payload to be open to the public?

Also encouraging is the final statement that FalconSats 4 and 5 will 
also have amateur payloads.  This could return us to the "LEO glory 
days" when RS-10, RS-12, and UO-14 were all operational with strong 
downlinks.  I wonder if they would consider a Mode A or Mode B linear 
transponder in one of the future FalconSats...  The global shift to 
code-free HF licenses could result in renewed interest in Mode A.

I've always felt that it makes the most sense for AMSAT-NA and AMSAT-DL 
to focus exclusively on HEO satellites and let universities and smaller 
AMSAT groups focus on LEO satellites.  This is happening in a big way 
now, thanks to King Abdulaziz University (SaudiSats), US Naval Academy 
(PCsats), US Air Force Academy (FalconSats), AMSAT-VU (VO-52), and 
AMSAT-ZL (KiwiSat).

Wayne Estes W9AE
Oakland, Oregon, USA, CN83ik

Sent via AMSAT-BB@amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.
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