Mir Amateur Radio Status: March 1, 1998
by Miles Mann WF1F,
MAREX-MG (Manned Amateur Radio Experiment, North American Division)
New Mir Crew Members:
The current crew consists of:
SOYUZ TM-29 arrived at Mir on February 20, 1999. Mir Soyuz TM-29 crew consisted of French cosmonaut Jean-Pierre Heignere, Viktor Afanasyev and Slovakian Cosmonaut Ivan Bella.
On February 28, some of the crew returned to earth, they were: Slovak Ivan Bella and Gennadiy Paldalko.
Gennadiys mission lasted approximately 6 months (August 16 1998 ≠ February 28 1999)
The remaining crew consists of:
The French cosmonaut Jean-Pierre Heignere, Cosmonaut Viktor Afanasyev, Cosmonaut Sergei Avdeyev. Sergei mission began August 16, and is expected to last a total of 9-11 months.
This will make the Mir crew 27 a three man crew. Energia informed me that the French Cosmonaut Jean-Pierre did receive training on the MAREX-MG SSTV project, and he has already sent a few SSTV images of him self and the rest of the Mir crew.
New Mir projects:
This weekend I received a message from Energia informing me that the initial testing of the future RS-19 are completed. RS-19 will be a project similar to the RS-18 project. As soon as I get more information on this and other projects, ill publish and post the links.
All tests of RS-19 completed O.K.
73 RV3DR and F6FAO
Current Schedule for Packet PMS and SSTV:
The SSTV system was active for approximately 36 hours on Sunday/Monday (Feb 28- March 1)
The crew will do their best to keep the SSTV system active on weekends and
packet PMS operational on weekdays.
I am looking for Pictures of the Amateur Radio equipment currently on the
Russian Space Station Mir. I have searched a few of the NASA archives, with limited luck. Most of the
equipment shots I have received from other sources. This week I received a nice shot from Tony VK5ZAI. The picture shows Astronaut Andy Thomas talking on the 2-meter station from the Pirioda module on Mir. In the back ground you can see good shot of the MAREX-MG DCI filter. The filter was needed to keep the Mir 143 MHz commercial radio from De-sensing the 2-meter station.
Current inventory list of amateur radio hardware on Mir:
SUFAX II Repeater (Icom)
Kenwood TM-733 (for PMS)
Kenwood TM-V7A (for SSTV)
Packcom TNC (old PMS modem)
Kantronics KPC-9612 (current PMS modem)
If you do find a good shots taken from Mir of the Amateur radio hardware, please send the JPG or GIF to my E-mail address. The best pictures will be posted to the MAREX-MG web page.
SSTV Receiving Software:
There are several SSTV software and hardware decoders on the market. Some you can buy while others are shareware. If you are just starting, you may want to try a software version first. I am currently using Pasokon TV Lite for my DOS computer and W95SSTV with my Win95 system. Both systems are easy to use and produce good results.
Mir School Schedules:
On Thursday Feb 25, the Schencksville School in Schnecksvill Pennsylvania had the privilege of talking to three crew members of the Mir station. Cosmonauts Jean-Pierre Heignere, Sergei Avdeyev and Ivan Bella all took turns answering questions during a prearranged school schedule. Due to a lack of a third-party agreement between the USA and Russia, only the FCC licensed Amateur Radio operation Tom Daniels N3CXP got the opportunity to talk to the Mir crew (the students were not allowed by FCC rules to talk directly to the crew). The 60 plus students near by, were still very excited to hear all of the questions and answers. Special thanks to all of the groups who helped out with this project:
MAREX-Russia, MAREX-MG, Dave Larsen at MIREX and the Crew of the Russian Space Station Mir.
Over the next 4 months we expect to run school schedules in the USA, Canada and Australia. MAREX-MG currently has a back log of schools waiting for Mir schedules. We are not currently looking for any more schools in the USA at this time. Note: During school schedules days, the SSTV system will usually be active. This allows the Mir crew to see the children they are talking with.
Web Page information:
The new MAREX-MG SSTV web is under construction but is now ON line check it out:http://www.MAREX-MG.org
The best way to track satellites is to get access to a good satellite tracking program. There are numerous programs on the market, both for sale and share ware. The best place for current satellite position date (Kepí) data is at the CelesTrak web pagehttp://celestrak.com/
Copyright 1999 Miles Mann, All Rights Reserved. This document may be freely distributed via the following means - Email (including listservers), Usenet, and WorldWideWeb. It may not be reproduced for profit including, but not limited to, CD ROMs, books, and/or other commercial outlets without prior written consent from the author. Images received from the MAREX-MG SSTV system on the Russian space Station Mir are considered public domain and may be freely distributed, without prior permission.