SpaceX has announced that the SSO-A: Smallsat Express mission is scheduled for launch on Sunday, December 2.
The SSO-A mission will carry several Amateur Radio satellites including AMSAT’s Fox-1Cliff, FUNcube on ESEO, JY1-SAT, K2SAT and ExseedSat.
The launch window opens at 18:31:47 UTC and will extend for approximately 30 minutes.
AMSAT reports that Vice President-Engineering Jerry Buxton, N0JY, delivered and integrated its Fox-1Cliff CubeSat into the launch vehicle on September 24, in preparation for sending it into orbit later this year.
AMSAT has purchased a commercial launch opportunity for Fox-1Cliff and has been seeking contributions (https://www.amsat.org/join-amsat/) to cover its costs. The Fox-1Cliff CubeSat was named in memory of long-time AMSAT member, contributor, and benefactor Cliff Buttschardt, K7RR (SK), who died in 2016.
“This is the last step for AMSAT Engineering in getting one of our satellites to orbit,” Buxton said in a YouTube video that explains what is involved in the final step of getting an Amateur Radio CubeSat to orbit: https://www.amsat.org/fox-1cliff-delivery-and-integration/
He explained, “Spacecraft integration is the process of mounting the spacecraft on the launch vehicle.” He pointed out that a spring-loaded “dispenser” propels the CubeSat into orbit from the launch vehicle.
Fox-1Cliff will have FM voice uplink frequencies of 435.300 MHz and 1,267.300 MHz (67.0 Hz CTCSS tone), and FM voice and AFSK digital data (up to 9,600 bps) downlink on 145.920 MHz. The nominal transponder power is 600 mW. Because only one uplink frequency can be active at a time, use of the Mode L uplink is limited to experimental periods announced in advance.
Following the successful launch and deployment of Fox-1Cliff, all Amateur Radio satellite enthusiasts can play an important part in the commissioning of the new satellite.
For more information please visit: https://www.amsat.org/fox-1cliff-launch-your-help-is-needed/
Earlier launch delay
AMSAT has announced that the SpaceX Spaceflight SSO-A SmallSat Express launch carrying the Fox-1Cliff Amateur Radio CubeSat and several other Amateur Radio payloads has been delayed.
SpaceX tweeted, “Standing down from Monday’s launch attempt of Spaceflight SSO-A: SmallSat Express to conduct additional pre-flight inspections. Once complete, we will confirm a new launch date.”
– Thanks to Southgate Amateur Radio News and AMSAT