IARU Amateur Satellite Frequency Coordination

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Delfi-PQ Updated: 09 Apr 2018   Responsible Operator Stefano Speretta PE5STE
Supporting Organisation Delft University of Technology  
Contact Person s.speretta@tudelft.nl.nospam  
Headline Details: The primary goal of this PocketQube mission is educational, being the spacecraft designed by the MSc and BSc students at the Delft University of Technology. The design of this spacecraft has been carried out as part of their curricula to acquire experience on the field. Students are involved on all the mission phases and they will also participate in operations. The second goal of this mission is technology demonstration, being this spacecraft one of the smallest ever launched. This satellite belongs to the class of PocketQubes, with a size of 50x50x192 mm and it contains all the required systems to operate in space. It is one of the first PocketQubes to be launched and it is the cornerstone for a series of PocketQubes from TU Delft with the aim to iteratively advance the platform to enable ambitious scientific objectives with networks of PocketQubes in the future. Delfi-PQ mainly focusses to demonstrate a reliable core system (comprising a power system, a communication system, an attitude control system and an on-board computer). Furthermore, it will host a few small-scale experiments which can be used for technology research. These experiments are related to future propulsion, more advanced attitude control, navigation, thermal analysis and control. The orbital life time of Delfi-PQ is currently foreseen to be very short (only up to 150 days due to the low orbit of deployment). This will ensure the spacecraft cannot contribute to the space debris problem and also it will occupy its assigned frequency band for a very short time, preventing spectrum pollution. The demonstration of the core spacecraft and its experiments is expected to take all the mission time, till deployment. The communication system, in particular, will be tested and the support of amateurs will also be important. AX.25 will be used worldwide to deliver telemetry. The protocol was selected due to the widespread community around the world that make already use of such a standard. Furthermore, a mode advanced communication protocol, using forward error correction, will be tested upon command (and so receivable over Europe). This new protocol is decoded by the provided decoding software: the help of radio amateurs will help estimating the performances of the receiver in different conditions (and statistics will be transmitted back to a central server by the decoding application, together with the data). In order to provide a return favor to the radio amateur community for the use of the frequency bands, this mission will publish all the instructions for satellite reception and telemetry decoding. A decoding application will also be provided to radio-amateurs around the world before launch to allow easy decoding with standard hardware. This application will also be used to submit the received frames to a central repository. The contribution from radio amateurs in receiving the data will greatly enhance the mission. To make it more exciting to participating radio amateurs, several challenges will be organized. Examples of challenges are the reception of the first and the last frame. In particular, the first received frame will be important for the team to assess the status of health oh the spacecraft and the submitter will receive a prize for it. Since the satellite will be deployed to only 350 km and the foreseen operational lifetime is equal to the orbital life time, it will be very interesting to monitor its deorbiting process. Next to this, the number of received frames and the global distribution will also lead to the definition of several challenges. All challenges will have some small prize and achievement certificate associated with it. Proposing a UHF downlink for GMSK at up to 19k2 and a launch on a Vector rocket from Kodiak Alaska in August 2018 with other PocketQubes. More information available on: http://delfispace.nl ** A downlink on 436.650 MHz has been coordinated**
Application Date: 06 Apr 2018   Freq coordination completed on 09 Apr 2018

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