IARU Amateur Satellite Frequency Coordination

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SAGE Updated: 29 Mar 2024   Responsible Operator Lars Horvath HB9GHL
Supporting Organisation ARIS (Akademische Raumfahrt Initiative Schweiz)  
Contact Person lars.horvath@aris-space.ch.nospam  
Headline Details: SAGE is a 3U CubeSat that will be a technology demonstrator and amateur mission combined. We will investigate the aging process, more specifically senescence, of human cells in the microgravity of low earth orbit. Since these experiments will only last 3 months, we included a “second life” amateur mission in our project from the start. We developed a new amateur payload (UHF to S-Band linear transponder) to be used until our planned mission ends after 3 years. The amateur payload is planned to be used to foster interest in the STEM field as well as the amateur radio community in students. The biological payload experiment will also transmit on amateur radio frequencies in the first 3 months. The results of the experiment will be transmitted publicly (including images of a microscope observing the microfluidic chip with the human cancer cells). Also, these subsystems will be controlled using the same amateur frequencies that will be used to control the amateur payload. Our CubeSat is a technology demonstrator of a student association. The mission statements are listed below. The main goal of the association is to bring an educational benefit to students by providing them “hands-on experience” in different space related projects. 1 Provide and operate a satellite platform in space as an educational project and contribute to scientific research 2 Investigate the aging of human cells under microgravity of low earth orbit for future space exploration. 3 Develop and host an amateur radio payload, a linear transponder, and an ETH Zurich developed GNSS module. SAGE shall inspire young students for STEM education and space related studies. We also want to promote the amateur radio community to a large audience of young students doing an engineering education at one of our partner universities. We are part of ESAs “Fly Your Satellite” program and already are well connected with other CubeSat teams through Europa. Since our main mission experiments will not last very long, we included a self-developed amateur payload from the beginning of the project to give the satellite a purpose after completing the science with the human cancer cells. We developed our own UHF to S-Band linear transponder that amateur operators can use to make QSOs or experiments with a new challenge of having to set up an S-Band ground station with a tracking dish or large yagi antenna. We think this will also have a positive effect on the number of S-Band ground stations in the SatNOGS network. We also plan to publish our antenna design of the UHF and S-Band antenna open source. Since we have the possibility to measure our antennas in an anechoic chamber at ETH we think we can develop a good open source alternative to the available COTS solutions. This will enable future student missions to use cheaper, validated hardware. Also, we are working very closely with the SatNOGS COMMS team in developing the FPGA code for the open source SatNOGS COMMS transceiver. This will again enable a lot of future missions to use a state-of-the-art open source transceiver instead of expensive COTS components. We will probably be one of the first CubeSats to launch the SatNOGS COMMS transceiver. Once the amateur payload mission is ongoing, we want to train student and future CubeSat projects in operating a CubeSat from our mission operation center at ETH. Proposing a UHF downlink using 10kbps BPSK for HK data and an S Band downlink at up to 250 kbps for image data. Planning a Exolaunch/SpaceX launch from Vandenberg in June/July 2025 into a 500/600km SSO Link budget and other details can be seen herehttps://polybox.ethz.ch/index.php/s/mBF0U7BDdbwkPS0 More info at https://aris-space.ch/sage-cubesat/ **Downlinks on 437.065 MHz and 2403.000 MHz have been coordinated**
Application Date: 25 Nov 2023   Freq coordination completed on 01 Jan 1970

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