Encyclopedia Astronautica
Oscar



pcsat.jpg
PCSat
International series of amateur radio communications satellites. Operational, first launch 1961.12.12. Launched in a variety of configurations and by many nations.

AKA: Orbiting Satellite Carrying Amateur Radio.
First Launch: 1961.12.12.
Last Launch: 2009.12.15.
Number: 28 .

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
See also
  • Ariane 5 The Ariane 5 was a completely new design, unrelated to the earlier Ariane 1 to 4. It consisted of a single-engine Lox/LH2 core stage flanked by two solid rocket boosters. Preparatory work began in 1984. Full scale development began in 1988 and cost $ 8 billion. The design was sized for the Hermes manned spaceplane, later cancelled. This resulted in the booster being a bit too large for the main commercial payload, geosynchronous communications satellites. As a result, development of an uprated version capable of launching two such satellites at a time was funded in 2000. More...
  • Ariane First successful European commercial launch vehicle, developed from L3S Europa launch vehicle replacement design. Development of the Ariane 1 was authorised in July 1973, took eight years, and cost 2 billion 1986 Euros. More...
  • Athena Privately funded family of solid propellant satellite launch vehicles. Originally known as LMLV (Lockheed-Martin Launch Vehicle); LLV (Lockheed Launch Vehicle). Sales did not develop as hoped by the company after the MEO-satellite bubble burst in the 1990's. More...
  • CZ China's first ICBM, the DF-5, first flew in 1971. It was a two-stage storable-propellant rocket in the same class as the American Titan, the Russian R-36, or the European Ariane. The DF-5 spawned a long series of Long March ("Chang Zheng") CZ-2, CZ-3, and CZ-4 launch vehicles. These used cryogenic engines for upper stages and liquid-propellant strap-on motors to create a family of 12 Long-March rocket configurations capable of placing up to 9,200 kg into orbit. In 2000 China began development of a new generation of expendable launch vehicles using non-toxic, high-performance propellants with supposedly lower operating costs. However these encountered development delays, and it seemed the reliable Long March series of rockets would continue in operational use for nearly fifty years before being replaced. More...
  • Delta The Delta launch vehicle was America's longest-lived, most reliable, and lowest-cost space launch vehicle. Development began in 1955 and it continued in service in the 21st Century despite numerous candidate replacements. More...
  • Kosmos 3 In 1961 Isayev and Reshetnev developed the Voskhod space launch system on the basis of the R-14 IRBM. The initial version of the two stage rocket was designated Kosmos-1. The first 'Voskhod' launch complex was at Baikonur, a modification of one of the pads at the R-16 ICBM launch complex 41. More...
  • PSLV Indian third-generation launch vehicle, large enough to carry polar-orbiting earth resources satellites. More...
  • Soyuz The Russian Soyuz spacecraft has been the longest-lived, most adaptable, and most successful manned spacecraft design. In production for fifty years, more than 240 have been built and flown on a wide range of missions. The design will remain in use with the international space station well into the 21st century, providing the only manned access to the station after the retirement of the shuttle in 2011. More...
  • Titan The Titan launch vehicle family was developed by the United States Air Force to meet its medium lift requirements in the 1960's. The designs finally put into production were derived from the Titan II ICBM. Titan outlived the competing NASA Saturn I launch vehicle and the Space Shuttle for military launches. It was finally replaced by the USAF's EELV boosters, the Atlas V and Delta IV. Although conceived as a low-cost, quick-reaction system, Titan was not successful as a commercial launch vehicle. Air Force requirements growth over the years drove its costs up - the Ariane using similar technology provided lower-cost access to space. More...
  • Topol Containerised all-solid propellant Nadiradze ICBM designed for launch from mobile and silo launchers. Replaced UR-100/UR-100NU in silos. More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Delta American orbital launch vehicle. The Delta launch vehicle was America's longest-lived, most reliable, and lowest-cost space launch vehicle. Delta began as Thor, a crash December 1955 program to produce an intermediate range ballistic missile using existing components, which flew thirteen months after go-ahead. Fifteen months after that, a space launch version flew, using an existing upper stage. The addition of solid rocket boosters allowed the Thor core and Able/Delta upper stages to be stretched. Costs were kept down by using first and second-stage rocket engines surplus to the Apollo program in the 1970's. Continuous introduction of new 'existing' technology over the years resulted in an incredible evolution - the payload into a geosynchronous transfer orbit increasing from 68 kg in 1962 to 3810 kg by 2002. Delta survived innumerable attempts to kill the program and replace it with 'more rationale' alternatives. By 2008 nearly 1,000 boosters had flown over a fifty-year career, and cancellation was again announced. More...
  • Soyuz Russian orbital launch vehicle. The world's first ICBM became the most often used and most reliable launch vehicle in history. The original core+four strap-on booster missile had a small third stage added to produce the Vostok launch vehicle, with a payload of 5 metric tons. Addition of a larger third stage produced the Voskhod/Soyuz vehicle, with a payload over 6 metric tons. Using this with a fourth stage, the resulting Molniya booster placed communications satellites and early lunar and planetary probes in higher energy trajectories. By the year 2000 over 1,628 had been launched with an unmatched success rate of 97.5% for production models. Improved models providing commercial launch services for international customers entered service in the new millenium, and a new launch pad at Kourou was to be inaugurated in 2009. It appeared that the R-7 could easily still be in service 70 years after its first launch. More...
  • Titan American orbital launch vehicle. The Titan launch vehicle family was developed by the United States Air Force to meet its medium lift requirements in the 1960's. The designs finally put into production were derived from the Titan II ICBM. Titan outlived the competing NASA Saturn I launch vehicle and the Space Shuttle for military launches. It was finally replaced by the USAF's EELV boosters, the Atlas V and Delta IV. Although conceived as a low-cost, quick-reaction system, Titan was not successful as a commercial launch vehicle. Air Force requirements growth over the years drove its costs up - the Ariane using similar technology provided lower-cost access to space. More...
  • Kosmos 3 Russian orbital launch vehicle. In 1961 Isayev and Reshetnev developed the Voskhod space launch system on the basis of the R-14 IRBM. The initial version of the two stage rocket was designated Kosmos-1. The first 'Voskhod' launch complex was at Baikonur, a modification of one of the pads at the R-16 ICBM launch complex 41. More...
  • Thor Agena B American orbital launch vehicle. Two stage vehicle consisting of 1 x Thor DM-21 + 1 x Agena B More...
  • Thor Agena D American orbital launch vehicle. Two stage vehicle consisting of 1 x Thor DM-21 + 1 x Agena D More...
  • Titan 3C American orbital launch vehicle. Titan 3A with five segment solid motors. Man-rated design originally developed for Dynasoar spaceplane. More...
  • Kosmos 11K65M Russian orbital launch vehicle. Definitive and prolific production version of satellite launcher based on Yangel R-14 IRBM. After further development at NPO Polyot (Omsk, Chief Designer A S Klinishkov), the modified Kosmos-3M added a restartable second stage with an orientation system. This booster was launched form two 'Cusovaya' launch complexes from 1967. The second stage used low thrust rockets using gas generator output to adjust the final velocity of the stage More...
  • Delta N American orbital launch vehicle. Long Tank Thor augmented with 3 Castor 2 boosters and Delta E upper stage. More...
  • Delta N6 American orbital launch vehicle. Three stage vehicle consisting of 6 x Castor 2 + 1 x LT Thor DSV-2L-1C + 1 x Delta E More...
  • Delta 0300 American orbital launch vehicle. Three stage vehicle consisting of 3 x Castor 2 + 1 x LT Thor DSV-2L-1C + 1 x DSV-3N-4 More...
  • Soyuz 11A511U Russian standardised man-rated orbital launch vehicle derived from the original R-7 ICBM of 1957. It has been launched in greater numbers than any orbital launch vehicle in history. Not coincidentally, it has been the most reliable as well. After over 40 years service in Russia, ESA built a new launch pad at Kourou which will keep it in service from three launch sites in three countries well into the mid-21st Century. More...
  • Delta 2310 American orbital launch vehicle. Three stage vehicle consisting of 3 x Castor 2 + 1 x ELT Thor/RS-27 + 1 x Delta P /TR-201 More...
  • Delta 2910 American orbital launch vehicle. Three stage vehicle consisting of 9 x Castor 2 + 1 x ELT Thor/RS-27 + 1 x Delta P /TR-201 More...
  • Ariane 1 French orbital launch vehicle. First version of the Ariane launch vehicle. More...
  • Ariane French orbital launch vehicle. First successful European commercial launch vehicle, developed from L3S Europa launch vehicle replacement design. Development of the Ariane 1 was authorised in July 1973, took eight years, and cost 2 billion 1986 Euros. More...
  • Topol Russian containerised all-solid propellant intercontinental ballistic missile designed for launch from mobile and silo launchers. Replaced UR-100/UR-100NU in silos. More...
  • Ariane 4 French orbital launch vehicle. The ultimate Ariane development. Compared with the Ariane 2/3, the Ariane 4 featured stretched first (61%) and third stages, a strengthened structure, new propulsion bay layouts, new avionics, and the Spelda dual-payload carrier. The basic 40 version used no strap-on motors, while the Ariane 42L, 44L, 42P, 44P, and 44LP versions used varous combinations of solid and liquid propellant strap-on motors). Development was authorised in January 1982, with the objective of increasing payload by 90%. Total development cost 476 million 1986 ECU's. More...
  • Delta 0100 American orbital launch vehicle. The military Thor-Delta vehicles were developed into the first of a series of commercial satellite launch vehicles. The Delta 0100 series featured Castor 2 solid propellant strap-ons and a Long Tank Thor core with MB-3 engine. More...
  • H-1 Japanese license-built version of Delta launch vehicle, with Japanese-developed upper stages. More...
  • Ariane 44LP French orbital launch vehicle. Ariane 4 with 2 liquid rocket + 2 solid rocket strap-ons. More...
  • Ariane 40 French orbital launch vehicle. 3 stage core vehicle with original Ariane H10 upper stage. A fully fueled Ariane core cannot lift off the ground without strap-on liquid or solid motors. When Ariane 4 is launched in this configuration, the propellant tanks of the first and second stages are not completely filled. More...
  • Ariane 42P French orbital launch vehicle. Ariane 4 with 2 solid rocket strap-ons. More...
  • Ariane 42L French orbital launch vehicle. Ariane 4 with 2 liquid rocket strap-ons. More...
  • PSLV Indian third-generation launch vehicle, large enough to carry polar-orbiting earth resources satellites. More...
  • Start Russian orbital launch vehicle. Launch vehicle based on decommissioned SS-25 ICBM's (differs from ICBM/basic Start-1 in having second stage used twice, in tandem, for increased payload). Launched from mobile transporter. Liftoff mass 60 tonnes. More...
  • Athena American orbital launch vehicle. Privately funded family of solid propellant satellite launch vehicles. Originally known as LMLV (Lockheed-Martin Launch Vehicle); LLV (Lockheed Launch Vehicle). Sales did not develop as hoped by the company after the MEO-satellite bubble burst in the 1990's. More...
  • Athena-1 American all-solid orbital launch vehicle. Basic version of the Athena with a Castor 120 first stage, Orbus second stage, and OAM Orbital Adjustment Module. More...
  • Ariane 5G French orbital launch vehicle. Initial version of the Ariane 5, a bit too large for the main commercial geosynchronous communications satellite payloads. More...
  • Ariane 5 French orbital launch vehicle. The Ariane 5 was a completely new design, unrelated to the earlier Ariane 1 to 4. It consisted of a single-engine Lox/LH2 core stage flanked by two solid rocket boosters. Preparatory work began in 1984. Full scale development began in 1988 and cost $ 8 billion. The design was sized for the Hermes manned spaceplane, later cancelled. This resulted in the booster being a bit too large for the main commercial payload, geosynchronous communications satellites. As a result, development of an uprated version capable of launching two such satellites at a time was funded in 2000. More...
  • Delta 2000 American orbital launch vehicle. The Delta 2000 series used Castor 2 strap-ons together with an Extended Long Tank core equipped with the more powerful RS-27 engine. This engine was derived from surplus H-1 engines intended for the Saturn IB booster of the Apollo programme. The Delta P upper stage was built by Douglas and used surplus Apollo lunar module engines from TRW. More...
  • CZ-4C Chinese orbital launch vehicle. The CZ-4C, first flown in 2007, had an upgraded second-stage engine that could be restarted in space. The vehicle also had structural rings at the base of the first and second stages, an interstage weather cover,ejected at liftoff, and the larger payload shroud introduced on the CZ-4B. All of these indicated that the vehicle was designed to take larger payloads to higher, more precise orbits than the CZ-4B. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • USAF American agency overseeing development of rockets and spacecraft. United States Air Force, USA. More...

Associated Programs
  • Oscar Amateur radio satellite network. For over a third of a century a series of OSCAR satellites have been launched in a variety of configurations and by many nations. More...

Bibliography
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Jonathan's Space Home Page (launch records), Harvard University, 1997-present. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Jonathan's Space Report (Internet Newsletter), Harvard University, Weekly, 1989 to Present. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Krebs, Gunter, Gunter's Space Page, University of Frankfurt, 1996. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • JPL Mission and Spacecraft Library, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 1997. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Launch Log, October 1998. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • National Space Science Center Planetary Page, As of 19 February 1999.. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • NASA/GSFC Orbital Information Group Website, Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Space-Launcher.com, Orbital Report News Agency. Web Address when accessed: here.

Associated Launch Sites
  • Cape Canaveral America's largest launch center, used for all manned launches. Today only six of the 40 launch complexes built here remain in use. Located at or near Cape Canaveral are the Kennedy Space Center on Merritt Island, used by NASA for Saturn V and Space Shuttle launches; Patrick AFB on Cape Canaveral itself, operated the US Department of Defense and handling most other launches; the commercial Spaceport Florida; the air-launched launch vehicle and missile Drop Zone off Mayport, Florida, located at 29.00 N 79.00 W, and an offshore submarine-launched ballistic missile launch area. All of these take advantage of the extensive down-range tracking facilities that once extended from the Cape, through the Caribbean, South Atlantic, and to South Africa and the Indian Ocean. More...
  • Vandenberg Vandenberg Air Force Base is located on the Central Coast of California about 240 km northwest of Los Angeles. It is used for launches of unmanned government and commercial satellites into polar orbit and intercontinental ballistic missile test launches toward the Kwajalein Atoll. More...
  • Baikonur Russia's largest cosmodrome, the only one used for manned launches and with facilities for the larger Proton, N1, and Energia launch vehicles. The spaceport ended up on foreign soil after the break-up of Soviet Union. The official designations NIIP-5 and GIK-5 are used in official Soviet histories. It was also universally referred to as Tyuratam by both Soviet military staff and engineers, and the US intelligence agencies. Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union the Russian Federation has insisted on continued use of the old Soviet 'public' name of Baikonur. In its Kazakh (Kazak) version this is rendered Baykonur. More...
  • Plesetsk Plesetsk was the Soviet Union's northern cosmodrome, used for polar orbit launches of mainly military satellites, and was at one time the busiest launch centre in the world. The collapse of the Soviet Union put the main launch site of Baikonur in Kazakh territory. It now seems that once the Proton rocket is retired, Baikonur will be abandoned and Plesetsk will be Russia's primary launch centre. Upgrades to existing launch facilities will allow advanced versions of the Soyuz rocket and the new Angara launch vehicle to be launched from Plesetsk. Plesetsk's major drawback was the lower net payload in geosynchronous orbit from a northern latitude launch site. However Russia is planning to remove the disadvantage by looping geosynchronous satellites around the moon, using lunar gravity to make the necessary orbital plane change. More...
  • Tanegashima Japan's main launch site for he larger N and H launch vehicles. In use for sounding rockets from 1967 and orbital launches from 1975. As of 2007 over 140 major launches had been made from the site. More...
  • Kourou After the agreement with newly independent Algeria for France to evacuate their launch sites in that country, a location near Biscarosse was selected for French missile testing. However since only launches westwards across the Bay of Biscay could be made from this site, it was unsuitable for France's Diamant orbital launch vehicle. After reviewing 14 potential sites, a location in the South American French colony of Guiana was selected. This would allow over-water launches to a tremendous range of possible orbital inclinations -- from -100.5 deg to 1.5 deg. Being near the equator, it would provide the maximum assist from the earth's rotation for launches into equatorial orbits. The decision was formalized in April 1964 and in July 1966 ELDO chose the site for future launches of the Europa II launch vehicle. More...
  • Sriharikota India's primary space launch center, located on the east coast of the peninsula with a firing sector over the Bay of Bengal. In use from 1971 to present. More...
  • Vandenberg SLC1W Delta launch complex. Originally a Thor 75 SMS launch pad. Upgraded to a space launch complex in 1966. More...
  • Taiyuan China's launch site for launch of polar orbiting satellites, also known as Wuzhai. Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center (TSLC) is situated in Kelan County, the northwest part of Shanxi Province, 280 km by road from Taiyuan City. More...
  • Kodiak In January 1998, the Alaska Aerospace Development Corporation began building a commercial spaceport at Narrow Cape on Kodiak Island, about 400 km south of Anchorage and 40 km southwest of the City of Kodiak. Kodiak Island was advertised as one of the best locations in the world for polar launch operations, providing a wide launch azimuth and unobstructed downrange flight path. More...
  • Vandenberg SLC2W Delta launch complex. Originally a Thor 75 SMS launch pad. Upgraded to a space launch complex in 1966. More...
  • Cape Canaveral LC41 Titan, Atlas V launch complex. Complexes 40 and 41 were constructed as part of the Integrate-Transfer-Launch (ITL) Titan launch facility at the north end of Cape Canaveral in the early 1960s. Over the next three decades, the complexes supported a wide variety of military space missions involving Titan IIIC, Titan 34D and Titan IV. Complex 41 was deactivated at the end of 1977, then upgraded for the Titan IV program in the 1986-88 period. In October 1999, Complex 41 was demolished with high explosives in order for a new pad for launch of the Atlas 5 rocket to be erected. By then it had been the starting point for 27 Titan flights. More...

Oscar Chronology


1961 December 12 - . 20:40 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena B. LV Configuration: Thor Agena B 325 / Agena B 1119.
  • Oscar 1 - . Mass: 5.00 kg (11.00 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USAF. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. Decay Date: 1962-01-31 . USAF Sat Cat: 214 . COSPAR: 1961-A-Kappa-2. Apogee: 474 km (294 mi). Perigee: 245 km (152 mi). Inclination: 81.2000 deg. Period: 91.80 min. The first Oscar Phase I amateur satellite was launched piggyback with Discover 36. A group of enthusiasts in California formed Project OSCAR and persuaded the United States Air Force to replace ballast on the Agena upper stage with the 4.5 kg OSCAR I package. The satellite was box shaped with a single monopole antenna and battery powered. The 140 mW transmitter onboard discharged its batteries after three weeks. 570 Amateurs in 28 countries reported receiving its simple 'HI-HI' morse code signals on the VHF 2 meter band (144.983 MHz) until January 1, 1962. The speed of the HI-HI message was controlled by a temperature sensor inside the spacecraft. OSCAR I re-entered the atmosphere January 31, 1962 after 312 revolutions. Additional Details: here....

1962 June 2 - . 00:31 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena B. LV Configuration: Thor Agena B 335 / Agena B 1127.
  • Oscar 2 - . Mass: 10 kg (22 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USAF. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. Decay Date: 1962-06-21 . USAF Sat Cat: 305 . COSPAR: 1962-Chi-2. Apogee: 339 km (210 mi). Perigee: 188 km (116 mi). Inclination: 74.2000 deg. Period: 89.80 min. OSCAR II was launched piggyback with a United States Air Force satellite. OSCAR II was very similar to OSCAR I. Differences included (1) changing the surface thermal coatings to achieve a cooler internal spacecraft environment, (2) modifying the sensing system so the satellite temperature could be measured accurately as the batteries decayed, and (3) lowering the transmitter power output to 100 mW to extend the life of the onboard battery. OSCAR II lasted 18 days ceasing operation on June 20, 1962 and re-entered June 21, 1962.

1965 March 9 - . 18:29 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC2W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena D SLV-2. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2 Agena D 419 / Agena D SS-01A 2701.
  • Oscar 3 - . Mass: 14 kg (30 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: OSCAR. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 1293 . COSPAR: 1965-016F. Apogee: 900 km (550 mi). Perigee: 876 km (544 mi). Inclination: 70.1000 deg. Period: 102.80 min. OSCAR III was launched piggyback with seven United States Air Force satellites. Weight 16.3 kg. It was the first amateur satellite to operate from solar power and relay signals from Earth. OSCAR III was the first true amateur satellite relaying voice contacts in the VHF 2 meter band through a 1 W 50 kHz wide linear transponder (146 MHz uplink and 144 MHz downlink). OSCAR III's transponder lasted 18 days. More than 1000 amateurs in 22 countries communicated through the linear transponder. The two beacon transmitters continued operating for several months.

    Note: Designed, built, and tested, a predecssor, OSCAR* was never launched. Similar in design to OSCAR I and II, OSCAR* contained a 250 mW beacon with phase-coherent keying. OSCAR* was never launched as the workers decided to focus their efforts on the first relay satellite -- OSCAR III.


1965 December 21 - . 14:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC41. LV Family: Titan. Launch Vehicle: Titan 3C. LV Configuration: Titan IIIC 3C-8.
  • Oscar 4 - . Mass: 13 kg (28 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: OSCAR. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. Decay Date: 1976-04-12 . USAF Sat Cat: 1902 . COSPAR: 1965-108C. Apogee: 33,549 km (20,846 mi). Perigee: 162 km (100 mi). Inclination: 26.8000 deg. Period: 587.50 min. OSCAR IV was launched piggyback with three United States Air Force satellites. The launch vehicle had a partial failure and placed the spacecraft in a low orbit preventing widespread amateur use. Orbit 29120 x 168 km. Inclination 26.8 degrees. Period 587.5 minutes. Weight 18.1 kg. Four monopole antennas. OSCAR IV was built by the TRW Radio Club of Redondo Beach, California. It had a 3 Watt 10 kHz wide linear transponder (144 MHz uplink and 432 MHz downlink). In operation until March 16, 1966. Re-entry April 12, 1976. Total operation 85 days. OSCAR IV provided the first US-Soviet amateur link.

1970 January 23 - . 11:31 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC2W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Delta N6. LV Configuration: Thor Delta N6 542/D76.
  • Oscar 5 - . Payload: Australis-Oscar 5. Mass: 18 kg (39 lb). Nation: Australia. Agency: Clemson. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 4321 . COSPAR: 1970-008B. Apogee: 1,478 km (918 mi). Perigee: 1,434 km (891 mi). Inclination: 101.8000 deg. Period: 115.00 min. Australis-OSCAR 5 was launched piggyback with ITOS-1 (TIROS-M weather satellite. Weight 17.7 kg (9 kg of which was battery mass). Box shaped 304 x 431 x 152 mm. 2 meter monopole and 10 meter dipole antennas. It was the first amateur satellite to be remotely controlled. Built by students at The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Battery powered, Australis-OSCAR 5 transmitted telemetry on both 2 meter (144.050 MHz at 50 mW) and 10 meter (29.450 MHz at 250 mW) bands that operated for 23 and 46 days respectively. Passive magnetic attitude stabilization was performed by carrying two bar magnets to align with the Earth's magnetic field in order to provide a favorable antenna footprint. The University of Melbourne compiled tracking reports from hundreds of stations in 27 countries.

1972 October 15 - . 17:19 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC2W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Delta 0300. LV Configuration: Delta 0300 575/D91.
  • Oscar 6 - . Payload: Amsat-Oscar-6. Mass: 16 kg (35 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: AmSat. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 6236 . COSPAR: 1972-082B. Apogee: 1,455 km (904 mi). Perigee: 1,449 km (900 mi). Inclination: 101.7000 deg. Period: 114.90 min. AMSAT-OSCAR 6 was launched piggyback with ITOS-D (NOAA 2). AO-6 was the first phase 2 satellite (Phase II-A). Weight 16 kg. Box shaped 430 x 300 x 150 mm. Quarter-wave monopole antennas (144 and 435 MHz) and half-wave dipole antenna (29 MHz). Firsts: complex control system using discrete logic; satellite-to-satellite relay communication via AO-7; demonstrated doppler-location of ground station for search and rescue; demonstrated low-cost medical data relay from remote locations. Equipped with solar panels powering NiCd batteries, AO-6 provided 24 V at 3.5 W power to three transponders. It carried a Mode A transponder (100 kHz wide at 1 W) and provided store-and-forward morse and teletype messages (named Codestore) for later transmission. AO-6 lasted 4.5 years until a battery failure ceased operation on June 21, 1977. Subsystems were built in the United States, Australia, and Germany.

1974 November 15 - . 17:11 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC2W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Delta 2310. LV Configuration: Delta 2310 592/D104.
  • Oscar 7 - . Payload: Amsat-Oscar-7. Mass: 29 kg (63 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: AmSat. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 7530 . COSPAR: 1974-089B. Apogee: 1,459 km (906 mi). Perigee: 1,440 km (890 mi). Inclination: 101.8000 deg. Period: 114.90 min. AMSAT-OSCAR 7 was launched piggyback with ITOS-G (NOAA 4) and the Spanish INTASAT. The second phase 2 satellite (Phase II-B). Weight 28.6 kg. Octahedrally shaped 360 mm high and 424 mm in diameter. Circularly polarized canted turnstile VHF/UHF antenna system and HF dipole. Firsts: Satellite-to-satellite relay communication via AO-6; Early demonstrations of low-budget medical data relay and doppler location of ground transmitters for search-and-rescue operations were done using this satellite. AO-7 was fully operational for 6.5 years until a battery failed in mid 1981. However the satellite was still functional in day-side passes when its ever-degrading solar cells could function, and was still responding to amateurs as of August 2006. Additional Details: here....

1978 March 5 - . 17:54 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC2W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Delta 2910. LV Configuration: Delta 2910 621/D139.
  • Oscar 8 - . Payload: Amsat-Oscar-8. Mass: 27 kg (59 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: AmSat. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 10703 . COSPAR: 1978-026B. Apogee: 903 km (561 mi). Perigee: 894 km (555 mi). Inclination: 99.2000 deg. Period: 103.00 min. AMSAT-OSCAR 8 was launched piggyback with LandSat 3 (ERTS 3) and PIX. The third phase 2 satellite (Phase II-D). Weight 27.2 kg. Box shaped, 33 cm high, 38 x 38 cm. Circularly polarized VHF canted turnstile, UHF quarter wave monopole, and HF half-wave dipole antenna system. Another cooperative international effort (United States, Canada, Germany and Japan). AO-8 had a similar store-and-forward service as AO-7 and carried Mode A (145.850-900 MHz uplink and 29.400-500 MHz downlink) and Mode J (145.900-146.000 MHz uplink and 435.100 MHz downlink (inverted)) linear transponders and telemetry beacons on 435.095 MHz and 29.402 MHz. AO-8's primary mission was for educational applications and amateur communications. It was in operation for six years until the battery failed on June 24, 1983.

1980 May 23 - . 14:29 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA1. LV Family: Ariane. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 1. LV Configuration: Ariane 1 L02. FAILURE: Failure.
  • Amsat Phase 3A - . Payload: Amsat Phase 3A. Nation: USA. Agency: ESA. Program: Oscar. Spacecraft: Oscar. COSPAR: F800523F. Summary: The satellite never obtained orbit. Weight 92.2 kg. Mode B (435 MHz uplink and 145 MHz downlink) transponder and 145 MHz beacon. VHF and UHF helix wide beam antenna..

1983 June 16 - . 11:59 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA1. LV Family: Ariane. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 1. LV Configuration: Ariane 1 L6.
  • Oscar 10 - . Payload: Phase 3B. Mass: 70 kg (154 lb). Nation: Germany. Agency: AmSat. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 14129 . COSPAR: 1983-058B. Apogee: 35,442 km (22,022 mi). Perigee: 4,007 km (2,489 mi). Inclination: 27.2000 deg. Period: 699.50 min. AMSAT Oscar 10, registration no D-R 001. Scientific and communication satellite for the amateur radio service. Frequency plan: Transponder U: 435.1 MHz (uplink), 145.9 MHz (downlink), Bandwidth +/- 75 kHz. Transponder L: 1269.45 MHz (uplink), 436.55 MHz ( downlink), bandwidth +/- 400 kHz. Two beacons adjacent to passband. Launch vehicle Ariane L6. First amateur satellite with onboard propulsion (which did not function entirely correctly, due to collision with launch vehicle after separation - hence the not-quite-Molniya-orbit). Computer control failed December 1986 due to radiation damage to memory. As a result, ground control stations have no control over the spacecraft. However, when the orientation is favourable (with respect to the Earth and Sun), OSCAR 10 continues to provide good Mode B service. If users coorperate, OSCAR 10 may provide many more years of service. Project Management: AMSAT-NA (Jan King, W3GEY) and AMSAT-DL (Karl Meinzer, DJ4ZC). Spacecraft sub-systems: Contributed by groups in Canada, Hungary, Japan, United States and West Germany. Spacecraft: Spin Stabilised with Magnetorquers: Power: 50 W solar array, 2 NiCd batteries. Payload: Transponders/Beacons: Mode B: Type: Linear, inverting, 50W; General Beacon: 145.809 MHz (Carrier); Engineering Beacon: 145.987 MHz; Uplink: 435.030-435.180 MHz; Downlink: 145.975-145.825 MHz. Mode L (no longer operational): Type: Linear, inverting, 50W: Beacons: 436.020, 436.040 MHz; Uplink 1269.450 MHz (800 kHz); Downlink 436.550 MHz.

1986 August 12 - . 20:45 GMT - . Launch Site: Tanegashima. Launch Complex: Tanegashima N. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: H-1. LV Configuration: H-1 H-15(F).
  • Oscar 12 - . Payload: JAS-1. Mass: 50 kg (110 lb). Nation: Japan. Agency: JARL. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 16909 . COSPAR: 1986-061B. Apogee: 1,497 km (930 mi). Perigee: 1,479 km (919 mi). Inclination: 50.0000 deg. Period: 115.70 min. Japanese Amateur Satellite. JAS-1 (Fuji). Amateur satellite communications. Development of amateur satellite technology. Launch vehicle H-I (two-stage) test flight no. 1. Launch time 2045 GMT. Launching organization NASDA. Fuji-OSCAR 12 was launched piggyback with a Japanese experimental geodetic satellite Ajisai (EGS). Weight 50 kg. 26-sided polyhedron, 40 x 40 x 47 cm. FO-12 was the first Japanese amateur satellite developed by the Japan Amateur Radio League (English version) with system design and integration performed at NEC. FO-12 was taken out of service November 5, 1989 because of battery failure.

1988 June 15 - . 11:19 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA2. LV Family: Ariane. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 44LP. LV Configuration: Ariane 44LP V22.
  • Oscar 13 - . Payload: Phase 3C. Mass: 150 kg (330 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: AmSat. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. Decay Date: 1996-12-06 . USAF Sat Cat: 19216 . COSPAR: 1988-051B. Apogee: 37,995 km (23,608 mi). Perigee: 809 km (502 mi). Inclination: 57.9000 deg. Period: 686.60 min. AMSAT-OSCAR 13 was launched by the first test flight of the Ariane 4 launcher. Size 600 x 40 x 200 mm. AO-13 was the third in a series of Phase-3 type high-altitude, elliptical orbit amateur communications satellites. It was built by an international team of radio amateurs led by Dr. Karl Meinzer of AMSAT-Germany. It carried four beacon transmitters and four linear transponders. AO-13 also contained a digital communications transponder called RUDAK-1. However attempts to get the experiment operating failed. Operational life span was 8 years. Careful analysis of AO-13's orbit in early 1990 by Victor Kudelka, OE2VKW revealed that resonant perturbations exist which lead the satellite into a negative perigee altitude. The perigee was down to 150 km by August 1996 which drastically increased atmospheric drag on the satellite until it reentered the Earth's atmosphere December 5, 1996.

1990 January 22 - . 01:35 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA2. LV Family: Ariane. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 40. LV Configuration: Ariane 40 V35.
  • Oscar 16 - . Payload: PACSAT. Mass: 12 kg (26 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: Arianespace. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 20439 . COSPAR: 1990-005D. Apogee: 797 km (495 mi). Perigee: 781 km (485 mi). Inclination: 98.6000 deg. Period: 100.60 min. Summary: Spacecraft engaged in research and exploration of the upper atmosphere or outer space (US Cat B). .
  • Oscar 17 - . Payload: Microsat 2. Mass: 12 kg (26 lb). Nation: Brazil. Agency: Arianespace. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 20440 . COSPAR: 1990-005E. Apogee: 796 km (494 mi). Perigee: 780 km (480 mi). Inclination: 98.6000 deg. Period: 100.60 min.
  • Oscar 18 - . Payload: Webersat. Mass: 12 kg (26 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: Weber. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 20441 . COSPAR: 1990-005F. Apogee: 797 km (495 mi). Perigee: 780 km (480 mi). Inclination: 98.6000 deg. Period: 100.60 min. Summary: Carried Earth imaging camera. Spacecraft engaged in research and exploration of the upper atmosphere or outer space (US Cat B). .
  • Oscar 19 - . Payload: LuSat. Mass: 12 kg (26 lb). Nation: Argentina. Agency: Arianespace. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 20442 . COSPAR: 1990-005G. Apogee: 797 km (495 mi). Perigee: 779 km (484 mi). Inclination: 98.6000 deg. Period: 100.60 min. Summary: Carried CCD camera..

1990 February 7 - . 01:33 GMT - . Launch Site: Tanegashima. Launch Complex: Tanegashima N. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: H-1. LV Configuration: H-1 H-21(F).
  • Oscar 20 - . Payload: JAS 1b. Mass: 50 kg (110 lb). Nation: Japan. Agency: JARL. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 20480 . COSPAR: 1990-013C. Apogee: 1,745 km (1,084 mi). Perigee: 912 km (566 mi). Inclination: 99.0000 deg. Period: 112.20 min. Summary: JAS-1b 'Fuji-2'. Continuation of amateurradio services of JAS-1; extension of amateur radio communications area; advancement of amateur radio technology. Launching organization NASDA. Launch time 0133 UT..

1993 May 12 - . 00:56 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA2. LV Family: Ariane. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 42L. LV Configuration: Ariane 42L V56.
  • Oscar 29 - . Payload: Arsene. Mass: 154 kg (339 lb). Nation: France. Agency: RACE. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 22654 . COSPAR: 1993-031B. Apogee: 36,582 km (22,730 mi). Perigee: 17,469 km (10,854 mi). Inclination: 5.3000 deg. Period: 1,012.60 min. Summary: Operated by Radio Amateur Club de LeSpace..

1993 September 26 - . 01:45 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA2. LV Family: Ariane. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 40. LV Configuration: Ariane 40 V59.
  • ITAMsat - . Payload: Oscar 26. Mass: 50 kg (110 lb). Nation: Italy. Agency: AmSat. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 22828 . COSPAR: 1993-061F. Apogee: 802 km (498 mi). Perigee: 789 km (490 mi). Inclination: 98.7000 deg. Period: 100.80 min. Summary: ITAMsat was built by AMSAT-ITALY. Its mission was to store and forward amateur radio messages..
  • Eyesat 1 - . Payload: Oscar 27. Mass: 12 kg (26 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: Interfer. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 22829 . COSPAR: 1993-061G. Apogee: 803 km (498 mi). Perigee: 790 km (490 mi). Inclination: 98.7000 deg. Period: 100.80 min. Experimental Interferometric Microsatellite built by Interferometrics Inc, of Chantilly, Virginia. The satellite was also equipped with amateur radio equipment, constructed by AMRAD, a non-profit organization of radio amateurs, to conduct digital satellite communications experiments. The Amrad-Oscar-27 payload was an 'FM Repeater', consisting of a crystal controlled FM receiver operation at 145.850 MHz and a crystal controlled FM transmitter operating at approximately 436.795 MHz. Output power of the transmitter was normally 0.5 watts. Because of the satellite's limited power budget the amateur transmitter was on for only part of the daylight portion of each orbit. As of September 1998, the satellite passed its five year design goal.

1995 March 28 - . 10:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC158. LV Family: Topol. Launch Vehicle: Start. FAILURE: Fell in Sea of Okhotsk..
  • Oscar 29 - . Payload: ENB UNAMSAT A. Nation: Mexico. Agency: RVSN. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. COSPAR: F950328C. Summary: UNAMSAT was an AMSAT Microsat class amateur radio satellite built by UNAM, the Autonomous University of Mexico..

1996 September 5 - . 12:47 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC132/1. LV Family: Kosmos 3. Launch Vehicle: Kosmos 11K65M.
  • Oscar 30 - . Payload: UNAMSAT B. Nation: Mexico. Agency: UNAM. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 24305 . COSPAR: 1996-052B. Apogee: 1,010 km (620 mi). Perigee: 966 km (600 mi). Inclination: 82.9000 deg. Period: 104.90 min.

1999 April 2 - . 11:28 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Sputnik-99 - . Nation: France. Agency: AmSat. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: OSCAR. Decay Date: 1999-07-29 . USAF Sat Cat: 25685 . COSPAR: 1999-015C. Apogee: 400 km (240 mi). Perigee: 400 km (240 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Summary: Subscale amateur radio model of Sputnik 1. Reentered July 29..

2000 November 16 - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA3. LV Family: Ariane 5. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 5G. LV Configuration: Ariane 5G V135 507.
  • AMSAT-Oscar-40 - . Mass: 4,758 kg (10,489 lb). Nation: Germany. Agency: AMSAT. Program: Oscar. Class: Communications. Type: Civilian communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 26609 . COSPAR: 2000-072B. Apogee: 58,650 km (36,440 mi). Perigee: 1,167 km (725 mi). Inclination: 7.5000 deg. Period: 1,146.50 min. The long-delayed Phase 3D amateur radio satellite, built by AMSAT-DL (Germany), was renamed AMSAT-Oscar-40 (AO-40) once launched. It carried an MBB S400 liquid engine (the backup engine for the Galileo Jupiter probe) and a variety of amateur radio payloads in L, S, C, X, V, U and K bands, as well as an ammonia arcjet thruster and a laser communications experiment. The satellite was the largest amateur satellite orbited to date and the first to feature deployable solar panels. Mass was 397 kg dry. The PAS 1R, STRV 1c/1d, and AMSAT Phase 3D satellites were placed in orbit on a single Ariane launch. At 0149 GMT the SBS cylindrical adapter which connected PAS-1R to AMSAT was jettisoned; 50 seconds later AMSAT separated from the EPS upper stage. Thereafter the spacecraft could not be contacted. Finally telemetry was received from after two weeks of silence, confirming that the satellite was still functioning.

2001 September 30 - . 02:40 GMT - . Launch Site: Kodiak. LV Family: Athena. Launch Vehicle: Athena-1. LV Configuration: Athena-1 LM-001.
  • PCSat - . Mass: 67 kg (147 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USN. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 26931 . COSPAR: 2001-043C. Apogee: 796 km (494 mi). Perigee: 789 km (490 mi). Inclination: 67.0000 deg. Period: 100.70 min. PCSat (Prototype Communications SATellite) was to act as a relay for UHF/VHF amateur radio transmissions. It was built by the midshipmen at the US Naval Academy. It was to augment the existing worldwide Amateur Radio Automatic Position Reporting System; mass was around 10 kg.

2002 May 4 - . 01:31 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA2. LV Family: Ariane. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 42P. LV Configuration: Ariane 42P V151.
  • Idefix - . Mass: 12 kg (26 lb). Nation: France. Agency: CNES. Manufacturer: Friedrichshafen. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 27422 . COSPAR: 2002-021B. Apogee: 809 km (502 mi). Perigee: 789 km (490 mi). Inclination: 98.7000 deg. Period: 100.90 min. The Idefix amateur radio payload consisted of two small 6 kg boxes attached to the Ariane third stage. The payload was operated by AMSAT-F, the French branch of the amateur radio organization. (The first French satellite was nicknamed Asterix after the famous comic book character; Idefix was Asterix and Obelix's pet dog.)

2005 May 5 - . 04:44 GMT - . Launch Site: Sriharikota. Launch Complex: Sriharikota SLP. LV Family: PSLV. Launch Vehicle: PSLV. LV Configuration: PSLV-C6.
  • VUSat - . Payload: IHamsat. Mass: 42 kg (92 lb). Nation: India. Agency: AmSat. Class: Communications. Type: Amateur radio communications satellite. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 28650 . COSPAR: 2005-017B. Apogee: 646 km (401 mi). Perigee: 607 km (377 mi). Inclination: 97.9000 deg. Period: 97.20 min. Microsatellite providing satellite-based Amateur Radio services to the international community of Amateur Radio Operators (HAMs). Primarily intended for HAM operators in South Asia. One of the transponders was developed by Indian amateurs with the assistance of ISRO, and the second by a student at the Higher Technical Institute, Venlo, Netherlands. Hamsat was a 630 mm x 630 mm x 550 mm cube of aluminium-honeycomb structure. Power was provided by body-mounted gallium arsenide solar panels and a lithium ion battery. The satellite was spin-stabilised at 4 rpm. Uplink/downlink frequencies were 435.25 MHz / 145.9 MHz.

2009 December 15 - . 02:31 GMT - . Launch Site: Taiyuan. LV Family: CZ. Launch Vehicle: CZ-4C.
  • Xi Wang 1 - . Mass: 50 kg (110 lb). Nation: China. Agency: SISE. Spacecraft: Oscar. USAF Sat Cat: 36122 . COSPAR: 2009-072B. Apogee: 1,205 km (748 mi). Perigee: 1,193 km (741 mi). Inclination: 100.5000 deg. Period: 109.40 min. Summary: Amateur radio satellite..

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