Tuesday, November 8, 2022

The QO-100 North America Challenge

Can you work a satellite your antenna can’t "see"? That’s what the QO-100 AMSAT-UK/BATC North American Challenge is hoping to determine. AMSAT-UK and the British Amateur Television Club are sponsoring the challenge, which the AMSAT News Service says will recognize the first amateur radio station to successfully achieve a two-way QSO via QO-100’s narrow band transponder while operating from North America, as well as the first amateur station to achieve 100 QSOs via the QO-100 narrow band transponder while operating from North America, and the first amateur to achieve a successful two-way digital amateur TV QSO via QO-100’s wide band transponder while operating from North America.

The challenge: QO-100 is a geostationary satellite over Africa whose “footprint” also includes most of Europe, and parts of Asia and South America. According to ANS, the most likely operating location from North America would be St. Johns, Newfoundland, which has a calculated viewing angle to the satellite of -0.9 degrees elevation. Being below the horizon, it is expected that tropospheric ducting will be required for the first few miles. An Indonesian amateur has already proven that it can be done, operating through QO-100 from an elevation angle of -1.2 degrees. 

Details of planned tests, general questions, and claims for trophies and certificates should be submitted to <awards@amsat-uk.org>. Updates will also be posted on the AMSAT-UK website: <https://bit.ly/3DR4qTU>, and a video about the challenge may be watched on the AMSAT-UK YouTube channel, at < https://bit.ly/3TUpXkv>.