UVa Cubesat to Launch on Wednesday, 17 April 2019

The UVa cubesat Libertas, part of the three-spacecraft Virginia Cubesat Constellation, is scheduled to launch at 4:46pm EDT on Wednesday, 17 April 2019. The ride to space will be on the Northrup Grumman Antares CRS-11 International Space Station (ISS) resupply mission. Our spacecraft will be delivered to the ISS later in the week, then 1-3 months after delivery the ISS astronauts will deploy Libertas through the airlock and into space.

The countdown clock and CRS-11 information are available at:

https://sites.wff.nasa.gov/wmsc

Live streaming video of the launch will be available at:

https://www.nasa.gov/nasalive

Although we were unable to work out the licensing to operate this mission under amateur radio rules, several AARC members contributed their time, expertise, and equipment to get the ground station ready for the mission. The UVa cubesat will communicate with the ground station at 401.040 MHz using standard 9600 baud packet. Command uplink to the spacecraft will be encrypted for security purposes, but the downlink will be unencrypted, and anyone who is interested is encouraged to receive the data stream and submit it to mike@kq9p.us. I’ll post more details about how to receive and decode the downlink after the launch.

Mike KQ9P