[aprssig] SATgates ? (again)

Steve Dimse steve at dimse.com
Mon Jan 25 23:40:39 EST 2016

> On Jan 25, 2016, at 8:11 AM, Lynn W. Deffenbaugh (Mr) via aprssig <aprssig at tapr.org> wrote:
> If the purpose of the APRS satellites is to provide a super-long-range digipeater to ensure packet delivery from remote areas, then the current system is working fine.  If the purpose of the APRS satellites is to give people visibility that their packets actually traversed through space, then that's the same thing as asking to use the APRS-IS as an RF analysis tool which is beyond its design requirements.
Many people do want confirmation of their packets being heard in space. Really this is no different than the QSL cards that were once central to ham radio and still quite popular. It is certainly a valid amateur activity and not one to be slighted.

In general I'm the first to point out the unsuitability of APRS for propagation studies, but for the most part the APRS IS does work for this particular case. It fails in a particular circumstance, where an IGate is local to the person trying to be heard via satellite. If an IGate author were to include the satellite mode option of filtering directly heard stations it would go a long way to solving that issue. There would be one program we could point people to to solve this problem in the locations where it occurs.

The lack of a satellite mode IGate also has lowered the number of IGates we have on 145.825. I know of one case where, when he complained to me about not appearing on findU and I explained the dup problem, the operator turned off his IGate so he could be seen on findU. There are probably more examples and that is too bad because we need more IGates. I used to brag that the APRS IS created the world's largest diversity receiver with the HF gates on 10.151. That is probably no longer true, but maybe 145.825 could be a similar bragging point for APRS, if only we could get more IGates. There is certainly more need than with 10.151 because of the polarization, antenna blocking, and line of sight issues.

Steve K4HG

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