Is the space station cross band repeater in use?

ve3ext

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Looking to confirm the new cross band repeater is active on 437.8??
tnx/73
Jerry VE3EXT
 

K4EET

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Back in October 2020, I was trying to work through the repeater but it was very busy. Not sure what the current status is. If I find out, I'll update you here. 73, Dave K4EET
 

k9wkj

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looks like the digipeater has been running
I dont think they can run things simultaneous
having a 145.825Mhz packet transmitter near the 145.990Mhz repeater receive freq
is not going to work so well
 

wd9ewk

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Looking to confirm the new cross band repeater is active on 437.8??
tnx/73
Jerry VE3EXT
The cross-band repeater hasn't been on since early October. The 145.825 MHz packet digipeater has been on since then, using the same radio that had been running the cross-band repeater. The cross-band repeater should return sometime in early December, according to ARISS:

Current Status of ISS Stations

All of this has been running on the new Kenwood TM-D710G radio in the European Columbus module. The Russian side of the ISS has an older version of the same Kenwood mobile radio (TM-D710E), but not with the customized firmware that has the cross-band repeater and packet digipeater in it. The older radio is used for the SSTV activities and some of the school contacts done by Russian cosmonauts.

Sometime in the next few months, the Russians will bring another one of those new Kenwood radios up to the ISS. Once that happens, it could be possible to have the voice repeater and packet digipeater operational at the same time, when the radios aren't being tasked for something else like SSTV or school contacts.

73!
 

n5ims

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Currently the ISS station on the US side (Columbus module) is in APRS mode with the station on the Russian side (Service module) is usually off.

To keep up with the current status and changes, check with the ARISS web page for that function at Current Status of ISS Stations (also linked on the post above).

Check often as they may switch operating modes at any time. For frequencies, modes of operation available, radios, call signs and more that information is on this page Contact the ISS
 

N4DJC

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@wd9ewk

Patrick how’s the signal on the new radio? I’ve been off the air for a few months.
 

wd9ewk

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@wd9ewk

Patrick how’s the signal on the new radio? I’ve been off the air for a few months.
The radio sounds pretty good. With the new firmware, there are different power levels for different modes - 5W for the cross-band voice repeater, 10W for the packet digipeater, and 25W for the scheduled contacts and other two-way contacts involving crewmembers. Packet has been a lot better with the new radio - improved receiver on the TM-D710G compared to the 20-year-old GE/Ericsson commercial HT, and more power. Five watts from the cross-band voice repeater is easy to hear, even when using duckie antennas. Better antennas help to get through either the voice repeater or packet digipeater, but there's more transmitter power from the ISS than what we have from any of our other satellites.

The main challenges with the cross-band voice repeater relate to so many signals trying to get through, and none of the signals are strong enough to hold the receiver for more than a second or two. A 67.0 Hz CTCSS (PL) tone is required, which wasn't the case when older radios on the ISS were used as the cross-band voice repeater. Many more tried that repeater, since it was easy to hear, and easier to hear than other FM satellites like AO-91.

If the ARISS web page I referenced above is correct, we are a week or so away from seeing the cross-band voice repeater back on again. I'm enjoying the packet digipeater, using APRS messages from my TH-D74 HT to make QSOs with other stations, but I also enjoy trying the voice repeater.

Happy Thanksgiving, and 73!
 

N4DJC

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I just worked a contact on the cross band repeater with my 300DR and inside mounted Elk. The signal was strong. Nice to hear it on the air, very busy though.
 

N4DJC

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I'm not hearing anything on 145.8 145.825 or 437.8 on a real time pass 70* elevation.
The voice repeater downlink (437.800) was loud last pass here around 7:20 PM EST.

The 145.825 APRS digipeater is off until late January early February. I haven’t heard any astronauts on 145.800 myself lately.
 

N4DJC

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NA1SS was on last pass over NA. I couldn't get in but it was loud....
 

737mech

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I tried to hear it in Vegas this morning between 06:55-07:05 but nothing heard on the FM repeater 437.8
 

n5ims

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Do you need to have the frequencies - and + or are they simplex
Most of the info you want is listed here --> Contact the ISS - ARISS <--. For the crossband repeater on the ISS, you'll need to program the frequencies as simplex and receive on the UHF frequency and transmit on the VHF frequency listed. Your dual-band radio may allow you to program it as a repeater, but you still won't use + or -, but will have to program the listed UHF frequency for receive and the VHF frequency for transmit. Check your manual to see if your radio allows this. Often it's simpler to use two radios so you can listen while you transmit so you can tell if you are just adding noise to the ISS signal or actually having your signal repeated. The ISS signal is often easy to hear on a handheld, but unless there's very little activity on the cross-band repeater, you won't be able to transmit through it since more powerful signals will simply squash your handheld's signal. Also, don't forget to transmit the proper CTCSS tone when you try to use the ISS cross-band repeater.
 
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