10th Anniversary of OSCAR 7's Return To Life

The amateur radio satellite OSCAR 7 came back to life 10 years ago on 21 June 2002.

OSCAR 7 was launched November 15, 1974 and ceased operating in June 1981 when its batteries failed.

For 21 years, nothing more was heard until June 21, 2002 when Pat Gowen G3IOR came across a beacon sending slow 8 -10 wpm CW on 145.973.8 MHz.

It sounded like old OSCAR satellite telemetry, it had the familiar HI HI followed by a string of numbers in groups of three. After monitoring by many ground stations it turned out to be OSCAR-7, and it seemed to have come back from the dead.

Pat's email to the AMSAT Bulletin Board announcing his discovery can be seen at http://www.amsat.org/amsat/archive/amsat-bb/200206/msg00525.html

It is believed that in 1981 the batteries failed short-circuit, however, in 2002 they became open-circuit enabling the satellite to run again from the solar panels. Since that day OSCAR 7 has been operational when in sunlight and has provided radio amateurs with some great long distance (DX) SSB/CW contacts.

Remember when working OSCAR 7 use the least uplink power possible to minimize your downlink power usage, and maximize the number of simultaneous contacts supported in the passband.

A BBC News report "Radio ham finds lost satellite" about the reception of OSCAR 7 by Dave Rowan G4CUO - http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/2149381.stm

Oscar 7 Information - http://www.amsat.org/amsat-new/satellites/satInfo.php?satID=9

A collection of photos by Dick Daniels W4PUJ taken during the construction, test and launch of the AMSAT-OSCAR 7 spacecraft in 1973 and 1974 - http://n4hy.smugmug.com/AMSAT/AMSAT-Oscar-7

Video of 2E0HTS Working the OSCAR-7 Satellite - http://www.uk.amsat.org/4105

Join the AMSAT Bulletin Board AMSAT-BB - http://www.amsat.org/amsat-new/tools/maillist/maillist.php