AMSAT-NA VP Operations, Drew KO4MA, provides an update on the work to recover the Amateur Radio satellite AO-51.
We are having a difficult time trying to restore AO-51 to operation. Currently, the satellite will not retain the upload of the flight software across eclipse. The batteries are in very poor condition. We have a few more things to try, but with eclipses peaking around July at ~27 minutes, the long term situation is grim.
There is a brief period around November where eclipses are as short as 16 minutes, but past that it is a long climb to 30 minutes or longer eclipses for many years. We have no expected "return to service" date.
If you have 9k6 digital capability, you can listen in on our attempts at recovery on 435.150 on many passes over the US.
Please support AMSAT-NA and the other AMSAT groups around the world, and help us get new satellites into orbit. Projects like Fox, FunCube, P3E, and Kiwisat need your financial support to keep our amateur satellite fleet flying.
AMSAT-NA VP Operations