{Collins} Re: Collins didn't just make ham radio



The ground gear was Collins, while the flight gear was Motorola. In those 
days, I was at Houston as a trouble-shooter on what was known as the Apollo 
Unified S-Band Telecommunications and Tracking System. The radio system was 
based on a Jet Propulsion Lab design that was first implemented at 800-900 
Mc. for unmanned spacecraft. For manned spaceflight, there was an uplink at 
2106 Mc. and a downlink at 2295 Mc. (There wasn't any Hz. in those days.) 
The spacecraft transponder turned the uplink frequency around and sent it 
back down at the higher frequency, enabling tracking of the spacecraft via a 
digital tracking code and a phase-coherent carrier. Subcarriers carried the 
various voice, command, telemetry, and TV signals. The spacecraft 
transponder had a high-gain TWT amplifier of 20 Watts and both omni and 
high-gain antennas. Without the amplifier, the transponder itself was just a 
few watts, I forget the exact number. The lowest transmitted power was half 
a watt, which would support CW. Yes, the Astronauts had to know CW. But most 
of them did, since they were all military pilots. Slow speed, of course. At 
the various ground stations around the world there were 30-foot dishes, with 
a few 85-foot ones. (No measurements in meters in those days. It was feet 
and miles.) The three Deep Space Network stations had 210-foot dishes. 
That's what it took to get back decent TV from the lunar surface. It was one 
of the astronauts, Tom Stafford, who single-handedly took it upon himself to 
improve the Apollo TV, from 10 frames per second, black and white, to 
commercial color. To do that required the 210-foot dish.

John Painter
W5LQS
Former "Rocket Scientist"


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Jack Colson" <jcolson7@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <krkaplan@xxxxxxx>; "Steve Lenaghan VE4LR" <VE4LR@xxxxxxxx>; 
<collins@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Wednesday, August 30, 2006 3:36 PM
Subject: {Collins} Re: Collins didn't just make ham radio


When NASA switched over from using VHF for its satellites up and down
links, Collins was selected to design and supply entire new S-band
2.1-2.3GHz) systems.   This included I believe a 20Kw uplink
transmitter.  When you saw the gear, it just had that Collins look.
These were deployed at all the NASA sites. These sites had 9 and 26
meter dishes.

 I am not sure about the three Deep Space Network sites

73,
Jack, W3TMZ

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Ken Kaplan" <krkaplan@xxxxxxx>
To: "Steve Lenaghan VE4LR" <VE4LR@xxxxxxxx>; <collins@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Tuesday, August 29, 2006 11:11 PM
Subject: {Collins} Re: Collins didn't just make ham radio


> Steve,
>
> Those are great historical pictures! What was the 90 foot dish for?
> Radio astronomy, communications?
>
> Kinda makes ham radio look like just a hobby <g>
>
> 73 Ken kb7rgg
>
>> I came across this set of slides for a cable multiplex job we did in
>> the
>> late '60s
>>
>> http://home.westman.wave.ca/~ve4lr/collinsmillvillage.htm
>>
>> Please note the mechanical filters on the cards.
>>
>> 73 Steve VE4LR
>
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Nets: Tues: 3.805 Mc-2000 Central / Thur: 3.875 Mc-2000 Central
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1st Wed (of the month) AM Net 3.880 Mc-2000 local (ET, CT, MT, PT)
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