New satellite - OPS-SAT (Launch 2019-12-18)

The ESA OPS-SAT launch is coming fast. It would be awesome if we could get the necessary SatNOGS DB entries update on time and see the community help us track the first “beeps” of our baby.
Details below.

Online information

Orbit info
Orbit is 530 km SSO, LTAN 06:00
Preliminary TLE set is available there:
We should have a post-deployment predicted TLE around 14:00 on the launch day (40 minutes after planned deployment). We will then update the linked file.
For now we use a dummy NORAD ID of 99992 and COSPAR 00000A. As soon as we get proper numbers assigned and the first NORAD TLE published, we will mirror them there.
Once we establish the on-board orbit determination, we might decide to publish TLE generated that way.

Launch timeline on the 17th
(UTC, all timestamps approximate, subject to corrections)
08:54 Lift-off
13:05 OPS-SAT deployment
13:35 The OBSW starts the autodeployment
13:40 Autodeployment finishes
13:50 Beacons transmitted with 10 second interval
~15:56 First ground station pass

3 radio modules:

  • GOMspace NanoCom AX-100 UHF Transceiver
  • Syrlinks EWC31 S-Band Transceiver
  • Syrlinks EWC27 X-Band Transmitter

UHF link parameters:
Half-Duplex 437.2 MHz/GMSK/BW 25 kHz/Baud 9k6/m=0.5
AX.25 with HDLC (see below examples and full specification)

Full downlink specification in PDF:

Beacon demodulation and decoding pipeline created by my colleagues Ben and Tom:

Let me know if you have any more questions.



@dmarszk thanks for the info!

I’m going to add the satellite soon in DB, in order to be able to add transmitters.


Working on a kaitai-struct decoder for dashboards already…


New satellite is waiting for launch, scheduled for 17.Dec.2019 . Is it possible to add the satellite to the database? No NORAD-ID is available at the moment, of course.

Transceivers on-board:
UHF - Detailed at
S-band up- and downlink.
X-band downlink.

I’ll try to provide more information as needed, but S- and X-band I think cannot be freely decoded. It would be great to use Satnogs to listen to the beacons, especially the first one!



@cclaudiu thanks for the info, the satellite will be added in the next 3 days. By the way there is already a thread about it, so I’m moving this post in that thread.

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Now with radioamateur campaign:


Thanks @dmarszk!

I have added OPS-SAT in SatNOGS DB with the temporary NORAD ID 99992.

I haven’t added the transmitters yet, I’ll do tomorrow if no one else add a suggestion in the DB entry.

OPS-SAT will be available for scheduling in SatNOGS Network ~12h before the launch.

NOTE 1: for those that are going to schedule OPS-SAT in Network, please avoid scheduling too far in the future until we get some steady TLE. Scheduling 4h after the launch is a good practice. Have also in mind that if there is a significant delay in launch or a significant change on the TLE the observations will be removed and rescheduled with the new TLE.

NOTE 2: for those that are going to schedule OPS-SAT in Network, please have in mind in general, when you schedule for a new deployments to use the advanced settings to change the minimum horizon to 0. This is a good practice because without fully accurate TLE this could help receive the satellite if it passes over the station a little after or a little before the expected time.



If you need some hands on working on the kaitai struct, i ll have time this week starting monday.

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Your help is always welcome! There’s also DUCHIFAT-3 to do, so we could arrange work a bit…

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Everything ready for tomorrow’s launch. Transmitter is added and any demodulated frame will be forwarded to DB.

TLE set has been added in Network so you can start scheduling:

  • Lift-off is scheduled for 08:54:20 UTC on 17 December. Deployment will begin 15044.6 seconds later (T+15044.6 seconds), expected to be at 13:05:04 UTC.

I’ve already schedule several high elevation passes for the first 4h (from 13:00 to 17:00 UTC).

I have update the mission timeline. Note that the earliest you might hear something would be 13:55, maybe 13:50 UTC.



Launch has been postponed, waiting for a new day. I’m going to remove the scheduled observations.


Propagating the TLE to a 2019-12-18T08:54:20UTC launch time:

1 84101U 19852A   19352.54519213  .00000000  00000-0  14352-3 0    00
2 84101  97.4562 173.9820 0014200 276.6703 275.2883 15.15898002    01

I have updated the timeline in the original post.

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TLE has been updated to the ones above until we have something more precise.

As the previous TLE weren’t accurate I have removed and rescheduled observations.

Also I’ve added some more observations for the first 4h after deployment (2019-12-18 13:05)

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The launch was successful, we are now waiting for deployment. If there is any update on TLE please add it here.

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New TLE uploaded to the website. Note that it shifts all passes by roughly 20 minutes. Note that the post-separation TLE might also diverge from it quite significantly.


1 99992U 00000A   19352.54519213  .00000000  00000+0  14420-3 0 00015
2 99992  97.4561 173.9824 0014200 276.6706 275.2880 15.15898027    05

They are slightly different from ones in New satellite - OPS-SAT (Launch 2019-12-18), so no need for re-scheduling observations.

NOTE: please keep in mind that these TLE are preliminary and maybe change after the deployment, so don’t schedule too far in the future.

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Note the mission timeline in the first post to see when a signal is expected.