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QSL: Direct or LOTW

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Enjoying Fine Coffee True Companion
Exploring the Oceans of Bandraginus V Future HAM

I earned my ticket in 1998 in college at Iowa State University working on an amateur hydrogen-line radio telescope along with KC0AYD. I was off the air for almost 20 years after college until 2017, when I got interested in APRS, SDR,  and then got bit by the amateur satellite bug.


  • FM Satellite QSOs (SO-50, AO-85, and AO-91)
  • Packet Satellite QSOs (ISS, NO-84, and FalconSat-3)
  • SSB Satellite QSOs (AO-7, FO-29, EO-88, CAS-4B, XW-2A, etc)
  • FM/Codec2 Satellite QSOs on LilacSat-1 (LO-90)



My first experiment with amateur satellites was sending APRS packets via ISS and PSAT (NO-84). For this, I dusted off my skills from college to build a homebrew Yagi, and used a Baofeng HT and PocketPacket TNC software on an iPhone.

I now work packet QSOs on ISS, NO-84, and FalconSat-3 with APRS messages, using a Kenwood TH-D72a and an Arrow satellite antenna.


I also work the FM birds SO-50, AO-85, and AO-91, chasing grids, occasionally roving, and generally trying to support others in the hobby. I had my first satellite QSO via SO-50 on March 27, 2017 with K5ND in Texas. So far, the farthest stations I have contacted via FM satellites have been:

College Homebrew Radio Telescope
In actuality, ISU was anything but boring!
  • North and East: Grid GP49 in Greenland with OX/NJ7H at 3,933 km (SO-50).
  • South: Grid EJ97 in Panama with HP2VX at 3,981 km (AO-91).
  • West: Grid CO29 in Alaska with AL6D at 3,443 km (AO-85).
  • Overall FM Distance Record: 4,189 km with FG8OJ in Grid FK96ig (SO-50).


In December 2017, Santa Claus delivered an FT-817, a portable, all-mode QRP radio, and I started working linear transponder satellites, operating semi-duplex. Due to the challenge created by Doppler shift on the 70cm band while working any Mode B satellites semi-duplex, I mostly worked FO-29 with a 2m uplink, having my first linear QSO on December 9, 2017 with NP4JV. I did successfully have a QSO on AO-7, our 40+ year-old zombiesat, with KE9AJ on December 15, 2017.

Later that month, I got an old FT-790R II, an all mode 70cm transceiver, which allowed me to operate linear satellites full-duplex. My current goals are to complete a transatlantic QSO with Europe and a QSO with Hawaii.



I also have a FUNcube Dongle Pro+ SDR. In 2018, Here are some of my interests and experiments with this SDR:

  • I have decoded telemetry data from FUNcube-1 (AO-73) and Nayif-1 (EO-88).
  • I have made SSB QSOs on FO-29 and AO-7 using my SDR in combination with a Windows tablet as the receiver.
  • I am also interested in receiving WSPR digital messages on HF bands.
  • I have had QSOs with other operators on LilacSat-1, which requires an SDR to decode the digital downlink. My first QSO on this satellite was with KB1PVH in Massachusetts on June 13.

Here is a link to my instruction guide for working LilacSat-1.

Other interests include spending time with my family, especially while traveling, hiking, reading, amateur astronomy, and, as it should probably go without saying, fine coffee.

73 and 55 (best success) to all,

Adam, KØFFY EN31

ISS Packet Assistants
ISS packet communication assistants.

Satellite Grids Confirmed 

8585686 Last modified: 2018-01-16 21:38:56, 5924 bytes

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