PCSat 1 (Prototype Communications satellite) or NO 44 (Nav-OSCAR 44) is a US Naval Academy Aerospace student project designed to give students real hands on experience in satellite design and operations.
The project was funded by the Naval Academy, and a Grant from Boeing Corporation, and the launch was secured through the DOD's Space Test Program in cooperation with NASA.
The mission, to fit within the ITU regulations for operations in the Amateur Satellite Service, is to provide mobile and Handheld Satellite digital communications for amateur satellite operators worldwide using the Automatic-Position-Reporting-System (APRS). PCsat augments the terrestrial APRS system with a flying worldwide Relay to extend APRS coverage globally.
This mission demonstrates mobile vehicle tracking and communications for GPS equipped remote travelers such as the Naval Academy Boats at sea, cross country travelers, expeditions, or any other travelers which are far from any existing APRS terrestrial tracking infrastructure. The PCsat satellite downlink from such travelers is fed into the existing worldwide internet linked APRS system by several volunteer ground stations.
|Type / Application:||Experimental Communication|
|Operator:||US Naval Academy|
|Contractors:||US Naval Academy|
|Power:||Solar cells, batteries|
|Orbit:||790 km × 800 km × 67°|
|PCSat 1 (Navy-OSCAR 44, NO 44)||2001-043C||30.09.2001||Kd LP-1||Athena-1||with Starshine 3, PICOSat, SAPPHIRE|