Did you know that you’re running out of time if you’ve been planning on working ARISSat-1? Why do you ask? Well, it’s estimated to be re-entering in January or February 2012. So now is the time to use the on board repeater or get an SSTV pic.
The satellite was deployed back in August and since then has lost about 60km of altitude, and is estimated to be losing 1.5km per day. This is due to increased drag on the craft from increased solar activity on the atmosphere. From Southgate ARC:
The orbit period changes about 30 seconds per day, and that will increase steadily. Be certain to update your tracking program Keps from Space-Track or CelesTrak before each pass. They issue revised versions 3-5 times daily.
That’s a lot of revisions, so make sure to stay on top of them if you want to work it. Plus any telemetry data the engineers can get from the satellite will help in future flights. If you want more information on ARISSat-1 feel free to check the related stories below or you can check out these stories done here for more info.