Sat-ND, 1.6.96

Sat-ND 96-06-01 - Satellite and Media News

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"(c) Copyright 1996 by Sat-ND, http://www.sat-net.com/pck/"
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Peter C. Klanowski, Fax +49-451-5820055, pck@LyNet.De

This issue is sponsored by TELE-satellite, Europe's Satellite Magazine 
Have a look at their homepage! >> http://www.TELE-satellit.com/ <<

Final countdown
The European Space Agency (ESA) has confirmed the launch date June 4 for
its new Ariane 5 rocket following a launch readiness review last Wednesday
and Thursday. Ariane 5 will be moved onto the launch pad on Monday and is
expected to take off on Tuesday between 1135 and 1335 UTC. Four identical
CLUSTER research satellites will be put into orbit. According to Dr Dish,
live coverage of Ariane 5's debut flight can be expected on TELECOM 2C
12.606 GHz v.

Summer TV launched (but where's the summer?)
As expected, Wereldomroep Zomer TV was launched today at 2000 CEST on
ASTRA (19.2E, 10.773 GHz h.) It didn't come as a total surprise that the
channel, which is targeted at Dutch tourists abroad, also appeared on
EUTELSAT II-F3 (16E, 11.638 GHz h) as tests had been carried there
before. On this transponder, Zomer TV was accompanied by the teletext from
public broadcaster NOS that also supplies most of the channel's
programming. At least today, ASTRA transponder 53 still carried the Racing
Channel's teletext.

Dr Dish to meet Jonathan Marks
With a little luck, you can get some additional information about Zomer TV
on June 14 when Radio Netherland's Jonathan Marks will (hopefully) be on
drdish@tv. Other topics include SCPC-Reception, Software (Satmaster Pro),
European Satellites in Brazil, Transponder-Watch, Space-News, and
Media-News. Please note that drdish@tv will already begin at 2000 CEST,
1900 UK time, or 1800 UTC respectively.  You can watch it by simply
pointing your dish at DFS 2 on 28.5E and tuning into 11.675 GHz h, audio
subcarrier 6.65 MHz.

Everything you wanted to know about Bremen (but were afraid to ask)
US media company Viacom is suing the independent media authority of
Germany's smallest partial state, Bremen, for not allowing their German
version of children's channel Nickelodeon onto local cable systems.
Instead, the rival channel planned by the country's public networks ARD
and ZDF was given priority. Claiming to be treated unfairly, Nickelodeon
now wants the channel allocation to be reviewed in court -- by no means an
unusual move for broadcasters trying to get access to the hopelessly
overcrowded cable systems in Germany. But in this case, station managers
and company executives had better kept some basic facts in mind. While
there are over 16 million cable households in Germany, just 218,000 of
them are located in Bremen. And what's more, Nickelodeon claims to reach
already 13 million German cable households. Much ado about nothing?

...get a tan from standing in the English rain
"The British weather is one of the most changeable in the world," knows
Patrick Scott, managing director of the Weather Channel. Obviously, that's
why the country needs two weather channels. US-based Weather channel is
available to 22,00 cable subscribers in the Andover, Oxford, Coventry,
Stafford and Salisbury areas as from today, while the Canadian Weather
Network started broadcasting for 2,200 cable households on Jersey. Both
channels aim at being available nation-wide and have therefore contacted
BSkyB about satellite distribution. While the Weather Channel co-operates
with the Meteorological Office, the Weather Network has teamed up with the
Weather Department, which is forecasting the weather for six regional ITV
stations. Both channels expect to take up regular service by autumn. Until
then, pilot programmes are shown instead.

Good-bye, TV3 Norge
TV3 Norge on ASTRA 1B (19.2E, 11.671 GHz h) will be replaced by a home
shopping channel on June 15, according to an insert seen on the channel.
The other three transponders of Scandinavian media company Kinnevik on
ASTRA (TV3 Sweden, TV3 Denmark, TV 1000) will be taken over by BSkyB on
August 1. (Norbert Schlammer/pck)

ADR News
So-called test transmissions from Luxembourg's satellite company SES on
10,964 GHz h, usually consisting of just a test tone, have ceased. German
pubcaster ARD still uses two mono channels in ASTRA Digital Radio format
for networked programming distributed via their Frankfurt/Main central
node. Today, the soccer friendly Germany/France was covered for ARD radio
stations on channel B (11.494 GHz h, subcarrier 6.12 MHz.) Channel A is
regularly used from 1700 UTC for foreign language programming, targeted at
guest workers in Germany, but occasionally also for nation-wide classical
music programming at night. (Stefan Hagedorn/pck)

Monitor Radio goes WWW
The Christian Science Monitor has officially opened is Web site. For some
years, Christian Science Monitor Radio has been available in Europe on
shortwave with their professionally made, unbiased news programmes. Apart
from that, programming partly is also carried on many local radio stations
in the USA. You can get all those frequencies you need on their Web site,
but of course you can also listen to the channel with Real Audio, at least
partially. Should you prefer to get your news in written form, no problem
 there's plenty of them, too. An interesting and well done alternative to
all that general news sites, and you definitely do not have to be a
Christian to access it.

Re: Mystery Signals (Sat-ND, 31.6.96)
The signals that you mention at or around 36 degrees east cannot be GALS.
As far as I know GALS transponder frequencies start at 11804 MHz. I too
have seen the TV6 Moscow signal on 11525 MHz. The frequency would suggest
that this may be from an old GORIZONT (maybe ex-40 degrees east).
Regarding the other signals seen around 36 degrees east recently, NTV and
ACT from Russia, these are more likely to be from a GALS craft. However,
here in southern England there has been no sign of these two stations
(even with using a 10 metre dish!!) 

According to NASA, there's GORIZONT 17 around 34E (33.9E on May 30.)
However, this bird -- launched more than seven years ago -- is not only
heavily inclined (4.7) but also seemed to be moving between 34.5E and
33.8E during the last 30 days. Unless anyone comes up with a better
explanation, this still seems to be the best guess.
As far as GALS reception is concerned: It's a DBS satellite that uses very
clearly shaped beams ought to be readily received with very small dishes
in their target areas, in this case obviously some part of Russia. That
also means that the field strength outside this area deteriorates
dramatically the farther you go West, and it actually becomes
unpredictable then. A few miles can make the difference between seeing at
least something or seeing nothing at all. On the continent, reception of
these channels mentioned has been confirmed by at least three independent
sources -- although admittedly it's more or less just an accident that
enthusiasts with big dishes can receive them here.

Thanks to our contributors --
Stefan Hagedorn: DXStefan@aol.com 
Norbert Schlammer: 100415.3560@compuserve.com

Alle Angaben ohne Gewähr. Copyright 1996 by Peter C. Klanowski,
pck@LyNet.De. All rights reserved.
Einsender erklären sich mit Bearbeitung und Veröffentlichung

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