Last Update: January 27, 2010
Sputnik 41, named amateur radio satellite RS-18 is a small 1/3 scale version of the original Sputnik satellite launched in 1957. Sputnik 41 was hand launched from the MIR space station on November 10, 1998 during some extravehicular activities. It was sponsored by Aéro Club de France that was celebrating its 100th anniversary and was broadcasting a message celebrating "The International Year of Air and Space". This was truly a QRP (low power) satellite transmitting with 200 mW on a frequency of about 145.814 MHz FM. I made the recordings below on November 13, 1998 at about 0520 UTC. My receiver was an Icom IC-251 and my antenna was a vertically polarized end-fed dipole (J-pole) up 5 meters. This particular pass had a maximum elevation of about 45 degrees. It is worth noting that I detected no spin modulation from the cross polarization / radiation pattern effects such as that usually detected from a spinning satellite while receiving it via a linear polarized antenna. I suspect that either Sputnik 41 wasn't spinning much or the antennas provided good polarization circularity.
All of the files below are from one transmitting sequence that I recorded live off the air directly from the satellite. Since there was a long period of time between individual transmissions I separated each transmission into different files to reduce the file size. No processing has been performed at all on these recordings.
The latest news regarding Sputnik 41 via AMSAT news is as follows:
"The satellite stopped transmitting early on December 11, 1998, meeting the 30 day projected lifetime."