Tuesday, August 22, 2006

What is in the September MT Milcom Column?

We have some really neat stuff in our September MT Milcom column. First, our cover is a photo of a Titan 4B launch from Vandenberg AFB carrying a classified DoD payload. This is part of the kick off for a series of columns that will cover monitoring military satellites in the pages of MT.

Monitoring Times was the first commercial hobby publication to carry a column devoted to satellites comms back when we were still in newsprint and bimonthly. That was in the fall of 1983 to be exact and I was the author of the then new Signals From Space column.

Riding on the success of that column was the publication by Grove of my first book, Satellite Communications. It was the first book ever written for the radio satellite monitoring hobby community. It was well received and went through three editions. It helped launch a whole generation of monitors into the satellite listening hobby. Of course, Grove was also the publisher of Satellite Times magazine and during its five year run it helped promote satellite monitoring.

Personally, I have been around satellite monitoring since my early days in the radio hobby. I cut my teeth monitoring Russian military satellites in the 1960s on HF frequencies so I have a bit of experience along these lines. I look forward to sharing that experience with MT readers in future Milcom columns.

As part of this expanded coverage, if you have some specific questions on satellite monitoring, you can email them to the address in the masthead and I will certainly consider them for publication in our MT Help Desk column. Sorry, but due to time constraints, I can't answer each one individually. While you can remain anonymous in the column, I will not accept for publication any query that does not include your name and location.

So what is in the September MT Milcom? We have an overview of the U.S. Military Satellite Program. You will learn about our imaging/recon, early warning, communications, and navigation satellite programs run by the National Reconnaissance Office and DoD. I have included a toolbox of online websites that you can use for more information.

So as I have said before, "miss one issue of MT and you miss a lot."

Photo by Pat Corkery and courtesy Lockheed Martin (copyright held by author and Lockheed and it cannot be reposted or circulated on the net without the permission of the copyright holders).