Would it be possible to receive the transmissions from JWST (James Webb Space Telescope) as an amateur, building your own antenna?

Would the transmissions be encrypted?

One source cites it using: S-band at 2270.5 MHz to transmit telemetry and that the science data will be transmitted in K-band at 29.5 GHz, with a rate of up to 28 Mbps.



1 Answer 1


Yes, it is possible to detect the S band telemetry from JWST as an amateur, and it has been done with a 6.1m dish. Hams have built dishes this big. The source you listed details this, and was written by a ham. The telemetry does not appear to be encrypted.

To receive the Ka band science data would require a much bigger antenna on the order of an 18 meter dish due to the signal strength and wide bandwidth. I cannot find an authoritative source on if the science downlink is encrypted.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.