Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) Status Report
September 17, 2012
1. Upcoming School Contacts
Zespól Szkól Technicznych w Kole, Kolo, Poland will participate in an Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) contact on Wednesday, September 19 at 07:15 UTC. Besides learning about space, amateur radio and satellite tracking in the classroom, students are also attending lectures on astronautics, engineering and astronomy. They are involved with related hands-on activities and competitions, with the winners receiving the opportunity to question the ISS astronaut. In addition, the school is forming astronomy and amateur radio clubs for the youth. The event will be broadcast live via the internet on: http://live.arisspolska.info/
An Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) contact has been planned for Sunset Hills Elementary School in San Diego, California on Thursday, September 20 at 17:24 UTC. Students are learning about the radio and space through age-appropriate hands-on activities. NASA education Web site materials are being used and guest speakers from the local Amateur Radio club will give a presentation to the students.
Lafayette Middle School, La Fayette, Georgia is slated for an Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) contact on Friday, September 21 at 15:03 UTC. The school will use the ARISS contact to promote the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics within its entire system. It hopes to arrange for Skype interviews with guests for the ARISS event: Dr. Rob Suggs and Dr. Bill Cooke of Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama; Cristi Whitworth, Educational Director for Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute; and Dr. June Scobee Rodgers, Founding Chair of the Challenger Center at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.
2. Successful Contacts Held
Students attending Maroochydore State School in Maroochydore, Queensland, Australia participated in an Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) contact on Wednesday, September 12 via telebridge station VK4KHZ in Australia. Akihiko Hoshide, KE5DNI answered 14 questions of the students before the ISS went over the horizon. Approximately 40 students and guests were in attendance and the contact received coverage by radio, television and newspapers. The contact was integrated into a comprehensive space curriculum, with lessons focused on the Venus Transit, the Juno mission and the Curiosity mission.
An ARISS contact was held between Joe Acaba, KE5DAR on the ISS and Marcelino Canino Canino Middle School in Dorado, Puerto Rico on Wednesday, September 12 via telebridge station K6DUE in Greenbelt, Maryland. The session was conducted in Spanish, with all 16 questions answered. The students are involved in a Microsatellite Hardware program through which they design, build, launch, track and retrieve their microsatellites with the assistance of many local amateur radio operators. The school, located in a rural area of Dorado, has an enrollment of 464 students of which 78% live below the poverty level and 26% receive special education services.
On Thursday, September 13, Sunita Williams, KD5PLB spoke with students at the Gymnasium Unterrieden in Sindelfingen, Germany through an ARISS contact and answered their space-related questions. One hundred people showed up for the event, including 4 media outlets. The audio was broadcasted via 2 amateur radio relays. The contact was integrated into several other amateur radio activities which included the students preparing for entry level amateur radio licenses and building a satellite receiving station. Video has been posted: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_uOnhrsOvg
A second ARISS contact that Akihiko Hoshide, KE5DNI took part in last week was with children at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland on Thursday, September 13. The students had 21 questions answered during the ISS pass, and as the coordinating person at Goddard had previously asked another astronaut for answers to the questions, the remaining students still received "official" answers to their questions. Nearly 100 people were in attendance, with 4 media cameras recording the event. Prince George's County Community TV reported on the event. See: http://tinyurl.com/9q939u3
On Thursday, September 13, an ARISS contact was held between children at the Burns Sci-Tech Charter School in Oak Hill, Florida and Sunita Williams KD5PLB on the ISS. Daytona Beach Amateur Radio Association supported the school in this endeavor. The contact was integrated into lessons on radio waves, electricity, communications, geography and languages.
3. Astronaut Training Status
Gregory Wiseman, KF5LKT took part in a basic operations training session on Wednesday, September 12. He is slated to fly with the Expedition 40 crew in May 2014.
4. ARRL Articles on ARISS
The American Radio Relay League (ARRL) carried two articles related to ARISS in its ARRL Letter on September 13. The first item covers the return of Expedition 31/32 crew members to Earth. The second talks about the ARRL convention to be held in California on October 12-14. Astronaut Lee Morin will be a guest speaker at the event and ARISS member Kenneth Ransom, N5VHO will also attend.
Three Hams Return to Earth this Weekend; Watch Live on NASA TV may be viewed at: http://www.arrl.org/news/three-hams-return-to-earth-this-weekend-watch-live- on-nasa-tv
To read ARRL Welcomes NASA Astronaut Lee Morin, KF5DDB, to 2012 National Convention, see: http://www.arrl.org/news/arrl-welcomes-nasa-astronaut-lee-morin-kf5ddb-to-20 12-national-convention
5. Amateur Radio Newsline Covers ARISS
On September 14, the Amateur Radio Newsline report #1831 included an item on the recent ARISS contact held with German students attending Michelstadt Gymnasium. Ham Radio in Space: ISS to Germany Student Q and A Session may be found at: http://www.arnewsline.org/storage/scripts/nsln1831.txt