An International Space Station school contact has been planned with participants at Nova East Star Party, Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Halifax Center, NS, Canada on 22 August. The event is scheduled to begin at approximately 12:54 UTC. The duration of the contact is approximately 9 minutes and 30 seconds.
The contact will be direct between NA1SS and VE1MR. The contact should be audible over areas of eastern Canada. Interested parties are invited to listen in on the 145.80 MHz downlink. The contact is expected to be conducted in English.
Celebrating its 23rd year, the Nova East Star Party is sponsored by the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Halifax Center. Its Atlantic Canada's oldest and largest Star Party and draws both professional as well as amateur Astronomers from the Atlantic Provinces, Quebec, Eastern Ontario and the New England States. Under the open skies of Smileys Provincial Park (outside Windsor, Nova Scotia) the focus of the event is public outreach and education. Through daytime seminars and workshops and evening observing sessions the public is introduced to the wonders of the night sky. At present the Park is sold out for the Nova East weekend. This is only one of the many events that the RASC, Halifax Center has been involved with in 2009 during this International Year of Astronomy.
Participants will ask as many of the following questions as time allows:
1. You are in free fall, or as the physicist John Wheeler put it:"free
float". What does it feel like, and do you get used to it? 2. What atmospheric pressure are your EVA suits regulated at? 3. What is it like to look out the window and instead of seeing a tree or a
car you see Earth and stars from space? 4. Now that the International Space Station is fully crewed and with the
different science modules from its partners (the USA, Canada, ESA, Russia
and Japan), how do you cope with all the different time zones that the
ISS represents given that it takes the ISS only approximately 90 minutes
to complete an orbit? 5. Do you see Iridium flares or are you at the wrong angle to see them from
the ISS? 6. When people on the ISS are "off duty" how much time do they spend looking
at Earth passing by? 7. After the ISS is completed, will its altitude be raised beyond the
present "construction" altitude to reduce the orbital decay rate from
atmospheric drag? 8. Prince Edward Island is noted for its red soil and for the 13-kilometre-
long Confederation Bridge linking the Island to New Brunswick. Is either
of these particularly noticeable from the ISS, and if so, what is your
impression? 9. With all the space junk that has accumulated in earth orbit, how is the
International Space Station protected? 10. I understand that the ISS requires periodic firing of engines to maintain
orbital altitude. Will the ISS eventually run out of fuel for these
"burns" or can the engines be refueled in orbit? 11. Our species is heavily impacting Earth's biosphere. How easy is it to see
human-made changes to Earth's land surface? Can you see any evidence of
our impact on the oceans and atmosphere? 12. How do you regulate your internal clock (your circadian rhythm)? 13. Do you have access to a telescope or binoculars on the ISS? If so, what
are the basic specs, and what do you look at planets, the Moon, Earth? 14. The Sun often emits energetic flares. Should a large one happen to be
directed at Earth, how is the International Space Station protected?
15. Many astronauts have reported nausea in zero G. Does this problem
disappear as the astronaut becomes used to zero G, or is medication
required on an ongoing basis? 16. What thoughts first come into your mind when you awake from sleep aboard
the ISS? 17. How much muscle mass is lost during a prolonged stay aboard the ISS? 18. Do you see as many stars when in orbit on the sun-lit side of Earth as on
the night side; that is, is the sun's glare sharply defined, or does it
tend to hide the stars? 19. Is the ISS quiet or noisy? Does the changing heat load on the ISS caused
it to "creak" and "groan"? 20. Have you had the opportunity for a "lights out" (dark adapted) look at
our home galaxy, the Milky Way? What does it look like from space?
Information about the upcoming ARISS contacts can be found at http://www.ariss.org/upcoming.htm#NextContact.
Next planned event(s):
1. Tenison Woods College, Mount Gambier, South Australia, Australia, Mon 24 August 09 07:19 UTC
2. Volkssterrenwacht Urania, Hove, Antwerp, Belgium Mon 24 August 09 11:30 UTC
ARISS is an international educational outreach program partnering the participating space agencies, NASA, Russian Space Agency, ESA, CNES, JAXA, and CSA, with the AMSAT and IARU organizations from participating countries.
ARISS offers an opportunity for students to experience the excitement of Amateur Radio by talking directly with crewmembers on-board the International Space Station. Teachers, parents and communities see, first hand, how Amateur Radio and crewmembers on ISS can energize youngsters' interest in science, technology, and learning. Further information on the ARISS program is available on the website http://www.ariss.org/ (graciously hosted by the Radio Amateurs of Canada).
Thank you & 73,
David - AA4KN