July 31, 2009
ASTRONAUT FRANK DE WINNE ON BOARD ISS EVALUATES AMATEUR RADIO
Thursday, 23 July 2009 at 19:35 UTC, i.e. 21:35 local time, “Ugo Guidi” School, Forte dei Marmi, Italy, established a direct contact with ESA astronaut Frank De Winne on board the International Space Station. The Amateur Radio school station operated the contact with callsign IQ5VR
One student asked a question about Amateur Radio and the astronaut's answer was most interesting.
"How important is the Amateur Radio station on board the ISS? Over"
"Amateur Radio is important for us on the ISS, because it provides an important means of psychological support. It's always nice to talk to people on earth, especially to schoolchildren like you, and to answer questions about the life here in space. So we like Amateur Radio contact very much".
An mp3 recording of this Q/A is attached to this ARISS-Europe News Bulletin, archived at
Frank De Winne has an Amateur Radio licence with call sign ON1DWN. He operated from space during the Odissea Mission in 2002.
Since the start of the OasISS Mission, May 2009, Frank has already done 10 school contacts. Several more are on the waiting list.
ARISS is an international educational outreach program partnering the participating space agencies, NASA, Russian Space Agency, ESA, 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 onboard 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.
Gaston Bertels, ON4WF