September 29, 2005




Today, Thursday 29 September 2005 at 11:28 UTC, i.e. 12:28 UK time and 13:28 CET (Continental European Time), the Tregaron High School in Tregaron, Wales, United Kingdom had a very succesful  Space Talk with US astronaut John Phillips, KE5DRY onboard the International Space Station.


Contact was established shortly after the ISS rose over the horizon and John Phillips started answering the questions put by the students. When student Kaleigh asked: “If you cry in space, what happens to the tears?”, John said this was probably the most interesting question. He said he had no experience but supposed the tears would stay in the eyes or on the cheeks and evaporate.


John answered 18 questions before the ISS went over the horizon and contact was lost. He even answered two more questions which were on the list and ground stations farther east could hear his answers and his signing off.


About 300 students, 30 teachers and VIP filled the room at Tregaron High School. BBC TV  covered the event which was also broadcast by streaming video.


The groundstation was RSGB’s well known mobile Ham Station GB4FUN, controlled by Carlos Eavis, G0AKI and operated by AMSAT UK’s Howard Long, G6LVB.


Congrats to Science Teacher Chris Greenfield who took the initiative of this ARISS School Contact. His students will remember their Space Talk for ever.



Gaston Bertels, ON4WF

ARISS-Europe chairman