27 March 2007




A telebridge ARISS school contact with the International School of Brussels, Belgium took place today, 27 March 2007.


At 13:48 UTC, 15:48 local time, Dave WA8AAS operating NN1SS in Maryland, USA established contact with NA1SS operated by Sunita Williams KD5PLB. Signals were relayed to Brussels, Belgium by Verizon Conferencing, Inc.

Signals were excellent and Sunita answered 16 questions from the students before the ISS went down over the horizon.



-          Eating and drinking initially was not easy because you donít feel food fitting in your stomach and itís a little bit of a pain too because the way you heat it and rehydrate it. So eating is a bit difficult and you canít eat things together, you sort of eat serially, one thing after another.

-          Every day is a bit different. We do things from robotic operations to space walks which we call EVAís, to science experiments, to maintenance of the station, as well as talking to people like yourself. So every day is different and thatís scheduled by our control centers in Moscow and in Houston.

-          Itís just like inside of a ship, sort of a submarine. However, outside of course itís very dangerous. And we have to prepare for it, like a fire or a depressurizing because of a meteorite. So we have a Soyuz vehicle which is a lifeboat which we can get into and leave the space station if any of those catastrophic things happened.


About 200 students assisted to the event as well as parents and teachers. Before the space talk, Gaston Bertels ON4WF had done a presentation of the amateur radio service in general and more precisely the radio station on the ISS, as well as an introduction to easy to understand aspects such as the daily number of revolutions, the orbital plane and the maximum latitudes were a direct radio contact is possible.


Students were very enthusiastic at least two of them, a boy and a girl, asked lots of questions on how to become a radio amateur.


The audio of the radio contact as well as pictures are hereto appended.


ARISS, Amateur Radio on the International Space Station, an international working group of several amateur radio societies from countries participating to the ISS, provides a free educational outreach programme in collaboration with the Space Agencies, involving a worldwide team of volunteering amateur radio operators.


Gaston Bertels, ON4WF

ARISS-Europe chairman


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