September 20, 2009


An International Space Station ARISS contact has been planned with students at Vrij Technisch Instituut Sint Lucas, located in Oudenaarde, Belgium.


VTI Sint-Lucas is a secondary technical school for pupils aged between 12 and 18 – 19 years old. It offers technical or vocational studies, such as industrial science, electricity-electronics, electro-mechanics, carpentry, central heating, construction …. VTISL are proud of the school’s motto: “With a heart for the person and technology”. The school has about 540 pupils, mainly boys.


Under the enthusiastic leadership of Patriek De Temmerman ON8PDT, the school has been working on this project for a whole school year. It was the central theme of the School's Open Day and space and the ISS were linked to many courses. Through designing and developing our own hardware and software, such as the cross yagi antenna and the transmitting equipment…we hope to make youngsters enthusiastic for technique and technology.


The contact is scheduled on Tuesday 22 September at 13:47 UTC, which is 15:47 CEST. The downlink signals will be audible over Western Europe on 145.800MHz FM. The contact is to be conducted in Dutch.

Participants will ask as many of the following questions as time allows:


1. Matthias: Waarom komt het ISS nooit in een baan boven de poolgebieden?

Why does the ISS never orbit above the polar regions?


2. Joran: Hoe koud is het in de ruimte?

How cold is it in space?


3. Niels: Zijn de zonnepanelen aan boord van het ISS ook toepasbaar op aarde?

Can the solar panels on the ISS be used on earth as well?


4. Rambot: Wat gebeurt er als jullie ziek zijn?

What happens if you are seriously ill?


5. Brecht: Ruimtevaart veroorzaakt een bepaalde milieuschade.  Hoe kan ruimte-onderzoek deze impact verantwoorden?

Launching into space causes some environmental damage. Are there ways that space research can justify such environmental impacts?


6. Arno: Is er bij jullie dag en nacht?

Do you have night and day?


7. Laurens: Waarin verschilt onze eigen ontworpen cross yagi antenne met het type antenne van het ISS?

What is the difference between our self-made cross yagi antenna and the type of antenna on ISS?


8. Lorenzo: Welke Belgische experimenten voeren jullie uit?

Which specific Belgian experiments do you conduct?


9. Sander: Welke natuurverschijnselen op aarde kan je vanuit de ruimte waarnemen?

Which natural phenomena on earth can you observe from space?


10. Steven: Hoe wordt de temperatuur geregeld in het ISS?

How is temperature controlled in the ISS?


11. Jonas: Hoe ‘vindt u de weg’ in de ruimte?

How do you find your way in space?


12. Thibo: Zijn er geluiden in de ruimte?

Is there sound in space?


13. Giel: Waar halen jullie je water voor dagelijks gebruik vandaan?

Where do you get water for daily consumption?


14. Reinout: Wat voor ontspanning heeft u in het ruimtestation?

What kind of entertainment do you have on the ISS?


15. Frederick: Hoe wordt elektriciteit opgewekt in het ISS?

How do you produce electricity for the ISS?


16. Anthony: Welk gevaar vormt ruimteafval voor het ISS?

How dangerous is space junk for the ISS?


17. Mathias: Kan je de actualiteit volgen?

Can you keep up to date with the news?


18. Yoran: Waarom zweeft het materiaal, dat je tijdens een ruimtewandeling verliest, weg?

Why do materials and tools float away in space, when you lose them during a spacewalk?


19. Olivier: Op welke manier slapen jullie daar?

How do you sleep there?


20. Simon: Is jullie zintuigelijke waarneming hetzelfde als op aarde?

Are your sensory perceptions there the same as they are on earth?


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 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

ARISS Chairman