ARISS contact planned with school in Michelstadt, Germany – Downlink audible over Europe


Friday September 7, 2012 at 08.52 UTC, which is 10.52 CEST, an ARISS contact is planned with Gymnasium Michelstadt, Michelstadt, Germany


This will be a direct radio contact operated by DKØDK. Downlink signals from the International Space Station will be audible over Europe on 145.800 MHz FM.


Michelstadt is a remote city located in the center of Germany and surrounded by a low mountain range. The city was mentioned the first time in historic documents of the year 741. Several historic buildings survived till today; most famous are the convent “Einhardsbasilika” (827) and the historic town hall (1484). The environment is dominated by temperate broadleaf forest and agricultural fields. The population of Michelstadt and its neighbor city Erbach counts around 30.000 inhabitants. The closest cities in the area are Darmstadt (in 50 km distance, ESA satellite control center), Heidelberg (in 60 km distance, US army base) and Frankfurt (in 70 km distance, main international airport).


The Gymnasium Michelstadt was founded by the count Albert of Erbach-Fuerstenau in 1823. Today the school teaches over 1500 students and employs about 120 teachers. Being the only secondary school dedicated exclusively to high education standards, the school attracts students of the entire region. Many students have to travel over 30 minutes to school each morning. Due to its size it offers many specializations and voluntary courses, especially in science and music. The school aims not only to educate the students but also supports them in the development of their personality. In the last years students took successfully part in a science contest “jugend forscht”. The school had some insights into space research due to our yearly visits to the ESA satellite control center. The entire school is excited about being chosen for a contact with the ISS and looks forward to the day of the contact.



Students will ask as many of following questions as time allows.


1. Jessica (15): What was the most interesting scientific project you were involved in at the ISS?


 2. Lisanne (14): Is living in space living up to the expectations you had on earth?


 3. Laureen (15): Did some things in space surprise you or were you prepared for everything by the training on earth?


 4. Julius (14): What was the biggest accident or mishap during your time on the ISS?


 5. Jona (15): Are you able to follow major sport events, for example the super bowl?


 6. Daniel (14): Is zero gravity fun or does it get annoying after some time?


 7. Larissa (15): How do American astronauts vote for the president?


 8. Yannik (15): Are there some things that are really annoying on ISS?


 9. Hanna (14): Do you miss things from earth on ISS?


10. Timo (15): How is sleeping at zero gravity?


11. Christian (15): How do you spend your free time?


12. Sophia (15): How is a typical day on the space station?


13. David (16): Do you feel any medical effects of the zero gravity? What do you do to prevent them?


14. Johannes (15): How was your first impression seeing the earth out of space?


15. Moritz (14): Can you see the Chinese Wall or any other human made structure form space?


16. Julia (15): Can you notice anything when you leave or re-enter the earth atmosphere?


17. Jonas (15): Are you afraid of meteorite or space debris hits?


18. Celil (14): Are you allowed to drink alcoholic drinks?


19. Henrik (14): At which time zone is the space station operating?


20. Marina (15): How does personal hygiene work in space? Can you shower?


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.


73, Gaston Bertels, ON4WF

ARISS Chairman