Contact with the International Space Station and Doctor Robert Thirsk on September 28,2009
We at the Calgary Space Workers (CSW) have enjoyed our involvment with the "Amateur Radio on the International Space Station" (ARRIS). We were proud to have supplied the equipment and assisted in the setup with these brilliant amateur radio enthusiasts.
Dr Robert Thirsk talking to Elementary Students with the help of the Calgary Space Workers Society (CSW) and the Radio Club known as Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS)
Calgary Space Workers and ARISS talking to Dr Robert Thirsk and the ISS
Calgary Space Workers and ARISS talking to Robert Thirsk and the ISS
Calgary Space Workers and ARISS talking to Robert Thirsk and the ISS
I have been in contact with Wayne, VE1WPH and we now have a official date and time for the RT Alderman ISS contact. It was our #4th choice that was picked.
Date: Mon 28 Sept 09
20:43:33 - 20:53:26 - UTC Time
14:43:33 14:53:26 - Local Time
Elevation - 76 Degrees
Since this is not the 'latest in the day' pass, from our submitted choices, it gives us more breathing room after the contact to disassemble the antennas, etc. and get home at a reasonable time.
Please acknowledge you received this e-mail so I know that the entire team has received this memo.
Ken Oelke - VE6AFO
Hi ARISS Team!
WOW....look what Brian Jackson received from Bob Thirsk, (NA1SS). Now - how often do you get an e-mail from an Astronaut, shortly after (7:24 PM)talking with him on 2 metres? This is so cool, and again you guys and gals helped pull off an awesome event for the Kids.
I am attaching a copy of the picture Bob sent to Brian - however - I have reduced the file size to 476 KB from a 6.5 MB file. Luckily, I can use the work computer/high speed network to send such a large file. If any of you want the large file (with this one, you can read the sheet of paper Bob is holding in his hand), let me know and I can send it to you. Or - I have it on my memory stick and you can get it from me if you bring a stick to Glenmore. We can use Lindsay's computer to do the tranfer. As Bob and Brian said - please DO NOT circulate this photo (family is okay) until he gets permission from CSA. We do not want to taint the trust Bob has put in us by sending this photo.
When Bob comes to Calgary, I am sure he will be busy visiting with family but, wouldn't it be cool if the ARISS-2009 Team could get together with him over a coffee? Knowing Bob - I know he would go out of his way to have the ARISS Team have a photo shoot with him. It certainly is something to think about.
So Team - thank you for all your efforts toward the first of two contacts. Anyone who has connections with the weather gods - maybe you could get them to stall the rain, sleet, snow AND wind for Oct. 3rd set-up!!
Ken Oelke - VE6AFO ********************************************************** Here is the message from Bob- we are still awaiting CSA approval for the picture so please ask people to hold tight to it for now. The image is VERY large.
JSC-Bob 28/09/2009 7:24 pm >>>
Hi Brian Clark! I greatly enjoyed the ARISS pass with R.T. Alderman School students. Their questions were very thoughtful.
Hi Brian Jackson! Thanks for helping with the technical aspects of this pass. I understand that I was not clearly heard at the beginning of the pass. Did the quality improve as the Station approached Calgary?
Attached is a photo for you. Please don't widely distribute it until the CSA has officially sent it to you. I also videotaped myself during the ARISS contact with the RT Alderman students. Let me know if you would like a copy of the tape in the near term. Otherwise I will give it to you when I hopefully visit Calgary in the new year.
I left a special beacon message on the ISS radio for you. Please try to read it in the next few hours.
Here are my responses to the questions that I did not have time to answer.
15. Erin (Gr.7), What is the distance from Earth that you orbit, and does this vary? The International Space Station orbits the Earth at 350 km. Due to atmospheric drag (very slight), the altitude of our orbit decreases gradually over time. Therefore every few months, the Station must be reboosted to 350 km by its own engines or the rocket engines of the Progress vehicle or space shuttle.
16. Sewa (Gr.8), Do members of the crew typically gain or lose weight during the 6 month mission and does that effect your preparations before you leave? A few crewmembers lose weight; a few gain weight. But most of us maintain a weight that is just a few kilograms less than our normal Earth-weight. Prior to flight, we exercise vigorously and fine-tune our diets to build as much muscle mass as possible.
17. Kimberly (Gr.9), What physical and emotional stressors do you experience? Weightlessness is the biggest physical stressor. It results in deconditioning of our heart, bones and muscles. Living in weightlessness for six months is like lying in bed for a long period. Our bodies lose conditioning. Separation from family and friends is the biggest emotional stressor. We are able to talk to our loved ones via phone and email, but we still miss them.
18. Kennedy (Gr.9), What is required to prepare for a 6 month mission in space? Two-and-a-half years of training is required to prepare for a six month expedition aboard the ISS. Our training program requires that we travel to Russia, Europe, Japan, Houston and Montreal for training. We learn how to operate the systems, experiments and emergency equipment aboard the Station.
19. Carolyn (Gr.9), Have there been any experiments in space where the outcome surprised you? On my first spaceflight, we were surprised to learn that calcium begins to leave our bones immediately (within two hours) of arriving in space. We had not thought that bone demineralization would start so quickly. We now do exercises in space and take a special medication that will hopefully prevent this loss of calcium.
Thanks to the students and staff for the time and effort they put into this ARISS contact. I realize that a lot of preparatory work and coordination was required.
All the best.
Hi ARISS Team,
This is an update to what has been happening since the announcement of our 2 upcoming ISS school contacts. The first ISS contact will take place at RT Alderman and the second at Glenmore Christian Academy.
First - we need to locate (2) 3 legged tripods. Does anyone remember who supplied these for the last ISS contacts? I can get one tripod. As well - we need some weights (sand bags, cinder blocks, etc.) to hold these tripods down.
The antennas have been located. I have the one for the AZ/EL primary system and Brian has the Egg Beater for the secondary system.
1. Brian Jackson and I will be doing a site survey on September 9th or 10th at both RT Alderman and Glenmore Christian Academy. Once this is completed I will update everyone as to what we will be up against installation wise.
2. We will be borrowing the Alfaspid rotor and Kenwood TS-2000 from the Calgary Space Workers Society. We thank the Calgary Space Workers Society for these!
This is the same rotor we used for the 2005-2006 schools contacts. The Kenwood TS-2000 will be in addition to the Icom IC 910 that we used before. It is very likely Andy Webb, VE6EN will NOT be available with his Kenwood TS-2000 for he is waiting an impending transfer to the UK.
3. Mitch Mitchel, VE6OH, of Alfa Radio, will be bringing down a couple runs of 1/2" hardline this weekend for our use. It is quite likely Gerry MacDonald, VE6QLT can supply some coax, however, I have not heard back from Gerry. Maybe he is gone on vacation? So - I am trying to cover off Murphy - just in case.
4. After the site survey is done - we need to round up all equipment and begin installation (at RT Alderman - 725 Mapleton Drive SE) on the weekend of either September 12-13 or 19-20. September 26th is out for many of us for it is the QCWA Wild Rose Chapter 151 Luncheon meeting. So we best get started early to make sure Murphy isn't given any opportunity to lurk in dark corners, given the ISS contact will be taking place on the week of September 28th - October 2nd. We believe the actual day for the ISS contact will be sometime mid week (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday??) If you are part of the "radio team" for the ISS contact - let your employer know now the possibly of these days.
If you have not yet responded to my earlier e-mail to let me know if you will be available for set up and the actual day of the ISS contact - please do so by replying to this e-mail.
Ken Oelke - VE6AFO
For the location of our meetings and our Research & Development Centre contact an active member to be nominated to join our society or contact Captain, Michael Bakk with your CV or background information for membership nomination