[amsat-bb] Re: hams on ISS

AJ9N at aol.com AJ9N at aol.com
Wed Jan 30 22:06:32 PST 2013

Hi all
As part of my volunteer duties with ARISS, I post the schedule of upcoming  
ARISS contacts on practically a daily basis.  I post to the SAREX BB 
(_sarex at AMSAT.ORG_ (mailto:sarex at AMSAT.ORG) ).  You can also check the  schedule 
at _http://www.issfanclub.com/_ (http://www.issfanclub.com/)  and at 
_http://ariss.rac.ca/_ (http://ariss.rac.ca/)   (actually 
_http://ariss.rac.ca/upcoming.htm#NextContact_ (http://ariss.rac.ca/upcoming.htm#NextContact)  and  
look for the link saying Tentative List of Upcoming School Contacts .   You 
can also go directly to _http://www.amsat.org/amsat/ariss/news/arissnews.rtf_ 
(http://www.amsat.org/amsat/ariss/news/arissnews.rtf) .
In spite of what some may think as to how up to date the schedule is,  as 
soon as I get updates on the schedule and success of a contact, I usually  
have updates posted in less than a day.  There are times when we get the  
locked down time from the ISS planners for a contact almost at the last minute  
so my heads up might be very short.  Unfortunately we sometimes find out  
about the Russian contacts after the fact and thus I am unable to give 
everyone  a heads up.  Usually we at ARISS get the scheduled date and time about 10 
 to 14 days in advance but we warn all schools that we may get told with 
less  than 36 hours.  We have also been aborted with less than 10 minutes to 
go  before a contact.
We are often asked about when the crew is going to make a general  contact. 
 We simply do not know.  The crew is super busy and when they  do get free 
time, they have many things they can do.  We can suggest that  they get on 
the radios; we can never demand.  So ham radio may or may not  be in their 
game plan for that day.  By the way, all of the ARISS school  contacts 
actually take place during a scheduled off time for the  crewmember.  That means 
they either gave up some free time or their day  gets extended.
Charlie AJ9N
One of the ARISS mentors
In a message dated 1/30/2013 7:30:56 P.M. Pacific Standard Time,  
ve3nxk at gmail.com writes:

On 30/01/2013 9:30  PM, Personal wrote:
> Remember they don't get paid to sit up there on  the radio. Remember too 
> ham radio in manned space flight has  changed since SAREX and Mir.
> It's no longer the back up system it once  was. They have iPods and such 
> now. There is Internet access  and a telephone to speak with family.

I don't generally get into these  types of verbal banter, but this time I 
make an 
exception.  Right now  a Canadian, Chris Hadfield, is onboard and doing a 
great job 
with pictures  and Twitter.  I see today that he did a live feed to a 
school here 
in  Ontario.  The part that bugs me is there were a few ARISS Ham contact  
Christmas that did not show up till the day of the contact.   The Canadian 
RAC site 
had no mention of it on their site and still is  stuck in November.....

I read a lot of AMSAT/ARRL news letters and I  have suddenly realized that 
the ham 
community is out of it  altogether.  It would appear that starting this 
year NASA 
themselves  is looking after the contacts.  I would have thought that the 
community would have been in an uproar over this, guess not.

I know  that the chances of hearing or contacting the ISS is like winning 
lottery, but I think now it is long gone.  I am disappointed that  when an 
USA or 
Russian is onboad you may hear them once or twice.  I  doubt that you will 
hear Chris at the mic......... he seems to be  caught up in social media.

> I'm not sure what the definition of a  real ham is but too many times it 
>to be a person stuck in the  past, bemoaning the things that used to be

No I do not feel that way, I  try all kinds of stuff when I have the time.  
you I see the day  when the radio will have an iPhone built in, and we will 
longer need  the the communication devices we have now.

Long live the smell of the  big tube Collins and Heathkit rigs

Sent from my personal  computer.

Bill Booth VE3NXK
Sundridge ON, Canada
79.23.37  W x 45.46.18 N

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