9 November 2005
at , students
from FurtherwickParkSchool, CanveyIsland, Essex were able to chat with astronaut Bill
McArthur orbiting the earth aboard the International Space Station.
The pupils used amateur
radio equipment to ask the astronauts questions as
they passed 250 miles above the earth travelling at 17500mph. 18 students
asked the questions.
FurtherwickParkSchool had received a special request from Mustapha
Landoulsi, DL1BDF to accept a question from Tunisia. The Tunisian Scouts had prepared the
question that was read out by a FurtherwickPark pupil. The World summit on the
Information Society will take place in Tunis 16-18 November 2005 and the recording of
the Furtherwick ARISS School Contact will be presented to the public visiting
the Exhibition set up in Tunis to accompany the Summit.
This ARISS School
Contact has been prepared by John Lewis Houghton, Head of Science Department and
implemented by South Essex Amateur Radio Society (S.E.A.R.S). Carlos Eavis,
G0AKI of the R.S.G.B and Howard Long, G6LVB of AMSAT UK offered their assistance. ††
Dave Speechley, G4UVJ
Chairman of S.E.A.R.S, who operated the station GB2FPS, said the students of FurtherwickParkSchool really enjoyed it. The School hall was
packed and was covered by all the local Media and BBC Essex Radio. A
great day was had by all, for itís not everyday you get a chance to speak to
someone orbiting the earth.
There was a bit of a
fright between Question 11 and 12 when Bill McArthur jumped frequency, but
it turned out ok and in the end a great contact.
The School intends to
keep the concept of Space on there science education lessons.
The Radio Society of
Great Britain's GB4FUN communications and demonstration vehicle also attended
the event, providing a full backup station.
An audio file of the
Spacetalk is available here :