On Monday January 9, 2012 at approximately 14:05 UTC, which is 15.05 CEWT an ARISS ham radio contact is planned with students at Descartes High School, located in Montigny-Le-Bretonneux, France. Amateur radio station F6KRK will call OR4ISS.

Descartes High School is located 30 km South-West from the center of Paris and 10 km from Versailles Palace. There are about 800 students, aged 15 to 18, who study non-vocational subjects for the end-of-the-year test called Baccalaureat. A 2-year preparatory class for admission to top engineering schools in France opened 2 years ago.

The Astronomy Club has a telescope with which the students observe planets. They successfuly took pictures of the ISS.

This year, students study life and work aboard the International Space Station and discover radioamateur activities with the support of the local radio-club F6KRK.

The schools English Club participates, helping the students to improve their speaking skills for a Space conversation. The students dream to communicate with the ISS so that one day, spotting a small shiny object in the sky, they can say: "I have talked with an astronaut up there!"

The conversation will be conducted in English. Downlink signals with the astronaut's answers will be audible in Europe on 145.800 MHz FM.

Moreover, the event will be webcast live in streaming video on

Students will ask as many of the following questions as time allows:
1. Valentin: How did you feel during your first day in space?
2. Mathilde: Was becoming an astronaut a child's dream, did someone inspire you, like a role model?
3. Marc-Aurel: How do you cope with cultural differences between astronauts?
4. Lucas: Have you ever done funny experiments in space, could you give us some examples?
5. Jeoffray: We have taken pictures of the ISS with a telescope, have you also got this kind of equipment and do you have time to observe the stars?
6. Camille: Have you already experienced extravehicular activity?
7. Ines: Does your water recovery system filter all the waste water and is it really efficient?
8. Valentin: Have you already got the first results of the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer experiment?
9. Marie: What has been the most exciting experiment for you so far?
10. Roxane: Are you happy with the food?
11. Jean: How difficult is it to cohabit in such a small space with so few people?
12. Axel: Do you have the notion of time in space?
13. Oscar: When you are in space, do you follow the news?
14. Elise: How do you clean the station, have you got a specific system like a vacuum cleaner?
15. Benjamin: Are there sometimes problems such as oxygen leaks or fire in the ISS?
16. Nicolas: What do you miss most?
17. Sarah: What outfits are you allowed to wear?
18. Nina: How were you chosen to go to the ISS?
19. Mailys: Do you have free time during the day?
20. Thomas: What is the main discovery you have made from growing plants in microgravity?


ARISS is an international educational outreach program partnering the participating space agencies, NASA, Russian Space Agency, ESA, NES, 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.


Text: Gaston Bertels

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