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2005 News Releases




St Martins Lutheran College in Mt Gambier, South Australia talks to the International Space Station

Date : 18 / 03 / 2005
Author : Chris Jones - VK2ZDD

The Amateur Radio International Space Station contact between the international space station and St Martins Lutheran College in Mt Gambier, South Australia on Thursday March 17th was a great success. Ten students ranging from reception to year nine asked Astronaut Leroy Chiao all the twenty questions scheduled with around twenty seconds to spare before the ISS slipped below the horizon.

The students were prepared by their teacher, Jeanie Axton who did a brilliant job organizing their questions on separate cards and maintaining continuity of the queue during the linkup. This procedure meant there was no loss of time.

The telebridge link was handled by Nancy, WH6PN in Hawaii. Nancy did an excellent job handling the downlink and switching. The linkup was also carried live on the Internet and was relayed via IRLP and EchoLink.

A gathering of around two hundred parents and guests along with students and members of the South East Radio Group crowded into the schools music room to listen to the event. Tony VK5ZAI set up a power point display of space scenes along with Instant Track to show the progress of the ISS to the audience while they waited for the contact to start. After the ISS had passed Tony answered numerous questions put to him by the audience.

John, WD5EEV supervised setting up the line connections, and the participants where introduced by Will, KC6ROL who as usual did a great job. The evening was covered by WIN TV, Bush Vision, a new community TV station, the ABC radio network, The Border Watch news paper, and the WIA. Numerous photos where taken by members of the South East Radio Club and some of these will be available in a few days at

This was the seventh Australian school to have taken part in the ARISS project.


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