Huntington High School Amateur Radio Club Talks To The ISS

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Have you ever wanted to talk to the ISS? Some lucky kids at the Huntington high School got to do just that today, February 25, 2019.

Today I saw a post on a local amateur radio club group that talked about an upcoming school contact with the ISS and since it was going to be in my area, I thought I would listen in and see if I could copy any of it.

Here is the post I saw:

Listen to the International Space Station… TODAY—The event is scheduled to begin at approximately 19:39 UTC. (1:39 PM CST)…..The duration of the contact is approximately 9 minutes and 30 seconds. The contact will be direct between NA1SS and KI5AJL The contact should be audible over the state of Texas and adjacent areas. Interested parties are invited to listen in on the 145.80 MHz downlink.

I approached trying to listen to this in two ways. First off, I wanted to see if I could hear the contact on my handheld. If I could hear it on my handheld then maybe I could listen to others later on.

My second way I approached listening to the ISS was on my base radio. If you remember my post last week on my station tour, I have a Kenwood TM-733 attached to a dual band j-pole on about a 20′ tower.

I wasn’t sure which would do better. One one hand, with my handheld I could change the polarization of the antenna, but the reception on my HT probably isn’t the best.

On my base station I was hooked to an external antenna but it was stuck in a vertical polarization.

It ended up being my base station that did the best. My handheld didn’t pick up anything at all. I think I saw the s-meter move slightly when the ISS was at its highest point above the horizon, but I didn’t hear anything out of the speaker.

I think next time I try it, I will hook my ht to a mag mount antenna and see if I hear anything. I might even take it one step further, and build me a small yagi antenna. If I do, I will post a video of it.

Have you ever made contact with the ISS? I have seen several posts lately about people that have received SSTV from the ISS. Did any of y’all get any pictures from the ISS?

Leave a comment below and let me know!

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Until next time…

73 de Curtis, K5CLM

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