ARISS Contact at Maine Regional School Unit 21 in Kennebunk, ME, January 21, 2021

ARISS logo[Updated January 18, 2021]

Students from four elementary schools in Kennebunk, Maine, including the Sea Road School, will have the opportunity to speak with astronauts aboard the International Space Station on Thursday, January 21, 2021 at  18:27 UTC, according to Rosalie White, K1STO, one of the two ARISS-US Delegates, and the delegate who represents ARRL.

Thomas Moyer, KB1VPD of New England Radio Discussion Society (NERDS) is named as the ham radio point of contact along with David Taylor, N1FCC.

According to their submitted proposal:

“NERDS offered to do a free course in electronics and radio fundamentals which includes DC and AC theory, semiconductor basics, applications, and digital electronics.  NERDS, Great Bay Radio Association, and Port City Amateur Radio Club will provide technical expertise and help plan and present radio information and demonstrations and basic radio projects.

“The elementary STEM team for Maine Regional School Unit 21 see every class, K through 5th grade for 45 minutes every week.  One of our main goals is to instill an engineering ‘thought process’ even in the youngest students.  The ARISS contact will intertwine lessons we’ve been fine-tuning for years including coding, 3D printing, and robotics. Some specific lessons include: a NASA lesson on space communications titled ‘Signals and Noise Oh Boy’ and Google Glasses Expeditions on Northern Lights, space, and more. We want our students to be able to see themselves in future STEM careers. A cross-curriculum will have students researching and writing letters to the astronauts and about the ISS, calculating distances and measuring time for math, understanding the impact of gravity and how it varies on other planets for science. The Brick Store Museum has a STEM thrust and has hosted a six-month radio exhibit created by two hams of the NERDS.  Kennebunk students and students bussed-in from other elementary schools visited the exhibit.”

Students will take turns asking their questions of Mike Hopkins, KF5LJG. Claudio Ariotti, IK1SLD, in Italy will serve as the ARISS relay amateur radio ground station. Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC, has served as the ARISS Technical Mentor for the contact. The ISS callsign is scheduled to be OR4ISS. The downlink frequency for this contact is 145.800 MHz.

The ARISS radio contact is scheduled for January 21, 2021 at 1:27 pm Eastern Time, (18:27 UTC). The contact will be live streamed and can be viewed at  https://youtu.be/LN70OpJFMgs . The livestream is expected to begin at approximately 30 minutes before the contact time.

[See also:

Kennebunk Maine School Students Prepare to Contact International Space Station

Liftoff: Sea Road School Students to Chat With Space Station Astronaut“] 

Amateur Radio Booth Proposed for “The Big E” in 2022

Big E logo/scrHampden County Radio Association president Larry Krainson, W1AST, is coordinating an effort to organize an amateur radio booth at “The Big E” in West Springfield, Massachusetts for 2022. The exhibition runs for 17 days from September 17 through October 3, 2022. 

According to Wikipedia, “The Big E,” formally known as The Eastern States Exposition, is billed as ‘New England’s Great State fair.’ It is the largest agricultural event on the eastern seaboard and the sixth-largest fair in the nation.”

W1AST says the 2016 event had 1.4 million visitors, and over 1.6 million visitors in 2019. “If just one-tenth of one percent of attendees sign up for ham classes, that would be 1,600 names to distribute to all New England clubs. We would all benefit and grow ham radio.” 

There hasn’t been a ham radio exhibit/booth at The Big E in over ten years.

Larry envisions a ham radio booth that would demonstrate the many aspects of ham radio, as well as an avenue for people to sign up for information and courses in their local area.

Some of his ideas include:

  • an EMCOMM display
  • DMR and/or other digital mobile mode demo
  • Digital HF modes on a big screen
  • A special event station (W1E or N1E or similar) with unique QSL cards
  • SSB, CW and digital modes
  • Demonstrate portable stations for field operation (i.e., Parks On The Air, Summits On The Air)
  • Highlight youth in ham radio

W1AST says he’d like to see clubs from different states staff the booth during “State” days and theme days. 

“If there is enough interest, we have lots of time to plan.”

Such an undertaking can succeed only if there is a sufficient number of volunteers and radio clubs who agree to participate in the event.  A special Groups.io mailing list group has been established to promote exchange of dialogue and ideas for the event. To join, send an email to ProjectBigE+subscribe@groups.io.

NH7C: “ARRL Public Relations” RATPAC Presentation, December 30, 2020

RATPAC logoPlease plan to attend Wednesday’s December 30 Zoom presentation.  

10:00 PM AST / 9:00 PM EST / 8:00 PM CST / 7:00 PM MST / 6:00 PM PST / 5:00 PM AKST / 4:00 PM HST

Topic: ARRL Public Relations

 Speaker/Presenter: Sid Caesar, NH7C, Chairman ARRL Public Relations Committee

This meeting will be OPEN for all to attend. Please feel free to invite others.

Please note: RATPAC will not be doing Zoom presentations on the following dates: 

December 31 – New Years Eve  /  January 01- New Years Day 2021

  • This meeting will be recorded. By participating you consent to being recorded. 
  • Please change your display name to Your First Name, Call Sign and Location, e.g. Dan K7REX Idaho. 
  • Please stay muted until ready to speak. Your space bar works like a PTT for unmuting
  • You may ask questions in chat; please stay on topic while using chat.

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/2128884758?pwd=OHNEMzAyeXNxVkQyM1FwWnh1VDNNQT09

Meeting ID: 212 888 4758
Passcode: Public

“The man with a plan for ham radio towers”

Photo of Zachary Manganello, K1ZK, in his ham shack
“Zachary Manganello is a longtime ham radio enthusiast looking to up his gear game.”

Shelburne, Vermont amateur Zachary Manganello, K1ZK, was featured in an October 15, 2020 article in The Citizen, a publication of the Vermont Community Newspaper Group. The story chronicles his struggle to erect his towers at his new QTH.  

[Full story]
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