Ham Video Commissioning completed - Please see video

The final Ham Video Commissioning Pass 4, planned Sunday April 13 at 18.23 UTC, was performed flawlessly.

ISS Commander Koichi Wakata operated OR4ISS. Ground stations F6DZP, G4KLB, IK1SLD and KI (Livorno) received the signals and streamed the video over the BATC server.

The DATV signal was received for about 6 minutes. Commander Wakata congratulated ARISS for this achievement and answered a series of questions prepared in the manner of a school contact. He also proceeded to a microgravity experiment.

The recorded video of this historical transmission is available at:

Conratulations to the Ham Video team for this outstanding performance.

Next step should be a video enhanced ARISS school contact. We will keep you informed on any progress.

Successful ARISS Contact of Zespol Szkol Technicznych in Ostrow Wielpolski

On Wednesday, January 8th, 2014 at 10:44 UTC, students from The Centre of Technical Schools (Zespol Szkol Technicznych abr. ZST) in Ostrow Wielkopolski, Poland established an ARISS contact with JAXA astronaut Koichi Wakata onboard the International Space Station. The astronaut operated with the ISS call sign OR4ISS. This contact was performed by Ostrow Radio Amateur Club SP3POW.

The Centre of Technical Schools in Ostrow Wielkopolski is a school which educates future electronics and mechatronics engineers, computer scientists and renewable energy specialists. Currently, the school has 800 students aged from 16 to 19 years. The ZST had invited 13 - 15 years old students from Junior High School No. 1 named of Polish Nobel laureates in Ostrow Wielkopolski and 10 - 12 years old students from Pope John Paul II Primary School in Lamki. All of them could participate in the ARISS program. The preparations for the ARISS contact began in late 2011. A series of amateur radio classes were set up so that students could learn the ham radio procedures. It was a very interesting experience for them to carry out radio communications through amateur radio satellites and to get pictures from the NOAA satellites. In addition, they monitored other radio signals from space. Most exciting were the radio contacts with the ISS in the APRS system and listening to ARISS contacts of schools in Poland, Europe and the USA (when they performed an ARISS telebridge contact via a European ground station).

Successful ARISS contact at ZESPOL SZKOL in Stobierna, Poland

Wednesday November 27th, 2013 at 09:22 UTC, which is 10:22 CEWT, students from Junior High Schools Complex in Stobierna, Poland established an ARISS contact with JAXA astronaut Koichi Wakata, aboard the International Space Station. The astronaut operated with the ISS call sign NA1SS. This was a telebridge contact operated by Tony Hutchison, amateur radio station VK5ZAI located in Kingston, South Australia.

The Stobierna School Complex started preparations for this event in 2011. They wanted to prepare a contact for two schools. However, their Space Station Center in Globikowa is located in the mountains where, at this period of the year, conditions for setting up antenna systems are unfavourable. For this reason they opted for a telebridge contact.

For a period of two years, pupils attended scientific meetings and some of them prepared their own presentations. They built models of PW-SAT, the first Polish satellite (cube-sat), which was launched about one year ago. They organized competitions on astronomy and space flights at their own school and with other schools. Young first class pupils attended an art competition about astronautics. They collaborated for these activities with the school in Brzeznica, which was going to perform a telebridge ARISS contact the following week.

During these two years, the children learned how to use a HAM radio. In 2012, the school organized the Second Polish-wide ARISS Conference in Pustkow-Osiedle. It took place in the Debica Region Library and Culture Centre. There was an exhibition for participants and invited guests, with very old crystal radios as well as modern HAM transceivers. HAM diplomas and QSL cards were also presented.

Friday 17 January 2014, ARISS contact planned with school in France

arisslogAn International Space Station educational radio contact has been planned Friday January 17 with participants at College Les Gondoliers, La Roche sur Yon, France. The event is scheduled to begin at approximately 09.51 UTC, which is 10.51 CEWT.

This will be a direct radio contact between OR4ISS and F6KUF/p. The contact is expected to be conducted in English. Downlink signals will be audible in Europe on 145.800MHz FM.

Presentation: The college Les Gondoliers, with its 500 pupils, aged 11-15, is located in Vendee, 70 km south of the city of Nantes, birthplace of Jules Verne, the renown author. At the end of the curriculum, the pupils take an exam called "Diplome national du Brevet". Our Astronomy Club has resumed its activities this year with the objective to enter in contact with the ISS. The starting point has been the visit of the exhibition “Voyages planetaires” (Planetary spaceflights), in Nantes, during the International Planetary Science Congress. Several astronomy and amateur radio activities are organized, with the support of the amateur radio society of Vendee. Operators present their activities and set up the station needed to contact the ISS.

Participants will ask as many of the following questions as time allows:

Ham Video Commissioning

As announced August 21, 2013 the Ham Video transmitter is onboard the International Space Station and stored in the Columbus module.

September 10, 2013 we informed about the Experiment Sequences Test (EST) and the Simulations performed by the European Space Agency in collaboration with ARISS.

September 20, 2013 we announced the Ham Video Launch Campaign and described a simple station for Ham Video reception.

The Commissioning of the Ham Video transmitter needs to cover different configurations involving 2 antennas, 4 frequencies and 2 symbol rates. As announced earlier, the signals transmitted during the Commissioning steps will be received by the Matera ground station, located in south Italy (see HamTV Bulletin #2).

Moreover, during the Commissioning period, the Ham Video transmitter will transmit permanently for several days (weeks). This will allow ground stations to test their equipment and to provide useful information concerning the efficiency of the transmitter. For these transmissions, no camera will be used. The so-called “blank” transmissions will nevertheless provide a complete DVB-S signal, as described hereafter.

We hoped that the Commissioning of the Ham Video transmitter would be planned October 2013. It appeared that the “Flight Rules” regarding ARISS activities, which cover VHF and UHF transmissions, needed to be updated for S-band. Writing Flight Rules and having them verified, accepted and signed by all parties involved is a process that takes time. ARISS matters have low priority among the countless activities that populate the International Space Station. Unforeseen events, such as the recent failing of a cooling system, evidently cause further delay.

Finally, the January - February 2014 time frame seems a reasonable guess for the Ham Video Commissioning.

Annexes are available at See left side column : HamTV Bulletin 4

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year !