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ARISS contact stories

Recent ARISS Contacts

Airdrie Space Science Club - Alberta, Canada (August 2020)

NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy aboard the ISS receives a call from Canadian students using a ham radio

Students Use Ham Radio to Call an Astronaut in Space (video)


Hudson Memorial School - Hudson, NH (December 2018)

Hudson students speak directly with astronauts aboard ISS

Journey To An ISS Crew Contact


Pathfinder Regional Vocational Technical HS - Palmer, MA (November 2018)

Pathfinder program connects students to space station

Pathfinder Tech students contact astronauts aboard International Space Station

Pathfinder ARISS (Amateur Radio International Space Station) Connection


Ashford School - Ashford, CT (October 2018)

Ashford students speak with astronaut in International Space Station

Ashford students get opportunity to chat with astronaut

ISS, we have contact!

Successful Ham Radio Contact between Students and Space Station Excites and Inspires


The Gary Literacy Coalition connected Amatuer Radio and the urban classroom by communicating with an astronaut in space. On May 8, 2013, students eagerly asked astronaut Tom Marshburn, KE5HOC, questions as his space shuttle travelled above them. For more information on the contact as well as student reactions feel free to read the following news articles:

"Students Chat With Orbitting Astronauts"

"Gary Students Over the Moon After Making Contact With Astronaut In Space Station"


Licensed Radio Amateurs Talk to Astronauts on the ISS

If you have a ham radio license and the right equipment configuration you might be lucky enough to snag a personal conversation with an astronaut on the ISS.  Some astronauts enjoy making contacts with hams around the world in their leisure time. Share newly licensed ham, KF7ETX, David Pruett's thrill as he makes a personal contact with Astronaut Doug Wheelock. Watch and listen to the video recording David captured to share on YouTube.


Students in Nunavut Province, Canada Interview Astronaut Donald Pettit

Students at Inuksuk High School, Iqaluit, Nunavut, Canada participated in a successful contact between Astronaut Donald R. Pettit, KD5MDT, on Wednesday, February 8, via telebridge station AH6NM in Hawaii.  The school formed a space club through which students are learning about the ISS via videos, the Internet and guest speakers. They are learning how to track the ISS and are completing space-related projects. Radio usage and protocol have been discussed. First Air and the Makivik Corporation are the sponsors that ensure ARISS contacts are supported in the remote areas of Northern Canada.

See photos below.

More Contact Stories

  • Students at Mill Springs Academy Interview Astronaut Chris Cassidy

    Mill Springs Academy in Alpharetta, GA launched the new school year with a conversation with Chris Cassidy, KF5KDR on September 4, 2013 as he flew overhead on the ISS.  Science teacher Martha Muir, W4MSA,  reports, "Our ARISS contact was phenomenal!  It had an impact on everyone – young and old. Since we were inviting folks Mill_Springs_Sept 2013_1.JPGhere from other schools and didn’t want them to drive here for just the 10 minutes of the astronaut chat, we scheduled the launching of over 50 model rockets that the 7th and 8th graders have been working on and invited our guests to watch this as well.  We also invited our guests to stop by our apiary and farm.  One of the teachers who maintains the apiary and farm invited guests to pick some okra.  As I told some folks, we do all kinds of science here.  This has been an amazing start to the school year."

    To learn more about the experience click here.

    Pictured here are students and adults dressed up standing onstage.


  • Scouts Snare Spacecraft

    At the JOTA Jamboree held in 2011 in Oklahoma, boyscouts were able to make an ARISS contact while implementing new programs related to the Radio merit badge. These new activities consisted of an electronic foxhunt, radiosurgery, creating symbolic equipment and last but not least, contacting astronauts in space!
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  • Reaching for the Stars with Radio

    A 6th grade class at Northland Preparatory School in Flagstaff, AZ build a radio telescope, use radio to explore the heavens, track a high altitude balloon, and on May 24, 2012, talk to astronaut Joe Acaba, KE5DAR, on the ISS during a scheduled contact.Three students wearing goggles doing an experiment with their teacher.
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  • Farnsworth Aerospace Magnet Middle School Students Track the ISS and Speak with Astronaut Don Pettit

    With the assistance of  members of the Polk County Amateur Radio Club, students at Farnsworth Aerospace Magnet Middle School, St. Paul, Minnesota learned how to track the ISS and how radio contacts with satellites work.  They spoke with astronaut Don Pettit, KD5MDT, on May 7, 2012.  A local news station tells the story. A class posing for a picture with their teachers in an auditorium.



    The TEAM! Students, ham radio operators, school officials and invited guests pose for a photo after the contact with astronaut Don Pettit.

  • Italian astronaut Paolo Nespoli on board the ISS talks to students at Fair Lawn, NJ

    March 2011 - Students gathered at Fair Lawn High School in New Jersey, to take part in a scheduled ARISS contact organized by junior Zach Feinberg.  “I’ve always found space fascinating and wanted to speak to an astronaut,” Feinberg said. “I wanted to bring my passion for technology and science to others.” Five students asked Italian astronaut, Paolo Nespoli, who was orbiting at 17,000 mph above the Earth's surface, several questions.

  • North Texas 4th Graders Talk to Astronaut on International Space Station

    March 2010-- Walnut Creek Elementary Students in Azle, Texas recently had the experience of a lifetime when they A girl speaking into a microphone.made contact with Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi aboard the International Space Station. As participants in the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station program (ARISS), the 4th graders used amateur radio to ask Noguchi questions during the 10 minute opportunity. Fox 4 News covered the event.

  • Astronaut Jeffrey Williams Chats with Italian Students via ARISS Contact

    December 2009-- On Monday, December 14, Expedition 21 astronaut Jeffrey Williams, KD5TVQ,d participated in an Amateur Radio onA crowd of people watching a broadcast and someone is recording it. the International Space Station (ARISS) contact with students from Istituto Comprensivo di Govone - Scuola Secondaria di primo grado “Nino Costa” di Priocca in Priocca, Cuneo, Italy. The contact was held at Infinito Astronomic Park in Pino Torinese, Torino, where an audience of more than 150 students, teachers, visitors and media watched as the students posed 22 questions to the astronaut during the nine minute pass. Following the contact, ARISS mentor Francesco De Paolis spoke to the children via teleconference about the contact and amateur radio. Regional television, local media and newspapers covered the event. The video, which was streamed on the web, received over 170 connections. The European Space Agency (ESA) reported the news on its Web site.

  • Midvalley Elementary School Scores First ARISS Contact with School in Utah

    A gir reading off a paper and talking into a microphone with an adult nearby.

    On Wednesday, December 2, 2009 students from Midvalley Elementary School in Midvale, Utah participated in an Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) contact with Jeffrey Williams, KD5TVQ. The school prepared for the contact using NASA lesson plan resources and integrated the ARISS activity into the school curriculum at many grade levels. Children learned about Amateur Radio, electromagnetic waves and the ISS and even viewed IMAX Space Station video.  Nineteen questions were answered during the nine minute pass. Approximately 200 students were present for the contact and others listened in from their classrooms. Dr. David Doty (the school district superintendent), school board members and district directors were also present. Two major Salt Lake City newspapers, the Salt Lake Tribune and the Deseret Morning News as well as Channel 4 (ABC) television, Fox 13 and the local community newspaper all covered the event. This was the first ARISS contact for Utah.

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  • Doug Wheelock Heats up the Airwaves During Expeditions 24 and 25

    During Expeditions 24 and 25 Doug Wheelock made 17 scheduled Amateur Radio contacts with schools around the world and over 1,500 contacts with individual radio amateurs.

    Read more:

    ISS Astronaut Creating Ham Radio Buzz, Taking Science to Students

    ISS Expedition 24/25 Crew Back on Terra Firma

  • Pine Tree High School Talks with Astronaut Mike Fossum

    Students at Pine Tree Middle School, Longview, Texas, participated in a successful ARISS direct contact on September 9, 2011 led by ARRL Education & Technology Program Instructor, Tommy Gober, N5DUX. Amateur Radio equipment received from the ARRL Teachers Institute program was used to make the contact. An instructor presenting slides in front of a group.

    Gober reports, "Once we heard Astronaut Mike Fossum, KF5AQG, after a very brief hello exchange, we delved right into the students asking their questions due to time constraints. Mike said we were a little weak at first, but that was because he was about 1° or 2° off the horizon and signal strengths picked up from there. I think the final questions asked count was about 20 questions give or take. The school's IT department had a video stream from from aboard the ISS, which was a great visual to accompany my ISS tracking map on the other screen.


    One kid in the audience asked, "Is this signal analog or digital? Are you using VHF or UHF?" - in 5th grade! Uncoached. Talk about a future ham!!!"

    To listen to a brief recording of a segment of the contact, courtesy of Stewart Morgan, AL0I, click here.


  • Students at Kiroli Elementary School Study Technology, Space and Astronomy in Preparation for ISS Contact

    Students at Kiroli Elementary School in West Monroe, LA, celebrated a successful ARISS contact with Astronaut Satoshi Furukawa, KE5DAW, on September 22, 2011 as the highlight of their recent technology studies. A licensed 5th grader, Connor Wiedemeier, KF5MTQ, initiated the contact for the 500 other watching students. The school faculty led 5th grade science class students through three weeks of space studies; first graders began their space lessons last week, and students in other grade levels were to participate in several technology-related classes. A professor of physics at University of Louisiana in Monroe (ULM) is scheduling 4 visits this fall for Kiroli students to the ULM observatory to learn about planets, stars, and electromagnetics. Dr. Paul Wiedemeier, KE5LKY, Assistant Professor of Computer Science at (ULM), and Dr. Mark Hammond, N8MH, Dean of Arts and Sciences at Campbell University in North Carolina assisted educators in setting up ham radio schedules between Kiroli students and students at the Coats Elementary School in Coats, NC. The hams taught students about Amateur Radio satellites, ISS and ARISSat. Read more.

  • Idaho Students Explore Technology, Science and Social Science in Preparataion for ARISS

    In preparation for their ham radio interview with an astronaut September 24, 2009, students at Garfield Elementary School in Boise, ID explored a range of topics that engaged their interest in technology, math and science and provided opportunitites for teachers to stress the importance of math and science in expanding our knowledge and horizons.

    Three students at Garfield Elementary School in Boise, Idaho play "Where's the Remote?" in preparation for a QSO with the International Space Station.
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