Mike, N8MTV, is leading the JSCARC’s efforts to rebuild the W5RRR satellite tracking station as an ARISS (Amateur Radio on the International Space Station ) ground station. Through guidance from Ken, N5VHO, the ISS Ham Project Coordinator, Mike successfully captured a downlink pass of a school contact with the ARISS on Feb 15th .
Astronaut Joe Acabe KE6DAR is speaking with students at the Los Angeles Academy Middle School via ground station W6RVD. For us at JSC, this pass was originally schedule to be an already tough pass at 12 degrees above the horizon, but due to a delay in the launch of the Progress and the impacted EVA schedule, the pass became an even more challenging pass at 7 degrees. Miracles upon miracles, Mike had to cobble the IC-275, Az-El controller and computer back off the floor due to our massive shack renovation (painting, furniture disassembly, etc). Kudos to Mike. Attached is a capture of the successful pass- without the benefit of our Low Noise Amplifier (LNA) pre-amp. Mike continues to look for club members to help support the club’s important role to become an ARISS ground station in the southern region, and for our direct support to the onboard astronauts’ effort to communicate with schools. If you have interest joining his support team, give MIke a note of interest at N8MTV@arrl.net. Attached is an audio file for the captured downlinked data using the shack’s 2m 24-element, cross-polarized, beam antenna.