Monday, September 27, 2010

Ham Radio Operator Talks To Space Station


Texas Man Shocked When He Got Reply From Astronauts

POSTED: 7:46 am PDT September 23, 2010
UPDATED: 8:29 am PDT September 23, 2010

Trying to contact the International Space Station from home is no easy task.
But an East Texas man used his ham radio to pull off the nearly impossible feat.
Darryl Young sent out a message 250 miles away to the space station one night, and was shocked when an astronaut heard and replied.
"Out of Pittsburg we've got ya, loud and clear," the astronaut is heard saying.
Because the space station moves so fast -- about 17,000 mph -- radio operators have only a two-minute window to make contact, Young said.
"When I made contact the first time it was on top of a 20 foot pole," he said. "There's a guy that has all this fancy antenna with tracking and everything else been trying for three years."
John Yembrick with NASA said it's not uncommon for people on the ground to contact the space station and speak with crew members.
"It's bragging rights," Young said. "Hey, I talked to the space station."
Next time, Young would like the astronauts to slow down so they can carry on a conversation "and say when's the last time you played golf or something."

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