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ARISS On The Air

Here is text of a report for Newsline:

 Amateur radio took another giant step on Monday, the 13th of November.
> The crew aboard International Space Station Alpha plugged in their
> and went on the air…holding their first voice QSOs from orbit.
> (Insert QSO tape if available)
> Operating on their standard downlink frequency of 145 dot 800,
> cosmonauts Sergej Krikalev , U5MIR, and Yuri Gidzenko joined their
> Commander, Bill "Shep" Shepherd, KD5GSL,  in a first check-out while
> flying over Russia.  They contacted station R3K.  Sergej Samburov,
> RV3DR, the Russian ARISS liaison responsible for installing much of
> gear aboard Alpha, and Vladimior Zagainov, UA3DKR, a training officer,

> made the first Engineering check.  They were joined in greeting the
> space ship by Eugene Labutin, RA3APR, President of AMSAT Russia.
> Signals were loud and clear both ways…an
> outstanding achievement using 5 watts to a temporary antenna on the
> outside of the station.
> Then it was on to the United States for the next major contact, with
> station NN1SS at the Goddard Space Flight Center, in Greenbelt,
> Maryland., followed by W5RRR at the Johnson Space Center in Houston,
> where more defiontive engeering tests were run..   Frank Bauer,
> who heads the ARISS Administrative team, described the contact at
> Goddard as one of the most thrilling days of his life…especially when
> Shep told him the reception Aboard Alpha was crystal clear…five bye.
> ( Insert tape, if available)
> And why, you may ask, is all this so important?  Because it is the
> culmination of a four year effort by dozens of dedicated hams...the
> realization of a dream.  Because the International Space Station is an

> INTERNATIONAL space ship that will insure manned presence in space for

> the foreseeable future on a contining basis.  The many nations taking
> part can look forward to many contacts in many modes as time goes by.
> Contacts with schools, families and all of us hams in the street.
> Next up will be engineering tests with packet, as soon as the crew can

> take time to set it up.  No timetable has been set…but the 3 men do
> a day off every weekend and we’re betting they’ll use some of that
> for ham radio, now that the system is up and running very well.
> International Space Station Alpha, is ON THE AIR.

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