ARISS Sept 24, 2008 Update and Call for Support
The ARISS volunteer team is working quite feverishly in preparation for the upcoming Soyuz 17S mission with Richard Garriott, W5KWQ, and Mike Fincke, KE5AIT, on-board. This e-mail provides an interim update for the mission and some new news regarding on-orbit ARISS hardware. Please refer to the press release dated Sept 18 for additional information on Richard Garriott's flight operations.
SSTV: Richard plans to take a Kenwood VC-H1 SSTV communicator with him on-board the Soyuz for his flight and leave this on-board the ISS for future ARISS use. The VC-H1 has completed all hardware certification on the US and Russian sides. The final test, an EMI radiated emissions test, was performed last week and the test data was delivered to Sergey Samburov, RV3DR in Russia this week. The VC-H1 provides a very simple interface for ISS crew members and does not require the use of a computer. Computer usage has been a real challenge for ARISS, so the VC-H1 represents a lesson learned to improve ARISS operations.
Backup Hardware: At this week's ARISS-International Meeting we received confirmation from Sergey, RV3DR, that the recent Progress flight delivered the flight backup D-700, a David Clark Headset for the Ericsson system, and an additional VOX box and cables to support the computer-operated SSTV system. The D700 may be installed as early as late this week, depending on crew availability. The flight backup will not provide a significant change in ARISS ops. It will make it easier for the crew to change program modes (PMs).
Richard Garriott Operations--Call for Support
Early during Richard Garriott's flight, he expects to setup the VC-H1 and autonomously transmit a new Earth image every 3 minutes. He hopes to have this system on a great deal of his flight. We encourage the ham community to bring SSTV equipment into schools and download these images in real-time. The ARISS team also plans to display images from hams around the world on a special on a web/blog site. A beta site has been developed and will be rolled out to the ham community in the near future.
To successfully implement the on-line SSTV picture site and support it 24/7 during Richard's flight, we will need some savvy individuals that can sort through the many SSTV photos that ARISS will receive and keep the SSTV site up to date in near real time. Some computer skills will be required. We are looking for global support from a few individuals in each international region to make this happen. That way we will not be asking individuals to volunteer all-night to realize this project. If you are interested in helping on this, please e-mail me directly.
Stay tuned for more information on the upcoming ARISS activities. And get your stations ready!
73, Frank Bauer, KA3HDO
AMSAT V.P. for Human Spaceflight Programs
ARISS International Chairman