MN Man Makes Contact with ISS Using His Ham Radio [WATCH]
A video first posted to Youtube November 30, 2018 has been making the rounds again online.
In it, a Minnesota man by the name of Larry uses his amateur radio -- also known as a Ham radio -- to make contact with astronaut Serena Aunon on board the International Space Station during an overhead pass.
Using the website SpotTheStation.nasa.gov, Larry was able to track the ISS as it passed overhead. When his video begins, Aunon can be heard speaking to students at Texas A&M by Ham radio. On its second pass, Larry makes contact with the ISS himself during the 10 minute window he has before it falls out of range of his radio.
"Hello, this is Larry in Minnesota," he says to Aunon. "Nice to talk with you."
"Oh, Minnesota!" Aunon replies, delighted, "Man, we're, uh, kind of a low pass for you guys, huh?"
"Yes, you are," Larry replies. "I'm running a vertical antenna which is not the best way to do this, but it's working for me."
"That is super clear up here," Aunan returns. "Nice equipment."
"Thank you very much, and thank you for the contact. I'll let you make some more," Larry says, signing off. They're communication is brief, but shows the power of modern -- and even simple - technology.
As the video continues, Aunon can be heard making contact with people in Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Michigan and Massachusetts as the ISS continues making its way east across the US.
The video's comment section offers additional insight and food for thought:
"My uncle has picked up ISS several times over the years," says Randy. "They're always so friendly. They must be bored as crap sometimes up there. I'm sure the radio contact to Earth is very comforting for them. I know it would be for me."
"This is one of the things that made me want to get my Ham radio license," shares Aaron. "I got it earlier this month but have yet to make a contact with the ISS, hopefully soon. Glad to see that they are still active at times."
"For some reason, this moved something so deep inside me," adds Jayd. "A man speaking to astronauts 254 miles above him with what most would consider obsolete technology, and them responding so casually; it truly is a microcosm of something really beautiful."