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Re: *SUITSAT* in the classroom

Hello All,

Bruce his story (below) is very importand to promote amateur radio to
childeren (and elder people).
I have a school presentation at march about ISS (but I will also involve the
SUITSAT project).
Bruce good idea that you involve (in your presentation) my friend Maryam
(9K2MD) from Kuwait.
 I (and others) have learned Maryam in the past about Space communications.
If others like to use that story for a presentation you can use the info on my
http://pd0rkc.ontwikkel.nl/9k2md.html (a young lady from Kuwait talked to her
favorite cosmonaut).
Click on the pictures for more large size!

For other pages I have copyright rules (any requests let me know!).

73's Cor PD0RKC

>I taught three classes on SuitSat in the science program of the local
>Middle School here in New Brunswick, Canada. I thought I'd provide a brief
>report, partly to seed ideas for future educational opportunities, partly
>as a note of thanks to the team that put SuitSat together and collected its
>This proved a very engaging topic, one to which the gr. 6 and 7 students
>warmed quite quickly. The idea of 'reusing' out-of-date equipment in this
>manner, the 'secret words' and multilingual nature of the message, and
>finally the very haunting image of 'Mr. Smith' tumbling through space all
>served to capture young imaginations.
>My presentation comprised a modified version of Gould's ppt presentation
>and an audio disk with A.J.'s Greatest Hits :-) I began talking about ISS
>and communications from there to earth via ham radio. I played a part of
>the recording of Maryam 9K2MD talking to U5MIR. Her enthusiasm is quite
>evident, and it draws the girls into the topic a bit. It also is a good
>introduction to the idea of callsigns and phonetic alphabets.
>After introducing the idea of SS, we watched the video of the launch.
>We calculated how much weaker the signal turned out to be than expected,
>and we listened to the audio. I gave them each a worksheet which helped
>guide them. Recordings with telemetry had headings for 'Temperature', for
>instance. Then they gathered in lab groups and tried to fill in material. I
>allowed representatives from the groups to gather around the CD player to
>eek out another word or two.
>We ended the hour with a discussion about what went wrong. Does your car
>stereo stop working at 13 deg. C? If the batteries on a suit are rated at
>28v, how does the voltage seem? Finally, by listening to the fading and
>comparing the video of the suit tumbling, many got the sense that the
>fading was due to the suit masking the antenna. All three classes wish to
>recommend to the designers of future suitsats that they install a second
>antenna, some thought at right angles to the first, others thought out the
>feet of the suit!
>The important thing for us to recognize is that this was an opportunity
>that was grasped very well. We should be proud not only of the people who
>put the thing together with very little time, but of those who made a
>success of it through their technical skills and their considerable
>73, Bruce
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