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ISS Surface-to-surface or what

I think you are both right.
A QSO with a human on the ISS is obviously a thrill and has been used to advantage for the
school contacts as well as random contacts.

But history has shown us that we'll only get a certain amount of astronaut time and it
varies widely with the individual astronaut's personal interests. So it makes perfect
sense to leverage the world's biggest platform in space for other amateur radio uses such
as surface-to-surface, without depending on a human on the ISS.

I think the ARISS Phase 2 hardware is consistent with this strategy.

Bob K0NR
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Francisco Costa" <fcosta@mail.telepac.pt>
To: "Bruce Bostwick" <lihan161051@earthlink.net>; <sarex@AMSAT.Org>
Sent: Monday, December 01, 2003 3:39 PM
Subject: Re: [sarex] ISS Hoax

----- Original Message ----- 
From: Bruce Bostwick <lihan161051@earthlink.net>
To: <sarex@AMSAT.Org>
Sent: Monday, December 01, 2003 3:35 PM
Subject: Re: [sarex] ISS Hoax

> This is why I suggested a while back that future payloads to ISS be
> focused primarily on surface-surface operations

With all respect, I desagree.
Why? Well, because then ISS would be just like any ordinary sat.
And it is not! It has people inside, and that's the special about it.
For me the goal is to talk to the crew, not to use some gadget
attached to repeat/digipeat my transmission.
Ok, I know that's ok when the crew it's not avaliable, but if
priority isn't voice QSO's, then there is a serious risk the
astro/cosmonauts simply forget about ham radio. And then
voice contacts will be more rare than now...
Please don't think I'm saying this as an outsider. Me, like many
of you, tracked all possible ISS windows last weekend.
Despite many call's, I heard nothing in return.
But that's the way it is! Except ARISS QSO's, there isn't any
sure ISS contact in advance. And that what makes a voice
QSO with ISS so special! "Hunt" them it's part of the game!
Why change the rules at "half term"???

73 F.Costa, CT1EAT

P.S. On a side note, allow me to advice you all to read the
        "Dragonfly - NASA and the crisis aboard MIR", by
        Bryan Burrough. It's a light reading about the worst
        period of MIR life, and there are several mentions
        about ham radio. It also helps us to understand why
        the crew it's not always on the mood to talk with us.
        Actually, after I read it I realised how amazing was to
        have talked with Valery Korzun just 4 days after the fire!!!

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