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QSO with Sergei, U5MIR on board ISS!!!



Hello Group,

Today (27 August 2005), ISS passed over West Malaysia at 1945 Hours
Malaysian Time or 1145 Hours UTC with a maximum elevation of 40 degrees.

During this pass, the packet digipeater and mailbox was not heard and
therefore I tried calling the crew as there were reports of the crew being
active on voice half an hour ago.

To my surprise, ISS ASTRONAUT SERGEI KRIKALEV, U5MIR ANSWERED MY CALL!!!
(BTW, today is Sergei's birthday).  This was the first time I made a contact
with Sergei, and this was my 2nd contact with ISS's crew.  Signals were very
clear and nice, 59 all the way.

Frequency used was 145.800 FM +/- downlink and 144.490 FM +/- uplink.
Antenna was only a 10-element Diamond Yagi, vertically polarized.  Rig was
FT-847, running 50 watts.

No one else was active on this pass and I am happy to be the only station
around this region to wish Sergei a very happy birthday.

This is the first time in my life that I have wished a human out of the
world, in space, happy birthday, and I am very happy that I did it.  I guess
amateur radio operators are very privileged as amateur radio is the only way
an ordinary person can speak to an astronaut when he or she is in space.
Also, not many people get the chance to wish another human in space happy
birthday.  I have recorded the pass, and will post the recording shortly.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH, SERGEI for the brief but memorable contact.

Have a nice weekend and good DX.

73,
Sion Chow Q. C.,
9W2QC.
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