Talk to an Astronaut!
Atlanta Science Festival presented students with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to speak with astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS) via amateur radio communications. Selected students asked their questions directly to ISS Commander Tim Kopra as the space station passed overhead during the ISS Radio Contact Event on March 8, 2016 at Fernbank Science Center. The event included a full day of family-friendly activities and demos on space science and radio science for students of selected schools. Due to space constraints, only schools selected as contest winners were able to attend.
In order to identify which students asked the questions, ASF held a Space & Radio Science Lesson Plan Contest for grades K-8 teachers. Winning teachers received a bus voucher to bring their students to the Contact Event and have their lesson plans published on our website. Importantly, students of the winning teachers proposed questions to ask the ISS astronauts. ASF selected the best questions, and invited those curious students to ask their questions live during the Contact Event.
This opportunity is made possible by the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) program, an international consortium of amateur radio organizations and space agencies including National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and AMSAT (Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation). Atlanta Science Festival was selected as one of fourteen sites nationwide to participate in ARISS this spring.
ASF partnered with Fernbank Science Center, North Fulton Amateur Radio League, BK International Education Consultancy, ISS Mission and Program Integration (MAPI), Atlanta Section of IEEE, Metropolitan Atlanta Regional Educational Service Agency, NASA Solar System Ambassadors, and Mill Springs Academy and to bring this opportunity to Atlanta.