ARISS Contact - Pearl Technology STEM Academy, Peoria Heights, IL, direct via W9DWJ

Pearl Technology STEM Academy, Peoria Heights, IL, direct via W9DWJ
The ISS callsign is presently scheduled to be NA1SS
The scheduled astronaut is Serena Aunon-Chancellor KG5TMT
Contact is a go for: Mon 2018-07-02 15:35:42 UTC 33 deg

Several stations were able to receive parts of the contact:

Congratulations and 73 to all!

Streaming video of contact:

More details about the contact from AMSAT-BB:

Click here for the details

An International Space Station school contact has been planned with participants at Pearl Technology STEM Academy, Peoria Heights, IL on 02 July. The event is scheduled to begin at approximately 15:35 UTC. The duration of the contact is approximately 9 minutes and 30 seconds. The contact will be direct between NA1SS and W9DWJ The contact should be audible over the state of Illnois and adjacent areas. Interested parties are invited to listen in on the 145.80 MHz downlink. The contact is expected to be conducted in English.

The Pearl Technology/Richwoods Township STEM Academy is a joint effort involving central Illinois organizations collaborating to educate local middle school students interested in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

Together with Richwoods Township and the University of Illinois Extension, Pearl Technology helped found the first STEM Academy in 2016. Richwoods Township wanted to start a STEM Academy for local students in the Peoria Heights, IL area. The University of Illinois Extension has a strong history of running successful STEM Camps, and Pearl Technology provides the funding and technology for the annual STEM Academy.

During the 2018 STEM Academy, held June 18-22, students built Raspberry Pi devices programmed to stream live video from the International Space Station and show the location of the ISS in its orbit. Students also took part in a high-altitude balloon launch and tracked it using APRS on amateur radio. Caterpillar engineers set up a virtual reality Mars environment and spoke to the students regarding NASA’s 3-D Printed Habitat Challenge and Caterpillar’s participation in the Challenge. The Challenge is designed to advance the construction technology needed to create sustainable housing solutions for the moon and Mars, using 3-D printing with materials found there.

Students also learned about amateur radio, listened to the Dean of Engineering at Bradley University speak about STEM education, and talked with the Vice President of the Peoria Riverfront Museum about life on the ISS.

Participants will ask as many of the following questions as time allows:

  1. What is your relationship like with your fellow astronauts?

  2. What is the most stressful part of space?

  3. Can you tell one of the most exciting things you have seen in space?

  4. Do you see any other planets?

  5. What was the longest you have been in space?

  6. What do you enjoy most about being in space?

  7. What do you do for fun?

  8. What kind of work do you do daily aboard the ISS?

  9. What is one of the most difficult challenges you face in space?

  10. Are there any types of ores on the moon?

  11. What is the best and worst part of being in zero gravity 24 hours a day?

  12. What happens when you sneeze in space?

  13. What is one aspect of life on Earth that you miss?

  14. Can you have pets in space?

  15. Are you scared being so high from Earth?

  16. What is the first thing you will eat when you get home?

  17. Did you always want to work on the ISS? If not, what career did you start with and how did it lead you here?

  18. What happens to the food you bring up into the space station?

  19. What are your favorite jobs to do on the ISS?

  20. How do you communicate with the foreign astronauts on the ISS?

  21. What is something you enjoy more in space than when you do it on Earth?

  22. What is the most beautiful aspect about Earth seen from space?

  23. How do you resolve disputes with your fellow astronauts?

  24. What is your favorite city to look at from space?


About ARISS:

Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) is a cooperative venture of international amateur radio societies and the space agencies that support the International Space Station (ISS). In the United States, sponsors are the Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation (AMSAT), the American Radio Relay League (ARRL), the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS) and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The primary goal of ARISS is to promote exploration of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) topics by organizing scheduled contacts via amateur radio between crew members aboard the ISS and students in classrooms or informal education venues. With the help of experienced amateur radio volunteers, ISS crews speak directly with large audiences in a variety of public forums. Before and during these radio contacts, students, teachers, parents, and communities learn about space, space technologies, and amateur radio. For more information, see,, and

Thank you & 73,

David - AA4KN


This is a map of the ground track, ARISS contact school, and the SatNOGS ground station which heard this contact.

Source for the notebook that generated this particular picture is at

Thanks to @kerel for the first idea and version!