After her return to Earth the first UK astronaut Helen Sharman visited the Harrogate Ladies’ College club station G0HCA From left to right are Anna-Karin G7IRR, Helen Sharman GB1MIR, Richard Horton G3XWH and Katy G7NST – Image Credit G3XWH
She launched from Baikonur in Kazakhstan on May 18, 1991 arriving at the space station 2 days later. During her 6 day stay on Mir she used amateur radio to linkup with students at 9 schools in the UK.
Using the callsign, GB0JUNO, six students who held Full amateur licences established the initial contact with Helen from the Harrogate Ladies’ College and then passed transmission to the other eight schools involved in the experiment. Katy G7NST asked Helen the first question: “If you had no clock on board Mir, what would give you sense of time in space?”.
In addition to the school linkups Helen also made some random contacts on 2m FM, one of those fortunate to speak to her was Chris Lorek G4HCL.
On Friday, February 26, BBC’s The One Show featured radio amateur Frank Bell G7CND, UK astronauts Helen Sharman GB1MIR and Tim Peake GB1SS along with the Oasis Academy Brightstowe ARISS contact
Frank is a retired Science teacher who was instrumental in the amateur radio linkup in 1991 between students at the Royal Grammar School, Guildford and the UK’s first astronaut Helen Sharman GB1MIR who was on the Mir Space Station. With Frank were two of his former pupils, Les and Pete, who took part in the contact nearly 25 years ago.
The Oasis Academy Brightstowe amateur radio contact with Tim Peake took place on February 19.
The UK’s first astronaut Helen Sharman was asked about Amateur Radio on the BBC Radio 4 show Saturday Live broadcast December 12.
When asked by a listener, Brian, whether she still uses her amateur radio licence, she said:
“My amateur radio license was given to me very specially. I didn’t pass the tests in order to get it and I was only allowed to use it while I was in space, but I made friends all over the world. You can’t talk to a lot of people in Europe because there’s so many people trying to communicate with the space station but in parts of the world we’re it’s less populated, for instance in Australia, the astronauts do make friends that they’ve only ever met through the radio… it’s lovely.”
Private Spacefarer Sarah Brightman Undergoes Medical Tests
On Wednesday, October 10 it was announced in Moscow that UK private spacefarer Sarah Brightman had passed the required mental and physical examinations to fly into space. In 2013 she will undertake six months of training at Star City in Moscow in preparation for her mission to the International Space Station (ISS).
Helen Sharman GB1MIR was the first UK astronaut. On May 18, 1991, she flew to the Mir Space Station on board Soyuz-TM12, aged 27.
Before flying, Helen spent 18 months in intensive flight training in Star City on the outskirts of Moscow. The Soyuz TM-12 mission, which included Soviet cosmonauts Anatoly Artsebarsky and Sergei Krikalev, lasted eight days, most of that time spent at the Mir space station. Helen’s tasks included medical and agricultural scientific experiments, photographing the British Isles, and participating in an amateur radio hookup with UK schoolchildren.
Watch Rocket Science – Helen Sharman Interview
Since her return, Helen has become one of the UK’s leading ambassadors for science. She was awarded the OBE in 1992 and is a fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry, the Royal Geographical Society, the Royal Aeronautical Society and the British Interplanetary Society. Helen has won numerous awards including the Medal “For Merit in Space Exploration” in 2012 from the Russian Federation government. Helen is currently Group Leader of Surface and Nanoanalysis at the National Physical Laboratory.
The autumn edition of the colour A4 newsletter OSCAR News is being posted to AMSAT-UK members this week
As usual it’s packed with Amateur Satellite articles:
– Haven’t Got A Callsign – regular column by Clive Wallis G3CWV
– Memories of working Astronaut Helen Sharman GB1MIR by Chris Lorek G4HCL
– Louis Varney Cup Presentation to Paul Robinson 2E1EUB
– ARISSat-1 Reception
– USA NTIA WRC proposal for an ITU “Educational” Satellite Service
– ARISSat Update
– FUNcube Testing at RAL
– Syncart geostationary transponder
– Report on First UK National Space Conference 2011
– FUNcube Project Report
– KiwiSAT Current Status
– IARU Region 1 Sun City Report
– 2011 AMSAT-UK Colloquium Report
– QB50 Latest News