In Science and Space: Isabella Payne, from Kent, was able to contact the astronaut in 45 seconds as the ISS passed by her home. Using her father’s ham radio, she was amazed to be able to chat briefly with American astronaut Kjell Lindgren, whom she said was just “a dream”.
“You can hear his smile.
Ms Payne said: “His voice immediately went from normal to cheerful.
“I was so moved when I heard his voice, I thought it was a dream.”
Miss Payne was inspired to come into contact with the floating space station after meeting British astronaut Tim Peake when she was two years old.
Today, his dream has been “realized”. She said: “It was truly amazing and a dream come true. I can’t wait to tell my friends everything. I hope this inspires other young girls to do science the way girls and boys should.
And the American astronaut also chatted “very happily” with the young man who is passionate about space. Mr. Lindgren tweeted: “Happy to use #ARISS #NA1SS ham radio on @space_station to chat with amateur stations around the world. I have even worked (unofficially) radio stations radio on every continent. But this is possibly my favorite station to contact by far. Thank you, Isabelle and @m0lmk!”
While Mr Payne was delighted his daughter had such a wonderful experience, he had to admit he was ‘a bit jealous’. He said that through the network he was in, he had heard that they were ready to contact the ISS. “Through the internet and the communities I’m involved with, I learned that the astronaut up there was using equipment, so we started listening to him and talking about it,” Payne said in an interview. It’s just a game of chance, really.
It would also be the only preference governed by an international treaty.
According to the British Broadcasting Association, amateur radio is a “common technical hobby and voluntary public service that uses designated radio frequencies for non-commercial message exchange, wireless experimentation, , self-training and emergency communications”. “You have to get to the right time when the space station passes you, and it has to be the right time of day when the astronaut actually uses the instrument.”