Posted & filed under News.

You may be wondering what Eaton Manor has to do with the International Space Station…

Well, one of our team, John, has recently volunteered his expertise as part of the UK ARISS Team (Amateur Radio on the International Space Station).  The UK ARISS team have set up a fantastic programme of contacts with the support of the UK Space Agency. This has facilitated school children from around the UK to speak directly to Major Tim Peake, the first British ESA astronaut to visit the International Space Station.

As if talking to a spaceman travelling 5 miles a second isn’t wow enough, the UK team have achieved a world first in the 16 year history of the ISS by having live and direct video via ‘Ham TV’ from orbit to the school pupils asking the questions. “Hi Tim give us a wave.” How cool is that!

John setting up with the UK ARISS teamJohn has been part of the UK ARISS team using skills from over 30 years’ experience as a radio amateur and from his former life in the RAF.

We have loved hearing all about John’s expeditions to the schools that have taken part, especially hearing the delightful questions some of the school children have asked, including wanting to know if there is space candy!  (We have learned that there is a candy draw on-board the ISS but it’s a secret, so please don’t tell anyone!)


As Tim’s Principia Mission comes to an end soon John is also coming back down to Earth after what has been a most thrilling and rewarding project. (In the 16 years that the space station has been in orbit there have been 14 UK contacts and John and the team have achieved a marathon 10 contacts during Tim’s mission)

You can find out more about the UK ARISS project here.


Other fun answers to some of the school children’s questions:

Tim has overslept, doesn’t change his trousers, has grown 2cm in 6 months and has to do his chores cleaning his room on a Saturday morning (just a big teenager really!)