Suitsat-1 uses a decommissioned Orlan spacesuit equipped with a ham radio transmitter and a compact disk containing messages and images from students around the world. After being released during extravehicular activities, the suit will transmit a ham radio signal for about 6 days and then after about a month reenter the atmosphere and burn up. Students and hobbyists from around the world can tune in to the signal to identify the transmitted words and image. This investigation will not only inspire the next generation of explorers but can help bridge the cultural gap of people around the globe.Principal Investigator(s)
Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, United States
Roscosmos, Moscow, , Russia
Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos)Sponsoring Organization
Information PendingResearch Benefits
Information PendingISS Expedition Duration
October 2005 - April 2006Expeditions Assigned
12Previous ISS Missions
Suitsat-1 is a unique investigation.
A decommissioned Russian Orlan suit (used in extravehicular activities) has been outfitted with hardware designed by NASA and is now Suit Satellite-1 or Radio Sputnik, a communications satellite. This hardware will allow the spacesuit to send prerecorded messages and images using amateur (ham) radio signals to Earth. Ham radio frequencies are slightly above the FM broadcast band. Students, teachers, scout troops, ham radio operators and the general public have been encouraged to track the signals from SuitSat-1 and listen to the messages.
The voices and images coming from Suitsat-1 were collected from students around the world. As Suitsat-1 floats in space, it will transmit voice messages from students in Russia, Japan, Europe (Spanish and German), Canada (French) and the USA (English). These messages contain a special word, students can copy of the special words in different languages from SuitSat-1 and submit the words to the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) Team for special educational award recognition. SuitSat-1 will downlink images using a series of audio tones, similar to a computer modem, using the ham radio picture standard of Slow Scan Television and will downlink images of similar quality as received on cell phones.
Information PendingEarth Applications
Crewmembers assembled Suitsat-1 using a decommissioned Orlan space suit and hardware sent onboard the 19 Progress supply vehicle. During an EVA, the ISS crewmembers will release the suit in a retrograde orbit. The recorded voice messages will be transmitted to Earth and downlinked on 145.990 MHz FM, which is the VHF portion of the amateur radio band. A repeat of the transmission can also be found on 437.80MHz.Operational Protocols
Suitsat-1 will be created by using an Orlan Space Suit that is onboard the ISS and hardware that arrived on the Progress supply vehicle. The crewmembers install the Kenwood transmitter and the micro-controller electronics boxes by connecting the cables associated with each box and placing them inside a fabric container located inside the space suit. The School Spacewalk CD will be placed inside the suit as well.
On the outside of the helmet, the crewmembers mount an antenna and the crew interface control box. The interface control box has three switches that will power on and activate the timers for the two boxes that are inside the space suit. The batteries are then attached to the transmitter, micro-controller, antenna and the interface control box.
The crewmembers will turn the switches on the interface box to the on position and release the suit into orbit during an EVA. The suit will be released in a retrograde orbit, meaning that the suit will be moving in the opposite direction than that of ISS; causing the suit to drop below ISS and slow its movement down.
Bauer F. This is Suitsat-1, Amateur Radio Station RS0RS!!. 23nd AMSAT Space Symposium and Annual Meeting, Lafayette, LA; 2005