ARISS News Release No. 22-13

March 3, 2022

Amateur Radio on the International Space Station, Inc. (ARISS-USA) is pleased to announce that two crew members scheduled to fly on Axiom Mission-1 (Ax-1), the first private astronaut mission to the International Space Station, will utilize the ARISS on-board radio resources to conduct six school connections via amateur radio. 

These ARISS school contacts will be conducted with Ax-1 crew members Mark Pathy, from Canada, and Eytan Stibbe, from Israel.  Both Pathy and Stibbe are fully trained on the use of the ARISS radio system, located in the ISS Columbus module, and have studied and passed their amateur radio license exams.  Mark Pathy’s amateur radio callsign is KO4WFH.  Eytan Stibbe’s amateur radio callsign is 4Z9SPC. 

As part of the “Rakia” mission, Eytan Stibbe will use ARISS facilities aboard the International Space Station to hold talks with middle school and high school students in Israel while the ISS will be above Israel. A total of 40 school classes are expected to participate in the project, and in the weeks preceding the launch, the students from Israel will participate in theoretical and practical sessions to learn about radio-based communication.

Mark Pathy, under the personal mission theme of ‘Caring for people and the planet’, will connect with elementary and high schools across Canada while on board the ISS. Pathy will be answering questions developed by the students, ranging from how his body has reacted to being in space to how to do everyday things in zero gravity and thoughtful questions around the state of our planet. The conversations are part of Pathy’s educational program through which schools also benefit from STEM content and mentorship.

“The long-held dream of private missions to stations in space becomes a reality on Ax-1.  ARISS is proud to collaborate with Axiom Space, Mark Pathy, and Eytan Stibbe on this flight and support the Ax-1 crew members through amateur radio contacts that will inspire, engage and educate school students in science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) topics,” said Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, Executive Director of ARISS-USA and Chair of ARISS International.

“Axiom is proud to help enable the educational work of ARISS-USA on this historic mission,” said Dr. Mary Lynne Dittmar, Executive Vice President of Government Operations and Strategic Communications for Axiom Space.  “For years, ARISS and its programs have inspired students across the globe to pursue interests in science, technology, engineering and math, and we are pleased that Ax-1 will join the list of missions that have contributed to this important educational work.”

The Ax-1 mission includes an international crew of four with Axiom’s Michael Lopez-Alegria, former NASA astronaut and Axiom VP, serving as commander.  The Ax-1 mission is currently scheduled to launch on March 30, 2022.