March 1: University of Maryland’s Global Campus (UMGC) website featured a story posted on the Cybersecurity blog about Rachel Jones, an ARISS informal educator who led STEM lessons at an ARISS school. She always wanted a space career, had NASA internships, and earned a Master’s in Space Studies at International Space University in Strasbourg, France where she discovered she loved cybersecurity. Back in the US, she earned a Master’s in Intelligence and this spring, will finish a UMGC Bachelor’s in Cybersecurity. Leading young students in ARISS hands-on lessons made her recognize the importance of exposing kids to science at an early age. Rachel said, “I really didn’t have the mentorship to recognize what I wanted to do early in life, so I want to make sure I provide that to others.” The engaging story is at:

March 3: ARISS-US Director of Education Kathy Lamont coordinated with two ARISS team members and held an ARISS Proposal Webinar. This was for educational institutions wanting to learn how to be selected for an ARISS contact, including tasks such as preparing STEAM classroom lessons. Attendees learned about the ARISS Education and Contact Proposal they would prepare and how to navigate the submission process. Attendees numbered 25.

March 1: An ARISS February weekly report featured five-year-old Mario Vasquez and his father in Spain who shared the excitement of receiving ARISS SSTV images during the ARISS December session. Mario loved it, and ARISS educator Micol Ivancic found out about his reactions. She decided to mail him a special gift of decals and patches tied to ARISS and space. He was elated, sent her his photo, and anxiously awaits the next ARISS SSTV event.

March 6: Two years ago, SpaceX-20 launched to the ISS with the ARISS InterOperable Radio System (IORS) in its protective pouch. Today the IORS continues to work flawlessly and is a staple of ARISS operations in Columbus. ARISS’ power supply guru Kerry Banke reported the IORS has been on the ISS for over 17,500 hours and has traveled about 306 million miles!  Frank Bauer congratulated the ARISS team who contributed to the development and flight certification of the IORS.

March 5: ARISS Director of Engineering Randy Berger set up a booth area representing ARISS at the Irving Hamfest, the second largest regional amateur radio get-together in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. He displayed ARISS hardware and information on ARISS education programs and school radio contacts. He talked with over 60 hams who had questions. He reported, “Most said they were going to listen to other hams engaging with the onboard ARISS radio system. Three want to help with ARISS school contacts and two want to help schools with preparing an ARISS Education and Contact Proposal to submit.” 

ARISS Upcoming Events 

March 17 Kids Star Club Sayama, Sayama, Japan ARISS contact, ARISS-Japan Team
March 18 HamSCI Workshop, Huntsville AL, presentation on ARISS experiments, ARISS-US Team
March 21 Toyonaka High School, Toyonaka, Japan ARISS contact, ARISS-Japan Team
TBD for April: Axiom crew school contacts in Canada and Israel