Ham radio operator talking to extraterrestrials!
It was a great day for Mr. Alan Tavor, 4Z4ZB, a 40 year old ham from Tel Aviv, Isreal, made radio contact with a ham operating from the space amateur radio station on board the Challenger spaceship. Tavor got the news over his telephone that Challenger would be in orbit over Isreal and that astronaut ham Dr. Tony, W0ORE on board the shuttle Challenger was looking forward to make contact with local ham radio operators. With his antenna set at 45 degrees over Tel Aviv, Tavor, 4Z4ZB, on August 1, 1983, established contact with the Challenger, which was then flying at the relatively low height of 350 km above the Earth and for two minutes he maintained a radio contact with the spaceship.Opening up his transmission with his callsign 4Z4ZB, Tavor then received the callsign of the Challenger, W0ORE operated by Dr. Tony. They had an informal chat when Tavor told that he was operating from a farm near Jerusalem, the capital city of Isreal. Tony, W0ORE from the spaceship then repeated this message to show that contact had been made and added the remark that from space, Isreal looked great. Tavor wished the astronauts a safe journey and then the contact faded.
Indian hams contacting hams onboard spaceship MIR
Mir, the Russian (erstwhile) space station, has in space since February 1986. In 1988 a handheld amateur radio was added to mir for crew recreational use, and it's been a popular activity.
Many other pieces of amateur radio hardware have followed, and mir has now a extremely ham station in space. Ham radio is a popular activity for many of the mir crewmembers, and there's additional interest with a fulltime amarican presence aboard mir. It was a dream come true for two ham radio operators in the Maharashtrian city of Pune, when while fiddling with the dials of their sets on 14th April, 1989, they accidentally made radio contact with a Soviet cosmonaut aboard the orbital space station MIR. Keki Darbary and Vilas Rabade, a Philips engineer with his station callsign VU2VPR had a three minute exchange, listened into by many fellow ham radio operators with their VHF walkie-talkie sets, with Dr. Valery Polyakov, U4MIR, who identified himself as a cosmonaut -scientist onboard spacelab MIR, a third generation one launched from Baikonour cosmodrome in Soviet Kazakhstan on February 10, 1986. Valery Polyakov is a doctor by profession. Similarly Aleksander Serebanov, who became the first man in history to conduct Extra-Vehicular Activity (EVA) logging a record 31 hours and 50 minutes outside the MIR, was also a ham radio operator!