PVHS Amateur Radio Club

Welcome to the Pinson Valley High School Amateur Radio Club, KN4BBD Webpage!

School Club Round Up
Students using High Frequency (HF) voice communications to compete in the School Club Round Up

ISS Astronaut Interview Mission Patch
International Space Station Mission Patch April 10, 2018 Alabama Bicentennial Event

Student Interviews Astronaut Live On Board ISS

Pinson Valley High School students interviewed Astronaut Ricky Arnold, KE5DAU live while on board the International
Space Station (ISS), 
NA1SS on Tuesday, April 10, 2018.

We are seeking radio audio recordings of the event. If you have audio of our students interviewing Astronaut Ricky Arnold please contact us here

Pinson Valey High School, KN4BBD completed a "direct" contact with the ISS. In 2006 Bob Jones High School successfully completed a telebridge contact.  Amateur Radio on the International Space Station

Student Interview Questions

  1. By having zero gravity, what type of exercises you have to do to keep your body from losing mass?
  2. What prompted your interest or love of space?
  3. What kind of medical testing does an astronaut have to go through to be physically and mentally ready for duty?
  4. Psychologically, what is the most challenging aspect of being in space?
  5. What type of research are you currently conducting on the ISS?
  6. When you receive food supplies in space can you make special request for certain foods?
  7. What can a high school student do now to prepare for a potential career in aerospace?
  8. How much education and training does an astronaut typically have?
  9. Theoretically could NASA power future rockets/spaceships via nuclear fusion, similar to the sun?
  10. What is the scariest part of space travel; the launch, living on the ISS, or re-entry? 
  11. What happens if someone was to have a heart attack, get sick, or have another medical emergency in space?
  12. What is a typical day aboard the ISS like?
  13. Since the ISS hosts astronauts from different countries, what language is spoken aboard the ISS?
  14. Besides your family, what do you miss most about life on earth?
  15. What fuels the ISS?
  16. Can you easily communicate with your family members while you are aboard the ISS?
  17. What are some hazards in space?
  18. What happens if a fire occurs on the ISS?
  19. Have any organisms been born or conceived in space?
  20. With all the materials onboard, is the ISS smelly?

Saved Live Stream of the ISS Astronaut Interview event:here.  

Other Alabama K-12 schools who have completed an ISS contact include:
Admiral Moorer Middle School, Eufaula (telebridge) 2001
Walter Jackson Elementary, Decatur (direct) 2016
Rainbow Middle School, Rainbow City (direct) 2017.
A few science camps and a university have also completed contacts in Alabama.     

The program on 04/10/18 will start at 12:30 P.M. CDT and the actual astronaut interview will be 1:03-1:14 P.M. CDT. All must be seated prior to 12:30 P.M. 

ISS Downlink: 145.800+/- (doppler shift).  All reception reports will be greatly appreciated. Please send reception reports by clicking here

Please share this event with others. 

Media coverage of the event:  

Pinson students will soon make contact with the International Space Station

Pinson Valley students contact International Space Station

WATCH: Pinson Valley High School students contact International Space Station

New ISS Crew Member’s Ham Radio Contact to Highlight a Wider Educational Effort

Ham Contact with Space Station Raises Amateur Radio’s Visibility in Alabama

Pinson Valley High School makes contact with astronaut on International Space Station

PVHS to be first Alabama high school to contact ISS direct through ham radio

PVHS in the Birmingham Business Journal

Pinson Valley High School to contact ISS astronauts through ARISS program

Pinson Valley selected for radio contact with International Space Station

Thirteen US Schools/Groups Move Closer to Hosting ARISS Contacts

All Birmingham television news stations covered the event.  All television stories are saved above except stories from ABC33/40 and Fox 6. We understand stations outside of the Birmingham market also covered the event. If you have a link to a story not listed above please email us

Ham Nation Episode 306 06/28/17 Pinson Valley High School on Ham Nation at 54:30 through 56:03. Ham Nation is live weekly on TwiT and on WTWW International Shortwave Broadcast at 8 P.M. CDT Wednesdays. Ham Nation is the the most popular amateur radio show in the United States and has a worldwide following.

Amateur Radio Newsline-Pinson Valley High School 06/28/17 Pinson Valley High School story at 2:17 through 3:50.

Amateur Radio Newsline-Pinson Valley High School 06/23/17 Pinson Valley High School at 7:44. ARN has worldwide correspondents.  

Pinson Valley High School has been scheduled by the (Amateur Radio on the International Space Station) U.S. program to interview an astronaut via an Amateur Radio contact with the International Space Station (ISS) on April 10, 2018, at 1:03 P.M. Check out the large antennas high atop the building when you park or travel through the bus lane. The equipment plan was submitted and accepted.  For more information click here.  

Members of the PVHS ARC copied Slow Scan Television images sent by the ISS on 
April 11-14, 2018 celebrating the Interkosmos 40th Anniversary of International Human 
Space Flights and Celebration of the Cosmonautics Day.

ISS Slow Scan TV Image April 13, 2018
ISS Slow Scan Television Image copied April 13, 2018 2335Z

 ISS Slow Scan TV Image April 18, 2018 2340Z
ISS Slow Scan Television Image copied April 13, 2018 2340Z

ISS Slow Scan TV April 14,2018 1615Z

ISS Slow Scan Television Image copied April 14, 2018 1615Z

ISS Slow Scan TV Image April 14, 2018 1620Z
ISS Slow Scan Television Image copied April 14, 2018 1620Z

Direction Finding (Transmitter Hunting/Fox Hunting) 
On 03/23/18 PVHSARC students participated in Direction Finding (Fox Hunting/Transmitter Hunting) activities during the process of locating an RFI (Radio Frequency Interference) issue prior to the ISS event. 

Alabama Butter Bean Festival Special Event Station 2017
Alabama Butterbean Festival 2017
Students and a teacher making the first contact from the Alabama Butterbean Festival using High Frequency (HF) voice communications

The Pinson Valley High School Amateur Radio Club, KN4BBD, operated a special event station portable from the 2017 Alabama Butterbean Festival in Pinson October 6-7, 2017. Our club operated the festival on Friday, October 6 from 6:00-10:00 P.M. and Saturday, October 7 from 9:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M.  The festival was enjoyed by thousands and we meet many community stakeholders, parents, alumni, amateur radio operators from the community, and others. Amateur radio operators worldwide made contact with the special event station on the air via SSB voice and FT8 digital mode on these frequencies. We also made contacts via several FM voice repeaters in the greater Birmingham, AL area. Thank you for supporting the special event by contacting us on the air or visiting our site at the festival. QSL Information: For an Alabama Butterbean Festival special event paper QSL card please include a SASE. All amateur radio contacts have been uploaded to QRZ and will be uploaded to LoTW and eQSL. 

Pinson Valley High School has been selected by the ARISS (Amateur Radio on the International Space Station) U.S. program to move to the scheduling phase toward participating in a scheduled Amateur Radio contact with the International Space Station (ISS) April 10, 2018, at 1:02:44 P.M. CDT.  The equipment plan was submitted and accepted.  For more information click here

Robotics-STEAM-Before School Program
Robotics-STEAM-at Pinson Valley High School

Why Amateur Radio?

Students and Educators

Develop valuable real-world experience with RF electronics and devices

Learn construction techniques and practices

Visualize theory and translate it into practice

Develop experience with antennas and RF propagation from MF through W band

Use amateur radio in support of scientific experiments and data collection

Scholarship opportunities exclusively for students who are licensed amateur radio operators. 

Technical Professionals

Freely experiment with and develop RF technology on your own

Career development experience

Contribute your expertise to public service

Use your skills in an enjoyable hobby 

We meet the first and third Wednesday of the month at 7:15 A.M. in room 212 (English, Mrs. Moore). All students, faculty, and staff are welcome to visit or join the club.

If you have interest in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, or Math (STEAM), communications, or serving others the Pinson Valley High Amateur Radio Club is the organization for you.

For more information concerning amateur radio at Pinson Valley High School click here to send an email.


Pinson Valley High School finished 10th in the School Club Roundup held the week of February 13-17, 2017. Look for us during future SCR events in October and February of each year. See a club officer, club member, or a teacher in room 212, V-11, or 201A to sign-up.  

Licensing Review
Amateur Radio Technician License Review (Question Pool) Start here-entry level license. 

Study online for the technician license (entry level) using study flash cards, reading the questions, and taking practice tests.  

Amateur Radio License Exam Session
Visit one of the following locations in between classes for more information: Room 201A, 212, or V-11.  
For more information concerning an amateur radio license exam session click here to send an email. The next exam session is tentatively scheduled for (date TBA).
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