A 52-year-old amateur radio enthusiast in the UK was left "stunned" when he managed to make contact with the International Space Station after a month of trying to get through from his garden shed.
Adrian Lane sent out a call signal to the ISS as it passed over his Gloucestershire house and was "stunned" when he received a reply. "They came back to me and said, 'Receiving you - welcome aboard the International Space Station'," Lane said.
Lane, from Coleford, and a US astronaut chatted for about 45 seconds before the station went out of range, 'the BBC' reported. "I asked him what the stars looked like from up there and he came back to me and said with no atmosphere up here the stars are really bright," Lane said.
"But he told me when you look down on Earth it's something else - it's just a mass of colour where everything else up here is black," Lane said. ISS publishes its Amateur Radio frequencies on the ARISS website.
According to the website, some ISS crew members make random, unscheduled, amateur radio voice contacts with Earth-bound radio amateurs, often called "hams".
They can make radio contacts during their breaks, pre-sleep time and before and after mealtime. Astronauts have contacted thousands of hams around the world.