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    ISS Elements: Ultra High Frequency (UHF) antenna

    Source: Shuttle Press Kit

    The Ultra High Frequency (UHF) antenna is attached to the U.S. laboratory Destiny. The antenna, on a four-foot boom, is part of the UHF Communications Subsystem of the station. It will interact with systems already aboard the ISS, including the Space-to-Space Station Radio (SSSR) transceivers. A second antenna will be delivered on STS-115/11A.

    The UHF subsystem is used for space-to-space communication (voice, commands and telemetry for the space station). It can support up to five users on the same frequency and provides:

  • Two-way voice communications between the station and space walkers, the station and orbiter and between the Mission Control Center in Houston and space walkers (using the UHF with the S-band subsystem).

  • Orbiter commanding of critical station functions such as going to free drift during undocking operations. Commands are encrypted for security.

  • ISS transmission of critical telemetry to the orbiter during undocking operations.

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