The former MP for Enfield Southgate, Michael Portillo, used 5.6 GHz amateur radio to bounce a signal off the surface of the moon.
In 2017, a team led by Noel Matthews G8GTZ and Brian Coleman G4NNS made several visits to Goonhilly Earth Station in Cornwall to use the 32 metre GHY6 dish for 3.4 GHz and 5.6 GHz Earth-Moon-Earth (EME) operation using the call sign GB6GHY. During one of the visits, Michael Portillo and the Great British Railway Journeys team visited and filmed a sequence including EME operation.
The show will be broadcast on Friday, January 12 at 6:30pm on BBC2.
Described as “Going to the moon by way of the Cornish Riviera” the sequence will show Michael talking to Brian G4NNS and operating his station under supervision to “talk to the moon” and hear his echos coming back.
The BBC description reads:
Steered by his early 20th-century Bradshaw’s railway guide, Michael Portillo boldly goes to the moon by way of the Cornish Riviera Express! On the trail of an historic achievement made at the dawn of the Edwardian era, he investigates the first radio signal to be sent across the Atlantic. In Plymouth, Michael uncovers what happened to surviving crew members of the most famous ocean liner in history, the Titanic. And at Fowey, he rediscovers a lost literary figure known as Q, who immortalised the town in his novels.
The show will be available online for 30 days from January 12 at
GB6GHY – Hello Moon, this is Goonhilly calling!
This was not Michael Portillo’s first encounter with amateur radio, in 2014 he send Morse code at Chelmsford, Essex under the guidance of Peter Watkins M0BHY
What is Amateur Radio? http://www.essexham.co.uk/what-is-amateur-radio
Find a UK amateur radio training course https://thersgb.org/services/coursefinder/