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Owatonna Steele County Amateur Radio 13-Apr-2017

OSCAR News - August, 25

OSCAR Meeting
The next regular OSCAR meeting is 13-Aug: 09:00 AM (local time) at Hardees in Owatonna.

Local News
- Fred KCUOX was recently being appointed Logistics Chief for CERT.
- Jeff KCUOW also received an appointed as CERT Education Chief.
- Dave Purscell returned to amateur radio by passing the General exam elements. Listen for Dave as KCUVY.
- Bill KCUOU advises he will be moving to Oregon in September.

CERT Training
A CERT training class is being scheduled for the fall. Classes will be held on three consecutive Saturdays; 24-Sep, 01-Oct, and 08-Oct. More information can be made available by calling 507/444-2454. The next CERT meeting is at the Owatonna Fire Station on 04-Aug at 6:30PM.

The regularly scheduled meeting for SKYWARN is at 7:00PM on the 3rd Tuesday of each month. Meetings are held at the Owatonna Fire Station. SKYWARN has a need for Amateur Radio operators to volunteer for commnication duties during severe weather events. The plan is to install a dual band radio at the fire station to communicate within the county as well as with the surrounding counties. Contact Tom NUW via the OSCAR e-mail address if you are willing to help. With enough volunteers, we can minimize the number of times an individual is called.

Vanity Call Sign Fees To Increase From ARRL Letter
The regulatory fee to apply for an Amateur Radio vanity call sign will go up slightly later this year, an FCC Order indicates. A Report and Order and Order On Reconsideration (R&O) in the assessment and collection of regulatory fees for fiscal years 2004 and 2005 released July 7 increases the fee for FY 2005 to $21.90 for the 10-year license term. The FCC said it had adjusted FY 2004 "payment units" for each service to better reflect expected FY 2005 payment liabilities.

2005 "BIG ONE" Cancelled From TCRC
It was announced on the Saturday Swap Shop on July 2, 2005 that Hamfest Minnesota (The Big One) has been cancelled for this year. Apparently it was due to financial reasons. The Twin Cities FM Club assures everyone that Hamfest Minnesota will be back in 2006. Location and exact dates are unknown at this time.

International Space Station
NA1SS on the International Space Station was put into FM repeater mode about 20-Jul, with an uplink at 437.800 MHz and downlink at 145.800 MHz. A couple of passes on 24-Jul resulted in some strong coverage over the midwest. Contacts have to be quick and compensation made for doppler shift, but it was an interesting experience to hear the QSOs via the ISS.

PCSAT2 Digipeater Launched From AR Newsline
The return of the United States Space Shuttles to flight on July 26th with the successful launch of the Discovery was also good news for ham radio. This is because the PCST 2 Amateur Radio data relay system was carried into space on the STS 114 mision. PCSAT2 will not be activated until it is installed on the outside of the International Space Station until a space walk slated for the August 1st or 3rd. Then it wll be another week of on-orbit checkout before the flying A-P-R-S digipeater will be activated for general use. If all goes as planned, that should be on or arpund August 10th.

New FCC Form 605 From AR Newsline
The FCC has issued a revised version of its Form 605 that must be used for all non-electronically filed applications and changes as of July 18th. The new version adds a single question regarding station ownership that is really not germane to the Amateur Radio service. While the FCC has not really provided any guidance to the ham community on how to answer this question, it would seem logical to say no since one cannot sell ones ham radio license to another person. The best way to avoid the problem created by the new Form 605 is to avoid using it and do all your business with the FCC using the Universal Licensing System on the World Wide Web.

MN SEC Resignation From ARRL Letter
Don Franck, ADF, is resigning as Minnesota Section Emergency Coordinator, effective August 1, 2005. Don is resigning for personal health reasons. Don has been active in emergency communications and served as an instructor for the ARRRL Emergency Communications Course. MN Section Manager Skip KSJ will begin to interview prospective candidates for the postition. If you are interested, please contact Skip.

International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend From AR Newsline
The International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend 2005 takes place on 20th and 21st August. Last year 376 lighthouse and lightship stations were active during the weekend and the target for this year is to have 400 stations on from around the world. As of June 15th there were 154 stations in 31 countries have confirmed their participation. More is on line at illw.net

FCC No Code Proposal From AR Newsline
The FCC issued a combination Report and Order teamed with a Notice of Proposed Rule Making. Both appear aimed at eliminating the need for Morse testing. WT Docket 05-235 is 29 pages in length and can be downloaded for review in its entirety. The FCC cites international radio regulations and proposals from the amateur community based on those changes.

Canadian No Code From ARRL Letter
Industry Canada (IC) has adopted elements of the Radio Amateurs of Canada (RAC) "Proposal on Morse Code and Related Matters" and has essentially removed the requirement for Amateur Radio applicants in that country to obtain a "Morse Qualification" for access to bands below 30 MHz.

Circuit Design Resource From ARRL Contest Rate Sheet
If you are looking for a circuit for that special need, you could do considerably worse than logging on to Discover Circuits. The site has more than 11,000 circuits (!) and a number of active forums, plus numerous useful links.

A Texas ham has set up a new web site that he says is to help other hams market products and services. CQ Yellow Pages will enable hams to place information about their business products and services by category in a fully-searchable national database. Goldblatt says that the site provides over 2,600 categories from A to Z just like a standard commercial directory. WA5KXX says that his goal is to build a site to build a national cyberspc marketplace where advertisers and visitors have something in common. You can find out by visiting www.cqyellowpages.com on the world-wide-web.

Phishing From ARRL
I find it interesting the number of phishing attempts show up in the OSCAR mailbox, but not in my personal mailboxes. A recent tip to help eliinate phishing on eBay and PayPal suggests not to simply delete the fake e-mails. Before deleting the e-mail, forward it to mspoof@ebay.com or spoof@paypal.com depending on which one they supposedly came from in the first place. The people that own eBay and PayPal are aggressively tracking these people down and where possible, prosecuting them.

Philipines May Lose 70cm From AR Newsline
The Philippines National Telecommunications Commission announces the inclusion of all of 70cm spectrum it is considering being made available for broadband wireless networks. This includes the Amateur and Amateur Satellite spectrum including the internationally agreed to allocations (430 to 440 MHz). The international allocations will probably cause an objection by the IARU.

ATM Deception From CGC Communicator
Not related to Amateur Radio, but I found this to be an unusual story. The University of Texas at Austin posted information on two gadgets that can be attached to an ATM machine to capture your ATM card data and your PIN number. See the press release to see exactly what these easy-to-spot devices look like, and how they work.

On The BPL Front From Various Sources
The Google search engine folks, Goldman Sachs Corporation and the Hearst Corporation have announced an investment of $100 million into promoting Broadband Over Powerline technology.

The first San Diego Gas & Electric Company BPL technology trial is beginning. A kick-off meeting for the working group of participants will take place on Friday, July 22, with initial baseline RFI background tests on Wednesday, July 27th.

The Rochester ARC reports a member went to Cincinnati. Significant noise measurements (S4 to S8 or S9 in the ham bands) were reported.

BPL is coming to a Pittsburg, Pennsylvania suburb. According to an article in the July 22nd edition of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Duquesne Light has announced that it will begin to offer wireless Internet service to about 2,800 customers in the Monroeville area. The B-P-L will provided by Duquesne Broadband. This is described as a joint venture between the utility and BPL Global Internet.