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Owatonna Steele County Amateur Radio 14-Apr-2017

OSCAR News - September, 2Ø1Ø

OSCAR Meeting
The next OSCAR meeting is 11-Sep @ 9:00 AM, the second Saturday of the month. Meetings are held in the meeting room at the Owatonna HyVee, 18th Street @ Oak Avenue. <

The next SKYWARN meeting is 21-Sep @ 7:00 PM, the third Tuesday of the month. Meetings are held at the Owatonna Fire Station.

Fox Hunt From Mike KCYQU
The Austin Area Amateur radio Club is having a Fox hunt on Saturday, Sept. 11th. All hams are welcome. The hunt will start at 12pm at the Hayward city park. We will continue to hunt until 4pm when we will return to the park to start cooking for the picnic which will start at 5pm. Please bring a dish to pass and your own beverages. All are welcome. The club will furnish burgers and hot dogs. We will have a meeting afterwards.

ARES 75th Anniversary From ARRL
The Amateur Radio Emergency Service, ARES, is celebrating its 75th anniversary from through December 2010. ARES has provided "ham radio" emergency communications for agencies such as the American Red Cross, Salvation Army, countless Emergency Operations Centers and other responders in the worst of times. The fastest way to turn an emergency into a disaster is to loose communications. In the first hours and days of a major event, Amateur Radio is often the source of initial information on the type, scope and reactions needed to save lives.

In the past several years, Steele County volunteers stepped up to support Rushford, Ellendale, Blooming Prairie, and Wadena. Thank you for your continued support.

National Preparedness Month From Multiple Sources
September is National Preparedness Month. Sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security to increase public awareness about the importance of preparing for emergencies and to encourage individuals to take action. Information on preparing your family is available at http://www.ready.gov. Amateur Radio can follow Field Day activities by participating in a Simulated Emergency Test (SET). Along with these events, it always is a good time to double check or assemble your Ready Kit.

ARES District 1 From Bill K0RGR
A couple ARES appointments were made in ARES District 1:

  1. BJ Watts, KC0NPF, bjw@byron.com is the new EC for Dodge County. BJ started with the Rochester club many years ago, when he was just a kid. BJ has been our 'point man' for SKYWARN in eastern Dodge county for a long time, has been involved in dozens of non-emergency public service events, and he brings with him a lot of energy and ideas.
  2. Paul Spevacek, KD0KRX, prospivy@yahoo.com is the new EC for Nicollet County. Paul is new to ham radio, but he has jumped into it with a lot of energy and a particular interest in emergency comms. He is involved with the Mankato Radio Club, and has participated in a number of public service events in the region. Paul is a graduate of the OSCAR Technician class for 2010.
  3. Bob, AB0BW, has accepted a promotion from Olmsted County EC to Assistant DEC. Bob is going to take the reins of driving some technology projects in the district. He is going to investigate and document ways that we can provide better communications in the district. Bob will continue as Olmsted EC in the interim, until a new EC is appointed.

ARES Frequency Plan
Did you know there is a set of MN ARES simplex frequencies? These frequencies are intended to standardize communications across the state. Steele County will always start communications using the 145.490 and/or 147.105 repeaters. Communications may expand to use the MN ARES frequency plan as the need exists. It would be worthwhile to have these frequencies programmed into your radio.

Some counties may use a different frequency plan.

Music of the Sun From Telegraph
Scientists cannot directly record the sound produced in the Sun's atmosphere because sound cannot travel through the near vacuum of space. Coronal loops are magnetic loops that coil away from the outer layer of the sun's atmosphere. These loops can be over 60,000 miles long. Scientists converted the visible vibrations into subaudible noise. The noise was turned into "music" by accelerating the frequencies to a level that could be detected by the human ear. Some of the "music" can be heard at the Telegraph.

VE Session Counts From ARRL
If you're an ARRL Volunteer Examiner (VE) who is interested in seeing how many ARRL exam sessions you've taken part in, you can find the answer on the VE Session counts web page. You can access a list that shows the total number of exam sessions that each ARRL VE has conducted. The listings are listed first by state and then in alpha-numeric call sign order (call area number, then suffix letters). The state where an individual VE record is located is based on the VE's official address on file with the ARRL Volunteer Examiner Coordinator. Only currently accredited ARRL VEs will be displayed on the Web page.

Radio Shack Archives From Radio World
Radio Shack may be wanting to be referred to as "The Shack", but the older folks will often remember going to the store for a multiple of components to build the next ??? Early catalogs are preserved for your enjoyment.

Cell Tower Radiation From Science Daily
A new study looking at the patterns of early childhood cancers across Great Britain has found no association between a mother living near to a mobile phone base station during her pregnancy and the risk of that child developing cancer before reaching the age of five. Radiation characteristics were based on distance, power level, and power density between the home and cell phone towers. The researchers point out, however, the study does not determine if there is any association between children's own exposure to mobile phone base stations.

Electrical Grid Failure From New Scientist
Blackouts of the electric grid are a relatively rare occurence. The last major grid failure was in the Niagra Grid back in 2003. An unfortunate chain of events led to that failure, but researchers are looking at how a cascading failure might be caused intentionally. Conventional wisdom might say that generating a fault at a highly loaded location in the network would be the most logical. The research is discovering that under particular loading conditions, taking out a lightly loaded subnetwork first caused more of the grid to trip out than starting with a highly loaded one. You can read an explanation of how a blackout occurs at How Stuff Works.

GPS Multipath From University of Colorado
GPS receivers were originally designed to measure plate tectonics and geological processes. Mutipath signals result due to ground reflection. Measurements of snow depth can be achieved by combining the interference patterns from mutipath and with signals that arrive at the antenna directly from the satellite. New experiments will analyze how the GPS signals traveling through alfalfa, corn and grass correlate with the amount of water in the vegetation.

Radio-Over-Fiber From Multiple Sources
Radio over fiber (RoF) modulates an optical wavelength in the fiber with a radio signal. It is used to provide access to radio dead zones, such as tunnels and stadiums. As the need for bandwidth increases, wireless devices may need to utilize ultra-wideband (UWB). One drawback of UWB is its limited range and inability to penetrate physical obstructions, such as walls. RoF could supply a solution by having access points in each room of a building.

Heat Sinks From Scienced Daily
As electronic products become smaller and more powerful, heat dissipation becomes a bigger issue. Manufacturers typically mount a small copper or aluminum plate underneath components toconduct the heat away from them. The plate is soldered to ceramic or silicon components. As the device heats up, the metal plate expands about three or four times as much as the silicon or the ceramics. This causes tension which can lead to cracks in the soldered joints. A new material expands no more than ceramics when heated, but has a conductivity one-and-a-half times superior to copper. The material is a mixture of diamond powder and copper.

World's Smallest Fuel Cell From New Scientist
Engineers created a fuel cell that measures just 3 millimeters across. The goal is to have the tiny hydrogen-fuelled power pack replace batteries in portable gadgets. A water reservoir is separated from from a chamber containing metal hydride by a thin membrane. The metal hydride is sandwiched by an assembly of electrodes on the other side. Tiny holes in the membrane pass water molecules to the metal hydride, creating hydrogen. The first designs generated 0.7 volts and a current of 0.1 milliamps for 30 hours before the fuel ran out.

Shock Absorber Power Supply From
Electricity is typically generated by converting mechanical energy (movement) into electrical energy. A lot of attention is being directed to harnessing the energy from mechanical devices. One design under investigation is a regenerative shock absorber. The prototype demonstrated its ability to harvest 2 to 8 watts of power at a speed of about 45 mph. Estimates are the devices could generate over 60 watts per device, or 240 watts for a car. For Amateur Radio, remember the basic rule -- turn off and unplugged the equipment when you are working on it.