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Owatonna Steele County Amateur Radio 14-Apr-2017

OSCAR News - November, 2Ø11

OSCAR Meeting
The next OSCAR meeting is 12-Nov @ 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 15-Nov @ 7:00 PM, the third Tuesday of the month. Meetings are held at the Owatonna Fire Station.

US Ham Population From ARRL
Time and time again, Amateur Radio has been called upon to provide emergency communications. In some places, the hams made the news and were highly praised, while in other places, the community never knew they were there because no one worked with the news media. On 03-Nov (9-10:30 PM EDT), the ARRL's national Public Relations Committee will present a 90 minute webinar -- Hams, Emergencies and the News. The event is intended for Public Information Officers (PIOs), group leaders and hams who want to learn how to appropriately work with the media in an emergency situation.

US Ham Population From ARRL
The ARRL reports the number of US hams is now over 700,000, a record high. The number of Technicians peaked in March 2011 at 342,572. Duggesting that new hams are upgrading, the number of Genral and Extra licenses peaked in September 2011

Emergency Alert System From Multiple Sources
FEMA and the FCC will be conducting a national test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) on 09-Nov. The test will take place at 1 PM CDT and should last about 3 minutes. This will be the first first nationwide test of the EAS. All Broadcast Television and Radio Stations across the nation are required to carry the test. NOAA Weather Radio will not carry this test.

Although the National EAS Test may resemble the periodic, monthly EAS tests we should be familiar with, there will be some differences. The audio message will be the same for all EAS Participants. The video test message scroll may not be the same or indicate that This is a test. For any questions contact the FCC, FEMA, or your National Association of Broadcasters representative directly.

Association of MN Emergency Managers From Paul KCESE
On 19-Sep and 20-Sep Paul Oby KCESE MN ARES Dist 6 ADEC staffed an exhibit at the 51st annual Association of MN Emergency Managers (AMEM) conference at Breezy Point Resort in Brainerd. He was able to setup a working dual band base using an Icom IC-2800 with an Astron power supply and mag mount antenna but being located in a bldg away from windows made it impossible to make any contacts. He handed out ARES literature to over and talked to over 150 attendees including an employee who was only able to stop for 10 seconds as he was on duty and Mike Wisniewski of District 4 ARES. Paul said he was very surprised with the amount of visitors to the exhibit. Especially since all counties are preparing to switch over to the Allied Radio Matrix for Emergency Response (ARMER) radio system in just over a year. This proves to me that there are still emergency mgmnt officials who are interested in Ham radio.

Then on Wednesday Sept 28 John Regan (Mn ARES Dist 6) and Paul setup a similar display for the second annual Mpls PrepareFair in Crystal Court of the IDS bldg. This time we had a "PrepareFair Net" using the 146.700 & 444.775 repeaters. While we only had 10 check-ins it allowed us to demonstrate Ham radio the many people who stopped by. We were busy with people from before 10:00 AM (our setup time) to after 2:00 PM (our takedown time). This event is being planned for Sept 11 of 2012 and we plan to be back there.

Emergency Center of Activity Frequencies From Multiple Sources
One question that usually comes up in the OSCAR Technician classes is knowing when a communications emergency is declared and what frequencies need to be avoided. Emergency declarations can be declared locally or globally. On a local basis, a repeater or simplex frequency may be used during an emergency. Amateur Radio operators are asked to avoid using those frequencies. The FCC may declare a temporay state of communication emergency with specific restrictions. On a global basis, specific countries and/or the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) may declare specific frequencies used for the HF bands. These Emergency Center of Activity (CoA) Frequencies help ensure that necessary communications can be carried out with the least possible amount of interference. The ITU CoA frequencies are:

  • On 15 meters, 21.360 MHz
  • On 17 meters, 18.160 MHz
  • On 20 meters, 14.300 MHz
  • On 40 meters,  7.060 MHz
  • On 80 meters,  3.760 MHz
There is also a wealth of information on IARU Emergency CommunicationsWeb site.

Space Laser Communications From Multiple Sources
NASA is beginning to reach the limit of what its existing communications network can handle. One option being considered is using lasers as an alternative to RF. The use of lasers could reduce the time to pass Mars images over 90%. The new system is expected to be demonstrated in 2016 with trasnmissions from ground stations to communications satellite. The optical systems will be at the mercy of clouds and local atmospheric conditions on earth.

One of the first steps in the process is the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) project. Expected to launch in 2013 and last only 16 days, LADEE will evaluate how the Moon's atmosphere affects laser communications.

Falling Satellites From Multiple Sources
Satellites falling from the sky have been in the news. NASA's 6-ton UARS satellite came down at the end of September. After 20 years in spcae, UARS broke into pieces during re-entry. Although most of of it up burned in the atmosphere, 26 components, weighing a total of about 1,200 pounds, could have survived the fiery re-entry and reach the surface of Earth.

More recently, the 22 year old German ROSAT satellite plunged to earth. The prediction was 30 pieces could survive reentry with teh largest being a 1.7 ton mirror.

Tracking of space junk is handled by the U.S. Department of Defense. Over 21,800 man-made objects have re-entered Earth's atmosphere since tracking began with Sputnik in 1957. The 5 largest space objects include:

  • 135 ton MIR space station had a controlled return in 2001.
  • 100 ton Columbia space shuttle was destroyed while coming home in 2003.
  • 86 ton SKYLAB fell to earth in 1979 after only 6 years in space.
  • 22 ton combination of Salyut 7 and Cosmos 1686 reached the atmoshpere in 1991.
  • 12 ton Pegasus 2 also returned to earth after 14 years in space.

For Sale From Bill AEBR
Bill AEBR has several Motorola MT-1000 hanhelds for $75 each. He has 16 channel units in both VHF and UHF versions. Bill will custom program the channels for you.

Bill AEBR; 1028 11th Ave NE; Owatonna, MN 55060; 507-573-4876; bill@reutercomputer.com

For Sale From Junior NXP
My son Joshua has the following for sale:

  • Yaesu FT-8900R - Asking $400.00 + Shippping
  • Comet GP-15 tri-band antenna - Asking $125.00 + Shipping
  • Larsen KG2/70CXPL mobile antenna - Asking $110.00 + Shipping
The Yaesu still has its original box and documentation and is in new condition. The glass mount antenna includes a mounting kit to mount it. All three together for $585 + shipping.