Advanced Class 10 March 2022, HamSci: Ham Radio Science Citizen Investigation, Measuring the Ionosphere with Amateur Radio

For our advanced class in March 2022, we took advantage of a very good presentation given by RATPAC.  The presentation was Ham Radio Science Citizen Investigation, Measuring the Ionosphere with Amateur Radio.

In the presentation, given by Dr. Nathaniel A. Frissell (W2NAF), who is a Space Physicist at the University of Scranton.  Dr. Frissell discussed how space weather (by which we mean mostly solar output, flares, sunspots, etc.) affect the ionosphere layers and, by extension, HF communications.  He first showed how existing ham radio resources, the Reverse Beacon Network, WSPRnet, and PSKreporter have been collecting information about propagation of radio waves and the condition of the ionosphere.  He then discussed several projects that are in progress to allow ham radio operators to build/implement and operate their own personal space weather observatories, and how to contribute that information to scientific research.

This was a bit more advanced than many of the topics we have covered, but provided great insight into how the ionosphere works, how HF radio propagation works, and how space weather impacts our communications on the HF bands (and others).

While we did not record the class ourselves, this presentation, and all of the other RATPAC presentations, are available online for your viewing pleasure.  See the links above for more information.

2022 Lesson/Class/Meeting Schedule

DateMeeting TypeTopicInstructor/Discussion Leader
3 November 2022Basic TopicsBeginner's Guide to HF Week 1: HF Bands, Modes, Making Contacts, and HF ActivitiesRATPAC
Anthony Luscre, (K8ZT) &
Dennis Kidder, (W8DQ)
10 November 2022Advanced TopicsCERT Training Class #5Murray Fire Department
17 November 2022General MeetingTactical Call Signs and EmCommsDan (N7XDL)
1 December 2022Basic TopicsBeginner's Guide to HF Week 2: Choosing HF Radios & AntennasRATPAC
Anthony Luscre, (K8ZT) &
Dennis Kidder, (W8DQ)
8 December 2022Advanced TopicsPacket Radio, Why and How?Jan (KD7ZWV)
15 December 2022General MeetingClub Christmas/Holiday Party
5 January 2023Basic TopicsBeginner's Guide to HF Week 3: Station Setup & HF ChallengesRATPAC
Anthony Luscre, (K8ZT) &
Dennis Kidder, (W8DQ)
12 January 2023Advanced TopicsAPRS Revisited, Gateways and Other UsesJan (KD7ZWV)
19 January 2023General MeetingRoles and Responsibilities at an EventJan (KD7ZWV)
2 February 2023Basic Topics
9 February 2023Advanced Topics
16 February 2023General Meeting
2 March 2023Basic Topics
9 March 2023Advanced Topics
16 March 2023General Meeting

Mobile Radio Installs

Last week at our Basic Topics class, we went over a few mobile radio installations and talked about some of the tips, tricks, and gotchas when installing your radio in your vehicle.

I mentioned that I would be posting a Youtube playlist with a bunch of videos on mobile installs, so here it is!

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLhkqvd9ZKOJr0sFPYic26FP9UAygtRp9B

As I find more videos that fit this list, I'll add them.  If you have a video (or more than one) that you think should be on this playlist, add it as a comment below or send it to me via e-mail and I'll put it on.

New Club Mailing Lists

We are now using the Freelists.org mailing list manager to maintain the club members list and the club announcements list.

The members list is for all members of MARC.  If you are a MARC member, you should join this list.  You can join the list by visiting https://www.freelists.org/list/marc-members and entering your e-mail address.  You will receive an e-mail instructing you to click the enclosed link to validate your e-mail address.  Since this is a closed list, once you have done so, a message will be sent to the list admins to have your subscription approved.  This may take up to 24 hours.  Once you are approved, you will receive a message informing you that you have subscribed to the list.

The announcement list is open to all, but can only be posted to by list moderators.  Posts sent to this list will advise about upcoming meetings and events of relevance to MARC.  You do NOT need to be a member of MARC to join the announcement list.  Join the list by visiting https://www.freelists.org/list/marc-announce and entering your e-mail address.  You will receive an e-mail instructing you to click the enclosed link to validate your address.  Once you have done so, you will receive a message indicating that you have been subscribed to the list.

We have also set up a third list for the club education committee.  If you are interested in teaching a class or in suggesting topics for future classes, you are welcome to join the education committee list.  Join the list by visiting https://www.freelists.org/list/marc-education-committee and entering your e-mail address.  Any list member can post to this list and it is open to anyone who is interested in helping teach.

Please join the appropriate list(s) for your interest and participation.  If you have suggestions for additional lists, please post them here as a comment or use the Contact Us form.

Basic Topics Meeting – 2 September 2021 – Winlink Overview

Presentation Download (PDF):  Winlink Overview

VARA Notes:

As I mentioned in the discussion, the ARES LAX group is currently doing a group buy of VARA.  The final terms came in at $55 per license based on the 57 or so people that had signed up.  If you are interested in participating, please visit https://forms.gle/qEvCebWNfXV963Yx7 and sign up.  Even if they execute this group buy before you do, you will be on the list for the next group buy.

Links mentioned in the presentation for convenience:

Monthly Meeting 19 August 2021 – Cross-band Repeat

Jan (KD7ZWV) briefs us on cross-band repeating, what it is, why we use it, how to set it up, and some caveats and gotchas about its use.  There was significant discussion at the end of the presentation, too, that was very worthwhile.

Download a copy of the presentation here.

Some links mentioned in the presentation are included here for ease of access:

Salt Lake County ARES Updates

What is ARES?

ARES is the Amateur Radio Emergency Service, a project supported by the ARRL to facilitate extending emergency services to our communities.  ARES is divided into Sections and smaller groups, and our own local groups is called the Salt Lake County ARES (or SLCo ARES).

Our own Dan (N7XDL) is the new EC (Emergency Coordinator) for SLCo ARES.  He has asked that the following information be posted on the MARC web site.

Time Reporting

The ARRL used to provide a mechanism for reporting volunteer hours associated with ARES via their ARES Connect utility.  This tool has been discontinued, but ARES members still need to be able to report their time to the ARRL.  SLCo ARES is using a Google Form to input the information.  The form can be found here:  https://forms.gle/KhPgJm4rqLMDKEw38 (note, this is a new version of the form as of 3 September 2022).

Please enter your data PRIOR to the last week of the month, every month, so that the data can be compiled and submitted to the ARRL before the end of the month.

Standard Load and Radio Configuration Files

SLCo ARES has spent a great deal of time working on the Standard Load.  While individual clubs will be maintaining their own versions of it, the basic template is maintained by SLCo ARES.  They are also setting up a repository of standard load files and radio configuration files.  These files will be stored in a Google Drive (at https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1N5DF663VUrLslCVH4nj1glAFu5acBKc0?usp=sharing) for general access.

Please send any standard load files you have or have generated in any format (ideally CSV, RT Systems files, or CHIRP radio image files) directly to Dan (N7XDL) or Rian (KF7QGY) for inclusion in this repository.  NOTE, we are not including Dan's or Rian's e-mail addresses here to help limit their spam exposure... if you do not have their e-mail addresses, please use our Contact Form to ask for them and we will be happy to let you know.  You can also find their e-mail addresses on QRZ.com.

Load files should be named according to the following standard to simplify classification:  <Make>_<Model>_<Date>.<Format>.  For example, a CSV file for a Yaesu FTM-400 DR mobile radio that was produced on 7 July 2021 would be named Yaesu_FTM400DR_070721.CSV, while a CHIRP image for an AnyTone AT-5888 UV III produced on 21 June 2021 would be named AnyTone_AT5888UVIII_062121.IMG.

WinLink Training

ARES recently sponsored an introduction to WinLink.  The presentation and associated chat text are available at the following links:

Presentation:  https://youtu.be/bl4aFN-sJjY

Chat Text:  https://drive.google.com/file/d/1jQBXnpiZxArKo5erTpLv8KmdAYelkYXF/view?usp=sharing

There will also be a four week training series starting in August.  You do NOT need to be an ARES member to attend.  The training will be provided over Zoom and is being coordinated by Oliver (K6OLI) from the Los Angeles Northeast District ARES in conjunction with Utah ARES.

In order to attend, you must first sign up at https://forms.gle/affxfCuNij7K7fMu6.  Once you have signed up, you will be added to a mailing list to receive the Zoom link(s).  The first session will be on 30 June 2021 at 7:00 PM MDT.  If you have any questions, please contact the Utah Section EC Tyler (N7UWX).  (Again, use our contact form if you don't know Tyler's e-mail address.)

And Finally...

SLCo ARES suggests that you read and heed the following article by Lucy Jones of the Los Angeles Times:  Earthquake Preparedness Tips

Account Cleanup

FYI, I have noticed an excess of what appear to be fake accounts on the club web site.  These have not caused much of a problem due to the requirement that comments must be vetted before being made public and that only authorized users can make new posts or edit pages, but in the interests of keeping our user database clean I have deleted several (about 28) accounts.  These accounts had not registered a call sign, had either never logged in, only logged in once, or had logged in way more times than they should have been able to based on the account creation data.  Quite often, these accounts had e-mail addresses in Russia or had other commonalities that indicated they were likely to not be valid.

If I purged your account and you are an actual person who wants to be part of the web site, please feel free to recreate your account AND notify me via our contact form of your interest.

If you have registered an account and you have a call sign but did not enter it when you created your account, please use the edit link (scroll down near the bottom) to update it.  If you are a member of the club and you can NOT access the Member's Area then please use the Contact Us page to let me know and I'll adjust your membership category accordingly.  Note that you do NOT have to live in Murray to be a member of the club... you can become an Affiliate Member, but you do have to have given some personal information (mainly name, address, phone number) to the club secretary.  Again, you can use the  Contact Us form to let us know and we will make sure you are put in touch with the club secretary.

Parade Update

Looks like the N7MRY repeater is back online, so we will plan to use it as our primary for the parade tomorrow.  See the current parade route here.

You can also download it in PDF format (which can be zoomed).

Station Assignments:

StationLocationOperator(s)
1Fashion Place Mall
6100 S State St
(net control)
Dan (N7XDL)
Gordon (KE7LWB)
2Zion's Bank
5600 S State St
Sam (KG7MLL)
Ragnar (N7LCR)
35300 S State StHenry (KI7ZLS)
4Murray Park Main Entrance (State St)Paul (AE4KR)
5Murray City HallDave C (KI7IHU)
6Murray Park North Entrance (Vine St)Neil (KF7PKX)
Dave O (KF7PKW)
7Murray Park (near Park Center)Sherwood (KF7YCT)
Max (KJ7WLV)

Frequency Assignments:

PriorityChannelFrequency
1N7MRY223.96 MHz
negative 1.6 MHz offset
PL Tone 103.5 Hz
2Ensign Pk147.16 MHz
positive 0.6 MHz offset
PL Tone 127.3 Hz
3Simplex146.440 Mhz
4Simplex145.540 MHz
5Simplex145.740 MHz
6Simplex146.480 MHz