LHS Episode #320: The Fire Down Below

Welcome to the 320th installment of Linux in the Ham Shack. In this episode, the hosts cover amateur radio and the recent earthquake in Puerto Rico and fires in Australia, Bitcoin, ARRL awards, Huawei, TensorFlow, Tucnak, Gridtracker and a whole lot more. Thank you for listening to our program and we hope you have a fantastic week.

73 de The LHS Crew


Russ Woodman, K5TUX, co-hosts the Linux in the Ham Shack podcast which is available for download in both MP3 and OGG audio format. Contact him at [email protected].

Smoke & Solder Host to Kick-Off Banner Year of CMSARA Speakers

January 11, 2020. (Brandon, MS): For Immediate Release

Information Contact: Frank Howell K4FMH [email protected]

A fan favorite from the internationally known video podcast, Ham Nation, kicks off the 2020 programs for the Central Mississippi Amateur Radio Club. “We are delighted to have George Thomas W5JDX, star of the Solder Smoke segment on Ham Nation and founder of AmateurLogic.tv, give our first presentation on January 14, 2020,” said Frank Howell K4FMH, Vice President for Programming. Ham Nation Founder Bob Heil K9EID says that Smoke & Solder is by far the most popular segment of the show according to email and other feedback. George’s topic will be, “DIY Projects Using Arduino and Raspberry Pi,” beginning at 7:00pm at the Rankin County Extension Service and EOC Building. CMSARA President Quinton Frasier KW5TON added, “I’m excited to see George W5JDX in person this month at our meeting. It’s unusual that we could get him to give a live talk since he’s so busy with Ham Nation, Amateur Logic TV, and his day job of RF Engineer for many radio stations in the Central Mississippi area.”

George W5JDX is only the first well known ham to headline this year’s program agenda, added Frank K4FMH. “We will follow George with the prolific author, broadcaster, and ham radio operator Don Keith N4KC in February.” Don’s recent book, Firing Point, was made into a very popular movie, Hunter Killer, with others on the way. He is a prolific author of books about shortwave and amateur radio, one of which is The Amateur Radio Dictionary: The Most Complete Glossary of Ham Radio Terms Ever Compiled. Don’s February presentation via Skype will be on Ham Radio Lingo. Our year will backend with Rob Sherwood NC0B, producer of the Holy Grail of receiver measurement ratings, the Sherwood Tables. Rob’s talk, also via Skype, is titled, “How to Use My Tables.” These are very well-known amateur radio operators but we have much more during the year planned for presentations.

“We wanted to blend some well-known ham speakers that we do not regularly get to experience in a club setting with informative topics from both our own members and other area hams,” Frank K4FMH said. “I think we’ve done that.” Topics and speakers include operations on six meters (Mike Duke K5XU), WSPR (J.D. Toony K5HH), APRS (Mike McKay APRS), and digital modes on HF (Eddie Pettis N5JGK and Carolyn Irons KJ5RC). We will also cover preparing for contest operations (John Struemph  K1JHS), establishing basic test equipment on your workbench (Tom Brown AE5I) and a festival of pictures of CMSARA member shacks during a program called Shack Night!. Frank K4FMH said, “I’m very pleased to have area hams who are affiliated with the Jackson ARC and the Vicksburg ARC to deliver top flight presentations to our membership and meeting attendees.” The ability to have an interchange of ideas and experiences from area hams is a real benefit to maintaining a vibrant club.

CMSARA welcomes non-members, hams who are visiting the area, and groups from nearby cities to join us at the Rankin County Extension Service auditorium where we have plenty of seating, good audio-visual equipment, and Internet access. We keep the “business” end of our club to a minimum and include a half-hour of pre-program fellowship as well as after the program itself. VE Testing is available every month with the exceptions of June and December due to Field Day planning and our Christmas Party respectively. The club has periodically had car pools of hams from as far away as the Starkville and Columbus areas attend CMSARA programs.

J.D. Toony K5HH, Vice President of Special Events added, “This will be an exciting year for radio amateurs in the Central Mississippi area. Not only for this month program agenda but for the multiple outings we are planning, a group Field Day, our new involvement with the Girl Scouts program, and a new repeater Net for new hams.” CMSARA welcomes visitors so get a car pool together and come visit us! Our website at http://centralmsham.club has updated information as well as via our Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/CMSARA/), e-mail ([email protected]) and telephone (601-345-1654).The Central Mississippi Amateur Radio Association is a non-profit 501(c)(3) status Mississippi  corporation serving counties in the Central Mississippi area. We focus on promoting having fun within the hobby and serving our communities through emergency and public service communications. We meet monthly on the second Tuesday at the Rankin County Extension Service / EOC Building, 601 Marquette Road, Brandon, MS 39042. Contact us at 601-345-1654 or at [email protected] for additional information. Any program changes will be communicated via the club website and Facebook page.


Frank Howell, K4FMH, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from Mississippi, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

Weekly Propagation Summary – 2020 Jan 13 16:10 UTC

Weekly Propagation Summary (2020 Jan 13 16:10 UTC)

Here is this week’s space weather and geophysical report, issued 2020 Jan 13 0408 UTC.

Highlights of Solar and Geomagnetic Activity 06 – 12 January 2020

Solar activity was very low. Region 2755 (S34, L=355, class/area Bxo/020 on 03 Jan) decayed to plage on 07 January and was absent of significant flare activity during the period. New Region 2756 (N22, L=017, class/area Cro/030 on 09 Jan) produced dual B1 flares at 10/1159 UTC and 10/1445 UTC before decaying to plage on 11 January. Both regions, one in the northern hemisphere and one in the southern hemisphere, presented in satellite imagery with reverse polarity magnetic field structure. No Earth-directed CMEs were observed.

No proton events were observed at geosynchronous orbit.

The greater than 2 MeV electron flux at geosynchronous orbit reached moderate levels on 09-12 Jan due to coronal hole influence. Normal levels were observed on 06-08 Jan.

Geomagnetic field activity reached active levels on 06 and 09 Jan, unsettled levels on 08 and 10 Jan due to influence from negative polarity CH HSS activity. Quiet conditions prevailed throughout the remainder of the reporting period.

Forecast of Solar and Geomagnetic Activity 13 January – 08 February 2020

Solar activity is expected to remain at very low levels.

No proton events are expected at geosynchronous orbit.

The greater than 2 MeV electron flux at geosynchronous orbit is expected to reach moderate levels on 13-22 Jan and 05-08 Feb due to recurrent CH HSS influence. Normal levels are expected throughout the remainder of the outlook period.

Geomagnetic field activity is expected to reach active levels on 14-15 Jan and 02-04 Feb, with unsettled conditions on 13, 16 Jan and 01, 05 Feb due to recurrent CH HSS activity. Quiet conditions are expected throughout the remainder of the period.

Don’t forget to visit our live space weather and radio propagation web site, at: http://SunSpotWatch.com/

Live Aurora mapping is at http://aurora.sunspotwatch.com/

If you are on Twitter, please follow these two users: 1. https://Twitter.com/NW7US 2. https://Twitter.com/hfradiospacewx

– – – – – – – – – – – – –

Be sure to subscribe to our space weather and propagation email group, on Groups.io

https://groups.io/g/propagation-and-space-weather

Spread the word!

– – – – – – – – – – – – –

Links of interest:

+ Amazon space weather books: http://g.nw7us.us/fbssw-aSWSC
+ https://Twitter.com/NW7US
+ https://Twitter.com/hfradiospacewx

Space Weather and Ham Radio YouTube Channel News:

I am working on launching a YouTube channel overhaul, that includes series of videos about space weather, radio signal propagation, and more.

Additionally, I am working on improving the educational efforts via the email, Facebook, YouTube, Tumblr, and other activities.

You can help!

Please consider becoming a Patron of these space weather and radio communications services, beginning with the YouTube channel:

https://www.patreon.com/NW7US

The YouTube channel:
https://YouTube.com/NW7US

..


Tomas Hood, NW7US, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from Nebraska, USA. Tomas is the Space Weather and Radio Propagation Contributing Editor to 'CQ Amateur Radio Magazine', and 'The Spectrum Monitor' magazine.

A Notable 2m Radio Contact

For the 2019 CQ Worldwide VHF Contest, I did a modest effort on 6 meters and 2 meters using mostly SSB and FT8. I operated from our cabin (DM78av). We had some good sporadic-E propagation on 6m which enabled some long-distance contacts to the east.  Then I noticed that 2 meters was also open so I quickly turned my attention to that band. While it’s common to have some sporadic E on 6 meters during July, having it on 2 meters is a lot less common. I was thrilled to snag 5 contacts to the eastern US on 2 meters.

One of the 2m contacts was with Jay/W1VD in Connecticut. Shortly after the contest, I got an email from Jay asking about my exact location for the contact, which I supplied using the 6-character grid locator (DM78av).  He told me that it is very difficult to work Colorado on e-skip from Connecticut…the general belief among VHF enthusiasts is that they have to use another propagation mode to work the state. Well, apparently that is not true!

Jay also worked Ken/W0ETT in Parker, CO so this turned into a three-way email discussion. Ken is located about 80 miles to the east of our cabin, so my QSO with W1VD was at a greater distance. Jay investigated the ARRL records and found that these two 2m contacts were notable enough to “make the list” at the ARRL but they are not new distance records. See the ARRL records list here.

Here’s a snippet from the ARRL list, with my W1VD QSO shown as 2793 km (1735 miles). The W0ETT QSO is also shown on the list as 2674 km (1662 miles).

You can see W1VD’s station information on the QSL card above. Obviously, a nice setup. I was using a Yaesu FT-991 driving a Mirage amplifier with 150W output to a 2M9SSB Yagi antenna. My antenna mast is only 25 feet above the ground but I benefit from an excellent radio horizon to the east from 9630 feet in elevation.

73 Bob K0NR

The post A Notable 2m Radio Contact appeared first on The KØNR Radio Site.


Bob Witte, KØNR, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from Colorado, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

PAØRDT Miniwhip Shakedown

The following blog was originally published in January, 2016 but there is still much interest in this popular and well-performing antenna.

           ***********************************

A recent posting to the 'ndblist group' by Mike, an ardent NDB DXer in the UK (Sussex), announced the recent completion of his four-part video series describing the installation and testing of a new PAØRDT active antenna.


If you may be contemplating the installation of an active antenna such as this, or perhaps making a start at DXing the NDB band or listening on 630m, then you might enjoy following Mike's journey as he demonstrates that living in the noisy suburbs need not keep you from enjoying the LF/MF bands. Mike includes some interesting tests involving his grounding system versus noise ingress and the results of keeping the electrical main's ground isolated (or not) from the antenna cable's ground.

The PAØRDT active whip is available from PAØRDT himself or if you are handy with a soldering iron, you might choose to build the same antenna in your workshop. These simple yet highly effective receiving antennas are being used successfully by hundreds of listeners all over the world and for their size provide some pretty amazing performance.












Much more information on the PAØRDT e-probe antenna may be found here in a previous blog posting. To see more of Mike's videos, you can visit his interesting Youtube Channel here.

Steve McDonald, VE7SL, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from British Columbia, Canada. Contact him at [email protected].

Arrival of new antenna

The End-fed antenna I have now is the W1SFR KX3 helper End-fed antenna. It's a great antenna and is working nicely. It is very well-made along with a 100% satisfaction guarantee, I have been very happy with mine and have used it without issue as a full time antenna. So with all this positive feedback why am I looking at and purchased another End-fed antenna? The W1SFR has a maximum rating of 100 watts. With my digital operations I have to be mindful that my End-fed is only rated at 100 watts max and I imagine that is an SSB rating. The other "thing" is the W1SFR uses the coax shield as the counterpoise and it has been causing me some grief at my  home station, some lights and our washing machine. I wanted to stay with an End-fed antenna as it fits on my property nicely and over all I am very happy with the performance of the End-fed type antenna. The antenna I decided on is from Ultimax Antennas and it's their Ultimax DXtreme, their 33 foot model. You can order the Ultimax antenna with lengths from 33-124 feet. I chose the 33 foot model as it just fits my property nicely, it would be great to go for something longer but at this time I am going with easy and convenient.
On the Ultimax site it says that the DXtreme antenna covers 6m to 160m and that ALL DXtreme models are of a different design that work most efficiently with the length of wire it is sold with. This End-fed antenna has a rating of 2kw which is more than enough of a buffer for me. Unlike the W1SFR End-fed antenna the DXtreme has provision for a counterpoise. I ordered the counterpoise that Ultimax offers for their antennas. As with most End-fed antennas an antenna tuner in needed and I have my new LDG AT200proII. I will be interested to see if I can get the antenna to tune on 80m! I would imagine the bandwidth may be narrow but that is where the AT-200proII tuner comes into the picture with its ability to call up a memory tune in no time.
The DXtreme antenna arrived here last week but the weather has not been co-operative for me to install the antenna. I don't want to rush the installation as some heights are involved and at my age, I don't bounce very well anymore!

Mike Weir, VE9KK, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from New Brunswick, Canada. Contact him at [email protected].

LHS Episode #319: HF Homebrew Antennas Deep Dive

Welcome to Episode 319 of Linux in the Ham Shack, the first episode of the new decade. In this episode, the hosts discuss what you might need in terms of money, knowledge, supplies and elbow grease to build a number of different effective HF antennas, both single- and multi-band. If you were wondering if you should put up a commercial mega-tenna or build something out of copper pipe and spare insulators, check out this episode. It is the first in several deep dive episodes concerning antennas and antenna theory. Hope you enjoy.

73 de The LHS Crew


Russ Woodman, K5TUX, co-hosts the Linux in the Ham Shack podcast which is available for download in both MP3 and OGG audio format. Contact him at [email protected].

Subscribe FREE to AmateurRadio.com's
Amateur Radio Newsletter

 
We never share your e-mail address.


Do you like to write?
Interesting project to share?
Helpful tips and ideas for other hams?

Submit an article and we will review it for publication on AmateurRadio.com!

Have a ham radio product or service?
Consider advertising on our site.

Are you a reporter covering ham radio?
Find ham radio experts for your story.

How to Set Up a Ham Radio Blog
Get started in less than 15 minutes!


  • Matt W1MST, Managing Editor




Sign up for our free
Amateur Radio Newsletter

Enter your e-mail address: