Amateur Radio Emergency Service - W4ACA

Proudly using the Oak Ridge ARC (W4SKH) Repeaters & W4ACA APRS Digipeater

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Beta Testing new site.

Hello everyone,

I was bored this afternoon watching football... so I decided to play some with the Andersonville Volunteer Fire Department website that I am also the webmaster. The new page is located here at the BETA page.

Please let me know what you think about, the ONLY pages that are active are the HOME and NEWS pages at the moment. The others will follow once everyone is happy with it.

Feel free to let me know what you think, likes and dislikes.

Happy New Year!

Moe

Friday, December 28, 2007

Ham radios can be lifeline in emergency

By Kelly Weaver-Hayes

Daily Times Correspondent

What happens when cell phone operating facilities are damaged and do not work during an emergency?

What if there is no power going out to hundreds, even thousands, of houses and most roads are impassible?

That was the story when Hurricane Katrina hit our southern neighbors two years ago.
That was the story for the eastern third of North America during the super storm of 1993.

Some sources are betting on a blizzard this winter, citing the summer drought and high temperatures this year as a similar weather pattern to that preceding the blizzard of 1993.

The need for reliable communication is always at the heart of getting help during an emergency.

When all else fails, there’s amateur radio — that is the motto of the National Association of Amateur Radio. The club serving Maryville and Alcoa recently celebrated its 60th anniversary of providing such service to the community.

Long-time member and Trustee Carol Peabody, of the Smoky Mountain Amateur Radio Club (SMARC), said he went out in the 1993 blizzard with rescuers, using his radio equipment to communicate with people stranded by the storm.

“The local automobile dealers lent out their four-wheel drive vehicles to the Red Cross to rescue people who were stranded,” Peabody said. “The Red Cross set up its headquarters on Church Avenue, in what used to be the old library.

“I went out with a driver and got people and took them to a shelter at Montvale Station, Maryville Middle School, or the rescue station.”

Emergency workers also took supplies to people who were sick, or who had no food or heat. Land lines were still working, but cell phones were out, so the mobile radios were the only way to communicate once you were on the road.

And just like it was in 1993, there are groups of people all over this country and the world, putting thousands of their own dollars into a system of communication that the Red Cross and National Guard rely upon during emergencies like the aftermath of Katrina

Read More

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

2008 Extra Class Question Pool

As Released December 21, 2007- NCVEC QPC

The 2008 Element 4 (Extra Class) question pool is hereby released to public use. This pool will become effective for examinations given on or after July 1, 2008, and will remain active until replaced by a subsequent version. As of this writing, this pool is scheduled to be in service until June 30, 2012.

Whenever possible, we have included references to the FCC rules for most of the questions in section E1. The citations are included only as a guideline, and while the QPC has made reasonable efforts to insure accuracy, we do not guarantee that such citations are accurate and/or complete.

Any graphics required for the questions are included at the end of this document, or are available as a separate file from NCVEC.ORG To assist in viewing fine details of some of the drawings associated with certain questions, we recommend increasing the "zoom" factor to 200% (or larger) when viewing the associated graphic.

While every effort was made to insure the accuracy of the material herein, this material was prepared by ordinary human beings, and there is always the possibility that a few typographical or other errors may remain. Users are authorized to make whatever typographic corrections that may be needed, keeping in mind that the basic meaning of a question, answer, or distractor must remain intact. The QPC would appreciate notification of any such errors.

There are 741 questions in the pool as released.

2008-2012 Element 4 Word

2008-2012 Element 4 PDF

2008-2012 Element 4 RTF

Current Question Pool for all license classes.

Please refer any questions to the QPC, by e-mail, to QPC@NCVEC.ORG

73,

Jim Wiley, KL7CC
Chairman, NCVEC Question Pool Committee
Anchorage VEC

Courtesy of National Conference of Volunter Examiner Coordinators

New YouTube PSK31 tutorial videos

Randy K7AGE has recently put a couple of new PSK31 tutorial videos on YouTube.

PSK31 Transmitter Level Adjustment
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3CwHaX7t5M

PSK31 - Operating
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZaAXMzGIUGA

Randy has previously posted several other PSK31 tutorial videos
Part 1: Introduction to PSK31 - Receiving
Part 2: Sample of 20 meter activity for PSK31 introduction
Part 3: Video Soundcard Interfacing

They can be seen at
http://www.southgatearc.org/news/september2007/psk31_introduction.htm


Related URL's

Digipan PSK31 Download Page
http://www.digipan.net/

British Amateur Radio Teledata Group (BARTG)
http://www.bartg.org.uk/
BARTG Yahoo Email Group
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/bartg/
To join email: bartg-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

Monday, December 24, 2007

CALLING ALL SANTAS : Local (California) businessman is searching for volunteers to help answer wayward calls for the Jolly Old Elf

CHARLOTTE BOECHLER, NEWS-PRESS STAFF WRITER

November 28, 2007 6:46 AM

John Dickson received nationwide media attention last year for taking phone calls from children across the country hoping to talk to Santa. Instead of dialing 1- 800-SANTACLAUS, they accidentally called his business line, 1-800-SANTABARBARA, just one digit off. And so as not to diminish the hopes of the little ones, he cheerfully played along.

But this holiday season, the "Accidental Santa" won't be answering his phone.

That's because he's setting up a Santa Claus Call Center to handle the hundreds if not thousands of potential calls.

Now if a little boy or girl mistakenly gets his number, the call will be routed to one of five lines at the center, located in the administrative office of the downtown Montecito Bank & Trust.

Mr. Dickson is hoping to find about 100 volunteers to answer the phones.

The qualifications?

Thick white beard, rosy cheeks, big belly, predisposition to "Ho-ho-hos"?

"You don't have to look like Santa and you don't have to look like Mrs. Claus," Mr. Dickson insists. "This is over the telephone only, so come as you are."

Some potential volunteers have expressed concern over their voice being too high.

"I said, 'You can be an elf!' " chuckles Mr. Dickson.

"We can find a place for anybody."

But won't kids be disappointed if they don't reach Santa?

Read More

The Accidental Santa Website can be found HERE

Merry Christmas to everyone from ACARES and we hope that you have a very Happy New Year!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Google Toolbar: Beware of Buttons

December 20th, 2007

by Roderick Ordoñez

The Google toolbar has found yet another use: as a possible malware vector. Researcher Aviv Raff has released a proof-of-concept (PoC) code, which demonstrates how an attacker may install malicious software or conduct phishing attacks by prompting the user to install a new Google toolbar button.

Affected Google toolbar versions are as follows:

Google Toolbar 5 beta for Internet Explorer
Google Toolbar 4 for Internet Explorer
Google Toolbar 4 for Firefox (partially)

The code makes use of a specially crafted link that refers to the button’s XML file, which when clicked displays a dialog box summarizing the details of the button to be installed. This dialog box also displays a URL of where the button is to be downloaded. Through manipulation, however, a malicious author could make it appear that the said URL is non-malicious by adding special redirector strings. This further increases the user’s trust in the button to be installed. If the toolbar does get installed, the user must manually click on the button to execute it, which in turn may run an installation script (which a user must approve to install) or a fake log-in console (for phishing purposes).

However, Google classifies the PoC as non-critical, due to the multitude of steps involved before a user does get infected. Nevertheless, the search giant has confirmed that it is currently looking for a fix to remedy the bug.

Google actually encourages the creation of custom buttons for its toolbar, and outlines the ease of creating one in their Web site, complete with API documentation. This ease-of-creation feature, coupled with Google’s large fanbase, opens up plenty of possibilities for its users, malware authors included.

For the meantime, users of Google toolbar are advised to refrain from adding new buttons.

Read More

Delfi-C3 is the first nanosatellite student project from the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands. The satellite is based on the CubeSat concept and a number of novel technologies will be tested on board the satellite:

Thin Film Solar Cell Experiment (Dutch Space)

Autonomous Wireless Sun Sensor Experiment (TNO)

A team of MSc students is currently working to finish Delfi-C3. The student team consists of aerospace engineering students, electrical engineering students and computer engineering students. Several bachelor of engineering students from schools across the area are also involved in this project. On this website you can find information about the project and the team.

Read More

Radio Amateur Section

Delfi-C3 will have a downlink in the amateur satellite segment of the VHF amateur radio frequency band. Telemetry decoding software will be made available to participating amateur radio operators and universities which allows them to decode and display real time telemetry. Furthermore, the software allows for a data upload to the central Delfi-C3 ground station via the Internet for data processing. The Delfi-C3 team would like to invite all interested radio amateurs to receive, decode and forward telemetry data to the Delfi-C3 ground station.

Delfi-C3 includes a mode UV linear transponder. The satellite will be in telemetry only mode for approximately the first three months of the mission, after which it is switched to transponder mode.

Frequencies:

Primary telemetry downlink: 145.870 MHz 1200 Baud BPSK AX.25 400mW

Backup telemetry downlink: 145.930 MHz 1200 Baud BPSK AX.25 400mW
Linear transponder passband downlink: 145.880 - 145.920 MHz (inverting) 400mW PEP

Linear transponder passband uplink: 435.570 - 435.530 MHz
Transponder mode beacon: 145.870 MHz CW (10dB below transponder PEP)

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Last Link - When disaster strikes, amateur radio operators keep the connection

By KATHY GRAY

of The Dalles Chronicle

Hugh Flint fires off a rapid explanation of what he does, pointing to equipment and using lingo like "packet data" and "terminal nodes" and "repeaters," while quietly leaving out the most important point: What he does may someday help save your life.

Flint heads the local Amateur Radio Emergency Service section for Wasco County, which helps with communication during emergency events. When a massive storm recently overwhelmed western Oregon with wind and water, downing phone lines and limiting cell coverage, people like Flint provided vital links within and outside the ravaged regions.

Amateur radio operators were heralded by state emergency officials as heroes, who set up networks for government and emergency officials to communicate when other system failed.

A network of at least 60 voluneer amateur radio operators working along the coast and inland helped keep crucial systems such as 9-1-1, American Red Cross and hospital services connected. They relayed information about patient care and lists of supplies needed in areas cut off by water.

Ham radio operators also kept New York City agencies in touch with each other after their command center was destroyed on Sept. 11, 2001, according to the National Association for Amateur radio. And when hurricanes like Katrina hit, amateur radio operators helped provide fire-and-death community services when everything else failed.

Read More

Hams step into communication void

By Rod Jones

(Created: Thursday, December 13, 2007)

If there was ever an example of the importance of Ham radios, the storms last week were it.

When all other forms of two-way communication crashed for more than a day, Ham operators stepped in to fill a vital role in emergency response. Seaside and most parts of the county not only lost landline phone service, but also cell phone service. Even the 9-1-1 service was out for about a day, a service considered so important that a few minutes of its absence sends chills up the spines of emergency responders.

Dozens of Ham radio operators took to the airwaves to fill the communications void during the strongest part of the storm, helping to keep some order to an otherwise chaotic situation.


One local Ham has been preaching the Ham gospel for the past couple years. Jeff Holwege, one of the founders of a new local amateur radio club called WA7VE, credited the local Ham radio operators for their quick and critical response.

Read More

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Milam County presses ham radio into service

By Jeanne Williams - Telegram Staff Writer

Published December 17, 2007

CAMERON - Hurricane Rita was the impetus that propelled Franklin Stewart from his comfortable pose as local VFW commander and oil company retiree into the minuteman role as volunteer amateur radio communications leader for Milam County’s Homeland Security Department.

Before the hurricanes of 2005, Stewart leisurely used his amateur radio skills to visit other ham operators across the United States, and mused at the opportunity to chat with the Space Shuttle crew via his desktop transmitter in Cameron.

Susan Reinders, Milam County’s homeland security director, knew about Stewart’s ham radio hobby, and recruited him into service when Hurricane Rita threatened the Texas coast and appeared to be headed toward Central Texas.

Stewart set up his antenna and ham radio set at the Milam County Courthouse’s homeland security headquarters in Cameron to ensure emergency management officials could communicate if the storm struck.

“Everything I came across in state and regional planning stated that amateur radio is the backup system for communications and we didn’t have a radio,” Mrs. Reinders said. “Mr. Stewart brought in his equipment and set up his antenna in the courthouse yard.”

Read More

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Black Hack Down: U.S. Military Labs Data Get Breached (ORNL)

December 12th, 2007 by Jake Soriano

Michael Jackson even had a song about it: Human Nature. There’s your weakest link—and one that hackers repeatedly take advantage of and manipulate.

Reports confirm that hackers have successfully broken the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in Tennessee, an institution in the United States that conducts highly sensitive research. While little is known of it, it also appears that the sister-institution of ORNL, the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, was also hacked. These are two of the United States’ more important research labs, where homeland security and military researches are conducted.

Investigations reveal that seven (only seven) phishing emails were directly involved in the breach. The said email messages were sent to lab employees. It was still unclear what these messages did specifically, but experts say they probably had malicious attachments in them.

Waves of phishing emails reportedly began in October, with employees as specific targets. The attackers managed to access a non-classified computer of ORNL that contained the personal information of people who visited the research laboratory since 1990.

The targeted attacks on these two institutions and the success of the hackers had analysts calling them “a sophisticated cyber attack that now appears to be part of a coordinated attempt to gain access to computer networks at numerous laboratories and other institutions across the country.”

Analysts, though, are careful in naming explicit architects of the attack. The angles range from a government-sponsored espionage to the work of a small crime organization.

What is interesting is that this would not be the first attack of this kind on institutions like the abovementioned laboratories. Los Alamos, in fact, has been the subject of not just one, but several breaches in recent years.

At the center of all these security breaches and hacking attacks is the individual—one with a trusting, or non-questioning, nature. The lesson learned here is that a huge and imposing organization is still made of people, and when these people are not well informed on how to stave off potential security attacks, the whole organization suffers.

Courtesy of Trend Micro Malware Blog

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Amateur radio operators step up when needed to keep county in touch with the world.

By KARA HANSEN

The Daily Astorian


When twin storms hammered the coast Sunday through Monday with hurricane-force winds, snapping tree limbs like twigs and cutting power to thousands in Clatsop County, amateur radio operators didn't just bolster efforts at the county Emergency Operations Center.

They were the heart of the response.

"Really, it's ham radio operators that are the backbone, because we operate on power," said Clatsop County Sheriff Tom Bergin. "They are a godsend when it comes to emergencies."

When phone service is cut, 9-1-1 lines are down, power is out and major highways are blocked, ham radio still works. Early this week, amateur operators' signals provided the only route for sending messages across or outside Clatsop County.

"When communications went out, I couldn't get ahold of anybody," said Sgt. Mark Whisler as he worked in the emergency center's communications room on Friday. "It all fell to them."

As efforts move on from disaster response to recovery from ruin, volunteers can expect to go home soon.

Since the beginning of the storm, 42 amateur radio operators have held strategic posts from Arch Cape and Cannon Beach to the Seaside and Warrenton fire departments, Rilea Armed Forces Training Center, local dispatch centers and hospitals, the Knappa-Svensen sheriff's office substation and the American Red Cross.

"The first day, we had one guy talking nonstop," said Frank Van Winkle, of Astoria, the local assistant emergency coordinator for amateur radio. At one point, traffic was so heavy over the lines that a radio gave out, he said.

Many on the North Coast belong to Sunset Empire Amateur Radio Club, whose communications bus also supported storm operations when the county generator temporarily shut down.

Read More

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Send Me RSS

Hello everyone,

After lots of trouble out of the the previous RSS feed to email update program created more trouble than it was worth I have replaced it with a great working program I use personaly on several other feeds. I recommend Send Me RSS.

What’s RSS?

RSS stands for “Really Simple Syndication.” It’s a family of information formats used to distribute frequently updated content. An RSS document is called a “feed” and usually contains a short summary of the full text. To learn more about RSS, watch this fun video called “RSS in Plain English.”

Hamquick Technician Class Tutorials

Courtesy of Hamquick.com

Now, getting your amateur radio license has never been easier. Just read our simple and easy to read tutorials, and pass the Technician Class license exam in a breeeze!

The tutorials are categorized into sub-elements, each subelement focusing on a different topic you need to learn.

Start Learning Today!

Ham radio operators add to relief effort in storm-battered Oregon

Heavy rain, high winds knocked out power, phone service, Net access

Todd R. Weiss

December 07, 2007 (Computerworld) -- Telephone lines, power lines, Internet access and cell-phone systems were no match for Mother Nature when three massive storms struck parts of Oregon in rapid succession this week. The storms lashed the region with 120-mph winds, heavy rains and flooding.

Even as modern technologies succumbed to the weather, the long-established, reliable ham radio network was able to fill the gaps and help state and county officials coordinate emergency response efforts and communicate with one another to assist distressed residents across the region.


In Oregon, about 200 volunteer ham radio operators have donated their time since last Sunday night to provide needed communications since the storms struck, said Vince Vanderhyde, emergency coordinator for the amateur radio volunteers who assist the Oregon Emergency Management Agency (OEM).

"I spoke to a woman who's been operating her radio in [the city of] Vernonia for 20 hours straight," Vanderhyde said. "Another guy volunteered to help communicate, then he said he was exhausted and was heading home to clean up his own house, which had been flooded with floodwaters. I have to tell you, it's the most dedicated bunch of citizen volunteers that you can imagine."

Read More Page 1

Read More Page 2

COUNTY REPAIRS COMMUNICATION SERVICE FOLLOWING MAJOR STORM

Please note: The information provided is INCOMPLETE but with a little imagination you can fill in the blanks. 73 Moe

Published: December 8, 2007

By Valliant Corley

Pilot staff writer


GOLD BEACH – In the aftermath of last weekend's major winter storm, which knocked out virtually all communications in Curry County, most of the services, including the 911 system, were back up by Friday, officials said.

"We've got 911 services back, the long distance lines are back up," County Emergency Services Director Michael Brace told Curry County Commissioners on Wednesday.

"Basically, all our communication went out," Brace said. "Backup ham radio was destroyed, backup to the backup was down. It was completely wiped out.

"There's nothing we could have done short of putting people in cars," Brace said. "Power lines were down. What could we have done? How could we stop the wind?"

The storm, which hit Sunday and continued through Monday, brought winds of 80 to 100 mph along much of the Oregon Coast, with the Curry County cities of Gold Beach and Port Orford taking the brunt of the wind.

During the storm the microwave dish sending signals from Grizzly Mountain, four miles east of Gold Beach, to the courthouse in downtown Gold Beach was destroyed. Two other dishes were knocked out of alignment.

"We had ham radio equipment in the annex, not to have all our eggs in one basket," Brace said.

The storm took care of both, as well as the private ham radio that was located at Grizzly Mountain to be used as backup.

"Thank God I've got no report of injuries or deaths," Brace told the commission.

Read More

Magnitude 2.4 - EASTERN TENNESSEE

Earthquake Details
Magnitude 2.4
Date-Time Sunday, December 09, 2007 at 06:58:50 UTC
Sunday, December 09, 2007 at 01:58:50 AM at epicenter

Location 36.250°N, 84.370°W
Depth 21.3 km (13.2 miles)
Region EASTERN TENNESSEE
Distances 16 km (10 miles) WSW (241°) from Caryville, TN
19 km (12 miles) W (279°) from Lake City, TN
19 km (12 miles) WSW (241°) from Jacksboro, TN
26 km (16 miles) WSW (237°) from La Follette, TN
49 km (31 miles) NW (309°) from Knoxville, TN
277 km (172 miles) N (1°) from Atlanta, GA

View Map of Location

Read More

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Amateur radio operators can talk around the world, help in crises.

By Eric Freeman efreeman@columbustelegram.comMonday, Dec 03, 2007 - 12:43:25 pm CST
COLUMBUS -- Randy Hiltner became a licensed ham radio operator in 1990. His interest in the hobby was cultivated while listening to the radio at his father’s side.

Hiltner is far from alone in his interest in amateur radio. The Pawnee Amateur Radio Club has been active in the Columbus area since 1970 with an average membership of about 15 through the years.

The club rents space on top of the courthouse for a VHF (very high frequency) repeater that amplifies the signals it receives and sends the transmissions back to hams and scanner listeners in the Columbus area. The frequency of the repeater is 146.640 MHz.

Read More

Oregon emergency officials say ham radio operators the unsung heroes

12/4/2007, 5:39 p.m. PST

By SARAH SKIDMORE The Associated Press

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — When parts of Oregon were overwhelmed by wind and water during the recent storm, vital communication often was lacking, with trees down and across phone lines and cell coverage limited.

Even the state police had difficulty in reaching some of their own troops.

But ham radio worked.

READ MORE

Saturday, December 1, 2007

2007 SKYWARN Recognition Day

Hams and the National Weather Service: Working Together for SKYWARN Recognition Day:


The Ninth Annual SKYWARN Recognition Day recognizes Amateur Radio operators for their commitment to help keep communities safe. Co-sponsored by the ARRL and the National Weather Service (NWS), the event is scheduled for Saturday, December 1. During this 24 hour special event, Amateur Radio operators, working together with their local NWS offices, will activate Amateur Radio stations and work as a team to contact other hams across the world.

"This is a fun event," said ARRL Media and Public Relations Manager Allen Pitts, W1AGP. "For 364 days of the year, hams aid in providing the NWS offices with real-time information on severe weather when people and property are at risk. But this one day is for fun, friendship and recognition of the critical services given to communities by the hams."

Scott Mentzer, N0QE, organizer of the event and Meteorologist-In-Charge at the NWS office in Goodland, Kansas, concurred. "Radio amateurs are a tremendous resource for the National Weather Service. These folks are dedicated, and the assistance they provide throughout the year is invaluable. SKYWARN Recognition Day is our way of saying thank you."

In 2006, 90 NWS offices across the country participated and logged more than 16,000 radio contacts, according to Goodland's Warning Coordination Meteorologist David Floyd, N5DBZ. In typical SKYWARN operations during severe weather, direct communication between mobile spotters and local NWS offices provides critical "ground truth" information for forecasters. In summer, spotter reports of hail size, wind damage and storm rotation in real time greatly assist the radar warning operator, since that information can be correlated with Doppler radar displays. In winter, snow nets are held, where reports of snow totals, ice accumulations and whiteout conditions in blowing snow help NWS forecasters assess the extent and severity of winter storms. In recent years during wildfire situations, Amateur Radio operators have reported the precise locations of thick smoke and zero visibility, allowing forecasters to provide crucial weather updates to fire fighters.

"NWS offices utilize the real-time reporting of weather events to assist in warning operations, but certainly hurricanes Katrina and Rita have shown us that ham radio operators are equally important during the recovery phase of large-scale natural disasters," Floyd pointed out. He also cited the example of the Hurricane Watch Net (HWN). He notes that the HWN, organized in 1965 during Hurricane Betsy, started out as an informal group of amateurs but has since developed a formal relationship with the National Hurricane Center (NHC) in Miami via its Amateur Radio station WX4NHC. Ham radio operators and volunteers at Miami work together when hurricanes threaten to provide real-time weather data and damage reports to the Hurricane Center's forecasters.

For more information on SKYWARN Recognition Day, including a list of participating NWS offices, QSL card and certificate information, please see the NWS Web site.

The Morristown TN NWS ham plans to be on the air also but at the time of this posting details were still being worked out.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Is it that time already, it seems that just a few weeks ago we experienced 80 to 90 degree weather, oh yes, we did. In some years by mid to late November, we have experienced some significant snows in the Southern Appalachians, so we like to get the word out and get people thinking about the hazards of winter. This years pamphlet about winter weather can be found at:

2007 / 2008 Forecast

Thursday, November 15, 2007

UPDATE - CONFIRMED Tornado damages buildings in Tennessee town

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MORRISTOWN TN

1130 AM EST THU NOV 15 2007

PRELIMINARY STORM INFORMATION FOR KIMBALL TENNESSEE STORM.

A NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SITE SURVEY TEAM HAS DONE A PRELIMINARY
SURVEY OF THE STORM DAMAGE AREA IN SOUTHERN MARION COUNTY,
TENNESSEE. THE DAMAGE WAS IN THE KIMBALL COMMUNITY...LOCATED ABOUT
3 MILES SOUTHWEST OF JASPER.

THE DAMAGE HAS BEEN JUDGED TO HAVE BEEN CAUSED BY A TORNADO...EF2 ON
THE ENHANCED FUJITA SCALE...WITH A 200 YARD WIDTH...AND A PATH
LENGTH OF 2 MILES. PEAK WIND SPEEDS WERE ESTIMATED AT 130 MPH.
THE
TIME WAS AT 702 CST (802 EST).


THE TORNADO WARNING WAS ISSUED AT 622 CST (722 EST).

Story Highlights

- Strong winds, possible tornado reported in Marion County, Tennessee

- Buildings damaged, minor injuries, in town of Kimball, near Chattanooga

- I-24 temporarily closed by storm; at least four accidents reported

- Local media report another possible tornado in Laurel County, Kentucky

Related Video from CNN

NASHVILLE, Tennessee (AP) -- Authorities say high winds, possibly from a tornado, damaged buildings and caused minor injuries to three children in an area near Chattanooga, Tennessee, on Wednesday night.

The Tennessee Highway Patrol and residents reported seeing a tornado touch down in Marion County at 7:20 p.m.

Jeremy Heidt of the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency said the roof at Kimball Baptist Church was heavily damaged.

He said the children suffered injuries from flying glass and were taken to hospitals for treatment. Many churches have worship services on Wednesday nights. Watch how storm trashed homes across state line in Kentucky »

Six other people in Kimball, about 25 miles west of Chattanooga, also suffered injuries, but no one appeared to be seriously hurt.

Heidt said City Hall, across the street from the church, had minor damage, and an ambulance business next to it had heavy damage. A house in Marion County collapsed during the storm.

Power was out to much of the town after the storm.

Justin Lawhorne, manager of Wendy's restaurant in Kimball, said a tornado touched down about an eighth of a mile from his restaurant.

"I couldn't get the door open because the outside pressure and wind was so strong," he said, adding that there wasn't any damage to his store.

Tony Visco, manager of a Lowe's store, said there were high winds around 7 p.m.

"The winds came across my front parking lot and knocked over some sheds, but that was about it," he said. "The building was completely intact."

The THP reported at least four accidents on Interstate 24 during the storm, and Heidt said both directions of the freeway were shut down for some two hours. Exit 152 on I-24 was closed to keep traffic out of Kimball.

One of the vehicles involved was a tractor trailer carrying 1,000 pounds of toy cap gun powder. "Since there's no fire, it's not terribly volatile," Heidt said.

Witnesses said the worst of the storm lasted only about 20 seconds.

The county was under a tornado warning at the time.


Marion County schools will be closed Thursday because of the storm.

Nearby Grundy County sent three ambulances and two officers to Marion County to help out

From CNN

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Running Barefoot on the Beach

By H. P. "Pete" Friedrichs, AC7ZL

November 13, 2007

Casual QRP in a Tropical Paradise

The phone in my office rang. I picked up the receiver. My wife's voice buzzed in the earpiece.

"Have you ever been to Puerto Rico?" She asked.

"No, why?" I chuckled, wondering what would come next.

She explained that her employer was sending her to San Juan for a week on business. "Why don't you go with me? It’ll be fun." Hmmm... Let's see... a nice hotel room, warm ocean air, the beach... she didn't have to twist my arm very far.

"That sounds great. I'll put in for the vacation time." We chatted for a bit longer, and then I hung up the phone.

For better or for worse, radio and electronics are never far from my thoughts. So, as I daydreamed about my pending trip, my thoughts wandered to all of the QST articles I'd read concerning DXpeditions and those who travel in order to operate from the remote corners of the earth. I didn't know if Puerto Rico counted as an "exotic" location, or even DX, but I decided that doing a little radio work while I relaxed might be a lot of fun. I wondered if my license would be valid there.

Puerto Rico is a sovereign nation. On the other hand, it's also a commonwealth of the United States. So while Puerto Rico is self-governing, the President of Puerto Rico is in fact the president of the United States, and many US federal agencies like the FCC have jurisdiction there. To confirm this, I shot an e-mail over to the ARRL offices, asking if any special paperwork would be required to operate in Puerto Rico. They responded that none was needed

Read More

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Iraq to Be Back on the Air Later This Month


(Nov 13, 2007) -- Diya Sayah, YI1DZ, President of the Iraqi Amateur Radio Society (IARS), announced today that effective November 20, all Amateur Radio activity will be "back to normal" in Iraq. Sayah said, "All Amateur Radio operators in Iraq who carry a valid Iraqi license will be able to use their radios according to regulations of IARU Region 1 and the IARS." Amateur Radio activity in Iraq was suspended in March of this year, with the suspension affecting both Iraqi citizens as well as any foreigners -- including military personnel and contractors -- who have been on the air from Iraq. The request to halt all ham radio activity and the issuance of licenses in Iraq originated with a letter from the Iraqi Ministry of Defense to Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki as part of a new security plan, Sayah said.

From the ARRL Website

Confessions of a Shopping Trolley Wally

By Andy Foad G0FTD from the The South Gate Amateur Radio Club

Some time back in the beginning of 2005 I hatched a devious plan to get a decent signal out on HF using a shopping trolley.

The advantage was that I could easily take a 10 minute walk to the beach where I'd be able to have the massive advantage of nature's best linear amplifier called the sea.

It seems to add at least 20db when compared to nature's best attenuator - a typical suburban plot with poor earth conductivity and all that bricks and mortar adding insult to injury with those low angle signals.

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Thursday, November 8, 2007

'It was just a miracle' - Hunting accident reveals value of radio hams to save lives

By CASSANDRA PROFITA
The Daily Astorian

The gun went off, and Karl Hauer fell to the ground.

Beside a pick-up full of hunting gear, his brother Dan stood in shock.

"I heard the shot," Astoria resident Dan Hauer recalls, "but it took me awhile to comprehend what actually happened."

The group of four hunters had just moved to a new spot in the woods off Oregon Highway 202 near Simmons Field, where they hoped to bag some deer Oct. 6. While he was arranging gear in the truck bed, Karl set the butt of his hunting rifle beside a downed tree and rested the muzzle against the truck.

The hammer, which releases the trigger, was locked down - "completely seated," Karl said later - but when he grabbed the gun to pick it back up, it caught on hard a branch and sent a bullet blasting straight up through his chest and lower jaw.

The impact knocked him down and filled his mouth with blood and pieces of bone and teeth.

Moments later, his brother rushed to his side.

"I was lying on the ground, drowning on what was left of my face," Karl said. "I looked into my brother's eyes and thought: 'Is this really happening?'"

The bullet left a large flesh wound on the left side of Karl's chest before exiting his body and hitting his lower left jaw. But it missed his upper jaw on its way up and just grazed his left brow bone.

He was lucky.

"It's just a miracle how it happened," Dan said. "It just missed all the organs in his chest. Had the angle been a little bit different, it would have been a lot worse."

Both brothers grew up in Astoria and say they have been known to pass out at the sight of a paper cut.

But out in the woods, six miles up a pot-holed logging road, and 18 miles down Highway 202 from Astoria, "We didn't have time to stop," Dan said.

Not knowing how much damage the bullet had done, Dan and family friends, Abiel Buenrostro and Anjee Taylor, gingerly loaded Karl into the back of their Jeep.

Karl used his left arm to contain his chest wound and Taylor pressed a towel to his face.

Then, with Buenrostro in the driver's seat, they took off as fast as they could safely go down the waterlogged gravel road.

They wanted to call an ambulance, but there was no cell phone service to be found - even as they got closer to the highway.

"Now what do we do?" Dan remembers thinking. "Then I remembered I had my dad's amateur radio."

Dan and Karl learned early in life to take extra precautions when going out into the woods. Their father, Ed Hauer, works with the Clatsop County Sheriff's Search and Rescue team; he and Dan are licensed ham radio operators.

"Initially, we couldn't hear anything," Dan said. But at the peak of a hill, he tuned in to a signal from Gearhart amateur radio operator Loren Wohlgemuth, who then called 9-1-1 for them.

"It was phenomenal," said Karl. "We were still bumping along the logging road when I remember hearing them on the radio saying 'help is on the way.'"

"It was such a huge relief to us," said Dan. "I thought, 'Things are finally starting to go our way.'"

They were still only a few miles from the accident site, though, and the radio signal cut out as they drove into a valley. When they could, they gave Wohlgemuth updates on their location.

Meanwhile, Dan, Taylor and Buenrostro kept talking to Karl. They'd ask him how he was doing, and he'd respond with hand signals: thumbs up or thumbs down.

Through choking bouts and discomfort throughout the drive, Karl said he prayed and tried to stay calm.

"People are helping. God's in control," he told himself. "Just don't go into shock."

Karl stayed conscious throughout the drive. At the Klatskanine Fish Hatchery, the Jeep met up with a Clatsop County Sheriff's deputy, who led them to an ambulance and medical technicians at the Olney-Walluski Volunteer Fire and Rescue station.

Wohlgemuth's help shaved valuable minutes off the emergency response time, said Ed Hauer, who's learned from countless missions searching for the lost and injured that there's a "golden hour" after any incident. "If you make the right things happen in that golden hour," he said, "your chances of surviving are greatly increased."

Dan said other than the gun shot, a lot of things went right that day.

"Everything that needed to happen happened in the time frame we needed to get treatment," he said.

Dan said he didn't know how severe Karl's injuries were until he saw the emergency response personnel cut his raincoat off to reveal a gaping chest wound.

Karl was taken to Columbia Memorial Hospital, where he was stabilized and sent via ambulance to Legacy Emanuel Hospital in Portland.

He'd left for the hunting trip at about 9 a.m that morning. At 11 p.m. doctors began a nightlong effort, involving several surgeries, to close up his chest and repair his shattered jaw.

The bullet knocked out five of his teeth and left him with dozens of staples in his chest, a titanium plate in his jaw, nerve damage on his left cheek and some hearing loss from the sound of the gun shot. But his recovery has been swift. He was released from the hospital Oct. 18.

In retrospect, Karl said, he could have employed all three of the safety mechanisms built into his rifle instead of just one. The accident was "just dumb luck," he said, "but it definitely could have been prevented."

Karl lives in Hillsboro with his wife and four sons, but he spends a lot of his free time in the woods on the North Coast.


Grateful
A lot of people from the North Coast and beyond jumped to respond to the emergency, and Karl said he's grateful for the efforts of his brother, his friends, Buenrostro and Taylor, Wohlgemuth, the sheriff's deputies and Olney-Walluski rescue team, Medix Ambulance and Columbia Memorial Hospital for getting him out of the woods and safely to treatment.

Through his surgery and recovery, he also received support from his friend Don Crabtree of Clatsop County, who helped recover the vehicles after the accident, his aunt and uncle, John and Deanna Hord, and the Schwarz family of Astoria, friends Zack and Patti Davis of Hammond and Astoria's First Presbyterian Church.

"I think what helped was staying level-headed," Karl said of the ordeal. "It could have gone any number of other ways. ... As careful as you can possibly be, stuff happens. Always, always err on the side of safety."

Monday, November 5, 2007

Motorola to Acquire Controlling Interest in Parent Company of Yaesu

According to a press release issued by Motorola, Motorola USA has announced its intention to "launch a tender offer to acquire a controlling interest in Vertex Standard Co., Ltd." Vertex Standard is the parent company of Yaesu. Upon successful completion of the tender offer and subsequent restructuring process, Motorola will own 80 percent of Vertex Standard; Tokogiken, a privately held Japanese company, controlled by current president and CEO of Vertex Standard Jun Hasegawa, will retain 20 percent, forming a joint venture. The total purchase price for 80 percent of the outstanding shares on a fully diluted basis will be approximately ¥12.3 billion (approximately US $108 million). The bid will start November 6 and end on December 26. If the bid succeeds, shares of Vertex would be delisted from the Jasdaq Securities Exchange in Japan.

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FIRST FREEZE OF THE SEASON POSSIBLE FOR SOUTHERN AND CENTRAL

842
WWUS74 KMRX 060211
NPWMRX
TNZ036>040-067>071-073-081>086-098>101-061015-

URGENT - WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MORRISTOWN TN
911 PM EST MON NOV 5 2007

...WINDY CONDITIONS EXPECTED IN THE MOUNTAINS TONIGHT...
...FIRST FREEZE OF THE SEASON POSSIBLE FOR SOUTHERN AND CENTRAL
TENNESSEE VALLEY...

.STRONG SOUTHWEST WINDS WILL MOVE INTO THE APPALACHIAN MOUNTAINS
AHEAD OF A COLD FRONT THAT WILL MOVE THROUGH OVERNIGHT. A LINE OF
SHOWERS MOVING THROUGH THE AREA AS WELL...WILL LIKELY CAUSE
ADDITIONAL GUSTY WINDS. AFTER THE COLD FRONT PASSES
TONIGHT...TEMPERATURES WILL DROP DRAMATICALLY WITH THE FIRST
FREEZING TEMPERATURES POSSIBLE IN THE SOUTHERN AND CENTRAL
TENNESSEE VALLEY.

COUNTY SPECIFIC MESSAGE:

/O.NEW.KMRX.FZ.A.0003.071107T0900Z-071107T1500Z/
ANDERSON-UNION-GRAINGER-HAMBLEN-NORTHWEST COCKE-ROANE-LOUDON-KNOX-
JEFFERSON-NW BLOUNT-NORTH SEVIER-SEQUATCHIE-BLEDSOE-RHEA-MEIGS-
MCMINN-NORTHWEST MONROE-MARION-HAMILTON-BRADLEY-WEST POLK-
INCLUDING THE CITIES OF...CLINTON...OAK RIDGE...MAYNARDVILLE...
RUTLEDGE...MORRISTOWN...NEWPORT...KINGSTON...LENOIR CITY...
KNOXVILLE...DANDRIDGE...MARYVILLE...SEVIERVILLE...DUNLAP...
PIKEVILLE...DAYTON...DECATUR...ATHENS...MADISONVILLE...JASPER...
CHATTANOOGA...CLEVELAND...BENTON
911 PM EST MON NOV 5 2007 /811 PM CST MON NOV 5 2007/

...FREEZE WATCH IN EFFECT FROM LATE TUESDAY NIGHT THROUGH
WEDNESDAY MORNING...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MORRISTOWN HAS ISSUED A FREEZE
WATCH...WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM LATE TUESDAY NIGHT THROUGH
WEDNESDAY MORNING.

TEMPERATURES WILL FALL DRAMATICALLY AFTER THE COLD FRONTAL PASSAGE
WITH TEMPERATURES DROPPING AS MUCH AS 20 DEGREES FROM MONDAYS
TEMPERATURES. OVERNIGHT LOWS WEDNESDAY MORNING WILL DROP INTO THE
LOW 30S AND UPPER 20S IN SOME AREAS.

A FREEZE WATCH MEANS SUB-FREEZING TEMPERATURES ARE POSSIBLE.
THESE CONDITIONS COULD KILL CROPS AND OTHER SENSITIVE VEGETATION
THAT ARE LEFT UNPROTECTED.

Traders net on 28.374

Hello to all,

There will be a traders net on 28.374 based out of the Hickory, NC area at 8:30 PM. It will be every Monday night to my knowledge. We look forward to hearing you there. We will be mostly horizontal polarization and will be swinging the beam around to try to hear everyone. However, some of us will try to swap over to vertical to see if we are missing anyone.

Look around and see what you have to get rid of and lets list it tonight at 8:30 PM!

73,

Rick N4WYK

P.S. If you would like to give a try at various digital modes someone is generally there every night running SSTV of various varieties (ie: MMSSTV or other programs). Plus we are hoping to try WinDRM (As soon as someone helps us figure it out). We also have tried Digital SSTV as well but find one must have a fairly strong signal to work this mode but relays can be done, etc. (ie: EasyPal). Come meet with us there!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

"Radio Hams" Film (Pete Smith Specialty)

"Radio Hams" Film - video from YouTube.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Assorted Grounding Hints, Kinks and Technical Correspondence

What is an RF Ground?

RF ground is a vague term: People claim they know what it is when they see it, but can't define it. Many radio amateurs are easily misled by untruths about RF grounds. What follows is by no means the last word on RF grounding, but should help fill a void in the radio amateur's literature.

In my opinion, an RF ground is something that presents a low impedance at all frequencies of interest on the desired ground surface. All frequencies of interest usually means just the transmission frequency and all spurii. Spurii usually include harmonics, but may include mixing products. The ground surface is the tricky part. What do you want to be at ground potential? Surely you don't expect your microphone to be at ground potential on all frequencies, do you? Think about it: A coiled microphone cord is a bigger radiator than many "rubber duck" antennas! With proper matching, you could probably make a better antenna out of the mic cord shield! In this case, low impedance means "small reactance and resistance." Some radio amateurs just look at the resistive part of the impedance and forget about the reactance, which often is huge!

The size and shape of conductors are very important in evaluating a ground surface. Take, for example, a tall, thin aluminum structure that is grounded at one end. No matter how well you ground that one end, the structure still radiates and receives RF energy--that's why it's called an antenna. The shape that offers the lowest impedance is a sphere. (The Earth is a pretty good approximation of a sphere.) Size is also important--you wouldn't expect a metal-covered tennis ball to present a low impedance on 160 meters.

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Lighting Protection Articles:

Lightning Protection for the Amateur Radio Station -- Part 1 (QST PDF)

Lightning Protection for the Amateur Radio Station -- Part 2 (QST PDF)

Lightning Protection for the Amateur Radio Station -- Part 3 (QST PDF)

Choices and consequences of station lightning protection (article) if you choose to not properly ground your station.

San Diego ARES Amateurs Stand Down after Wildfires

With the wildfires in Southern California well on their way to be being contained, San Diego area ARES Amateur Radio operators have ceased assisting their served agencies; many hams had been called to action early last week. When the fires began early Sunday morning, October 21, ARRL San Diego Section Emergency Coordinator Jim Cammarano, KG6R, conferred with California Fire VIP Red Flag Coordinator Rich Beisgl N6NJK; Beisgl told Cammarano that local ARES groups were not needed at that time. "A few hours later, I called again and our status remained the same. They assured me that they would call me immediately if they required [assistance from] San Diego ARES. With the Santa Ana winds blowing, the fires had rapidly advanced far beyond the point where volunteer radio operators would be safe in performing such a role," Cammarano said.

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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

This the very latest NEWS:



As of October 25th... agreements have been reached which will allow the 146.730 (-) repeater to return to near it's original home! The '730 machine had always been referred to as the "English Mountain" repeater... because of it's traditional location on that mountain top... and efforts had been underway for many many years to get this machine re-located back to it's home on top of English Mountain. Now it appears those efforts have been successful! After some final fine-tuning, the machine will soon be making it's way back to the mountain top... so look for 146.730 to be on the air from it's new High Profile Location very very soon!

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Monday, October 29, 2007

Letters from an HF Newbie

Steve Handler, N9ABC
uscapmajor-n9abc@yahoo.com


Some of us know code and some of us are “no code.” Some of the latter, including the author, now hold General and Amateur Extra class licenses.



A view of the balun and west leg of N9ABC’s indoor dipole antenna.







My modest station: Yaesu FT-897 transceiver, LDG Z-11Pro tuner, headset and clock.

Two QSLs from my DX activity: OX60AD, Greenland, and 5D5A, Morocco. I’m a proud member of the group of people who, since February 24, have become radio amateurs with HF privileges without having to pass a Morse code exam. My adventures in ham radio to date may be both interesting and instructive.

First, the nitty-gritty. My shack qualifies for the worst-case scenario. I have a great rig and tuner -- a Yaesu FT-897 and a LDG Z-11Pro. My antenna, however, is an indoor 33 foot dipole with a balun in the feed line. Because of its substandard location, I somewhat affectionatelycall my antenna the “Krappo One.”

An indoor dipole? I can hear you snickering. CC&Rs (deed covenant, conditions and restrictions), right? No, much worse. It’s a matter of my wife’s restrictions on what she will tolerate outside. In this case, that means nothing unsightly that the neighbors can see.

With 100 W and my indoor dipole, you might wonder what I’ve been able to achieve. Well, after my first eight months on the air, I’ve worked 97 DXCC entities (formerly called “countries”), and have QSLs from 86 of them. “Not bad,” say I.

Using my tuner and my 20 meter dipole, I can also get on 40, 17 and 15 meters. Most of my contacts have been on 20 meter SSB, although I have started to play with PSK31.

So, what DX does a newbie from the Midwest encounter on HF? If I rounded up the usual suspects they would include contacts with Europe, the Caribbean and South America. Within Europe, Italy, Spain and Russia seem to be the most plentiful. Their friendly hams appear willing to work with newcomers to the HF bands. Being a glutton for punishment, one day I dropped my power to 10 W and still was able to work Slovenia.

Many Europeans seem to enjoy short QSOs (often just an exchange of signal reports) and then move on. Not so for many of those from the United Kingdom. They love to chat. Bless them for putting up with my low power, marginal antenna and puny signal. Contacts with Africa have been sparse. I’ve worked a handful of Moroccans, Algeria, Liberia, Madeira Island and little else. The Caribbean and South America hold a special place in my heart. Operators in those parts of the world generally seem friendly and interested in working stateside stations.

The lesson here is that even with minimal gear and a compromise antenna, it’s still possible to have a lot of fun on HF, including working DX.

What I Have Learned So Far

Lesson 1: Courtesy and patience are the golden rules.

Lesson 2: Find an Elmer, someone who can be your mentor. I’ve gone “two better” and have three of them. All have provided invaluable tips and hints. All are long-time hams who have been there and done that. They are patient and more than willing to help me out with problems and questions.

Lesson 3: Not all days are created equal. Propagation at this point in the solar cycle seems to vary not only from day to day but according to the time of day. Find something else to do when propagation is poor, unless you enjoy warming the ionosphere. This brings me to “Steven’s Rule of Woe”: The amount and quality of DX available on the air tends to be inversely proportional to the amount of time you have available to hunt DX.

Lesson 4: Timing is everything. I’m learning to operate like an ant dancing with elephants. Although outgunned in power (and antenna system) by almost everyone else on the air, I’ve already learned about using timing to break a pileup. One recent evening, I worked Algeria by listening to the pileup and noting a pattern to the QSOs. I determined that after the DX station called CQ, about six seconds into the caterwauling of call signs there almost always was a slight one-second lull before he either answered a station or the bedlam resumed. I timed my call to hit that lull, and, sure enough, I got through and he came back to me.

This method has worked over and over for me. Although each pileup seems to have a different pattern, there is almost always a pattern to be found. If you’re running low power, try timing your calls for the lulls in pileups.

Lesson 5: Every dog has its day, and every region has its time of day. Different regions tend to have better signals at different times of the day. For me, the Caribbean is good in the early morning and late afternoon. South America also is good in the late afternoon. Europe tends to be good from mid morning to mid to late afternoon, while Africa has been good in the early evening hours. Your situation will differ depending on your location, but listen a lot and get a feel for when to expect to hear one region of the world or another.

Lesson 6: Stick to it! Pick a band, and learn it. I have chosen 20 meters and am learning its various ins and outs -- especially propagation and knowing what parts of the band yield the best chance of working DX. For example, I have found that above 14.300 MHz are a number of nets, and my chances of catching any DX there are not as great as in the lower end of the band. Like all rules, however, there are exceptions. Recently on 14.330 MHz I worked a maritime mobile out of Germany and had a nice 10 minute chat.

Lesson 7: Become a contestant. Early on I complained to one of my Elmers that contests clogged the bands on weekends and made it hard for me to DX. He wisely pointed out, however, that contests are golden opportunities. Join the contest, and go after the participating stations. I’ve snagged a number of DX entities this way.

Lesson 8: Listen before you speak! Very early on, I joined pileups even before I had solid copy of the target station’s call sign. I figured it if was good enough for others, it was good enough for me. This bad habit ended abruptly. One day using my timing technique, I broke a pileup to work what I thought was a great catch. His exotic DX location turned out to be a neighboring city, and I had to face his question as to whom I thought I was calling. Oops! Never mind!

Lesson 9: I have heard the enemy, and it is I. Using an indoor antenna I have sometimes caused RFI within the house. The Palomar Engineers RFI Kit of toroids and beads judiciously placed on telephone cords, computer mouse, keyboard wires and other key locations have helped me eliminate RFI within the house.

Lesson 10: CQ, CQ, CQ Whirlpool? Household appliances create interference, and having an antenna indoors only makes things worse. My front-loading Whirpool washer is one of the worst offenders. The faster its high-speed motor whirls, the worse the interference. Let’s see, clean clothes or DX? Guess which one wins out? Other offenders include two of our televisions and the fluorescent lights. All of the interference is radiated, not arriving via the power line. Detective Steve found that if you detach the antenna, the interference goes way. The moral of the story is to DX when no one else is home (or at least doing the laundry), or learn to live with some interference.

Final Observations

New licensees want and need to learn. Most want ham radio to be a great hobby not only for themselves but for their fellow hams. Veteran radio amateurs have a golden opportunity to help educate and teach new hams and shape their operating habits for life.

Unless you enjoy talking to yourself, ham radio will always be a matter of teamwork. Get on the air and join the team, and we’re all winners.

73 and good DX!

Steve Handler, N9ABC, lives in Buffalo Grove, Illinois. His interest in ham radio began as a shortwave listener (SWL) using a Knight Span Master. He became a Technician class Amateur Radio licensee in 1991, and he’s been involved in ARES and RACES. Earlier this year he upgraded, first to General and then to Amateur Extra, and he obtained the vanity call sign N9ABC. He’s also written for Satellite Times and Mobile Computing Magazine.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

URGENT - WEATHER MESSAGE

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MORRISTOWN TN
255 PM EDT SUN OCT 28 2007

...COLDEST TEMPERATURES OF THE SEASON EXPECTED BY SUNRISE MONDAY MORNING...

.A LARGE AREA OF HIGH PRESSURE WILL BECOME CENTERED OVER THE SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN REGION TONIGHT. AS A RESULT...CLEAR SKIES AND LIGHT WINDS WILL COMBINE TO ALLOW TEMPERATURES TO FALL INTO THE UPPER 20S TO LOWER 30S IN MANY AREAS BY SUNRISE ON MONDAY MORNING. FREEZING TEMPERATURES IN THE UPPER 20S TO LOWER 30S WILL BE POSSIBLE ACROSS A LARGE PART OF SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA...NORTHEAST TENNESSEE...THE SMOKY MOUNTAINS...AND EXTREME SOUTHWEST NORTH CAROLINA.

COUNTY SPECIFIC MESSAGE:

/O.CON.KMRX.FZ.W.0007.071029T0800Z-071029T1400Z/
CHEROKEE-CLAY-HANCOCK-HAWKINS-SULLIVAN-JOHNSON-
COCKE SMOKY MOUNTAINS-NORTHWEST GREENE-SOUTHEAST GREENE-
WASHINGTON TN-UNICOI-NORTHWEST CARTER-SOUTHEAST CARTER-
BLOUNT SMOKY MOUNTAINS-SEVIER SMOKY MOUNTAINS-SOUTHEAST MONROE-
EAST POLK-LEE-WISE-SCOTT-RUSSELL-WASHINGTON-
INCLUDING THE CITIES OF...MURPHY...HAYESVILLE...SNEEDVILLE...
ROGERSVILLE...KINGSPORT...BRISTOL...MOUNTAIN CITY...COSBY...
GREENEVILLE...CEDAR CREEK...JOHNSON CITY...ERWIN...ELIZABETHTON...
ROAN MOUNTAIN...CADES COVE...GATLINBURG...COKER CREEK...
DUCKTOWN...JONESVILLE...WISE...GATE CITY...LEBANON...ABINGDON
255 PM EDT SUN OCT 28 2007

...FREEZE WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 4 AM TO 10 AM EDT
MONDAY...

A FREEZE WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 4 AM TO 10 AM EDT MONDAY.

FREEZING TEMPERATURES IN THE UPPER 20S TO LOWER 30S ARE EXPECTED
BY SUNRISE MONDAY MORNING ACROSS A LARGE PART OF SOUTHWEST
VIRGINIA...NORTHEAST TENNESSEE...THE SMOKY MOUNTAINS AND EXTREME
SOUTHWEST NORTH CAROLINA.

A FREEZE WARNING MEANS SUB-FREEZING TEMPERATURES ARE EXPECTED OR
OCCURRING. THESE CONDITIONS MAY KILL CROPS AND OTHER SENSITIVE
VEGETATION THAT ARE LEFT UNPROTECTED.

San Diego Area Hams Activated as Wildfires Ravage Southern California:

As fires raged through parts of the San Diego area and other areas in Southern California, ham radio operators did their part to ensure the safety of residents either affected or threatened by the fires. ARES groups in San Diego were activated on Monday, October 22 and continued to assist their served agencies until early Wednesday morning. Sixty hams were called to service by the County of San Diego's Emergency Medical Service.

According to ARRL San Diego Section Emergency Coordinator James J. Cammarano II, KG6R, hams assisted at the San Diego Medical Operations Center, six trauma centers and 16 community hospitals. Hams served as a resource, Cammarano said, "to be used in case primary circuits to hospital communications were lost due to either overload or power interruptions." In addition to these 60 amateurs, another dozen or so hams were activated by the Red Cross.

ARRL Emergency Preparedness and Response Manager Dennis Dura, K2DCD, learned that San Diego ARES volunteers were activated and now they are in standby mode. "They are ready to go at a moment's notice, but there are currently no plans for re-activation," he said. As in any emergency situation, information can quickly change and the ARRL will continue to monitor the situation and inform members if the situation changes.

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Saturday, October 27, 2007

Special Weather Statement

Special Weather Statement

ANDERSON-BLEDSOE-BRADLEY-CAMPBELL- CLAIBORNE-GRAINGER-HAMBLEN- HAMILTON- JEFFERSON-KNOX-LOUDON-MARION-MCMINN- MEIGS-MORGAN- NORTH SEVIER-NORTHWEST COCKE-NORTHWEST MONROE-NW BLOUNT-RHEA- ROANE- SCOTT TN-SEQUATCHIE-UNION-WEST POLK- 245 PM EDT (145 PM CDT) SAT OCT 27 2007

...COLDEST AIR OF THE SEASON EXPECTED SUNDAY NIGHT AND MONDAY NIGHT...

A LARGE AREA OF HIGH PRESSURE WILL BUILD ACROSS THE SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN REGION ON SUNDAY...AND BECOME CENTERED OVER THE AREA BY SUNDAY NIGHT. WITH LIGHT WINDS AND CLEAR SKIES EXPECTED ON SUNDAY NIGHT...TEMPERATURES WILL FALL INTO THE 30S ACROSS MOST OF EAST TENNESSEE BY SUNRISE ON MONDAY MORNING...AND AGAIN ON TUESDAY MORNING. THESE COLD TEMPERATURES WILL ALLOW SCATTERED FROST TO FORM TOWARDS SUNRISE ON MONDAY MORNING...AND AGAIN ON TUESDAY MORNING. IN ADDITION...A FEW ISOLATED LOW LYING AREAS MAY BRIEFLY EXPERIENCE FREEZING TEMPERATURES AROUND SUNRISE ON MONDAY AND TUESDAY MORNINGS.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Chattanooga Hamfest

October 27, 2007

Chattanooga Convention Center

Place: Hamfest Chattanooga has moved to the Chattanooga Trade and Convention Center for 2007. This location will give Visitors a chance to enjoy HamFest07 as well as local area attractions.


Talk In: 146.79 / 224.180

For dealers:
10' x 10' space, $45 each.
Space includes one or two 8' tables (your choice)
Electricity
Free admission for dealer and workers
Dealer Registration

For inside flea market:
8' table, $15 ea.
Electricity $10
Admission $7 each person

Flea Market Registration

Contact : Tom Cash K4ZQX

Email : k4zqx ()AT() arrl.net

Mail : Hamfest Chattanooga

P.O. Box 23121

Chattanooga TN 37422

Repost from Chattanooga Amateur Radio Club

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Digital Master 780 by Ham Radio Deluxe

Digital Master 780 by Ham Radio Deluxe

Started in September 2006, Digital Master 780 (DM780) is a multi-mode program supporting the most common digital modes such as PSK, RTTY, and MFSK. It replaces PSK31 Deluxe which is now a legacy program.

DM780 is designed to work with Windows 2000, XP and VISTA. It will not work on Windows 98 systems, Linux or Macintosh.

Suggested minimum requirements are 1 GHz CPU and 512 MB of RAM. A wide screen helps - the wider the better!

Advantages of DM780 -

- Fully customisable.
- Integrated with Ham Radio Deluxe for radio control.
- Logbook with eQSL, ADIF, Cabrillo, Callsign Lookup and Google Earth interfaces.
- Modern user interface.
- Free!

Modes:

Current -

The modes currently supported are: PSK, QPSK, CQ, MCW, DominoEx, MFSK, MT63, Olivia, RTTY and Throb.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Tornado Watch - Knox (Tennessee) - Rmail


TORNADO WATCH OUTLINE UPDATE FOR WT 728
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
220 AM EDT FRI OCT 19 2007

TORNADO WATCH 728 IS IN EFFECT UNTIL 800 AM EDT FOR THE
FOLLOWING LOCATIONS

TNC001-007-009-011-013-025-057-063-065-067-073-089-093-105-107-
115-121-123-129-139-143-145-151-153-155-173-191200-
/O.NEW.KWNS.TO.A.0728.071019T0620Z-071019T1200Z/

TN
. TENNESSEE COUNTIES INCLUDED ARE

ANDERSON BLEDSOE BLOUNT
BRADLEY CAMPBELL CLAIBORNE
GRAINGER HAMBLEN HAMILTON
HANCOCK HAWKINS JEFFERSON
KNOX LOUDON MARION
MCMINN MEIGS MONROE
MORGAN POLK RHEA
ROANE SCOTT SEQUATCHIE
SEVIER UNION

 

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Central Kentucky Amateur Radio Society

2007 Annual Fall Hamfest in Richmond Kentucky!!!

When:

November 10, 2007 8:00 am – 4:00 pm

Cost
$5.00 at gate -- Outside Tailgate free with paid admission

$10.00 Tables inside with electric as available

$5.00 Tables inside without electric as available

Prizes!!

Grand Prize
ICOM 2200H 2 meter mobile

2nd Prize
MFJ-971 Antenna Tuner

3rd Prize
$50 gift certificate to vendor of your choice at the site.

Door prizes will also be awarded.

More information can be found here

Strong Thunderstorms Possible

HAZ WX OUTLK- THS HZRDOUS WX OUTLOOK IS FOR PARTS OF SW NC E TN & SW VA. .DAY 1 TODAY & TNITE NO HZRDOUS WX IS EXPCTD @ THS TIME. .

DAYS 2 THRU 7 FRI THRU WED A STRNG COLD FRONT IS FCAST TO MOV INTO THE S APPALACHIAN REGN ERLY FRI CREATNG SCATRD SHWRS & TSTRMS. @ THS TIME IT APPEARS THAT SOME OF THSE TSTRMS MAY BCOME SVR. .SPOTR INFORMATN STMNT SPOTR ACTVTN MAY BE NEEDED ERLY FRI. --Affects:Anderson,Blount,Campbell,...

MRXHWO Link

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

California Ham Helps District Prepare for Emergency

By Sharon Cotal
scotal@the-signal.com

Signal Staff Writer

Tuesday October 16, 2007



When Art Edwards taught at Hart High School in California, then later at Canyon, he would use his amateur (ham) radio as a tool to teach Spanish, and during the course of his 39 years as a teacher he made contact with every Spanish-speaking country in the world.

Now that he's retired, the Canyon Country resident is working with the William S. Hart Union High School District to develop a communications system that will work in the event of an emergency or natural disaster.

"The school district didn't really have any way to communicate in the event of a disaster," Edwards said. "So the idea is to have a cadre of ham radio operators, with two at each school in the district and also at the administrative offices."

Bob Weber, coordinator of risk management for the district, sent out e-mail messages to district personnel asking if anyone would be interested in learning to operate a ham radio and becoming licensed. He expected a couple of people to respond.

Read More

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

NOAA Reports U.S. Likely to Have Above-Average Winter Temperatures

La Niña Arrives, Southern Drought Concerns Intensify

October 9, 2007

NOAA forecasters are calling for above-average temperatures over most of the country and a continuation of drier-than-average conditions across already drought-stricken parts of the Southwest and Southeast in its winter outlook for the United States, announced at the 2007-2008 Winter Fuels Outlook Conference in Washington, D.C., today.

“La Niña is here, with a weak-to-moderate event likely to persist through the winter,” said Michael Halpert, head of forecast operations and acting deputy director of NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center. “The big concern this winter may be the persistence of drought across large parts of the already parched South. And while December through February is likely to be another milder-than-average winter for much of the country, people should still expect some bouts of winter weather.”

Read More

About USGS





Our Mission and Vision

Mission:
The USGS serves the Nation by providing reliable scientific information to describe and understand the Earth; minimize loss of life and property from natural disasters; manage water, biological, energy, and mineral resources; and enhance and protect our quality of life.

Vision:
USGS has become a world leader in the natural sciences thanks to our scientific excellence and responsiveness to society's needs.

Who We Are:
The USGS employs the best and the brightest experts who bring a range of earth and life science disciplines to bear on problems. By integrating our diverse scientific expertise, the USGS is able to understand complex natural science phenomena and provide scientific products that lead to solutions. Every day the 10,000 scientists, technicians, and support staff of the USGS are working for you in more than 400 locations throughout the United States.

How We Are Organized:
The USGS is organized with a Headquarters and Eastern Region facility in Reston, Virginia. Central Region and Western Region offices are located in Denver, Colorado, and Menlo Park, California, respectively. Thousands of other USGS employees are working in every State in the Nation.

Read More

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Episode 16: MFJ Enterprises Interview

It’s another fun packed episode. Amateur Logic #16

George has a very interesting interview with Martin F. Jue, President and founder of MFJ Enterprises.

Peter demonstrates his WokTenna from the mountain tops downunder.

Tommy talks about the automatic tuning Yaesu ATAS-120 mobile antenna.

Jim has another Network Tools segment featuring the powerful Netstat.

And George demonstrates the Softrock Software Defined Radio using the M0KGK SDR decoder software.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Directions to Hamfest

Hello everyone,

If you have never been to the Oak Ridge Hamfest you can get driving directions HERE. If you have any questions please leave a comment or email me directly.

73, de N4CQW Moe

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

[ACARES] Anderson County ARES Net, 10/9/2007, 7:00 pm

Reminder from:   ACARES Yahoo! Group
 
Title:   Anderson County ARES Net
 
Date:   Tuesday October 9, 2007
Time:   7:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Repeats:   This event repeats every week.
Location:   146.880 Repeater
Notes:   Backup frequencies if 146.880 is unavailable:
146.970
147.360 100Hz Tone
147.420 (Simplex)
 
Copyright © 2007  Yahoo! Inc. All Rights Reserved | Terms of Service | Privacy Policy
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SPONSORED LINKS
Craft hobby Ham radio Ham radio sales
Ham radio outlet

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Change settings via email: Switch delivery to Daily Digest | Switch to Fully Featured
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Child Abduction Emergency

Anderson (Tennessee)

TNC001-007-009-011-013-019-025-029-057-059-063-065-067-073-089-091- 093-105-107-115-121-123-129-139-143-145-151-153-155-163-171-173-179- 092045- BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED CHILD ABDUCTION EMERGENCY TENNESSEE BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION NASHVILLE TN RELAYED BY NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE NASHVILLE TN 145 PM CDT TUE OCT 9 2007 ...AMBER ALERT... THE FOLLOWING MESSAGE IS TRANSMITTED AT THE REQUEST OF THE TENNESSEE BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION. AN EASTERN TENNESSEE REGIONAL AMBER ALERT HAS BEEN ISSUED BY THE WASHINGTON COUNTY SHERIFFS OFFICE FOR COURTNEE LEAH MAUPIN. SHE WAS ABDUCTED BY HER FATHER CORY MAUPIN WHO HAS THREATENED HER LIFE AND HIS LIFE. COURTNEE MAUPIN IS A 5 MONTH OLD WHITE FEMALE. SHE IS 23 INCHES LONG AND WEIGHS 17 POUNDS WITH BLUE EYES AND BROWN HAIR. COURTNEE WAS LAST SEEN WEARING A WHITE ONESIE OUTFIT WITH YELLOW DUCKS IN THE FRONT. THE FATHER CORY MAUPIN IS A 19 YEAR OLD WHITE MALE WITH BLACK HAIR AND BROWN EYES. HE IS 5 FEET AND 7 INCHES TALL AND WEIGHS 150 POUNDS. CORY MAUPIN IS DRIVING A 1981 BLUE FLEETWOOD CADILLAC WITH TENNESSEE REGISTRATION 4 2 4 R J K WITH THE CADILLAC EMBLEM MISSING FROM THE TRUNK. $$ JAO 


--
Moe Brewer  N4CQW
Anderson County Assistant EC

Monday, October 8, 2007

[ACARES] Anderson County ARES Net, 10/9/2007, 7:00 pm

Reminder from:   ACARES Yahoo! Group
 
Title:   Anderson County ARES Net
 
Date:   Tuesday October 9, 2007
Time:   7:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Repeats:   This event repeats every week.
Next reminder:   The next reminder for this event will be sent in 23 hours, 2 minutes.
Location:   146.880 Repeater
Notes:   Backup frequencies if 146.880 is unavailable:
146.970
147.360 100Hz Tone
147.420 (Simplex)
 
Copyright © 2007  Yahoo! Inc. All Rights Reserved | Terms of Service | Privacy Policy
__._,_.___

Your email settings: Individual Email|Traditional
Change settings via the Web (Yahoo! ID required)
Change settings via email: Switch delivery to Daily Digest | Switch to Fully Featured
Visit Your Group | Yahoo! Groups Terms of Use | Unsubscribe

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Saturday, October 6, 2007

News letter and Hamfest

Hi everyone,

I am way behind again. Soccer has kept me tied up. Get a little time off for Fall Break and I am trying to get caught up.

I have uploaded the September newsletter to the website September News Letter and will get the one for October posted as soon as I get it.

The NEW October issue and previous monthly News Letters can be found here.

I have also updated the hamfest pages. Oak Ridge 2007 Hamfest Please look over them and make sure everything is correct.

I hope to make the meeting tomorrow and will be at the Hamfest.

Anything else I can do to help?

Jeff
K4IK

YouTube Video's about "Evil Ham Radio"

Interesting YouTube videos I came across...

"Those men seem so... threatening!"



"...and here's the inevitable neighborhood mob all amateurs must face!"



I have to give credit to Steve, W4HKL from the Mountain Amateur Radio Club for these.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Gray Hamfest

The Gray Hamfest® Association is pleased to announce the second-annual ARRL sanctioned hamfest in Gray, Tennessee. This year's event will again be held at the Gray Appalachian Fairgounds, located in the Tri-Cities metropolitan area (Bristol, Johnson City, and Kingsport) of northeast Tennessee.

Admission: $6 (under 12 free)

Parking: Free (with admission)

Hours: 08:00 - 14:00

Talk-in:
146.700 MHz (PL 103.5)
146.520 MHz [Simplex]

Expect to enjoy a variety of exhibitors, plenty of tailgating (with provisions for rain), hourly prizes, forums, an ARRL VE test session, good food, RV camping, and an opportunity to meet new and old friends face-to-face. Put this date on your calendar and join us for a radio-active time.

Directions can be found here.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

HF Radio Propagation Primer

by AE4RV

Use this Flash movie to learn how HF or "Short-wave" radio works. Learn about the Ionosphere, Solar Flares, and why radio waves skip or refract off of the different layers of the Ionosphere. Learn how space weather affects radio conditions. This presentation is useful for Ham radio operators, DX'ers and SWL's (shortwave listeners).

The movie can be found here or directly downloaded here.

73, de N4CQW

Note: this requires

ARES Application Form

Thanks to Steve KI4RGN he pointed out in the new website design I left the ARES application link off the new homepage. The link is availiable at the bottom of the page or here to download the pdf file.

Please let me know if I have left anything out on the new site that you would like to see again from the old one.

73, de N4CQW Moe

When all lines go down in an emergency, one channel still remains


By KOMO Staff Reporters
Courtesy of KOMO TV

SEATTLE -- Chaos broke loose at the South Seattle Community College, where experts and volunteers simulated a citywide emergency on Saturday during a drill aimed to answer the question - what do you do when all lines of communication are down?

The drill, which was run by Seattle utilities and Seattle Auxiliary Communication Service, proved that ham radios are the answer.

Ham radios are the little-known backup tool that makes sure emergency crews know where they're needed most in case of a chaotic emergency. The ham radio operators with ACS can get messages across even when a storm knocks down trees and floods the streets.

"It's critical because nobody else can do this work," said Don Diebert.

Remember Morse code? Jim Hadlock is still fluent.

"You can get through with morse code with less power. It gets through noise better," he said. "It's easier to hear than a voice signal."

And the entire command center is portable. Operators can pass on critical information without even being plugged in.

Most people don't know about the critical need ham operators fill, but the lack of gratitude doesn't deter the operators.

"This has been my hobby for 50 years and it's important to me, and it's a way I can help the community," Hadlock said.

And when the community needs them most, the operators will be there.

Seattle Auxiliary Communications is always looking for volunteers. Those who want to help do not have to own a ham radio.

For more information on volunteering, visit the group's Web site.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

It Seems to Us: Interoperability

By David Sumner, K1ZZ
October 1, 2007
Courtesy of ARRL Website

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Interoperability" is a big word with many different definitions depending on the context. In radio it means, broadly, the ability of operators or devices to communicate (that is, to exchange information) with one another. Interoperability normally refers to the characteristics of equipment rather than to operators although language and jargon also can be barriers to communication.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Public safety communicators have been grappling with the problem of interoperability for decades. When everyone used analog FM voice it was possible, in principle, to solve the problem simply by designating a common frequency. In practice it wasn't always that easy. Different agencies used different frequency bands, and even when they could get on the same frequency they couldn't talk very far and often used different jargon. The emergence of a variety of trunked and digital systems exacerbated the situation. Today there are technical solutions to the public safety interoperability problem -- but they depend on the availability of specific hardware, training, and a willingness on the part of agencies to relinquish control.

Read More

Anderson County ARES Information

The Anderson County ARES net meets every Tuesday Night at 7PM local time.
We use the the W4SKH Oak Ridge ARC repeaters.

The main repeater is: 146.880 PL Tone 88.5 (Currently Online)
The current back up is: 146.970 (Currently Online)

The ARES Nation Simplex Frequency is 147.420 and will used if required.

The net preamble for the Anderson County ARES net can be found here.
NET PREAMBLE

Net Control Station Manual

New FCC BAND PLAN (pdf) Updated Version with a different layout HF Band Plan Vertical (pdf) Courtesy of KB6NU's Ham Radio Blog

If you would like to join Anderson County ARES please complete the application form and submit it by email to Jeff or Moe.


Emergency Coordinator and Staff

Jeff Yawn K4IK Emergency Coordinator (865)567-2577
Jim Bogard - KY4L Assistant Emergency Coordinator
Larry Hensley - KB4ITS Asst Emergency Coordinator / Net Manager
Steve Lothridge - KI4RGN Net Manager
Moe Brewer - N4CQW Asst Emergency Coordinator / Webmaster

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