Date: Wednesday, June 11, 1980
Time: 12:00 noon
The Smith Chart
The Club's June 11 meeting will feature a tutorial videotape on The Smith Chart. The Smith Chart is an extremely useful graphic aid in transmission line calculations and is a labor-saving device that every ham should be familiar with. This videotape lesson was produced by Hewlett-Packard to help train users of some of their transmission-line measuring equipment and we thank Mr. Greg Narog, JPL's H-P sales representative, under whose good auspices the tape was obtained for this meeting.
In addition, there will be an equipment expenditure vote at the June 11 meeting. Details of the plans will be found elsewhere in this issue. Don't miss this meeting!
CLUB MEMBER APPOINTED TO ARRL POST
JPLARC member and former president, Stan Brokl, N2YQ, has just been appointed ARRL Section Communications Manager for the Los Angeles Section. Elected to the same position in 1978, Stan (then K6YYQ) was able to serve only a few months when he had to resign because of a change in job assignment. Perry Masterson, KD6C, was appointed to complete Stan's 2-year term; Perry was subsequently elected on his own. However, Perry found himself recently in a similar situation to Stan's and was forced to resign because of business pressures, Meanwhile, Stan had returned to California and was willing to take over once again and complete Perry's term! The JPLARC is proud to have both ARRL elected leadership posts (Director and SCM) filled from our membership!
The SOM reports to the ARRL Communications Department Manager and is responsible for encouraging and coordinating all station activities in the sections. He makes appointments of active hams to assist him:
Official Traffic Station, Official Observer, Emergency Coordinator, etc; and reports on the section activities by writing the monthly "Station Activities" column in QST. You should call Stan or drop him a note describing your activities ... traffic, hamfests, new antennas, license upgrading, etc. You might even consider volunteering to help him in this big job. JPLers can reach him especially easy at X 2765; otherwise write to him at 2645 N. Marengo, Altadena, California, 91001. Welcome back, Stan!
AMSAT/OSCAR PHASE III S/C IN THE DRINK
The Ariane booster carrying the AMSAT/Oscar Phase III satellite, launched May 23rd from Kourou, French Guyana, suffered a loss of thrust in one of the four engines of the first stage. The verniers were unable to successfully correct for the unbalance and the launcher splashed into the sea near Kourou. With this failure, the five years of effort by amateurs in the AMSAT groups around the world, who designed and built this most sophisticated of all amateur radio communications spacecraft, was literally deposited on the bottom of the sea.
Lance Ginner, K6GSJ, who was the "Mr. Oscar" for the OSCARS 1 through 4, (OSCARS 1-3 were planned and executed by Project OSCAR at Foothill College in Los Altos, Ca., and OSCAR 4 was the result of effort at the TRW Amateur Radio Club) could only comment with "quiet sobs."
Jan King, W3GEY, who is the American AMSAT Engineering V-P, and Tom Clark, W3IWI, President pro-tem of AMSAT USA, were interviewed by an NBC news team at Goddard Space Flight Center after the splashdown. Jan indicated that all tests on the Phase III spacecraft just prior to launch showed that it was in perfect operating condition, that had the Ariane launch been successful all of the anticipated results would have been fulfilled.
Tom reported that while the spacecraft itself was lost, the entire project suffered only a 20% loss. The ground station command and control network around the world was completed, in place and operative at the time of the launch. This work will not have to be repeated. There is a well underway second Phase III package in the works with a goodly portion of its hardware already completed. The electronics modules will have to be constructed and new kick motor and solar panels obtained. Of course another launch opportunity will have to be found. It may be two years at the earliest before another amateur radio spacecraft launch can take place.
There is a plan afoot to raise the Ariane debris. It had fallen into 50 meters of water near Kourou. This was learned by W6SP from a French Amateur.
Support for AMSAT has been reported from around the world. Life members have sent in additional contributions and renewals of memberships have seen a sudden spurt in the past week since the announcement of the Ariane launch failure.
A need at this time is for those of us who are able to do so to support the new OSCAR effort with any construction capabilities which we can muster. The aerospace industries on the West Coast have a great many workers who are amateurs and are experienced in spacecraft techniques and technologies. It is strongly urged that if anyone reading these words has the necessary capability and interest in the amateur communications spacecraft projects, please contact K6PGX (Norm) at JPL (213) 354-6833. He'll put you in touch with the right people.
On June 7th from 1300 to 1650 hours PDT there will be a meeting of AMSAT and Project OSCAR groups at the Space Division of the Los Angeles Air Force Station Officers Club. The station is in El Segundo just west of the 405 freeway "El Segundo Blvd exit. Anyone interested is welcome. There will be a film of the December 24th Ariane launch and tapes and slides of the preparation for launch of May 23rd. Tom Clark, W3IWI will be there as well as John Pronko, W6XN, President of Project OSCAR. The meeting is being hosted by Col. John Browning, W6SP, Chairman of the AMSAT Board of Directors. (Tnx K6PGX)
FIELD DAY, 1980
It is just a few weeks until the traditional Field Day Contest will be in full swing. On Saturday and Sunday, June 28th and 29th, JPL Amateur Radio Club members, their families and guests will meet at Table Mountain near Wrightwood for the annual assault on the ether.
In response to many constructive inputs from club members, the Field Day Committee has adopted the theme that "Winning Can Be Fun." To implement this theme, the club will enter the four transmitter category, and covering HF and VHF between 160 meters through 70 centimeters. This class of entry will be battery powered in the 200 watt class.
Operation will begin on Saturday at 11 am PDT (1800Z) and end on Sunday at 2 pm PDT (2100Z.) Operation will include CW and SSB modes, plus FM on VHF. There will be a special Novice/Technician station for those who want to get their contest feet wet during this exciting amateur event.
In addition to the operating activities, the schedule of events includes a Saturday evening BBQ and a tour of JPL's Table Mountain Observatory to be scheduled for some time Saturday afternoon or evening so as to not interfere with regular observatory activities.
Preliminaries will begin on Friday with the antenna party. All stations will be tuned and ready to go Saturday morning with all batteries fully charged and generators (for recharging) topped off.
In the scoring department, we will be shooting for the "big score" will all the QSO's and bonus points we can accumulate. As a class A battery powered 200-watt station, each contact will have a x2 multiplier. In addition, each CW contact gets an additional x2 multiplier. Bonus points are given for 100% emergency power (100 pts.) Public Relations Story (100 pts) Message to SCM/SEC (100 pts) Relayed Messages (10 pts each, 100 pts max.) Natural Power (100 pts for a maximum of 5 contacts) and another 100 pts for copying the ARRL Field Day Bulletin. (Ed. note: With our SCM now in our own club and probably will be at this affair, isn't there some way we could capitalize on handling message traffic to him during the contests)
Parking and other facilities will be available at the Ski Sunrise area which is adjacent to Table Mountain. Talk-in will be available if you use your normal WR6APS channel - 222.44/224.04. Due to the high altitude (nearly 8000 ft) and heavy use of 2235 simplex, plus the low implementation of 223.4 club simplex frequency among members, just use your WR6APS capability. The talk-in station at Table Mtn. will use this channel in reverse. This will simplify talk-in and will not interfere with WR6APS at JPL. We will also try to listen for calls on WR6AZN 220 MHz.
There is still room for anyone interested in joining the fun. For additional information, call John Walsh N6UK (x 3303) or Stan Brokl N2YQ (x 2765 or, in desperation, Merv MacMedan N6NO (x 7264) (Tnx N6UK)
... to new license-holders John Earnest, K6CTT, Dick Mathison, KG6Y, and Paul Goodwin, KA6HPI/LB. Paul went from Novice to Extra in one sitting at the FCC in Long Beach. He took the 20 wpm test "to warm up for 13" and passed it! Congratulations.
Minutes of Board Meeting, by Ron Zenone, W6TUZ
Members in attendance at the May 28, l980 board meeting included WA6MYJ, K6SVP, N6AVW, W6ABW, WB6EMO, WA6PEA, W6EJJ and W6TUZ. With a quorum present, the meeting was called to order by George Morris.
Minutes of the April 1930 board meeting were read and approved with the following changes:
(1) The last name in sentence one of the third paragraph is to read "Lumsden."
(2) The last sentence in paragraph three is to read "Use of a loaner key was approved by the Board."
(3) The last sentence in paragraph four is to read "A $10 donation was suggested."
The major topic of discussion pertained to equipment purchases for the club. WA6MYJ suggested equipment options that would augment the club station and also provided rationale for his choices. Eventually a list of equipment was derived which can be purchased for an amount that is within the approved budget plan. The Board unanimously approved purchasing the equipment.
A renewal request submitted by Maurice Piroumian (WA60PB) was reviewed per club policy and approved by the Board. The meeting was then adjourned.
MEMBERSHIP VOTE ANNOUNCEMENT
In accordance with the Club By-laws (Article VII, Section 6) the Board of Directors announces its intention to call for a membership vote at the June 11, 1980 meeting. The vote is to obtain club membership approval of the equipment procurement plan approved by the Board of Directors at the May Board meeting. Such a vote is required by the Bylaws for monetary commitments in excess of 15% of the total expenditures approved in the annual budget.
Equipment Procurement Plan.
The basic philosophy and baseline thinking of the Board and the Equipment Committee was presented in the May W6VIO Calling. The following plan has been approved by the Board of Directors and will be presented at the June meeting for your approval:
- Item Use
- 1 ea. Kenwood TS-820, Prime phone/SSTV station
- VFO, CW filter to replace Collins gear.
- 1 ea. Kenwood TS-120, Prime "No frills" equip
- CW filter ment for basic, straight
- forward (Novice) station.
- 2 ea. Butternut HF5V-III Supplement beams at the
- Vertical antennas water
- tanks and phone pole.
- 10-80 meters.
- 3 ea. Inline Instruments Provide "wireless" selec
- 3-way Coax Switches tion of 1 of 3 antennas for
each of 4 hard-line coax's
running up hill.
As reported earlier, a Dentron Clipperton 'L' 1 KW DC (2 KW PEP) amplifier and one 3-way coax switch have been procured already as the initial part of the total equipment upgrade plan.
The above equipment provides a station equipment complement as follows:
- Pos'n Function Equipment Remarks
- 1 Prime phone; TS-820 + Acces; Tough rigs
- SSTV; Robot 300 SSTV; for 100%
- Secondary CW Collins phone patch; duty cycle
- Collins 30S1 Amp. of SSTV.
- 2 Prime CW; FT101-E + Acces;
- Secondary Phone patch; Autek
- phone. keyer; Dentron Amp;
- 3 Prime Novice TS-120, CW filter. Basic Stn.
- 4 2-meter FM ICOM IC-21A
- 5 220 MHz Midland 13-513 Clegg--inter
- Clegg FM-76 com, to 171
- 6 2-meter OSCAR ICOM 211, Microwave Xmtr depends
- CW, SSB, FM modules transverter, on which
- TBD transmitter Collins stn
- used in 171
The antenna farm is still a bit flexible, but appears to be winding up as follows
- No: Antenna Location
- 1 a. TH6DXX 10-15-20 beam Tower
- b. Hygain 10-40 vertical West Water Tank
- c. Optional Wire antenna Off Tower
- 2 a. HF5V-III 10-80 Vert. East Water Tank
- b. 2 meter vertical
- c. Optiorial wire antenna
- 3 a. 220 MHz not procured) West Water Tank
- b. 2 meter (not procured)
- c. Optional VHF antenna
- 4. a. HF5V-III 10-80 Vert. Phone Pole
- b. 40 mtr 2-el. beam
- c. KT-34XA 10-15-20 beam
This plan provides lots of operating flexibility and growth potential. If the editor succeeds in getting this plan into the newsletter, he should be given a hero's badge. (Ed. note: Now I think I know why N6MP went on vacation and left the newsletter for N6NO to do this month!) Plan to attend the June meeting and vote! (The Equipment Committee)
CLUB STATION ACCESS
The club trailer will be open on a regular basis on Tuesday Noon, from 1200 to 1300 hours local time.
Please take this opportunity to drop in and familiarize yourself with the facility. I will be happy to demonstrate the equipment, assist in "first QSO's" etc. This is an excellent way to use the equipment without having to go through formal checkout and key sign-out procedures. This program is specifically aimed at the recent NOVICES that have so diligently pursued their operating privileges.
Jim Lumsden, WA6MYJ Ext, 6726
IT'S HOT DOG TIME AGAIN
The 1980 JPL Picnic is scheduled for Saturday July 12 and the Radio Club will operate its usual hot dog stand. These sales are a real boost to club funds, last year netting us more than $300. This year's picnic will have a new closer QTH: Lockheed's Robert Gross Park in Burbank. Club members are needed to work the stand especially during the noon rush. Its a great chance to have some fun with the family at the Picnic and earn some bucks for the club at the same time. Last years bunch had a great time. Volunteers please contact John McKinney, N6AVW, Ext. 6610 or in Building 233 room 208.
ON THE WAY TO NATIONAL COVERAGE
During the May 28th AMSAT/OSCAR Satellite News Net which the JPL and Goldstone Amateur Radio Clubs operate each Wednesday Evening at 8 pm on WR6APS and WR6AZN, an interesting sidelight was the joining in of W6FXN/R who had arranged a radio intertie to Northern California where four more 2-meter repeaters were joined to the network. Norm, K6PGX, who presides over the OSCAR news net played a condensed tape of the ill-fated lift-off of the phase III spacecraft on the Ariane rocket and the news conference at GSFC which followed the Ariane splashdown. Northern California hams came through clearly and asked many questions. (Tnx K6PGX)
This month's issue was put together by Merv, N6NO, while your regular editor, Stan, N6MP, takes a well deserved vacation basking in the sun of Isle of Man in England. Stan has a reciprocal license and hopes to operate there as GD5DHU9 tentatively June 8-10, after 1600Z. Good hunting!
Go back to the W6VIO Calling Index.