WVARA’s monthly meeting will be on Wednesday, November 11, at 7pm via Zoom. Please contact a WVARA board member for Zoom Information.
At this month’s meeting, Keith Snyder (KI6BDR) will give a virtual presentation on the Russian Woodpecker Over the Horizon Radar – A Real Blast from the Past. I’m really looking forward to this one since many of us older hams remember encountering this signal on-the-air.
In addition, Steve KC6ZKT will give us an update on plans for Winter Field Day and how you can get involved. (Winter Field Day will be January 30/31). Jim, K6EIWVARA Vice President
Hidden deep in a serene forest yet taller than the clouds, standing in surreal beauty is an antenna array like none other on earth, having an aperture area greater than 15 U.S. football fields. One of the great wonders of the world – a top secret Soviet HF radar, so secret that even the name is uncertain, for it had many. It was the Russian Woodpecker. It was the Steel Yard. It was Duga.
The story of this top secret place is one of mystery and intrigue. Now abandoned, a rusting testament to man’s cold war hubris, almost all popular accounts on the web are seriously flawed – victims of deliberate disinformation. Where did it come from? What did it do? Did it transmit? Did it receive? Was it the first of three, or the third of two?
Keith Snyder, KI6BDR, has been busy reverse engineering to uncover truth before time erases history. Keith shows visible engineering clues that reveal the mission and correct the history of the huge “Duga 3” antenna array. The Duga 3 is located a few kilometers from the Chernobyl nuclear power plant site. Although it has fallen into disrepair, it stands today due only to a hasty exit forced by radiation from the Chernobyl nuclear accident. The nuclear accident ironically protected the array from dismantlement, a reprieve from all but the ravages of time. The antenna array today attracts tourists who visit Chernobyl. It is one of the 8th Wonders of the World due to its titanic size.
In addition to FARS, this presentation will also be given at an upcoming WVARA meeting on December 9.
*Speaker*: Steve Sergeant, KC6ZKT
*Summary*: What if you’re organizing a backcountry event where there is no communications infrastructure? It’s the kind of problem that amateur radio operators are uniquely suited to solve. What if your repeater site is only accessible on foot? Then you need a portable repeater system that can be carried to site in a backpack. Steve will talk about design requirements for highly portable repeaters systems, and show and demonstrate two 70-cm systems he has built for public service events, and review events where they were used.
*About the speaker*: Steve Sergeant is a third-generation ham. Originally licensed Novice class in 1972, his licensed expired, but in 1991 he was granted KC6ZKT as a Technician and has since upgraded to Extra. Steve has a long career in audio engineering for professional and later consumer audio system integration. He currently works at Dolby Laboratories as an Applications Engineer. Steve is on the boards of the WVARA and the Nature Sounds Society. He is also a volunteer backpacking instructor for the Sierra Club, who teaches in ultralight techniques, and a Uniformed Volunteer for California State Parks at Henry Coe State Park.
WVARA’s monthly meeting will be at 7pm on Wednesday, October 14, via Zoom. (Zoom instructions can be found at the end of this email.) At this month’s meeting, Dave Brown (WR6Z) will give a virtual presentation on How to Get On 900 MHz.
Looking forward to seeing you at our virtual meeting. Jim, K6EIWVARA Vice President
Meeting Topic: The 902-928MHz amateur band poses some interesting obstacles to get on the air and operate as there are no amateur specific radios commonly available. This makes the band ideal for the ham radio DIY experimenter to get on the air and is not expensive to do so. This presentation will cover the origins of the 900MHz ham band, how to obtain and modify equipment to get on the air and where to operate.
A Bay Area native, Dave Brown was first licensed in 1977 as WD6EBC and later upgraded to the extra class, changing call signs to WR6Z. Being active in the hobby since he was first licensed, he enjoys building projects, working on radio equipment as well as operating portable on HF, VHF and UHF. A graduate from Cal Poly, SLO he has worked in the field of electrical engineering for over 30 years specializing in RF, mixed signal and power management systems. He is an active WVARA member and is currently working in R&D application engineering focused on semiconductor products for mobile platforms at Kinetic Technologies, Inc.
Zoom Meeting Specifics: Topic: WVARA MonthlyTime: Oct 14, 2020 07:00 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada)
I have been notified by Sunnyvale’s management that all city park reservations for the month of August have been cancelled due to Covid-19. As a result, we will not be holding our annual BBQ in Sunnyvale’s Bayland Park on August 15.
Due to the coronavirus, this month’s WVARA meeting will not be held at the Red Cross Building. Instead, we will hold a virtual meeting via Zoom at 7pm on Wednesday, June 10. At this month’s meeting, Jim Deloach (WU0I) will give a virtual presentation on his Field Day operation from a remote location in the wilds of Southeast Alaska.
Time: Jun 10, 2020 19:00 Pacific Time (US and Canada)
Tales of an Alaskan Field Day: Have you ever wanted to participate in a DXpedition but did not want to wander too far or spend a lot of money? Then you should try Alaska! Alaska makes a great vacation destination, it is rare enough and exotic enough (with its own DXCC listing) to be a fun DX spot, and adding an Amateur Radio component to your vacation is easier than you think! In his presentation, Jim explains how he and his lovely XYL mounted a Field Day DXpedition to Alaska in 2017, and nearly won the state!
Jim DeLoach, WU0I, is a Silicon Valley wireless and location technology systems engineer specialized in data analytics, field testing, product definition, and tools development. For fun, Jim loves to build high-performance temporary contest stations, but prefers to get out of the way and let the real operators take over as soon as the station is up and running! Jim and XYL Maggie (KK6DZS) are WVARA members, live in Sunnyvale, and love to travel. Jim can be reached at email@example.com.
This month’s WVARA meeting will be held via Zoom at 7pm on Wednesday, May 13. George Zafiropoulos (KJ6VU) will give a virtual presentation on PackTennas — lightweight, compact, portable HF antenna systems ideal for a simple, solo Field Day. George will tell us the story of these antennas, explain their design, and give tips on how to get the most from them.
Due to the CoronaVirus, the March 2020 WVARA meeting will NOT be held at the Red Cross Building. Instead, we will hold a virtual meeting via Zoom. Below are the specifics: Time: Mar 11, 2020 19:00 Pacific Time (US and Canada)