Signals from space – Annapolis Royal students learn amateur radio for June launch

©Lawrence Powell

ANNAPOLIS ROYAL – Al Penney can bounce radio signals off the moon, but right now he’s working with high school students who want to send live video back to Earth from the edge of space.

Annapolis West Education Centre student Abigail Bonnington holds a video camera hardly bigger than a sugar cube. It’s attached to a small transmitter that will send signal to a laptop.

It stopped working and now Penney and Bonnington are troubleshooting. It has to be operational or replaced by sometime in June when the Annapolis Royal Space Agency launches its second ‘package’ deep into the stratosphere – 30 or 40 kilometres up.

Penney is with the Annapolis Valley Amateur Radio Club and has been working with the students since the fall.

Read the full story in the Annapolis County Spectator

Low Band RX Antennas – SMART 2017 Presentation

Here is Al Penney’s Low Band RX Antennas, presented at the 2017 Symposium for Maritime Amateur Radio Techs.

Low Band RX Antennas - SMART 2017 Presentation
Low Band RX Antennas - SMART 2017 Presentation
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Amateur Satellites and AMSAT – SMART 2017 Presentation

Here is Brent Taylor’s Amateur Satellites and AMSAT, presented at the 2017 Symposium for Maritime Amateur Radio Techs

Amateur Satellites and AMSAT - SMART 2017 Presentation
Amateur Satellites and AMSAT - SMART 2017 Presentation
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Symposium for Maritime Amateur Radio Techs

“To provide insight into the technical and procedural aspects of amateur radio operation.”

From Jim VE1JBL Apr.1st, 2017

There was a meeting on Saturday Apr. 1st, 2017 in Amherst with the organizing committee of this year’s Symposium of Maritime Amateur Radio Techs. (S.M.A.R.T.)

Taking part were Mike Johnson VE1MWJ, Kevin Burke VE1KEV, Bernie Cormier VE9BGC and Yvon Hachey VE1VON. The event will again be a one day event held on Apr.29th, 2017. Registration will begin at 8am and the first classes will begin at 9am. Registration fee is only $5.00. The classes will be broken down with one room having technical courses while the other room will have operational classes. Later in the day there will be a class for CANWARN and for Radio Amateurs of Canada. Both CANWARN and RAC will hopefully have booths set up for the day to supply information to interested hams and the general public.

  • Ron MacKay VE1AIC will be there again this year and have a table set up with Muti-Mode Digital Radio – Demos.
  • John Scott VE1JS will be there and available to check DXCC, WAS, VUCC and WAC cards, if required. He will also do  identity checks for those wishing to join LoTW without having to send a package to Newington. Make sure all your paperwork is in order for him to check. If not sure contact John at scotts@sandycove-ns.ca
  • Al Cyples VE1CYP from Nova Scotia Public Service and Field Communications will be attending with their mobile unit for all to see and visit during the day.

We will be contacting other provincial agencies to see if they can provide emergency vehicles at this year’s event. It was confirmed that courses will be 40 minutes with a 5 minute Q&A so that the room can be prepared for the next presenter. Each presenter will make himself/herself available after the meeting for more questions. The site for this year’s event has not been confirmed yet but there are two different locations available (Amherst & Springhill). This will be finalized at the next meeting in mid April.

This year there will be no classes between 12 noon and 1pm or 1:30pm TBA for lunch break, QSO with friends and touring of emergency vehicles that will be available. Lunch will again be barbecue hamburgs & hotdogs and soft drinks.

Visit the WestCUMB ARC website for more information and to indicate attendance

New HF Manager for IARU Region 2

Congratulations Al!

Alphonse Penney, VO1NO, Appointed HF Manager for IARU Region 2

January 26, 2016

The International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) Region 2 Executive Committee has appointed Al Penney, VO1NO, RAC’s Band Planning Committee Chair, as the HF Band Manager for IARU Region 2.

The official announcement from IARU R2 can be found at: http://wp.rac.ca/iaru-r2-ec-elects-three-new-coordinators/

In Region 2, Canada’s proximity to both of the other International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Regions offers a unique perspective on how small the world is for radio propagation and the need to coordinate band usage to minimize interference and maximize the Amateur spectrum for all. Al is an excellent choice with his on-the-air experience and as the current Chair of the RAC Band Planning Committee. Please join me in congratulating Al on his new role.

73, George Gorsline, VE3YV
International Affairs Officer
Radio Amateurs of/du Canada

New Bi-Directional iGate

I’ve set up a bi-directional APRS IGate in the Kingston area and it is now “live”. While there is an existing IGate, it is RF to IS only, limiting APRS usage in the area to just position reporting. Mine will give APRS users within RF range of the VE1ARC digipeater full two-way messaging capability. SMS or email to/from your radio. Query the IGate for local services/businesses (I will have to add many more than I have so far, that will be ongoing).

Basic Course in Annapolis Royal

Well – that was a fantastic start to the Basic Course in Annapolis Royal today! Nine students, with several more to join us next time. What’s more, they were motivated, quick to catch on to new concepts, and very sharp – a pleasure to teach! We covered the first 3 chapters of the Study Guide, and then spent an hour hooking up circuits in the Physics Lab. I think we’ll have a bunch of new hams in a few month’s time!

Margaretsville Light Activation September 2016

Hello everyone

Our first lighthouse activation went very well! Ten AVARC members showed up at the Margaretsville Light, and we quickly erected two 24-foot masts that supported dipoles for 20m and 30m, and a 33-foot vertical antenna for 40m. Several people also brought along their own portable stations with mag-mount antennas for the HF bands, and in short order we had 5 transmitters operational.

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