[amsat-bb] Last night's presentation/demo in Glendale AZ

Patrick STODDARD (WD9EWK/VA7EWK) amsat-bb at wd9ewk.net
Fri Sep 17 09:14:39 PDT 2010


The presentation and demonstration last night for the ThunderBird
Amateur Radio Club in Glendale, Arizona, was a success.  There was
a good turnout for both, even though the demonstration started 
about an hour before the club meeting.  An unplanned surprise also
helped with the evening.  One of the club members, Rick K7TEJ, 
used his HT and homebrew dual-band Yagi to do a demonstration on 
an AO-51 pass about 20 minutes before my FO-29 demonstration.  
This allowed the club members to see FM and SSB satellite operation
before the meeting and my presentation. 

On FO-29, I worked 5 stations from Tennessee and Kentucky to 
California, as well as Omar XE1AO in central Mexico.  Thanks for
the QSOs!  Early in the pass, I tuned around and heard other 
CW activity, which reinforced the notion that more than one QSO
can take place on a satellite like FO-29 at the same time.  
There were 15 to 20 people outside in the late-afternoon sun for
the demonstrations by K7TEJ and me, not bad considering it was
still around 100F/38C outside at that time.  

When the club meeting started, there were probably 25 to 30 in 
attendance.  My presentation went just over an hour after the 
club finshed its normal business meeting.  Along with talking about
the various satellites, I added a bit of discussion about the ISS 
and in particular the recent activity by Doug Wheelock up there.  I 
know that for many, myself included, working the ISS can be the spark 
to try working other amateur satellites.  I put one of the recent 
photos from the ISS of Doug Wheelock at the ham station in my slideshow, 
along with some captions to identify the equipment at the ISS ham 
station, to give the audience an idea of who and what is on the other 
end of a QSO with the ISS.  I was even able to show the audience an
NA1SS QSL card I had just received for a QSO with Doug on 4 September 
(thanks to ARRL for the very quick turnaround on my QSL request!).

The day after I worked Doug, NASA posted 3 photos of him at the ISS
ham station.  If you want to see them for yourself, they can be 
found at:




I used the photo in the third link in my slideshow.  It was nice to 
see these on the NASA photo archive for this expedition, and especially
nice to see the caption identify the radio as a "ham radio system" and
not just a "communications system" as was done on similar photos from
past ISS expeditions.  

Thanks to the ThunderBird Amateur Radio Club for inviting me out to
another meeting for a presentation and demonstration.  This was the
fourth time I have done this at their meetings since 2007, in addition 
to having an AMSAT table at their January hamfests over the past few 
years.  The club's program chairman, Israel AD7ND (also an AMSAT 
member), is already asking me to make another presentation to the club 
a year from now.  :-)  And a thank-you to Rick K7TEJ for adding the 
FM satellite demonstration to the evening.  


Patrick WD9EWK/VA7EWK 

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