Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society

CARS Meetings   October - December 2015

Award for All

13th Dec 2015

Added Xmas Social...

October Meeting
Tue 6-Oct-2015, 7.30-10pm
Oaklands Museum, Moulsham Street
"Annual General Meeting"
By CARS Members

October saw the Society have its Annual General Meeting, which was well attended by the membership. Carl Thomson G3PEM the retiring president opened the meeting with a well-presented year-in-brief report, and obituary to Clive Ward G1EUC and Geoff Mills G3EDM. This was followed by a one minute silence to reflect on the good work Clive & Geoff gave to the Society and Amateur Radio. Next followed the special Yearly Raffle, which Chris G0IPU won - to his surprise…… (two vouchers for the RSGB Bookshop).

Carl then presented the "Amateur Of The Year" which this year went to Clive Ward G1EUC posthumously. The committee had thought about it and suggested this. Carl asked the assembled membership for a proposer - Richard G7OED obliged and the assembled membership agreed unanimously. Next were the presentations of the certificates for the Constructors Competition. There were four to award - in fourth place and named the "First-timers prize" was Steve G4HSK and his 10m-144MHz Transverter. In third place was Peter G3SUY for his Mobile Whip. In second place was Bruce M0XBS with a Valve Audio Amplifier and in first place was Charlie M0PZT with a Log Book program called PZTLog.

Carl then commented on his time as president and the five years he had been in post. He thanked the Committee and Training Team for their work. Carl in closing thanked everyone for supporting him. In conclusion Carl read from a past newsletter written by Roy Martyr G3PMX (a past president) back in 1982, reminding us why the club is a hobby Club/Society, run by volunteers, where all can help in the running of the Society by contributing in a constructive way, including criticism backed with constructive suggestions. Referring to the many activities the club put on for the membership to attend, Carl indicated that we need to encourage the newer licensed members to the activities, as some are not so well attended by the membership.

Carl presenting Bruce M0XBS with his certificate (Photo by John G8DET)

Committee Reports

Presidential Elections
Carl was then asked to do his last duty as president as he was standing down. Carl G3PEM proposed Tony G4YTG who agreed to take on the role of President; this was seconded by Peter M0PSD and was agreed by a show of hands by the attending membership. Tony was duly elected. Tony was presented with the chain of office.

Carl continued with the election of a new Vice-President of Murray G6JYB, as John G8DET was standing down. This was proposed by John G8DET and was agreed by a show of hands by the attending membership. Certificates for "Distinguished Service" were then presented to Carl and John for their outstanding work.

Election of New Committee for 2015 - 2016
The Committee stood down and Tony G4YTG in his new role took the floor. To elect a new committee for 2015-2016:-

- all were duly agreed by a show of hands from the membership attending the AGM.


Vice-Presidents (Photos by John G8DET)

Constitution Changes
Murray presented the two sets of Constitution changes that had been notified in the newsletter:-

Both sets of changes were duly agreed by a show of hands from the membership attending the AGM.

The membership attending the AGM was asked what can the Society do for you....

The break then followed with its opportunities for Tea & Coffee and a chat - and renewals of subs.

Renewing subs during the break

Following this the meeting reconvened for the raffle (organised by Carl) and then...

Review of the Year
John G8DET next gave a review of the year using a chronological slideshow of photos starting from the last AGM.

Lastly - after his comment earlier - Colin did get his CARS Mug! - many thanks all.

Colin gets his mug!

November Meeting
Tue 3-Nov-2015, 7.30-10pm
Oaklands Museum, Moulsham Street
"5 MHz NVIS Propagation"
Marcus Walden G0IJZ

With the 2015 World Radio Conference (WRC-15) in progress, the November meeting was a highly topical talk on 5MHz Propagation by Marcus Walden G0IJZ, followed by a 5MHz WRC-15 update by Murray G6JYB.

Marcus is a corresponding member of the RSGB Propagation Studies Committee and has analysed years worth of data from the UK 5MHz beacon network and Chilbolton ionosonde, enabling him to write some key papers on the topic.

Vice President Murray G6JYB opened the meeting with apologies from the President and Chairman and with a few notices of the Society's upcoming activities. He then introduced the speaker Marcus Walden G0IJZ who would enlighten us on the progress of the 5 MHz NVIS beacon experiment. NVIS stands for Near Vertical Incidence Sky wave and is achieved by having high angle radiation from the aerial giving an operational distance up to 500 km with no skip zone. To obtain this high angle radiation, the aerial has to be below a quarter wavelength from the ground.

The 5MHz band is mainly occupied by the military, humanitarian agencies, and in the UK selected band slots are allocated to radio amateurs holding a Full licence. The radio amateur slots were first allocated in the UK in 2002 after representation from the RSGB. Ofcom issued NoV's to amateurs holding Full licences for propagation studies. The experiment was to produce propagation data that could be compared with and validate the existing propagation prediction models to the benefit the humanitarian agencies.

As well as data from radio amateurs who reported their reception signal reports to RSGB using SINPO reception code, three transmitting beacon stations on 5290kHz were built and installed for automated reception. It is the data from these that Marcus has analysed. The beacons are:

Monitoring of the GB3RAL 5 MHz Beacon

Marcus then proceeded to explained by using plots of Ionograms of critical frequency from the Chiltern Ionosounder. He displayed the graph of the critical frequency and described the ordinary wave and the extraordinary wave and how they affect the interpretation of the 5 MHz propagation model. He further explained the optimum working frequency and how 5 MHz propagation changes over time.

He then produced several plots detailing the comparison of the data obtained from the monitoring of the 5 MHz beacons and the HF NVIS propagation predictions produced from the VOACAP and ASAPS software computer prediction models for mid-latitude 5MHz HF links.

A 5MHz VOACAP Propagation forecast for Chelmsford

This was an extremely well presented and interesting talk on the result of the 5 MHz experiment and the results should be of help to those agencies that have to set up links in an emergency. The work should also strengthen the case for a permanent amateur allocation in the 5 MHz band.

After the break which was followed by our usual raffle, Murray then gave a short update on the status of the 5MHz band in the UK (where 11 segments or 'bandlets' are now embedded in the new Ofcom licence) and the ongoing discussions at WRC-15 in Geneva at Geneva.

The evening closed with the presentation by Murray of a CARS Mug to Marcus

Colin Slemp G8JSD
Colin Slemp G8JSD with the Desk Microphone raffle prize donated by Brian G3CVI - photo by Colin G0TRM

Marcus receiving his CARS Mug from Murray G6JYB - photos by Steve G4GHO and Carl G3PEM

December Meeting
Tue 1-Dec-2015, 7.30-10pm
Oaklands Museum, Moulsham Street
"Xmas Social & Quiz"
By CARS Members & Visitors

Like last year, the December meeting had a seasonal flavour and was more of a social occasion. Features included mince pies, a couple of special quizzes by John G8DET & Murray G6JYB and the 'tune-a-dipole' game by Chris G0IPU (used on Foundation courses).

Graham G7JYD tuning against the clock

Before the meeting John G8DET had diligently reviewed various mince pies and the final choice was excellent - dozens were consumed with great compliments, whilst David & Myra helped with ample tea/coffee and biscuits.

Mince Pies and Stollen - courtesy of John G8DET!

CARS President Tony G4YTG, on keyboard

Xmas puzzles included an on-screen ten question Xmas Radio Quiz by Murray G6JYB and a 40-object table of old electronics by John G8DET


Socialising also included downstairs where Geoff G7KLV was explaining some of the exhibits

Geoff G7KLV with Marconi exhibits - Photo by G8DET

A good evening of chatter. Thanks to all who came and made it the success it was.

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