FARS Meeting Programs - 2012
Friday January 20, 2012 - FARS/PAARA Winter Banquet
Radio on the High Seas
Richard Dillman, W6AWO
Maritime Historical Radio Society
Richard speaks about the history of radio on the high seas
with a slide show of photos and a stirring and melodramatic narration.
We had $1,200 in prizes for the banquet raffle.
The major prizes include a Yaesu FT-857D HF/VHF/UHF
(100W HF, DSP, and 60M band), and a Powerwerx KG-UV3D/UHF
(Dual band HT 2M/70cm).
Click banquet for all the details.
Friday February 24, 2012 - Membership Meeting
Balloons and the California Near Space Project
Ron Meadows, K6RPT, and Don Ferguson,
Ron and Don are active members of the California Near Space Project
Ron and his son Lee have been outfitting balloons with high tech electronics
They have put GPS, APRS, cameras and crossband repeaters on balloons
filled with hydrogen and helium.
In 2011 they set new records for both altitude and distance,
beating US government agency records.
The records were confirmed by the use of onboard GPS,
and balloons were tracked by their APRS transmissions.
They were featured in two stories on ARRL’s web site at
The first record was in October 2011,
when Ron’s tenth balloon, CNSP-10,
reached a record altitude of 136,545 feet.
That’s 26 miles up!
Two months later, in December, their eleventh balloon, CNSP-11,
cruised as high as 115,000 feet as it crossed the United States,
then the Atlantic Ocean.
It was tracked by a Nova Scotia coastal station to the limit
of reception before it’s signal was lost to the noise.
Then the faint signal was picked up from the island of St. Miguel
in the Azores.
Stations around the world tuned to listen
to the little balloon from Silicon Valley as it headed toward Europe.
The balloon eventually landed in the Mediterranean Sea,
a whopping distance of 6,236 miles!
Come and hear the exciting story of these amazing feats
of Amateur Radio and ballooning.
Friday March 23, 2012 - Membership Meeting
Rethinking Field Day Outside the Box
Jim Peterson, K6EI
Jim shares some ideas on how clubs can boost Field Day innovation,
participation, and outreach — and have more fun in the process.
Friday April 27, 2012 - Membership Meeting
Brewing Projects the Arduino Way
Umesh Ghodke, K6VUG, and
Nimit Hongyim, K6XOX
Umesh and Nimit will focus on home brew projects using Arduino
microcontrollers, a versatile system with many interesting applications.
Their presentations will provide a deeper understanding
of the Arduino microcontroller and how it can be used
to make exciting and fun home-brew projects.
Tonight’s presentations are timely and will prepare you
to understand projects featured at the 2012 Maker Faire
coming up on May 19-20.
Umesh Ghodke, K6VUG, will show a light weight portable rotator
for satellite antenna, consisting of two RC Servo Motors
for accurate Azimuth and Elevation positioning of the antenna.
An Arduino Pro Mini controls the servos in response to commands
from a Satellite Tracking program.
A live A/V recording of the this project can be seen at
Nimit Hongyim, K6XOX, will show two projects that he built
based on Arduino Bootloader:
(1) A custom-made APRS Tiny Tracker from Opensource.
Nimit will show the schematic and explain how it works; and
(2) a Geiger Counter interfaced for APRS packet transmission.
Nimit will talk about the kit and show the demo board.
Nimit will also talk about using Proteus Software for schematic capture and
board layout for PCB design.
He will show how Proteus makes PCB design and fabrication simple.
Friday May 25, 2012 - Membership Meeting
Stub Filter Design Beyond the Simple Trap
Steve Stearns, K6OIK
Just in time for Field Day, Steve, K6OIK shows how to design stub filters.
Stub filters are easy to build from coax and T connectors
and are a great DIY project for Field Day operations.
The filters are also well suited for stripline
and microstrip implementations at UHF and above.
Steve shows a simple way to design filters graphically
on a Smith chart that is intuitive and easy to explain without math,
by extending graphical principles for match network design.
The resulting filters outperform the classic single stub trap.
Steve will show a synthesis procedure for “3-frequency,
In this construction, two frequencies are designated
as “pass” frequencies and one is designated as
a “stop” frequency.
The frequencies may be in any order,
i.e. the stop frequency can be below, between,
or above the pass frequencies.
The construction is done graphically on the Smith chart
- no math is required.
Other combinations are also possible, e.g., two stop frequencies
and one pass frequency.
Friday June 15, 2012 - Membership Meeting
A Stub Filter for SSB and CW Operation on the Same Band
Steve Stearns, K6OIK
Continuing his exploration of stub filters for interference rejection,
Steve considers a practical stub filter for separating CW and SSB
operation on the same band.
Such filters may be very helpful for multitransmitter operation
when transmitters are crowded close together.
Friday July 27, 2012 - Membership Meeting
Amateur Radio Satellite Beacons
Anthony Young will talk about his experience with satellite operations
and the use of the Amateur Radio beacons on small triple cubesats.
The satellites carried Amateur Radio beacons that transmitted
telemetry signals on Amateur UHF frequencies.
The telemetry signals reported satellite status,
which enabled ground receivers to monitor satellite health.
The missions provided the opportunity for the greater Amateur Radio
community to assist in satellite reporting.
Friday August 24, 2012 - Membership Meeting
Steve Stearns, K6OIK
Steve talks about a new, advanced antenna modeling program,
just released in June 2012, that is priced low enough
for serious amateur antenna modelers.
The price is $162 to $210 depending on where you buy it.
The program is like WIPL-D Lite but improved with a better
computational architecture having fast in-core and out-of-core
solvers and a professional user interface.
The program is called HOBBIES, an acronym for
“Higher Order Basis Based Integral Equation Solver.”
The program comes on a CD with the instruction manual
published by Wiley, 2012, ISBN 1118140656.
A link to the software is on FARS web site in the software section
Friday September 28, 2012 - Membership Meeting
FARS Annual Homebrew Contest
This is your time to shine.
Bring your amateur radio project to this meeting to
show and describe to our audience.
Everyone has a few minutes to explain and describe
Then the audience votes on the best ones to award prizes.
The following prizes are awarded:
Friday October 26, 2012 - Membership Meeting
Equipment for the Shack & Extreme Receivers
Mikel Lechner, KN6QI & Steve Stearns, K6OIK
Mikel talks about some basic equipment for your radio station,
how it works, and how to use it.
Steve talks about receivers that ace out the competition
in particular characteristics.
Find out which receivers push the envelope of receiver capabilities,
but why this isn’t always a good thing.
Friday November 16, 2012 - Membership Meeting
Holiday Shopping Items Every Ham Needs
Staff of Sunnyvale HRO
The Sunnyvale HRO staff share with us some of the most popular products
and deals for the holiday season.
Friday December 21, 2012 - Membership Meeting
Digital Amateur Television (DATV): A Primer and Use Cases
Joel Wilhite KD6W
What is digital television and what are the use cases for amateur radio?
Joel Wilhite KD6W answers these questions and demonstrates
transmission and reception of DATV.
This presentation is an expanded version of Joel’s popular
presentation at ARRL Pacificon.
Past Programs 2011
2012 by FARS