This year, David, G8UOD provided one of his excellent quizzes. There were four teams of four members each. Topics as diverse as ‘Movies’ and DX were on offer. The team named KODA (Ken, Owen, Derek and Alan) was the winner. A good bit of discussion about the questions and answers followed during tea and biscuits.
A good turnout of 31 including contingents from The Stevenage and Cambridge clubs attended the Autumn Junk Sale.
It was agreed that the amount and quality of junk has gone down in the last few years, perhaps due to fewer companies getting rid of out dated equipment. We might have to re-think our outlook on two Junk Sales a year even though the lower takings were worth the effort.
Jeff is the Technical Director of the East Anglia Astrophysical Research Organization formerly knows as East Anglia Amateur Radio Observatory. The name was changed to better covey the nature of their work.
EAARO is an educational and scientific charitable company and the organisation is building a radio astronomy observatory and satellite ground station near Cambridge. Their main objective is to encourage and inspire young people to pursue science, technology and mathematics interests. They also want to develop basic radio astronomy for the wider community.
Jeff explained the nature of meteors and how they could be detected using the reflected signals from a powerful VHF transmitter located in southern France. He explained that from the signals detected, the meteor velocity and directions can be calculated. The information thus obtained can be used to back up present theories.
The organisation is also outfitting another remote station on the Orkney Islands with the hope that a transmitting license can be obtained for radar studies at that location.
For anyone interested in meteor detection and radio astronomy, there is a website at: http://www.meteorscan.com/meteor-live.html showing live detections!
Appointed in early 2016, Steve Thomas, M1ACB took on the position of General Manager of the RSGB. He explained he was first licensed in 1999 and volunteered for the post of Deputy Regional Manager for Suffolk in 2008. In 2009 he became the Regional Manager for East & East Anglia. He stressed he believes in radio clubs and societies and seeks to support them.
Steve went on to explain the many duties of the RSGB, not all of which readily spring to mind. He also pointed out that there were only 15 paid workers at the HQ but the society relies on a further 1000 volunteers to get things done. The statistics for Foundation, Intermediate and Advance licenses were discussed and it was encouraging to see that almost half of those holding Foundation licenses advance to Intermediate. The trend from Intermediate to Advanced is also up. A total of 2861 exams were taken in 2015 with a high pass rate.
Also showing improvement is the number of visitors to the RSGB website, the number of visits this month being 31,300.
After a short Q&A, Steve went on to tell of the success of the schools’ programme to make contact with the International Space Station. Ten schools took part and numerous students began by earning their Foundation License. There was extensive coverage by the BBC, Sky and other news agencies which resulted in the Sandringham School having a total of 16 million TV viewers during their QSO with Tim Peake on the ISS.