The meeting was held in the Kanata Room at Sobey's in Kanata.

The following members and guests were present:

NameCall SignPosition
Tom ZinckVA3NFAPresident
Rick BandlaVE3CVGV.P. / Webmaster
Ken AsmusVA3KATreasurer
Andy HartVE3NVKGuest
Harold HamiltonVA3UNK
Doug LeachVE3XK
Al PenneyVO1NO
John ChristensenVE3IAO
Barney BakerVA3BGB
Carl FalsnesVE8CFGuest
Aaron HallGuest
Graham IdeVE3BYTSecretary

Due to a prior booking for the room by another group, the assembly moved to the picnic tables outdoors at Sobey's in Kanata. Fortunately it was pleasant weather (i.e., it was not snowing).

Rick, VE3CVG, gave an outline of progress on the D-STAR repeater installation. Ying Hum, VE3FUB, has offered to put on a demonstration of the Internet link on the 1240 MHz band, probably on October 9.

Ken, VA3KA, put out a request for funds in support of the D-STAR project. On motion of Al, VO1NO, seconded by Barney, VA3BGB, the club would donate $101.00 for system upkeep. Carried.

Graham, VE3BYT, suggested that the club initiate a project that might involve a majority of the members, something of general interest. The object is to engage members to achieve a project generally beyond their individual capabilities and to gain expertise and broaden our interests. A high-altitude balloon launch could be an interesting example. Graham outlined the elements of such a launch project. This outline is attached as an addendum to these minutes. Considerable interest was expressed in such a project. This will be discussed more fully at future meetings.

Rick suggested also a group-building project such as a Software Defined Radio.

Al offered to lead a DXpedition maybe to FN05, Algonquin Park area, at contest time in June 2008. This would be multi-operator, low power, up to 10 GHz. Rick offered to be cook for the expedition, in addition to operating, of course. Al suggested a DXpedition Down East, ideally at St. Johns, NF, to attempt a Trans-Atlantic QSO on the 144 MHz band. This will be considered in the future - it could be exciting.

Development of any of these projects will require special meetings. Graham will present again the proposal for a possible balloon launch project at a future meeting and Al will plan a DXpedition to Algonquin Park.

Rick wondered if the club beacons might be located at VO1NO. Al suggested another good location might be at Brad's, VE3BSM.

Doug, VE3XK, will take over the construction and packaging of the 222 MHz beacon.

Carl, VE8CF, indicated that he and Aaron Hall are experimenting with Free Energy, a la Nicola Tesla, near Perth. This is interesting, and will bear closer examination in future.

Tom, VA3NFA, reminded everyone that club elections will be held at the December meeting. Tom will not be running for President. Secretary's note: Graham, VE3BYT, will not be running for Secretary.

Rick showed his kit for the 10 GHz Transverter from Down East Microwave. Rick mentioned that parts were missing, and the instructions are poor and inadequate. This is a poor show on the part of DEMI.

The next meeting will be on November 6, 2007.

Graham Ide VE3BYT


High Altitude Balloon Launch - potential club project

Object of project:

  • Opportunity to acquire new experience, broaden interests
  • Gather expertise, and data and photographs from near space
  • Present results of the effort to other clubs and on the Internet

Major components of project:

  • Preliminary planning, development of specifications, choice and acquisition of equipment, programming of controller
  • Design and construct the Flight Package, balloon and parachute
  • Plan and execute the launch
  • Prepare Ground Station with mapping, tracking, acquisition of data by telemetry, etc., logging of data
  • Recovery of payload
  • Analysis and plotting of data

Example - Flight Package Payload might include:

  • VHF and HF Beacons, cw, voice, PSK31, APRS, etc.
  • TinyTrak, APRS Transmitter
  • GPS Receiver
  • Radar Reflector
  • Digital Cameras - horizontal and vertical (down)
  • Controller/Computer
  • Sensors for Atmospheric Pressure, various Temperatures, Humidity, etc.
  • Antennas, Power supplies, containers, hardware
  • Even a Cross-Band Repeater, e.g. on the 144 and 440 MHz bands.

It would be best to launch first with a limited flight package, followed by more complex systems on future launches if there is interest. Possible embellishment: Haul aloft a glider with GPS, APRS and flight controls that will detach at say 50,000 feet and Fly Back to the launch site!

Graham Ide
October 2, 2007