QCARC Calendar

October 2017
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Local APRS

QC Weather

Clear
Wednesday 10/18/2017 0%
Clear
Plentiful sunshine. High 69F. Winds SW at 5 to 10 mph.
Clear
Thursday 10/19/2017 10%
Clear
Sunny skies. High 68F. Winds SW at 10 to 15 mph.
Clear
Friday 10/20/2017 10%
Clear
A mainly sunny sky. High 69F. Winds WNW at 5 to 10 mph.
Quad-County Weather Page

Latest News

Amateur Radio License Exam Session

Amateur Radio License Exam Session

EXAM SESSION 09/29/2017 ALL CLASSES OF LICENSE EXAMS WILL BE OFFERED. Sponsor: Quad County ARC Date: Sep 29 2017 Time: 6:00 PM (Walk-ins allowed) Contact: Joe Shupienis (814) 371-3235 Email: w3bc@arrl.net VEC: ARRL/VEC Location: Penn State Dubois Smeal Building Du Bois, PA  15801

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2017 Jamboree On The Air

2017 Jamboree On The Air

This year the QCARC will activating a station from the Hallstrom Building located at the Camp Mountain Run Scout Camp. The station, N3QC, will be operating on HF bands, considering propagation characteristics to a given part of the World that we intend to communicate with. VHF & UHF frequencies may be activated ...

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W3CDG-11 Balloon Launch In The Air From Pittsburgh

The W3CDG-11 balloon launch is in the air. To watch the progress go to: aprs.fi for the current info. Launch was from the Pgh. Zoo.     The Balloon has landed in the Brackenridge. PA area. Congratulations to those affiliated with the successful flight!

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High Altitude Balloons Pass Nearby

High Altitude Balloons Pass Nearby

          Two high altitude balloons with APRS telemetry reporting transmitters passed just west of DuBois on September 13. These balloons were reporting altitudes of just over 45,000' and temperatures around 12 degrees F. I happened to capture a screen shot one of the balloons as it was posted online, via the WA3UFN-1, ...

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Hurricane Irma The Latest Severe Weather Threat

Hurricane Irma The Latest Severe Weather Threat

  Even though the hurricanes are well south of Pennsylvania, amateurs in our area may still be able to help pass health and welfare traffic. The hurricane watch net should be active as you read this. The net will be active on 14.325 MHz, then switch to 7.268 as conditions change. Check ...

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Baker Trail Ultra-Marathon — Good Test Of Preparedness

Baker Trail Ultra-Marathon -- Good Test Of Preparedness

  Area amateurs recently had an opportunity to actually test preparedness at the Baker Trail Ultra-Marathon where amateurs provided communications along a 50 mile trail where cellular communication was mostly unavailable. This was the real deal in testing the functionality of equipment and abilities of the operators to set up effective ...

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Amateur Radio Parity Act Moves Into The Senate

Amateur Radio Parity Act Moves Into The Senate

  This important piece of legislation that may very well have an effect on more amateur radio operators than what you may first  expect, has moved into the Senate. The legislation has a history of bi-partisan support but we still need to keep aware of what is occurring with the bill ...

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SKYWARN TRAINING – WORTH YOUR TIME

SKYWARN TRAINING - WORTH YOUR TIME

Sometimes things do not all ways as they appear. SkyWarn training may conjure up ideas of intense detailed training for the likes of those who are meteorologists.  No so! This training is for the everyday person on the street, so to say. The training gives the everyday person the background to ...

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Clearfield County SkyWarn® Training Scheduled

Clearfield County SkyWarn® Training Scheduled

The SkyWarn presentation has been rescheduled for July 19, 2017. This training is open to amateur radio operators as well as the general public. It is not required but if amateur radio operators could, also email me if  you anticipate attending at: “bryan at wa3ufn dot com”. Since I initiated the planning ...

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North Western PA Tornado

Severe Weather Awareness Week started a bit early for folks in North Western PA. April 20, 2017 brought an EF0 tornado to Mathews Run in Warren County, just north west of Youngsville, PA. Fortunately there were no injuries or serious damage from the short lived tornado. Details of the tornado can ...

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SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK APRIL 24 – 28, 2017

SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK APRIL 24 – 28, 2017

Since the National Weather Service outline for Severe Weather Week encompasses the weather that we encounter in our area, it might just be a great idea to check the State College, NWS website (http://www.weather.gov/ctp/SevereWeatherAwarenessWeek) for some important information. The information on the web pages just happen expand on the April ...

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WIRES-X , The New Kid on the Block

This article was originally posted January 15, 2016 Just above the horizon – WIRES-X! Recently you may have heard some rather odd noises and unlikely QSOs taking place on the N3QC, 147.315 repeater. The latest update to our repeater was added January 12, 2016 when the Yaesu Wires-X Voice Over Internet ...

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Desktop Wallpaper, 4x3, on green

April 2017 Parasitic Emission

In a shocking development, Joe W3BC has finally come to his senses and put out a modest but informative edition of the Parasitic Emission newsletter. You may download it here: Parasitic Emission, Volume 43, Number 1, April 2017

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Pennsylvania Flood Safety Awareness Week

The National Weather Service Flood Safety Awareness Week Begins March 27. Considering we experience flooding in our area rather often, it is likely worth your time to check out the National Weather Service flood safety week web page at http://www.weather.gov/ctp/floodSafetyWeek The week starts out with information on the continuing effort ...

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Please Keep Fire Hydrants Clear

I know this is not directly related to amateur radio but it is directly related to neighborhood safety. It may even be directly related to your safety!

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QCARC Events

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Hurricane Irma The Latest Severe Weather Threat

 

Even though the hurricanes are well south of Pennsylvania, amateurs in our area may still be able to help pass health and welfare traffic. hurricane-symbol-red

The hurricane watch net should be active as you read this. The net will be active on 14.325 MHz, then switch to 7.268 as conditions change.

Check for the latest updates and additional information at www.arrl.org and look for the links on that page relating to the hurricane response.

 

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SKYWARN TRAINING – WORTH YOUR TIME

Sometimes things do not all ways as they appear. SkyWarn training may conjure up ideas of intense detailed training for the likes of those who are meteorologists.  No so! This training is for the everyday person on the street, so to say. The training gives the everyday person the background to recognize and report on severe weather issues that may impact themselves, families, friends and neighbors. Since severe weather is one of those events that can happen to everyone, not just someone else, getting the training to help prevent injuries and maybe even damages can be an asset. Whether you are part of an organized group that participates in SkyWarn or an individual who would rather do it on their own, you need the training to pass along the appropriate information to the Weather Service Forecast Offices, or to be able to protect yourself. The training that is made available is not something intuitive that we are born with.

-images-wrn-Infographics-lightning_temperaturewrn-Infographics-tornado_safe_placesConsider these two topics, tornadoes and thunderstorms, that are covered in the SkyWarn training. Sure seem interesting don’t they! Not all that difficult to learn and understand just the main points and at times some added details about these weather events that we see in our general area.

Register by sending an email advising that you want to attend the SkyWarn training to the Clearfield County Assistant EMA Director at:  “smignot  at  clearfield911  dot  com”     The training is scheduled for July 19, 2017 at 6:30 PM at the Clearfield County 911 Center at 911 Leonard Street just east of Clearfield off Rte. 322. Talk-in on the 147.315 repeater.

 

 

 

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Pennsylvania Flood Safety Awareness Week

Spring WX Safety

The National Weather Service Flood Safety Awareness Week Begins March 27. Considering we experience flooding in our area rather often, it is likely worth your time to check out the National Weather Service flood safety week web page at http://www.weather.gov/ctp/floodSafetyWeek

The week starts out with information on the continuing effort to modernize the hydrologic information that enables the general public to be aware of water levels in bodies of water in their areas. An interactive, real time hydrologic map of PA.

Toward the bottom of Monday’s page are a couple downloads in .pdf format that may be of interest.

One of my favorite topics is the “Turn Around Don’t Drown” information that is available, that EVERYONE should follow. If people do not follow the simple phrase they are risking not only their own life and those who may be in the vehicle with them but also the lives of the rescue responders. The “Turn Around Don’t Drown” campaign is highlighted Tuesday.

The balance of the week includes; the causes and severity of floods, flood insurance and flood safety.

Please take some time to refresh yourself of flooding issues and the safety points that everyone should be aware of.

 

WRN lower panel

 

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Please Keep Fire Hydrants Clear

I know this is not directly related to amateur radio but it is directly related to neighborhood safety.
It may even be directly related to your safety!

Clear Hydrant

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NOAA’s National Weather Service Pages Are Changing

If there is anything true about our world it is change! The changes on the NWS pages has been moved to April, as the information states.:
“Effective April 4, 2017, NWS will implement the next version of the forecast pages. Highlights will include a standardized look and feel, a mobile-ready landing page, and a completely new architecture with a modernized API. Please review the Service Change Notice for complete details.”

As part of our continued effort to modernize weather.gov, the National Weather Service (NWS) is upgrading our point forecast, zone forecast, and product pages. Once these changes go live on March 7, all existing bookmarks to forecast.weather.gov will change. Links to a forecast page will display an error message that includes a URL to the new location. You will need to update your bookmarks to continue to access our forecasts quickly after the upgrade. After March 7, the new URL can also be found by searching for your location from forecast.weather.gov or www.weather.gov. These changes will not impact office pages located at www.weather.gov

If you run an automated process to get NWS data from forecast.weather.gov, you will need to switch to the new developer API by March 7. Specifications for the new API can be found here.

The primary focus of the upgrade is to make the forecast pages more reliable during weather events, but there are some new benefits of new forecast pages that include:

  • Addition of 7-day hourly forecast information to the point forecast page

  • A new mobile-friendly landing and graphical/tabular forecast page

  • Low-bandwidth optimization for all pages, on a partial roll-out at launch

  • Option to automatically detect your location on a mobile device

  • A new widget mode that allows you to customize the information on the point forecast

    We overhauled the architecture of our application platform to provide a more stable and consistent service to meet the demand of severe weather events. The platform also introduces a modernized API that will make it easier for web developers to create high-quality applications and services to share NWS data. The updated web site now provides a complete mobile-friendly experience with optimizations for low bandwidth and customized weather widgets. We also have new data centers located in College Park, MD, and Boulder, CO, to provide 100% backup capability for the operational data used within the forecast process.

    We look forward to providing you with useful and timely information using our improved connectivity and new design.

    For more details, please read our Service Change Notice.

    Questions can be sent to kolly.mars@noaa.gov

 

 

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Winter Travel – More Than Just Cold Temeratures

 

NWS Getting Traction

As we’ve seen this winter, the weather can change rather quickly. Especially when traveling, we need to be prepared for those extremes during our winter travels. One of the biggest issues this winter has been the occurrence of white-outs. Often times these winter squalls materialized so fast there is no time to react and the ensuing results can be catastrophic, as we have seen in our locale.

Preparing for winter travel includes both the folks in the vehicle as well as the vehicle. Click on the Getting Traction graphic for more information about preparing yourself and your vehicle for travel during the winter. You can never be too safe!

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NWS Winter Weather Awareness Week

The week of November 7 – 11, 2016 is the National Weather Service Winter Weather Awareness Week in Pennsylvania. Currently it sure does not seem like winter is coming but rest assured it is! Some of the indicators seem to predict a harsh winter. I have a boatload of acorns on the ground which is supposed to be indicative of a bad winter but I recall at least once before when there was a plentiful crop of acorns and the winter was rather mild.

To keep up on the information that the National Weather Service will be posting during the week, be sure to visit the web page daily at
http://www.weather.gov/ctp/WinterWeatherAwarenessWeek

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Hurricane – Frequency Advisory

With hurricane Matthew’s track that effected Haiti, Jamaica and Cuba, it is probable there will also be issues in the Bahamas, Florida and points northhurricane-symbol-red along the coast as well as inland from the coast. The following frequencies have been posted, by Sean Kutzo of the ARRL, as frequencies that may be used by relief agencies and would be advisable to avoid for general contacts. Check http://www.arrl.org/home for information and links to current amateur radio activities. For information on the hurricane the National Weather Service http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/  is a good place to view maps and forecasts.

Remember that 7.268 MHz & 14.325 MHz are used for the Hurricane Watch Net  http://www.hwn.org/  and given the nature of the communications please refrain from operating nearby to prevent any interference with the relief efforts. Please do not check into the emergency or weather nets unless you have something relevant to contribute.

14.325	7.080
14.265     7.045
7.268       3.740
7.120       3.720
7.110

 

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US Lightning Fatalities

A surprising statistic in the U.S.A. for 2016, as of August 21 there have been 27 fatalities due to lightning, which is the total for 2015! It is difficult to definitively determine why so many people have been killed by lightning strikes so far this year. It could be that the word is not getting out. It could be that people are not hearing the information about the seriousness of lightning. It could be that people are just plain ignoring the fact that lightning is a major factor in deaths, especially during outdoor activities. Personally I believe it is the last possibility.

Lightning strikes the Empire State Building and other buildings

Please heed the warnings especially about moving indoors when you first hear lightning. I have first-hand experience when it comes to seeing the “bolt out the blue”. When the “bolt out of the blue” struck, I believe the storm was about 10 miles away. By the way, myself nor the other fellow who I was talking to heard thunder! Fortunately we were in his house but only about eighty feet from the tree that was struck. That was one lesson learned but everyone does not have the luck of a safe experience of a close strike to talk about.

Click on the photo of lightning striking the building for and interesting list of “Lightning Myths and Facts”.

Check out the National weather Service web site about the lightning strike statistics at:
http://www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov/fatalities.shtml

Also check out the web site on ways lightning strikes people at:
http://www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov/struck.shtml

 

The Quad County Amateur Radio Club is a Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador“Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ and the Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ logo are trademarks of the U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, used with permission.”

“Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ and the Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ logo
are trademarks of the U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, used with permission.”

 

 

 

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Burn Bans Lifted in Clearfield and Jefferson Counties

flames-clipartThe countywide burn ban that was enacted at the the July 19 Clearfield County PA, Commissioners meeting, was lifted as of 8/16/2016.

For the entire article relating to the burn ban see the GantDaily.com website http://gantdaily.com/2016/08/16/breaking-clearfield-county-lifts-burn-ban/

Jefferson County PA has also lifted their burn ban.

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Don’t Turn A Cold Shoulder To Summer Heat

Although we have recent memories of snow, the summer heat really is on the way. All too many times we hear of children or pets left in a vehicle during hot summer days, sometimes with a heartbreaking ending. There are days when the temperature may seem rather low but with the sun shining through the vehicle windows, the vehicle becomes a greenhouse and the interior can heat up quickly to dangerously high levels.

View more information on this serious topic that can effect everyone at http://www.nws.noaa.gov/om/heat/index.shtml

heatindexchart

heat-graphic-2

 

 

 

 

 

“Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ and the Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ logo are trademarks of the U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, used with permission.”

The Quad-County Amateur Radio Club is a WRN Ambassador

“Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ and the Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ logo are trademarks of the U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, used with permission.”

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Severe Weather Watch-Warning, Know The Difference

Sometimes we peer out the window and the sky looks ominous then the wind picks up and possibly it begins to rain or hail. What may happen next can be a matter of protecting our life and property, a good reason to understand the difference between Watches and Warnings.  Being prepared is a relatively simple matter, there are several good methods to personally become involved that will help yourself, your family and friends. The National Weather Service SkyWarn Spotter program is a great way to become actively involved and you do not have to be a weather background! A more passive manner may be purchasing a NOAA Weather Radio that  will sound an alert when various forms of weather effect your locale. Cell phone are also a good method as many have an alert function built in as well as the availability of weather apps that can be configured to match your needs.

If you are having a problem setting up your system whether it is a NOAA Weather Radio radio or cell phone app, you can obtain help through the Quad County Amateur Radio Club, A Weather Ready Nation Ambassador. Check the announcement panel at the top of the home page for meeting  dates and times.
Tornado Watch Warn WRNWatch Warning Difference WRN

 

 

 

 

 

“Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ and the Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ logo are trademarks of the U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, used with permission.”

The Quad-County Amateur Radio Club is a WRN Ambassador

“Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ and the Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador™ logo are trademarks of the U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, used with permission.”

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