2021-01-25 DSES Science Meeting Notes: by Bill Miller
We had 14 participants in the virtual science meeting today: Thanks everyone for joining.
Participants: Dr. Rich Russel, Ray Uberecken, Bob Haggart, Floyd Glick, Gary Agranat, Lauren Libby, Myron Babcock, Robert Sayers, Dan Layne, Michael Nameika, Marc Slover, Phillip Coker, Paul Sobol NO0T, Bill Miller
Also see the Zoom Video Recording for more detail:
Myron’s Treasure’s Report Checking $2533.03 Savings $5742.25 , We have 31 paid members. 23 yet to pay. Paul Sobon, Marc S. Myron will pay the property tax shortly.
Questions on ORION Meeting invite from David Fields.
Call for BOD Nominations. Need three nominations for the board to replace or retain BOD members, Floyd Glick, Dave Molter, and Bill Miller by Feb 3rd.
In 2019 and 2020 we accomplished a lot of the big goals that we had been working on for a number of years including (H1) Hydrogen Line mapping, Tropospheric scatter communications, Pulsar detection, and EME. Now that we have those and can replicate them at will, we have to ask ourselves, what else can we do and what direction(s) should we go in? In my opinion here are several key areas or categories that the org. needs to address with some more detailed plans.
1. Continued Infrastructure upgrade and maintenance
2. Instrument and electronics upgrades and additions
3. Scientific discovery, theory testing, and publication
4. Educational programs and events for members and students
5. Public outreach and member recruitment
6. New observation initiatives
Science Fair: Letter from PPRSF below. The Science Fair will be on Feb. 18-20.
Please send us a list of your special award judges and their email contact information by February 10, 2021.
We will send you and your judges an email with the details and code to view projects in the virtual showcase.
The attached letter outlines the information for this year’s fair.
We are looking forward to your participation in the virtual science fair and are hoping that next year will be an in-person event.
Carol Bach, Karen Crosson and Lynne Williams
Our Site is photogenic! Andrew Miller, another photographer based out of Denver would like to do a project on the site.
Front Range 6 Meter Group. Paul Sobon sobonpaul[at]gmail.com The group would like an open house virtual presentation on Wed. , Feb 10th at 6:30 opening at 7PM. Bill is working on a general presentation.
Chad Carter was in Haswell on Friday working on the camera on the large grain elevator. Did anyone call him into the work trip Saturday. www.car-telenterprises.com 785-564-0118 cell. Ray sent him email but he didn’t show at the site Saturday so probably had to return to home base.
Bill will write an endorsement letter and have the DSES Board modify and approve for Planet Walk Colorado Springs. See https://www.planetwalkcs.org/
Rich: See all the notes about the site visit from Saturday Jan 23rd.
Saturday Power Glitch: A Mains power glitch caused an upset of the system and that drove the dish to the electrical stops. Rich believes that we should have a UPS or backup battery power on the tower electronics, including the Raspberry Pie and Ethernet Switch and on the Ethernet Switch and computer in the trailer to prevent this. Bill suggests that anytime the dish is active the operators should monitor its position on the CCTV and use the panel VFD switch to kill the drive if not in control. In this particular case the watch dog timer in the controller didn’t stop the drive because the computer was still sending updates.
Marc Slover took some pictures while at the site up until about 9PM when the clouds came in.
Dan Layne came down for the first time and he and Ray had a good conversation about the systems and the site.
Rich got his 27 KHz, SuperSids receiver and data collection working again and it agrees with Floyd’s data. See graphs in the presentation.
Floyd uses a 5 ft by 5 ft. loop antenna in PVC to hook up. About 20 Ft per loop.
Rich’s H1 hydrogen measurement with the spectra Cyber.
The Sara $300 H1 receiver or Radio Scope in a Box can receive Hydrogen data similar to the Spectra Cyber instrument.
For Positioning Use Stellarium Program for Windows or Linux.
See the Zoom recording that will be up for the next 2 months for more detail.
Membership Dues are now due for 2021. Please submit check or pay pal payment to Myron or on the link in the website. We started 2020 with 62 members and ended 2020 with 52 members. Several members that we normally see at the open house and renew dues then did not do so this year because we did not hold the open house. Myron has tried to contact them but have not heard anything back yet.
Latest Treasures Report from Myron Babcock. The current checking is; $2791.73 Savings Is: $5742.20 Electric Bill for 2020. $825.94 for electric and telephone. $337.56 to Steve and $335.81 for Glenn for materials for facilities and Tracking System.Bob Haggart submitted 12 receipts for construction on the Communications Trailer operating desk and separate workstation. He also built the wooden steps leading up to the trailer and did some electrical work inside the trailer for the electric heater. The total cost was $360.25. The Board approved this reimbursement.
Photographer, Marc Slover visited the site with Michael Rice on 12.20 – 12.21 and created time lapse videos of the site. They would like to do it again on a night where we are moving the dish for Pulsar or other observations. See the video at:
We elected 4 BOD positions in 2020. Myron Babcock – Treasurer and Gary Agranat – Vice President were retained. Steve Plock – At large, and Dr. Richard Russel-At large were replaced by Bob Haggart and Bob Sayers.
We will elect or retain 3 seats turning over in 2021. These are; Dave Molter at Large, Floyd Glick- Secretary, Bill Miller President.
We need to finish and post the new bylaws changes related to the BOD election schedule that was approved last year to our website. Bill sent the Ver 3.1 Bylaws markup to Gary and Floyd for review, incorporation and posting.
In keeping with the Bylaws schedule changes voted by the board in 2019 the rough schedule is as follows:
Open nominations now, January 15th, and close in 20 days, on February 4th.
Release the ballot to the members by February 9th.
Hold board election in the following 10 days, completing Feb 20th.
The 4 BOD members not up for election shall count the ballots and make results known to the membership by Feb 26th.
Schedule the “all-member annual meeting” in early March and in that meeting the Board votes for or assigns officers from the elected BOD. Although we would like to have an in person meeting, because of the Covid-19 and our responsibility to keep our members safe, the all-members meeting will be scheduled and held virtually.
Status of SARA mini H1 1420MHz Receiver kit containing a Sawbird LNA and SDR from NoElec with 2,4GHz Wi-Fi dish and mount with AirSPi SDR Sharp SW from Rich. The kit is on the SARA website. There is also a user’s manual on the site.
April 3rd is the SARA western conference. Deadline for papers for the August conference is in June.
The SARA Drake’s lounge is on January 17th for SARA members. There are now 2-3 80ft dish groups in the group.
The 12 ft H1 dish is working at Rich’s residence. Rich’s SuperSID receiver is broken. The 408MHz SDR receiver is up and ready for pulsar observations. The B210 SDR receiver from Don Latham is working at Rich’s Lab. Only missing the GPS connection. This can be connected to the GPS are the site.
Next pulsar trip; New members Dan Layne, AD0CY and Photographer, Marc Slover would like to attend the next pulsar trip. Please contact them if you are going.
Rich wrote a paper for the spring SARA conference. Check out Rich’s SARA paper on An Arduino Controller for the Yaesu G5500D mount.
Michael Lowe donated an Edmond Scientific 8 inch, 65 inch focal length optical telescope to the DSES. Bill started working to clean and refurbish the telescope to the original condition. Floyd offered some advice and assistance in collimation once the scope is ready.
Planet Walk support: Bill worked with the Planet Walk Org. and got some on air PSAs for them with KSTY, KCME and KRCC.
Dark Skies support: The DSES organization should support the Dark Skies initiative in South East Colorado to help extend the dark skies area for all astronomers.
Did anyone find Rodney Howe’s 1.665GHz feed? Looking for this still but Ray discussed his building of a new 1.665GHz OH feed he will share with Rodney. Rodney’s feedhorn is a copper cylinder about 5 inches in diameter and 12 inches long Keep an eye out for it at the site.
The 1296MHz feed is now changed out to the 408MHz feed for continuing pulsar work.
See the Feed change schedule on the main website page this needs updating.
Things to do
Check clean out and Fix the Sump Pumps in the underground.
Cut off the 5 band vertical mounting pole and move the vertical base to ground level and reattach and add more radials and bury them for protection.
Repair the dish edge damage.
Clean out the tower and the pedestal base.
Align Ray’s HughesNet Satellite internet dish. Call HughesNet for reprogramming and support.
Need to remove Tumble weeds have piled up in the ramp and add some fencing to mitigate.
Clean out the silt in the Underground from the flooding damage.
Nails on Road. Several of Ray’s friends came out on the 10/3 trip and used metal detectors and magnets to clear the site of nail and metal on the road. We’ve all had flat tires and need to continue to clear the road and site of debris as many of us have had tire damage. Bill bought a new magnet roller and left it in the Comm. Trailer. Please walk it up and down the road once whenever you’re on site.
Align the 3 element Yagi and re-enforce.
The Ham Radio Equipment in the bunker needs some dust covers or enclosures to keep the dust out of the equipment.
Need a program to combine logs for position and time and signal strength.
Need to modify the heater with sheet metal or plastic covers to provide safety and the bracket needs to be reinstalled. Need 4 2 ½ inch drywall screws to hold the heater bracket to the wall.
Replace the rear window of the Comm. Trailer. Complete: Bill bought custom window from Kent Glass for $81 and installed it.
Ray has 8 brackets to fix a railing around the scaffold for additional safety.
Ettus Research B210 receiver from Don Latham. Rich has it working except for the GPS input. Will work at the site with the GPS. Don says there is a 10MHz source in the electronics he brought down.
Retrieve Key for Battery Box from Ed Corn.
Clean up the DC Bus on Comm. trailer wall.
Need to characterize the dish surface for problems and accuracy.
Miscellaneous discussion on various topics
The GPS 10MHz 4 way distribution box that Ray built just needs a small power supply.
Ray would like to make a work trip on Saturday the 16th. Need to build the scaffold railing and add the U-bolts on the feed hub. This trip was cancelled for wind and other activities.
Bob says he will modify the heater with covers over the exposed wiring.
Skip Macaulay sent us the spectrograms of our EME signal in the first frame compared to others in the second as received with his dish and equipment in Lacombe, Alberta Canada. This clearly shows our excellent signal strength amplitude off the moon.