News article features Fort Hays State University SuperDARN intern Kelly Strecker

By: miker  on: Thu., July 19, 2018 03:19 PM EDT  (33 Reads)
An article featuring intern Kelly Strecker and the SuperDARN radar facility located on the grounds of Fort Hays State University (FHSU) in western Kansas has appeared in the FHSU magazine 'Roar'. Kelly is an FHSU undegraduate in physics originally from Colorado. She was appointed to her position as SuperDARN intern by Dr. Gavin Buffington, chair of the Department of Physics at FHSU. As part of her duties she minds the radar site and reports back on issues to Virginia Tech personnel. Currently she is visiting the Virginia Tech SuperDARN Lab in Blacksburg, Virginia and has participated in a repair trip to the Blackstone radar. To read the article click on the link link)
Note that Kelly is featured on the cover framed by antenna support poles and the article is on pages 32-35. The SuperDARN internship program at FHSU provides research experience to undergrads and is supported by the NSF via subcontract from Virginia Tech.

Wallops Island Antenna Overhaul Trip Part I, May 2018

By: ksterne  on: Mon., July 02, 2018 02:56 PM EDT  (135 Reads)
After a trip in March 2018, the next steps in making repairs to the antenna array would be the removal of the old reflector wires as well as the upper and lower horizontal guy wires. A trip was made to the site in mid-May as the availability of personnel and a lift from Wallops Island’s facilities coincided at this time. Thanks needs to be given to Philip Smith with NASA/Wallops Island for coordinating a lift for us. A majority of materials ordered following the March 2018 trip would also be on hand by this time which would facilitate the initial steps needed for the repairs.

Blackstone Antenna Repair Trip, May 2018

By: ksterne  on: Fri., June 29, 2018 02:44 PM EDT  (133 Reads)
Following the April 2018 overnight trip to Blackstone when many of the transmitters were repaired, a trip was needed to make some repairs to the antenna array. On leaving the radar during the April trip, there were more transmitters in working condition that there were antennas. A trip was organized in order to make repairs to the antenna array including antenna feeder cables, antenna wires, baluns, resistor boxes, and reflector wires. Dr. Mike Ruohoniemi, Paul Kennedy, and Kevin Sterne made 2-day trip to the site in order to make these repairs and investigate any other issues along the antenna arrays.

Blackstone Transmitter Repair Trip, April 2018

By: ksterne  on: Fri., Apr. 27, 2018 02:39 PM EDT  (1008 Reads)
Following the March 2018 day trip to Blackstone, it was noticed that about 5 to 6 transmitters were not on or running for various reasons. As time did not allow of any kind of electronics checks during the previous trip, this trip was made by Kevin Sterne and Dr. Mike Ruohoniemi to review and make repairs on the electronics inside of the building. It was hoped that any outdoor work on the antennas could be performed during this trip, but logistics did not allow for making it worth renting a high-lift. In addition, the newly installed wireless hop system would be re-checked to see about improving the connection as it was still experiencing some minor problems despite staying up for the majority of the time.

Scholarships for Undegraduate students via the USRA Scholarship Award Program

By: miker  on: Tue., Apr. 24, 2018 02:22 PM EDT  (192 Reads)
The Universities Space Research Association (USRA) is offering four scholarships for the next academic year to undergraduate students with a career interest in the physical, engineering, or life scientists with an emphasis on space or aerospace-related sciences or engineering.

The awards are available in amounts of $4,000 each, paid directly to receipients. Applicants must be full-time undergraduate students within two years of earning a degree and citizens or lawful Permanent Residents.

Application deadline: Aug 8, 2018

For more information see link)

Blackstone Wireless Hop Upgrade Trip, March 2018

By: ksterne  on: Fri., Mar. 16, 2018 01:56 PM EDT  (578 Reads)
Following an extended period of problems with the network connection to the site, a trip was planned after some new equipment was purchased to replace the aging wireless bridge system. The network connection has been a problem since the site was constructed, and in particular since the installation of new radios in 2011. However, through late 2017 and early 2018, the network connection was mostly down leading to long backlogs of data. To resolve this problem, new antennas, mounting hardware, and Ethernet cable were taken out to the site along with replacement radios that were in the lab. This trip was made while Mike and Kevin were coming back from Wallops Island in the two days prior. Of course, upon arriving to the site, the network connection was working.
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