06/11/2010: EMWIN EMERGENCY: Sat Downlink Freqs Under Attack By Broadband Interests.
On June 4th, 2010, the FCC put out a Public Notice requesting comments to
determine actual unlicensed usage of the EMWIN satellite downlink in the
frequency range of 1675-1710 MHz. This is to determine the feasibility of
AUCTIONING these frequencies to broadband service interests. If this happens,
we would lose the EMWIN satellite downlink, and the 2+-minute leadtime in
bulletins current EMWIN users enjoy over the weather radio. This would affect
thousands of Emergency Management Agencies across the country, and abroad.
BUT WE WERE ONLY GIVEN LESS THAN THREE WEEKS TO WRITE OUR RESPONSE
COMMENTS! Responses are due on June 28th. This is unfair. We need to act fast
or we could lose free EMWIN bulletins in our area. For more information on the
issue and how to make your comments see the AC-EMWIN Blog Site.
02/25/2009: EMWIN Retransmissions Turned Off.
Unfortunately, EMWIN Over-The-Air retransmissions have been turned off. It was
done for two reasons: First, due to the AC-EMWIN Server hacking (see), and second,
due to lack of use.
As for the hacking, it occurred by an individual who was once an admin but who
had been banned from using the system for being too irresponsible and after
causing just too many problems. We were still sending him courtesy bulletins
but when the system experienced a problem one day, rather than wait for admin
to be able to work on it, he hacked into the system and began perusing
federally protected Personally Identifiable Information. So he committed two
computer-related crimes. First, he broke into a system he had no authority to
access; and second, he perused information he had no need to be looking at
considering the problem that was occuring. When I complained about it to the
Faculty Advisor of GARC, the FA decided that it was easier to get rid of the
victim rather than deal with the criminal.
As for the actual usage of the retransmissions, we gave it a good try, but
there really just wasn't that much interest in them. As well, not helping the
situation was the fact that the tiny little "demodulator" units, 1" x 1" x
1/4", cost on the order of $114. That's kind of exorbitantly high. The most
use we were seeing for it was for use as trick to gather 100 points during
Field Day exercises. That was really about it. It saw more use in
demonstration than in live field use. And so, the retransmission phase ends;
but the EMWIN project continues to serve the public in other ways - in a
thousand=percent more ways than was actually requested of us in the beginning.
10/03/2003: More Talkgroup Codes Added.
I've been able to obtain lots more talkgroup codes for local analog and digital
channels. See the GRU list here.
04/25/2003: EMWIN Data Now Being Retransmitted.
Weather products are now being retransmitted over the air on 163.325 MHz
at 1200 baud, 8/N/1. Products available are limited to Florida and
surrounding states. More information about the Alachua County EMWIN
Project is available here.
We are also sending limited products (such as watches and warnings) to pagers
and email to the public for free. Our products so far seem to be actually
beating commercially available services. Our products also are not sent
with ads, unlike many commercially available sources. At this time we are
still pulling from the Internet. The only thing left to do with the project
is to install the satellite dish so that we can receive the data straight off
of the GOES-12 satellite. Once this occurs, Internet pulling will become the
backup method, and the satellite pull will be the primary method.
02/07/2003: More Regarding EMWIN Transmitting
Equipment. GARS and GARC have voted to go ahead with involvement
in the project. Receiving and transmitting equipment has been obtained from
John Fleming/WD4FFX, of the Fla. Division of Emergency Management in
Tallahassee. Still awaiting proper lengths of coax. (Didn't have room in
John's SUV for it, this trip.) Once that is obtained, we can put this thing
01/29/2003: EMWIN Transmitter?
We may soon have an EMWIN weather bulletin TRANSMITTING system here in the
county! Trying to arrange things now and make it a more "definite" thing.
If we get it, we would be able to receive weather bulletins straight off of
the GOES satellite, and then scannists, hams, and the public could receive
them through the use of a "demodulator" ($15-$30 depending upon who you buy
them from, or you can build them yourself) hooked up between the scanner and
the computer, and free software available on the Internet. The advantage of
this is that the data comes from directly off the GOES-8 satellite. So
there are no lags and delays that are associated with the Internet. Will
keep everyone posted on progress.
01/17/2003: Space Shuttle Burns Up On Reentry.
...I don't know what to say. We worked so hard...then this. Our hearts go
to the families and friends of the STS-107 crew.
01/16/2003: Space Shuttle Audio on 146.910
MHz. Space Shuttle audio can now be heard on the
Gator Amateur Radio Club's
146.910 MHz W4DFU amateur radio repeater. We (Jeff Capehart/W4UFL, Joe
DiPietro/N2UF, Todd Sherman/KB4MHH [me]) just installed a 4-element 2-meter
beam on the penthouse rooftop of Beaty Tower East - pointed at the W4YJC
shuttle audio broadcast repeater located in MacClenney. As well, we hooked
up a 2-meter link receiver in the repeater room on the 13th floor. This
link will be active for the duration of the STS-107 mission. See the
W4DFU Shuttle Link
web page for more information.
01/15/2003: THE NEW UNIDEN DIGITAL SCANNERS DO WORK WITH THE
GAINESVILLE/ALACHUA COUNTY AREA DIGITAL SYSTEM! More information on that
here. The news sortuh made a nice birthday
present for me.
c/o Todd L. Sherman/KB4MHH
Gainesville, Alachua Co., Fla.
Last updated: June 03, 2011.
© Copyright 1995-2011 by Todd L. Sherman. All Rights Reserved.