Tech Net News 01-18-2020

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Ancient Gondwanian feathers, courtesy of the Melbourne Museum

Winter Field Day is less than 7 days away! Sign up for your preferred operating time and be prepared to have fun. The DARC will be participating in the three-club special event station K5T on Saturday, January 25th, 2020.

Remember that there’s no Lecture and Lab this month due to Winter Field Day…and please don’t forget to pay your dues if they’re due.

There are a lot of small contests and operating events going on this weekend, and one big one: the North American QSO Party is taking place right now.

In news from the world of amateur radio:

Reportedly, Iowa had the first state park system in the US, and it turns 100 this year. The Iowa State Parks on the Air special event will be going on all year.

The ARRL reports that hams have been in touch with the staff at the Arecibo Observatory, and that everyone there is safe after the recent earthquakes.

The ARRL has also shared the good news that the Christmas Eve transmission from SAQ was heard by over 400 listeners in 32 countries. SAQ, in Sweden, uses the world’s only working Alexanderson Alternator to transmit on 17.2 kHz. With good conditions and some hard work, you can hear them with a computer sound card.

And in news from the world of science:

Museums aren’t just for public education; they often help scientists do their work. New analysis shows that a largely forgotten collection of fossils, found in Australia in 1961 and then stored in the Melbourne Museum, may contain the oldest-known flight feathers.

In extremely cute news, it turns out that some wolf puppies will play fetch with humans. Researches have begun to wonder if centuries of hunting have caused modern wolves to become more fearful and less domesticateable than their ancestors were.

We’ve all read about the amazing tardigrade, a tiny animal that can survive almost any sort of hostile condition, from the vacuum of space to temperatures as low as 1 Kelvin. Unfortunately, scientists have noticed that they do have one secret weakness: a few days spent in warm water.

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