Kasser synergy amateur radio


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Radio amateurs provide a pool of technically competent personnel that contribute to information engineering and communications and other technical professions in countries in which it is an established hobby; countries such as Japan and the USA. In the Asia-Pacific region, while Japan has more radio amateurs than any other country, governments of the lesser developed countries tend to ignore amateur radio as a source of the indigenous personnel needed to help provide the benefits of 21st century technology. This paper first addresses the problem of educating good systems engineers by suggesting that potential students be preselected from pools of candidates who show characteristics deemed desirable in systems engineers. The paper then shows that one source of partially trained personnel maybe found among the technical members of the amateur radio community and similar technical hobbies. The paper then discusses some of the technical achievements of amateur radio followed by the twelve engineering roles of amateur radio in the manner of (Sheard 1996) and proposes that there is enough similarity between amateur radio’s technical activities and the role of systems engineering so that amateur radio can provide a source for students with experience in systems engineering activities. The last section of the paper then mentions some amateur radio failures that systems engineering should have prevented and concludes with a discussion on recruiting young systems engineers via amateur radio clubs, some synergy between INCOSE and amateur radio clubs and suggestions for future research

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Kasser synergy amateur radio

  1. 1. How synergy between amateur radio,systems and other engineering can raise the technical quotient of a nation Joseph Kasser, CM, CEng, CMALT (9V1CZ, G3ZCZ and VK5WU) Visiting Associate Professor National University of Singapore Email joseph.kasser@incose.org 1
  2. 2. Outline of the Presentation 1 Situational context 2 The problem 3 Amateur radio as one solution Use of amateur radio to teach models and 4 simulations 5 Solutions to problem 2
  3. 3. Situational context Need for good systems engineers is greater than supply Education process has drop outs  Students who do not complete the degree Can we minimize drop outs? Can we pre-screen students for characteristics of systems engineers? Literature review  Characteristics and traits • Five types of systems engineers  CEST • See next slide 3
  4. 4. Capacity for Engineering Systems Thinking (CEST) A proposed set of high order thinking skills that enable individuals to successfully perform systems engineering tasks 38 characteristics  14 cognitive characteristics,  12 capabilities,  9 behavioural competences  3 knowledge and experience characteristics 4
  5. 5. The problem Recommend a way to pre-screen students applying to systems engineering programs to minimize drop out rates and maximize probability of producing good systems engineers 3 1 2 5 6 7 8 4* Tasks 2-7 from Hitchins, D. K., Systems Engineering. A 21st CenturySystems Methodology, John Wiley & Sons Ltd., Chichester, England,2007., Figure 6.2 5
  6. 6. Identify possible solutions Think out of the box (Generic STP) Question  Is there anything similar to systems engineering that can be used to pre-select students? Answer – “Yes”  Educational modules that incorporate systems engineering • Racing cars • Others  Technically inclined hobbies • Model rockets and aircraft • Amateur radio • Others 6
  7. 7. Amateur radio  Technical hobby  Many users of equipment, some developers/pioneers Number of amateur Year of Country Source radio operators ReportJapan 1,296,059 1999 IARUUnited States 733,748 2010 FCCThailand 141,241 1999 IARUSouth Korea 141,000 2000 IARURepublic of China 68,692 1999 IARUPeoples Republic of 20,000 2008 CRSAChina 7
  8. 8. 12 systems engineering roles (Sheard, 1996)1. Requirements owner2. System designer3. Systems analysts4. Validation and verification5. Logistics and operations6. Glue7. Customer interface8. Technical manager9. Information manager10. Process engineer11. Coordinator12. Classified Ads systems engineering 8
  9. 9. Common chararacteristics Ability to find High Problem Innovators similarities among solvers (III) (V) objects which seem to be different Low Imitators, Problem Doers (II) formulators (IV) “Ability to find” Low High comes from Ability to find differences application of among objects which seem to be similar holistic thinking* Gordon G. et al. “A Contingency Model for the Design of Problem Solving Research Program”, Milbank Memorial FundQuarterly, p 184-220, 1974 cited by Gharajedaghi, System Thinking: Managing chaos and Complexity, Butterworth- 9Heinemann, 1999
  10. 10. Radio amateur achievements Discovered and pioneered the long distance communications potential of short waves  in the early years of the 20th century Pioneered many of the techniques now used for the vhf/uhf personal communications services Constructed and communicated via the worlds first multiple access communications satellite  (OSCAR 3) in 1965 Pioneered the Emergency Locator Transmitter (ELT) System now used to locate downed aircraft  via AMSAT-OSCAR 6 in the mid 1970’s Often provide communications capabilities for the public services immediately following a natural disaster 10
  11. 11. Aspects of amateur radio** Yeo, Nai Kwang Jeff, 29 Oct 2010 11
  12. 12. LEO Satellite communications terminal(1974) System integration 12
  13. 13. Systems engineering situation International cooperation building the spacecraft Arranging for a launch Multiple communications users with different ground stations  Receivers, transmitters Keeping track of communications windows Telemetry, tracking and control  Morse code, digital, speech 13
  14. 14. AMSAT-OSCAR-10 Elliptical orbit DX - 25,000kM Beams and low power 2-TV rotator AZ-EL mount Reliable propagation Time delay on signals 14
  15. 15. Models and simulations Can also be used in teaching examples  Case studies Needed to develop learning component in MDTS systems engineering course  Shows need for, and Students had been taught relationship between, about simulations and models systems engineering and and how to use them, but not domain knowledge how to develop them or how  Communications at HF they related  Digital computer hardware Example was available and software  1984 – Reuse after 26 years • Pushing state of art 15
  16. 16. ARRL Sweepstakes contest [1977] Contact (work) as many other stations as possible within 48 hour period  Weekends in November Exchange simulated emergency message Use different frequency bands with different propagation characteristics Score = number of contacts * multiplier  Multiplier is number of ARRL Sections contacted • Section only counts once irrespective of frequency band 16
  17. 17. Definition of the problem The time was 1980 Understand the factors involved in the ARRL sweepstakes contest well enough to enable an operator in Silver Spring, MD to contact all the Sections given the constraints of low radiated power 17
  18. 18. ARRL Sections in 1977Numbers are assigned for this project not by the ARRL 18
  19. 19. Issues Operational  Located in Silver Spring, Maryland  Want to contact all sections in a contest  Want to make as high as score as possible  Will be using low radiated power  Have no way of knowing when a section is active other than by hearing it on the air  Operating at home, family and other interruptions possible 19
  20. 20. CONOPS of Model Use before contest  to plan when to operate on which bands • To contact sections when propagation is possible Use during contest  to see which sections are still needed so as to re- plan when to operate on which bands • Go for section multiplier • Go for higher contact rate • Go for both Interface to “knowledge” needed 20
  21. 21. Functions – sample listing Call CQ (F_CQ) Receive a call from another station (F_RX) Check for duplicate (F_CK) Exchange message (F_QSO)  Send message (F_TXM)  Receive message (F_RXM) Log contact (F_LOG) Tune band (F_QSY) Hear another station (F_QRV)  In QSO  Calling CQ  Not in contest Time outs (F_QRX) Etc. 21
  22. 22. Partial functional N2 chartF_CQ o o o3 o F_RX o o1 o2 o o4 o F_CK o o o o F_B4 o o F_TXM o o o o o F_RXM o o o F_LOG o o F_QSY o o o o F_QRV outputs – horizontal squares, inputs – vertical squares 22
  23. 23. F_QSO Partial functional N2 chart Single input, candidateF_CQ o for aggregation o o3 o F_RX o o1 o2 o o F_CK o o o o F_B4 o o F_TXM o o o o o F_RXM o o o F_LOG o o F_QSY o o o Candidate for o F_QRV aggregation with F_QSO outputs – horizontal squares, inputs – vertical squares 23
  24. 24. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cohesion_(computer_science), accessed 21 September 2010 Types of aggregation/cohesion*  Coincidental cohesion (worst)  arbitrary  Logical cohesion  logically are categorized to do the same thing, even if they are different by nature  Temporal cohesion  are processed at a particular time in program execution  Procedural cohesion  always follow a certain sequence of execution  Communicational cohesion  operate on the same data  Sequential cohesion  output from one part is the input to another part like an assembly line  Functional cohesion (best)  all contribute to a single well-defined task of the module 24
  25. 25. How do you determine system functions? Top down? Bottom up? Middle out? All of the above? 25
  26. 26. Operational factors affecting probability of radio communication between two locations P = ∑( p1, p2, p3, p4, p5)1. Probability of someone being at other location (Section) Apply knowledge by stating • Number of amateurs at location (assumption) that since this is a • Time of day contest, there will be people active at all times of the day – Working hours, sleeping hours2. Probability that frequency band is open allowing communication3. Received signal levels at each end of link • Radiated power, receiving parameters4. Probability and amount of interference from other amateur stations in contest at each end of link5. Electrical power at sending station 26
  27. 27. Testing Section calculation model* Monte Carlo runs of model Numbers from published results Individual runs (6) Average Conclusion:Approach is feasible, if used, numbers would need to be tweaked in realization phase 27
  28. 28. Radio amateurs in space NASA  Many Space Shuttle flights  STS-35 December 1990 • Mission specialist Dr Ron Parise, WA4SIR  International Space Station Russia (Soviet Union)  MIR Educational uses  Contacts with schools Hobby uses to combat boredom of long duration flights Technical experiments  Automated communications/command and control software development 28
  29. 29. IRLP: Internet Radio Linking Project  Links > 4000 VHF/UHF repeaters worldwide  VOIP  Evolving radio equipment  Multiple manufacturers They don’t know it is a  Dial-up tone control “systems of systems” access problem, so they are  http://www.irlp.net/ just getting on and doing it. 29
  30. 30. http://www.irlp.net/typical_node.html 30
  31. 31. Big picture – roles exist in Layers 1 - 4 31
  32. 32. AUD $20,000 Yagi** Kasser J.E., The $20,000 Yagi, Radcom, August 2007 32
  33. 33. Left over wood – matter of perspective 33
  34. 34. Path to Type V systems engineer Systems thinking applied here Attraction of SystemsCommunications thinking developed & applied here Hardware Software Antenna Data processing Receivers Spacecraft orbit predictions, Transmitters telemetry processing VHF, QRP Communications terminals Modeling and simulations Radio communication systems 34
  35. 35. Radio amateurs – in summary Systems engineering Communications Engineering Researchers  Scientists • Nobel prize winners A trained, motivated and volunteer resource to be tapped in times of emergency  Natural disasters  Wartime and terrorist attacks 35
  36. 36. Solutions to problem Amateur radio is but one domain in which to find candidate systems engineers All potential domains could be used  Interesting to compare results years from now Typical interview questions  Have candidates done any experimenting?  What did they learn from the experiments? • Do they think systems? • Do their eyes glint with passion when they talk about their experiences? 36
  37. 37. Summary 1 Situational context 2 The problem 3 Amateur radio as one solution Use of amateur radio to teach models and 4 simulations 5 Solutions to problemRoles 37
  38. 38. 38