Category Archives: Green

Ugly or not?


Which is it? Personally, I think they are fantastic.  The are a lot nicer looking than some of the other structures visible from the same spot, and far more functional.  What really surprised me though was how quiet they are in operation.  The traffic moving along the road from Kilmeaden to Portlaw was easily able to drown out what I think was the noise from them.

Last Monday, Tipperary Amateur Radio Group were on top of Slievanamon (the Mountain pictured behind the wind turbines), participating in the Spring Leg of the Irish Radio Transmitters Society’s 2 Meters Counties Contest.  After some generator trouble, we got going and spend an enjoyable few hours up there (pictures), making approximately 57 unique contacts in 24 counties. It was great to see so much activity on the band.

Last week I was in Innsbruck, Austria, helping Miguel at the Tridentcom conference.  There was lots to take in and lots of folks to meet, too much in fact. I briefly managed to get outside for a look around and take some pictures on Tuesday evening.  The rest of the time was spent either attending technical sessions, or continuing technical discussions afterwards.

Getting set up for the contest was a technical challenge of a different kind (one could consider it therapy almost!).

5.25 Volts

Thats what the 4 x AA pack is reading at 22:25 IST. Obviously the pack wasn’t fully discharged, but still, thats not bad for zero cost charging (lets not get into the argument about the cost of manufacturing the solar cell). It will be interesting to see how long it takes to recharge a set of depleted cells.

Battery Charger.

Have you ever gone to the drawer looking for 4 batteries for something or other, only to find a) you don’ t have 4 of any similar type, b) you have no idea if they are charged or not. I have, and it’s always annoying.

I came across this kit last week and ordered one from Neil. I’ve just stuck it together and put it on the kitchen window, it should get some sun before I get up in the morning. The Voltage is currently reading 4.96 on the battery pack. It’ll be interested to see what they read at breakfast time.

It should be possible to leave them in the window all the time, and then I will always know where I have a ‘fresh set’. We’ll see!

More power

TV, Video, Sky Box 0.4kWh (~80Watts) comes to about €24 Euro for the year (lets say €30 making allowances for Rugby matches etc). Dreambox DM7000 Satellite Receiver about €18 per annum (0.3kWh). Happy birthday to my little bro today…. he’s getting old now 😉

Thinking Green.

Justin’s recent post got me thinking, so I’ve started doing some measuring. First to the radio ‘shack’/office, I did a measurement where I switched on all the radio equipment running in receive mode, server, laptop and second screen running, DSL modem and wireless router, switching most of them off when I went to bed. After 24 Hours the total usage was 4kWh. So over 12 months, the cost would be 4 * 0.1435 * 1.135 * 365 = €238 Inclusive of vat, wow, thats quite expensive and not very Green.

The server, dsl modem, wireless router, and kit for my Dxtuners node takes up the bulk of that cost at about €195 per annum. Our most recent aquisition, a small chest freezer (Whirlpool) uses about 0.5kWh per day, so should cost us about €30. Next, the TV.

President Bush examines Hybrid Vehicles

The full news article is available here. White house link here

What I though most interesting was what Mr Bush said on the video clip:

“I firmly believe that the goal I laid out — that Americans will use 20 percent less gasoline over the next 10 years — is going to be achieved, and here’s living proof of how we’re going to get there,”

Interesting indeed.