When the club was formed, LBJ High hosted an advanced academic program called the Liberal Arts & Science Academy (LASA). In 2007, LASA became its own high school co-located on the LBJ campus. While celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2014, the decision was made by club members to officially change the name of the club to reflect its operation as a part of the Liberal Arts & Science Academy High School. As such, in April 2014, K5LBJ became the "LASA" High School Amateur Radio Club. We continue to be proud of our callsign which represents our club's heritage and Texas roots. Whether operating as LBJ or LASA High, we are K5LBJ. Ultimately, we just want to be a leader in assisting new Hams to learn the excitement of the hobby.
Originally issued KE5BBZ, the LBJ High School Amateur Radio Club was formed in April 2004. (The Founding Students were Noah Kalish, KD5VDO, David Broockman, KD5ZNC.) At that time, we also became a member of ARRL's "Big Project", now known as the Education & Technology Program (ETP).
Over time, the Amateur Radio club provided an avenue to form an Amateur Radio class at LASA. Students are guided by their teacher, Ronny Risinger, KC5EES, and our Elmer, Joe Fisher, K5EJL. Many students have learned about this uniquely fun and important skill over the years.
We have enjoyed competing in the School Club Roundup contest. We were proud to be #1 in the High School category in 2006.
On October 19, 2008, our club was privileged to make contact with Richard Garriott, W5KWQ, while he was onboard the International Space Station. Many thanks go out to Mr. Garriott, NASA, and the many people involved in ARISS.
Our club was also featured on the cover of the September, 2010, edition of "Monitoring Times" magazine.
During the Fall 2010 School Club Roundup, K5LBJ's 13 student operators made 577 contacts with 47 states, 5 Canadian provinces, 13 countries, and 33 schools. This outstanding effort earned them the #1 ranking in the High School category in the Fall 2010 School Club Roundup contest.
We really enjoy the homebrew aspect of Amateur Radio. Our Spring 2011 project was to build a portable, HF vertical antenna. Inspired by the 'Minuteman 20,' LASA students set to work. Using PVC conduit for supports and coil forms and stereo wire for ground radials, they built a fine antenna. The goal was to build an antenna that would would operate on 17/20/40 meters. In its first test, the vertical reached Germany (5385 miles) and Sommerville, TX (64 miles). Student success!
In Fall 2012, students decided to participate in the November Phone Sweepstakes contest. They made 307 contacts with 81 of 83 sections. Thus, in the November 2012 Phone Sweepstakes contest, K5LBJ placed 1st among schools in the West Gulf Division. This garnered K5LBJ its first ever piece of "walnut" for the wall.
At present, we have a "Radio Room" (pictured above) which has an Icom 706MkIIg running through either an AT-180 automatic antenna tuner or a Palstar AT2K manual tuner. In 2012, we were able to add an Ameritron AL-811 (600 watt) amplifier. We also have a "Classroom Station" which has an ICOM 706MkIIG running through an MFJ Versatuner II. All of our antennas are located on the roof of our school.
In Fall 2013, the antenna farm includes a Cushcraft HF vertical antenna, a Gap Challenger (homebrewed) HF vertical, a Tennadyne T6 Log Periodic (installation underway), a G5RV dipole (mounted between push-up masts), and a Cushcraft VHF/UHF Yagi (in tripod with rotator). In addition, we have a helical antenna mounted for reception of the NOAA Weather Satellites (each day we capture NOAA-15 images and display them on a large computer screen in the school hallway).
In Fall 2013, we were fortunate to receive grants to install a complete satellite station (A+ Credit Union provided financial support for the tower and rotators, while the Dayton Amateur Radio Association (DARA) funded coax, and the ARRL ETP program provided the computer interface. Finally, the Austin Amateur Radio Club (AARC) funded an Icom 910H radio for satellite work.) During Spring 2014, students assembled the EL/AZ rotator, tripods, building cables, and installed the computer interface to prepare us for working satellites, including the ISS. On September 19, 2014, K5LBJ mades its first solo satellite contacts through SO-50 (W5PFG, N8RO, NX9B, and WI9I). After a few weeks of working with packet software, on October 14, 2014, K5LBJ successfully digipeated its first message through the Int'l Space Station (acknowledged by XE1MEX).
During the Fall 2014 School Club Roundup, K5LBJ's student operators made 959 contacts (40 of which were CW) with 48 states, 7 Canadian provinces, 49 countries, and 47 schools. This outstanding effort earned them the #1 ranking in the High School category in the Fall 2014 School Club Roundup contest. SCR is the students' favorite activity of the year, and the October 2014 contest will be remembered as one for the ages. Ten meters was "wide open."
K5LBJ's satellite tracking/communication station brought new excitement to our club in February 2015. On Feb. 23rd/24th, the Russians on board the International Space Station were beaming Slow-Scan TV (SSTV) images to Earth. The images were in celebration of what would have been Yuri Gagarin's 80th birthday. The LASA High School Amateur Radio Club received some great images from SPACE!
In Spring 2016, students turned their attention to FUNcube (AO-73). They began in earnest to receive telemetry data and send it to the satellite's administrators. Of course, students were captivated by the "Fitter" (FUNcube Twitter) messaged relayed by the cubesat. With an e-mail, students were happy to soon see the LASA Jaguars being recognized worldwide via a FUNcube Fitter message.
During the Spring 2016 School Club Roundup, K5LBJ's student operators made 915 contacts with 48 states, 5 Canadian provinces, 10 countries, and 41 schools. But, just as important as running up the QSO count, good operating manners are practiced by K5LBJ. Rebecca ("Becks"), KG5NZW, one of K5LBJ's outstanding YL operators, was heard by an Official Observer doing a great job of running stations. It made her (and the Club's day) to receive a postcard on February 17, 2016, from the Official Observer recognizing K5LBJ's "EXCELLENT radio signal quality/operating procedure as a fine example for all radio amateurs."
In the Spring 2017 School Club Roundup, K5LBJ's student operators made 863 contacts with 46 states, 6 Canadian provinces, 18 countries, and 45 schools. This outstanding effort earned them the #1 ranking in the High School category in the Spring 2017 School Club Roundup contest. K5LBJ has competed in the "School Club Roundup" since 2005, and has been fortunate enough to capture 1st place in the high school division in 2006, 2010, 2014, and 2017.
Students usually operate before school (7:30-8:00 CST) or during lunch (normally 1:00-2:00 p.m. CST). If you would like to arrange a sked, feel free to call the "Radio Room" directly at 512-414-7047.
Note: �The physical address of K5LBJ is 7309 Lazy Creek Drive, Austin, Texas 78724, however QSL correspondence should be directed to the club's trustee at the license address.
8055070 Last modified: 2017-04-25 16:54:45, 18021 bytes
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