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Army and Air Force MARS will be holding a joint training exercise along with the Amateur Radio Service on February 12, 2016. MARS operators will be coming up on Amateur frequencies asking for community related information. The community related information is limited to radio or personal observation; internet and other telecommunication services are not acceptable. Please monitor the standard HF, VHF and UHF frequencies to assist in this effort.

If there are any questions, please contact Mike Boger, k7bum.mike@gmail.com.

MARS INVITES ARES/RACES PARTICIPATION IN
CORONAL MASS EJECTION DISASTER EXERCISE: ( Message pdf-icon)

A disastrous coronal mass ejection (CME) will be the focus of a national Military Auxiliary Radio System (MARS) communication exercise in early November, and MARS is hoping to collaborate with Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) and Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES) groups. The MARS exercise will get under way on November 8 and continue into November 10. It will be a quarterly contingency HF exercise in support of the US Department of Defense.

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“The exercise scenario will simulate a CME event and focus on actions that radio operators should take prior to and following a CME event,” explained Army MARS Program Manager Paul English, WD8DBY. “One thing we want to continue to work on is the interface with the greater Amateur Radio community.”
CMEs are huge explosions of gas, plasma, and electromagnetic radiation from the Sun, which are responsible for geomagnetic storms. Solar flares can accompany CMEs, but they are not the same thing. A CME can take anywhere from 1 day to 3 days to reach Earth. CMEs occur all the time, but most bypass Earth with minor effects. A major CME that hits Earth directly could damage or destroy satellites as well as terrestrial communication and electrical power infrastructure.
English said the November exercise would simulate a radio blackout as well as infrastructure damage. “During the exercise, we will simulate the blackout with a 3 hour pause, and then we will bring stations back on air and begin handling requests for information,” he told ARRL.
Training objectives for this exercise will include understanding what a CME is and how much forecast lead time can be expected; the effects associated with a CME, and what precautions radio operators take to protect their equipment prior to a severe CME.
After the simulated CME, operators will assess its effects and begin reporting that information. This will involve “interoperation with Amateur Radio operators and groups to assist in assessment.”

Individual radio amateurs as well as ARES and RACES teams are encouraged to participate in this exercise. Contact MARS and provide your contact information, if your organization is interested.

Tue, Nov 13, 2018
Day 1 Outlook Image
SPC 0100Z Day 1 Outlook Day 1 Convective Outlook NWS Storm Prediction Center Norman OK 0631 PM CST Tue Nov 13 2018 Valid 140100Z - 141200Z ...NO SEVERE THUNDERSTORM AREAS FORECAST... ...SUMMARY... Severe thunderstorms are not expected tonight. ...01Z Outlook Update... Only change to the previous outlook was to further trim [...]
Source: Storm Prediction Center Outlook
Tue, Nov 13, 2018
Following is a summary of key federal disaster aid programs that can be made available as needed and warranted under President Donald J. Trump's emergency disaster declaration issued for the state of California.Assistance for the State, Tribal and Affected Local Governments Can Include as Required: [...]
Source: FEMA Region IX News (includes Arizona)
Tue, Nov 13, 2018
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced today that federal emergency aid has been made available to the state of California to supplement state, tribal and local response efforts due to the emergency conditions in the area affected by a wildfire beginning on [...]
Source: FEMA Region IX News (includes Arizona)
Sun, Nov 11, 2018
Day 2 Outlook Image
SPC 0700Z Day 2 Outlook Day 2 Convective Outlook NWS Storm Prediction Center Norman OK 1129 PM CST Sun Nov 11 2018 Valid 131200Z - 141200Z ...NO SEVERE THUNDERSTORM AREAS FORECAST... ...SUMMARY... Thunderstorm potential will linger across portions of the Southeastern States, including the Florida Peninsula. ...Southeast... Severe probs will not be [...]
Source: Storm Prediction Center Outlook