QST Member Spotlight 2023 - Members of Notability
Dr. Joseph Hooton Taylor, Jr., K1JT
Smorgasbord / Kirt's Cogitations™ #346

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Dr. Joseph Hooton Taylor, Jr., K1JT, January 2023 QST - RF Cafe

Dr. Joseph Hooton Taylor, Jr., K1JT

Cover of the January 2023 QST, ARRL - RF Cafe

Cover of the January 2023 QST, American Radio Relay League (ARRL)

The January 2023 issue of QST magazine recently arrived in my mailbox. As is my custom, the same evening I went through it from cover to cover. That's not to say I read everything within, but I do look for content of interest on every page. Monthly features like "Correspondence" (from readers), "Up Front" (photos of Ham-related items - often vintage), "100, 50, and 25 Years Ago" (covers and sample stories from past editions), "Hints & Hacks" (hints and hacks), "Ask Dave" ([Casler, KE0OG], formerly "The Doctor Is In," by Joel Hallas) nearly always get read in full. "Member Highlight" is usually an interesting read since it gives insight into the backgrounds of usually life-long Hams. Lifelong in some cases means twenty years because the member is maybe twenty-six years old. Other times it means seventy years as a licensed Ham, where the highlighted operator got into radio as a kid during the World War II era.

The January 2023 issue of QST highlights Dr. Joseph Hooton Taylor, Jr., K1JT. An accomplished radio astronomer, Dr. Taylor's feature is the first of what will be a year-long theme to "highlight amateurs who have achieved recognition in areas outside of, or related to, amateur radio." I think that is a great idea and look forward to seeing who they come up with. Too bad that the ARRL doesn't post stories like this so that non-members can have access to them; they would serve as a great motivation to people considering earning a new license or upgrading to a higher class.

Having worked with many people during my decades-long career in the RF and microwave engineering realm, consistently some of the most capable engineers, technicians, and managers have been Hams. My license* was not earned until after I left the corporate world and became independent to work full-time at publishing RF Cafe and writing software. That's not to say non-Hams are not brilliant, but typically enthusiasm noticeably exudes from very active amateur radio operators. I wish I had been counted amongst their numbers back in the day.

The page photo above is intentionally not of high enough resolution to be legible so as to not violate any copyright, but the Fair Use Act should cover this short excerpt:

"JT. Since 2001, those two letters have signaled digital transformation in ham radio. They are the initials of the pioneering scientist and amateur radio innovator, Joe Taylor, whose software suite, WSJT - updated to WSJT−X - revolutionized ham radio. Today, the warble of JT8 dominates, but the tones of FT4, JT9, SWPR, and Q65 all emerge from the static to connect hams the world over with signal-to-noise ratios as low as −44 dB. "

"Dr. Joseph Hooton Taylor, Jr., K1JT, began the development of his weak-signal software in 2000, at a time when he wasn't lecturing and training PhD students..."

"His 1993 Nobel Prize-winning research on pulsars - in which he and Russell Hulse observed evidence of gravitational radiation using a binary system of stars, providing experimental proof of Einstein's general theory of relativity - involved parsing signals from noise."


Unfortunately, you need to be an ARRL member to read "the rest of the story..."


* Technician Class in 2010, General Class in 2015, Amateur Extra class in 2017.



Posted December 23, 2022