2018 SCHEART Review

We would like to thank all those who donated time and money to support the SCHEART network in 2018. As a result, SCHEART made an impact across our state and region.

If you enjoy using the SCHEART repeater network, please consider donating to SCHEART. Your donation will help fund system enhancements, future upgrades, and is tax deductible.
Initial funding for installation was obtained from Health and Human Service grants through DHEC and Department of Homeland Security grants through SLED. However, this grant money is no longer available. Money to further expand or enhance the SCHEART network must come from individual donations.
• Make a secure donation via credit card, debit card or PayPal through our website.
• If you shop at Amazon, you can use smile.amazon.com and Amazon will provide SCHEART a small percentage of those purchases.
• Mail a check to;
P.O. Box 38
Ballentine, SC. 29002
Attn: Gene Retske, Treasurer
Thank you! Every donation makes a difference.

Read on to learn about our accomplishments in 2018.

System Upgrade and Expansion Projects
• An RF link was installed to connect the stand-alone Edgefield VHF repeater to the network. SCETV has a tower crew scheduled to upgrade the link in the first quarter of 2019 to increase reliability.
• A site survey was conducted for the Cheraw area to add a repeater due to poor coverage reports, and SCHEART approved funding to support a repeater. A location has been chosen; at this time it has emergency power but doesn’t have Internet drop. SCETV is working on a plan to obtain an Internet connection, and other planning efforts are continuing for the Cheraw area.
• With support from Chester County Emergency Management, an additional DMR repeater was installed near the Chester High School to improve coverage in the county. This repeater was a good addition to improve coverage between Rock Hill and Columbia.
• Thanks to a generous donation, SCHEART was able to provide a portable repeater kit for use in emergencies and special events. While the repeater was purchased for DMR linking, it can also support analog operation.

Ongoing Projects
• SCHEART, SCETV and Union County Amateur Radio Club are currently working on a project that will add a VHF analog repeater to the network. This will increase coverage south of Spartanburg and was targeted due to user reports about coverage from the local hospital.
• SCETV continues to provide engineering and technical support for the SCHEART network and host most of the system repeaters. SCETV currently uses volunteers to assist in the support of the SCHEART network and funds system maintenance as part of the statewide emergency communications program. In return, state, county and local agencies depend on amateur radio volunteers to help augment communications during emergencies.

Hurricane Response
During and after Hurricanes Michael and Florence, the SCHEART network was used for multiple days to augment local communications. Both events caused local infrastructure failures involving connectivity to cell sites and state communications systems. SCHEART repeaters using the state microwave network continued to provide alternate communications without interruption. Many amateur operators responded and volunteered to assist local shelters, hospitals, and county and State EOCs. Each of you responded and supported your fellow citizens when needed and continued to demonstrate why Amateur Radio provides an essential public service during emergencies. Thanks to all who helped, and we encourage those operators who didn’t, to get involved and be ready for the next opportunity.

Other Updates
The Anderson County Trailer contained a DMR repeater that could link to the statewide network via satellite. Anderson County discontinued use of the trailer; that repeater was removed and is now listed as Field Com Portable 2 on the DMR status page.

Thanks for a great year! We look forward to working together in 2019.

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