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Red Deer boy, 10, creates satellite transceiver

At just 10 years old, Joseph Lewis already has a passion for creating electronic devices.
Joseph Lewis, 10, looks at a circuit board Sunday afternoon. The young Red Deerian recently made a satellite transceiver as well. (Photo by Sean McIntosh/Advocate staff)

At just 10 years old, Joseph Lewis already has a passion for creating electronic devices.

For his most recent project, the Red Deer boy decided to create a satellite transceiver.

“It’s something that can transmit signals and receive signals,” said Joseph, adding it was built using various items, including an old fax machine someone had thrown away.

“I pressed some random numbers to see if (a message) would go to something and it said, ‘Received.’”

Joseph said his passion for building and electronics began with Snap Circuits, which is a line of electronic kits, manufactured by Elenco Electronics, that are geared for children.

David Lewis, Joseph’s father, said his son has been interested in electronics since he was very young. David recalled Joseph, who is a student at Fairview Elementary School, had already begun drawing schematics in Grade 1.

David, a truck driver, was on the road for work when Joseph put together his transceiver project. Joseph told his father about the project over the phone.

“I was like, ‘Really?’ He said, ‘Yep. I sent out a signal.’ I quizzed him and asked how he knew he got a signal out. He told me about the fax machine and everything. I was like, ‘That’s really cool, kiddo,’” said Joseph.

The transceiver has since been taken down.

David said Joseph “seems to have no bounds” when it comes to building.

“This is what he really seems to go after. I’m not surprised by his capacity to learn,” David said.

“The only thing we’re concerned about is when he starts to plug things in. He started off by putting battery packs together and would try to power up some of the things he’s made. But his mind is learning so quickly. He’s reading books, taking in information and he wants to get practical with it.”

On top of creating devices like the transceiver, Joseph has also fixed electronic devices, including a tablet and an old VCR.

David said the whole family – himself, his wife Sarah, and their two other children Abigail and Jonathan – are all proud of Joseph for his creations.

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Sean McIntosh

About the Author: Sean McIntosh

Sean joined the Red Deer Advocate team in the summer of 2017. Originally from Ontario, he worked in a small town of 2,000 in Saskatchewan for seven months before coming to Central Alberta.
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