The Wirral & District Amateur Radio Club

Club Members' News Page

With the latest Amateur Radio and Technical News
from Wirral, UK and around the World !

The RSGB NEWS for Radio Amateurs & SWL's

Looking for an archived News Item to read again ? click ARCHIVED NEWS

 

FCC turns down petition to create a 4 meter band in the US

Saturday 20th September 2014

It does not appear that US radio amateurs will gain a new band at 70 MHz anytime soon.

The FCC has denied a Petition for Rule Making filed earlier this year by Glen E. Zook, K9STH, of Richardson, Texas, seeking to add a 4 meter band to Amateur Radio's inventory of VHF allocations. Zook had floated the proposal in 2010, and his petition was dated January 27, 2010, but the FCC said it did not receive it until last May.

Zook asked the Commission to allocate 70.0 to 70.5 MHz to Amateur Radio because, Zook's Petition asserted, "the recent migration of broadcast television stations to primarily UHF frequencies basically eliminates any probable interference to television channels 4 or 5." VHF TV channel 4 occupies 66 to 72 MHz.

"Because the Zook Petition is based on a faulty premise - that broadcasting use within the 70.0-70.5 MHz band will diminish or cease - its argument that amateur band users could operate without causing harmful interference to any existing service lacks sufficient support to warrant our further consideration, The FCC said in a September 17 Order denying the Petition.

The Order may be found on the web in PDF format at,
http://transition.fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/2014/
db0917/DA-14-1347A1.pdf

The FCC pointed out that three full-power TV stations, 110 low-power TV stations and translators, and six Class A TV station now occupy channel 4 in the US. In addition, the Commission, through an "ongoing incentive auction proceeding," is attempting to "repurpose" a portion of television broadcast spectrum for broadband operations and "repack the remaining TV stations into a smaller frequency range." Under certain scenarios, the FCC said, channel 4 could become even more heavily populated by broadcast users in the future.

"Given the complexity of the incentive auction proceeding, we also conclude that it would not serve the public interest to further complicate that unique undertaking by proposing to introduce a new service into the broadcasting frequencies at this time," the FCC said. The Order noted that fixed and mobile services will continue to operate in the frequencies between channels 4 and 5 (76 to 82 MHz).

As Zook noted in his petition, a 4 meter band has been authorized for Amateur Radio use in the UK and in a number of other European and African countries. The FCC said that since it wasn't planning to grant Zook's petition, it declined to evaluate his claims "regarding the benefits that amateurs would derive from use of the band."

Zook's original proposal asked to have the FCC open up the allocation to all classes of Amateur Radio licensees.

Brian Justin, WA1ZMS, operated an Experimental Service beacon transmitter from Virginia on 70.005 MHz under the call sign WE9XFT.

At the time his Experimental license was granted in 2010, Justin told the ARRL that he was not seeking to have the FCC create a 4 meter band. "This beacon is purely for radio science for use as an E-skip detection device," he explained.

Source: The American Radio Relay League

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Tracking The Lincolnshire Poacher

Saturday 20th September 2014

A look back at a 2005 Radio 4 documentary on the mysterious number stations that send their cryptic covert messages to 'agents in the field' on the outer limits of the short-wave band

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Dutch NPO to end medium wave transmissions

Saturday 20th September 2014

It is reported that Netherlands Public Broadcasting (NPO) plans to end medium wave AM broadcasts

The Ham News site says that both 747 kHz Zeewolde, Flevoland and 1251 kHz Hulsberg, South Limburg are to close.

The Netherlands Ham News
http://tinyurl.com/Netherlands-Ham-News

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IARU R1 release VHF/UHF/Microwave Handbook

Saturday 20th September 2014

IARU Region 1 have released edition 6.14 of the free VHF Managers Handbook covering the VHF, UHF and Microwave amateur radio bands

The handbook has chapters on Band Planning, Contests, Propagation Research, Operating Procedures and Satellites. On page 122 it even specifies a standard for the use of circular polarization defining which way helical beam antennas should be threaded.

Download the handbook at
http://tinyurl.com/IARU-VHF-Handbook-6-14

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2300 MHz restriction in Nijmegen

Saturday 20th September 2014

The Netherlands Ham News site report radio amateurs within 35 km of Nijmegen will be unable to use the 2300 MHz band on September 21

Amateur transmissions will not be allowed because of TV video/audio links that will use the frequencies 2325, 2335, 2345 and 2355 MHz each with a bandwidth of 8 MHz

The Netherlands Ham News
http://tinyurl.com/Netherlands-Ham-News

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WIA plans a submission on new VK operating conditions

Friday 19th September 2014

The expiring Australian Licence Condition Determination or LCD for the Amateur Service is an excellent opportunity to re-think how to regulate its existence now, and in the future.

The Amateur LCD is due to 'sunset' in October 2015 and needs replacement, so the Amateur Service can continue. It includes how Australia's three licence grades operate, their frequency bands, modes and maximum permitted powers.

The WIA board of directors has identified several issues for evaluation and invites all to have input on them and any related LCD matter, before it makes a final submission next year.

The WIA says many of the current LCD provisions have been outdated by technology and practice. It wants the LCD to be better aligned with international standards, able to adapt to emerging technologies, and reduce unnecessary regulatory burdens.

It takes a holistic view to make sure all radio amateurs now, and where possible in the future, enjoy the hobby and bring some benefit to the community.

According to the WIA, the new Amateur LCD must include references to the Electro Magnetic Emission (EME) requirements for all in the Amateur Service, to support other awareness and compliance action.

The WIA wants no limit on experimentation to allow flexibility in communications technologies and applications, and for it to remain a self-regulating service with no reduction or downgrading from the current Apparatus Licence principles.

The WIA review covers all licence grades. For the highest or Advanced Licence it seeks a relaxation of permitted bandwidths on 1.8 MHz to 430 MHz to enable emerging and newly developed technologies.

In line with greater awareness and compliance with the EME requirements, the WIA seeks that the Advanced Licence be given a power limit of up to 1000w pX, as a right without a permit. Several microwave allocations are also to be sought.

The WIA will seek to raise the Standard Licence conditions to better match similar intermediate licence grades in other countries. That includes allowing up to 200w pX instead of the former Novice Licence carry-over power of 100w pX.

It is looking at increasing the Standard Licence access to a number of bands between 1.8 MHz and 28 MHz, and particularly access to the lower part of 6-metres at 50-52 MHz.

The WIA seeks a relaxation of the permitted bandwidths relating to the Standard licence on all bands over 1 GHz, to allow the use of wideband digital and image transmission modes by that licence.

For the entry level Foundation Licence, the WIA will seek to add digital modes, commercially made transmitter kits, conversion of non-amateur transceivers to ham bands, unattended operation and remote control.

An increase of power level to 25 watts pX is advocated because of the tyranny of distance of Australia, the noisy urban environment, and that more available transceivers are routinely fitted with the higher power.

The WIA also notes the Foundation Licence permitted bands are quite restricted when viewed in the context of other entry level licences across the world.

The WIA also will seek access to the 5 MHz band, subject to the World Radio Conference 2015 preferably at least enabling overseas contact, a primary allocation 50-52 MHz and consideration of 70 MHz access overlapping other countries.

Jim Linton VK3PC

Wireless Institute of Australia

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Plan for beta release of WSJT-X v1.4

Friday 19th September 2014

A public beta release of the weak signal datamodes software WSJT-X, version 1.4, is now planned for October 1

Download links will be posted at that time on the WSJT home page.

Important changes in version 1.4 relative to v1.3, r3673 include the following:

1. CAT control for most radios is much improved, including expanded support for Commander, Ham Radio Deluxe, and OmniRig. One-way CAT control is no longer supported. Users may choose no CAT control, or may have working two-way communication so that WSJT-X can verify that commands sent to the rig have been executed. "Split" mode operation is supported via HRD for radios where HRD provides the necessary control functions. WSJT-X can now simulate Split mode for rigs that do not provide it.

2. Many options previously found on the Setup menu now appear on a far more flexible "Settings" screen. You can define multiple spot operating frequencies per band. All recognized amateur bands are supported, and frequency offsets can be configured for transverters.

3. There has been considerable polishing and extension of the user interface, including optional user-defined palettes for the waterfall and user-defined fonts for the main screen, decoded text areas, and Astronomical Data screen.

4. The JT65 decoder now accepts negative values of DT down to -3.2 s, eliminating most of the occasional "garbage decodes".

5. Better (glitch-free) behavior of audio streams.

6. Better handling of messages that include compound callsigns.

7. Support for standard "localization" conventions.

8. Writable files now appear in platform-dependent standard locations. This allows for more efficient installation on all supported platforms and allows settings to be seamlessly carried forward during program upgrades.

9. A new WSJT-X User Guide is available. Additions and changes will continue to be made, but most sections are now in good shape.
Click on http://www.physics.princeton.edu/pulsar/K1JT/wsjtx-doc/
wsjtx-main.html
to read the manual.

In addition, there are many internal changes to the project aimed at cleaning up the code, establishing a standard set of compile-and-build tools, and making the whole package more readily maintained by an active development group.

Known Problems

WSJT-X v1.4 cooperates with Ham Radio Deluxe much more reliably than v1.3. However, the good behavior can break down when HRD Logbook or DM780 are also running in parallel. You may see delays up to 20 seconds or so in frequency changes or other radio commands, due to a bug in HRD. HRD folks are aware of the problem, and are working to resolve it.

It has not been possible to initially provide support for all radios via HRD. We have built-in diagnostics that allow quick identification of the extra support needed to support untested rigs via HRD. We urge HRD users to try this new version and report back results. We will then add any missing support based on feedback from users as soon as possible.

About 25 amateurs, including all of the most active members of the Development Team, have been regular users of WSJT-X built from recent code revisions. We find version 1.4 to be a pleasure to use, and we think you will, too.

We look forward to user feedback on the latest version following its formal announcement in about two weeks.

73,
Joe, K1JT
(for the WSJT Development Team)

WSJT Homepage
http://physics.princeton.edu/pulsar/K1JT/wsjt.html

WSJT Yahoo Group
https://groups.yahoo.com/group/WSJTgroup

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Surprising dip in stratospheric radiation during solar storm

Friday 19th September 2014

On September 12th, student scientists in California launched a weather balloon to the stratosphere during the most intense solar storm of the year.

They expected to measure an increase in energetic radiation.
Instead they measured a sharp drop. Their counterintuitive data and the interesting explanation for it are featured on today's edition of
http://spaceweather.com

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DX News from the ARRL

The American Radio Relay League's round-up of the forthcoming week's DX activity
on the amateur radio bands

Friday 19th September 2014

This week's bulletin was made possible with information provided by I3VJW, the OPDX Bulletin, 425 DX News, The Daily DX, DXNL, Contest Corral from QST and the ARRL Contest Calendar and WA7BNM web sites. Thanks to all.

TIMOR-LESTE, 4W. Sei, JA7LU and Hiro, JA2VWG will be QRV as 4W6LU and 4W6DD, respectively, from Dili, IOTA OC-148, from September 22 to 29. Activity will be on 40 to 6 meters using SSB and RTTY. QSL direct to home calls.

CROATIA, 9A. Ede, HA5BWW, Pista, HA5AUC and Karl, HA7PC will be QRV as 9A/home calls from Rab Island, IOTA EU-136, from September 22 to 29. Activity will be on the HF bands using CW and SSB. QSL to home calls. In addition, a group of operators are QRV as 9A/IQ3VO from the Lighthouse Porer-Pula Croatia, ARLHS CRO-014, until September 21. Activity is on 80 to 6 meters with two stations using CW, SSB, RTTY, PSK31, JT65A and EME. QSL direct to IQ3VO.

KUWAIT, 9K. To celebrate the naming by the UN of Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah as a Global Humanitarian Leader, special event station 9K9GHL is QRV until October 6. QSL via 9K2QA.

FRANCE, F. Special event station TM89IARU will be QRV from September 20 to 29 to celebrate the IARU's 89th anniversary. QSL via F6KMF.

ITALY, I. Bob, OK2BOB will be QRV as IA5/OK2BOB from Giglio Island, IOTA EU-028, from September 21 to 28. Activity will be holiday style mostly on the newer bands using CW and SSB. QSL to home call.

BULGARIA, LZ. Special event station LZ14IARU will be QRV from September 20 to 27 during the IARU Region 1 conference in Albena.
QSL via bureau.

BELGIUM, ON. Special event station OT703CCF will be QRV on September 21 and 22 to celebrate the 70th anniversary for the freedom of the Farciennes City. Activity will be on the HF bands using CW, SSB and PSK31. QSL via ON4CPN.

SABA, ST. EUSTATIUS, PJ5. David, OK6DJ, Petr, OK1FCJ and Pavel, OK1FPS will be QRV as PJ5/home calls from Sint Eustatius, IOTA NA-145, from September 21 to October 3. Activity will be on 160 to 10 meters using CW, SSB, RTTY and other digital modes with up to three stations active. This includes an entry in the upcoming CQ World Wide RTTY DX contest. QSL via operators' instructions.

ST. MAARTEN, PJ7. Ed, WA1ZAM will be QRV as PJ7PL from the Royal Palm Beach Resort in Cole Bay, IOTA NA-105, from September 21 to October 15. Activity is holiday style on the HF bands using CW, SSB and RTTY. This includes being an entry in the upcoming CQ World Wide RTTY DX contest. QSL direct to home call.

SEYCHELLES, S7. Chris, HB9LCA will be QRV as S79LCA from La Digue from September 22 to 27. Activity will be on 40 to 6 meters using mostly CW. QSL to home call.

DODECANESE, SV5. Fred, PA1FJ is QRV as SV5/PA1FJ/p from Karpathos Island, IOTA EU-001, until September 27. Activity is on the HF bands using CW, SSB and various digital modes. QSL to home call.

GABON, TR. Alain, F6CTL is QRV as TR8CA. His length of stay is unknown. QSL via F6CBC.

BENIN, TY. A group of operators are QRV as TY1AA until September 26. Activity is on the HF bands. QSL direct via I2YSB.

CHRISTMAS ISLANDS, VK9X. Rob, N7QT and Melanie, AB1UH are QRV as VK9AN until October 2. Activity is on 80 to 10 meters using CW, SSB and various digital modes. QSL via N7QT.

ASCENSION ISLAND, ZD8. Bob, G4DBW will be QRV as ZD8RH from Georgetown, IOTA AF-003, from September 22 to 30. Activity will be mainly on the HF bands using CW. This includes being an entry in the upcoming CQ World Wide RTTY DX contest. QSL to home call.

SPECIAL EVENT STATIONS.
W1AW Centennial Stations W1AW/1 in Connecticut and W1AW/4 in North Carolina are QRV until 2359z on September 23. In addition, W1AW/5 in New Mexico and W1AW/7 in Idaho will be QRV starting at 0000z on September 24. They will be active until 2359z on September 30.

THIS WEEKEND ON THE RADIO
ARRL 10 GHz and Up Contest, NCCC RTTY Sprint Ladder, NCCC Sprint, AGB NEMIGA Contest, Pirate QSO Party, Scandinavian Activity CW Contest, Feld Hell Sprint, QRP Afield, Washington State Salmon Run, and BARTG Sprint 75 are all on tap for this weekend.

The 144 MHz Fall Sprint and Run for the Bacon QRP CW Contest are scheduled for September 22. The CWops Mini-CWT CW Test and SKCC CW Sprint are scheduled for September 24.

Please see September QST, page 81 and the ARRL and WA7BNM contest web sites for details

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Friday 19th September 2014

Dave Raycroft's  ICPO
(Islands, Castles & Portable Operations)

I.C.P.O. Bulletin (19-26 September 2014)
"Islands, Castles & Portable Operations"
Listing is by calendar date (day/month/year)

If you like chasing the DX to some of the remotest areas of the world, or love a rag-chew with a portable station in a rare square or working Islands, Castles or Lighthouses on the Air, then you need the right information. 

Dave Raycroft VA3RJ produces an excellent bulletin, and you can read the latest by clicking on the following link, and see what is coming up in the next few days/weeks.  Dave Raycroft Bulletin

Also check the excellent HF Propagation predictions from the United Kingdom for September 2014 by Gwyn Williams, G4FKH

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Essex school contact with International Space Station

Thursday 18th September 2014

Dave G4UVJ reports that on September 23 there will be an ARISS (Amateur Radio on the International Space Station) contact between students at Winter Gardens Primary School, Canvey, Essex and astronaut Alexander Gerst KF5ONO on the ISS

Just confirming that our ARISS contact has been scheduled with Alexander Gerst KF5ONO (photo right), the ESA Astronaut on board the ISS for Tuesday, September 23, 2014 at 1037 UT which is 1137 BST.

For information, the ISS will actually be over Australia at the time and we will be making use of one of the amateur radio Australian Telebridge Ground Stations to actually make the link to the Space Station.

As you all know we have been in progress of organizing another Contact with the International Space Station as we did in 2005, this time its Winter Gardens Primary School, Canvey Island the day now been confirmed it will be the September 23, 2014 contact time is 11:37 BST. We will start 1 hour before contact time and finish 30mins after, changes may still occur if there are any emergencies on the station.

73 Dave G4UVJ

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Ofcom invite comment on Annual Plan

Thursday 18th September 2014

Ofcom is inviting members of the public, as well as those working in the industries it regulates, to contribute to its work plan and priorities for the next financial year

The 'Invitation to Comment' encourages anyone with an interest in Ofcom's activities to offer their views on which areas of the telecoms, media, postal and spectrum industries should be addressed in Ofcom’s Annual Plan for 2015/16.

Responses from the public and stakeholders will help inform the draft Annual Plan, which Ofcom will consult on in December. Ofcom expects to publish its final plan in March 2015.

Comments should be submitted by 5pm on October 15, 2014, see
http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/consultations/
annual-plan-2015-16-invitation-to-comment/


Perhaps one area for comment might be Ofcom's failure to enforce the Wireless Telegraphy Act 2006. Ofcom used to publish statistics showing their actions against offenders, they no longer do so. In fact they deleted all previous statistics from their website, perhaps to hide the fact they were no longer taking enforcement action ? Fortunately you can still see the 2008/9 statistics at
http://www.southgatearc.org/news/may2010/ofcom_prosecutions.htm

Ofcom also fail to take action against plasma TV's and PLT devices which pollute the radio spectrum and ruin people's enjoyment of radio.

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Postage stamp features ham radio satellites

Thursday 18th September 2014

A new Lithuanian postage stamp features the amateur radio satellites LituanicaSAT-1 and LitSat-1

The two CubeSats were launched to the International Space Station (ISS) on January 9, 2014 and deployed from the ISS on February 28.

LituanicaSAT-1 carried a FM transponder and a camera while LitSat-1 had a linear (SSB/CW) transponder developed by by William Leijenaar PE1RAH.

LitSat-1 was the lighter satellite and re-entered the Earth's atmosphere and burnt up on May 23, the heavier LituanicaSAT-1 remained in orbit until July 28.

Watch a presentation on LituanicaSAT-1 given by Gintautas Sulskus to the 2014 AMSAT-UK Colloquium in Guildford
http://amsat-uk.org/colloquium/colloquium-2014/presentation-videos/

LituanicaSAT-1
http://amsat-uk.org/2014/03/26/
president-tests-lituanicasat-1-fm-transponder/


LitSat-1
http://amsat-uk.org/2014/03/09/litsat-1-transponder-test-successful/

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AmateurLogic 70: Arduino Antenna Switcher

Wednesday 17th September 2014

George builds a remote control antenna disconnect switch with an Arduino and a Servo. Tommy experiments with the MFJ Ultrasonic Noise Locator. Peter participates in the 2014 DATV QSO Party.

Details on our 9th Anniversary Sweepstakes giveaway of the Ultimate Mobile Station.

Upcoming personal appearance, events and more…

1:20:13 of ALTV Enjoyment.

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Radio Exterior de España to abandon shortwave October 1st, 2014

Wednesday 17th September 2014

On the mailbag portion of REE's English language service, an announcement was made that Radio Exterior de España will cut all shortwave radio broadcasts October 1st, 2014.

http://wp.me/pn3uc-2Ou

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EURAO Newsletter September 2014

Wednesday 17th September 2014

In this issue you will find:

  • EURAO General Assembly at HAM RADIO 2014

  • EECE : European Emergency Communications Exercise

  • WLOTA : World Lighthouse On The Air

  • EANET Sprint Contest 2014 : for clubs and hams of any country

  • EURAO Party - Summer 2014 : give youth a chance

  • RSF-RWF: Radioamateurs Without Frontiers

  • News in brief

EURAO Newsletter comes out quarterly, either in pdf format and as a website. Spread the word!

http://www.eurao.org/newsletter

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Wednesday 17th September 2014

Island activities:

IOTA-QRGs
CW: 28040 24920 21040 18098 14040 10114 7030 3530 kHz
SSB: 28560 28460 24950 21260 18128 14260 7055 3760 kHz

AS-200; JA5; Shikoku's Coastal Islands: Take/JI3DST will operate as JI3DST/5 from Shodo Island between Sept. 20 and 22. QRV on 40-6m in CW, SSB, and RTTY. Dates depend on wx conditions. QSL via h/c (d/B).

EU-001; SV5; Dodecanese: Fred/PA1FJ operates as SV5/PA1FJ/p from Karpathos Island (MIA MGD-013, WLOTA 1570, GIOTA DKS 016) between the 18th and 27th. QRV on HF in CW, SSB, and digital modes with an FT817 and a Buddistick antenna. QSL via h/c (d/B).

EU-023; 9H; Malta group: Jose/EA5IDQ activates Malta holiday-style as 9H3JA from the 18th to 25th on 40-10m in SSB and digital modes.
QSL via h/c (d/B), OQRS.

EU-032; F; Poitou-Charentes Region group: Operators Christine/F4GDI, Jean Michel/F4EWP, Pascal/ F8CGL, Lionel/F5HNQ, Nelly/F4HHR, and Didier/F1PPH will be active as TM32O from Oleron Island (DIFM AT-025, WLOTA 1369). QRV from Sept. 21 to 26 on 80-10m. QSL via F6KFI (d/B). http://tm32oleron.blogspot.de/

EU-038; PA; Noord Holland / Friesland / Groningen Province group: Dieter/DK1AW, Juergen/DL2AMT, Lutz/DL3ARK, Peter/DL4AMK, and Mar/DL5ASE pay a visit to Texel Island (WLOTA 0043) and operate as PA/homecalls between the 19th and 26th. QRV on 160-10m in CW, SSB, RTTY, and PSK; they also plan to activate PAFF-012 and PAFF-074. QSL via homecall. http://www.dxclub.net

EU-053; OJ0; Market Reef: Pasi/OH3WS will get on the air as OJ0W between Sept. 13 and 20 during his free time on the Reef. QRV on 40-10m. QSL via OH3WS (d/B).

EU-088; OZ; Kattegat group: Bernd/DL8AAV operates with the call OZ0AV from the 15th to the 27th holiday-style from Laeso Island (DIA NK-003, WLOTA 2820) on HF in CW and SSB. QSL via DL8AAV (B), eQSL.EU-110; 9A, Istra group: Operators Walter/I3VJW, Ampelio/IK3JBP, Mauro/IK3SCB, Flavio/I3JRF, Marco/IW3ICK, Roberto/IZ3JKI, Cale/IW3ILP, and Luca/IU3BXI are going to activate Porer Rock (IOCA CI-090, MIA MC-313, ARLHS CRO-014, CLHA CLH-111) as 9A/IQ3VO from Sept. 18 to 21. QRV with two stations on 80-10m in CW, SSB, RTTY, PSK31, and JT65A. They also plan to work on 6m in CW, SSB, MS, JT65A, and EME. Skeds for EME and MS via ON4KST's website. QSL via IQ3VO (bureau preferred, direct also ok).
http://www.ari.verona.it/forumnew/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=3569

EU-136; 9A; Kvarner group: Ede/HA5BWW, Pista/HA5AUC and Karl/HA7PC will get on the air from Rab Island (IOCA CI-096, MIA MC-330, WLOTA 2198) between the 22nd and 29th signing 9A/homecalls. QRV mainly in CW and SSB. QSL via homecalls (d/B).

EU-138; SM7; Blekinge County group: Fred/SM7DAY is currently active as SM7DAY/p from Senoren Island until the 20th. QRV on all HF bands in CW and SSB. QSL via h/c (d/B), OQRS.

OC-150; YB9; Tenggara Barat Islands and OC-022; YB9, Bali Island: Gabor/HA3JB, member of the International Police Association, is going to operate from Lombok (OC-150) and Bali (OC-022) between Sept. 25 and October 7 as YB9/HA3JB. QRV on HF in CW, SSB, and RTTY (including the contest). QSL via h/c, OQRS. http://www.ha3jb.com/yb9-ha3jb.html

SA-003; PY0F, ZY0F; Fernando de Noronha Archipelago: Andre/PP6ZZ gets on the air from Fernando de Noronha (DIB OC-01, DFB OC-03, PYFF-016, WLOTA 1208, ARLHS FDN-001, WW Loc HI36TD) between the 18th and 25th as PY0FF. QRV on 80-10m in CW, SSB, and digital modes. QSL via W9VA (d), LOTW, ClubLog.

Compiled by Friedrich, DL4BBH
Deutscher Amateur Radio Club
e-mail: iota@dxhf.darc.de

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News bulletin from OPDX

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ESTCube-1 Solar Sail Experiment

Tuesday 16th September 2014

Tõnis Eenmäe ES5TF brings news that on Tuesday, September 16, 2014, the team are starting to deploy the electric solar sail tether on-board the amateur radio CubeSat ESTCube-1.

The process of burning the tether end-mass and spool locks and reeling out the first few centimeters of tether will start during the 09.06 - 09.19Z pass over Estonia. This is a high pass and should be visible over most of the Europe.

The next good passes listed below (all in UTC) will be used to download images the telemetry logs and the images:
10.43 - 10.56
18.39 - 18.51
20.15 - 20.28

During the locks release process and after reeling the tether out some centimeters, images will be taken.

The other shorter passes during the day will be used to download the experiment data as quickly as possible (in Estonia, all daily passes are visible, but lowest ones are just couple of degrees above the northern horizon).

If everything is OK with the tether, additional unreeling will take place in coming days.

If you are interested in receiving ESTCube-1 during those exciting passes, the UZ7HO 9600 bps packet softmodem and an Online Telemetry Decoder by Mike Rupprecht http://www.dk3wn.info/files/
estcube_online.zip
can be used. But basically any 9600 bps G3RUH TNC or decoder can be used to receive ESTCube-1.

We are looking forward to receiving your reports on the address es5e AT estcube DOT eu, and we would really appreciate if you would also send received data in live, using Mike's decoder.

With best wishes,

Tõnis Eenmäe ES5TF

AMSAT-UK http://amsat-uk.org/

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Typhoon hits Central Philippines

Tuesday 16th September 2014

At least 70 people are missing after the Maharlika II experienced steering trouble and sank off the central Philippines during the approach of fast moving Typhoon Kalmaegi.

Due to the Typhoon, the Philippines Amateur Radio Association has activated its HERO network for emergency traffic and coordination.

PARA has requested that 7.095 plus or minus 5 kHz be kept clear.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council has asked all in its path to take the necessary precautions. The Typhoon over the Cagayan and Isabela provinces was bringing with it winds of 130km/h and gusts of 160km/h on Sunday, and expected move north-east before reaching the South China Sea on Tuesday.

Jim Linton VK3PC
Chairman
IARU Region 3 Disaster Communications Committee.

Philippine Amateur Radio Association
http://para.org.ph/

BBC News
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-29196687

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Ham Radio in The Register

Tuesday 16th September 2014

Richard Chirgwin reports in The Register that UK regulator Ofcom is looking for radio amateurs' opinions about proposed changes to spectrum and amateur licensing

He says "Ofcom also proposes permitting encryption for hams involved in RAYNET operations. Currently, encryption is forbidden, which creates a problem if an incident commander asks for encryption."

Read the article at
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/09/15/
radio_hams_can_encrypt_in_emergencies_says_ofcom/


Amateur Radio Licence Consultation
http://www.southgatearc.org/news/2014/september/
amateur_radio_licence_consultation.htm

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Update on local TV in the UK

Tuesday 16th September 2014

Ofcom has issued a progress update on local TV, two years since the first licences were awarded.

Local TV is a new form of broadcasting, enabled through legislation passed by Parliament in 2011. Ofcom is responsible for licensing local TV stations on digital terrestrial TV and has now issued 30 licences across the UK, to a wide range of different organisations, small and large (see table below).

Six local TV channels are now on-air, having broadcast some 6,400 hours of local programmes to a potential audience of six million across the UK, while more than 10 stations are preparing for launch before February 2015.

Two years on from awarding the first licences (in Grimsby and Brighton), the channels now on-air are:

• Estuary TV, Grimsby (broadcasting from November 2013)
• Mustard TV, Norwich (broadcasting from March 2014)
• London Live, London (broadcasting from March 2014)
• Notts TV, Nottingham (broadcasting from May 2014)
• STV Glasgow, Glasgow (broadcasting from June 2014)
• Latest TV, Brighton & Hove (broadcasting from August 2014)

A second phase of licensing is already under way and there is continued interest from potential applicants in launching channels across the UK. In July, Ofcom invited applications for new local TV channels in seven areas - Aberdeen, Ayr, Carlisle, Dundee, Forth Valley, Inverness and Stoke on Trent.

Licensing local TV

Local TV licensees are varied in type and size, reflecting the diverse nature of the UK demographic and geography. Licensees range from not-for-profit community ventures to new commercial partnerships between local newspapers, TV production companies and educational institutions.

In awarding local TV licences, Ofcom conducts a thorough assessment of the bids to select the one that best meets the requirements set by Parliament, such as meeting the needs of the local area.

Bidders must demonstrate that they would be financially sustainable and provide evidence that funding is in place, or would be if their application was successful. When awarding a licence, Ofcom carefully considers these factors and makes the best decision it can on the available evidence.

However, the nature of awarding licences for a new type of service in a competitive media market means that it is very unlikely that all channels will succeed. This is an inherent feature of the nature of awarding a large number of licences for a new service across very different parts of the UK.

We note that the holder of the Birmingham licence has gone into administration. The administrator is looking to transfer the licence to another party that could launch the service (which would require Ofcom’s consent). If this proves not possible, Ofcom would re-advertise promptly the licence in Birmingham.

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IOTA News from OPDX

Monday 15th September 2014

Island activities:

AS-099. Members of the Balkan Contest Group will be active as TC0A from Bozcaada Island in Asiatic Turkey between November 23rd and December 1st. Activity will also include the CQWW DX CW Contest (November 29-30th) as a Multi-2 entry. QSL via LoTW or direct to LZ1NK: NIKOLAY ENCHEV, P.O. Box 176, 4300 Karlovo, BULGARIA. Operators mentioned are Nick/LZ1NK, Christo/LZ3FN, Plamen/LZ1DCW, Llian/LZ1CNN, Nick/LZ3ND, Nasko/LZ3YY, Yasar/TA3D, Mustafa/TA2TX, Miroslav/LZ1MBU and Krasi/LZ2UW. For more detail, past operations and updates, see: http://tc3a.alle.bg

AS-073. Members of the North Of Peninsular Malaysia ARA BOYS (Contesters & DXers) will be active as 9M2SM from Pulau Perhentian Besar (WLOTA 2848) between September 26-28th. Activity will be on all HF bands using CW and SSB. Their operations will include an entry in the CQWW DX SSB Contest (September 27-28th). QSL via 9M2GET direct (see QRZ.com). No LoTW, No eQSL and No Bureau. Operators mentioned (10 brothers) Ahmad/9M2AGC, Zaki/9M2ZAK, Rizal/9M2RDX, Han/9W2SBD, Mohamad/9W2SBL, Hafizi/9W2TZW, Noh/9W2MNW, Syed/9M8SYA, Oja/9M2OUT and Hary/9M2GET.

AS-113. (Update/Reminder) By the time you read this, operators Yung/BU2BV, Ted/BV2OO, Su/BX2AI, Wu/BX2AM and Lee/BX2AN should be active as BO0D from TungYin Island, Matsu Islands, until September 20th. Activity will be on all HF bands using CW, SSB, the Digital modes and EME operations. QSL via the BV Bureau or the OQRS on ClubLog. For more info and updates, watch:
http://www.qrz.com/db/bo0d
https://twitter.com/@bo0d_2014
http://www.ctarl.org.tw/bv5ya/2013-14/2014-BO0D.htm

EU-038. Members of the German "DX Club Werratal" will be active as PA/homecall from Texel Island (WLOTA 0043, WFF PAFF-012 and WFF PAFF-074) between September 19-26th. Operators mentioned are Dieter/DK1AW, Juergen/DL2AMT, Lutz/DL3ARK, Peter/DL4AMK and mar/DL5SAE. Activity will be on 160-10 meters using CW, SSB, RTTY and BPSK. QSL via their home callsigns. For more details and updates, see: http://www.dxclub.net

EU-136. Ede, HA5BWW, and his friends Pista/HA5AUC and Karl/HA7PC will be operating once again as 9A/homecall from Rab Island, Croatia, between September 22-29th. They will be operating on CW mostly (99%), but some SSB activity expected as well (1 % hi). Their rigs are 2x IC-756PRO transceivers and R7000, W80-10, and Windom by HA5BT antennas. QSL via the HA Bureau or direct to their home callsigns.

OC-294. (Update/Reminder) Operators Cezar/VE3LYC, Craig/VK5CE, Johan/PA3EXX and Bob/KD1CT will attempt to operate from Sandy Islet between September 15-19th as VK6ISL. According to their Web page, the team will "arrive at Sandy Islet in the mid-afternoon of September 15th (local time). We will do our best to land, setup camp, and start the operation before nightfall, so expect us to be on the air by sometimes around 10-11 UTC."

They plan to have two stations on around-the-clock, using CW and SSB, on 40-10 meters. For one of the two stations, the Team will employ a solid state 400 watts amp, whereas the second station will use 100 watts. They will bring vertical antennas for 15m, 20m, and a multi-band antenna. The Pilot Station will be Bob, WB2YQH.

Their Web page states, "Sandy Islet represents the last IOTA group of Australia still waiting to be brought on the air for the first time! After multiple rounds of communication during the last almost three years, we are extremely pleased to report that the Department of Parks and Wildlife of Western Australia have agreed to approve a landing and operating permit for the Team. This permit is valid until September 30th, before the start of the Giant Green Turtles hatching season."
QSL via VE3LYC (see Web page), direct or by the Bureau. An OQRS will be available at ClubLog. For more details and updates, watch:
http://vk6isl.weebly.com

Compiled by Tedd Mirgliotta, KB8NW OPDX

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

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Transmitter Noise

Monday 15th September 2014

Many of us are familiar with the work done by Rob Sherwood NC0B over the years to identify rigs with poor strong-signal performance on receive - of particular relevance to contesters and DXers
www.sherweng.com/table.html

Jim Brown K9YC has now done a similar exercise, except he has measured the trash (key clicks, intermodulation distortion, and phase noise) generated by some popular rigs on transmit.

If you're thinking of buying a new rig, it's worth reading this first -
k9yc.com/TXNoise.pdf

IRTS

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Another broadcaster to end AM transmissions

Sunday 14th September 2014

Medium Wave Info reports that Deutschland Radio will end broadcasting in the Medium and Long Wave bands

They say that on December 31, 2014, 'Donebach' 153 kHz, 'Sehlendorf' and 'Oranienburg' 177 kHz and 'Aholming' 207 kHz will close. Six medium wave stations are planned to close on December 31, 2015.

Medium wave broadcasting in Germany in Google English
http://tinyurl.com/German-MW-Broadcasting

Medium Wave Info
http://mediumwave.info/news.html

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Shortwave Numbers Stations: A bad day to be a Cuban spy

Sunday 14th September 2014

While band scanning last Sunday (September 8, 2014) I stumbled upon the Cuban numbers station HM01 on 11,530 kHz at 17:30 UTC.

It’s always intriguing to hear numbers stations, but I prefer those that stick to pure vocal number strings; HM01 has numbers with digital bursts between number sets, which is a more fatiguing listening experience.
Nonetheless, I kept it playing in the background as I tooled around the radio room Sunday afternoon, putting away supplies from my recent three week road trip.

Several times during the HM01 broadcast, I heard the audio (not the AM carrier) drop in the middle of numbers sets and digital bursts...

http://wp.me/pn3uc-2NF

Thomas K4SWL

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Radio Society of Great Britain partners up with RFinder

Saturday 13th September 2014

The Radio Society of Great Britain (RSGB) and RFinder are pleased to announce a new business partnership agreement effective from the 1st August 2014.

The RSGB will be supplying the very latest UK repeater data for the RFinder which is a steadily growing worldwide repeater directory including IRLP, Echolink, AllStar, DStar, MotoTRBO, and even Winlink information.

RFinder screen showing the route from Aberdeen to St. Ives

RFinder currently has over 175 countries and 50,000 repeaters in the directory. Access to the World Wide Repeater Directory is provided by any version of the RFinder smartphone apps on Android, iPhone and iPad/iPod Touch. The same user-id enables access from any version of the RFinder app, the browser interface (web.rfinder.net), or through a growing list of third-party memory programming applications such as RT Systems radio programmers and CHIRP open source software.

One subscription, access to worldwide repeater data from any computing device on Windows, Linux, OS X, web, Android iPhone and soon on Windows Phone! RFinderPi, the open-source radio programmer for RFinder is based on Raspberry Pi, a "Made in Great Britain" product.

“The RFinder team is honoured to be RSGB’s partner providing the very latest repeater information for the Radio Amateurs of Great Britain. We consider Great Britain the birthplace of so many advancements in radio over the past century and we look forward to working with hams “across the pond,” says Bob Greenberg, creator of RFinder – The World Wide Repeater Directory.

The RSGB is the voice of Amateur Radio for all Great Britain and is also a member society of the IARU (International Amateur Radio Union).

More information about RFinder can be found at www.rfinder.net or on Facebook.com/rfinderwwrd
RFinder can be found in Google Play or The Apple App Store
eMail RFinder at w2cyk@rfinder.net

Bob Greenberg, W2CYK

 

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Satellite Farm Tender for BBC due to the closure of Television Centre London

Saturday 13th September 2014

VIEWING: By prior appointment with the Auctioneers only.
At: BBC TVC, Wood Lane, Shepherd’s Bush, London, W12 7RJ, England.
N.B. No Parking available at BBC TVC

http://www.ppauctions.com/auction.php?id=116

A unique opportunity to purchase the BBC Broadcasting Sat Farm inc:
Approximately 20 satellite dishes and ancillary equipment available either as a whole or in part:-
Andrew, Channel Master, Vertex, Weston, SA, Precision etc Satellite Dishes to 11m approx, antennae & associated equipment.

FOR FURTHER SPECS / DETAILS PLEASE SEE SALE FLYSHEET (LINK ABOVE)

PLEASE CONTACT US TO ARRANGE A VIEWING OR FOR FURTHER INFORMATION

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Amateur Radio Licence Consultation

Friday 12th September 2014

The RSGB General Manager Graham Coomber G0NBI has released a statement regarding the Ofcom amateur radio licence consultation

To assist Ofcom prepare for their consultation the Society ran several Litmus Tests last year to provide feedback to Ofcom prior to their setting up of the consultation questions. The outcome of the process and the submissions that the Society made to Ofcom are available on the RSGB website -
http://rsgb.org/main/rsgb-consultations/consultation-archive/
ofcom-consultations/licence-review-preparation/

In respect of RSLs, the response is available at
http://rsgb.org/main/rsgb-consultations/consultation-archive/ofcom-consultations/licence-review-preparation/regional-secondary-locator/
and reproduced below.

The Society understands that the Secondary Regional Identifier (RSL) is not an ITU-R Radio Regulations requirement, but can be requested at the discretion of the national administration (in our case Ofcom). The RSGB also recognizes that Ofcom are best positioned to determine the legality of the current or possible changes to the wording of clause 2(2) of the Licence Schedule, so this response does not consider the legal aspects; but equal attention must be given to functional issues and to the impact of any change. The function of an amateur call sign is to identify each individual station concisely and unambiguously to any listener around the world (including the monitoring services of other administrations). The established UK system of RSL achieves that in a way that is widely known and understood. Any unilateral change by OFCOM would thus have a negative impact on stakeholders, not only in the UK but around the world. That impact would need to be formally assessed and could only be justified in terms of some overriding need. RSGB sees no such need or justification for changing the existing system.

The purpose of this document is to give RSGB views on the potential impact of changes to usage of the RSL.

The overriding view from those participating in our consultation, which was paralleled at the Ofcom session at the recent RSGB Convention, is that the current practice of using the appropriate RSL at the point of where the transmitter is located should stand. Ofcom may wish to consider if the wording in the Licence Schedule needs to be improved to make this clear.

The RSGB is keen to point out the following potential impacts:

a) Current practice is to change the RSL as the station operates in different UK Nations. Amateurs outside the UK may be confused where the appropriate RSL for the actual location of the station is not used, or its application is made optional.
b) Short-term operation from those UK Nations where amateur operations are less common will significantly reduce if the use the appropriate Regional Secondary Locator is not allowed.
c) Various International Amateur Awards and Contest adjudication may be made more complicated if changes are made to the usage of RSLs. Some contests too rely on the RSL attract activity.
d) There may be an impact in terms of usage by amateurs visiting from overseas and operating under the CEPT TR61-01 arrangements.

The RSGB proposes that the current interpretation of Clause 2(2) in the licence schedule be strengthened by clarifying that the appropriate RSL must be used for alternative, temporary or mobile operations. Further, that call signs with non-RSLs, such as special prefixes, may be used through variation of the licence at the request of the licensee.

Within our consultation on the RSL there were several comments about the shortcoming of lack of regional location with the use of the GB prefix for Special Event Stations. The RSGB is willing to work with Ofcom to reach an outcome that will better meet UK amateur’s needs.

Comment was made in our consultation that inclusion of the RSL issue, with its implications about regional identity, would be inappropriate to include in the Licence Review if this was to take place during the course of the Scottish Referendum Campaign.

To inform its response to the consultation document, the Society will be once more giving all amateurs the opportunity to contribute their views via a discussion forum. This will be available at
http://rsgb.org/main/operating/licensing-novs-visitors/licence-review/ shortly.

The full 32-page consultation document is here:
http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/consultations/amateur-radio-licence

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Pair of solar CME's to strike Earth

Friday 12th September 2014

Chris Williams writes on The Register about the Coronal Mass Ejections (CME) that occured September 9/10

Earth's magnetic field is expected to receive a double-blow from a pair of CMEs resulting in strong geomagnetic storms on Sept. 12 and 13.

People in northern Europe, Asia, Canada, and the north of the United States may see some auroras as a result.

Read the article and watch the video at
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/09/11/solar_flare_livestream/

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GB0ABL Anderton Boat Lift

Friday 12th September 2014

The Nothwich Guardian reports the Mid-Cheshire Amateur Radio Society will be transmitting from the Anderton Boat Lift on Sunday, Sept 14

They say amateur radio enthusiasts will be contacting boat lifts across Europe this weekend as part of a special event station transmitting from Anderton Boat Lift.

The event is promoting the society and amateur radio in general as well as marking the accolade for the boat lift when it received an engineering heritage award in recognition of its status as the oldest operational boat lift in the world.

Read the article at
http://www.northwichguardian.co.uk/news/
11467184.Anderton_Boat_Lift_will_be_on_the_air_this_Sunday/


Mid-Cheshire Amateur Radio Society
http://www.midcars.org/

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X-Flare Wednesday evening

Thursday 11th September 2014

Space Weather reports Earth-orbiting satellites detected a powerful X1.6-class solar flare at 17:46 UT on September 10

The source was active sunspot AR2158, which is directly facing Earth. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded the extreme ultraviolet flash.

Ionizing radiation from the flare could cause HF radio blackouts and other communications disturbances, especially on the day-lit side of Earth. Confirmation was awaited from the SOHO and STEREO spacecraft to determine if a CME emerges from the blast site. If so, the cloud would likely be aimed directly at Earth and could reach our planet in 2 to 3 days.

Check Space Weather for further information
http://spaceweather.com/

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Five frequencies on Friday's balloon flight

Thursday 11th September 2014

Radio amateur David Akerman M0RPI will launch his 'Superman' Raspberry Pi balloon on Friday, September 12 between 11am and 12pm. The signals should be receivable over most of the British Isles

These frequencies will be used:

- LEX 434.400 MHz, 425 Hz shift, 50 baud, 7 N 2
- KALEL 434.420 MHz, 470 Hz shift, 50 baud, 8 N 2
- CLARK 434.435 MHz, 880 Hz, 600 baud, 8 N 2, SSDV
- LOIS 434.465 MHz, 470 Hz shift, 50 baud, 8 N 2
- OLSEN 434.480 MHz, 880 Hz, 600 baud, 8 N 2, SSDV

SSDV stands for Slow Scan Digital Video.

KALEL is in Superman's body and will track his descent after he is ejected from the main payload.

LEX (appropriately) is doing the cutting down, and has extra fields in the telemetry for the cutdown readiness and status.

Currently ejection altitude is 28 km and expected burst is 33 km.

Video streaming from launch site:
http://www.batc.tv/streams/m0rpi

Video streaming from chase car:
http://www.batc.tv/streams/m0rpi_chase

See the predicted flight path at
http://pic.twitter.com/meBphz7PD2

Useful 434 MHz balloon links
http://amsat-uk.org/beginners/balloons/

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Noble Radio NR-4SC 4 Meter SSB/CW Transceiver

Thursday 11th September 2014

New on the market
The NR-4SC is a simple to use 10 Watt (minimum) 4 Meter SSB/CW transceiver.

The radio operates USB and CW.

The NR-4SC uses a single conversion design with an IF frequency of 10.7 MHz. Front end bandpass filters limit out of band signals into the RF Preamp stage.

A double balanced diode ring mixer provides good strong signal handling capability. There are two 8 pole crystal filters following the mixer which are designed for 3.0 kHz and 500 Hz -6dB bandwidths. The 3 kHz filter allows for good SSB voice fidelity while the 500 Hz filter provides good adjacent channel rejection on CW. Either filter can be selected in both modes.

Two IF amplifier stages and fast attack AGC provide good receiver sensitivity while leveling the audio output on strong signals. AGC action starts at approximately a -120 dBm input signal level.

The local oscillator is derived from a DDS/PLL circuit providing a high degree of stability and low noise.

A high stability 107.374 MHz reference oscillator is used for all local oscillator generation. The high frequency provides low DDS spurious out-put.

The transceiver offers a 10.7MHz IF out on the back panel for connection to an SDR so it may be used with a PC for a Spec-tral Display.
Other features of the
NR-4SC include RIT (Receiver Incremental Tuning) and SPLIT mode functions as well as a built in Iambic Keyer for CW. The AGC rate has a FAST and SLOW speed to suit operator preference.

Specifications
1) SSB/CW
2) 10 Watt output power
3) Built in Iambic keyer
4) Analog S-meter, not a bargraph.
5) RIT
6) SPLIT
7) Variable Speed Tuning VST
8) Wide and Narrow filter
9) Fast and Slow selectable AGC
10) Output to key an external Amplifier
11) Can be switched for QSK and Non QSK compatible Amps
12) Simultaneous display of RX and TX frequencies
13) 13.8VDC at 4 Amps TX current
14) 650 mA RX current
15) Built in loudspeaker
16) Audio output .6 Watt
17) 10.7 MHz IF output
18) RX Sensitivity -130dbm MDS
19) IF rejection greater than 100db
20) Blocking dynamic range 107db
21) Third Order Dynamic Range = 96db (IP3 = +14dBm)
22) 2nd Order Dynamic Range 87db (IP2 = +44dBm)
23) TX spurious is better than - 55dBc which meets CE ETSI EN301 783-1 standards

Price in The Netherlands : € 499,00 incl. 21% Dutch VAT.
More information at : www.nobleradio.eu
Also available : NR-6SC 6 Meter SSB/CW Transceiver

Rob PE9PE

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Thursday 11th September 2014

Island activities:

IOTA-QRGs
CW: 28040 24920 21040 18098 14040 10114 7030 3530 kHz
SSB: 28560 28460 24950 21260 18128 14260 7055 3760 kHz

AS-041; JA4; Oki Islands: Hiro/JS3CTQ will be active as JA6TBE/4 from Oki between the 12th and 15th. QSL via JS3CTQ (d/B).

AS-113; BV; Matsu Islands: Yung/BU2BV, Ted/BV2OO, Su/BX2AI, Wu/BX2AM, and Lee/BX2AN join forces to activate Tung Yin Island (WLOTA 2310) as BO0D from the 13th othe 20th. QRV in CW, SSB, and digital modes. QSL via bureau, OQRS.

AS-200; JA5; Shikoku's Coastal Islands: Kenji/JA4GXS activates Shodo Island from Sept. 13 to 15 as JA4GXS/5 on 40-17m in CW and SSB. QSL via h/c (d/B).

EU-003; CU1, CU2; Eastern Azores group: Gerald/DL4KG pays a visit to Sao Miguel Island from the 10th to 28th and will get on the air mainly in CW as CT8/DL4kG. QSL via h/c (d/B), LoTW.

EU-174; SV; Makedonia/Thraki Region group: Laci/HA0HW returns to Thassos Island (GIOTA NAS-037, MIA MG-124, WLOTA LH-4186, WW Loc. KN20hs) from the 12th to 22nd. QRV as SW8WW on 80-6m, mainly in CW with some SSB and maybe RTTY. QSL via h/c (d/B), OQRS.

EU-174; SV; Makedonia/Thraki Region group: Gabi, HA1YA, joins Laci on Thassos and works as SV8/HA1YA, mainly on 6 and 2m, before moving on to Limnos Island (EU-049) on the 24th. QSL direct via HA1YA.

NA-014; VE9; New Brunswick Province South group: Michael/KI1U will put Grand Manan Island (CIsA NB003, WLOTA 0082) on the air from the 10th to the 14th as KI1U/VE9 (mainly CW). QSL via h/c (d/B), LoTW.

NA-079; W4; Florida State (Dry Tortugas Islands) group: Dennis/W5MZU gets on the air from Dry Tortugas Islands (WWFF KFF-023) as W5MZU/4 between the 11th and the 13th. QRV only on 10m SSB. QSL via h/c (d).

OC-086; KH0; Northern Mariana Islands: Nobuaki/JA0JHQ avails himself of the shack in the Himawari Hotel on Saipan (USI NI002S, WLOTA 1333, WW Loc. QK25UF). QRV from Sept. 12 to 15 as AH0CO on HF in CW (mostly), SSB (including the WAEDC SSB Contest (Sept. 13/14) and digital modes. QSL via h/c (d/B).

OC-294; VK; Sandy Island: Craig/VK5CE, Cezar/VE3LYC, Johan/PA3EXX, and Bob/KD1CT activate Sandy Islet (NEW-ONE) from the 15th to the 19th as VK6ISL. QRV with two stations on 40-10m in CW and SSB. QSL via VE3LYC (d), OQRS preferred. http://vk6isl.weebly.com

Papua New Guinea - IOTA Tour:
Derek/G3KHZ and Hans/SM6CVX announce an IOTA Tour between Sept. 11 and 30 according to the following schedule:

* OC-008; P2, Bismarck Archipelago: P29VCX Sept. 11 - 14, New Britain Island.
* OC-258; P2, Papua New Guinea's Coastal Islands North: P29NI Sept. 15 - 20, Kranket Island.
* OC-115; P2, Trobriand Islands: P29VCX Sept. 21 - 25, Kiriwina Island.
* OC-240; P2, Papua New Guinea's Coastal Islands East: P29NI Sept. 25 - 30, Loloata Island.

QRV mainly in CW, but also daily in SSB and RTTY on 20 and 15m.
QSL P29NI via G3KHZ (d/B), P29VCX via SM6CVX (d/B).
http://p29ni.weebly.com/ and  http://p29ni2014.weebly.com/

IOTA - Video:
The film production company TX Factor plans a video about IOTA and is looking for suitable film and picture material by IOTA-DXpeditioners. Interested parties are asked to contact the firm before Sept. 21: info@txfactor.co.uk

Compiled by Friedrich, DL4BBH
Deutscher Amateur Radio Club
e-mail: iota@dxhf.darc.de

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News bulletin from OPDX

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LTE test transmissions in ham radio 2.3 GHz band

Wednesday 10th September 2014

The RSGB reports that Ofcom have advised that there are expected to be LTE test transmissions over the next few months in the 13 cms/2.3 GHz band

(LTE = a 4G mobile communications standard for which users should see data speeds up to 10 time faster than the current 3G network)

The tests will be in the central London area and will be up to 38dBW erp. If licensed Radio Amateurs should become aware of unusual transmissions, they are asked to bear this in mind.

Source: Radio Society of Great Britain
http://www.rsgb.org/

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Ofcom Consultation - Amateur licence changes from April 2015

Tuesday 9th September 2014

UK regulator Ofcom has today published a 32 page proposal covering possible changes to the UK amateur radio licence. If approved these could come into effect from April 2015

In summary, the changes proposed are:

Dropping the Regional Secondary Locators ("M" for Scotland, "W" for Wales, etc), except for Intermediate
Relaxing how we use our callsigns on-air
Access to 470kHz and 5MHZ for Full licencees without an NoV
Changes to club licence ownership
A number of wording changes, mostly for clarification

The consultation runs from now until the 20th of October 2014.

The full 32-page consultation document is here: http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/consultations/amateur-radio-licence

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Friedrichshafen presentations available online

Tuesday 9th September 2014

The ARRL reports key presentations from the 2014 'Ham Radio' international exhibition in Friedrichshafen, Germany, have been posted online

The Vienna-based DokuFunk archive offers both audio and video presentations from the 2014 Ham Radio, which is Europe’s largest Amateur Radio gathering.

PowerPoint presentations in English include :-

   “The Enigma and Other famous Cipher Machines” by Tom Perera, W1TP;

   “FT5ZM — Amsterdam Island DXpedition” by Ralph Fedor, K0IR;

   “K9W — Wake Atoll 2013 Commemorative Expedition” by Lou Dietrich, N2TU;

   “VK9MT — Mellish Reef DXpedition” by Leslie P. Kalmus, W2LK.

The German-language presentation “Yagi und Quad Antennen für den Kurzwellenamateur” (Yagi and Quad Antennas for HF” by Martin Steyer, DK7ZB, also is available.

The DokuFunk site offers selected Ham Radio presentations dating back to 2008.

Ham Radio 2014 Lectures
http://www.dokufunk.org/amateur_radio/contributions/
?CID=9458#A14975


DokuFunk
http://www.dokufunk.org/index.php?lang=EN

Source ARRL
http://arrl.org/

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NASA launches new era of Earth science from space station

Tuesday 9th September 2014

The launch of a NASA ocean winds sensor to the International Space Station (ISS) this month inaugurates a new era of Earth observation that will leverage the space station's unique vantage point in space.

Before the end of the decade, six NASA Earth science instruments will be mounted to the station to help scientists study our changing planet.

The first NASA Earth-observing instrument to be mounted on the exterior of the space station will launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, on the next SpaceX Commercial Resupply Services flight, currently targeted for no earlier than Sept. 19. ISS-RapidScat will monitor ocean winds for climate research, weather predictions and hurricane monitoring from the space station.

The second instrument is the Cloud-Aerosol Transport System (CATS), a laser instrument that will measure clouds and the location and distribution of airborne particles such as pollution, mineral dust, smoke, and other particulates in the atmosphere. CATS will follow ISS-RapidScat on the fifth SpaceX space station resupply flight, targeted for December.

Image Credit: NASA

"We're seeing the space station come into its own as an Earth-observing platform," said Julie Robinson, chief scientist for the International Space Station Program at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. "It has a different orbit than other Earth remote sensing platforms. It’s closer to Earth, and it sees Earth at different times of day with a different schedule. That offers opportunities that complement other Earth-sensing instruments in orbit today."

The space station-based instruments join a fleet of 17 NASA Earth-observing missions currently providing data on the dynamic and complex Earth system. ISS-RapidScat and CATS follow the February launch of the Global Precipitation Measurement Core Observatory, a joint mission with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, and the July launch of the Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2, making 2014 one of the busiest periods for new NASA Earth science missions in more than a decade.

Most of the agency’s free-flying, Earth-observing satellites orbit the planet over the poles at altitudes higher than 400 miles in order to gather data from all parts of the planet. Although the space station does not pass over Earth’s polar regions, its 240-mile high orbit does offer logistical and scientific advantages.

"With the space station we don't have to build a spacecraft to gather new data -- it's already there,” said Stephen Volz, associate director of flight programs in the Earth Science Division at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “The orbit enables rare, cross-disciplinary observations when the station flies under another sensor on a satellite. Designing instruments for the space station also gives us a chance to do high-risk, high-return instruments in a relatively economical way."

The data provided by ISS-RapidScat will support weather and marine forecasting, including tracking storms and hurricanes. The station's orbit will allow the instrument to make repeated, regular observations over the same locations at different times of day, providing the first near-global measurements of how winds change throughout the day. ISS-RapidScat was built by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California.

CATS is a laser remote-sensing instrument, or lidar, that measures clouds and tiny aerosol particles in the atmosphere. These atmospheric components play a critical part in understanding how human activities such as pollution and fossil fuel burning contribute to climate change. CATS was built by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.

Two additional NASA Earth science instruments are scheduled to launch to the station in 2016. The Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment III (SAGE III), will measure aerosols, ozone, water vapor and other gases in the upper atmosphere to help scientists assess how the ozone layer is recovering and better understand global climate change. SAGE III was developed by NASA's Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, and built by Ball Aerospace of Boulder, Colorado.

The Lightning Imaging Sensor (LIS) will detect and locate lightning over tropical and mid-latitude regions of the globe. The first LIS was launched in 1997 as part of NASA’s Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission. The sensor will monitor lightning for Earth science studies and provide cross-sensor calibration and validation with other space-borne instruments and ground-based lightning networks. LIS was developed by NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

In July, NASA selected proposals for two new instruments that will observe changes in global vegetation from the space station, giving scientists new ways to observe how forests and ecosystems are affected by changes in climate and land use change. Both sensors will be completed before the end of the decade.

The Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) will use a laser-based system to study forest canopy structure in a range of ecosystems, from the tropics to the high northern latitudes. The observations will help scientists better understand the changes in carbon storage within forests from both human activities and natural climate variations. GEDI is managed by scientists at the University of Maryland, College Park.

The ECOsystem Spaceborne Thermal Radiometer Experiment on Space Station (ECOSTRESS) is a high-resolution multiple wavelength thermal imaging spectrometer that will study water use and water stress in vegetation. Measurements of the loss of water from growing leaves and evaporation from the soil will help reveal how ecosystems change with climate and provide a critical link between the water cycle and plant health in both natural and agricultural ecosystems. ECOSTRESS is managed by JPL.

The space station provides several capabilities useful to both instruments. The space station orbit provides more observation time of forests and vegetation over temperate land masses than possible with the polar orbit commonly used for other types of Earth observations. The GEDI laser requires significant power resources, which the space station can provide.

For more information on Earth science activities aboard the space station, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/issearthscience

NASA monitors Earth's vital signs from land, air and space with a fleet of satellites and ambitious airborne and ground-based observation campaigns. NASA develops new ways to observe and study Earth's interconnected natural systems with long-term data records and computer analysis tools to better see how our planet is changing. The agency shares this unique knowledge with the global community and works with institutions in the United States and around the world that contribute to understanding and protecting our home planet.

For more information about NASA's Earth science activities in 2014, visit:
http://www.nasa.gov/earthrightnow

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Are we running out of radio frequency space?

Tuesday 9th September 2014

As demand for new mobile services grow, can the UK’s limited radio frequencies keep up with technological development? Or will there be a serious shortage of RF space in the very near future?

The last 15 years have seen an explosion of mobile technologies. Smartphones, TV channels, wireless internet and mobile data, all requiring a chunk of the mobile spectrum, but with a relative finite amount of space how much more can it hold?

Read the full article at
http://www.ebuyer.com/blog/2014/07/are-we-running-out-of-radio-frequency-space

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How to detect radio waves

Monday 8th September 2014

Sandeep Baruah VU2MUE has released a video showing a simple circuit which can be used to demonstrate electromagnetic radiation to young people

Take 30 cm of copper wire to form a loop with one OA85 point contact germanium diode and a Light Emitting Diode (LED) in series in series. This simple passive device detects the electromagnetic radiation from the mobile phone.

When the radio waves from the mobile phone passed through the copper loop, the free electrons in the copper wire starts oscillating at the frequency of the mobile phone. This oscillating current of electrons are converted to DC current by the Germanium diode and the LED (Light Emitting Diode). Only a single LED without the diode should also work but due to very high internal capacitance of the LED, the copper loop de-tunes.

Full details are given at
http://www.creative-science.org.uk/mobile_LED.html

Watch How to detect radio wave (Radio Wave Detector)!

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How clean is your transmit signal ?

Monday 8th September 2014

Jim Brown K9YC has published a comparison of ARRL Lab Data for selected transceivers, the results may surprise you

Read his article at
http://k9yc.com/TXNoise.pdf

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IOTA News from OPDX

Monday 8th September 2014

Island activities:

AF-019. (Update to OPDX.1153) The IG9Y Lampedusa Contest Team will continue the fun of last year and enter in this year's CQWW DX CW+SSB Contests from the same northern location on the Island of Lampedusa - ZONE 33 (African Italy) with two international Multi/Multi teams of about 30 operators in total using the new callsign: IO9Y. All info can be found on the IG9Y-LCT Web site
at: http://ig9y.com
ADDED NOTE: IG9Y is a lone African Entity that counts in the CQDX Marathon!!!

OC-021. Budi, YF1AR, is now active as YF1AR/p for the next several weeks on the weekends from Java Island. His activity will be dedicated to 80m night-time operations and during his sparetime on 40m daytime. He mentions that his antenna is a vertical full size on a 20m aluminium tubing put over the sea, 20m away from the beach on the Java Sea. Radio is a Yaesu FT450D with tuner using 100 watts. QSL via N2OO or use the OQRS on ClubLog. For more details and updates, see:
http://www.yf1ar.com/2014/09/yf1arp-qrv-dedicated-80m-band.html

OC-133. Saty, JE1JKL, will once again be active as 9M6NA from Labuan Island, East Malaysia, during the CQWW DX CW Contest (November 29-30th) as a Single-Op/All-Band/High-Power entry. QSL via LoTW, or to JE1JKL, by the Bureao or direct. To see his station, visit:
http://jsfc.org/je1jkl/9m6na.html

LA-QRP-IOTA-EXPEDITION. Frank, DH0JAE, will be active as LA/DH0JAE from several Norway IOTAs between September 8-20th. IOTAs mentioned are Donna Island (EU-062), Froya Island (EU-036), More OG Romsdal County Center Group (EU-056) and More OG Romsdal County South Group (EU-079). Frank states, "For the expedition your paper-QSL is not needed. I take these for my fun and for the hams in the world." QSL via his home callsign, direct (EU 0.75 EURO, DX 1 IRC or 1 green stamp) --- all others return via Bureau. He does use LoTW. A log search is available via ClubLog:
https://secure.clublog.org/logsearch/LA/DH0JAE

Compiled by Tedd Mirgliotta, KB8NW OPDX

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

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3.4 GHz under threat in Australia

Saturday 6th September 2014

WIA News provides an update on the worrying situation regarding 3.4 GHz in Australia

Back in June the WIA advised us all that our 9 cm Amateur Band may be in jeopardy. You can read all that Roger Harrison, VK2ZRH prepared in the "Hot Issues" section of the wia web page, or direct go to
http://www.wia.org.au/newsevents/hotissues/current/index.php

Now the Department of Communications have placed a Consultation on draft Direction to use 3.5 GHz band spectrum for the National Broadband Network spectrum gap on the web.

An exposure draft of the Australian Communications and Media Authority (3.5 GHz frequency band) Direction 2014 has been issued for public consultation.

The draft Direction relates to the use of spectrum in 3400 MHz up to and including 3425 MHz; and from 3492.5 MHz up to and including 3542.5 MHz

Keep an eye out on WIA Front Page News and the Hot Issues section for details and response required.

Oh and only a few weeks’ notice, submissions must be received by September 22.


Source WIA News

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The 5MHz Newsletter

Saturday 6th September 2014

The latest edition of The 5MHz Newsletter is now available for free download from

http://tinyurl.com/m9a9puy

The Summer 2014 edition (No.11) features the latest 5 MHz News, plus a Midsummer's Day on 5 MHz and BeaconSpot looks at the new Swiss 5 MHz Beacon.

Previous copies are now archived at
http://tinyurl.com/p22gybh
and also available for download

Cheers

Paul G4MWO

Editor
The 5 MHz Newsletter

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MSF outage notice

Saturday 6th September 2014

The MSF 60 kHz time and frequency signal broadcast from Anthorn Radio Station will be shut down on Thursday 11 September 2014 from 10:00 to 14:00 BST

The interruption to the transmission is required to allow maintenance work to be carried out in safety.

If you require any additional information, please contact us at:
www.npl.co.uk/contact-us

Or alternatively please see our website:
www.npl.co.uk/time

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SB6 Ultra Portable 6m Beam

Friday 5th September 2014

Portable specialists SOTABEAMS have just announced an exciting new product.

The SB6 is a lightweight portable beam antenna for the sixmetre band that has been produced in response to customer demand.

50MHz is a great band for portable operating; it supports so many different modes of propagation that results are often surprising, with some amazing DX being possible.

The SB6 has been designed to be very quick to set up and use, with assembly taking less than 90 seconds. As it has been designed for portable use, the packed-length and weight are low at 55 cm (22 inches) and 700g (1.54lb). The SB6 has a calculated gain of 11dBi and front to back ratio of 24dB when mounted at its design height of 4 metres above ground level. The SB6 has been tested in contests and is a proven performer.

Details at http://www.sotabeams.co.uk/sb6-6m-ultra-portable-beam/

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Near-Earth asteroid flyby this weekend

Friday 5th September 2014

On Sunday, September 7th, a house-sized asteroid named '2014 RC' will fly through the Earth-Moon system approximately 40,000 km from our planet.

At closest approach, the space rock will be almost inside the orbit of Earth's geosynchronous satellites.

Amateur astronomers, especially those in the southern hemisphere, may be able to observe the flyby.

Check http://spaceweather.com for more information.

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New RSGB Youth Committee

Thursday 4th September 2014

The RSGB Board has approved the formation of a new committee to provide a focus for its young members and to help promote amateur radio amongst the younger sections of society

The new committee will be known as the Youth Committee.

Members of the Youth Committee must be under 26 years of age and be members of the Society (which includes Junior and Student members) and applications for membership of the committee are now invited.

Details of how to apply are here
http://rsgb.org/main/about-us/volunteering-for-the-rsgb/
youth-committee-2/


Youth Committee
http://rsgb.org/main/about-us/committees/youth-committee

Source http://rsgb.org/main/blog/uncategorized/2014/09/03/
new-youth-committee
/

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International Air Ambulance Week 2014

Thursday 4th September 2014

The new Amateur Radio Events Organisation wish to advise everyone of a new 9-day special event taking place, commencing on 27 September 2014.

The event will be known as the IAW (International Air-ambulance Weekend) and is in support of the many Air Ambulance services around the world and particularly those in the UK, which are donation funded.

More details on the event, it aims and a registration form to take part can be found at http://www.radio-amateur-events.org - Registration is entirely free of cost.

73 Jon M0HEM

http://www.qrz.com/db/m0hem

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Ham Radio in Motherboard article

Thursday 4th September 2014

The UK Editor of Motherboard Victoria Turk @VickiTurk interviewed Steve Netting M0SPN in the Amateur Radio village at the Electromagnetic Field event EMF 2014

The 3-day event was held Aug 29-31 near Bletchley, Milton Keynes. Vicki's article has a good picture of the special event station GB2EMF.

Read Not Your 'Traditional Hacker Camp': Inside Electromagnetic Field Festival
http://motherboard.vice.com/read/
inside-uks-electromagnetic-field-festival


BBC reports EMF 2014 about “Getting kids involved”
http://amsat-uk.org/2014/09/02/bbc-reports-emf-2014/

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Thursday 4th September 2014

Island activities:

IOTA-QRGs
CW: 28040 24920 21040 18098 14040 10114 7030 3530 kHz
SSB: 28560 28460 24950 21260 18128 14260 7055 3760 kHz

IOTA-News - SA-100P
G3KMA's new list of IOTA references now includes SA-100P - Arica and Parinacota/Tarapaca Region group (CE1).
http://www.g3kma.dsl.pipex.com/IOTA%20Programme
%20New%20Island%20Groups.pdf

EU-001; SV5; Dodecanes: George/GM0IIO is going to activate Kos Island until September8 as SV5/GM0IIO on 20 and 17m in CW and SSB. QSL via h/c (d).

EU-049; SV; North Aegean Islands (Voreio Aigalo): Cees/PA3FBT operates from Lesvos Island (GIOTA NAS-014, MIA MG-064, WLOTA 0165) between the 4th and 10th as SV8/PA3FBT/p on 20m and maybe also on 10m. QSL via h/c (d/B), LotW, eQSL.

EU-109; G, M; Farne Islands: Nobby/G0VJG, Dave/EI9FBB, Richard/G7GLW, and Charles/M0OXO activate Farne Islands as M0UKI/p for the IARU Region 1 Fieldday (September 6/7). Wx permitting they will also try to operate from the lighthouse on Longstone Island
(WLOTA 0234, ARLHS ENG-070). QSL via M0OXO (d/B), bureau cards only via OQRS.
http://www.m0oxo.com

LA-Tour: DH0JAE and DM3ZF Reinhard/DM3ZF and Frank/DH0JAE are planning to visit EU-062, EU-036, EU-056, and EU-079 between the 8th and 19th. QRV as LA/homecalls in CW and SSB. For skeds and more info see qrz.com. QSL via h/c (d/B).

NA-052; W4; Florida State South West (Collier/ Monroe County) group: Bruce/N9BX gets on the air from Marco Island signing N9BX/4 between the 3rd and 9th. QRV on HF in CW and SSB. QL via h/c (d), LoTW, OQRS.

NA-063; CY0; Sable Island: Gary/VE1RGB, Randy/N0TG and Murray/WA4DAN will put Sable on the air on September 8 (ca 1330z - 2130z). QRV as CY0C, mainly on 30, 20, and 17m in CW and SSB. QSL via VE1RGB (d/B). http://www.cy0dxpedition.com

OC-009; T8; Palau Islands: Nobuaki/JA0JHQ (JA1QJU, AH0CO) operates as T88PB between Sept. 4 and 8. QRV on HF in CW, SSB, and digital modes. QSL via JH1QJU (d/B). http://pandasan.jimdo.com

OC-218; FK; Matthew and Hunter Islands: TX4A (see DXNL 1899) has been rescheduled to September 4 to 7.

OC-222; YB8; Obi Islands: Imam/YB4IR and Din/YB8RW pay Obi Island a visit from the 7th to the 13th, operating as YB4IR/8 and YB8RW/p in CW and SSB. QSL YB4IR/8 via LoTW and OQRS, YB8RW/p via YB9BU (d).

Compiled by
Friedrich, DL4BBH
Deutscher Amateur Radio Club
e-mail: iota@dxhf.darc.de

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News bulletin from OPDX

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Spread Spectrum and SSDV on 434 MHz Balloon

Wednesday 3rd September 2014

Today after 11am, David Akerman M0RPI hopes to launch a 434 MHz balloon that will use the latest LoRa spread spectrum techniques as well as transmitting Slow Scan Digital Video and a UKHASNET Repeater

The balloon will carry three trackers:

BUZZ 434.250MHz, 50 baud RTTY, 460Hz shift 7 N 2, telemetry only

LORA1, 434.450MHz, LoRa modulation (explicit mode, error coding 4:8, spreading factor 11, 20.8kHz bandwidth), telemetry only

LORA2, 434.550MHz, LoRa modulation (implicit mode, error coding 4:5, spreading factor 6, 20.8kHz bandwidth), telemetry and SSDV

If you happen to have a suitable LoRa modem, then you can receive either of the LoRa transmissions; otherwise you can see the signal on an SDR but you won't be able to decode.

All three should appear on SNUS or any of the other tracking maps.

Video streaming of the launch:
http://www.batc.tv/streams/m0rpi

The chase car will be carrying an APRS beacon M0RPI-7, which you can see here:
http://aprs.fi/#!call=a%2FM0RPI-7&timerange=3600&tail=3600

Online real-time tracking of balloons
http://spacenear.us/tracker/

Mobile Tracker
http://habitat.habhub.org/mobile-tracker/

Beginners Guide to Tracking using dl-fldigi software
http://ukhas.org.uk/guides:tracking_guide

Slow Scan Digital Video (SSDV) Guide
http://ukhas.org.uk/guides:ssdv

See received SSDV images on the web at
http://ssdv.habhub.org/

To get up-to-date information on balloon flights subscribe to the UKHAS Mailing List by sending a blank email to this address: ukhas+subscribe@googlegroups.com

Follow balloon chat on the #highaltitude IRC channel at http://webchat.freenode.net/?channels=highaltitude

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90th Anniversary of first UK-NZ contact

Wednesday 3rd September 2014

The NZART have issued an update on preparations to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the first two-way radio communication between the UK and New Zealand

On October 18, 1924, Frank Bell 4AA in Shag Valley, South Island, NZ contacted Cecil Goyder who was operating the Mill Hill school station 2SZ.

2SZ QSL Card

 

2SZ QSL Card

Planning and equipment preparation is well advanced for Branch 30’s recognition of the 90th anniversary of the historic first ever radio communication between New Zealand and the UK, an event that changed radio communication for ever as it established new and initially, little understood “rules” for short wave communication.

Working bees are being held to test antenna and equipment, much work is going on arranging and sourcing equipment and two reconnoiter visits have been made to our hosts at Shag Valley Station, Johnny Bell and his family, the 6th generation Bell family on the station.

Current plans see the main antenna farm installation starting on Saturday 4th October and possibly
extending to the Sunday.
Then the teams will be returning to the site on Saturday 11th October to complete the antenna installation and start installing the radio equipment. Operating on the various bands will start as each bands equipment is activated with operation from the site continuing from later on the Saturday (as soon as the workers are free to become operators) through the week until Sunday the 19th when the big dismantle will start.

Bands we anticipate operating are 80m, CW and phone as available. This is the prime band as it is close to the original frequency. It will be using a vertical mast.

We will have a quad hung from nearby trees for 40m, a tri-bander on a 13m lattice pole for 20, 15 and 10 and also 17m facilities.

An IRLP, node 6507 will be on the club’s 690 VHF repeater with a cross-bander on nearby hills to give handheld access from the site. Similarly we anticipate access to the Mount Cargill National System node and we will have a STSP repeater operating nearby on 6625 to give incoming guidance to visitors.

Anybody is welcome to come and visit the station or assist with operating at any time during the week – just drop an email to president@ZL4AA.org.nz so we can expect you.

We are operating from the stations Shearers quarters where a limited number of beds with mattresses are available – please bring food, sleeping bags and pillows.

The big day will be early evening on Saturday 18th October with around 0630UTC or 1930 NZDT being the actual time of the original contact.

Media will be present on the final Saturday with Radio NZ’S Jim Sullivan preparing a programme for his Sounds Historical programme on Radio New Zealand National on Sunday 19th.

Those on site will be able to visit the museum where much of the original 4AA equipment is displayed as well as a fascinating range of scientific equipment that demonstrates the early Bell generations had considerable other scientific and experimental interests. A large range of Frank and Brenda Bell’s original QSL cards are on site and make absolutely fascinating reading.

Further full and interesting information on the original “Trans-world” stations are available on the following websites:-

Branch 30 Check under both the “90th Anniversary” tab and the “About us/History tabs”
http://www.ZL4AA.org.nz/

GB2NZ
http://gb2nz.com/?page_id=11

Kiwi DX Group
http://zm90dx.com/

RSGB RadCom article the Ultimate DX
http://gb2nz.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/The-Ultimate-DX1.pdf

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Governments have been ham-handed say radio amateurs

Wednesday 3rd September 2014

The News Minute reports how consecutive governments have held back ham radio in India

Access to amateur radio licenses in India is bound in red-tape and archaic laws written in the pre-independence era.

The News Minute interview R. Ramachandra VU2RCR, former President of the Amateur Radio Society of India (ARSI). The ARSI has written to Union Telecommunications Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad asking that the laws be reviewed, the clearance procedure be speeded up and licenses be given to people interested in not just connecting with the world but also connecting the world to each other in times of distress, floods or natural calamities.

While the authority to issue the license is the telecommunications ministry, the Indian government has raised security issues citing that the technology may fall into hands of terrorists thus requiring that anyone who applies for a license also requires a security clearance.

The ASRI letter says nowhere in the world is a security clearance required. In other countries, you become an amateur radio enthusiast after you pass a basic exam, pay a fee and get yourself a transmitter and receiver. In India, you still have to know someone who knows someone and this discourages people from coming on to a platform that is educational and entertaining.

Read Consecutive governments have been ham-handed about them, say amateur radio enthusiasts
http://www.thenewsminute.com/lives/232

Amateur Radio Society of India
http://www.arsi.info/

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BBC Monitoring Website

Wednesday 3rd September 2014

BBC Monitoring have a new public-facing website for media insight and analysis

Among the stories BBC Monitoring highlight are:

Interference leaves broadcasters in a jam
http://www.bbc.co.uk/monitoring/
interference-leaves-global-broadcasters-in-a-jam


The future use of the UHF spectrum band between 470 to 790 MHz
http://www3.ebu.ch/contents/news/2014/09/
european-public-broadcasters-rea.html


BBC Monitoring http://www.bbc.co.uk/monitoring

Twitter
https://twitter.com/BBCMonitoring

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BBC reports EMF 2014 about 'Getting kids involved'

Wednesday 3rd September 2014

BBC News reports on last weekend's successful Electromagnetic Field EMF 2014 event held near Bletchley, Milton Keynes

The three day event attracted nearly three times as many people as the previous event held in 2012. Of those attending 75 were children under 16. "Getting kids involved has been crucial," says Jonty Wareing, one of the event's volunteer organisers.

Dr Elpida Makrygianni, from UCL's Engineering Sciences faculty is charged with engaging young people with science, she thinks the festival is an important place to be.

"It's the social context, the fact that it is in the countryside, a million miles from the stereotype of a sterile lab."

That preconception is one of the first obstacles that has to be overcome when trying to engage young people in science, she says, especially young women.

AMSAT-UK reported on a tweet that those responsible for organising technical event should bear in mind. Rosie Campbell @RosieCampbell tweeted: The gender balance of speakers at #emfcamp has been great. So many awesome women! Take note, other tech event organisers!

Although not reported by the BBC the Amateur Radio Foundation was held at the event and radio amateurs launched several balloons carry 434 MHz transmitters and flew a Quadcopter which carried a Repeater.

Unlike other countries the UK amateur radio licence currently bans experimentation on aeronautical platforms but fortunately amateurs can use licence exempt bands such as 434 MHz and 868 MHz for aeronautical work instead.

Read the BBC report - Electromagnetic Field: Can geeks get kids into science?
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-29011889

Additional info on EMF 2014 at
https://www.facebook.com/amsatuk
http://amsat-uk.org/2014/08/29/live-webcast-of-electromagnetic-field-emf-2014-event/

See pictures of EMF 2014 at
https://www.flickr.com/search/?q=emfcamp

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Radar Docu-drama on BBC TV

Tuesday 2nd September 2014

On September 4, BBC 2 will broadcast Castles In The Sky, a drama which tells the remarkable story of the fight to develop RADAR by Robert Watson-Watt and a team of UK scientists

It aims to conveys the genuine human drama behind the invention which saved the nation in the Battle of Britain.

Eddie Izzard, who plays Watson-Watt, says he joined the project because he was so inspired by the character and story: “I feel very privileged to be playing the role of Robert Watson-Watt. Hopefully our production will allow him, along with Arnold 'Skip' Wilkins and their team, to finally take their places in the pantheon of British greats of World War II, as the inventors of RADAR.”

Castles In The Sky on the sky will be broadcast on the web at 9pm BST (2000 GMT) on Thursday, September 4 at
http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/live/bbctwo

A recording should be available after at
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b04gnhv7

Note: Overseas viewers may need to use a UK based Proxy Server.

RADAR stands for Radio Detection And Ranging, its development led to the deployment of a network of Chain Home stations along the coast.  Photo above right of the Chain Home Tower at Great Baddow, Chelmsford.

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White space between TV signals could save lives at sea

Tuesday 2nd September 2014

BBC News reports: The leftover white space between TV signals is raising the hope of saving lives at sea and providing broadband for remote communities.

"Come in, Solent Coastguard..." It is the third time the coxswain of the Freshwater independent lifeboat, Jeremy Blake, has tried to get through. He is using VHF radio, a technology virtually unchanged for a century.

It was from the cliffs above Freshwater Bay on the Isle of Wight that Guglielmo Marconi first proved that radio could be used for two-way wireless communication with ships at sea.

In the years since Marconi began his experiments in 1897, marine radio has saved countless lives but is far from perfect.

"Essentially we're using the same technology," says Mr Blake. "It's got smaller and more reliable but we're still limited by line of sight. We can only have one-way communication at a time, and if someone else is talking on the radio that will drown us out if they've got a stronger signal.

"So sometimes we can't communicate. We often have problems when someone is sitting on their radio, and transmitting, and they are blocking out all the other channels."

'Prime real estate'

That could all be about to change. The lifeboat has been taking part in a trial of a new technology that supporters say could not only save lives but bring superfast broadband to rural communities that so far have been cut off from the information age.

It is called TV white space and takes advantage of unused parts of the spectrum reserved for television transmissions.

Read the full story with video at:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-28957172

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Footage of powerful solar flares released by Nasa

Tuesday 2nd September 2014

BBC News reports on the recent Solar Flares

They say "There have been a number of eruptions on the surface of the sun in the last week. Some have warned that this explosion of energy might have a serious impact here on earth. The BBC's Tim Allman explains."


Watch the BBC TV report at
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-29008576

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It's time to 'Get Your Kicks On Route 66'

Monday 1st September 2014

The 2014 operating award for "Route 66 On The Air"

It's been called the "Great Diagonal Way", the "Will Rogers Memorial Highway", the "Mother Road", the "Main Street of America, and the "Electric Highway".

Of the 4 million miles of highways in the United States, none are more famous than the 2,451 miles that once made up U.S. 66, better known as "Route 66".

Starting on September 6th you will have nine days to travel Route 66 once again, this time via the airwaves. Twenty one Special Event stations, each located in a city along the route, will join together for the 15th annual "Route 66 On The Air".

The event, which was created by the Northern Arizona DX Club and is now organized by the Citrus Belt Amateur Radio Club of San Bernardino, Cali-fornia, allows the participants to traverse the route one more time, by radio.

Beginning in 1926, millions of people travelled the road which began at Jackson Street and Michigan Avenue in Chicago and ended at 7th Street and Broadway in Los Angeles. In 1936 the road was extended to the intersection of Olympic Blvd and Lincoln Blvd. in Santa Monica, California. Santa Monica has also promoted the inter-section of Ocean Blvd. and Santa Monica Blvd and also the Santa Monica Pier as the ending point, but Route 66 never ended at either of those places.

The Dust Bowl of the 1930's saw 200,000 "Okies", "Arkies", and "Texies" loose their farms to the elements and to the banks. These plains dwellers, packed up their families and traveled Route 66 in search of agriculture jobs in California. Their westward migration began to create a need for travel services all along the road to the Pacific.

Although in many places, U.S. 66 was little more than a single, 9 foot wide lane of asphalt, by the war years of the 1940's the route had spawned thousands of service stations, motor lodges, souvenir shops, and eateries.

In 1940 the very first McDonalds opened along Route 66 at the corner of North E Street and West 14th Street in San Bernardino, California. But the distinction as the very first drive-thru restaurant goes to another Route 66 icon, "Red's Giant Hamburg" which was in Springfield, Missouri.

"Get your Kicks on Route 66" was recorded by Nat King Cole in 1946. The song was written earlier that year by Bobby Troup who was inspired after a ten day trip on the road. Chuck Berry, the Rolling Stones, and a host of others have re-recorded the song over the years.

By the 1950's Route 66 had become a neon highway. Even the most remote sections of the road held some recently added "landmark" designed to separate the many families travelling on vacation from their money.

A family could spend the night in a genuine Indian wig-wam (although really shaped like a ti-pi and made of concrete) in two locations along Route 66, Holbrook, AZ and San Bernadino, CA.

Meteorite craters. leaning water towers, the worlds largest Ketchup bottle, Cadillac's planted nose first into the ground, a round barn, a giant orange, and the world's largest map were just a few of the thousands of attractions that dotted the landscape along Route 66.

Every few miles one could see a freshly painted barn, courtesy of workers from the Meramac Caverns of Stanton, Missouri.
Meramac would paint a farmers barn for free in exchange for being allowed to emblazon the roof and sides of the barn with ads enticing travelers to visit "Jesse James Hideout".

In 1960 Hollywood took note of Route 66 with the creation of the television series of the same name. For four years two young men in a Corvette convertible sought adventure on the open road.

While the '50s and '60s gave Route 66 it's most prosperous times, it was 1956 that began it's slow death. With the introduction, that year, of the Interstate Highway System, the narrow, little Route 66 began to be replaced by new super-highways. On June 27, 1985 the government decertified the highway and U.S. 66 ceased to exist.

Today, many of the states operate sections of the original road as state routes. The largest portion in use is in Arizona, where you can still 'stand on the corner in Winslow, Arizona', pet dozens of wild burros as they beg handouts from the tourists on Route 66 in Oatman, view the petrified forest in the Painted Desert, and take a peak at that giant meteor crater.

A beautiful certificate awaits those who work at least one of the 21 Special Event stations. Operations are planned for all modes and bands. Complete information is available on the Citrus Belt Amateur Radio Club website.
http://www.w6jbt.org/

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SUWS ham radio WebSDR used from India

Monday 1st September 2014

Radio Amateur Sandeep Baruah VU2MUE in New Deli has released a video showing how he uses the SUWS WebSDR located at Farnham near London

The YouTube description reads:
WebSDR is a nice technology to monitor radio stations using our Internet browser and tune into any frequency we like [the stations that we shall be to hear are those that are actually heard by the WebSDR at that remote location].

The remote WebSDR radios dedicatedly run in different frequency bands can be found at: http://websdr.org/ In this video, I am trying receive some digital packets coming from the WebSDR station run by Southampton University Wireless Society [in collaboration with Martin G8JNJ and Noel G8GTZ]. The radio can be accessed at http://websdr.suws.org.uk/

This is a VHF, UHF and microwave WebSDR. When I tuned to 144.800 MHz I could hear continuous packet bursts. Using "free" soundmodem software by UZ7HO http://uz7.ho.ua/packetradio.htm and UI-view http://www.ui-view.net/ by late Roger Barker, G4IDE [England] I could decode and plot the remote ham radio stations heard via my Internet browser.

Watch Decoding Southampton University WebSDR packets heard on 144.800 MHz

SUWS VHF/UHF/Microwave WebSDR moves to new site
http://amsat-uk.org/2014/08/15/suws-websdr-moves-to-new-site/

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IOTA News from OPDX

Monday 1st September 2014

Island activities:

AF-019. Emilio, IZ1GAR, will be active as IH9/IZ1GAR from Pantelleria Island (IIA TP-001, WLOTA 0041) at the end of November. In the CQWW DX CW Contest (November 29-30th), Emilio will be active as IH9R and as a Single-Op/Single Band (40m)/QRP entry.
Pantelleria counts as Multiplier Zone 33 Africa Italy for the CQWW DX rule (islands are located over the African continent platform). QSL via IZ1GAR, direct or by the Bureau.

AS-113. Operators Yung/BU2BV, Ted/BV2OO, Su/BX2AI, Wu/BX2AM and Lee/BX2AN will be active as BO0D from TungYin Island, Matsu Islands,
between September 13-20th. Activity will be on all HF bands using CW, SSB and the Digital modes. QSL via the BV Bureau (preferred).
For more info and updates, watch:
http://www.qrz.com/db/do0d
http://www.ctarl.org.tw/bv5ya/2013-14/2014-BO0D.htm

AS-200. Take, JI3DST, will be active as JI3DST/5 from Shodo Island (Kagawa Prefecture, Shozu District) between September 20-22nd. Activity will be on 40-6 meters using CW, SSB, FM and RTTY. In case of heavy rain or other conditions, the operation condition may vary. QSL via his home callsign, by the Bureau or direct. For more details and updates, see: http://blog.goo.ne.jp/ji3dst

EU-038. Marcel, PD5MVH, will be active as PD5MVH/p from Ameland Island (ARLHS NET-001, WLOTA 1059) between now and September 13th. Activity will be on 40/20/10 meters using SSB. QSL via his home callsign, direct or by the Bureau.

EU-062. Frank, DH0JAE, will be active as LA/DH0JAE from Donna Island between September 8-10th. Activity will be on 80-10 meters using CW and SSB. His rig is a K3 and K2, operating QRP only. QSL via his home callsign, by the Bureau or direct. ClubLog's OQRS will be available. ADDED NOTE: Frank also has plans to activate IOTAs EU-036, EU-056 and EU-079 between September 11-20th.

NA-052. Bruce, N9BX, will be active as N9BX/4 from Marco Island (USI FL025S) between September 3-9th. Activity will be on all bands using CW and SSB. QSL via his home callsign. An OQRS is available on ClubLog.

Compiled by Tedd Mirgliotta, KB8NW OPDX

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

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If you would like to read more news from previous months

then click on More News

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DX Cluster .. Service for Club Members

Our local packet DX-Cluster GB7MDX (run by Bob G4UJS) is located near Whixall
in Shropshire.  It is hard-wired to GB7MDX is GB7UJS, a Linux Server running DXspider
by G1TLH permanently connected to the internet and the worldwide packet cluster network.

This is an experimental Telnet link to our local DX-Cluster from this page.  If you
are a licensed radio amateur, click on GB7UJS and enter your callsign to log-in.

If you experience any problems in making the connection, please read the HELP file.

All connections are recorded, so please do not abuse
this facility otherwise it will be withdrawn.

Click here for the full on-line manual for DXspider on GB7UJS.

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This page will be regularly updated to reflect Club News and Activities and both UK and World News Items deemed to be of interest to members.  If you have an announcement which you think would interest Club members and would like it mentioned here, please send details to:-  webmaster@wadarc.com