Wirral & District

Amateur Radio Club

 

Twice Winner of

RSGB Region 3

'Club of the Year'

Trophy

for 2013 & 2014

 


Interested in Radio & Electronics ?  you need a Licence to get started in Amateur Radio

WADARC has a team able to provide Foundation and Intermediate Licence Tuition

Contact our Chairman & Chief Exam Trainer - Geoff G4WUA at chairman@wadarc.com
 

 

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 from last 12 months to read again ? click ARCHIVED NEWS

 

Nepal earthquake report

Monday 27th April 2015

The rescue and recovery work is continuing after the devastating 7.8 on the Ritcher scale earthquake that claimed at least 3,200 lives, with many missing, and widespread damage in Nepal.

The Nepal Amateur Radio Society is providing emergency communications. Satish Krishna Kharel 9N1AA reports that with help from VU2 in India and others work is continuing. This includes the use of four wheel drive vehicles.

Satish 9N1AA said information has already been provided on the status of about 80 loved ones of foreign radio amateurs and others.

He was using solar power in coordination with the Nepal police in Kathmandu. Also sharing the emcomm work with Suresh Upreti 9N1HA.

The earthquake on April 25 caused landslides on Mount Everest during the climbing season, where some lives of mountaineers and others were lost.

The capital of Kathmandu was among the areas hit. An emergency net on 20 metres on 14.205 and/or 14.215 MHz, has Jayu Bhide VU2JAU/AT150ITU, the Amateur Radio Society of India (ARSI) National Coordinator for Disaster Communication, as net controller.

Other VUs are involved. Activity has also been reported on 7.100, 18.160 and 21.360 MHz.

Nepal's first Amateur Radio repeater, set up in 2012 by the National Society for Earthquake Technology, had a dozen hams who previously engaged in simulated emergency tests.

The 9N1KS repeater 434.500 MHz in and 145.000 MHz out, is on the outskirts of Kathmandu with coverage into the Kathmandu Valley.

There is no cross-border movement so far of radio equipment and radio amateurs.


Jim Linton VK3PC

Chairman IARU Region 3 Disaster Communications Committee.

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London Hackspace win RSGB Club of the Year

Sunday 26th April 2015

The winners of the RSGB Club of The Year Award, sponsored by Essex-based amateur radio dealer Waters & Stanton, were announced at the AGM held in London on April 25

Entries were judged in two categories: clubs with less than 25 Members and clubs with 25 or more Members - during 2014 - and there were separate prizes for each category.

The Large Club category was won by London Hackspace and the Small Club category was won by St George's Academy.

Watch a documentary about London Hackspace
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t8up7Wm-LAE

London Hackspace is at 447 Hackney Road, London, E2 9DY
Web https://london.hackspace.org.uk/
Twitter https://twitter.com/m0hsl

Nesta UK Makerspaces
http://www.nesta.org.uk/publications/open-dataset-uk-makerspaces-users-guide

St George's Academy radio club enters the space race
http://amsat-uk.org/2013/12/06/uk-academys-radio-club-enters-the-space-race/

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New transatlantic 144MHz beacon

Sunday 26th April 2015

The EI2DKH transatlantic 144MHz beacon is fully operational as of 12 April 2015.

Transmitting JT65b with CW ID on 144.488 MHz every even minute and listening on 144.155 MHz every odd minute.

Any call signs received are uploaded to a publicly accessable webpage at http://86.43.106.118/ei4hq/ei8jk/

During major meteor showers the beacon will switch to FSK441

Beacon details;

4 x 5 element LFA-Q (22.24 dBi) QTF 270º
(sponsored by InnoVantennas http://www.innovantennas.com/)

Antenna height 60m asl

TX power 75 watts

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Surprise drop in Australian ham licence renewal fees

Saturday 25th April 2015

A 12-month renewal for an Amateur licence in Australia is AUD$51 from 5 April 2015 - a drop of AUD$24 from the AUD$75 that applied to renewals earlier this year. The last time that Australian licence fee renewals were at AUD$51 was 20 years ago!

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) told the WIA that, “as part of the introduction of a new licensing system this year, the ACMA has reviewed the charging component of its fees for renewal of licences. From 5 April 2015, the ACMA reduced the fee for renewal of amateur licences.”

However, while renewal fees have dropped, the ACMA’s fee for the issue of a new licence is now AUD$75, up by one dollar on the fee that prevailed over the previous year.

The WIA said that, while to some people this may seem a comparative disincentive to new licensees, there is essentially no change to the situation that has prevailed to date.

Details are on the WIA website at:
www.wia.org.au/newsevents/news/2015/20150422-2/index.php

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FCC Closures- House Committee asks for documents

Saturday 25th April 2015

There are plans to close two-thirds of all FCC field offices, the ARRL reports on the latest developments

The US House Committee on Energy and Commerce has given the Federal Communications Commission a May 7 deadline to produce documents related to FCC Enforcement Bureau proposals to close two-thirds of its field offices and eliminate nearly one-half of its staff of field agents.
In an April 23 letter, Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) told FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler that his panel wants the Commission to provide all documents relating to the proposed closures.

“[Y]our proposal to shutter 16 of the Commission’s 24 field offices raises significant challenges and concerns,” Upton said. “The Commission has represented to Congress and the American people that it will ‘preserve the integrity of public safety communications infrastructure by taking action on 99 percent of complaints of interference to public safety communications within 1 day,’ yet your proposal to reduce the geographic footprint of the Commission appears to ignore the impact this might have on the Commission’s public interest goal.” Upton said the Commission has offered little information to support its proposals. “Indeed, our concerns have only been heightened by the Commission’s failure to provide all the information requested by the Committee,” he wrote.

The field office and personnel layoff proposals were outlined in a March 10 internal memorandum from Enforcement Bureau Chief Travis LeBlanc and FCC Managing Director Jon Wilkins to EB field staff. The memo, obtained by ARRL and others, cited the need to take “a fresh look” at the Bureau’s 20-year-old operating model in light of technology changes and tighter budgets.

Read the full ARRL story at
http://www.arrl.org/news/house-committee-asks-fcc-for-documents-related-to-proposed-enforcement-bureau-closures

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RSGB Youth Committee Minutes released

Saturday 25th April 2015

The minutes of the RSGB Youth Committee meeting held on April 13 have been released

The minutes record "The Committee voted and was unanimously in favour of a monthly “2I0MFB Memorial Award for youth achievement in amateur radio”.

Download the minutes from
http://thersgb.org/publications/yc-meeting-minutes/13-04-2015/

RSGB Youth Committee
Twitter http://twitter.com/theRSGByouth
Web http://rsgb.org/main/about-us/committees/youth-committee/

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Latest edition of The 5 MHz Newsletter

Saturday 25th April 2015

(Winter/Spring 2015)

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

http://tinyurl.com/q7uqrqw

This copy – Winter/Spring 2015 (No.13) - features 5 MHz news from the Czech Republic, UK, Uruguay, South Africa and Australia, plus 5 MHz Eclipsed, the official ITU Agenda booklet for WRC15, the HB9AW RX Project and Readers’ Feedback

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Radio ham flown out of Pag-asa for medical treatment

Friday 24th April 2015

A member of ham radio Mabuhay DX Group was flown out of Pag-asa Island in the West Philippine Sea on Thursday after suffering an infection from drinking highly saline local water

Amanda Fernandez of GMA News writes:

In an interview with GMA News Online, Armed Forces of the Philippines spokesperson Brig. Gen. Joselito Kakilala confirmed that the radio enthusiasts' group requested assistance from the AFP Western Command to pick up Chito Pastor.

Kakilala said a Nomad airplane from the Philippine Air Force had been scheduled to pick up Pastor. However, the Western Command was not able to airlift the passenger out because of "technical problems."

"Instead, WESCOM allowed the relatives of the patient to send a Piper 30 civilian plane to evacuate the patient," he added.


Read the full story at
http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/475094/news/nation/radio-enthusiast-flown-out-of-pag-asa-island-for-medical-treatment

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New video, D-STAR and the Icom RS-MS1A Android App

Friday 24th April 2015

Icom UK together with TX Films have produced a video providing an introduction to D-STAR and the Icom RS-MS1A Android D-STAR application software.

The video, introduced by Bob McCreadie (G0FGX) of TX Films features Don Turner (G4TKR) providing a number of demonstrations featuring the ID-5100 dual band D-STAR digital and the RS-MS1A Android app.

It includes:

- Sending text messages and images.
- How to connect to D-STAR and your nearest repeater.
- Finding repeaters utilising a mapping application.
- Explanation about reflectors and how to connect to them.
- Where you can find the most up to date list of Icom D-STAR radio programming files and data files of UK D-STAR repeaters and reflectors.

For further details about D-STAR visit our microsite at
http://www.d-staruk.co.uk

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Opportunity to connect with the first high altitude cross band amateur radio FM Repeater

Friday 24th April 2015

Radio Amateurs of Canada (RAC) members in Manitoba are supporting High School ballon projects. The following announcement describes a balloon launch scheduled for Friday April 24.

Radio amateurs are invited to use the cross band amateur repeater that will be flown. Additional information available at:

Shaftesbury Overhead Amateur Repeater 1 (SOAR-1) Pre-flight Announcement to the Radio Amateur Community

or by visiting

http://shsballoonproject.pbworks.com/

Radio Amateurs of Canada

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

Friday 24th April 2015

This week's bulletin was made possible with information provided by QRZ DX, 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.

MALTA, 9H. Goran, S55OO is QRV as 9H3OO until May 2. Activity is on 40 to 6 meters using CW, SSB and various digital modes. QSL direct to home call.

WEST MALAYSIA, 9M2. Operators 9M2RDX, 9W2FLD, 9W2AEV, 9W2SBD,9W2ZKZ, 9M2RHQ, 9M2MCB, 9W2VVN, 9W2MCK and KC3DQS are QRV from Pulau Redang Island, IOTA AS-073, until April 26. Activity is on 80 to 10 meters using CW, SSB and PSK. QSL direct via 9M2RDX.

BAHAMAS, C6. Gordon, G3USR is QRV as C6AGM from Freeport, Grand Bahamas until April 28. Activity is on the HF bands. QSL direct to home call.

ARMENIA, EK. Bernd, DL7UCX and Frank, DK7AO are QRV as EK/home calls until May 4. Activity is on 160 to 10 meters using CW, SSB and RTTY. QSL to home calls.

CLIPPERTON ISLAND, FO. Alain, F6BFH is QRV as TX5P while here on work assignment. He is active in his spare time on 30 to 10 meters.
His length of stay is unknown. QSL to home call.

JAPAN, JA. Mitsuru, JE1HXZ and Tak, JR1LZK will be QRV as home calls/6 from Yaeyama, IOTA AS-024, from April 25 to May 3. Activity will be on 40 to 6 meters using CW, SSB and RTTY. QSL to home calls.

OGASAWARA, JD1. Makoto, JI5RPT will be QRV as JD1BLY from Chichijima Island from April 29 to May 5. Activity will be on 40 to
6 meters using CW, SSB and various digital modes. QSL to home call.

PALAU, T8. Yasu, JH2DFJ will be QRV as T88DF from April 27 to May 2. Activity will be on the HF bands and 6 meters using CW, SSB, RTTY, SSTV, JT65 and WSPR. QSL to home call.

CORSICA, TK. Gust, ON6KE will be QRV as TK/ON6KE from April 25 to May 9. Activity will be on 160 to 6 meters using CW, SSB, RTTY and PSK. QSL via operator's instructions.

NORFOLK ISLAND, VK9N. Operators Chris, VK3QB, Luke, VK3HJ, Roy, VK3GB, and Oly, VK3XDX are QRV as VK9NT until May 4. Activity is on 160 to 10 meters using CW and SSB with two stations active. QSL via VK2CA.

INDONESIA, YB. Operators Imam, YB4IR and Din, YB8RW will be QRV as YB4IR/8 and YB8RW/p, respectively, from Lucipara Island, new IOTA OC-274, from April 27 to May 1. Activity will be on the HF bands using CW and SSB. QSL to home calls.

ZIMBABWE, Z2. Gertjan, PA3CPG is QRV as Z21DX from Masvingo. His activity is on a few HF bands using SSB, but at various times. QSL via PA3CPI.

CAYMAN ISLANDS, ZF. Col, MM0NDX plans to be QRV as ZF2CI from April 25 to May 2. Activity is holiday style on the HF bands. He may also take short trips Little Cayman, IOTA NA-016, and be QRV as ZF8/ZF2CI, and to Cayman Brac, IOTA NA-016, and be QRV as ZF9/ZF1CI.
QSL via IW7EGQ.

THIS WEEKEND ON THE RADIO
The 10-10 International Spring Digital Contest, BARTG Sprint 75, NCCC RTTY Sprint, NCCC Sprint CW Ladder, QRP to the Field, SP DX RTTY Contest, Helvetia Contest and the Florida QSO Party are all on tap for this weekend.
The CWops Mini-CWT CW Test and 432 MHz Spring Sprint are scheduled for April 29.

Please see April QST, page 83 and the ARRL and WA7BNM contest web sites for details

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Friday 24th April 2015

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

I.C.P.O. Bulletin (24 April - 01 May 2015)
"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 April 2015 by Gwyn Williams, G4FKH

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RSGB Twitter account update

Friday 24th April 2015

The Radio Society of Great Britain have changed their Twitter user name to @theRSGB

They used it to tweet the results of the photo competition which was won by Adam Hutchison MM0KFX. His picture has become RSGB Twitter account banner image.

Runners up were Vaughan Ravenscroft M0VRR and Charles Wilmott M0OXO.

See the Society's Twitter account at
https://twitter.com/theRSGB

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Emcomm acts as volcano erupts

Thursday 23rd April 2015

The Calbuco volcano in Southern Chile has erupted after being silent for more than five decades, with thousands evacuated as a thick plume of ash and smoke reaches for the sky.

Marisa Tobella Pinto CE2MT, Director of Emergency Communications, said he advised that 7050 kHz is in use, with the alternative frequencies being 14250 kHz and 3738 kHz.

An evacuation radius of 20 kilometres is established. Chile is in the Pacific 'Rim of Fire'.

Winds are pushing the plume toward Argentina, and some flights have been cancelled fearing that flying could be dangerous.

Jim Linton VK3PC
Chairman,
IARU Region 3 Disaster Communications Committee.

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Amateur Radio and WRC-15

Thursday 23rd April 2015

ARRL Chief Technology Officer Brennan Price, N4QX says the World Radiocommunication Conference 2015 (WRC-15) Conference Preparatory Meeting (CPM15-2) left Amateur Radio 'with every possibility of success'

The 2-week-long meeting addressed a variety of spectrum-related matters, including several dealing with Amateur Radio. Its Report to WRC-15 focuses on technical, operational, and regulatory matters that ITU member-states will consider in developing their proposals to WRC-15. More than 1250 participants from 105 ITU member-states attended.

“Through our combined efforts, methods favorable to Amateur Radio were included in all appropriate places within the CPM report,” Price said this week. “Amateur Radio will enter WRC-15 with every possibility — although no assurance — of success.”

Read the full ARRL story at
http://www.arrl.org/news/amateur-radio-heads-into-wrc-15-with-every-possibility-of-success

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New award scheme for portable operators

Wednesday 22nd April 2015

The Amateur Radio Portable Operators Club (ARPOC) unveils a new award scheme that encourages operators to get out and about.

Spring has arrived, and the Amateur Radio Portable Operators Club has launched a fun and exciting award scheme that’s been designed to encourage its members to take full advantage of their radio equipment.

Matthew Payne, M0LMK, from ARPOC said: “We hope that the award scheme encourages operators to get out in the fresh air with their radio equipment and enjoy the benefits that portable operating can bring as well as help with promoting the hobby to the public.”

Any licenced operator can take part in the award scheme and individuals can apply for and claim their personalised award certificates online. Downloadable certificates cost £2.00 each or are free for full members of ARPOC which costs just £5 a year. Funds raised from the award scheme go towards ensuring the scheme can be continued for many years to come.

There are a number of different award certificates that can be gained each with their own challenges. These include awards such as:

• Life’s A Beach

• Portable Professional

• Lighthouse Lurker

• Operating Within Tent

While many licence holders have shacks at home and associated QRM issues, ARPOC want to encourage members to get out and about and experience the joys of operating a portable station away from the noise.

The names of the awards themselves hint towards what situations and locations the members will experience when they work towards these certificates. For instance, a few trips to the seaside will be needed for the Life’s A Beach award, while members will have to travel to five other countries if they opt to work towards their European Sun Seeker award. This award tasks members with operating a station from two different beaches that are in no less than five different European countries. Operators will also need to complete a standard exchange with at least one station at each location.

Once members have successfully completed their tasks, they can apply for the awards they have worked towards. All of these new ARPOC awards are available to download. That means these prized certificates can be downloaded and printed off quickly and easily, ensuring members are able to enjoy them almost immediately.

More information about ARPOC and this new awards scheme can be found on the website at http://www.arpoc.org

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Amateur Radio Parity Act

Tuesday 21st April 2015

HamRadioNow discusses the House Bill 1301 that would extend PRB-1 style requirements to Homeowners Associations' rules

Gary Pearce KN4AQ talks with ARRL Roanoke Vice-Director Bill Morine N2COP and North Carolina Section Manager Karl Bowman W4CHX.
Both are active in the grassroots campaign to gather support for the bill. Karl and his NC crew met with their Representative last year and have some experience to share.

Watch HRN 197: Grassroots on Antenna Parity

HR-1301
https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-bill/1301/
http://www.arrl.org/hr-1301

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Ofcom considers 10.475 and 47 GHz bands for 5G

Tuesday 21st April 2015

The Amateur Satellite Service allocations at 10.475 GHz and 47.0 GHz are being considered by Ofcom for 5G use

Ofcom has published an update on spectrum bands above 6 GHz that might be suitable for next generation mobile, often referred to as '5G' – the fifth generation of mobile services.

This document summarises responses from Ofcom's earlier Call for Input in January and sets out their current views on bands and next steps.
The update identifies several bands in different parts of the 6 – 100 GHz range, including 10.475-10.575 GHz and 47.000-47.200 GHz, they believe are candidates for further study for use in the UK.

Ofcom’s goal is to have globally harmonised bands for next generation mobile services and is currently engaging with other administrations around the world, ahead of these services becoming commercially available in the next five to six years.

Consideration of these bands will now be taken forward in forthcoming international discussions, including the World Radiocommunication Conference-15 (WRC-15) at which the scope of a future WRC-19 agenda item on bands above 6 GHz will be considered.

This does not guarantee these bands will be adopted in the future and Ofcom do not rule out considering other options ahead of WRC-15, pending further research and development.

Ofcom Above 6 GHz consultation page
http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/consultations/above-6ghz/update-apr15/

Laying the foundations for next generation mobile services: Update on bands above 6 GHz
http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/binaries/consultations/above-6ghz/5G_CFI_Update_and_Next_Steps.pdf

Quotient Associates - 5G Candidate Band Study
http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/binaries/consultations/above-6ghz/qa-report.pdf

Frequencies of Es’hail 2 Geostationary Amateur Radio Transponders
http://amsat-uk.org/2014/09/21/eshail-2-ham-radio-transponders/

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Tuesday 21st April 2015

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-073; 9M2, Kelantan / Terengganu State group: Operators Rizal/9M2RDX, Hanif/9W2FLD, Ahmad/ 9W2AEV, Han/9W2SBD,
Muhamad/9W2ZKZ, Rosli/9M2RHQ, Ishak/9M2MCB, Mat/ 9W2VVN, Mohamad/9W2MCK, and Mohd/KC3DQS are going to activate Pulau Redang Island from the 23rd to 26th. QRV on 80-10m on CW, SSB, and PSK. QSL via 9M2RDX (d), ClubLog OQRS, LoTW.

EU-008; GM, Inner Hebrides: Graham/MM0GHM, Allan/2M0VNW, Arthur/MM0DHQ, Allan/GM3OZB, Gordon/ GM7WCO, Jason/GM7VSB, and Paul/GM0PJD, all members of the Kilmarnock and Loudoun Amateur Radio Club will be active from Muck (IOSA NH06, SCOTIA DI18, WAB NM48, WW Loc. IO66uu) between April 26 and May 2 as MM0KLR. QRV on 160-2m (incl. 60m). QSL via MM0KLR (B), MM0GHM (d), eQSL.
www.klarc.org

EU-014; TK, Corsica Island: Gust, ON6KE, gets on the air as TK/ON6KE from the 25th until May 9. QRV on 160-6m on CW, SSB, PSK, and RTTY with antennas close to the sea. QSL via LoTW, ClubLog.

EU-023; 9H, Malta group: Goran, S55OO, will be holidaying on Malta (MIA MM-001, WW Loc. JM75) between the 24th and May 2, and operating a bit as 9H3OO. QSL via S55OO (d/B), LoTW, eQSL.

EU-124, GW/MW, Welsh Coastal Islands: The Barry Amateur Radio Society is going to activate Flatholm Island (WLOTA 0007, WW Loc. IO81) from the 24th to the 27 with the call GM4MBC. They will also join the Marconi event. QSL via MW0DHF (d/B).

NA-080; C6, Little Bahama Bank group: Gordon, G3USR, will be active holiday-style between the 22nd and 28th as C6AGM from Freeport (WLOTA 0527), running 100W and vertical antennas. QSL only direct via G3USR.

NA-112; W4, Carolina State West (Brunswick to Carteret County) group: Ops Joseph/WO3F, Keith/KK4PLI, Charles/W3ENK, and Sterling/N4WKG put Bogue Banks on the air on the 25th and 26th with the call N4F. Preferred QRGs are 14260, 18128, and 7055.
www.w4ymi.com

OC-249, YB8, Aru Islands: Imam's (YB4IR) first destination on his current IOTA trip will be Wamar Island, from where he gets on the air between the 22nd and 26th signing YB4IR/8. QRV on HF (CW & SSB). QSL via YB4IR OQRS. YB8, Gorong and Watubela Islands: Din, YB8RW, begins his IOTA trip on Watubela Island. QRV between April 19 and 23 on HF on SSB, CW, and RTTY. QSL via YB8RW OQRS.

OC-274, YB8; Lucipara and Penyu Islands: Together YB4IR and YB8RW are then moving on to Lucipara Island in order to activate OC-274 for the first time! QRV between the 27th and May 1 as YB4IR/8 and YB8RW/p. QSL via homecall OQRS.

-003, PY0F, Fernando de Noronha Archipelago: Leo, PP1CZ, returns to Fernando de Noronha (DIB OC-01) for another operating stint as PY0F/PP1CZ between the 20th and 27th. QRV on 80-10m on CW, SSB, and RTTY. QSL via PP1CZ (d), OQRS.

Compiled by Andreas, DK5ON
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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Another shortwave broadcaster shuts down

Tuesday 21st April 2015

The Bulgarian DX Blog reports that International Radio Serbia is going to be closed altogether on June 30, 2015, after 79 years of broadcasting

The blog also lists the short wave frequencies currently used by the station
http://swldxbulgaria.blogspot.co.uk/2015/04/sw-transmissions-of-international-radio.html

Protest by station employees
http://inserbia.info/today/2015/04/protest-of-voice-of-serbia-employees-in-front-of-serbian-government/

International Radio Serbia
http://voiceofserbia.org/

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GAREC 2015 Cancelled

Monday 20th April 2015

The organisers of the Global Amateur Radio Emergency Conference (GAREC) 2015 have taken the difficult decision to cancel this year's conference.

The projected attendance for the conference which was to have been held in Tampere, Finland between June 23-24 was below last year's and so was not adequate to justify the participation of external speakers and presented a financial risk to the organisers.

Rather than take a chance that attendance will increase substantially leading up to the Conference, a difficult decision has been made to cancel. All registered participants will be contacted by the organisers shortly.

Cancellation of the conference is a loss to the Amateur Radio Emergency Communications community and thoughts are now turning to how to continue with what was started 10 years ago and maintain the good working relationships which have been developed, as well as providing a place for those positive achievements to be promoted.

IARU Region 1
http://iaru-r1.org/

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Lyrids Meteor Shower

Monday 20th April 2015

James Ayre reports that the Lyrids meteor shower will be reaching its peak this year on the night of Wednesday April 22, 2015 (early morning hours of April 23, 2015). In other words the peak is almost here.

Given that the Lyrids are consistently one of the best and most reliable meteor showers of the year, the upcoming peak is something worth making note of, imo. The best days for watching the meteor shower generally stretch from April 16 (or so) through April 25 with the peak sometime towards the center of that. Any of these nights will usually offer those watching a chance to see meteors though.

As far as times go, with the Lyrid meteor shower the best time to watch is usually just a couple of hours before dawn anytime after the skies get nice and dark, though, will be good. The prediction this year is for 10-20 meteors an hour (when observing from a dark rural location).

There’s a limited possibility though (an unlikely one, that is) that 2015 will be a breakout year for the Lyrids which happens occasionally. If that was to happen that peak rates could go as high a hundred (or more) meteors an hour.

More here: http://planetsave.com/2015/04/15/lyrids-meteor-shower-peaks-wednesday-april-22-2015-early-morning-april-23-2015/

 

Extract from Wikipedia

The April Lyrids (LYR, IAU shower number 6 are a meteor shower lasting from April 16 to April 26 each year. The radiant of the meteor shower is located in the constellation Lyra, near this constellation's brightest star, Alpha Lyrae (proper name Vega).

Their peak is typically around April 22 each year.

The source of the meteor shower is particles of dust shed by the long-period Comet C/1861 G1 Thatcher. The April Lyrids are the strongest annual shower of meteors from debris of a long-period comet, mainly because as far as other intermediate long-period comets go (200 - 10,000 years), this one has a relatively short orbital period of about 415 years. The Lyrids have been observed for the past 2600 years.

The shower usually peaks on around April 22 and the morning of April 23. Counts typically range from 5 to 20 meteors per hour, averaging around ten. As a result of light pollution, observers in rural areas will see more than observers in a city. Nights without a moon in the sky will reveal the most meteors. April Lyrid meteors are usually around magnitude +2. However, some meteors can be brighter, known as "Lyrid fireballs", cast shadows for a split second and leave behind smokey debris trails that last minutes.

More here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lyrids

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ISS Ham Radio Digital TV

Sunday 19th April 2015

The request to power up the Ham Video system on 2395 MHz was added to the crew task list on April 16

That means, that crew is invited to activate Ham Video as a free time activity. No precise day/time for this activity is fixed.

Please monitor the 2395 MHz at 2.0 Ms/s frequency and tell everyone as soon as you observe it.

This will be a period of blank transmission for testing and calibration. Please make maximum use of it.

Read the HamTV overview by Gaston Bertels ON4WF
http://tinyurl.com/HamTVoverview

Join the ISS HamTV Yahoo Group
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/HamTV

ARISS-EU HamTV Bulletins
http://www.ariss-eu.org/

HamTV on Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/Hamtvproject

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Another 450,000 DAB radios with wheels sold in Q1

Saturday 18th April 2015

New CAP/SMMT data released by Digital Radio UK show that 450,000 new car registrations had digital radio as standard in Q1 2015.

DAB is standard in 61.1% of new cars, and 21.8% of new commercial vehicles, according to figures shared by industry body Digital Radio UK.

The 450,000 new cars with DAB included represents an increase of 29% year-on-year - over 100,000 more than the same quarter last year.

Read the full Media.info story at
https://media.info/radio/news/another-450000-dab-radios-with-wheels-sold-in-q1

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With a heavy heart - G3CWV - SK

Saturday 18th April 2015

It is with great sadness that I have to inform you that I have just learnt of the passing of our dear friend Clive Wallis, G3CWV on 27th March 2015

Clive has been a very staunch supporter of AMSAT from the very early days.  Many will recall his intense interest and loyalty in following UOSAT-2/UO-11.
He maintained a very comprehensive web site with details of the spacecraft's activities. He wrote many articles for Oscar News about his activities. He attended many AMSAT-UK Colloquia.

He was awarded the Louis Varney cup for 2015 by the RSGB, and although he knew of the award before his passing, the formal presentation is not until 25 April.

His funeral is to be held on Tue 22 April 2015 at 3.00pm at Christchurch, Bedford Road, Hitchin, Herts, UK. I am sure that his family would appreciate the presence of any AMSAT members who are able to be there.
 
We send our condolences to his widow, Janet.

RIP, Clive.

73s Jim Heck G3WGM
Hon Sec AMSAT-UK

For 17 years between 1996 and 2013 Clive produced monthly reports on OSCAR-11 (UoSAT-2). The report archive is at
http://www.g3cwv.co.uk/newsarch.htm

Clive's OSCAR-11 page
http://www.g3cwv.co.uk/oscar11.htm

In 1993 Clive Wallis G3CWV took over distribution of satellite related BBC software
http://amsat-uk.org/2011/12/11/bbc-micro-and-amsat-uk-software-library/

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Remaking VK Amateur LCD

Saturday 18th April 2015

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) is to tidy up the Licence Condition Determinations (LCD) that automatically sunset in October.

The ACMA proposes only minor updating of the regulations, the Radiocommunications Licence Conditions (Amateur Licence) Determination.

Although not due to sunset until April 2018, a sister piece of legislation, the Radiocommunications (Overseas Amateurs Visiting Australia) Class Licence, is also being revised.

This will enable harmonisation with the proposed new LCD, so overseas radio amateurs continue their activity while visiting up to 90 days.

The proposed LCD minor changes include removal of restrictive regulations following the closure of analogue television, and to clarify power levels in the 472-479 kHz band frequency range.

Before it makes changes, drafts of both documents are out for public comment.

Submissions must be received by the ACMA on Friday 24 April 2015.
To read the full draft materials visit the ACMA website.

Jim Linton VK3PC

WIA

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Norway to switch off FM in 2017

Saturday 18th April 2015

Thursday, the Ministry of Culture announced a national FM-switch off, to complete the transition to digital radio.

Norway is making an historical move into a new radio era, being the first country in the world to decide upon an analogue switch-off for all major radio channels. With DAB and digital radio, listeners will be provided with more radio channels and greater diversity in content.

Thor Gjermund Eriksen, head of NRK, says:
This is an important day for everyone who loves radio. The minister's decision allows us to concentrate our resources even more upon what is most important, namely to create high quality and diverse radio-content to our listeners.

The DAB-coverage in Norway now exceeds FM-coverage. DAB provides Norway with 22 national channels, as opposed to five channels transmitting nationwide on FM.

Switch-off begins 11th January 2017

You can read the full story here:
http://radio.no/2015/04/norway-to-switch-off-fm-in-2017/

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Al Jazeera: Ham Radio and Scarborough Reef

Saturday 18th April 2015

Marga Ortigas interviews radio amateur Chen Ping BA1HAM who has been involved in several DXpeditions to the disputed Scarborough Reef/Shoal near the Philippines

Scarborough Reef, also known as Panatag Shoal or Bajo de Masinloc, is located between the Macclesfield Bank and Luzon Island of the Philippines. It is claimed by Governments in Manilla, Taipei and Beijing.

Read the Al Jazeera article at
http://www.aljazeera.com/blogs/asia/2015/04/china-calling-150416170124853.html

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Aussie balloon circumnavigates the globe

Friday 17th April 2015

After being released in Victoria Australia on Easter Monday (April 6), the foil party-type balloon PS-41 has achieved the longest range in project Picospace and circled the globe.

The latest solar powered helium filled balloon PS-41 launched by Andy Nguyen VK3YT on April 6, has an HF payload, transmitting 25mW on the 30m and 20m bands, sending WSPR spots and JT9 telemetry.

Andy Nguyen VK3YT said: "PS-41 crossed 144.903 degree longitude (0120 UTC Thursday April 16) which it started from more than 10 days ago, marking a complete round trip around the globe.

"Thanks to everyone for assistance with tracking and providing encouragement for the project, the trip would not have been possible without you."

Earlier its sister balloon PS-30 went down on January 16 in suspected poor weather off the east coast of Africa near Madagascar.

The high-attitude balloon PS-41 took a path over Tasmania, then south of New Zealand, the southern tip of South America, directly over the South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands, well south of Africa, and back across to Australia.

While south of Tasmania, it abruptly changed course like a petulant child to be on a southerly track, but it has encircled the globe.

Another balloon PS-42 made its way to the Southern Pacific between New Zealand and South America.

Andy Nguyen VK3YT said: "PS-41 and PS-42 are still in the air, and will continue to be tracked in the coming days."

These have been extensively via JT9 by a network in VK, ZL, South America and South Africa, and Ireland. WSPR spots have as received all over the world.

How much longer the pico balloons can stay afloat in for anyone to guess - but we congratulate Andy VK3YT, his team and the trackers as near-space exploration continues.

Jim Linton VK3PC

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FUNcube-1 transmitting again

Friday 17th April 2015

FUNcube-1 (AO-73) is again transmitting telemetry. A restart took place during the 0930 UT Thursday pass over Europe

The CubeSat had stopped transmitting at around 2018 UT on Wednesday, April 15.

The team is still investigating the situation, but have concluded from earlier telemetry analysis that it was safe to switch back to nominal operations.

During the 0930 UT pass over The Netherlands, Wouter PA3WEG commanded it back to nominal mode with full automatic mode switching.

At this time, there is no reason to believe this event was dangerous to the spacecraft, all systems were nominal and the battery is nearly full.

Many thanks for all the reports that the team have received.

FUNcube-1 (AO-73) Telemetry:
• Dashboard App
http://funcube.org.uk/working-documents/funcube-telemetry-dashboard/


• Data Warehouse Archive http://warehouse.funcube.org.uk/

• Whole orbit data shows the effect
http://warehouse.funcube.org.uk/wod.html?satelliteId=2

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Ofcom publishes applications for small scale DAB trials

Friday 17th April 2015

Ofcom has published 51 applications received for trials of a new approach that could provide small radio stations across the UK with an affordable way to broadcast on DAB digital radio

Known as ‘small scale DAB’, the new approach is best suited for broadcasting to a small geographic area, ideal for community and local radio stations.

Ofcom intends to license up to ten trials of small scale DAB to help inform Ofcom’s work on identifying suitable frequencies for broadcasting smaller digital stations and how these services could be licensed.

Small scale DAB is cheaper than current systems because it is uses software freely available from opendigitalradio.org rather than relying on often expensive hardware equipment.

If the trials are successful, UK radio listeners could benefit from more local and community radio stations on DAB.

List of applicants
http://licensing.ofcom.org.uk/radio-broadcast-licensing/digital-radio/small-scale-trial-multiplex-licensing/applicants/

Press release
http://media.ofcom.org.uk/news/2015/small-scale-dabradio/

ISS Ham Radio SSTV video

Thursday 16th April 2015

Randy Hall K7AGE used his Arrow dual band J-Pole antenna, FT-817, Signalink USB interface and MMSSTV software to capture some great images from the ISS

Watch SSTV Images from the International Space Station

ISS Slow Scan TV Active on Weekend of April 11
http://amsat-uk.org/2015/03/31/iss-sstv/

Using WebSDRs Worldwide for the ISS
http://amsat-uk.org/2015/04/14/using-websdrs-for-iss/

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Ham radio numbers fall in Germany

Thursday 16th April 2015

In 2014 the number of German radio amateurs fell for the 5th successive year

The Deutscher Amateur Radio Club (DARC) report that on December 31, 2014 there were a total of 67,468 licences of which 60,019 were Class A (CEPT Class 1) and 7,449 were Class E (CEPT Novice).

Amateur licence total as of December 31 in each year:
2014 - 67,468
2013 - 68,191
2012 - 70,446
2011 - 71,659
2010 - 72,293

The DARC say the number of DN call signs assigned for training young people has been increasing:
2014 - 2925
2013 - 2711
2012 - 2528
2011 - 2353
2010 - 2126

The number of exam candidates were:
2014 - 991
2013 - 909
2012 - 804

Deutscher Amateur Radio Club (DARC) in Google English
http://tinyurl.com/GermanyDARC

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Ham radio at Universities growing in importance

Thursday 16th April 2015

The Deutscher Amateur Radio Club (DARC) report on amateur radio groups in Universities

DARC Officer Annette Coenen, DL6SAK, and Joachim Posegga, DL7JP, of the University of Passau say there are now 36 universities with ham radio groups listed in the German-speaking world. The 32 German universities being complemented by English-speaking universities in neighboring countries, Lucerne and Zurich in Switzerland and Linz and Vienna in Austria.

An email network exists to facilitate the exchange of information on planned amateur radio activities at the universities. An aim is to promote young talent and organize training courses.

The first meet-up of participants will take place at the HAM RADIO event in Friedrichshafen on Saturday, June 27, 2015.

All DARC members, local organizations, speakers and districts are encouraged to learn about what amateur radio offers at Universities and establish contacts and support groups to cooperate with them. There is much potential for recruitment to the hobby at Universities.

A list of Universities with amateur radio groups can be found at
http://www.darc.de/referate/ajw/jugend/afu-an-hochschulen

Deutscher Amateur Radio Club (DARC) in Google English
http://tinyurl.com/GermanyDARC

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Radio ham first to pick up Titanic's distress call

Thursday 16th April 2015

The South Wales Argus reports radio amateur Artie Moore (MNX) was the first to receive the Titanic's distress call but no-one believed him

Artie Moore, was at his home at Gelligroes Mill in Pontllanfraith, when he picked up the SOS signal sent from the Titantic as she started sinking on April 15, 1912. He received a faint Morse code transmission which said "Require immediate assistance. Come at once we have struck an iceberg. Sinking, we are putting the women off in the boats."

He raced to the local police station to inform officers of the terrible news, but nobody believed him.

Read the full story at
http://www.southwalesargus.co.uk/news/12890350.
How_a_Blackwood_man_was_the_first_to_pick_up_Titanic_s_
distress_call____but_no_one_believed_him
/

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New German Entry Level licence discussed

Thursday 16th April 2015

On March 25, representatives of the Amateur Radio Round Table (RTA) met with officials from the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI)

Because of the Federal Government's proposed 2018 fee schedule, there is a need to alter the Amateur Radio Act (AFuG). The RTA hope to use this opportunity to introduce some changes to the act.

In the six hour meeting they discussed details of amendments to the amateur radio legislation and a first draft was produced.

In total, more than 30 different modifications or amendments have been proposed. These include the introduction of a new Entry Level license class below the existing Class E.

DARC members can access further information at
http://www.darc.de/aktuelles/vorstandsinformationen

Deutscher Amateur Radio Club (DARC) in Google English
http://tinyurl.com/GermanyDARC

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Radio ham develops sensor hat

Thursday 16th April 2015

In this video, radio amateur Shiloh, K6RBT, demonstrates her prize-winning invention, a hat with sensors to help blind people avoid obstacles

Watch Shiloh, K6RBT and other young inventors https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D0_hD1SJrvA
Fast forward 5 minutes

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Thursday 16th April 2015

Island activities:

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

AF-016; FR, Reunion Island: Michel, F5PLC, will be active as FR/F5PLC between April 16 and June 16 from Reunion Island (DIFO FR-001, WLOTA 1812, FFF-011). QRV mainly on 20m, and whenever possible also on 30m with a QRP rig. QSL via F5PLC (d/B).

EU-015; SV9, Crete Island: Members of the Radio Club Bielsko team up with Greek operators for an activity from Crete (GIOTA KRS-005, MIA MGC-005, WLOTA 1400). QRV as SX9PL from the 18th to the 24th on HF on CW and SSB. Operators are Mirek/SP9ONC, Marek/SP9JKB, Martin/SQ9AC, Darek/SP9ETE, Tomek/SP9NLT, John/SV9IOQ, and John/SV9AHZ.

QSL via SP9KAT (d/B).

EU-032; F, Poitou-Chartentes Region group: Jean-Paul, F5BZK, and other operators are going to activate the LH Chassiron (DPLF PB-047, FFF-775) on Oleron on April 18&19. QRV as TM1IO, QSL via F5BZK (d/B). http://www.f5bzk.fr/

EU-038; PA, Noord Holland / Friesland / Groningen Province group: John, PA1PJ, gets on the air from the 13th to the 16th from Terschelling Island on 20 and 40m with a QRP setup. QSL via PA1PJ.

EU-048; F, Bretagne Region group: Operators Eric/F5LOW, Laurent/F5MNK, Bertrand/F6HKA, and Leon/ON4ZD, all members of the Charente DX Group, will activate Belle-Ile-en-Mer (DIFM AT-015, WLOTA 0872, WW Loc. IN87ik) from the 18th to the 25th. QRV as TM9B on HF on SSB, CW, and digital modes. QSL via ON4ZD (OQRS via ClubLog).
www.charentedxgroupe.fr

OC-021; YB1, Java Island: Bert, PD1SA, gets on the air again from Java Island between April 18 and May 18. QRV as YB1/PD1SA mainly in digital modes (PSK31/63/125) and some SSB. QSL via PD1SA (B).

OC-244; DU1-4, Luzon's Costal Islands: Patrick, 4F1TDT and Gil, 4F2KWT, plan to activate Mindoro Island (WLOTA 0794) from the 17th to the 19th as 4G0PUP. QSL via DX1PUP (d/B).

Compiled by Andreas, DK5ON
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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AmateurLogic 77: SkyPi, ThumbDV, Grid Square GPS

Wednesday 15th April 2015

George builds the SkyPi-40 QRP transmitter for RaspberryPi and sets a distance record. Tommy installs the new ThumbDV D-Star dongle. Peter creates the VK3PB Sota Box, a Grid Square GPS unit. Plus your viewer emails and more.

1:05:59

AmateurLogic.TV Episode 77 is now available for download.

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Using WebSDR’s worldwide for the ISS

Wednesday 15th April 2015

Martin Ehrenfried G8JNJ describes how he uses WebSDR’s to listen to ISS transmissions on 145.800 and 145.825 MHz. The SUWS SDR at Farnham can even receive the 143.625 MHz ISS comms channel.

We were treated to more Slow Scan Television (SSTV) pictures from the International Space Station (ISS) on the weekend of April 11/12.

During the Sunday evening passes a Cosmonaut suddenly decided to try some ad-hoc voice contacts between SSTV transmissions. Quite a few other stations were calling RS0ISS, but I didn’t hear any actual two-way exchanges. I made a very late, hurried and half-hearted attempt to call near the end of the pass, when my collinear antenna was most likely to be effective, but the ISS was very quickly out of range.

I was also monitoring the Russian VHF-2 comms frequency 143.625 MHz FM on the new extended 143 MHz band on the SUWS WebSDR in a second browser window, and heard a very short transmission from a Cosmonaut near the end of the UK pass. I suspect they were attempting to call Moscow as they started to come into range.

When the ISS dropped out on the SUWS WebSDR, I swapped over to the Russian http://sdr.22dx.ru/ WebSDR and heard some full contacts during a long pass over the Russian mainland.

With the exception of Asia (Bangkok SDR seems to be very deaf) it’s now possible to switch between WebSDR’s at different locations and catch just about all Amateur transmissions from the ISS. In fact it’s possible to set-up multiple browser tabs, one for each WebSDR and just leave them set on 145.800 MHz FM with squelch enabled, so that voice or SSTV traffic can be heard on each SDR in turn when the ISS passes into range.

SUWS WebSDR http://websdr.suws.org.uk/


A list of WebSDR URLs and Martin's audio recording are available at
http://amsat-uk.org/2015/04/14/using-websdrs-for-iss/

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U.S. Postal Rates - Going up!

Wednesday 15th April 2015

Beginning April 26th, there will be some new postal rates.

Here is a quick summary:

Forever Stamps -- Will remain the same at 49 cents
Global Forever Stamps -- Going Up! $1.15 to $1.20
Postcards -- Going Up! 32 cents to 33 cents
Additional Ounces -- Going Up! 21 cents to 22 cents

The complete breakdown of the new rates can be seen at:
http://blog.stamps.com/2015/03/04/usps-announces-postage-rate-increase-starts-april-26-2015/

OPDX

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Noise from Switching-mode Power Supplies

Tuesday 14th April 2015

ARRL Laboratory Manager and EMI Expert Ed Hare, W1RFI, told the HamRadioNow webcast recently that switching-mode power supplies are a more common noise source for radio amateurs than electrical power lines

The ARRL say:

HamRadioNow host Gary Pearce, KN4AQ, interviewed Hare on April 4 at the Raleigh, North Carolina, RARSfest, where Hare also presented a forum, “Tall Tales from the ARRL Lab.” Hare told Pearce that switching-mode power supplies are in — or provide power for — many home electronics these days.

“The old days of those iron transformers are gone,” Hare said. “Every single one of these is a switcher. We’re also seeing noise from pulse-width control motors.” Hare said the big culprits are “little wall warts,” not switching supplies designed to power Amateur Radio gear. “Every TV you own has a built-in switcher, almost every device has a wall-wart, and a lot of these are imported, not necessarily meeting the FCC rules, so we’re seeing more reports involving those,” he said.

Hare also told HamRadioNow that a few LED-type lightbulbs that are becoming more common also can be noise-generators, as are “grow lights” used for cultivating plants indoors. He said that the ARRL Lab can work with manufacturers to correct these problems, but the Lab needs model numbers and “specific information about the problems amateurs are having, so that we can put some of our resources toward helping.”

Read the full ARRL story at
http://www.arrl.org/news/switching-power-supplies-a-more-common-noise-source-than-power-lines-arrl-lab-manager-says

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RSGB Region 3 Club of the Year Trophy

Monday 13th April 2015

Yesterday Sunday 12th April at the Norbreck Castle Hotel in Blackpool, the Northern Amateur Radio Societies Association (NARSA) held their Annual Blackpool Radio Rally .. one of the largest Rallies in the North West of England.

Although the weather was not too kind, it was not long before the crowds were queuing at the doors.

The RSGB announced the winner of the RSGB Region 3 Club of the Year Trophy which went once again to the Wirral & District Amateur Radio Club. 

Now a worthy winner two years running (2013 and 2014) the pressure is on to go for the hat trick !

In the photo right, Neil M0WBG our Treasurer is seen receiving the Trophy from RSGB General Manager Graham Coomber

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Caister to echo to historic sound of Morse code

Monday 13th April 2015

Norfolk's radio amateurs will once again contact other enthusiasts around the world from Caister Lifeboat on Saturday 25 April 2015 as part of the International Marconi Day celebrations.

The Norfolk Amateur Radio Club (NARC) will be running an all-day special event station with the callsign GB0CMS at Caister Lifeboat Visitor Centre to commemorate the village's original Marconi Wireless Station, which was established at Caister in 1900. The station was in a house in the High Street known as Pretoria Villa and its original purpose was to communicate with ships in the North Sea and the Cross Sands lightship.

Last year the radio amateurs managed to contact radio amateurs in 30 different countries.

Using a mixture of Morse code and speech, notable contacts were made with other special Marconi stations in the UK, Italy, the USA and Canada, including St John's Newfoundland, where Marconi's signals from Poldhu in Cornwall were first heard across the Atlantic from in 1901.

Contacts closer to home included many other radio amateurs around the UK, including some of the other Marconi stations in Holyhead, Daventry and The Lizard in Cornwall – home to some of the inventor's early work.

NARC member and local weatherman Jim Bacon, callsign G3YLA, operating the Caister Marconi station in 2014

On this day, the closest Saturday to Guglielmo Marconi's birthday, stations around the world are set up at sites with historical links to the inventor's work.

These include Poldhu in England; Cape Cod Massachusetts; Glace Bay, Nova Scotia; Villa Griffone, Bologna, Italy and many others.

Once again, radio amateurs around the world will try to contact as many of these stations as possible to win an award, in this the 28 th year that International Marconi Day has been run.

NARC aim to run two stations at the Caister Lifeboat Visitor Centre – one using speech (telephony) and the other Morse code (telegraphy). Any radio amateur making contact with either station can request a special “QSL” card with an historic photograph of the original Caister Marconi Wireless Station on the front.

NARC public relation officer Steve Nichols, who is organising the event, said: “Any visitors who want to find about more about amateur radio or Caister's role in radio history will be made more than welcome.
In addition to the radio stations the lifeboat Visitor Centre will also be open, which offers a fascinating insight into the remarkable history of Caister Lifeboat.”

Further history of the original Marconi Wireless Station:

The Caister station was connected by land line to Gt Yarmouth Post Office and the Caister Coast Guard Station. The main aerial mast behind the house was 150 feet high, the aerial wire being suspended between this and a slightly shorter mast situated on land where Lacon Road was later built.

The large front room of the house contained the main apparatus and was also used as the operating room. The engine for charging the accumulators was situated in a shed adjoining the house and the accumulators themselves were housed in a specially-constructed annex.

The remainder of the premises were used as a dwelling house for the officer-in-charge.

The range of communication was 150 to 200 miles on the long wave (600m) and 100 miles on the short wave (300m).

In 1909 all the Marconi coastal stations were taken over by the Post Office. In 1911 the Caister station was used to train lightship men in the use of telegraphy equipment.

In January 1915 the telegraph equipment on the Cross Sands lightship was transferred to the Parlour lightship and the Caister station was changed to ‘general working’ and not used for ship-to-shore work. Public use of the telegram facility provided at Caister was suspended for the duration of the WW1.

In 1921 plans were made for the reinstallation of wireless on Trinity House lightships, but this time the new wireless telephony was to replace telegraphy (Morse). New technology made the Caister station out of date and it finally closed in 1929. The masts were taken down and a few years later the house became the village Police Station.

(Historical details with thanks to local historian Colin Tooke.)

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CQ ENCE 2015: EmerComms on the Net

Monday 13th April 2015

The 6th Emergency Communications National Exercise ENCE in Spanish) is devoted this year to RoIP: EchoLink, FRN, IRLP, D-Star, Fusion...

It will be held on Saturday April 18, 16:00-17:00 UTC, and is open to international participation. A good opportunity for technical experimentation and to practice languages.

Aware that, if a disaster occurs, internet can be one of the first resources to fail in the affected area, but, outside there, it is a very powerful tool to consider; in this edition we will emphasize the use and dissemination of technologies that allow attaching radio and internet, without sacrificing classic modes of communication.

The exercise purpose is to bring an opportunity to all those radio amateurs interested in practicing operational skills.

One way to participate is by connecting that day to the EchoLink conference *EANET*, listening and writing down received messages.

To make things easier a template is created in order to collect data of messages and a howto in English is provided:
http://www.fediea.org/news/?news=20140405&lang=en

Reports can be sent to: ence@fediea.org.

CQ ENCE is organized by Federación Digital EA and Liga Española de Asociaciones CB y Radioaficionados.

More info (in Spanish) at: http://www.fediea.org/emergencias/

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Apollo 13 radio communications issue

Monday 13th April 2015

After the explosion of Oxygen Tank 2 in Apollo 13’s service module the crew discovered the Lunar Module radio communications system couldn’t hear Mission Control

The crew radioed they were getting lots of background static, and at times, they reported communications from the ground were “unreadable.” Additionally, the Manned Space Flight Network (MSFN) tracking stations around the world were having trouble “hearing” the Apollo 13 spacecraft’s radio broadcasting the tracking data.

“Without reliable knowledge of where the vehicle was or was going might result in disaster,” said NASA engineer Jerry Woodfill.

Read the story at
http://www.universetoday.com/119784/13-more-things-that-saved-apollo-13-part-3-detuning-the-saturn-vs-3rd-stage-radio/

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IOTA News from OPDX

Monday 13th April 2015

Island activities:

AS-073. Operators Rizal/9M2RDX, Ahmad/9W2AEV, Hanif/9W2FLD, Rosli/9M2RHQ, Han/9W2SBD, Ishak/9M2MCB, Mohamad/9W2MCK, Ahmad/9W2VVN, Faizol/9W2ZKZ and Rizal/KC3DQS will be active as 9M4TI from Redang Island between April 23-26th. Activity will be on 80-10 meters using CW, SSB and BPSK. QSL via 9M2RDX, direct only.

EU-124. Members of Barry Amateur Radio Society (BARS) in South Wales, UK, will be operating as GB4MBC from the historical Flatholm Island, between April 24-27th. The GB4MBC operations on April 25th is to celebrate Marconi's birthday. Also, the team will operate using their own personal callsigns on the other days. Activity will be mainly on the HF bands, but will also operate on satellite using limited portable equipment during their stay. QSL via MW0DHF.

EU-160/EU-188. In an eight day journey (about 1700m) throughout the Barents Sea, members of Russian Robinson Club (RRC) plan to activate some very remote and hard to access IOTA during the second half of July (approx. dates July 18th and August 6th). Islands mentioned are Korga Island (callsign RI1PK) [EU-160, RR-03-04) or possibly Chaichij Island (callsign RI1PC) [EU-160, RR-03-24] and Timanets Island (callsign RI1PT) [EU-188 , RR-03-27(new one), RLHA: RLE-133 (new one), WLOTA: LH-0191 (new one)].
Operators mentioned are Vasily/R7AA (Team Leader), Vasily/RA1ZZ, Alexander/RA3AV, Aleksej/RA1QY and Sergey/R1OO. QSL via R7AA direct (SASE). Also, QSL via ClubLog's OQRS (DIRECT or Bureau). For more details and updates, see:
http://www.ri1pc.org

NA-248. (New IOTA) Cezar, VE3LYC, is planning to activate Melville Island sometime between the period August 3-10th (Exact dates TBA). Landing permission and logistics have been granted. Full details will be announced soon on a Web page.

OC-262. Operators Hafni/YB5FN, Vector/YB5BOY (Team Leader), Surya/YB5EHQ (Co-Leader), Denny/YC5KIK (QSL Manager), Yhonny/YB5LX, Mardiyan/YC5MB, Syahril/YC5DSM, YL Dahnial/YC5KJY, Nana/YC5EGN, Zulherman/YC5JYY, Uncu/YD5DFR, Zainal/YD5KCI and Robby/YD4IRS will be active as YB5M from Pasumpahan Island between May 14-17th. Activity will be on 40/20/17/15/10 meters using CW, SSB and RTTY. Visit their Web site at: http://yb5m.com

SA-024. Operators Marcelo Pera/PY2AE, Murilo/PY2DS, João Carlos/PU2KKE, Willian/PU2XIZ and Flávio/PU2KFL will be active as PW2C from Cambriú Island (DIB SP-15) between May 1-3rd. The island of Cambriú will be activated for the first time; it belongs to São Paulo State West Group and will be a new DIB to Brazil, SP-15. Cambriú is a tiny island in south of São Paulo state without any kind of infrastructure, and there is no energy power or portable water. The landing is done on the rocks and the weather and sea conditions usually are not good.
Activity will be on 80/40/20/15/10/2 meters using CW and SSB.  QSL via PY2DS, direct or by the Bureau.

SA-028. (Update) By the time you read this, operators Leo/PU2LGU, Paulo/PU2WZR and Agostinho/PY2DMC will be finishing their "DXpedition Solidary of Easter" (Solidary Sailor Project) from Vitoria Island as ZV2VS, between April 11-12th. The main objective of this operation is to deliver food donations for 20 poor families in a remote village. They celebrated the Easter holiday with chocolate eggs for the children. Amateurs radio and personal friends have contributed to this action. Also, the CDR Group made a large donation for this event.
QSL via PU2WZR only direct.  See QRZ.com and www.veleirotukura.com.br for more details.

RSGB IOTA website

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

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Tests may lead to Australia joining the space race

Sunday 12th April 2015

A group of enthusiasts plan to launch a 100 per cent locally built balloon carried glider in outback Queensland as a possible forerunner to getting the country back in space.

Australia once had space launches from Woomera in South Australia, and over the years there's been talk of other launch sites, but nothing appears to have happened.

However Project ThunderStruck, headed by father and son Robert Brand VK2URB and Jason VK2FJAB, has an ambitious venture that promises to see a glider lifted by a balloon to an altitude of 45km from Longreach in September.

From there the glider will free-fall reaching supersonic speed for a short time. The Phase 1 balloon and glider flights are to be recorded by telemetry and cameras.

Robert VK2URB admits he's too busy to play Amateur Radio, leaving an option of someone else to use the balloon's 2kg capacity that's big enough for a small repeater or similar package.

A suitable ham package for each phase of the ThunderStruck project is now being sought.

In six or seven years the knowledge gained through ThunderStruck may lead to the launch of CubeSats carrying Amateur Radio to the planet Mars.

More can be read on the website
www.projectthunderstruck.org

Jim Linton VK3PC

WIA

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Maritime Radio Day

Sunday 12th April 2015

This annual event is held this year on April the 14th and 15th to remember the years of wireless and seafarers.

Wireless was used on ships from the early days of the 1900s and ended in 1998, to be replaced by automatic communications and positioning technology.

The event is open to all radio amateurs, and special stations at coastal stations, naval establishments and maritime museums are encouraged.

More details are available at www.trafficlist.net

Jim Linton VK3PC

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RSGB New Starter's Newsletter to change name

Friday 10th April 2015

From June the New Starter’s Newsletter will be known as RadCom Basics

The newsletter is available to all RSGB members not just newcomers. The April-May edition is now available and has articles on D-STAR, 18 MHz, Sporadic E and Baluns.

Articles planned for the June RadCom Basics are
- Making the most of 10MHz (30m)
- What is DMR?
- Understanding Software Defined Radio (SDR)
- What is Summits on the Air (SOTA)?

RSGB members can sign up for the newsletter at
http://rsgb.org/main/publications-archives/new-starters-newsletter/

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IARUMS newsletter now available

Friday 10th April 2015

The latest IARUMS newsletter says the Australian Over The Horizon (OTH) Radar 'JORN' was operating daily on 21295 kHz using different sweep rates

The International Amateur Radio Union Monitoring System (IARUMS) Region 1 March 2015 newsletter can be read at
http://www.iarums-r1.org/iarums/news2015/news1503.pdf

Reports of Amateur Band intruders can be logged on the IARU Region 1 Monitoring System Logger at
http://peditio.net/intruder/bluechat.cgi

Monitor the short wave bands on-line with a web based SDR receiver at
http://www.websdr.org/

IARU Monitoring System (IARUMS)
http://www.iaru-r1.org/index.php?option=com_content
&view=category&layout=blog&id=39&Itemid=87

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Ofcom: Mobile Trading Regulations

Thursday 9th April 2015

Ofcom has published a consultation setting out plans to include 1452 -1492 MHz and former amateur radio allocations in 2350 - 2390 MHz and 3410 - 3600 MHz within the Mobile Trading Regulations

These regulations define the process for trading spectrum in specified frequency ranges that can be used for provision of mobile services.
In particular, they enable Ofcom to carry out a competition check before approving a trade of such spectrum.

The spectrum access licence for the 1452 -1492 MHz band is currently held by Qualcomm UK Spectrum Ltd. Qualcomm has requested a licence variation to help enable the spectrum’s use for mobile or fixed communication Network Supplemental Downlink (SDL) in the UK.

SDL is a new mobile broadband technology which, using a mobile base station transmitter network, provides additional bandwidth to deliver improved capacity for consumer mobile broadband services. Improved capacity can help service providers send more data to consumer devices, such as smartphones, tablets and laptops, at faster speeds.

The 2350-2390 MHz and 3410-3600 MHz spectrum bands are to be auctioned under proposals for the Public Sector Spectrum Release (PSSR). As set out in previous consultations, we expect this spectrum to be used for mobile broadband.

In this consultation we are seeking views on plans to make two sets of regulations, which would allow the licences in the 1452 – 1492 MHz, 2350 - 2390 MHz and 3410 - 3600 MHz bands to be traded with a competition assessment, should it be required. The draft regulations would give effect to our proposed policy.

Ofcom’s earlier consultation on varying the Spectrum Access Licence for the 1452 -1492 MHz band can be viewed here.
Ofcom’s earlier consultation on the PSSR Award of the 2.3 GHz and 3.4 GHz bands can be viewed here.

This consultation closes on May 8, 2015.

Consultation details
http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/consultations/
mobile-trading-regs-apr-15/

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Thursday 9th April 2015

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-013; 8Q, Maldive Islands: is currently holidaying on the Maldives until April 12. QRV as 8Q7SA on 40-10m, 60 and 6m depending on condx. QSL via LZ3SM.

AS-200; JA5, Shikoku's Coastal Islands: Take, JI3DST, activates Shodo Island April 11 - 13 as JI3DST/5 (SSB/CW) and JS6RRR/5 (RTTY/FM) on 40-6m. QSL via h/c, OQRS. http://blog.goo.ne.jp/ji3dst

EU-026; JW, Spitzbergen Island: Francois, F8DVD, will be active as JW/F8DVD from Longyearbyen (WLOTA 0125) between the 9th and 15th. QRV on 80-10m on CW, SSB, and digital modes. QSL via F8DVD (d/B), Logs will be uploaded to LoTW and ClubLog.

EU-138; SM7, Blekinge Country Group: Fred, SM7DAY, is going to put Senoren Island on the air as SM7DAY/p or SK7DX between the 11th and 18th on HF (SSB, CW, PSK). QSL SM7DAY/p via SM7DAY (d/B), ClubLog OQRS; DK7DX via SM7DXQ.

NA-002; VP5, Caicos Islands: Steve, VE3OC, returns to Providenciales Island (WLOTA 2003) and operates holiday-style as VP5/VE3OC between the 11th and 16th. QSL via VE3OC (d), LoTW, eQSL.

NA-025; J8, The Grenadines: Brian, GW4DVB, will be active from Palm Island (WW Loc. FK92ho) April 13 to 21. QRV as J88PI on 40, 20, 17, 15, 10, and 6m on SSB. QSL via h/c (d/B). http://www.g4dvb.co.uk/

NA-105; PJ7, Sint Maarten: Doug (K4DBR) pays Sint Maarten (WLOTA 0711) a visit from the 12th to the 17th. QRV as PJ7/K4DBR on 40-10m on SSB and digital modes. QSL via LoTW.

SA-028; PY2, Sao Paulo State East group: Paulo/ PY2WZR, Billy/PY2LCD, and Edgar/PU2TYA, all members of the CDR DX Group, activate Vitoria Island on the 11th and 12th as ZV2VS. QSL via PY2WZR (d/B), eQSL. http://www.veleirotukura.com.br/

Compiled by Andreas, DK5ON
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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New Essex D-Star Repeater

Thursday 9th April 2015

The latest D-Star repeater in Essex is GB7KH which went live on Tuesday, April 6

It joins the other Essex D-Star repeaters GB7ZP in Danbury and GB7SS in Hockley.

The repeater is located at the Keveldon Hatch Secret Nuclear Bunker about 30 km N.E of central London and provides coverage of West and Central Essex, a map can be seen at
http://www.ukrepeater.net/my_repeater.php?id=2330

It is based around the Icom ID-RP4000V UHF repeater with ID-RP2C controller and Procom duplexer tuned for the output frequency of 439.6125 MHz and 430.6125 MHz input.

Further information on GB7KH is at
http://www.gb7kh.co.uk/

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ISS Slow Scan TV active again this weekend

Wednesday 8th April 2015

The Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) has announced another round of amateur radio Slow Scan Television (SSTV) activity from the International Space Station (ISS) will take place.

Continuous operation, using the call sign RS0ISS, is expected to start at 1000 UT on Saturday, April 11 to commemorate the anniversary of the first human spaceflight by Yuri Gagarin which took place on April 12, 1961. Previous SSTV sessions have run for two days.

Twelve different images will be sent on 145.800 MHz FM using the SSTV mode PD180, with a 3-minute off time between transmissions.

One of the photos shows the commemorative diploma created by PZK, the national Polish Amateur Radio society, on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the birth of first cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin.

The equipment used will be the Kenwood D710 transceiver located in the Russian Service Module. It is thought the equipment may be producing about 25 watts output which should provide a very strong signal.

Plans are being discussed for transmitting new images from space enthusiasts around the world in the coming months. Additional details will be released.

The images received by amateurs world-wide during previous transmissions can be seen at http://www.spaceflightsoftware.com/ARISS_SSTV/ and you are invited to upload any pictures you receive during the upcoming transmissions.

In the UK newspaper the Daily Mail, Jonathan O’Callaghan wrote about how 22-year-old Radek Karwacki, an AMSAT-UK member, received pictures from the ISS using a £10 ($15) RTL-SDR dongle and a dipole antenna, see http://amsat-uk.org/2015/02/04/iss-sstv-in-uk-press/

All you need to do to receive SSTV pictures direct from the space station is to connect the audio output of a scanner or amateur radio transceiver via a simple interface to the soundcard on a Windows PC or an Apple iOS device, and tune in to 145.800 MHz FM. You can even receive pictures by holding an iPhone next to the radio loudspeaker.

On Windows PC’s the free application MMSSTV can be used to decode the signal, on Apple iOS devices you can use the SSTV app for compatible modes. (Note: see comments below about MMSSTV clock adjustments which may be needed to reduce picture slant)

The ISS puts out a strong signal on 145.800 MHz FM and a 2m handheld with a 1/4 wave antenna will be enough to receive it. The FM transmission uses 5 kHz deviation which is standard in much of the world apart from the British Isles and Europe where 2.5 kHz deviation is more common.

Many FM rigs can be switched been wide and narrow deviation FM filters. For best results you should select the wider deviation filters. Handhelds all seem to have a single wide filter fitted as standard.

The ISS Fan Club website will show you when the space station is in range.

Paul Turner G4IJE, co-developer of the SSTV PD modes, says regarding the MMSSTV PD180 mode: “Don’t forget to either enable “Always show RX viewer” or use the “Picture viewer” (magnifying glass icon) to show the picture at its real resolution of 640 x 496. If you just view as normal you will only see 320 x 248 resolution, which kind of defeats the object of using a high resolution mode.”

On the AMSAT-BB Rick W2JAZ and Alan WA4SCA comment on the need to set the MMSSTV sound card setting to 48 kHz instead of the default 44.100 kHz
• Options
• Setup
• Misc
• Then the Clock section at the bottom of the page

The MMSSTV default setting may need to be set to 24000 (exactly half of the sound card setting). You then should get good clean images.

The sound card adjustments will vary slightly depending on the version of the OS you are running, but usually will be under the advanced properties for the device. You can probably use a higher sampling rate for the sound card so long as it is a power of 2 multiple (2,4,8, etc) of the value in MMSSTV. For instance 192k (8x) has no issues. The same applies to most similar software.

You can receive the SSTV transmissions online using the SUWS WebSDR remote receiver located near London along with the MMSSTV software http://amsat-uk.org/2014/08/15/suws-websdr-moves-to-new-site/

ISS Fan Club – Tracking / Predictions http://www.issfanclub.com/

Free MMSSTV Slow Scan TV software http://hamsoft.ca/pages/mmsstv.php

iOS SSTV App https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/sstv/id387910013

For more on Slow Scan Television SSTV, see this article SSTV – The Basics http://www.essexham.co.uk/sstv-the-basics

How to be successful with the ISS Slow Scan Television (SSTV) imaging system http://www.marexmg.org/fileshtml/howtoisssstv.html

IZ8BLY Vox Recoder, enables you to record the signals from the ISS on 145.800 MHz while you’re away at work http://antoninoporcino.xoom.it/VoxRecorder/

ARISS Slow Scan TV (SSTV) Blog and Gallery
http://ariss-sstv.blogspot.co.uk/

Information on the MAI-75 SSTV experiment
http://www.energia.ru/eng/iss/researches/education-26.html

Video showing reception of SSTV using the FUNcube Dongle Pro SDR and SDR-RADIO going into Virtual Audio Cable (VAC) then to MMSSTV software https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K6MOrX9iZCk

ISS SSTV received online with SUWS WebSDR
http://amsat-uk.org/2014/09/06/iss-sstv-on-suws-websdr/

Mauricio PY4MAB

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New UK Ham Radio Licence

Wednesday 8th April 2015

UK amateurs should have received a copy of the new amateur radio licence document by the end of this week

The licence takes effect from April 7 and the RSGB suggests those who haven't received it by April 14 should email ARL2015@ofcom.org.uk

On the 5 MHz Yahoo reflector John G8XTJ noted that the new licence contained the following clause regarding 5 MHz operation:

(x) The Licensee shall only operate the Station to the extent that the Licensee can be contacted on a telephone which is located in close proximity to the Station.

The clause originally appeared in the special NoV which used to be needed for 5 MHz operation and seems to have been simply copied across into the main licence document. Since Ofcom has not yet requested amateurs to provide their private telephone number it is not clear how they would be able to ring the telephone which is in close proximity to the station.

A number of people have wondered if the wording in the licence permits overseas contacts.

11(2)(a) says Messages sent from the station shall only be addressed to other Amateurs or to the stations of those Amateurs;
While 17(d) says
“Amateur” means a holder of a United Kingdom Amateur Radio Licence;

A sample copy of the UK licence can be seen at
http://licensing.ofcom.org.uk/binaries/spectrum/amateur-radio/guidance-for-licensees/nov/licence.pdf

RSGB - NoV to the Amateur Radio licence
http://rsgb.org/main/blog/news/gb2rs/headlines/2015/03/13/notice-variation-amateur-radio-licence/

5 MHz Yahoo Group
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ukfivemegs

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IOTA News from OPDX

Monday 6th April 2015

Island activities:

AS-200. Takeshi "TAKE"/JI3DST(JS6RRR) will once again be active as JI3DST/5 (CW/SSB) and JS6RRR/5 (RTTY/FM) from Shodo Island (in the Shikoku's Coastal Islands) between April 11-12th.
Activity will be on 40/30/20/17/15/12/10/6 meters. This operation is subject to change because of bad WX or other conditions.
QSL JS6RRR/5 and JI3DST/5 via the Bureau or by ClubLog's OQRS.
Please check QRZ.com for more details. For more details and updates, see:
http://blog.goo.ne.jp/ji3dst

EU-023. Roberto, PB5X, will once again be active as 9H3A from Gozo Island, Malta, between June 3-10th. Activity will be holiday style with a focus on the 30/20/17/12/10 meters SSB. QSL via PB5X, direct or by the Bureau.

EU-051. Operators Giovanni/IK5BCM and Andrea/IU5BLZ will be active as IE9B from Ustica Island between May 9-16th. Activity will be on 80-10 meters using CW, SSB and the Digital modes. QSL via IU5BLZ, direct, by the Bureau, LoTW or eQSL.

EU-074. Operators Francis/ON8AZ, Geert/ON7USB, Tim/ON5HC, Lieven/ON4PQ and Pat/ON7PQ will be active as TM5U from Ile Brehat, France, between May 10-16th. Activity will be on 160-6 meters using CW, SSB and RTTY. QSL via ON8AZ. For more details, see their Web site at: http://www.eu074.be

EU-088. Mike, OZ1KZX, will be active as 5P1ANH from Anholt Island (DIA NK-001) sometime between May 5-10th for 3-4 days. When off duty, he will be active on Digimode JT65, RTTY and PSK31. QSL via his home callsign, by the Bureau, direct, LoTW, eQSL or ClubLog's OQRS.

EU-125. Tom, DL7UZO, will be active as 5P9Z/P from Romo Island between May 23-31st. Activity will be focused on CW and RTTY. QSL via his home callsign, direct or by the Bureau. For more details, see: http://www.5p9z.com

EU-175. By the time you read this, Leo, CU3EJ, was expected to be active as CU5/CU3DX from São Jorge Island as of Friday, starting at 0900z. Activity will be mostly on 20 meters SSB. Length of stay was not mentioned (could be a one operation). This activity will count for the awards: CTFF-0124, CUFF-005, WCA CT-00416, DMHP AZ-068, ARLHS AZO-019, WLOTA WL-1004, DFFP FP-145, DFP FAZ-05, PIP AC-005, DIP AZ-005, DMP 1904 and DDFP VLS-03. QSL via CU3EJ, by the Bureau or direct.

OC-021. Bert, PD1SA, will be active as YB1/PD1SA from Java Island between April 18th and May 18th. QSL via PD1SA by the Bureau.

OC-130. Marc, ON5SM, will once again be active as DU9/ON5SM from Mindanao Island (WLOTA 2803) between April 16-25th. Activity will be on all HF bands. QSL via his home callsign, by the Bureau or direct (see QRZ.com). Log will be uploaded to LoTW and eQSL.

OC-142. Charlie, VK3ZD, is currently active as VK9NW from North West Island [uninhabited island off the coast of Queensland in the Coral Sea] until April 20th. Activity will be mainly on 20 meters (14205 kHz) at first, but will also be on 40 and 15 meters. QSL via his home callsign direct, eQSL or LoTW. For more details and updates, see: http://www.vk9nw.com

OC-204. By the time you read this, Budi, YF1AR, will be active as YF1AR/4 from the rare IOTA Enggano Island and Malakoni Enggano Lighthouse (IDO-197) until April 6th. Activity will be on 40-10 meters using mainly SSB with some CW and Digital modes. QSL via N2OO or via ClubLog's OQRS. For more details, see:
http://www.yf1ar.com/2015/04/yf1ar4-ido-197-oc-204-enggano-island.html

OC-244. Operators Patrick/4F1TDT and Gilbert/4F2KWT/DX1PUP will be active as 4G0PUP from Mindoro Island between April 16-19th. Activity will be on the HF bands using CW and SSB.  QSL via DX1PUP/4F2KWT, direct or by the Bureau.

OC-269. Operators Imam/YB4IR, Hendri/YB7AM and YC7BAO are now active (since April 2nd) as YB4IR/7, YB7AM/p and YC7BAO/p, respectively, from Serutu Island, Karimata Island until April 7th. QSL via YB4IR.

RSGB IOTA website

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

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New SA radio regulations published

Sunday 5th April 2015

The new South African radio regulations were published in the government gazette this week.

In short, South African radio amateurs can now, with the exception of a few bands, increase output power to one kilowatt.

The 160 meter band has been extended to 2 MHz and as bonus, Class B licensees were awarded a power increase to 100watt as well.

Look out for more on these and other amendments in future SARL bulletins.

The South African Radio League

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GB7SE DMR licence issued

Sunday 5th April 2015

The Essex DMR digital voice repeater GB7SE is now licensed and it is expected on-air in a couple of weeks

The 70cm repeater, located at Thurrock, wil be part of the DMR South East regional talk group 8.

Output frequency is 439.4750 MHz with the input on 430.4750 MHz

Further information and a coverage map is available on the Essex Amateur Radio DX Group site at
http://www.eardx.co.uk/home/gb7se/

Twitter https://twitter.com/EARDX_Group

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RKR Designs acquire Alpha Amplifier and TEN-TEC

Saturday 4th April 2015

RKR Designs, LLC of Longmont, Colorado has announced that they have acquired the assets of Alpha Amplifier and TEN-TEC brands from RF Concepts. RKR plans to expand the product line, while continuing to service their customers that have enjoyed their products over the years.

The principals of RKR Designs are Richard Gall, Ken Long and Rich Danielson (Gall and Danielson of QSC Systems, Longmont, Colorado have been a successful contract manufacturer, for over 20 years).

Ken Long, N0QO has over 20 years in the electronics and amateur radio industry. Long will be President and CEO of the new company. QSC has been building Alpha amplifiers for over 5 years. They have also been building boards for TEN-TEC since their purchase by RF Concepts last year.
Mr. Long said “QSC has always been a fantastic contract manufacturer, and has the expertise and knowledge that will allow us to bring down costs, while increasing quality and reducing manufacturing times.”

When asked for comment, Michael Seedman, AA6DY said “I can’t think of a more capable group of people to take over the 45 year Alpha Amplifier/TEN-TEC legacy. Ken Long has been involved with the industry for years, and has a great feeling for products and operations. He has the manufacturing and engineering resources available to deliver quality products that our customers demand”. Mr. Seedman went on to say “Alpha and TEN-TEC have always had a warm spot in my heart, and I am thrilled that RKR Designs will be able to continue the operations of the business. I wish them the best”.

Ken, Richard and Rich have been working very close over the past several years and feel that this new relationship will benefit the company and customers moving forward. This closer relationship to the contract manufacturer will allow a more consistent process and delivery of quality products along with significant cost benefits.

RKR Designs LLC is privately held, and terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

TEN-TEC Press Release

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ACMA consults on removing 3400-3410 MHz

Saturday 4th April 2015

The Australian regulator the ACMA is consulting on a number of changes to the amateur radio licence including removal of a key 3400 MHz allocation

3400-3410 MHz is allocated to the Amateur Satellite Service in ITU Regions 2 and 3 and is also used by amateurs in many countries around the world for weak signal communications including moon bounce (EME).

The ACMA consultation closes on April 24, WIA announcement at
http://www.wia.org.au/newsevents/news/2015/20150314-2/

Consultation documents
http://www.acma.gov.au/theACMA/remaking-amateur-lcd-and-overseas-visiting-amateurs-class-licence

UK Microwave Group 3400 MHz page
http://www.microwavers.org/3400mhz.htm

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Breaking News !!  Ofcom agree 70.5-71.5 MHz

Friday 3rd April 2015

Radio amateurs in much of the UK and Crown Dependencies will have access to an extra 1 MHz of VHF spectrum from 70.5 to 71.5 MHz for digital experimentation by special permit.

The RSGB say further details of the application process will be published in due course. Permission will be subject to geographical restriction and Scotland is precluded.

Read the RSGB announcement at
http://rsgb.org/main/blog/news/gb2rs/headlines/2015/04/02/new-spectrum-digital-experimentation/

RSGB on Facebook
http://facebook.com/theRSGB

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Cambridge 105 goes pirate - including on 6070kHz - for Good Friday

Friday 3rd April 2015

Community broadcast radio station Cambridge 105 is throwing away the modern technology and returning to the era of pirate radio for Good Friday.

Setting up turntables and cart machines on the Riverboat Georgina on the River Cam, we'll be broadcasting from 10am to 10pm, covering everything from the early days of offshore radio in the 1960s to the end of the era in the early '90s.

We've also teamed up with the DARC-run Channel 292 shortwave transmitter on 6070kHz for the day, so SWLs should be able to hear us there across much of Europe.

Dom M0BLF will be handling QSL cards for anyone who does hear us on HF.

Cambridge 105 is run entirely by volunteers, including a good number of licensed amateurs, both on the engineering and presentation side of the station.

73,

Rob, M0VFC
(part of the engineering team)

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New Ham Radio Course Finder

Thursday 2nd April 2015

The RSGB has launched a new amateur radio training course and exam finder page on their website

The UK Course and Exam Finder allows you to search for specific courses, or for exam centres, in your area.

Just enter your town or postcode at
http://www.rsgb.org/find-courses

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Ham Radio Photo Competition

Thursday 2nd April 2015

The RSGB have launched a new photo competition to celebrate amateur radio!

The image must reflect an aspect of amateur radio and multiple submissions are permitted.

The winning entry will become the Society’s new Twitter profile picture.

To find out more go to http://www.rsgb.org/photocomp

But hurry as the deadline is midnight on April 12.

RSGB on Facebook
http://facebook.com/theRSGB

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Thursday 2nd April 2015

Island activities:

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

OC-086; KH0, Northern Mariana Islands: Mami, JP3AYQ will operate as AH0YL from Saipan Island (WW Loc. QK25ve) in holiday style from March 29th to April 1st on 40m - 6m (SSB/CW/Digital modes) QSL via JP3AYQ, LoTW, eQSL.

SA-099; PJ2, Curacao Island: Anja, DH2AK and Torsten, DL1THM will be on vacation on Curacao Island from April 3rd to 23rd and operate as PJ2/homecall, mostly on SSB/RTTY on the highbands. QSL via Homecall (d/B). https://twitter.com/dl1thm

Compiled by Andreas, DK5ON
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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RSGB IOTA

Thursday 2nd April 2015

The current IOTA 'Honour Roll' and 'Annual Listings' were just updated on the IOTA website.

168 participants have more than 1000 IOTA references confirmed, another 484 more than 750.

http://www.rsgbiota.org/info/
http://www.g3kma.dsl.pipex.com/

DXNL

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Limitations of short range device licences

Thursday 2nd April 2015

Recent work by New Zealand's Radio Spectrum Management has shown a need for good radio frequency engineering practices to be employed at ports following an investigation of interference on container-loader driver’s radio systems.

RSM traced the interference to newly-installed high-power transmitters that were causing front-end overload of the port’s radio equipment. The movement of containers is critical for efficient and safe port operations.

Some ports use a wireless location system for containers using Short Range Devices authorised by a General User Radio Licence. In making the choice to use such a system, operators must take into account the shared nature of the licence and that no regulatory protection is given from the interfering effects of other radio services.

Learn more about general user radio licences.

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Recognised Spectrum Access for Receive Only Earth Stations

Wednesday 1st April 2015

Ofcom has published a decision to extend Recognised Spectrum Access (RSA) to new frequency bands, intended to promote more efficient use of spectrum

RSA is a means for Ofcom to take into account, within national spectrum planning, the use of frequencies used for the reception of services that do not need to be licensed.

In this instance, it relates to ‘receive-only earth stations’, ground based terminals which are used to receive signals from meteorological satellites, earth exploration satellites and space missions, but do not transmit.

This document explains why we have decided to make RSA for receive-only earth stations available in two additional frequency bands: 7850 – 7900 MHz and 25.5 – 26.5 GHz.

It also includes a consultation on draft regulations that we propose to make in order to give effect to our policy decisions.

The consultation closes on May 5, 2015, details at
http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/consultations/rsa-earth-stations-statement/

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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