The Wirral & District Amateur Radio Club

Club Members' News Page

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

The RSGB NEWS for Radio Amateurs & SWL's

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


New D-Star repeater in the north of Portugal

Thursday 31st October 2013

The Portuguese ARETD (Associação de Radioamadores de Entre Tâmega e Douro) has launched a new D-star repeater in the north of Portugal this week.

This repeater has a range of 30 Kms and is primarily devoted to regional contacts, the gateway is on.

This system is a non-Icom rigs, it's operated by two GM-300 from Motorola and a Raspberry Pi with G4KLX software for the control of the system and connection to D-Star network.

The data of this repeater are:
Callsign = CQ0DAM (DTMF = 54662)
TX on = 438,200 MHz
RX on = 430.600 MHz
PAR = 25W
Locator = IN51wg (41º16'08''N/08º05'51''W (WGS84))

We invite all who want to reach this region.


Jorge Santos, CT1JIB

Dstar-DTMF call: 1725
DStar System

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Contactless cards: data intercepted

Thursday 31st October 2013

The BBC reports a researcher at the University of Surrey has intercepted the HF 13.560 MHz signal used by contactless debit and credit cards

BBC News says Thomas P Diakos built equipment that could reliably eavesdrop on synthesised payment data at more than four times the distance it should have been.

Inconspicuous equipment including a shopping trolley, a backpack and a small antenna were used to intercept the data.

Read the research paper Eavesdropping near-field contactless payments: a quantitative analysis

Read the BBC News story

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Thursday 31st October 2013

Island activities:

AF-016; FR; Reunion Island:
Stephane/F5UOW will once again visit Reunion Island (DIFO FR-001, WLOTA 1812, WWFF FFF-011) from October 31st to November 21st. As FR/F5UOW he will mostly work CW on 40m - 10m. From November 3rd to 17th, he will use the special callsign TO2R. QSL via F5UOW (d/B).

AF-016; FR; Reunion Island:
The second stop of Armin/DK9PY's trip will be Reunion Island (DIFO FR-001, WLOTA 1812, WWFF FFF-011), where he will sign FR/DK9PY from November 11th to 22nd. QSL via DK9PY (d/B).

AF-027; FH; Mayotte Island:
Armin/DK9PY will activate two African IOTA groups in November. His first destination is Mayotte Island (DIFO FH-001, WLOTA 0376) from which he plans to get on the air as FH/DK9PY from November 4th to 11th. Activities are planned in CW only, if conditions permit also on the low bands. QSL via DK9PY (d/B).

AF-086; D4; Windward Islands:
John/G4IRN will sign D44TWQ from November 5th to 12th from Boa Vista Island (WLOTA 0972, WW Loc. HK86me). In "holiday style" you can expect him in CW on the WARC bands. QSL via G4IRN (d/B).

AF-086; D4; Windward Islands:
Also Yuris/YL2GM is QRV from D4, from Sao Vicente Island as D44TYL. Main activities are on 20m and 15m in SSB. QSL via YL2GM (d/B).

AS-031; JD; Chichijima/ Mukojima/ Hahajima Islands:
Take/JA1UII will activate JD1BON from November 1st to 4th from Chichijima (WLOTA 2269). QSL via JA1UII (d/B).

EU-125; OZ; Jylland West group:
From November 2nd to 9th, Dirk/DF3XX will sign OZ/KH6DXX from Romo (OZFF-004) in holiday style from 80m - 10m, on the common IOTA and WWFF frequencies, including a participation in the IPA contest on November 3rd. QSL via DF3XX (d/B).

NA-020; YV0; Aves Island:
The 4M5DX-Group will organize a DXpedition to Aves Island (WLOTA 0216; ARLHS AVE-001). Between November and February 2014, a group of 11 OPs from YV, LU, OH and EA will be QRV as YW0A. Exact dates to be announced. QSL via LoTW und EB7DX.

NA-033; HK0; San Andres Island:
A multi national team consisting of Alberto/EA1SA, Roberto/EA2RY, Toni/EA5RM, Manolo/EA7AJR, Jose Ramon/EA7KW, Alain/F6ENO, Tony/F8ATS, Bernard/F9IE, Roberto/HK3CW, Faber/HK6F, Fabrizio/IN3ZNR and Valery/RG8K, will activate San Andres Island (WLOTA 2990, WWFF HKFF-035) as 5J0R from November 1st to 10th. Four stations will be working the pileups on the HF bands in CW, SSB and RTTY in parallel. QSL via EA5RM.

OC-032; FK; New Caledonia Islands:
From November 1st to March 1st, 2014 Freddy/F5IRO will be FK/F5IRO from New Caledoinia. With 100W and simple antennas he will work CW and a little PSK31. Together with Mic, FK8IK, he will sign TX5W during the CQWW CW. QSLs for both calls via F5IRO (d/B). In March the logs will be uploaded to LoTW and ClubLog.

OC-035; YJ; New Hebrides:
Nob/JA2AAU, Iwao/JA2LSS, Iku/JA2ATE and Tug/JA2ZS will sign YJ0AU, YJ0CJ, YJ0TE and YJ0ZS respectively from November 1st to 11th from Iririki Island (WW Loc. RH42dg). They will be QRV on HF/6m in CW, SSB and RTTY. QSL for YJ0AU and YJ0CJ via JA2ATE (d), for YJ0ZS via JA2ZS (d/B) and YJ0TE via JA2ATE.

OC-046; FO; Windward Islands:
Until November 6th, Heinz/DF1YP is still QRV from Moorea (WW Loc. BH52bm) in holiday style as FO/DF1YP, mostly around 14252 kHz. QSL via DF1YP (d/B).


Compiled by Klaus, DL7UXG
Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News bulletin from OPDX

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MINIMA - a compact, general coverage transceiver 0-30MHz

Thursday 31st October 2013

It is smaller than a Yaesu FT817 and 6 times cheaper, with exceptional capabilities

Minima is a general coverage transceiver with a pleasant receiver and a clean transmitter. It covers all the HF bands and yet it can be all assembled on a single 6" by 6" board. It is called Minima because we've tried to keep the complexity and cost at a minimum without compromising on the quality.

It should cost less than $100 in new parts.

Details will be out soon on VU2ESE website, until then stay tuned..

website link -

Watch this video:

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BATC Convention presentation videos

Wednesday 30th October 2013

Noel G8GTZ, Chair of the BATC, has announced the first 11 presentation videos from the recent CAT13 convention on ATV/DATV have been put up on the BATC video archive area

They can be found in the Film Archive by selecting the BATC CAT13 category.

The direct links are as follows:

BATC review

LNB developments

HAB introduction

Early colour cameras

SMD techniques

DTX1 DVB-S xmtr

DATV in practice

Spectrum matters

10 GHz Tx multipliers



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BT to field trial fiber

Wednesday 30th October 2013

G.Fast fiber broadband technology transmits across HF and VHF to connect the distribution point to the home 

DSL Prime report Huawei has announced that it will supply fiber to the distribution point (FTTdp) technology for a field trial BT plans to conduct near its BT Adastral Park R&D center in Ipswich.

VDSL2 transmits across the spectrum up to 30 MHz but Huawei say will work up to 106 MHz or even 212 MHz.

Dr. Tim Whitley, managing director, research and innovation at BT said “We will be observing the results of the trial with interest to see whether technology could play a role in ensuring BT has the best network in the short, medium, and long term.”

Gao Ji, Huawei’s chief strategy and marketing officer, Western Europe, added "Copper wires remain an important resource to telecom carriers and are assets that have yet to be fully exploited. By utilizing new copper wire technologies, such as vectoring and, carriers can make more efficient use of their resources and quickly implement bandwidth strategies, helping to achieve commercial success. Huawei will continue to invest in copper-wire technology and plans to lead further innovations in this area."

G.FAST at Hundreds of Meg Demoed by British Telecom & Huawei

ITU readies gigabit standard for copper's last wild ride
gfast_takes_first_step_on_standards_road/ for FTTdp
T065B0000320009PPTE.ppt Moving Copper Access into the Gigabit Era

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Aurora for Halloween ?

Wednesday 30th October 2013

Space Weather reports that as October comes to an end, a series of Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs) are sweeping past Earth

The first three were expected to deliver glancing blows on October 28 through October 30, possibly having little effect. A more direct hit is likely on October 31 when a CME from Earth-facing sunspot AR1882 arrives.

It was propelled in our direction by an M4-class flare on October 28. High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for auroras on Halloween.

An aurora can produce DX propagation in the 50/70/144 MHz bands.

Space Weather

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NASA's Orion spacecraft comes to life

Tuesday 29th October 2013

NASA's first-ever deep space craft, Orion, has been powered on for the first time, marking a major milestone in the final year of preparations for flight.

Orion's avionics system was installed on the crew module and powered up for a series of systems tests at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida last week. Preliminary data indicate Orion's vehicle management computer, as well as its innovative power and data distribution system - which use state-of-the-art networking capabilities - performed as expected.

All of Orion's avionics systems will be put to the test during its first mission, Exploration Flight Test-1(EFT-1), targeted to launch in the fall of 2014.

"Orion will take humans farther than we've ever been before, and in just about a year we're going to send the Orion test vehicle into space," said Dan Dumbacher, NASA's deputy associate administrator for exploration systems development in Washington. "The work we're doing now, the momentum we're building, is going to carry us on our first trip to an asteroid and eventually to Mars. No other vehicle currently being built can do that, but Orion will, and EFT-1 is the first step."

Orion provides the United States an entirely new human space exploration capability - a flexible system that can to launch crew and cargo missions, extend human presence beyond low-Earth orbit, and enable new missions of exploration throughout our solar system.
EFT-1 is a two-orbit, four-hour mission that will send Orion, uncrewed, more than 3,600 miles above the Earth's surface - 15 times farther than the International Space Station.

During the test, Orion will return to Earth, enduring temperatures of 4,000 degrees Fahrenheit while traveling 20,000 miles per hour, faster than any current spacecraft capable of carrying humans.

The data gathered during the flight will inform design decisions, validate existing computer models and guide new approaches to space systems development. The information gathered from this test also will aid in reducing the risks and costs of subsequent Orion flights.

"It’s been an exciting ride so far, but we're really getting to the good part now," said Mark Geyer, Orion program manager. "This is where we start to see the finish line. Our team across the country has been working hard to build the hardware that goes into Orion, and now the vehicle and all our plans are coming to life."

Throughout the past year, custom-designed components have been arriving at Kennedy for installation on the spacecraft - more than 66,000 parts so far. The crew module portion already has undergone testing to ensure it will withstand the extremes of the space environment. Preparation also continues on the service module and launch abort system that will be integrated next year with the Orion crew module for the flight test.

The completed Orion spacecraft will be installed on a Delta IV heavy rocket for EFT-1. NASA is also developing a new rocket, the Space Launch System, which will power subsequent missions into deep space, beginning with Exploration Mission-1 in 2017.

For information about Orion and EFT-1, visit:

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Operation from a rare IOTA

Tuesday 29th October 2013

An 8-man team led by Joppy, YB8XM plan activity from Banda Besar (IOTA OC-157), Maluku Tengah, Indonesia, between 10-15th November 2013.

Plans are to be QRV on 40-10 metres.

Team members and callsigns:
Joppy YB8XM (team leader), Marthin YB8VM/p, Danny YC8VDT/p, Richard YD8VSR/p, Agustinus YD8VRA/p, G. Saiya YD8VRS/p, Fransicus YC8VFB/p and Andy YC0MVP/8.

A rare IOTA - further info can be found at:

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FUNCube Data Warehouse ready for demo

Monday 28th October 2013

AMSAT-UK and AMSAT-NL are pleased to announce a new version of the FUNcube Data Warehouse which will collect, collate, de-duplicate and display data from FUNcube Dashboards running on user PCs (see section at end).

The URL is:

The intention of the warehouse is to allow access to all the data received for the duration of the mission rather than from just one or a series of passes. This will enable educators and others to download mission telemetry for off-line analysis as part of our STEM outreach goal.

The warehouse will store information for the following satellites/devices:

- FUNcube Flight Model
- UKube-1 - FUNcube module
- FUNcube Engineering Model (which will be used for some demonstrations)
- FUNcube Software Test Stack (which is still be used for development but may become another demonstration model later)

Please note, that we are still adding functionality and that some features may not be enabled but it will give a flavour of what will be there.

The warehouse DOES allow registration for upload of data from the FUNcube Dashboard (see below) and we would like feedback on the process. You can register now as a user of the Warehouse and then, later, apply the settings, that you will be emailed to you, to the Dashboard software when it is available.

There is a new forum at:, whose purpose is to provide support for FUNcube satellite users. Registration on this forum is separate from the warehouse registration.

FUNcube Dashboard

A Windows PC application has been developed which will allow FUNcube Dongle (either model) users and those with other, SSB compatible,  2 metre radios to receive and display satellite telemetry in real time and upload the data to the FUNcube Data Warehouse. If using the FUNcube Dongle, the software will perform doppler tracking on the received signal.

As well as real-time processing, the software can replay binary, IQ and sound files captured on earlier passes.

The Dashboard software is undergoing final testing and will be made available in about two weeks time.

We are looking forward to a late November launch. News updates can be found here:

Dave Johnson, G4DPZ
on behalf of AMSAT-UK / AMSAT-NL


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Meteor Scatter for Beginners video

Monday 28th October 2013

Paul Whatton G4DCV has released a video of the Meteor Scatter for Beginners using FSK441 presentation given by Lyndon Leach GW8JLY on October 12, 2013 at the RSGB Convention.

The HD video is available to view or download at

FSK441 is one of the modes in the free WSJT Weak Signal communications software developed by Joe Taylor K1JT. FSK441 has been specifically designed for meteor scatter. It can use random meteors that are available throughout the year. It works best in the range 800 km to 1800 km where contacts on 144 MHz can be completed with 100 watts or less and a single yagi in typically 40 minutes.

WSJT software

Working DX on a Dead 50MHz Band Using Meteor Scatter

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International Space Station assembly animation

Monday 28th October 2013

This fascinating animation shows the assembly of the International Space Station

Our thanks to Kenneth N5VHO and ANS for this link

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Ham Radio Clubs - A Shot in the Arm

Monday 28th October 2013

Have your club meetings become outdated and seem to lack vitality? Have your meetings taken on the features of a high school classroom - more lecture, less engagement?

Ed Gibbs, KC4UFN, vice president of the Virginia Beach Amateur Radio Club (VBARC) found that new and prospective members were not always feeling welcome or engaged.

In this ARRL article he describes the steps the club took to put this right.

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Global eruption on the sun

Sunday 27th October 2013

Space Weather reports on what may be an interconnected global eruption on the Sun

Solar activity is high and intensifying. New sunspot AR1882, which rotated over the sun's eastern limb earlier October 25, promptly unleashed an X1-class solar flare, adding to a series of lesser flares already underway from sunspots AR1875 and AR1877.

NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded a bright flash of extreme UV radiation from the X1 flare, which peaked at 08:01 UT on Oct. 25th:

There may be more to this flare than meets the eye. The X1-flare was bracketed by two erupting magnetic filaments, each located hundreds of thousands of kilometers from AR1882. In other words, the X1 flare might have been just one piece of an interconnected global eruption.

More flares are in the offing. There are now three sunspot groups on the Earthside of the sun capable of strong eruptions: AR1875, AR1877 and AR1882.

Read Space Weather at

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Radio Equipment Directive consultation response

Sunday 27th October 2013

The Department for Business Innovation & Skills has released the Government response to the consultation on the proposal for a directive on radio equipment

The consultation sought views on the European Commission’s Proposal for a Directive on the Harmonisation of the Laws of the Member States Relating to the Making Available on the Market of Radio Equipment.  The sector covers a wide range of electronics and radio equipment including mobile phones, mobile network transmitters, and laptop computers.

The new Directive, though based on the current Radio & Telecommunications Terminal Equipment Directive and drawing on that text, will regulate the placing on the market of products within its scope and has been opened up for a full review of its scope, essential requirements and administrative procedures.

The Government response acknowledged the need to explore the possibilities to include receive only radio equipment within the proposal during the negotiations subject to the impact on industry being acceptable.

Read the Government response at

Radio Equipment Directive Proposal

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Digital TV: DVB-T transmitter dongle

Sunday 27th October 2013

Radio amateurs have been using USB DVB-T dongle receivers for sometime. A new dongle takes it one step further and provides transmit capability 

The UT-100C is claimed to be able to transmit DVB-T digital TV across 50-950 MHz and 1200-1350 MHz in 1 kHz steps. The power output is only 1 milliwatt so an amplifier for the appropriate band would be required.

Further information on the UT-100C is at

GB3SQ, believed to the the UK's first digital-only 1240 MHz ATV repeater went on the air near Bournemouth on October 20, 2013. The input is on 1244 MHz and the output 1304 MHz.

G8AJN Digital TV

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Is Amateur Radio portrayed correctly?

Sunday 27th October 2013

The activity we enjoy has a mixed image among the general public and sadly this is often reflected by some of those who are radio amateurs themselves.

The official definition of Amateur Radio includes the intercommunication
between amateur stations solely with a personal aim and without pecuniary interest.

A similar stuffy definition can be used to describe a diamond as a
'carboniferous solid.' But like a diamond, Amateur Radio can be a many-faceted gem of dazzling beauty.

While a now old-fashioned view of Amateur Radio between World War II and the mobile phone or Internet age was attractive - that time has truly gone.

Do some of today's radio amateurs inadvertently live in the past or
incorrectly promote their hobby as being a modern recreational and vocational activity?

Would you buy a new car built a decade ago, no matter how well it was marketed? Well, think about how all of us promote modern Amateur Radio.

The Wireless Institute of Australia with the clubs, individuals and
stakeholders will hold the PR4AmateurRadio Expo in April 2014.

This is an opportunity of promotion. Will you be involved?

More details on this event can be read under the 'What’s On' section of the website.


Wireless Institute of Australia

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First and only 2 Metre DXCC in southern hemisphere

Sunday 27th October 2013

What is not generally known is that the first and the only 2 Metre DXCC ever issued in the southern hemisphere was awarded to Bob McQuarrie, ZL3TY, with 102 countries confirmed.

This year his name and call sign have been inducted in the New Zealand Hall of Fame.

Bob's preferred activities include DX-ing on 6 metres, 2 metres and EME, primarily the 2 metre band. His equipment on the latter band consists of 4x12 element K1FO Yagis, TS790A and GU74b amplifier.

Bob was also the first New Zealand amateur to achieve DXCC in mixed VHF (6 metres and 2 metres) using the latest digital technology combined with his CW skills and moonbounce.

Congratulations Bob


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WADARC Jamboree on the Air (JOTA) 2013

Saturday 26th October 2013

The report for our 2013 JOTA is now on the website from Simon G6XHF

Click on GB2JAM on the left hand menu and then click on 2013

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Last Wednesday's Construction and Hot Pot Evening

Saturday 26th October 2013

Last Wednesday everyone thoroughly enjoyed a very interesting evening looking at what 5 club members had individually built during the last 12 months in our annual construction competition.  It was combined with a fine Hot Pot cooked by Eric G6HWD and the evening drew to a close with the awards of the Cups and Trophies for 2013 achievements.

Simon G6XHF our Secretary is seen below announcing forthcoming events while Gordon G8MMM brought the meeting to a close with thanks to everyone for their support and participation.

You can read a report with pictures by clicking on the following link:-

Construction and Hot Pot Evening

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New QRP Antenna Tuner

Saturday 26th October 2013

Portable radio accessory specialists SOTAbeams has introduced a new antenna tuner this week.

The Hi Tee Tuner has been designed to be at home in the shack or out outdoors.

A nice touch is that the laser engraved front panel includes space to write the settings for each band with your favourite antenna.

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Amsterdam Island DXpedition

Saturday 26th October 2013

A sea container filled with our equipment - transceivers, amplifiers, antennas, wire and cable, connectors, baluns, bandpass filters, camp supplies, and other miscellaneous equipment - is now on its way to New Zealand.

There it will be loaded aboard our ship, the MV Braveheart.

The Braveheart crew and our VK6 friends have our shopping lists for other needed materials and are procuring these items for us. These materials will all come together in January when the Braveheart and the FT5ZM team arrive in Fremantle, Australia.

Our network and logging team are in the last round of testing our system for the seamless uploading of our logs. Currently we can export 400 QSO's each hour from each of 10 PC's in approximately 500 msec. The log collection will be automatic, so there is no interruption of operator time. A zipped log file with 100,000 QSO's will be just over 600 Kb in size, saving time and money on satellite uploads. The process has been tested end to end, including uploading to ClubLog.

We are in the phase of the DXpedition where large expenses are coming at us rapidly. We've completed one down payment on our ship, we've had to purchase some equipment and shipping supplies, shipping and customs fees have been paid, our anchorage and per diem costs at Amsterdam Island are coming due, we will be seeing berthing and ship supply charges from Fremantle soon, and we have another ship payment due on December 1.

We are staying within our budgeted expenses, but contributions have been somewhat less than we had hoped. It now appears almost certain that the team members will have to increase their personal contribution from $10,000 per person to $12,500 per person as well as pay their own way to and from Fremantle, Australia.

If you've contributed to the DXpedition, we thank you. If you've yet to help us, or if you can send some additional help our way, we can certainly use any financial support that you can give us.

Please continue to check our progress, our news updates, and photos on our website: If, while you are there, you'd hit the 'Donate' tab, we'd really, really appreciate it.

Ralph – K0IR

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New IARU Region 2 Band Plan

Saturday 26th October 2013

One of the most important achievements of the IARU Region 2 General Assembly held in Cancun, Mexico, last September 2013 was the revision of band plans

Band plans are recommendations for the voluntary use of the frequencies assigned to radio amateurs. They seek an efficient use of our spectrum, the prevention of interference between compatible modes, and a standardized use in the three IARU Regions.

IARU Region 2 counts on a specific procedure for modifications to its band plan. It starts practically one year before the General Assembly, and all Member Societies in IARU Region 2 are invited to participate.

For the first time ever, definitions are included to organize the concepts used in the band plan, as well as the proposed use of spectrum for the bands between 6 meters and 1 millimeter. As in previous years, the allocation of bands between 2200 meters and 10 meters was revised.

Joaquín Solana, XE1R
News Editor - IARU R2

The IARU Region 2 band plan can be seen at|

IARU Region 2

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The Spectrum Monitor: a new radio magazine

Saturday 26th October 2013

The Spectrum Monitor, an e-magazine, will cover amateur radio, longwave and shortwave listening, public service scanning, AM/FM/TV broadcasting, satellites, WiFi radio, vintage radio and more.

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FUNcube-1 talk for local Ham Radio clubs

Saturday 26th October 2013

Dave Johnson G4DPZ is willing to give talks to local amateur radio clubs in the West Midlands and Warwickshire area about the new satellite FUNcube-1

In late November 2013 FUNcube-1 will be launched into Low Earth Orbit. On board will be a UHF/VHF Linear transponder for SSB/CW communications along with a high power beacon for transmitting telemetry for educational (STEM) purposes, for reception by schools. Further information on the satellite can be found at:

Any West Midlands/Warwickshire area club interested in having a talk on the design, development, launch and operation of the satellite should contact Dave
email: dave at g4dpz dot me dot uk
phone: on 07733 106990


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DXCC Country/Entity Report

Saturday 26th October 2013

According to the Amateur Radio Cluster Network for the week of Friday, 18th-October, through Friday, 25th-October there were 229 countries active.

Countries available:

3A, 3B8, 3B9, 3D2, 3DA, 3V, 3W, 4J, 4L, 4O, 4S, 4U1I, 4X, 5B, 5H, 5N, 5R, 5T, 5W, 5X, 5Z, 6W, 6Y, 7P, 7X, 8P, 8R, 9A, 9H, 9J, 9K, 9L, 9M2, 9M6, 9V, 9X, 9Y,

A3, A4, A6, A7, A9, AP, BV, BY, C2, C3, C5, C6, C9, CE, CE0Y, CE9, CM, CN, CP, CT, CT3, CU, CX, D2, D4, DL, DU, E5/s, E7, EA, EA6, EA8, EA9, EI, EK, EP, ER, ES, ET, EU, EX, EY, EZ, F, FG, FH, FJ, FK, FM, FO, FP, FR, FS, FW, FY, G, GD, GI, GJ, GM, GU, GW, H4, HA, HB, HB0, HC, HH, HI, HK, HL, HP, HR, HS, HV, HZ, I, IS, J2, J6, J8, JA, JD/o, JT, JW, JY,

K, KG4, KH0, KH2, KH6, KL, KP2, KP4, LA, LU, LX, LY, LZ, OA, OD, OE, OH, OH0, OK, OM, ON, OX, OY, OZ, P2, P4, PA, PJ2, PJ4, PJ5, PJ7, PY, PY0F, PZ, S5, SM, SP, ST, SU, SV, SV/a, SV5, SV9, T32, T7, T8, TA, TF, TG, TI, TI9, TJ, TK, TN, TT, TU, TZ, UA, UA2, UA9, UK, UN, UR,

V2, V3, V4, V5, V6, V7, V8, VE, VK, VP2E, VP2M, VP2V, VP5, VP6, VP8, VP8/h, VP9, VR, VU, XE, XX9, YA, YB, YI, YJ, YL, YN, YO, YS, YU, YV, Z2, Z3, Z8, ZA, ZB, ZD7, ZD8, ZD9, ZF, ZL, ZP, ZS, ZS8

PLEASE NOTE: The report "could" contain "Pirate/SLIM" operations or more likely a "BUSTED CALLSIGN". As always, you never know - "Work First Worry Later" (WFWL).


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IOTA News from OPDX

Saturday 26th October 2013

Island activities:

AF-019. Emilio, IZ1GAR, will be active as IG9W from Lampedusa Island [African Italy] (IIA AG-001, MIA MI-126, WLOTA 2312) during the CQWW DX CW Contest (November 23-24th) as a Single-Op/Single-Band (40m) entry. Lampedusa counts a multiplier for Zone 33 Africa Italy for the CQWW DX rule, the island is located over the African continent platform. QSL via direct or by the Bureau.

EU-025. The II9K Contest Team will once again be active as II9K from Sicily Island during the CQWW DX SSB Contest (October 26-27th) as a Multi-Single entry. Operators mentioned are Giuseppe/IT9HBT, Girolamo/IT9GNG, Rino/IT9FXY, Vincenzo/IT9ECQ, Sal/IW9FRA, Mike/ IF9ZWA and Domenico/IW9GTD. The II9K Contest Team will be active during the contest, testing their new setup and the stack antennas for 10m, this year with a little bit of ambition. QSL via IT9HBT. For more details, see:

OC-035. reports that Ralph, YJ0RK, will be active from Awei Island this weekend for CQWW DX SSB Contest. Ralph mentions that he will be returning to VK sooner than expected due to a failing weather window and an early predicted cyclone season. Therefore no activity from OC-111 is now planned. QSL via NR6M.

OC-157. A team of 8 operators will be active from the rare Banda Besar Island between November 10-15th. Callsign(s) have not been announced yet. Activity will be on 40-10 meters using CW and SSB. The operators mentioned are Joppy/YB8XM (Team Leader), Marthin/YB8VM, Danny/YC8VDT, Richard/YD8VSR, Agustinus/YD8VRA G. Saiya/YD8VRS, Fransicus/YC8VFB and Robert/YC0MVP. Look for more details to be forthcoming. Watch the following Blog page for updates at:

OC-186. is reporting that Adhi, YB3MM, is making plans to activate Karimunjawa Island again as YB3MM/2 tentatively between November 9-10th. Activity will be on the HF bands using CW and SSB. QSL via IZ8CCW. Check out info about his last operation at:

OC-221. Joppy, YB8XM, is now active as YB8XM/P from Dulah Laut Island (in the Kai Islands IOTA Group) until October 27th. Activity
will be on the HF bands using a G5RV antenna. QSL via YB9KU.

SA-035. (Update) A group of YL operators will be active as YW5RYL from Los Roques between November 7-10th. The current operators mentioned are Carolina/YV4AW, Maika/YY5ALO, Geraldine/YY2GAL, Alejendra/YY5AA, Laura/YY5OLA, Mary/YY5MCO and Yumayra/YY5YVR.  Activity will be on 160-6 meters using CW, SSB and the Digital modes. The group will be using ClubLog during this operation.

Their Web page is now active at:

Compiled by Tedd Mirgliotta, KB8NW OPDX

RSGB IOTA website

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

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WREN a Ham Radio Slow Scan TV PocketQube

Friday 25th October 2013

The PocketQube satellite WREN, just 5x5x5 cm and weighing 250 grams, aims to transmit amateur radio Slow Scan TV (SSTV) pictures using the Martin-1 format

Despite its small size WREN is equipped with a camera, a gyro, a magnetic field sensor, momentum wheels and pulsed plasma microthrusters.

The communications uplink and downlink will take place on the IARU coordinated frequency of 437.405 MHz.

WREN is flying in a bigger satellite called UNISAT-5 that will be launched in late November, 2013 on a Dnepr rocket from Dombarovsky near Yasny. UNISAT-5 will deploy WREN one month later so we may expect to hear the SSTV signal in January 2014.

Paul Kocyla and Sacha J. Tholl presented the working engineering model of the Wren PocketQube satellite Wren to the public at the Maker Faire in Kerkrade in the Netherlands. In this Video they are sending live pictures during the faire via SSTV amateur radio, just as WREN will do in orbit.

Watch Satellite Wren, sending Pictures by SSTV at the Continium Maker Faire in Kerkrade NL 07.09.2013

In this video Sacha J. Tholl talks to Chantal Cappelletti, CEO from GAUSS s.r.l., the launch provider for the WREN PocketQube, and Paride Testani, principal investigator of the UNISAT-5 Project.

Watch How is WREN, the tiniest Satellite with Thrusters (5 cm³, 250gram) getting into Orbit?

Watch The Wren flight model being build and the mission control software updated

Wren Kickstarter page

Paul Kocyla Satellite developer

Italian Microsat to Deploy Amateur Radio Satellites

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CubeSat to test new battery technology

Friday 25th October 2013

Radio amateurs Professor Sharlene Katz, WB6FFE, and Professor James Flynn, WB9AWX, describe their CubeSat project, CSUNSat1, which aims to test new technology to extend battery lifetime

(photo right Sharlene Katz WB6FFE and James Flynn WB9AWX - Image CSUN)

Space has captured the human imagination and curiosity since the dawn of time. While much has been discovered about this beautiful abyss, space is still in many ways the final frontier, and California State University Northridge’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering is part of this expedition.

CSUN is home one of the 13 university teams NASA has selected for collaborative projects to develop and demonstrate new technologies and capabilities, and spur innovation in communication, navigation, propulsion, science instrument and advanced manufacturing for small spacecraft. The goal of these efforts is to transform a small spacecraft, some of which are only a few kilograms in weight, into powerful but affordable tools for science, exploration and space operations.

Electrical and computer engineering professors Sharlene Katz, WB6FFE, James Flynn, WB9AWX and David Schwartz applied for a NASA SmallSat Technology Partnership Grant. The grants were given to universities working in partnership with a NASA center. CSUN is working with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena.

The project is to construct a ‘CubeSat,’ called ‘CSUNSat1,’” Katz said. “A 10-centimeter-by-10-centimeter-by-20-centimeter satellite, roughly the size of a shoe box and weighing about 2.25 kg, to carry a J.P.L. energy storage experiment into low Earth orbit, or about 800 km above the Earth’s surface. Over the course of several months, the satellite will downlink data from the experiment to a ground station on the roof of Jacaranda Hall. The CSUN team is responsible for the mechanical construction of the satellite, the design of the radio, sensor electronics and power system, along with all the satellite’s main computer programming.”

Testing of the completed satellite will be carried out by the CSUN unit.

“The team is also responsible for the design, construction and operation of the ground station,” Katz said. “The J.P.L. is responsible for the design and construction of the experimental payload. NASA will launch the satellite as part of their CubeSat Launch Initiative, which piggybacks small satellites from educational institutions onto commercial and government satellite launches around the world – at no cost to the educational institution.”

The CSUN team includes 20 students from the electrical engineering, computer engineering, mechanical engineering and computer science departments.

“Senior and graduate students were selected based on their interests, course performance and an interview with the faculty,” Flynn said.
“Their work on the project will fulfill their senior or graduate project requirement. Sophomore and junior students are beginning to take part by volunteering to help with the project on a regular basis. That gives the faculty a chance to see how they work and determine if they can assume a major role in the project during their senior year.”

The experiment involves a new development in power storage for spacecraft. Current systems consist of solar cells and batteries, or some other power source and batteries.

“Unfortunately, the batteries do not work well at the extremely low temperatures found in space far away from the sun or when the spacecraft is the earth’s shadow,” said Flynn. “Up to now, the batteries were equipped with heaters, but these consume precious energy and add weight to the vehicle. In addition, current battery systems involve rapid discharging and recharging of the batteries. This can wear out batteries very quickly and shorten the life of a mission. The new JPL technology eliminates the need for heaters and protects the batteries from the rapid discharge/charge cycles. Both aspects will allow longer missions farther from the sun.”

Katz looked to the future. “The flight of the CSUN/J.P.L. satellite “will verify and validate this new system, making it available for use on future missions,” she said. “In addition, the mission will validate the CSUN satellite design and allow for future missions using this spacecraft.”

Source: California State University Northridge have issued this press release

Radio Amateurs get $25,000 for CubeSat project from JPL

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RSGB 5 MHz Consultation

Thursday 24th October 2013

As part of the RSGB 'Have Your Say' programme, the Society has launched a consultation on the 5 MHz band

Now that the new frequencies have been available and in use for 10 months, it is an opportunity to review the status of the band and discuss any issues.

More information can be found at:

5 MHz Band Consultation and Discussion

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New Worked All Britain Award

Thursday 24th October 2013

The Worked All Britain Awards Group, (WAB) are pleased to announce their award for 2014, that year being their 45th anniversary.

The 45th anniversary, whilst not widely celebrated, is the Sapphire one.

WAB have therefore decided to break the mould and celebrate this anniversary by introducing a Sapphire Anniversary award.

The award is based on the number 45 and stages of this award, culminating in a trophy, have endorsements corresponding to the less usual anniversaries.

More details can be found on their website at

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IET article on polluting BPL technology

Wednesday 23rd October 2013

RSGB Electromagnetic Compatibility Committee (EMCC) member Don Beattie G3BA/G3OZF is interviewed about Broadband over Power Line (BPL) in an IET article

The article says:
The RSGB estimates that each BPL device, such as an in-house power-line adapter, generates as much noise or interference as 10,000 other devices operating in the same unlicensed radio frequency bands, emissions strong and widespread enough to also interfere ADSL connections using overhead, rather than underground, telephone cables. Other complaints centred on the high levels of electromagnetic compatibility emissions caused by access BPL, suggesting that pylons and other tall structures effectively amplify the interference.
Norweb trialled access BPL in Manchester during 1998/1999, using street lights near the test site that served to act as antennas for the 2-10MHz band. This reportedly caused interference to the BBC World Service, Civil Aviation Authority, and GCHQ.

Read the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) article at


UKQRM are a group that fights PLT/PLC/BPL interference

UKQRM Yahoo discussion group

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New satellite segment in IARU Region 2 bandplan

Wednesday 23rd October 2013

Following the IARU Region 2 (the Americas) meeting in September at Cancun, Mexico, the new Region 2 bandplans for all allocations from 137 kHz to 250 GHz have now been published

There is a new allocation for the Amateur-Satellite Service from 144.000-144.025 MHz.

There is also a reference to NSS – Near Space Stations in the definitions section. This is believed to be the first mention of High Altitude Balloons in any radio amateur band plan document. It says

NSS - Near Space Stations:
Equipment located in temporary Near Space Stations (such as those carried by High Altitude Balloons) can transmit carefully on any frequency; exceptions are the segments with “exclusive” usage where “NSS” are not applied. NSS must follow the BW and mode restrictions of the segment and observe carefully the usual occupation of the band on the related region to avoid harmful interference. For longer missions and NSS crossing international and regional boundaries, extra care must be observed in harmonization of different allocations.

A new Amateur-Satellite Service allocation at 144.000-144.025 MHz has now been covered in both IARU Regions 1 and 2 meetings but in order for the allocation to become a practical reality it needs to be agreed by IARU Region 3 (Asia and Pacific). It is not yet clear if this vital item is on the agenda for the next IARU Region 3 meeting.

See the new IARU Region 2 bandplans at

Read the IARU Region 1 paper Increased Amateur Satellite Service 144 MHz Usage

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End of the Centre Victoria RadioFest

Wednesday 23rd October 2013

The Amateur Radio Victoria website reports that one of the southern hemisphere's biggest amateur radio shows is set to close.

Australia’s big event known as the Centre Victoria RadioFest at Kyneton, which proved to be very successful, although never designed to be a huge generator of profit, has ended.

When introduced, it instantly became a very much needed and different type of event, one that had been innovative and parts of it copied by others both locally and interstate.

Unfortunately an increase in the site rental charge, double that paid last year, meant it could only continue in 2014 with a dramatic lift in charges for the sellers, higher admission costs, or be abandoned.

Read more on the Amateur Radio Victoria website

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FUNCube SDR Radio Telescope

Wednesday 23rd October 2013

Dr David Morgan has released a new paper 'Further Developments of an SDR Radio Telescope' using the FunCube Dongle Pro+ and SpectrumLab

"Further Developments of an SDR Radio Telescope" details the equipment configuration and software involved in setting to work a small 3m diameter amateur radio telescope using the FunCube Dongle Pro+ software defined radio receiver. 

It demonstrates how Spectrum Lab can provide digital filtering to observe up to 20 individual sub-bands to help overcome interference issues.  David also provides details of gain and noise stability measurements for the FUNcube Dongle and observations of emissions from the quiet Sun and the Cygnus arm of the Milky Way.

This paper adds to the work that David has undertaken in the past and is interesting reading for anyone wanting to experiment with SDR solutions for amateur radio astronomy.

Paul Hyde G4CSD
BAA RAG Coordinator

Download the paper from

BAA RAG website

Join the BAA RAG Yahoo Group at

FUNcube Pro Plus Yahoo Group

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Hackspaces raised at RSGB Board

Wednesday 23rd October 2013

Hackspaces were discussed at the RSGB Board meeting held on September 14, 2013

The Board Proceedings record that Stewart Bryant G3YSX said that he had collated the various visits to hackspaces. He said that they are a facilitating activity for those without the resources. He suggested that we could encourage our clubs to operate differently and perhaps follow this example.

Proceedings of the RSGB Board meeting held September 14, 2013

Previous RSGB Board proceedings

You can join the RSGB online at

RSGB membership is free to licensed amateurs under the age of 21 and to licensed amateurs aged 21-25 in full time education

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Amateur Television Convention CAT13

Tuesday 22nd October 2013

The BATC Convention takes place this weekend, 26-27th October 2013.

This will be at the Finningley Amateur Radio Society site near Doncaster and will include a range of amateur television demonstrations, lectures and equipment.

For location and registration details see:

For a current list of activities see:

All are welcome.

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Power line communication standard ratified: FprEN 50561-1:2012

Tuesday 22nd October 2013

On October 9th, 2013, the CENELEC Technical Board (BT) ratified FprEN 50561-1:2012

"Power line communication apparatus used in low-voltage installations - Radio disturbance characteristics - Limits and methods of measurement – Part 1: Apparatus for in-home use"


Implementation dates:
Date of adoption (doa) = April 9th, 2014
Date of publication (dop) = October 9th, 2014
Date of Withdrawal (dow) = October 9th, 2016

It has been asked of the CEN-CENELEC Management Center (CCMC) to offer the standard to the European Commission (EC) for citation in the Official Journal (OJEU) under the EMC Directive and R&TTE Directive.


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Poland to close short wave service

Tuesday 22nd October 2013

The Polish Radio External Service have announced their short wave broadcasts will cease on October 27, 2013

They say:
We encourage you to listen to Polish Radio External Service in the country through modern digital technology, DAB Plus.

You can still listen to us via satellite Eutelsat Hot Bird, via the website abroad, Polish Radio mobile application and friendly radio stations around the world.

Announcement in Polish,Nasze-audycje-27-pazdziernika-znikna-z-fal-krotkich

SWLing Blog story

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Bushfire response gets WICEN help

Monday 21st October 2013

As numerous bushfires burn in the Blue Mountains in New South Wales (NSW) Australia the latest to join the fight has been WICEN members activated to help with their communications knowledge.

WICEN NSW President Compton Allen said the official activation has begun, drawing on the resources of the emergency communications group.

The activation is "to support the declared State of Emergency with manpower in the Lithgow area to the West of Sydney in the Blue Mountains," said Compton.

Already 200 homes have been lost. A State of Emergency has been declared for the area.

The NSW Rural Fire Services fear that up to four separate blazes could potentially come together to form a huge fire front in the next day or so.

Evacuations of tens of thousands of people are possible as hotter weather conditions combine with fire fronts already burning.

 For WICEN check out

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5 MHz Hooray for the Cubans!

Monday 21st October 2013

Gary Pearce KN4AQ says you can thank the Cuban government for getting the proposal for a 60 meter band on the agenda for the World Radio Conference (WRC) coming up in 2015

In HamRadioNow episode 102, former ARRL and IARU President Larry Price W4RA guides us through the sausage-making process of how we MAY end up with a real 60-Meter BAND instead of just discreet channels, some day in the far-distant future.

NOTE: The event will be in 2015, not 2017. Larry misspoke the date once, and I locked in on it for all the graphics. I've fixed them where I could, but I can't re-edit and upload the video. Maybe the ITU will accommodate me and reschedule the conference?

HamRadioNow Episode 102: Hooray for the Cubans! (WRC-15 and 60 Meters)

Ham Radio Now

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India's first Radio Scouting repeater inaugrated

Monday 21st October 2013

The Malabar Amateur Radio Repeater Society (VU2MLQ) is pleased to announce the inaugration of the India’s First Scouting Repeater VU2MJJ yesterday at 4.00 p.m during the JOTA 2013 (20.10.2013) by Shri. Manjalamkuzhi Ali, Hon. Minister of Urban Affairs, Town Planning, Development Authority and Minority Welfare.

VU2MJJ, located at the club station VU2MLQ, has a wide coverage in South India and is situated at the top most point in Puthanathani town of Malappuram District in Kerala state at an Altitude of 420 feet ASL.

The Coordinates are 10* 56’ 03.43” N .76* 00’ 20.45” E.

This is the first DSTAR capable repeater in India with the frequency of 145.450 with standard minus shift. The repeater is capable to handle DV, DD, FM (N),FM (W) MODES.

VU2MLQ was established to serve the Scouts and guides associations in India. It provides training to the scouts and guides and has an active daily net on VHF and on HF every weekend.

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1939 Morse Code Movie

Monday 21st October 2013

A 1939 short New Zealand movie titled, From Back-Blocks to High Seas - a romance of the radio-telegraph service, is now available

The YouTube description reads:

The romance of the radiotelegraph service. This service utilized the high frequency spectrum known as "shortwave" (from 3 MHz up to 30 MHz) as well as the longwave and medium frequency spectrum (below 3 MHz).

This is a short film about communication to and from New Zealand on these shortwaves, using Morse code (eventually, using CW modulation). This film is a 1939 Government film scanned to 2K from a 16mm combined B/W reduction print.
It is from ArchivesNZ ( and is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution, reuse allowed.

Watch 1939 Film: New Zealand Shortwave Communications; Morse code (CW)

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Indian record for tracking Ham Radio balloon

Monday 21st October 2013

Global Brands Magazine features the High Altitude Balloon work of Dhruva Space and Indian radio amateurs

Dhruva Space in association with Indian Institute of Astrophysics is gearing up to observe comet ISON when it passes earth on November 28, 2013 using a high altitude balloon platform.

Weekly test flights are in progress as part of the preparations for the ISON observation. On one such flight on October 13, the balloon which was carrying a 5 kilograms payload containing various sensors reached a peak altitude of 21 km and it traveled over 600 km into the Arabian Sea.

What makes this test flight special is that the ground station at Bangalore and the two mobile payload recovery teams were able to receive the 145.765 MHz FM APRS radio signals from the balloon for over 12 hours without any disruption.

Hyderabad-based National Institute of Amateur Radio which is one of the program partners has provided immense support in successful post-flight payload recovery.

Ham radio operators in Karnataka and Goa in India, and Middle East and Africa were able to receive encoded APRS signals containing real time location, altitude and other operating conditions of the flight.

Read the full story at

Dhruva Space

National Institute of Amateur Radio (NIAR)

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DXCC Country/Entity Report

Monday 21st October 2013

According to the Amateur Radio Cluster Network for the week of Sunday, 13th/October, through Sunday, 20th/October there were 234 countries active.

Countries available:

3A, 3B8, 3B9, 3D2, 3DA, 3V, 3W, 4J, 4L, 4O, 4S, 4U1I, 4X, 5A, 5B, 5H, 5N, 5R, 5T, 5W, 5X, 5Z, 6W, 6Y, 7P, 7X, 8P, 8R, 9A, 9G, 9H, 9J, 9K, 9L, 9M2, 9M6, 9N, 9V, 9X, 9Y,

A4, A5, A6, A7, A9, AP, BV, BY, C2, C3, C5, C6, C9, CE, CE9, CM, CN, CP, CT, CT3, CU, CX, D2, D4, DL, DU, E5/s, E6, E7, EA, EA6, EA8, EA9, EI, EK, EL, EP, ER, ES, EU, EX, EY, EZ, F, FG, FH, FJ, FK, FM, FO, FO/a, FP, FR, FS, FW, FY, G, GD, GI, GJ, GM, GU, GW, H4, HA, HB, HB0, HC, HI, HK, HL, HP, HR, HS, HV, HZ, I, IS, J2, J6, J8, JA, JD/o, JT, JW, JY,

K, KG4, KH0, KH2, KH6, KL, KP2, KP4, LA, LU, LX, LY, LZ, OA, OD, OE, OH, OH0, OK, OM, ON, OX, OY, OZ, P2, P4, PA, PJ2, PJ4, PJ5, PJ7, PY, PZ, S5, S7, SM, SP, ST, SU, SV, SV/a, SV5, SV9, T5, T7, T8, TA, TF, TG, TI, TJ, TK, TN, TR, TT, TU, TY, UA, UA2, UA9, UK, UN, UR,

V2, V3, V4, V5, V6, V7, V8, VE, VK, VK9L, VP2E, VP2V, VP5, VP6, VP8, VP8/h, VP9, VR, VU, XE, XX9, YA, YB, YI, YJ, YL, YN, YO, YS, YU, YV, Z2, Z3, Z8, ZA, ZB, ZC4, ZD7, ZD8, ZD9, ZF, ZL, ZP, ZS, ZS8

PLEASE NOTE: The report "could" contain "Pirate/SLIM" operations or more likely a "BUSTED CALLSIGN". As always, you never know - "Work First Worry Later" (WFWL).


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Friedrichshafen Lectures on Web

Sunday 20th October 2013

The lectures given at Ham Radio 2013 in Friedrichshafen, which include 100 Years of the RSGB, are now available on the web

These PowerPoint slides complete with soundtrack have been released:

• Changing Times in DX Hunt by Martti Laine OH2BH

• Technology Innovations

• Helping DXers by Veijo Kontas OH6KN and Juho Juopperi OH8GLV

• The ENIGMA and other Historic Cipher Machines. Introduction to the Enigma by Tom Perera W1TP

• Small Cipher Machines by John Alexander G7GCT

• Development of Broadcasting in Germany 1923-2013 by Martin Steyer DK7ZB (German language only)

• 100 Years of the RSGB - and its International Partners by Chris Ducking G3SVL

They can be downloaded from

Video streamed from Friedrichshafen can be seen at

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Ham Radio: From Generation to Generation

Sunday 20th October 2013

The ARRL have released the October issue of the free amateur radio publication Radio Waves

The publication aims to provide news for license instruction and radio science education.

Articles include a description of the Mars Lander Marine Amateur Radio Robotics Exploration Activity (MAREA). The licence statisics are also published and show that after adjusting for population differences the USA is attracting more than three times as many new people to amateur radio each year than the UK does.

The Radio Waves PDF is available at

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Wireless Internet access via light bulbs

Saturday 19th October 2013

Xinhua News reports that Professor Chi Nan of Shanghai's Fudan University has used a LED bulb to provide a high speed internet connection

She explained that by using Li-Fi technology a light bulb with embedded microchips can produce data rates as fast as 150 Mbps, much higher than the average broadband connection in China.

"Wherever there is an LED light bulb, there is an Internet signal," said Chi. "Turn off the light and there is no signal."

The term Li-Fi was coined by Harald Haas from the University of Edinburgh in the UK and refers to a type of visible light communication technology that delivers a networked, mobile, high-speed communication solution in a similar manner as WiFi.

Read the Xinhua News article at

The problem with Li-Fi technology is getting the Internet to the bulb. It is understood all current Li-Fi systems make use of polluting Power Line Telecommunications (PLT) which can render the HF radio spectrum unusable.

UKQRM are a group that fights PLT interference

UKQRM Yahoo discussion group

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Ham radio operators to help in tracking comet

Saturday 19th October 2013

After helping the Odisha government in disaster relief during cyclone Phailin, amateur radio operators will now help astrophysicists track a comet

The Hindustan Times reports that astrophysics experts are joining hands with Ham (amateur) radio operators to track and read data on comet ISON, scheduled to pass nearest to the earth on November 28.

Read the story at

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Jamboree on the Air (JOTA)

Jamboree On The Year this year will take place over this coming weekend the 18th – 20th October.

Simon G6XHF has again secured the Notice of Variation to operate the callsign GB 2 JAM, and is planning  to operate on as many bands as possible but will definitely be on 2M, 4M (inc Echolink via node 691718), 15M, 17M, 20M, 40M and 80M at various times.

Set up is from 4:00 P.M. on Friday 18th   (THIS COMING FRIDAY)

The station will be open from approx. 9:30 A.M. - 8 P.M. on Saturday and from 9:30 A.M. - 2:00 P.M. on Sunday

WADARC is always a BIG Signal during JOTA and this year looks like it will be no exception. We are also hoping to try out some experimental antennas as well, so if you can spare any time over the weekend please come along and see us and assist with the set-up, operating, or the strip down. All help will be greatly appreciated.

A big station like this is a great opportunity for club members to come along and have a go, help with some logging or just spectate.  No matter how experienced an operator you may or may not be, you will be most welcome .. so please do come along and get as involved as you feel comfortable with.

The station will be centrally located on the Wirral and easy to find with plenty of parking space.

        We are operating from:-

        20th Birkenhead Scout Group H Q


Please come along and support our last big club event of 2013
WADARC is YOUR CLUB ........ Please Support it.

 Directions – From St SAVIOURS CHURCH, at the junction of BIDSTON ROAD / TOWNFIELD LANE, travel Northwest and pass the Caernarvon Castle pub (on your right). The road bends slightly to the left and a wide gravelled entrance appears on the left hand side of the road. This is the site entrance and we will be in the first wooden hut on the left at the bottom of the car park.

Further details from if required.      MAP        (Above library photos from 2012)

Follow the link to Radio Scouting UK

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Contest-free frequencies for JOTA

Friday 18th October 2013

The site reports on frequencies that may be free of contest activity for JOTA

The site says:

Unfortunately there is a large amateur-radio competition in Germany during the JOTA weekend, called the WAG contest. However, we are pleased that the contest organisers have again arranged for frequencies that are kept free of contest traffic, so we can have a JOTA with minimal interference.

The following frequencies are the contest free zones:

Contest-free zones

BAND      CW(Morse) kHz       SSB(Phone) kHz

  80m        3560 - 3800                 3650 - 3700

  40m        7040 - 7200                 7080 - 7140

  20m       14060 - 14350             14100 - 14125 & 14280 - 14350

  15m                                         21350 - 21450

  10m                                         28225 - 28400

56th JOTA 2013

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9M4CSB Selangor State JOTA Station

Friday 18th October 2013

The JOTA station 9M4CSB is located in Selangor, about 100km NW from Kuala Lumpur.

We will be active on HF for 56th Jamboree On The Air (JOTA) this weekend, October 19-20.

We are pleased to communicate with scouts JOTA station or personal station during the Jamboree On The Air.

Our call sign: 9M4CSB
Locator : OJ03lp

We can be reached on: 40-10m + 2m.

CQ JOTA... Hope to meet you.

"Jumpa lagi" means "See You Again"


Arie 9W2VVH
9M4CSB Station Manager

Our 9M4CSB QSL Card

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FUNcube-1 has arrived in Russia

Friday 18th October 2013

The amateur radio FUNcube-1 CubeSat has arrived in Russia on its journey to the Dombarovsky launch site near Yasny   (Photo right :- FUNcube-1 and other CubeSats being loaded)

It was flown on a special flight from Rotterdam on Wednesday, October 16 and was cleared through Russian customs on the morning of Thursday, October 17. Another flight took it to Orsk from where it had a road trip of several hours before arriving at the launch integration facility at Yasny.

The only work that still needs to be completed before launch is a final battery charge up to 7.68 volts, this is the best storage voltage for this type of battery, and the final ABF “Add Before Flight” plug needs to be installed and glued in place.

This work will be done on site by Gerard Aalbers who has been a member of the FUNcube team from the beginning of the project.

FUNcube-1 communication subsystem:

• 300 mW Inverting linear transponder for SSB and CW
- Uplink      435.150 – 435.130 MHz
- Downlink  145.950 – 145.970 MHz
• 300 mW BPSK Telemetry  145.935 MHz (30 mW output when transponder active)

The Yasny Dnepr launch should carry at least 11 spacecraft using the amateur satellite service and one of them, UniSat-5, will, itself, later deploy up to nine CubeSats and PocketQubes so there should be plenty of new signals to listen for after this launch.

UniSat-5 to Deploy Amateur Radio Satellites

Battery Charger for FUNcube-1

FUNcube Yahoo Group

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ESA drives forward with all-electric telecom satellites

Friday 18th October 2013

ESA is set to begin developing a new generation of satellites propelled by solar electric thrusters, following the signing of a contract with SES of Luxembourg for the next phase of the Electra project.

Electra is a partnership between ESA and satellite operator SES to define, develop and validate in space an electric-only propulsion platform for geostationary telecommunication satellites of around 3 tonnes launch mass.

The first launch is expected by the end of 2018.

Electra is the first partnership project established under ESA’s ARTES-33 programme, which supports market-driven innovations from industry that require flight heritage and in-orbit validation – proof that they work in space – so that they are more readily embraced by the marketplace.

ARTES-33 requires a partnership between a manufacturer and a user of the innovative capabilities and demands that innovation is validated in a commercially representative environment.

Through Electra, Europe’s new capability will serve the current and future needs of satellite operators in the geostationary segment for smaller satellites.

The use of electric-only propulsion for orbit raising and stationkeeping yields important savings in fuel consumption, reducing launch mass by 40%. This allows payloads to be twice as large or the use of smaller launch vehicles. Either way, it is economically attractive.

German satellite builder OHB Systems is in partnership with SES for the development of Electra. OHB aims to extend its portfolio of telecom satellite platforms, adding a fully electric version to the Small GEO product line with Electra.

The Electra project encompasses both the development of the platform and the flight of a mission defined by the satellite operator. The mission will be selected at the end of this Phase-B1 in 2014.

Jean-Jacques Dordain, ESA’s Director General, attending the signing of the contract at SES in Luxembourg, noted: “Electra represents three partnerships in one: between SES and OHB, to develop the best solution for SES and the future needs of other satellite operators; between SES and ESA, to offer the best possible validation in orbit of a new technology; and between ESA and DLR to capitalise on previous investments. These three partnerships is the best way to optimise the use of public and private funds for enhancing the competitiveness of the European sector."

Rolf Densing, Director of ESA Space Programmes at the DLR German Aerospace Center, commented: “Electra is a good example of the kind of cooperation we are seeking with ESA in the area of telecommunications. It maximises the outcome for German industry in terms of potential commercial exploitation.

“At the same time, Electra imposes a rigorous framework on all the parties involved, derived from the high commercial stakes. With Electra we continue our strategy to establish a prime for small telecommunication satellites in Germany”

Magali Vaissiere, ESA’s Director of Telecommunication and Integrated Applications, added, “We are adapting our tools to best support the competitiveness of our satellite telecommunication industry.

“Electra is the first example of our Partner programme, where we are consolidating the model of partnerships with the private sector to help the introduction and adoption of innovative efficient solutions proposed by our industry.

“SES is not only a world-leading satellite operator but also a key reference for the consolidation of OHB as a prime contractor in the commercial satcom sector.”

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Previous RSGB General Manager

Thursday 17th October 2013

The Radio Society of Great Britain has issued a statement regarding the previous General Manager.

The Board is pleased to be able to report to Members that the debt owed to the Society by its previous General Manager, who left the Society in early 2011, has been repaid in full, together with statutory interest and the Society’s court fees. This will be reflected in the 2013 accounts as a write-back of the provision taken against the debt in the 2011 accounts. Details will be in the annual report and accounts which will be published in time for the AGM in 2014.

The Board expresses its thanks to the Society team which has brought about the recovery of this debt and now regards the matter as closed. No further comment will be made.


You can join the RSGB online at

RSGB membership is free to licensed amateurs under the age of 21 and to licensed amateurs aged 21-25 in full time education

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JOTA 434 MHz balloon launch

Thursday 17th October 2013

During Jamboree On The Air it's hoped to launch a balloon that will transmit the message 'Scouts JOTA Youlbury Oxford UK' on 434.300 MHz USB

Steve G0TDJ
hopes to launch the balloon on Sunday, October 20 from the Scout center in Youlbury, Oxford. The launch is entirely dependent on local weather conditions. If the weather is unsuitable the launch will be postponed to a later date.

Payload: VAYU-1
Frequency: 434.300MHz USB +/- Drift
Mode: RTTY 50 7n2
Launch site: Lat = 51.724227 Lon = -1.301292
Launch time: 12:30 + weather/travel etc.

Telemetry: Callsign, Sentence No, Time HH:MM:SS, Lat, Lon, Altitude, Distance from Launch, Satellites, GPS Mode, Power Save Mode, Battery Voltage, Internal Temp.

Interleaved with the telemetry, every 10 sentences will be 'Scouts JOTA Youlbury Oxford UK -'

The VAYU payload is based on a design by Chelmsford radio amateur Chris Stubbs M6EDF.

A Crash Course in Tracking 434 MHz Balloons

Real time tracking map of this and other balloons

Beginners Guide to Tracking using dl-fldigi

To get up-to-date information on balloon flights subscribe to the UKHAS Mailing List by sending a blank email to this address:

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CQ-DATV6 is out now

Thursday 17th October 2013

This ATV eBook magazine, can be downloaded free from

This magazine is optimised for eBook readers, so you need either an eBook, smart phone or suitable free software for your MAC or PC.
See the readers page

Windows eBook on line converter to pdf file.

Sigil eBook editor

In this issue

Ian G8IQU looks at what is wrong with ATV

Part one of G7GTN advanced video switcher

Some good advice from W5KUB on video streaming

G8CJS looks at getting into 4K TV using the budget Go Pro camera

W6HHC covers the latest breaking news on DATV express and together with KB6CJZ plans a DATV station

VK2ZUH provides an insight in some of his ATV projects

ON4WF provides an update on DATV on the international space station

Plus all the usual features, news, events and the caption contest

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San Andres Island DXpedition

Thursday 17th October 2013

Members of the 'DX Friends' will activate San Andres Island (NA-033) between November 1-10th.

The current list of operators mentioned are Alberto/EA1SA, Toni/EA5RM (Team Leader), Roberto/EA2RY, Manolo/EA7AJR, Jose/EA7KW, Fabrizio/ IN3ZNR, Alain/F6ENO, Tony/F8ATS, Faber/HK6F, Bernard/F9IE, Roberto/HK3CW and Valery/RG8K.

Activity will be on 160-6 meters using CW, SSB and RTTY.

Suggested frequencies are:
CW - 1824, 3524, 7004, 10104, 14024, 18074, 21024, 24894 and 28024 kHz
SSB - 1845, 3780, 7065/7160, 14195, 18145, 21295, 24945 and 28494 kHz
RTTY - 7035, 10140, 14080, 18100, 21080, 24921 and 28080 kHz
6m - 50105/CW and 50115/SSB

They will have at least 4 stations at the same time on different bands
and modes. Equipment is an Elecraft K3 and 3 Icom IC-7000.
Antennas are Hexbeams, SpiderBeam, Verticals (160/80/40/30m) and Yagi for 6 meters.

QSL via EA5RM direct (see Web page). You can use the OQRS (see Web
page) for direct and Bureau cards. More details should be forthcoming,
especially their callsign.

Visit their Web page at:


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Ofcom: Releasing MOD spectrum for new civil uses

Thursday 17th October 2013

Ofcom is inviting stakeholders to express their interest in acquiring radio spectrum that is being released for civil use by the Ministry of Defence (MOD) 

This spectrum includes 40 MHz located in the 2.3 GHz band and another 150 MHz between 3.4 GHz and 3.6 GHz. These bands are in the process of being harmonised across Europe for mobile broadband; and are therefore likely to be used for 4G services.

As well as inviting expressions of interest, Ofcom is making a number of proposals relating to the award of this spectrum. This includes proposed band plans for the spectrum and a proposal to relocate UK Broadband spectrum holdings within the 3400 to 3600 MHz band, to form one contiguous block of frequencies for award.

Further information is at

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AmateurLogic.TV 59: 8th Anniversary Extravaganza

Wednesday 16th October 2013

Our 8th Anniversary Extravaganza. You don’t want to miss a minute of this action packed episode!

Peter declares war, Tommy reviews the Icom ID-51A, George shows how and why to use a Megger, we model the new AmateurLogic T-shirts, a Google + Hangout with show friends, info on the 8th Anniversary Giveaway, and more.

1:12:24 of AmateurLogic Celebration


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Lampedusa DXpedition

Wednesday 16th October 2013

An international team consisting of Gabor, HA1YA, Don, JH5GHM, Boyko, LZ1QN, Dale, N3BNA, Frederic, ON4LG, Aurelio, PC5A, Rob, PE1ITR, Vlad, RC0F, Silvo, S50X, Romeo, S52RU, Renato, S57UN, Slavco, S57DX, Drago, S59A, and Konstantin, VE3LA, plan to activate Lampedusa AF-019 IIA AG-001, MIA MI-126, WLOTA 2312, WW Loc. JM65gm) as IG9Y from the 17th to the 30th.

QRV on 160-6m with 4 stations in CW, RTTY, and SSB (including the contest).

The team also appeals for charity donations (via paypal[at], or direct to ON4LG) to support the refugees who come to Lampedusa by boat from Africa.

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Jota Cluster

Tuesday 15th October 2013

How do you find other JOTA stations?

By using the JOTA cluster. The cluster is always online for scouting events, but mostly used during the JOTA weekends.

You can reach the JOTA cluster using port 7300 in your favourite Cluster software, or use the web interface at

So, if you are in the JOTA event this weekend, make sure you will be found!

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Earthquake hits the Philippines

Tuesday 15th October 2013

The Philippine Amateur Radio Association (PARA) has activated its Ham Emergency Radio Operators in emergency communications using the frequency of 7.095 MHz.

It did so almost immediately on receiving news that a 7.2 Magnitude earthquake occurred in the Bohol Province, causing numerous casualties and damage.

Pictures from the scene show damaged buildings, blocked roads and a look of bewilderment on many faces.

Roberto Jose C. Vicencio DU1VHY said all radio amateurs are asked to keep the 40m frequency clear. The assessment of damage and other relief work is continuing.

Various reports put the death toll up to 20 and many injured when the earthquake struck today near a key tourist area. It was followed by two aftershocks, each measuring more than 5.0 in magnitude.

Jim Linton VK3PC
Chairman IARU Region 3 Disaster Communications Committee

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Tuesday 15th October 2013

The Norman Lockyer Radio Group will be operating GB0HE on Sunday 20th October to celebrate the 145th anniversary of the discovery of the element Helium (HE) by Sir Norman Lockyer.

The station will be located at our group HQ at the Norman Lockyer Observatory Sidmouth (photo right). We are located at 650' asl just to the east of the coastal town of Sidmouth.

Activity will be on most HF bands depending on conditions and with some limited VHF activity on FM and SSB and via our on site repeater GB3SW.

More details etc on

We look forward to working as many stations as possible from 9.00 until 20.00 utc

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M-class flare: earth-directed CME - aurora

Tuesday 15th October 2013

Space Weather reports October 13 began with an explosion on the sun. At 00:43 UT, sunspot AR1865 erupted, producing an M1-class solar flare and an Earth-directed CME

Soon after the flare, the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory recorded a faint CME emerging from the blast site: movie.
Based on the approximate speed of the expanding cloud, between 600 km/s and 800 km/s, it will probably reach Earth on Oct. 15-16.
Polar geomagnetic storms are possible when the CME arrives.

On Tuesday and Wednesday listen out for possible Auroral DX SSB/CW signals on 50/70/144 MHz.

See the video at

Live Aurora Map

Aurora Watch UK

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Location information for emergency calls from mobile phones

Tuesday 15th October 2013

Ofcom is today seeking views from stakeholders on emergency caller location information (ECLI) for mobile phones.

Ofcom’s General Condition 4 requires communications providers to make accurate and reliable caller location information available for all calls to the emergency services.

The document seeks views from stakeholders as to what (if any) concerns currently exist with respect to the accuracy and reliability of ECLI for mobile calls.

The document further discusses if and how technologies such as smartphone mapping applications and enhanced mobile network capabilities could now, or in the future, help improve the accuracy and reliability of caller location information. 

Communications providers, consumer groups, the emergency services and individuals are invited to contribute to Ofcom’s preliminary examination of the opportunities and potential issues in this area. This may help inform Ofcom’s future policies.

The call for input closes on 23 December 2013.

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Ofcom Amateur Radio Licence Review

Tuesday 15th October 2013

One of the highlights of the RSGB Convention was a talk by Ofcom's Paul Jarvis G8RMM and Ash Gohil about the upcoming Amateur Radio Licence Review

Read the Essex Ham report at

The RSGB are planning to offer
three further Litmus Tests shortly on
- Licence Progression
- /AM usage for unattended airborne usage (balloons, etc)
- Remote Operation.

The new discussion Forums will be available at

Other issues that people may want to discuss that came from Ofcom's presentation on Sunday, or at the National Hamfest, should be posted to the "Suggestions for New Topics" Litmus Test, see

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BATC Convention: Balloon with video downlink

Monday 14th October 2013

The British Amateur Television Club convention takes place on the weekend of October 26-27 at the Finningley Amateur Radio Club facilities near Robin Hood airport in Yorkshire

On the Saturday 16:00 if the weather is suitable Philip Crump M0DNY will be giving a live demonstration of a High Altitude Balloon launch.  The balloon will carry a video transmitter.

Other highlights of the program include:

10 GHz ATV equipment and operation.
Ku band LNB developments and the use of PLL LNBs on 10 GHz.
How to get going on 70cms and 3.4 GHz DATV and experiences to date.
HAMTV on ISS – introduction and how to receive it.
Digital update – including the latest from the Digilite and DATV express teams.
Narrow band modes below 432 MHz – presentation and discussion.
Talk and demo of DTX1 transmitter system.

As well as the talks program, there will be plenty of time for meeting other ATVers from across the country and visit the other activities on site including:

SMD soldering workshop where you can buy, build and test equipment – we will be selling kits for the G4DDK PGA103 amplifier (see CQ-TV 241).
Demonstration area – featuring member’s demo including M0DTS showing his integrated MK808 Digilite system.
Comprehensive RF test and measurement equipment up to 10 GHz.
Selected RF and video suppliers.
Members bring and buy area.
Antennae test range (Sunday only & weather permitting).
BATC shop with stock of all items currently on sale

The talks program and  agenda for the weekend has now been published see

If you are coming to CAT13, please register on the Finningley Radio Club site see

There will be a group dinner on Saturday night but you do need to book ahead with the hotel – so far no-one has emailed a menu request so the hotel are asking if they should cancel the booking!

See for details and also details on nearby hotels.

We look forward to seeing you all in 2 weeks time


Noel G8GTZ
On behalf of the BATC committee

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October 432 and Above EME Newsletter

Monday 14th October 2013

The October issue of the free amateur radio 432 MHz and Above EME Newsletter is now available

The Word and PDF formats the newsletter can be downloaded from

Previous newsletters are at

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Daily Mail: PocketQube Satellites

Monday 14th October 2013

The UK newspaper the Daily Mail reports on a Glasgow-based start-up Alba Orbital which has recently begun creating and selling the building blocks for tiny satellites named 'PocketQubes'

Read the story at

PocketQube Shop on Kickstarter

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SOTAbeams expands

Saturday 12th October 2013

Specialist amateur radio accessory company SOTAbeams has recently moved to a new factory unit. They have invested heavily in new equipment including an industrial laser cutter.

Managing Director, Richard Newstead, G3CWI said "this is an exciting move for us. We have already taken on more staff to meet the strong demand for quality items and are looking forward to a busy time in the run up to Christmas."

Investment in new technology allows SOTAbeams to customise their products for individual customers. The first such product is a handy desk stand for the FT-817 engraved with the owner's callsign.

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LED Lights Interference Presentation

Saturday 12th October 2013

Neil Ackerley G3RIR is giving a presentation on LED Lights interference, titled 'A horror story from a victim', to the RSGB Centenary Convention

The presentation will take place on Sunday, October 13 from 10:15-11:00.

The RSGB’s Centenary Convention, sponsored by Martin Lynch & Sons, takes place this weekend (Fri eve-Sun) October 11-13 at Horwood House, MK17 0PH just a few miles outside Milton Keynes. Tickets are available on the door.

RSGB Convention Schedule

RSGB Centenary Convention

UKQRM Yahoo Group

UKQRM website

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Ham radio operators geared up for Cyclone Phailin

Saturday 12th October 2013

The Times of India reports amateur radio operators have swung into action gearing up to offer their services for communication with the dangerous threat of Cyclone Phailin looming large

The newspaper says: In Odisha, as many as 200 trained ham radio operators have been put on alert to rise to the occasion. Ham radio operators help in rescue operations when other means of communications may or may not be working. "Ham volunteers not only in Odisha, but all over the country have been asked to be available if their services are needed. As many as 40 have already volunteered and have offered to go to any place if needed," NIAR director S Ram Mohan VU2MYH told The Times of India.

Following the alert about Cyclone Phailin, the Odisha state government got in touch with NIAR, Hyderabad to alert the entire network of ham radio operators and participate in the operations that may have to be taken up. "We have eight stations which have been put on active alert while there are 28 stations which are there as back-up at various places in the country," Ram Mohan VU2MYH said.

Read the full story at

National Institute of Amateur Radio (NIAR)

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AMSAT-UK FUNcube-1 presentation on Saturday

Friday 11th October 2013

Dave Johnson G4DPZ will be giving a presentation on the amateur radio AMSAT-UK FUNcube-1 and UK Space Agency (UKSA) UKube-1 satellites to the RSGB Convention on Saturday

The presentation will take place from 16:45-17:30 in the Cook 2 room at Horwood House, MK17 0PH on Saturday, October 12.

FUNcube-1 carries a 435/145 linear transponder for SSB and CW communications and an educational telemetry beacon using 1k2 BPSK for school outreach purposes.

Ukube-1 carries a set of AMSAT-UK FUNcube boards that will provide an additional 435/145 MHz linear transponder and educational telemetry beacon.

The current launch information has lift off for FUNcube-1 scheduled for late November and UKube-1 on February 20.

FUNcube-1 communication subsystem:

• 400 mW Inverting linear transponder for SSB and CW
- Uplink      435.150 – 435.130 MHz
- Downlink  145.950 – 145.970 MHz
• 400 mW BPSK Telemetry  145.935 MHz

UKube-1 communications subsystem:

• Telemetry downlink 145.840 MHz,
• FUNcube subsystem beacon 145.915 MHz
• 400 mW Inverting linear transponder for SSB and CW
- Uplink     435.080 -435.060 MHz
- Downlink 145.930 -145.950 MHz
• S Band downlink 2401.0 MHz
• myPocketQub 437.425-437.525 MHz

The RSGB’s Centenary Convention, sponsored by Martin Lynch & Sons, takes place this weekend (Fri eve-Sun) October 11-13 at Horwood House, MK17 0PH just a few miles outside Milton Keynes. Tickets are available on the door.

RSGB Convention Schedule

RSGB Centenary Convention

FUNcube Yahoo Group


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RSGB 1913-2013 congratulated

Friday 11th October 2013

The Radio Society of Great Britain (RSGB), which is celebrating its century with a variety of events, has been thanked and wished well on the occasion and into the future.

Fellow International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) member society, the Wireless Institute of Australia (WIA), has described the array of events organised throughout this centenary year as marvellous.

WIA President Phil Wait VK2ASD said the events engage the membership, clubs, and radio amateurs worldwide, while further raising the profiles of the organisation and the amateur service.

The RSGB has been a true friend through its 100 years of international cooperation including strong leadership on issues at the IARU and other forums. It continues to display a leading role both locally and throughout the world.

The WIA acknowledges that it relied heavily on the RSGB for its own Introduction of the Foundation Licence that has proven to be highly successful in Australia.

RSGB publications continue to sell well through the WIA Book Shop.
The WIA has sent a plaque to the RSGB extending the warmest of wishes on achieving the milestone and for its future.

Source: Wireless Institute of Australia

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Up Up and Away

Friday 11th October 2013

WIA News reminds radio amateurs who launch small balloons and Quad Copters of the need to keep away from structures such as the Sydney Harbour Bridge
In this day and age of we hams launching small balloons and using ATV on board easily purchased quad copters and the like, comes this story with a message in its tail.
A mystery drone crashed into the Sydney Harbour Bridge causing counter terrorism officers to be alerted and an investigation by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority.
The incident occurred Wednesday week, just a day before the start of the International Navy Fleet Review. However police believe the two were not linked.
A spokesman for CASA confirmed it was investigating the incident.
He said those operating remotely piloted aircraft must keep them at least 30m away from any people, buildings or structures and to check with local council where they can be used. He said airspace around the Harbour Bridge was restricted, even for small aircraft such as drones.

Source WIA News

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Raspberry Pi at RSGB Convention

Thursday 10th October 2013

Peter Goodhall 2E0SQL, (photo right operating satellites portable) a well known amateur radio satellite operator, will be giving a presentation on the Raspberry Pi computer board at the RSGB Convention this weekend

The popular Raspberry Pi has been used for many different amateur radio applications. Peter's presentation will be given at 14:30-15:15 on Saturday, October 12.

The RSGB’s Centenary Convention, sponsored by Martin Lynch & Sons, takes place this weekend (Fri eve-Sun) October 11-13 at Horwood House, MK17 0PH just a few miles outside Milton Keynes. Tickets are available on the door.

RSGB Convention Schedule

RSGB Centenary Convention

Over a million Raspberry Pi's have been manufactured in the UK

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MacLoggerDX version 5.49 released

Thursday 10th October 2013

Dog Park Software is pleased to announce that version 5.49 of MacLoggerDX has been released.

What's New in this version:

* Requires Intel 64 bit Processor.
* Added FlexRadio SmartSDR 6500, 6700 drivers.
* Added Rotor Bearing HUD (Heads-Up_Display).
* Removed Prosistel read-back error.
* db v4, v5 includes SOTA, My SOTA fields, ADIF tags.
* CW Macros duplicated in Shortcuts menu for Keyboard Shortcuts.
* Show tuned spot frequency in bold.

MacLoggerDX is the Total Mac Ham Radio Assistant and premier Mac logger:

Organizing and filtering the spots from your favourite DX Cluster for DXing, Contesting or casual rag-chewing.

It supports close to a hundred radios, automatically tuning to the spots you are interested in and optionally swinging your beam around.

Alerting you to rare contacts or Band Openings and looking up, displaying on 2D, 3D and Satellite Maps and logging your contacts to a super fast sql database.

MacLoggerDX can also email you when the Bands are open or that rare DX is spotted.

Awards Tracking, Band Activity, Schedules, Memories, QSL Generation, ADIF import, export, eQSL, LoTW Confirmations and much more.

This is a free update for all Version 5 customers and can be downloaded from:

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STRaND-1 talk at RSGB Convention this Sunday

Wednesday 9th October 2013

Dr Chris Bridges (photo right) M6OBC /M0GKK of the Surrey Space Centre is one of the volunteers who developed the UK's first CubeSat STRaND-1 (437.568 MHz)

At 11:30 on Sunday, October 13 he will be providing an update on the satellite to those attending the RSGB Convention near Milton Keynes.

Launched on February 25, 2013 STRaND-1 was the first satellite to carry a Smartphone into space and attracted world-wide media interest.

At the heart of STRaND-1 is a Google Nexus One smartphone with an Android operating system. Smartphones contain highly advanced technologies and incorporate several key features that are integral to a satellite – such as cameras, radio links, accelerometers and high performance computer processors – almost everything a spacecraft needs except the solar panels and propulsion.

The RSGB’s Centenary Convention, sponsored by Martin Lynch & Sons, takes place this weekend (Fri eve-Sun) October 11-13 at Horwood House, MK17 0PH just a few miles outside Milton Keynes. Tickets are available on the door.

RSGB Convention Schedule

RSGB Centenary Convention

STRaND-1 information

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Guide to Digital Signal Processing

Wednesday 9th October 2013

The Scientist and Engineer's Guide to Digital Signal Processing by Steven W. Smith, Ph.D. is available for free download

You can download the book in PDF format at

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Russian vocoder Yakhta back on 21 MHz

Wednesday 9th October 2013

The IARU Monitoring Service (IARUMS) newsletter reports on a possible Russian military station that has been using the amateur radio 21 MHz band

The encrypted voice traffic has been operating on 21000.0 kHz on USB, the inband synchro F1B-signal (100 baud – 150 Hz shift) was always audible and very strong. Location: Nizhny Tagil, Russia. Probably Russian military, real purpose unknown.

The newsletter reports the Russian military have also been using other frequencies in our 7, 14 and 21 MHz bands and have been operating an Over The Horizon radar between 3500 and 3800 kHz.

The International Amateur Radio Union Monitoring System (IARUMS) Region 1 September 2013 newsletter can be read at

Please log your reports of Amateur Band intruders online at

Monitor the short wave bands on-line with a web based SDR receiver at

IARU Monitoring System (IARUMS)

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Tuning out: Analogue radio to disappear by 2018

Tuesday 8th October 2013

Analogue radio sets are likely be consigned to history by the first half of 2018, the head of Britain’s commercial radio trade body has said, as she called on the Government to set out a clear timetable for the industry’s digital switchover.

Linda Smith, chief executive of RadioCentre, which represents commercial stations across the country, predicted that the analogue radio signal would survive six years beyond last year’s switch off in the television sector. The switchover would be three years later than recommended in a major government report in 2009.

Read the full Independent article at:

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Ofcom propose legalising 27 MHz SSB

Tuesday 8th October 2013

In June 2011 the ECC published a Decision harmonizing CB radio across the European Union. 28 months later Ofcom has announced a consultation on legalising 27 MHz SSB

Ofcom has published proposals to amend current arrangements for Citizens’ Band (CB) Radio in the UK, to allow the use of a wider range of transmission standards.  CB radio is a system of short-distance radio communications between individuals.

Ofcom is proposing to allow the use of Amplitude Modulation (AM), Double-sideband (DSB) and Single-sideband (SSB) transmission standards on CB radio, which will bring the UK in line with other European countries. The consultation will close on 8 November 2013.

In the late 1970's radio amateurs such as James Bryant G4CLF the then President of the UK Citizens' Band Association, campaigned for the legalisation of AM/SSB CB. Now some 36 years later it looks as though it will finally be achieved.

The consultation will close on November 8.

Consultation document

Information on how to respond is at

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Ofcom's Paul Jarvis to speak at RSGB Convention

Tuesday 8th October 2013

Ofcom will be represented at this weekend's RSGB Convention by radio amateur Paul Jarvis and Ash Gohil

The RSGB’s Centenary Convention, sponsored by Martin Lynch & Sons, takes place this weekend (Fri eve-Sun) October 11-13 at Horwood House, MK17 0PH just a few miles outside Milton Keynes. Tickets are available on the door.

Paul and Ash will be giving a presentation titled 'Outline of the forthcoming Amateur Licence Review' which will take place on Sunday, October 13 between 11:15 and 12:00.

The RSGB is currently holding an online forum, open to all, to discuss the licence review.

Read the RSGB licence review preparation

To participate in the Ofcom Amateur Consultation discussions register on the RSGB Forum at

RSGB Convention Schedule

RSGB Centenary Convention

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UK ham radio licenses hit new high

Tuesday 8th October 2013

The number of UK amateur radio licenses appeared to hit a record high at the end of September

The October figures released by Ofcom show that at the end of September there was a grand total of 82,040 licences an increase of 152 over the previous month.

Although they look good, Ofcoms statistics are in fact deceptive. In the UK, amateur licenses need to be revalidated (renewed) every 5 years otherwise Ofcom say they will revoke the licence, but it appears Ofcom are failing to revoke licences.

They do not appear to have revoked any licenses since 2006 which means that thousands of Silent Keys and possibly tens of thousands of those who've left the hobby in the past 7 years are still showing in the license statistics.

Ofcom UK Amateur Radio Licence Statistics

How to validate your licence

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Special event station GB0TWY

Tuesday 8th October 2013

Look for special event station GB0TWY to be activated by the 2nd Twyning Scout Group, as part of the 56th Jamboree on-the-Air (JOTA) event, for one day on October 19th.

Operations will be from the Twyning School. Twyning is a small village on the banks of the River Avon, 3 km north of Tewkesbury in the county of Gloucestershire, England.

The village has around 70 Beavers, Cubs and Scouts – many of which will be visiting the station to take part in JOTA/JOTI 2013. They will also be joined by other Scout groups from Tewkesbury District.

Activity will be on the HF bands (40/20/15 meters) as well as 2m and
70 cm.

QSL via info on

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Celebrating the first-ever UK - NZ radio contact

Tuesday 8th October 2013

Special event callsign GB2NZ came on the air on Saturday, October 5th, as part of the preparation for the commemoration of the 90th anniversary this October of the first-ever Europe/Oceania radio communication, between Z4AA in southern New Zealand and 2SZ in London, in 1924.

The main object is to make some G/ZL contacts on 80 meters, close to the 3 MHz frequency used in 1924.

Laurie Margolis, G3UML, will be on first with the special callsign GB2NZ on October 5th and 6th (UK time). Other operators, including Don/G3BJ, Chris/G3SJJ and John/G3XRJ, will keep it going throughout most of October.

The schedule is as follows:
October 5-6th - Op G3UML SSB
October 7-11th - Op G3XRJ SSB and CW
October 12-18th - Op G3BJ SSB and CW
October 19-25th - Op G3SJJ CW (Team Leader & Webmaster)

See the following URL links for more details:

QSL via M0OXO's OQRS (preferred) for direct and Bureau QSLs.

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DXCC Country/Entity Report

Tuesday 8th October 2013

According to the Amateur Radio Cluster Network for the week of Sunday, 29th-September, through Sunday, 6th-October there were 220 countries active.

Countries available:

3A, 3B8, 3B9, 3D2, 3V, 3W, 4J, 4L, 4O, 4S, 4U1I, 4X, 5A, 5B, 5H, 5N, 5R, 5T, 5W, 5X, 5Z, 6W, 6Y, 7P, 7Q, 7X, 8P, 8Q, 8R, 9A, 9H, 9J, 9K, 9M2, 9M6, 9N, 9Q, 9U, 9V, 9X, 9Y,

A4, A6, A7, A9, AP, BV, BY, C3, C9, CE, CE0Y, CE9, CM, CN, CP, CT, CT3, CU, CX, CY0, D2, DL, DU, E5/s, E7, EA, EA6, EA8, EA9, EI, EK, EL, EP, ER, ES, ET, EU, EX, EY, F, FG, FH, FK, FM, FO, FO/a, FR, FS, FY, G, GD, GI, GJ, GM, GU, GW, H4, HA, HB, HB0, HC, HH, HI, HK, HL, HP, HR, HS, HZ, I, IS, J2, J6, J8, JA, JD/o, JT, JW, JY,

K, KH0, KH2, KH6, KL, KP2, KP4, LA, LU, LX, LY, LZ, OA, OD, OE, OH, OH0, OK, OM, ON, OX, OY, OZ, P2, P4, PA, PJ2, PJ4, PY, PY0F, PZ, S5, SM, SP, SU, SV, SV/a, SV5, SV9, T7, TA, TF, TG, TI, TJ, TK, TL, TN, TR, TT, TU, TZ, UA, UA2, UA9, UK, UN, UR,

V2, V3, V4, V5, V6, V7, V8, VE, VK, VK9N, VP2E, VP8, VP8/h, VP9, VR, VU, XE, XU, XW, XX9, YA, YB, YI, YL, YN, YO, YS, YU, YV, Z2, Z3, Z8, ZA, ZB, ZD7, ZD8, ZF, ZL, ZL9, ZP, ZS, ZS8

PLEASE NOTE: The report "could" contain "Pirate/SLIM" operations or more likely a "BUSTED CALLSIGN". As always, you never know - "Work First Worry Later" (WFWL).


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Spacecraft goes into lunar orbit

Monday 7th October 2013

Among a select few allowed to work during the US government shutdown, controllers for NASA's Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) fired the spacecraft's engines Sunday morning, Oct. 6th, slowing it enough to be captured by lunar gravity. LADEE is now in orbit.

Soon, the spacecraft will begin its mission to study the Moon's exotic and diaphanous atmosphere, which is mightily affected by space weather.

For more information about this development, plus new color images of incoming Comet ISON, visit

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DTX1 DVB-S Digital TV

Sunday 6th October 2013

The BATC DTX1 digital encoder/modulator has been developed specifically for amateur radio TV use on 70 and 23cms

It is designed and manufactured in the UK for the BATC by Antennair in Manchester and, although based on their consumer product, it has special ATV software. It is now available to members through the BATC shop:

The BATC DTX1 is only available from the BATC online Shop, and is not available directly from Antennair. For sales enquiries, please use the online form at

Pre-sales enquiries will not be answered by Antennair - they are only providing post-sale technical support.


For the User Guide and further information see

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FCC issues warnings for Amateur Radio infractions

Sunday 6th October 2013

The FCC's Enforcement Bureau has made public warning letters sent for alleged infractions of the Part 97 Amateur Service rules

The ARRL say: The FCC's Enforcement Bureau recently made public warning letters to several individuals for alleged infractions of the Part 97 Amateur Service rules or Section 301 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended.

On August 9, Special Counsel Laura L. Smith wrote Jack Hartley, K4WSB, of Tampa, Florida, citing evidence received from members of the Amateur Auxiliary (Official Observers) that Hartley had operated outside of his Advanced class privileges while attempting to work a station on Kwajalein Atoll in the South Pacific.

Read the full ARRL story

Read the FCC warning letters should be available again once Federal shutdown is over at

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Australian D-STAR on 40 metres

Saturday 5th October 2013

Amateur Radio Newsline carries a report about a D-STAR net on 7.215 MHz

AR Newsline say:

If you have interest in digital audio on the High Frequency bands you might want to tune your D-Star equipped transceiver to 7.215 MHz at noon UTC.  This to see if you can take part in a D-Star test net operating from Australia most mornings.
The net control is Brian Farrar, VK2AH, in New South Whales who says the best contacts so far have been from his location to the city of Horsham about 550 miles away. Farrar says that net participants have tried other bands with no much success but 40 meters seems promising.

VK2AK is not only on for the net but also tries 40 meter D-Star at other times of the day as well.  While operating he also monitors D-Star Reflector REF003 and does put out alerts when he is looking for D-Star contacts from his QTH down-under.  (VK3TOM, D-Star Remailer)

The Emission Designator of a D-STAR transmitter is understood to be 6K00F7W. This indicates a Necessary Bandwidth of 6 kHz. An article by the Utah VHF Society on D-STAR occupied bandwidth and channel spacing can be seen at

D-STAR Channel Spacing

Classification of emissions and necessary bandwidths

Amateur Radio Newsline

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HF Interoperability Exercise 2013 in full swing

Friday 4th October 2013

The HF Interoperability Exercise 2013 started Friday 04 October and ends on 14 October.

Amateur radio operators all over the world are participating on the air during the 10 days of this international communications preparedness exercise, using Automatic Link Establishment (ALE).

The innovative ALE system uses a digital selective calling method to enable radio users to ring each other up on High Frequency shortwave using their callsigns like a phone number.

"HFIE-2013" as the radio exercise is known, is sponsored by HFLINK.COM and the Global ALE High Frequency Network (HFN)

Thousands of stations have registered and many of them will be on-the-air with their Single Sideband (SSB) radios talking by voice or texting. The exercise is intended to provide training and maintain proficiency for HF Interoperability; an important issue these days, because of the new standards for government and non-governmental organizations in emergency and disaster communications. After completing the exercise, participating radio stations are issued Certificates and Wallet Cards.

They also keep track of each other using an internet-connected chat room with a map feature that tracks their operating signals on the following frequencies.

Primary ALE Frequencies -International Amateur Radio Service
Channels and open nets for all ALE ham ops.


---KHZ---SSB-----COMMON USE--------(NOTES)---
03596.0 USB ALE DATA/SOUNDING International
05371.5 USB ALE DATA/SOUNDING (NALE no sounding North America)
07102.0 USB ALE DATA/SOUNDING International
10145.5 USB ALE DATA/SOUNDING International
14109.0 USB ALE DATA/SOUNDING International
18106.0 USB ALE DATA/SOUNDING International
21096.0 USB ALE DATA/SOUNDING International
24926.0 USB ALE DATA/SOUNDING International
28146.0 USB ALE DATA/SOUNDING International


---KHZ---SSB-----COMMON USE--------(NOTES)---
03791.0 USB ALE VOICE-SSB International
03996.0 USB ALE VOICE-SSB North America
05371.5 USB ALE VOICE-SSB (NALE North America)
07185.5 USB ALE VOICE-SSB International
07296.0 USB ALE VOICE-SSB North America
14346.0 USB ALE VOICE-SSB International
18117.5 USB ALE VOICE-SSB International
21432.5 USB ALE VOICE-SSB International
24932.0 USB ALE VOICE-SSB International
28312.5 USB ALE VOICE-SSB International

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New RSGB amateur licence forums

Friday 4th October 2013

The RSGB has created three forums to enable discussion of aspects of the amateur radio licence

Single call sign per station

Regional Secondary Locator

Suggestions for New Topics

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Ulster 434 MHz SSDV Balloon Flight

Friday 4th October 2013

Phil Heron 2I0VIM hopes to launch a balloon transmitting slow scan digital images from Omagh on Saturday, October 5

The launch time is uncertain but probably around 12:00 BST from Omagh in Northern Ireland.

Callsign: ORION
Frequency: 434.650 MHz, 600 baud RTTY, 8N2

The payload should transmit SSDV images along with the regular telemetry.

Live tracking and images will be available at:

There may also be live streaming from the launch site
(try "Live Events" then UKHAS Balloon Launches)

Beginners Guide to Tracking using dl-fldigi

Slow Scan Digital Video (SSDV) Guide

Balloon flights are always subject to last minute changes. To get up-to-date information subscribe to the UKHAS Mailing List by sending a blank email to this address:

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Lighthouse saved in fire

Friday 4th October 2013

A bushfire on the Australian coast threatened the historic listed Barrenjoey Lighthouse at Palm Beach, on the northern most point of Sydney and features on the Aussie TV drama Home and Away.

The New South Wales Rural Fire Service reports the building sustained some roof damage last week but is mostly fine after fire swept through the area.

This is good news, particularly to the Manly Warringah Radio Society VK2MB which has activated Barrenjoey in the International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend.

Already 18 countries have registered for 2014. Australia and Germany have about 25 each. The others having substantial numbers are from Argentina, England, Finland, Ireland, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Sweden and the USA.

Canada, Chile, Japan, Poland, Romania, Scotland, South Africa and Wales are with one each, but among nearly 90 registered lighthouses, lightship or marine beacons so far. Who will be the prestigious 100th registration?

To register in the 48 hour fun-event on August the 16 and 17th 2014 please check the website

Jim Linton VK3PC

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ARRL Executive Committee to consider numerous regulatory issues

Friday 4th October 2013

The ARRL Executive Committee (EC) will face an agenda heavy on FCC and regulatory issues when it meets Saturday, October 5 in the Denver, Colorado, area.

Among action items, the EC is expected to consider the filing of a Petition for Rule Making, now in draft, seeking to delete restrictions on symbol rates for data communication and to establish a 2.8 kHz maximum authorized bandwidth for HF digital data emissions. At its July meeting, the ARRL Board of Directors directed ARRL General Counsel Chris Imlay, W3KD, to prepare a Petition for Rule Making with the FCC seeking to modify §97.307(f) to delete all references to "symbol rate." The Petition would ask the FCC "to apply to all amateur data emissions below 29.7 MHz the existing bandwidth limit, per §97.303(h), of 2.8 kHz."

The Board determined that the current symbol rate restrictions in §97.307(f) "no longer reflect the state of the art of digital telecommunications technology," and that the proposed rule change would "encourage both flexibility and efficiency in the employment of digital emissions by amateur stations." ARRL CEO David Sumner, K1ZZ, explained the Board's action on symbol rate regulation in his September 2013 QST "It Seems to Us" editorial.

The EC also will consider authorizing comments on an FCC Public Notice on recommendations approved by the WRC-15 Advisory Committee.

The Committee will consider approving the filing of comments with the FCC that express concerns about expanding proposed radiolocation use of the 77.5 to 78 GHz band beyond on-vehicle applications to, for example, fixed roadside applications. The comment deadline is October 11, although the FCC shutdown may change that date.

The EC also will continue to evaluate strategies to improve the FCC's Amateur Radio enforcement program and consider filing reply comments on FCC ET Docket 13-84, regarding a re-examination of RF exposure regulations (reply comments are due November 11, subject to the FCC shutdown). While the FCC proposals do not alter existing RF exposure limits, they do call for the elimination of existing special evaluation exemptions spelled out in §97.13(c) of the Commission's rules. Minor rules changes adopted in the Report and Order section of the document took effect August 5.

In addition the EC will discuss a manufacturer's proposal to delete §97.317(a)(2), requiring that amplifiers operating below 144 MHz "not be capable of amplifying the input RF power (driving signal) by more than 15 dB gain." The Committee will consider whether to propose the rules change described.

The EC will hear status updates on other regulatory matters, including the ARRL's Petition for Rule Making filed last November to create a new MF allocation for the Amateur Service at 472-479 kHz.

The FCC's ET Docket 13-101 regarding receiver performance standards also will come up for discussion, as will pending amendments of the Amateur Service rules governing qualifying exam systems, Amateur Radio use of TDMA equipment, and remote proctoring of exam sessions.

Other topics on the EC agenda for review include the FCC's proposed revision of Part 15 rules to permit unlicensed National Information Infrastructure (U-NII) devices in the 5 GHz band, the effects of communications towers on migratory birds, and amendments to the FCC's CORES system. There has been no recent FCC action on these items.

The EC also will hear a report on the status of the effort to have the "Emergency Communications Enhancement Act of 2013" introduced in the 113th Congress. The objective of the League's draft bill is an instruction from Congress to the FCC to extend the existing limited preemption of state and local regulation of Amateur Radio station antenna structures to private land-use regulations.

Source: The American Radio Relay League

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Radios in decline among young

Friday 4th October 2013

An Ofcom report shows that only 15% of 5-15 year-olds have a radio in their bedroom, down from 19% in 2012

Ofcom has published its 2013 Children and Parents: Media Use and Attitudes report, which provides detailed evidence on media use, attitudes and understanding among children and young people aged 5-15. For the first time it also provides detailed information about access to, and use of, media among children aged 3-4.

The report also includes findings relating to parents’ views about their children’s media use, and the ways that parents seek to monitor or limit such use.

Among the report’s findings are:

· There has been a decline in the number of 5–15s owning a mobile phone;

· The use of tablet computers at home has tripled among 5-15s since last year;

· Children’s preference for internet-enabled devices reflects changes in how and why they are going online;

· For the first time there has been a decrease in the number of children with social networking profiles;

· Most parents of 5-15s say that they know enough to keep their child safe online; but around half of parents feel that their child knows more about the internet than they do.

The reference to a decline in mobile phones appears to relate to a fall in those using old "2G type" voice/text only phones. 18% of 8-11 year-olds now have their own smartphone.

The finding that fewer young people have social networking profiles seems surprising but there is a possibility that the figures for those aged under 13 are inaccurate. In order to set up a Facebook account people under 13 have to say they are older than they are, e.g. born in 1999 or earlier. Youngsters may simply be reluctant to admit in a questionnaire that they are in breach of age restrictions.

Read the Ofcom report at 

Ofcom has also published the report’s underlying questionnaire and data tables

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Pirates play while FCC cat is away

Friday 4th October 2013

It seems not everyone laments the FCC furlough.

Shortwave pirate radio activity has been up since the US government shutdown:

Read more at:

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Ofcom update: Spectrum management strategy

Thursday 3rd October 2013

Ofcom has published a consultation on its spectrum management strategy, setting out its approach to and priorities for spectrum management over the next ten years

The consultation discusses how Ofcom has refined its approach to spectrum management in light of past experience. It also assesses how the demands of major sectors that use spectrum are likely to develop in the future. This has identified a number of areas where Ofcom plans to focus its efforts over the next ten years.

Separately, Ofcom has also today published a press release announcing the participants in its white space trial. Over the next six months, around 20 public and private organisations will be participating in Ofcom’s pilot by running trials to test a variety of innovative applications. TV ‘white space’ devices will use gaps in radio spectrum that sit between frequency bands used for Digital Terrestrial TV. Use of these white spaces allows devices to transmit and receive wireless signals for applications such as broadband access for rural communities or innovative ‘machine-to-machine’ networks.

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UK PocketQube Shop on Kickstarter

Wednesday 2nd October 2013

PocketQube Shop is a small satellite startup based in Glasgow that has just launched a Kickstarter project

They believe small satellites are on the cusp of a major breakthrough much like personal computers were in the late 70′s/early 80′s.

PocketQube Shop say they wish to facilitate as many PocketQube builders as possible and see huge potential in lowering the barriers to entry for budding ‘Homebrew Satellite Builders’.

Wren – Image credit Stadoko

PocketQube massively lowers the barriers to entry for small satellite teams.

Despite the small size of CubeSats, 10x10x10 cm, they can still cost up to $100,000 to launch.

PocketQubes are just 5x5x5 cm and may be launched for a significantly lower price, under $20,000.

PocketQube Shop will not be offering to provide any launch facility but they have teamed up with an Italian company called GAUSS which has brokered launch opportunities with a Russian rocket called Dnepr, operated by ISC Kosmotras.

Several satellites built to the PocketQube standard will be launched in November. These include Wren, which has a camera and pulsed plasma thrusters; Morehead State University’s BeakerSat; the University of Maryland’s QubeScout-S1 and the 50DollarSat.

PocketQube Shop on Kickstarter

Wired article on PocketQube Shop

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Swedish Radio Hams on 472 kHz

Wednesday 2nd October 2013

On October 1, 2013 Swedish radio amateurs gained access to the 472-479 kHz band

The maximum radiated power 1W EIRP, apparently Sweden is too close to Russia to permit 5 watts EIRP

The Telecom Paper reports that also on October 1 new rules concerning exemptions from the requirement for radio transmitters to have an operating license came into effect.

Most transmitters need a license but for the sake of simplicity, PTS allows exceptions in cases where this is little risk of interference.

A new exemption applies to vehicle communication transmissions in the 63–64 GHz band. Other exemptions relate to RFID (Radio Frequency IDentification) use in the 2446–2454 MHz range for sales and inventory, and for vehicle radars in the range 24.25–26.65 GHz.


SSA in Google English

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New Ofcom spectrum head appointed

Tuesday 1st October 2013

Ofcom has appointed Philip Marnick (photo right) as its new Group Director in charge of spectrum

Spectrum is the airwaves over which all wireless communications operate and Ofcom is responsible for its management. Mobile phone networks, TV and radio broadcasting, wireless internet, sat-nav,
air traffic control, and the emergency services are just some of the services that use spectrum.

Philip has 27 years’ experience in the wireless communications industry. He joins from UK Broadband where he served as Chief Technology Officer. Prior to that he held senior positions at O2, BT, Orange, J-Phone – Japan (now Softbank Mobile), Extreme Mobile and SpinVox (now Nuance). Philip is also a member of the Ofcom Spectrum Advisory Board.

Philip, who will join in November, will lead Ofcom’s Spectrum Policy Group. This is responsible for setting and implementing the strategy for managing spectrum, which involves clearing, awarding and licensing it.


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Magnificent eruption on the sun

Tuesday 1st October 2013

On Sept. 29th, a long filament of magnetism in the sun's northern hemisphere erupted, producing a magnificent CME and several must-see movies from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory.

Although the CME was not aimed at Earth, our planet might receive a glancing blow from the cloud on Oct. 2-3.

Check for more information and updates.

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Radio Progreso now on shortwave

Tuesday 1st October 2013

The SWLing Post reports that the Cuban medium wave broadcaster Radio Progreso planned to conduct an 'experimental' shortwave broadcast on 4,765 kHz between 00:30 till 04:00 UTC on October 1st, 2013.

For more information:

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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:-