The Wirral & District Amateur Radio Club

Twice Winner of the RSGB Region 3

'Club of the Year' Trophy for 2013 & 2014

UK & World News Page

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

   Click for the RSGB NEWS for Radio Amateurs & SWL's

 

Looking for an archived News Item from last 12 months to read again ? click ARCHIVED NEWS

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TODAY's Local and World NEWS

U3A ham radio meeting

Tuesday 4th August 2020

The U3A, an organisation aimed at older people, is holding an online meeting for amateur radio operators on August 13 from 2-3pm  

The U3A announcement says:

Are you an Amateur Radio enthusiast? Would you like to meet people with the same interest to share experiences and support each other in this area? We will be discussing topics such as how has lockdown affected your engagement as a radio amateur and how U3A could assist members who wish to begin, develop or share their hobby as radio amateurs.

Amateur Radio, sometimes known as ham radio, is a worldwide communications hobby that allows individuals to learn about using transmitting equipment and make contact with other enthusiasts.


Source U3A
https://www.u3a.org.uk/component/content/article/197-covid-19/815-join-our-discussion-group-on-amateur-radio

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Solar Cycle 25 is Coming to Life

Tuesday 4th August 2020

There's no longer any doubt. Solar Cycle 25 is coming to life.
A new sunspot emerged today, crackling with flares and adding to a string of new-cycle active regions spread across the face of the sun.

Is Solar Minimum over? Find out the answer on today's edition of Spaceweather.com.

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Radio Spectrum Interference complaints consultation

Tuesday 4th August 2020

Eire's communications regulator ComReg has published their response and decision to the consultation on managment of radio spectrum interference complaints

IRTS News reports:

ComReg, the Commission for Communications Regulation recently published their response on the management of radio spectrum interference complaints. The document is a response to a consultation document published in December 2019 which invited comments from interested parties.

IRTS made a submission and amateurs will be disappointed with the new classification and response times. Complaints are in three categories: - Class A get an immediate response, Class B gets a 5 working day response and Class C does not get a response time. Amateur Radio complaints fall into the class C category.

Unfortunately, IRTS has been excluded from ComRegs Spectrum Intelligence and Investigations Operators Forum. More on this subject when the document is studied in more detail.


The reference number is 20/62 and it can be found on www.comreg.ie Everyone should read it.

The ComReg document can be downloaded from
https://www.comreg.ie/publication/response-to-consultation-on-the-management-of-radio-spectrum-interference-complaints

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New Zealand introduce licence for the supply of transmitting equipment

Tuesday 4th August 2020

RSM have released details of how to apply for a licence to supply Radio Transmitters and obligations for a permitted person to supply unrestricted two-way radios

Amateur radio operators or suppliers that want to supply radios transmitters in NZ must apply for a Licence to Supply Radio Transmitters either as an individual or organisation. Suppliers are defined as persons in NZ that import, manufacture, distribute, sell or install.

If the supplier also wants to supply unrestricted two-way radios as described under the Prohibition Notice, then they too must apply to become a permitted person. Unrestricted radios can only be sold to qualified radio amateurs. Applying for a Licence to Supply and a permitted person is a two-step process.

A permitted person will then be obligated to follow the additional terms, conditions and restrictions applied to their Licence to Supply. Permitted persons will also undergo periodic audits to ensure they are following the rules where their licence may be revoked if they are not.

Read more about Licences to Supply Radio Transmitters and endorsements
https://www.rsm.govt.nz/business-individuals/supplier-compliance/get-a-licence-to-supply-radio-equipment/

Read more about Obligations for a Permitted person to Supply Unrestricted two-way radio
https://www.rsm.govt.nz/about/publications/gazette-notices/prohibited-products-and-equipment-gazette-notices/#bookmark1

Radio Spectrum Management
https://www.rsm.govt.nz/

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Hurdy Gurdy Museum of Vintage Radio

Tuesday 4th August 2020

The Hurdy Gurdy Museum of Vintage Radio was set up in the Martello Tower at Abbey Street in Howth, Co. Dublin by the late Pat Herbert in 2003.

Pat started his wonderful collection in London in the 1950s and continued until his death on June 18th 2020. An amateur radio station EI0MAR was set up in the tower, facilitated by Tony EI5EM. We are delighted to announce that the great work will be continued by Pats son Simon.

The museum is currently closed due to Covid-19 but will reopen as soon as possible. You can contact the museum by email at hgmovr at gmail.com or by phone on 086-3818865. You can visit the website at 
https://sites.google.com/site/hurdygurdymuseum/home

IRTS

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Why hobby electronics is a great thing to take up

Monday 3rd August 2020

The Deccan Herald reports nothing is more satisfying than using a piece of electronic equipment built at home

The newspaper says:

Using a piece of equipment that you have built with your own hands is thrilling and I certainly was thrilled. An additional advantage is that you can save money through the do-it-yourself route. If you take a pair of loudspeakers, a DIY job will save you at least two-thirds of the cost for something that is similar sounding as compared to buying readymade stuff.

Whether it is for the thrill of building equipment, repairing gadgets or saving a bit of money, hobby electronics is very rewarding. Yes, it requires a bit of learning in the beginning but once the electronics bug bites you, it becomes an addiction.


Read the full story at
https://www.deccanherald.com/specials/why-hobby-electronics-is-a-great-thing-to-take-up-868623.html

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Mid Ulster ARC Tuesday Night Lecture Series

Monday 3rd August 2020

This week the Mid Ulster ARC conitinues on Tuesday evening with Victor Mitchell Gi4 ONL on the topic of The History and Appreciation of Morse code.

As always everyone from anywhere is welcome, to get our zoom code please email Dave 2i0SJV on dcparkinson@icloud.com

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DXCC Country/Entity Report

Monday 3rd August 2020

According to the Amateur Radio Cluster Network for the week of Sunday, 26th/July, through Sunday, 2nd/August there were 197 countries active.

Countries available:

3A, 3B8, 3D2, 3DA, 3V, 3W, 4J, 4L, 4O, 4S, 4U1U, 4X, 5B, 5H, 5R, 5T, 5Z, 6Y, 7X, 8P, 8Q, 9A, 9G, 9H, 9J, 9K, 9L, 9M2, 9M6, 9N, 9Q, 9V, 9Y,

A2, A4, A6, A7, A9, AP, BV, BY, C3, C9, CE, CE0Y, CE9, CM, CN, CP, CT, CT3, CU, CX, D2, D4, DL, DU, E5/s, E7, EA, EA6, EA8, EA9, EI, EK, EL, ER, ES, ET, EU, EX, EZ, F, FG, FK, FM, FO, FR, FS, FY, G, GD, GI, GJ, GM, GU, GW, HA, HB, HB0, HC, HI, HK, HL, HP, HR, HS, HZ, I, IS, J3, J6, J7, JA, JT, 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, PZ, S0, S5, S7, SM, SP, SU, SV, SV5, SV9, T2, T5, T7, T8, TA, TF, TG, TI, TK, TR, TZ,

UA, UA2, UA9, UK, UN, UR, V3, V4, V5, V7, V8, VE, VK, VP2E, VP2M, VP8, VP9, VR, VU, XE, XW, YB, YI, YJ, YK, YL, YN, YO, YS, YU, YV, Z2, Z3, ZA, ZB, ZD7, ZF, ZL, ZL7, ZP, ZS


OPDX

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IOTA News from OPDX

Monday 3rd August 2020

Island activities:

IOTA NEWS. The following are IOTA operations that were active this past week between July 27th-August 1st (as per the DXCluster):

IOTA Callsign Island/GROUP Bands/Modes
------ ---------- ------------- ------------
AF-004 EA8DHA Canary 17m; SSB
AF-032 5H1FF ZANZIBAR 17m; FT8
AS-003 4S7JL/MM SRI LANKA 20m; SSB
AS-004 5B60AIX CYPRUS 20m; SSB
AS-005 D44PM Sao Tiago 20m; SSB
AS-007 JA9LX HONSHU 20m; Digi
AS-007 JE1NVD HONSHU 20m; Digi
AS-007 JF2DDR HONSHU 20m; Digi
AS-007 JF4VZT HONSHU 20m; Digi
AS-007 JG4AKL HONSHU 20m; Digi
AS-007 JH0NCG HONSHU 20m; Digi
AS-007 JO7KMB HONSHU 20m; Digi
AS-078 JA8IZP HOKKAIDO 20m; Digi
AS-141 BA5CJ/5 ZHEJIANG PROVINCE S 20m; FT8
EU-002 OH0Z ALAND 20m; CW
EU-004 EA6/EA3HSO BALEARIC 20m; CW
EU-005 G7CNF GREAT BRITAIN 15m; Digi
EU-005 GM5X Scotland 80/40/20/15m; SSB
EU-005 M3OVA GREAT BRITAIN 30m; Digi
EU-007 R1MJ/P BLASKET 20m; SSB
EU-014 TK/F4IDN CORSICA 40m; SSB
EU-021 TF5B ICELAND 15m; Digi
EU-025 IT9BGE SICILY 40m; SSB
EU-030 OZ8IE/P BORNHOLM 20m; SSB
EU-032 F1HOM/P POITOU-CHARENTES REGION 80/20m; SSB
EU-036 LB9RE OR-TRONDELAG/MOREOG ROMSDAL COUNTY N 17m; Digi
EU-042 DL0SY CHLESWIG-HOLSTEIN STATE NW 20m; SSB
EU-042 DL1DAW/P CHLESWIG-HOLSTEIN STATE NW 20m; CW
EU-048 F/LX1NO/P BRETAGNE 20/17/15m; CW/Digi
EU-051 IT9AGZ/IE9 USTICA 40m; SSB
EU-054 IF9/IT9PPG EGADI 20m; CW
EU-056 LA/DF9TM GODOYA 17m; SSB
EU-056 LA/DL2SWW GODOYA 30/20/17m; CW
EU-062 LA7GIA/P TJOTTA 30m; CW
EU-076 LA7GIA/P LOFOTEN 30m; CW
EU-079 LA/DF9TM MORE OG ROMSDAL COUNTY S 40/20m; SSB
EU-079 LA/DL2SWW MORE OG ROMSDAL COUNTY S 40/20/10m; CW
EU-096 OH3OJ/1 KAURISSALO 40/30/20/17m; CW
EU-113 SV8/DJ4EL Kythira 40/20/17m; SSB
EU-115 GI5NI IRELAND 40m; SSB
EU-115 MI0AIH IRELAND 20m; SSB
EU-115 MI7RPG IRELAND 20m; Digi
EU-116 GD1JNB ISLE OF MAN 40m; SSB
EU-117 R1MJ/P Gulf of Finland North 20m; SSB
EU-117 R1CBL/P Gulf of Finland North 20m; SSB
EU-132 SP/DL7DF ZCZECIN/KOSZALIN PROVINCE 40m; CW/SSB
EU-170 9A0FF DALMATIA NORTH 40m; CW
EU-170 9A3ST/P DALMATIA NORTH 40m; SSB
EU-170 9A8TQF Tramerka 20m; SSB
EU-175 CU3DX/P Azores 20m; CW/SSB
NA-015 CM6RK CUBA 40m; SSB
NA-021 8P6ET Barbados 20m; Digi
NA-096 HI7M Dominican Republic 17m; SSB
NA-101 J73WA Dominica 30m; Digi
NA-108 J69DS St. Lucia 17m; Digi
NA-178 K6VVK CALIFORNIA STATE CENTRE 20m; Digi
OC-001 VK2WJ AUSTRALIA 20m; Digi
OC-001 VK6MIT AUSTRALIA 20m; Digi
OC-013 E51JD RAROTONGA 20m; SSB
OC-016 3D2AG VITI LEVU AND VANUA LEVU 17m; Digi
OC-021 YB2HAF JAVA 20m; Digi
OC-022 YB9AY BALI 30m; Digi
OC-036 ZL1WN NORTH 20m; SSB
OC-048 DV3CEP LUZON 20m; Digi
OC-148 YD9MFD TIMOR 40m; Digi
SA-011 9Z4Y Trinidad and Tobago 20m; CW
SA-012 YV7PMG Isla Margarita 20m; SSB
SA-012 YV7WGA Isla Margarita 15m; Digi

** Thanks to the individuals who put the island/group and mode
on their QSNs on the PacketCluster reports....

AS-117. Kenji, JA4GXS, will once again be active as JA4GXS/4 from Kasado Island on August 22nd, between 0700-2200z. Activity will be on 40/20/17/15/6 meters using CW, SSB and FT8. QSL via his home callsign, direct or by the Bureau.

EU-041. Simone, IU4HRJ, will once again be active as IM0/IU4HRJ from Maddalena Island between August 4-10th. Activity will be on 40-2 meters using SSB and the Digital modes. Plans to pos- sibly activate some DCI/WCA reference numbers. QSL via his home callsign, direct or by the Bureau.

EU-052. Francesco, IK6QON, will be active as SV8/IK6QON from Corfu Island between August 9-20th. Activity will be holiday style on 40-6 meters using CW and SSB, with 100 watts into a multi- band vertical. QSL via IK6QON.

EU-076. By the time you read this, Ken, LA7GIA, should be finishing up his LA7GIA/P activity from Lofoten Island until August 3rd. Operations will be on 30 meters CW or possibly 20 meters.

EU-096. Tony, OH1TD, is currently active again from his summer QTH on Korpo Island until September. QSL via his home callsign, direct or via the Bureau.

EU-170. Didi, DL4DCW, will be active as 9A/DL4DCW from Vir Island, in the Dalmatia North Group, Croatia. Activity will be holiday style on various HF bands. QSL via his home callsign or eQSL.
 

PLEASE NOTE: Since the Webmasters of the new <www.iota-world.org> have decided NOT to post or dedicate a Web page to announce upcoming IOTA operations, PLEASE send your IOTA operations information to the OPDX, and we will post it here in an upcoming bulletin......

OPDX

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

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QSO Today Amateur Radio Podcast
Carole Perry - WB2MGP

Sunday 2nd August 2020

Carole Perry, WB2MGP, was my guest in episode 51, five years ago this week. Carole leads a Youth Forum at the major hamfests every year including Dayton and Huntsville.

This year because of the Covid-19 pandemic, she will lead it at the QSO Today Virtual Ham Expo. I thought to introduce Carole again before the Expo to put her and the Youth Forum into context. Be sure to visit Carole at the Radio Club of America booth in the Expo.

Listen to the podcast

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Ham College episode 67

Sunday 2nd August 2020

Extra Class Exam Questions Part 5
E1E Volunteer examiner program: definitions, qualifications, preparation and administration of exams, accreditation, question pools, documentation requirements.

57:40

Download

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FT8 experiment on 40 MHz - 1st to 15th August 2020

Sunday 2nd August 2020

Between the 1st and 15th of August 2020, LY2YR and S50B will be experimenting with the FT8 digital mode on the new 8-metre band.

Gintas, LY2YR in Lithuania will be transmitting on 40.220 MHz.
Borut, S50B in Slovenia will be transmitting on 40.680 MHz.

Both stations will mainly be active from 10:00 to 21:00 UTC and would welcome any reception reports.

More info...
https://ei7gl.blogspot.com/2020/08/ft8-experiment-on-40-mhz-1st-to-15th.html

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Monthly performance of 8J17CALL

Saturday 1st August 2020

Please be advised that monthly performance of 8J17CALL, 7-CALL 30th Anniversary Special station for June-July, 2020 (23rd June to 22nd July, 2020) are as follows;

Monthly result in this period is 2,527 QSOs including 184 DX QSOs.

Thank you for your calling us from all over the world!

Overall result from the beginning is 7,040 QSOs including 473 DX QSOs as of 22nd June, 2020.

7-CALL is Japanese callsign starting with 7" and it is a symbol of the golden age of Japanese amateur radio history.

There are only 17,583 7-CALL stations (just 6.81% of overall issued 7-CALLs) still exist as of the end of 2019.

Our club is going to promote 30th Anniversary of Japanese 7-CALL issuance with the special station until 22nd April, 2021.

The special station is also known as a brand new WPX.

More detail:

https://7-call.com/news20200731

About us:
7-call.com/en
(English and Chinese available)

Thank you for your attention to us!

8J17CALL / JS1YEY
7-CALL Amateur Radio Club
7-call.com

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Foundations of Amateur Radio

Saturday 1st August 2020

First Digital DX contact!

The other day day I managed my first DX contact using a new mode, FT8.
It wasn't very far away, all of 2600 km or so, but it evoked memories of my first ever on-air DX contact nearly a decade ago. I should say thank you to YD3YOG for my 15m contact, fitting because my first ever was also on 15m as I recall. Unfortunately I never did log my first.

Recently a friend asked me how the two compared.

15m and logging aside, there's a lot of similarities, even though I'm a more experienced operator today when compared to when I made my first ever contact.

The preparation and the building anticipation is what made the contact all the sweeter.

A while ago I managed to connect the audio of my radio to a computer. This is pretty much the first step in starting to use digital modes. Essentially many common digital modes use an SSB transmission to generate and receive audio that in turn contains digitally encoded information.

There are hundreds of modes like this, from PSK31 to RTTY, WSPR, FT8, SSTV and many more. If you've not yet dabbled in this area, I'd recommend starting with WSJT-X. The software is so far the best tool I've found to make sure that your digital levels are correct and offers several popular modes to see how your station is operating. If you're asking for a first mode recommendation, I'd start with WSPR. Just do the receive part first, then work on from there.

There are many tutorials available, some better than others, so if the one you find doesn't float your boat, keep looking. A fly-over view is that there are several things that you need to get working and if they don't all work together, you'll get no result.

Obviously you'll need to install the software, but that's not the whole story. For the software to be able to control your radio, change bands, frequency and set-up things like split operation, you'll need to set-up the hardware to do this, in my case a CAT cable between the radio and the computer. You'll also need to set-up control software that knows how to talk to the hardware. In my case that's Hamlib on Linux, but it could be Hamlib or flrig on MacOS or something like OmniRig on your Windows machine.

The purpose is to control the radio. When you're troubleshooting, keep that in mind, hardware plus software need to work together to control the radio and this is before you actually do anything useful with the radio.

Then you need to have both hardware and software to have audio go between the computer and the radio. In my case the headphone and microphone connectors on my computer are connected to the data port on the back of the radio. If your computer doesn't have access to sockets you might need to use a USB sound-card. If your radio doesn't have an easily accessible port, you might need to have an interface.

The computer software in this case is likely setting the volume levels using the audio mixer in your operating system.

I will add that some radios have a USB socket on the back that combines both CAT control and audio. The principle though is the same. You need to make the CAT interface work, which is essentially a serial connection, and you need to make the audio work, which is essentially a sound-card.

Nothing else will make sense until you've managed to make those two work.

Then, and only then, can you try to launch something like WSJT-X, point it at the various things you've configured, then you can actually start decoding signals.

For WSJT-X to work properly, there's one more thing. An accurate clock is required. Likely you'll need to use a piece of software that knows how to synchronise with something called NTP or Network Time Protocol. The simplest is to point your clock tool at a time-server called pool.ntp.org which will get you global time coverage. Each operating system does this differently, but getting it right is essential before WSJT-X will actually make sense. You can visit time.is in a web browser to see how accurate your clock currently is.

So, get computer control of your radio working, get audio working, set the clock, then you can run WSPR, FT8, JT65 or any other mode.

I will note that I'm not attempting to give you specific computer support here, just an overview of what's needed before anything will work.

If you've been contesting then CAT control might already be operational. If you've been using a computer voice-keyer, then audio might also be ready. Depending on where you are on your digital journey, these steps might be complicated or trivial.

Once you've done all that you can start doing things like figuring out where satellites are or how to talk to the International Space Station, or use Fldigi to make a PSK31 contact or send a picture using SSTV or decode a weather fax.

When you've made that first digital DX contact, I'm sure that you too will have a sense of accomplishment!

I'm Onno VK6FLAB

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The Solar Minimum Superstorm of 1903

Friday 31st July 2020

Don't let Solar Minimum fool you. Superstorms are possible even during the "quiet" phase of the solar cycle.

A new study just published in the Astrophysical Journal Letters looks back to October 1903. Solar activity was at a low point eerily similar to now when one of the biggest storms in modern history erupted.

Get the full story at Spaceweather.com.

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The Space Weather Woman

Friday 31st July 2020

The latest space weather forecast from Dr Tamitha Skov WX6SWW

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

Friday 31st July 2020

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

UGANDA, 5X. Shabu, M0KRI is QRV as 5X1RI until mid August. QSL to home call.

FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF GERMANY, DA. Members of the German section of the International Police Association are QRV with special event station DL70IPA to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the organization. Activity is Sundays and Thursdays during August and September on 40 and 80 meters, respectively. They may be active on 20 meters depending on conditions. QSL via bureau.

FRANCE, F. Members of radio club F4KKE at Saint-Martin-des-Besaces in Normandy are QRV with special callsign TM11AD until August 3 to commemorate the role played by the British 11th Armored Division during Operation Bluecoat in July and August 1944. Activity is on the HF bands using CW, SSB and various digital modes. QSL via F4KKE.

ENGLAND, G. Special event stations GB75PEACE, GB1945PE and GB1945PJ will be QRV during August to mark the end of World War II in the Pacific. QSL via LoTW.

HUNGARY, HA. Members of the Hungarian FIRAC are QRV with special event call sign HA70MAV from Budapest until December 1 to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Hungarian Railway. Activity is on various HF bands. QSL via LoTW.

ITALY, I. Simone, IU4HRJ will be QRV as IM0/IU4HRJ from Maddalena Island, IOTA EU-041, from August 4 to 10. Activity will be on the HF bands using SSB and various digital modes. QSL to home call.

FINLAND, OH. Jukka, OH3OJ is QRV as OH3OJ/1 from Kaurissalo Island, IOTA EU-096, until August 5. Activity is on 80 to 6 meters using CW, some SSB, and FT8. QSL to home call.

ARUBA, P4. Thomas, KM4VI will be QRV as P4/KM4VI from August 2 to 7. Activity will be on the HF bands using SSB and QRP power. QSL direct to home call.

NETHERLANDS, PA. Special event station PI75VERON is QRV until the end of 2020 to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Dutch National Club VERON. QSL via PA1AW.

MEXICO, XE. Special event station 4A2MAX is QRV during August to honor the memory of Maximilian Kolbe. Activity will be on the HF bands using CW, SSB and various digital modes. QSL via LoTW.

VIET NAM, XV. Jesus, WP4JBG is QRV as XV9G from Ho Chi Minh City. Activity is on the HF bands. QSL via operator's instructions.

LAOS, XW. Mike, XW2DX is QRV as XW2DX from Vientiane and is here for the next five years. Activity is on 20, 15 and 10 meters. QSL via RM0L.

THIS WEEKEND ON THE RADIO. The ARRL 222 MHz and Up Distance Contest, North American CW QSO Party, QRP 20-Meter CW Fox Hunt, NCCC RTTY Sprint, NCCC CW Sprint, Batavia FT8 Contest, 10-10 International Summer SSB Contest, European HF Championship, WAB 144 MHz Low Power Phone, RTTYOPS Weekend Sprint and SARL HF Phone Contest will certainly keep contesters busy this upcoming weekend.

The RTTYOPS Weeksprint, ARS Spartan CW Sprint and Worldwide Sideband Activity Contest are scheduled for August 4.

The VHF-UHF FT8 Activity Contest, CWops Mini-CWT Test and Phone Fray are scheduled for August 5.

Please see July 2020 QST, page 74, and the ARRL Contest Calendar and WA7BNM contest web sites for details

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ISWL callsigns for August 2020

Wednesday 29th July 2020

The following International Short Wave League (ISWL) club callsigns will be used throughout the month of August 2020:

GX4BJC/A & GX4BJC/P - Operated /A from Great Sutton, in Cheshire, by Geof, M0BAU (WAB Square - SJ37 - England, IOTA EU-005, WLOTA 1841).
Geof will give his /P WAB square if requested.

MN1SWL/A - Operated /A, from Belfast, in Northern Ireland, by Alan, GI0VWU (WAB Square - J36 - N. Ireland, IOTA EU-115, WLOTA 1439).

ALL QSLs will be handled by Dick, M5DIK - The QSL Manager and NOT the individual operator

The I.S.W.L. is a member of the European PSK Club. All QSL info is on www.iswl.org.uk or www.qrzcq.com or www.qrz.com or via www.eQSL.cc.

NO LoTW

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Wednesday 29th July 2020

Island activities:
Compiled by Andreas, DK5ON

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

EU-038; PA, Noord Holland/ Friesland/ Groningen Province group:
Jan/PA2JJB continues to operate as PA6TXL from Texel Island until the 9th of August. QSL via homecall.

EU-041; I*0, Maddalena Archipelago: Simone/IU4HRJ pays Maddalena Island (IIA M-001) a visit from Aug. 4 to 10 and signs IM0/IU4HRJ on SSB and digital modes. QSL via IU4HRJ (d/B).

U-096; OH1, Lansi-Suomi (Turku) Province group: Jukka/OH3OJ activates Kaurissalo Island Island between July 30 and Aug. 5 as OH3OJ/1. QSL via homecall (d/B), LoTW, eQSL, ClubLog.

SA-036; P4, Aruba: Thomas/KM4VI will be operating as P4/KM4VI between Aug. 2 and 7. QRV on HF (SSB) with a QRP rig. QSL via KM4VI (d), LoTW.

Deutscher Amateur Radio Club
e-mail: iota@dxhf.darc.de

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News bulletin from OPDX

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The Space Weather Woman

Wednesday 29th July 2020

The latest space weather forecast from Dr Tamitha Skov WX6SWW

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IOTA News from OPDX

Sunday 26th July 2020

Island activities:

OTA NEWS. The following are IOTA operations that were active this past week between July 19-23rd (as per the DXCluster):

IOTA Callsign Island/GROUP Bands/Modes
------ ---------- ------------- ------------
AF-049 3B8CW Mauritius 20m; Digi
AF-057 5R8UI Nosy Be 20m; RTTY
AS-002 A91FTDMC Bahrain 15m; Digi
AS-007 JA7OYF Honshu 20m; Digi
AS-007 JH4ALY Honshu 20m; Digi
AS-007 JH9CEN Honshu 20m; Digi
AS-020 BV7FO Taiwan 20m; Digi
AS-053 HS0ZNV Malay Peninsula 20m; CW
AS-078 JA8KSF Hokkaido 20m; Digi
AS-047 JS6TWW Daito 17/15m; Digi/FT8
EU-001 SV5AZK Dodecanese 15m; Digi
EU-002 OH0Z Aland 20m; FT8
EU-004 EA6/EA3HSO Balearic 20m; SSB
EU-005 M3FON Great Britain 20m; FT8
EU-005 MX0SNB Great Britain 40m; SSB
EU-018 OY1CT Faroe 17m; Digi
EU-024 IS0/DL8JJ/M Sardinia 40/20m; CW
EU-025 IT9/HB9EKH Sicily 20m; SSB
EU-025 IT9BGE Sicily 20m; SSB
EU-030 OZ30EU Bornholm 20m; SSB
EU-042 DK8OL Schleswig-Holstein NW 20m; SSB
EU-042 DL1DAW/P Schleswig-Holstein NW 20m; CW
EU-042 DL6BEN Schleswig-Holstein NW 17m; Digi
EU-046 LA6KOA Rolla 17/10m; SSB
EU-054 IF9A Egadi 20/15m; CW
EU-096 OH1NJN LansiSuomi 20m; Digi
EU-115 MI0AIH Northern Ireland 20m; SSB
EU-132 SQ6NEJ Wolin 40m; SSB
EU-146 PH2A/P Zuid Holland 20m; SSB
EU-170 9A0FF Dalmatia North 40m; CW
EU-172 OZ/DB4ST Samso 80/40/20/17m; SSB
EU-174 SV7RIB/8 Samothraki 40m; SSB
EU-177 7S5A Sodermanland/Ostergotland 30/20m; CW
EU-185 R6AF/P Krasnodarskiy Kray 40/20/17m; CW
NA-015 CO3LT Cuba 40m; Digi
NA-015 CO8RRM Cuba 20m; CW
NA-015 CM2RSV Cuba 40m; Digi
NA-026 WB2SMK NY State 20m; SSB
NA-052 K0AP/4 Marco 20m; CW
NA-083 W4BKR VA State 20m; SSB
NA-249 KP4SX Vieques 17m; FT8
OC-032 FK8IK New Caldonia 20m; CW
OC-036 ZL3IO NZ North 40m; Digi
OC-150 8C52I Tenggara Barat 17m; Digi
SA-002 VP8LP Falkland 20m; SSB
SA-006 PJ4KY Bonaire 20m; SSB
SA-018 CE7VPQ Los Lagos 20m; SSB

** Thanks to the individuals who put the island/group and mode
on their QSNs on the PacketCluster reports....

AS-150. Bao, BH4LLP, will be active as BI4IX from Zhucha Island during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as a Mixed-Mode entry.  QSL via BH4LLP.

EU-132. Kuba, SQ6NEJ, is now active from Wolin Island until July 27th. QSL via SQ6NEJ.

EU-136. Kordic, 9A4KJ, will once again be active as 9A4KJ from Rab Island (CI-096, WW Loc. JN74JS) during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as a Single-Op/Mixed-Mode/12-HRs/Fixed/Low- Power entry. QSL via 9A2KJ or by the Bureau.

EU-146. Ivan, ON4IBM, who was expected to be active as PA/ON4IBM from Schouwen Duiveland during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th), has canceled his operation due to the new COVID-19 virus break-out and authorities guidelines.

EU-177. Waldi, SP7IDX, will be active as SM/SP7IDX from Stora Alo-Boko Island [Oostergotland County](depending on COVID-19 situation) between October 10-17th. Activity will be on 40/10 meters using SSB and FT8. QSL via LoTW or direct.

EU-185. Victor, R6AF, is once again active as R6AF/P from Sudzhuk Island until July 28th. Activity will be on various HF bands using CW, and he will probably be in the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as a Single-Op/All-Band/DXpedition entry. QSL via his home callsign.

NA-026. Mike, N2GC, will be active from Long Island, NY, during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as a Single-Op/CW-Mode entry. QSL via his home callsign.

NA-031. Bill, W1WBB, will be active as AI1TT from Aquidneck Island, Rhode Island, during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as a Single-Op/Low-Power entry. QSL via ClubLog and LoTW only.

NA-036. Gabor, VE7JH, will be active from the VE7UF's contest station on Vancouver Island during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as a Single-Op/All-Band entry. QSL via VE7JH.

NA-046. Howard "Howie", K1VSJ, will once again be active from Martha's Vineyard during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as a Single-Op/Mixed-Mode/Low-Power entry. QSL via his home call-sign, direct or by the Bureau.

NA-054. Dragan, K0AP, will be active as K0AP/4 from Marco Island during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as time and pro- pagation allows. He is currently on a family holiday and will be active as much as possible. He suggests to look for him on 20 meters only between 1200-1400z and 2200-0200z using CW, SSB and FT8. There may be a side trip to NA-069. QSL via his home callsign, direct, by the Bureau, ClubLog, eQSL or LoTW.

NA-110. Steve, AA4V, will be active from Isle of Palms, South Carolina, during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as a Single-Op entry. QSL via AA4V.

OC-021. Asep, YD1JQM, will be active from Java Island during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as a Single-Op entry. QSL via LoTW.

OC-022. Operators Adhi (Bimbo)/YB3MM and I Made/YC9DE will be active as YB3MM/9 (July 22-29th) and YC9DE/P (23-26th) from Nusa Ceningan Island (near Nusa Lembongan). Activity will be mainly on 40/20/15 meters using CW, SSB and FT8. QSL YB3MM/9 via Club-Log's OQRS, direct or via Manager IZ8CCW. Bureau is OK, but it will take more than 3 years. QSL YC9DE/P via direct or via YB3MM, eQSL, LoTW, QRZ or E-mail.

OC-034. Aerizal, YB9UA, will be active from New Guinea, Papua New Guinea, during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as a Single-Op/Assisted/24-Hrs/Low-Power entry. QSL via LoTW.

OC-139. (VK5KI KANGAROO ISLAND DXPEDITION WRAP UP) Grant, VK5GR, posted the following on July 23rd [edited]:

Folks -- Firstly thanks to everyone who managed to work us from Kangaroo Island last week. While propagation was challenging, and we were only able to operate part time (as it was also a family holiday) we still managed to put over 1200 contacts in the log. I was quite surprised and pleased at how many comments we received back along the lines of "Thanks for the ATNI". While one tends to think of islands in the 40%+ counted for IOTA range as being of low interest, it seems that the IOTA program is still alive and well, and presumably attracting new interest from people who do still need already activated IOTAs for their tally. Its fair to say it has inspired me to plan a return to Kangaroo Island again, perhaps in the next 2 years, rather than leaving it for 4 years since my last activation as VK5GR/P.

OQRS is open through my manager Charles, M0OXO. Full details can be found on my website: https://vk5gr-iota.net From a statistics perspective - this was a two man operation. We found the majority of openings on 30 and 40m, with less success on 20m (we presume due to the CME which hit on the first day of the trip coupled with it being mid winter here). We had over 84% unique contacts in the log and worked 80 DXCC for 41 hours on the air. We had two stations sharing verticals for 30 and 40m, a HexBeam for 20-10m and an inverted V for 80m -each capable of 400W. It's fair to say that my two favorite openings were the CW contacts on 30m on Wednesday night and CW on 40m on Saturday morning. About 50% of the total contacts were via FT8, 30% CW and 20% SSB. SSB was very hard as, despite our best efforts, international SSB to anywhere other than the US on 20m and a very small number of Europeans on 40m just didn't appear. Had 20m played ball at night or on Long Path in the afternoons we would have made more contacts I am sure - but the MUF struggled to climb above 12 MHz on several nights and the night it did get there we were asleep - mea culpa! Anyway thanks again everyone who made contact. I look forward to bringing you all another "not so rare" IOTA from VK hopefully in the next 6-9 months or so. (as the chance for anything inter- national is pretty much sunk until 2022 I fear). Regards, Grant VK5GR
Email: vk5gr.radio@gmail.com Website: https://vk5gr-iota.net/

OC-148. Musa, YD9MBM, will be active from Timor Island during the RSGB
IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as a Single-Op/Low-Power entry. QSL via LoTW.

ADDED NOTE ABOUT THE RSGB CONTEST (July 25-26th): Per the RSGB Contest Committee, the IOTA Contest this year is exclusively for Single-Operators using their home stations, and only "Single Operator Fixed Island" stations and "Single Operator Fixed World" stations will be eligible to enter. Full details of the IOTA Contest, including the rules, can be obtained from the RSGB at: https://www.rsgbcc.org/hf/rules/2020/riota.shtml

PLEASE NOTE: Since the Webmasters of the new <www.iota-world.org> have decided NOT to post or dedicate a Web page to announce upcoming IOTA operations, PLEASE send your IOTA operations information to the OPDX, and we will post it here in an upcoming bulletin......

OPDX

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

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DXCC Country/Entity Report

Sunday 26th July 2020

According to the Amateur Radio Cluster Network for the week of Sunday, 19th/July, through Friday, 25/July there were 186 countries active.

Countries available:

3A, 3B8, 3D2, 3V, 3W, 4J, 4L, 4O, 4S, 4U1U, 4X, 5B, 5R, 5T, 5Z, 6Y, 7X, 8P, 9A, 9G, 9H, 9J, 9K, 9M2, 9N, 9V, 9Y,

A2, A3, A4, A6, A7, A9, AP, BV, BY, C3, 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, EU, EX, EZ, F, FG, FK, FM, FO, FR, FS, G, GD, GI, GJ, GM, GU, GW, HA, HB, HB0, HC, HI, HK, HL, HP, HR, HS, HZ, I, IS, J6, J7, JA, JD/o, JT, 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, PZ, S2, S5, S7, SM, SP,
SV, SV5, SV9, T5, T7, T8, TA, TF, TG, TI, TK, TR, TY, TZ,

UA, UA2, UA9, UK, UN, UR, V3, V5, V7, V8, VE, VK, VP2E, VP8, VP9, VR, VU, XE, XU, XX9, YA, YB, YJ, YL, YN, YO, YS, YU, YV, Z2, Z3, ZA, ZB, ZD7, ZF, ZL, ZP, ZS
 

OPDX

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Foundations of Amateur

Saturday 25th July 2020

What do you talk about?

When was the last time you told anyone anything about your hobby? What about someone who isn't also an amateur?

Have you ever considered why there is a perception that our hobby is dying, why it's running out of people, why we struggle to get air-time in mainstream media, why attracting new members is hard and why there is a very narrow range of understanding about what our hobby is, what it does and how it's relevant in the world today?

I'm a radio amateur. So are you. You might not be licensed yet, but the fact that you're here right now indicates a willingness to understand and learn, to participate and question.

Those qualities are the fundamental building blocks that make up a radio amateur.

I'm also a self-employed computer consultant, a radio broadcaster, an interviewer, a software developer, a public speaker, a blogger, author, publisher and a partner. My friends include people who are process managers, astronomers, gynaecologists, mariners, tow truck drivers, communications technicians, volunteer fire-fighters, business owners, employees, retirees, fathers, mothers, old, young and everything in between. Radio Amateurs one and all.

When you sign up to be an amateur, you don't give up all the other things you are. You don't stop being a member of society, you just add in another box marked radio amateur and you get on with your life.

If you get into this hobby you begin to realise that it sneaks into everyday life all the time. You use it to figure out how something works, or explain why it doesn't, you use it to trace a circuit or to plug in your new surround sound system. You use it to encourage curiosity in your children and to talk to your grand-children. It's not an add-on, it's part of who you are.

That's always been the case, but the perception in the general public has not been like that, it's been based around the idea that being a radio amateur is being special, being separate, being knowledgeable, studied, licensed. The reality is that the world we live in is more connected than ever and the things we once did in isolation are now part of mainstream life.

There is a perception that amateur radio is dying. Articles describe how we need to attract more people, how we need to appeal to children, how we need to recruit, become sexy or relevant. There's discussion about what's broken in the hobby, how we need to fix it.

I think that none of those things are what's in need of investigation. I think it's us. You and I. I think we need to stop being shy about being a radio amateur, about what we do and why we enjoy it; what it means and how it works.

When you talk about your activities of the day, if you made a rare contact with Tuvalu, or managed to connect your computer to your radio, or made an antenna work, or climbed on a hill or learnt Morse Code, you need to share your victories and the excitement that they bring you.

As a society we're not shy about tweeting what we had for breakfast, sharing an interesting picture or discussing an article we saw on reddit. Fundamentally what you do and who you are is worth talking about and sharing.

So, next time you talk about going camping, or discuss a barbecue you had with friends, or relate to your friends something that happened, don't be shy about your amateur radio affiliation.

It's not a secret society, it's not weird or embarrassing, it's just part of what makes you who you are.

XXX

I'm Onno VK6FLAB

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Chain Home Radar - Battle of Britain Anniversary

Wednesday 22nd July 2020

August sees two GB80 Special Event Stations come on air marking the critical role that radar played in the Battle of Britain 80 years ago

In mid-August 1940 as events unfolded, the radar stations such as Ventor on the Isle of Wight bore the brunt of the initial wave, but stayed on air to play a vital role. Unlike its modern counterparts, the pioneering Chain Home Radar system operated over HF to VHF (~20-55 MHz).

GB80CH (Chain Home) will be operated from Chelmsford in Essex, which has the most complete surviving radar tower from the Battle of Britain. Originally located at Canewdon near the Essex coast, the 360ft tall Chain Home mast was moved to what was Marconi Research Centre in the 1950s (now BAE Systems) in Great Baddow, where it has recently been given listed status. In recent times, it has supported amateur experiments on 160m and 472kHz. The BAE Systems Great Baddow Amateur Radio Club, with amateur colleagues in local clubs, will be operating across the HF+6m bands.

GB80BRS will be operated to commemorate Bawdsey Radar Station in Suffolk, which was where radar was developed in the late 1930s and was the location of the worlds first operational radar station. This will be the latest SES following several previous commemorations including in 2015 when the 80th anniversary of the first demonstration of working radar was made in the UK.  Operation will be on 10m to 80m bands, SSB, CW and FT8.

Electronic QSL only.

Great Baddow Amateur Radio Club MX5BAE
http://www.mx5bae.org.uk/
https://twitter.com/MX5BAE

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EKCO founder honoured

Wednesday 22nd July 2020

A new statue in Southend-on-sea, Essex, honours Eric Kirkham Cole, founder of the radio and electronics company EKCO

The Clacton and Frinton Gazette reports :  

"At its peak, the company employed more than 8,000 people in Essex and played a key role with the Ministry of War to help end the Second World War.

Ekco started as a radio manufacturing firm in 1922 but quickly grew to be an international brand, manufacturing the must-have electronics and gadgets of the time.

Eric was at the helm until the company was bought out by Pye in 1967."


Read the full story at
https://www.clactonandfrintongazette.co.uk/news/south_essex_news/18592994.lasting-memorial-honours-true-southend-pioneer/

Wiki https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EKCO

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Intermediate Course -Free to all

Wednesday 22nd July 2020

My UK Intermediate Licence Course has taken off very well with now 629 students at time of writing.

This course is designed to be used with your own studies such as the intermediate licence manual and all material can be accessed 24 hours a day 7 days a week.This course is also free, as is my foundation and both are available at

https://gm6dx.thinkific.com/

As well as the course students can join the facebook UK Intermediate Amateur Radio Licence group where people share study material and ask questions from various sources.

Don't wait for a course to start, take advantage of the remote exams and sign up for immediate access now.

73 Billy GM6DX

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Tokyo Ham Fair cancelled

Tuesday 21st July 2020

The JARL has announced the largest amateur radio event in the world, the Tokyo Ham Fair, due to to held Oct 31 - Nov 1 has been cancelled due to Coronavirus

The Tokyo Ham Fair was first held in 1977 at Harumi Fairgrounds which was located in Harumi, Tokyo, and has been held annually ever since. In 1996, the venue was changed to Tokyo Big Sight, which is located in Ariake, Tokyo. From 1999 to 2001, the venue was Pacifico Yokohama, located in Yokohama, Kanagawa prefecture with the event returning to the Tokyo Big Sight in 2002.

In 2019, 42,000 people are reported to have visited the event which usually takes place in August. For 2020 it was planned for Oct 31-Nov 1 because of the expected Olympic and Paralympic Games during the summer.

A translation of the JARL announcement reads:

A meeting was held on July 16 to discuss whether or not to hold the "Amateur Radio Festival Ham Fair 2020", in light of the Coronavirus outbreak.

Even if measures were taken to ensure safety in accordance with the Government and Tokyo's infection prevention measures and the "Guidelines for Preventing New CoronaVirus Infection at Exhibitions, etc." published by the Tokyo Big Sight, it was difficult for visitors and exhibitors to prevent and ensure the safety of new coronavirus infections, and it was concluded that the Ham Fair should be canceled.

We are very sorry to announce that we have decided to cancel the Ham Fair 2020.

The timing of the next fiscal year will be postponed due to the postponement of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, but we will inform you as soon as the schedule and venue are decided.

Thank you for your continued cooperation.

Japan Amateur Radio Federation
Chair Yoshinori Takao JG1KTC


JARL Announcement
https://www.jarl.org/Japanese/1_Tanoshimo/1-3_Ham-Fair/2020/Ham-Fair_c.htm

2019 FB News Tokyo Ham Fair
https://www.fbnews.jp/201911/ww04/

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WWII RAF veteran GW3EJR celebrates 100th birthday

Tuesday 21st July 2020

The Tivyside Advertiser reports John Armstrong GW3EJR celebrated his 100th birthday on Saturday, July 18, 2020

A Cumbrian by birth, John spent his childhood growing up in the idyllic setting on the edge of Lake Ullswater, with his parents, an older sister and a younger sister.

From the age of five he would walk the one-and-a-half miles to school wearing clogs on his feet. They lived a simple country life with Johns father growing a very productive vegetable garden and they kept chickens which meant they were fairly self-sufficient, and often ate rabbit and game they had caught.

John has had an amateur radio licence since 1948. He taught himself the Spanish language which he perfected over time when talking to his many friends in Spain and over the air.

Read the full story at
https://www.tivyside
advertiser.co.uk/news/18586091.cardigan-world-war-two-raf-veteran-celebrates-100th-birthday/

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Derick Browne G4XKF SK

Tuesday 21st July 2020

Brighton's newspaper The Argus pays tribute to radio amateur Derick Browne G4XKF who passed away on May 2, 2020, aged 85  

Derick Browne could always be found tinkering with his ham radio or TV long after he closed his electronics shop in 1991, writes Sam Brooke.

Granddaughter Laura Roberts remembers him talking about how he called every country in the world from his Portslade home.

Once, he holidayed with friends in South Africa he had first met via radio.

In 1983 he even managed to get through to the Space Shuttle Columbia on its mission to carry the first space laboratory into orbit. Astronaut Owen Garriott later sent him a calling card.

Read the full story at
https://www.theargus.co.uk/news/18585339.tributes-hove-radio-lover-contacted-space-shuttle/

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Mid Ulster ARC Tuesday Night Lecture Series

Tuesday 21st July 2020

The next Mid Ulster ARC Tuesday Night Lecture happens this Tuesday evening at 7:00pm via the platform zoom.

This weeks topic is delivered by John M0JAV around the topic of shack interference and VDSL issues.

Everyone is welcome to join us and for further info and the zoom details contact Dave 2i0SJV on dcparkinson@icloud.com

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Online talk: Vector Network Analysers and 3rd Order IMD

Tuesday 21st July 2020

Alan Wolke W2AEW will be giving the online talk organised by the Denby Dale Amateur Radio Society on Wednesday, July 22, at 7:30pm (1830 GMT)

Alan is an RF Field engineer for Tektronix. He produces an extensive number of videos on his You Tube channel particularly on tests and measurements.

Alan's two part talk to Denby Dale is on Vector Network Analysers and 3rd Order IMD (intermodulation distortion) in radio receivers. Alan's videos give excellent technical talks presented in a way as to make difficult subjects easy to understand.

If the Zoom meeting is over subscribed DDARS will stream it live on their YouTube channel for any who are unable to join the Zoom meeting.

The Zoom meeting ID is 278 609 9353
https://zoom.us/j/2786099353

For further information see
http://www.ddars.net/

Recordings of earlier Denby Dale online talks can be seen at
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCq9nFTkJJAjO
dPZVytoPOcg

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AmateurLogic 145: Saturday In The Park

Sunday 19th July 2020

Weve got Summertime outdoor Ham Radio fun. Emile and friends at the W5SLA club do Field Day from a new location. Tommys unconventional Field Day.
Join George, Tommy, and Ray for Saturday in the park with a great group of new portable antennas. Mike introduces the Grove Beginner Kit for Arduino. At this low price, even Emile is impressed.

1:14:58

Download

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RASA make QTC magazine directly available as a PDF

Sunday 19th July 2020

In response to requests from their readers the Radio Amateur Society of Australia have made their popular magazine QTC directly available as a free downloadable PDF

Following the RASA's recent change to a new online distribution system it was only possible for readers to download a somewhat lower quality PDF by using a "Print to PDF" feature.

Readers asked if a separate PDF file could still be available and the RASA speedily responded to the request.

Among the articles in the latest issue are:
Getting started with QRM Guru
Getting started in HF DX
A simple 40 metre Vertical
The Origin and Attributes of Radioteletype

You can download the QTC PDF from
https://vkradioamateurs.org/qtc-e-magazine/

RASA have also available a PDF of the Welcome to Amateur Radio guidebook that provides an introduction to our hobby for newly licenced Foundation amateurs. Download a copy from
https://vkradioamateurs.org/welcome-to-ar-guidebook-for-newcomers/

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Court ruling following alleged interference to internet VDSL

Sunday 19th July 2020

A ruling was handed down in the Reykjavk District Court on July 8, in the case of Bjarni Sverrisson, TF3GB, against the Icelandic state; Case no. E-7441/2019

A translation of the post by Iceland's national amateur radio society the IRA reads:

The case was heard in parliament on December 19, 2019 but was taken to court on June 10 after the main hearing. Outcome: The case was dismissed without a claim.

The IRA's board of directors and the EMC committee will study the ruling which is at
https://www.heradsdomstolar.is/domar/domur/?id=56216ad9-d72d-4e7e-b34e-88e680831264

The discussion of this issue is pointed out in the RA Annual Report 2019/20, chapter 9.a on p. 97. Furthermore, the minutes of the Board of Directors (in the same report). Board meetings no. 4 / 2019-20 p. 141; no. 6 / 2019-20 p. 145 and no. 7 / 2019-20 p. 149, see
http://www.ira.is/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/15022020-%C3%81rssk%C3%BDrsla-2019-20-pdf.pdf

Judgment of the court:

"From the above, it is clear that the plaintiff's neighbors' complaint became the reason for the Post and Telecom Administration to consider whether the plaintiff's broadcasts cause harmful interruptions to electronic communications at the neighbor's home within the meaning of the first paragraph. Article 64 Act no. 81/2003, on electronic communications, and whether there was a reason for the Agency to intervene for that reason on the basis of its authorizations under the same Act.

It is also clear that the decision of the Post and Telecom Administration from October 29, 2019 is based on the fact that the plaintiff's broadcasts caused interruptions to telecommunications at the neighbor's home. It can therefore only be seen from the case file that the plaintiff's neighbor had significant, individual and legally protected interests in the resolution of the case at the administrative level.

In light of this, it is the conclusion of the court that the plaintiff had to give his neighbor the opportunity to defend himself in the court case before him. As this was not done, it is inevitable to dismiss the case from the court without a claim, cf. Paragraph 2 Article 18 Act no. 91/1991, on the handling of civil cases ".

Source IRA https://tinyurl.com/IcelandIRA

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Radio Revista magazine online for everyone

Sunday 19th July 2020

Italy's IARU member society ARI has announced its magazine Radio Revista is available free online for everyone to enjoy

A translation of the announcement reads:

Dear friends,

Health emergency, forced constraints and time to spend at best. To resist, with a constructive and proactive charge, to this surreal situation that displaced us, put us on the corner.

Live it to the fullest then, this time suddenly found. By planning, working, reading. Maybe even flipping through our Radio Magazine to stay on the air with good radio amateurs, even page after page. Or to discover a new passion, radiantism, that could one day, when we finally got out of this nightmare, conquer new followers and let them fully live what, just in circumstances like this, should be our exclusive, very particular ham spirit .

My due premise because, thanks to a decision shared by the entire National Board of Directors of the ARI, I am pleased to inform you that, starting from this number, we offer everyone, Members and non-Members, the opportunity to browse our Radio Magazine without using any credentials that oblige you to login and certify that you belong to our Association.

It is a small "community service" commitment that we are all proud to offer in ARI. An initiative also taken into consideration of the objective difficulties that our Post Offices are encountering and will encounter throughout the period of this emergency in delivering correspondence and therefore also our periodical and which will certainly continue until the emergency is really over. An online magazine entirely and quickly browsable with each device (thanks to our webmaster IK8LOV for his valuable collaboration) which does not mean and will not mean the replacement of the paper magazine which in any case constitutes a precious asset of our Association.

I wish you a good read and invite those who do not know us to enter our magical world!

Gabriele Villa, I2VGW

You can read the July/August issue of Radio Rivista online at
http://www.ari.it/en/radiorivista-online.html

Source ARI https://tinyurl.com/ItalyARI

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New video: Introducing the IC-705 QRP SDR transceiver

Saturday 18th July 2020

With the release of the much-anticipated IC-705 QRP SDR transceiver just around the corner, Icom UK have managed to get hold of a pre-production sample and give to Bob McCreadie G0FGX of TX Films to put it through its paces.  He produced a video with his thoughts and reactions.

In the video Bob

- Goes through a rundown of the IC-705s many features and picks up on how simple and intuitive the IC-705 is to use.
- Demonstrates the compact and lightweight body of the IC-705 and the flexibility of its power supply.
- Shows the multiband capability of the radioliterally a shack in a box.
- Highlights its impressive, bright and intuitive 4.3″ colour touch screen display as used on other Icom SDR radios like the market leading IC-7300 and IC-9700 models.
- Gives us a sneak peek of the LC-192 Backpack designed especially for this radio looks like.

View the video

For more details about the IC-705 visit the  IC-705 Product Page .

For more information about TX Films and their regular programme dedicated to the great hobby of Amateur Radio visit  http://www.txfactor.co.uk/

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Foundations of Amateur Radio

Saturday 18th July 2020

What's the point of this hobby?

One of the recurring questions in this hobby, technically outside this hobby, asked by people who've not yet, or have only just been bitten by the bug, is: "What's the point of this hobby?"

In some ways I too have asked this question, though for me the answer came within a few months of learning that amateur radio exists. In response to others asking this I've also made meagre attempts to answer this question with varying degrees of success and satisfaction.

The typical responses are things like: there's a thousand hobbies inside amateur radio, it's about the communication, about the camaraderie, about climbing and hiking, about technology, science, physics, electronics. The truth is that this is just a fly-over view of what it means to have this as your hobby.

It occurs to me, having now been licensed for a little while, I can actually express a little more clearly what this hobby has given me.

At a basic level, I now know what the front of a TV aerial is and how Wi-Fi is attenuated by walls, how line of sight works and why you can talk to the International Space Station with a hand-held radio. I've learnt about sunrise and sunset and how they affect propagation, the grey line and how the ionosphere is broken into layers that are affected by solar radiation. I've learnt about sunspots and how they change over time, that there are cycles, that there is a thing called the Maunder Minimum and that propagation is a fickle beast. I've learnt about the Ionospheric Prediction Service and about band planning in contests, about dealing with pile-ups and making contacts, about voice-keyers and computer controlled radios, about contesting software and logging, about contest scoring and contest rules.

I've learnt about gain and about loss, about how 75 Ohm coax differs from 50 Ohm coax, how connectors work, about soldering and crimping, how to use a crimper and what connectors to use with which coax. I've learnt about path-loss and about bouncing signals off the moon, about Sagittarius A*, a bright and very compact astronomical radio source at the centre of the Milky Way and about inclination and ascension, about galactic coordinates and observation windows, about programming in Python and the astropy library.

I've learnt about how radio signals are used to encode information, the seemingly infinite supply of digital modes and how a radio signal can be described in three dimensions. I've learnt how maths can describe amplitude modulation and how side-bands can be described, about signal to noise ratios and decibels.

I've experienced the joys of making a rare contact, to places like Amsterdam Island, Prince Edward & Marion Island, Heard Island, Micronesia, Cuba, Kiribati, and many more. I've learnt more about geography, about maidenhead locators, learnt new phrases and started learning new languages.

I've gone out camping more times than I can count, spent nights under the stars making contacts across the globe. I've set-up my station in parks and on peaks across the country, made life-long friends locally and abroad, tested my patience and my endurance.

I've learnt about the pioneers and inventors who came before me, about their successes and failures, their enduring legacies and their inventiveness. I've gained insight into Apollo radio communications and distance measuring, global positioning before there was GPS, about satellite dishes and radio during disasters, about emergency communications and temporary set-ups with just enough to get the job done.

I've written software, made charts, learnt how to use GNUPlot, written articles, recorded podcasts, interviewed amateurs, published books, produced, presented and transmitted amateur news broadcasts, built amateur radio websites, chaired meetings, raised funds, contributed to club committees and helped as I was able.

I've helped organise a national amateur radio conference, learnt how to teach others and created a weekly radio net for new and returning amateurs. I've acted as a point of contact, offered life advice and acted as a shoulder to cry on when the going got tough for some of my fellow amateurs.

I've built more, tested more, explored more, learnt more and done more in the past decade than I have in the 40 years before that.

When I look back over the 472 podcast episodes I've written so-far, that massive list is only just scratching the surface and it only just begins to describe how deeply affected I've been by this hobby. It only barely describes the width and depth of this hobby and I've only been here for a little while.

I must point out that I did all these things because I could, because I had radio amateur friends who prodded and poked, who helped and asked, who gave and received. My exposure over this decade was only possible because there are others who share my interests and stopped to take a moment to express that.

Next time you're asked about how amateur radio is relevant, how it relates to the world, how it affects you and your life, what it's given you, or what you can gain from it, consider, even just for a moment, just how much is possible within this massive hobby.

I'm Onno VK6FLAB

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Unauthorized transmissions in 144 MHz satellite allocation

Saturday 18th July 2020

The DARC reports unauthorized transmissions are taking place in the 144 MHz satellite segment of the 2m amateur radio primary allocation.

A translation of the DARC post reads:

In the 144.010 MHz to 144.020 MHz range, illegally operated transmitters are increasingly being operated as "water vitalizers" or "water energizers". The manufacturer specifies 144.015 MHz as the transmission frequency in its product description.

The DARC EMC department asks for further information with location information about conspicuous signals in this frequency range, in preparation for collective complaints.

The devices apparently generate fields with considerable field strength and a long range. The signals appear increasingly in the morning or in the evening. The illegal transmitters are typically in operation for 5 to 60 minutes (integer multiples of 5 minutes). The signal is generally very stable in frequency, but occasionally shows short-term fluctuations of up to a few 100 Hz. Otherwise the carrier is not further modulated.

The frequency range 144.000 MHz to 146.000 MHz is assigned to the amateur radio service in Germany as the primary exclusive user.

A video of the interference caused by these devices and a map showing some of the cases so far detected in Germany can be seen at
https://www.darc.de/der-club/referate/emv/

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Ofcom release responses to EMF consultation

Saturday 18th July 2020

Responses to the Ofcom consultation: Proposed measures to require compliance with international guidelines for limiting exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF) are now available

The RSGB response said:

"RSGB is deeply concerned on both regulatory and technical grounds with the burdensome and disproportionate approach taken by the Ofcom proposals"

"In their impact upon Amateur Radio,the current Ofcom proposals do not meet the statutory criteria for objective justification. Ofcom admits that it is not aware of any cases where the ICNIRP Guidelines have been breached [3, para 4.11]; RSGB is likewise not aware of any such cases involving Amateur Radio."

"The proposed changes would have a damaging effect upon Amateur Radio in the UK while delivering little or no improvement in terms of EMF Safety."

Read the responses at
https://www.ofcom.org.uk/consultations-and-statements/category-1/limiting-exposure-to-emf?showall=1

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High school marine buoy transmitter now active on 20m WSPR

Saturday 18th July 2020

Phil Karn KA9Q, Randy Standke KQ6RS and students at the Mount Carmel High School Amateur Radio Club have constructed and deployed an amateur radio marine buoy, callsign KQ6RS, transmitting 14.0956 MHz USB WSPR

In a post on the AMSAT Bulletin Board Phil Karn KA9Q says:

Over the past year, Randy, KQ6RS and I have mentored the MCHSARC in designing and constructing a simple marine buoy that was deployed from the R/V Sally Ride this morning about 700 km off the coast of southern California. It is up and transmitting WSPR on 20m using the callsign KQ6RS, and is being received all over the US and into Canada and Brazil.

The electronics is the 20m WSPR version of the WB8ELK "pico tracker" that has been flown quite a few times (including by us) on long duration balloons. We removed the solar panels and substituted 21 ordinary alkaline D-cells wired to supply 4.5V. We estimate battery lifetime will be 6 months.

The basic design was inspired by Bob, WB4APR, at the US Naval Academy. Physically, the buoy is just a 5' section of 4" PVC pipe, ballasted at one end to float vertically in the water. The top is closed by a sewer pressure test plug I found at Home Depot; it has a bolt in the center that acts as a convenient feed-through and mounting point for the antenna, a stainless steel CB whip with a matching network designed, tested and carefully tuned by Randy. We use the sea as a counterpoise, but to avoid direct metal/seawater contact we lined the inside of the pipe with copper tape to form a capacitive connection. We probably spent too much time on this; Randy even modeled the electrical fields in the seawater with a professional RF analysis package.

In our first flotation tests in Randy's swimming pool we found that the ballasted pipe, by itself, was remarkably stable in pitch, roll, sway and surge but oscillated a lot in heave (up and down). To damp this Randy added cross arms at the water line to add drag in the vertical direction.
(It wasn't our intent to mimic a religious icon but that's where the physics went.) Tuning the antenna required sea water, so Randy did it from a dock on Mission Bay here in San Diego.

We tried to make this thing as rugged as we could. (My favorite saying to the students was that the sea *always* wins in the end, but we can delay that long enough to be useful.) Everything inside is held in place with epoxy or polyurethane foam. Randy reinforced the sewer plug with a PVC end cap with a hole cut in the center. Although the antenna is stainless steel, Randy covered it with a type of heatshrink with a waterproofing compound inside. Activation was by removing an external magnet placed over a parallel pair of normally closed magnetic reed switches. (Using two instead of one was my idea.) We even argued how to guard against the crew forgetting to remove the magnet before deployment. Randy found some adhesive that would dissolve and let the magnet fall away; I suggested a big REMOVE BEFORE FLIGHT tag and a float that would pull it away if it was tossed into the water.

That left the problem of deployment. We couldn't just drop it close to the coast because it would quickly wash back up on the beach. We needed a boat ride. We were originally going on a NOAA vessel in April, but that trip was cancelled due to the pandemic. Randy secured a trip on the R/V Sally Ride, a research ship operated by Scripps Institute of Oceanography and home ported here in San Diego.

This map shows the "lawn mowing" pattern they follow to measure and sample sea water off southern California. We were deployed early on the morning of July 16 at the most southwestern point shown here:
https://calcofi.org/cruises/2020-cruises/calcofi-2007sr.html

First report was at 12:52:30 UTC, July 16, from 29 51.25N, 123 37.50W. That's grid square CL89eu, which I figure is pretty rare for grid hunters. The current carried us east into CL89fu at 20:32:30. This is a little surprising since we thought the currents in that area are to the southwest. But that's why you do science!

You can track us on aprs.fi here:
https://aprs.fi/#!call=a%2FKQ6RS-1&others=1&timerange=604800&tail=3600

We also show up on wsprnet.org
http://wsprnet.org/drupal/wsprnet/map

Because of the funky way Bill encodes position in WSPR (which was never designed for this), you'll see some weird-looking callsigns (like 0W7NFU) in addition to KQ6RS.

This was our first buoy, just to get our feet wet (ha ha). Now to think about what we want to put in our *second* buoy. Two-way links, satellite tracking, sensors, the works. But remember the "second system" effect...

73, Phil

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NAB offers tools for stations to celebrate 100 years of radio milestones

Saturday 18th July 2020

The National Association of Broadcasters is counting down the 100 days to the centennial anniversary of the first commercial radio broadcast, which took place on November 2, 1920.

As part of the online and on-air #Radio100 campaign, NAB released today the #Radio100 toolkit to help stations celebrate this incredible milestone.

The toolkit features a celebratory video, social media assets, scripts and other content for radio stations to use in advance of the anniversary. Listeners are encouraged to post their favorite radio memory on social media using #Radio100.

For a century, broadcast radio has been a free and local service keeping Americas communities informed, entertained and connected, said NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith. NAB is excited to lead thousands of local stations in a celebration of this historic milestone and to honor radios enduring legacy and bright future.

Starting on Sunday, July 26, NAB will count down the 100 days by highlighting a landmark moment in radios history each day. The moments will be featured on NABs social media channels on Twitter and Facebook, as well as WeAreBroadcasters.com/Radio100.

The first commercial radio broadcast took place on KDKA in Pittsburgh, Pa., on November 2, 1920 with the broadcast of the election results between Warren G. Harding and James M. Cox.

About NAB

The National Association of Broadcasters is the premier advocacy association for Americas broadcasters. NAB advances radio and television interests in legislative, regulatory and public affairs. Through advocacy, education and innovation, NAB enables broadcasters to best serve their communities, strengthen their businesses and seize new opportunities in the digital age. Learn more at www.nab.org.

https://www.webwire.com/ViewPressRel.asp?aId=261612

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Ofcom features Amateur Radio

Saturday 18th July 2020

Ofcom report Amateur Radio has helped keep thousands of people in the UK connected, and many have taken up the hobby during lockdown including ten-year-old William M7WHB

We caught up with William and his dad to find out what they've been up to on the air. Over.

Read the Ofcom story at
https://www.ofcom.org.uk/about-ofcom/latest/features-and-news/lockdown-boost-for-amateur-radio

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Radio amateurs help air-ambulance

Friday 17th July 2020

Peru's Radio Club Peruano (RCP) reports that Guillermo OA4DTU and the Peruvian Relief Chain on 7.100 MHz assisted an aircraft enroute to Easter Island after its satellite communication equipment failed

A translation reads:

On Thursday, July 9 an aircraft departing Santiago de Chile carrying out an air ambulance service to pick up a patient on Easter Island, lost communication more than 1,000 nautical miles from the continent with its control tower, so the pilot turned to the frequency of the Peruvian Relief Chain on 7100 kHz.

While the exercise of the Peruvian Relief Chain had ended a few minutes before, colleagues Guillermo OA4DTU, who was operating the Chain, and Giancarlo OA4DSN, were left in wheel, so the aircraft pilot was able to contact Guillermo.

In this way communication was established with the aircraft, who detailed its delicate situation, given an apparent failure in its satellite communication equipment, so requested support to communicate via telephone with Ocean Air Control, service of the Directorate General of Aeronautics of Chile that watches over that 32 million square kilometres airspace in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Chile.

This is how Oceanic Control takes the call of Guillermo, pointing out his surprise and relief for communication, since they were indeed in an alert situation due to the loss of contact with the aircraft and that the remote team HF of the Island Tower Easter was inoperative at the time, so communication was not possible for them.

About 10 phone calls were made with this service, pointing out the different positions and schedules of its route, plus some indications for pilots and air control respectively.

Other OA colleagues were attentive and ready to take action if necessary, accompanying Guillermo in contact and the aircraft until he knew it would reach its destination.

At approximately 23:30 (04:30 GMT), the aircraft reports that it has managed to make contact via VHF with the Easter Island control tower, confirming the descent and landing instructions on the island!!!

The joy and satisfaction of all who were in frequency was absolute even more since minutes after losing contact by HF the pilot communicated with Guillermo sending his greetings, thanks and a photograph of the aircraft perched on the Mataveri track, in where the minute it was raining and waiting for a patient to be moved to Santiago de Chile.

Finally, the accompaniment to the aircraft lasted nearly 3 hours, which was permanent from the first contact until its arrival at destination, with the thanks also from the Ocean Air Control Service to Guillermo and the Peruvian Socorro Chain.

This action reaffirms the role played by Radio amateurs in risk or emergency situations.


Congratulations Guillermo!
OA4O - RADIO CLUB PERUANO

Source RCP Facebook post at
https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=
4314923508548316&id=
108632835844092


Cadena Peruana de Socorro (Peruvian Relief Chain)
https://www.facebook.com/AsocCPS

Radio Club Peruano
https://tinyurl.com/Peru-RCP

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UK Online Intermediate training videos

Friday 17th July 2020

The Radio Society of Harrow has twelve training videos for the current Intermediate Syllabus (July 2020).

The videos can be found at

Introduction https://youtu.be/mfwXWeYBcUw
Licence regs https://youtu.be/ny2N3uydwLw
Tech Aspects https://youtu.be/84SfmaP9t
Receivers https://youtu.be/jO34S9JtXAE
Transmitters https://youtu.be/st2nqcrqD2g
Antennas https://youtu.be/Qe4aochTlQM
Propagation https://youtu.be/Otla2Kd-ASo
EMC https://youtu.be/n4TXDcKoXd4
Operating https://youtu.be/4kd4QbkMJJY
Safety https://youtu.be/bKqjDveiAnQ
Measurements https://youtu.be/0kzi3BkTKkI
Revision/Exam
https://youtu.be/af7eyhRuFmc

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High-end ham radio gives up its firmware secrets

Friday 17th July 2020

Dan Maloney KC1DJT writes on Hackaday that Afshin Salehi AG5OW and Travis Goodspeed KK4VCZ have dumped and partially decoded the Kenwood TH-D74As firmware

The radio, a tri-band handy talkie with capabilities miles beyond even the most complex of the cheap imports and with a price tag to match, had a serial port and JTAG connector. A JTAGulator allowed him to probe some of the secrets, but a full exploration required spending $140 on a spare PCB for the radio and some deft work removing the BGA-packaged Flash ROM and dumping its image to disk.

Read the Hackaday article and watch the video at
https://hackaday.com/2020/07/14/high-end-ham-radio-gives-up-its-firmware-secrets/

Twitter links
"Hash" AG5OW https://twitter.com/BitBangingBytes
Travis KK4VCZ https://twitter.com/travisgoodspeed

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A surprise visit from STEVE

Friday 17th July 2020

Comet photographers in Canada were surprised this week when the night sky filled with purple ribbons of light. It looked like auroras, but it was not.

Comet NEOWISE was photobombed by STEVE, a recently discovered glow caused by hot ribbons of gas in Earth's magnetic field.

Get the full story at Spaceweather.com

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ARRL Director asks: What's wrong with ham radio?

Friday 17th July 2020

When ARRL Director Ria Jairam N2RJ asked amateurs on Twitter to tell her what's wrong with amateur radio and how to fix it, she had many replies including a blog post from Razvan Fatu M0HZH 

Razvan highlights five areas:

Cost of entry & age
Attractiveness
Gatekeeping
Diversity
General public perception

Read his blog post at
https://qrpblog.com/2020/07/whats-wrong-with-ham-radio/

Ria Jairam N2RJ
https://twitter.com/RiaJairam/status/1283215578677870593

Razvan Fatu M0HZH
https://twitter.com/YO9IRF/status/1283391130315493376

An article in the IEEE Spectrum magazine looks at some of the issues facing amateur radio, see
https://spectrum.ieee.org/telecom/wireless/the-uncertain-future-of-ham-radio

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SpaceX to launch AMSAT-EA EASAT-2 and Hades satellites

Friday 17th July 2020

Spain's national amateur radio society URE says SpaceX expect to launch the EASAT-2 and Hades satellites in December 2020
Image: AMSAT-EA Hades PocketQube

AMSAT-EA
, the URE satellite group, is building the satellites together with the European University of Madrid. The launch that has been managed through the space broker Alba Orbital based in Glasgow.

EASAT-2 and Hades will be launched into a sun-synchronous orbit between 500 km and 600 km and their main function is to act as analog and digital repeaters for radio amateurs.

There is also a camera for SSTV transmissions provided by the Czech Republic, that has already flown on the United States Marine Academy PSAT-2 satellite, and has now been adapted to fit into the PocketQube satellites.

Both satellites are based on the PocketQube 1.5P (7.5 x 5 x 5 cm) architecture and represent an evolution of the previous GENESIS platform, whose GENESIS-L and GENESIS-N satellites are expected to fly before the end of the year with Firefly, in a joint collaboration with Fossa Systems and LibreSpace, which also launch their own satellites, all of them within the Picobus dispenser, developed by the latter.

IARU has coordinated these frequencies:
Hades - uplink 145.925 MHz, downlink 436.888 MHz 
EASAT-2 - uplink 145.875 MHz, downlink 436.666 MHz

IARU Satellite Frequency Coordination pages
http://www.amsat.org.uk/iaru/

Source URE
https://tinyurl.com/SpainURE

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Telecoms regulation in the Hull area

Friday 17th July 2020

Ofcom has today published a consultation on our proposals for regulating wholesale fixed telecoms markets in the Hull Area between April 2021 and March 2026. This sets outs how we plan to regulate KCOM during this period.

The Hull Area accounts for around 0.7% (c.200,000) of the UKs premises, and people here benefit from the availability of KCOMs full-fibre network. However, KCOM has a near monopoly at both the wholesale and retail level. 

We believe there is now a better prospect of competing providers entering the Hull Area, which ultimately should result in more retail choice and lower retail prices for customers. So we propose to focus our regulation on encouraging retail competition. This includes ensuring competitors continue to have access to KCOMs network on fair and reasonable terms, but also by making improvements to the existing wholesale access arrangements.

Todays consultation closes on 24 September 2020, and we intend to publish our decisions before the new regulation takes effect in April 2021.

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The Red River Bridge War

Friday 17th July 2020

The Grayson County Amateur Radio Club commemorates the Red River Bridge War of 1931, a boundary conflict between Oklahoma and Texas.

They will use the callsign W5I between July 18 and 26.

QSL via K5GCC (d/B), LoTW, eQSL

DXNL

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European SOTA Activity Day September 19th

Friday 17th July 2020

Summits On The Air is a programme designed to encourage amateur radio based activity from the summits of hills and mountains in countries around the world and to provide an award system for radio amateurs in all DXCC entities.

There are 389 listed summits in EI, ranging from little more than 150m in height to over 1,000 metres.

Full details of awards and a listing of all summits is available on www.sota.org.uk.
Details of current SOTA operations are listed on
sotawatch.sota.org.uk

A European SOTA Activity Day will be held on Saturday September 19th and will provide a great opportunity to get involved in the SOTA award scheme.

IRTS

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ILLW on track for 2020

Thursday 16th July 2020

Registrations for this years popular International Lighthouse Lightship Weekend, ILLW, have not been diminished by the global pandemic now known as Covid-19.

The dates for this years event have been moved to a week later than normal so as to keep 15th August clear for those wanting to commemorate the 75th anniversary of Victory in the Pacific.

With some 5 weeks to go to 22nd August, 222 entries have been received which, if past experience is any indicator, should result in around 400 by start time. No doubt most of the lockdowns and restrictions will still be in place so adherence to local rules and regulations must be observed.
Some cancellations are expected but the guidelines have been relaxed in some instances to enable participation to take place.

New to the event this year is Corsica at Phare dAlistro which for our purposes carries the French number of FR0030 (see photo). We also have two lighthouses from Ghana which is a new country as well. Buck Island Lighthouse in the US Virgin Islands is listed for the second year in succession being activated by KP2AD with the ILLW number VI0001.

Germany is well in the lead with 54 entries, followed by Australia with 29 entries and the USA with 27 entries. So far we have 30 countries listed which under the current circumstances is quite amazing.

A word of advice to some of the large DX groups that this event is a fun weekend designed to encourage exposure of amateur radio and lighthouses to the visiting public and also to enable portable stations to contact each other at lighthouses. Compiling a log full of brief contacts is not acceptable and not in the spirit of the event.

Please take care and observe your local Covid safe instructions during the event as we really want you all back next year. 22nd and 23rd August is the date for this year and 20th to 21st August next year.  
Happy lighthousing.

Kevin vk2ce

https://illw.net

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New amateur radio satellite guidance for Brazil

Thursday 16th July 2020

Brazil's National Telecommunications Agency (Anatel) has published a new webpage providing regulatory information for small amateur radio satellites

IARU Region 2 say:

According to Anatel, the reductions in the cost of manufacturing and launching small and non-geostationary satellites increased the national demand for this technology, requiring the creation of a guide to orient those interested in Brazil.

The Brazilian National Amateur Radio Association (LABRE) was consulted during the first phase of the guide development and received the support of its Space Communications (LABRE/AMSAT-BR) and Spectrum Defense and Management (LABRE/GDE) working groups.

LABRE stressed the need to respect the precepts and scopes of each telecommunication service as specified in ITU, reinforcing the principles of the Amateur Radio Service, as well as the need to observe regulations, practices and authorizations issued in Brazil, leveraging the educational satellite activities in a more integrated relationship with amateur radio.

According to Anatel: The exploration of satellites should be carried only in frequencies assigned to satellite services, as well as to services compatible to the applications which the builder wants to develop. In the case of small satellites (for example, cubesats), if placed in the amateur radio service bands, they must be used for own training, intercommunication and technical investigations carried out by amateur radio operators, not seeing any monetary or commercial objective. To meet this demand, Anatel created a manual that contains information and instructions to comply with regulatory procedures.

LABRE/AMSAT-BR has already collaborated with several Brazilian educational satellite projects like NanosatC-BR1 (INPE), AESP-14 (ITA), SERPENS-1 (UnB), Tancredo-1 (Tancredo Neves Municipal School, Ubatuba/SP), ITASAT- 1 (ITA), Floripasat-1 (UFSC) and NanosatC-BR2 (INPE). LABRE is also active in the working group of the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) focused on the Coordination of Satellite Frequencies.

Anatel's new website with forms and manuals is available at:
https://www.anatel.gov.br/setorregulado/pequenos-satelites

In English at
https://tinyurl.com/BrazilSatelliteRegs

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RASAs QTC magazine goes fully electronic

Thursday 16th July 2020

The Radio Amateur Society of Australia is pleased to announce a new, fully electronic edition of our QTC magazine.

This new format is best viewed on tablets or larger monitors. By using your browser, you get the magazine look and feel, embedded videos and dynamic hotlinks which allow you to click through to external web sites.

If you prefer, you can still create a PDF version. When you view the digital magazine, simply print a copy to a PDF file on your computer.

To access all our QTC magazines just follow this link:
www.qtcmag.com

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Evaluation of digital modes using the Teensy IONOS Simulator

Thursday 16th July 2020

Joe Speroni, AH0A, ARRL Pacific Section Manager, reports that the Winlink team has published an excellent digital modes comparison study, by Thomas Whiteside, N5TW

It shows steady improvements in performance as software algorithms evolve.
Speroni said "the addition of digital modes in our tool kit makes Amateur Radio more valuable to our served agencies." For example, "Winlink is a tool for personal communications, health and welfare traffic, and served agencies with varying need of digitally-formatted messages." Speroni said the study is well done and worth reading.

View the study here
https://winlink.org/sites/default/files/a-winlink-digital-mode-performance-
comparison-based-on-the-ionis-sim-hf-vhf-channel-simulator---july-5-2020-0.pdf

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Amateur radio operators send balloon around the globe

Thursday 16th July 2020

Peter Vogel VE7AFV writes in The B.C. Catholic about radio amateurs who build balloons carrying amateur radio transmitters and fly them around the world

He describes how Bill Brown WB8ELK and a small team of ham radio enthusiasts aimed to build and launch a radio-equipped balloon that might possibly circumnavigate the planet, broadcasting its location every 10 minutes or so.

On their 9th attempt the balloon, following the jet stream, moved across the Atlantic, Europe, the Middle East, northern India, China, Japan, and finally the Pacific.

Read the full article at
https://bccatholic.ca/voices/peter-vogel/amateur-radio-operators-send-balloon-around-the-globe

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Solar Cycle update

Thursday 16th July 2020

The solar cycle is in a strange place.

During the past two months we have seen the strongest solar flare in years and a profusion of new sunspots. Yet, at the same time, the sun is deeply quiet.

We make sense of it all on today's edition of Spaceweather.com

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Thursday 16th July 2020

Island activities:
Compiled by Andreas, DK5ON

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

EU-024; I*0, Sardinia Island & EU-165; I*0, Sardinia's Coastal Islands: Emil/DL8JJ pays Sardinia a visit from July 16 to 26, operating as IS0/DL8JJ/m. On July 18 he plans to activate Foradada Island (EU-165) on 40-10m on CW and SSB. QSL via DL8JJ (d/B).

EU-028; I*5, Toscana (Tuscany) Region group: Michele/IU2NKC signs
IA5/IU2NKC from Giglio between the 12th and 15th. QSL via IU2NKC (B), LoTW, eQSL.

EU-177; SM5, Sodermanland/ Ostergotland County group: Kjell/SM4DDS
activates Stora Aloe/Bokoe Island as 7S5A from the 19th to 24th.
QRV on 80-6m on CW, SSB, and FT8. QSL via ClubLog, SM4DDS (d/B),
LoTW.

NA-014; VE9, New Brunswick Province South group: Len/VE9MY and
Linda/VE9GLF will be signing their homecalls/p from Grand Manan
Island between July 12 and 18. QRV on 80, 40, 20, and 17m (SSB).
They also plan to activate six WWFF references. QSL via homecalls
(d/B).

NA-079; W4, Florida State (Dry Tortugas Islands) group:
The activation of Dry Tortugas Islands had to be postponed to December
2020.

https://hamradioadventures.com/upcoming-adventures/dry-tortugas-trip/

Deutscher Amateur Radio Club
e-mail: iota@dxhf.darc.de

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News bulletin from OPDX

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1240-1300 MHz discussed at CEPT SE 40 meeting

Wednesday 15th July 2020

The 69th meeting of CEPT ECC Working Group SE-40, held June 23-25, discussed the amateur radio 1240-1300 MHz band, the meeting documents are now available

Several contributions were received for the ECC Report dealing with the coexistence between the radionavigation-satellite service and the amateur service in the frequency band 1240 - 1300 MHz. The contributions were incorporated in the draft ECC Report. The CPG arrangements for the preparation of WRC-23 for AI 9.1 topic b) was noted.

The Russian Federation noted:
1240-1260 MHz is by the GLONASS system
1260-1300 MHz are used by EU's Galileo, Beijing's Beidou, Japan's QZSS and is planned to be used by Korea's KPS.

Among the documents available in Input, Info and Minutes are:
SE40(20)052 Amateur Repeaters - IARU-R1
SE40(20)051 Section 2 update WI_39 - IARU-R1
SE40(20)050 Annex Draft report RNSS Amateur - Russian Federation
SE40(20)049 Suggestions for RNSS and Amateur Service Compatibility - Russian Federation
Info 1 Amateur repeaters 23 cm - IARU-R1
Info 3 Letter to SE40 chairman on updated of ITU-R M.1092 - European Commission
Minutes
SE40(20)56A3 (1) Draft Report Amateur vs RNSS

Download the meeting documents from
https://www.cept.org/ecc/groups/ecc/wg-se/se-40/client/meeting-documents/?flid=27561

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OE SOTA Day 2020

Wednesday 15th July 2020

OE SOTA Day is a popular annual Summits on the Air event, organised by the Austrian SOTA Association. 

It traditionally includes lots of summits being activated in OE, both from Austrian hams and visiting amateurs, plus a social meet-up somewhere in the Austrian mountains.

In 2020, Covid-19 has significantly reduced the possibility of international travel for many, plus a social face-to-face gathering is much more difficult.  

OE SOTA Day will still take place on Saturday 19th September 2020, but without the social meeting.  Instead, the event is being widened to the whole European continent, and will be a festival of SOTA activations to mark the end of summer in Europe.

SOTA associations right across the continent are being encouraged to join in, and get as many activators out on summits as possible.  As such, there should be a great many opportunities for S2S (summit-to-summit) QSOs throughout the day.

It is further hoped that there will be SOTA activity in the Far East & Pacific in the early part of the day, and activations from the Americas into the afternoon and evening.  It should be a fantastic festival of SOTA, and hopefully encourage the first-time and occasional activators to be active, as well as the regular participants.

Obviously, the day should also offer a very good opportunity for chasers to amass a large number of points and unique summits worked!

For more information about the SOTA - Summits on the Air scheme, please visit http://www.sota.org.uk

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National Hamfest cancelled

Wednesday 15th July 2020

The UK National Hamfest planned for September 25-26 at the Newark Showground has been cancelled due to the Coronavirus outbreak

On July 14 the organisers Tweeted:

It is with much regret that we must announce the cancellation of the National Hamfest 2020 due to be held on Friday 25th and Saturday 26th September.

We have been closely monitoring the ever changing health landscape and emerging government guidance. In consideration of our primary responsibilities to the health and welfare of our volunteers, traders and visitors we have decided that this is the right decision.

The environment in which the event is held presents unique and very difficult challenges in protecting social distancing, preventing handling of equipment and controlling numbers in a confined area. It is our conclusion that we are unable to ensure the safety of attendees and our large team of traders and volunteer helpers.

We do appreciate the lost opportunities and financial impact to our participating Clubs, Traders and visitors resulting from the cancellation.

Arrangements are in hand for returning to the Newark Showground in September 2021 and we look forward to seeing you there.

The Directors of National Hamfest (Lincoln) Limited.

National Hamfest
http://www.nationalhamfest.org.uk/
https://twitter.com/N_Hamfest

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DATV in 2m band on August 22

Wednesday 15th July 2020

The Netherlands IARU member society VERON is encouraging radio amateurs to use DATV in the 2m band on August 22 to demonstrate the band is suitable for DATV

Date: Saturday, August 22, 2020
Time: 1200-1600 GMT
Frequency 144.600 MHz or 145.300 MHz
DVB-S or DVB-S2, Symbol rate 125k

VERON suggest https://dxspot.batc.org.uk/ is used for talkback/

Further details on the VERON site
https://tinyurl.com/NetherlandsVERON

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Transceiver performance for the HF-VHF-UHF operator

Wednesday 15th July 2020

The presentation on transceiver performance given by Rob Sherwood KC0B to the Sutton and Cheam Radio Society is available on YouTube

Rob explains how he tests the various radios, his full list of test results is available at
http://www.sherweng.com/table.html

Watch Rob Sherwood KC0B - Transceiver performance for the HF - VHF - UHF operator

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The Space Weather Woman

Wednesday 15th July 2020

The latest space weather forecast from Dr Tamitha Skov WX6SWW

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NASA to highlight Comet NEOWISE with public broadcast

Wednesday 15th July 2020

NASA experts will discuss and answer public questions about Comet C/2020 F3 NEOWISE during a broadcast of NASA Science Live and follow up media teleconference on Wednesday, July 15. The comet is visible with the naked-eye in the early morning sky and starting this week, after sunset.

The NASA Science Live episode will air live at 3 p.m. EDT Wednesday on NASA Television and the agency's website, along with Facebook Live, YouTube, Periscope, LinkedIn, Twitch, and USTREAM.

Viewers can submit questions on Twitter using the hashtag #AskNASA or by leaving a comment in the chat section of Facebook, Periscope, or YouTube.

NASA will follow the broadcast with a media teleconference at 4 p.m. Wednesday. The media teleconference audio will stream live at:
https://www.nasa.gov/live

The teleconference participants include:

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'Magic' of ham radio breaks doldrums of COVID-19

Wednesday 15th July 2020

The Gazette video The Magic of Radio looks at the Pikes Peak Radio Amateur Association

On the windswept prairie east of Colorado Springs, in a ramshackle trailer plastered with maps and codes associated with every sector of the world, strange sounds are coming from a radio.

Static mixes with R2-D2-like beeps and bops. Don DuBon has a microphone in one hand while the other twirls a dial, searching.

Alpha, foxtrot, zero, sierra, he says, speaking into the void. Alpha, foxtrot, zero, sierra...

Thats the call sign for the Pikes Peak Radio Amateur Association, the group of enthusiasts who make this trailer their base.

Read the full story and watch the video at
https://gazette.com/life/in-colorado-springs-and-beyond-magic-of-ham-radio-breaks-doldrums-of-covid-19/article_53c2c024-baea-11ea-9254-d379ab3d3d35.html
 

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Radio amateurs respond to flooding in Indonesia

Wednesday 15th July 2020

ORARI HQ and LAPAN (National Institute of Aeronautics and Space of Indonesia) has activated the amateur radio satellite IO-86 for emergency communications in Luwu, South Sulawesi

Dani YB2TJV reports:

There is currently an emergency post near the scene, which is coordinated by the Soroako Local ORARI and the East Luwu for emcomm.

Please keep clear on 7.110 MHz for emcomm

Read the report on the amateur radio response by the IARU national society ORARI at
https://tinyurl.com/IndonesiaORARI

Flash flood kills 15 in Indonesias South Sulawesi province
https://www.thestar.com/news/world/asia/2020/07/14/flash-flood-kills-15-in-indonesias-south-sulawesi-province.html

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Midway Island

Wednesday 15th July 2020

Ron, KH6DV, posted the following on July 9th, on QRZ.com:

We've all seen the latest pandemic news. It's not progressing in a good direction or anything like the earlier predictions. The U.S. now has 132,000 deaths and the forecast is for 200,00 by November.

We have encountered a strong and understandable push-back related to the original date of October 2020. Once there was possibility of moving the operation to the second half of February 2021, the conversation turned more positive. The application for the Special Use Permit for Midway has now been edited and now proposes a period of the second half of February 2021 and will be submitted this week.

Two things now need to happen:
1. We need more operator interest.
2. We need more donations to the expedition PayPal page. (KH6VV@outlook.com)

OPDX

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Irish Amateur Radio Examination Resource Pages and Blog

Tuesday 14th July 2020

A new resource for students studying for the HAREC examination has been launched on Facebook by Tony EI5EM and has been generating considerable interest

IRTS News says:

The page is called Irish Amateur Radio Examination Resource Pages and Blog and on the page Tony provides articles on different aspects of the examination syllabus plus sample questions. Students can submit queries on any topic and Tony invites amateurs to join him in helping students with their studies.

You contact Tony on the Facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/groups/724354188352083

or by email at tonyei5em /at/ gmail.com

Source IRTS https://www.irts.ie/cgi/thisweek.cgi

Unlike the 3-tier UK system, there is just a single 60 question multiple choice exam in Eire to get straight to the full 1 kW licence. On passing the exam the candidate gets a HAREC certificate which the UK regulator Ofcom recognises and will issue the holder with a UK Full M0 licence.

Each year a number of amateurs from the UK travel to Dublin to take the exam as this provides a faster route to getting Full.

The syllabus for the HAREC exam and sample paper is at
https://www.irts.ie/cgi/st.cgi?downloads

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Amateur radio satellite enthusiast makes newspaper front page

Tuesday 14th July 2020

The Waco Tribune-Herald newspaper featured an article on their front page about amateur radio satellite enthusiast Josh Ward W3ARD

The article features a picture of Josh's portable amateur satellite station and says:

Amateur satellite radio hobbyist Josh Ward scans the skies this past week from Lake Wacos Koehne Park, using passing satellites to make brief contact with other hobbyists thousands of miles away.

Participants log their locations on a global grid and share them through social media in what Ward calls "a giant game of Geek Bingo."

Ward, a Baylor University technology employee, has also launched miniature rockets into near space.

Source Waco Tribune-herald
https://twitter.com/W3ARDstroke5/status/1282643343
563010049/photo/1

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First Worked All ZS 2000 issued

Tuesday 14th July 2020

For the past 13 years, the Worked All ZS awards programme has been dominated by one individual.

Jan Botha, ZS4JAN was the second applicant for WAZS-500 in 2007.
Since then, he has been the first to reach every level from 600 to 1800, a level he reached last year.

SARL Awards Manager Tjerk Lammers, ZS1J has announced that Jan has recently applied for WAZS-2000. He submitted proof of contacts with 2000 different South African call signs. This total represents almost half of all licences issued in the country!

Apart from the WAZS-2000 on mixed modes, Jan has also applied for WAZS-1900 on Phone. In both cases, ZS4DZ is the runner-up with 1 100 and 1 000 callsigns, respectively. Jan has also applied for WAZS-200 on Digital modes. No-one else has thus far reached the 100 level. Jan's application also included WAZS-1000 on 3,5 MHz and WAZS-1800 on 7 MHz. On each of these bands, Jan's score is more than double the score of the runner-up.

When the awards programme was expanded twenty years ago to recognise achievements above the entry level of 100, trophies were offered to the first three operators to reach 500. The level was chosen to be a barely-achievable challenge. No-one at the time envisaged that anyone would reach the lofty heights of 2 000. It would be interesting to see if and when Jan will start to slow down!

South African Radio League

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NASA broadcasts final spacewalks to upgrade space station power system

Tuesday 14th July 2020


NASA astronaut Bob Behnken (at left) is pictured during a spacewalk to swap batteries and upgrade power systems
 on the International Space Station's Starboard-6 truss structure. Pictured at lower right, is an external pallet, gripped
 by the Canadarm2 robotic arm, that housed the batteries replaced on the orbiting lab. Behnken  was joined
during the six-hour and seven-minute excursion by NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy (out of frame). Credits: NASA

NASA astronauts Chris Cassidy, KF5KDR and Robert Behnken will conduct a pair of spacewalks Thursday, July 16, and Tuesday, July 21, to finish a 3.5-year effort to upgrade the International Space Stations power system.

Coverage each day will begin at 6 a.m. EDT on NASA Television and the agencys website. The spacewalks will begin around 7:35 a.m., and could last up to seven hours.

Cassidy and Behnken will replace aging nickel-hydrogen batteries with new lithium-ion batteries delivered to the station on a Japanese cargo ship in May. The replacements will be on the starboard 6 truss 3B power channel.

During the July 16 spacewalk, they plan to remove five of six older nickel-hydrogen batteries for the truss power system and install three new lithium-ion batteries, as well as accompanying hardware. The last nickel-hydrogen battery will be removed from the truss and stowed on July 21, when Behnken and Cassidy venture out on the 300th spacewalk involving U.S. astronauts since Ed White stepped out of his Gemini 4 capsule on June 3, 1965.

In all, 12 spacewalks will have been performed since January 2017 to change out batteries for eight power channels used to route electricity on the station.

When the power upgrades are complete, the astronauts will shift gears and remove two lifting fixtures used for ground processing of the stations solar arrays prior to their launch. Theyll also begin preparing the Tranquility module for the installation of a commercial airlock provided by NanoRacks and scheduled to arrive on a SpaceX cargo flight later this year. The airlock will be used to deploy commercial and government-sponsored experiments into space.

Behnken will be designated extravehicular crewmember 1 for both spacewalks and wear a spacesuit bearing red stripes. Cassidy will be extravehicular crewmember 2 for both spacewalks, wearing a suit with no stripes.

These will be the 230th and 231st spacewalks in the history of space station assembly, maintenance, and upgrades. They also will be the ninth and 10th for Cassidy and Behnken, who will join former NASA astronauts Michael Lopez-Alegria and Peggy Whitson with the most spacewalks by Americans.

Cassidy arrived at the space station in April, taking command of Expedition 63. Behnken, who is serving as a flight engineer for the expedition, arrived at the station in May with fellow Commercial Crew astronaut Douglas Hurley on SpaceXs Crew Dragon Demo-2 test flight.

For almost 20 years, humans have lived and worked continuously aboard the International Space Station, advancing scientific knowledge and demonstrating new technologies, making research breakthroughs not possible on Earth that will enable long-duration human and robotic exploration into deep space. As a global endeavor, 239 people from 19 countries have visited the unique microgravity laboratory that has hosted more than 2,800 research investigations from researchers in 108 countries and areas.

For more information about the International Space Station, its research, and crew, visit:
https://www.nasa.gov/station

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Radio Caroline the return to the Ross!

Tuesday 14th July 2020

At last we are back on board our radio-ship Ross Revenge for the first time since March for the next Radio Caroline North broadcast over the weekend 18th-19th July.

You'll hear all the best music from the 60s early 90s throughout this two day broadcast. Our sponsor this time is Feature Story News, and you'll have the chance to win some Web Shop goodies, kindly sponsored by Grace Devine from Skerries, Co Dublin.

Listen in on 648 AM in the South and South-East, on 1368 AM in the North and North-West courtesy of our friends at Manx Radio and around the world online here, with the Radio Caroline app or on smart speakers.

We'd love to hear from during the broadcast via memories@radiocaroline.co.uk and remember, it's the only email address that gets you straight through to Ross Revenge directly.

http://radiocaroline.co.uk/home.html

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Radio ham worked on power supply unit for Space Station

Tuesday 14th July 2020

The Republic reports Ed Krome K9EK is helping amateur radio operators and students connect to the International Space Station (ISS)

The newspaper says:

For Ed Krome of Columbus, engineering has been a lifelong passion.

When he was 21, he built a Meyers Manx dune buggy. In 1963, he got his amateur radio license (though he prefers experimenting to chatting with other ham operators). For many years, he was the engineering manager for Master Power Transmission. In his own words, Krome holds nine patents on mechanical devices and has built everything from micro-electronics to a two-story house.

Now, the retired electrical and mechanical engineer is wrapping up work on something a little more interstellar a power supply for shortwave radio equipment on the International Space Station.

For more than two and a half years, Krome has been a mechanical engineer and designer on a Multi-Voltage Power Supply (MVPS) that is part of an Interoperable Radio System.

On March 6, Krome, along with the rest of the power supply team, was invited to watch the first MVPSs launch into space at Cape Canaveral.
The power supply was aboard the SpaceX CRS-20.

It was the clearest night ever, Krome said. And you could see everything. You know, we saw the launch, we saw the first stage cutoff, we saw the separation, we saw the booster come back down and land only about a mile from us. And it was just spectacular.

The power supply is used by an international organization known as Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS).

Read the full story at
http://www.therepublic.com/2020/07/08/connecting_in_orbit__
retired_columbus_engineer_
works_on_radio_power_
supply_for_space_station/

 

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Solar weather station listens for lightning

Tuesday 14th July 2020

Custom weather stations are a common enough project these days, especially based around the ESP8266. Wire a sensor up to the MCU, power it up with an old phone charger, and youre half way there. But if you want something thats going to operate remotely on the long term, youve got to put a little more thought into it.

Which is exactly what [BuckarewBanzai] did for his solar powered Raspberry Pi weather station. With an industrial NEMA-rated enclosure, a beefy 35 watt photovoltaic panel, and enough lead-acid battery capacity to keep the show going for days, this build is certainly more robust than most. Some might call it overkill, but we think anyone whos ever deployed hardware outdoors for more than a few days knows you can never be too careful when Mother Nature is involved.

To keep the 18 Ah battery topped off, [BuckarewBanzai] is using a 10 amp Wanderer charge controller. It sounds as though he burned through a few lesser models before settling on this one; something to consider for your own off-grid projects. An LM2596 regulator is then used to provide a stable 5 V for the Raspberry Pi.

In addition to the BME280 environmental sensor that picks up on temperature, humidity, and pressure, theres also a AS3935 lightning sensor onboard which [BuckarewBanzai] says can pick up strikes up to 40 kilometers away. All of this environmental data is collected and stored in a local SQLite database, and gets pushed offsite every five minutes with a REST API so it can be visualized with Grafana.

Critics in the audience will no doubt pick up on the solderless breadboard located in the center of the weather station, but [BuckarewBanzai] says hes already on the case. Hes working on a custom PCB that will accept the various modular components. Not only should this make the station more reliable, but he says it will cut down on the spaghetti wiring. Though for the record, this is hardly the worst offender weve seen in that department.

Read the full article
https://hackaday.com/2020/07/13/solar-weather-station-listens-for-lightning/

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Online booking for Remotely-invigilated Intermediate Exams

Monday 13th July 2020

The RSGB have announced that radio amateurs can now book online to take the remotely-invigilated Intermediate exam

From Monday, July 13, the automated exam booking system will accept bookings for both Foundation and Intermediate level exams.

Please note that the earliest available bookings for exams at either level are during the second week in August.

The requirement for Intermediate practical assessments is waived.

Book your exam at
https://rsgb.org/main/rsgb-examination-booking/

Source RSGB
https://rsgb.org/main/blog/news/gb2rs/headlines/2020/07/10/rsgb-introduces-remote-invigilation-for-intermediate-exams/

 
The Wirral & District Amateur Radio Club offers excellent opportunities to get together and mix with like minded folk for those living within easy reach of Wirral, with the chance to meet up regularly (under normal non-coronavirus conditions) and ask questions. 

As in most walks of life, passing the initial exam is the first stage to proving competence and initial experiences of the joys of an exciting hobby.  It is often chatting with your peers who can add their life experiences and knowledge as a short cut to complete your personal enjoyment.

We are unable at this moment in time to offer training and so one of the above courses offered above would be an ideal way into the hobby, followed by taking the RSGB on-line exam.

After your success, if you live near the Wirral Peninsular, do consider coming along to WADARC for a few evenings (no charge), and I'm sure we will be able to convince you how fulfilling and rewarding being a member of a good club can be. 

Our members operate in a wide range of radio, computer activities and regular contests over much of the amateur spectrum.

Keep checking our "Calendar of Events"  on the club website for the latest information
 

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Ham radio in Third Age Matters magazine

Monday 13th July 2020

Radio amateur Mike Meadows G4GUG got some good publicity for the hobby in an article for Third Age Matters magazine in which he explains his enjoyment of amateur radio over the years

Read the article 'Amateur radio the first social media' at
https://rsgb.services/public/gota2c/200107_Amateur_radio_feature_
in_Third_Age_Matters
_U3A_members_mag.pdf


The RSGB produce a handy Media Guide and Template press release that you can use when you contact your local newspaper, most local newspapers seem only too happy to print a story, see
http://rsgb.org/main/clubs/media-guide-for-affiliated-societies/
 

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Brazil: Amateur Radio statistics released

Monday 13th July 2020

Brazil's national amateur radio society LABRE has released a report by Ricardo Benedito PU2RKA that uses ANATEL's Open Data to provide an analysis of radio amateur numbers by Class and State

Brazil has a population of 212 million and in 2019 there were 39,539 radio amateurs (36,919 Men and 2,620 Women).

For comparison as of mid-July 2020 the United Kingdom, population 67 million, is believed to have about 78,000 individual radio amateurs.

A translation of a post on the LABRE website says:

Based on official data published by ANATEL, the work consists of several graphs containing information previously unknown to us, which will help LABRE to better understand Brazilian radio amateurs and their distribution throughout the national territory.

Divided into two parts, the first deals with the issue of the number of Brazilian radio amateurs, composed only of individuals with COER (Radio Amateur Station Operator Certificate), and in the second part, licensed stations, whose grants may also include clubs, associations and other legal entities. In the graphs, easy to understand, Ricardo lists the number of radio amateurs and licensed stations by state, city, per 100 thousand inhabitants, per class, etc. There is even a curious graphic containing the most common names in amateur radio.

Ricardo, who is a professor of the Energy Engineering Course at the Federal University of ABC and recently became a radio amateur, prepared the study and kindly sent it to LABRE. After some minor adjustments, we now present to the Brazilian radio amateurs.

LABRE thanks its colleague Ricardo PU2RKA for the excellent service provided to Brazilian amateur radio and for the confidence in sharing it with us.

Download the study at
http://labre.org.br/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/RADIOAMADORES-Versao-2.pdf

Source LABRE https://tinyurl.com/BrazilLABRE

2018 Ofcom release total number of individual UK radio amateurs
http://www.southgatearc.org/news/2018/september/how-many-uk-radio-amateurs-are-there.htm

Brazil has three classes of Amateur Radio licence:
Class C permits 100 watts output, all bands except for 10/14/18 MHz and parts 7/21 MHz. It requires 14 correct answers in each of a 20 question Operating Theory exam paper and a 20 question Rules & Regs paper
Class B permits 1000 watts output all bands except for 10/14/18 MHz and part of 21 MHz. The segments 28000-28500 kHz & 29300-29510 kHz are limited to 100 watts. It requires 10 correct answers (50%) in a 20 question Basic Knowledge of Electronics and Electricity exam paper and a 5 WPM Morse receiving test
Class A permits 1000 watts output all bands (10 MHz 200 watts) and requires 14 correct answers (70%) in the 20 question Basic Electronics and Electricity exam paper and a 5 WPM Morse sending and receiving test

Further information at
http://www.anatel.gov.br/setorregulado/index.php/radioamadorismo

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Bengaluru taps HAM community to tackle Covid-19 spread

Monday 13th July 2020

The Economic Times reports Indias technology hub Bengaluru is tapping into a strong community of amateur radio users to help tackle the spread of the Covid-19 outbreak

Indias technology hub Bengaluru is tapping into a strong community of amateur radio users to help tackle the spread of the Covid-19 outbreak.

The city, which has seen on average 1,000 positive cases of Covid-19 infections over the past few days, goes into a one-week lockdown starting Tuesday.

Known informally as HAM radio operators, these hobbyists use wireless radio sets and antennas - both static as well as mobile -- to interact with fellow HAM users across the world, a technique developed over a century ago.

At a time when cellular and internet penetration has peaked in the city, over 350 HAM users spread across Bengaluru are acting as volunteers with the citys home quarantine squad - a government formed team that looks at ensuring infected people are quarantined.

Read the full story at
https://economictimes.
indiatimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/bengaluru-taps-ham-community-to-tackle-covid-19-spread/articleshow/76926799.cms

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Mid-Ulster Amateur Radio Club Tuesday Night Lecture Series

Monday 13th July 2020

The next Mid-Ulster Amateur Radio Club Tuesday Night Lecture series is this Tuesday 14th, with Mike Richards Gi4WNC talking about the inner workings of Raspberry Pi.

All welcome.

For the Zoom details please email Dave 2i0SJV on dcparkinson@icloud.com

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Limerick Clare Amateur Radio Club

Monday 13th July 2020

LCRC has returned to the Shannon Aviation Museum and is currently setting up HF and VHF/UHF working stations.

The club is awaiting delivery of a HF Hex Beam and VHF/UHF antennae.

Due to Covid-19, and for the first time in 8 years, LCRC will not be taking part in the International Lighthouse & Lightship Weekend from Loop Head.

Unfortunately, the Lighthouse Compound remains closed for the duration of 2020. IL&LW was a highlight of club activities - with up to 14 members attending over that weekend.

However, the club plans on being on air, from the Shannon Aviation Museum, for the IL&LW on the 22nd and 23rd August 2020 and to work as many IL&Ls as possible.

With the IRTS announcement of the dates for the next HAREC Exam, LCARC club members are available to help anyone preparing for the exam. Club members are also available to run the HAREC course - anyone interested should contact LCARC Chairman, Dermot Gleeson (via e mail) ei2gt at eircom.net.

IRTS

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Jingle Bells on Top Band

Monday 13th July 2020

In the 1960s, many UK Top Band operators and listeners around the country were greeted by the sound of beacons of various tones, usually around 1900 kHz (or should that be kc/s ?) which got the nickname jingle bells or more simply the beacon.

This was the commercial Decca HI-FIX MF Short-Range Hyperbolic Positioning system (not to be confused with the longer-range Decca Navigator system which operated at much lower LF frequencies).

The apparatus which produced this delightful musical signature was the HI-FIXs MDU or Master Drive Unit, shown in this demonstration YouTube video

More information on the HI-FIX system can be found on Alan Cordwells website at
http://alancordwell.co.uk/Legacy/radionavigation/hifix/hifixint.html

73

Paul Gaskell G4MWO

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US global media agency seeks to kick out international journalists

Monday 13th July 2020

CNN Business reports: Efforts to clean house at the US Agency for Global Media continued this week as leadership indicated that international journalists who work for Voice of America (VOA) will not have their visas extended and a widely respected top editor at Radio Free Asia was fired, explained three sources familiar with the decisions.

Under the new leadership of Michael Pack, who took the job as USAGM's CEO last month, the organization which oversees US-funded broadcasters VOA and RFA among others has been thrust into a wide-ranging shakeup which appears to be politically motivated.

With indications that Pack is not going to allow visas to be extended for international VOA journalists in the US, there are dozens of journalists who could face retaliation if they are forced to return to their home countries.

Read the full CNN news story
https://edition.cnn.com/2020/07/10/media/usagm-voice-of-america-visas/index.html

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DXCC Country/Entity Report

Monday 13th July 2020

According to the Amateur Radio Cluster Network for the week of Sunday, 5th July, through Sunday, 12th July there were 199 countries active.

Countries available:

3A, 3B8, 3D2, 3V, 3W, 4J, 4L, 4O, 4S, 4U1U, 4X, 5B, 5R, 5T, 5Z, 6Y, 7X, 8P, 8Q, 9A, 9G, 9H, 9J, 9K, 9M2, 9M6, 9N, 9V, 9Y,

A2, A4, A5, A6, A7, A9, AP, BV, BY, C3, CE, CE0Y, CE9, CM, CN, CP, CT, CT3, CU, CX, D2, DL, DU, E3, E5/s, E7, EA, EA6, EA8, EA9, EI, EK, EL, EP, ER, ES, ET, EU, EX, EZ, F, FG, FK, FM, FO, FP, FR, FS, FY, G, GD, GI, GJ, GM, GU, GW, HA, HB, HB0, HC, HH, HI, HK, HL, HP, HR, HS, HV, HZ, I, IS, J3, J6, J7, 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, P4, PA, PJ2, PJ4, PJ7, PY, PY0F, PZ, S0, S2, S5, S7, SM, SP, SU, SV, SV5, SV9, T5, T7, T8, TA, TF, TG, TI, TK, TR, TT, TZ,

UA, UA2, UA9, UK, UN, UR, V2, V3, V5, V7, V8, VE, VK, VP2E, VP8, VR, VU, XE, XU, XW, YA, YB, YJ, YL, YN, YO, YS, YU, YV, Z3, Z6, Z8, ZA, ZB, ZD7, ZF, ZL, ZP, ZS

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

OPDX

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IOTA News from OPDX

Monday 13th July 2020

Island activities:

Since no or few new IOTA announcements have been made during the past several weeks (probably because of many COVID-19 travel restrictions), OPDX decided to list the following IOTA operations that were active this past week between July 5-11th (as per the DXCluster):

IOTA Callsign Island/GROUP Bands/Modes
------ ---------- ------------- ------------

AF-004 EA8DFQ Gran Canaria 12m; Digi
AF-014 FR4PV Reunion 17m; SSB
AF-022 ZD7JC St. Helena 15m; FT8
AN-016 DP0GVN Antarctic 40m; Digi
AS-002 A92AA Bahrain 40m; Digi
AS-007 JF1EHM Honshu 20m; SSB
AS-007 JH3NGD Honshu 40m; SSB
AS-007 JI1ICF Honshu 20m; SSB
AS-078 JH8XVH Hokkaido 10m; Digi
AS-107 E20WXA/P Gulf of Thailand N 20/15m; SSB
AS-107 HS2JQC/P Gulf of Thailand N 40m; FT8
EU-002 OH0Z Aland 20m; CW
EU-004 EA6BB Balearic 17m; Digi
EU-004 EA6OM Balearic 10m; SSB
EU-004 EC6AAE Balearic 20m; CW
EU-005 G4UJS Great Britain 20m; Digi
EU-005 GB13COL Great Britain 40/20m; SSB/CW
EU-005 GM0OQV Scotland 20m; SSB
EU-005 GM1KNP Scotland 20m; SSB
EU-005 MM0HVU Scotland 80m; Digi
EU-005 MM0TFU Scotland 10m; SSB
EU-009 GM8OFQ Orkney 20/10m; SSB/Digi
EU-018 OY1CT Faroe 17m; Digi
EU-021 TF3JB Iceland 40m; SSB
EU-025 IT9DOR Sicily 20m; SSB
EU-026 JW4PUA Spitsbergen 15m; Digi
EU-029 5Q5W Sjaelland 40/17m; CW/Digi
EU-029 OV9M Sjaelland 40/20m; SSB
EU-029 OZ0MJ Sjaelland 20m; SSB
EU-029 OZ8AE Sjaelland 40m; CW
EU-031 IC8HRG Campania Reg 20m; SSB
EU-047 DJ4EL/P Juist 20m; SSB
EU-050 IL7/IK4YCQ Tremiti 20m; SSB
EU-050 IL7/IZ5IUY Tremiti 40m; SSB
EU-088 OZ7AEI/P Laeso 40/20m; Digi/SSB
EU-115 EI2HI Ireland 20m; SSB
EU-115 EI5KP Ireland 20m; SSB
EU-115 EI9HX Ireland 20m; SSB
EU-116 GD1JNB Isle of Man 20m; SSB
EU-147 R7AL/1 White Sea Coast 40/20m; CW
EU-170 9A9CW/P Dalmatia N 40m; CW
EU-172 5Q5W Jylland East & Fyn 20m; CW
EU-172 OV9M Jylland East & Fyn 20m; SSB
EU-174 SV2AEL/8 Makedonia/Thraki 20/17/10m; Digi
EU-175 CU3HN Azores 20m; Digi
NA-021 8P5AA Barbados 20m; SSB
NA-026 W2ASC NY State 40m; SSB
NA-026 WB2SMK NY State 20m; SSB
NA-052 N1UL FL State SW 20m; Digi
NA-096 HH2AA Haiti 30m; Digi
NA-099 WP3R Puerto Rico 20m; SSB
NA-107 FM5BH Martinique 20m; CW
NA-108 J68HZ St. Lucia 80m; Digi
OC-013 E51JD Rarotonga 20m; SSB
OC-016 3D2AG Viti Levu & Vanua Levu 20m; CW
OC-019 WH6EY Hawaiian 20m; Digi
OC-032 FK4RD New Caledonia 40m; SSB
OC-036 ZL1WN NZ North 20m; SSB
OC-134 ZL4TT NZ South 20m; CW
OC-184 V85AHV Brunei's Coastal 20m; Digi
SA-002 VP8LP Falkland 20m; SSB
SA-006 PJ4/KU8E Bonaire 20m; CW
SA-085 XQ1KK Atacama Reg 20m; SSB
SA-099 PJ2GT Curacao 20m; CW

Thanks to the individuals who put the island/group and mode on their QSNs on the PacketCluster reports....

AF-018. Operator Raffaele, IH9YMC, will be active from Pantelleria Island (IIA TP-001, MIA MI-124, WW Loc. JM56XT), African Italy, during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) Single-Op entry. QSL via LoTW or eQSL.

AS-107. A team of Thailand operators were expected to be active this past weekend as HS2JQC/p (Kim), HS0YNM/p (Mod), E20WXA/p (Chai) and HS1OLQ/p (Phatcharadet) from Ko Si Chang Island in the northern Gulf of Thailand. Their activity was to be on 40-10 meters using CW, SSB and FT8/FT4. QSL via their home callsign.

AS-150. Members of the One Partner DX Club (OPDXC) will be active as BG4OP Lingshan Island, July 25-26th. However, operator Ma, BA4MY, will be in the RSGB IOTA Contest as a Single-Op/ All-Band/Mixed-Mode/High-Power entry. QSL via BI4IIZ, direct or by the Bureau.

EU-001. Claudio, HB9OAU, will once again be active as SV5/HB9OAU from Karpathos Island, Dodecanese, between September 12-25th. Activity will be on 80-10 meters using SSB, RTTY and possibly FT8. QSL via his home callsign, direct, by the Bureau, ClubLog, eQSL and LoTW.

EU-028. Michele, IU2NKC, will be active as IA5/IU2NKC from Isola del Giglio, located in the Tuscan Archipelago, between July 12-25th. Activity will be holiday style on various HF bands. QSL via his home callsign, by the Bureau, LoTW and eQSL.

EU-042. Operators Joerg "Joe"/DJ1JB, Markus/DJ4EL, Thorsten/DJ5TM and possibly others are planning to be active as homecall/p from Pellworm Island (as well as some other surrounding islands; in the same IOTA group) between August 27th and September 3rd. Activity be on 40-10 meters using SSB with verticals and quad antennas. QSL via LoTW or their home callsigns. Look for more details to be forthcoming.

EU-055. Tom, LA4LN, is now active as LN1V from Stord Island (WW Loc. JO29QS), Norway, mainly on 6 meters using digital until mid- August. However, Tom does mention he does have antennas for 160m-70cm and can operate on all modes. The special callsign (LN1V = Liberation Norway One Victory) is being used in celebration of the 75 years since the liberation from the 5 year long Nazi occupation in 1945 after World War 2. QSL via LA4LN.

EU-055. Operators Holger/DH3RN and Benny/DH7RG will once again be active as LA/DH3RN and LA/DH7RG from Bomlo Island (WW Loc. JO29PS), Norway, between August 14-24th. PLEASE NOTE that due to the current COVID-19 situation changes can happen (watch QRZ.com for updates). Activity will be on 80-10 meters using SSB and FT8/FT4. QSL via their home callsign, direct, by the Bureau or ClubLog.

EU-057. Jo, DL5KUD, will be active from Ruegen Island (German Island Award: O-07, WLOTA: LH 1712. DOK: V01) during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th) as Single-Op/CW-Mode/12-Hrs/Low-Power entry. QSL via ClubLog.

EU-107. Operators Gil/F4FET, Antoine/F5RAB and friends, who were expected to be active as TM7P from Petite Island during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th), have canceled their operation "Due to the fact (COVID-19) that no multi station can be on air." (See note about the contest below)

EU-111. Members of the Cray Valley Radio Society (G3RCV), who were expected to be active as GM3RCV and MM8C (IOTA Contest) from Ceann Ear in the Monach Islands between July 20-26th, have postponed their operation until 2021's RSGB IOTA Contest.

EU-117. Vasily, RA1ZZ, who was expected to be active as RA1ZZ/P from Bolshoy Berezovyy Island during the RSGB IOTA Contest, had to cancel his operation.

EU-133. Members of the Russian Robinson Club will be active from Gogland Island between July 23-28th. Operators mentioned are Mikhail/R1MJ, Yulia/R1CBL and Vitaliy/RA1AGJ, and will sign as homecall/P. They plan to be active in the RSGB IOTA Contest weekend (July 25-26th). Activity will be on 160-15 meters. QSL via their home callsigns.

EU-147. Vasily, R7AL, was heard active as R7AL/1 from Pezhostrov Island (RDA KL-14, RRA RR-02-96) this past week for a few days. The length of his stay is supposed to be several days and may be QRT by the time you read this. Activity is holiday style on 20/15 meters using CW with 100 watts and vertical antennas. QSL via his home callsign or ClubLog (preferable). ADDED NOTE: Vasily was also heard on Oleniy Island (EU-162) on July 9th.

EU-165. Emil, DL8JJ, will be active as IS0/DL8JJ from Foradada Island on July 18th. This will be the first activation ever. Activity will be on 40-10 meters using CW and SSB. QSL via his home callsign, direct, by the Bureau or LoTW. ADDED NOTE: Emil will also operate as IS0/DL8JJ/M from Sardinia Island (EU-024) between July 16-25th.

EU-172. Poul, OZ9V, will be active as OZ9V/P from r Island during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th). QSL via LoTW.

EU-177. Kjell, SM4DDS, will once again be active as 7S5A from Boko Island between July 19-24th. Activity wil be on 80-6 meters using CW, SSB and FT8. QSL via ClubLog's OQRS, LoTW, or via his home callsign (direct or by the Bureau).

NA-014. Operators Len/VE9MY and XYL Linda/VE9GLF will be active as VE9MY/p and VE9GLF/p from Grand Manan Island between July 12-18th. The duo plans to activate 6 World-Wide Flora & Fauna (WFF) references. Activity will be on 80/40/20/17 meters using SSB. QSL via their home callsigns, direct or by the Bureau (preferred).

OC-139. Grant, VK5GR, on July 12th, updated the following on his upcoming VK5KI Expedition to Kangaroo Island between July 13-18th [edited]: "Final preparations for the VK5KI expedition are complete. We have confirmed with the owner and the weather for the ferry crossing looks excellent. With luck we will have fine weather in the afternoon and get all of the antennas up tomorrow. If all goes well we should appear on air, most likely on 40m first sometime tomorrow night our time. Watch the DX Clusters and out Clublog live feed for details." For more updates/details, see Grant's Web page at: https://vk5gr-iota.net

OC-228. Andy, VK5MAV, reported on July 8th, that he is completely disappointed with the position of the Department of Nature for South Australia, which manages/controls access to the south Australian islands. However, Andy stated that he has "only one last option - very light, time and conditions limited, no night activity from Granite Island." So during this past weekend (on July 12th), Andy planned to do a test visit on Granite Island sometime between 0100-0600z on 20/15 meters using CW with 100 watts into a GP and on battery power. He hopes to give someone a new island contact. Remember, Andy plans to activate Granite Island as VK5MAV/p for the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th).
Activity will be CW only. QSL via ClubLog's OQRS. NEW FLASH: Just before going to print, Andy sent out the following on July 12th, 8:02 AM (EDT): "If you tried to contact me but with no success - it's still a hope. If the weather will let me - I will try again next Saturday or Sunday. Participation in IOTA Contest would be pointless as today's activity demon- strated. My signal was very weak with such setup, especially during daytime. But in general - it was sad event. 7 hours, 150 approximately QSO - not important (for me, but for someone who has got a new island - completely different:-)) Tomorrow I will upload the log to ClubLog and IOTA Committee.
As already written - there will be no cards. Well, if anyone needs it badly - my usual card with a sticker. However, I didn't expect anything else, GP 20/15, 'radials' - copper wire into the water. 100 watts, battery powered. No tent, no shelter, no normal table/chair. The toilet is far away. Ward tea - in a thermos brought by me. Temp was + 12, windy with drizzle. I was lucky at least the rain did not happen. That's it for now, folks :-) .... Cheers. Andy VK5MAV."

ADDED NOTE ABOUT THE RSGB CONTEST (July 25-26th):
Per the RSGB Contest Committee, the IOTA Contest this year is exclusively for Single-Operators using their home stations, and only "Single Operator Fixed Island" stations and "Single Operator Fixed World" stations will be eligible to enter. Full details of the IOTA Contest, including the rules, can be obtained from the RSGB at: https://www.rsgbcc.org/hf/rules/2020/riota.shtml

PLEASE NOTE: Since the Webmasters of the new <www.iota-world.org> have decided NOT to post or dedicate a Web page to announce upcoming IOTA operations, PLEASE send your IOTA operations information to the OPDX, and we will post it here in an upcoming bulletin......

OPDX

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

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Getting publicity for Amateur Radio

Sunday 12th July 2020

Publicity can be magical and when it comes to ham radio, it's great magic. Jeremy Boot G4NJH tells WIA News how one amateur in the UK used newspaper publicity to boost ham radio's profile

WIA News says:

Have you ever wished your local community understood more about amateur radio? Well, why not do what one enterprising ham did and contact your regional newspaper? Phil G4OBK lives in the North of England out in a country area and he contacted the Rydale Gazette Herald and let them know about what radio amateurs are doing during the COVID-19 lockdown, giving them as reference an article from the national society, the RSGB, but also offered to add to it with local content.

The newspaper jumped at the offer and the result can be seen at

https://www.gazetteherald.co.uk/news/18518331.radio-enthusiast-making-waves-nearly-40-years/

Source WIA News
http://www.wia.org.au/members/broadcast/wianews/display.php?file_id=wianews-2020-07-12

The RSGB produce a handy Media Guide and Template press release that you can use when you contact your local newspaper, most local newspapers seem only too happy to print a story, see
http://rsgb.org/main/clubs/media-guide-for-affiliated-societies/

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7-CALL 30th Anniversary special station - 2nd shack opened

Sunday 12th July 2020

7-CALL Amateur Radio Club has started operation from a 2nd Shack of 8J17CALL, 7-CALL 30th Anniversary Special station on 11th July, 2020.

(According to Japanese radio law, portable station license is limited up to 50W and over 50W operation shall obtain a separate station license with fixed station address respectively)

The new shack has been approved by Kanto Bureau of Telecommunications at 7th July, 2020.

7-CALL is Japanese callsign starting with 7" and it is a symbol of the golden age of Japanese amateur radio history.

There are only 17,583 7-CALL stations (just 6.81% of overall issued 7-CALLs) still exist as of the end of 2019.

Our club is going to promote 30th Anniversary of Japanese 7-CALL issuance with the special station until 22nd April, 2021.

The special station is also known as a brand new WPX.

More detail:
https://7-call.com/news20200712

Twitter:
https://twitter.com/JS1YEY/status/128199360
4613804041

Welcome your retweeting!!

About us:
7-call.com/en
(English and Chinese available)

Thank you for your attention to us!

8J17CALL / JS1YEY
7-CALL Amateur Radio Club
7-call.com

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Austral and Marquesas Islands DXpedition postponed

Sunday 12th July 2020

Lance, W7GJ, informs OPDX of the following:
Because of the ongoing COVID 19 pandemic, we regret that the W7GJ 6m EME DXpedition to FO/A and FO/M and the KB7Q 2m EME DXpedition to FO/M must be delayed until 2021.

Lodging reservations already have been changed, and we are in the process of revising the licensing and equipment importation authorizations. The APPROXIMATE dates for the new DXpeditions are:
FO/A (6m only) - October 15-24, 2021
FO/M (TX7MB on 2m and 6m) - October 26-November 4, 2021

Exact dates and operating schedules will be posted on my website after September 2020, when airline reservation dates for 2021 become available:
http://www.bigskyspaces.com/w7gj/Austral%20Islands
%202020.htm

http://www.bigskyspaces.com/w7gj/Marquesas%202020.htm

We are looking forward to contacting you and hope that this unfortunate delay provides you with any extra time you may need to improve your station to get ready for the FO DXpedition!

OPDX

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SARL 80m Club Sprint

Sunday 12th July 2020

The fourth leg of the 80m Club Sprint is on the air from 17:00 to 18:00 UTC on Wednesday 15th July with CW and phone activity.

The aim is to work as many grid squares as possible during the hour long event. The exchange is a RS or RST report and your 4 figure grid square. Submit your MS Excel log by 23:59 on Sunday 19th July to zs4bfn@mweb.co.za.

The rules are on page 64 of the 2020 Blue Book.
South African Radio League

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Polish special callsign

Sunday 12th July 2020

Members of the Mysliborski Klub Lacznosci PZK (SP1PMY) will be active with the special callsign SN87LOT from Mysliborz between now and August 31st.

Activity is to commemorate 86th anniversary of the flight over the Atlantic Ocean by two Lithuanian pilots Steponas Darius and Stasys Girenas.
They flew from New York in little airplane "Lituanica" to Kaunas on July 15th, 1933. Their flight ended with catastrophy in a forest near the village of Pszczelnik (ca. 6 km from Myslibrz, West Pomeranian Voivodeship).

There is a monument dedicated to those two brave airmen at the place where airplane fell. Every year at this monument, there takes place celebrations with highest Polish and Lithuanian representatives.

Activity will be on various HF bands. QSL via SP1PMY, direct or by the Bureau

OPDX

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Foundations of Amateur Radio

Saturday 11th July 2020

Homebrew radio for the 21st Century

The hobby of Amateur Radio is essentially one of experimentation. Within our community we endlessly build things, from amplifiers to Yagis and every letter of the alphabet in between. With every experiment we grow the amateur radio sphere of influence just a little bit.

As our hobby is evolving into Software Defined Radio, or SDR, the homebrew aspect of our community is also changing bit by bit and as a result, homebrew today is just as likely to be based on software as it is in hardware.

Unlike the physical world where you need to source and buy components, design a circuit, build it, test it and then put it in a box, in the software realm you can get started with the computer that is more than likely within reach right now.

Recently I took delivery of a new SDR, an ADALM Pluto. It's essentially a Linux computer, FPGA and transmit capable SDR in a small box. I bought it specifically for the purpose of experimentation.

One of the first things I did with this device was install an existing piece of software called dump1090. The tool listens to 1090 MHz and decodes Mode S transponders, used by aviation to report aircraft information in real-time.

Originally written by Salvatore Sanfilippo in 2012 for the RTL-SDR dongle, it was patched by several people and in 2017 it was updated by Jiang Wei to support the Pluto SDR. My contribution to the project is minor. I've updated the on-board web-server to use Open Street Map and a few other cosmetic changes.

For me it was a "Hello World" project, something that's the software equivalent of warming up your soldering iron and pre-tinning the wire you're about to use.

The tools to do this is what I want to discuss.

When you look at the software that underlies much of the SDR world, the digital modes, logging, contesting, even the software inside tools like the Nano-VNA, much of it is open source. That means that as a curious amateur you can have access to the underlying equivalent of the circuit diagram. As you can with a soldering iron, a scribe and wire, you can patch or update a circuit. In the software realm you can do the same once you have access to the source code.

The tools you're going to get in touch with are text editors, compilers, libraries and configuration files. If that's not your thing, I appreciate that, but if it sparks your interest, you'll open the door into a brand new world of software development where you can determine how a mode works or what it supports or how it interacts with your radio or testing gear.

When you jump in, likely feet first, you're going to make mistakes and lose hair and sleep and you'll be shaking your virtual or physical fist at the person who came before you, but then that's the world of experimentation, so likely you'll already have that down pat.

You'll likely play with different tools that require different versions, often installed side-by-side, much to your chagrin when you learn that it just won't work. Not to mention that removal of the offending tool often leaves interfering cruft behind, not unlike unsightly and short-circuiting blobs of solder.

I'm here to introduce you, albeit briefly, to a tool that will take much of that pain away. The free tool is called Docker. It has got little in the way of visibility in the amateur radio world, but in the software development world it's pretty much old hat.

Essentially the idea is that you can install stuff into a so called disposable container so you can have your copy of dump1090 installed in one container and your copy of codec2 in another, a copy of rtl-sdr in a third container, all working independently from each other, without needing to complicate things with multiple computers or virtual machines. If a developer uses Debian, another uses Ubuntu and a third uses Red Hat, you can run these side-by-side without any issue. If they need an ancient version of something, that too is handled without a problem. Make a mistake, destroy the container and start again, fresh.

Docker is a tool that allows you to build an environment on Linux, MacOS and Windows, as well as the Raspberry Pi, that acts and behaves in many ways like a virtual machine. In all the ways that you're likely to use it, at least initially, it's indistinguishable. What that means is that the operating system, the compiler and the libraries that you need for one tool won't affect those needed for another tool.

The best part of this is that you can build on a massive library of pre-existing Docker containers and use files that describe how to build and compile tools like dump1090.

If you look for my callsign vk6flab on github.com, you'll find my version of dump1090 and you'll find a Dockerfile that describes how I built it. The project contains all the bits you'll need to get started with your own version of dump1090, or some other project that tickles your fancy.

Every time you build something, the amateur radio sphere of influence grows just that little bit.

I'm Onno VK6FLAB

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A SOTA wedding took place on 4th July 2020!

Saturday 11th July 2020

David Wise KM3A and Lizzette Rodriguez K6LZT are both keen SOTA activators, and their marriage actually took place on a summit and in conjunction with a SOTA activation!

The ceremony took place on California's Morton Peak, SOTA reference W6/CT-128, and was officiate by their friend Scott Lindquist N0OI, who became ordained specially for the occasion.


David Wise KM3A and Lizzette Rodriguez K6LZT

All three radio amateurs then successfully activated the summit as part of the celebrations.  It was Lizzette's debut as a SOTA activator.

The Summits on the Air Management Team send their congratulations to Lizzette and David.

For more information about SOTA, please visit
http://www.sota.org.uk

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ESA emits a guide to picking up ISS SSTV

Saturday 11th July 2020

The Register reports on the new ESA tutorials explaining how to pick up the amateur radio Slow Scan TV (SSTV) tutorials transmitted from the International Space Station

Got plans for the weekend? No? How about pulling that Pi out of the drawer or dusting off an old laptop and getting ready to grab some images from the ISS, courtesy of locked-down European Space Agency (ESA) boffins.

The system makes use of the Web Software Defined Receivers (WebSDR) scattered around the world, which allow multiple users to listen in and tune the receiver simultaneously. The audio generated can then be piped into a SSTV decoder (ESA directed us to RX-SSTV, which will have a crack at rendering an image).

The example cited for a WebSDR by ESA is the AMSAT-UK / BATC one hosted at Goonhilly Earth Station in Cornwall, which allows users to listen in on the 144 146MHz VHF band. ISS voice and data starts at 145.800 MHz FM, but only if the station is actually transmitting and in range of the station.

Read The Register article at
https://www.theregister.com/2020/07/10/esa_iss_sstv/

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LunART- Lunar Amateur Radio Transponder

Saturday 11th July 2020

The European Space Agency (ESA) website has published a proposal by radio amateurs from AMSAT-DL for LunART (Lunar Amateur Radio Transponder): a Communications Platform on the Large European Lander to support communication and payload experiments.

Peter Glzow DB2OS and Matthias Bopp DD1US say a LunART Communications Platform on the Large European Lander will support direct communication with earth through amateur radio frequencies in the microwave bands, support University and Student Payloads with direct access to their experiments, allow Radio Science for a huge community of radio amateur operators and scientists worldwide.

It would also provide an important back-up communication capability and capacity during emergency or when ESA network is busy, for example during non-critical times.

Read the proposal at
https://ideas.esa.int/servlet/hype/IMT?userAction=Browse&templateName=
&documentId=81f70b2b01f6993c1b76fb6b572ee6c5

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The super-sized nucleus of Comet NEOWISE

Saturday 11th July 2020

Now we know why Comet NEOWISE (C/2020 F3) is so bright. It has an unusually large nucleus.

Infrared data from NASA's NEOWISE spacecraft suggest that the comet's core of ice and dust is 5 km wide. This bodes well for the comet's visibility in the weeks ahead.

Visit Spaceweather.com for the full story and observing tips.

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Eavesdropping video monitors with TempestSDR RTL-SDR

Saturday 11th July 2020

This is not new, but the software is getting better and better.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QjqpKtGNbQo&feature=youtu.be

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWbLMDlV-9M

With just an SDR you can pull images out of a nearby computer monitor. With TempestSDR you can reconstruct the unintentional radiation form a nearby monitor back into a usable image with nothing more than an SDR and a basic antenna.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mBJ6uQZsF9c

Source:
Eavesdropping Video Monitors With TempestSDR RTL-SDR

https://www.rtl-sdr.com/tempestsdr-a-sdr-tool-for-eavesdropping-on-computer-screens-via-unintentionally-radiated-rf/

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ARU HF World Championship

Friday 10th July 2020

The amateur radio HF World Championship takes place this weekend July 11-12

This is an annual event to support amateur self-training in radiocommunications including improving amateur operating skills, conducting technical investigations, and intercommunicating with other amateurs around the world, especially IARU member society headquarters stations, using the 160, 80, 40, 20, 15 and 10-meter bands.

More information: http://www.arrl.org/iaru-hf-world-championship

Source IARU-R1 https://iaru-r1.org/

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Belgium: Amateur radio regs and exam consultations

Friday 10th July 2020

Belgium's communications regulator the BIPT has published two consultations relating to radio amateurs

A Google translation of the UBA post reads:

1. Consultation on a draft decision of the BIPT Council on the rules concerning stations and call signs of radio amateurs.

This draft decree lays down the rules for the allocation and use of callsigns, for ordinary stations, unmanned stations and remote stations.

You can consult this draft decision at https://bipt.be/consumenten/publication/raadpleging-betreffende-de-tests-en-examens-voor-radioamateurs

2. Consultation on a draft decision of the BIPT Council on tests and examinations for radio amateurs.

This draft decision determines the subject matter and the examination method for the 3 license types (HAREC, CEPT NOVICE and Basic license).

You can consult this draft decision at https://bipt.be/consumenten/publication/raadpleging-inzake-de-regels-betreffende-de-stations-en-roepnamen-van-de-radioamateurs


Who comments, suggestions or objections to the draft decisions UBA can bring them to the informed by Rik ON7YD no later than July 29. On this basis, the UBA will prepare its response to BIPT.

You can of course also contact BIPT directly, in particular to  consultation.sg@bipt.be, for the attention of Ben Deschacht, acting advisor. The correct way in which this should be done is described on the BIPT website (follow the links above). If you contact BIPT directly, a copy of your email will be appreciated (also to Rik, ON7YD).

Source Belgian national amateur radio society UBA
https://tinyurl.com/BelgiumUBA

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Old QSL card collection

Friday 10th July 2020

Jean Michel, F6AJA, wants to remind everyone to visit the Les Nouvelles DX (LNDX) Web page to see more than 18,000 old QSL cards in several different albums/galleries.

This site contains:

- The ten most wanted DXCC entities (2009 to 2018) with more than 600 QSLs
- At least one card for each 62 deleted DXCC countries (more than 2000+ QSLs)
- Nearest the totality of current prefixes, disappeared now (more than 5900+ QSLs)
- Album for stations from North Africa 1945-1962 (500+ QSLs)
- More than 1000 QSLs from the Antarctic bases.
- With 280 QSLs from the TAAF (Terres Australes and Antarctiques Francaises).
- More than 100 cards from Eparses Islands such as FR/B/E/G/J/T
- More than 500 QSLs for the rare French Pacific Islands such as FK, FK/C, FO/C, FO/A, FO/M, FO/C and FW
- The FG, FM, FP, FS, FY stations from 1945 to 1969
- Commemoratives stations for ITU and IARU with more than 900 QSL.
- More than 3600 cards for the old timer with more than 150 countries before 1945.
- Cards from the French Department before 1945.
- At least one card from each of the states in the U.S. before 1945.

The URL address for the Web site is: http://LesNouvellesDX.free.fr
Some cards are still needed for the collection, and your participation is welcome. Only a ".jpg" file (both sides of the card) is required.

Please visit the site and give them your comments by sending an E-mail to: LesNouvellesDX@free.fr

OPDX

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LO-94 the first amateur radio spacecraft in lunar orbit

Friday 10th July 2020

Nature carries an article about the spacecraft Longjiang-2/Lunar-OSCAR 94 (LO-94) which carried the first Amateur Radio communication system to operate in lunar orbit

As a part of Chinas Change-4 lunar far side mission, two lunar microsatellites for low frequency radio astronomy, amateur radio and education, Longjiang-1 and Longjiang-2, were launched as secondary payloads on 20 May 2018 together with the Queqiao L2 relay satellite.

On 25 May 2018, Longjiang-2 successfully inserted itself into a lunar elliptical orbit of 357km 13,704km, and became the smallest spacecraft which entered lunar orbit with its own propulsion system. The satellite carried the first amateur radio communication system operating in lunar orbit, which is a VHF/UHF software defined radio (SDR) designed for operation with small ground stations.

This article describes and evaluates the design of the VHF/UHF radio and the waveforms used. Flight results of the VHF/UHF radio are also presented, including operation of the radio, performance analysis of downlink signals and the first lunar orbit UHF very-long-baseline interferometry (VLBI) experiment.

Read the article at
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-020-17272-8

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Learn from 70+ speakers at the first ever Virtual Ham Expo

Friday 10th July 2020

We are reaching out to let you know that despite the closure of all ham radio events, there is a great opportunity to join your fellow hams and us at the first ever QSO Today Virtual Ham Expo on Saturday and Sunday, August 8 - 9, 2020.

Attendance is free and registration is now open at
https://www.qsotodayhamexpo.com/ with early bird prize incentives for registering by July 24, 2020.

Built on a live, virtual reality platform used by Fortune 500 companies and major universities, this ARRL-sanctioned hamfest will let you:

Learn from a packed line-up of 70+ world renowned ham radio speakers such as Ward Silver, N0AX, on Grounding and Bonding; Glen Johnson, W0GJ, on DXpeditions, and John Portune, W6NBC, on building slot antennas for HOA.

See demos of the latest ham radio equipment from the world's top equipment companies. You can easily ask questions and engage with Exhibitors through video, audio, or chat. (Note: CQ is an Exhibitor!)

Share ideas and network with your fellow ham radio operators throughout the Expo.

And if you've never been to a Hamfest or Expo, you can participate from the convenience of your home or office without spending a dime on travel!

This platform simulates a full convention experience with an exhibit hall and exhibit booths staffed by live attendants, speaker auditorium, lobby, and lounges.

Icom is the Expo's Platinum Sponsor, along with Gold Sponsors GigaParts, RT Systems, FlexRadio, RFinder, DX Engineering, Elecraft, RigExpert, and NCG Company (Comet Antenna).

Go to https://www.qsotodayhamexpo.com/
to learn more - get registered by July 24th!

We look forward to having you join us at Expo for an amazing and engaging experience.

Source: CQ Magazine

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Monitoring compliance with the EU Net Neutrality regulation 2019/20 update

Friday 10th July 2020

Ofcom has today published its fourth annual report to the European Commission on monitoring open internet access, also known as net neutrality. 

The report sets out Ofcoms approach to monitoring and enforcing the EU net neutrality rules from May 2019 to April 2020. 

Under these rules, broadband providers must treat all internet traffic on their networks equally, and must not give preferential treatment to certain sites or services. 

Our monitoring work has identified that: 

Although the UK has left the European Union, Ofcom is still obliged under UK law to produce an annual report on UK net neutrality rules and so we will continue to monitor compliance and publish findings in this area.  

More information on net neutrality is available on Ofcom's website.

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ESA promote amateur radio in ISS SSTV video

Thursday 9th July 2020

The ESA space agency has released a new video 'How to get pictures from the International Space Station via Amateur Radio'

Did you know that astronauts on the International Space Station send pictures from space to ground over amateur radio that you yourself can get at home using your computer? ESA show you how to get them, step by step.

The video features radio amateur David Honess 2E0XDO (ex-M6DNT).

Watch How to get pictures from the International Space Station via amateur radio

Read the Raspberry Pi article Pictures from space via ham radio
https://www.raspberrypi.org/magpi/pictures-from-space-via-ham-radio/

ISS SSTV info and links
https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/iss-sstv/

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The Rebirth of HF

Thursday 9th July 2020

In his latest blog post ICQ Podcast presenter Dan Romanchik KB6NU looks at a paper produced by Rohde and Schwartz - The Rebirth of HF

The paper provides a good description of HF propagation that could be of great help to any newcomer, it also notes:

"...in order to allow HF to meet the minimum requirements for a modern global communications technology, improvement or enhancements over traditional or legacy HF are required. The first and most important of these is improved data performance. Although HF will never match the throughput provided by satellites, a certain minimum data rate is necessary for making HF a viable choice in modern applications. Despite the dominance of data, voice is still a critical component in a global communications system, and here too there is substantial room for improvement compared to legacy analog HF voice."

Modern communication techniques enable throughput rates of up to 240 kbps in a 48 kHz wide HF channel.

Read the post by Dan Romanchik KB6NU at
https://www.kb6nu.com/the-rebirth-of-hf/

Read the Rohde and Schwartz paper at
https://tinyurl.com/TheRebirthOfHF

15 frames per second color video streaming can be achieved on HF using a bandwidth of 18 or 24 kHz. In a test in 2011 video was streamed over a 1,700 km path for 75 minutes without sync loss, see
https://web.archive.org/web/20160311153726/http://hfindustry.com/meetings_presentations/presentation_materials/2011_sept_hfia/presentations/3_rockwell_wbhf_high_
order_qam_ota_results.pdf


In 2012 successful trials took place in the UK with 24 kHz bandwidth high-speed data and video transmissions on 3.613 MHz in the 80m band, see
https://web.archive.org/web/20160826162928/http://www.hfindustry.com/meetings_presentations/presentation_materials/2012_sept_hfia/presentations/RC_WBHF_UK_Trial2012.pdf

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ESA Lunar lander

Thursday 9th July 2020

Following our report "ESA invites proposals for lunar lander mission in late 2020's" (SARC News, 30 May 2020),  the German Amateur satellite organisation, AMSAT-DL has submitted a major and comprehensive proposal to the European Space Agency for their Lunar Lander.

AMSAT-DL propose "LUNART" - Lunar Amateur Radio Transponder - a comprehensive radio platform using the European frequency standards of 2.4 GHz up and 10 Ghz down which were pioneered in the QO-100 satellite project. LUNART would include low power beacons and while high data rates would be operated from their 20 meter diamater dish at Bochum, lower data rates would be available to more modest amateur systems.

The proposal is on open access at the ESA website and is now being evaluated. It follows G0SFJ's proposal LARIE, Lunar Amateur Radio Interaction Experiment, which made the initial case for Amateur Radio on ESA's Lunar Lander. Both refer to weak signal modes and share the same frequency bands. Andy, G0SFJ, welcomes LUNART as a well developed proposal, and hopes ESA will support it too.

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The number of HAMNET links continues to increase

Thursday 9th July 2020

In 2017 holders of Germany's lowest level of Amateur Radio licence, the Class E, were given access to the 23202450 MHz and 56505850 MHz since the number of HAMNET data links has grown significantly

A translation of a DARC post says:

The number of nodes and links for the Highspeed Amateur radio Multimedia NETwork HAMNET is still increasing.

The network is growing - even if you compare 2020 with 2019. According to current statistics from the Federal Network Agency, recently presented by the DARC VHF/UHF/SHF Manager, Jann Traschewski, DG8NGN, the link sections have increased again to 6 cm. The figures can always be seen as of May 3, 2019 and June 15, 2020. In 2019 there were 916 link routes and in 2020 there were 969.

At 13 cm the growth is more moderate - from 13 to 15 - and at 9 cm the number even decreased marginally from 26 to 24. There is also growth to report from the Hamnet nodes. There are now 22 nodes on 70 cm, 2 on 13 cm, so that there are now 200. The number rose from 5 to 8 on 9 cm and from 184 to 195 on 6 cm.

DARC https://darc.de/

HAMNET https://www.hamnet.eu/site/

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IARU Region 1 General Conference website

Thursday 9th July 2020

Information about the upcoming IARU Region 1 General Conference is available at a dedicated conference website

Documents for the virtual part of the conference to be held October 11-16, 2020, are now being published.

The documents for part 1 of the meeting are split according to the principal committees:  
C3 General
C4 HF
C5 VHF/UHF/Microwaves
C7 EMC

25th IARU Region 1 General Conference website
https://conf.iaru-r1.org/

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IARUMS June newsletter now available

Thursday 9th July 2020

The latest IARU-R1 Monitoring System newsletter reports on the continuing interference on various frequencies in the 7 MHz band from Russian language propaganda broadcasts

Over The Horizon Radar (OTHR) systems in the Russian Federation and China continue to cause interference in the amateur 14 and 21 MHz bands and Iran has been operating a radar in the 21 and 28 MHz bands.

The International Amateur Radio Union Monitoring System (IARUMS) Region 1 June 2020 newsletter can be read at
https://www.iaru-r1.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/IARUMS-Newsletter-20-06.pdf

Recordings of military transmissions can be found on the Signal Identification Guide Wiki at
https://www.sigidwiki.com/wiki/Category:Military

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

IARU Monitoring System (IARUMS)
https://www.iarums-r1.org/

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Publish your Grid Rover Activites with ease - tyQSL

Thursday 9th July 2020

Recently the Online Logbook tyQSL got a new Activity Function that allows Users to publish for example future GRID Activations or participation in Events.

All Activities are shown on the Users Public Profile and on the interactive QSOMap.

So if you wan't to know if a Rover will activate a Grid you need, just take a look at the QSOMap and you see in Seconds if there will be someone on the Air.

Info & Registration:
https://tyqsl.eu

Tweet about Feature: https://twitter.com/tyqsleu/status/1280951598739570695

Manuel, DO5TY

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Software Defined Radio Academy goes virtual

Thursday 9th July 2020

They say every cloud has a silver lining. Its hard to find a positive among all the bad news about the current global pandemic, but it has pushed more conferences and events to allow online participation either live or after the fact. A case in point: The Software Defined Radio Academys annual event is all on a YouTube channel so you can attend virtually.

Not all the videos are there yet, but the keynote along with some very technical talks about techniques ranging from FPGAs to spectrum monitoring and spectral correlation density.

There are some older videos on the channel, too, including some GNU Radio material. We hear some of the upcoming videos will have some new GNU Radio content, too, including some on the GNU Radio implementation for Android.

It is remarkable how software defined radio has transformed from an exotic technology to the commonplace. If you like these tech-heavy presentations, you might also enjoy this free book. No matter what your If you want the pick of cheap SDRs, there have been reviews. Not to mention reviews of the higher-end devices.

Read more:
https://hackaday.com/2020/07/08/software-defined-radio-academy-goes-virtual/

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IARUMS: Russian-Ukrainian radio war is remaining on a high escalation level

Wednesday 8th July 2020

The new newsletter of the IARU Monitoring System (aka 'Intruder Watch') has just been published.

The most frequently reported intruders on the exclusive amateur radio service bands were in conjunction with the "Russian-Ukrainian radio war" (see below) as well as the daily emissions from the Russian OTHR (Over the Horizon Radar) "Contayner".

"The Russian-Ukrainian radio war remained on a high escalation level in June. Almost every day we heard the massive spiteful and provocative broadcasts", said Peter Jost, HB9CET, IARUMS R1 Coordinator a.I. "In June they used more frequencies than before, affecting our bands very hard. It is a great annoyance and a big shame!"

The IARU Monitoring System (Intruder watch) has little opportunity to stop this radio war itself. Only national authorities can hopefully do something against with international complaints. It is very important and very helpful that many other member societies also observe these frequencies and making complaints to their regulators! "We have to coordinate this well within IARU and act together. This is the only way we have a certain power", said Peter, HB9CET.

73
Tom DF5JL
IARU Region 1 HF Manager

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Ham radio talks on YouTube

Wednesday 8th July 2020

Mid Ulster Amateur Radio Club talks have been made available for everyone to view on YouTube

The talks include:

QO-100 geostationary satellite by Dom M0BLF
DMR What is it all about with John GI4BWM
Coaxial Cable and Connectors. Know what to use and when to use it with George GI4SJQ
What's it like as an Air Traffic Controller by Alistair MI0RWY
Urban QRM. What can I do? a Q&A with Tony Canning G2NF
The RSGB OAS with Ian Gi0AZB
Amateur Radio and Raspberry Pi with Nathan MI0NPR

The MUARC YouTube Channel is at
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCF9NZauGrpS0C3A-fs3Eu7g/videos
https://muarc.com/
https://twitter.com/MN0VFW

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DIY Weather Satellite Ground Station

Wednesday 8th July 2020

Sasha M6IOR and Sophie M6NYX have made available a Guide for the reception of NOAA satellite images using software defined radio on Windows or MacOS

The guide gives a few ways to receive an Automatic Picture Transmission (APT) from active National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) satellites in the 137 MHz band.

Read the guide at
https://publiclab.org/notes/sashae/06-26-2020/diy-satellite-ground-station

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Ofcom's Contracts and MoU's with the RSGB

Wednesday 8th July 2020

A recent Freedom of Information request asked about the Contracts and Memorandums of understanding that Ofcom has with the RSGB

1.  A list of contracts OFCOM has with RSGB.
Ofcom has no contracts with the RSGB therefore this information is not held.

2.  A list of Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) OFCOM has with RSGB.
Ofcom has one documented MoU with the RSGB which concerns the conduct of Amateur Radio exams.

3.  A list of draft MoUs OFCOM has with RSGB.
Ofcom has one draft MoU regarding GDPR and data processing, however this is exempt from disclosure under Section 44 of the Act which inhibits disclosure of information if another enactment prohibits it. Ofcom considers that the enactment in this case is section 393 of the Communications Act 2003.  

Section 393 prevents Ofcom from disclosing information about a particular business, unless Ofcom has the consent of that business or Ofcom considers that disclosure would further the exercise of its functions. In the circumstances of this case, neither gateway to disclosure is engaged. Section 44 is an absolute exemption and does not require a public interest test. Other exemptions may apply.

4.  The text of the MoUs OFCOM has with RSGB.
You can find the text of our documented MoU with the RSGB regarding Amateur Radio exams here
https://thersgb.org/publications/exams/schedule-of-terms-between-ofcom-and-rsgb-conduct-amateur-radio-examinations.pdf

5.  The text of the draft MoUs OFCOM has with RSGB.
As in question 3, we are unable to disclose the draft MoU regarding GDPR and data processing.

Read Ofcom's full reply at
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/669549/response/1591656/attach/html/9/FOI%20contracts
%20and%20mous%20with
%20rsgb%2000930955.pdf.html


You can submit a Freedom of Information request to Ofcom at
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/new/ofcom

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Radio hams assist sailing vessel

Wednesday 8th July 2020

ARRL reports the Maritime Mobile Service Net (MMSN) on 14.300 MHz came to the assistance of a sailing vessel on June 25

The ARRL say:

MMSN control operator Steven Carpenter, K9UA, took a call on 20 meters from Ian Cummings, KB4SG, the skipper of the Mystic Lady, then some 40 miles east of Florida. Cummings reported that his engine had failed as he was attempting to return to his home port of Stuart, Florida. He not only had insufficient wind, but a strong current was carrying the vessel out to sea.

Cummings had been unable to reach any station via his VHF marine radio, since he was too far from the coast. Assisting in the call was Robert Wynhoff, K5HUT, also an MMSN net control operator. Cummings said his vessel, with one passenger on board, was drifting northwest toward the South Carolina coast.

A major concern was that the vessel was heading directly towards a lee shore, the MMSN reported. Lee shores are shallow, dangerous areas which are a hazard to watercraft. Vessels could be pushed into the shallow area by the wind, possibly running aground and breaking up.

Carpenter contacted Cummings family, who had already called the Sea Tow marine towing service. Sea Tow advised Carpenter to tell the captain to head closer to shore by sailing west, if possible. Carpenter told Cummings that if he was unable to get nearer to shore, he would notify the US Coast Guard, which was already monitoring the situation.

As the MMSN reported, The Mystic Lady was able to make some headway, but it was very slow. Members of the MMSN made additional calls via landline to the captains family as to the ongoing status of those on board. The family was concerned but relieved that communication was established and that all were well.

Several hours later, the captain advised that the wind had picked up, allowing him to head close enough to shore for Sea Tow to reach the vessel and take it back to port.

The Pacific Seafarers Net, which monitors 14.300 MHz from the West Coast after the MMSN secures at 0200 UTC, kept in touch with the Mystic Lady into the night while it was under tow.

The tired, grateful captain later messaged the net, A million thanks to everyone last night who helped rescue us on 14.300. Everyone chipped in as we drifted north in the Gulf Stream 60 miles headed to a lee shore.
The MMSN net control and several others stayed with us for hours, phoned people, and were immensely helpful. The situation on board was dangerous. We are now safely under tow home. You folks are amazing!

In operation since 1968, the MMSN monitors 14.300 MHz 70 hours a week to assist vessels and others in need of assistance.


Thanks to MMSN Net Manager Jeff Savasta, KB4JKL

Source ARRL
http://www.arrl.org/news/maritime-mobile-service-network-comes-to-the-aid-of-vessel-in-distress

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Temporary licences extended for radio stations broadcasting Covid-19 services

Wednesday 8th July 2020

Radio stations providing news and information about the coronavirus pandemic to local communities will remain on air, after Ofcom confirmed it will extend their temporary licences.

Ofcom introduced a new short-term restricted service licence product at the start of lockdown. The licences were awarded to stations to broadcast temporarily during the pandemic.

In consultation with the licence-holders, we are extending the term of their licences to 5 September 2020. New applications for Temporary Covid-19 radio licences are also being accepted.

Update on licensing process for drive-in events

We are also giving notice that organisers of drive-in events that are due to be held on or after 5 September 2020 must submit their application at least 60 days in advance. We will continue to process applications for drive-in events due to take place before that date as quickly as possible.

More information is available.

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Australian special callsign

Wednesday 8th July 2020

Members of the Wireless Institute of Australia are QRV with the special call VI 110 WIA until the end of 2020 to celebrate our 110th anniversary, in fact the world's oldest Amateur Radio Society.

Activity is on the HF bands and QSL is via LoTW.

WIA

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RAC will host virtual presentation on Canada C3 WSPR Project at
2020 IEEE International Antenna and Propagation Symposium

Wednesday 8th July 2020

On  Thursday, July 9, Radio Amateurs of Canada will participate in the 2020 IEEE AP-S Symposium on Antennas and Propagation by hosting a virtual presentation on the  Canada C3 WSPR Project.

The  Symposium on Antennas and Propagation is the premier international forum for the exchange of ideas on state-of-the-art research in antennas and propagation and radio science.

Through a range of technical and social activities, it provides an opportunity to interact with the world's leading experts in antennas and propagation, and radio science from academia, industry and government.

Originally scheduled as an in-person conference in Montreal from July 5-10, it is being presented as an online symposium as a result of the global pandemic.

Amateur Radio at IEEE AP-S/URSI 2020

Antennas and propagation are very important to Radio Amateurs so it is not a surprise that many participants are Amateurs in fact call signs for 105 symposium registrants have been entered into this years registration system.

Amateur Radio activities and events have been associated with Symposia over the last six years and are usually organized by Amateur Radio clubs in the locations where they take place. They have provided opportunities for Amateurs to meet in person and to showcase the Amateur Radio Service to the Symposium participants.

This year Radio Amateurs and Canada (RAC) and the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) are both very pleased to have an opportunity to make virtual presentations about different aspects of Amateur Radio.

The ARRL will provide a virtual tour of the Hiram Percy Maxim Memorial Station W1AW on Wednesday, July 8 at 1 pm.

RAC will present an overview of the  Canada C3 WSPR Project An Epic Journey to Celebrate Canada and Connect Canadians  on Thursday, July 9 at 3 pm.

Links to these events are available on the conference website to those registered.  Others interested in the RAC presentation can watch it online at 3 pm on Thursday, July 9 by clicking the following link:
https://global.gotomeeting.com/join/916691509

More information on the Symposium can be found online at:
https://2020apsursi.org/AmateurRadio.asp

Registration is free for the online symposium this year at:
https://2020apsursi.org/Registration.asp

Alan Griffin
RAC MarCom Director

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Wednesday 8th July 2020

Island activities:
Compiled by Andreas, DK5ON

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

EU-047; DL, Niedersachsen State group: Markus/DJ4EL will be signing his call /p from Juist Island between the 10th and 13th on 40-10m (SSB).
QSL via DJ4EL, LoTW.

EU-050; I*7, Puglia (Foggia) Region group: Franco/IK4YCQ remains active from San Domino Island until the 10th as IL7/IK4YCQ. QRV on 40-10m;
QSL via IK4YCQ (d/B), LoTW, ClubLog.

NA-134; OX, Greenland's Coastal Islands North West: Bo/OZ1DJJ operates from Aasiaat Island (WW Loc. GP38nq) as OX3LX between July 7 and 30. QRV on 40-4m. He will also try to activate other islands of this IOTA group. QSL via OZ0J.

OC-139; VK5, South Australia State East Centre group: Grant/VK5GR and Andrew/VK5AKH activate Kangaroo Island as VK5KI between July 13 and 18. QRV with two rigs on CW, SSB, and FT8. QSL via M0OXO.
https://vk5gr-iota.net/

Deutscher Amateur Radio Club
e-mail: iota@dxhf.darc.de

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News bulletin from OPDX

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Mid Ulster ARC Tuesday Night Lecture Series

Tuesday 7th July 2020

This Tuesday evening 7th July, the Mid Ulster Amateur Radio Club Tuesday Night Lecture Series continues on zoom with a presentation by RSGB region 8 rep Philip Mi0MSO and a discussion and Q & A with Steve M1ACB the general manager of the RSGB.

All welcome and for details if you would like to join, email Dave at dcparkinson@icloud.com

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Tuesday 7th July 2020

Web hosting service now available for RAC affiliated clubs

The Radio Amateurs of Canada is pleased to announce it is now offering a new benefit to our Affiliated Clubs: the ability to host your clubs website on the RAC server.

And depending on how you choose to set up your domain, in some cases there will be  no cost for this new service!

Radio Amateurs of Canada runs our IT services using OVHcloud, a Montreal-based internet service provider (ISP) that offers affordable high-performance dedicated servers and a wide range of cloud-based services.

Features and Services

Our new web hosting service will include the following:
1) 400 MB of storage space
2) Unlimited email aliases
3) Two MySQL Databases
4) A Free SSL Certificate

5) A Website Builder program, powered by SitePad, for those who have limited coding experience or who want to use the built-in, easy-to-use drop and drag tools and templates to design their sites. You can try a sample demo at sitepad.com/demo.

6) For clubs that do not want to pay the extra cost to have their own domain name (clubname.ca), RAC now provides the opportunity to show your affiliation with RAC using MyRAC in your domain name clubname.myrac.ca  and at no cost!

7) Already have a domain? You can transfer your current domain name over to the RAC domain name service for $20/yr for .ca/.com to cover extending your registration.

Self-Administered Support

RAC is a volunteer-based organization and does not have dedicated staff to provide any site support so it is important that you have someone who has some basic coding experience and is familiar with website functions to administer the site.

If you choose to take advantage of this new web hosting benefit, RAC will be happy to set up the initial hosting requirements and provide you with the necessary administrator credentials, but it will be up to your club to create your own site using the SitePad tools provided or to transfer an existing site using the FTP and cPanel administration interface.

If you have any questions about the new Web Hosting Service please contact:
Jeff Dale, VA3ISP
RAC System Administrator
sysadmin@rac.ca

Not currently an Affiliated Club? It only costs $27.95 per year (plus GST/HST) to become one and to enjoy the other benefits including affordable $5 million liability insurance for the clubs and their members.

For more information about the new RAC Web Hosting Service for Affiliated Clubs please visit:
https://www.rac.ca/rac-affiliated-club-program/web-hosting-service/

For more information about the RAC Affiliated Clubs Program please visit: 
https://www.rac.ca/rac-affiliated-club-program/

Glenn MacDonell, VE3XRA
President, Radio Amateurs of Canada

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A major outbreak of noctilucent clouds

Tuesday 7th July 2020

Last night, a major outbreak of noctilucent clouds (NLCs) blanketed Europe.

Electric-blue tendrils of frosted meteor smoke rippled over European capitals, shocking many observers who had never seen the clouds before.

At sunrise, onlookers snapped photos of Comet NEOWISE surrounded by the NLCs.

See their rare photos on today's edition of Spaceweather.com

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11 year-old passes morse test

Tuesday 7th July 2020

Morse code received a boost from the younger generation, on the 24th June 2020, when 11-year-old Ryan Morrison from Stillorgan, Co. Dublin took and passed his Morse code test.

Conducting the test were IRTS Chief Morse tester Dave Moore EI4BZ and Jerry Cahill EI6BT. Ryan was delighted to pass the Morse test after practicing for five months at twenty minutes per day.

Ryan is looking forward to sitting the radio theory test on 25th July in the Maldron Hotel, Tallaght and we wish him every success.

IRTS

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Dream Rig Youth Essay Contest

Tuesday 7th July 2020

First Annual "Dream Rig" Youth Essay Contest.
The
Intrepid-DX Group is a U.S. based 501 C(3) nonprofit organization that promotes Amateur Radio activities in developing countries.

Announcing our first annual Youth Essay Contest-Prize is a Dream Rig!

The Intrepid-DX Group recognizes the importance of including Youth in our great hobby because they are our future! We are establishing an annual Dream Rig Youth Essay Contest to learn the suggestions of young people for attracting other young operators to Amateur Radio.

What is the Prize?
The prize is a factory fresh ICOM IC-7300! See the features here:
https://www.icomamerica.com/en/products/amateur/hf/7300/default.aspx

Contest Rules:
1) Two-page Essay answering these questions:
A) What are your amateur radio goals?
B) What can we do to attract more youth to amateur radio?
2) USA Amateur Radio License Holders Age 19 or younger.
3) Promise to keep the radio for one year, not flip it, trade it or sell it, and to use it on the air.
4) Send essay in text or MS Word attachment to intrepiddxgroup@gmail.com
by July 31, 2020.
5) You may alternatively mail it to: The Intrepid-DX Group,
3052 Wetmore Dr, San Jose, CA 95148, USA.. Must be post marked by
July 31, 2020.
6) The winner of the Essay Contest will be announced on our Website and Facebook page on August 10, 2020.

All submissions become the property of the Intrepid-DX Group and may
be published.

Questions: Send an email to pauln6pse@gmail.com

Follow us on our homepage www.Intrepid-DX.com and/or our Facebook page
at
https://www.facebook.com/The-Intrepid-DX-Group-180857615282553

OPDX

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The RaDAR Challenge on 11 July

Tuesday 7th July 2020

The second RaDAR Challenge for 2020 takes place from 00:00 UTC to 23:59 UTC on Saturday 11 July 2020 with each RaDAR operator defining their own operating time schedule of a maximum, single period, four hour time slot.

CW, SSB, FM or any legal amateur radio digital mode can be used on all amateur bands including cross band contacts via amateur radio satellites.

The exchange is your call sign, your name, a RS, RST or RSQ report and your grid locator. Get all the information on page 27 of the Blue Book.

South African Radio League

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Commemorative SSTV transmissions

Tuesday 7th July 2020

On 18 July 2020, the Secunda Amateur Radio Club - ZS6SRC will commemorate the SARLs 95 years of existence.

Starting at 02:00 UTC on Saturday 18 July 2020 until 02:00 UTC on Sunday 19 July 2020, the club using the ZS95SARL call sign will be transmitting a series of images in SSTV B/W8 mode via the LEO FM satellites that pass Secunda at more than 10 degrees elevation during the period.

The following satellites will be used: SO-50, AO-91, AO-92 and PO-101.

Please setup your receivers to share in this activity. All received images can be e-mailed to secradio@jenny.co.za.

We will upload them to our website www.secradio.org.za.
Every participant who e-mails their images will receive a certificate, there are special certificates for the youth members who participate.
Let us have some fun!

The SARL is playing a huge role in keeping our hobby alive in these very uncertain times.

SARL

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DXCC Most Wanted

Tuesday 7th July 2020

The "DXCC Most Wanted" entities list has been updated on ClubLog as of July 3rd.

The list contains 340 entities.
The following are the top 26 entities:

1. P5 DPRK (North Korea)
2. 3Y/B Bouvet Island
3. FT5/W Crozet Island
4. BS7H Scarborough Reef
5. CE0X San Felix Islands
6. BV9P Pratas Island
7. KH7K Kure Island
8. KH3 Johnston Island
9. 3Y/P Peter 1 Island
10. FT5/X Kerguelen Island
11. FT/G Glorioso Island
12. VK0M Macquarie Island
13. YV0 Aves Island
14. KH4 Midway Island
15. ZS8 Prince Edward & Marion Islands
16. PY0S Saint Peter and Paul Rocks
17. PY0T Trindade & Martim Vaz Islands
18. KP5 Desecheo Island
19. SV/A Mount Athos
20. VP8S South Sandwich Islands
21. KH5 Palmyra & Jarvis Islands
22. JD/M Minami Torishima
23. EZ Turkmenistan
24. ZL9 New Zealand Subantarctic Islands
25. YK Syria
26. FK/C Chesterfield Island

No change on the Top 26 since we last reported back on May 4th.
The complete "DXCC Most Wanted" entities list (340) is available at:
https://secure.clublog.org/mostwanted.php

OPDX

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The Future of Amateur Radio Clubs

Monday 6th July 2020

The July 4 edition of the Saturday night DX Commander show featured a discussion on the Future of Ham Radio Clubs

The participants discussed the future of Ham Radio Clubs and touched on the subject of how easy - or difficult it SHOULD be to achieve an amateur radio licence.

Taking part in the discussion were:
Ian G0CNN
Tim G5TM
Gil F4WBY
Mike M0MSN
Carl 2E0EZT
Callum M0MCX
Gary M0TIG
Roly ZL1BQD

Watch The Future of Ham Radio Clubs - YouTube Crew July 2020

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Upgrade of the D4VHF station VHF and Microwave antenna systems

Monday 6th July 2020

The D4VHF team on Cape Verde Islands have recently made some major changes to their antenna systems for 2-metres, 23cms and 12 cms.

For 144 MHz, they have now installed three crossed 5-element Yagis stacked in a vertical configuration. These will be using Right Hand Circular Polarization and it is hoped that they will be able to make more contacts as the signals will be less prone to fading.

For the 23cms and 13cms microwave bands, they have installed a 1-metre homemade dish. They will be adding an elevation motor so that it can be used for moonbounce on 1296 MHz and 2300 MHz.

They also have an 80cm dish for accessing the QO100 satellite in geostationary orbit (2.4 GHz up, 100 GHz down).

More info...
https://ei7gl.blogspot.com/2020/07/upgrade-of-d4vhf-station-vhf-microwave.html

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The Space Weather Woman

Monday 6th July 2020

The latest space weather forecast from Dr Tamitha Skov WX6SWW

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Upcoming Online Amateur Radio Talks

Monday 6th July 2020

The Denby Dale ARS has an exciting lineup of online talks available to all radio amateurs via Zoom and YouTube

Talks are held on Wednesdays at 7:30pm BST (1830 GMT).

July 8 - Long Island CW Club :  Learning and improving your Morse Code for radio amateurs

July 15 - Summits on the Air - portable operating ideas and tips Michael G0POT

July 22 - Measurements, analysing, testing  - Alan Wolke W2AEW introduces his extensive You Tube channel

July 29 - Having fun with High Altitude Balloons - Heather Lomond M0HMO

The Zoom meeting ID is 278 609 9353
https://zoom.us/j/2786099353

If the Zoom meeting is over subscribed Denby Dale will stream it live on their YouTube channel for those unable to join the Zoom meeting.

For further information see
http://www.ddars.net/

Videos of earlier talks are on the Denby Dale YouTube channel
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCq9nFTkJJAjOdPZVytoPOcg

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Ofcom prosecutions: Freedom of Information request

Monday 6th July 2020

Only July 1, 2020 in response to a Freedom of Information request Ofcom released limited details of prosecutions of Amateur Radio operators

The questions and abbreviated answers were:


Q: How many times have Ofcom taken action/prosecuted Amateur Radio Operators since 2003 ?

A: Based on the data currently available to us, we can confirm that there have been two prosecutions of individuals holding a radio amateur licence issued under the Wireless Telegraphy Act 2006 (WTA amateur licence), one in 2010 and one in 2019.

Q: Do Ofcom Monitor Amateur Radio Operators Power Levels in accordance with there license?

A: Ofcom does not monitor the power levels of individuals holding a WTA amateur licence.

Q: Has Ofcom gave any amateurs since 2003 any "warnings" or "cautions" if so please give a number of how many have been issued ?

A: Based on the data currently available to us, we can confirm that there have been two formal warnings issued to individuals holding a WTA amateur licence for breach of the WTA, one in 2015 and one in 2020. Based on the data currently available to us, we also confirm that we have not issued any cautions to individuals holdings a WTA amateur licence.

Ofcom's full answers can be seen at
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/664385/response/1594310/attach/9/FOI%20amateur%20radio
%20actions%20and%20power
%20levels%2000918092.pdf


Prior to 2010 Ofcom used to openly publish annual numbers for the Prosecutions, Warnings and Cautions given to radio amateurs on their website, they then decided to erase all the numbers from the site, no explanation was given.

The figures were almost always zero except for FY 2005/6 when Ofcom issued 1 Official Caution and 3 Warning letters, see
https://web.archive.org/web/20080114023635/http://www.ofcom.org.uk/radiocomms/ifi/enforcement/pstats/stats0506

In 2010 Ofcom did bring a prosecution against an individual in Hull, it is not clear if this is the 2010 case that Ofcom were referring to in their reply, see the Hull local newspaper article at  
https://web.archive.org/web/20101128081440/http://www.thisishull
andeastriding.co.uk/news/Presenter-hijacked-airwaves/article-2934445-detail/article.html


It is not known what the 2019 prosecution was for.

In an FoI submitted in 2017 Ofcom said they had never prosecuted any radio amateurs for Repeater Abuse, see
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/foi_ham_radio#incoming-1063811

 

You can submit a Freedom of Information request to Ofcom at
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/new/ofcom

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ICQPodcast - Homebrew CAT and Programming Cable

Monday 6th July 2020

In this episode, Martin M1MRB is joined by Chris Howard M0TCH, Martin Rothwell M0SGL, Ed Durrant DD5LP, Frank Howell K4FMH and Bill Barnes WC3B to discuss the latest Amateur / Ham Radio news. Colin M6BOY rounds up the news in brief and this episodes feature is Homebrew CAT and Programming Cable

ICQ AMATEUR/HAM RADIO PODCAST DONORS
We would like to thank our monthly and annual subscription donors for keeping the podcast advert free. To donate, please visit - http://www.icqpodcast.com/donate

News stories include: -
First Ireland & Slovenia Contact made on 40 MHz Band
Transatlantic Emergency Call
UK Radio Ham Answers Call for Help
Ham Radio Saved My Life!
Presenter Article: Prominent Ham Operators Lead Major Covid-19 Pandemic Effort
First Annual Dream Rig Youth Essay Contest
Online Remote Invigilation Expanding
GB100RS Special Event
Wales Special Event GB0WMZ
NRRL form Vision and Action Working Group

The ICQPodcast can be downloaded from
http://www.icqpodcast.com

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IRTS Award winners for service to the Society or to Amateur Radio 2020

Monday 6th July 2020

At each Annual General Meeting, the Society recognises individuals and clubs who give outstanding service to the Society or Amateur Radio.

This year, the awards were given as follows:

The Presidents Cup was awarded to Dave Deane EI9FBB for his achievements in DXing and DXpeditioning, for his leadership role in the EI DX Group and his service as a DXCC Card Checker.

The Arup Cup goes to Michael Foertig EI3GYB for his excellent work for the IARU Monitoring Service. Michael monitors our bands for intruders and reports monthly to the Region 1 IARUMS.

The Collins Cup goes to Leo McHugh EI8BR who provides excellent CW training in South Dublin Radio Club.

The Pat Conway Cup is awarded to Tony Condon EI2AW, recently retired Treasurer of Limerick Clare Radio Club. Tony was licensed in 1965 and was elected treasurer in 1979/80 and served in the position for 40 years. A truly remarkable record.

The John Ash Chapman Shield goes to the Kerry Amateur Radio Group for their efforts at promoting the hobby at various public events throughout the year.

The Sheila Piper Cup goes to Steve Wright EI5DD for his continuing work in producing the monthly IRTS publication, the online EI News

The Paddy Maher EI3AV Cup goes to the Galway VHF Group for their tremendous work in providing a digital repeater service.

IRTS

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Spain on-the-air for IARU HF World Championship

Monday 6th July 2020

Members of the URE (Unin de Radioaficionados Espaoles) will be active as EF4HQ from their HQ station during the IARU HF World Championship between 1200z Saturday, July 11th and 1200z Sunday, July 12th.

Activity will be on 160/80/40/20/15/10 meters using CW and SSB.

QSL via EA4URE, by the Bureau (prefered) or direct.

Three awards are available (Gold, Silver and Bronze). Details can be found on QRZ.com or
https://concursos.ure.es/en/iaru-hf-world-championship/

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DXCC Country/Entity Report

Monday 6th July 2020

According to the Amateur Radio Cluster Network for the week of Sunday, 28th June, through Sunday, 5th July there were 206 countries active.

Countries available:

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

A2, A4, A6, A7, A9, AP, BV, BY, C3, C5, C9, CE, CE0Y, CE9, CM, CN, CP, CT, CT3, CU, CX, D2, DL, DU, E4, E5/s, E6, E7, EA, EA6, EA8, EA9, EI, EK, EL, EP, ER, ES, EU, EX, EY, F, FG, FK, FM, FO, FR, FS, FW, FY, G, GD, GI, GJ, GM, GU, GW, HA, HB, HB0, HC, HC8, HH, HI, HK, HL, HP, HR, HS, HV, HZ, I, IS, J2, J3, J6, J7, 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, PJ7, PY, PZ, S0, S2, S5, S7, SM, SP, SU, SV, SV5, SV9, T7, T8, TA, TF, TG, TI, TJ, TK, TR, TT, TZ,

UA, UA2, UA9, UK, UN, UR, V3, V5, V7, V8, VE, VK, VK9N, VP2E, VP2M, VP8, VP9, VR, VU, XE, XU, XW, YA, YB, YI, YJ, YK, YL, YN, YO, YS, YU, YV, Z3, Z6, Z8, ZA, ZB, ZD7, ZD8, ZF, ZL, ZP, ZS

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

OPDX

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IOTA News from OPDX

Monday 6th July 2020

Island activities:

Since no or few new IOTA announcements have been made during the past several weeks (probably because of many COVID-19 travel restrictions), OPDX decided to list the following IOTA operations that were active this past week between June 28th-July 4th (as per the DXCluster):

IOTA Callsign Island/GROUP Bands/Modes
------ ---------- ------------- ------------

AF-004 EA8W Canary 17m; FT8
AF-004 EA8DEG Tenerife 20m; SSB
AF-014 FR4PV Reunion 20m; CW
AF-022 ZD7FT St. Helena 17m; SSB
AF-057 5R8UI Madagascar 20m; RTTY
AS-002 A91FTDMC Bahrain 20m; Digi
AS-007 JH3NGD Honshu 40m; SSB
AS-007 JI1UGH Honshu 20m; Digi
AS-019 9V1YC Singapore 20m; Digi
AS-020 BX5AA Taiwan 20m; SSB
AS-021 A61EK Trucial Coast 30m; Digi
AS-031 JD1BHA Ogasawara 40m; Digi
EU-003 CQ8F Formigas 20/17m; SSB
EU-004 EA6AM Balearic 40m; SSB
EU-005 G0TSM Great Britain 15m; Digi
EU-005 G4UJS Great Britain 15m; Digi
EU-005 G6XX Great Britain 40/20m; SSB
EU-005 GB13COL Great Britain 40/20m; SSB
EU-005 GB8AFD Great Britain 40m; SSB
EU-005 GM3YEH Great Britain 20m; Digi
EU-005 M3FON Great Britain 20m; Digi
EU-015 SV9ANK Crete 17m; SSB
EU-015 SV9BMG Crete 17m; Digi
EU-023 9H1VC Malta 10m; SSB
EU-023 9H5BZ Malta 17m; SSB
EU-023 9H5JO Malta 20m; SSB
EU-024 IS0DCR Sardinia 10m; SSB
EU-024 IS0HYW Sardinia 20m; Digi
EU-024 IS0MVE Sardinia 12m; Digi
EU-029 5Q0X Sjaelland 20m; Digi
EU-029 OZ0MJ Sjaelland 20m; SSB
EU-088 OZ7AEI/P Kattegat 80m; Digi
EU-115 2I0DYA Ireland 12m; Digi
EU-115 MI0ITS Ireland 17m; SSB
EU-115 MI0SAI Ireland 15m; Digi
EU-143 EA7KDM Cadiz/Huelva 20m; Digi
EU-032 F1HOM/P Poitou-Charentes 40m; SSB
EU-174 SV2AEL/8 Ammouliani 20m; SSB/FT4
EU-175 CU3HN Azores 17m; Digi
EU-181 LZ2CW Bulgaria 40m; CW
NA-015 CO3VT Cuba 30m; FT8
NA-015 CO5WE Cuba 30m; FT8
NA-026 K2L NY State 40/20m; SSB/CW/Digi
NA-026 KB2ZPB NY State 20m; Digi
NA-065 WU8U WA State N 30m; Digi
NA-107 FM4SA Martinique 20m; SSB
NA-108 J68HZ St. Lucia 20m; SSB
NA-139 K2I MD State E 80m; SSB
NA-143 W8NEO TX State E 15m; SSB
OC-001 VK1TX Australia 40m; SSB
OC-019 K2GT Hawaiian 20m; Digi
OC-021 YB0AZ Java 20m; SSB
OC-021 YB1NWE Java 20m; Digi
OC-021 YB2BOB Java 30m; Digi
OC-022 YB9AY Bali 20m; Digi
OC-032 FK8HM New Caledonia 20m; Digi
OC-147 YG9WKB West Papua's Coastal 40m; Digi
SA-002 VP8LP Falkland 20m; SSB
SA-006 PJ4GR Bonaire 20m; FT8
SA-029 PY1SAD Rio De Janeiro State W 40m; Digi

** Thanks to the individuals who put the island/group and mode
on their QSNs on the PacketCluster reports....

EU-031. Salvadore, IC8SDL, is active from Capri Island. Activity is
on various HF Bands including 6 meters. QSL via IC8SDL:
Salvatore Lembo, Porciello 4/a, Capri, 80073, Italy.

EU-047. Markus, DJ4EL, will be active as DJ4EL/p from Juist Island between July 10-13th. Activity will be on 40-10 meters using SSB with mono-band and multi-vertical antennas. QSL via LoTW or his home callsign. ADDED NOTE: Markus plans to activate more German islands (which have never been activated) at the end of August. Look for more details to be forthcoming.

EU-081. Operators Jean/ON5DX, Krt/ON5DZ, Tim/ON5HC, Pat/ON7PQ and Francis/ON8AZ will be active as TM2U from Saint Marcouf Island between August 23-28th. Activity will be on 80-6 meters (also 60m) using CW, SSB and the Digital modes. QSL via ON8AZ. For more details, see: https://www.eu081.be

EU-113. Markus, DJ4EL, will be active as SV8/DJ4EL from Kythira Island between July 26-30th. Activity will be on 40-10 meters using SSB with quads and vertical antennas. QSL via LoTW or his home callsign.

NA-134. Bo, OZ1DJJ, will be active as OX3LX from Asiaat Island (WW Loc. GP38NQ), Greenland, between July 7-30th (possibly longer due to the COVIN-19). Activity will be on 40-4 meters. When not active, he will run a WSPR beacon on 160 to 6 meters. He states this is NOT a DXpedition, and the best chance to work him will be around lunchtime and after dinner (his local time UTC-2), also during the weekend, possibly at night/morning. QSL via OZ0J direct (see QRZ.com). Logs get uploaded to LoTW, ClubLog and sometimes eQSL. He may also go to other islands in the NA-134 group. For more details and updates, watch QRZ.com or his Web page at: http://geronne.dk/index.php/ox3lx/ox3lx-dxped

OC-139. Grant, VK5GR, on July 5th, updated the following on his VK5KI Expedition to Kangaroo Island between July 13-18th [edited]: "Preparations are almost complete for the VK5KI mini DXpedition to Kangaroo Island. We are on track to depart Monday week (July 13th) on the Sealink Ferry to the island, part of the South Australia State East Centre IOTA group. Andrew, VK5AKH, and I are preparing to take two stations, the first comprising an Elecraft K3S+KPA500, with the second consisting of an Icom IC7600 and SPE 1.5K-LFA (the amplifier that didnt make it to Tonga). We will have a HexBeam on 20-10m, a dedicated 40m vertical and a multi-band vertical for 160-10m. We will be operating SSB, CW and multiple digital modes, including FT8. We do not expect to run Fox/Hound mode this trip but stay tuned on the clusters as we could switch over if we are receiving excessive calls." For more updates/details, see Grant's Web page at: https://vk5gr-iota.net

OC-228. Andy, VK5MAV, will be active as VK5MAV/P from West Island or Granite Island, Australia, during the RSGB IOTA Contest (July 25-26th). Activity will be CW only. QSL via ClubLog's OQRS.

SA-052. Markus, DJ4EL, will activate two islands in the Suriname SA-092 IOTA group in October: Houttuyn Island - as PZ5GE; between October 11-25th; on 40-10m using SSB; WW Loc. GJ25kr Pagegaaien Island - as PZ5G; between October 16-19th; on 80-10m using CW and SSB; WW Loc. GJ15kv QSL both operations via LoTW or his home callsign.

PLEASE NOTE: Since the Webmasters of the new <www.iota-world.org> have decided NOT to post or dedicate a Web page to announce upcoming IOTA operations, PLEASE send your IOTA operations information to the OPDX, and we will post it here in an upcoming bulletin......

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

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Ham College 66

Sunday 5th July 2020

Extra Class Exam Questions Part 4
E1D Amateur space and Earth stations; telemetry and telecommand rules; identification of balloon transmissions; one-way communications.

1:03:10

Download

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AMSAT responds to allegations of unauthorized legal expenses

Sunday 5th July 2020

The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation (AMSAT) has been made aware of public comments alleging financial mismanagement in the form of unauthorized legal expenditures. AMSAT takes these allegations very seriously and in full disclosure, has investigated these claims for many months.

AMSATs corporate records give a full accounting of all expenditures and are provided to its Directors upon request, in compliance with our governing documents and law of the District of Columbia (D.C.) Our office remains closed due to COVID-19, where those documents reside.

Furthermore, AMSAT complies with IRS rules for 501(c)(3) disclosure of public financial documents, such as the Form 990 available on the AMSAT website. Financial review and accounting services from a third-party firm of Certified Public Accountants are utilized by the corporation to ensure governance to best practice and law.

The Corporation vehemently denies false statements alleging unauthorized expenditures.

On behalf of AMSAT,

Clayton Coleman, W5PFG
President

ANS

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'Clubs as Hubs' plan designed to revive UK amateur radio

Sunday 5th July 2020

Australia's WIA News carries a report by Jeremy Boot G4NJH on the 'Clubs as Hubs' plan designed to revive UK amateur radio

WIA News says:

Disintermediation.

That's a big word and it's used often in marketing to indicate the elimination of the middleman - but it's also the heart and soul of an amateur radio initiative to reinvigorate activity in the UK.

Jeremy Boot G4NJH picks up the story from here.

JEREMY:
There's nothing like holding a meeting in person to network and find ways to reverse the decline of ham radio activity in the UK. With the pandemic temporarily putting their work for any such conference on hold, the Mid Somerset Amateur Radio Club however is still advancing its plans. The club's chairman Richard Thomas G4JJP said the challenge is particularly great in Somerset, Englands mostrural county where he believes amateurs need an online environment to learn how to connect with each another for skill-development and support, even if no middleman, such as a club, is nearby.

RICHARD:
"Clubs themselves can share their resources, share their expertise, share their membership if you like across a much wider area. That also gives access to younger people as well who do not naturally join clubs but are naturally linked to social media and online services."

JEREMY:
The concept of clubs as hubs is key and he said it follows the successful model of disintermediation in retail where services like Amazon and eBay are open around the clock and don't rely on a middleman. Likewise, the new model means mentoring, skill-sharing and equipment access could now be accomplished also around the clock. Richard says that what people will ultimately have access to is an experience that's not just informative but transformative.

RICHARD:
"These networks we are trying to build, they are not just about information. They are about people coming to join so they can actually transform in terms of skill, in terms of their ability to use amateur radio, in terms of their ability to learn and so on."

JEREMY:
With input from numerous area clubs and the RSGB, Richard said the network continues its work moving forward and hopes for the day soon when a conference can be held in real-time.

Source WIA News
http://www.wia.org.au/members/broadcast/wianews/display.php?file_id
=wianews-2020-07-05


Read the article Amateur Radio Hubs not Clubs? by Richard Thomas G4JJP
https://www.icqpodcast.com/news/2019/11/2/amateur-radio-hubs-not-clubs

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Statement: Listed Events Cricket Test Matches played in England 2020-2024

Sunday 5th July 2020

Ofcom has granted Skys request to broadcast exclusive live coverage of cricket test matches played in England between 2020 and 2024.

Cricket test matches played in England are listed events, which means Ofcoms consent is needed for a broadcaster to provide exclusive live coverage.

Sky will broadcast the test matches on its Sky Sports Channels. The BBC also has rights to broadcast test match TV highlights, as well as holding national radio rights for all international test matches played in England and Wales during this period. 

More information is available

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ICASA extends the grace period for amateur radio licence renewals

Sunday 5th July 2020

Following discussions, ICASA has informed the SARL that no amateur radio licenses expired on 30 June 2020. The grace period has been extended by several weeks to allow payment.

ICASA still operates the old system in parallel with the new online system which is still in its Beta testing phase.

ICASA informed the SARL that invoices have been mailed. Although some amateurs have reported that they have received an invoice, there will be delays in some areas due to the huge postal backlog caused by the lockdown. It would therefore not be necessary to register on the new online system. You may pay the license fee without the invoice, your just need your licence number.

The South African Radio League

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Big radio switch-off is delayed until 2032

Saturday 4th July 2020

Big radio switch-off is delayed again: AM and FM stations will be available on old devices for another decade as switchover from analogue to digital is put off until 2032

Writing in the Daily Mail, Paul Revoir reports: Radio fans will be able to carry on listening to FM and AM radio stations on older devices in cars and at home until 2032, ministers announced yesterday.

New legislation will mean another delay in scrapping the analogue signal.

Media regulator Ofcom will renew all commercial analogue licences which had been due to expire in 2022 for another decade. 

Nearly 60 per cent of all radio listening is now done through digital but analogue still has a loyal listenership of millions who tune into FM and AM.

Analogue had been due to begin turning off in 2015 but this was put on hold as a result of slower than expected take-up of digital radio.

A switchover date was then due to be looked at once digital accounted for half of all listening a target hit in 2018. 

Yesterday's announcement came after the Government had to decide what to do when a number of national analogue licences, including those for Classic FM and TalkSport, expire in 2022.

Ministers will let Ofcom renew the analogue licences for a further ten-year period if the stations also broadcast on digital radio. 

The changes only affect analogue commercial radio services as digital radio is subject to different arrangements. The BBC's radio stations are not subject to the rules.

Media Minister John Whittingdale said: 'As we move into an increasingly digital world, we're making sure the licensing landscape for radio is fair and up-to-date and allows audiences to enjoy a wide range of high-quality stations. 

'Today's step ensures there is no disruption for loyal listeners of treasured FM and AM radio services, such as Classic FM, Absolute Radio and TalkSport, over the next decade. 

We will soon be turning our attention to providing similar long-term certainty to support the future growth of digital radio.'

The Government said that the move 'clarifies the long-term licensing arrangements for FM and AM radio services' as the shift to digital radio continues.

ttps://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8485629/Radio-fans-listen-FM-decade-digital-switchover-off.html

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Foundations of Amateur Radio

Saturday 4th July 2020

What is a repeater offset and how does it work?

Every week I run a net for new and returning amateurs. A variety of people join in with varying degrees of skill, knowledge and number of birthdays.

One of the regular things I say during that net is that if I'm not acknowledging you, it's because I cannot hear you. I then start a spiel about repeater offsets and give some examples, but what is it really and how does it work?

As you might recall, a repeater is a radio, generally located somewhere useful, like on a hill or tall building, that offers the ability to talk to other amateurs who are not within range of your radio.

For bands like 2m, 70cm and 23cm, generally speaking, contacts are line-of-sight. If you're standing on a hill, you can talk to more people because your line of sight is further away.

This is also why you can talk to the International Space Station with a hand-held, since it's in your line-of-sight, at least some of the time.

A repeater acts as a line-of-sight extender. If it can see both you and another station, it can act as a bridge between you.

How it does this is pretty simple. A repeater listens to your signal and transmits that to the other station. It uses two separate frequencies to make this happen. A receive and a transmit frequency, or more precisely an input and an output frequency. To remember which is which, you can think of a repeater as a giant megaphone, you talk into it and sound comes out. Said differently, think of a repeater as a device that takes an input from one station and makes an output for everyone to listen to.

To actually use a repeater, your radio needs to be setup to transmit on the repeater input and it needs to receive on the repeater output. This means that when you transmit, the repeater can hear you and when you're listening, you can hear the repeater.

To achieve this, you can set your radio up using repeater mode. It uses a thing called an offset to set the difference between the input and output frequencies.

To find out what the offset is, you take the repeater input frequency and subtract the repeater output. If you've set-up your radio correctly you're tuned and listening to the repeater output. When you hit the Push to Talk or PTT, you'll transmit on the input frequency and when you let go, you're back to receiving on the output frequency.

One final roadblock might be that your local repeater has a tone lock. If it does, the repeater will ignore you even if you have all the frequencies correct. This tone is generally published by the repeater owner or your local regulator. You can also check a website called repeaterbook.com to see many of the world's repeaters and their specific settings.

Now, I should point out that while repeater offsets are standardised, they're not the same across bands, across the world, or even within a country or city. Depending on where you are, what the density of repeaters is and what band you're on, the offset number and direction will change.

It's even possible that you have a variety of offsets on the same band in the same city. This means that you cannot just pick a standard offset for your radio but most modern radios will have a method to deal with this.

It's easy to get this wrong.

Setting up your radio for using a repeater is deceptively simple. Three things to look out for when it's not working. You have the input and output reversed, the offset is wrong, or there's a tone blocking your transmission.

I'm Onno VK6FLAB

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5000 km plus opening on 144 MHz from Cape Verde Islands to Europe - 2nd July 2020

Saturday 4th July 2020

The D4VHF station on Cape Verde Islands off the west coast of Africa had another remarkable opening to Europe on 144 MHz on Thursday the 2nd of July 2020. Using the FT8 digital mode, they worked at 20 stations on 2-metres in Italy (11), Slovenia (2) and Croatia (7).

The best DX was 9A6NA who was just over 5000kms away, a remarkable distance for a terrestrial 144 MHz contact.

It is thought that the most likely mode of propagation was a maritime duct from Cape Verde to the coast of Morocco coinciding with a Sporadic-E opening to southern Europe.

More info...
https://ei7gl.blogspot.com/2020/07/5000km-plus-opening-on-144-mhz-from.html

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National Hurricane Centers WX4NHC annual station test is successful

Saturday 4th July 2020

On May 30, operators at WX4NHC at the National Hurricane Center (NHC), working from home, conducted the annual readiness check of the station and of other amateur radio stations and operators around the country and world. WX4NHC is marking its 40th year of public service in 2020.

Assistant Amateur Radio Coordinator at the NHC Julio Ripoll, WD4R, reported that five WX4NHC operators made 146 contacts with US and Caribbean stations.

Despite poor HF propagation, operators made contacts with stations as far north as Maine and as far south and west as Aruba and Curacao, Puerto Rico, and Texas. Operators also made many contacts using digital modes, including Winlink as well as Floridas statewide SARNET UHF repeater network that connects 27 repeaters from Key West to Tallahassee.

Thanks to the ARES E-Letter.
http://www.arrl.org/news/national-hurricane-center-s-wx4nhc-annual-station-test-is-successful

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Monthly performance of 8J17CALL for May-June, 2020

Saturday 4th July 2020

Please be advised that monthly performance of 8J17CALL, 7-CALL 30th Anniversary Special station for May-June, 2020 (23rd May to 22nd June, 2020) are as follows;

Monthly result in this period is 2,172 QSOs including 197 DX QSOs.

Thank you for your calling us from all over the world!

Overall result from the beginning is 4,513 QSOs including 303 DX QSOs as of 22nd May, 2020.

7-CALL is Japanese callsign starting with 7" and it is a symbol of the golden age of Japanese amateur radio history.

There are only 17,583 7-CALL stations (just 6.81% of overall issued 7-CALLs) still exist as of the end of 2019.

Our club is going to promote 30th Anniversary of Japanese 7-CALL issuance with the special station until 22nd April, 2021.

The special station is also known as a brand new WPX.

More detail:

https://7-call.com/news20200704

Twitter:
https://twitter.com/JS1YEY/status/1279278037289197570
Welcome your retweeting!!

About us:
7-call.com/en
(English and Chinese available)

Thank you for your attention to us!

8J17CALL / JS1YEY
7-CALL Amateur Radio Club
7-call.com

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Bright morning Comet alert

Saturday 4th July 2020

Today, Comet NEOWISE (C/2020 F3) is passing by the sun near the orbit of Mercury--and it seems to be thriving.

Many astronomers in Europe and the USA photographed the comet at the crack of dawn shining through bright twilight. The mornings ahead could be even better.

Visit today's edition of Spaceweather.com for pictures and observing tips.

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RSGB ham radio exams on Greatest Hits Radio

Saturday 4th July 2020

The RSGB reports the remotely invigilated online amateur radio exams got a brief mention on the Andy Crane show on Greatest Hits Radio

On June 26 the Worksop Amateur Radio Society Exam Secretary and RSGB remote exam invigilator Donna Buck, M7DON, got a mention for the exams when requesting a song.
(Unfortunately, the recording of this show has now been removed from the GHR website - Ed)

Source RSGB
https://twitter.com/theRSGB

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HAM Radionline 2020 statistics released

Friday 3rd July 2020

DARC reports there were 28,000 views on their channel during the HAM RADIOnline 2020 event held June 26-28 but just 3.4% were women and only 1.5% under 35

HAM RADIOnline 2020 ran from June 26-28 and replaced the in-person Friedrichshafen event which was cancelled due to Coronavirus.

A translation reads:

Like hardly any other type of targeting, YouTube's system statistics reveal how the response of the online content has been to the public.
We remember: Usually we would give you the number of visitors to the HAM RADIO fair at this point. Lets take a look at DARCs own darchamradio YouTube channel in this message.

During the above period, our YouTube channel had an estimated 28,000 views. The average playback time (in the past 28 days) is 7:02 minutes and in the same period our DARC channel gained 496 subscribers - thank you very much! 96.6% of the audience is male, 3.4% female. In the past 28 days, 21.8% of the audience came from DL, 0.7% from HB9 and 0.6% from OE.

The demographic distribution is concentrated at 64% in the age group 55+, 21.4% are 45 to 54 years old and 12.7% are 35 to 44 years old.
[DARC don't state the under 35 figure but it can be calculated from data above]

The top videos of the HAM RADIOnline 2020 with 32 067 minutes of playback were the lecture "Toroidal applications in antenna technology", "From zero to a hundred to the moon" (26 682), "Opening and creation of the HAM RADIOnline 2020" (17 865) , "QO-100 for beginners" (17 768), "DARC Club Championship and Shortwave Cup 2019" (15 556), "Radio weather simply explained" (10 716) and "QO-100 - how do I become a QRV?" Brings it to 9230 These numbers are only snapshots anyway, because the contents of the virtual HAM RADIO remain online and will continue to generate more clicks in the future.

It should be noted that the clicks mentioned only concern the DARC channel, because the other channels of "Faszination Amateurfunk" (FA), the SDR Academy (SDRA) and the amateur radio colloquium also attracted many interested parties and are not considered here. The SDRA and the FA channel also streamed live, with a total of around 500 viewers online at peak times. Without further discussion, the numbers speak for themselves and in Corona times we can proudly say: The HAM RADIOnline 2020 was a complete success!

Nevertheless, we look forward to a personal reunion with all members and friends in Friedrichshafen - hopefully as early as next year.

Source DARC https://darc.de/

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WIA submission to ACMA on 5-year spectrum outlook

Friday 3rd July 2020

The Wireless Institute of Australia have published their submission to the ACMA draft 5-year spectrum outlook consultation

WIA say:

The ACMA five-year spectrum outlook (FYSO) provides an overview of the technology, market and policy drivers likely to shape the demand for spectrum over the next five years, as well as spectrum management priorities and the ACMA work plan. Every year, they seek feedback on the draft FYSO, ahead of settling the final FYSO.

In the draft FYSO 202024, the ACMA:

- revised and updated the forward allocation plan
- plan for private long-term evolution networks
- explore new bands for monitoring
- set out a detailed work plan for the coming year, including the program of upcoming spectrum auctions.

The draft FYSO forms a key part of the ACMA engagement and transparency with industry and the community on spectrum management priorities.

The Wireless institute of Australia provided a response to the ACMA Five-year spectrum outlook 202024 consultation.

The WIA response included references to the following:

- 2200 - 3400 MHz band
- 47 GHz band
- 2300 - 2302 MHz band
- 435 - 438 MHz band
- 5351.5 - 5366.5 MHz allocation
- 70 MHz allocation
- education, examination and certification
- non-assigned amateur and outpost licensing arrangements
- compliance and enforcement
- revised callsign structure

Source WIA
https://www.wia.org.au/newsevents/news/2020/20200701-1/index.php

WIA submission
https://www.wia.org.au/newsevents/news/2020/20200701-1/documents/WIA%20Submission
%20on%20FYSO.pdf

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CW Training Program

Friday 3rd July 2020

In this video Howard WB2UZE and John K2NY of the Long Island CW Club talk to David W0DHG about their CW training program  

The club started in 2017 offers over 45 hours of CW classes EACH week, and has grown to over 600 members from all 50 states and 15 countries all over the world.

HRN423 Long Island CW Club

Ham Radio Now
https://www.youtube.com/user/HamRadioNow/videos

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BBC Local Radio to cut 139 jobs in England

Friday 3rd July 2020

BBC local radio stations in England will lose 139 jobs as the network keeps the simplified schedules it created in March and adds a new all-England late show.

Helen Thomas held an all-staff virtual meeting on Thursday morning to communicate the changes with staff. She said the BBC needed to refresh, reinvent and reinvigorate as a result of recent events.

She told staff the new schedules have brought a new clarity to audiences across England with three, four hour shows in daytime and that there will also be restructuring in engineering and special features.

BBC England needs to save 25m operational costs before 2022. In total, 450 equivalent full-time roles across radio, TV and online in the nations and regions will be cut, from a staff of around 3,000.

Across BBC Local Radio programmes will be hosted by a single presenter with no more double-headed shows. As well as the standardised shows 6-10am, 10am-2pm and 2-6pm seven days a week, there will be a new all-England Weekday and Weekend Late Show and shared regional programming between 6pm and 10pm on Sundays.

Unions say Band B (Journalist Co-ordinators) and Band C (Journalist) roles will be formally placed at risk of redundancy. Although Band D and above will not be in scope, management anticipate interest at these grades through voluntary redundancy.

GNS, which provides national news content to BBC Local Radio, will be replaced by a new Central News Service and move to Salford at some point in the future, resulting in a number of job losses.

Cuts are also being made in television and online news operations, and the BBC will continue to look at saving costs with its buildings portfolio.
In regional TV, the evening news programmes will be presented by a single host rather than being double-headed.

Helen Thomas, the Director of BBC England, said: Im proud people have turned to us for trusted news and information in huge numbers during COVID-19, proving the importance of our local and regional services. But those services were created more than 50 years ago, have changed very little and need significant reinvention. That has meant taking some difficult decisions.

We are in the age of the Facebook community group and the WhatsApp neighbourhood chat. We must adapt to better reflect how people live their lives, how they get their news and what content they want.

Were going to modernise our offer to audiences in England by making digital a central part of everything we do. Well take forward lessons from COVID-19 that will make us more agile and more in touch with communities while also ensuring were as efficient as we can be. Im confident we can evolve our local and regional services while improving our impact and better serving our audiences.

Source:
ttps://radiotoday.co.uk/2020/07/bbc-local-radio-to-cut-139-jobs-in-england

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QSO Today Virtual Ham Expo

Friday 3rd July 2020

It's time to pack your virtual suitcase and prepare for a virtual journey that will take you to the first QSO Today Virtual Ham Expo.

The venue may be virtual but the hams and the expertise and support they are offering are very real.

The QSO Today podcast, hosted by Eric Guth 4Z1UG, has already lined up such well-known speakers as Glen Johnson, to discuss DXpeditions, Ward Silver, to talk about grounding and bonding and John Portune to explain building slot antennas in an HOA environment.

This free 48-hour event on August 8th and 9th is a first for the popular QSO Today podcast Eric hosts weekly. The virtual platform allows attendees to interact with exhibitors via chat, video and audio and true to the ham expo experience, it will also feature an exhibit hall with booths as well as an auditorium for speakers.

Although the expo will be live for 48 hours during the 8th and 9th, August, it will also be accessible for another 30 days as an on-demand event.

For additional details visit qsotodayhamexpo.com - and then make sure your smartphones, tablets and laptops will be charged up as you are likely to be there for some time!

WIA

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Monaco operation

Friday 3rd July 2020

Ennio, IW1RBI, will once again be active as 3A/IW1RBI from Monaco between July 6-19th.

Activity will be on 30-6 meters using SSB and FT8.

QSL via his home callsign or LoTW

OPDX

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CMA, ICO and Ofcom launch the Digital Regulation Cooperation Forum

Friday 3rd July 2020

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), Information Commissioners Office (ICO) and Ofcom have today announced the launch of a new forum to help ensure online services work well for people and businesses in the UK.

The Digital Regulation Cooperation Forum strengthens existing collaboration and coordination between the three regulators. It aims to harness their collective expertise when data, privacy, competition, communications and content interact.

A statement outlining the Forums objectives and how the three organisations will work together to support effective and efficient regulation across the digital landscape has been published. A news release summarising the initiative is also available.  

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GB100RS Special Event

Friday 3rd July 2020

Members of the Royal Signals Amateur Radio Society (RSARS) are celebrating their 100th anniversary by using the special callsign GB100RS between June 28th and the end of October.

Activity will be on various HF bands using CW, SSB, RTTY and PSK.
Special awards are available.

See: https://rsars.org.uk/rsars-corps-celebrations-2020

QSL via the Bureau

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Another Shortwave WebSDR operational in Iceland

Thursday 2nd July 2020

On June 27, a new KiwiSDR web software defined radio became operational in Iceland  

A translation of the IRA post reads:

The new receiver is located in Blfjll at an altitude of 690 meters. It has for the first time used, a horizontal dipole for 80 and 40 meters.

The KiwiSDR receiver operates from 10 kHz up to 30 MHz. You can listen to AM, FM, SSB and CW transmissions and select a bandwidth suitable for each formulation. Up to eight users can be logged into the recipient at the same time.

Ari rlfur Jhannesson TF1A was responsible for the installation of the device today, which is owned by Georg Kulp, TF3GZ.
Blfjll: http://blafjoll.utvarp.com/

The other two receivers that are active are located at Bjargtngar in Vesturbygg, Iceland's westernmost plains and the outermost point of Ltrabjarg and at Raufarhfn. Listen at:
Bjargtngar: http://bjarg.utvarp.com/
Raufarhfn: http://raufarhofn.utvarp.com/

The IRA Board thanks Ara and Georg for their valuable contributions. This is an important addition for radio amateurs who are experimenting in these frequency bands, as well as listeners and anyone interested in the spread of radio waves.

Source IRA https://tinyurl.com/IcelandIRA

KiwiSDR Network
http://kiwisdr.com/public/

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Denby Dale online talk features RSGB General Manager

Thursday 2nd July 2020

In the June 24 online talk from the Denby Dale ARS, RSGB General Manager Steve Thomas M1ACB answered questions about the explosion of interest in Amateur Radio in the past few months

The video starts with Dan Romanchik KB6NU, well-known from his regular appearances on ICQ Podcast, talking about "Having Fun with Morse Code".

That is followed at 01:05:00 into the video by the RSGB General Manager.

Watch KB6NU Dan Romanchik "Having Fun with Morse Code"

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Social distancing the norm for Ramona ham radio club

Thursday 2nd July 2020

Ramona Sentinel reports for years, Ramona radio amateurs have been meeting each other, sharing aspects of their daily lives, and participating in large eventsusually with physical distancing well in place

Thats because the operators, also known as hams, operate on handheld or mobile radios. These radios are different from the widely known citizen band, or CB radios, that anyone can purchase and talk on, because ham radio operators must be licensed.

As president of the Ramona Outback Amateur Radio Society (ROARS), Steve Stipp KK6AHB says COVID 19 has caused the club to make some changes, but it hasnt slowed them down.

We have about 75 members, Stipp explains, and we hold our meetings over the radio now instead of in person.

The virus has also caused one of their biggest yearly events to change.

Read the full story at
https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/ramona-sentinel/news/story/2020-07-01/social-distancing-the-norm-for-ramona-ham-radio-club

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The July-August 2020 Communicator

Thursday 2nd July 2020

Over 90 Pages Of Projects, News, Views and Reviews...

Amateur Radio News from the South West corner of Canada and elsewhere. You will find Amateur Radio related articles, profiles, news, tips and how-to's.

You can view or download it as a .PDF file from:

https://ve7sar.blogspot.com/2020/07/the-july-august-2020-communicator.html

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Thousands of radio operators band together to practice for the worst

Thursday 2nd July 2020

Forbes magazine article reports radio amateurs across North America spent last weekend doing emergency communications practice

For twenty-four hours over the weekend of June 27 and 28, 2020, thousands of amateur radio operators across the United States and Canada set up temporary emergency communications centers where everything had to be done without external services. This meant they had to erect their own temporary antennas, provide their own emergency power and operate their equipment in temporary locations. Their goal was to prove that they can communicate with each other in times of an emergency when theres no infrastructure available.

These amateur radio operators, also known as hams, devote seemingly endless hours preparing their radio equipment, computers, cables and antennas required to conduct radio communications in todays demanding environment. Whats more, these radio operators volunteered their time, provided their own equipment and transported it to a remote site without electrical power, frequently without shelter and with only the supplies they could carry. And this time, they were doing it in the middle of a pandemic where they met crowd size requirements and social distancing laws.

They do this for the same reason we always exercise, said former FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate. Its better to have it break in practice than break for real.

Read the full article at
https://www.forbes.com/sites/waynerash/2020/06/30/thousands-of-radio-operators-band-together-to-practice-for-the-worst/

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Thursday 2nd July 2020

Island activities:
Compiled by Andreas, DK5ON

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

AN-002; 3Y, Bouvet: The Rebel DX Group has announced plans for a new attempt to reach Bouvet in 2021. https://rebeldxgroup.com/

AN-016; Various, Antarctica: Alexander/RX3ABI currently works on Mirny Base. He will stay until early 2021 and plans to operate as RI1ANM during his spare time. QRV on 40 and 20m on FT8 between 0200z and 1530z. QSL via RX3ABI.

EU-004; EA6, Balearic Islands: Andy/DK5ON will be active again from Mallorca (ARLHS BAL-010 (Cap de Pera Light), WLOTA 1902) between July 1 and 11 as  EA6/DK5ON. QRV on 40 to 6m on SSB, CW, and digital modes. QSL via DK5ON (d/B), LoTW, ClubLog OQRS.

Deutscher Amateur Radio Club
e-mail: iota@dxhf.darc.de

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News bulletin from OPDX

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New IARU Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Coordinator appointed

Wednesday 1st July 2020

ARRL reports a UK radio amateur, Martin Sach G8KDF, has been appointed global Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Coordinator by the IARU succeeding Tore Worren LA9QL

The ARRL post says:

EMC is a major challenge for all radiocommunication services, the IARU noted. Radio amateurs are experiencing increased interference caused by unwanted radio frequency emissions from a wide variety, and rapidly growing number, of electronic devices.

The EMC Coordinators mission is to ensure that the concerns and needs of radio amateurs are effectively addressed in international standards bodies particularly CISPR and the ITU as well as in regional telecommunication organizations and at national levels through IARU member-societies. Assisting in the effort is a network of volunteers with expertise in the field of EMC.

IARU President Tim Ellam, VE6SH, said, The IARU Administrative Council is grateful for Tores leadership and for his willingness to continue contributing to this vital work. We are fortunate that someone as qualified as Martin is willing to take the reins. He has already represented the IARU effectively at important international meetings and we look forward to working even more closely with him.

Radio amateurs throughout the world support the work of the IARU through membership and involvement in their national IARU member-societies.
The IARU needs qualified volunteers in this and other fields.


Source ARRL
http://www.arrl.org/news/new-iaru-electromagnetic-compatibility-emc-coordinator-appointed

Working for IARU
https://www.iaru.org/about-us/working-for-iaru/

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Ears to the World: Radio hams complete 24-hour Field Day exercise

Wednesday 1st July 2020

Shelly Swift of the Greenfield Reporter newspaper attended the Hancock Amateur Radio Club Field Day station last weekend

The newspaper says:

The local club has never won, which isnt uncommon for a club of just 25 to 30 members that operates 100 watts or less. But the group always has a good time at the all-night event. Even when it pours down rain.

Ryan Ogle and Ed Tanaka of Indianapolis brought their 10-year-old sons by to try out some radio communications.

Im not a ham guy myself, but at the same time I certainly recognize that it plays an important role, especially if some kind of local disaster happens, Tanaka said. With the coronavirus stuff going on, it makes you realize that emergency communications like this are so important.

Jon Reeves WB9CNE
, president of the Hancock County club, said that ham radio is more than just a hobby for many. Its also heavily relied upon for weather tracking and to help with communications during public emergencies, as it was in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.


Read the full story at
http://www.greenfield
reporter.com/2020/06/30/ears_to_the_world_
ham_radio_operators_complete
_24hour_field_day_exercise/

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The rapid brightening of Comet NEOWISE

Wednesday 1st July 2020

This week, Comet NEOWISE (C/2020 F3) is passing by the sun and rapidly brightening to naked-eye visibility.

New images from the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) show an 8-fold increase in brightness over just a few days.

A movie of the comet's development is featured on today's edition of Spaceweather.com

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Ham radio in Barrow-in-Furness

Wednesday 1st July 2020

The Mail reports on some significant milestones in the history of the Furness Amateur Radio Society

Last week the newspaper published a nostalgic look back on when The Mail was present for a couple of significant milestones for the Furness Amateur Radio Society and dignitaries were there to mark the occasions.

Read the story at
https://www.nwemail.co.uk/news/18545350.nostalgia-stations-world-got-touch-furness-hams-anniversaries/

Furness Amateur Radio Society celebrated their 100th anniversary in 2013
http://www.fars.org.uk/GB100RXY.php

This is the time of year when local newspapers can be short of material to publish and so it's a good time to get some free publicity for amateur radio.

The RSGB produce a handy Media Guide and Template Press Release which can help you to submit a story about the hobby to your local paper, see
http://rsgb.org/main/clubs/media-guide-for-affiliated-societies/

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RAC Canada Day Contest 2020 - today!

Wednesday 1st July 2020

The global pandemic continues to be a significant threat and we want to make sure that all participants in the RAC Canada Day Contest on Wednesday, July 1 help us to celebrate Canadas birthday safely. 

The RAC Contest Committee is therefore asking all participants in the Canada Day Contest 2020 to follow the guidelines provided by the government and health officials in your respective area for any of the multi-op categories enabled within the contest. 

Unless you can carry out a multi-multi operation with those individuals who you are now physically living with, we suggest that such categories be avoided for this contest. For example, in Ontario, Canada the current state of emergency restricts social gatherings of more than ten people so this would be the maximum number of participants allowed in all categories in the RAC Canada Day Contest.

If you do carry out an operation in any of the multi-op categories, please advise as part of your log submission that you have followed your locally applicable guidelines for group sizes and social (physical) distancing. 

We hope to hear you on the air for the July 1, 2020 Canada Day Contest (00:00 UTC through 23:59:59 UTC).

For the complete rules please visit:
https://www.rac.ca/rac-canada-day-contest-celebrate-canada/

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Wales special event GB0WMZ

Wednesday 1st July 2020

Members of the North Wales Amateur Radio Group and Eryri DX group are now active from the Welsh Mountain Zoo situated in Colwyn Bay on the North Wales coast; http://www.welshmountainzoo.org/ using the special callsign GB0WMZ until July 17th.

QSL via MW0JWP by the Bureau.

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Jan Mayen DXpedition

Wednesday 1st July 2020

It has been announced that a team of operators will activate Jan Mayen (EU-022) for a 2 week DXpedition sometime in late September 2021 as JX0X

The team members mentioned are Ken/LA7GIA, Mats/RM2D, Dima/RA9USU and Dominik/R4BE (DL5EBE).

The team has been planning this operation for 14 months and finally received all permissions needed from the Military and the Norwegian authorities.

Activity will be on all bands and modes, but the DXpedition will focus on the lower bands (160-30m) using CW and the Digital modes. They will also do the other bands like 60, 20 and possible 17m and SSB depending on the conditions.

Look for more details as well as a Web page to be forthcoming

OPDX

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100 years of radio since Marconis big breakthrough

Wednesday 1st July 2020

Ofcom summarizes the key changes in UK broadcasting since Dame Nellie Melba broadcast from Chelmsford in Essex in 1920

Marconi is credited with being the first person to transmit radio signals, doing so over a distance of a mile and a half in 1895 in Lavernock Point in the Vale of Glamorgan in Wales. He later set up his Wireless Telegraph and Signal Company in Chelmsford, in 1899.

His 1920 broadcast took place from there. On 15 June a song recital by Dame Nellie Melba was broadcast using a telephone transmitter, and was heard in a number of different countries.

Its fair to say a lot has happened in radio since Marconis breakthrough.
Here we take a look at some of the major events.

Read the Ofcom article at
https://www.ofcom.org.uk/about-ofcom/latest/features-and-news/100-years-of-radio/

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