The Wirral & District Amateur Radio Club

Twice Winner of the RSGB Region 3

'Club of the Year' Trophy for 2013 & 2014

Club Members' 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


Interested in Radio & Electronics ? 

Get started right away, by acquiring a Short Wave or VHF receiver and listening to the activity on the amateur bands but if you want to transmit and talk to people then you will need a valid Amateur Radio Licence to achieve the full enjoyment of Amateur Radio.  This includes experimenting with antennas and much more.

WADARC has a team able to provide Foundation and Intermediate Licence tuition so if you are interested please contact our training team by sending an email with your details to the link at the bottom.

We hope to be starting an Intermediate Licence Course very soon, with other exam possibilities to follow.

If you would like to find out more, please send an email to explaining your interest.



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

The 2019 SARL Blue Book

Sunday 16th December 2018

The 2019 Contest Manual or Blue Book has been released and is available for download from Contest page on the SARL website.

Why 'Blue Book?'
Well, the first Contest Manual was printed and had blue covers, and from there, the name.

Please download a copy of the 2019 Contest Manual, as changes have been made to the General Rules, the YL Sprint, the Youth Sprint and the ZS3 Sprint; two new contests have been added, and small changes have been made to other contests.

The South African Radio League

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Saturday 15th December 2018

New "Local Repeater"

One of our new members Rob, M0ORA has written in to our secretary as follows :-

I have a new NoV approval for a 70cm Digital Voive (DV) repeater near Neston, South Wirral

Repeater callsign is GB7RA.  More information coming soon but this repeater will support users of DStar, DMR & Yaesu Fusion radios. It will allow you to connect using your preferred digital voice (DV) mode 

It will be connected to reflectors for each DV mode but feel free to change these as you use the repeaters. It will default back to the pre-defined reflectors after a period of inactivity.

The repeater is currently in testing mode but the aim is to have it fully on-air by Jan 2019

Repeater website is 

Thanks Rob

Well done Rob, more news on frequency etc. when we receive it

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Tim Peake KG5BVI / GB1SS inspired 2 million young people

Saturday 15th December 2018

A new report has found more than 2 million young people in the UK engaged with education and outreach programmes linked to Tim Peake’s Principia Mission to space. The report highlights the role of ARISS and amateur radio during the mission

UK PM Theresa May and Tim Peake with some of the young people involved in Principia mission

The UK Space Agency ran a £3 million education campaign alongside the mission to the International Space Station, which blasted off three years ago today (15 December), to inspire a greater interest and understanding of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) as well as space.

The campaign - the largest and most successful ever organised for a European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut – encompassed 34 separate projects and covered a spectrum of ages and subjects, including mass participation experiments in schools using seeds that had been in space.

The report, produced by the UK Space Agency, found one in three UK schools took part in at least one Principia activity. Every region of the UK ran school activities with all projects accessible to boys and girls. The majority of the 34 projects focused on primary school children although some went right through to university.

Human Spaceflight & Microgravity Programme Manager at UK Space Agency
Libby Jackson @LibbyJackson__ tweeted:
This report records my most memorable and most proud of professional achievement. Thank you to each and every one of the amazing team and partner organisations for what we did together along with @spacegovuk, @esa and @astro_timpeake. The impacts will be felt for many years yet.

ARISS-UK Ciaran Morgan @M0XTD tweeted:
Thank you @LibbyJackson__ and to the amazing team at @spacegovuk for choosing @ARISS_status to be part of the #Principia mission. We are proud to have taken part and to have made such an impression with so many students. Looking forward to the future!

Download the full Principia campaign report, or summary education report from

ARISS Principia

ARISS-UK videos of the Principia amateur radio contacts

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Two killed in accident at Antarctic research station

Saturday 15th December 2018

Two fire technicians at a US scientific station in Antarctica have died after being found unconscious, according to the National Science Foundation (NSF).

The two technicians had been working on a fire-suppression system at McMurdo station on Ross Island, the foundation said on Wednesday. It said they were found on the floor by a helicopter pilot who had landed after spotting what appeared to be smoke from the building.

Both were taken from the building and given CPR. One died at the scene. The other was flown to a clinic and pronounced dead shortly after.

It happened on Tuesday eastern US time at a generator building that powers a radio transmitter near the McMurdo station.

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Variation to UK Broadband’s licence for spectrum in the 3.6 GHz band

Saturday 15th December 2018

Ofcom has granted a request from UK Broadband to vary its licence for use of spectrum in the 3.6 GHz band.

UK Broadband, owned by Hutchison 3G UK Limited, holds a licence to use 168 MHz of spectrum in two separate 84 MHz blocks at 3605-3689 MHz and 3925-4009 MHz.

UK Broadband requested the following changes to its lower frequency block:

• to shift it down by 5 MHz;
• to reduce its frequency holding in this block by 4 MHz;
• to update the relevant technical requirements; and
• to allow a 9-month transitional period for these changes to take effect.

In June, Ofcom published a consultation on its provisional view to grant the variation. Following consideration of the responses, we have decided to grant the variation and issued UK Broadband with the amended licence.

Ofcom has made this decision in-line with our statutory duties and relevant spectrum management functions. Granting this variation simplifies spectrum holdings in the 3.6-3.8 GHz band and increases the amount of contiguous spectrum usable by all operators, that can be made available in our planned auction of spectrum in the 3.6-3.8 GHz band by 10 MHz

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First FT8 Roundup is a huge hit

Friday 14th December 2018

The ARRL report the first FT8 Roundup held December 1–2 attracted some 1,300 logs with about 131,200 contacts recorded

Ed Muns, W0YK, who’s NCJ “Digital Contesting” contributing editor, said FT8 Roundup participation compared favorably with that for the ARRL RTTY Roundup, which has averaged around 1,700 logs in recent years.

Read the ARRL story at

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Hackaday: Weaponizing the radio spectrum

Friday 14th December 2018

Dan Maloney KC1DJT writes on Hackaday about the talk "Electronic Warfare; a Brief Overview of Weaponized RF Design" given by radio amateur Jeremy Hong KD8TUO to the Hackaday Superconference

From fighter jets that are flying Software Defined Radios, to the cat and mouse game of law enforcement and radar detectors, here's a fascinating peek into Electronic Warfare.

Read the Hackaday article at

Watch Hackaday Supercon - Jeremy Hong KD8TUO : Electronic Warfare; a Brief Overview of Weaponized RF Design

Other Hackaday Supercon videos are at

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IEEE Microwave Society awards radio hams

Friday 14th December 2018

The ARRL reports the IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques Society (MTT-S) has announced its 2019 award recipients. The list includes several radio amateurs

James C. Rautio, AJ3K, will receive the Microwave Career Award for a career of leadership, meritorious achievement, creativity, and outstanding contributions in the field of microwave theory and techniques.

Wayne Shiroma, NH7PA, will receive the Distinguished Service Award, in recognition of a distinguished record of service to the MTT-S and the microwave profession.

Amir Mortazawi, AC8YB, will receive the Distinguished Educator Award, for outstanding achievements as an educator, mentor, and role model of microwave engineers and engineering students.

Frederick “Fritz” Raab, W1FR, will receive the Pioneer Award in recognition of pioneering contributions to the theory, development, and practical use of high-efficiency power amplifiers. Raab was coordinator of the ARRL 500 kHz experiment (WD2XSH), which was instrumental in securing the new 630-meter band.

In addition, Rick Campbell, KK7B, was elected an IEEE fellow in 2019 for his work in extending wafer probing into the millimeter-wave range. He is well known for his publications, including Experimental Methods in RF Design (with co-authors Wes Hayward, W7ZOI, and Bob Larkin, W7PUA) and his contributions to ARRL publications, including QST. Awards will be presented during the International Microwave Symposium (IMS), June 2 – 7, 2019, in Boston.

Award recipients

Source ARRL

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Updates for users of spectrum in the 700 MHz band

Friday 14th December 2018

Work to clear the 700 MHz spectrum band remains on track, as Ofcom confirms additional funding for some spectrum users affected by the clearance programme

The 700 MHz spectrum band is currently used by digital terrestrial TV and by Programme Making and Special Events (PMSE) equipment, such as wireless microphones. The band is being cleared so the airwaves can be used to improve mobile services.

Ofcom has published a review of progress and the timescale to complete the programme. The clearance work during 2018 has progressed as planned, and the programme is on track to be completed by May 2020.

Additional support for PMSE users

Ofcom has also confirmed additional funding to support eligible owners of PMSE equipment who currently use the 700 MHz band.

In August 2018 we announced details of a funding scheme that will see eligible PMSE equipment owners receive at least 60% of the estimated cost of replacing their equipment. We also consulted on plans to award claimants a further 5% of the cost of replacing their equipment, to help meet additional costs they face as a result of participating in the PMSE funding scheme.

After considering responses to the consultation, we have decided to increase the amount of additional funding equipment owners will receive to 10%. Further details on how to register for the funding scheme will be available early next year.

700 MHz clearance programme timescale review

Statement: PMSE clearing the 700 MHz band

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Half of homes could boost their broadband

Friday 14th December 2018

Half of British households could switch to faster broadband today, Ofcom has found, as it announces a range of action to protect loyal broadband customers and help people get a better deal.

Ofcom figures show that 94% of UK homes and offices can now get superfast broadband, but less than half have taken it up.

And many people are paying more than they need to. Around four million households with old-style, basic broadband have passed their initial contract period and could switch to superfast for the same – or less – money than they currently pay.

So Ofcom is announcing a range of measures today to help people get the best deal.

Consumer campaign. A major new information campaign and website, Boost Your Broadband, launches today. Backed by consumer champion Gloria Hunniford OBE, the Government’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and consumer body Which?, the website – – uses Ofcom data to tell people what broadband they can get in their area, and offers impartial advice on how to find the best deal today

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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 14th December 2018

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.

GHANA, 9G. Kay, 9G5SA is usually QRV as 9G2HO from the club station at Ho Technical University. Activity of late has been on 17 meters.
QSL via LoTW.

ANTARCTICA. Felix, DL5XL is QRV as DP1POL from station Neumayer III, IOTA AN-016, until the end of February 2019. Activity is on the HF bands using mostly CW and various digital modes. QSL via DL1ZBO.

PALESTINE, E4. Elvira, IV3FSG is QRV as E44YL from Bethlehem until December 18. Activity is on 80 to 10 meters, and possibly 160 meters, using CW, SSB, RTTY, PSK and FT8. QSL via IK3GES.

SOUTH COOK ISLANDS, E5. Milan, OK1DWC is QRV as E51DWC from Rarotonga, IOTA OC-013. Activity is on 160 to 10 meters using CW, SSB and RTTY. QSL to home call.

NEW CALEDONIA, FK. Phil, F6OBD will be QRV as FK/F6OBD from December 18 to February 10, 2019. Activity will be holiday style on the various HF bands using various digital modes. QSL to home call.

THAILAND, HS. Erich, HB9FIH is QRV as HS0ZLS near Pattaya and Koh Samui, IOTA AS-101, until January 10, 2019. Activity is on the HF bands using CW, some SSB, and various digital modes. QSL to home call. In addition, special event station HS18NBTC is QRV until December 16 to celebrate Thailand Amateur Radio Day. QSL via bureau.

OGASAWARA, JD1. Harry, JG7PSJ will be QRV as JD1BMH from Chichijima Island, IOTA AS-031, from December 17 to January 2, 2019. Activity will be on the HF bands using CW, SSB and RTTY. QSL direct to home call.

GREENLAND, OX. Station OX/SM3UQK is QRV until December 19 from Constable Point, Nerlerit Inaat. Activity is on 40 and 20 meters.
QSL to home call.

DENMARK, OZ. Frank, 5P2BA is QRV with Santa Claus call sign XP1SC until January 6. QSL via OZ2CBA.

ARUBA, P4. Ben, DL6RAI is QRV as P4/DL6RAI until December 27.
Activity is holiday style on the low bands, with a focus on CW, and some part-time activities in various contests. QSL via LoTW.

SLOVENIA, S5. Members of radio club S59DCD are QRV as S511PMC to call attention to the World Wide Peace Messenger City Contest to be held January 5 and 6, 2019. QSL via bureau.

GABON, TR. Roland, F8EN will be QRV as TR8CR beginning December 16 and here for 3 months. Activity will be on 40 to 17 meters, and possibly 80 meters, using CW and SSB. QSL via F6AJA.

ROMANIA, YO. Nine Santa Claus stations are QRV as YP2XMAS through YP0XMAS during December from various locations. Activity is on the HF bands using CW, SSB and various digital modes. QSL via operators' instructions.

KOSOVO, Z6. Philipp, DK6SP, Tomi, HA8RT, Flo, OE3FTA and Horia, YO3IMD are QRV as Z66DH from Pristina until December 22. Activity is on all HF bands using CW, SSB and various digital modes, including FT8 in DXpedition mode. QSL direct to M0SDV.

SOUTH SUDAN, Z8. Diya, YI1DZ is here for another six months and will be QRV as Z81D. Activity is on 80 to 10 meters using SSB and various digital modes in his spare time. QSL via OM3JW.

The ARRL CW Rookie Roundup, NCCC RTTY Sprint, QRP 80-Meter CW Fox Hunt, NCCC CW Sprint, UN DIGI Contest, Russian 160-Meter Contest, Feld Hell Sprint, OK DX RTTY Contest, Padang DX SSB Contest and Croatian CW Contest are all on tap for this weekend.

The Run for the Bacon QRP CW Contest is scheduled for December 17.

The CWops Mini-CWT Test, QRP 40-Meter CW Fox Hunt, Phone Fray and NAQCC CW Sprint are scheduled for December 19.

Youth On The Air runs during all of December.

The ARRL International Grid Chase runs during all of 2018.

Please see December QST, page 70, and the ARRL and WA7BNM contest web sites for details

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French ham radio licence fee

Thursday 13th December 2018

REF reports the Finance committee of the Senate has tabled an amendment to the French Finance Act 2019 concerning the annual amateur radio license fee

The annual license fee in France is currently 45.73 euros and yields about 600,000 euros.

The amendment says that collecting the license fee costs 409.6% of the amount recovered and proposes "removing this tax".

REF notes "amendment has yet to pass to the Assembly and perhaps to the Joint Committee, it seems that there has been an echo of our proposal at (see this link) "

REF in Google English

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Swiss Council of States - ham radio antennas

Thursday 13th December 2018

The national amateur radio society in Switzerland, the USKA, reports on legislation concerning amateur radio antennas

A Google translation of the USKA post reads:

Without opposition, the Council of States accepted, on November 27, 2018, Art. 37a (LTC) Radio amateurs.

Report of the Commission: Mr. Councilor Claude Janiak

Report of the Commission: Mr. Councilor Olivier French States

This new article should facilitate authorization procedures (for investigation) for the construction of single antennas (wired, ground plane, vertical antennas, flagpole antennas and the like), provided that the Cantons make the same interpretation of these provisions or resume them as they are (It will have to be verified by the Cantonal Parliaments). The same procedure should allow the maintenance and replacement of existing antennas without bureaucracy.

We have not reached our goal yet!

For demanding legislation, it is common for differences to exist between the draft of the Council of States and that of the National Council. The discrepancies must now be resolved (the process of eliminating discrepancies). The National Council must therefore approve the current art 37a so that it passes the barrier of the final vote of the Federal Assembly and can enter into force within the framework of the law on telecommunications.

We wholeheartedly thank all sections who, through their voting recommendations and invitations to members of the Council of States, have made this success a success!

Before the session, the two rapporteurs of the Council of States were personally approached by radio amateurs who argued and informed them: The State Councilor Claude Janiak BL / PS by Pepe HB9EVT (FACB) and the State Councilor Olivier Français VD / PLR by Pascal HB9IIB (RAV). Numerous other contacts with members of the Council of States have contributed to this encouraging result. A good example of teamwork of Swiss radio amateurs!

The LTC Project returns to the CTT-N National Council Commission.

Download Article 37a and Speaking Out: LTC 37a Council of States 27 Nov 2018

Willi Vollenweider HB9AMC

UKSA in Google English

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Comtech 23cm Amateur Television (ATV) LCD tuner using Arduino

Thursday 13th December 2018

In October 2018 I started using a Comtech 23cm transmitter for my ATV operations.

Rather than use the 8-way dip switches to tune the transmitter, I decided to work on a project to develop a rotary LCD tuner using an Arduino Uno as the micro-controller. This article shows how I did it, including the code.


Adrian M0NWK

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NZ 60m trial extended

Thursday 13th December 2018

New Zealand's national society NZART report that RSM have agreed to extend the one year 60m trial for a further six months to give more time for
information gathering.

If you already hold a sub-licence from NZART you do not need to do
anything. The trial will now finish on July 24th 2019.

If you wish to operate on 60m you must have a sub-licence from NZART – please see


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Vonage fined for emergency call service failure

Thursday 13th December 2018

Ofcom has fined Vonage for failing to ensure its customers had uninterrupted access to the emergency services.

Our investigation found that Vonage, which offers cloud-based communications services, broke an important rule designed to ensure that everyone can contact the emergency services at all times.

What went wrong

In January 2018, Vonage began to implement some technical changes to the way calls were routed on its network.

Although the company carried out testing to ensure that regular calls were still being connected during the transition, it failed to test the emergency call numbers, 999 and 112, as part of this process. Vonage therefore failed to identify that emergency calls were not connecting successfully following the routing changes it had made.

Ofcom’s decision and financial penalty

Our investigation concluded that Vonage had broken our rules, which require communications providers to maintain uninterrupted access to the emergency services.

We have imposed a penalty of £24,500 on the company. This figure includes a 30% discount as a result of Vonage admitting liability and agreeing to settle the case. The penalty will be paid to HM Paymaster General. Vonage has since made changes to its network and testing processes to minimise the risk of a similar incident occurring in future.

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DF13, German special event

Thursday 13th December 2018

Look for special event stations DF13DEJU, DF13BLN, DF13BUD, DF13MUC, DF13PAR and DF13STO to be active between January 1st and June 30th, 2019.

Activity is to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the maiden flight of the Junkers F-13, the mother of all commercial aircraft.

All QSOs will be automatically confirmed after July 15th, 2019, with a QSL card via Bureau. If you do not need a QSL card, let them know.
This saves their money and time. Send direct QSLs via DM2TO cards -- shipping starting after August 1st, 2019. For more details and info on awards, see their page.

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Working Amateur Radio Satellites

Wednesday 12th December 2018

Stephen 2E0SSM recently did a talk at the Lincoln Shortwave Club about working amateur satellites and he has now published an article on his website

This is a basic introduction explaining the things Stephen had to learn when he first started.

A guide to working amateur satellites is now available at

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Artist made a radio out of a kitchen sink

Wednesday 12th December 2018

The IEEE Spectrum magazine reports on Amanda Dawn Christie’s work which commemorates the fading glory of shortwave radio

Some artists work in oils, say, or marble. Amanda Dawn Christie works in radio. Not radio in the sense of performing on air. But radio in the sense of the giant cultural and technological phenomenon that is broadcasting, and specifically shortwave broadcasting.

For decades, shortwave was the only way to reach a global audience in real time. Broadcasters such as the BBC World Service and Voice of America used it to project “soft power.” But as the Internet grew, interest in shortwave diminished.

Christie’s art draws from shortwave’s history, representing it in sculpture, performance, photography, and film. Her focus is the life of the Radio Canada International (RCI) transmitter complex, located in Sackville, New Brunswick, near Christie’s hometown. The transmitter was in operation from the 1940s until 2012.

“Those towers were always just a part of the landscape that I grew up around,” says Christie. It took a radio-building workshop to spark her interest: “I built a radio out of a toilet-paper tube.... I thought I did a great job because I picked up Italian radio. It turned out I did not—I was just really close to this international shortwave site.”

Read the full story and watch video Requium for Radio : Full Quiet Flutter at

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Santa Claus from Romania

Wednesday 12th December 2018

Santa Claus and his Ham Radio elves are coming back to YO again in 2018 for the third consecutive time.

The YP-XMAS callsigns are already a tradition and the Romanian RadioClub Association (ARR) aims again to give to the Radio Community moments of joy around the Winter Holidays

The beautiful Santa Claus story on radio waves started by Finland's radio amateurs (OH9SCL in 1986 and later the OF9X team) has been taken over in recent years by different colleagues from several European countries.

In this context, the initiator of the Romanian team, Sorin YO2MSB, put his traditional Santa clothes, a white beard, and three years ago he went looking for the elves eager for such a radio event. And they rushed to say "yes" to the call of Santa and began to prepare their necessary radio equipment. Therefore, on December 01st, 2016, the first calls with YP-XMAS were heard in frequencies.

Today, in 2018, we are preparing for the largest team with activators in all the districts of YO


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How to Choose a Two-Way Radio

Wednesday 12th December 2018

Popular Mechanics magazine article says Walkie-talkies, CB radios, and Ham radios are a fun and useful way to communicate with your group of friends and family

Two-way radios are usually either citizens-band, a.k.a. CBs, GMRS, or ham radios. They all operate on different frequencies, and have varying wattage outputs and ranges. Our handy guide explains the differences.

Read the Popular Mechanics article at

What is Amateur Radio?

The RSGB provide an online map to help you locate an amateur radio training course in the UK, see

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Invitation of applications for new community radio licences

Wednesday 12th December 2018

Ofcom is inviting applications for new FM community radio licences in 43 areas across the UK.

These areas were announced in September 2018, and were based on earlier responses from individuals or groups who had expressed an interest in applying for a community radio licence.

The closing date for receiving applications is 3pm on Tuesday 26 March 2019

Click here to view the PDF (196.3 KB) document

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Antarctica op

Wednesday 12th December 2018

Felix DL5XL operates once more as DP1POL from the station Neumayer III (AN-016, WW Loc. IB59uh).

QRV until the end of February 2019 on HF (mostly on CW and digital modes).

QSL via DL1BZO (d/B), LoTW.


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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Wednesday 12th December 2018

Island activities:

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

AS-031; JD, Chichi/ Haha/ Muko Islands: Harry/JG7PSJ will be active from Chichijima Island (WW Loc. QL17cc, JCG 10007) as JD1BMH from Dec. 17 until Jan. 2 on CW, SSB, and RTTY. QSL via JG7PSJ (d) or via JD1BMH (B).

NA-026; W2, New York State group: Bodo/DF8DX operates from Long Island (USi NY003S) as KT3Q/2 between the 18th and 23rd. QSL via DF8DX (d/B).

NA-079; W4, Florida State (Dry Tortugas Islands) group: James/WX4TV, Hope/KM4IPF, and Faith Hannah/AE4FH activate Garden Key between the 14th and 17th with the call N4T on HF. QSL via WK1DS.

Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News bulletin from OPDX

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WSJT-X 2.0 full release now available

Tuesday 11th December 2018

The WSJT-X 2.0 software suite has been released, and developer Joe Taylor, K1JT, is urging FT8 and MSK144 users to upgrade to what will become the new standard

The ARRL says:

The FT8 and MSK144 protocols have been enhanced in a way that is not backward compatible with older versions of the program. That includes any version 1.9 releases.

"The new protocols become the worldwide standards starting on December 10, 2018, and all users should upgrade to WSJT-X 2.0 by January 1, 2019," Taylor said on the WSJT-X home page. "After that date, only the new FT8 and MSK144 should be used on the air."

Quick Start Guide for WSJT

FT8 Operating Guide by ZL2IFB

Source ARRL

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‘Suspicious package’ at post office was ham radio equipment

Tuesday 11th December 2018

The Gainesville Sun reports the U.S. Post Office on Southwest 34th Street was briefly evacuated after the discovery of a suspicious package

The newspaper says:

A suspicious package found Thursday at U.S. Post Office on Southwest 34th Street was deemed non-threatening by law enforcement.

An email sent by Gainesville Police Department spokesman Capt. Jorge Campos said several officers responded to a call from the post office about a large package with pipes and wire coming from it.

Campos wrote that the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office bomb squad was called out and the building was evacuated.

It was eventually determined to be ham radio parts protruding through the box.

Employees were able to return to work.


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IARUMS reports on mystery frequency hopping station

Tuesday 11th December 2018

IARU-R1 Monitoring System reports an intriguing transmission has been spotted giving short beeps exactly on each second, frequency hopping between 10108-10115 kHz and 18834/18899 kHz

One of the mysterious transmitters is located in the vicinity of Chicago, near the town of Aurora or Elburn, Illinois.

The International Amateur Radio Union Monitoring System (IARUMS) Region 1 November 2018 newsletter can be read at

Reports of Amateur Band intruders can be logged on the IARU Region 1 Monitoring System Logger at

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

IARU Monitoring System (IARUMS)

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Voyager 2 enters interstellar space

Tuesday 11th December 2018

At Monday's American Geophysical Union meeting in Washington, NASA announced that Voyager 2 has exited the sun's magnetic bubble and entered interstellar space.

The 70s-era probe is now experiencing a blizzard of galactic cosmic rays as it charts the unexplored space between the stars.

See the data and learn more on today's edition of

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Masada Fortress special event

Tuesday 11th December 2018

Members of the Holy Land DX Group will operate from the heart of 'Masada Fortress' as 4X0M (M=Masada) between January 4-6th, 2019.

Built by King Herod the Great, Masada, was designated a UNESCO World Heritage in 2001.

From its strategic perch in the Judean Desert overlooking the Dead Sea, this historically famous palace fortress is one of the most visited tourist sites in all of Israel. For more info, see:

Activity will start on Friday, January 4th, at 0730 UTC, and close down on Sunday, January 6th, 0600 UTC. They will have two stations on the air on
80-10 meters using CW and SSB.

Operators mentioned are Ruben/4Z5FI, Mark/ 4Z4KX, Alex/4Z4AK, Ros/4Z5LA, Yuli/4X6HP, Vladimir/4Z5IW, Amir/4X6YA, Arthur/4X4DZ, Jan/4X1VF and Hal/W8HC.

QSL Manager is Antonello, IK2DUW

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Global Radio Guide is now available

Tuesday 11th December 2018

The 11th edition of Teak Publishing’s Global Radio Guide (Winter 2018-2019) is now available on Amazon.

Written by Gayle Van Horn, the electronic guide (formerly known as the International Shortwave Broadcast Guide), features a 24-hour station/frequency summary with Winter 2018-2019 schedules for selected medium wave and longwave/shortwave radio stations. It also offers hourly schedules of language services and frequencies, including world target areas, for more than 500 broadcast stations as well as a list of DX radio programs and internet websites addresses for many of the stations mentioned.

New in the 11th edition of the Global Radio Guide is a feature on “The Battle of the Airwaves in Cuba” by Gayle (W4GVH) and Larry (N5FPW) Van Horn. This report, say the authors, details the “historic and ongoing war over the airwaves between the United States and Cuba.”

Read the full Radio World article:

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NASA On The Air

Monday 10th December 2018

Listen for amateur radio clubs at NASA facilities as they participate in the NASA On The Air activity to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 8 mission that spanned launch December 21, 1968, to splashdown on December 27, 1968.

The 50th anniversary event will start on 0000 UTC December 21, 2018 through 2359 UTC December 27, 2018.

14.271 MHz and other bands depending on conditions with spotting announcements on DX clusters, FaceBook, and twitter.

QSL and a certificate with information available on

This marks the concluding event of the year-long NASA On the Air celebration of 60th anniversary of NASA.



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Israel Amateur Radio Club Xmas event

Monday 10th December 2018

Members of the Israel Amateur Radio Club (I.A.R.C) are pleased to announce the 2018 XMAS activity for its national award program: Holy-land Christianity On The Air (HOCOTA).

The program includes numerous sites with major significance to Christianity - well-known to every Christian and based by the language and citation from the holy books, Christian tradition, beliefs and heritage, as well documented archeology and other researches.

This is the third year of the program and the activity will be commenced during the 2018 Christmas season (December 25-29th) by 5 special event multi-operators stations. The current sub-program includes Christian sites from various sectors of the program including Kar Nachum, Caesarea, Jerusalem, Latrun and Massada.

Look for the following to be active:
1. Callsign 4X2XMAS; KFAR NACHUM - ?(Capernaum) Church of the Holy
Apostles; Ref. No. (WW. Loc. KM72SV, HOLYLAND Loc. K-07-YZ, HOLYLAND N05KN and 4XFF-0064); Operators 4Z1DZ, 4Z5SL, 4Z1SH, 4X6ZM, 4Z1KD and 4X1KW; QSL ONLY via LoTW and eQSL.CC; NO BUREAU - DO NOT WASTE YOUR CARD or YOUR TIME

2. Callsign 4X3XMAS; CAESAREA - Crusader Fortress; Ref. No. (Category
F-01, WW. Loc. KM72KM, F-09-FD and 4XFF0161); Operators 4Z1NB, 4X1OM, 4Z1KM and 4X6FR; QSL ONLY via LoTW and eQSL.CC; NO BUREAU - DO NOT WASTE YOUR CARD or YOUR TIME

3. Callsign 4X19HNY; JERUSALEM; Ref. No. (WW. Loc. KM72 and J-18-JS); Operators 4X1KS, 4X1ZZ and 4X1TQ; QSL ONLY via LoTW and eQSL.CC; NO BUREAU - DO NOT WASTE YOUR CARD or YOUR TIME

4. Callsign 4X9XMAS; LATRUN; Ref. No. (WW. Loc. KM71LU and G-17-RM); Operators 4X1IG, 4Z4DX, 4X6RE, 4Z4UO, 4X5AR and 4X5ZS; QSL ONLY via LoTW and eQSL.CC; NO BUREAU - DO NOT WASTE YOUR CARD or YOUR TIME

5. Callsign 4X0M; See details above under "4X0, ISRAEL (Update/Special
Event)"; QSL via IK2DUW

For more details, see for each callsign.....


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Santa Claus special event from Romania

Monday 10th December 2018

Look for the following special event Santa Claus stations to be active during December.

Activity will be on various HF bands using CW, SSB and the Digital modes. An electronic award will be issued for working stations on at least 3 different bands upon request.

QSL via YO2MSB or see (under YP2XMAS) for more details.

Here are the special event stations and their locations:

YP2XMAS - Timisoara (QSL via YO9FNP)
YP3XMAS - Bucuresti (QSL via YO9FNP)
YP4XMAS - Cernavoda (QSL via YO2MSB)
YP5XMAS - Transilvania (QSL via YO9FNP)
YP6XMAS - Brasov (QSL via YO2MSB)
YP7XMAS - Arges (QSL via YO2MSB)
YP8XMAS - Suceava (QSL via YO2MSB)
YP9XMAS - Buzau (QSL via YO9FNP)
YP0XMAS - Giurgiu (QSL via YO9KYO)


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1940s Radio Times now online

Monday 10th December 2018

The BBC Genome Project has released the next batch of pages from the publication Radio Times, this time covering the 1940s

The BBC have issued a warning about the content of the Radio Times saying "This historical record contains material which some might find offensive"

Read the copies of the Radio Times at

BBC announcement

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EI100MCV, last chance to operate

Monday 10th December 2018

Reminder that as we approach December 31 the National Maritime Museum of Ireland Radio Club would like to invite EI licence holders to operate Special Event Call Sign EI100MCV before the licence expires.

This commemorates the centenary of the sinking, by torpedo, of RMS Leinster in the final days of World War 1, resulting in the largest loss of life in the Irish Sea.

Any EI licensed operator can operate the call from their own QTH between now and Dec 31st. Anyone wishing to do so should contact Dave O’Connor EI6AL for further information.

Those who have already used the call can still use the Google doc. form to register their desired Date, Time and Mode.

Logs should be forwarded in ADI format to Dave O’Connor EI6AL

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DXCC Country/Entity Report

Monday 10th December 2018

According to the Amateur Radio Cluster Network for the week of Sunday, 2nd December, through Sunday, 9th December there were 216 countries active.

Countries available:

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

A2, A4, A6, A7, A9, AP, BV, BY, C3, C5, C6, CE, CE9, CM, CN, CP, CT, CT3, CU, CX, D2, D4, DL, DU, E5/n, E5/s, E7, EA, EA6, EA8, EA9, EI, EK, EL, EP, ER, ES, ET, EU, EX, EY, F, FG, FK, FM, FO, FP, FR, FS, FY, G, GD, GI, GJ, GM, GU, GW, H4, HA, HB, HB0, HC, HH, HI, HK, HK0/a, HL, HP, HR, HS, HZ, I, IS, J2, J3, J6, J7, J8, JA, JD/o, JT, JW, JY,

K, KG4, 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, PJ5, PJ7, PY, PY0F, PZ, S0, S2, S5, S7, SM, SP, ST, SU, SV, SV5, SV9, T2, T32, T7, TA, TF, TG, TI, TK, TR, TY, TZ,

UA, UA2, UA9, UK, UN, UR, V3, V5, V8, VE, VK, VK0M, VP2E, VP2M, VP8, VP8/h, VP9, VR, VU, XE, XT, XU, XX9, YA, YB, YI, YL, YN, YO, YS, YU, YV, Z2, 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" (WFWL).


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IOTA News from OPDX

Monday 10th December 2018

Island activities:

AS-032. Take, JS6RRR/JI3DST, will be active from Nishinoomate-City, Tanega Island, between 0900z, December 26th and 0000z, January 7th. He will use the following callsign: JI3DST/6 for DX, and JS6RRR/6 & JL3YWN/6 for JA stations. Activity will be on 80/40/30/20/17/15/12/10/6 meters using CW, SSB, FM, RTTY and FT8. Operations may vary in case of heavy rains or other conditions.
QSL routes are as follows: JI3DST/6 via JI3DST; JS6RRR/6 via JS6RRR and JL3YWN/6: ONLY 1 WAY (Please don't send QSL to him). Please check for details. Look for logs to be posted on ClubLog.

NA-079. Operators Faith Hannah (AE4FH), Hope (KM4IPF), and Dad (WX4TV) will be operating amateur radio from the Dry Tortugas National Park from December 14-17th. Their call will be N4T. QSL via WK1DS. This trip to the Dry Tortugas is a dry run to see if it is feasible to take other young amateur radio operators to the island to give them the experience of going on an amateur radio DXpedition. If this trip is successful, the plan is to form a 501-C3 non-profit to begin to take two or three young hams each year to the Dry Tortugas or other islands to give them this experience.
The Dry Tortugas are a desired entity in the amateur radio world, so the team expects to make lots of contacts during the three days that they are on the air from the island. They will be operating on HF (shortwave) and also the amateur radio satellites, in an attempt to contact as many other amateur radio operators as possible.
Reference numbers are: IOTA NA-079, USI# FL013S, WFF ref# KFF-0023, GRID EL-84, and the National Parks on the Air: Dry Tortugas K-0023.
To prepare for this trip, the girls and Dad camped in the Crane Point Hammock in the Florida Keys and operated during the RSGB IOTA Contest in late July, 2018. The girls gained experience in primitive camping skills, preparing food over open fires, and operating from a tent with battery and solar power.
The National Park Service and the Yankee Freedom Ferry do not allow liquid fuels or accelerants on the island, so they needed to find a way to boil water using dry fuel. They tried many different ways to boil water for food preparation and every one of them failed–until they found the Kelly Kettle.
They will be using the Ultimate Stainless Base Camp Kit for food preparation. Watch the YouTube channel for a video that they will be producing about this very soon!

NA-250. NEW IOTA! A couple of sources are reporting that operators Mike/K9AJ and Bruce/KD6WW are planning to be active from Yakutat County Group, Coastal Groups (Alaska), sometime between May 10-13th, 2019. Look for more details to be forthcoming.

PLEASE NOTE: Since the Webmasters of the new <> 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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Fox-1Cliff/AO-95 Commissioning Status

Sunday 9th December 2018

Following the launch of Fox-1Cliff/AO-95, AMSAT Engineering began the commissioning process, with the help of AMSAT Operations, on Tuesday December 4.

Satellite telemetry indicates that the bird is healthy, and I thank all of the stations who have captured and relayed the telemetry that enabled us to monitor and determine the health of the various systems on board.

Fox-1Cliff required an extended period monitoring battery and power levels due to the anomaly and fix that was applied back in February of 2016 during environmental testing, and the result of that is positive.

However, during the next steps of commissioning we discovered an anomaly with her receive capability. After a few days of tests, analysis, and discussion, it appears that Fox-1Cliff/AO-95 will not be commissioned as our fourth Fox-1 amateur radio satellite.

AMSAT Engineering will continue to evaluate and test Fox-1Cliff/AO- 95 for solutions to the anomaly and your continued help in providing telemetry is appreciated so that we can have data throughout her daily orbits rather than limited data over our U.S. stations. The data, analysis, and testing could lead to a positive solution but at the very least will be important to AMSAT's satellite programs in providing information that would help us and others, as we do freely share our successes and failures, to avoid similar situations with future missions.

I would like to thank all of the AMSAT Fox Engineering volunteers who made Fox-1Cliff possible and continue to build our new satellites, becoming even better as we move forward.

I will provide more information on the anomaly and any determination we make regarding the possible cause or causes as well as information on the possibility of recovery, over time. Please be patient regarding that. Many of you have probably built a project and had to troubleshoot it on your bench, we are in a troubleshooting situation here with the additional challenge of being 600 km away from our bench.

Jerry Buxton, N0JY
AMSAT Vice President of Engineering

Amsat website

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Satellites activation from the Queen Mary on December 15

Sunday 9th December 2018

Patrick WD9EWK will be part of a day of satellite operating from a deck on the RMS Queen Mary, docked at Long Beach in southern California, Saturday 15 December 2018.

Operations will be portable, almost like a Field Day, and should include FM, SSB, and possibly packet. All operations from the Queen Mary will be as W6RO, the call sign for the wireless room on the ship operated by the Associated Radio Amateurs of Long Beach. Depending on staffing in the W6RO wireless room, there may also be HF activity during the satellite operation.

Amateur radio has a long history on the Queen Mary, including a special-event station GB5QM that operated as the ship made its final voyage from England to Long Beach in 1967, and in almost 4 decades with the W6RO operations from Long Beach.

More about the history of amateur radio on the Queen Mary is available at:

Patrick had the pleasure of working AO-7 from W6RO in March 2016. An article covering this quick operation appeared in the AMSAT Journal, and is available from the "Articles" folder in my Dropbox space: as well as an AMSAT-BB posting after that activation:

QSLing for the W6RO satellite activation will be handled per the procedure on W6RO's QRZ page: with one exception: no QSO numbers will be given during the satellite operation. Satellite QSOs from W6RO will be done in the normal manner, with an exchange of call signs and grid locators. W6RO is located in grid DM03. W6RO does not use Logbook of the World, so all QSL requests will need to be mailed directly to the W6RO address in QRZ.

Thanks to Endaf Buckley N6UTC, the Associated Radio Amateurs of Long Beach and the ARALB's W6RO Wireless Room Manager (David Akins N6HHR), and the Queen Mary management for their work in arranging this event.
I look forward to another opportunity to work satellites from the Queen Mary.

Patrick WD9EWK


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WIA Hot Issues

Sunday 9th December 2018

What is immediately facing the WIA?

The ‘Current WIA Hot Issues’ section on the website gives you a view into some of the major pressure points that the WIA stays across on your behalf.

This is all part of the service that the WIA provides to Amateur Radio.

You can find the list easily:
just click the burning flame icon on the home page.

Some of the items are on the list because they need further action or submissions. Some are there to invite input from members. Others are tracking long term activities or have an indefinite time-frame. All these items are things that are identified and watched by the WIA board.

To be informed and become aware, check out the ‘Current WIA Hot Issues’ section at via the icon on the home page or type “hot issues” into the search bar.

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Es’hail-2 ham radio transponders in TX Factor show

Saturday 8th December 2018

In Episode 22 of the popular amateur radio show TX Factor, AMSAT-UK's Graham Shirville G3VZV explains what to expect when the geostationary satellite Es’hail-2 is in full operation

This episode features two new exciting radios. There’s a sneak preview of the Yaesu FTdx 101 hybrid transceiver and a comprehensive overview of the high-performance Icom IC-R6800 general coverage receiver.

Pete Sipple M0PSX visits the 2018 RSGB Convention. We chat with Graham Shirville G3VZV with an update on the latest news from AMSAT-UK including what to expect when the geostationary satellite Es’hail-2 is in full operation. And more down to earth, Bob Mccreadie G0FGX ventures into the controversial world of Network Radio!

Watch TX Factor - Episode 22 (TXF022)


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China's mission to the farside of the Moon

Saturday 8th December 2018

China is going where no one has gone before--the farside of the Moon.

Yesterday (Friday), a Long March 3B rocket blasted off from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center, propelling a lander and rover toward hidden craters possibly containing water and other resources key to future human exploration.

If the mission succeeds, it will catapult China into the forefront of lunar exploration with a landing that no other nation has even dared to attempt.

Visit today's edition of for the full story

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Coverage set for Russian spacewalk at International Space Station

Saturday 8th December 2018

Two Russian cosmonauts will venture outside the International Space Station at 11 a.m. EST Tuesday, Dec. 11, to conduct a six-hour spacewalk. Live coverage will begin at 10 a.m. on NASA Television and the agency’s website.

Expedition 57 Flight Engineers Oleg Kononenko and Sergey Prokopyev of Roscosmos will use this spacewalk to examine a section of the external hull of the Soyuz MS-09 spacecraft currently docked to the space station.

In late August, a pressure leak occurred on the space station that was traced to the Soyuz. Within hours after finding the source of the leak, the Expedition 56 crew sealed the hole and the station has since maintained a steady pressure.

The cosmonauts will take samples of any residue found on the hull and take digital images of the area before placing a new thermal blanket over it. The samples and images will provide additional information that will aid the investigation into the cause of the pressure leak. The cosmonauts also will retrieve science experiments from Rassvet before heading back inside.

Roscosmos cosmonaut Sergey Prokopyev lays cable for the installation of the Icarus animal-tracking experiment on the Zvezda service module
 during a spacewalk that lasted 7 hours 46 minutes. Fellow cosmonaut Oleg Artemyev (out of frame) joined Prokopyev during the spacewalk which also saw the deployment
 of four nano-satellites and the retrieval of a materials exposure experiment on the Russian segment of the International Space Station. Credits: NASA

Kononenko, extravehicular crew member 1 (EV1), will wear a spacesuit bearing red stripes on this spacewalk, the fourth of his career. Prokopyev, on his second spacewalk, will bear blue stripes as EV2.

Prokopyev, NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor KG5TMT, and ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Alexander Gerst KF5ONO are scheduled to depart the station in the Soyuz MS-09 at 8:42 p.m. Dec. 19, returning home to Earth after a six-and-half-month mission. 

Get breaking news, images and features from the space station on social media at: and

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JY1Sat now Jordan-OSCAR 97 (JO-97)

Saturday 8th December 2018

On December 3rd, 2018, JY1Sat was launched on a Falcon 9 vehicle from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. Part of Spaceflight’s SSO-A: Smallsat Express launch, JY1Sat is a project of the Crown Prince Foundation of Jordan. Telemetry has been received and decoded around the world since the launch.

At the request of the Crown Prince Foundation, AMSAT hereby designates JY1Sat as Jordan-OSCAR 97 (JO-97).

We congratulate the owners and operators of JO-97, thank them for their contribution to the amateur satellite community, and wish them continued success on this and future projects.


Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA

AMSAT VP Operations / OSCAR Number Administrator

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YOTA 2018 video released

Friday 7th December 2018

The RSGB have released a video of the YOTA 2018 event held August 8-15 in South Africa

The RSGB was proud to send a team to South Africa to represent the UK at YOTA 2018. The event welcomed 74 young radio amateurs from all over the world, including participants from seven African countries.

This video, filmed and edited by Peter Barnes, M0SWN, shows the highlights of the event, and accompanies the official blog which can be found at

Watch Youngsters on the Air (YOTA) 2018

YOTA 2018

RSGB Youth Committee

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'Aurora Phoenixes' fly over Norway

Friday 7th December 2018

Last month, a stream of solar wind hit Earth's magnetic field, sparking a memorable display of Phoenix-shaped auroras over Norway.

The gaseous stream is about to return as the underlying coronal hole turns to face Earth once again. Estimated time of arrival: Dec. 8th or 9th.

Visit for more information and updates

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Changes to FUNcube Warehouses

Friday 7th December 2018

The FUNcube team are busy commissioning JY1Sat and assisting with ESEO.

To this end we have instigated a new data warehouse which will aggregate all the data generated by FUNcube payloads.

This can be found at and is currently supporting NAYIF-1, JY1Sat & ESEO. (The Dashboard warehouse URL for these satellites is the same)

The existing warehouse at will continue to support FUNcube-1 and hold data for UKube-1 and it's Dashboard warehouse URL remains

We appreciate that this may be a little confusing as we transition but please bear with us.

We be transferring all your points from the existing warehouse to the new one in the next few days when the commissioning dust settles.

If you have lost your Dashboard credentials, please email

We still have available for general discussions.

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Magnetic Loop Antenna Current and Voltage Distribution

Thursday 6th December 2018

Magnetic Loop Antenna Current and Voltage Distribution with Jeri Ellsworth

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RSGB release Board Minutes for Aug-Oct

Thursday 6th December 2018

The RSGB Board Minutes for the August, September and October 2018 meetings have been released

Members can read the RSGB Board proceedings at

You can join the RSGB online at

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

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Finland special event

Thursday 6th December 2018

The Santa's Radio Club will be active as OH9S from the Arctic Circle until December 8th.

Activity will be mainly on 80-6 meters using all modes; also including the popular FT8 Digital mode.

QSL via ClubLog's OQRS (Preferred) or LoTW. QSOs will automatically be QSLed via the Bureau.

For some additional info, see:


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Greek special event

Thursday 6th December 2018

Look for special event station SX60RAAG to be active until December 31st.

Activity is to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Radio Amateur Association of Greece (RAAG).

Operations will be on all HF bands and modes. QSL via LoTW, eQSL or ClubLog's OQRS (for direct and by the Bureau). Awards are available for 4 classes.

For more details, log search and downloadable awards, go to:

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FCC tells LED sign marketers to abide by statutes and rules

Wednesday 5th December 2018

US communications regulator the FCC has taken action against suppliers of LED signs that pollute the precious radio spectrum

The ARRL report:

The FCC Enforcement Bureau has called on on marketers of light-emitting diode (LED) signs to ensure that these lights comply with FCC rules.
Since March of this year, the agency has entered into 21 settlement agreements with companies that marketed noncompliant LED signs in violation of the Communications Act and FCC rules.

The settlements yielded approximately $850,000 in penalties, and commitments to ensure compliance with the law going forward. Adherence to the FCC’s equipment authorization and marketing rules is critical because radio frequency emissions from the signs may cause harmful interference to licensed communications, such as wireless services, the FCC said.

“In light of these recent settlements, we remind LED sign marketers of their obligations under the law,” said Enforcement Bureau Chief Rosemary Harold. “The FCC takes seriously its responsibility in ensuring that energy-emitting devices like LED lights do not interfere with authorized transmissions.”

LED lights are often used in digital billboards and other commercial and industrial applications, including billboards and large video displays in sports arenas. Given the electrical design of these lights, they may emit RF energy. Prior to being marketed in the US, LED sign models must be tested and comply with FCC technical standards and must include the proper labeling, identification, and user information disclosures. The FCC Office of Engineering and Technology (OET) oversees the equipment authorization process for RF devices, including LED signs.

The Enforcement Bureau investigated hundreds of indoor and outdoor LED sign models and discovered repeated FCC rule violations concerning the failure to market the models with the required equipment authorizations, labeling, and user information disclosures. To settle its respective investigation, each company verified that the models at issue were brought into compliance with FCC rules, agreed to pay a monetary penalty, and committed to abide by a compliance plan to improve internal procedures to avoid future violations.

The Bureau has settled 21 investigations to date, with penalties as high as $115,000. Each settlement is available on the FCC Enforcement Bureau home page.

Source ARRL

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IARU plans for 2019

Wednesday 5th December 2018

The IARU has released details about their planned participation in key ITU meetings in 2019

Download the PDF from

Reports on IARU Administrative Council Meetings are available at

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A comet as big as the full moon

Wednesday 5th December 2018

Hyperactive comet 46P/Wirtanen is approaching Earth for one of the closest Earth-comet encounters of the Space Age.

Observers report that the comet's gaseous green atmosphere now covers a patch of sky as large as the full Moon--and it is growing larger. 

Sky maps and expert observing tips are featured on today's edition of

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IOTA News from the Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

Wednesday 5th December 2018

Island activities:

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

AF-045; 6W, Senegal North group: 6W7JX, 6W1PZ, 6W1KI, 6W1QL, 6W1PA, 6W1FJ, 6W1SQ, 6W1SV, 6W1GF, and 6W1RD will be active together from Goree Island. QRV from Dec. 7 to 9 with two rigs on HF (SSB, CW). QSL via 6W1QL (d), LoTW.

SA-023; PY6, Bahia State North group: Martin/LU9EFO is currently
active until the 7th from Itaparica Island as PS6I. QSL via F4BHW (d).

Petty's Island: For an island to become part of the US Islands Awards Programme it has to qualify first. With that objective in mind, members of the Gloucester County ARC (W2MMD) plan to visit Petty Island as K2P on Dec. 8 (13z to 17z). QRV on 40-15m (CW, SSB). A proper activation will then be conducted on April 27 next year.

Deutscher Amateur Radio Club

RSGB IOTA website

Check-out the latest IOTA News bulletin from OPDX

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Ham radio satellites blast-off from Vandenberg

Tuesday 4th December 2018

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California at 1834 GMT on Monday, December 3 carrying many Amateur Radio satellites

Four microsatellites including ESEO carrying an AMSAT-UK FUNcube-4 transponder were deployed about 2 hours and 13 minutes after launch.

ESEO beacon received by Surrey Space Centre

60 CubeSats including Jordan's JY1SAT carrying a FUNcube-6 transponder and capable of transmiting Slow Scan digital Video (SSDV) images were expected to be deployed about 2 hours after that.

The Twitter feed of Spaceflight Inc should provide updates on CubeSat deployment

ESEO information and FUNcube Dashboard

JY1SAT information and FUNcube Dashboard

Frequencies of Amateur Radio satellites on the SSO-A mission

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NASA astronaut Nick Hague set for new space station mission after abort

Tuesday 4th December 2018

NASA astronaut Nick Hague, KG5TMV who was forced to abort his recent mission to the International Space Station, is scheduled to launch again Feb. 28, 2019, from the Baikonour Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

Hague will launch with Alexey Ovchinin of the Russian space agency Roscosmos, who was his commander and crewmate on the aborted mission in October, and NASA astronaut Christina Hammock Koch aboard the Russian Soyuz MS-12 spacecraft.

The trio will join the station’s Expedition 59 crew and return to Earth in October 2019 as members of Expedition 60. Hague and Koch will serve as flight engineers for Expeditions 59 and 60. Ovchinin will serve as a flight engineer on Expedition 59 and the commander of Expedition 60.

All three crew members will participate in a news conference at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 12, at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. The news conference will air live on NASA TV and the agency’s website. To participate in person, media must contact Johnson’s newsroom at 281-483-5111 by 5 p.m. on Dec. 11 for credentials. To participate by phone, media must contact Johnson’s newsroom by 1:45 p.m. Dec. 12. 

During their mission, the station crew will take part in about 250 research investigations and technology demonstrations not possible on Earth to advance scientific knowledge of Earth, space, physical, and biological sciences. Science conducted on the space station continues to yield benefits for humanity and will enable future long-duration human and robotic exploration on missions to the Moon and Mars. The crew also is scheduled to be onboard during the first test flights of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program, which will return human spaceflight launches to U.S. soil.

This will be Koch’s first spaceflight. Hague and Ovchinin were scheduled to join the station’s Expedition 57 crew on Oct. 11, but were forced to abort their mission when their Soyuz’s rocket booster experienced a malfunction shortly after launch. Flight dynamics specialists determined Hague and Ovchinin achieved enough altitude on their aborted climb to orbit to qualify for previous spaceflight status, making this Hague’s second spaceflight and Ovchinin’s third.

Hague is a native of Hoxie, Kansas, and a colonel in the U.S. Air Force. Prior to his selection as an astronaut in 2013, he was part of the Air Force Fellows Program in Washington, where he worked as an adviser to the U.S. Senate on matters of national defense and foreign policy. He earned a bachelor’s degree in astronautical engineering from the U.S. Air Force Academy and a master’s degree in aeronautical and astronautical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Koch, who grew up in Jacksonville, North Carolina, earned bachelor’s degrees in electrical engineering and physics and a master’s degree in electrical engineering from North Carolina State University in Raleigh. Her career includes experience as an electrical engineer focusing on space science instrument design at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, and the Johns Hopkins University’s Applied Physics Lab, in Laurel, Maryland. She also worked as a research associate with the United States Antarctic Program, completing several deployments, including spending the winter at the South Pole. Her work at remote scientific research stations went on to include sessions as a field engineer in the Arctic and as station chief with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in American Samoa. She was selected by NASA as an astronaut in 2013.

See video of Hague’s launch, abort, and landing, as well as interviews and family welcome at:

Follow Hague on social media at:

Follow Koch on social media at:

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Ofcom's proposed Annual Plan and stakeholder events

Tuesday 4th December 2018

Ofcom's proposed Annual Plan mentions WRC-19, opening amateur radio 2.3 GHz allocation to other users, Interference/Enforcement and a possible National Spectrum Centre in Wales

Ofcom has published its proposed 2019/20 Annual Plan for consultation, outlining its areas of work for the next financial year.

Ofcom wants to make sure that people and businesses in the UK get the best from their communications services. We aim to do this by encouraging competition; securing standards and improving quality; and protecting consumers from harm.

Our proposed plan highlights all our major work areas in the financial year 2019/20. Those with an interest in Ofcom’s work are encouraged to respond to the consultation by the closing date of February 8, 2019.

We are holding a series of events to gain direct feedback from industry stakeholders and members of the public on our proposed plan. These events are taking place in Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh and London.

Each event will begin with a brief presentation, after which there will be an opportunity to comment and ask questions. All meetings are open and free of charge. Further details are available.

Download the Annual Plan from

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NASA'S OSIRIS-REx spacecraft arrives at asteroid Bennu

Tuesday 4th December 2018

NASA’s Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft completed its 1.2 billion-mile (2 billion-kilometer) journey to arrive at the asteroid Bennu Monday. The spacecraft executed a maneuver that transitioned it from flying toward Bennu to operating around the asteroid.

Now, at about 11.8 miles (19 kilometers) from Bennu’s Sun-facing surface, OSIRIS-REx will begin a preliminary survey of the asteroid.
The spacecraft will commence flyovers of Bennu’s north pole, equatorial region, and south pole, getting as close as nearly 4 miles (7 kilometers) above Bennu during each flyover.

This image of Bennu was taken by the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft from a distance of around 50 miles (80 km). Credits: NASA/Goddard/University of Arizona

The primary science goals of this survey are to refine estimates of Bennu’s mass and spin rate, and to generate a more precise model of its shape. The data will help determine potential sites for later sample collection.

OSIRIS-REx’s mission will help scientists investigate how planets formed and how life began, as well as improve our understanding of asteroids that could impact Earth. Asteroids are remnants of the building blocks that formed the planets and enabled life. Those like Bennu contain natural resources, such as water, organics and metals. Future space exploration and economic development may rely on asteroids for these materials.

“As explorers, we at NASA have never shied away from the most extreme challenges in the solar system in our quest for knowledge,” said Lori Glaze, acting director for NASA’s Planetary Science Division. “Now we’re at it again, working with our partners in the U.S. and Canada to accomplish the Herculean task of bringing back to Earth a piece of the early solar system.”

The mission’s navigation team will use the preliminary survey of Bennu to practice the delicate task of navigating around the asteroid. The spacecraft will enter orbit around Bennu on Dec. 31 --thus making Bennu, which is only about 1,600 feet (492 meters) across -- or about the length of five football fields -- the smallest object ever orbited by a spacecraft. It’s a critical step in OSIRIS-REx’s years-long quest to collect and eventually deliver at least two ounces (60 grams) of regolith -- dirt and rocks -- from Bennu to Earth.

Starting in October, OSIRIS-REx performed a series of braking maneuvers to slow the spacecraft down as it approached Bennu. These maneuvers also targeted a trajectory to set up Monday’s maneuver, which initiates the first north pole flyover and marks the spacecraft's arrival at Bennu.

“The OSIRIS-REx team is proud to cross another major milestone off our list -- asteroid arrival,” said Dante Lauretta, OSIRIS-REx principal investigator at the University of Arizona, Tucson. “Initial data from the approach phase show this object to have exceptional scientific value. We can’t wait to start our exploration of Bennu in earnest. We’ve been preparing for this moment for years, and we’re ready.”

OSIRIS-REx mission marks many firsts in space exploration. It will be the first U.S. mission to carry samples from an asteroid back to Earth and the largest sample returned from space since the Apollo era. It’s the first to study a primitive B-type asteroid, which is an asteroid that’s rich in carbon and organic molecules that make up life on Earth. It is also the first mission to study a potentially hazardous asteroid and try to determine the factors that alter their courses to bring them close to Earth.

“During our approach toward Bennu, we have taken observations at much higher resolution than were available from Earth,” said Rich Burns, the project manager of OSIRIS-REx at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “These observations have revealed an asteroid that is both consistent with our expectations from ground-based measurements and an exceptionally interesting small world. Now we embark on gaining experience flying our spacecraft about such a small body."  

When OSIRIS-REx begins to orbit Bennu at the end of this month, it will come close to approximately three quarters of a mile (1.25 kilometers) to its surface. In February 2019, the spacecraft begins efforts to globally map Bennu to determine the best site for sample collection. After the collection site is selected, the spacecraft will briefly touch the surface of Bennu to retrieve a sample. OSIRIS-REx is scheduled to return the sample to Earth in September 2023.

Goddard provides overall mission management, systems engineering and the safety and mission assurance for OSIRIS-REx. Dante Lauretta of the University of Arizona, Tucson, is the principal investigator, and the University of Arizona also leads the science team and the mission’s science observation planning and data processing. Lockheed Martin Space in Denver built the spacecraft and is providing flight operations. Goddard and KinetX Aerospace are responsible for navigating the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft. OSIRIS-REx is the third mission in NASA’s New Frontiers Program, which is managed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama for the agency’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington.

For more information about OSIRIS-REx, visit:

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EURAO Newsletter December 2018

Tuesday 4th December 2018

In this issue you will find:

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

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THE 2018 ARRL 10 Metre Contest this weekend

Monday 3rd December 2018

The object is for Amateurs worldwide to exchange QSO information with as many stations as possible on the 10 metre band using phone and CW.

The contest takes place from 00:00 UTC on Saturday 8 December and ends at 23:59 UTC on Sunday 9 December 2018.

The contest exchange for stations in the USA, Canada and Mexico is a RS or RST report and their state or province, for DX stations it is a RS or RST report and a sequential serial number starting with 001. Maritime mobile stations send a RS or RST report and the ITU Region (R1, R2 or R3).

All logs generated by computer must be in Cabrillo format and a hand-written paper log is an acceptable submission. All entries must be uploaded to or postmarked by 23:59 UTC 16 December 2018.

Get the full set of rules at and read the rules before the contest!

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DXCC Most Wanted

Monday 3rd December 2018

The 'DXCC Most Wanted' entities list has been updated on ClubLog as of November 28th.

The list contains 340 entities and here are the top 10 entities (which has not changed since last month):

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. VK0M Macquarie Island
10. FT5/X Kerguelen Island

The complete "DXCC Most Wanted" entities list is available at:


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December 2018 is YOTA Month

Monday 3rd December 2018

The SARL report that December is YOTA Month when several youngsters from IARU Region 1 Member Countries will become active on the air with YOTA as suffix in the call signs.

From Saturday 1 December to Monday 31 December 2018, young amateurs in their teens and early 20s will attempt to make many contacts worldwide with each other during this international event. This event is aimed at our young generation and is a golden opportunity for clubs to get youngsters who are interested in or want to find out more about Amateur Radio on the air.

It is not a formal contest, but a way to get our current young amateurs on the air contacting hundreds of other youngsters around the world.

The South African Radio League (SARL) has registered a special call sign ZS9YOTA on the IARU Region 1 website as an educational call sign for use by clubs and individuals during December.

To reserve a slot to use the ZS9YOTA callsign on a daily basis or for information please contact Noel, ZR6DX via e-mail at or alternatively to Nico, ZS6QL at The schedule and applicable rules will be available on the SARL website.

All radio amateurs are welcome to enjoy a QSO with the youngsters, be aware that some of them are new to the radio hobby, while others are more experienced. Looking forward to hearing our younger generation on the air during December!

South African Radio League

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DXCC Country/Entity Report

Monday 3rd December 2018

According to the Amateur Radio Cluster Network for the week of Sunday, 25th November, through Sunday, 2nd December there were 227 countries active.

Countries available:

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

A2, A3, A4, A5, A6, A7, A9, AP, BV, BY, C2, C3, C5, C6, C9, CE, CE0Y, CE9, CM, CN, CP, CT, CT3, CU, CX, D4, DL, DU, E5/n, E5/s, E6, E7, EA, EA6, EA8, EA9, EI, EK, EP, ER, ES, ET, EU, EX, EY, F, FG, FK, FM, FO, FR, FS, FY, G, GD, GI, GJ, GM, GU, GW, H4, HA, HB, HB0, HC, HH, HI, HK, HL, HP, HR, HS, HZ, I, IS, J6, J7, J8, JA, JD/o, JT, JW, JX, JY,

K, KG4, 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, PY0F, PZ, S0, S5, SM, SP, ST, SU, SV, SV/a, SV5, SV9, T2, T5, T7, T8, TA, TF, TG, TI, TK, TN, TR, TU, TY, TZ,

UA, UA2, UA9, UK, UN, UR, V2, V3, V4, V5, V6, V7, V8, VE, VK, VK0M, VP2E, VP2M, VP2V, VP5, VP8, VP8/h, VP9, VR, VU, XE, XT, XU, YB, YI, YL, YN, YO, YS, YU, YV, Z2, Z3, Z6, 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" (WFWL).


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IOTA News from OPDX

Monday 3rd December 2018

Island activities:

AF-037. (Update) Members of the F6KOP Team will be active as 9LY1JM from Banana Islands, Sierra Leone, between January 9-21st, 2019. Operators mentioned are Frank/F4AJQ (Team Leader), Jean-Luc/F1ULQ/AK8DX (Co–leader), Patrick/F2DX, Andreas/DL3GA/AB8AY, Jimi/F4DLM/AF7JJ, Jean-Baptiste/F4ERY, Frank/F5TVG, Julien/F8AVK, Herman/ON4QX/KM6CPP and Eric/ON7RN.
Activity will be on 160-10 meters using CW, SSB, RTTY, PSK and FT8. There will be 4 stations on air: 4X Kenwood TRX-590s into VDA antenna 10 to 20m & Spiderbeam mast for low band 30 to 160m. QSL via F5GSJ, direct, by the Bureau. Also,
QSL via ClubLog or LoTW. For more details and updates, see:

AS-153. Members of the West Bengal Radio Club (VU2WB) will be active as AU2HAM from Ganga Sagar Mela Island between January 10-17th, 2019. Activity will be on various HF bands. QSL via VU2NRO.

NA-057. Tom, N9EAW, is now active as HQ9T from Roatan Island (NA-057), Honduras, until December 18th. Activity will be on various HF bands using CW and SSB. Equipment is an Icom IC-7300 transceiver into a dipole antenna. QSL via N9EAW direct.

OC-022. Emmanuel, F5LIT, will once again be active as YB9/F5LIT from Bali between January 27th and February 6th, 2019. Activity will be on various HF bands. QSL via his home callsign, direct or LoTW.

OC-042. Christian, F4EBK, will be active as DU3/F4EBK from Luzon Island sometime in February and March of 2019. He plans to participate in the ARRL International SSB Contest (March 2-3rd). QSL via info on for DU3/F4EBK.

OC-113/OC-279 (Reminder) Operators Cezar/VE3LYC and Adrian/KO8SCA will operate . as TX0A from Maria Est Atoll in the Acteon Group (OC-113), and as TX0M from Morane Atoll in the Morane Group (OC-297P) between December 4-18th.  The only amateur radio activity from the Acteon Group took place more than 28 years ago by Robert Berry (FO5BI/P). He operated in April 1990 from the Marutea Sud Atoll. This IOTA reference is currently ranked #6 on the Most Wanted IOTA Listing, needed by 98% of the IOTA members.

Since at the time of this operation there will be 1126 IOTA references activated to date, compared to 340 current DXCC entities, the rarity of this IOTA group corresponds to #2 on the DXCC Listing.  The Morane Atoll is the only counter of the New IOTA Group OC-297. It fits the "Remote Island Group" criterion (IOTA Programme Structure B.1.3). Both Atolls are uninhabited.  The plan is to operate from each Atoll for 5 full days. Activity will be on CW, SSB and 40-10 meters concentrating on the bands that will exhibit the best propagation conditions within specific time windows for each region.
They will maintain one station on 20 m as long as the propagation will permit in order to maximize the number of unique stations logged. This is a complex and extremely expensive project, and they need your support to defray some of the considerable costs incurred! All donors will be timely acknowledged on their Web site at:
QSL via VE3LYC, direct, by the Bureau or ClubLog's OQRS.

PLEASE NOTE: Since the Webmasters of the new <> 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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3Y0I Bouvet Island DXpedition news

Monday 3rd December 2018

The following was posted December 1st:

3Y0I to invite additional operators -- Some fresh news from Cape Town, South Africa.

The 3Y0I Team is about to deal with another extensive training next week + gathering some additional equipment we'll need at Bouvet Island. Also, new possibilities emerge: we can take 2 additional operators (CW + SSB) with us. If you're flexible operating - and weather- experienced individual, and willing to join 1-month long adventure of your life time, drop a msg asap at: Be quick!"

Also, there has been several QSNs reported on the DXclusters by E51DOM/MM (mostly on FT8). This is reportedly Dom, 3Z9DX, "probably" operating from the ship that they will use to take them to Bouvet. Dom has stated that he will use this callsign during his sailing trips to several different locations in the World and "probably" on his way to Bouvet.

Departure dates are still not known. It is still a mystery...
Remember, they plan to stay on the island for at least 2 weeks, if the weather cooperates.

The 3Y0I DXpedition's band plan ­ frequencies (160-6m) and modes (CW/SSB/FT8) can be found at:

QSL via ClubLog's OQRS (preferred), LoTW or via 3Z9DX.

For more details and updates, we suggest to watch the following Web pages: (For JA stations)

via OPDX

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JOTA reports 36% growth in Scout participation

Sunday 2nd December 2018

ARRL say Scouting’s Jamboree on the Air (JOTA) 2018 reports that total USA Scout participation in the annual fall event jumped by 36% from 2017

Each year more than 1 million Scouts and Guides get together over the airwaves for JOTA, which takes place on the third weekend of October. Since the first JOTA in 1958, millions of Scouts have become acquainted via Amateur Radio, and contacts sometimes result in relationships that extend for many years.

This year, 10,703 Scouts took part in the event, compared with 7,872 last year. Participating Amateur Radio operators topped 1,000 for the first time since 2016. At 610, the number of registered JOTA locations was way up, as was the number of JOTA stations registered, with 314. Participating JOTA stations reported contacts with stations in 99 countries, also up over 2017.

JOTA Coordinator Jim Wilson, K5ND, said he was pleased with this year’s numbers and hopes that 2019’s event will show a continued increase, despite a lack of sunspots.

World JOTA-JOTI numbers are not expected until early 2019, as each country reports its results by mid-December followed by number crunching and compiling of the report, Wilson explained.

Read the full ARRL story at

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SARL meets ham radio regulator ICASA

Sunday 2nd December 2018

South Africa's ICASA/SARL Liaison committee met last week to discuss various regulatory issues affecting Amateur Radio

Revisiting the agreement that home built amateur radio equipment does not require type approval, ICASA confirmed that all the regions have been informed of this agreement. The entire process of type approval affecting all equipment that utilises the radio frequency spectrum or has an effect on it, is being reviewed, which is a two-year process. "This will not affect homebrew amateur radio equipment for own use", SARL president Nico van Rensburg, ZS6QL said. "The SARL encourages radio amateurs to keep developing their hobby through homebrew".

The problem of commercial VHF equipment, recently type approved, resulting in unauthorised use of amateur frequencies was tabled. ICASA acknowledged that they are aware of the issue. The SARL has now also formally filed an official complaint.

Dealing with interference on amateur frequencies, ICASA has agreed to supply the SARL with details of the Regional Managers who are dealing with radio interference. The SARL will over the next few weeks develop a guideline on how interference should be reported. This will be available on the SARL web pages upon completion.

The new ICASA IT system, now going through its beta testing phase, will become operational on April 1, 2019. The system will administratively impact on applications to write the Radio Amateur Examination. ICASA is setting up a workshop for the Liaison Committee and the SARL RAE Manager to engage the new system so that timely new guidelines for applicants can be developed.

The reception of weather satellite pictures and the licensing of equipment has been a grey area. The ICASA ruling is that Radio Amateurs wishing to set-up and own equipment to receive signals in 137 MHz band must apply for a separate satellite receiving licence as it is not covered under their amateur radio license. Non-licenced persons must in addition also apply for a radio receiving license. The standard ICASA frequency spectrum license application form should be used. It is available for download from the SARL web.

ICASA confirmed that the current radio frequency spectrum regulations are still in force. The SARL pointed out that there is a discrepancy on the 1.8 MHz frequency band between the current regulations and the Frequency Spectrum Band plan which was approved by cabinet and gazetted earlier this year. ICASA said they will look into this. They also confirmed that the new regulations will first go through a public consultation process. It was also confirmed that South African Radio Amateurs have full access to the 5 MHz band namely 5350 - 5450 kHz and the channel 5290 kHz for propagation studies, and that this will be incorporated in the new regulations.

On the topic of reciprocal licencing, ICASA confirmed that CRASA had accepted the proposal to join the CEPT TR61-01 scheme which allows licenced radio amateurs to operate in SADC countries for a period of up to three months without the need to apply for a licence. This final process to ensure that all SADC administrations have communicated this through their structures may take some time. The SARL will monitor the developments and advise radio amateurs of progress.

Source SARL News

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Additional amateur radio communication Cubesats to launch on SSO-A

Sunday 2nd December 2018

JY1SAT is a one unit CubeSat, dedicated to the memory of His Majesty the late King Hussein, (photo right) the first founder of the HAM Radio in Jordan and holder of call sign JY1. This will be Jordan's first satellite.

JY1SAT contains the AMSAT-UK FUNcube-6 communications transponder with expanded capabilities to be able to transmit stored images reflecting the Jordanian culture and its historical heritage, along with a voice message recorded by the Crown Prince to be transmitted in space to receivers around the world.

Frequencies for the JY1SAT FUNcube-6 transponder include:
Uplink: 435.100 - 435.120 MHz CW, LSB
Downlink: 145.855 - 145.875 MHz CW, USB
Telemetry: 145.840 MHz (FUNcube BPSK format, new Dashboard software
will be made available)

JYISAT will transmit pre-stored images of the Kingdom which have been selected by a national competition. These images will be downlinked using a SSDV digital format.

The SpaceX Falcon-9 v1.2 launch from Vandenberg also includes 40+ cubesat passengers, notably ExseedSat 1 from India, the European Student Earth Orbiter - ESEO (FUNcube 4) and AMSAT-NA Fox 1Cliff.

Uplink: 435.340 MHz FM voice with 67 Hz CTCSS tone
and APRS digipeater
Downlink: 145.900 MHZ FM voice, APRS digipeater, telemetry

ESEO (FUNcube 4)
Uplink: 1263.500 MHz FM voice with 67Hz CTCSS tone
Downlink: 145.895 MHz FM voice and telemetry

See also the AMSAT-UK summary of mission descriptions and frequencies at:


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Australia aims for quicker entry into Ham Radio

Sunday 2nd December 2018

WIA Education Group aims to reduce barriers to entry with cost reduction, immediate delivery, quicker processing times as well as automating the process to ensure a smooth and quicker entry into Amateur Radio

WIA News for Sunday, December 2 says:

I’m David VK4QM with this week's comment from WIA Education Group.

As many of you would know the ACMA released the Approach to Market for the next deed to supply the Amateur Community with Exam and Callsign management services on their behalf - the current deed expires early next year.

The WIA Education Group was recently formed following an appeal to members by the WIA to form an expert team to respond to the ACMA call for tenders - known as the ATM. This group consists of volunteers with many and varied experiences such as Legal, Education, Training & Assessment.

We would like to introduce ourselves:
Ron VK2DQ, Steve VK2LW, Elizabeth VK2XSE, Dr Harry Edgar VK6YBZ, Phil VK4PG, Sue Evans, Joseph VK5FJDE  and myself, VK4QM.

Since the release of the Approach to Market our  team has been working to provide a response that is in the best interest to the Amateur Radio Community and allows the most UpToDate and flexible delivery options for future Exams and Callsign management. We have taken what we feel were the best of delivery and service options within our current offerings as well as external sources such as the RSGB, ARRL & NZART to put together a world class approach for the Australian Amateur Radio Community now and into the future.

Our guiding principle for this whole process was to reduce barriers to entry with cost reduction, immediate delivery, quicker processing times as well as automating the process to ensure a smooth and quicker entry into the hobby. We have not only been able to achieve this but have addressed all of ACMAs mandatory and desired requirements as outlined in their approach to market.

Over the coming weeks as we move closer to the end of the current deed and what we believe will be our success in securing the future deed we will be expanding the education group to ensure that on day 1 we are ready to move into a brighter future for our Amateur Radio Community.

We will be working with the current Nominated assessors in the first instance, then with the wealth of experience and knowledge of Assessors and Learning Facilitators to build the examination system of the future. If you are an assessor or learning facilitator you will be hearing from us by email shortly.

We would like to thank WIA Members for their ongoing support of the WIA, who represent the whole of the Amateur Radio Community in Australia. With this new initiative for the exam and callsign management service we would like to invite past members as well as those who have never been a member to become members and support this great hobby into the future.

We wish to acknowledge Fred VK3DAC for all his tireless support of the WIA and for his service in delivering assessor and learning facilitator services under the 2009 deed.  Without Fred’s support over many years the WIA would not have been able to grow and move forward with this very important service for all in the Amateur Radio Community.

Whilst we won’t know the outcome of the ATM tender selection process for some weeks, we are hopeful of a successful outcome. We have put together a comprehensive and forward-looking submission on behalf of the WIA, its members and also the entire Australian radio amateur cohort.

I’m David VK4QM from Roma Qld and would like to thank our team and the WIA board for its support through this process and to our success as the Australian Amateur Radio community in growing and moving forward into the future together.

Source WIA News

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CQ-DATV Magazine issue 66 free download

Sunday 2nd December 2018

CQ-DATV 66 magazine is now available for free download from

This is a free monthly magazine and the previous 65 copies are available from

Alternatively you can read it at the online magazine store

If you like what you read, why not join the CQ-DATV Facebook at or if you would like to contribute to the next issue please send your pictures, copy or ideas to we would love to hear from you.

In this issue • Editorial • News and World Round-up • SpaceX launch of a Falcon 9 Block 5 Rocket • DKARS advert • 70cm vs. 23cm Band Activity • DATV-Express Project Report • TV-AMATEUR • The ABC of Broadcast Video Tape Recording.

• Matching 50 Ohm; to 75 Ohm
• The Mini Router Switcher
• 70cm Antennas for ATV
• MiniTutiouner-Express advert
• One from the vault
• Information
• Coming up

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Turkey gets two Christmas presents

Sunday 2nd December 2018

Turkey’s telecom regulator, BTK, in a government gazette notice of 29th November 2018, released two new Amateur Radio allocations.

They are:
The new WRC-15 60m Secondary allocation of 5351.5 – 5366.5 kHz with a power limit of 15W EIRP. All modes are allowed.

A 6m allocation of 50 – 52 MHz, all modes allowed, with a power limit of 75W.

BTK National Frequency Allocation Table (p.11,27)

(Tnx: TA4ED, BTK, W8GEX)


Paul Gaskell  G4MWO
The 5 MHz Newsletter

and its archive

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AMSAT web adds Donation portal

Sunday 2nd December 2018

AMSAT relies on your donations to Keep Amateur Radio in Space.
Please consider a donation to the AMSAT General Fund, the GOLF Program, or ARISS today!

Access the Donation Portal on the AMSAT front page --> Select Donate from the main menu bar
visit for direct access to the page.

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Ofcom fines Cloud M £50,000 for breaking number porting rules

Saturday 1st December 2018

Ofcom has fined business telecoms provider Cloud M Limited £50,000 for breaking rules that entitle customers to take their telephone number with them when they switch providers – a process known as ‘number porting’.

Why number porting matters

Consumers are entitled by law to keep their telephone numbers regardless of who they choose as their service provider. This enables customers to switch providers without the inconvenience of having to change their telephone number. This removes barriers to switching and facilitates healthy competition in the market.

Following an investigation, Ofcom has found Cloud M refused to let one of its customers – a small business – take their phone number with them when they wanted to switch to another provider.

Telecoms companies are required to compensate customers if they break porting rules. Cloud M did not do this, so in addition to the £50,000 fine we are also requiring the company to pay £1,000 in compensation to the customer.

Additional fine

Ofcom has also fined Cloud M £5,000 for failing to provide accurate and complete information to us, by the deadline given, during the course of our investigation.

Cloud M has still not provided all the information requested. Our information-gathering powers are important to our work in protecting consumers, so we are imposing a daily penalty of £100 (capped at £3,000) until Cloud M provides the information.

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If you would like to read more news from previous months

then click on More News

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