Sunday 17th August 2014
The news headlines:
RSGB Convention news
Plans for Youngsters On The Air month
BBC World War 1 At Home radio day
The RSGB Convention takes place between 10th and 12th October and will be held at the Kent’s Hill Conference Centre in Milton Keynes. Dave Powis, G4HUP is doing an SMD presentation on the Saturday, followed by workshops during the day. Visitors can book their places in the workshop, which takes up to an hour with only 6 individuals per session. During the session they will learn solder dispensing and component placement of surface mount components and they will have access to a reflow oven. Also on Saturday, from 9am until 1pm, Keith, G3VKW, Chris, GM3WOJ and Fred, G4BWP will have a number of vintage transceivers on display, dating from the 1960s. These will be connected to a receive antenna, so older visitors can relive the experience of listening on one of these radios that they may have owned in the past, while younger visitors can also share that experience. The RSGB has extended the Early Bird discount until the 1st September so there’s still time to get a bargain. Go to www.rsgbevents.org to book your place.
December is IARU Region 1 Youngsters On The Air month and the RSGB has arranged for Clubs/Groups to use the special callsign G14YOTA, with Regional variations, on a rota basis. An application form is available on the RSGB website. As there are only 31 allocations, applicants are asked to give three choices of date in an attempt to resolve diary conflicts. There are some conditions attached to using the G14YOTA callsign and these are included on the application form and on the website. The main one is the requirement to use the callsign to put youngsters on the air, and, for this purpose, anyone under the age of 26 is considered to be a youngster. Applicants are encouraged to think about making the most out of the activation by including other activities, such as Morse demonstrations, ARDF hunts, WSPR beacon displays, listening to remote SDRs, use of Arduino/Raspberry Pi, and so on. The RSGB will provide some promotional material, stickers, badges, etc. Applications must be submitted by 22nd September and a panel made up from the YOTA teams will then allocate the callsign, with every Region having some activations. For further details see the RSGB website, Operating section.
The BBC Radio Solent WW1 At Home display will be at the Weymouth Pavilion on Carnival day, 20th August. Members of the South Dorset Radio Society will be assisting the Royal Signals Museum with a demonstration of how Morse Code was used during WW1. Rob, G0RYL, Carol, 2E1RBH, Rob, G3MYM and Geoff, G0EVW expect to be located in the Ocean Room at the back of Weymouth Pavilion. The event runs from 10am to 4pm, is open to the public and entry is free. The South Dorset Radio Society team will be very pleased to see any radio amateurs who are able to visit, although this is a Morse demonstration not a special event station.
There’s still time to get involved with Churches and Chapels on the Air, which takes place on the 13th September between 10am and 4pm. Activity is mainly on 40 and 80m and over 20 stations in the UK are already planned. Contact John, G3XYF by email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you are planning to take part.
The RSGB is involved with a special event station, 2SZ, that will be on the air from North London from 11th to 18th October. This to celebrate the first two way radio communication between the UK and New Zealand on 18th October 1924 between 2SZ at Mill Hill School and 4AA in New Zealand. The contact attracted the attention of the national press and was reported in the Daily Mail newspaper on 21st October 1924. To commemorate the 90th anniversary, stations will recreate the first contact, hopefully on a wavelength close to the one that was used in 1924. This is believed to be only the second time that Ofcom has permitted radio amateurs to use three character callsigns to commemorate a special event. More details are on the RSGB website.
Kerry Amateur Radio Group has been issued with an additional callsign, EI1K. The club intends to use the callsign for contest operating, while the other callsign, EI1KARG, will continue to be used for club field day operations and special event stations. The group have a qrz.com page for EI1K where photographs of our various activities and details of the club can be found.
And now for the details of rallies and events for the coming week
The Rugby Amateur Transmitting Society Annual Radio Rally will take place at Princethorpe College, Princethorpe, Rugby CV23 9PX today, 17th August. More details from Stephen, G8LYB on 01788 578 940.
Also today, the 17th, the 2nd South Manchester Radio Club Summer Radio Car Boot Sale will be held at Trafford Metrovicks Rugby and Cricket Club, Finnybank Road, Sale, Cheshire M33 6LR. Tables are £10 and admission is £1, with the gates opening at 9.30am. More information from John, M6JII, on 07892 890 902.
On 24th August, Milton Keynes ARS Rally will be held at Longueville Hall, Hammond Park, Whaddon Road, Newton Longville, Milton Keynes MK17 0AT. Visitors can combine a visit to the rally with one to Bletchley Park and visit the National Radio Centre as well. There is a car park and doors open at 10am with entry costing £3. More details from Steve, G6KJU on 07866 673 192.
August Bank Holiday Monday, the 25th, sees the Huntingdonshire ARS Rally take place at St Neots Community College, Barford Road, St Neots PE19 2SH. Doors open at 10am and admission is £2. There is talk in on S22 with a Bring & Buy and car boot area as well as trade stands. More from Clive, G3NKQ on 01480 810 473,
If you have any rally or event information you’d like to appear in future editions of GB2RS News, in RadCom and on the RSGB website, please e-mail details to email@example.com.
Now for the news of special events
Coventry Amateur Radio Society will be operating GB4PIA at the Party in the park event that has changed its date. Organisers have moved the event to the August bank holiday on 25th August. It remains at the Miners Welfare Park, Coventry Road, Bedworth.
Halifax and District ARS will be operating from two churches in the Halifax area as part of Churches on the air on 13th September. GB4ASC will be operated from All Souls Church at Haley Hill, Halifa, and GB4BMC will be operated from Bethesda Methodist Church at Elland. Frequencies will be the HF bands.
The Radio Society of Sri Lanka will activate the Point Pedro Lighthouse, the Northern most point of the island, on 17th August for the International Light House event. The team use HF bands both on CW and SSB. QSL requests to PO Box 907, Colombo. SWL reports are also welcome.
This weekend, during the International Lighthouse & Lightships Weekend, TC1LHW will be active from Istanbul Terkos Karaburun Lighthouse and TC6LHW will be active from Samsun Bafra Lighthouse. Details are on qrz.com
And now the DX news compiled from 425 DX News and other sources
A group of English operators will be active from Rathlin Island, EU-122, until 20th August. They will use the callsign GN0GRC and plan to operate from three lighthouses while there. QSLs go via G0RCI.
G3ZVW will be active as ZD8N from Georgetown on Ascension Island, SA-043, between the 21st and 29th August. Operation will be on the 10 to 80m bands using CW, SSB and the digital modes. QSL via his home callsign either direct or via the bureau.
LZ3FN will be operating stroke SV9 from Crete between 24th August and 7th September. Activity will be on all bands, mainly CW. QSL via LZ1PM.
JH1UVV will be on the air as T88UN from the West Plaza by the Sea Hotel rental shack on Koror Island, OC-009, between the 28th and 31st August. Activity will be holiday style on the HF bands. QSL cards go via his home callsign only. No electronic QSLs will be available for this one.
VK3VTH will be active stroke 7 from King Island, OC-233, between the 14th and 17th August. His operation will be on 40 and 20m using SSB only. QSL via VK3VTH either direct or via the bureau.
VK3ATX will be operational stroke P from Gabo Island, OC-196, on 16th and 17th August. Activity will be on the HF bands. QSL via his home callsign, direct only.
Now the contest news
On Tuesday, the 19th, the 1.3GHz UK Activity Contest takes place from 1900 to 2130UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
The IRTS 2m Counties Contest takes place on Sunday 24th between 1300 to 1500UTC, with awards for the leading non-EI station in each of the six sections of this 2-hour event. These awards often go to stations in GI, but if you have a good takeoff across the sea to Ireland it’s definitely worth a try. Also worth remembering is that if you’re a VHF ‘square basher’ and have missing squares in Ireland, this could be a good afternoon to work some of them. The 32 Irish counties are used as multipliers and you can find a list of them on EI8IC’s website. The exchange is signal report and serial number.
Now the solar factual data for the period from Friday the 8th to Thursday the 14th of August, compiled by Neil Clarke, G0CAS on Friday the 15th of August.
All visible sunspot groups were small and not very flare productive. Only eight small C class solar flares took place up to the 11th, since then solar activity declined to very low levels with no C class solar flares taking place. Solar flux levels declined from 123 units on the 8th to 103 by the 13th and the 14th. The average was 108 units. The 90 day solar flux average on the 14th was 127 units, that's three units down on last week. X-ray flux levels declined from B4.8 units on the 8th to B2.5 by the 14th and the average was B3.4 units for the period. Geomagnetic activity was quiet every day except for the 12th, which increased to Ap 10 units. The average was Ap 7 units. Solar wind data from the ACE spacecraft saw solar wind speeds increase from 360 kilometres per second on the 8th to 560 by the 12th. Particle densities were low every day except for the 11th, which increased to 22 particles per cubic centimetre. Bz varied between minus 3 and plus 4 nanoTeslas on the quietest day and between minus 10 and plus 8 nanoTeslas on the 12th, which was the most disturbed day.
Now the solar forecast for the coming week. This week solar activity is expected to be at low levels, however, an M class solar flare is slightly possible on any day. Solar flux levels are expected to be around the 100 mark but could increase slightly after midweek. Geomagnetic activity should be mostly quiet but could increase slightly towards next weekend due to a small recurring coronal hole. MUFs during daylight hours at equal latitudes should be around 22MHz. Paths this week to Australia should have a maximum usable frequency with a 50 per cent success rate of around 21MHz. The optimum working frequency with a 90 per cent success rate should be about 16MHz. The best time to try this path will be between 0800 and 1100 hours UTC.
And that’s all from the propagation team for another week.