Sep 23rd, 2016 by gb2rs
Sunday 25th September 2016
The news headlines:
Former RSGB President SK
National Hamfest this week
DXCC checking at Hamfest
Sad news to begin this week’s broadcast. Former RSGB President Terry Barnes, GI3USS has recently become a Silent Key. Terry served as RSGB President in 1992. He was the first GI callsign to hold the position for around 25 years. Terry had been a volunteer for the Society for some years before his election to President, and put this experience to good use during his term of office. He was also the President of the Radio Amateur Old Timers’ Association (RAOTA) from 1994 until 1998. Our thoughts are with his family and many friends around the world.
The National Hamfest takes place on the 30th of September and the 1st of October at the Newark & Nottinghamshire Showground. With several international traders as well as the UK’s largest dealers and representatives from the main manufacturers, there will be plenty for visitors to enjoy. For those looking for the extra bargain there will also be a large car boot sale area. For more details go to www.nationalhamfest.org.uk/
DXCC card checking will be available at the National Hamfest, on the UK 6m Group stand. They can also check your documents for your Logbook of the World, so bring your licence and an original photo ID such as photo driving licence or passport, with the same name on both. These documents don’t have to be sent to the USA. If you plan to bring a lot of cards, more than 25, please drop them off as soon as you arrive. Please note the paper application forms are no longer used, you must use the online tool to make your application and bring the resulting printout with the cards.
The RSGB 2016 Convention takes place on the 7th to the 9th of October at Kents Hill Conference Centre, Milton Keynes, sponsored by Martin Lynch & Sons. Sam Jewell, G4DDK will be speaking on Saturday on the secret life of the transverter. This will cover the basics of transverters, including designs, performance trade offs, buy or build and interfacing. Transverters can be used on any amateur radio band, so the talk is equally applicable to LF, HF, VHF and microwaves. On Sunday, Professor Cathryn Mitchell, M0IBG will be explaining Space Weather that bombards the Earth, sometimes with dramatic effects on our technology including how we are building resilience for our infrastructure. Cathryn is a professor at the University of Bath who has recently qualified as a radio amateur. Go to www.rsgb.org/convention for tickets, bookings and details of the event.
The Convention Buildathon will provide attendees with the opportunity to build a 40m transceiver based on a popular Kanga UK design. Construction is simple and easy and will not pose any difficulties even to the novice kit constructor. The basic build should be completed in a half-day session, leaving plenty of time to enjoy the rest of the Convention attractions. Please note that participation in the Buildathon is charged at £29.95, which does not include the cost of admission to the Convention but does include use of all the equipment required and the 40m transceiver kit. Go to www.rsgb.org/convention for details.
The RSGB is pleased that Susan Buckle, the Astronaut Flight Education Programme Support Manager at the UK Space Agency will be speaking following the Gala Dinner at the RSGB Convention. She will be talking about how the RSGB and the ARISS UK team worked closely with her and other UK Space agency colleagues for the ten amateur radio school contacts with Tim Peake. If you have already booked your tickets and want to reserve a table for friends, send an email to email@example.com with the names of those wishing to share a table.
For young amateurs, there’s something new at the RSGB Convention. If you are under 21 you have free admission, although young people under 16 must be accompanied. Just turn up at the door with some form of ID that shows your age.
The annual RSGB Construction Competition is to encourage home construction, experimentation, design and innovation. Any Member of the RSGB, or group of Members, is eligible to enter. The closing date for entries is the 30th of September and judging will take place at the RSGB Convention. This year the competition is being sponsored by Martin Lynch and Sons with prizes of £50 of vouchers for each category winner and £100 for the winner of the prestigious Pat Hawker G3VA Trophy that will be awarded to the best overall entry. See the RSGB website for full details of the various categories, where you will also find an entry form.
The RSGB’s Training and Education Committee created a new role earlier this year, to help support amateurs with disabilities. This followed discussions with the RAIBC and the role includes liaising between the two organisations, giving consideration to disabilities more widely, from time to time making recommendations in this area to the TEC Chair and helping formulate responses to RSGB Board requests. If you are interested in this role, please contact Philip Willis via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Region 13 is looking for a Deputy Regional Manager for the Nottingham/Derbyshire area, which is District 136. If you are an RSGB Member and think this role would suit you, contact the Regional Manager, Jim Stevenson, G0EJQ by email to email@example.com
And now for the details of rallies and events for the coming week
The Chippenham & District Amateur Radio Mini-Rally takes place today, the 25th of September, at the new venue of Kington Langley Village Hall, Church Road, Kington Langley SN15 5NJ. The doors open at 10am, with disabled visitors gaining access 30 minutes earlier. Admission is £2, with under 16s free. There is on site car parking. There will be trade stands, a car boot sale area and refreshments will be available. Details from Brian, G6HUI on 0772 224 2741.
The National Hamfest takes place on the 30th of September and the 1st of October at the Newark & Nottinghamshire Showground, Lincoln Road, Winthorpe, Newark, Nottinghamshire NG24 2NY. More details are at www.nationalhamfest.org.uk.
The Laugharne Tin Shed Rally takes place on the 1st of October in the Tin Shed Experience, Clifton St, Laugharne, Carmarthen SA33 4QG. Doors open from 10am to 2pm. There will be traders, a Bring & Buy and a flea market. Refreshments are available including bacon sandwiches. Details from Matthew, GW6KOA on 01994 427 581.
The British Vintage Wireless Society Auto Jumble takes place on the 2nd of October at The Angel Leisure Centre, Tonbridge, Kent TN9 1SF. Doors open from 10.30am to 4.30pm. Details are online at www.audiojumble.co.uk
On the 2nd of October the Blackwood ARS Rally takes place at Rougemount School, Llantarnham Hall, Malpas Road, Newport NP20 8QB. The venue has free car parking. A talk-in station will be on 145.550MHz. Doors open at 10am to 4pm, with disabled access 15 minutes earlier. There will be trade stands, a car boot sale, a Bring & Buy, special interest groups and a lecture programme. There is catering available on site. Details available from Mike Rackham, GW4JKV on to 01495 226 149.
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 email details to firstname.lastname@example.org
And now the DX news compiled from 425 DX News and other sources
Alejandro, LU9VEA will be on Easter Island, IOTA reference SA-001, working as CE0Y/LU9VEA between the 26th and 30th of September. Listen for him on a variety of HF bands, working SSB. Send QSL cards to IK2DUW.
Stan, LZ1GC and Emil, DL8JJ will operate as H44GC from Guadalcanal, OC-047, from until the 3rd of October with two stations on the HF bands using CW, SSB, RTTY and PSK. Emil then returns to Germany, while Stan moves on to Nendo Island to operate as H40GC from the 4th to the 17th. He then returns to Guadalcanal for another stint until October 21. QSL via ClubLog OQRS, LoTW.
Kasimir, DL2SBY will be active as S79KB until the 2nd of October from Praslin Island, AF-024 and from the 2nd to the 8th Eden Island. Look for him on the HF bands using SSB, CW and RTTY. QSL via DL2SBY direct and ClubLog OQRS for direct and bureau.
Josep, EA3BT and Nuria, EA3WL will be on the air from the 26th of September to the 1st of October as S9BT and S9WL, respectively, on the 6 to 40m bands using SSB, RTTY and some CW. QSL both calls via EA3BT.
Aaron, VA1AXC is on the air as CY0/VA1AXC from Sable Island, NA-063 until early November, mostly on 20 metres during his spare time, using SSB only. QSL via JE1LET.
Now the special event news
Enigma Reloaded 2016 takes place until the 1st of October. The main goal of the event is to promote amateur activity as possible all over the world, celebrating the history of the Enigma cipher machine and its crucial role in World War II. From the 17th to the 30th of September, stations registered as Activator stations will be on the air. On the 1st of October those stations will exchange predefined CW messages. Full details and rules are at www.enigma-reloaded.it
Riviera ARC from Devon will be activating Babbacombe Cliff Railway for Railways on the Air today, the 25th of September. They will be covering the HF bands and 2m / 70cm, and expect to be busy on 40 / 20 metres. They have requested the usual callsign of GB4BCR from Ofcom.
GB75ACO – that’s Air Cadet Organisation – will be operating at Stalham ATC Squadron, Norfolk, until the 28th of September. They are celebrating 75 years of the Air Training Corps. Primary activity will be on 40m, with some local 2m and 60m. Special QSL cards will be available and details are on QRZ.com.
The 950th anniversary of the Norman Conquest will be commemorated by the Phoenix Amateur Radio Club, starting with the Battles of Fulford and Stamford Bridge until the 26th of September. Callsigns will be MX0PHX and MX0YHA, and operations will be subject to prevailing conditions on the HF bands. More information is online at www.phoenixarc.org.uk
Poole Radio Society celebrates its 40th Anniversary in October. GB40PRS will be on air during the month at locations in and around Poole. On the 1st to 3rd of October the callsign will be on the air from Kingstone Lacy.
GB16IYL will be on the air from the 3rd to the 10th of October for the BYLARA International YL Convention taking place in Milton Keynes.
On the 29th of September, Torbay Amateur Radio Society will be operating GB6GEO from Kents Cavern Torquay as part of the 7th International conference being held on behalf of the UNESCO Global Geoparks. They will be active on HF and VHF for the day. More information on QRZ.com
GB4DUK will be operating from the 1st of October to raise awareness for Dementia & Dementia UK. A special QSL card will be available for all HF and VHF contacts. More information is on QRZ.com
Now the contest news
The CQWW DX RTTY contest ends its 48 hour run at 2359UTC today, the 25th. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz bands, the exchange is signal report and Zone, which for the UK is 14.
A UK Microwave Group contest on 5.7 and 10GHz takes place today, the 25th, from 0600 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on those two bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
The first leg of the ON Contest takes place on 6m from 0700 to 1000UTC today, the 25th. Work Belgian stations only, exchanging a signal report and serial number. ON stations will also send club codes, eg MCL, which count as multipliers.
Also today, the 25th, the Practical Wireless 4m Contest runs for four hours from 1200 to 1600UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
On Tuesday the 50MHz UK Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 2130UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
Also on Tuesday from 1900 to 2130UTC the SHF UK Activity Contest is on the 2.3 to 10GHz bands. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
The UK IE 80m contest runs from 2000 to 2100UTC on Wednesday. Using CW only, the exchange is your 4-character locator square.
On Thursday the 80m Club Sprint runs from 1900 to 2000UTC. Using CW only the exchange is both callsigns, serial number and name.
On Saturday the 1st of October the 1.2/2.3GHz trophy takes place from 1400 to 2200UTC. Using all modes on these two bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
The 432MHz-248GHz contest runs from 1400 on the 1st to 1400UTC on the 2nd. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
The Oceania DX SSB contest runs from 0800 on the 1st to 0800UTC on the 2nd. Using the 1.8 to 28MHz bands the exchange is signal report and serial number. There are sections for single-op and multi-op stations. To encourage LF activity the points for QSOs are different on each band. Work only Oceania – that’s VK, ZL and Pacific islands.
The IARU 432MHz to 248GHz contest runs from 1400UTC on the 1st to 1400UTC on the 2nd. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
The Worked All Britain HF Phone Contest takes place next Saturday and Sunday, the 1st and 2nd, from 1200 to 1200UTC. Using the 14, 21 and 28MHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and WAB square. Entries need to be with the contest manager by 23rd October. Full details at www.worked-all-britain.org.uk and please note that all contacts to all countries, even to non WAB members, count for points.
On the 2nd of October the International DX Contest runs from 0700 to 1900UTC. Using CW and SSB on the 14 to 28MHz bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number. There are Open, Restricted and QRP categories, plus you can enter single mode or mixed mode. Countries, UK excepted, and Call Areas act as multipliers, and QSO points are loaded to encourage operating on higher frequencies.
The ON Contest takes place from 0600 to 1000UTC on the 2nd. Using SSB only on the 3.5MHz band the exchange is signal report and serial number with ON stations giving their club code too.
Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 23rd of September.
This week saw the solar flux index increase from 80 to 86, but poor ionospheric conditions due to a high-speed solar wind stream dominated the earlier part of the week. The K index hit five on the 20th but, as predicted, geomagnetic conditions improved slightly towards the end of the week.
On the bright side, while some days have seen very poor HF conditions, there have been highlights. The Chilton ionosonde has indicated that the maximum usable frequency over a 3,000km path has exceeded 21MHz at times. And better autumnal conditions mean that there is DX around. This is an ideal month for working South Africa and South America on 18, 21 and even 24MHz at times.
East-West paths may be better on 14MHz, and will improve as we head into October. And don’t ignore 30m at the moment, which may deliver some surprises. Eighty and forty metres are also starting to come into their own at dusk and after sunset.
Our best advice is look for days that are geomagnetically quiet. That is, when the K index is zero, one or two. This may be tricky as NOAA predicts very unsettled geomagnetic conditions for eight days from September 28th. So work your best DX in the first half of this week.
And now the VHF and up propagation news.
Prospects for tropospheric openings are poor this week, with low pressure near to the north and west of Britain bringing autumnal weather. For much of the period this will mean some quite strong winds at times and little chance of tropo developing. There may be some rain scatter options, although this could be difficult with fast-moving weather systems.
There is likely to be high pressure over the continent and this will place the better tropo conditions over the near continent and across Biscay at times, and probably not accessible for most of the country. The Sporadic-E season seems to be over, so it’s back to random meteor scatter as the main DX mode on the lower VHF bands.
Moon declination is heading negative again later this week so EME moon windows will shorten as the week goes on. Losses are also increasing as the moon heads out to apogee. But don’t despair of the poor VHF conditions. There are plenty of workable satellites in orbit to give you your fix of VHF DX, so why not give them a try? Go to the AMSAT-UK website for information.
And that’s all for this week from the propagation team.