Sunday 23rd November 2014
The news headlines:
New Youth Committee Chairman
Happy Birthday FUNcube-1!
Question Writing Workshop Postponed
The RSGB is pleased to announce that Michael Jones, 2E0MLJ has been appointed to be the first chair of the new Youth Committee. He is 17 and. received his amateur radio training at Callington Community College with Callington ARS by Keith Harris, G1FMU.He is now studying Forensic Science and Criminal Psychology at City College Plymouth. As chair of the Youth Committee, Michael said that he, and the rest of the team, will do their best to show the young people of the UK the endless possibilities this hobby has to offer, most importantly to inspire, innovate and achieve. Congratulations to Michael on his appointment and look out for lots of youth activities next month
FUNcube-1, otherwise known as AO73, has celebrated its first birthday. It was launched at 0710UTC on 21 Nov 2013.. The satellite has been performing very satisfactorily with the battery voltage keeping above 8 volts and is fully charged within about 7 to 10 minutes after re-entering sunlight from eclipse. AMSAT-UK would like to thank all those who download telemetry and forwarding it to the warehouse and who use the transponder. This telemetry data is invaluable, both as an educational resource and to see how the spacecraft systems are performing and surviving. So far almost 400MB of unique data via stations from all around the world has been collected.
Sadly, only two expressions of interest were received for the Exam Item Question Writing Workshop planned for December. This means the event has been cancelled. Organisers are disappointed that more amateurs are not willing or able to get involved in this important job as there remain gaps in the question bank. Recently appointed Chair of the Training & Education Committee, Philip, M0PHI, has said he will try to rally support to run the event in 2015.
Did you visit the National Hamfest in September? Perhaps you were unable to attend and wondered what it was like. TX Factor have announced that Episode 6 about the National Hamfest is now available to view online at www.txfilms.co.uk/txfactor/txf006.shtml
The RSGB is delighted to announce plans to launch an exciting new electronic supplement, RadCom Plus. Aimed at extending the range of technical information available to Members as part of their existing subscription, it will complement and expand the existing range of publications. It will be published quarterly and articles will cover a wide range of topics to provide the technical background that everyone needs for ‘self-training’ beyond the UK licence exams. See the RSGB website for more details.
Anyone who enjoyed the 3-D printer article on page 44 of the latest RadCom may be interested in the Model Engineering Exhibition at Sandown Park on the 12th to 14th December. There will be a section devoted to these devices. Details at www.modelengineershow.co.uk
The new Radio Arcala My DX Summit website went live at 1000UTC on 21st November. The new site design, which incorporates a number of features including a handy propagation tool, has been undergoing some beta testing and last-minute tweaking over the past few weeks. Go to www.dxsummit.fi/
Two Japanese amateur radio satellites, will be heading into deep space this month. The satellites will hitch a ride with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency asteroid mission, which is scheduled to launch on 29th November. One satellite will have an F1D digital store-and-forward transponder, a CW beacon on 437.505MHz and WSJT telemetry on 437.385MHz. The second satellite will have a CW beacon at 437.325MHz.
And now for the details of rallies and events for the coming week
Today, the 23rd, the CATS Radio & Electronics Bazaar will be in the 1st Coulsdon Scout HQ, at the rear of the Council Car Park, Lion Green Road, Coulsdon, Surrey. Doors are open from 10am to 1pm and there will be a Bring & Buy. Anyone proposing to attend this year's CATS Bazaar is advised to check the CATS website at www.catsradio.org before setting out as the site is planned for redevelopment and there may therefore be last-minute changes to access or parking arrangements.
Also today, the 23rd, is the Plymouth Radio Club Rally at Harewood House, The Ridgeway, Plympton, Plymouth PL7 2AS. Doors opens at 10am and admission is £2. Details from Sheila Hart, 2E0YSH on 07815 542 477.
Martin Lynch & Sons will be moving to new, larger premises early in 2015 and are holding a Farewell to Chertsey Hog Roast on 29th November. The new premises are located in nearby Staines on Thames. On the 29th there will be the usual refreshments from 8am to 4pm.
The final rallies of the year are on 6th and 7th December. The South Lancs Winter Rally is at Wigan on the 6th and the Bishop Auckland RAC rally is in County Durham on the 7th. More details next week.
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
Allen, G4PF and Janet, M0GWW will be celebrating Lancashire Day on the 27th of November. They plan to be active from 2m to Top Band, conditions permitting.
Prefix hunters have the opportunity of a few new prefixes between now and the end of December when the callsigns 7V60R, 7V7V, 7W9A and 7Y9A will be on the air. These stations celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Algerian Revolution.,
Celebrating the annual arrival of Sinterklaas, a forefather to Santa Claus, special event station PD6SINT will be active until 14th December. QSL via the Dutch bureau.
And now the DX news compiled from 425 DX News and other sources
Tim, LW9EOC will be active as 5K0A from San Andres Island, which is IOTA reference NA-033, from 26th November to 4th December. He will operate CW, SSB and RTTY. QSL via LW9EOC, Logbook of The World and logsearch on Club Log.
A group of operators will be QRV from the Andaman Islands as VU4KV until 30 November. They hope to have 5 stations on the air on all bands from 6 to 160m.
UT5UGR will be active as FM stroke KL7WA from Martinique between 24th November and 1st December. Activity will likely be on all HF bands except 30, 17 and 12 meters and the digital modes. QSL via UT5UGR.
DL6KVA will be active as 4K0CW from Azerbaijan between 26th November and 2nd December. Operations will be CW only on all HF bands using 100 watts into a long wire. QSL via DL6KVA via the bureau or electronically using Logbook of the World.
KM0O will be operational as 3W3O from Vietnam between 25th November and 24th December. His main activity will be the CQ World Wide DX CW Contest but expect him to be on 160 and 80m before and after the contest. QSL to KM0O direct, via the bureau or electronically using Logbook of the World.
Now the contest news
Today, the 23rd, the UK Microwave Group’s Low Band Contest runs from from 1000 to 1400UTC. Using all modes on the 1.3 to 3.4GHz bands the exchange is the usual signal report, serial number and locator.
On Tuesday, the 50MHz UK activity Contests runs from 2000 to 2230UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
Also at the same time on Tuesday, the SHF UK Activity Contest is on the air, Using all modes on the 2.3 to 10GHz bands the exchange is the usual signal report, serial number and locator.
On Wednesday the UK EI Contest is on 80m from 2000 to 2100UTC. Using CW only the exchange is your 4 character locator square. This contest is one hour long and you only have one hour after the contest finishes to upload your log.
Another one hour contest is on Thursday when the 80m Club Sprint take to the air from 2000 to 2100UTC. Using CW only the exchange is serial number and name.
Next weekend the 29th and 30th is one of the last big contests of the year, the CW World Wide DX contest. It’s CW only on the 1.8 to 28MHz bands, which will be busy all weekend for this 48 hour contest. Some rarely activated countries will be on the air. The exchange is signal report and CQ Zone, which is 14 for the UK.
Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA and G4BAO on Friday the 21st of November.
As we predicted last week, sunspot region 2209 has been active, emitting a number of M- and C-class solar flares, although it is nowhere near as violent as it was on its last rotation. The solar flux index remained relatively high during the week, peaking at 170. The latest NOAA/USAF forecast predicts the solar flux index will be 170 on Monday 24 November and will then tail off towards 120 by the end of the week.
Geomagnetic conditions look to be reasonably quiet, especially after Tuesday, with the Ap index predicted to be a very low 2-4. This should bode well for reasonable HF conditions during next weekend’s CQ World Wide CW contest on the 29th and 30th.
As we head towards the winter solstice we are starting to see long path 40m openings to the west coast of the USA in the afternoon, just before sunset. VU4KV on the Andaman and Nicobar Islands has also been spotted on 40m around the same time. We are also starting to see 80m openings to the east coast of the USA before sunrise. Both bands are worth a second look at this time of year.
And now the VHF and up propagation news.
Meteorologist, Jim, G3YLA, says weather-related propagation factors are a bit thin on the ground once again. Thankfully, this week does offer an initial temporary period when a weak ridge of high pressure may provide a slight enhancement of VHF/UHF tropo conditions. This is just at the beginning of the week, but with low pressure nearby, it represents only a marginal, and certainly temporary, improvement. Towards the end of the week it seems likely that returning low pressure will put us right back to November’s typical flat conditions.
The more settled sun and low Ap index means little chance of auroras this week.
Last week’s Leonids meteor shower turned out to be much poorer than expected, and the Geminids are still three weeks away, but it’s still worth trying for random meteor activity in the early mornings especially on 50 and 70MHz.
For EME operators, the Moon gets to its lowest declination on Monday, meaning shortest moon availability, but is at perigee (the closest point) on Friday, meaning losses are lowest.
Despite the poor outlook on the VHF and microwave bands this week, there is always propagation by aircraft reflection and random meteors to experiment with.
And that's all this week from the propagation team.