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RSGB GB2RS NEWS BULLETIN for 11th. June 2017.

Posted on June 9th, 2017


Sunday 11th of June 2017

The news headlines:

  • Real-time propagation tool goes online

  • Jamaica removes Morse requirement

  • New 122 and 241GHz UK records

A new graphing tool has been developed by Jim, G3YLA of the Propagation Studies Committee to show the near real-time critical frequency over the UK and the predicted maximum usable frequency over different paths. A feature on how to use the free tool appears in the July issue of RadCom. But if you want to try the critical frequency tool on your own it can be found at and there are useful help files to get you going.

Amateur radio operators and technicians in Jamaica will no longer be required to be proficient in Morse code, as a result of changes to the regulations for the two pieces of legislation that govern radio and telegraph control services.

The existing 122GHz and 241GHz UK distance records were both extended to new distance of 6.8km with two-way contacts in CW between John Hazell, G8ACE, operating from his home, to Ian Lamb, G8KQW/P located at Shroner Wood, Winchester. The contact took place on Sunday the 21st of May. Transmit power levels were around 200 microwatts at both ends on both bands, and the antennas were 30cm dishes with separate 122GHz and 241GHz feed horns. RST was 539 each way on both bands. You can see the contacts thanks to the video uploaded to YouTube by John. See for details.

A three-page briefing note from the UK Activity Contest workshop on the 3rd of June is now available. It can be downloaded as a PDF from and describes what was discussed, plus the workshop group’s unanimous proposals for the further development of these successful contests.

European Space Agency Astronaut Thomas, KG5FYG, returned to Earth on the 2nd of June after a 6-month duty tour on the International Space Station. It took more than 3 hours to descend to Earth in a Soyuz MS-03 transporter. During his time on the ISS he participated in several Amateur Radio on the International Space Station school contacts. Italian astronaut and amateur Paolo Nespoli, IZ0JPA will head to the ISS in July.

Grimsby ARS has upgraded the D-Star UHF repeater GB7GC with new antennas and a UHF preamp on receive. These improvements will help with better coverage of the area. They will be doing the same for GB3GY, the UHF FM repeater based in Cleethorpes. Visit for more details.

The callsign of the Perth City internet gateway on 145.2125MHz is now MB7APT-L. The station is part of the Echolink system, with a new node number of 866340. The gateway station is located on Kinnoull Hill, on the outskirts of Perth. It has good coverage both of the city and a swathe of its hinterland to the North and West. Access is with a CTCSS tone of 94.8Hz. 

And now for the details of rallies and events for the coming week

Today, the 11th of June, the Junction 28 Amateur Radio Rally will take place at Bowls Hall Alfreton Leisure Centre, Church Street, Alfreton DE55 7BD. Contact the rally secretary for details on 01159 307 322

Also on today, the 11th, the East Suffolk Wireless Revival, otherwise known as the Ipswich Rally, will take place at the new venue of Kirton Recreation Ground, Back Road, Kirton, IP10 0PW, just off the A14. Doors open at 9.30am, with free car parking and an entry fee of £2. There will be trade stands, a car boot sale, Bring & Buy, special interest groups, GB4SWR HF station on the air and an RSGB bookstall. Catering is available on site. Contact Kevin, G8MXV, on 0771 0046 846.

Next Saturday, the 17th, the South Lancs ARC Summer Rally will be held at Bickershaw Village Community Club, Bickershaw Lane, Bickershaw, Wigan WN2 5TE. There is car parking on site and doors open at 9am for the public. Entry is £2.50. There are a limited number of pitches available. There will be a Bring & Buy, special interest groups and trade stands. Catering is available on site. Details from Jason, G0IZR on 01942 735 828.

On Sunday the 18th, the 30th Newbury radio Rally will take place at the Newbury Showground, next to the junction of the M4 and A34 in Berkshire. There is free parking on site and entry is £2.50, or £12.30 for those in the car boot area. There will be a display area of an amateur radio station, exhibits, special interest groups, clubs and societies. There is on site catering and disabled facilities. The site is open to sellers from 8am and to the public from 9am.

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 full details to

And now the DX news compiled from 425 DX News and other sources

Four operators will be active as DL/OO6P and DL/ON4IPA from Fehmarn Island, IOTA reference EU-128, from the 17th to the 23rd of June. They will operate SSB, RTTY, PSK31 and PSK63 with two stations. QSL via ON6ZV, direct or bureau. More details on

Ryosei, JH0IXE will be on the air from Koror Island in the Republic of Palau. He will use the callsign T8CW from the 9th to the 18th June. Palau is in the western Pacific Ocean and the IOTA reference is OC-009. Activity will be on all bands from 80m to 6m and on CW, SSB and digital. QSL manager is JA0FOX.

Stefan, DF8HS will be active from Fehmarn Island, EU-128 from the 16th of June to the 1st of July. QSL via the bureau.

Didier, F5PLR will be active as HI9/F5PLR from Las Terrenas in the Dominican Republic, NA-096, between the 6th of June to the 4th of July. He will be using the 30, 20 and 15m bands.

JA0JHQ will be active as AH0C/KL7 from near Anchorage, Alaska from the 17th to the 19th of June. Main activity will be on 160, 80, 40 and 20 metres during the All Asian DX CW Contest on the17th and 18th. QSL via JA0JHQ, bureau or direct, and Logbook of The World; logsearch on Club Log.

Now the special event news

South Essex ARS will be operating from The Bay Museum, Canvey Island on Sunday the 18th of June for Museums on the Air, and to commemorate the two B17s that crashed at Canvey Point in 1944.

Crystal Palace Radio & Electronics Club will be activating GX2LW on HF and VHF at a street party in Overhill Way, Beckenham, Kent on Saturday the 17th of June. The station will be accessible to the public.

As part of the Open Garden Squares Weekend event, GB8CCG will be on the air from a temporary radio shed on the 17th from 11am to 3.30pm at 182 Mare St, London E8 3RE

Rhondda Amateur Radio Society will be running GB0BTB on the 17th and 18th of June for the historic Beating The Bounds. Members will be active on all band's and modes, including data.

Now the contest news

The IARU ATV contest ends its 24 hour run at 1200UTC today, the 11th. Using the 432MHz and up bands the exchange is picture grade, four-digit code, serial number and locator.

The REF DDFM 6m contest ends its 24 hour run at 1600UTC today, the 11th. Using SSB, CW and FM on the 50MHz band, the exchange is signal report, serial number and four digit locator.

Today, the 11th, the 144MHz Backpackers contest runs from 0900 to 1300UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Lasting three hours longer, from 0900 to 1600UC today, the 11th, the Practical Wireless 2m QRP contest uses all modes on the band. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator. Note the maximum power for this contest is 5 watts.

On Tuesday the 432 FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1900UTC with the 432MHz UK Activity Contest following from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange is the same for both: signal report, serial number and locator.

On Wednesday the 80m Club Championship is on from 1900 to 2030UTC. This is the CW leg and the exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Thursday the 70MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1900UTC and is followed from 1900 to 2130UTC by the 70MHz UK Activity Contest. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The 50MHz trophy runs from 1400UTC on the 17th to 1400UTC on the 18th. Using all modes on the 6m band the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The All Asian DX contest runs from 0000UTC on the 17th to 2359UTC on the 18th. Using CW only on the 1.8 to 28MHz bands the exchange is signal report and age.

Next Sunday, the 18th, the UK Microwave Group High Band contest runs from 0900 to 1700UTC. Using all modes on the 24-248GHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The Worked All Britain 50MHz phone contest takes place next Sunday, the 18th of June, from 0900 to 1500UTC. The exchange is signal report, serial number and WAB square for UK stations. Entries need to be with the contest manager by the 9th of July. Details at

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 9th of June.

Last weekend’s National Field Day saw only average HF propagation, with a geomagnetic disturbance on the Saturday evening sending the K index to four. Nevertheless, there was DX to be had, even if most of it was on 20 metres. G4ARN/P in Norfolk reported working Brazil on 20m using five watts, but the majority of their other contacts were mostly European.

Sporadic-E did manage to cause some excitement up to 28MHz, but you had to be in the right place at the right time. The rest of the week was characterised by relatively-settled geomagnetic conditions and a solar flux index in the seventies.

Twenty metres threw up some interesting openings in the evenings. As the sun began to set, D layer absorption dropped and David, G3YYD reported working the USA, Mexico, Chile, Venezuela, and Barbados on 20m SSB from 2100 to 2330UTC. This backs up what we have been saying about 20m remaining open longer as we head towards the summer.

Next week, the solar flux index is predicted to remain around 78 to 80. Geomagnetic conditions may be good until the 14th of June, when they may then become unsettled until the 18th. We suggest the best DX may be available this weekend and early next week, with F2 layer openings up to 20m and occasionally 17m.

Sporadic-E openings could occur from as low as 80m and up to 10m, although D-layer absorption may hide them on the lower bands during daylight.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The unsettled weather has lasted into this weekend with further spells of rain or showers. This type of weather is good for rain scatter on the GHz bands, but not much else.

Early next week, high pressure starts to build across southern Britain and is later expected to form a small detached high over the country. This should be good for tropospheric opening prospects, which should improve as the week progresses.

Sporadic-E is well under way now, with good QSOs being made, including multi-hop transatlantic and Japanese QSOs on 50MHz. Even small stations are benefitting from the upsurge in digimode activity, but please try to spread out from 50.276MHz and keep to the correct time slot for your direction to avoid QRM. Most of all, please don’t run ‘attended JT beacons’ on this frequency: leave it free for QSOs and calling CQ. Follow the clusters and beacons to get an early advantage and select the late morning and late afternoon prime times for checking the bands from 10m up to 2m.

The openings tend to move across Europe from east to west, so don’t fix your beam in one direction only. This is not the Sporadic-E patch moving, but different areas becoming active as the earth turns. There is often a lull during early afternoon and move up to the higher bands as they open to get maximum range.

This is another poor week for EME, with negative moon declination and high losses due to the apogee on the 8th, so keep tweaking those systems on sun noise to optimise your performance.

And that’s all from the propagation team this week.