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RSGB GB2RS NEWS BULLETIN for 13th. August 2017.

Posted on August 11th, 2017



Sunday 13th of August 2017


The news headlines:

  • YOTA 2017 wraps up

  • Nominate an upcoming DXer

  • RSGB site adds dynamic updates

This weekend sees the end of a fabulous YOTA 2017 week. It has been action-packed and a great success. Eighty young radio amateurs from 26 countries have enjoyed trying out new aspects of amateur radio as well as making new friends. After a tense start at the ISS contact on Tuesday, twelve young radio amateurs were able to put their questions to astronaut Paolo Nespoli, IZ0JPA. It was truly a night to remember for all the participants, everyone present at the YOTA event itself, plus those watching from around the world via the BATC internet video stream. IARU Region 1 President Don Beattie, G3BJ and Hilary Claytonsmith, G4JKS visited the YOTA camp and were impressed by the skills and enthusiasm shown by the YOTA teams. You can see a snapshot of the huge range of activities that have been happening via the YOTA 2017 Daily Diaries at

The G5RP Trophy is an annual award to encourage newcomers to HF DXing. The award is not limited to youngsters or the newly-licensed; it is open to anyone who has recently discovered and made significant progress in HF DXing. If you are an established HF DXer and want to recommend someone to be awarded the G5RP Trophy for 2017, now is the time to send in your nomination. This prestigious award will be presented this year at the RSGB Convention on the 13th to 15th October. Please send nominations to Ian Greenshields, G4FSU, by e-mail to to arrive no later than Friday the15th of September.

This week the RSGB has launched its new dynamic updates page. It brings together in one place the live RSGB Facebook, Twitter and YouTube content as well as the latest news feed. This week the news is focusing on YOTA 2017 but in the future it will show the RSGB’s latest breaking news.

From the 16th to the 27th of August, Medway Amateur Receiving and Transmitting Society will be holding their annual field event at Milton & District Scout Camp, Bexon Lane, Bredgar, Sittingbourne, Kent ME9 8HD. Over the two weeks the club will be on the air on the 80m to 70cm bands using their three callsigns G2FJA/P, G5MW/P and G8MWA/P. Anyone who contacts all three callsigns by SSB, data or CW over the two weeks will receive a commemorative certificate either by eQSL or email. On the weekend of the 19th and 20th of August there will be specialised demonstrations at the field using microwaves, antennas, WSPRlite and data. For further updates please visit

Ofcom has issued frequency clearances for four microwave beacons. These are GB3FNM at Farnham on 2.3GHz, GB3LPC at Bampton on 3.4GHz, a move of GB3KEU to Finningley on 5.7GHz and a change to GB3KBQ in Taunton on 10GHz. These are all secondary allocations where RSGB supports and encourages activity.

The end of the Early Bird discount for bookings at the RSGB’s Convention is fast approaching. The deadline is the 18th of August and the event takes place on the 13th to the 15th of October. The provisional programme is now available on the website, so visit for all the latest information.

Marcus Hazel-McGown, MM0ZIF has decided to step down as Regional Manager for Scotland South and the Western Isles. The RSGB would like to thank Marcus for his hard work during his term as Regional Manager. We are of course seeking a replacement Regional Manager and would welcome applications from anyone living in the Region who is keen to represent the Society and help support and develop amateur radio in the area. For further details, please contact RSGB General Manager Steve Thomas, M1ACB via email to

YOTA 2017 ends this weekend and the 80 young radio amateurs from 26 countries will make their way home after a week of operating, visits and construction projects. A quick preview of the amazing CW transceiver that Hans, G0UPL designed for the YOTA teams to build is at There was lots of activity in the shack on GB17YOTA and, at the time this script was prepared, over 8,000 QSOs were in the log. They also had the first FT8 mode transatlantic contact on 6m on Thursday. More information is at

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

Flight Refuelling ARS Hamfest takes place today, the 13th of August, at Cobham Sports and Social Club Ground, Merley, near Wimborne, Dorset BH21 3DA. There will be a talk in station on S22 and the venue has free car parking. Doors open at 10am and admission is £3.50. There will be trade stands, a car boot area and indoor and field pitches for traders. Lectures will take place during the day. There is catering and a licensed bar on site. Camping is available, on Saturday night only, in an adjacent field. More information from

Next Sunday, the 20th, the Rugby ATS Radio Rally takes place at Princethorpe College, Princethorpe, Rugby, CV23 9PY. Doors open from 10am to 4pm and admission is £3. Sellers can gain access from 8am. There will be a car boot area. Catering is available on site. Details from Tony, G0OLS on 0775 968 4411.

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

Special station 4A2MAX from St Maximilian Maria Kolbe Temple in Monterrey on the 13th to the 19th of August. Activity will be on the HF bands and 6 metres SSB, CW and digital modes. Born in 1894, Father Kolbe, SP3RN died on 14 August 1941 at Auschwitz. QSL via Logbook of The World, eQSL and Club Log.

YB72RI is a special callsign celebrating the 72nd anniversary of the Republic of Indonesia until the 17th of August. Activity takes place from all Indonesian provinces and ORARI districts, using YB72RI/0 to YB72RI/9. See YB2RI on for details.

Two Alaskan IOTA islands will be activated by Mike, VE7ACN. He will be operating as AL3/AA7CH from Hinchinbrook Island, NA-042, until the 15th of August and as NL6/AA7CH from Kayak Island, NA-157, from the 18th to the 28th. All QSLs to his Canadian call.

Alex, F4GHS will be operating holiday style from two different locations in the South Cook Islands until the 25th of August. He will use the callsign E51GHS. QSLs go via his home call.

Martti, OH2BH and Henri, OH3JR, signing as OJ0BH and OJ0JR, respectively, will be on the air until the 19th of August, using the new FT8 digital mode from Market Reef.

Now the special event news

Grey Point Fort ARS club station will be transmitting at the 204 NI Field Hospital Family Fun Day at Grey Point Fort today, the 13th of August. All the museums will be open with other attractions such as a climbing wall, military displays, stalls and a band. Everyone is welcome.

Llanelli ARS will be running GB1BPL for this year’s International Lighthouse & Lightship Weekend from 0000UTC on the 19th until 2359UTC on the 20th. Activity will be on HF and 2m. QSL is via the bureau. Details on

Fareham & District ARC will be operating GB1GL from the Mary Mouse 2, an automated light vessel moored in Portsmouth Harbour as part of International Lighthouses and Lightships Weekend on the 19th of August. Two stations will be active on HF and VHF from 9am to 6pm. The Lightship is open to the general public for food and drink. The Shack will be in the wardroom on the foredeck if you would like to visit in person.

After being invited by the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, Humber Fortress DX ARC will be activating GB2SL on the 19th and 20th from Spurn Head Lighthouse for International Lighthouses and Lightships Weekend. This will be only the third activation in the last 10 years and coincides with the full renovation of the Spur High Lighthouse.

Loughton & Epping Forest ARS is all set to activate GB0TBW at the Trinity Buoy Wharf for International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend on the 19th and 20th. This lighthouse is the only lighthouse on the Thames. Visitors are most welcome and there are refreshments available on site. The postcode is E14 0JY, but space for parking is limited.

Colchester Radio Amateurs will be activating GB6NT at Naze Tower at Walton on the Naze on the 19th and 20th of August for International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend. Planned operation is 11am on the 19th to 5pm on the 20th using HF, VHF and UHF. All stations in the log will receive an eQSL card; paper cards will be QSLR only. Details are on

Now the contest news

The WAE DX CW contest ends its 48 hour run at 2359UTC today, the 13th of August. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number. EU stations work non-EU stations only.

Today, the 13th, the fifth 70MHz Cumulative Contest runs from 1400 to 1600UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Tuesday the 1.3GHz UK Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 2130UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

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

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G3SVW, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 11th of August.

Last week, the solar flux index continued in the mid 70s, with a single sunspot group making its way across the visible disk. Compare and contrast this with the same week last year, when there were actually five sunspot groups visible. This confirms, as it we didn’t know, that Solar Cycle 24 continues to decline. The current estimates for sunspot minimum place it around 2019 to 2020, so get used to more of the same.

The good news last week was that conditions were more geomagnetically stable, with the K index mostly around one after Monday the 7th. This meant that there was DX to be had, including some short-lived openings to the Far East on 20 and 30 metres around 1800hrs. Milton, ZP9CTS in Paraguay was also worked by Tony, G4CJC on Tuesday using the new digital mode FT8 on 10 metres.

Next week may start off unsettled due to another solar coronal hole, which became Earth-facing on Wednesday. This suggests unsettled geomagnetic conditions could occur from Friday the 11th and run in to this weekend. This could spark auroral conditions, but may ultimately result in depressed maximum useable frequencies.

Once the weekend is over, next week should be more settled and conditions may settle. Look for DX openings on 30, 20, and 17 metres, with occasional Sporadic-E openings on higher bands at times.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The big problem with multiple weather models is that they usually predict ridges of high pressure and troughs across the country at different times. It’s best therefore, to provide generalised operating guidance for the different weather types.

This week, the ridges of high pressure will tend to favour the south of the country for Tropo, principally into the continent and across Biscay to Spain. The troughs and lows usually bring rain scatter and there’s been some good examples with the heavy thundery downpours lately. Look for heavy rain, shown as bright colours on the many online rainfall radars, to get the best from any large storm events.

The Perseids passed their peak at the weekend, but activity will still be high over the next few days for meteor scatter enthusiasts.

Sporadic-E is still hanging on into the last part of the season with a few openings on most days, but not necessarily reachable from the UK. It’s quite likely that the unsettled weather currently bodes well for Sporadic-E, since the powerful upper atmosphere jet streams that drive the rainy weather are also good for Sporadic-E.

The lunar cycle continues on its predictable way. Now, and for the next few years, lowest path losses are coinciding with highest declination in the Northern Hemisphere. This means that Moon windows are longest when losses are at their lowest. This week should be good for EME, with falling losses as we move towards perigee and maximum declination on Friday.

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