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RSGB GB2RS NEWS BULLETIN for 6th. August 2017.

Posted on August 4th, 2017



Sunday 6th of August 2017


The news headlines:

  • ARISS contact for YOTA 2017

  • RSGB comments on Ofcom VDSL report

  • 12-year-old activates all 214 Wainwrights

An International Space Station ARISS contact has been planned for astronaut Paolo Nespoli, IZ0JPA and the Youngsters on the Air event, which takes place at Gilwell Park this week. The ARISS contact is scheduled for Tuesday the 8th of August at approximately 1838UTC. This will be a direct radio contact, operated by GB4YOTA, and downlink signals will be audible in many parts of Europe on 145.800MHz narrowband FM. Paolo, IZ0JPA will operate the HamVideo transmitter. The Goonhilly receiver will be activated sometime on the 4th of August and will remain active over the weekend, continuing to track the ISS until the morning of the 9th. Two internet video streams will be available. The main YOTA event stream is at and the ISS contact stream, starting at around 1740UTC on Tuesday, will be at You can also watch the ISS contact live on the RSGB’s YouTube channel at

Ofcom published a research report that the RSGB contends came to the mistaken conclusion that no electromagnetic disturbance capable of causing harmful interference was found at three sites tested, all of which had reported interference from VDSL. The RSGB EMC Committee has analysed in detail the results obtained by Ofcom and converted them to standard units for this type of measurement. Ofcom results were then found to be within a few decibels of RSGB’s earlier measurements at these sites. We believe these constitute Harmful Interference and so we presented these results at a meeting with Ofcom in June 2017. Slides from presented by RSGB at the meeting are at Ofcom now proposes to conduct further tests at other sites using a different test setup. We are discussing with them test methods that will find what is and what is not receivable because of the VDSL RFI. Currently, Ofcom propose to measure only what is receivable despite the RFI.

Congratulations to Lauren, M6HLR, who completed the Wainwrights on the Air challenge this week. She has climbed all 214 Wainwrights within two years and been portable on amateur radio from each one. At just 12 years old she is the youngest person to complete the challenge. BBC News caught up with her on Monday after her 213th Wainwright and the programme aired after she completed the challenge on Tuesday. The BBC report is online at She is a great advocate for amateur radio and an enthusiastic role model for encouraging others of her age to get involved.

Online voting is now open to determine which scoring system will be used in the UKAC contests from 6m though to 23cm for 2018. Online voting on this consultation will remain open until 2359 BST on the 20th of August. Those eligible to vote are current RSGB Members who have taken part in an RSGB VHF, UHF or SHF contest in the past five years either as single operators, or as members of a multi-operator entry, as verified against the Contest Committee database. If you have changed your callsign since entering your last VHF Contest, please include both your old and new callsigns. The vote can be reached by going to

The MSF radio signal is a dedicated time broadcast that provides an accurate and reliable source of UK civil time, based on the NPL time scale UTC. The annual shutdown of the MSF time signal service to allow safe maintenance of the masts and antennas, including greasing of the stays, will take place between the 14th and the 31st of August. The service will be off-air from 8am to 7pm each day, including weekends. If the weather is unsuitable for work to be carried out, then the service will not be turned off. If the work is completed sooner than 7pm on any day, the service will be restored as soon as possible.

GB2RS newsreader Reg, G8VHI will be away on the 13th of August so there will be no 2m SSB transmission at 2030 on 144.250MHz. There will only be the 145.525MHz FM broadcast, with a slightly reduced coverage, as the reserve reader Jim, G4AEH will be reading. SSB will return on the 20th of August.

The Danish national society, EDR, celebrates its 90th anniversary in August. Danish radio amateurs will, throughout 2017, be active with OZ90EDR, OX90EDR and 5P90EDR. On the 15th August from 0000UTC until 2359UTC there will be extensive activity with these callsigns and the special Headquarters station, OZ90HQ, and also the Joker station, OV90EDR, will be active. On the 19th, OZ90HQ will be active again. After the 19th, the HQ station will go back to using OZ1HQ. All contacts on the 15th and 19th will be valid for the EDR 90 Anniversary Award. Read more about the award on

Alan Betts, G0HIQ recently stepped down as chair of the Examinations Group. His successor has been announced as Professor Peter Richmond, M0HBL. Peter has been interested in amateur radio since his schooldays and this interest in electricity and magnetism led to a career with Unilever looking into the effectiveness of washing powders and the nature of food. A lengthy career in research and general management followed, including a post in Trinity College Dublin applying his physics skills to problems in economics and social science, which continues to this day. On retirement, Peter obtained his licence and joined the Examinations Group. You can read more about Peter and the work of the Examinations Group at

Thames Amateur Radio Group is hosting an RSGB Train the Trainers event on Saturday the 9th of December between 9am and 5pm. Training is open to candidates from any club and is delivered free to RSGB Members, but the club will be asking for a £5 donation per candidate towards hall hire, buffet lunch and refreshments. To book send an email to

The annual Churches and Chapels on the Air event takes place on the 9th of September, between 10am and 4pm. Most operation is on 40m SSB. If you are putting a station on please register your event with John, G3XYF by email to A list of CHOTA stations will be on

Ofcom has updated the conditions of the 2300-2302MHz microwave NoV. Operation from Jersey and Guernsey is now also permitted under the latest terms. As many of the existing 3-year NoVs are due to expire, all holders are encouraged to renew online, free, from to benefit from the latest terms. Separately, Ofcom has issued frequency clearances for four microwave beacons. These are GB3FNM at Farnham on 2.3GHz, GB3LPC at Bampton in 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.

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

The 28th King's Lynn ARC Great Eastern Radio Rally takes place today, the 6th of August, at Gaywood Community Centre, Gayton Road, King's Lynn, Norfolk PE30 4DZ. Car parking on site is free and talk in will be provided on 145.550MHz. Doors open at 9am, with admission £2. There will be trade stands and a Bring & Buy. There are amateur radio pitches outside as well as tables inside. On site catering will be available. Details from Ted, G4OZG, on 01553 768 701, 0794 683 8656.

The Lorn Radio Rally takes place today, the 6th of August, at Crianlarich Village Hall, Main Street, Crianlarich, Perthshire FK20 8QN. Doors open at 10.30am and entry is £2. There will be trade stands as well as a Bring & Buy. A raffle will be drawn at 1.30pm. Catering is available on site. Details, by email, to

The 24th Cockenzie and Port Seton ARC Annual Mini Rally Night takes place on the 11th of August at Port Seton Resource Community Centre, South Seton Park, Port Seton, East Lothian EH32 0BQ. Doors are open from 6pm to 9pm and entry is £2. A raffle will be held on the night and refreshments will be available. Bring along your own junk and sell it yourself. There is no charge for a table but they are only available on a first come first served basis. More information from

Flight Refuelling ARS Hamfest takes place next Sunday, 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 areas 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

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

Gianluca, IK4LZH and Teresa, IU4ICT will be active as 4O/IK4LZH and 4O/IU4ICT from Montenegro between the 6th and 15th of August. They will operate SSB on 40 and 20 metres. QSLs via Logbook of The World, eQSL or via IK4LZH, bureau preferred.

Alex, F4GHS will be active holiday style as E51GHS from Aitutaki, IOTA reference OC-083, between the 7th and 16th of August, then from Rarotonga, OC-013, until the 25th. QSL via his home callsign.

Giovanni, IK1WEG will be active as 9A/IK1WEG from Rab Island, EU-136, between the 7th and 19th of August. He will operate mainly CW on the HF and VHF bands. QSL via his home callsign, direct or bureau.

S9V will be active from Robben Island, AF-064, between the 9th and 13th of August. The team of operators plan to operate SSB and CW with two stations. QSL via M0OXO’s OQRS; traditional QSLs direct only to M0OXO.

Geoff, G8OFQ will be working as a volunteer at the Giant Tortoise Breeding Center on Isla Isabela, Galapagos, SA-004, until the 31st of October. He will be mostly on the air /MM from his yacht the Blue Aurora moored in Puerto Villamil. QSL direct only. He will upload his logs to Logbook of The World and Club Log.

Now the special event news

We start with details of Regional Youngsters On The Air activities. GB17YOTA will be a big signal on many bands this week, marking the RSGB international YOTA event at Gilwell Park. Listen out for them and give them a call – there will be a mixture of operators in the age range from 15 to 25 visiting from around the world.

Meirion ARS will be running a YOTA event over this weekend at Maes Y Neuadd, Talsarnau Gwynedd LL47 6YA. The event is being hosted by the 1st Porthmadog Scout Group who are holding a weekend YOTA camp where Explorer Scouts, Scouts, Cubs and Beavers will all be going for their communications awards. All visitors are welcome to this event and a talk-in station will be operating on 145.475MHz.

There will be a YOTA station in Sussex operating as GB2HAY from the Thursday the 10th to Saturday the 12th of August from noon to 6pm. The venue is Gummies, Beacon Hill Campsite, Tower Road, Faygate RH12 4SX. Contact Mick, G4EFO on 0785 526 8666, for more information.

Members of Bredhurst RATS will be activating Rochester Castle on the 11th and 12th of August and they believe it will be the first time the location has been activated.

Dundee Amateur Radio Club is holding a YOTA2017 Day on Saturday the 12th of August between 10am and 4pm from Monikie Scout Hut, Panmure Road, Monikie, Angus DD5 3QA. The 53rd Angus 1st Newbigging Scout Group will be joining them for a day of radio activity. Details from Jim, MM0DXD on 0772 032 1824.

Grey Point Fort ARS club station will be transmitting at the 204 NI Field Hospital Family Fun Day at Grey Point Fort on the 12th and 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.

Now the contest news

The 432MHz Low Power contest takes place today, the 6th, running from 0800 to 1200UTC. Using all modes on 70cm, the exchange is signal report, serial number, locator and postcode.

On Tuesday the 432MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1900UTC. It is immediately followed by the 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange is the same for both contests, signal report, serial number and locator.

On Thursday, the 50MHz UK Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 2130UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The 144MHz Meteor scatter Sprint Contest takes place during the maximum of the Perseids meteor shower. Running from 2200UTC on Friday the 11th to 2159 on Sunday the 13th, you can find the necessary rules, scoring system and award details at

Running from 0000UTC on Saturday the 12th to 2359UTC on Sunday, the 13th the WAE DX CW Contest uses the 3.5 to 28MHz bands. Europe works non-Europe only and the exchange is signal report and serial number.

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

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G3SVW, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 4th of August.

Last week was characterised by reasonably settled geomagnetic conditions and a solar flux index in the low 70s. The settled conditions meant that, despite the ionosphere still suffering from the summer doldrums, there was HF DX to be had. Andy, M0NKR reports working Z81D South Sudan and TX5EG Marquesas Island on Monday as well as a string of North and South American stations on 20m in the early evening. This shows that at this point in the solar cycle quiet geomagnetic conditions can make all the difference.

Next week NOAA predicts the solar flux index will remain in the mid seventies, but we may suffer from the tail end of the geomagnetic disturbance that started on Friday the 4th. This is due to solar matter from a large Earth-facing coronal hole on the Sun. At the time this is being written we don’t know the magnetic characteristics or speed of the incoming solar wind stream so it is hard to be precise. Nevertheless, if its magnetic component is south-facing we can expect it to couple more easily with the Earth’s magnetic field and the K index could soar as particles are channelled towards the poles.

After a potential initial positive phase we might see maximum usable frequencies to decline and the bands to be noisy, perhaps until Tuesday the 8th. The good news is that a new sunspot has just rotated into view and the rest of next week is predicted to be more settled.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The unsettled weather of the past week will continue through this weekend and into the first half of next week. This means that, like last week, rain scatter is one mode of choice for the GHz bands. As Sunday’s UK Microwave Group contest showed, even light patchy rain can improve 10GHz propagation so be alert, check the beacons and announce activity.

Around the middle of next week there are signs that a weak ridge of high pressure will build towards southern Britain, offering a hint of tropo across southern UK and into the continent. Paths of maximum range are probably going to be across the ridge over Biscay to Spain, Portugal and perhaps even the Canaries or the Azores.

As we approach the end of the Sporadic-E season, August offers decreasing chances. That said, there have been some very good days well into the second half of the month, especially when the weather is more unsettled and is driven by strong jet streams. Subjectively, these late season events can pop up at odd times, quite often biased towards the middle of the day rather than the morning and evening splits of mid-season Sporadic-E.

EME path losses start to fall again this week and Moon declination is rising but stays negative until Friday. UK Moonrise gets later in the evening as the week progresses, so EME will be a late night or early morning activity all week.

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