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RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for October 20th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 20th October 2019

The news headlines:

  • New talk on WUSAT-3 goes online

  • Apply for GB19YOTA now

  • Results of Convention Construction Comp announced

A new video has been released on YouTube of a talk that was given to the AMSAT-UK Colloquium, which was part of the RSGB Convention. Given by Professor Julia Hunter-Anderson, the talk is on the WUSAT-3 CubeSat project and highlights potential uses of satellites for wildlife tracking. You can watch it at tinyurl.com/GB2RS-1020-A

Have you applied to host the callsign for this year’s Youngsters on the Air Month in December? It is a great opportunity to encourage youngsters to get on the air and to learn more about the practical side of the hobby. The RSGB has the callsign GB19YOTA and we’re looking for individuals, radio clubs, schools, Scout, Guide and Cadet groups to activate the callsign or host a station. Operations can be on HF, VHF and or UHF using all modes. Each day will be split into three operating slots, midnight to 1159UTC, 1200 to 1759 UTC, and 1800 to 2359UTC. You can also just operate for a few hours if you wish. All Full licensed RSGB Members or Affiliated clubs can register to host the callsign. Such stations can be operated by Foundation and Intermediate licence holders provided they are supervised by an appropriate Full licence holder. The aim of the event is to get operators aged 26 or below on the air. To find out more go to www.rsgb.org/yota-month and to apply to host the callsign please email gb19yota@rsgb.org.uk with your full name and callsign, your RSGB Membership or affiliation number, plus your preferred dates and operating times.

The 2019 RSGB Construction Competition, generously sponsored and supported by Martin Lynch & Sons, was very well supported with a larger number of entries this year. We’d like to thank all the judges for their time and expertise and the entrants who took the trouble to bring their projects to the Convention. Judges’ Merit awards went to Russell Tribe, G4SAQ, for his Low Earth Orbit Satellite Antenna Tracking Controllers and to David Holman, M0YDH, for his Digital Amateur TV system. The Judges’ Technical Merit award went to Dean Brice, G0UIL, for his Bluetooth Satellite Antenna Controller. The winner of the Innovation category was Mike Willis, G0MJW, for his Dual Band Feed System. The Construction category was won by John Quarmby, G3XDY for his Solid State Amplifiers for 2m, 70cm and 23cm and the Software category winner was Heather Lomond, M0HMO, for her Software DATV receiver. Kevin Ayriss, G8MXV won the Supporting and Encouraging Beginners category with his Magnetic Loop Antenna Controller. He is also the overall winner of the 2019 RSGB Construction Competition, receiving the Pat Hawker G3VA trophy.

The predtest.uk website, supported by the RSGB, is currently without a site developer, consequently a volunteer is sought. Website management skills, as well as Ubuntu and Python knowledge are prerequisites. Presently two items need addressing; the site requires refactoring and the OS needs updating to the newest release, which in itself has some Python prerequisites. Replies to Gwyn Williams, G4FKH at g4fkh@sky.com please.

SAQ, the world heritage radio station, is to transmit on UN-Day, the 24th of October. The transmission will be on 17.2kHz CW. The startup of the transmitter will be around 1630UTC and the transmission of the message will be at 1700UTC. No QSL cards will be send out for this transmission and no List of Reports will be constructed, but they do accept shorter Listeners Reports by email to info@alexander.n.se.

The Royal Signals ARS would like to contact those people who joined the RSARS at the National Hamfest on the 28th and 29th of September. Please contact the membership secretary by email to rsarsmemsec@virginmedia.com.

The Homebrew Heroes Award Program has announced its first annual recipient, Hans Summers, G0UPL. This annual award recognises persons, groups or organisations who help define the frontiers in amateur radio technology through the long-standing tradition of homebrew construction. The formal video presentation is available at the Award Program website, homebrewheroes.org. A longer audio feature interview is available in Episode 308 of the ICQ Podcast at icqpodcast.com.

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

Today, the 20th of October, the Galashiels Rally will take place in Volunteer Hall, St Johns Street, Galashiels, Scottish Borders TD1 3JX. Doors open 11am for disabled visitor and 11.15am for the general public. There will be traders and a Bring & Buy. Refreshments will be available on site.

There are no rallies in the diary for next weekend, the 26th and 27th of October.

Plymouth Radio Club would like to inform people that this year’s rally, planned for November, will not be held. The club would like to thank all those who have supported them over the years.

Please send details of your 2020 rally and event plans as soon as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk.

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

Yosuke, JJ1DQR will be active as 3W9QR from Da Nang in Vietnam from the 23rd of October to the 1st of November. QSL via JJ1DQR.

Geri, DK8KW will be active as 3W9KW from Hanoi in Vietnam until the 26th of October. He will operate QRP CW and possibly SSB, depending on conditions. QSL via DK8KW.

A group will be active as CQ9A from Madeira, IOTA reference AF-014, until the 26th of October. They will operate CW, SSB and FT8 on the 80 to 6m bands, with special attention on 60m. QSL via Club log’s OQRS, Logbook of The World, or via EA1AP.

Jay, AA4FL will be active holiday style as J6/AA4FL from St Lucia, NA-108, until the 28th of October. QSL J6/AA4FL via Logbook of The World, or direct to his home call.

Kenji, JA4GXS will be active as JA4GXS/0 from Sado Island, AS-206, from 0800UTC on the 26th of October until 2200UTC on the 27th. He will operate CW and FT8 on the 40, 30 and 20m bands. QSL via his home call, direct or via the bureau.

Jaap, PA7DA will be active as P4/PA7DA from Aruba, SA-036, until the 31st of October. He will operate CW, SSB and digital modes on the 40 to 10m bands. QSL via PA7DA.

Now the special event news

Hartlepool ARC will be running Jamboree on the Air special event station GB0TVS on behalf of Tees Valley Scouts today, the 20th of October. The station will operate from the Hartlepool Scout Centre, Brierton Lane, just off the A689. Activity will be on HF, VHF and UHF, and all visitors will be welcome.

GB100GP will be on the air from Gilwell Park today, 20th of October, and will have over 250 youngsters visiting the station over the weekend to take part in a variety of activities. They will be active on HF and locally on 145MHz with voice and SSTV.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

The Worked All Germany contest ends its 24 hour run at 1500UTC today, the 20th. Using CW and SSB on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number, with German stations also sending DOK.

Today, the 20th of October, the 50MHz AFS contest runs from 0900 to 1300UTC. Using all modes on 6m only, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Today, the 20th, the 2nd RoLo contest runs from 1900 to 2030UTC. Using CW only on the 3.5MHz band, the exchange is signal report and the rolling postcode.

Also today, the 20th, the UK Microwave Group 24-76MHz contest runs from 0900 to 1700UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Tuesday the SHF UK Activity Contest runs from 1830 to 2130UTC. Using all modes on the 2.3 to 10GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Wednesday it’s the 80m Autumn Series from 1900 to 2030UTC. This time it’s data only and the exchange is signal report and serial number.

Next weekend it’s the CQ World Wide DX SSB contest, running for 48 hours from 0000UTC on the 26th to 2359UTC on the 27th. Using the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and your Zone, which for UK operators is 14.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 18th of October.

The solar minimum continued last week with zero sunspots being recorded. The good news was that geomagnetic conditions were quite settled with a maximum Kp index of three recorded. Most of the week it was between zero and two, which meant that the HF bands were performing to seasonal averages.

Rsgb.org/propquest shows that maximum usable frequencies over a 3,000km path are regularly exceeding 21MHz and reaching as high as 24MHz at times. This would bode quite well for the CQ Worldwide CW contest next weekend – when more than 35,000 amateurs are expected to take to the airwaves – if it were not for the bad news coming up!

Next week NOAA predicts the sun will remain spotless and with a solar flux index of 68. However, a large solar coronal hole was rotating to be Earth-facing on Friday, which means we may have unsettled geomagnetic conditions this weekend. We can expect the Kp index to rise to at least four, bringing noisy bands and lowered maximum usable frequencies after a potential HF enhancement. The ionosphere should settle again early next week.

NOAA then predicts a further geomagnetic disturbance from the 24th to the 27th, thanks to another coronal hole that is returning into view again after a 27-day solar rotation. This may coincide with CQ Worldwide, so it is anyone’s guess as to how propagation will be.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The majority of this weekend and throughout next week will be dominated by low pressure, so it once again looks like the weather will continue to give us rain scatter conditions for the GHz bands. With the SHF UKAC coming up on Tuesday, this is good news for those higher bands.

For the rest of us relying upon Tropo, there is little comfort, although there is a hint of a temporary, but rather weak, ridge of high pressure over the British Isles early next week. The models imply it’s a one-day wonder, probably on Monday, so keep alert to the charts to track its progress.

Of course, other modes are available, such as aurora, EME and meteor scatter, so it will pay to look at the clusters to make sure you haven’t missed anything.

This weekend sees the second leg of the 50-1296MHz ARRL EME contest, so it’s a good time to try the mode at moonrise and moonset if you have a big terrestrial system. The Moon is at maximum declination today and perigee is just a week away so conditions will be good, helped by low and falling sky noise on VHF.

There are two meteor showers this week. The big Orionids shower, with a Zenithal Hourly Rate of 20, peaks on Monday. The much smaller Leonis Minorids, with a ZHR of two, peaks on Thursday.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for October 13th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 13th October 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • RSGB meets with Ofcom over VDSL

  • Scottish Microwave Round Table soon

  • Apply now to run GB19YOTA

 

As a result of RSGB Members’ concerns, a letter requesting a meeting was sent to Ofcom by the RSGB Director responsible for Spectrum, RSGB Board Chair and RSGB President. Subsequently, Dave Wilson, M0OBW, Dr Philip Willis, M0PHI, Dr Martin Sach, G8KDF, Dr John Rogers, M0JAV and Steve Thomas, M1ACB met with Ofcom this week to discuss the VDSL issues. Some of the key points from that meeting include:
1. Ofcom has finished its testing and has produced a report which the RSGB saw in draft format. This revised report recognises that VDSL emits a level of Electro Magnetic Disturbance capable of affecting HF radio reception. With that in mind, the RSGB asked Ofcom to publish its new report and remove the previous report from its website.
2. Ofcom is happy to support the RSGB’s plans to re-open discussions with OpenReach. One area the RSGB intends to discuss with OpenReach is the implementation of notching for the amateur bands, a feature that is already included in OpenReach equipment
3. The RSGB EMC Committee has published its final report on joint testing with Ofcom and is happy to confirm that the results are similar to those in the new Ofcom report at tinyurl.com/GB2RS-1013-ofcom
4. The RSGB emphasised the need to implement notching in G.fast, Ultrafast Broadband, from the beginning, and will take this up with Ofcom during further meetings
5. To help amateurs understand Ofcom’s position, Ofcom offered to write an open letter to the RSGB explaining its ethos; the rationale behind how it operates; what the law is; what Ofcom can do and what it will do; and also how Ofcom’s decision-making process works. This letter has also been published on the RSGB website.

The Scottish Microwave Round Table will take place in Burntisland in Fife on Saturday the 2nd of November. The programme includes talks by Martin Hall, GM8IEM on Constructing a 13cm home station around the Kuhne MKU23 G4 transverter; Heather Lomond, M0HMO on Beginning with GNU SDR and Mark Hughes, GM4ISM on Microwave EME. Other attractions include a construction competition, a test equipment bench and an evening dinner. Further information including the programme and booking information is online at www.gmroundtable.org.uk.

Youngsters on the Air Month takes place each December to encourage youngsters to get on the air and to learn more about the practical side of the hobby. The RSGB has the callsign GB19YOTA and we’re looking for radio clubs, schools, Scout/Guides groups, Cadet groups and individuals to activate the call sign or host a station. Operations can be on HF, VHF, UHF using all modes but all operators should be aged 26 or below. Each day will be split into three operating slots: 0000 to 1159UTC; 1200 to 1759UTC; and 1800 to 2359UTC but you can also just operate for a few hours if you wish. All Full licensed RSGB Members or affiliated clubs can register to host the callsign but Foundation and Intermediate licence holders may operate if they are supervised from the station of a club or the station of a Full licence holder. To find out more go to www.rsgb.org/yota-month and to apply to host the callsign please email gb19yota@rsgb.org.uk with your full name and callsign; your RSGB Membership or affiliation number; your preferred dates and operating times.

The RSGB is pleased to announce that Rob Evered, G2RE has taken up the volunteer post of Youth Champion. Rob will work closely with the Youth Team to ignite interest; develop links with schools, Scouts and Guides, universities and the general public; and motivate young people to get involved in amateur radio.

A special WRC-19 issue of ITU News is now available for downloading at tinyurl.com/GB2RS-1013-ITU. It is a large file but provides an excellent overview of the Conference and its Agenda items, including an article on the IARU objectives for the Conference by IARU Secretary Dave Sumner, K1ZZ. WRC-19 takes place over a full month starting on the 28th of October, concluding on the 22nd of November. The relevant RSGB volunteers plan to attend as part of the Ofcom-led UK delegation, whilst some other amateurs will be embedded in other national delegations. The IARU will also be present at it has official Observer status. The RSGB’s social media and special focus page at www.rsgb.org/wrc-19 will feature regular postings whilst the conference is underway.

From 8am to 5pm today, the 13th of October, UK Army, Navy and Air Cadet Units will be carrying out Exercise Blue Ham 19. Operations will be on the 5MHz shared band. Amateurs may claim a certificate if they contact 10 or more stations over the weekend and submit a copy of their log sheet. QSO exchange details and claim info are at tinyurl.com/GB2RS-BlueHam-19. This is the last chance of 2019 to make contact with Cadets.

There are two ARISS school contacts with the International Space Station planned for this week. An Italian school is booked for the 17th of October around 0849UTC with the contact conducted in Italian. Then, on Friday the 18th at around 0937UTC, an English language contact has been arranged with participants at a Science and Technology event in Germany. The downlink signals for both contacts will be audible in parts of Europe on 145.800MHz FM.

The GB3JV amateur TV repeater is now on the air in beacon mode. It is located in Petts wood, Kent and transmits on 3404MHz. The Tx antenna is a slotted waveguide design and gives an ERP of 150 watts. Receiver inputs are available on 1249MHz and the repeater output is streamed on the BATC website. To receive the repeater all that’s required is a tuneable DVB-S2 satellite receiver, or a BATC Minitiouner, a small dish and a C-Band LNB. Coverage predictions show reception possibilities across the heavily populated area of South-East & East London as well as parts of Essex. This repeater is on the air due to the work of many people and the repeater keeper thanks them all. Information and updates are at www.gb3jv.co.uk.

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

Today, the 13th, is the final day of the 2019 RSGB Convention at Kent’s Hill Park Training and Conference Centre, Milton Keynes MK7 6BZ. See www.rsgb.org/convention

Today, the 13th, the Hornsea Amateur Radio Rally will be held in the Floral Hall, Hornsea HU18 1NQ. Doors open at 10am. Admission is £2, with under 14s free. The Bring & Buy will be run by Hornsea ARC. There will be trade stands showing radio equipment, computers etc and an RSGB book stand. Hot and cold food will be available in the café. Contact Les, 2E0LBJ on 01377 252393 or see www.hornseaarc.co.uk.

Today, the 13th, sees the Holsworthy Radio Rally take place at its new venue, Holsworthy Leisure Centre, Well Park, Western Road, Holsworthy, Devon EX22 6DH. There will be traders, a Bring & Buy and catering on site. The venue has separate disabled access via the side door. A club steward will be on duty in the car park. Doors open 8am for traders and 10am for visitors. Contact Howard, M0MYB via email to holsworthyarc@gmail.com.

On Saturday, the 19th, the Carrickfergus Amateur Radio Group Radio Rally will be held in Downshire Secondary School, Downshire Road, Carrickfergus. Doors will open at 12 noon for the public and 9.30am for traders. All proceeds from the sale of the food and beverages will go to Belfast Samaritans, a very worthy charity. More information from Elizabeth Forde on 0785 544 2839.

On Saturday, the 19th, the CW Convention and CW Boot Camp will be held at the 3rd Witham Scout & Guide HQ, Rear of Spring Lodge Community Centre, Powers Hall End, Witham, Essex CM8 2HE. Registration is at 8.30am for a 9am start. The event is due to finish at around 4.30pm. You should pre-register, as places are limited. Contact g0ibn1@yahoo.com or 0745 342 60 87.

Next Sunday, the 20th of October, the Galashiels Rally will take place in Volunteer Hall, St Johns Street, Galashiels, Scottish Borders TD1 3JX. Doors open 11am for disabled visitor and 11.15am for the general public. There will be traders and a Bring & Buy. Refreshments will be available on site.

Please send details of your 2020 rally and event plans as soon as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk. So far we have received details of just SIX events for the whole of the year.

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

Members of the CAN-AM DXpedition Group will be active as TX7T from the Marquesas Islands, IOTA reference OC-027, until the 17th of November. They will operate CW, SSB, RTTY and FT8 in Fox & Hound mode on the 160 to 6m bands. QSL via M0URX's OQRS and Logbook of The World.

Rene, DL2JRM will be active as 9H3YY from Malta, EU-023, between the 18th and 22nd of October. QSL via his home callsign, direct or bureau. He does not use Logbook of The World.

Willy, DJ7RJ will be active again as FH/DJ7RJ from Mayotte, AF-027, from the 15th of October to the 4th of November. He will operate CW and SSB with a focus on the 160m band and the low bands. QSL via his home call. He does not use Logbook of The World or Club Log.

Antonio, EA5RM will be working in Bolivia until the 30th of November. In his spare time he will operate SSB and digital modes on the 40 to 10m bands as CP1XRM. QSL via EA5RM.

Look for Fabien, F4GYM/P and Pierre-Marie, F4FCE/P, who will be active from Grande Ile de Chausey, EU 039, between the 19th and the 25th of October. They will operate SSB, CW and digital modes on the 80 to 10m bands. QSL via home calls, either via the bureau or direct.

Philippe, F1DUZ will be active as FG4KH from Guadeloupe, NA-102, between the 14th to the 29th of October. He will operate SSB and some FT8 on 80, 40, 20, 17, 15, 12 and 10m bands. QSL via Logbook of The World, eQSL, or via F1DUZ, either direct or via the bureau.

Now the special event news

Hartlepool ARC will be running Jamboree on the Air special event station GB0TVS on behalf of Tees Valley Scouts on the 19th and 20th of October. The station will operate from the Hartlepool Scout Centre, Brierton Lane, just off the A689. Activity will be on HF, VHF and UHF, and all visitors will be welcome.

GB1NHS will be operating as part of GIANT Healthcare scheduled to take place on 15-16 October 2019 at the Chelsea Football Club Stadium in London. This year will be the first time that the event has featured amateur radio. Paul Devlin will be operating a demonstration station on both days.

GB100GP will be on the air from Gilwell Park on the 19th and 20th of October and will have over 250 youngsters visiting the station over the weekend to take part in a variety of activities. They will be active on HF and locally on 145MHz with voice and SSTV.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

The Oceania DX CW contest ends its 24 hour run at 0800UTC today, the 13th. Using the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

Today, the 13th, the IRTS 40m Counties Contest runs from 1200 to 1400UTC using CW and SSB, the exchange is signal report and serial number. EI and GI stations also send their County.

On Monday, the 80m Autumn Series runs from 1900 to 2030UTC. Using CW only on the 3.5MHz band, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Tuesday the 1.3GHz UK Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 2130UTC. Using all modes on the 23cm band, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Thursday the 70MHz UK Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 2130UTC. Using all modes on the 4m band, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next weekend the Worked All Germany contest runs from 1500UTC on the 19th to 1500UTC on the 20th. Using CW and SSB on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number, with German stations also sending DOK.

Next Sunday, the 20th of October, the 50MHz AFS contest runs from 0900 to 1300UTC. Using all modes on 6m only, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next Sunday, the 20th, the 2nd RoLo contest runs from 1900 to 2030UTC. Using CW only on the 3.5MHz band, the exchange is signal report and the rolling postcode.

Next Sunday, the 20th, the UK Microwave Group 24-76MHz contest runs from 0900 to 1700UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 11th of October.

We had a mixed bag of HF propagation over the last seven days, although Monday saw maximum usable frequencies over a 3,000km path climb above 21MHz. Conditions were less good on Thursday morning, mainly due to an elevated Kp index, which reached four thanks to an enhanced solar wind with a south-facing Bz component.

There was DX to be had though, including A82X in Liberia, TO80SP in St Pierre and Miquelon and the ZK3A DXpedition to the Tokelau Islands. They unfortunately had to end their operations early due to the illness of an island resident, but well-equipped stations were able to work them earlier.

There were no sunspots recorded during the last seven days. We apologise for saying the same last week when in fact a small spot appeared and then vanished the next day!

Next week NOAA has the solar flux index pegged at 68. The good news is that it doesn’t think we will have any geomagnetic disturbances. A shot of the sun taken by the Solar Dynamics Observatory on Thursday the 10th showed no coronal hole activity at all. As we know all too well this could change as the week goes on, but for now we predict settled geomagnetic conditions with maximum usable frequencies near their seasonal norms.

We are now seeing the better autumnal propagation as the ionosphere cools, although you may be forgiven for thinking we are not. The low solar flux is not making the bands come alive to SSB and to a lesser extent CW, although modes like FT8 with its lower required signal to noise ratio is letting DX be worked on a regular basis.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

It’s hard to get too much enthusiasm for next week’s VHF propagation prospects as autumn is the season of changeable weather patterns. The coming week is no exception. There will be low pressure nearby for much of the week with the main centres tracking close to Scotland, but also affecting the south at times. These will also bring windy weather at times to test the summer antenna work! The upside of course is that this unsettled weather pattern will bring some good prospects for rain scatter on the GHz bands again.

As for Tropo, it’s not looking good for UK stations with high pressure displaced to the south over France, Biscay and the Azores and thus well out of range for any extended Tropo paths.

Today sees Moon declination go positive so we’ll see a continuing increase in Moon window lengths and peak moon elevation. We are past apogee for this lunar month now, so losses will be falling as well. Sky noise on VHF is low but increasing, reaching 500 kelvin at 144MHz next Saturday.

There is one small meteor shower this coming week, the Epsilon-Geminids on the 18th. We are a week and a day from the much more intense Orionids shower so we should see some improvement then in meteor scatter conditions.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for October 6th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 6th October 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Bampton School to contact ISS on Tuesday

  • Exams committees reorganised

  • Enter the Construction Competition!

Bampton School in East Devon will make their contact with the International Space Station on the Tuesday the 8th of October at 1.51pm. They will be operating as GB4BPS and contacting NA1SS on the station, speaking to Drew Morgan, KI5AAA. The downlink signals on 145.800MHz FM will be audible in many parts of Europe.

In January 2019 the RSGB announced that the Exam committee structure would be changing. The Examinations and Syllabus Review Group, or ESRG, has now been formed to replace the previous Examinations Group. The new Group includes places for club tutors who hold a Full amateur radio licence and have taught the Advanced Syllabus for at least two years. The RSGB is seeking to appoint a Chair and up to three additional members. Further information about the Group, including its Terms of Reference and membership can be found on the RSGB website at www.rsgb.org/esrg. Please email the Examination Standards Committee Chair, Tony Kent G8PBH, via esc.chair@rsgb.org.uk for an application and include a brief description of your relevant experience.

There is still time to put in an entry for the RSGB Annual Construction Competition, which will be judged at the RSGB Convention on the 12th. Entries covering any aspect of amateur radio are welcome. Any project may be entered, other than previous winners in this competition. If you have entered a club or national construction competition, or written up a project for your club magazine, you have done most of the work needed to enter the RSGB Construction Competition. Go to www.rsgb.org/construction-competition to find out more.

Regrettably, two items were stolen from the ML&S stand at the National Hamfest last Saturday. A Kenwood TH-D74E, serial number B6B10239, complete with the battery and antenna was removed from the stand. Additionally a Nissei digital SWR/power meter type RS-70 was removed. If you are offered either of these items, please contact Martin Lynch & Sons.

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. It is kindly sponsored by Martin Lynch & Sons. The programme of lectures and workshops is now online at www.rsgb.org/convention. The closing date for online discount day tickets is the 7th of October. Weekend package bookings can be made until midnight tonight, the 6th of October, at www.rsgb.org/convention. If you have tickets for the Gala Dinner on Saturday and wish to reserve a table with friends, send your name and callsign details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk.

From 8am to 5pm on the 12th and 13th of October, UK Army, Navy and Air Cadet Units will be carrying out Exercise Blue Ham 19. Operations will be on the 5MHz shared band. Amateurs may claim a certificate if they contact 10 or more stations over the weekend and submit a copy of their log sheet. QSO exchange details and claim info are at tinyurl.com/GB2RS-BlueHam-19. This is the last chance of 2019 to make contact with Cadets.

John Rogers, M0JAV and David Lauder, G0SNO will be running an RFI Clinic at the RSGB Convention on Saturday at 4.45pm. The session will consist of a short presentation on the tools and techniques used to locate and identify RFI sources. Then a number of test setups and live demos will be available using radios, SDRs and spectrum analysers to let you see and hear some of these common RFI sources. If you have an unusual source then please bring it along for them to investigate.

Due to essential maintenance work, the GB3RS radio room at the RSGB’s National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park will be closed on Wednesday the 9th of October. The NRC itself will remain open to visitors but, with the radio room closed, it will be unavailable for visiting radio amateurs to operate the station GB3RS. We apologise for any inconvenience and anticipate the station to be fully operational again on Thursday morning.

There will be two Raspberry Pi workshops held on Saturday the 12th at the RSGB Convention. Raspberry Pi owners that are new to Linux and the Pi who would like to understand more about its capabilities in amateur radio should bring along their own Pi; the workshop will supply other equipment. There are limited spaces, but plenty of room for observers, and handouts will be provided. See www.rsgb.org/convention for timings.

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

Today, the 6th of October the 46th Welsh Radio Rally takes place at Rougemont School, Llantarnam Hall, Malpas, Newport NP20 6QB. Doors open from 10am to 4pm, or 9.45am for disabled visitors. Admittance is £2.50. There will be trade stands, a Bring & Buy, RSGB bookstall and Special Interest Groups. Lectures will take place during the day. Catering is available on site. Contact Rob Evans, MW0CVT, 01495 220 455.

The RSGB Convention takes place from the 11th to the 13th of October, with delegates being encouraged to visit the RSGB’s National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park on Friday as part of the weekend activities. Taking place at Kent’s Hill Park Training and Conference Centre, Swallow House, Timbold Drive, Kent’s Hill Park, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire MK7 6BZ, the Convention will feature five streams of lectures and workshops to suit all areas of amateur radio interest. See www.rsgb.org/convention

Next Sunday, the 13th, the Hornsea Amateur Radio Rally will be held in the Floral Hall, Hornsea HU18 1NQ. Doors open at 10am. Admission is £2, with under 14s free. The Bring & Buy will be run by Hornsea ARC. There will be trade stands showing radio equipment, computers etc and an RSGB book stand. Hot and cold food will be available in the café. Contact Les, 2E0LBJ on 01377 252393 or see www.hornseaarc.co.uk.

Next Sunday, the 13th, sees the Holsworthy Radio Rally take place at its new venue, Holsworthy Leisure Centre, Well Park, Western Road, Holsworthy, Devon EX22 6DH. There will be traders, a Bring & Buy and catering on site. The venue has separate disabled access via the traders side door entrance. A club steward will be on duty in the car park. Doors open 8am for traders and 10am for visitors. Contact Howard, M0MYB via email to holsworthyarc@gmail.com.

Please send details of your 2020 rally and event plans as soon as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk.

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

Pasi, OH3WS will be active as OJ0W, OJ0/OH3WS and OJ0/OG3A from Market Reef, IOTA reference EU-053, until the 12th of October. He will operate CW and SSB on the 80 to 30m bands. This is expected to be the last activity for Market Reef’s Golden Jubilee celebrations.

Ravi, VU2IIX will be on Mahe Island in the Seychelles, AF-024, until 30 June 2021. He will operate SSB and digital modes as S79VU on the 80 to 10m bands.

Vernon, NN5E and James, NT5V will operate as V31CC and V31JW respectively from Belize until the 12th of October. QSL via Logbook of The World, or via home calls either direct or via the bureau.

Members of the Italian DXpedition Team will be on the air from Liberia until the 11th of October. An unusual feature of this trip is that instead of the normal EL prefix they will be using A82X for CW and SSB contacts and A82Z for digital contacts. QSL manager is I2YSB and there will be an online log.

Istvan, HA5AO is in Lesotho until the 19th if October using the callsign 7P8AO. He will focus on the high bands, mainly on CW and FT8. QSL via his home call.

Now the special event news

Special callsign GB100HAL has been issued to commemorate 100 years of RAF Halton, in conjunction with the many events that are taking part celebrating the anniversary. The call may also be claimed towards the Airfields on the Air Award and is recognised by RAFARS for all their awards. The callsign will be used most Saturdays up until the end of the year.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

This weekend is busy, with several contests taking place over the two days.

The IARU 432MHz to 245GHz contest runs for 24 hours, finishing at 1400UTC today, the 6th. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The Oceania DX SSB Contest runs for 24 hours until 0800UTC today, the 6th. Using SSB only on the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

Today, the 6th, the DX Contest runs from 0500 to 2300UTC. Using CW and SSB on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

Also today, the 6th, the Worked All Britain DX Contest runs from 0500 to 2300UTC. Using SSB only on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and WAB area.

On Monday the Pioneer FT4 Series contest takes place from 1900 to 2000 on the 3.5MHz band. The exchange is your signal report and 4-character locator.

The IRTS 80m Evening Counties Contest runs from 1900 to 2000UTC using CW and SSB on the 3.5MHz band. The exchange is signal report and serial number. EI and GI stations also send their County.

On Tuesday the 432MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC, using FM only. It is followed by the all-mode 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for both contests is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Thursday the 50MHz Machine Generate Mode Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC, with the exchange of signal report and your 4-character locator. It is followed by the all-mode 50MHz UK Activity Contest from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for that contest is signal report, serial number and locator.

The Oceania DX CW contest runs for 24 hours from 0800UTC on the 12th to 0800UTC on the 13th. Using the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

Next Sunday, the 13th, is the IRTS 40m Counties Contest. Running from 1200 to 1400UTC using CW and SSB, the exchange is signal report and serial number. EI and GI stations also send their County.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 4th of October.

We had a real mixed bag in terms of HF propagation last week. The middle of the week through to Friday was actually quite good. Peter, G3XJE ran a very comprised 20m WSPR station from the Propagation Studies Committee stand at the Newark Hamfest and was picked up as far afield as the southern states in the USA. Saturday was a different story though, thanks to a geomagnetic storm that saw the Kp index soar to five. Twenty metres was pretty lousy and WSPR on 30 metres from Newark only returned a few European spots.

The Sun remained spotless last week and HF propagation is again being dominated by geomagnetic disturbances. Next week NOAA has the solar flux stuck at around 68 with zero sunspots.

We may see the effects of another coronal hole today, the 6th of October, with the Kp index predicted to rise to four. Look out for a possible pre-auroral enhancement. This disturbance may be relatively short lived, with the Kp index falling to two for the rest of the week.

There are a number of DXpeditions on at the moment. The A82X and A82Z DXpedition to Liberia may be one of the easier ones to catch, with openings from 0600-0800 hours on 30m to 15m being favourite. After the slight mid-day D-Layer absorption lull, openings again occur all afternoon. Keep an eye on the DX Cluster to see where they are operating.

Station A35JT from Tonga may be a little more difficult for average stations, as will ZK3A from the Tokelau Islands, both in the Pacific Ocean. But if you don’t have a beam and a linear amplifier, why not try FT8?

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

It's another very unsettled looking set of weather charts for the week to come. They suggest that once again, rain scatter will be the go-to mode on the GHz bands. The hidden message here is that this means low pressure and a general lack of high pressure and temperature inversions for enhanced Tropo conditions.

It can sometimes be useful to explore areas of high pressure a bit further away, and in the next week we find a large high resident between the UK and the Azores. A ridge from this high could occasionally just reach out to the south-western corner of the British Isles to give a small chance of Tropo paths from Southern Ireland, southwest England and South Wales towards Spain and perhaps as far as the Canaries or Azores.

Moon declination reached minimum yesterday so we’ll see an increase in Moon window lengths and peak moon elevation as the week goes on. Apogee is on Thursday, so losses will be high as well. The only plus is that sky noise on VHF is low all week.

There is a flurry of meteor showers this week with the largest, the Draconids, with a zenithal hourly rate of 10, peaking on the 9th. This is followed by the Southern Taurids on the 10th and the delta Aurigids on the 11th, so we should see some better meteor scatter conditions.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for September 29th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 29th September 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Bampton School to contact ISS

  • RSGB Convention latest news

  • Frequency Measurement Festival for WWV

 

Another UK school has the opportunity to contact the International Space Station. Bampton School will make the contact sometime during the week of the 7th of October, but won’t know the exact date and time until closer to the event. They will be operating as GB4BPS and contacting NA1SS on the station. They hope to speak to either Drew Morgan, KI5AAA or Luca Parmitano, KF5KDP, members of the Expedition 60 crew.

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. It is kindly sponsored by Martin Lynch & Sons. The provisional programme of lectures and workshops is now online at www.rsgb.org/convention. There will be a Meet the RSGB Board session where delegates have the opportunity to discuss current issues and strategy with the members of the RSGB Board of Directors. The closing date for online discount day tickets is the 7th of October. Weekend package bookings and the Buildathon can be booked until midnight on the 6th of October at www.rsgb.org/convention. If you have tickets for the Gala Dinner on Saturday and wish to reserve a table with friends, send your name and callsign details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk.

HamSCI and the Case ARC will sponsor a Festival of Frequency Measurement on WWV’s centennial, the first of October, from 0000 to 2359UTC. The event invites radio amateurs, short wave listeners, and others capable of making high-quality frequency measurements on HF to participate and publish their data to the HamSCI community on the Zenodo open-data sharing site. Read all about how to get involved on the ARRL website, see https://tinyurl.com/rsgb-wwv

In Australia, Foundation licensees have gained some digital privileges. The changes include digital modes for Foundation licensees, the removal of the requirement for Foundation licensees to use commercial equipment and a general relaxation of the emission bandwidths for all classes of licence. There are no changes to output power or bands. The changes took effect on the 21st of September.

Moonraker launched a new version of Worked All Postcodes at the National Hamfest on the 27th. The challenge is to work as many postcodes as possible, simplex only, any mode on the 70MHz, 144MHz, 430MHz & 1296MHz bands. The first 10 people to work 30 unique postcodes on the 2m band, confirmed by both stations via the app, will get the pick of some great prizes. A suggested activity night is Wednesday, from 1900-2200UTC using SSB on 144.625MHz ±QRM. Download the worked all postcodes on Google Play or the App Store or visit www.amateur-radio.co.uk.

The next edition of RadCom Basics is now available. Each edition of RadCom Basics explores key aspects of amateur radio in a straightforward way. RadCom Basics is sent as an email alert to subscribers when each edition is published. This email provides a list of contents and a link to the articles on the RSGB website. Go to www.rsgb.org/radcom-basics to register.

With over 60,000 visitors to the RSGB National Radio Centre so far in 2019, we are looking to recruit new volunteers to engage with the public and give radio demonstrations. If you’re interested in becoming an NRC volunteer you should be passionate about meeting people, feel confident explaining the hobby, as well as operating the NRC’s radio station, GB3RS. You should be a licensed amateur, an RSGB Member and be prepared to work a minimum of one (preferably two) days per month. You will be joining a team of enthusiastic, friendly and dedicated volunteers and full training will be given. Travel expenses are paid to volunteers living within reasonable travelling distance and NRC volunteers enjoy numerous benefits associated with volunteering at Bletchley Park. Please email nrc.support@rsgb.org.uk for further information.

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

We have no rallies in the diary for today, the 29th of September.

Next Sunday, the 6th of October the 46th Welsh Radio Rally takes place at Rougemont School, Llantarnam Hall, Malpas, Newport NP20 6QB. Doors open from 10am to 4pm with disabled visitors gaining access at 9.45am. Admittance is £2.50. There will be trade stands, a Bring & Buy, RSGB bookstall, Special Interest Groups and lectures will take place during the day. Catering is available on site. Contact Rob Evans, MW0CVT, 01495 220 455.

Please send details of your 2020 rally and event plans as soon as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk.

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

Harald, DF2WO will be active as D44TWO from Sao Tiago on Cape Verde, IOTA reference AF-005, from the 29th of September to the 13th of October. He will be using an Icom IC-7300, two transverters with 3 watts output on the QO-100 geostationary satellite Es’Hail. QSL via M0OXO's OQRS.

Elena, RC5A and Yuri, RM0F will be active as 5H3CA and 5H3RRC from Mafia Island, AF-054, from the 29th September to the 5th of October. They will operate CW and SSB on the 160 to 10m bands. QSL via RC5A.

DS3EXX/2 and DS3FGN/2 will be active from Daecheong-do, AS-122, between the 3rd and the 9th of October. They will operate SSB, CW and FT8 on the 160 to10m bands. QSLs via DS3EXX direct and Logbook of The World; DS3EXX/2 plans to use Club Log's Live Streams.

A team will be active as HQ9X from Roatan Island, NA-057, until the 7th of October. They will be active on as many bands and modes as possible although 60m operation will be limited to 50 watts USB. QSL via KQ1F.

Jeff, K5WE and Bill, N5AQ will be active as VP2VEM and VP2V/N5AQ respectively from the British Virgin Islands, NA-023, between the 4th and the 13th of October. They will operate mainly CW with some RTTY, FT8, FT4 and SSB on 160-10m. QSL via Logbook of The World, Club Log's OQRS, or via their home calls.

Oleh, KD7WPJ will be active as YJ0BCP from Efate, Vanuatu, OC-035, from the 3rd to the 10th of October. He will operate CW, SSB and FT8 on the 40 to 6m bands. QSL via KD7WPJ for CW and SSB contacts, Logbook of The World for FT8 contacts.

Now the special event news

September 2019 marks the centenary of radio in the Cambridge Area. There is a celebration day today, the 29th of September at Foxton, to which all local amateurs are invited. Local clubs have activated the callsign GB1CAM and it will be in operation until the end of the month.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

This weekend it’s the CW World Wide DX RTTY Contest. It ends its 48 hour run at 2359UTC today, the 29th. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and your Zone, which for the UK is 14.

Today, the 29th, the UK Microwave Group contest runs from 0600 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on the 5.7 and 10GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Tuesday the 144MHz Machine Generated Mode Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC. Tthe exchange is signal report and your 4-character locator. At the same time the 144MHz FM Activity Contest runs with the exchange signal report, serial number and locator. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for this contest is also signal report, serial number and locator.

On Wednesday the UK EI Contest Club 80m contest runs from 2000 to 2100UTC. Using SSB only, the exchange is your 4-character locator.

Next weekend is busy with seven different contests taking place over the two days.

The IARU 432MHz to 245GHz contest runs from 1400UTC on the 5th to 1400UTC on the 6th. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The 1.2GHz and 2.3GHz Trophy contests takes place on Saturday the 5th from 1400 to 2200UTC. Using all modes on the 1.2 and 2.3GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The Oceania DX SSB Contest runs from 0800UTC on the 5th to 0800UTC on the 6th. Using SSB only on the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

Next Sunday, the 6th, the DX Contest runs from 0500 to 2300UTC. Using CW and SSB on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Sunday the 6th, the Worked All Britain DX Contest runs from 0500 to 2300UTC. Using SSB only on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and WAB area.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 27th of September.

Last week continued with zero sunspots, making it now more than 190 days this year that the solar surface has remained spotless. Many solar scientists predict that 2019 will have a total of more than 250 days without sunspots, which would make it the ninth most ‘spotless’ year since records began in 1849. Current research suggests that it may be at least next summer before we see Solar Cycle 25 taking off. Solar physicist Lisa Upton says the current solar minimum will continue through 2019, likely ending in 2020. The next solar maximum is expected in 2024-2026. Meanwhile, looking at HF propagation last week there were a few surprises. Ten metre FT8 showed that there are still some short Sporadic-E openings occurring on the band. The trick is to be there when they happen!

Daytime critical frequencies are still hovering around the 4.1 to 5.1MHz range, which is good news for 80m local contacts, but not so good for 40m. These figures translate to maximum useable frequency over a 3,000km path of up to 18-19MHz at times. But do keep an eye on Propquest.co.uk for real-time figures.

This weekend will likely see the after-effects on the ionosphere of a very large coronal hole that was spewing out solar matter when this report was being prepared. This may send the K index up to a maximum of six, with lowered critical frequencies and noisy bands. The rest of the week will see slightly more settled conditions.

The good news is that DX is starting to return as we move towards better autumnal ionospheric conditions. The lower bands are also starting to come into their own. And as we have passed the Autumnal Equinox don’t forget that this is also the best time of year for north-south, trans-Equatorial contacts.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

There was a totally different feel to the weather last week with a return of rain, showers and strong winds at times. That produced some nice rain scatter QSOs on 10GHz for the SHF UK Activity Contest. It looks like a similar story this weekend and into much of the next week for most areas, which will mean that rain scatter is again an item for the coming week. There will be a brief possibility of a weak ridge of high pressure crossing the country mid-week, although such short duration transient features are not usually great providers of Tropo.

The Moon is at perigee, its closest point to Earth, today so path losses are low. Declination is negative and falling so peak moon elevation will get lower as the week progresses. We are entering a period in the Northern Hemisphere where Moon perigee coincides with low and decreasing declination, meaning that lowest path losses coincide with low Moon peak elevation and short moon visibility windows. This trend will continue until June 2022 when perigee and lowest declination coincide. After this, the trend reverses until September 2026 when perigee and maximum declination coincide again. This is a double-edged sword, as the upcoming conditions will favour extreme EME DX where antenna elevation needs to be very low, but path losses on the GHz bands will be highest when the Moon is at its highest. There are no significant meteor showers this week, so continue to check the early hours before dawn for the best random meteors.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for September 22nd 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 22nd September 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • National Hamfest this week

  • RSGB Convention news

  • GB1SOE at Bletchley Park

 

Next Friday and Saturday it’s the National Hamfest, held at the Newark Showground, Newark NG24 2NY. On Saturday, the 28th, the National Club of the Year finalists will be announced. The competition, which is sponsored by Waters and Stanton, announced the Regional Finalists at the AGM in April. Other activities to look forward to over the weekend is a Buildathon for the new constructor, national and international trade stands, a Bring & Buy as well as car boot type area. More details are at www.nationalhamfest.org.uk

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. It is kindly sponsored by Martin Lynch & Sons. The provisional programme of lectures and workshops is now online at www.rsgb.org/convention. The talk Hints and Tips to get the most out of Digital Modes including FT-8 by Gavin Nesbit, M1BXF is aimed at those who are new to, or are thinking of trying, Machine Generated Modes such as FT-8, particularly on VHF. And for something a little different, Dr Bill Crofts and Professor Julia Hunter-Anderson from Warwick University will look at WUSAT-3, a novel wildlife tracking satellite. The closing date for online discount day tickets is the 7th of October. Weekend package bookings and the Buildathon can be booked until the 7th of October at www.rsgb.org/convention.

The weekend of the 28th and 29th of September is the 1940s weekend at Bletchley Park. The RSGB National Radio Centre will be open all weekend to Bletchley Park visitors and, supporting the 1940s weekend, they will host the special event station GB1SOE. RSGB Members can gain free access to the Bletchley Park museum by downloading and printing the entry voucher from the RSGB website, www.rsgb.org/bpvoucher.

Since its inception in 1998 the International Lighthouse Lightship Weekend has been held on the 3rd full weekend in August. Next year, 2020, that weekend is host to the 75th anniversary of the cessation of hostilities in the Pacific region. The organisers of the ILLW event have therefore decided it would be appropriate to temporarily move it to the following weekend, the 22nd and 23rd of August 2020.

Waters & Stanton has announced that Eric Swartz, WA6HHQ, co-founder of Elecraft, will be visiting Portsmouth to give the first UK live demonstration of the Elecraft K4 transceiver. The event will take place at 6.30pm on Wednesday the 25th of September. All visitors are welcome at Unit 1, Fitzherbert Spur, Portsmouth PO6 1TT.

The next edition of RadCom Basics will be available at the end of September. This edition will look at RSGB Awards, in particular for the Foundation licensee, Moving up to the Intermediate and Full licences, Using digital Repeaters and How and Why the HF bands come alive in the autumn. RSGB Members can read previous editions of RadCom Basics by going to www.rsgb.org/radcom-basics. You can register to receive notification of subsequent issues as they become available; they will appear at the same internet address. Each edition of RadCom Basics explores key aspects of amateur radio in a straightforward way. RadCom Basics is sent as an email alert to subscribers when each edition is published. This email provides a list of contents and a link to the articles on the RSGB website.

Three more RSGB 2018 Convention videos have been released to the RSGB YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/theRSGB. Rael Paster, M0RTP talks on Magnetic Loop Antennas; Dave Deane, EI9FBB looks at the Irish Islands IOTA Tour of 2018 and Matthew Phillips, G6WPJ examines FreeDV, Digital Voice for HF and other low SNR channels. There are now over 110 videos on the RSGB YouTube channel, check out www.youtube.com/theRSGB

There’s still time to apply to be part of the Youngsters on the Air Winter Camp in the Netherlands from the 12th to the 15th of December. The closing date for applications is the 30th of September. See www.rsgb.org/yota

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

Today, the 22nd, the Weston-Super-Mare Radio Rally will be held at The Campus, Highlands Lane, Weston super Mare BS24 7DX. Doors open 10am to 3pm and entry is £3. There will be trade stands and a Bring & Buy stall, plus excellent catering and a large car park. Enquiries to Dave Dyer on 0787 103 4206.

Today, the 22nd, the Belgium Amateur Radio & Computer Rally takes place at Louvexpo, La Louvière, Belgium. Open from 9am to 4pm, talk-in is on the local FM, DMR & D-Star repeaters. There will be trade stands from UK, Holland, Germany and France, plus a flea market. Details are at www.on6ll.be.

Next Friday and Saturday the National Hamfest takes place at Newark & Nottinghamshire Showground, Lincoln Road, Winthorpe, Newark, Nottinghamshire NG24 2NY. Everything from national and international traders to a Buildathon will be there. See www.nationahamfest.org.uk for all the details.

Please send details of your 2020 rally and event plans as soon as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk.

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

Jacek, SP5APW will be active as 3W9KJ from Dao Co To, IOTA reference AS-132, in Vietnam from the 27th of September to the 3rd of October. The main mode will be FT8/FT4, with some SSB if conditions allow. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, Logbook of The World or via his home call.

Maurizio, IK2GZU will be active as 5H3MB from Tanzania between the 25th of September and the 28th of October, while doing volunteer work for the local hospital. In his spare time he will operate SSB, CW and RTTY on the HF bands. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, Logbook of The World and eQSL, or via IK2GZU either direct or via the bureau.

Taka, JA8COE will be active as JA8COE/0 from Sado Island, AS-206 on the 22nd to the 24th of September. He will operate CW, FT8 and SSB on the HF bands. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, or via JA8COE either direct or via the bureau.

Rudi, DK7PE will be active as 8R1CW from Guyana until the 28th of September. He will be active when time allows. Details will be published on his website www.rooody.de.

Kazu, JD1BNA plans to active as JD1BNA/JD1 from Minami Torishima, OC-073, between the 25th and the 30th of September. He will operate mainly CW with some SSB and FT8 on the 160 to 17m bands. QSL direct to JL1UTS.

Bo, OZ1DJJ will be active in his spare time as OX3LX from Simiutaq Island, NA-220, between the 26th and the 30th of September. Before and after going to Simiutaq he might be active from the main island of Greenland, NA-018. QSL via OZ0J, Club Log’s OQRS and Logbook of The World.

Now the special event news

Today, the 22nd, Sheffield & District Wireless Society is celebrating its 100th anniversary with GX5TO on the air from the Kelham Island Industrial Museum. Activity will be between 1030UTC and 1530UTC using 40m and 20m SSB and FT8. Call in on 2m FM.

Southgate ARC will be taking part in Railways on the Air today, the 22nd of September, from the Hoddesdon Model & Railway Club at Broxborne Meadows, using the callsign GB4HMR. Volunteers, operators and anyone interested are more than welcome to come along.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

Today, the 22nd, the Practical Wireless 70MHz contest runs from 1200 to 1600UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Tuesday the SHF UK Activity Contest runs from 1830 to 2130UTC. Using all modes on the 2.3 to 10GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Wednesday it’s the UK EI Contest Club 80m contest from 2000 to 2100UTC. Using CW only, the exchange is your 4-character locator square.

Thursday sees the 80m Autumn Series running from 1900 to 2130UTC. It’s the data-only leg so the exchange is signal report and serial number.

Next weekend it’s the CW World Wide DX RTTY Contest, running from 0000UTC on the 28th to 2359UTC on the 29th. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and your Zone, which for the UK is 14.

Next Sunday, the 29th, the UK Microwave Group contest runs from 0600 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on the 5.7 and 10GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 20th of September.

We had a relatively settled week, with the Kp index remaining at or below four. The high-speed solar wind was the reason for the K index increase, but it didn’t significantly degrade HF propagation. We are seeing a change to more autumnal HF conditions with north to south paths opening up quite regularly. The summer doldrums are also now fading as we see an increase in daytime critical frequencies. This is probably the best month for working into the Southern Hemisphere.

A 10 metre FT8 opening at around 1500UTC on Monday saw the Falklands Islands being very workable. Mike, VP8NO and Bob, VP8LP were both active on the mode, giving many people a chance to get VP8 in their logs. South American stations active this week on 15 and 10m last week FT8 included Argentina, Brazil, Columbia and Paraguay. It does seem that a lot of DX stations have moved to FT8 and FT4 for contacts, a mode that works well under poor conditions due to its lower required signal to noise ratio. So if you haven’t tried it why not give FT8 a whirl? The Chilton ionosonde shows that daytime MUFs over a 3,000km path are now exceeding 18MHz and even touching 21MHz at times. There are also signs that limited Sporadic-E openings are still occurring on 10 metres.

Next week, NOAA predicts the solar flux index will remain pegged at about 68, with zero sunspots. Geomagnetic conditions will remain mainly settled, at least until the weekend of the 28th/29th, when the Kp index may rise to six due to a solar coronal hole making its return after its transit around the Sun’s surface.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The coming week is looking like almost the exact opposite of last week. The high pressure systems will move away east by the start of this weekend and allow Atlantic lows to dominate the weather over the country for much of the coming week. This means any Tropo at first to the east across the North Sea into the Baltic will soon fade and we’ll be left with unsettled, wet and rather breezy weather. As for propagation, there will be a chance of rain scatter on the microwave bands for Tuesday night’s Super High Frequency UK Activity Contest.

Other modes are always worth a look, even the odd fleeting bit of Sporadic-E on 10m perhaps. But it also worth mentioning that the autumn months are always a good time to be alert to the prospects of aurora.

The Moon reaches maximum declination tomorrow, and perigee on Friday, so EME conditions should be good all week with falling losses. Sky noise on 144MHz is mainly falling, but this coming Saturday the Sun and Moon are close together in the sky from mid morning to Moonset, so noise levels will make EME very difficult apart from for GHz band stations with very narrow antenna beam widths.

The daytime Sextanids meteor shower, with a Zenithal Hourly Rate of five, peaks this coming Saturday, but is not a very big one. Continue to check the early hours before dawn for the best random meteors.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for September 15th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 15th September 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Larry E Price, W4RA, SK

  • Bulgarians get digital segment on 6m

  • RSGB NRC aerial improvements

 

It with great sadness that IARU reports that ARRL and IARU President Emeritus Larry E Price, W4RA, died on the 10th of September. He was 85. The IARU owes a debt of gratitude to Larry for his tireless work over the decades to represent the interests of amateur radio in regulatory forums. Larry was first licensed as WN5TIA at age 16. He served four two-year terms as ARRL President, serving simultaneously as Secretary of the International Amateur Radio Union in 1989-1992 and continuing as IARU Secretary and ARRL International Affairs Vice President until his election as IARU President in 1999. He served as IARU president for two five-year terms, retiring and being named IARU President Emeritus by the IARU Administrative Council in 2009. The ARRL Board named him ARRL President Emeritus in 2011. The amateur radio community expresses its deep-felt sympathy to Larry’s family at this sad time.

Bulgarian radio amateurs have obtained temporary access to the digital portion of the 50MHz band, 50.310 to 50.335MHz. Previously their allocation was restricted to just 50.05 to 50.2MHz, which excluded digital usage such as FT8. A key objective to WRC-19 is to extend 50MHz access to all countries across Region 1.

The RSGB National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park has successfully completed the realignment of the SteppIR beam this week. The Yaesu rotator is now back in action and the SteppIR beam can be rotated. The D-Star Repeater GB7BP is also now back online and operational. Don’t forget RSGB Members can download a free entry voucher for Bletchley Park and take your licence with you for the opportunity to operate GB3RS whilst you are there. See www.rsgb.org/bletchley-park-voucher for details.

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. The provisional programme of lectures and workshops is now online at www.rsgb.org/convention. In the talk I can HEAR it, why won’t it decode? Neil Smith, G4DBN will discuss how do you choose the best digital mode for tropospheric DX at VHF and above? He will investigate the effects of multipath, scintillation, scatter modes and radio characteristics on signal coherence and decodability. Full details of tickets, weekend packages and the Buildathon can be found at www.rsgb.org/convention.

Three more RSGB 2018 Convention videos have been released to the RSGB YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/theRSGB. John Warburton, G4IRN talks about An HF DXpedition to the Andaman Islands; Bo Hansen, OZ2M looks at Arduino, GPS, RF and Si5351A for radio amateurs and Chris Tran, GM3WOJ looks at Transmit/Receive switching times and why they matter.

GB7HZ, in Strabane, Northern Ireland is a multi-mode digital repeater and is now active on DMR, D-Star and Yaesu Fusion. Reports are welcome to the Keeper, Michael Conaghan, MI0HOZ.

The next edition of RadCom Basics will be available at the end of September. This edition will look at RSGB Awards, in particular for the Foundation licence, moving up – Intermediate and Advanced licences, using digital repeaters, and how and why the HF bands come alive in the autumn. RSGB Members can read previous editions of RadCom Basics by going to www.rsgb.org/radcom-basics. You can register to receive notification of subsequent issues as they become available; they will appear at the same internet address. Each edition of RadCom Basics explores key aspects of amateur radio in a straightforward way. RadCom Basics is sent as an email alert to subscribers when each edition is published. This email provides a list of contents and a link to the articles on the RSGB website.

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

Today, the 15th, the West Tyrone ARC Rally will be held at Omagh Rugby Club, 7 Mellon Park Drive, Omagh BT78 5NE. Doors open at 11am and admittance is £3. There will be a talk in station, trade stands, special interest groups, a Bring & Buy and an RSGB bookstall. Catering and a licensed bar are available on site. A prize draw will take place. More information from Philip, MI0MSO on 0784 902 5760.

Next Sunday, the 22nd, the Weston-Super-Mare Radio Rally will be held at The Campus, Highlands Lane, Weston super Mare BS24 7DX. Doors open 10am to 3pm and entry is £3. There will be trade stands and a Bring & Buy stall, plus excellent catering and a large car park. Enquiries to Dave Dyer on 0787 103 4206.

Next Sunday, the 22nd, the Belgium Amateur Radio & Computer Rally takes place at Louvexpo, La Louvière, Belgium. Open from 9am to 4pm, talk-in is on the local FM, DMR & D-Star repeaters. There will be trade stands from UK, Holland, Germany and France, flea market. Details are at www.on6ll.be.

Please send details of your 2020 rally and event plans as soon as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk.

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

The Latvian team on Nauru between the 16th to 25th September will be signing C21WW instead of C21W.

Tina, HB0/DL5YL and Fred, HB0/DL5YM will be active from Masescha, Liechtenstein from the 20th of September to the 5th of October. They will operate CW, plus RTTY during the CQ WW DX RTTY Contest and maybe some SSB on the 160 to 6m bands. QSL via their home calls, direct or bureau.

Giuseppe, IK5WWA will be active as IM0DAE from San Pietro Island, EU-165, between the 16th and the 28th of September. He will be on the HF bands as well as 6m, 2m and 70cm. QSL via IK5WWA, direct or bureau.

Harry, JG7PSJ will be active holiday style as WH0RU from Saipan, OC-086, between the 15th and the 22nd of September. He will operate CW, SSB and RTTY on the 40 to 10m bands. QSL via Logbook of The World, or direct to JG7PSJ.

Chip, KB1QU will be QRV as 9G5QU from Ghana from until the 21st of September. He will be on 40, 30 and 20m on CW and digital. QSL manager is N4GNR.

Now the special event news

Thames Amateur Radio Club will operate GB2MFM today, the 15th, to raise awareness of military sites, particularly in Essex and Kent. GB2MFM will be at a WW2 pill box at Wat Tyler Country Park, near Basildon.

This month marks the centenary of radio in the Cambridge area. As well as a celebration day to be held on the 29th of September at Foxton, to which all local amateurs are invited, local clubs have activated the callsign GB1CAM and will be operating it throughout September. Further details are at cdarc.org.uk.

OL75CARBON commemorates the 75th anniversary of the dropping the CARBON paratroops in the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia during the WWII, known as Operation Carbon. It will be on the air until the 30th of November. For more information visit QRZ.com.

In memory of those lost in Operation Market Garden, the South Dorset Radio Society will be operating from the war-time glider base at Tarrant Rushton near Blandford in Dorset. They will be on the air from Tuesday the 17th until Friday the 20th of September, using the callsign GB0MKT.

Southgate ARC will be taking part in Railways on the Air on the 21st and 22nd of September from the Hoddesdon Model & Railway Club at Broxborne Meadows with the callsign GB4HMR. Volunteers, operators and anyone interested are more than welcome to come along.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

It’s a very busy time for contests this weekend. The WAE DX SSB contest runs for 48 hours this weekend ending at 2359UTC today, the 15th. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number. EU stations only work non EU stations.

The UK Microwave Group contest runs from 0900 to 1700UTC today, the 15th, on the 24 to 76GHz bands. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The IRTS 70cm Counties Contest runs from 1300 to 1330UTC today, the 15th. It is immediately followed by the IRTS 2m Counties Contest from 1330UTC to 1500UTC. Both contests use SSB and FM and the exchange is signal report and serial number, with EI and GI stations also giving their county.

The BARTG Sprint 75 contest runs from 1700 to 2100UTC today, the 15th, on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands. Using RTTY only, the exchange is just your serial number.

Finally for today, the 15th, the 70MHz AFS contest runs from 0900 to 1200UTC next Sunday, the 15th. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

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

On Wednesday the 80m Autumn Series contest runs from 1900 to 2130UTC. Using CW only, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Thursday the 70MHz UK Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 2130UTc. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Sunday, the Practical Wireless 70MHz contest runs from 1200 to 1600UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 13th of September.

It was a quiet week, geomagnetically speaking, with the Kp index generally not rising above two. But a lack of sunspots didn’t help HF propagation, which was decidedly uninspiring. There were some highlights though, mostly on FT8. Columbia was decoded on Wednesday evening on 15 metres at a time when CW and SSB users might have thought the band was dead. FT8’s ability to dig out signals that are below the noise level is saving the day in terms of DX being workable.

On a brighter note, in a new paper, scientists predict that the current solar cycle 24 will end in the first half of 2020, kicking off the growth of solar cycle 25 very shortly after. The paper, from the US National Center for Atmospheric Research, is based on a new theory that tsunamis of plasma race through the Sun’s interior and trigger the birth of the next sunspot cycle.

Meanwhile NOAA predicts that next week the solar flux index will remain low with an estimate of 68-70. A total lack of Earth-facing coronal holes is good news, with the Kp index remaining at around two.

Finally, we are starting to see the gradual change to autumnal HF conditions, which will bring better DX working over the next couple of months. The Propquest site shows that the maximum usable frequency is now hitting more than 18MHz over a 3,000km path at times, so 17m is becoming quite usable as we exit the summer doldrums. It is also still showing an uplift in the critical frequency after dark on most days, which could bring some DX surprises.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The coming week will suit VHFers who like to rise early, so set those alarms to get the best DX opportunities. The week will start with high pressure over the country and, except for a brief period when low pressure moves across the far north of Britain this Saturday, the 14th, it’s pretty much a Tropo story all the way. When there is still summer warmth around, it’s worth noting that the strong lift conditions in the early morning usually fade as the temperature rises. So it’s really an early bird that catches the worm for Tropo!

Last Friday saw Moon apogee, when it is at its furthest point from Earth, and Moon declination goes positive today, so EME conditions will improve as the week progresses. The Moon will rise higher in the sky at zenith and will be above 50 degrees elevation in Southern England in the early hours of Thursday. Sky noise on 144MHz starts the week at a low of around 250 kelvin, and path losses will fall.

There are no major meteor showers this week, but the September epsilon-Perseids minor shower, though past its peak, continues to be active until around the 21st September. Check the early hours before dawn for the best random meteors.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for September 8th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 8th September 2019

The news headlines:

  • British success in FoxO competition

  • New exam sample questions released

  • 5MHz Newsreader needed

Tuesday was the first race in the European Radio O Championships in Slovenia. This race was the FoxO competition, where the hidden transmitters are roughly indicated by a circle on the map. The competitor has to orienteer to the area of the circle and then use radio direction finding to locate the hidden transmitter. There is no flag, just a SportIdent box beside the transmitter. John Marriott, M0OJM was over the line in second place in the M70 category, just 6 seconds ahead of the bronze medallist. Congratulations to John.

As promised last week, the RSGB has just released documents with sample questions for every syllabus item in the Foundation and Intermediate exams. These new resources will provide additional help to tutors and candidates as they prepare for the exams under Syllabus 2019. The Society has also published a sample optical marking sheet to demonstrate to candidates what they will be given if they choose to do the paper format exam. All of these documents can be found on the RSGB website at www.rsgb.org/mock-exams. Further resources are being finalised and will be released over the next few weeks, so look out for new announcements.

Owing to retirements, the GB2RS 5MHz Team has need for readers on the rota of its Sunday afternoon national broadcast at 1500UTC on 5398.5kHz USB. We would welcome applicants, who should contact the RSGB’s GB2RS Manager via email to gb2rs.manager@rsgb.org.uk in the first instance. Note that 5MHz readers need to possess a Full UK amateur radio licence and should be RSGB Members.

Four new videos from the 2018 RSGB Convention have been uploaded to the RSGB YouTube channel. Palle Hansen, OZ1RH speaks about Troposcatter on the VHF bands; Cezar Trifu, VE3LYC shares his thrilling and unforgettable IOTA experiences of H44R & H40D; John Worsnop, G4BAO speaks on the Wednesday Night Digifest, and Steve Nichols, G0KYA looks at the top HF propagation questions and some possible answers. All of these videos, and many more, are at www.youtube.com/theRSGB

The annual maintenance shutdown of the MSF service, the dedicated time broadcast, has been announced. The service will be off-air from 1000 to 1400BST on the 12th of September. If the weather is unsuitable for work to be carried out, then the service will not be turned off.

Due to unusual circumstances, there will be no GB2RS news broadcast from Germany on 40m today, Sunday the 8th of September. Normal service should resume next week.

On Saturday the 14th of September there will be many Churches and Chapels on the Air activations. CHOTA activity is usually SSB on the 80, 40 and 20m bands from 10am to 4pm. Groups that have told us they intend to run stations are mentioned later and in this week’s Local News. See WACRAL.org under the CHOTA tab for a full list of participating stations.

There’s still time to apply to be part of the Youngsters on the Air Winter Camp in the Netherlands from the 12th to the 15th of December. The closing date for applications is the 30th of September. See www.rsgb.org/yota

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. The provisional programme of lectures and workshops is now online at www.rsgb.org/convention. John Rogers, M0JAV and David Lauder, G0SNO will be running an RFI Clinic. The session will consist of a short presentation on the tools and techniques used to locate and identify RFI sources. Then a number of test setups will be available using radios, SDRs and spectrum analysers to let you see and hear some of these common RFI sources. If you have an unusual source then bring it along for them to investigate. Full details of tickets, weekend packages and the Buildathon can be found at www.rsgb.org/convention.

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

Today, the 7th of September, the Caister Lifeboat Rally will be held at Caister Lifeboat station, Tan Lane, Caister on Sea, Norfolk NR30 5DJ. Access is via the car park in Beach Road. Doors open from 9.30am. There will be a raffle and the onsite café and museum will also be open. A special event station will be on the air. Details from Zane, M1BFI on 0771 121 4790.

Next Saturday, the 14th, the Fog on the Tyne Rally will take place at Whitehall Road Methodist Church Hall, Bensham, Gateshead NE8 4LH. Doors open at 10.30am. Entrance is £1.50 and includes an entry for the raffle. There will be a Bring & Buy, junk stall, RSGB book stand and many traders. Car parking is available. Enrolment for Foundation, Intermediate and Advanced exam courses and Morse class will take place at the rally. Details from Nancy, G7UUR on 0799 076 0920.

Next Sunday, the 15th, the West Tyrone ARC Rally will be held at Omagh Rugby Club, 7 Mellon Park Drive, Omagh BT78 5NE. Doors open at 11am and admittance is £3. There will be a talk in station, trade stands, special interest groups, a Bring & Buy and an RSGB bookstall. Catering and a licensed bar are available on site. A prize draw will take place. More information from Philip, MI0MSO on 0784 902 5760.

Please send details of your 2020 rally and event plans as soon as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk.

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

Chip, KB1QU will be active as 9G5QU from Ghana from the 8th to the 21st of September. In his spare time he will operate CW, FT8, FT4 and some SSB on the 40, 30 and 20m bands. QSL via Logbook of The World, or direct to N4GNR.

Francesco, IV3TMM will be active as 9U3TMM from Burundi until the 17th of September. He will operate SSB and digital modes on the 60 to 6m bands. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS and Logbook of The World.

Fred, DH5FS will be active as E51SFS from Rarotonga, IOTA reference OC-013, between the 8th and the 16th of September, then from Aitutaki, OC-083, between the 20th and the 25th of September. DXCC-wise, both count for the South Cook Islands. QSL via his home call, direct or via the bureau.

Puiu, YO5BIM will be active in is spare time as P29VIM from Papua New Guinea until the 22nd of September. He operates CW, FT8 and JT9 on all bands. QSL via his home callsign.

Randy, K5SL will be active holiday style as PJ4/K5SL from Bonaire, SA-006, until the 14th of September. He will operate mainly CW on the 40, 30, 20 and 17m bands. QSL via his home callsign.

Now the special event news

During the month of September, Dutch special event stations PA75PARA, PA75BTF and PA75OMG will be on the air to commemorate the 75 years since British, American and Polish airborne forces tried to capture the river bridges at Arnhem and Nijmegen. PA75OMG will be active from 12 to 22 September.

Thames Amateur Radio Club will operate GB2MFM on the 14th and 15th of September to raise awareness of existing military sites, particularly in Essex and Kent. GB2MFM will be at a WW2 Pill Box at Wat Tyler Country Park, near Basildon.

GB2SCC will be activated at St Cynllo Church in the village of Coed Y Bryn, Ceredigion, Wales, between 10am and 4pm on the 14th of September. They expect to be active on 80m and 40m SSB from IO72TB. QSL via the bureau.

Bush Valley ARC will operate a CHOTA station on the 14th from Dungiven Parish Church BT47 4LG.

Marsham ARS will operate their CHOTA station from St Andrew’s Church using GB1SAC. All visitors are welcome and the tower will be open as usual.

September 2019 marks the centenary of radio in the Cambridge area. As well as a celebration day to be held on the 29th of September at Foxton, to which all local amateurs are invited, local clubs have activated the callsign GB1CAM and will be operating it throughout September. Further details are at cdarc.org.uk.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

It’s a very busy time for contests.

The RSGB SSB Field Day and the IARU Region 1 Field Day end their 24 hour run at 1300UTC today, the 8th. Both use the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands and the exchange is signal report and serial number.

The 144MHz Trophy contest ends its 24 hour run an hour later at 1400UTC today, the 8th. So does the IARU 144MHz contest. Using all modes, the exchange for both contests is signal report, serial number and locator.

The All Asian DX contest ends its 48 hour run at 2359UTC today, the 8th. Using SSB only on the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and your age. YL operators may send 00.

There are two contests that start and finish today, the 8th. The 5th 144MHz Backpacker contest runs from 1100 to 1500UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Running from 1000UTC to 1400UTC next Sunday is the Worked All Britain 2m QRO Phone Contest. Using SSB and FM, the exchange is signal report, serial number and WAB square.

On Monday the 80m Autumn series runs from 1900 to 2130UTC. Using SSB only, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Tuesday the 432MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC, using FM only. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for both contests is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Thursday the 50MHz Machine Generated Mode Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1900UTC. The exchange is signal report and your 4-character locator. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 50MHz UK Activity Contest from 1900 to 2130UTC. This time the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Friday the 13th is the Straight Key Contest organised by the Regional Department of the Polish Amateur Radio Union in Lodz. It takes place between 1700 and 1900UTC on the 80m band. Rules, in English, can be read at https://ot15.pgk.net.pl/675.html

The WAE DX SSB contest runs for 48 hours next weekend from 0000UTC on the 14th to 2359UTC on the 15th. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number. Note the EU stations only work non EU stations.

Next Sunday, the 15th, is another very busy day for contests.

The UK Microwave Group contest runs from 0900 to 1700UTC on the 24 to 76GHz bands. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The IRTS 70cm Counties Contest runs from 1300 to 1330UTC on the 15th. It is immediately followed by the IRTS 2m Counties Contest from 1330UTC to 1500UTC. Both contests use SSB and FM and the exchange is signal report and serial number, with EI and GI stations also giving their county.

The BARTG Sprint 75 contest runs from 1700 to 2100UTC on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands. Using RTTY only, the exchange is just your serial number.

The 70MHz AFS contest runs from 0900 to 1200UTC next Sunday, the 15th. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 6th of September.

Our prediction last week that there would be a major geomagnetic storm turned out to be correct, although we got the timing a little wrong. The solar material from a coronal hole actually hit the Earth in the early hours of Saturday morning, rather than later that day, sending the three-hourly Kp index up to five. Such was its intensity that eventually the Kp index hit six. The solar wind speed exceeded 600 kilometres per second during the main event and auroras were reported around high northern and southern latitudes.

Some listeners reported a pre-auroral enhancement. Phil, GU0SUP found that 15m was alive late on Friday evening with South American stations on FT8. He also worked HK3GSO, ZS1DX and a few JAs on 30m. But by Saturday morning the HF bands were impacted and DX was a little harder to find. Next week NOAA predicts the solar flux index will remain around 67 or 68 as we continue into solar minimum.

After the potential for unsettled geomagnetic conditions at the beginning of the weekend, due to yet another coronal hole, things should then remain settled for the rest of the week. It seems that coronal hole activity will once again dominate forecasts for the time being.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The pattern for the coming week offers high pressure as the predominant feature in the south of the UK, with a continuing chance of Tropo to the south into France and Spain. The northern half of Britain will see areas of low pressure passing by the far north of Scotland, which will possibly bring some rain scatter at times and preclude any widespread prolonged Tropo.

It’s probably the final curtain for Sporadic-E as we head into mid-September. There have been some very isolated openings on 10m, but 6m is getting very sparse now. Just remember that the data shows that it’s not a zero for Sporadic-E outside the main summer months, but it’s quite hard to predict. Best to use the many clusters available to make sure you don’t miss anything.

The end of this week sees the full Moon, known as the Harvest Moon, falling within 14 days of the autumn equinox. However, the week starts with relatively high sky noise on 144MHz of more than 1,000 kelvin. Path loss increases throughout the week as the Moon moves towards apogee. This would not be an ideal week for small station EME. On a brighter note, the full Moon next weekend occurs at low declination, which will favour those stations without elevation. The full Moon may, clouds permitting, allow a good visual sighting for beam alignment. For those lucky enough to run reasonable size antennas on the bands above 1GHz, there will be scope to work EME throughout the week.

There are no major meteor showers this week. The September Epsilon-Perseids minor shower is active from around the 5th to the 21st of September, with a peak on the 10th. This shower is not expected to produce a large return, however. But it should be worth monitoring the usual meteor scatter frequencies on 6m and 2m as the unexpected might happen!

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for September 1st 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 1st September 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Good news for the two metre band

  • More positive news from CEPT ahead of WRC-19

  • Syllabus 2019 mock exams

The past week has seen CEPT meet in Turkey, where it finalised its positions on a wide range of WRC-19 Agenda Items, including proposals for WRC-23. So let’s look at the matters that interest radio amateurs. At 144MHz, after a major effort, the 144 to 146MHz frequency range was successfully withdrawn from the French WRC-23 aeronautical proposal. This hot topic had been the subject of detailed submissions by the IARU, France and Germany. This excellent result for amateur radio occurred in parallel to a number of other proposals being adopted to support aeronautical interests. There’s more positive news at 50MHz. CEPT confirmed its common position for an overall 50 to 52MHz secondary allocation for IARU Region 1. Following requests from both the RSGB and the UK Six Metre Group to Ofcom, we are pleased to announce that the UK has signed an optional footnote in the CEPT proposal for national Primary status in the 50 to 50.5MHz segment, along with a number of other countries. In most microwave bands it is pleasing to report that the CEPT positions adopted should result in no further regulatory change to the amateur 5GHz Secondary and 47GHz Primary allocations, as well as innovative UK usage above 275GHz. However, for the 23cm band, following intense discussions, a WRC-23 proposal was considered necessary to ensure the protection of new satellite navigation systems such as Galileo from amateur emissions in the 1240 to 1300MHz range. The draft Resolution that would guide such studies excludes the removal of the existing amateur Secondary allocations. Commenting on the overall outcome, IARU Region 1 President Don Beattie, G3BJ praised the IARU team of volunteers and their contributions; and was pleased that regulators had recognised the strength of the amateur case. The RSGB will shortly add further details and copies of key papers to its online focus pages at www.rsgb.org/wrc-19. The October edition of RadCom will also feature further information as the process now moves towards the final stage at the World Radio Conference this autumn.

In preparation for Syllabus 2019, which comes into effect this Sunday, 1 September the RSGB has added to the range of documents for tutors and candidates. Foundation, Intermediate and Full licence mock exam papers are now available from the Society’s website. They include a new handy syllabus reference column to help candidates check the appropriate part of the syllabus if they need further revision on specific questions. You’ll find all of these documents on the special Syllabus 2019 part of the RSGB website, www.rsgb.org/mock-exams. The Syllabus Full Specification document has been updated with a few minor changes that are shown in the Change Log at the end. Additional supporting materials will be released soon, including documents that will provide sample questions for every syllabus item in each of the exams.

Hot on the heels of August’s Youngsters On The Air summer camp in Bulgaria, IARU Region 1 YOTA will be running a winter camp in the Netherlands from the 12th to the 15th of December. We’ve secured five places at the camp for RSGB Members who are aged 16 to 25. The camp, which will take place in a forest setting, promises to be lots of fun, and will include a variety of workshops and activities. The RSGB will cover the majority of the cost of the event, with attendees contributing £50. To apply to take part, please contact Board Director Mark Jones, G0MGX, via email to g0mgx@rsgb.org.uk. The closing date for applications is the 30th of September. Find out more at www.rsgb.org/yota

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. The provisional programme of lectures and workshops is now online at www.rsgb.org/convention. The Buildathon on Saturday evening includes food and also the SMD Sudden 2, a 40m direct conversion receiver, made and supplied by Kanga Products UK. All necessary equipment will be provided, along with a team to assist you through the build. For more info, to book your Buildathon place, for weekend packages or day tickets, go to www.rsgb.org/convention. Early Bird discounts end at midnight tonight, the 1st of September.

With over 60,000 visitors to the RSGB National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park so far in 2019, we are looking to recruit new volunteers to engage with the public and give radio demonstrations. If you’re interested in becoming an NRC volunteer you should be passionate about meeting people, feel confident explaining the hobby, as well as operating the NRC’s radio station, GB3RS. You must be a licensed amateur, an RSGB Member and be prepared to work a minimum of one or preferably two days per month. You will be joining a team of enthusiastic, friendly and dedicated volunteers and full training will be given. Travel expenses are paid to volunteers living within reasonable travelling distance and NRC volunteers enjoy numerous benefits associated with volunteering at Bletchley Park. Please email nrc.support@rsgb.org.uk for further information.

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

Today, the 1st of September, the Telford Hamfest and G-QRP Convention takes place at Harper Adams University, near Telford, TF10 8NB. See www.telfordhamfest.org.uk for more information.

Next Sunday, the 7th of September, the Caister Lifeboat Rally will be held at Caister Lifeboat station, Tan Lane, Caister on Sea, Norfolk NR30 5DJ. Access is via the car park in Beach Road. Doors open from 9.30am. There will be a raffle and the onsite café and museum will also be open. A special event station will be on the air. Details from Zane, M1BFI on 0771 121 4790.

Please send details of your 2020 rally and event plans as soon as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk.

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

Laurent, F8BBL will be active as TK19IOTA between the 6th and the 22nd of September. He plans to operate from IOTA groups EU-014, which is the main island of Corsica, EU-100, which is Cerbicales, EU-104, which is Sanguinaires and EU-164, which is Lavezzi. He operates mainly CW. QSL via F8BBL either direct or via the bureau and Logbook of The World.

Yuri, N3QQ, Cezar, VE3LYC, Sandro, VE7NY and Adrian, KO8SCA will be active as K7TRI from Tillamook Rock, IOTA reference NA-211, between the 6th and the 9th of September. They will operate CW and SSB on the 40 to 17m bands with two stations active around the clock. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, or via VE3LYC.

Members of the Russian Robinson Club will activate Sledge Island in Alaska, NA-120, until the 2nd of September. The callsign will be KL7RRC/P. QSL info is via Club Log OQRS.

Now the special event news

Today, the 1st of September, the Radio Club of Binche will activate ON44WAR to commemorate the sacrifice of the Belgian Resistance in WWII, especially those of the Refuge B 40 in Waudrez. On the hour, for 30 minutes, a Whaddon MK VII Paraset will be used to make CW transmissions on the 7MHz band. The following half hour will be SSB transmissions on the 7MHz band. QSL via ON7RY; more information is at www.on7ry.be

During the month of September, Dutch special event stations PA75PARA, PA75BTF and PA75OMG will be on the air to commemorate the 75 years since British, American and Polish airborne forces tried to capture the river bridges at Arnhem and Nijmegen. PA75OMG will be active from 12 to 22 September. PA75SODS will be on the air to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Schelde.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

The UK and Ireland Contest Club DX contest ends its 24 hour run at 1200UTC today, the 1st of September. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and District code.

On Monday the Pioneer FT4 Series runs from 1900 to 2000UTC, using FT4 only on the 3.5MHz band. The exchange is signal report followed by your 4-character locator. Do read the rules carefully for this new contest.

On Tuesday the 144MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 18550UTC, using FM only. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator. At the same time, the Machine Generated Mode 144MHz Activity Contest takes place, exchanging your report and 4-character locator. From 1900 to 2130UTC it’s the 144MHz UK Activity Contest, using all modes. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Wednesday the UK EI Contest Club 80m event runs from 2000 to 2100UTC. Using SSB only, the exchange is your 4-character locator.

On Saturday the CWops CW Open Contest runs from 0000UTC to 2359UTC. Using the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is serial number and name. The contest has three 4-hour sessions.

Next weekend is the RSGB SSB Field Day. Running from 1300UTC on the 7th to 1300UTC on the 8th, it uses the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands. The exchange is signal report and serial number.

Also next weekend is the 144MHz Trophy contest, this time running from 1400UTC on the 7th to 1400UTC on the 8th. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Another contest over next weekend is the All Asian DX contest. It runs from 0000UTC on the 7th to 2359UTC on the 8th. Using SSB only on the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and your age. YL operators may send 00.

In a busy weekend of contests, the IARU Region 1 Field Day runs from 1300UTC on the 7th to 1300UTC on the 8th. Using SSB only on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

Finally for contests over the full weekend, it’s the IARU 144MHz contest. This runs from 1400UTC on the 7th to 1400UTC on the 8th. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

There are two contests on next Sunday only. The 5th 144MHz Backpacker contest runs from 1100 to 1500UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Running from 1000UTC to 1400UTC next Sunday is the Worked All Britain 2m QRO Phone Contest. Using SSB and FM, the exchange is signal report, serial number and WAB square.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 30th of August.

The past week was characterised by a low solar flux index and relatively-calm geomagnetic conditions. There were reports of numerous Sporadic-E openings this week that livened up the 10m band. On Thursday these spread from Serbia through to Germany, Finland and Norway and were probably caused by a strong jet stream, which can be seen on the Met Office 300millibar charts.

The Space Weather Services Bureau of Meteorology in Australia has been reporting that its T index, which can be best thought of as an "equivalent sunspot number", has been hovering around zero after weeks of being very negative. This suggests that maximum usable frequencies may be up to 20% better than we have been experiencing, partly due to quieter geomagnetic conditions and partly due to the seasonal change. Nevertheless, the Chilton ionosonde has been recording daytime F2 critical frequencies of about 4.3 to 4.7MHz, giving a maximum usable frequency over a 3,000km path of between 14 and 18MHz.

Next week NOAA predicts a solar flux index of 67, but a large T-shaped coronal hole on the Sun threatens to push the K index up to six late on Saturday 31st or Sunday 1st as solar matter hits the Earth’s magnetic field. This may result in depressed HF conditions after an initial enhancement. These should settle by Tuesday or Wednesday, leaving the rest of the week with a K index of two or three and potentially better conditions.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The last week brought some welcome late season Sporadic-E to many parts of the UK, even reaching 2m on one occasion. This was an unusually-widespread opening geographically, with most areas from Scandinavia round to Portugal being worked. Sporadic-E is possible into early September, so be sure to check the various blogs and clusters for activity. You haven’t got much time left to bag those missing squares!

The coming week will see unsettled weather generally with some showers or spells of rain, especially in the north. This may give a few opportunities for rain scatter. The south will be closer to high pressure over the continent and has the best chance of tapping into some Tropo conditions, although it’s not really a strong option until near the end of the week, when high pressure builds in from the Atlantic.

The Moon is past perigee and declination goes negative again tonight, reaching minimum a week today. The EME week will be characterised by shortening Moon windows and rising path losses. There are no major meteor showers this week so stick with the usual pre-dawn enhancement for the best meteor scatter conditions.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for August 25th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 25th August 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Syllabus 2019 candidate & tutor information

  • 145MHz Russian EME Contest

  • Join the W1AW 150th birthday celebration

As the introduction of Syllabus 2019 approaches, the RSGB has a range of materials to help candidates and tutors prepare. The Reference Data Booklets for each level of exam are now on the website and the Exam Secrets book, referred to by Board Director Mike Bruce, M0ITI in his recent RadCom article, has been updated to include new material on software defined radio and digital matters. The instructor’s version of the Practical Assessment Record Sheets can be downloaded from the RSGB website and we now have a good stock of the printed candidate versions at HQ. To see and download the booklets and instructor PARS, go to www.rsgb.org/exam-forms

The 145MHz Russian EME Contest is intended to encourage worldwide activity on 2m moonbounce and support VHF activity in remote regions in Russia and around the globe. Each different DXCC country and each Russian region form a multiplier. The contest runs for 48 hours ending at 2359UTC today, the 25th. Use digital modes and CW only on the 2m band. The full rules and scoring system are at https://tinyurl.com/y4gtxdgn

The Hiram Percy Maxim Birthday Celebration runs from the 31st of August to the 8th of September. It commemorates the 150th anniversary of the birth of ARRL co-founder – and first President – Hiram Percy Maxim, W1AW. The objective is to work as many participating stations as possible. W1AW and all ARRL members will append /150 to their callsigns during this event. Stations will exchange a signal report and their ARRL/RAC Section. A total of 84 multipliers are available. DX stations will send a signal report and the letters DX instead of their Section. All bands except 60, 30, 17, and 12m can be used. Contacts may be made on CW, phone and digital modes. Incentives are available for using different modes, operating portable, and using social media, among others. Logs will be scored, and downloadable certificates will be available. See www.arrl.org for further details.

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. The Buildathon on Saturday evening is a little different this year. Presented as an alternative to the Gala Dinner, those attending the Buildathon get a hot & cold buffet and an evening of surface mount construction. The event includes the food and also the SMD Sudden 2, a 40m direct conversion receiver, made and supplied by Kanga Products UK. All necessary equipment will be provided and there’s a helpful team of volunteers to assist you through the build. For more info, to book your Buildathon place, for weekend packages or day tickets, go to www.rsgb.org/convention. Early Bird discounts have been extended until the 1st of September.

There were almost 400 entries in the last IARU Region 1 50/70MHz contest. Congratulations to GM4ZUK/P in IO86RW for 11th place and to G8X in IO80HV for placing 24th in the Single Operator 50MHz section. G8T in JO01KJ was 10th in the 50MHz multi operator section and G0VHF/P in JO01PU was placed 11th. Provisional results for this very popular contest are available at www.iaru-r1.org

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

Today, the 25th, is the second day of the Montrose Air Station open Day and Radio Rally will take place at Montrose Air Station Heritage Centre, Waldron Road, Broomfield, Montrose DD10 9BD. It is an indoor event and tables are available to sell your own equipment. The event opens to the public from 10am. Minor catering will be available. Details from Ewan, MM0BIX on 01674 676 740.

Today, the 25th, the Torbay Annual Communications Fair will be held at Newton Abbot Racecourse, Devon TQ12 3AF. Doors open at 10am, with disabled visitors gaining access at 9.30am. The indoor event has plenty of free parking on site. There will be a Bring & Buy and catering will be available on site. Details from Pete, G4VTO, on 01803 864528.

Today, the 25th, the Milton Keynes ARS Rally will take place at the Irish Centre, Manor Fields, Watling Street, Bletchley MK2 2HX. Entry is £3 per person. There is free parking and on-site catering. Doors open from 9am. Additional information is at www.mkars.org.uk/rally

On Bank Holiday Monday, the 26th, the Huntingdonshire ARS Annual Rally will be held at Ernulf Academy, St Neots PE19 2SH. Talk in will be on 145.550MHz by GX0HSR. Gates open at 9am for the public and entry is £3. There is free car parking, an RSGB Bookstall, Bring & Buy and indoor and outdoor stands. Catering is provided on site. Contact Malcolm, M0OLG via events@hunts-hams.co.uk for details.

Next Saturday, the 31st, the Telford Hamfest Buildathon takes place in the evening. Contact Martyn on 01952 255 416.

On Sunday the 1st of September, the Telford Hamfest and G-QRP Convention takes place at Harper Adams University, near Telford, TF10 8NB. See www.telfordhamfest.org.uk for more information.

Now is the time to let us know your rally and event plans for 2020. To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – the earlier you tell us the better. We need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom, and do our best to give you free publicity for as many months as possible.

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

YP0F will be active from Fericirii Island, IOTA reference EU-191, from the 27th of August to the 1st of September. A team of four will operate SSB, CW and FT8 on the 80 to 10m bands. QSL via YO9RIJ.

The VIC Amateur Radio Contest DX Club will be active as 4U500M between the 1st and the 30th of September to mark the 500th anniversary of the first voyage around the globe under the lead of Ferdinand Magellan. This activity counts for Austria for DXCC and for the Vienna International Centre for the CQ DX Marathon. QSL via UA3DX, direct or bureau.

K9HZ will be active from his J68HZ station on St Lucia until the 4th of October. He will operate on the 40 to 6m bands and QSLs go via his home call.

Francesco IV3TMM will be on the air as 9U3TMM from Bujumbura in Burundi from the 31st of August to the 17th of September. Look for him on the 60 to 6m bands on SSB, RTTY and FT8. QSL via Club Log OQRS.

Members of the Russian Robinson Club will activate Sledge Island in Alaska, NA-210, from the 28th of August to the 2nd of September. The callsign to be used is KL7RRC/P. QSL info is via Club Log OQRS.

Now the special event news

Special event station GB8NCI will be on the air today, the 25th, for the second day from 10am to 8pm. Operating from the National Coastwatch Institution station in Exmouth, Devon, it’s celebrating the 25th anniversary of the NCI. There will be an open house and the public will be invited to view the radio station and, where appropriate, pass a greetings message under supervision. SSB and CW will be mainly on 40m, 20m and 2m, together with other HF bands if conditions allow. Locator is IO80HO. Region 11 Regional Representative Dean, G0UIL and District Representative DR117 Tony, M0THJ will be coordinating and operating on both days, helped by a member of the Exmouth ARC and an NCI Watchkeeper who holds an amateur licence.

British Inland Waterways on the Air 2019 takes place over the August bank holiday, the 24th to 26th of August. The event is open to all amateurs who are boaters, cyclists or who otherwise use the canals, rivers, towpaths or riverbanks for work or recreation. If you are interested in registering your station for the event or for more information, please visit www.nharg.org.uk/biwota 

On the 31st of August and the 1st of September, the Radio Club of Binche will activate ON44WAR to commemorate the sacrifice of the Belgian Resistance in WWII, especially those of the Refuge B 40 in Waudrez. On the hour, for 30 minutes, a Whaddon MK VII Paraset will be used to make CW transmissions on the 7MHz band. The following half hour will be SSB transmissions on the 7MHz band. QSL via ON7RY; more information is at www.on7ry.be

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

Just a reminder that August is the month of the traditional summer holiday, so there are no RSGB HF contests this month.

Today, the 25th, the UK Microwave Group High band contest runs from 0600 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on the 5.7 and 10GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Tuesday the SHF UK Activity Contest runs from 1830 to 2200UTC. Using all modes on the 2.3 to 10GHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next weekend the UK and Ireland Contest Club DX contest runs from 1200UTC on Saturday to 1200UTC on Sunday. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and District code.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 23rd of August

The last seven days have seen quiet geomagnetic conditions but, equally, zero sunspots and a solar flux index of around 67. Nevertheless, the Lighthouses on the Air event last weekend saw UK stations finding people to talk to, even if real DX was a little thin on the ground.

Saturday the 17th saw numerous short-skip openings on 40m that were probably due to Sporadic-E. Path lengths of less than 150 miles were reported by GB0HL in Norfolk, which meant UK stations were able to talk to others around the country on seven megahertz. This was at a time when the critical frequency, as reported by the Chiltern Digisonde, was only 4.1MHz.

Make the most of any potential Sporadic-E openings on HF as the season is fast coming to an end. But it will be replaced by better Autumnal F2 layer conditions so it is not all bad news. As the ionosphere cools there will a shift towards more monatomic rather than diatomic species, and these are easier to ionise. As a result we can expect MUFs to rise in late September or early October.

Next week, NOAA predicts the solar flux index will remain around 67-68 and geomagnetic conditions will remain settled until the 1st of September, when the K index could rise to five due to material from another solar coronal hole impacting the Earth’s magnetic field. Therefore, after a potential pre-auroral enhancement, expect MUFs to be adversely affected for a couple of days next weekend.

And now the VHF and up propagation news

Microwave bands rain scatter was the main player last week, but it's looking like we start the period with some high pressure controlling the weather pattern over the UK. This could herald the return of useful Tropo conditions. This Tropo period should probably last until midweek as temperatures gradually rise to high-summer values before a breakdown, with a chance of thunderstorms from mid-week. It often happens that in very hot weather, the Tropo tends to favour sea paths and night-time over the land. The last part of the coming week appears to be heading towards lower pressure with showery weather and cooler conditions, but it should offer some more chances for rain scatter from any big cumulonimbus thunder clouds.

Sporadic-E is showing up on 10m on most days, but getting harder to find on 6m. It's not done yet, but be guided by the clusters and beacons and you should be able to make use of any that does crop up.

One minor meteor shower, the Aurigids, peaks a week today with a Zenith Hourly Rate of six.

With the Moon reaching peak declination this Tuesday, and perigee coming up on Friday, it’s a good week for EME with long daytime Moon windows and lowest path losses.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for August 18th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 18th August 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • IARU prepares for key CEPT meeting

  • YOTA 2019 finishes this weekend

  • 146MHz band gets extra year

 

The final CEPT Conference Preparatory Group meeting prior to WRC-19 takes place from the 26th of August. Most of its papers are now available, including on current hot topics in the 6m, 2m and 23cm bands, where RSGB volunteers have been working hard to support the IARU. In summary, at 50MHz IARU hopes that the European Common Proposal for WRC-19 will be supported, with as many administrations as possible signing the optional footnote to allow amateurs Primary access on a national basis in the lower part of the band. The 144-146MHz band is subject to the French proposal for a WRC-23 agenda item for aeronautical use. IARU and its Member Societies have been busy in recent weeks. IARU has submitted a paper to the meeting that includes background on amateur usage and regulatory concerns. It also includes a basic technical analysis showing the impracticality of such a proposal and believes there are much more appropriate parts of the spectrum for such an application. Turning to 23cm, there has been concern about a few cases of interference from amateur signals to the Galileo navigation system, specific to its E6 sub-band at 1260-1300MHz. It is IARU’s firm view, and stated in the paper it has submitted, that this should be properly studied within CEPT, rather than proposed as an agenda item for WRC-23. IARU experts will be present in the CEPT meeting to explain on these topics and other agenda items of interest, including other microwave bands and wireless power. You can read more at www.rsgb.org/wrc-19 

The ninth annual Youngsters on the Air Summer Camp comes to a close this weekend. Special callsign LZ19YOTA will be on the air during the event, hosted by the Bulgarian Federation of Radio Amateurs. QSL LZ19YOTA via the bureau to LZ1BJ. The experiences of the British team are at www.rsgb.org/yota2019.

Ofcom has agreed to extend for a further year the Notice of Variation (NoV) for 146-147MHz to encourage radio amateurs to experiment and test new communications schemes and systems. The current NoVs expire on 31 October 2019. Any Full licence holder may apply for an experimental NoV for the 146-147MHz band: go to www.rsgb.org/nov for details. In the last year, 578 NoVs were issued for this segment.

In Australia, Roland, VK4FB and Stefan, VK4CSD completed what is being claimed as the world’s first FT8 contact on 122GHz. The distance spanned during the 11th of August contact was 92.08km. The received signals were –17dB on one end and –20dB on the other.

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. The Buildathon on Saturday evening is a little different. Presented as an alternative to the Gala Dinner, those attending the Buildathon get a hot & cold buffet and an evening of surface mount construction. The event includes the food and also the SMD Sudden 2, a 40m direct conversion receiver made and supplied by Kanga Products UK. All necessary equipment will be provided and there’s a helpful team of volunteers to assist you through the build. For more info, to book your Buildathon place, weekend packages or day tickets, go to www.rsgb.org/convention. Early Bird discounts have been extended until the 1st of September.

The G5RP Trophy is an annual award to encourage newcomers to HF DXing. If you are an established HF DXer and want to recommend someone to be awarded the G5RP Trophy for 2019, now is the time to send in your nomination. Your nominee should be an up-and-coming HF DXer who has made rapid progress in the last year and has some real achievements to show. Please send your nominations to Ian Greenshields, G4FSU, by e-mail to hf.manager@rsgb.org.uk to arrive no later than Friday the 6th of September.

The ATU African Preparatory Meeting prior to WRC 19 takes place between the 26th and the 30th of August. ATU is one of the four Regional Telecommunications Organisations in Region 1 and the IARU will be present at the meeting. The IARU has particular interest in the 50MHz, 5 and 47GHz issues being discussed. There is no evidence yet that the 144-146MHz and 1240-1300MHz band issues being considered in CEPT will be discussed in the African Preparatory Meeting but the IARU will be prepared should this happen.

Six News issue 140 is now available for UK Six Metre Group members to download from the website. Go to www.uksmg.org for more details.

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

Today, the 18th of August, the Rugby ARS Rally will take place at Princethorpe College, Princethorpe, Rugby CV23 9PY. Admission is £3 and the NGR for sat navs is SP395710. Doors open from 10am to 4pm, with traders having access from 8.30am. There is a car boot area. Catering is available on site. Details from Steve, G8LYB on 0795 685 5816.

Next weekend, on the 24th and 25th, the Montrose Air Station open Day and Radio Rally will take place at Montrose Air Station Heritage Centre, Waldron Road, Broomfield, Montrose DD10 9BD. It is an indoor event and tables are available to sell your own equipment. The event opens to the public from 10am. Minor catering will be available. Details from Ewan, MM0BIX on 01674 676 740.

Next Sunday, the 25th, the Torbay Annual Communications Fair will be held at Newton Abbot Racecourse, Devon TQ12 3AF. Doors open at 10am, with disabled visitors gaining access at 9.30am. The indoor event has plenty of free parking on site. There will be a Bring & Buy and catering will be available on site. Details from Pete, G4VTO on 01803 864528.

Next Sunday, the 25th, the Milton Keynes ARS Rally will take place at MKARS, Irish Centre, Manor Fields, Watling Street, Bletchley MK2 2HX. Entry is £3 per person. There is free parking and on-site catering. Doors open from 9am. Additional information is at www.mkars.org.uk/rally

On Bank Holiday Monday, the 26th, the Huntingdonshire ARS Annual Rally will be held at Ernulf Academy, St Neots PE19 2SH. Talk in will be on 145.550MHz by GX0HSR. Gates open at 9am for the public and entry is £3. There is free car parking, an RSGB Bookstall, Bring & Buy and indoor and outdoor stands. Catering is provided on site. Contact Malcolm, M0OLG via events@hunts-hams.co.uk for details.

Now is the time to let us know your rally and event plans for 2020. To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – the earlier you tell us the better. We need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom, and do our best to give you free publicity for as many months as possible.

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

Thor, DK7RD, Paul, G4PVM and Col, MM0NDX will be active as MS0INT from the Shiant Isles, IOTA reference EU-112, between the 23rd and the 25th of August. Plans are to operate CW, SSB and FT8 on the HF bands. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, or via M0SDV.

Michael, DL2GMI will visit Bernhard, H44MS / DL2GAC on Malaita, OC-047, in the Solomon Islands from the 23rd of August to the 3rd of September. He plans to be active as H44MI on 80, 40, 20, 17, 15, 12, 10 and 6m using SSB and FT8. QSL via Logbook of The World or via his home call, either direct or via the bureau.

Alessandro, IZ1AZA will be active as OY/IZ1AZA from the Faroe Islands, EU-018, between the 21st and the 26th of August. He will operate SSB and CW on the 40 and 10m bands. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, Logbook of The World, or via his home call.

Michele, IW7EGQ will be active as SV8/IW7EGQ from Zakynthos Island, EU-052, between the 20th and the 28th of August. QSL via M0OXO’s OQRS.

Now the special event news

Two local clubs are taking part in the bicentennial commemoration Peterloo Massacre incident in Manchester, which happened on the 16th of August 1819. South Manchester Radio Club is running GB200PLM for the next three weeks, for which you can find information via www.smrcc.org.uk. Oldham ARC is organising a special event, GB2PL, to take place during a picnic and unveiling of a memorial stone. They’ll be using on UHF, VHF and some HF from about 11am today, the 18th of August. QSL via the bureau and eQSL.

Special event station GB8NCI will be on the air from 10am to 8pm on the 24th and 25th of August. Operating from the National Coastwatch Institution station in Exmouth, Devon, it’s celebrating the 25th anniversary of the NCI. There will be an open house and the public will be invited to view the radio station and, where appropriate, pass a greetings message under supervision. SSB and CW will be mainly on 40m, 20m and 2m, together with other HF bands if conditions allow. Locator is IO80HO. Region 11 Regional Representative Dean, G0UIL and District Representative DR117 Tony, M0THJ will be coordinating and operating on both days, helped by a member of the Exmouth ARC and an NCI Watchkeeper who holds an amateur licence.

British Inland Waterways on the Air 2019 takes place over the August bank holiday, the 24th to 26th of August. The event is open to all amateurs who are boaters, cyclists or who otherwise use the canals, rivers, towpaths or riverbanks for work or recreation. If you are interested in registering your station for the event or for more information, please visit www.nharg.org.uk/biwota 

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

Just a reminder that August is the month of the traditional summer holiday, so there are no RSGB HF contests this month.

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.

Next Sunday, the 25th, the UK Microwave Group High band contest runs from 0600 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on the 5.7 and 10GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 16th of August.

We had more of the same last week with zero sunspots, but no geomagnetic disturbances. The good news is that there appear to be no Earth-facing coronal holes coming around the Sun, although there are significant holes around the solar polar regions.

The tool at Propquest.co.uk has been showing an interesting phenomenon over the past week. It appears that the critical frequency, and therefore maximum useable frequency, have been increasing after sunset. This means that the higher HF bands, such as 20 or even 17m, may be staying open longer. It also means that 80m is often open for UK contacts after dark, at least until nearly midnight. Daytime DX is still a little harder to come by as D-layer absorption still reigns supreme, but it is worth looking for greyline contacts around sunset.

Next week NOAA predicts the solar flux index will be at 67 and the geomagnetic K index will be at two. This means we can expect 20 or perhaps 17m to be the highest bands in use, other than contacts via Sporadic-E, which is now declining as we head towards September.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The recent run of unsettled weather has produced some heavy thundery downpours in places and some nice rain scatter propagation across the UK on the microwave bands. This weekend is looking like more of the same, but as pressure builds again in the south it’ll change to Tropo as the preferred mode for paths into the continent. Northern Britain will however remain nearer the low pressure and provide a few further options of rain scatter.

Sporadic-E is putting in the odd appearance on 10m, 6m and 4m, but getting very hard to find now. Next week should start with the best chances with a jet stream over the near continent, but this will probably weaken later, so focus on the first half of the week.

As we move away from the peak of the Perseids meteor shower, don’t feel all is over, as it’s a broad peak and always worth exploring meteor scatter propagation if you haven’t tried it yet.

The Moon was at apogee yesterday so EME path losses are at their highest this weekend. They will fall as the week progresses and with declination going positive again late on Monday, Moon windows will lengthen and the Moon’s peak elevation will increase all week.

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

RSGB GB2RS broadcast for 11/08/2019

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 11th August 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Record numbers visit NRC

  • YOTA 2019 in Bulgaria

  • ILLW next weekend

 

The RSGB’s National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park experienced record numbers of visitors in July. Before last month, the highest number of visitors was 10,713 in August 2018. July 2019 saw 10,860 visitors to the NRC, with several days seeing over 500 visitors through the door. If you’re interested in becoming an NRC volunteer you should be passionate about meeting people, feel confident explaining the hobby, as well as operating the NRC’s radio station, GB3RS. You should be a licensed amateur, an RSGB Member and be prepared to work a minimum of one (preferably two) days per month. You will be joining a team of enthusiastic, friendly and dedicated volunteers and full training will be given. Travel expenses are paid to volunteers living within reasonable travelling distance and NRC volunteers enjoy numerous benefits associated with volunteering at Bletchley Park. Please email nrc.support@rsgb.org.uk for further information.

Up to 80 young radio amateurs, primarily from IARU Region 1 but including participants from other parts of the world, will gather in Bulgaria from today, the 11th of August for the ninth annual Youngsters on the Air Summer Camp. Special callsign LZ19YOTA will be on the air during the week-long event, hosted by the Bulgarian Federation of Radio Amateurs. Activities will include kit building and an opportunity to visit the surrounding region, including the Acom amplifier factory. QSL LZ19YOTA via the bureau to LZ1BJ. You can read about the experiences of the British team at www.rsgb.org/yota2019.

The International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend runs from 0001UTC on Saturday the 17th August to 2359UTC on the 18th. The event came into being in 1998 as the Scottish Northern Lights Award, run by the Ayr Amateur Radio Group. ILLW now attracts over 500 lighthouse entries located in over 40 countries. To see a list of this year’s special event stations, go to https://illw.net/ and this week’s propagation report has details on which lighthouses you are likely to be able to hear and work.

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. Dave Sumner, K1ZZ will open the convention with his talk on Our Global Amateur Radio Community. Dave is the Secretary for the IARU and has recently written a very thought-provoking article in the ITU’s magazine on the value of radio amateurs around the world, see https://tinyurl.com/rsgb-itunews. Nobby Styles, G0VJG will speak about his DXpedition to Wallis Island and RSGB Members can read a brief account of this in the September RadCom. To book weekend packages or day tickets and to read more about the RSGB Convention, go to www.rsgb.org/convention. The Early Bird discounts have been extended until the 1st of September.

Region 1, Scotland South and Western Isles, has a number of vacancies for Deputy Regional Representatives. District 13, Ayrshire, Dumfries and Galloway, District 16, the Borders, and District 17, Stirling, Falkirk and Clackmannanshire, are all vacant. If you would like to know more about the role and what it entails, contact the Regional manager for Region 1, Tony Miles, MM0TMZ by email to rr1@rsgb.org.uk.

The DXCC Most Wanted entities list has been updated on Club Log. The complete list contains 340 entities, with the top five most wanted being North Korea, Bouvet Island, Crozet Island, Scarborough Reef and San Felix Islands. The list is available at https://secure.clublog.org/mostwanted.php

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

Today, the 11th sees the Flight Refuelling ARS Hamfest take place at Cobham Sports and Social Club Ground, Merley, near Wimborne, Dorset BH21 3DA. A talk-in station will be on S22. There is car parking on site and doors are open from 10am to 4.30pm. Admission is £4, which includes parking. There will be trade stands with indoor and field pitches and a car boot area. Lectures will take place during the day. No dogs are allowed, except Guide dogs, which is a condition set by the landowner. More from Tony Baker, G3PFM on 0774 347 5018.

Next Sunday, the 18th of August, the Rugby ARS Rally will take place at Princethorpe College, Princethorpe, Rugby CV23 9PY. Admission is £3 and the NGR for sat navs is SP395710. Doors open from 10am to 4pm, with traders having access from 8.30am. There is a car boot area. Catering is available on site. Details from Steve, G8LYB on 07956 855816.

Now is the time to let us know your rally and event plans for 2020. To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – the earlier you tell us the better. We need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom, and do our best to give you free publicity for as many months as possible.

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

A group of mainly German amateurs will activate TO5M from the St Pierre and Miquelon Islands, IOTA reference NA-032, until the 18th of August. They will be on all bands from 160 to 6m on SSB, CW and FT8. QSL via Club Log OQRS.

A team of ZS operators will activate Robben Island, AF-064, from the 15th to the 20th of August. They will use the callsign ZS9V. Look for them mainly on 10, 15 and 20m SSB. Robben Island is where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 18 years. QSL manager is M0OXO.

Gil, IZ2DLV is active as 8Q7GB from Nika Island, AS-013, until the 18th of August. Activity is holiday style on the 40, 30, 20, 17 and 15m bands using CW, SSB and FT8. QSL via Logbook of The World or ClubLog.

Members of the DX Punta Maya Group will be active as T45FM from the Punta Maya Lighthouse, NA-105, in Cuba from the 15th to the 19th of August. Activity will be on the 160 to 10m bands using CW, SSB and the digital modes. An emphasis will be on the International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend. QSL via RW6HS.

Now the special event news

Advance notice now for British Inland Waterways on the Air 2019. This annual event takes place over the August bank holiday, the 24th to 26th of August. The event is open to all amateurs who are boaters, cyclists or who otherwise use the canals, rivers, towpaths or riverbanks for work or recreation. Many clubs and individual amateurs who are on or near the UK inland waterways obtain Special Event Station callsigns. Others operate mobile or portable stations using their own callsigns. If you are interested in registering your station for the event or for more information, please visit www.nharg.org.uk/biwota 

Bushvalley ARC is taking part in the lighthouse on the air event this year from Rathlin Island. The club has eight members travelling to the island to activate the three lighthouses there. The event runs from the 17th to the 18th of August. For live updates and frequencies please keep an eye on their Facebook page.

The FT8 Digital Mode Club is commemorating its 2nd anniversary and eight special event stations will be on air in a number of countries until the 24th of August. An FTDMC Anniversary Award can be earned, with various levels to the award. Full details of the participating stations, and the awards, are at www.ft8dmc.eu

The bicentennial commemoration of the Peterloo Massacre incident in Manchester that happened on the 16th of August 1819 has two local clubs marking the event. South Manchester Radio Club is running GB200PLM for the next three weeks with information on www.smrcc.org.uk. Oldham ARC are organising a special event to take place during a picnic and unveiling of a memorial stone using GB2PL on UHF, VHF and some HF from the park’s Rotary Club Wheel area from about 11am on the 18th of August. QSL via the bureau and eQSL.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

Just a reminder that August is the month of the traditional summer holiday, so there are no RSGB HF contests this month.

Today, the 11th, the 5th 70MHz Cumulative Contest runs from 1400 to 1600UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The WAE DX CW contest runs for 48 hours over this weekend ending at 2359UTC on the 11th. It’s CW only on the 3.5 to 28MHz bands. The exchange is signal report and serial number, but EU stations must only work non-EU stations to count.

On Tuesday the 432MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC, using FM only. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for both contests is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Thursday the 70MHz UK Activity Contest takes place from 1900 to 2130UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

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

Matter from a solar coronal hole hit the Earth last week as predicted. However, we got the date wrong, as it actually impacted us on Monday and not Sunday, as it was moving slightly slower than we thought. This sent the Kp index up to five as the Earth’s geomagnetic field was disturbed and where it stayed for four consecutive Kp sessions, or 12 hours in total. There were reports of a pre-auroral enhancement on 10 metres, but overall HF conditions were down as a result.

Tuesday was characterised by reduced maximum usable frequencies, but by Wednesday the solar wind stream had calmed down and the ionosphere soon got back to its normal sunspot minimum doldrums. There was DX to be chased though, with the CY9C St Paul Island DXpedition off Nova Scotia being workable on the lower HF bands, especially 20m, and being very audible in the UK.

Next week NOAA predicts a calm Sun with a solar flux index of 67 and zero sunspots. After potentially unsettled geomagnetic conditions this weekend due to a coronal hole, the rest of the week should be fine, with a maximum Kp index of two or three.

Don’t forget that it is International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend on the 17th and 18th, which should attract more than 500 lighthouse entries located in over 40 countries. A full list can be found at illw.net, but please note that with ionospheric conditions the way they are you may struggle to work nearby UK lighthouses on 40m due to the low critical frequency, and 80m may be closed from mid-morning until late afternoon due to D-layer absorption. But feel free to try for the European stations and those further afield on 40 and 20m.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The next week or so is looking decidedly unlike summer with a tendency for low pressure, especially in the north. Wind, rain, thunder and no Tropo is hard to sell, but there are usually some positives even in bad weather! Let's start with a strong positive, which is a good jet stream pattern for Sporadic-E. In this case a marked upper trough crosses the country with segments of strong jet stream winds over the UK and near continent. In the closing weeks of the Sporadic-E season, a strong jet stream is a real bonus, so pursue the usual summer operating rules and check the 10m and 6m bands late morning and late afternoon.

Another positive is that the Perseids meteor shower is approaching its peak, so expect excellent meteor scatter conditions over the coming days. The broad peak of the 11th to the 13th of August may cause meteor ionisation, which is an important component in the formation of Sporadic-E.

Now the bad news. There is pretty much a total absence of high pressure, so it's unlikely that Tropo will feature much, if at all. Strong winds will remind us to check the antennas are in good shape for winter. Trying to end on a positive note, thunderstorms are useful if you are into GHz bands rain scatter from the large cumulonimbus clouds.

Moon declination is at its minimum, most negative, today, so the Moon will be very low in the sky at its zenith. Losses are still increasing as we approach apogee on Saturday, so it’s a poor week for EME.

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

RSGB GB2RS broadcast for 4/08/2019

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 4th August 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • WRC-19 - Request to Support 50MHz

  • Celebrating W5LFL from space

  • RSGB Convention news

 

As the run-up to WRC-19 gathers pace, the UK Six Metre Group has also written to Ofcom in support of a positive approach to Agenda Item 1.1 concerning the future of the 50MHz band in ITU Region 1. At present, harmonisation and activity is impeded by the lack of a formal 50MHz ITU Region 1 amateur allocation. Whilst seeking positive UK support for the agenda item that is at the final preparation stage in CEPT, the UK Six Metre Group also expressed concern at recent proposals by some countries to cut the entire band down to just 200kHz wide. The RSGB welcomes the latest submission and is also continuing its own efforts to promote and defend amateur bands at 50MHz, 144MHz and 1296MHz, amongst others that are in scope of the various WRC-19/23 proposals.

Amateur Radio on the International Space Station, otherwise known as ARISS, is celebrating the life and accomplishments of astronaut, scientist and amateur radio pioneer Owen Garriott, W5LFL, who became a silent key earlier this year. There may just be time to catch the end of the commemorative slow-scan television event featuring images from his work with ham radio during his missions in space. Transmissions began on the 1st of August and are scheduled to continue until 1815UTC today, the 4th. Transmissions will be on 145.800MHz FM using SSTV mode PD-120. Received images may be posted, so visit the ARISS website for updates and more information at www.ariss.org.

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. With use of the first geostationary satellite for amateur use rapidly climbing, visitors will be able to listen to Dave Crump, G8GKQ talk about Use of the QO-100 Wideband Transponder for DATV. Neil Smith, G4DBN will speak on Choosing the right digital mode for the job, particularly useful when digital modes are so useful at this point in the solar cycle. Alwyn Seeds, G8DOH will draw on his long professional and amateur experience to explain many of the pitfalls and mistakes made when selecting feedlines and coaxial connectors. Although focused on VHF/UHF issues, this talk, Coax and connectors, the forgotten ingredient of high performance VHF/UHF stations, should be of interest to all radio amateurs. To book weekend packages or day tickets and to read more about the RSGB Convention, go to www.rsgb.org/convention. The Early Bird discounts are due to end on the 18th of August.

ARISS has successfully completed a battery of stressful tests required as part of the final certification of the next generation radio system for launch to and operation on the International Space Station. In July, compatibility tests were undertaken to ensure that the ARISS hardware will not interfere with the ISS systems or other payloads. These tests verified that the ARISS Interoperable Radio System, or IORS, will not introduce harmful signals back into the ISS power system and is quiet enough to meet ISS acoustic requirements. Successful completion of these tests represents a key milestone in preparing the IORS for launch. ARISS can now begin final assembly of the flight units and prepare for their safety certification before launch. ARISS is working towards launch-ready status by the end of the year.

The latest edition of the VHF Newsletter is now available from the IARU Region 1, as is the VHF Handbook, version 8.50, with the recommendations of the Interim meeting in Vienna. You can download a copy from the IARU Region 1 website, www.iaru-r1.org.

A new edition of RadCom Basics is now out. RSGB Members can read it today by going to www.rsgb.org/radcom-basics, where you can also register to receive notification of subsequent issues as they become available. This edition looks at using repeaters in other areas, using WSPR and how to take part in September’s SSB Field Day.

Celebrating the British Amateur Radio Teledata Group’s 60th anniversary, special callsign GB60ATG will be used from the various DXCC Entities in the UK until the 30th of June 2020. QSL via M0OXO. Complete information on the event and the BARTG Diamond Jubilee Award can be found at http://bartg.org.uk.

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

Today, the 4th of August, the 30th King’s Lynn ARC Great Eastern Radio Rally will take place at Gaywood Community Centre, Gayton Road, King's Lynn, Norfolk PE30 4EL. Doors open at 9am and traders have access from 7am. Admission is £2.50, with free car parking. There will be trade stands and a Bring & Buy. There are amateur radio pitches outside as well as tables in hall. Details from Ted, G4OZG on 01553 768701.

Today, the 4th of August, the Crianlarich Radio Rally, organised by Lomond Radio Club, will be held at Crianlarich Village Hall, Main Street, Crianlarich, Perthshire FK20 8QN. The doors will open at 10am. There will be a Bring & Buy, traders and an RSGB Bookstall. Catering will be available on site. Contact Bill, via mm0elf@blueyonder.co.uk for further details.

On Friday the 9th of August the twenty-sixth Cockenzie & Port Seton Mini Rally will be held in the Community Centre, Main Hall, Port Seton. Bring along your own junk and sell it yourself. Tables on a first come first served basis. The entry fee is £2 and the doors open from 6pm to 9pm.

Sunday the 11th sees the Flight Refuelling ARS Hamfest take place at Cobham Sports and Social Club Ground, Merley, near Wimborne, Dorset BH21 3DA. A talk-in station will be on S22. There is car parking on site and doors are open from 10am to 4.30pm. Admission is £4, which includes parking. There will be trade stands with indoor and field pitches and a car boot area. Lectures will take place during the day. No dogs are allowed, except Guide dogs, which is a condition set by the landowner. More from Tony Baker, G3PFM on 0774 347 5018.

To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – we need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom.

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

The slightly delayed CY9C St Paul Island DXpedition is now on the air. CY9C has been spotted on the 40, 30, and 20m bands, with a lot of initial activity on FT8 using Fox/Hound mode, in addition to some CW and SSB. The DXpedition will continue until the 8th of August. All operations will be from the Northeast Island and the DXpedition has already has been approved for DXCC credit. The IOTA reference is NA-094. The propagation report later in this bulletin has info on your best chances of working the DXpedition.

Sugi, JI3KDH will be in the Maldives, AS-013, until the 7th of August. Using the callsign 8Q7SU on the 20 to 10m bands, the operation is CW only. QSL via Logbook of The World.

Darek, SP9DLM will be active as 4L/SP9DLM from Kobuleti, Georgia from the 4th to the 16th of August. He will be active on the 40, 20, 15 and 10m bands. QSL via Logbook of The World, eQSL, or via SP9DLM either direct or via the bureau.

Giovanni, IZ2DPX will be active as 5R8PX from Nosy Be, AF-057, until the 17th of August. He will operate SSB and digital modes on the HF bands. QSL via IK2DUW direct and Logbook of The World; the log will be uploaded to Club Log.

Rick, AI5P is on Lord Howe Island, OC-004, operating as VK9APX until the 10th of August. Look for him on the 40 to 17m bands using on CW and FT8. QSLs go via his home call.

A multi-national team of YL operators will be active as OL88YL from the OK5Z contest station near Brno in the Czech Republic until the 8th of August. QSL via HB9FPM.

Now the special event news

GB100HAL has been issued to commemorate 100 years of RAF Halton, in conjunction with the many events that are taking part celebrating the anniversary. The call may also be claimed towards the Airfields on the Air Award and is recognised by RAFARS for all their awards. The callsign will be used most Saturdays up until the end of the year.

The FT8 Digital Mode Club is commemorating its 2nd anniversary and eight special event stations will be on air in a number of countries between the 10th and the 24th of August. An FTDMC Anniversary Award can be earned, with various levels to the award. Full details of the participating stations, and the awards, are at www.ft8dmc.eu

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

Just a reminder that August is the month of the traditional summer holiday, so there are no RSGB HF contests this month.

Today, the 4th, the 432MHz Low Power contest runs from 0800 to 1200UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number, locator and postcode.

On Tuesday the 144MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC. Using FM only, its exchange is signal report, serial number and locator. At the same time the 144MHz Machine Generated Mode contest takes place, with the exchange of signal report and 4-character locator. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 144MHz UK Activity Contest, from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for this contest is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Thursday the 50MHz machine Generated Mode Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC. The exchange is signal report and 4-character locator. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 50MHz UK Activity Contest, from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for this contest is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Sunday the 11th the 5th 70MHz Cumulative Contest runs from 1400 to 1600UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The WAE DX CW contest runs for 48 hours over the weekend of the 10th and 11th of August. Starting at 0000UTC on the 10th and ending at 2359UTC on the 11th, it’s CW only on the 3.5 to 28MHz bands. The exchange is signal report and serial number, but EU stations must only work non-EU stations to count.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 2nd of August.

A solar coronal hole pushed the Kp index to three last week and the solar flux index was static at 66. The plasma from the hole impacted the Earth on Wednesday, but it didn’t have the dire results that many had predicted. In fact, there was a pre-auroral enhancement that saw the maximum usable frequency over a 3,000km path climb to more than 18MHz at 2030UTC on Tuesday the 30th. Two even larger coronal holes followed, matter from which is expected to hit the Earth today, the 4th. These latter holes have a positive polarity though, so the solar wind may not connect fully with the Earth’s magnetic field.

Next week NOAA has the solar flux index pegged at 67, but the good news is that once the high-speed solar wind stream from this latest coronal hole calms down we can expect more settled geomagnetic conditions.

In other news, 40m has been humming at night with many reports of US and Caribbean stations being worked.

The CY9C DXpedition to St Paul Island, off Nova Scotia, should now be under way. It’s planned to last until the 8th of August. The VOACAP online HF prediction tool shows that 20m from 2100 to 2200UTC may be favourite for a contact. Thirty metres offers an even better opportunity from 2000UTC to midnight, but is obviously restricted to CW and data modes. Later, 40 and 80 metres take over through the early hours, until sunrise. Good news for lesser-equipped stations is that CY9C is using FT8 in Fox and Hound mode at times.

And now the VHF and up propagation news

The end of this last week and most of next will still be on the unsettled side of high summer with areas of low pressure close to the British Isles. At this time of the year it often means heavy showery bursts of rain with a risk of thunder in places, so that’s a good signal for rain scatter on the microwave bands. High pressure is just putting in an appearance over the North Sea and Biscay, which means that some Tropo paths might develop to the continent.

We have a feeling that the Sporadic-E season is in its last phase now, but don’t abandon the idea that Sporadic-E can still occur, since some good openings have been seen in previous years even into the first week of September. Keep a check on the clusters for the much rarer openings in August. They can be productive, although tend to be short-lived.

Moon declination goes negative on Monday so peak Moon elevations will be under 20 degrees by the end of the week. EME Moon windows will therefore be short. Path losses will still be reasonable though as we are still two weeks from apogee.

While the Perseids meteor shower doesn’t reach its peak for another week, the shower is quite broad so you can expect improving meteor scatter conditions as the week progresses.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for July 28th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS
Sunday 28th July 2019

The news headlines:
ARISS Russia SSTV test transmissions
Learn how to build a medium wave radio receiver
New RadCom Basics out now

A Russian MAI-SSTV event is planned from the International Space Station for Monday the 29th of July from 1315 to 2125UTC. There will be a second session on Tuesday the 30th of July from 1350 to 1950UTC. Transmissions are expected to be on 145.800MHz FM in SSTV mode PD120. The callsign in use will be RS0ISS. This session is the routine MAI-75 activity that is only active for a few orbits.
On the 6th of August, the RSGB invites young people – and an accompanying adult if the child is under 16 – to join them at the National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park for a fun and hands-on workshop where they can learn more about radio and electronics. The workshop offers a short introduction to wireless communications before moving on to the construction of a medium wave radio receiver. Aimed at people aged 10 to 18, all tools, test equipment and supervision will be provided. The event is organised by the RSGB, including a goody bag for each young person, and the RCF is kindly funding the kit. There is a choice of two sessions, 9.45am to 12.15pm or 1 to 3.30pm. Tickets are just £7 and you can book at tinyurl.com/rsgb-workshop
A new edition of RadCom Basics is out this weekend. RSGB Members can read it today by going to www.rsgb.org/radcom-basics, where you can also find out how to sign up for the RadCom Basics mailing list. Each edition of RadCom Basics explores key aspects of amateur radio in a straightforward and accessible way. RadCom Basics is sent as an email alert to subscribers when each edition is published. This email provides a list of contents and a link to the articles on the RSGB website. This edition looks at using repeaters in other areas, using WSPR and how to take part in September’s SSB Field Day.
Ofcom have confirmed their approach for innovation and sharing for mobile phones and wireless broadband in a number of microwave bands, following a consultation earlier this year. In the case of the 2390 to 2400MHz band, they acknowledge the RSGB Spectrum Forum input made in March 2019. Typical amateur uses include datalinks, DATV reception and the ARISS HamTV downlink for schools contacts. The Ofcom statement now confirms amateurs as one of the secondary incumbent users and the basis for our ongoing access. The original RSGB input and a link to the Ofcom consultation and statement is at tinyurl.com/rsgb-2400MHz
The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. Jim Loughlin, G4DKQ will give a talk on A Brief History of Baldock Monitoring Radio Station. From its opening in 1929 as a receiving station for the Imperial Wireless Chain, Baldock Monitoring Radio Station has seen many changes throughout the ninety years of operation. The talk will cover the milestones in its history up to the present very different operational capabilities of the station. On the 12th, as part of the Contest University, Steve, G0KYA, will look at how propagation plays an important role in contesting and the tools available today for helping to predict for the big event itself. To book weekend packages or day tickets and to read more about the RSGB Convention, go to www.rsgb.org/convention.
Celebrating 55 years of offshore radio broadcasting, the Martello Tower Group will be active as GB55RC between the 1st and 5th of August. Activity will take place from the MV Ross Revenge, home of Radio Caroline, moored in the Blackwater estuary. If members of the public are interested in visit the station, a fully insured tender will depart from Mersea Island at 10am and 1pm on the 3rd and 4th of August for the approximately twenty minute journey to the Ross Revenge. Details of the trips can be found on Qr Z.com under GB55RC.
The RSGB Radio Communication Foundation is a sponsor of the Arkwright Engineering Academy. On Wednesday the 7th of August, an Arkwright Engineering Academy Foundation Licence training event is being organised by the RSGB at the National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park. The NRC Radio Room and the station, GB3RS, will be in use for training and practical assessment purposes for most of the day. Whilst GB3RS will still be operational, it does unfortunately mean that the station won’t be available for any visiting radio amateurs to operate. During the day the NRC will remain open to visitors to look around but, we apologise for any disappointment or inconvenience caused by the radio room itself being unavailable.
The G5RP Trophy is an annual award to encourage newcomers to HF DXing. If you are an established HF DXer and want to recommend someone to be awarded the G5RP Trophy for 2019, now is the time to send in your nomination. Your nominee should be an up-and-coming HF DXer who has made rapid progress in the last year and has some real achievements to show. Please send your nominations to Ian Greenshields, G4FSU, by e-mail to hf.manager@rsgb.org.uk to arrive no later than Friday the 6th of September.
And now for the details of rallies and events for the coming week
Today, the 28th, the Wiltshire Radio Rally and Electronics Fair takes place at Kington Langley Village Hall & playing fields, Church Road, Kington Langley, Chippenham SN15 5NJ. Doors open from 9am to 1pm, with disabled visitors gaining access at 8.30am. Admission is £2. There is a car boot sale, flea market and trade stands. Catering is available on site and there is an RSGB Bookstall. For more information contact Brian, G6HUI on 0772 224 2741.
Today, the 28th, Horncastle Summer Rally will take place at the Horncastle Youth Centre, Horncastle, Lincolnshire LN9 6DZ. Entry is £2 and the doors open at 10am. Refreshments are available. Contact Tony, G3ZPU on 01507 527835. This will be the last radio rally at the Horncastle Youth Centre as the County Council are closing the building. A new venue is being sought.
On the 4th of August, the 30th King’s Lynn ARC Great Eastern Radio Rally will take place at Gaywood Community Centre, Gayton Road, King's Lynn, Norfolk PE30 4EL. Doors open at 9am and traders have access from 7am. Admission is £2.50, with free car parking. There will be trade stands and a Bring & Buy. There are amateur radio pitches outside as well as tables in hall. Details from Ted, G4OZG on 01553 768701.
On the 4th of August, the Crianlarich Radio Rally, organised by Lomond Radio Club will be held at Crianlarich Village Hall, Main Street, Crianlarich, Perthshire FK20 8QN. The doors will open at 10am. There will be a Bring & Buy, traders and RSGB Bookstall. Catering will be available on site. Contact Bill, mm0elf@blueyonder.co.uk for further details.
To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – we need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom.
And now the DX news from 425 DX News and other sources
SP3PS will be active as C5SP from The Gambia until the 5th of August. He will operate SSB and FT8 on the 20 to 6m bands. QSL via his home callsign.
Sebastien, F8BDQ will be active as IS0/F8BDQ the main island of Sardinia, IOTA reference EU-024, until the 6th of August. QSL via his home callsign, direct only.
Frank, K3TRM will be active as J6/K3TRM from St Lucia, NA-108, until the 3rd of August. He will operate SSB, CW and digital modes of RTTY and FT8, plus satellite, on the 40 to 6m bands. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, Logbook of The World, or via his home call either direct or via the bureau.
LA/OK1XC and LA/OK3EE will be active from Flemsoya, EU-056, until the 4th of August. QSL via OK1XC.
Rick, AI5P will be active holiday-style as VK9APX from Lord Howe Island, OC-004 from the 31st of July to the 10th of August. He will operate CW and FT8 on the 40 to 17m bands. QSL via AI5P.
Now the special event news
Arrowe Jamboree 2019 is a weekend camp celebrating the 90th Anniversary of the 3rd World Scout Jamboree held at Arrowe Park, Birkenhead, Cheshire. Wirral ARS will put GB2APJ on the air from Helsby High School today, the 28th July, using most bands and modes from 3.5MHz through to 5.6GHz.
Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.
Now the contest news
The big contest this weekend is the Island On the Air, or IOTA, contest. It runs for 24 hours until 1200UTC today, the 28th. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and IOTA reference.
Today, the 28th, the UK Microwave group contest runs from 0600 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on the 5.7 and 10GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
There are no RSGB HF contests in the month of August.
On Saturday the 3rd of August the fourth 144MHz Backpacker contest runs from 1400 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on the 2m band, the exchange is signal report, serial number, locator and postcode. Starting at the same time, but running for two hours longer, the 144MHz Low Power Contest runs from 1400 to 2000UTC. The exchange is signal report, serial number, locator and postcode.
The WAB 144MHz Low Power Phone contest is also on the 3rd of August from 1400 to 1800UTC. The exchange for this one is signal report, serial number and WAB area.
On Sunday the 4th, the 432MHz Low Power contest runs from 0800 to 1200UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number, locator and postcode.
Don’t forget that the UK Six Metre Group Marathon runs until the 4th of August. Using all modes on the 50MHz band, the exchange is just your 4-character locator.
Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 26th of July.
Last week HF was once again dominated by Sporadic-E openings. On Wednesday FT8 contacts were being made across Europe on 28MHz, from Finland in the North to Spain in the South. It was a similar story on Thursday with S9 signals from the Balearic Islands to Norway. As we head towards August it is best to make the most of these as the Es season will start to fade quite soon.
Other than Sporadic-E it has been quiet on the HF bands in general.
NOAA predicts that next week the Sun will continue to be spotless, with a solar flux index of 67. Geomagnetic conditions are likely to remain settled, with the Kp index predicted to be around two to three. The solar wind is currently more settled, with speeds down into the 300 to 400km per second range. However, a large solar coronal hole is making its way around the Sun. Its equatorial position means it is likely to have an impact on the Earth. Our best guess is that this could be mid-week, likely resulting in increased solar wind speeds, an elevated K index and depressed maximum useable frequencies.
And now the VHF and up propagation news.
There is a warm, but unsettled theme to the weather in the next week, but like the last few days this hot weather can produce some very strong ducting over the seas around the British Isles. This means that Tropo is always a possibility during this period. The unsettled nature of the weather is also going to lead to some potentially heavy showers on some days, bringing with them a chance of rain scatter.
We are still in the Sporadic-E season, so it's always worth checking for openings. They tend to favour mid morning, late afternoon or early evening. Follow the jet stream charts on the various websites, for example propquest.co.uk and use the daily blog to guide you as to which directions seem most likely to produce results. Sporadic-E patches are created by the horizontal wind shear on the edges of these strong upper flows of air in the troposphere. These generate turbulence and launch atmospheric gravity waves up to the E region, where they produce vertical wind shear.
The Moon reaches maximum declination on Tuesday and perigee next Friday so it’s a good week for EME.
Another propagation mode to signal for attention is meteor scatter, with two small showers this week peaking on Tuesday. The Southern Delta Aquariids and the Alpha Capricornids are then followed by the major shower, the Perseids, in the next week or two, with a broad peak around the 12th and 13th of August.
And that’s all from the propagation team this week.

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for July 21st 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 21st July 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Keeping the spectrum clean

  • G5RP nominations sought

  • Ian White, GM3SEK to speak at the RSGB Convention

The radio communications consultancy LS telcom held its 24th annual spectrum summit on the 3rd of July and invited the IARU to participate in a panel session on “Keeping the Spectrum Clean”. The IARU was represented by Barry Lewis, G4SJH, who is the RSGB Microwave Manager. He summarised the impact of the increase in man-made noise observed by radio amateurs in recent years across the HF to UHF frequency ranges and how the amateur community is dealing with this. LS telcom is a consultancy that specialises in spectrum monitoring and was particularly interested to hear the views from the amateur community. The audience of 200 came from 34 countries and included a wide range of representatives from across the radio communications industry and regulatory fields. For more on the summit, go to www.spectrum-summit.com/en/home/

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 2019, now is the time to send in your nomination. Your nominee should be an up-and-coming HF DXer who has made rapid progress in the last year and has some real achievements to show, for example, a good total of new countries worked or some serious HF DXpedition activity. This prestigious award will be presented this year at the RSGB Convention in October. Please send your nominations to Ian Greenshields, G4FSU, by e-mail to hf.manager@rsgb.org.uk to arrive no later than Friday the 6th of September.

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. Ian White, GM3SEK will present Clean Up Your Shack - Revisited. This is sure to be a popular talk as there has been around 7000 views on the RSGB YouTube channel of Ian’s 2017 talk. To book weekend packages or day tickets and to read more about the RSGB Convention, go to www.rsgb.org/convention.

With the summer holidays looming, where can you take youngsters that’s fun, educational and free? Bletchley Park, the former top-secret home of Britain’s Codebreakers, is now a vibrant museum and has a packed calendar of interactive exhibitions and events that tell the story of this historic site. Engineering challenges, codebreaking games and immersive displays are just some of the fun summer activities on offer. For a full list of What’s On visit the Bletchley Park website https://bletchleypark.org.uk. Don’t forget RSGB Members can download a free entry voucher and you can always visit the RSGB National Radio Centre whilst you are there. Bring your licence and you can operate the permanent special event station GB3RS.

ICQ Podcast has announced a partnership in the founding of the Homebrew Heroes Award. This annual award is to recognise persons, groups or organisations who help define the frontiers in amateur radio technology through the long-standing tradition of home brew construction. The new awards program is independent of the ICQ Podcast and you can read much more at https://homebrewheroes.org

The VX2A11 team is commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing during a DXpedition on Grosse Iles, Iles de la madeleine, NA-038, from the 23rd to the 30th of July. They will also participate in the IOTA contest. See www.facebook.com/vx2a11 for more information.

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

Today, the 21st, sees the Finningley ARS Rally take place at The Hurst Communications Centre, Belton Road , Sandtoft, Doncaster DN8 5SX. Doors open 10am and there is free parking. An indoor and outdoor area will have with major traders and club stalls from microwave components to QRP kits. Hot food and drinks are available all day. Admission is £3. Contact Kevin, G3AAF on 07831 614640 for other details.

Next Sunday, the 28th, the Wiltshire Radio Rally and Electronics Fair will be held at Kington Langley Village Hall & playing fields, Church Road, Kington Langley, Chippenham SN15 5NJ. Doors open from 9am to 1pm with disabled visitors gaining access at 8.30am. Admission is £2. There is a car boot sale, flea market and trade stands. Catering is available on site. For more information contact Brian, G6HUI on 0772 224 2741.

Next Sunday, the 28th, Horncastle Summer Rally will take place at the Horncastle Youth Centre. Horncastle, Lincolnshire LN9 6DZ. This will be the last radio rally at the Horncastle Youth Centre as the county council are closing the building and a new venue is being sought. Entry is £2 and the doors open at 10am. Refreshments are available. Contact Tony, G3ZPU on 01507 527835.

To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – we need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom.

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

The FT8 frequencies for the CY9C DXpedition to St Paul Island, NA-094, planned between the 31st of July and the 8th of August have been announced. See https://cy9c.com for details. QSL via Club Log's OQRS, Logbook of The World or direct to WA4DAN.

Lukas, HB9EBT will be active as D44TEG from Sao Tiago, AF-005, Cape Verde between the 22nd and the 29th of July. He will operate CW on the 40 to 10m bands. QSL via his home call, direct or bureau.

Gil, F4FET and Antoine, F5RAB will participate in the IOTA Contest as TM7P from Ile Petite, EU-107. They will be active for a few days before and after the contest, with two stations on the 80 to 6m bands using SSB, CW and RTTY. QSL via F4FET.

Cray Valley Radio Society will be active from St Mary's, Isles of Scilly, EU-011, between the 24th and the 30th of July, including an entry in the IOTA contest as M8C. Outside the contest, the team will be on the air as G3RCV/p. QSLs via Club Log's OQRS either direct or bureau and Logbook of the World.

Thierry, HK2SM and other seven operators will be active as HK1NA from El Morro Grande, SA-082 in Santa Marta Bay on the 27th and the 28th of July. They will operate SSB on the 80 to 10m bands. The log will be uploaded to Club Log and Logbook of The World.

Now the special event news

Leicester Radio Society will be hosting GB5EHL for Eagle Has Landed will be on air today, the 21st of July using HF and VHF, all modes. A special QSL card will be available.

Baldock Radio station in Hertfordshire will be on air with GB9BRS celebrating 90 years since the station was opened. Operation will be on 2m FM and FT8 as well as 20 and 80m CW and SSB. It is part of a IET open house aimed at young people on the 26th of July, go to www.theiet.org and search for open house.

Arrowe Jamboree 2019 is a weekend camp celebrating the 90th Anniversary of the 3rd World Scout Jamboree held at Arrowe Park, Birkenhead, Cheshire. To mark the 90th anniversary, Wirral ARS will put GB2APJ on the air from Helsby High School on Friday the 26th until Sunday the 28th July using most bands and modes from 3.5MHz through to 5.6GHz.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

Today, the 21st, the 70MHz Trophy contest runs from 1000 to 1600UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number locator and postcode.

The Low Power Contest runs from 0900 to 1600UTC today, the 21st. Using CW only on the 3.5 to 14MHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and power.

On Tuesday the SHF UK Activity Contest runs from 1830 to 2200UTC. Using all modes on the 2.3GHz and up bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Thursday the 80m Club Championships data let takes place from 1900 to 2030UTC. The exchange is signal report and serial number.

The big contest next weekend is the Island On the Air, or IOTA, contest. It runs from 1200UTC on the 27th to 1200UTC on the 28th. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and IOTA reference.

On Sunday the 28th, the UK Microwave group contest runs from 0600 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on the 5.7 and 10GHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Don’t forget that the UK Six Metre Group Marathon runs until the 4th of August. Using all modes on the 50MHz band, the exchange is just your 4-character locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 19th of July.

There is very little to say about HF propagation last week. Conditions were relatively settled, thanks to a respite from solar coronal hole activity, but the HF summer doldrums are still taking their toll. The summer ionosphere is composed mainly of diatomic gases rather than monatomic, and these are harder to ionise. This means maximum useable frequencies are lower during the Summer daytime than they are in Winter. However, night-time MUFs tend to be higher, with perhaps 14MHz remaining open much later into the evening in Summer.

The good news was that station 1A0C, The Order of Malta’s Italian Relief Corps, was active on HF, which gave DX chasers something to aim for. Sporadic E was the main mode of propagation to the station, which confusingly, is based in Rome and not Malta. And the result was that many hams were able to put 1A0C in their log on many band slots.

NOAA predicts more of the same next week with the solar flux index around 67 and the K index at two, thanks to a quiet Sun. However, a week is a long time in terms of HF propagation, so there is always the chance we may get a solar coronal hole rotating into view later in the week.

Meanwhile, make the most of the Sporadic-E season, which is now less active than it was. Es can bring forth propagation on all the HF bands, not just 28MHz, so keep looking and call CQ – you might get a surprise.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

Mixed weather at the end of last week, with some weather fronts crossing the country, brought patchy rain and some rain scatter. Thereafter, pressure probably remains low to the north and west of Britain, while a weak ridge remains close to southeast Britain with a chance of Tropo, especially across the North Sea and English Channel. By mid-week the pressure pattern has weakened and after some very warm weather, there is a trend for thundery showers to develop - once again good conditions for rain scatter.

Sporadic-E continues to show a presence as we move to the latter stages of the season. However, the jet stream pattern looks less active over Europe, although the Atlantic domain offers some activity as the jet stream buckles to provides options for paths to the States.

Moon declination goes positive on Tuesday and we are past apogee now, so EME conditions will improve throughout the week with lengthening Moon windows, lower losses and increased moon elevation.

Again there are no major meteor showers this week, but the Piscis Austrinids on the 28th is a small one and just above the horizon in the UK, so continue to look for best DX opportunities via random meteors around dawn.

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

RSGB GB2RS Podcast for Sunday 14th July 2019

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 14th July 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • RSGB President writes to Ofcom

  • New Science Museum exhibition

  • RSGB Convention lectures

After due consideration, and as reported in GB2RS news on the 5th of July, RSGB President Dave Wilson, M0OBW wrote to Ofcom strongly expressing the RSGB’s concerns about the proposed WRC-23 aeronautical Agenda Item that includes 144-146MHz. A set of appendices were attached to the letter, to enhance understanding of amateur radio usage in this band, and emphasise why any study for such new use would inevitably be fraught with complexity and likely to be unsuccessful. The letter requests regarding three other WRC Agenda Items; 50MHz, Wireless Power Transfer and 23cm/Galileo, where UK/Ofcom support is also sought. For further information please see our focus pages at www.rsgb.org/wrc-19

Discover the remarkable world of codebreaking, ciphers and secret communications in a new exhibition at the Science Museum in London. From the trenches of the First World War to the latest in cyber security, Top Secret explores over a century’s worth of communications intelligence through hand-written documents, declassified files and previously unseen artefacts from the Science Museum Group's and GCHQ’s historic collections. It includes the story of Alan Turing and the team of Bletchley Park codebreakers who broke the Enigma code in 1941. Top Secret coincides with the 100th anniversary of GCHQ and runs until the 23rd of February 2020. The exhibition is free but booking is required. See the Science Museum website at www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/‎ for more details.

The RSGB Convention takes place in Milton Keynes from the 11th to the 13th of October. Two of the interesting lectures over the weekend will be Don Field, G3XTT talking about Guest Operating. Being part of a multi-operator contest or DXpedition effort can be fun, it's a great learning experience and he has been involved in many such operations. Tony Canning, G2NF will be speaking on a subject very close to many radio amateurs’ hearts, Urban QRM; What can I do? To book weekend packages or day tickets and to read more about the RSGB Convention, go to www.rsgb.orf/convention

Confused by all the recent talk about the World Radio Conference, CEPT Project teams etc? The RSGB has put together a few slides that explain the layers in the international regulatory cake. They are available at https://tinyurl.com/rsgb-slides and are also part of the wider resource on WRC-19 at www.rsgb.org/wrc-19.

Join VERON, the Dutch National Society, in a 2m propagation experiment on Saturday the 20th of July from 1700 to 1900UTC. Make QSOs on the 2m band in any mode you prefer. It’s not a contest but an experiment to get as many radio amateurs on the band as possible. Club Log is handling the statistics. Upload your QSOs in ADIF format. Find out more on the VERON website www.veron.nl

The RSGB invites young people, and an accompanying adult if the child is under 16 years, to join them at the National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park on the 6th of August for a fun and hands-on workshop where they can learn more about radio and electronics. Details are on the Bletchley Park website at https://bletchleypark.org.uk under the What’s On tab.

A further meeting on Wireless Power Transmission was held in Copenhagen in week beginning the 1st of July. This was a sub-group of CEPT Committee SE24 charged with work on a report on generic WPT devices. Don Beattie, G3BJ, representing IARU, made input on its projections of harmful emissions from WPT systems, both generic and wireless electric vehicle charging, operating at the existing harmonic emission limits. The IARU also reported on tests carried out on small WPT devices. The IARU continues to argue for tighter emission limits on harmonics and other spurious emissions from WPT systems, which have the potential to cause sustained harmful interference to incumbent radio services.

A new G-2800DXC rotator has been installed on the tower driving the SteppIR beam for GB3RS, the permanent special event station at the RSGB National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park. The work was completed ahead of schedule and GB3RS is now both back on air and available for visiting amateurs to operate during their visit, please bring your licence with you.

The TX Factor video recently made at the RSGB National Radio Centre about the new geostationary satellite OSCAR 100 is now online. Go to http://www.txfilms.co.uk/txfactor/ and view Episode 23.

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

Today, the 14th, the Cornish Radio Amateur Club Rally will be held at Penair School, St Clements, Truro TR1 1TN. Doors open from 10.30am to 4pm. There will be trade stands and a Bring & Buy. Catering is available on site. Contact Mike Halloway on 01209 211 069.

Today, the 14th, the McMichael Radio Rally and Boot Sale will take place at Reading Rugby Football Club, Sonning Lane, Sonning on Thames RG4 6ST. Doors open 9.30am to 3.30pm, admission is £3. There will be trade stands and exhibition displays as well as a car boot area. Catering is available on site as well as a bar. More from Min, G0JMS on 07917 830 410.

Today, the 14th, the 23rd Red Rose QRP Festival will be held at St Joseph’s Hall, Mather Lane, Leigh, WN7 2PR. There is free car parking and the halls are all on one level. Doors open 10.30am. There will be a Bring & Buy, RSGB bookstall, refreshments and bar. Details from Colin, M0IQY on 0741 936 3131.

Next Sunday, the 21st, sees the Finningley ARS Rally take place at The Hurst Communications Centre, Belton Road , Sandtoft, Doncaster DN8 5SX. Doors open 10am and there is free parking. An indoor and outdoor area will have with major traders and club stalls from microwave components to QRP kits. Hot food and drinks are available all day. Admission is £3. Contact Kevin, G3AAF on 07831 614640 for other details.

To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – we need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom.

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

Ignazio, IT9AGZ will be active as IF9/IT9AGZ from Levanzo Island, EU-054 between the 16th and the 28th of July. QSL via his home call.

Harry, JG7PSJ will be active as JG7PSJ/7 from Oshima, AS-206, one of the new IOTA designations, starting around 2200UTC on the 19th of July until around 0600UTC on the 21st. He will operate CW, SSB and RTTY on the 40 to 10m bands. QSL via his home call.

JI3CEY will be also be active holiday style as JI3CEY/0 from the island of Sado, AS-206, one of the latest IOTA destinations, between the 20th and the 22nd of July. Plans are to operate SSB and CW on the HF bands. QSL via his home call.

Rick, K6VVA plans to be active as K6VVA/KL7 from Endicott Island, NA-004 from about 2200UTC on the 16th of July until about 1600UTC on the 19th. He will operate CW and some SSB on 40, 30 and 20 metres. IOTA credit for this operation will be obtained only via the Club Log Matching function on the IOTA website.

Now the special event news

Gilwell Park also hosts GB2GP and has been getting Scouts on the air for over 50 years. To celebrate Scouting’s 100 years, GB100GP today, the 14th of July, when Gilwell Park is open to Explorer Scouts and Ranger Guides.

Leicester Radio Society will be hosting GB5EHL for Eagle Has Landed throughout the whole of July to celebrate the first moon landing. In particular they will be on air for the whole weekend of 20th and 21st July using HF and VHF, all modes. A special ASL card will be available.

GB100BM will be on the air to celebrate 100 years of Bentley Motor cars. The station will be operated by members of South Cheshire ARS. Throughout July they will operate on the 80m to 2m bands using SSB, CW, FM and datamodes. A special full colour QSL will be available. QSL is via OQRS, Bureau, Logbook of The World and eQSL.

On the 20th of July, members of Poldhu ARC will be operating GB50AML from the Goonhilly Earth Satellite Station in Cornwall to commemorate the part Goonhilly played in relaying TV signals of the Apollo 11 Moon landing 50 years ago. Look for activity on 40 metres SSB, and 20 metres CW and SSB. QSL via Club Log's OQRS or via G3UCQ.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

Next The IARU HF Championship 24 hour run ends at 1200UTC today, the 14th. Using SSB on the 1.8 to 28MHz bands the exchange is signal report and ITU Zone, which for the UK is 27.

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

On Saturday the 2nd 40m QSO Party runs from 1000 to 1200UTC. Using SSB only the exchange is 59 and your name.

Next Sunday, the 21st, the 70MHz Trophy contest runs from 1000 to 1600UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number locator and postcode.

The Low Power Contest runs from 0900 to 1600UTC on Sunday the 21st. Using CW only on the 3.5 to 14MHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and power.

Don’t forget that the UK Six Metre Group Marathon runs until the 4th of August. Using all modes on the 50MHz band, the exchange is just your 4-character locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 12th of July.

Last week saw poor geomagnetic conditions on Tuesday and Wednesday, with the Kp index hitting five. This was due to a weak coronal mass ejection followed by the onset of a solar wind stream from a coronal hole. A solar wind speed above 650km/s, coupled with a strongly south-pointing Bz field, led to geomagnetic unrest at higher latitudes.

The net result was poor conditions on HF, with even the Chilton ionosonde failing to show much of an ionospheric return on its plots.

The poor conditions continued on Thursday with 20m looking distinctly lacklustre and only one or two stations audible on the band. Conditions are predicted to recover by the weekend.

Next week NOAA predicts the solar flux will continue to be around 67, with zero sunspots. Geomagnetic conditions are predicted to be settled with a maximum Kp index of two. This means HF conditions may be better next week, although still subject to the summer doldrums.

We have probably seen the best of the Sporadic-E season, but do keep an eye on 10m for short-skip openings. A long-term view is that we may not see better HF F2-layer conditions until the Autumn. On the bright side, today, the 14th, is the last day for the Cricket World Cup special event stations, so make the most of the final activity.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

A period of high pressure is crossing the country this weekend, which should have suppressed the heavy showers of recent days in some areas. Thus rain scatter is now replaced by some Tropo, for a time at least.

Early next week the weather position gets very uncertain with weather models split. One version brings a low across northern Britain from the Atlantic, which brings a showery cold front south by the end of the week to offer a chance of rain scatter again.

The other model outcome is for low pressure to drift into southern Britain from the continent, leaving pressure higher in the north, but introducing showers to the south. Either way, the end result is that the early week Tropo is replaced by the chance of rain scatter again.

As we move into mid-July, Sporadic-E can become less commonplace, but still produce some good openings when they do materialise. The FT8 factor means there’s plenty of chance for QSOs via this mode if signals are too low for SSB and CW.

Moon declination is at a minimum tomorrow, Monday, and apogee is just a week away so path losses will continue to increase as the week progresses and Moon windows will be very short with the moon at low elevations.

There are no major meteor showers this week so continue to look for best DX opportunities via random meteors around dawn.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for July 7th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 7th July 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • RSGB President writes to Ofcom

  • Bletchley youngsters’ hands-on radio

  • Microwave Manager addresses Spectrum Summit

 

In our next step in an ongoing effort to protect the 144MHz band, the RSGB President has written to Ofcom regarding the recent World Radio Conference WRC-23 aeronautical proposal. Our input summarises the basis for our deep concerns, but also includes an appendix highlighting the multi-faceted nature of amateur radio activity and innovation in this strategically important global Primary allocation. This comes in the run up to a key CEPT meeting in August, where its 48 member states – including the UK – will confirm their common positions for the World Radio Conference this autumn. The letter also includes requests regarding other WRC agenda items including 50MHz, 23cm/Galileo and Wireless Power. The RSGB anticipates being able to publish more details and supporting material in due course.

The RSGB invites young people, and an accompanying adult if the child is under 16 years, to join them at the National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park on the 6th of August for a fun and hands-on workshop where they can learn more about radio and electronics. The workshop offers a short introduction to wireless communications, radio propagation and electronic construction, before moving on to the construction of a medium wave radio receiver. The event is aimed at young persons aged 10 to 18. There is a choice of two sessions, a morning or afternoon workshop. Only 8 places are available on each session. Tickets cost £7 each and entry is by pre-booked ticket only. Details will be on the Bletchley Park website at https://bletchleypark.org.uk

This week IARU expert and RSGB Microwave Manager Barry Lewis, G4SJH presented a key address to a panel session on ‘Keeping the Spectrum Clean’ at the 24th Annual Spectrum Summit in Germany that attracted 200 delegates from 34 countries. He said, “The amateur radio community struggles with an ever-growing level of electro-magnetic pollution that is crowding in across the radio spectrum from the lowest frequencies up into the VHF bands. In some frequency ranges, efficient and useful radio communication is becoming compromised. Aftermarket regulation and slowly evolving standards are struggling to be effective in keeping the spectrum clean for all users.” 

Professor Cathryn Mitchell, M0IBG, academic director of the University of Bath Doctoral College and Trustee of the Radio Communications Foundation, has received the 2019 Edward Appleton Medal and Prize for her pioneering research in tomography and data assimilation. This revealed a completely new perspective on the ionosphere in response to extreme space weather. Read the full story at https://tinyurl.com/yxs3k5lc

An item of radio equipment was handed in after the Houghton-le-Spring Free Radio Rally. Please spread the word so the organisers can find the rightful owner, who can contact Ian Laidler, M0RZE on 07977 310 928.

IARU was represented at the recent meeting in Switzerland of CEPT Project Team D. This was the last of the CEPT project team meetings preparing European Common Proposals for a number of agenda items of the ITU World Radiocommunication Conference that takes place during November 2019. From an amateur radio standpoint, WRC-19 agenda item 1.1, which addresses the possibility of an allocation in Region 1 of the 50-54MHz frequency band, was the key issue to be resolved. PTD agreed the text for WRC-19 which, if adopted at the WRC, would see an entry in the international table of allocations for Region 1 and would allocate the 50 to 52MHz frequency band to the amateur service on a secondary basis. In addition a footnote to the international table was agreed which would permit individual CEPT countries to introduce a national primary allocation in the 50.0 – 50.5MHz sub-band. The final meeting of CEPT’s Conference Preparatory Group will take place in the week beginning the 26th of August and will finalise CEPT’s input to WRC-19. The IARU will attend the CPG to represent the views of the Amateur Service.

Visitors to the RSGB’s National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park in June numbered 9,041, which is almost 5,000 more than in June 2018. This gives a total for the first six months of 2019 of 45,588. The RSGB would like to thank the volunteers, who ensure that visitors feel welcomed and find the NRC team knowledgeable, enthusiastic and helpful. A reminder that the main SteppIR beam aerial is having its rotator replaced and feeder cable trays installed between the 8th and the 10th of July. There will be no radio demonstrations using GB3RS during those three days.

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

Today, the 7th of July, the Barford Norfolk Radio Rally will be held at Barford Village Hall & Green, Barford, Norwich NR9 4AB. Doors open at 9am, with talk in on S22. There will be trade stands, a car boot sale, a Bring & Buy, raffle, repeater groups, catering and free car parking. Entry is £2 per person, with under 16s free. Contact radio@dcpmicro.com.

Next Sunday, the 14th, the Cornish Radio Amateur Club Rally will be held at Penair School, St Clements, Truro TR1 1TN. Doors open from 10.30am to 4pm. There will be trade stands and a Bring & Buy. Catering is available on site. Contact Mike Halloway on 01209 211 069.

Next Sunday, the 14th, the McMichael Radio Rally and Boot Sale will take place at Reading Rugby Football Club, Sonning Lane, Sonning on Thames RG4 6ST. Doors open 9.30am to 3.30pm, admission is £3. There will be trade stands and exhibition displays as well as a car boot area. Catering is available on site as well as a bar. More from Min, G0JMS on 07917 830 410.

Next Sunday, the 14th, the 23rd Red Rose QRP Festival will be held at St Joseph’s Hall, Mather Lane, Leigh, WN7 2PR. There is free car parking and the halls are all on one level. Doors open 10.30am. There will be a Bring & Buy, RSGB bookstall, refreshments and bar. Details from Colin, M0IQY on 0741 936 3131.

To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – we need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom.

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

Saty, JE1JKL will be active as 9M6NA from Labuan Island, East Malaysia, IOTA reference OC-133 between the 11th and 16th of July. He will concentrate on the 6m band using FT8. QSL via Logbook of The World and Club Log’s OQRS.

Janusz, SP9FIH returns to Bethlehem in Palestine from the 6th of July to the 3rd of August. He will be using the 80 to 6m bands as E44WE. QSLs go via his home call.

David, DL7ZM will be active as 4L/DL7ZM from Georgia between the 13th and the 21st of July. He will be operating on 6 metres CW, SSB and FT8. QSL direct only to AD0PY; he does not use Logbook of The World.

Dave, WJ2O will be active as MD/WJ2O from the Isle of Man, EU-116, between the 11th and 17th of July. QSL via N2ZN.

John, W2GD will be active as P44W from Aruba, SA-036, between the 11th and the 16th of July. He will operate primarily CW, with main activity during the IARU HF World Championship. QSL via Logbook of The World, or direct to N2MM.

Now the special event news

GB1CMS will be operating today, the 7th of July at a display of military vehicles and battle re-enactments located 7 miles south of Dorking in Capel, Surrey. A listening watch will be maintained on 51.60MHz and a full list of frequencies can be found via tinyurl.com/yx92b4uy

Grey Point Fort ARS will be open for visitors during the Military Vehicle Weekend today, the 7th of July from 10am to 4pm. Visit them at Grey Point Fort, Fort Road, Helen’s Bay, Crawfordsburn BT19 1LD.

Gilwell Park also hosts GB2GP and has been getting Scouts on the air for over 50 years. To celebrate Scouting’s 100 years, GB100GP will be active between the 12th and 14th of July when Gilwell Park is open to Explorer Scouts and Ranger Guides.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. It is a licensing condition that stations using a UK special event callsign must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

The RSGB VHF National Field Day ends its 24 hour run at 1400UTC today, the 7th. Using all modes on the 50 to 1.3GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Today, the 7th, the 3rd 2m Backpackers Contest runs from 1100 to 1500UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Wednesday the 80m Club Championships SSB leg runs from 1900 to 2030UTC. The exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Tuesday the 432MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC, using FM only. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for both contests is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Thursday the 50MHz Machine Generated Modes Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1900UTC. The exchange is signal report and four-character locator. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 50MHz UK Activity Contest from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for this contest is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next weekend the IARU HF Championship runs from 1200UTC on the 13th to 1200UTC on the 14th. Using SSB on the 1.8 to 28MHz bands the exchange is signal report and ITU Zone, which for the UK is 27.

Don’t forget that the UK Six Metre Group Marathon runs until the 4th of August. Using all modes on the 50MHz band, the exchange is just your 4-character locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 5th of July.

Good news: this week saw two sunspots appear from the upcoming solar cycle 25. We know this due to their magnetic polarity and locations close to the solar equator. Unfortunately, the sunspots didn’t last very long before vanishing. But it is a start. Earlier this year, an international panel of experts predicted that solar minimum would deepen in 2019 and begin to rebound sometime next year.

Solar conditions continued to be calm, with a low solar flux and a quiet geomagnetic field. This allowed the ionosphere to recover somewhat and there was DX to be had if you chose the right mode and time. For example, T2AR on Tuvalu in the Pacific has been worked by quite a few stations in the UK, on both CW and FT8. The GB19 cricket stations have also been busy and will be active until the 14th of July, so make the most of the time left. KH7XS in Hawaii has also been heard in the UK at S9 on 20m SSB.

The Daily Express predicted doom and gloom for Friday the 5th of July when it said a huge solar storm would hit the Earth. At the time of writing, this seemed unlikely. Next week NOAA predicts that the solar flux index will remain in the range 67-69, with settled geomagnetic conditions. We hope to get the Propquest.co.uk tool back in action again soon, which has been out of action to a data centre fault in North America.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

We start off with high pressure to the west of Britain and it should provide some Tropo conditions for most areas this weekend, but will decline next week and become confined to the western side of the country.

The main change in the pattern next week is that a trough of low pressure will become established over the North Sea and produce a gentle but cooler northerly flow over the country. This could produce some heavy showers, over eastern areas in particular, and offer a chance of some rain scatter on the microwave bands.

The Sporadic-E season is still performing for us with 144MHz openings to Italy, and there will be suitable jet streams present to make it an interesting prospect for next week. Check the bands late morning and again late afternoon or early evening to have the best chance of finding some Sporadic-E.

The Moon declination goes negative on Tuesday, and path losses will increase as the week progresses. EME conditions will be best early in the week. There are no major meteor showers this week so continue to look for best DX opportunities via random meteors around dawn.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for June 30th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 30th June 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • New Ones for IOTA

  • Latest news on VHF spectrum

  • LightSail 2 CubeSat to transmit Morse

 

Every five years the IOTA Board reviews the island list to see if there is scope for a small number of additions to the list of around 1200 island groups. Some ‘New Ones’ were announced at the Ham Radio gathering in Friedrichshafen last weekend. Details are on www.iota-world.org but, in brief, the new ones are AS-206 Honshu Coastal Islands East; AS-207 Chukchi Sea Coast Centre; OC-298 Tatakoto Atoll; OC-299 Yap East group; OC-300 McKean and Nikumaroro Atolls; and SA-101 Alejandro Selkirk Island. AS-206 will probably be activated very soon; the others will take a lot more planning.

The latest stage of our ongoing efforts to protect and develop VHF spectrum saw considerations for the future of 50MHz being concluded with the final meeting of CEPT Project Team D, as they prepare for WRC-19, where the RSGB has been represented throughout. We are also well aware of the concern in the amateur radio community about the 144MHz aeronautical proposal, currently at the CEPT stage and RSGB volunteers continue to work as part of the broader IARU efforts to protect the interests of the global amateur radio community. The RSGB has updated the special focus page with the latest documents and CEPT meeting minutes at tinyurl.com/yxfgfkqt. All amateurs are encouraged to go and read the details, which will be updated as necessary.

The Planetary Society’s LightSail 2 CubeSat, launched on the 25th of June, will transmit Morse code from space. LightSail is a citizen-funded project and the satellite is due to be deployed on the 2nd of July. Once deployed, LightSail 2 will automatically transmit a beacon packet every few seconds, which can be decoded into 238 lines of text telemetry describing the spacecraft's health and status, including everything from battery status to solar sail deployment motor state. Every 45 seconds, the spacecraft will transmit ‘LS2’ on the spacecraft's frequency of 437.025MHz. Further details can be found at tinyurl.com/ae22jvd.

We have added some more detail to the lectures for the 2019 RSGB Convention at www.rsgb.org/convention. You can read about the latest confirmed lectures for the HF, VHF, AMSAT and General Interest streams, as well as information about Contest University, Awards and Contests. Booking is now open for both weekend packages and day tickets. For full details go to www.rsgb.org/convention

The annual SAQ VLF transmission on Alexanderson Day on 17.2kHz from the Alexanderson Alternator takes place today, starting from 0830UTC for the message at 0900UTC, then 1130UTC for the transmission at 1200UTC. Both transmission events will be broadcast live on YouTube. SK6SAQ will also be operating on 7.035kHz or 14.035MHz CW or 3.755kHz SSB. For more information see grimeton.org and alexander.n.se

Last weekend, RSGB President Dave Wilson, M0OBW demonstrated the UK's online exam system at the Ham Radio show held in Friedrichshafen. Online trials are taking place in several countries and representatives were very interested to see how the UK system works.

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

Next Saturday, the 6th of July, the Stockport RS Rally will be held in Walthew House, 112 Shaw Heath, Stockport, Cheshire SK2 6SQ. Doors open from 9.30am, with disabled visitors gaining access at 9.15am. Admittance is £2. There will be trade stands, special interest groups and an RSGB Bookstall. Catering is available on site. A talk-in station will be on the air. Details from Nigel Roscoe, G0RXA, on 07506 904422.

On Sunday the 7th of July, the Barford Norfolk Radio Rally will be held at Barford Village Hall & Green, Barford, Norwich NR9 4AB. Doors open at 9am, with talk in on S22. There will be trade stands, a car boot sale, a Bring & Buy, raffle, repeater groups, catering and free car parking. Entry is £2 per person, with under 16s free. Contact radio@dcpmicro.com.

To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – we need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom.

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

Bruce, 3W3B will be in Laos until the 7th of July, where he will activate his XW4XR callsign. Look for him on the 40 to 6m bands on CW, FT8 and RTTY. The QSL manager is E21EIC.

Peter, LA7QIA will be operating as JW7QIA from Spitsbergen, IOTA reference EU-026, from the 29th of June to the 6th of July. Activity will be on 6m from Grid Square JQ68. QSL to his home callsign.

Janusz, SP9FIH returns to Bethlehem in Palestine from the 6th of July to the 3rd of August and will be transmitting on the 80 to 6m bands as E44WE. QSLs go via his home callsign.

Anders, SM0HPL is operating as 5X7W from Kampala until the 6th of July while on work assignment. Activity is in his spare time on the HF bands using QRP and CW, JT65, FT8 and FT4. QSL direct to home callsign.

Paul, SA6PIS will be on the air as SV9/SA6PIS/p from Chania, in Crete, from the 30th of June to the 7th of July. Activity will be holiday style on 40, 20, 15 and 10 metres using SSB. QSL to home callsign.

Tony, 3D2AG and John, KK7L are on the air as T2AR and T2R, respectively, from Tuvalu until the 5th of July. Activity is on the 160 to 6m bands, using CW, SSB, RTTY, JT65 and FT8. QSL T2AR direct via 3D2AG and T2R direct via N7SMI.

Karel, OK2ZI is QRV as 9Y4/OK2ZI from Trinidad, SA-011, until the 6th of July. Activity is on the 40 to 10m bands using CW, SSB and various digital modes. QSL to home call.

Now the special event news

GB1CMS will be operating over the weekend of the 6th and 7th of July. The event is a display of military vehicles and battle re-enactments located 7 miles south of Dorking in Capel, Surrey. A listening watch will be maintained on 51.60MHz and a full list of frequencies can be found via tinyurl.com/yx92b4uy

GB100BM will be on the air to celebrate 100 years of Bentley Motor cars. The station will be operated by members of South Cheshire ARS on the 80 to 2m bands using SSB, CW, FM and data modes from the 1st to the 28th of July. A special full colour QSL will be available. QSL is via OQRS, Bureau, Logbook of The World and eQSL. More information and QSL policy is available at QRZ.com

Leicester Radio Society will be hosting a special call GB5EHL, Eagle Has Landed, between the 1st and the 28th of July. It is 50 years since Apollo 11 lifted off from Cape Kennedy carrying the command module, Columbia and the Lunar Module, Eagle with astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins heading for the moon on the 16th of July. On the 20th of July the lunar module touched down on the moon’s surface, which was announced by the now-famous words, “The Eagle Has Landed”.

The special callsign GB100HAL has been issued to commemorate 100 years of RAF Halton in conjunction with the many events that are taking part celebrating the anniversary. The call may also be claimed towards the Airfields on the Air Award and is recognised by RAFARS for all their awards. The callsign will be used most Saturdays up until the end of the year.

The annual Original 13 Colonies Special Event will mark its 11th anniversary this year. The event gets under way on the 1st of July 1300UTC and runs until the 7th July at 0400UTC. Special event stations with 1×1 callsigns will represent the original 13 US colonies, plus bonus stations K2Z, WM3PEN in Philadelphia and GB13COL in Durham, England. Each special event station will have its own QRZ.com profile page.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. Remember, it’s a licensing condition that stations using UK special event must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

Today, the 30th, the UK Microwave Group’s 5.7 and 10GHz contest runs from 0600 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on the two bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Monday the 80m Club Championships run from 1900 to 2030UTC. It is the CW leg and the exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Tuesday the 144MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC, using FM only with the exchange of signal report, serial number and locator. It runs simultaneously with the 144MHz Machine Generated Mode Activity Contest, whose exchange is signal report and 4-character locator. They are immediately followed by the all-mode 144MHz UK Activity Contest from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for this contest is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next weekend is RSGB VHF National Field Day from 1400UTC on the 6th to 1400UTC on the 7th. Using all modes on the 50 to 1.3GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next Sunday, the 7th, the 3rd 2m Backpackers Contest runs from 1100 to 1500UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Don’t forget that the UK Six Metre Group Marathon runs until the 4th of August. Using all modes on the 50MHz band, the exchange is just your 4-character locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 28th of June.

Last week saw a continued quiet sun with zero sunspots at the end of the week and a settled geomagnetic field. A feature in Nature magazine has suggested that we may be heading for a Maunder Minimum in the next three decades. The report cites a study of long-term oscillations of the solar background magnetic field associated with double dynamo waves generated in the inner and outer layers of the Sun, which indicate that the solar activity is heading for a grand minimum.

Another report says an international panel of experts coordinated by the NOAA and NASA have released its preliminary solar cycle 25 forecast, predicting that cycle 25 will peak no earlier than 2023 and no later than 2026, with a minimum peak sunspot number of 95 and a maximum of 130. This would make it similar to cycle 24, which was predicted to reach a maximum smoothed sunspot number of 90 in May 2013. In fact, solar cycle 24’s maximum was reached in April, 2014 and peaked at an average sunspot number of 82. Meanwhile, we continue to head towards sunspot minimum, which is predicted no earlier than July 2019, and no later than September 2020.

The HF doldrums continue, although evenings and night-times seem to be best for DX, with 20m remaining open until very late indeed. OD5TX in Lebanon was romping in at around 1930UTC on Wednesday. 40m is also very active with Roger, G3LDI reporting many stations from the USA on the band around 0330UTC.

Next week, NOAA predicts the solar flux index will be in the range 67-69 with settled geomagnetic conditions and a maximum Kp index of two or three.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

This coming week, Tropo should be fairly productive at times, especially across nearby sea paths over the North Sea and English Channel. High pressure remains a primary feature of the weekend and part of next week, although the centre of the high being close-by will mean that the inversion is quite close to the ground, so paths may suffer if this gets too low. That said, it looks like a good week to get those beams and some CW/SSB going on VHF bands.

Moving on to Sporadic-E now, which relies indirectly upon the presence of jet stream flow. This can make gravity waves that propagate up to the E region and play a role in the formation of Sporadic-E propagation.

The location of jet stream winds recently has been driven by an upper low west of Biscay, which has favoured paths to Spain and Portugal, but this is about to change as the pattern shifts to a jet stream across Scandinavia into eastern Europe. This will favour paths to Scandinavia, the Baltic and Ukraine. There is an outside chance of an upper ridge over western Europe, which could introduce a chance of Sporadic-E into Italy or Spain, but this is not a clear signal this far ahead.

The Moon reaches peak declination on Tuesday and perigee on Friday, so EME conditions will be at their best all week with low path losses and long Moon windows. There are no major meteor showers this week so continue to look for best DX opportunities via random meteors around dawn.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for June 23rd 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 23rd June 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • 2m crosses the Atlantic

  • SAQ transmission next weekend

  • Update on 144 MHz and 23cm threats

 

An historic contact was made on Sunday the 16th of June 2019, when the Atlantic was spanned for the first time on 144MHz. D41CV on Cape Verde Islands off the coast of Africa managed to work FG8OJ in Guadeloupe on 144.174MHz using FT8. The distance was 3,867km. This was bettered on the 18th with QSOs between Cape Verde and Puerto, KP4. The distance was 4,458km. There was also a QSO with WP4G at 4,358km. The propagation mechanism was tropospheric ducting and the path has been predicted as being workable for a long time.

The annual SAQ VLF transmission on Alexanderson Day on 17.2kHz from the Alexanderson Alternator will take place Sunday the 30th of June. Two transmissions are scheduled. Tuning will start at 0830UTC for the message at 0900UTC, then 1130UTC for the transmission at 1200UTC. Both transmission events will be broadcasted live on YouTube. QSL reports to SAQ should be via the new reception report form, via the SM bureau or direct by postal mail, not by email. SK6SAQ will be operating on 7.035kHz or 14.035MHz CW or 3.755kHz SSB. QSL instructions are on the website. QSL details and other information are on the websites grimeton.org and alexander.n.se

The IARU was represented this week at the meeting of CEPT Project Team A, which is one of the groups leading WRC-19 preparations and has just finished in Prague on Friday the 21st. Of particular interest were discussions on two proposed Agenda items for WRC-23, concerning the sharing of the 1240-1300MHz band with the Galileo satellite navigation system and the proposal from France to study a range of frequencies, including the 144MHz amateur band, for future primary aeronautical applications. The meeting considered views that the Galileo issue did not currently warrant a WRC23 Agenda item and should be first investigated within CEPT. However, regarding new aeronautical frequencies including 144MHz, the proposal was unfortunately not strongly opposed by other administrations; this has been carried forward to the higher level CEPT-CPG meeting in August. The IARU and RSGB views with grave concern any proposal to include the global amateur and amateur satellite 144MHz primary band in the proposed aeronautical agenda item; and will be making every effort to fully protect amateur radio interest and seek the support of regulators in this regard. More details can found at tinyurl.com/GB2RS-0623A and on the RSGB’s own special focus page at https://rsgb.org/wrc-19

A newly-digitised classic film of the 25th Anniversary Congress of the IARU has been uploaded to the RSGB YouTube channel. Taking place in 1950, the Congress was attended by many well-known amateurs from around the world. The silent film also includes some marvellously authentic street scenes – and some decidedly odd motor vehicles. You can find it in the Film Archive section at www.rsgb.org/videos, where you’ll also be able to find the Bulletin report from August 1950 on the same event.

Former Colliery Sites on the Air takes place on the 25th of June from 7 to 9pm. It’s easy to take part and there are very few rules: all you need is a 2m handheld. For full details visit http://fcsota.org.uk/

The latest edition of Six News is now available for UK Six Metre Group members to download from www.uksmg.org. The printed edition has been sent out to those members who take it but all members are able to access the digital version.

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

Today, the 23rd of June, the Newbury Radio Rally and Boot Sale takes place at Newbury Showground, next to M4 Junction 13. There will be talk-in on S22. Car parking is free. Traders can gain access from 8am and visitors at 9am. Admission is £2.50, car boot sale pitches are £12.50. There’s a huge radio, electronics and computing boot sale, plus demo marquee with amateur radio on air, plus clubs and national society stands. There’s catering on site. Contact Phill, G6EES on 0777 150 4738 or by email to NewburyRally@nadars.org.uk

The Houghton-le-Spring ARC radio rally takes place on Saturday the 29th of June at Dubmire Royal British Legion Club, Britannia Terrace, Fencehouses DH4 6LJ. Doors open 10.15am, or 10am for disabled visitors. Admission is free. Donations welcome to the Royal British Legion Club. Hot drinks will be available and a licenced bar will be open from 11am. More from Amanda, M6LXK, on 0778 715 5745.

To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – we need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom.

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

John, AD8J will return to Dunbar Rock near Guanaja Island, Honduras, IOTA reference NA-057, until the 6th of July. He will be active holiday style as AD8J/HR9. He will operate CW, SSB and FT8 the 80 to 10m bands. QSL via Logbook of The World, or direct to home call.

Giuseppe, IW1EGO will be active as ID9/IW1EGO from Vulcano Island, EU-017, until the 30th of June. QSL via his home call.

Dave, W9DR will be active as PJ5/W9DR from Sint Eustatius, NA-145, from the 25th of June to the 2nd of July. He will operate SSB, CW and FT8 on 6 metres only. QSL direct to home call.

Bruce, 3W3B will be active as XW4XR from Laos from the 26th of June to the 7th of July. He will operate CW, FT8 and RTTY on the 40 to 6m bands. QSL via Logbook of The World or via E21EIC.

Now the special event news

GB1SCW, operated by members of Worthing & District ARC, will be on the air from the National Coast Watch Institution lookout at Shoreham By Sea, Sussex BN43 5HY today, the 23rd of June, using 40, 20 and 2m from 10am to 4pm. QSL via bureau or eQSL. More information on QRZ.com.

Christian Vision for Men holds an annual event called The Gathering, attended by some 2000 men. Today, the 23rd, special event station GB0CVM will be operating on 80, 40 and 20 metres.

GB4SRC will be operating, mainly on 40m SSB and 2m FM, from the South East Big Bang STEMfest at the South of England Showground on the 26th of June. GB4SRC was the callsign used by the ARISS team in April 2016 at St Richard’s, one of the ten schools who earned the right to talk to British astronaut, Tim Peake. The station will be operated by St Richard’s College Radio Club, under the supervision of Phil, G3MGQ, who set up the radio club when the College asked the Hastings Electronics & Radio Club for help after that ISS contact.

Coventry ARS will be supporting The Nuneaton Armed Forces Day event, at Riversley Park, Nuneaton, Warwickshire on the 29th of June. Operating GB6AFD, mainly 40m SSB, 2m FM and digital modes, the event is open to the public from 11am. Further information from Brian G8GMU on 07801 86 26 86.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. Remember, it’s a licensing condition that stations using UK special event must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

Today, the 23rd, the 50MHz CW contest runs from 0900 to 1200UTC. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Also today, the 23rd, the 70MHz Cumulative Contest runs from 1400 to 1600UTC. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Tuesday the SHF UK Activity Contest runs from 1830 to 2130UTC. Using all modes on the 2.3 to 10GHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Thursday, the 80m Club Championships runs from 1900 to 2030UTC. Using SSB only the exchange is signal report and serial number.

Next Sunday, the 30th, the UK Microwave Group’s 5.7 and 10GHz contest runs from 0600 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on the two bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 21st of June

The week was dominated by thunderstorms and rain. While not strictly HF propagation-related, this did cause havoc on the lower bands, with frequent static crashes. This was particularly noticeable in Thursday’s RSGB 80m Club Championship CW contest, where storms over the low countries made the contest hard going.

Other than that the week was once again marked by a lack of sunspots, but more settled geomagnetic conditions. The solar flux index was pegged at 67-68, with the Kp index fluctuating between one and two. F-layer propagation has generally seen maximum useable frequencies over a 3,000km path around 14-18MHz, although frequent Sporadic-E openings have seen this boosted to 28MHz and higher on short-skip paths.

As an example, the five watt IW3FZQ/B beacon on 28.227MHz in Monselice, Italy and ED4YAK/B on 28.251MHz in Henares, Spain were both booming in on Thursday at 0900UTC, with no other CW or SSB signals on the band.

Next week NOAA has the solar flux index remaining at 68-69, with generally calm geomagnetic conditions other than around Monday the 24th to Wednesday the 26th when it predicts the Kp index could rise to four.

At the time of writing most coronal hole activity was around the solar poles, which shouldn’t threaten the Earth.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The weekend starts with a weak high transiting across the British Isles, which could give some Tropo enhancements for southern stations, while the north remains closer to the old low and its showery weather type. Some models retain a tendency for higher pressure in the south and further possible Tropo.

The fact that showery weather is not far away and continues to put in appearances during the week ahead, means that rain scatter should again be an option for GHz band enthusiasts, especially for northern and western areas.

There have been a few active days recently for Sporadic-E and, in a jet stream sense, the coming week offers some useful directions for Sporadic-E paths. South to Spain and north-east into Scandinavia should be favoured. Additionally there is a broad upper ridge pattern over eastern Europe and this can produce good openings in the high summer. Remember the peak periods for Sporadic-E are late morning and late afternoon or early evening.

The Moon is at apogee today with declination rising and going positive on Wednesday, so EME conditions will slowly improve as the week progresses, with falling path losses and lengthening Moon windows.

As mentioned last week, the Bootids meteor shower peaks on Thursday but no unusually high zenith hourly rate is predicted for 2019.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for June 16th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 16th June 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • IARU addresses 2m & 23cm threats

  • High altitude balloon launches on 20th at 27th

  • Emergency Comms meeting at Friedrichshafen

 

As October’s World Radio Conference, WRC-19 draws closer, proposals that would need to be agreed for the future WRC-23 agenda are also in progress. On Monday the 10th of June, IARU Region 1 provided detailed background and serious concerns it has regarding two proposals under discussion in CEPT/Europe that may potentially impact important amateur bands at 144-146MHz and 1240-1300MHz on a global basis if initially adopted and eventually agreed at the 2023 conference. The 2m band has a proposal for a Primary Aeronautical Mobile service allocation, whilst 23cm faces potential restrictions with respect to the European Galileo and similar satellite navigation services. RSGB and IARU volunteers are actively involved with the CEPT meetings and other fora considering these initial proposals. The RSGB’s own special focus page is at https://rsgb.org/wrc-19. Whilst IARU and RSGB wish to draw this information to the attention of the amateur community, we urge restraint in pubic and social media comments until further progress has been made in the regulatory discussions. More details can found at www.iaru-r1.org

hi-impact will be launching two high altitude balloon flights this month, on the 20th and 27th of June. Working alongside Altrincham Prep School and South Wirral High School, they plan to launch from Welshpool at 11am, subject to any operational changes, which will appear on their Facebook and Twitter feeds, @hiimpactconsult. Both flights are HABDuino equipped, and assistance from amateurs and SWLs in receiving the data and feeding it into HABHUB via DL-FLDigi is appreciated. The HABduino is set up on 434.650MHz USB, RTTY, 50 Baud, 425Hz Shift with 7 Bits, No Parity and 1 Stop Bit, or 7N1, for both flights. The callsign for the 20th is ALTRIPREP and for the 27th it is SWHS_HAB. Mark, MW1MDH will be on site, and will try to be on S22, but as he’s part of the launch team, this may not happen!

IARU Region 1 will be hosting a meeting for radio amateurs interested in Emergency Communications in Friedrichshafen on Friday the 21st of June, starting at 12 noon. There will be talks on new technology, satellite use, drills, data networks and responding to a power grid failure. The working language for this meeting will be English.

The second Midlands ARDF event takes place today, the 16th of June, at Cademan Wood near Whitwick. The assembly area is in the small car park at the Eastern end of the wood. The event is designed for members of radio clubs in RSGB Regions 5 and 13, although anyone is welcome to participate. Registration opens 10am and there will be tuition on how to operate the 80m DF receiver. Details are at www.rsgb.org/ARDF

There are two International Space Station contacts with schools planned for this coming week. On Wednesday the 19th of June a contact has been planned for David St-Jacques, KG5FYI with participants at King Island District High School in Australia. It will begin at approximately 0849UTC and will be a telebridge operated by IK1SLD, located in northern Italy. The downlink signals will be audible in parts of Europe on 145.800MHz. The International Space Station school contact for Nick Hague, KG5TMV with participants at Rowan Preparatory School in Surrey is planned for Thursday the 20th of June at 1248UTC.That contact will be a direct link between NA1SS and GB4RPS. The downlink signals will be audible in many parts of Europe on 145.800MHz.

A new APRS iGate and Digipeater has come online in Aylesbury, callsign MB7UDJ. It is planned that it will be operational 24 hours a day 7 days a week, in order to fill a gap in APRS coverage in the Aylesbury area. For further information, please contact the keeper, John Gascoigne, M5ET, via email to m5et@m5et.radio

The May/June ITU-R Study Group 1 meeting, together with its Working Parties, has just completed its 2019 meeting in Geneva. The IARU was represented for the whole seven days of meetings by Region 1 President Don Beattie, G3BJ. The meetings spent a large amount of time discussing the emerging Wireless Power Transmission technologies and their applications. Work was advanced on Reports on WPT at 100-148.5kHz for low power charging of portable devices, for WPT for electric vehicles at high power around 20, 60 and 85kHz and for wirelessly beamed WPT for remote charging. All these technologies, particularly their harmonics, have the potential for harmful interference to radio communications services, if not carefully managed. The IARU has submitted formal studies on the impact on the amateur service and these have been incorporated into one completed report and will inform a new Recommendation being developed on emissions from WPT. The IARU is advocating proper emission limits to protect radio services and is working with other spectrum users and administrations which share its concerns. The ITU meetings discussed the emerging CISPR proposals for WPT-EV emission limits, where there is a level of concern that they fall short of providing the necessary protection to radio communications services.

The RSGB Cricket World Cup Radio Marathon has been running for 13 days and has already exceeded the UK QSO total of the 2013 RSGB Centenary activation, making this the biggest UK amateur radio event ever, measured by QSO count. Thirty-one GB19 series callsigns are active, with 200 volunteer operators having made over 132,000 QSOs so far. Nine International stations are taking part and they have made an additional 21,000 QSOs. Awards are available for numbers of QSOs with the activating special stations. Alek, SP2EWQ, the leading award chaser, has already made over 500 QSOs with Cricket World Cup stations, all on different bands and modes, and has been awarded the first Platinum Certificate. It is not too late for you to take part, either activating one of the GB19 callsigns or chasing awards by calling the GB19 and International stations. Full details are on the RSGB website at www.rsgb.org/cricket.

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

Today, the 16th, the sixteenth West of England Radio Rally will take place at the Cheese & Grain, Market Yard, Bridge Street, Frome, Somerset BA11 1BE. Doors open at 10am. The event will feature inside and outside trade stands, an RSGB book stall, a café and car parking. Further information from Shaun, G8VPG, on 01225 873 098, or email rallymanager@westrally.org.uk

Today, the 16th, the Scottish Amateur Radio and Electronics Rally will take place at INTU Braehead Centre, Glasgow. Doors open at 10am. There will be traders, radio clubs and a Bring & Buy, and areas for clubs to operate from. Talks and presentations will be running throughout the day. Refreshments are available on-site. For more information call Tony Miles on 07702 134 188.

The Ham Radio Exhibition in Friedrichshafen will take place between the 21st and the 23rd of June. The RSGB will be represented by its usual large book stall, with volunteers and staff to answer queries, and some will attend the various meetings that take place. The IARU will be in the main hall, also with staff and volunteers available for informal discussions on important amateur radio matters.

On Saturday the 22nd of June, the Bangor & District ARS Rally will be held in The Hub, Hamilton Road, Bangor. A Council pay car park is nearby. Doors open 11am and entry is £3 including a raffle ticket. There will be traders, a Bring & Buy and a bookstall. More from 0289 042 2762 or by e-mail to samanumi11@gmail.com

On Sunday the 23rd of June, the Newbury Radio Rally and Boot Sale takes place at Newbury Showground, next to M4 J13. There will be talk-in on S22. Car parking is free. Traders can gain access from 8am and visitors at 9am. Admission is £2.50, car boot sale pitches are £12.50. There’s a huge radio, electronics and computing boot sale, plus demo marquee with amateur radio on air, plus clubs and national society stands. There’s catering on site. Contact Phill, G6EES on 0777 150 4738 or by email to NewburyRally@nadars.org.uk

To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – we need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom.

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

Gildas, FG/F6HMQ and Michel, FG/F6GWV will be active from Guadeloupe, IOTA reference NA-102, until the 25th of June. QSL via home calls. They will also operate as TO1T. QSL via F6HMQ.

Nobu, JA0JHQ will be active as T88PB from Koror, Palau, OC-009 until the 23rd of June. QSL via Logbook of The World, preferred, or direct to JA0JHQ.

Matteo, IZ4YGS is on the air as 9G5GS from Sanzule, West Takoradi in Ghana until the 2nd of July while there on work assignment. He is active in his spare time during his evenings on 160 to 6m using mostly FT8 and SSB. QSL direct to home call.

Special event station CB2E is on the air in Chile until the 2nd of July to mark their total solar eclipse. Activity is on the HF bands using SSB and FT8. QSL via the bureau.

Now the special event news

On Thursday the 20th of June, Tom, M0HYE is running GB19RG from noon until 6pm using the HF bands for the Cricket World Cup Marathon 2019.

Members of the Government Communication ARC will be operating two special event stations in celebration of the centenary of Government Communication Headquarters, or GCHQ. Operation will be from approximately 0800 to 1600UTC on Friday the 21st. GB100GCHQ will operate from the organisations’ HQ in Cheltenham and GB100GCB will operate from their station in Bude, Cornwall. Operation will be primarily on HF using a mixture of voice, CW and datamodes. All contacts will be confirmed via eQSL and Logbook of The World.

GB1SCW, operated by members of Worthing & District ARC, will be on the air from the National Coast Watch Institution lookout at Shoreham By Sea, Sussex BN43 5HY on the 23rd of June using 40, 20 and 2m from 10am to 4pm. QSL via bureau or eQSL. More information on QRZ.com.

Christian Vision for Men holds an annual event called The Gathering, attended by some 2000 men. From the 21st to the 23rd, special event station GB0CVM will be operating on 80, 40 and 20 metres.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. Remember, it’s a licensing condition that stations using UK special event must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

The 50MHz Trophy ends its 24 hour run at 1400UTC today, the 16th. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The All Asian DX contest ends its 48 hour run at 2359UTC today, the 16th. Using CW only on the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and your age.

Today, the 16th, the UK Microwave Group 24 to 248GHz band contest runs from 0900 to 1700UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The Worked All Britain 50MHz phone contest takes place today, the 16th, from 0800 to 1400UTC. The exchange is signal report, serial number and, for UK stations, their WAB square. Entries must be with the contest manager by the 7th of July. Full details are at www.worked-all-britain.org.uk

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

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

On Thursday the 70MHz UK Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 2030UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next Sunday, the 23rd, the 50MHz CW contest runs from 0900 to 1200UTC. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Also on the 23rd, the 70MHz Cumulative Contest runs from 1400 to 1600UTC. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday 14th June 2019.

We had another quite settled week. The Kp index rose to four on the 8th thanks to a glancing blow from an earlier coronal mass ejection. It rose to three again on Thursday the 13th due to an enhanced solar wind stream. The solar flux index remained around 70 thanks to a total lack of sunspots. It is hard to believe we are heading for the summer solstice in the Northern hemisphere, especially with last week’s weather! Summer solstice is characterised by lower daytime maximum useable frequencies than winter, but higher night-time MUFs. Don’t write off 20 or 30 metres in the evening as the bands may well be open all night. Otherwise, the highlights are likely to be due to Sporadic-E, with June perhaps offering some of the best, with openings from 40 through to 10 metres.

Next week, NOAA predicts more of the same with the solar flux index pegged at 68-70 with the Kp index averaging around two. There is the risk of an increase in the Kp index this weekend thanks to an Earth-facing coronal hole, but this is unlikely to be long lasting.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

We ended the week with the last of the very wet unsettled weather, but high pressure is making an appearance in the far south, which could well put Tropo back on the agenda again for the coming week. The regions most likely to benefit are southern England into the continent and across Biscay to Spain. These improved conditions may extend into northern Britain later.

The heavy thunderstorms last week brought almost daily GHz bands rain scatter conditions for those fortunate enough to be around to catch them. These showers should still be present in some northern areas at first next week, again providing a potential source for rain scatter.

As we said earlier, it’s high season for Sporadic -E and the jet stream distribution suggests that there will be some options for Sporadic-E because of the placement of these jet streams, although the strength looks weaker as we move through the coming week.

The Moon is at minimum declination this coming Tuesday and with apogee just a week away the Moon is only up for a few hours either side of midnight and path losses increase all week.

June has three daytime meteor showers. Two are over, but the Bootids shower, associated with comet 7P/Pons-Winnecke and peaking on June the 27th, produced high activity in 1998 and 2004. The last perihelion passage of the comet was in 2015, and no unusual activity is predicted for 2019.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for June 9th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 9th June 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Use 6m on the 13th

  • IARU Kids Day next Saturday

  • GB3RS QSOs now at Logbook of the World

 

At the 2019 ITU World Radio Conference there is an important motion on the agenda to consolidate and extend access to the 50MHz band in IARU Region 1, which is Europe, Africa and Asiatic Russia. To gather solid evidence of the high level of amateur activity on the band, and at the same time to demonstrate that amateurs can co-exist with other band users including the military, the IARU is supporting a monitoring trial in the middle of June. It will be run by the Czech national radio society, in conjunction with their regulator, and it is part activity period, part contest. Government and professional users will also be monitoring and some will be transmitting so it is important that if you do hear any non-amateur stations you must make sure you do not cause them any interference. The monitoring operation is on the 13th of June from 0730 to 0900UTC and from 1100 to 1230UTC. There needs to be as much activity as possible on the band during these two periods, preferably sticking to the Czech power limit of 25W ERP. It doesn't matter whether the band is open or not, just get on the air using SSB, CW, digital, or all three. IARU would like as many logs as possible to be sent in by the 15th of June, whether or not you take part in the contest, to provide solid evidence that can be used in pre-WRC planning. For full details, including the contest info, please see https://tinyurl.com/GB2RS-0906A

This year’s second Kids Day will be held on Saturday the 15th of June. This event is especially created to promote amateur radio to youth. This is a moment where you can share your amateur radio hobby with your family, grandchildren, friends, Scouts or even to the general public. Suggested frequencies for IARU R1 and ARRL stations can be found at www.iaru-r1.org and you should call CQ Kids Day to take part.

GB3RS, the permanent special event station at the RSGB National Radio Centre at Bletchley, is now registered for Logbook of the World. Martin Atherton, G3ZAY, has uploaded 17,000 QSOs with GB3RS into the database so that operators can receive electronic confirmations.

Kuwaiti telecom regulator, CITRA, has released the new WRC-15 60m Secondary allocation to Kuwaiti 9K2 licensees under ITU Footnote 5.133B, which in the case of Kuwait means a maximum of 15W EIRP.

CQScotland.com, funded by the RSGB Legacy Committee and supported by the Mid Lanark Amateur Radio Society, will be attending the Braehead Arena Rally on Sunday the 16th of June. Donations of surplus components, books and magazines that will be shared among local community groups would be most welcome. The group would like to thank amateurs all for the tremendous support received so far. A current Project Update may be downloaded from www.cqscotland.com

The International Museums Weekends are the 15th and 16th, and 22nd and 23rd of June. More details about the event can be found at www.radio-amateur-events.org/ including a list of the stations registered. An award certificate can be obtained for 5 and 20 stations worked, or 10 heard by a SWL. Registration is still open if you wish to enter a museum station.

The second Midlands ARDF event takes place on the 16th of June at Cademan Wood near Whitwick. The assembly area is in the small car park at the Eastern end of the wood. The event is designed for members of radio clubs in Regions 5 and 13, although anyone is welcome to participate. The event will use the 80m amateur band and there will be five hidden transmitters deployed. Suitable directional receivers will be available on loan and there will be a small fee, around £2, to cover the cost of the maps and other incidental expenses. If you are taking part, bring a pair of headphones with 3.5mm plug, wear clothing suitable for walking around in woodland, a compass with a rectangular base plate, a lightweight A4 board, a red spirit pen, some safety pins and a whistle to summon help if needed. Registration opens 10am and there will be tuition on how to operate the ‘sense’ feature on the 80m DF receiver. Details at www.rsgb.org/ARDF

Two new 2018 Convention videos are now available on the RSGB YouTube channel. These are an introduction to 3D printing for the radio amateur by James Patterson, M1DST and The Iceni high-performance 70cm transverter by Sam Jewell, G4DDK. There are also two new lectures for RSGB Members only – these are An HF DXpedition to the Andaman Islands by John Warburton, G4IRN, and Arduino, GPS, RF and Si5351A for Radio Amateurs by Bo Hansen, OZ2M. To see any of these lectures go to www.rsgb.org/videos

To give UK amateurs an opportunity to work all the GB19 Team and Ground callsigns, the organisers are holding a UK Special on the evening of Saturday 15 June. This will be for four hours from 8pm until midnight, local time, to try to achieve good UK propagation. Team and Ground stations will be on 40m from 8pm, moving to 80m from 10pm, switching hourly between CW and SSB. See www.rsgb.org/cricket for more details.

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

Today, the 9th, the Junction 28 Radio Rally takes place at Alfreton Leisure Centre, Alfreton, Derbyshire. Doors open at 10.15am and admission is £3. Run by South Normanton & Alfreton & District ARC, there will be a hot and cold drinks plus a bar, and a selection of cobs and hot food. There’s free parking and over 100 tables, all indoors, with dealers & private traders, RSGB, local & national clubs. Contact Alan Jones, on 01332 679 913.

Today, the East Suffolk Wireless Revival, the Ipswich Rally, takes place at Kirton Recreation Ground, Back Road, Kirton IP10 0PW, just off the A14. Doors open at 9.30am and admission is £2. The venue has free car parking. There will be trade stands, a car boot sale, a Bring & Buy, special interests groups, GB4SWR HF station and an RSGB bookstall. Catering is available on site. Contact Kevin, G8MXV on 07710 046 846.

Next Saturday, the 15th, the Rochdale and District ARS Summer Rally will take place at St Vincent de Paul’s, Caldershaw Road, Norden, Rochdale OL12 7QR. Proceeds from this rally ensure the continued operation of DMR repeater GB7MR. Doors open at 10.15am, with disabled visitors gaining access at 10am. Admission is £2.50, with those under 12 free. Refreshments will be available including bacon and sausage butties. Further details from Robert, M0NVQ by email to m0nvq@outlook.com or 0777 811 3333.

Next Sunday, the 16th, the sixteenth West of England Radio Rally will take place at the Cheese & Grain, Market Yard, Bridge Street, Frome, Somerset BA11 1BE. Doors open at 10am. The event will feature inside and outside trade stands, an RSGB book stall, a café and car parking. Further information from Shaun, G8VPG, on 01225 873 098, or email rallymanager@westrally.org.uk

Next Sunday, the 16th, the Scottish Amateur Radio and Electronics Rally will take place at INTU Braehead Centre, Glasgow. Doors open at 10am. There will be traders, radio clubs and a Bring & Buy, and areas for clubs to operate from. Talks and presentations will be running throughout the day. Refreshments are available on-site. For more information call Tony Miles on 07702 134 188.

To get your event into RadCom, onto GB2RS and on the RSGB website, please send details as early as possible to radcom@rsgb.org.uk – we need to know four months in advance to get your info into RadCom.

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

Christian, EA3NT and Col, MM0NDX will be active as JW/EA3NT and JW/OJ0Y respectively from Longyearbyen, Svalbard, IOTA reference EU-026, between the 12th and the 16th of June. They will operate CW, SSB and digital modes on whatever bands are open, and will upload their logs to Club Log.

S9A will be the callsign of the LazyDXers, who will be on Sao Tome Island, AF – 023, until the 18th of June. They will be on all bands from 160 to 10m on CW, SSB, RTTY and FT8. QSL manager is EB7DX.

Elixander, W7HU and his son Elixander Jr, N4EVJ will operate SSB and FT8 as homecall/HC7 from Ecuador from the 8th to the 11th of June. QSLs via Logbook of the World, or via W7HU.

Jacques, CT2IXX will be active as LA/CT2IXX/p from Melandsjoen, Hitra Island, EU-036, until the 12th of July. He will operate SSB only, in his spare time.

Bo, OZ1DJJ will be active as OX3LX from Nuuk, Greenland, NA-018, between the 11th and the 21st of June, with possible activity also from Kook Island, NA-220. Bo will operate in his spare time, typically around lunch and after dinner. QSL via OZ0J, Club Log OQRS and Logbook of the World.

Lars, SM6CUK will be active as SA6G/7 from Ven Island, EU-137, between the 10th and the 14th of June. He will operate CW only on the 40 to 10m bands. QSL via SM6CUK.

Now the special event news

DL0WUN will be on the air from the 10th to the 16th of June to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Airlift from Wunstorf to Berlin. On 28 June 1948, the first RAF C47 started to transport goods to the then-blockaded Berlin from Wunstorf Air Base. By September 1949, more than 277,000 flights had been made from various airfields in West Germany. Exact operating times and frequencies can be found on QRZ.com

The Galway Radio Experimenters Club will be active as EI100ABC for the Alcock & Brown Centenary Festival in Clifden, Co. Galway, between the 11th and the 16th of June. The festival celebrates the 100th anniversary of the first non-stop transatlantic flight, made in June 1919 by British aviators John Alcock and Arthur Brown from St John’s, Newfoundland to Clifden, Ireland. QSL via EI2II.

GB5HH will be on the air from Hengistbury Head Visitor Centre, Bournemouth BH6 5EN for Museums on the Air on the 15th and 16th of June.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk as early as possible so we can give you free publicity. Remember, it’s a licensing condition that stations using UK special event must be open to the public.

Now the contest news

The IARU Region 1 ATV Contest will end its 30 hour run at 1800UTC today, the 9th. Using the 432MHz and up bands, the report is picture quality, serial number, four digit code and locator.

Today, the 9th, the second 144MHz Backpackers contest runs from 0900 to 1300UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Also today, the 9th, the Practical Wireless 2m QRP contest runs from 0900 to 1600UTC. Using phone only, the exchange is signal report, serial number band locator. Please note the maximum power for this one is 5W.

On Monday, the 80m Club Championships runs from 1900 to 2030UTC. This is the data leg and the exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Tuesday the 432MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC, using FM only. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for both contests is signal report, serial number and locator.

As mentioned in the main part of the news, there’s a special 50MHz contest and activity session on Thursday morning. The future of the 6m band will be affected by the number of users during the test period, so please take part or at least get some signals up on 6m. Full information is at tinyurl.com/GB2RS-0906A

On Thursday the 50MHz Machine Generated Mode Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1900UTC, with the exchange being your signal report and 4-character locator. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 50MHz UK Activity Contest, from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next weekend the 50MHz Trophy runs from 1400UTC on the 15th to 1400UTC on the 16th. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Also next weekend, the All Asian DX contest runs for 48 hours from 0000UTC on the 15th to 2359UTC on the 16th. Using CW only on the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and your age.

On Sunday the 16th the UK Microwave Group 24 to 248GHz band contest runs from 0900 to 1700UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The Worked All Britain 50MHz phone contest takes place next Sunday, the 16th, from 0800 to 1400UTC. The exchange is signal report, serial number and, for UK stations, their WAB square. Entries need to be with the contest manager by the 7th of July. Full details are at www.worked-all-britain.org.uk

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday 7th June 2019.

We had a very quiet, settled Sun last week. The solar flux index never got above 70, reflecting a complete lack of sunspots, while the Kp index eventually decreased to one or two, due to a lack of coronal holes on the solar surface. The net result was that HF conditions were not bad, but definitely not outstanding. Last weekend’s NFD saw many teams with better scores than last year, although the bulk of the propagation was to Europe.

40 metres has become the new 20m, being open during the day as well as in the evening, while openings on the bands above 20m have been fleeting and largely restricted to short-skip Sporadic-E. A station on the west coast of the USA was worked by G4ARN/P, but that was largely due to the other station’s antenna system.

Another DX nugget this week has been 3D2CR on Conway Reef in the South Pacific. This has been worked by a few UK amateurs equipped with high-mounted beams. As the long and short path routes both go over the poles, this is an indication that geomagnetic conditions have been good.

Sporadic-E has not been so prevalent this week, but there have been short openings. A surprise was hearing GB19CH, the Scotland World Cup HQ Station, on 28MHz CW on Thursday, here in Norfolk. This was undoubtedly short-skip Sporadic-E. Special Event Stations AM70C, AM70L and AM70P in Spain were also frequent visitors to 28MHz.

Next week, NOAA predicts the solar flux index will continue around 70-72, while geomagnetic conditions will be settled, with a maximum Kp index of two. Maximum useable frequencies over a 3,000km-long path will peak at about 16-17.5MHz, so 20 metres continues to be the daytime DX band of choice.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

With an unsettled weather week coming up, this time of the year often means some potentially heavy rain with a chance of thunder. Therefore the first propagation mode to get a mention this week is rain scatter on the microwave bands. Use one of the many radar displays available on the web to track the storms.

Now it’s high summer, the Sporadic-E season is well under way. Recent days have been a bit lacklustre in a European sense, although some choice DX has been worked on six metres into Central Africa. Given that jet streams at 10km altitude in the weather part of the atmosphere are known to play a role in the location of Sporadic-E at 100km, it's reassuring to see that there will be some significant jet streams over our part of Europe during the coming week. At various times they will support possible Sporadic-E paths from Scandinavia round to Spain. The main operating tip is to check the bands late morning and again late afternoon and early evening, starting with 10m and working up through six, four and two metres. Unfortunately all of this depends upon the other parameters that influence Sporadic-E coming into line, but at least the weather part looks promising. With predominantly low pressure, there is a limited chance of Tropo featuring much during the coming week.

The Moon is past peak declination perigee, but it is still a good week for EME, albeit with shortening Moon windows and path losses increasing. After last week’s peak of the daytime Arietids meteor shower, there are no significant showers in the upcoming week. And that’s all from the propagation team this week.

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