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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.

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for June 2nd 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 2nd June 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • RadCom Basics out this weekend

  • GB100GP marks Gilwell Park’s centenary

  • Latest Cricket World Cup Marathon news

A new edition of RadCom Basics is out this weekend. RSGB Members can read it today by going to www.rsgb.org/radcom-basics. You can also register to receive notification of subsequent issues as they become available at the same address. 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 Antennas and explains impedance and reactance, as well as looking at the locator square systems that exist – and how to use them.

Gilwell Park is recognised by many people involved in Scouts as the movement’s spiritual home. It is also home to Scouting’s UK administrative headquarters. Gilwell Park also hosts an amateur radio station, GB2GP, which has been getting Scouts on the air for over 50 years. 2019 is the centenary of the site being donated to Lord Baden Powell, and there are numerous events taking place to mark this. There is a special call sign to mark the site’s centenary: GB100GP. It will be active at a Funday for Beavers and Cubs on the 8th and 9th of June. If you hear the station, give the young people a call.

The ICC Cricket World Cup has started and so has the RSGB’s Cricket World Cup Marathon. UK and international callsigns will be active on nine HF bands on SSB, CW, and digital modes. Award certificates will be offered based on the number of contacts made with the special UK and international stations. A total of 31 special callsigns will be on the air in the UK, with GB19CWC representing the 2019 Cricket World Cup Headquarters in England. Listen for other GB19 prefix callsigns too. Teams will field special event stations as well. Full details are at www.rsgb.org/cricket

Logbook of The World is now accepting FT4 contacts. The latest TQSL update, released on the 22nd of May, includes FT4 as a sub-mode of MFSK. It also adds AISAT-1 and PO-101 in the satellite category. As of the 23rd of May, over one thousand million contact records have been entered into the system, resulting in 200 million contact confirmations. Logbook in The World has 118,328 users.

Now some advanced warning about restricted access to the RSGB’s National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park. On Thursday the 6th of June the NRC will be running a special event station GB2DAY to commemorate the 75th anniversary of D-Day. On that day, access for visiting radio amateurs wishing to operate the station GB3RS will be limited.

Thursday the 6th of June is the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings in Normandy. HMS Belfast was the flagship for the flotilla supporting the British and Canadian troops at Gold and Juno beaches. Commemorating this important event, the radio station in the Bridge Wireless Office aboard the preserved cruiser will use the special callsign GB75DDAY throughout June, manned by members of RNARS (affiliated) London Group and Imperial War Museum volunteers. See www.gb2rn.org.uk for more details.

GB2ORM will be on the air from the 7th to the 9th of June commemorating the 75th Anniversary of the D-Day Landings from The Great Orme, Llandudno. This location played a vital role in WW2 with its Gunnery School Positions, RAF Radar Station and, of course the famous Mulberry Harbour construction site. North Wales RS and Dragon ARC will be operating the station. A small party of Air Cadets, Army Cadets & Sea Cadets will also be involved.

To commemorate the work of the many D-Day signallers who were responsible for maintaining essential wireless communications during the Normandy landings, members of VMARS, the Vintage & Military Amateur Radio Society, are co-ordinating wireless nets of equipment types that were in use on that historic day. Those already planning to take part in the nets include portable stations being established at British Gold King Red Beach and near to the Bénouville bascule bridge on the Caen Canal, better known today as Pegasus Bridge. In the UK will be stations operating from a former navigation station at Beachy Head and from Windy Ridge, the site of the WW2 transmitting station at Whaddon Hall in Buckinghamshire. The 75th Anniversary nets will be established from early in the morning of the 6th of June on 3615kHz AM. Communications will take place throughout the entire day. The net is open to all licenced amateurs who can operate using AM equipment of any vintage, but it is hoped that vintage military equipment will be used wherever possible. All amateur radio stations are invited to join in on the AM and FM nets on the 6th of June to celebrate and honour the work of the D-Day signallers, many of whom were targeted by enemy snipers attempting to disrupt the wireless communications of the invasion troops.

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

Today, the 2nd, the Spalding DARS annual rally takes place at Holbeach Community Sports Academy, Pennyhill Lane, Holbeach PE12 7PR. Doors open at 9.30am and admittance is £3. The venue offers easy access from the A17, a large area for boot traders and modern hall for indoor traders. There will be a car boot sale, RSGB Book Stall, special interest groups and trade stands. Catering is available on site and there will be a prize draw. Contact Graham Boor, G8NWC, on 0775 461 9701, or email rallysecretary@sdars.org.uk.

Next Sunday, the 9th, the Junction 28 Radio Rally will be held at Alfreton Leisure Centre, Alfreton, Derbyshire. Doors open 10.15am and admission is £3. Run by South Normanton & Alfreton & District ARC, there will be full disabled facilities and a bar selling alcoholic, hot and cold beverages, and a selection of cobs. Hot food is also available in the on-site café. There’s free parking and over 100 tables, all indoors, with dealers & private traders, RSGB, local & national clubs. You’ll find new rigs and accessories to vintage spares and components. Contact Alan Jones, snadarcsec@gmail.com or 01332 679 913.

Next Sunday, the 9th, the East Suffolk Wireless Revival will be held at Kirton Recreation Ground, Back Road, Kirton IP10 0PW, just off the A14. Doors open at 9.30am and the entry fee for visitors 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.

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 print cycle means we need to know four months in advance to get your information into RadCom.

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

Sven, HB9DXB expects to be active as XV9DXB from Nha Trang in Vietnam, starting around the 2nd of June. Plans are to operate SSB and CW on 80, 40, 20 and 10 metres. QSL via EB7DX.

Audie, DU1ZDR and Gazelle, DU1ZDQ will be active as DZ1A from Kalanggaman Island, IOTA reference OC-129, on the 3rd of June. They will operate QRP on or around 14260 and 7055kHz.

Oliver, SV8/DK7TX will be active from IOTA group EU-052, Antipaxos, Paxos and Kerkyra, between the 2nd and 9th of June. He will operate SSB on 40, 20, 17 and 15m bands. QSL via DK7TX, direct or bureau.

Now the special event news

GB0RBW will be active this weekend from the Bath and West Show near Shepton Mallet. Organised by Mid-Somerset ARC, with support from Yeovil and South Bristol clubs, the station will be on the air from 9am to 6pm each day.

The Marconi museum ship, Elettra, which was Marconi’s moving laboratory, will be on the air this weekend as part of the Museum Ships weekend. 2019 is the centenary of the purchase of Elettra by Marconi.

GB2DAW will be on the air for Dementia Awareness Week between the 3rd and 9th of June, to raise awareness of dementia. Operating from the Shetland Islands, Scotland, they will transmit on varying bands and frequencies depending on conditions and time of day. All information is be on QRZ.com.

The Windmill Amateur Radio DX Group will be operating GB1RY on the 6th of June from RAF Ramsbury for the 75th anniversary of D-Day. They will be operating again on the 8th and 9th during the unveiling of a commemorative plaque and information board about RAF Ramsbury.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that stations using UK special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

This weekend will see the lower parts of the bands very busy for the RSGB CW National Field Day, which is part of the IARU Region 1 Field Day. Ending it 24 hour run at 1500UTC today, the 2nd, it’s CW-only on all the contest bands from 1.8 to 28MHz. The exchange is RST and serial number. Note that although the RSGB and IARU events coincide, European data protection laws mean you need to send your log to each organisation separately. RSGB can’t forward logs to the IARU on your behalf as has been the practice in earlier years.

The SEANET contest ends its 24 hour run at 1200UTC today, the 2nd. CW and SSB can be used on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, and the exchange is signal report and serial number.

The UK Six Metre Group Summer Contest ends its 24 hour run 1300UTC today, the 2nd. Using all modes on the 50MHz band only, the exchange is signal report, serial number, locator and UKSMG membership number.

The UK Microwave Group Low Band contest takes place today, the 2nd, from 1000 to 1600UTC. Using all modes on the 23, 13 and 6cm bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Tuesday the 144MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC, using FM only. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator. It takes place concurrently with the 144MHz Machine Generated Mode Activity Contest, where the exchange is 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 Saturday the 8th, the 1st 40m QSO Party runs from 1000 to 1200UTC. Using SSB on the 7MHz band, the exchange is 59 and your name.

The IARU Region 1 ATV Contest will be held on the 8th and 9th of June from 1200UTC on the 8th to 1800UTC on the 9th. Using the 432MHz and up bands, the report is picture quality, serial number, four digit code and locator.

Next Sunday, 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 on Sunday 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 your maximum power for this one is 5 watts.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday 31st May 2019.

A couple of small Earth-facing coronal holes were the source of an elevated solar wind stream that pushed the Kp index to four on Wednesday. Otherwise solar conditions were generally quite flat last week. This helped Sporadic-E production, which saw 10 metres come alive, with the band sounding more like 20 metres on a good day. Unfortunately, this came to an end mid week when the Kp index soared, as we’ll explain later. One highlight was the start of the Cricket World Cup, with special stations GB19AUS, for Australia, and GB19LL, for Lord’s London, starting the ball rolling on Thursday.

The Sun remained distinctly spotless and that trend is due to continue. NOAA predicts more of the same with the solar flux index between 68 and 72 next week. The good news is that geomagnetic conditions should remain quiet with a maximum Kp index of two forecast over the next seven days. This should help the ionosphere replenish itself.

This weekend has seen National Field Day take place and while we can’t say how conditions have been we are sure that there have been the odd instance of DX openings, albeit fleetingly. This is an example of how you can write off a band, only to find it opening up in one direction for ten minutes or so. F2-layer openings do occur on the higher bands, even at sunspot minimum – it is just a case of being lucky enough to catch them.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

There has been some spectacular Sporadic-E across much of Europe during the last week or so, reaching up to 144MHz in a few cases. However, this changed from midweek as conditions reverted back to normal and Sporadic-E barely made it to 10m.

So what changed? Well, on Wednesday the Kp index was four at a critical time when Sporadic-E might form. This is higher than ideal; typically a K index of less than three is good. Also there has been a gradual deterioration in the positioning of the jet streams in the upper air and these look to be less likely to intersect with the Alps or Pyrenees as we move through this weekend. Sporadic-E paths into Europe may well be biased towards northern Europe, the Baltic and Scandinavia.

Regarding other modes, we appear to be lined up for being associated with low pressure and a showery weather pattern, so offering the prospects for rain scatter on the GHz bands. Watch out for thundery showers today. High pressure does try to return at the end of the week, but may not bring strong Tropo, although sea paths around Britain may offer the better paths.

The Moon reaches peak declination on Wednesday and perigee on Friday, so a good week for EME with long Moon windows and low path losses.

Next Friday/Saturday sees the peak of the daytime Arietids meteor shower, with a zenithal hourly rate of 30.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for May 26th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 26th May 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • New propagation prediction tool released

  • Cricket World Cup Radio Marathon is imminent

  • New forum for Easy-100 satellite upconverter

The RSGB’s Propagation Studies Committee has released a new propagation tool for amateurs. Based on the ITU’s ITURHFPROP program, the new tool is the work of programmer and Committee member James Watson, HZ1JW. It gives hour-by-hour monthly median propagation predictions from a location you specify to one of 28 locations around the world. You can select your operating mode, eg SSB, CW or FT8, local noise levels, the antenna type at each end and other variables. The results are presented in tables, using colours and numeric values to indicate path properties. There is more information on the RSGB website and the tool itself, which is free to all amateurs worldwide, is at www.rsgb.org/proppy

It’s only a few days until the start of the Cricket World Cup Radio Marathon. Some brand-new awards have been added, including Worked all Teams and Worked all Cricket Grounds. The Marathon runs from the 30th of May to the 14th of July and full details can be found at www.rsgb.org/cricket

There has been a great deal of interest in the Easy-100 DIY upconverter for geostationary satellite QO-100, published in the June RadCom. A special interest group has now been created for discussions and support at groups.io/g/easy-100 and all are welcome to join.

Dementia Awareness Week is run by Alzheimer’s Scotland from the 3rd to the 9th of June. Peter, MM0NQY will be running GB2DAW during this time to help raise the worldwide amateur community’s awareness of dementia. Operating from the Shetland Islands, Scotland, on various bands and times, Peter hopes that the end result may be a world-wide net where operators with dementia could talk to each other. For more information please see the QRZ.com entry for GB2DAW.

Next Saturday and Sunday sees this year’s Museum Ships weekend. Transmissions will be sent from all sorts of old and special ships worldwide, enabling unique QSOs. Around 110 museum ships around the world have registered to take part, including seven or so that are new to the event. Ships and boats from submarines to aircraft carriers will be on the air and a full list can be found at www.qsl.net/w/wa2tvs//museum

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

Today, the Durham District ARS Radio Rally takes place at Bowburn Community Association, Durham Road, Bowburn, Co. Durham DH6 5AT. Doors open 10.10am to 2.30pm, with disabled visitors gaining access at 10 am. Admittance is £2. There will be traders, a Bring & Buy as well as an RSGB bookstall and special interest groups. Catering and a licensed bar is on site. Contact Michael, G7TWX on 07826 924 1192.

Next Sunday, the Spalding DARS annual rally takes place at Holbeach Community Sports Academy, Pennyhill Lane, Holbeach PE12 7PR. Doors open at 9.30am and admittance is £3. The venue offers easy access from the A17, a large area for boot traders and a modern hall for indoor traders. There will be a car boot sale, RSGB Book Stall, special interest groups and trade stands. Catering is available on site and there will be a prize draw. Contact Graham Boor, G8NWC, on 0775 461 9701, or email rallysecretary@sdars.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 – the print cycle means we need to know four months in advance to get your information into RadCom.

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

M0PAI will be active from the 1st to the 8th of June on the Isle of Lewis/Harris, IOTA reference EU-010, Isle of Skye, as MM0PAI/p. He will be active all week on 80m to 2m, including 4m SSB, and on FT8. New references for World Flora Fauna will be activated, there will be WAB references up for grabs and possible SOTA activations depending on weather.

Ric, LA/DL2VFR, Friedrich, LA/DL4BBH and Klaus, LA/DL7UXG will be active from the Vesteralen Islands, EU-033, from the 27th to the 31st of May, and from the Lofoten Islands, EU-076, on the 1st to the 5th of June. They will operate CW, SSB and FT8. QSL via home calls, Club Log and eQSL.

Akio, JE2QIZ has received a licence to operate in Naypyitaw, Myanmar as XZ2B. It covers 20 to 300MHz at 25W maximum and expires at the end of June. Details are on QRZ.com

Dwight, VE7BV is on the air from Guatemala as TG9BBV until the 13th of June. QSL via home call, direct, bureau, or Logbook of the World.

Yuki, JH1NBN is active as 9N7BN in Nepal until the 4th of June. Bands in use are 80m to 6m using CW and FT8. QSL via home call.

Now the special event news

GB0RBW will be active for four days from Wednesday the 29th from the Bath and West Show near Shepton Mallet. Organised by Mid-Somerset ARC, with support from Yeovil and South Bristol clubs, the station will be on the air from 9 am to 6 pm each day.

Burton Amateur Radio Club will be operating GB2RTF for Rolleston On Dove Transport Festival on Bank Holiday Monday. The station will be active on HF, VHF & UHF using SSB, FM, FT8, FT4 and CW using SDR and traditional transceivers.

Unusual callsign GB9SOS comes to the end of its month-long run on the 31st of May. Run by G8XQB in aid of SOS Radio Week, full information can be found on QRZ.com

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that stations using UK special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

The 48 hour CQ Worldwide WPX CW contest is in full swing, ending at 2359UTC tonight. Using CW only on the 1.8 to 28MHz bands, the exchange is a signal report and serial number.

Also today, the 26th, the UK Microwave Groups contest runs from 0600 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on the 5.7 to 10GHz bands, the exchange is a signal report, serial number and locator.

The 3rd 70MHz Cumulative contest runs from 1400 to 1600UTC today. Using all modes, the exchange is a signal report, serial number and locator.

On Tuesday the 432MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 2000UTC, using FM only. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 2000 to 2230UTC. The exchange for both contests is a signal report, serial number and locator.

Also on Tuesday, the SHF UKAC takes place from 1830 to 2130UTC, Using all bands on the 2.4 to 10GHz bands, the exchange is a signal report, serial number and locator.

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

Next weekend will see the lower parts of the bands very busy for the RSGB CW National Field Day, which is part of the IARU Region 1 Field Day. Running from 1500 UTC on Saturday to the same time on Sunday, it’s CW-only on all the contest bands from 1.8 to 28MHz. The exchange is RST and serial number. Note that although the RSGB and IARU events coincide, European data protection laws mean you need to send your log to each organisation separately. RSGB can’t forward to the IARU on your behalf as has been the practice in earlier years.

Also next weekend, the SEANET contest takes place from 1200UTC on Saturday until the same time on Sunday. CW and SSB can be used on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, and the exchange is a signal report and serial number.

The UK Six Metre Group Summer Contest runs from 1300 UTC next Saturday to 1300 on Sunday. Using all modes on the 50MHz band only, the exchange is a signal report, serial number, locator and UKSMG membership number.

Finally, for next weekend, the UK Microwave Group Low Band contest takes place next Sunday from 1000 to 1600UTC. Using all modes on the 23, 13 and 6cm bands, the exchange is a signal report, serial number and locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday 24th May 2019.

Geomagnetic conditions have been much quieter over the last week as the result of reduced coronal hole activity and a lack of coronal mass ejections. The solar surface is now devoid of sunspots, so we are back to settled conditions.

Many listeners are reporting that 20 metres is staying open longer at night. This is to be expected as we move towards summer ionospheric conditions, characterised by lower maximum useable frequencies during the day, compared with winter, but sustained MUFs at night. This is due to a mixture of increased D-layer absorption during daylight and a change in the ionospheric chemistry to more molecular, rather than monatomic species, which are harder to ionise. Some long-distance contacts into the USA have been reported even at 2 am and we can expect these to continue. Twenty metres may even become a 24-hour DX band by mid-summer.

There is a slight chance of an elevated K index on Friday 24th or Saturday 25th due to an Earth-facing coronal hole, but otherwise the geomagnetic field is predicted to be quiet. NOAA predicts unsettled conditions on the 28th and 29th when the K index could rise to three or four. The solar flux index will start at about 68 and is predicted to rise to 74 or 76 by next weekend, presumably due to the return of a sunspot group.

And finally, as mentioned in the main news the RSGB’s Propagation Studies Committee has launched a new HF prediction tool that uses the ITURHFPROP engine. The tool can create predictions to 28 different locations around the world, based on your particular antenna, mode and power. It joins the VOACAP-based tool launched earlier this year, which can be found via www.rsgb.org/psc

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

This week we will find a tendency for high pressure to be located to the southwest of the British Isles, with any Tropo prospects biased towards southern UK into France across Biscay into Spain perhaps. The bulk of the country is dominated by low pressure to give a showery type of weather and offer some possibility of some rain scatter, since it’s likely at this time of the year to be a case of some showers being heavy and thundery.

Sporadic-E is working well this season with some openings reported on most days, often as high as 50MHz and occasionally higher. Obviously, not all paths have been accessible from the UK, but some have and so far this season many of the paths have been associated with jet streams. The coming week suggests some further jet stream activity over northern Europe and Scandinavia, while flows over southern Europe become weaker. Maybe it is time for paths to Scandinavia and the Baltic to come to the fore. It’s always worth remembering to check the clusters and, as an operating principle, try a late morning or early evening check on 10m and 6m beacons for signs of activity.

The Moon is at apogee today so losses are at their highest, but falling as the week progresses. Declination is rising and goes positive on Thursday so EME conditions will become more favourable towards next weekend. Again there is no significant meteor shower activity this week so in between the Sporadic-E, keep looking for the early morning random meteor peak on the lower VHF bands.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for 19/05/2019

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 19th May 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Book now for RSGB Convention

  • CQ Hall of Fame inductees named

  • GB2DAY at NRC on 6 June

Booking is now open for the 2019 RSGB Convention, which is sponsored by Martin Lynch & Sons. Join us between the 11th and 13th of October at Kents Hill Park, Milton Keynes. The lecture programme is in the process of being finalised, and will feature streams including HF, VHF, AMSAT-UK and general interest. The Convention will include the annual Construction Competition, an SMD Buildathon, the Contest University and a Pi workshop. Our after-dinner speaker will be Dave Sumner, K1ZZ, Secretary of the IARU. Dave was active with the IARU during his entire 44-year career on the staff of the ARRL. Making a weekend of it? Why not come and visit the RSGB National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park on the Friday? RSGB Members can download their free entry voucher from the RSGB website. See more at www.rsgb.org/convention.

Five amateurs have been inducted into the CQ Amateur Radio Hall of Fame. They are John Attaway Senior, K4IIF, SK, who served for more than 20 years as CQ magazine’s DX Editor, proposing the establishment of the CQ DX Hall of Fame in 1967; Dave Bernstein, AA6YQ the author of the DXLab software suite, Doreen Bogdan-Martin, KD2JTX, the Director of the International Telecommunication Union Telecommunication Development Bureau and the first woman ever to hold a senior elected position in the ITU, Predescu Florin Cristian, YO0CNU, the founder of Europe's Youngsters On The Air (YOTA) program and Ellen White, W1YL who served as the ARRL's Deputy Communications Manager, was QST magazine's DX editor, recorded QST on tape for the Library of Congress’s Talking Book Program for the visually-impaired. Bruce, WA7BNM; Dean, N6BV, and Chris, 9A5K, SK, have been inducted into CQ Contest Hall of Fame. Joe Taylor, K1JT, the Nobel Prize winning-astrophysicist who created the suite of WSJT weak-signal digital modes, including FT8, and Silvano Borsa, I2YSB and the Italian DXpedition Team who have made more than 20 major DXpeditions in the past 20 years, mostly to Africa have been inducted into the CQ DX Hall of Fame.

Advance notice now that RSGB National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park will have restricted access for visiting radio amateurs wishing to operate the station, GB3RS on the 6th of June. On the 6th, the NRC will be running a special event station, GB2DAY to commemorate the 75th anniversary of D-Day. The NRC will remain open to visitors but access to the radio room will be restricted and visiting amateurs will be unable to operate the station.

New videos have been added to the RSGB website for Members to view. They are two 2018 RSGB Convention lectures. John Worsnop, G4BAO talks about The Wednesday Night Digifest and Steve Nichols, G0KYA speaks on The top HF propagation questions and some possible answers. Go to www.rsgb.org/videos for these and many more interesting talks. There is also new archive video, National Field Day 1947, plus the original RadCom article written about the event now live in the Film Archive section at www.rsgb.org/videos

This year the ITU World Radio Conference takes place and there is an important motion on the agenda to consolidate and extend access to 50MHz in Region 1, which covers Europe, Africa and Asiatic Russia. One of the national telecoms administrations that is actively supporting the proposal is the Czech Republic; unfortunately some other administrations are actively opposed. 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, IARU is supporting a monitoring trial on the 13th of June. The event is being 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 be monitoring and some will be transmitting as well so it is important that amateurs make a good showing. Remember, by the way, that if you do hear any non-amateur stations you must make sure you do not cause them any interference. Full details of the event can be found at https://tinyurl.com/yxngnmlw

The 200th registration for this year's International Lighthouse Lightship Weekend has been received and it is from Latvia, which is a rare country for the event and a new lighthouse as well. This highly popular event, now in its 22nd year, takes place on the 17th and 18th of August with over 500 entries expected. It is a fun weekend with many entrants returning year after year with some taking part every year since 1998. All the details and registration form are on the ILLW website, https://illw.net

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

Today, the 19th of May, the Dunstable Downs National Amateur Radio Car Boot Sale takes place at Stockwood Park, Luton LU1 4BQ. More details can be found on the website www.ddrcbootsale.org.

On the 26th of May, the Durham District ARS Radio Rally takes place at Bowburn Community Association, Durham Road, Bowburn, Co. Durham DH6 5AT. Doors open 10.10am to 2.30pm, with disabled visitors gaining access at 10am. Admittance is £2. There will be traders, a Bring & Buy as well as an RSGB bookstall and Special Interest Groups. Catering and a licensed bar is on site. Contact Michael, G7TWX on 07826 924 1192.

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 print cycle means we need to know four months in advance to get your information into RadCom.

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

Juha, OH5CW and the OH5C group will be active as OG0C from Kokar, in the Aland Islands, IOTA reference EU-002, between the 22nd and the 28th of May. They will operate CW, SSB, FT8, FT4 and MSK144 on the 160 to 2m bands. QSL via Logbook of The World, via the bureau, or direct to OH5CW; logsearch on Club Log.

Thomas, F4HPX will be active holiday-style as FR/F4HPX from Reunion Island until the 5th June. He will operate mainly SSB and FT8 on 40, 20 and 15m.

Waldi, SP7IDX will be active as LA/SP7IDX from Store Molla, Lofoten Islands, EU-076, until the 29th of May. He will operate SSB and FT8 on the 40 to 10m bands. QSL direct to home call or via Logbook of The World.

Members of the Old House Radio Club, OH5C, will visit the Aland Islands from the 22nd to 28th of May using the callsign OG0C. QSL via OH5CW.

Zorro, JH1AJT will visit Eritrea from the 25th of May to the 3rd of June. The main purpose of his trip is to support the Eritrea National Olympic Committee. He will be joined by Franz, DJ9ZB, David, WD5COV, Johannes, PA5X, Dima, RAUSU, Sergey, RZ9UN and Champ, E21EIC, who will be active as E31A on the 160 to 6m bands using CW, SSB and FT8 Fox & Hound mode. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, or via JH1AJT.

Laci, HA0HW will be active as SW8WW from Thassos Island, EU-174, from the 23rd of May to the 5th of June. He will operate mainly CW, with some SSB and RTTY/PSK, on the 40 to 6m bands. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, or via HA0HW direct or bureau.

Now the special event news

W7K celebrates the redefinition of the SI unit kelvin, which will take place on the 20th of May. This station will be operated from one of the most accurate temperature standards laboratories in the world, at American Fork, Utah. Times of operation will be 0000UTC to 2359UTC. The station will operate on both HF and VHF. For HF, operation will be on the 20, 40 and 80m bands. The VHF operation will be accessible via Echolink for those out of the area at specific times. For more information, go to tinyurl.com/w7kelvin

Two special event radio stations will be on the air from Shetland. GB0DAW, for Dementia Action Week, will be on the air between the 20th and the 26th of May; GB2DAW for Dementia Awareness Week between the 3rd and 9th of June. All information will be on QRZ.com.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that stations using UK special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

The 144MHz May Contest ends its 24 hour run at 1400UTC today, the 19th. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number, locator and postcode.

Today, the 19th, the 144MHz Backpackers contest runs from 1100 to 1500UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Also today, the 19th, the UK Microwave Group High Band contest runs from 0900 to 1700UTC. Using all modes on the 24 to 76GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

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

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

Next weekend the CQ Worldwide WPX CW contest runs for 48 hours from 0000UTC on the 25th to 2359UTC on the 26th. Using CW only on the 1.8 to 28MHz bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Sunday the 26th, the 3rd 70MHz Cumulative contest runs from 1400 to 1600UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Sunday the 26th, the UK Microwave Groups contest runs from 0600 to 1800UTC. Using all modes on the 5.7 to 10GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 17th of May.

Last week saw the Kp index rise to seven on Tuesday thanks to an enhanced solar wind stream containing a sharply south-pointing Bz. This is the direction of the Interplanetary Magnetic Field and south-pointing means it was more likely to couple with the Earth’s magnetic field. This was due to a number of filament eruptions in the vicinity of sunspot region 2741.

While not entirely unexpected, the Kp index rise to seven was quite severe and resulted in auroral conditions on HF. A number of B-class solar flares on Wednesday didn’t help much either. The FoF2 plot at Propquest.co.uk looked a bit like a roller coaster as the predicted MUF over a 3,000km path went rapidly from nearly 20MHz to 16MHz. Luckily, things were more settled on Thursday with a Kp index of two, although HF conditions remained flat.

Sunspot group 2741 is now rotating off the Sun’s disk, with NOAA predicting the solar flux index will go back down to around 68 next week, due to an absence of spots. As a result the K index is predicted to be around 2 to 3 as the risk of coronal mass ejections declines.

Phil, GU0SUP, the RSGB newsreader for Guernsey, reports that FT8 has been quite active. On the morning of Friday the 10th he heard lots of Ws on 30 metres, including a W7 in Idaho. Moving to 20m he then then saw K2GT calling CQ and found out he was in Hawaii. Phil says he was very surprised at just how loud he was. He adds that he usually expect to work KH6 later in the day, although he has worked Hawaii in the mornings before, but when the SFI was much higher.

And now the VHF and up propagation news

The weak high pressure nearby may reassert itself as a shallow area of low pressure over France drifts away. This does not look anything like as strong as the exceptional high of 1042mb of last week. Therefore some weak Tropo is always possible, especially along the east coast.

Sporadic-E has been doing fairly well with a comprehensive selection of jet streams to offer potential triggers for Sporadic-E at first, but the coming week looks much thinner with the main jet stream activity displaced south over the Mediterranean. This may put Sporadic-E patches too far south, although it should be productive across the Mediterranean region. Best prospects from the UK look to be south into Spain and Portugal.

As we head down to minimum Moon declination on Wednesday and are just a weak away from apogee, Moon windows are short and losses high. It’s a good time put aside QSO attempts and to check out EME system performance using Sun to cold sky measurements as the sun is nice and high in the sky at noon now.

There is no significant meteor shower activity this week so in between the Sporadic-E, keep looking for the early morning random meteor peak on the lower VHF bands.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for May 11th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 12th May 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Midland series ARDF event in Leicestershire

  • Monk Apollo, SV2ASP, Silent Key

  • BBC explains amateur radio emergency comms

 

The first of the Midland series ARDF events takes place on Saturday the 18th of May at Burbage Common, between Hinckley and Earl Shilton in Leicestershire, map reference SP446953. Anyone interested should meet at the visitor centre off the B4668, that’s the old A47, at 10am. Suitable radio receivers will be available on loan. There will be tuition if you would like this and also mentors to help you get started. The 80m band is being used and there will be five transmitters to be located. You will find it helpful to bring a compass with a rectangular base plate, a fine tipped spirit pen and a lightweight A4 board to which you can tape the map that will be provided. Dress appropriately for a walk in the woods. There is a fee of £2 to cover the costs of the maps and incidentals.

Sad news now. Mount Athos’ best-known radio amateur, Monk Apollo, SV2ASP, became Silent Key on the 5th of May after complications resulting from cancer. He was 64. Monk Apollo was essentially the lone DX voice from Mount Athos, the 20th most-wanted DXCC entity, where he operated from his Orthodox Monastery.

An interesting item about amateur radio was broadcast on the BBC World Service this week. It dealt with the importance of amateur radio emergency communications during the recent cyclone in India. You can listen to the broadcast, Digital Planet – Ham Radio Aids Cyclone Relief Effort, at www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w3csy664

New videos have been added to the RSGB YouTube channel for anyone to view. Dan McGraw, M0WUT presents ‘Designing an HR WSPR Transceiver’ and Noel Matthews, G8GTZ talks about ‘The Farnham WebSDR – DC to microwaves on your smartphone’. Go to www.rsgb.org/videos for these and many more interesting talks.

A BBC Earth PodCast featuring Eleanor Griffin, M6NWZ talking about her experience with an ISS link from Kings High School, Warwick was broadcast this week. Go to www.bbcearth.com/podcast, scroll to the bottom and listen to the one called ‘Looking Up’.

There are several interesting publications available on the IARU Region 1 website at www.iaru-r1.org. You can read the latest edition of the IARU Region 1 Monitoring System newsletter that contains detailed reports from the various national coordinators showing the various stations that have been monitored on the amateur bands and any action that has been taken. The IARU Region 1 VHF newsletter contains reports on the recent IARU meetings in Vienna preparing for the next ITU conference and has details of a 50MHz test that will take place on the 13th of June.

Recently added to the Syllabus 2019 updates on the RSGB website is a presentation on Digital Signal Processing Without The Maths. This is aimed at tutors preparing training material. On the page you will also find the Exam Specifications, details of the Tutors’ meeting in March, and model tutorial slides on SDR and Digital elements.

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

There are no rallies in the diary for this weekend, the 11th and 12th of May.

Dayton Hamvention® takes place on the 17th to the 19th of May at the Greene County Fairgrounds and Expo Center, Dayton, Ohio, USA. The RSGB will be represented with a Book Stall and Membership stand.

On Sunday the 19th of May, the Dunstable Downs National Amateur Radio Car Boot Sale will be held at Stockwood Park, Luton LU1 4BQ. More details can be found on the website www.ddrcbootsale.org.

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.

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

To celebrate World Telecommunication and Information Society Day on 17th May a special station, 8J1ITU, will be on the air throughout May from the Japanese island of Honshu. QSL via the Bureau.

Tom, DL7BO will be active again as XV9BO from Mui Ne, Vietnam on 13-19 May. He will operate sporadically on the HF bands SSB, CW, RTTY and FT8. QSL via LoTW or DL7BO.

Lance, W7GJ will be active as CP1GJ from Copacabana, WWL FH53kt, Bolivia on 7-16 May. This will be a 6m EME DXpedition. Lance urges people to gain experience with JT65A and especially review the QSO procedure. When not aimed up at the moon he may be on SSB, or FT8 on 50.313MHz. QSL direct only to home call. See www.bigskyspaces.com/w7gj/ for planned operating schedules and other information.

Members of Tynemouth ARC, G0NWM, are travelling to the Isle of Mull, IOTA reference EU-008, from Friday the 17th of May until Friday the 24th, where they will be operating using the callsign GS0NWM. Subject to conditions the group will be operating up to four stations across the HF bands on SSB, CW, RTTY, FT8 using Fox and Hound mode and they hope to have a go at VHF/UHF satellite operation. QSL is via m0urx.com.

Thomas, F4HPX will be active again as FR/F4HPX from Reunion Island, AF-016, between mid-May and early June. He will operate SSB, FT8 and maybe some CW on 40 to 15 metres from different locations around the island. QSL via LoTW, Club Log’s OQRS, or via home call, direct or bureau.

Jacques, F6HMJ will be active as SV8/F6HMJ from Ios Island, EU-067, on 14-28 May. He will operate SSB and CW on 80 to 10 metres.

Now the special event news

This weekend you can expect to hear special event stations taking part in SOS Radio Week, Pubs and Clubs on the Air and Mills on the Air. Several of these stations are mentioned in local news this week.

Cwmbran ARC will be operating from Llanyravon Mill, Llanyravon Way, Cwmbran over the weekend for Mills on the Air. Visitors are welcome.

Windmill Amateur Radio DX Group will be operating GB1WW from Wilton Windmill, Wilton, near Marlborough.

Members of West Kent ARS are operating from the Nutley Windmill on Ashdown Forest today, the 12th, using GB2NW. Operation will be on HF and 144MHz SSB and FM.

This year’s Eurovision Song Contest is being held in Tel Aviv, Israel and to mark the occasion five special event callsigns will be on the air until the 18th of May. Look for 4Z64EURO, 4X64S, 4X64O, 4X64N and 4X64G.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. UK special event stations must be open to the public, and our free publicity can help.

Now the contest news

The UK Six Metre Group Summer Marathon runs until the 4th of August. Using all modes on the 50MHz band, the exchange is just your four-character locator.

Today, the 12th of May, the 70MHz CW Contest runs from 0900 to 1200UTC. The exchange is signal report, serial number, locator and postcode.

Also today, the 12th, the Worked All Britain 40m phone contest runs from 1000 to 1400UTC. Using SSB only, the exchange is signal report, serial number and WAB area.

On Monday the 80m Club Championships takes place from 1900 to 2030UTC. 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 70MHz UK Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 2130UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next weekend the 144MHz May Contest runs from 1400UTC on the 18th to 1400UTC on the 19th. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number, locator and postcode.

On Sunday the 19th, the 144MHz Backpackers contest runs from 1100 to 1500UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Also next Sunday, the 19th, the UK Microwave Group High Band contest runs from 0900 to 1700UTC. Using all modes on the 24 to 76GHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4DDK on Friday the 10th of May.

Sunspot group 2740 has now returned and is emitting a lot of radio noise. Solarweather.com reports large bursts have been recorded on 20 and 25MHz. The bursts sound like waves breaking on the shore and are caused by beams of electrons accelerated by explosions in the sunspot’s magnetic canopy. As the electrons slice through the Sun’s atmosphere, they generate a ripple of plasma waves and radio emissions detectable on Earth.

The last week saw slightly better HF conditions. Andy, M0NKR reports working Nobby, FW5JG on 20 metres on Wallis and Futuna Islands. Jim, G3YLA also reported working James, K6AR just north of San Diego in California at 1400Z, also on 20 metres.

Sporadic-E has also been growing this week. Beacon signals were logged on 10 metres from Poland on Wednesday, and Spain and Italy on Thursday. The 10m beacons, from 28.160 to 28.325MHz are a good guide to propagation, especially as many of them run less than five watts.

Next week, NOAA predicts the solar flux index will be 76, thanks to the two sunspots groups now visible on the solar disk. A weak, slow-moving coronal mass ejection observed on Tuesday the 7th of May is predicted to deliver a glancing blow to our geomagnetic field this weekend. Otherwise, geomagnetic conditions will be settled with a maximum K index of two next week, although more coronal mass ejections from sunspot groups 2740 and 2741 are a strong possibility. This could lead to an elevated K index and poorer HF conditions in the short term.

Daytime critical frequencies remain in the 4-5MHz range, with the maximum usable frequency over 3,000km occasionally exceeding 18MHz. The night-time critical frequency is mostly now staying above 3.5MHz, which means 80m should remain open to NVIS signals around the UK throughout the night.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

It’s an unsettled end to the week with further showers for many areas, so there is still some scope for rain scatter on the microwave bands. Some of the showers could be heavy with a chance of hail and thunder, so watch out for rain static.

The big change will come after the weekend when the pressure builds quickly to produce a large area of high pressure over the country and improved weather all round. It also means a good chance of Tropo and maybe checking out those solar panels for your off-the-grid portable set up.

Sporadic-E has been showing its hand during the last week and there should a reasonable chance of jet streams in good locations for further Sporadic-E in the coming week.

Use the Propquest.co.uk website to see the daily updates. Starting this weekend, there will be a jet stream over the Pyrenees that translates east to the Alps. This means we could start off with paths to EA/CT and gradually move to Italy and IS0 in the central Mediterranean.

The Eta Aquariid meteor shower has now peaked, although there are still meteors associated with this shower up to about the 24th of May, so expect to hear some pings throughout this week. We now enter a bit of a lull in shower activity until the July Delta Aquariids.

Full Moon occurs next Sunday, the 19th of May. This is a low declination full Moon, meaning that the moon reaches full illumination at its lowest point in the sky of this lunar cycle. This period should be more favourable for stations without antenna elevation, although the low declination often means more terrestrial obstructions for the antenna view of the Moon. Path loss will increase through the week, as will libration – the Moon’s apparent “wobble” that lets us see up to 59% of its surface.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for May 5th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 5th May 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • New RSGB talks online

  • ARDF Champs in Thames Valley

  • NRC visitor figures rise

After the formal proceedings and the trophy presentations at the recent RSGB AGM, attendees were treated to an introductory talk on Qatar Oscar 100, the new geostationary satellite. Noel Matthews, G8GTZ, Dave Crump, G8GKQ and Phil Crump, M0DMY gave an introduction to the QO-100 amateur transponders on the Es’hail-2 commercial satellite, which was launched in February. It has already seen many stations making contacts across a third of the globe on the narrow band voice/data and wide band DATV transponders. The presentation included a brief history of how the project came about, an overview of equipment required to operate QO-100 and a demonstration of the webSDR and spectrum monitor. You can listen to the talk and view the presentation slides at tinyurl.com/GB2RS-0505A.

This Bank Holiday weekend sees the annual three day RSGB ARDF Championships taking place in the Thames Valley. The areas chosen are Christmas Common near Wendover, Whiteleaf near Princes Risborough and Hodgmoor Woods near Amersham. The competitions will comprise ‘classic’ ARDF events on 144MHz and 3.5MHz on two of the days, with the final day devoted to the two ‘short format’ variants. More information is available on the ARDF pages of the RSGB website.

9,092 visitors went to the RSGB National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park in April, bringing the total in the first four months to 27,077. That’s nearly three times more than the 9,355 in the same period last year. The radio room in the NRC will have reduced access on the morning of Tuesday the 7th of May. The NRC will remain open to visitors but access to the radio room will be restricted as filming will be taking place. We apologise for any inconvenience but this means that any visiting radio amateurs won’t be able to operate the station GB3RS until after midday.

RSGB Club Insurance and Beacon and Repeater Insurance has now been renewed for the year to April 2020. Club Insurance Certificates can be downloaded from the RSGB website; please use your Membership Services login to obtain a copy of your Certificate. To ensure that your beacon and repeater is covered under the RSGB Insurance a £10 admin fee is required and you may renew this via the RSGB shop. Please allow a couple of days after renewal for your certificate to be dispatched.

At the IARU Region 1 Interim meeting last week, a special Sunday morning session that focussed on enhanced VHF/Microwave activities was kicked off by John Regnault, G4SWX, the RSGB VHF Manager. Joining the meeting by Skype, John explained how the UK had gained access to the experimental 71 and 146MHz bands for digital innovation. Amongst other things this had fostered ground-breaking developments in reduced bandwidth digital ATV by BATC, which has transformed activity on VHF/UHF. More recently this innovative work has supported the IARU WRC-19 case for 50MHz; and has also proved to be a popular mode on the new QO-100 geostationary satellite. Details are at tinyurl.com/GB2RS-0505B.

SOS Radio Week has started and will continue until the end of May. This annual event raises awareness of the amazing work that the brave volunteers of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution perform and to honour the volunteer watchkeepers of the National Coastwatch Institution, who provide eyes around the coast of the UK to observe and report potential disasters unfolding that technology cannot detect. For further information, visit www.sosradioweek.org.uk.

The UK DX Foundation will be holding its convention, dinner and 2019 AGM at the Link Hotel, Loughborough, on Saturday the 11th of May. The programme includes the AGM in the morning, afternoon DX and technical talks, and an evening dinner – with plenty of time for socialising in between. Members, XYLs and non members are welcome. Booking details can be found on the CDXC website www.cdxc.org.uk.

New videos have been added to both the RSGB Members section of the website and the RSGB YouTube channel for anyone to view. Members can view Troposcatter on the VHF Bands by Palle Hansen, OZ1RH; and Cezar Trifu, VE3LYC talking about the IOTA DXpedition to H44R & H40D. Available on the RSGB YouTube channel is why the digital mode PI4 is a success for beacons by Bo Hansen, OZ2M; and Ian White, GM3SEK’s talk on VHF baluns – fact and fancy. Go to www.rsgb.org/videos to find these and many more interesting talks.

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

Today, the 6th of May, sees the 35th Dartmoor Radio Club Rally at The Butchers Hall, Pannier Market, Tavistock. Entrance to the rally will be from the square and doors open at 10am. Admission is £2. There will be traders, a Bring & Buy and an RSGB bookstall. Refreshments will be available. Contact Roger, 2E0RPH on 07854 088 882, or email 2e0rph@gmail.com

There are no rallies in the diary for next weekend, the 11th and 12th of May.

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 print cycle means we need to know four months in advance to get your information into RadCom.

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

Brian, GW4DVB will be operating a small holiday DXpedition from the 6th to the 15th of May to Palm Island, also know as Prune Island, IOTA reference NA-025, in St Vincent and the Grenadines. He will use the callsign J88PI from the locator FK92HO. QSL, direct only, to PO Box 20:20, Llanharan, Pontyclun, Wales CF72 9ZA.

Andrey, R9YU will be active as JT9/R9YU from Mongolia until the 12th of May. He will operate SSB on the 40, 20 and 15m bands. QSL direct to his home call; note he does not use Logbook of The World or Club Log.

Mike, AC0PR will be on the air as OA3/AC0PR from Peru between the 5th and 11th of May. Activity will be limited to his spare time, most likely in one-hour sessions on the 40 to 10m bands using QRP CW. QSL via home call, and Logbook of The World.

Bernd, DL9LBR will be active as OZ/DL9LBR from Fano Island, EU-125, until the 11th of May. All QSOs will be confirmed automatically via the bureau.

Roland, DL1EAL will be active as PA/DL1EAL from Texel Island, EU-038, until the 9th of May. He prefers CW and all digital modes, and will be operating holiday style on the 40, 20, 15 and 10m bands. QSL via his home call either direct or via the bureau, eQSL and Logbook of The World.

Now the special event news

From the 4th to the 31st of May, GB9SOS will be operating as part of SOS Radio Week. The station will be operating on as many different HF and VHF bands as possible during the 28 days the station will be active. The station will be operating from 1900 to 2100UTC on weekdays and 0900 to 1600UTC at weekends. Further details can be found at www.docsvruk.com/g8xqb

Pubs and Clubs on the Air is taking place between the 10th and the 12th of May. More details can be found at www.g6tw.org.uk.

Cwmbran ARC will be operating from Llanyravon Mill, Llanyravon Way, Cwmbran on the 11th and 12th of May for Mills on the Air. Visitors are welcome.

Windmill Amateur Radio DX Group will take part in Mills on the Air on the 11th and 12th of May from Wilton Windmill, Wilton near Marlborough Wiltshire, using the callsign GB1WW.

Many other club stations will be taking part in Mills on the Air; the details we’ve been given are in the relevant parts of Local News.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that stations using UK special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

The UK Six Metre Group Summer Marathon runs until the 4th of August. Using all modes on the 50MHz band, the exchange is just your four-character locator.

The 432MHz to 248GHz Trophy contest ends its 24 hour run at 1400UTC today, the 5th. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The ARI International DX contest ends its 24 hour run today, the 5th, at 1200UTC. Using CW, phone and RTTY on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number with Italian stations also sending the Province code.

Today, the 5th of May, sees the UK Microwave Groups contest runs from 0800 to 1400UTC. Using all modes on the 1.3 to 3.4GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Also on today, the 5th of May, the IRTS 40m Counties contest runs from 1200 to 1400UTC. Using SSB and CW the exchange is signal report and serial number. Irish stations also send their County.

On Tuesday the 144MHz Machine Generated Modes Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1855UTC with the exchange of signal report, serial number and four-character locator. It takes place at the same time as the 144MHz FM Activity Contest. Both are immediately followed by the all-mode 144MHz UK Activity Contest, running from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for the FMAC and UKAC 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, serial number and four-character locator. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 50MHz UK Activity Contest, running from 1900 to 2130UTC. The exchange for this contest is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Sunday the 12th of May, the 70MHz CW Contest runs from 0900 to 1200UTC. The exchange is signal report, serial number, locator and postcode.

Also on Sunday the 12th, the Worked All Britain 40m phone contest runs from 1000 to 1400UTC. Using SSB only, the exchange is signal report, serial number and WAB area.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 3rd of May.

Well, it is now May and that means the Sporadic-E season has started. There have already been some Sporadic-E openings on 10m, but the best is yet to come. Meanwhile, a lack of sunspots and continuing coronal hole activity means F2-layer DX is a little harder to come by.

Last week’s International Marconi Day saw some reports of poor conditions, but with a few propagation nuggets to keep the spirits up. GB0CMS at Caister Lifeboat in Norfolk worked 36 countries, including eight US States and a contact with Indonesia on 20m, so there is propagation about if you look for it.

NOAA predicts the solar flux index will remain around 68-72 next week and we can expect unsettled geomagnetic conditions this weekend with a maximum K index of four. Once that has passed, the rest of the week should be more settled. This is due to a large elongated coronal hole on the solar surface, the same one that was responsible for poor geomagnetic conditions on Thursday the 2nd of May. By next weekend we may see the return of sunspot groups 2738 and 2739 as they rotate into view again. The STEREO Ahead spacecraft shows they have been active, emitting solar flares and coronal mass ejections, so we might be in for a bumpy ride.

Otherwise, the HF bands are starting to stay open longer in the evening as we move towards summer, but a change in the ionospheric chemistry may mean we may have to wait until the autumn to see the return of optimum DX conditions.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The weather charts for next week appear to be fully tilted towards the unsettled side, with low pressure either over the country, or close-by. At first this weekend there is a weak ridge of high pressure near western parts of Britain, but it will soon decline and does not look good for Tropo.

The Sporadic-E season has started for traditional modes now with paths opening into Spain on 24th and Eastern Europe on the 26th on CW and SSB.

To keep up to date, use www.propquest.co.uk to see the daily weather jet stream charts with a Sporadic-E blog detailing possible areas of interest. The main advice is to follow the jet streams and check the clusters. There is a reasonable link between meteor debris and potential Sporadic-E, so the Eta Aquarids peaking tomorrow should keep the enthusiasm going.

Look out for rain scatter on the GHz bands due to the heavy showers that are likely to be a feature of the coming week. The bigger storms with hail and thunder are the most promising, and you’ll be able to track them down using one of the many online weather displays.

The Moon reaches maximum declination this coming Thursday, and path losses are falling as it moves in to perigee a week on Monday, so it’s a good week for EME.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for April 28th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 28th April 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • RSGB at IARU Region-1 Interim Meeting

  • RSGB ARDF Championships next weekend

  • Could you volunteer to support amateur radio?

The IARU Region-1 Interim Meeting is being held this weekend, the 27th and 28th of April, in Vienna. It is a key opportunity for National Societies to consider changes and opportunities across at HF, VHF/Microwave and EMC matters. The RSGB has been a major contributor of inputs to the overall total of 70 papers and will have representatives in all three topics. The inputs can be found on the meeting website at https://vienna.iaru-r1.org/

The first Bank Holiday weekend sees the annual three day RSGB ARDF Championships taking place in the Thames Valley. The areas chosen are Christmas Common near Wendover, Whiteleaf near Princes Risborough and Hodgmoor Woods near Amersham. At this time of the year the forests in this country are at their best. The weather is reasonably warm and the nettles, brambles and bracken are not yet fully developed. We are welcoming small groups from Romania and the Czech Republic this year, to add an international flavour to the weekend. The competitions will comprise ‘classic’ ARDF events on 144MHz and 3.5MHz on two of the days with the final day devoted to the two ‘short format’ variants. These both use the 3.5MHz band and are FoxOring where the location of each transmitter is marked by a circle on the map. The transmitter is extremely low power (typically 30 milliwatts), which is only audible when the competitor gets close to the circle. DF is then used to actually find it either inside or close by the circle. The second is a sprint race with a total of ten 3.5MHz transmitters operating on two frequencies (five transmitters on each frequency). The top competitors will be coming back in about 20 minutes having located all ten transmitters. Needless to say the transmitters are quite close to each other. More information is available on the ARDF pages of the RSGB website and late entries are possible.

There are a number of volunteer vacancies available within the RSGB. These range from District Regional Representatives who work with clubs and individuals within part of one of the 13 Regions to the role of Beyond Exams Champion. Beyond Exams is a suite of initiatives designed to promote engagement, learning and enjoyment in amateur radio for all and someone is needed to look after the schemes under this banner. If you think you would like to volunteer within the hobby of amateur radio, go to www.rsgb.org/volunteers

Joe Taylor, K1JT has announced a new digital mode, FT4, which is 2.5 times faster than FT8 and is an experimental digital mode designed specifically for radio contesting. FT4 can work with signals 10dB weaker than needed for RTTY, while using much less bandwidth. The message formats are the same as those in FT8 and encoded with the same low-density parity check code. Transmissions last for 4.48 seconds, compared to 12.64 for FT8. Full information on FT4 is at https://tinyurl.com/y5yl66nj

SOS Radio Week will take place between 0000UTC on the 1st May and 2359UTC on the 31st of May. This annual event has been extended for 2019 to raise awareness of the amazing work that the brave volunteers of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution perform and to honour the volunteer watchkeepers of the National Coastwatch Institution who provide eyes around the coast of the UK to observe and report potential disasters unfolding that technology cannot. Individual amateur radio operators and clubs are invited to register as official SOS Radio Week stations and operate during the month to raise awareness of the invaluable work these two organisations perform. Stations can be run under individual, club, or special event callsigns, from home or other locations. There are few restrictions at to what can be done when, how, or where, other than to warn participants not to operate within the vicinity of a lifeboat or Coastwatch station without clearing it with them first. To register to take part, or for further information, please visit our website at sosradioweek.org.uk

The May edition of HackSpace magazine features amateur radio articles by Jo, MW6CYK. It is available as a free PDF. You can download it from https://tinyurl.com/y3k795t8

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

Today, the 28th of April, the Northern Amateur Radio Societies Association Exhibition will take place at the Norbreck Castle Exhibition Centre, Blackpool FY2 9AA. There will be a talk-in station and plenty of car parking. There will be trade stands, a Bring & Buy, special interest groups and an RSGB bookstall. Doors open at 10.30am, or 10.15 for disabled visitors. Catering is available on site. Contact Dave, M0OBW on 01270 761 608.

Today, the 28th of April, the Andover RAC Spring Car Boot Sale will be held in the Wildhern Village Hall, near Andover SP11 0JE. Opening at 10am, admission is £2. Catering is available all day. There is ample on site parking and indoor shelter should it rain. Contact Paul, G4KZY on 07775 738 200.

Next Saturday, the 5th of May, the Thorpe Camp Hamfest will be taking place at Thorpe Camp Visitor Centre. Tattershall Thorpe LN4 4PL. Doors to the public from 9am and entry is £4 per person, children under 12 free entry. More information in the events page of thorpecamp.org or Sylvia or Ant on 0795 665 4481.

Sunday 6th of May sees the 35th Dartmoor Radio Club Rally at The Butchers Hall, Pannier Market, Tavistock Entrance to the rally will be from the square and doors open at 10am. Admission is £2. There will be traders, a Bring & Buy and an RSGB bookstall. Refreshments will be available. Contact Roger, 2E0RPH on 07854 088 882, or by email to 2e0rph@gmail.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 – the print cycle means we need to know four months in advance to get your information into RadCom.

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

Jean-Marc, F5SGI will be active as TM6ILE from Groix Island, EU-048, until the 4th of May. He will operate CW only. All QSOs will be confirmed automatically via the bureau.

Hiro, JF1OSL, Toru, JH0CJH and Shin, JR1NHD will operate as MD0HWX, MD0ITP and MD0IUX respectively holiday style from the Isle of Man, EU-116, until the 1st of May. They will operate SSB, CW and digital modes on the 40 to 10m bands. Plans are to upload the logs to Logbook of The World and Club Log.

A team of eight Belgian operators will be active as GJ6EFW from Jersey, EU-013, until the 5th of May. They will operate mainly SSB with some CW and FT8 on the HF bands and 6 metres. QSL via ON6EF, direct or bureau, and eQSL; they will not use Logbook of The World.

Pasi, OH3WS will be active as OJ0W from Market Reef, EU-053, until the 4th of May. Activity will be limited to his spare time. QSL via home call, direct or bureau.

Jun, JL8AQH will be on the air as XV9XX from Hue in Vietnam until the 4th of May. He hopes to be on 40, 30, 20 and 17m and QSL requests go via Club Log OQRS.

Now the special event news

From the 4th to the 31st of May, GB9SOS will be operating as part of SOS Radio Week. The station will be operating on as many different HF and VHF bands as possible during the 28 days the station will be active. The station will be operating from 1900 to 2100UTC on weekdays and 0900 to 1600UTC at weekends. Further details can be found at www.docsvruk.com/g8xqb

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that stations using UK special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

The SP DX RTTY contest ends its 24 hour run at 1200UTC today, the 28th. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number, with SP stations also sending their Province code.

Today, the 28th, the BARTG Sprint 75 contest runs from 1700 to 2100UTC. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is the serial number.

There are no contests in the diary for MONDAY TO Friday this week. But it’s a busy weekend over the 4th and 5th of May,

On Saturday the 4th, the 432MHz Trophy contest runs from 1400 to 2200UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The 10GHz Trophy contest runs at the same time, also using all modes and with the same contest exchange.

The 432MHz to 248GHz Trophy contest runs for 24 hours from 1400UTC on the 4th to 1400UTC on the 5th. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The UK Six Metre Group Summer Marathon starts on the 4th of May and runs until the 4th of August. Using all modes on the 50MHz band, the exchange is just your four-character locator.

Starting at 1200UTC on the 4th and running for 24 hours the ARI International DX contest uses CW, phone and RTTY on the 3.5 to 28MHz bands. The exchange is signal report and serial number with Italian stations also sending the Province code.

Sunday the 5th of May sees the UK Microwave Groups contest runs from 0800 to 1400UTC. Using all modes on the 1.3 to 3.4GHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Also on Sunday the 5th of May, the IRTS 40m Counties contest runs from 1200 to 1400UTC. Using SSB and CW the exchange is signal report and serial number. Irish stations also send their County.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4DDK on Friday the 26th of April.

Last week saw the start of the Sporadic-E season. There were reports of openings on 10m, and Andy, M0NKR even reported working The Gambia on 28MHz. This may have been a lucky F2-layer opening, but a contact is a contact!

Es signals from Czech Republic, Ukraine, Poland, Italy, Spain, and the French beacon F5ZEH beacon on 28.231MHz, were heard on Thursday the 25th at 1300UTC.

Don’t forget that Sporadic-E can affect all the bands from 20m to 10m. The best guide may be the 10m beacons across Europe, which can act as good propagation indicators.

We’ll look at Es a little more in the VHF section.

The solar flux level dropped below 70 last week as a result of sunspot number 2738 rotating off the visible disk. Sunspot 2739 never really amounted to much and since then the solar disk has been bare. One bit of news is that the cosmic ray flux has been increasing. This is to be expected as we head towards solar minimum.

Solar activity will remain very low, unless a sunspot crops up unannounced. A small coronal hole may cause some disruption on Friday or Saturday this weekend, just in time for International Marconi Day.

HF conditions remain challenging with even 20m not fully opening until later in the morning.

NOAA predicts the solar flux index will remain at about 60-70 this next week thanks to a spotless Sun. Geomagnetic conditions will be unsettled on the Saturday 27th as we said, and again on the 30th, 1st and 2nd, when the Kp index may rise to four.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

We have a low-pressure feel for many areas at first, so this spell of showery weather continues to provide a chance of rain scatter on the Gigahertz bands. The high pressure is only temporarily displaced, so as it rebuilds, to the north of Scotland in one model and to the south of Britain in another, there is clearly scope for changes to the forecast as the week progresses. Either way it does suggest that we may be able to talk of some Tropo returning in the second half of the week.

The Sporadic-E season is upon us (and has been for some time using digital modes) and on Wednesday evening the 6m band gave a brief opening from the UK to Spain and the Balearics for SSB and CW. This seemed to tie in with a strong jet stream over the Pyrenees. From the 1st May the daily Es blogs will restart on Propquest.co.uk to give some ideas as to where to find these useful jet streams.

The forecast jet stream charts at the moment suggest that this region may migrate eastwards to affect the Alps before weakening and therefore paths towards Italy and the Balkans may be activated in the first part of the week.

After the excitement of the Lyrids meteor shower, this coming week will be a little slower. The Eta Aquarids shower will peak on the 5th of May, but there are meteors associated with the shower from around the 19th of April, so expect to see bursts and pings all this week.

The Moon will continue to wane this week with the new Moon appearing on the 5th of May. Libration will be at a minimum, but path loss will be quite high with the Moon coming off apogee (furthest distance from Earth) at the start of the week. The Moon will rise in the very early morning at the beginning of the week and with the low declination, it will set quite early. As the week progresses the Moon will set later in the day, making the later part of the week probably best for casual EME activity.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for April 21st 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 21st April 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • RSGB AGM on Saturday

  • Ham space pioneer Owen Garriott, W5LFL, SK

  • International Marconi Day next weekend

 

The 92nd RSGB AGM will be held at Jurys Inn, 24 Broad Street, Birmingham B1 2HQ on Saturday the 27th of April, commencing at 12 noon. Details for the 2019 AGM appeared in the April RadCom. Arrangements have been made for Members who are unable to attend the AGM to cast their votes by proxy. Details of this are at www.rsgb.org/AGM2019. Votes must be received at www.ersvotes.com/rsgb19 before 9am on Thursday the 25th of April. Lunch will be provided at the AGM for Members who notify their attendance in advance. Please register using the form on the website at www/rsgb.org/attendagm. After lunch there will be a Q & A session and a short presentation on the Es’hail-2 satellite by Dave, G8GKQ and Noel, G8GTZ.

Former US astronaut and long-duration spaceflight pioneer Owen Garriott, W5LFL, who operated the world’s first amateur radio station from space, died at the age of 88 on the 15th of April 2019. He spent a total of 70 days in space and 13 hours and 43 minutes in three separate spacewalks. According to his family, he passed away at his home in Huntsville, Alabama. You can read much more about Owen and his career, including his work to get amateur radio into space at www.ariss.org

The May RadCom includes a report that an authentic World War 2 Spy Set was recently donated to the RSGB National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park. We are delighted to announce that it is now on display in the reception area, providing a focal point to engage visitors’ interest from the moment they enter the building. RSGB Members can download a free entry pass to Bletchley Park from the RSGB website, www.rsgb.org

International Marconi Day 2019 will take place on the 27th of April. Last year 74 stations were registered, all operating from a site that Marconi operated from or had a personal connection with. To see the stations involved this year, go to www.gb4imd.co.uk

The Syllabus 2019 edition of the Foundation Licence Manual is now available from the RSGB in both in hard copy and Kindle version. It has been fully revised and contains all the information required for those looking to gain their Foundation licence. Full details are on the RSGB website, www.rsgb.org

For those who send large numbers of QSL cards directly to other bureaux there is a change of address for the Canadian Incoming QSL Bureau. From the 1st of May, cards should be sent to RAC National Incoming QSL Bureau Manager, Ed Spingola, VA3TPV, PO Box 83, Streetsville, Ontario L5M 1L5, Canada.

The IARU was represented in Turkey, where committee SE24 on Short Range Devices met to undertake further work concerning Wireless Power Transmission, or WPT. SE24 is considering both WPT for electric vehicles and also generic WPT applications. The IARU has made extensive input on the potential impact on radio communications from spurious emissions from WPT devices and was represented by Region 1 President, Don Beattie, G3BJ, who is leading the IARU work on WPT.

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

There are no rallies in the diary for the Easter weekend.

On the 28th of April the Northern Amateur Radio Societies Association Exhibition will take place at the Norbreck Castle Exhibition Centre, Blackpool FY2 9AA. There will be a talk-in station and plenty of car parking. There will be trade stands, a Bring & Buy, special interest groups and an RSGB bookstall. Doors open at 10.30am, or 10.15 for disabled visitors. Catering is available on site. Contact Dave, M0OBW on 01270 761 608.

On the 28th of April the Andover RAC Spring Car Boot Sale will be held in the Wildhern Village Hall, near Andover SP11 0JE. Opening at 10am, admission is £2. Catering is available all day. There is ample on site parking and indoor shelter should it rain. Contact Paul, G4KZY on 07775 738 200.

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 print cycle means we need to know four months in advance to get your information into RadCom.

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

Max, DK1MAX will operate as XT2MAX from Burkina Faso until the 25th of April. He will be on CW and FT8. Please note that he will not be issuing paper QSLs. Logs will be uploaded to Logbook of the World.

Anders, SM0HPL is on the air from Kampala, Uganda until the 27th of April. He is operating on CW and digital in his spare time using the callsign 5X7W. QSL via Club Log OQRS.

Bruce, AD7MM, Doug, W6HB and Marilyn, KI7DLK will be active holiday style as E51BAS, E51DLD and E51MAS respectively from Rarotonga in the South Cook Islands, IOTA reference OC-013, between the 21st and the 28th of April. QSL via the operator’s instructions.

Look for JL3YWN/6, JI3DST/6 and JS6RRR to be active from the Miyako Islands, AS-079, from the 24th of April to the 7th of May. Activity will be on the 80 to 6m bands using SSB, CW and digital modes. QSL via Club Log OQRS.

Tak, JR1LZK/6 and Mitsu, JE1HXZ/6 will be active from Iriomote Island, AS-024, from the 26th of April to the 6th of May. They will operate CW, SSB, RTTY and FT8 on the 80 to 6m bands. QSL via home calls, either direct or via the bureau and Logbook of The World.

Now the special event news

Special callsigns 4Z64EURO, 4X64S, 4X64O, 4X64N and 4X64G will be active from the 18th of April to the 18th of May for the 64th Eurovision Song Contest, which will take place in Tel Aviv, Israel between the 14th and 18th of May. QSL via Logbook of The World and eQSL. Certificates will be available for download, see 4Z64EURO on QRZ.com for the rules.

During the Easter Weekend, broadcasts from Radio Caroline are being sponsored by Martin Lynch, G4HKS in memory of former employee Graeme Platts, G4XOF who sadly passed away due to cancer last November. Listen on 648kHz or via their website www.RadioCaroline.co.uk

OE19M will be on the air for 72 hours between the 26th and 28th of April as an official International Marconi Day station. Contacts made on Saturday, the 27th of April, are valid for the IMD Award. QSL info is on QRZ.com

EI0MAR will be part of International Marconi Day on the 27th of April, operating from the Hurdy Gurdy Museum of Vintage Radio in Howth. The Marconi Company conducted wireless telegraphy tests at the Martello Tower in 1905. If you would like to come along that day as a visitor or operator you will be most welcome.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that stations using UK special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

This weekend the First Machine Generated Mode Contest ends its 24 hour run at 1400UTC today, the 21st. Using MGM on the 50 and 144MHz bands, the exchange is signal report and four-character locator.

On Monday the IRTS 70cm Counties Contest runs from 1200 to 1300UTC. It is immediately followed by the IRTS 2m Counties Contest from 1300 to 1500UTC. Both contests use FM and SSB. The exchange is signal report and serial number, with EI and GI stations also sending their county.

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

On Wednesday the UK EI Contest Club contest takes place on 80m between 1900 and 2000UTC. Using CW only, the exchange is your 4-character locator.

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

The SP DX RTTY contest runs from 1200UTC on the 27th to 1200UTC on the 28th. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number, with SP stations also sending their Province code.

On Sunday the 28th, the BARTG Sprint 75 contest runs from 1700 to 2100UTC. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is the serial number.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4DDK

As this version of GB2RS is being compiled early on Thursday, rather than the normal Friday, the propagation report has not yet been prepared. Once it is available, likely to be on Thursday afternoon or Friday morning, a new version of the script will be uploaded and the RSGB website will be suitably updated.

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for April 14th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 14th April 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Artistic SSTV from Iceland

  • ML&S sponsors Radio Caroline

  • GB2RS Manager Ken Hatton, G3VBA, SK

 

Until the 29th of April, as part of an art installation in Iceland by Lucy Helton, KD2MFV, SSTV images will be transmitted by TF3JA. The images, appropriated from the Reykjavik Museum of Photography’s collection, are of Icelandic glaciers photographed many years ago. Amateur radio operators who receive these transmissions are being asked to print out the images received and post them back to Lucy, using instructions on the website www.lucyhelton.com. In exchange, when she has assembled the printed pieces to reconstruct the whole image transmitted, QSLs of the completed images will be sent back to the participating amateurs. Each single transmission consists of 12 SSTV images and five different glacier images will be transmitted over 15 days. Look for USB signals on 14.230MHz at 1300, 1800 and 2300UTC.

Over the Easter Weekend of the 18th to 21st of April, Martin Lynch of ML&S is sponsoring broadcasts transmitted from Radio Caroline in memory of his old employee Graeme Platts, G4XOF, who passed away last November due to cancer. One of Graeme’s last ‘bucket list’ visits was to the ship itself arranged by Martin. The history of Radio Caroline is an interesting one being one of the most famous Pirate Radio Stations in the 1960s. There are several radio amateurs on the ship and the full history can be seen on their website. Listen on 648kHz AM or via their website, www.RadioCaroline.co.uk

Sad news next. Ken Hatton, G3VBA, the GB2RS Manager, became silent key at the end of last week. He was appointed as GB2RS Manager on the 1st of January 2014, taking over from Gordon Adams, G3LEQ. Ken will be sadly missed by all who knew him.

The National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park will be holding its first-ever ElectroJumble on Sunday the 21st of April. Over the years they have accumulated many pieces of electronic apparatus and components that are surplus to requirements. Items for sale will include test equipment, military items, domestic radios, telecommunication equipment and vintage components. Details can be found via www.tnmoc.org

The IARUMS Region 1 Newsletter for March 2019 is now available at www.iaru-r1.org. The Monitoring System report includes details of intruders on the amateur bands from Richard, G4DYA, the Intruder Watch Coordinator who runs the RSGB Monitoring System.

GB2DAY is on the air for its final day today, the 14th, to promote the opening of the Teleprinter Building at Bletchley Park, which houses a fantastic D-DAY exhibition entitled Interception / Intelligence / Invasion. The new exhibition is open as part of the general admission to Bletchley Park museum, located near Milton Keynes. RSGB members can gain free access to Bletchley Park and the National Radio Centre by downloading and printing a voucher from the RSGB website. See www.rsgb.org/bletchleyvoucher for instructions.

The RSGB has released a vintage silent black and white video of an Amateur Radio Direction Finding field day. The video, called D/F Field Day North of the Thames, May 18th 1947, was filmed at Chipping Barnet. It has been added to the many amateur radio videos that can be viewed on the Society’s YouTube channel, www.youtube.com/watch?v=D_LHb3wPAfE

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

We have been asked to clarify definitively that the Andover rally is on the 28th of April and NOT on the 18th, as has been reported incorrectly by some non-RSGB sources.

Today, the 14th, the West London Radio & Electronics Show will take place at Kempton Park Racecourse, Staines Road East, Sunbury on Thames TW16 5AQ. A talk-in station will be on air. Car parking is free and doors open at 10am, with disabled visitors gaining access 10 minutes earlier. There will be trade stands and a Bring & Buy as well as special interest groups and lectures. Catering is available on site. More details from Paul, M0CJX on 08451 650 351.

Also today, the 14th, the Hack Green Bunker Rally will be held at the Hack Green Secret Nuclear Bunker, French Lane, Hack Green, near Nantwich, Baddington, Cheshire CW5 8AL. It is a sale of electronic equipment, amateur gear, components, military radio items and vehicle spares. Doors open 10am, and there will be refreshments available onsite. Contact 01270 623 353 for more information.

The Ripon Radio Rally, on the 14th, will take place in Hugh Ripley Hall, Ripon, HG4 2PT. Doors open at 10am. Refreshments will be available on site. Information and a table booking form are at www.ripon.org.uk

There are no rallies in the diary for Easter weekend. The next ones are on the 28th at Blackpool and Andover.

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 about four months in advance for RadCom.

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

Mart, DL6UAA will be on the air as OH0UA from the Aland Islands, IOTA reference EU-002, until the 19th of April. He will operate on CW and digital and QSLs go via his home callsign.

Chris, VK3FY and Dindo, DU1UD will be active as 4E8T from Tawi Tawi Island, OC-174, from the 19th to the 23rd of April. They will operate CW, SSB and FT8 on the 40 to 20m bands. QSL via M0OXO’s OQRS.

Evert, PA2KW will be active as 5T2KW from Nouadhibou, Mauritania until the 19th of April. Operating as a guest at the QTH of 5T5PA, he will use CW and maybe some SSB. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, preferred, and Logbook of The World.

There will be some IOTA activity from Djibouti in the coming weeks. Christian, EA3NT with MM0NDX and MM0OKG and will travel to Sept Freres Island, IOTA AF-059. They hope to be on the island from the 16th to the 18th of April using the callsign J20DX. This will be followed by activity from Moucha Island, IOTA AF-053, on the 18th and 19th of April signing J20DX/P. Dates may vary due to local conditions.

Now the special event news

A special event station to commemorate the Battle of Culloden will be on the air on the 16th and 17th of April from the Highland Astronomical Society, Culloden Battlefield, Culloden Moor, Inverness IV2 5EU. Using the callsign GB0BOC, the station will be on the air from 9am to 8pm.

GB0GKA, operated by Tony, G3ZRJ, and GB0GKB, operated by Larry, G4HLN, will be representing Portishead Radio during this year’s Maritime Radio Day. The event will run from 1200UTC on the 14th of April until 2200UTC on the 15th.

Special callsigns 4Z64EURO, 4X64S, 4X64O, 4X64N and 4X64G will be active from the 18th of April to the 18th of May for the 64th Eurovision Song Contest, which will take place in Tel Aviv, Israel between the 14th and 18th of May. QSLs via Logbook of The World and eQSL. Certificates will be available for download, see 4Z64EURO on QRZ.com for the rules.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that UK special event callsign stations must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

Today, the 14th, the First 50MHz contest takes place from 0900 and 1200UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number locator and Postcode.

Also today, the 14th, the Worked All Britain Data Contest runs from 1000 to 2200UTC. Using the 3.5 to 14MHz contest bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and WAB 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, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next weekend the First Machine Generated Mode Contest runs from 1400UTC on the 20th to 1400UTC on the 21st. Using MGM on the 50 and 144MHz bands the exchange is signal report and four-character locator.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4DDK on Friday the 12th of April.

This has been a difficult time for HF. The solar wind has remained active and the Bz component exhibited several periods of prolonged southward deflection, meaning it more easily coupled with the Earth’s magnetic field. Solar wind speed ranged mostly from 425-475km per second and this was enough to keep the Kp index elevated, often to four. The net result was that conditions were pretty rotten, with even 14MHz struggling to open at times. However, the solar flux did increase to 78 thanks to the return of sunspot number 2738. This is large, but appears to be only producing very minor B-Class flares. An isolated C-Flare may also be possible.

Next week should be more settled, geomagnetically, with a maximum Kp index of two and solar flux of 74. If the solar wind drops we may expect fair HF conditions next week.

This current solar cycle had a peak average of 82 sunspots. The Solar Cycle 25 Prediction Panel experts have just said the next may have a slow start, but is anticipated to peak with solar maximum occurring between 2023 and 2026, and a sunspot range of 95 to 130. This is well below the average number of sunspots, which typically ranges from 140 to 220 sunspots per solar cycle.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

It seems that high pressure remains firmly in control to the north of Britain and over Scandinavia for much of the coming week. This would normally mean that Tropo should get a mention, certainly for eastern areas, but the air mass is fairly dry and therefore not ideal for producing the required change in refractive index needed for Tropo.

In the south and west there will be some spells of rain and a possibility of some rain scatter, but it will also be rather windy at times. There should be a trend later next week for a more moist and warmer flow to cross the North Sea and this could introduce extensive misty low cloud along the east coast. This is exactly what’s needed for better Tropo prospects in eastern areas.

We are rapidly approaching the Sporadic-E season and should start to see some paths on 10m and possibly 6m opening up within Europe. It is worth checking the clusters and beacons for band activity. Digital modes like FT8 will benefit first, but it is possible that SSB and CW will start to show in the second half of the month. The typical early paths are often out to the eastern Mediterranean and over the Pyrenees, usually just out of reach from the UK, but a good sign should they occur.

Although the Lyrids meteor shower does not peak until next week, the first indications of the shower will begin to be noticed around the 16th of April, probably with a gradual increase in the number of meteors encountered growing during the forthcoming week. Don’t expect great things this week, but do keep an eye on the ON4KST chat for reports of meteor bursts. Better still, keep listening on one of the more distant 6m, 4m or 2m beacons for the occasional ping.

As the moon declination decreases during the week, 144MHz moon background sky noise gradually increases. However, path degradation is low due to the moon’s closest approach, or perigee, on the 17th. Libration is also low on the 17th and this will help 1296MHz EME, as CW characters will be less ‘chopped’. The 17th would be good day to try EME.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for April 7th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 7th April 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • New Syllabus tutorial slides available

  • Work GB2DAY at Bletchley Park

  • New videos from the RSGB

 

The RSGB has released SDR and digital model tutorial slides to assist tutors prepare for the new 2019 syllabus, which is expected to be used for amateur radio exams from September. The slides were first presented to tutors at the SDR and Digital Syllabus Matters meeting held on the 17th of March. You can download the Model Tutorial Slides from tinyurl.com/GB2RS-0407A

GB2DAY is a special event station to celebrate and promote the opening of the Teleprinter Building at Bletchley Park, which houses a fantastic D-DAY exhibition entitled Interception / Intelligence / Invasion. The new exhibition is open from Wednesday the 11th April as part of the general admission to Bletchley Park museum, located near Milton Keynes. Operating from the RSGB’s National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park, GB2DAY will be on the air from Wednesday until Sunday, with activity in CW and SSB on the 80 and 40m bands. RSGB members can gain free access to Bletchley Park and the National Radio Centre by downloading & printing a voucher from the RSGB website.

Two new videos are now available on the RSGB YouTube channel. They are Improving your Morse Code Skills by Ray Burlingame-Goff, G4FON and FT8 performance secrets by Neil Smith, G4DBN. You can access these lectures via the RSGB website at www.rsgb.org/videos

Visitor numbers to the RSGB National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park continue to be high. On some days around 40% to 50% of Bletchley Park visitors visit the NRC. In March, the NRC volunteers welcomed 8,268 visitors, a significant increase on last year’s number, 2,156, and the second highest monthly number of visitors on record. With the increasing visitor numbers, Nigel Ambridge, G4FRL has joined the NRC volunteer team. If you are interested in becoming an NRC volunteer, contact martyn.baker@rsgb.org.uk

The GB3LEX 10GHz beacon was re-installed by G3TQF at the Leicestershire Repeater Group site at IO92IQ on the 30th of March at 1200UTC. Two reports from G3UKV in IO82RR and G0API in IO80XS have already been received, but further reports are always welcome via Leicestershirerepeatergroup.org.uk, beaconspot, etc. For further info see www.leicestershirerepeatergroup.org.uk.

The RSGB is looking for an enthusiastic volunteer to perform the role of Beyond Exams Champion. The post holder will play a key role in supporting the implementation of Strategy 2022, especially in the priorities of Growth, Participation and Diversity. Beyond Exams is a suite of initiatives designed to promote engagement, learning and enjoyment in amateur radio for all. As a member of the newly-formed Amateur Radio Development Committee, the Champion is needed to look after the schemes under this banner. To find out more and to apply, please email, Mark Jones, G0MGX via g0mgx@rsgb.org.uk. The closing date is Friday the 3rd of May. There is more information on the website at www.rsgb.org/volunteers

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

Today, the 7th, the Cambridge Repeater Group Rally takes place at Foxton Village Hall, Hardman Road, Cambridge CB22 6RN. There will be a talk-in station and car parking is free. Doors open 9.30am and entry is £2. There will be traders, a Bring & Buy and an RSGB bookstall. A burger van has been booked for on-site catering. Contact Lawrence, M0LCM on 07941 972 724 or see www.cambridgerepeaters.net

Also today, the thirty-fifth Yeovil ARC QRP Convention takes place at Digby Hall, Sherborne, Dorset DT9 3AA. Doors open at 9.30am and admission is £3. No dogs can be admitted except Guide Dogs. The event is supported by the RSGB, RAFARS and BYLARA. There will be club stands as well as new and second-hand stalls. Two talks are scheduled: A Remarkable Very Young Lady Radio Amateur and An Introduction to Mag Loops. Refreshments will be available on site. Contact Bob Harris, G8UED via wjh069@gmail.com or see http://Yeovil-arc.com.

Next Sunday, the 14th, the West London Radio & Electronics Show will take place at Kempton Park Racecourse, Staines Road East, Sunbury on Thames TW16 5AQ. A talk-in station will be on air. Car parking is free and doors open at 10am, with disabled visitors gaining access 10 minutes earlier. There will be trade stands and a Bring & Buy as well as special interest groups and lectures. Catering is available on site. More details from Paul, M0CJX on 08451 650 351.

Also on the 14th, the Hack Green Bunker Rally will be held at the Hack Green Secret Nuclear Bunker, French Lane, Hack Green, near Nantwich, Baddington, Cheshire CW5 8AL. It is a sale of electronic equipment, amateur gear, components, military radio items and vehicle spares. Doors open 10am, and there will be refreshments available onsite. Contact 01270 623 353 for more information.

Finally for next Sunday, the Ripon Radio Rally will take place in Hugh Ripley Hall, Ripon, HG4 2PT. Doors open at 10am. Refreshments will be available on site. Information and a table booking form are on the website www.ripon.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 about four months in advance for RadCom.

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

John, W5JON will be on the Caribbean island of St Kitts, IOTA reference NA-104, throughout April. He will activate his V47JA callsign on all bands from 160 to 6m on SSB and FT8. QSL directly to his home call.

A group of Dutch operators will sign HB0/homecall from Liechtenstein until the 13th of April. The QSL manager is PE1FLO.

Livio, IZ3BUR is now about halfway through his month-long visit to Guinea-Bissau. He is very active using his J52EC callsign. QSL via his home call.

Jerry, F4HJO will be active as F4HJO/P from Belle Ile en Mer, EU-048, from the 13th to the 21st of April. He will operate SSB, RTTY and FT8 on 80 to 15m. QSL via Club Log OQRS, or via the bureau to home call.

Harald, DF2WO will be active as XT2AW from Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso between the 7th and the 26th of April. QSL via M0OXO's OQRS and Logbook of The World.

Now the special event news

The Windmill Amateur Radio DX Group will put GB1RY on the air today, the 7th of April. Operating from RAF Ramsbury near Marlborough in Wiltshire, they are taking part in Airfields on the Air over the weekend. Details are at www.rafars.org/rafaota/

Special event station OL75CLAY will be active from the 12th of April to the 31st of July to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the dropping of the Clay paratroops in the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia. The main mode will be CW, but they also want to be active on SSB, FM and possibly digimodes. Every first QSO will be answered by a special QSL card sent via the Bureau. Please do not send your cards. They will also answer every SWL report sent via bureau to OK2PXJ or via email. Send a SASE for direct requests.

2019 will see the 50th anniversary of landing men on the Moon. One of the places that the astronauts trained was the mile-wide Meteor Crater in Arizona. During 2019, Northern Arizona DX Association will set up and operate K7M until the 13th of April from the Meteor Crater National Natural Landmark. Other activations will follow throughout the year.

The Yukon Canam Contest Club has secured Canadian special prefixes for use by all Canadian licensees until the 28th of May. VEs can use CK, VAs can use CJ, VYs can use CZ and VOs can use CY. The special prefixes are celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Official Languages Act of Canada. The club itself has secured the special call CZ1Z. Please QSL via Logbook of The World.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that UK special event callsign stations must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

The 24-hour SP DX contest ends its 24 hour run at 1500UTC today, the 7th. Using CW or SSB on 1.8 to 28MHz, the exchange is signal report and serial number. SP stations also send their Province code.

Today, the 7th, the First 70MHz contest runs from 0900 to 1200UTC. Using all modes on the 4m band, signal report, serial number and locator form the exchange.

Also today, the RSGB RoLo HF Championship event takes place. Running from 1930 to 2030UTC, this SSB contest uses the 80m band only. The exchange is signal report plus the locator you received.

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

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

Next Sunday, the 14th the First 50MHz contest takes place from 0900 and 1200UTC. Using all modes, the exchanges is signal report, serial number locator and Postcode.

Also next Sunday, the 14th, the Worked All Britain Data Contest runs from 1000 to 2200UTC. Using the 3.5 to 14MHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and WAB number.

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

Last week saw more of the same as we head towards solar minimum, which is now expected to be some time in 2020. There was a slight increase in the solar flux index later in the week as a new embryonic sunspot appeared on the visible disk. A group of three solar coronal holes threatened to cause disturbed conditions this weekend and again on the 12th of April, with NOAA predicting the Kp index could rise to four. Otherwise the geomagnetic conditions will remain settled and the solar flux index is forecast to remain at about 69-70.

This is a good time of year for North-South paths, such as the UK to South Africa and UK to South America. Maximum usable frequencies are expected to be about 14 to 18MHz. But don’t ignore 30 and 40 metres, which could still throw up some surprises, especially around sunset. There is a slight chance of openings to Australia and New Zealand on these lower bands and the HF propagation prediction tool at www.predtest.uk will help show you the best times to attempt a contact. Contacts into North Africa are also a possibility on 20-40m, especially in the early evening.

Do make the most of HF at this time as conditions are likely to get worse as we head into summer, apart from the Sporadic-E season, but more of that later.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

It’s looking like a finely balanced weather pattern with high pressure to the north of the British Isles and low pressure near to southern areas. The influence is more from low pressure at first, so there is a continuing chance of heavy April showers bringing some rain scatter to the GHz bands, just as we had last week.

As the northern high becomes stronger, it will introduce an easterly or northeasterly weather pattern, so the North Sea coast will feel very chilly. The strong winds at times will mean that Tropo doesn’t get much of a look-in in the south, although there is a possibility in the north. So, the main theme of the VHF/UHF bands will be a possible occasional bit of weak Tropo in the north, plus some rain scatter in the south. Use the online radars to see where the echo points might be.

We are approaching mid April now, so it’s time to start monitoring the 6 and 10m bands for some Sporadic-E. Last week already saw cluster reports of FT8 QSOs so it will be interesting to note how this new mode is extending the Sporadic-E season.

Moon declination is positive and rising and path losses are falling this week, so it’s a good one for EME. There are no significant meteor showers, but we are only a couple of weeks away from the Lyrids on the 23rd.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for March 31st 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 31st March 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Join the Cricket World Cup Marathon

  • Fierce storm delays Bouvet Island DXpedition

  • 5MHz Newsreader wanted

 

The RSGB is hosting an international amateur radio marathon event on the HF bands to celebrate this year’s Cricket World Cup, which is being held in England and Wales. The marathon will run from the 30th of May to the 14th of July. The RSGB Contest Club is looking for more volunteers to help co-ordinate the special event callsigns, but now is also a great time to join the list of operators and sign up so that you will be ready to operate. Full details are at www.rsgb.org/cricket and if you want to get involved, email contestclub@rsgbcc.org.

The much-anticipated 3Y0I Bouvet Island DXpedition has run into difficulties before having a chance to approach the island. Winds as high as 170km/h, that’s 105 mph, caused damage to their ship, the MV Atlantic Tuna, which is now heading back to Cape Town for assessment and repairs. The team is stressing that this setback represents a postponement, not a cancellation. Despite losing both antennas in the storm, E51DOM/mm is now back on the air and giving a taste of what signals from Bouvet could – and will – be like.

A vacancy has arisen for a GB2RS newsreader on the 5MHz team. Transmissions are on a rota basis, each Sunday afternoon at 1500 UTC, on 5398.5kHz USB. If you are interested, please contact the RSGB GB2RS News Service Manager, Ken Hatton, G3VBA, via email to gb2rs.manager@rsgb.org.uk. Note that a Full licence is required for 5MHz operation.

Would you like to help shape the direction of the RSGB in the future? Then why not stand as a Director and become a Board member? Details of what’s involved can be found on pages 6 and 7 of the January 2019 RadCom. For an informal discussion, please contact the Chairman, Ian Shepherd, G4EVK, via email to g4evk@rsgb.org.uk, by Monday the 15th of April at the latest.

British Summertime started at 1am this morning. with the clocks jumping forward to 2am. Domestic clocks should now read one hour ahead of UTC.

At the RSGB AGM on the 27th of April there will be a fascinating talk on the world’s first geostationary amateur radio satellite, Es’hailsat-2, also known as QO-100. Noel Matthews, G8GTZ and Dave Crump, G8GKQ will explain the history of the project, its space launch in February 2019, the equipment you need to work it, plus a demonstration of listening to the satellite via the internet. See www.rsgb.org/agm for details.

Whilst we’re on the subject of the AGM, we would like to remind RSGB Members that they can vote online on the various Resolutions. Details of these are in the April issue of RadCom and on the RSGB website at www.rsgb.org/agm2019.

Advance notice now of a couple of major events in the coming months. This year’s International Marconi Day will take place on the 27th of April. Stations are invited to help celebrate Marconi’s birthday by operating from sites that are closely associated with him, or from which he himself operated. For more information, or to register your station, go to www.gb4imd.co.uk. Separately, SOS Radio Week will take place throughout May. The event highlights the amazing work of the RNLI and honours the volunteer Watchkeepers of the National Coastwatch Institution. Individual amateurs and clubs are invited to register as official SOS Radio Week stations. For more information see www.sosradioweek.org.uk

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

Today, the 31st, the first British Amateur Television Club Regional Convention takes place in Bristol. It will be hosted by North Bristol ARC at SHE7 building, Braemar Crescent, Filton, Bristol BS7 0TD. Doors open from 10am to 4pm. There will be a full day of talks & demonstrations, with a test bench available for visitors’ projects. Further information is at https://forum.batc.org.uk or from Shaun, G8VPG, on 01225 873 098 

Also next Sunday, the Pencoed Radio Club Table Top Sale takes place from 9.30am at Pencoed Rugby Club, The Verlands, Felindre Road, Pencoed CF35 5PB. Refreshments are available on site. Details from Madeline Roberts on 0773 837 5775.

Next Saturday, the 6th of April, the GMDX convention takes place at the King Robert Hotel, Whins of Milton, Stirling. Registration commences at 10.30am, with the GMDX AGM taking place shortly thereafter. The Convention includes a series of excellent lectures on DX and technical subjects, followed by the famous DX Dinner from 8pm. Details are at www.gmdx.org.uk

Next Sunday, the 7th, the Cambridge Repeater Group Rally takes place at Foxton Village Hall, Hardman Road, Cambridge CB22 6RN. There will be a talk in station and car parking is free. Doors open 9.30am and entry is £2. There will be traders, a Bring & Buy and an RSGB bookstall. A burger van has been booked for on-site catering. Contact Lawrence, M0LCM on 07941 972 724 or see www.cambridgerepeaters.net

Also next Sunday, the thirty-fifth Yeovil ARC QRP Convention takes place at Digby Hall, Sherborne, Dorset DT9 3AA. Doors open at 9.30am and admission is £3. No dogs can be admitted except Guide Dogs. The event is supported by the RSGB, RAFARS and BYLARA. There will be club stands as well as new and secondhand stalls. Two talks are scheduled: A Remarkable Very Young Lady Radio Amateur and An Introduction of Mag Loops. Refreshments will be available on site. Contact Bob Harris, G8UED via wjh069@gmail.com or see http://Yeovil-arc.com.

Now, advance notice that the National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park will be holding its first-ever ElectroJumble on Sunday the 21st of April. Over the years they have accumulated many bits and pieces that are surplus to requirements. Items for sale will include test equipment, military items, domestic radios, telecommunication equipment and vintage components. Details can be found via www.tnmoc.org

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 about four months in advance for RadCom.

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

Dagmar, DM7PQ / E51NPQ and Rainer, DL1AUZ / E51AUZ will be active holiday-style from Rarotonga, IOTA reference OC-013, in the South Cooks from 2-11 April. They will operate CW only.

Darek, SP3DX will be active as 8Q7DM from Lankanfinolhu Island in the Maldives, AS-013, from the 1st to the 7th of April. Activities will be on 20, 17, 15, 12 and 10m, SSB and FT8. QSL via SP3DX.

Celebrating the 40th anniversary of the signing of the Norfolk Island Act, the VI9NI Team of VK3QB, VK3HJ, VK2PN and VK3BDX will be active from Norfolk Island, OC-005, from the 1st to the 14th of April. They will operate on 160 to 17m, FT8, CW and SSB. QSL via VK4FW.

Harald, DF2WO will be on the air again as XT2AW from Burkina Faso, from the 7th to the 26th of April. He will operate on 160 to 10m, using CW, SSB and digital modes. QSL via M0OXO direct, OQRS.

Now the special event news

The Windmill Amateur Radio DX Group will put GB1RY on the air on the 6th and 7th of April. Operating from RAF Ramsbury near Marlborough in Wiltshire, they are taking part in Airfields on the Air. Many other stations are expected to take part in the event, for which you will find full details at www.rafars.org/rafaota/

Pontefract & District ARS will operate GB4SL to mark the visit of cosmonaut Gennady Padalka. He will give a talk in Pontefract on the 6th April; the special event station will be on the air for 28 days around this date. Gennady Padalka has spent a record 879 cumulative days in space, over five missions from 1985 to 2015. More information on the talk, for which tickets are still available, can be found at www.space-lectures.com

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that UK stations with special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

This weekend sees the CQWW WPX SSB contest that started at 0000UTC on Saturday and ends at 2359UTC today, Sunday. This SSB-only event uses all the contest bands from 1.8 to 28MHz. The exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Monday it’s the RSGB 80m CW Club Championships. Running from 1900 to 2030UTC on the 3.5MHz band only, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

Tuesday is busy on two metres. From 1800 to 1855UTC it’s the 144MHz MGMAC, using machine-generated modes. The exchange is signal report, serial number and your 4-character locator. Also from 1800 to 1855UTC, the 144MHz FMAC uses FM only, exchanging signal report, serial number and locator. From 1900 to 2130UTC it’s the 144MHz UKAC, using all modes. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Wednesday sees the UKEICC 80m contest from 1900 to 2000UTC. Using SSB only on the 3.5MHz band, the exchange is your 4-character locator.

The 24-hour SP DX contest runs from 1500UTC next Saturday. Using CW or SSB on the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number. SP stations also send their Province code.

Next Sunday the RSGB RoLo HF Championship event takes place. Starting at 1930 and ending at 2030UTC, this SSB contest uses the 80m band only. The exchange is signal report plus the locator you received.

Also next Sunday, the First 70MHz contest runs from 0900 to 1200UTC. Using all modes on the 4m band, signal report, serial number and locator form the exchange.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA & G4BAO on Friday the 29th of March.

Last week the predicted increased Kp index from a coronal hole didn’t amount to much. The coronal mass ejection from the Sun a few days earlier wasn’t quite Earth-facing so we dodged the bullet. Other than that, conditions have been quite settled with a maximum Kp index of three caused by an enhanced solar wind. This was due to a co-rotating interaction region, or CIR, on the Sun, followed by the onset of an isolated, negative polarity coronal hole high speed stream. Elevated solar wind conditions are expected to continue until Friday 29th March, before declining.

The Sun has remained spotless after sunspot group number 2736 left the visible disk and looks set to continue. As we head into April. NOAA has the Sun remaining settled with a solar flux index at 70 and the Kp index sitting at two or three. This means reasonable radio conditions, just in time for the CQ SSB WPX contest this weekend. And don’t forget that if you don’t like contests there are always the WARC bands, although 17m may struggle to open at times.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

It looks as though we continue into next week with high pressure dominating much of the country, especially south western areas. This should continue to provide some Tropo, but slowly becoming less noticeable as the week progresses. Various models show low pressure close to northern Scotland at times, so this region is less likely to benefit from any Tropo.

There is a possibility of a few sharp showers, particularly at the end of next week – it is April, after all! These can be good for rain scatter propagation on the GHz bands.

The Moon is at apogee today, its furthest point from the Earth, so EME path losses will start to fall. Declination is negative and goes positive again on Friday, so we’ll see Moon windows lengthening with rising moon elevations and decreasing path losses.

There’s still a while to wait before we see the return of Sporadic-E, so work on your antenna systems for when it restarts. Remember that Sporadic-E can be a great opportunity for VHFers to improve their Morse skills. Give your brain a workout while the rest of the world is staring at computer screens and clicking a mouse.

Finally, there’s always plenty of DX opportunities on the satellites. While we have our marvellous geostationary, QO-100, there are still the low orbit birds to challenge you.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for March 24th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 24th March 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Australians set new microwave records

  • Bouvet Island DXpedition now en route

  • Smithsonian Institution callsign revived

 

The Wireless Institute of Australia, WIA, reports that new records have been set on the 47GHz and 122GHz bands. Operating 47GHz mobile, David, VK5KK and Wayne, VK5APN set a new record of 20.8km on the 11th of March 2019. At 122GHz, Matt, VK2DAG and David, VK2JDS set a new VK2 state record of 100m. Although this is some way short of the world record, the 122GHz band is fiendishly difficult and has serious attenuation challenges due to an atmospheric oxygen resonance.

The much-anticipated 3Y0I Bouvet Island DXpedition is presently at sea en route to its destination. They set sail from Cape Town on the 19th on board the MV Atlantic Tuna. All being well the team expects to land at the remote Antarctic island around Tuesday 26 March and hopes to be on the air before the end of the month. Whilst en route they plan to operate as E51DOM/mm.

Historic American callsign NN3SI is being reactivated under the aegis of the Smithsonian Institution Amateur Radio Group. Although presently lacking a permanent station location and unable yet to support guest operation, the group’s president, John Weise, N4NPG, told ARRL “This this is the start to Amateur Radio slowly coming back at the Smithsonian. We expect to begin operating holiday-style starting in April.”

The deadline for applications to become a team member or the team leader for YOTA Bulgaria 2019 has been extended until Sunday the 14th of April. Full details are at tinyurl.com/GB2RS-2403A

News now of new videos from the RSGB. Two new videos from the 2018 RSGB Convention are now available to Members on the RSGB website. These are the LF Forum run by Dave Pick, G3YXM and David Bowman, G0MRF, and the Dwingeloo story by Dick Harms, PA2DW. RSGB Members can find these new releases and many other recordings via www.rsgb.org/videos. As part of the same move, two more videos from the 2018 RSGB Convention are available on the RSGB’s YouTube channel. First, Jim Bacon, G3YLA revisits his specialist subject, Sporadic-E. Second is the untold IOTA story and announcement of the new IOTA groups by Roger Balister, G3KMA. These and many more can be found via tinyurl.com/GB2RS-2403B

RSGB Members are reminded that every vote counts in the online polls ahead of the 2019 AGM. Members will find the Resolutions and other details in the April issue of RadCom and on the RSGB website at www.rsgb.org/agm2019 The AGM takes place on the 27th of April in Birmingham.

Regrettably, the Train the Trainers course planned for the 30th March in Cambridgeshire has had to be cancelled. The organisers apologise for any inconvenience.

Finally, a reminder of the start of British Summertime next weekend. The clocks go forward one hour at 1am on Sunday the 31st, jumping to 2am. Consequently, clocks set to BST will read one hour ahead of UTC times.

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

Today, the 24th, the Hamzilla Radio Fest and Electronics Fair, hosted by Dover Amateur Radio Club, takes place. Located at the Discovery Science Park, Gateway House, Ramsgate Road, Sandwich, Kent CT13 9FF, doors are open from 10am to 4pm. There will be a bring & buy, lectures, an RSGB Bookstall, special interest groups and trade stands. Catering is available on site. Contact Aaron, M0IER on 0771 465 4267.

The Callington Radio Rally also takes place today at Callington Town Hall, Callington, Cornwall PL17 7BD. Doors open 10am to 1pm and admittance is £2. There will be a bring & buy and trade stands. Catering is available on site. There is ample free parking in the adjacent car park. The rally is organised jointly by the Devon & Cornwall Repeater Group and Callington ARS. More information Roger, 2E0RPH on 0785 408 8882.

Finally for today, the 24th, Causeway Coast Glens ARC Radio Rally takes place at Bushmills Community Centre, 14 Dunluce Road, Bushmills, Co. Antrim BT57 8QG. Doors open from 11am and admittance is £3. More details by email from stephen769@talktalk.net

Next Sunday, the 31st, the first British Amateur Television Club Regional Convention takes place in Bristol. It will be hosted by North Bristol ARC at SHE7 building, Braemar Crescent, Filton, Bristol BS7 0TD. Doors open from 10am to 4pm. There will be a full day of talks & demonstrations, with a test bench available for visitors’ projects. Further information is at https://forum.batc.org.uk or from Shaun, G8VPG, on 01225 873 098 

Also next Sunday, the Pencoed Radio Club Table Top Sale takes place from 9.30am at Pencoed Rugby Club, The Verlands, Felindre Road, Pencoed CF35 5PB. Refreshments are available on site. Details from Madeline Roberts on 0773 837 5775.

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 about four months in advance for RadCom.

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

The Robinson Crusoe Island DXpedition, XR0ZRC, on the Juan Fernandez Islands, IOTA reference SA-005, reports that their log uploads are being hampered by a very poor internet connection. The Russian Robinson Club also says they are suffering with S9 noise on the lower frequencies and may have to relocate the entire low bands operation.

Kasimir, DL2SBY will be active as 6Y5KB from Jamaica, IOTA reference NA-097, from 28 March to 10 April. He plans to operate CW, SSB, FT8 and possibly RTTY on 80-6 metres. QSL via LoTW, or direct only to home call. He no longer uses the bureau.

A team from ARI Modena will be active as IG9MO from Lampedusa Island, AF-019, from 28 March to 2 April. They will operate on SSB, CW and digital modes on the HF bands, and will participate in the CQ WW WPX SSB Contest. QSL via IK4ALM.

Jacek, SP5APW will be active as XV9JK from Thu Island, AS-157, Vietnam from 10-16 March. He will operate SSB mainly on 17 and 20 metres; in case of bad propagation, he will operate FT8 on 40 and 30 metres. He might be QRV as XV9JK/p from mainland Vietnam on 6-8 March. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, or via home call.

Dagmar, DM7PQ / E51NPQ and Rainer, DL1AUZ / E51AUZ will be active from Rarotonga, OC-013, in the South Cooks. The will work holiday style from 9-11 March and again on 2-11 April. They will be on the air from Manihiki, OC-014, from 13-25 March, and from Aitutaki, OC-083, on 27-31 March. They will operate CW only.

Now the special event news

From the 25th March to the 1st of April David, G4YVM will be running GB5EEE, Europe Europe Europe. Operating from Salisbury, he will be mostly CW. This is one of several special event stations planned to be on the air around the 29th of March to mark the intended date of Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union, from an historical rather than political viewpoint. Other callsigns planned include GB3XEU on 6m and 4m SSB and JT data, GB4QEU on HF SSB, GB2BRX on HF, and GB1UK on VHF FM and SSB.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that UK stations with special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

The UK EI Contest Club DX CW contest ends its 24-hour run at 1200UTC today, the 24th. Using CW only on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and District code.

On Tuesday the 432MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 2000UTC, using FM only. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 2000 to 2230UTC. The exchange for both contests is signal report, serial number and locator.

Tuesday also sees the SHF UKAC. Running from 1930 to 2330UTC and using all modes on the 2.3 to 10GHz bands, the report is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Wed it’s the UKEICC 80m contest from 2000 to 2100UTC. Using CW only on the 3.5MHz, the exchange is your 4-character locator.

The 80m Club Championships take place on Thursday. Running from 2000 to 2130UTC, it’s SSB-only on the 3.5MHz band. Signal report and serial number form the exchange.

Next weekend sees the CQWW WPX SSB contest. Starting at 0000UTC on Saturday and ending at 2359UTC on Sunday, this SSB-only event uses all the contest bands from 1.8 to 28MHz. The exchange is signal report and serial number.

Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday 22nd March.

The Sun burst into life this week, with two new sunspots and solar flares aplenty. But before you get too excited the spots are from the outgoing solar cycle 24.

Sunspot 2736 erupted on Wednesday with a C4-class solar flare. The Earth-directed explosion sent ionisation rippling through Earth’s upper atmosphere and caused a Dellinger fade-out over parts of Europe and Africa.

A Dellinger fade-out or sudden ionospheric disturbance, SID, is an abnormally high ionisation or plasma density in the D region of the ionosphere. The SID results in a sudden increase in radio-wave absorption that is most severe in the upper medium frequency and lower high frequency ranges.

The explosion also hurled a coronal mass ejection, CME, into space, which might deliver a glancing blow to Earth’s magnetic field. Although the bulk of the CME was not Earth-bound, be prepared for increased Kp indices and/or aurora on or around Saturday 23rd. Meanwhile tiny sunspot 2735 also appeared, helping to push the solar flux index to 77. Conditions were mixed this week, with Tuesday being lousy and Wednesday being fair.

Dean Pesnell, Project Scientist of the Solar Dynamics Observatory, said this week that solar minimum is now likely to be some time in 2020 – he didn’t want to be drawn on exactly when. He added that the indications are that Solar Cycle 25 will be similar to 24, so we are not heading for a Maunder Minimum.

Next week NOAA has the solar flux index at 69, but the K index is predicted to hit five between March 26 and 29. Conditions should then be more settled for the weekend.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

It’s a good Tropo theme again, with at least one model keeping the large area of high pressure over the country for most of the coming week. However, being centred over the country, the inversion will probably be at a low height, say around 1km or less, and there will be drier air near the surface, so look for overnight lifts, especially if there is any fog.

Another model is less enthusiastic at the end of next week, allowing low pressure to the north of Britain to bring a cold front south. This would produce rather windy weather and bring Tropo to an end. This cold front could be quite active with heavy rain along it, so perhaps an opportunity for some microwave rain scatter.

The Moon is heading for apogee a week today, and its declination is negative and falling all week. The coming week will therefore see shortening Moon windows, low moon elevations and increasing losses for EMEers. The Moon up is in the early hours in Europe.

With still a month to go until the Lyrids meteor shower we’ll have to rely on random meteors around dawn for the best chance of meteor scatter DX.

Remember that if the weather fails to produce propagation there’s always aircraft reflection to fall back on for VHF DX, especially on the lower GHz bands. Just Google aircraft scatter to learn about this fascinating mode.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for March 17th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 17th March 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • George Dobbs, G3RJV, silent key

  • RSGB AGM online voting is open

  • Train the Trainers in Cambridgeshire soon

 

It is with great sadness that we learned this week of the death of George Dobbs, G3RJV, founder of the GQRP club and well know for his writing in SPRAT, RadCom and Practical Wireless. An obituary for George will appear in the May edition of RadCom. Our thoughts are with his family and many amateur friends worldwide at this difficult time.

Voting is open for the RSGB 2019 AGM that takes place on the 27th of April in Birmingham. Members will find the Resolutions and other details in the April issue of RadCom and on the RSGB website at www.rsgb.org/agm2019.

There is a Train the Trainers course being organised and hosted by Huntingdon Amateur Radio Society for the 30th March in Buckden, St Neots, Cambridgeshire. For more information or to reserve a place, contact the organiser, David Howlett, via email to secretary@hunts-hams.co.uk

Keith Bird, G4JED, Regional Representative for Region 10, is looking to recruit a volunteer for the post of District Representative for the East Sussex area. The prime duties in this annual and renewable post will be to liaise with the clubs and individuals in that area. There are opportunities to assist others and develop your own ideas to promote interest in amateur radio with the help of a team within Region 10. Anyone wishing to step into these roles should contact Keith, G4JED, via email to rr10@rsgb.org.uk

Greece is the latest newcomer to the 60m band. A ministerial decision dated the 26th of February published in the Greek government gazette of the 5th of March. This introduced a new Frequency Allocation Table, which authorises Greek radio amateurs to use the WRC-15 band on a secondary basis at 15W EIRP.

The Dayton Hamvention committee has announced their awards for 2019. Of particular interest is Pietro Begali, I2RTF, the 2019 recipient of Hamvention’s Technical Achievement Award. He is best known for designing and producing high-quality Morse keys and paddles. Chris Janssen, DL1MGB/KO2WW, is the winner of Hamvention’s 2019 Special Achievement Award. He served as president of World Radiosport Team Championship 2018, guiding more than 300 volunteers who put on the successful competition in Germany.

From the IARU Region 1 Monitoring System newsletter come reports that Russian over-the-horizon radar has caused severe problems on 14MHz. Sometimes three signals were active at the same time, each system with 14kHz bandwidth and many splatters. The transmitter is located north of Penza in Western Russia. The German PTT filed an official complaint and the Dutch PTT has been informed.

JVC Kenwood UK has appointed Martin Lynch & Sons as the sole UK distributor for Kenwood amateur radio products. ML&S has earned more Kenwood Amateur Radio Dealer of the Year awards than any other dealer. The sole distributorship for the UK reflects the continued support and commitment, says Kenwood UK. JVC Kenwood is committed to the amateur radio market and will continue to design and manufacture amateur radio equipment.

The RSGB has now released a new Intermediate training book to support the new amateur radio exam syllabus that starts on the 1st of September. The Intermediate Licence Manual For Radio Amateurs has been fully revised, reordered and contains all of the information required for those seeking to upgrade from their Foundation callsign. Go to www.rsgbshop.org for full details.

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

Today, the 17th, the 34th Wythall Radio Club Hamfest takes place at the Club HQ, Wythall House, Silver Street, Wythall B47 6LZ. Doors open at 9.45am, with disabled visitors gaining access at 9.30. There is free on-site parking and admission is £4. There are four halls of traders including a Bring & Buy and a club stand. A selection of refreshments will be available all day and bar facilities within Wythall House open from midday. Contact Ian Reeve, M0IDR on 01386 839 655.

The Hamzilla Radio Fest and Electronics Fair, hosted by Dover Amateur Radio Club, takes place on the 24th of March. Located at the Discovery Science Park, Gateway House, Ramsgate Road, Sandwich, Kent CT13 9FF, doors are open from 10am to 4pm. There will be a bring & buy, lectures, an RSGB Bookstall, special interest groups and trade stands. Catering is available on site. Contact Aaron, M0IER on 0771 465 4267.

The Callington Radio Rally takes place on the 24th at Callington Town Hall, Callington, Cornwall PL17 7BD. Doors open 10am to 1pm and admittance is £2. There will be a bring & buy and trade stands. Catering is available on site. There is ample free parking in the adjacent car park. The rally is organised jointly by the Devon & Cornwall Repeater Group and Callington Amateur Radio Society. More information and bookings from Roger, 2E0RPH on 0785 408 8882.

Causeway Coast Glens ARC Radio Rally takes place at Bushmills Community Centre, 14 Dunluce Road, Bushmills, Co. Antrim BT57 8QG on the 24th of March. Doors open from 11am and admittance is £3. More details from stephen769@talktalk.net

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 about four months in advance for RadCom.

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

Cezar, VE3LYC will be active as VE3LYC/KL7 from Little Diomede Island, IOTA reference NA-150, between the 18th and 26th of March. Plans are to operate CW and SSB on the 40 to 17m bands QSL via Club Log’’s OQRS, or via his home callsign either direct or via the bureau.

Alex, 5B4ALX will be active as E6ET from Niue, OC-040, from the 18th of March to the 2nd of April. He will operate SSB, CW, RTTY and FT8 on 160, 60, 40, 30, 20, 17, 15, 10 and 6 metres. He will operate FT8 using a multi answer protocol with a focus on 20m during his day and 40/60m during his night, 0700 to 1700UTC. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, Logbook of The World, or via IZ4AMS, either direct or via the bureau.

Dagmar, DM7PQ and Rainer, DL1AUZ will be active as E51NPQ and E51AUZ respectively holiday style from Manihiki, OC-014, North Cooks until the 25th of March, and from Aitutaki, OC-083, South Cooks between the 27th and 31st of March. They will operate CW only.

The EI DX Group DXpedition to Togo is on the air until the 26th of March. The plan is to operate as 5V7EI on all bands from 160 to 10m on CW, SSB and digital. QSL manager is M0OXO OQRS.

The Italian DXpedition team will be in Uganda until the 25th of March. They will operate as 5X3C on CW, SSB and RTTY. For QSOs on FT8 they will use the callsign 5X3E. QSL manager is I2YSB.

Now the special event news

Today, the 17th, Army, Sea and Air Cadet Units in the UK will be carrying out Exercise Blue Ham 19 as part of a weekend of activity. Operating on the 5MHz shared band, operation is expected from 8am to 5pm. QSO exchange details can be found at https://alphacharlie.org.uk/exercise-blue-ham and amateurs may claim a certificate by contacting 10 or more stations over the weekend and submitting a copy of their log sheet.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that UK stations with special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

The Russian DX Contest ends its 24 hour run at 1200UTC today, the 17th. It uses CW and SSB only on the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands. The exchange is signal report and serial number, with Russian stations also sending their Oblast code.

The BARTG HF RTTY Contest ends its 48 hour run at 0200UTC on Monday the 18th of March. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and time.

IRTS News reports that there is an evening IRTS Counties Contest on Tuesday 19th March from 2000 UTC. It is a one-hour contest, on 80 metres, for SSB and CW. See www.irts.ie/contests for details and the full rules.

On Tuesday the 1.3GHz UK Activity Contest runs from 2000 to 2230UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Thursday the 70MHz UK Activity Contest runs from 2000 to 2230UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next weekend the UK EI Contest Club DX CW contest runs for 24 hours from 1200UTC on the 23rd. Using CW only on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and District code.

Now the propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 15th of March

There is life in the old dog yet! The lone spotted region on the visible disk of the Sun managed to produce a minor C1.3 flare on the 8th of March. Although not a noteworthy event as far as peak X-Ray strength, the flare was associated with an eruption and what appears to be a faint coronal mass ejection. Much of the plasma was likely reabsorbed, but some did manage to escape the Sun when viewing coronagraph imagery, courtesy of the STEREO Ahead spacecraft. This wasn’t directed at Earth and we seem to have missed it.

This week has been characterised as relatively settled with the Kp index mainly in the zero to two range. There have been no sunspots since the disappearance of the sunspot we mentioned last week. So overall, not good conditions for radio, as was witnessed by last week’s Commonwealth Contest. The consensus was that it was one of the worst yet. Nevertheless, some high scores were presented. Stars like 3B8XF, ZF2CA and 9J2BO, plus many VK and ZL stations were worked from the UK.

Next week, NOAA predicts the solar flux will remain at about 79. The Kp index will also remain relatively settled at two to three. The next big unsettled session is due on March 26, thanks to a coronal hole, with the Kp index predicted to hit five. So look out for aurora and make the most of the settled conditions this week.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

After a week or more of very unsettled weather with strong winds testing your antennas, its shaping up to be much quieter in the coming week as high pressure returns.

After this weekend, the pressure will start to build over the south of the country and develop a strong ridge. High pressure will drift northeast from the Azores and across the southern Britain, to finish over Germany by the end of the week. The effect of this will be a welcome return of Tropo lift conditions, although not especially strong all the time. A good visual indicator may be a layer of stratocumulus cloud at 1 to 2km above the ground, which will be at the height of the temperature inversion formed by sinking air within the high. These can extend over hundreds of kilometres to give paths well into northern Europe.

It could be a good week to test the other modes on VHF and UHF. Try a CW or SSB QSO for a change and, if calling CQ, remember to say what square you are in.

The Moon reached peak declination last week and is at perigee on Tuesday, so it’s a good week for EME with low path losses and high elevations.

There are no meteor showers this week, so again we’ll have to rely on random meteors around dawn for the best chance of meteor scatter DX.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for March 10th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 10th March 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Amateur Radio Development Leader required

  • Contact Cadets on 60m in Exercise Blue Ham

  • DXCC Most Wanted list updated

 

The RSGB is looking to recruit to a voluntary leadership position in the newly-formed Amateur Radio Development Committee. The post holder will play a key role in contributing towards meeting strategic priorities under Strategy 2022, especially Growth, Participation and Diversity. As well as leading on existing elements within the committee, the Chair will develop two new areas that will include the recruitment of project leads. Full details can be found at www.rsgb.org/volunteers

Next weekend, the 16th and 17th of March, Army, Navy and Air Cadet units in the UK will be carrying out Exercise Blue Ham 19. Operating on the 5MHz shared band, the expected period of operation will be from 8am to 5pm both days. QSO exchange details can be found at https://alphacharlie.org.uk/exercise-blue-ham Amateur operators may claim a certificate if they contact 10 or more stations over the weekend and submit a copy of their log sheet.

The DXCC Most Wanted entities list has been updated on Club Log. It contains 340 entities. The top five most wanted are P5 North Korea, 3Y/B Bouvet Island, FT5/W Crozet Island, BS7H Scarborough Reef and CE0X San Felix Islands. Scarborough Reef and San Felix Islands switched places in the 4th to 5th position. The complete DXCC Most Wanted entities list is available at https://secure.clublog.org/mostwanted.php

A note for your diary next. Voting opens for the RSGB 2019 AGM on the 13th of March. Members will find the Resolutions and other details in the April issue of RadCom and, after the 13th of March, on the RSGB website at www.rsgb.org/agm2019. The 2019 RSGB AGM takes place in Birmingham on Saturday the 27th of April.

The Amateur Radio on the International Space Station US team will offer two very unusual items in its first-ever auction. JVC Kenwood generously gave a brand new TS-890S, signed by astronauts, and the ARRL donated the limited edition 2019 ARRL Handbook for Radio Communications box set, again signed by astronauts. Bidding starts on the 8th of April at 1200UTC and ends on the 14th of April at 2200UTC. More auction details will be posted at www.ariss.org

Finally, it is with great sadness that we learned this week of the death of Jim Stevenson, G0EJQ. He was RSGB Region 13 Representative. He passed away unexpectedly on Monday the 4th of March. An incredibly enthusiastic amateur and an unique, irrepressible character, Jim will be missed by a large number of people both inside and beyond his Region. An obituary for Jim appears on page 95 of the April RadCom, which will begin arriving on Wednesday this week.

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

Today, the 10th of March, the Grantham ARC Radio and Electronics Rally takes place at Grantham West Community Centre, Trent Road , Grantham, Lincs NG31 7XW. Doors are open from 9.30am to 3pm and admittance is £3. There will be trade stands, RSGB bookstall and Special Interest Groups. Catering is available on site. Contact Kevin Burton, G6SSN, 07793 142 483.

Cardiff University Amateur Radio Club has gained a callsign, GW4CDF, in time for the Microwave Roundtable event on the 16th of March. Held at the Cardiff University Engineering Department, Newport Road, Cardiff, you can find more details of the Roundtable at www.cardiffars.org.uk/events/2019/roundtable/

Next Saturday, the 16th, the Laugharne Rally will take place at Laugharne Millennium Memorial Hall, Clifton Street, Laugharne, Wales SA33 4QG. Doors open at 10am. Details from Matthew on 0739 882 5024.

Next Sunday, the 17th, the 34th Wythall Radio Club Hamfest takes place at the Club HQ, Wythall House, Silver Street, Wythall B47 6LZ. Doors open at 9.45am, with disabled visitors gaining access at 9.30am. There is free on-site parking and admission is £4. There are four halls of traders including a Bring & Buy and a club stand. A selection of refreshments will be available all day and bar facilities within Wythall House open from midday. Contact Ian Reeve, M0IDR on 01386 839 655.

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 about four months in advance for RadCom.

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

Richard, G3RWL will be active as 8P6DR from Barbados, IOTA reference NA-021, between the 13th of March and the 17th of April. He will operate CW and RTTY on the 80 to 10m bands. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, Logbook of The World or via his home callsign, either direct or via the bureau.

Hans-Martin, DK2HM will be on the air as E51HMK from Rarotonga, OC-013, in the South Cook Islands between the 14th and the 22nd of March. He will operate SSB and FT8 on the 80 to 10m bands. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, Logbook of The World, eQSL, or via his home callsign, direct or bureau.

Jacek, SP5APW will be active as XV9JK from Thu Island, AS-157, in Vietnam between the 10th and the 16th of March. He will operate SSB mainly on the 17 and 20m bands; in case of bad propagation, he will operate FT8 on 40 and 30 metres. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, or via his home callsign.

Dagmar, DM7PQ and Rainer, DL1AUZ will be active holiday style as E51NPQ and E51AUZ respectively from Rarotonga, OC-013, in the South Cooks until the 11th of March, from Manihiki, OC-014, in the North Cooks on the 13th to the 25th of March, and from Aitutaki, OC-083, in the South Cooks from the 27th to the 31st of March. They will operate CW only.

Andy, DK5ON will be active as PJ2/DK5ON from Curacao, SA-099, between the 14th and the 30th of March. He will operate CW, SSB, RTTY and FT8 on the 80 to 6m bands. QSL via Logbook of The World, Club Log’s OQRS, or via his home call either direct or bureau.

Now the special event news

As part of British Science Week, Frodsham C of E school will be operating GB2OVE on the 12th and 13th of March, from 12noon to 3pm on both days. If you hear the young people on the air, please give them a call.

The James Clerk Maxwell Radio Society will be operating from Parton Kirk, Parton Village, near Castle Douglas, DG7 4NE over this weekend. They will use the call GB2JCM and the activities are part of British Science Week. Feel free to come along and join them, just bring your licence with you.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that UK stations with special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

The RSGB Commonwealth Contest ends its 24 hour run at 1000UTC today, the 10th. It’s CW only on the 3.5 to 28MHz bands, with the exchange signal report and serial number. HQ stations also send HQ.

Today, the 10th, the second 70MHz Cumulative Contest runs from 1000 to 1200UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The Worked All Britain 3.5MHz contest takes place today, the 10th of March, from 1800 to 2200UTC. Entries need to be with the Contest Manager by the 31st. The exchange will be RS plus serial number plus WAB square. Full details are at www.worked-all-britain.org.uk

On Tuesday the 432MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 1955UTC, using FM only. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 2000 to 2230UTC. The exchange for both contests is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Wednesday the 80m Club Championships CW leg runs from 2000 to 2130UTC. The exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Thursday the 50MHz Machine Generated Mode Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 1955UTC. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 50MHz UK Activity Contest from 2000 to 2230UTC. The exchange for both contests is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next weekend the BARTG HF RTTY Contest runs from 0200UTC on the 16th to 0200UTC on the 18th of March. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz bands the exchange is signal report, serial number and time.

Also next weekend is the Russian DX Contest. Running from 1200UTC on the 16th to 1200UTC on the 17th, it uses CW and SSB only on the 1.8 to 28MHz bands. The exchange is signal report and serial number, with Russian stations also sending their Oblast code.

Now the propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 8th of March

The Sun sprouted a new sunspot this week bringing the sunspot number to 17 and the solar flux index to 73. The sunspot number represents 10 for a group and one for each of the sunspots in that group. Geomagnetic conditions were more settled over the week, with the Kp index hitting one and two. This was due to lack of coronal hole activity. Looking at the extreme UV image taken by the Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, shows we can expect relatively calm conditions, at least for the coming week.

NOAA still has a geomagnetic warning out until the tenth of March, but it is hard to see why. We can expect the solar wind speed to remain average over that time, but there are no Earth-facing coronal holes to push the K index to four or higher.

Now that we are in March we can expect to see better HF conditions, with good opportunities for North-South paths, such as the UK to South Africa and UK to South America. Look for openings on 17 and perhaps even 15m, which you might normally expect to be closed at this time of year.

The charts at Propquest show that 20m is open most days, with occasional openings on 17m. But do look out for fleeting openings on 15m, especially around lunchtime.

And finally, good luck in the Commonwealth Contest this weekend, which often throws up excellent opportunities to work some DX.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

It’s shaping up to be a quiet propagation week, driven by low pressure, which will be located to the north and east of the British Isles. This implies a colder, north westerly weather pattern. At this time of the year it’s hard to get too excited about Tropo in such disturbed weather conditions.

We’re not far away from the traditional season of April showers, with a chance of some heavy ones, perhaps with hail and thunder, which may provide an opportunity to try some rain scatter on the GHz bands. But in this thundery weather it’s worth considering whether to disconnect your antennas before going off to work.

High pressure is displaced well to the south-west of the UK, so if there are any Tropo prospects, they’ll be marginal and confined to the south-west and into western France and Biscay.

There is a small meteor shower, the Gamma Normids on Thursday, but in general we’ll have to rely on random meteors around dawn for the best chance of meteor scatter DX.

It’s a good week for EME with rising Moon declination peaking on Friday, and falling losses as we approach perigee a week on Tuesday.

Of course, when all other propagation modes fail there are always the satellites. As well as the well-established low earth orbit satellites, we now have a geostationary transponder, Oscar-100 available for use 24/7. Google Goonhilly Web SDR to find the online receiver, and have a listen before you commit your efforts to operating via this new one.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for March 3rd 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 3rd March 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Prepare for Commonwealth Contest next weekend

  • Suggest talks for RSGB Convention 2019

  • Ham radio artwork returns to Tate Gallery

 

The Commonwealth Contest, RSGB’s longest-running contest, takes place for 24 hours over the weekend of the 9th and 10th of March. As mentioned in the Propagation Report, you should not expect much propagation on the upper HF bands, but some hardy travellers will undoubtedly activate countries that don’t appear on the air every day, so make the most of it.

Planning has begun for the 2019 RSGB Convention, which will take place from Friday the 11th to Sunday the 13th of October, at Kents Hill Park Training and Conference Centre, Milton Keynes. The organising committee would like to encourage suggestions for this year’s lectures, please email convention@rsgb.org.uk, in particular, if you are able to suggest a presenter, as well as a topic. The RSGB Convention is generously sponsored by Martin Lynch & Sons.

The artwork Ten Minute Transmission, featuring the Kenwood TS-2000 transceiver and the International Space Station is again on display at the Tate Gallery in London. Made of wire and attached to the TS-2000, this sculpture receives radio signals from the ISS and transmits them into the gallery space. The title of this work, Ten Minute Transmission refers to the period of time when the ISS can be contacted as it flies past. Although the ISS orbits the Earth once every 90 minutes, it only passes close enough to the artwork to receive any signals just twice a day. See www.tate.org.uk for other details about the exhibit.

Two videos of 2018 RSGB Convention lectures are due for release to Members this week. Sam Jewell, G4DDK speaks about the Iceni, a high performance 70cm transverter for the constructor, and James Patterson, M1DST gives an introduction to 3D printing for the radio amateur. Go to www.rsgb.org/videos to view these two very interesting talks – and many others too.

Stations taking part in the St Patrick Award will be on the air from noon on the 16th of March to noon on the 18th of March. This year a new Digital Award has been added, covering such modes as FT8, DMR, D-Star, JT656 abd Echolink etc. To claim it you must have made 20 contacts with a registered St Patricks Day Station. For more information go to https://stpatrickaward.webs.com/.

The provisional results for the last IARU Region 1 145MHz Contest have been published. In the Multi Operator 145MHz section G8P was placed third, operating from JO01QD, and G8T was placed 9th, operating from JO01KJ. Full results can be found at www.iaru-r1.org

Cwmbran and District ARS now have a new local SSTV repeater. Classed as a ‘regenerative node’, it will relay/repeat a received image. MB7TR is situated in Cwmbran and maintained by Peter, MW0RPB. It operates on 144.500MHz using FM and outputs in the Martin1 SSTV mode. To get it to repeat your transmitted image, which incidentally can be transmitted in any SSTV mode, on 144.500MHz in FM, you transmit your CW ident, then a 1750Hz tone burst for around 1-2 seconds and key off. Finally you listen and wait for MB7TR to reply with its CW ident and this signifies it is ready so you can transmit your SSTV image. Those using the repeater wish to thank Peter for all his work on this.

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

Today, the 3rd of March, the Exeter Radio & Electronics Rally takes place at America Hall, De la Rue Way, Pinhoe, Exeter EX4 8PW. Doors open at 10.30am, with disabled customers gaining access at 10.15am. Admission is £2, with under 16s free. There will be trade stands and a Bring & Buy, and catering will be available on site. Details from Pete, G3ZVI on 0771 419 8374.

Next Sunday, the 10th of March, the Grantham ARC Radio and Electronics Rally takes place at Grantham West Community Centre, Trent Road , Grantham, Lincs NG31 7XW. Doors are open from 9.30am to 3pm and admittance £3. There will be trade stands, RSGB bookstall and Special Interest Groups. Catering is available on site. Contact Kevin Burton, G6SSN, 07793 142 483.

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 about four months in advance for RadCom.

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

Don, G3XTT will be active as C56DF from the Gambia on from the 5th to the 12th of March. Main activity will be during the RSGB Commonwealth Contest on the 9th and 10th, but he hopes to do some operating also before and after the contest. This will be a CW-only operation, low power with wires from a rooftop apartment. It is unlikely there will be space for 80 or 160m antennas. QSL via Logbook of The World, Club Log’s OQRS or direct to his home call.

Ali, EP3CQ will be on the air as 6O1OO from Somalia until the 24th of March. Usually he operates FT8 on the 20m band; his activity is limited to his spare time. QSL direct with details on QRZ.com.

Dom, M1KTA will be active as C6AKT from Eleuthera Island, IOTA reference NA-001, in the Bahamas between the 8th and 16th of March. He will operate CW on 80, 40, 20, 15 and 10m bands, and will participate in the Commonwealth (BERU) Contest. QSL via Club Log’s OQRS, or via his home call.

Dagmar, DM7PQ and Rainer, DL1AUZ will be active as E51NPQ and E51AUZ respectively from Rarotonga, OC-013, in the South Cooks between the 9 and 11th of March, holiday-style. They will operate CW only.

Look for KG4SC and KG4AS to operate SSB, CW, FT8 and possibly other digital modes from Guantanamo Bay between the 6th and 13th of March. QSL as per instructions on QRZ.com.

Now the special event news

TC10GITRAD is the special callsign for the Giresun Radio Amateurs and Nature Sports Association to celebrate their 10th anniversary. It will be active until the end of the year. QSL via Logbook of The World, eQSL, direct or via the bureau.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that UK stations with special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

This weekend, the 144/432MHz contest ends its 24 hour run at 1400UTC today, the 3rd. Using all modes on both bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The ARRL International DX contest ends its 48 hour run at 2359UTC today, the 3rd. Using the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and transmit power. American and Canadian stations also give their State or Province.

Today, the 3rd, the UK Microwave Group’s Low Band Contest runs from 1000 to 1600UTC. Using all modes on the 1.3 to 3.4GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Monday the 80m Club Championship runs from 2000 to 2130UTC. This is the data leg and the exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Tuesday the 144MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 2000UTC, using FM only. It runs concurrently with the Machine Generated Mode Activity Contest. The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator. These are immediately followed by the all-mode 144MHz UK Activity Contest from 2000 to 2230UTC. The exchange for this one is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Wednesday the UK EI Contest Club event will be on the 80m band between 2000 and 2100UTC. The exchange is your four-character locator.

Next weekend the RSGB Commonwealth Contest runs from 1000UTC on the 9th to 1000UTC on the 10th. It’s CW only on the 3.5 to 28MHz bands with the exchange signal report and serial number. HQ stations also send HQ.

On Sunday the 10th, the second 70MHz Cumulative Contest runs from 1000 to 1200UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The Worked All Britain 3.5MHz contest takes place next Sunday, the 10th of March, from 1800 to 2200UTC. Entries need to be with the Contest Manager by the 31st. The exchange will be RS plus serial number plus WAB square. Full details at www.worked-all-britain.org.uk

Now the propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 1st of March

The settled Sun came to an abrupt end on Thursday when the Kp index rose to five as a result of an elongated coronal hole on its surface. This sparked high-latitude auroras. It brought to an end a period of settled conditions, with the Chilton ionosonde showing MUFs struggling to reach much above 14MHz on Thursday morning.

Before this there was DX to be had if you stuck with it. Chris, G0DWV reports working T31EU Central Kiribati on 40m CW at 1750UTC. Another DX station that was sought after was FH/UA4WMHX on Mayotte, off the coast of Madagascar, which was worked on many HF bands by Mike, G4DYC during the week. Both Hawaii and Peru were worked on 40m in the morning by Andy, M0NKR.

Next weekend is the Commonwealth Contest with lots of stations on, so make the most of it, but don’t expect much above 14MHz.

NOAA has the solar conditions settled until Friday the 8th of March, when it expects the Kp index to rise to four or more, due to a coronal hole. This should be relatively short lived as it should die down again shortly after. The solar flux index is pegged solidly at 71, so no surprises there.

As we head into March, expect conditions to improve slightly with better DX, although the lower bands may suffer with more daylight. This is a great time for north-south paths, such as the UK to South Africa, and UK to South America.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

We’ve now seen the end of the extended Tropo weather we’ve been enjoying, and are now in a very unsettled Atlantic weather pattern. Weather systems moving towards the British Isles will bring stronger winds and periods of rain or showers.

It’s hard to pinpoint a good weather propagation mode in this pattern, other than some occasional GHz bands rain scatter from showers or the more active cold fronts that happen to pass by. As usual there are many good radar displays, which can allow you to pick the most intense echoes.

Without Tropo to boost activity, and still too early for traditional Sporadic-E, pickings may be thin. However, with such strong jet streams on the charts, especially across the Atlantic, there’s always a remote chance for a brief 28MHz path, but I wouldn’t take a day off work for it!

Meteor scatter conditions are still quiet until April, so just random meteors to keep us interested there.

The Moon is at apogee tomorrow and last Friday saw minimum declination. This week we have a daytime Moon and a week of lengthening Moon windows and falling losses.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for February 24th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 24th February 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • IARU active at WRC-19 preparation

  • Enter the Club of the Year competition

  • Could you be RSGB Company Secretary?

 

The ITU Conference Preparation Meeting for WRC-19 has been running this week and will continue into next week. Taking place in Geneva, the IARU has been present for Agenda Items on 50MHz, Wireless Power and other matters of importance to amateur radio.

There is still time to put in an entry for the RSGB Club of the Year competition. Entries are welcome from all RSGB affiliated groups, and there is just one size category this year so the size of your club doesn’t matter. The theme is ‘Meeting RSGB Strategy 2022’. Entries must be received by the 28th of February. Clubs should read the rules at www.rsgb.org/main/clubs/national-club-of-the-year/ and send entries to their Regional Representative. The RSGB would like to thank Waters & Stanton for their continued sponsorship of this competition.

The RSGB looking to recruit an RSGB Member to the voluntary position of Company Secretary. The position plays a key role in the Society’s governance and provides vital support in the running of Board meetings and the Annual General Meeting. For full information on the role, please go to www.rsgb.org/volunteers. If you feel you have the necessary skills to fulfil this important role, or would like more information, email the Chairman of the Board via chairman@rsgb.org.uk and if you are applying for the position, please include a current CV.

For the first couple of days after KickSat-2 was deployed last November, nothing was heard from the satellite. But in February, Nico, PA0DLO reported receiving several short and weak telemetry bursts on 437.5077MHz. KickSat-2 was scheduled to deploy up to 104 tiny Sprite satellites into low Earth orbit. The Sprites then would transmit on 437.240MHz at 10mW. The Sprites, which are less than 2 square inches, are expected to re-enter Earth’s atmosphere within weeks. There is no news on whether these Sprites will be deployed.

Provisional results for the last IARU Region 1 50 to 70MHz Contest are now available on the IARU Region 1 website, www.iaru-r1.org. Several UK stations are in the top ten in various categories. The 6 hour 50MHz category saw G4ZAP/P achieving 4th place and G0VHF/P got 10th place. In the multi-operator 50MHz section, the GJ8P stations achieved 5th place.

The ARRL has released version 11.7 of the Logbook of the World configuration file. This has added the ability to confirm QSOs made through the JO-97, FO-99 and QO-100 satellites. Users should receive a prompt to update their configuration file when opening recent versions of TQSL. The file can also be downloaded from https://lotw.arrl.org/lotwuser/config.tq6

The RSGB has changed the way it hosts the online version of RadCom. This uses HTML5 to display the pages and no longer requires Flash to be installed. Pages will also load faster. All this year’s editions are now available to Members in the new format at www.rsgb.org/radcom and we will be converting back issues from previous years in due course.

Car parking charges will be waived for The West of England Radio Rally on 16 June at Frome’s Cheese and Grain. Last year, Mendip District Council introduced Sunday charges in a number of car parks across Frome, including the exhibitors’ site. According to BBC News, the council has announced it will stop charging for the duration of the event.

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

Today, the 24th, the Rainham Radio Rally takes place at The Victory Academy, Magpie Hall Road, Chatham, Kent, ME4 5JB. Doors open 10am to 4pm and it’s £2.50 for adults, with free entry for children. There will be local and national traders, the BRATS kitchen, a BRATS Interactive Zone for Kids, BRATS Junk and a Talk-in Station on 145.550MHz using GB4RRR.

Also today, the 24th, the Red Rose Rally will be held at St Josephs Hall, Chapel Street, Leigh WN7 2PQ. Doors open at 11am. There will be trade, individual and club stands, including an RSGB bookstall, as well as a Bring & Buy. Catering will be available on site. Details are at www.wmrc.co.uk.

Next Sunday, the 3rd of March, the Exeter Radio & Electronics Rally takes place at America Hall, De la Rue Way, Pinhoe, Exeter EX4 8PW. Doors open at 10.30am, with disabled customers gaining access at 10.15am. Admission is £2, with under 16s free. There will be trade stands, a Bring & Buy, and catering will be available on site. Details from Pete, G3ZVI on 0771 419 8374.

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 about four months in advance for RadCom.

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

George, W2AIV will be on holiday in Belize as V31GF until the 2nd of March. He will be on the 40, 20, 15 and 10m bands using SSB but will also try some slow CW. Logs will be uploaded to Logbook of The World.

Willy, ON4AVT will be active as 6W7/ON4AVT from Senegal until the 30th of March. He will operate PSK, CW, SSB and possibly FT8 on various bands including 60m. QSL via his home call, bureau preferred.

Roman, UT7UA is active as EM1UA and/or EM1U from the Ukrainian Research Station located on Galindez Island, AN-006, Antarctica. His licence is valid until 1 February 2020. QSL for both callsigns via UT7UA.

Gildas and Michel will be active as FG/F6HMQ and FG/F6GWV respectively from Guadeloupe, NA-102, until the 10th of March. QSL via their home calls. In the ARRL DX SSB Contest they’ll call TO3Z. QSL via F6HMQ.

Arnaud, JG1XMV will be on the air as FK/JG1XMV from New Caledonia until the 10th of March. He will operate SSB on the 40 to 15m bands from the main island, Grande Terre, OC-032. Updates will be posted on QRZ.com under FK/JG1XMV. QSL via JG1XMV either direct or the bureau, Logbook of The World and eQSL.

Now the special event news

H31A is being used to commemorate 500 years of the foundation of Panama City, Panama. The station will be on the air at various times until the 15th of August. They will be operating on the 80 to 10m bands, particularly using digital modes, RTTY, PSK31 and FT8, and some SSB. For more information, please refer to QRZ.com. The QSL manager is HP1AVS.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that UK stations with special event callsigns must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

Today, the 24th, the First 70MHz Cumulative Contest runs from 1000 to 1200UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The CW World Wide 160m DX contest ends its 48 hour run at 2200UTC today, the 24th. Using SSB on the 1.8MHz band only, the exchange is signal report and CQ Zone, which for the UK is 14. American and Canadian stations will also send their State or Province.

The REF Contest ends today at 1800UTC. Using SSB only on the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number. French stations also send their département number or overseas prefix.

On Tuesday the SHF UK Activity Contest runs from 1930 to 2230UTC. Using all modes on the 2.3 to 10GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Wednesday the UK and Ireland Contest Club 80m contest runs from 2000 to 2100UTC. This is a CW leg and the exchange is your 4-character locator.

On Thursday the 80m Club Championships also has its CW leg between 2000 and 2130UTC. The exchange this time is signal report and serial number.

Next weekend, the 144/432MHz contest runs for 24 hours from 1400UTC on the 2nd to 1400UTC on the 3rd. Using all modes on both bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The ARRL International DX contest runs for 48 hours next weekend from 0000UTC on the 2nd to 2359UTC on the 3rd. Using the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and transmit power. American and Canadian stations also give their State or Province.

On Sunday the 3rd, the UK Microwave Group’s Low Band Contest runs from 1000 to 1600UTC. Using all modes on the 1.3 to 3.4GHz bands, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

Now the propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 22nd of February

The Sun played ball this week and matched our predictions. The Kp index soared to four on Thursday the 21st, thanks to ongoing coronal hole activity, but it was otherwise settled. There had been good conditions earlier in the week. The ARRL International DX Contest gave people contacts into nearly all the US states over the weekend of the 16th and 17th. Meanwhile, Chris, G0DWV worked a host of west coast US stations, including some in Oregon and Washington, via 40m long path late afternoon on Wednesday the 20th, although his beam helped a lot. This may have also been due to a pre-auroral enhancement, as the Kp index surged upwards later that evening.

Next week we can expect more of the same, with NOAA predicting the solar flux index at 68 to 70 again. Geomagnetic conditions will be settled to start with, but expect the Kp index to rise again from around the 27th due to recurrent coronal hole activity. We may expect the Kp index to hit four or five between the 27th of February and the 2nd of March, so expect subdued maximum usable frequencies after the potential for enhanced conditions before the geomagnetic storm bites.

As we head into March we can start to kiss goodbye to the long nights that have brought good 160m conditions. It’s time to say hello to better HF conditions, with excellent north-south paths, especially around noon and early afternoon. Eighty metres may also start to continue to be open to the UK after dark, with the critical frequency just managing to cover the whole band at times this week.

And now the VHF and up propagation news

The large area of high pressure nearby to the east and south of Britain will continue to provide good Tropo conditions during the first part of the coming week. This long run of Tropo weather, pretty much since the start of the month, is typical of slow-moving winter highs, but eventually the Atlantic lows and their frontal systems will always break through. This time it seems the changeover starts from mid-week, as the pressure falls, and the quality of the lift conditions fade. It’s still too early to talk of Sporadic-E propagation, so that leaves the cupboard bare for other weather-related modes this week, but keep watch in case the odd aurora chances by.

Es’hailSat continues to surprise and activity is high, with reports of people copying narrowband signals with just an LNB pointed at the satellite and no dish! A 45cm Sky dish seems to give acceptable results receiving the narrowband transponder.

Moon declination is negative and falling this week so the Moon will be at low elevation for a short period each day and losses are increasing as we go towards apogee a week tomorrow.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for February 17th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 17th February 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • First Amateur Geostationary Satellite Transponder now active

  • Updated ITU document for Emergency Communications

  • Could your club host Train the Trainers?

 

The geostationary amateur radio narrowband transponder on the Es'hail-2 / QO-100 was made available for amateur experimental use on the afternoon of Tuesday the 12th of February. The 250kHz bandwidth transponder uses the 2.4GHz band for the uplink with the downlink in the 10.45GHz band and should provide communications over a wide portion of the globe. Potentially both Brazil and Thailand might be in range from the UK. Contacts have been made by running as little as 500 milliwatts of SSB to a 1.2m dish. You can listen to the Narrowband transponder from anywhere in the world by using the online WebSDR developed by AMSAT-UK and BATC that is located at Goonhilly, UK, see https://eshail.batc.org.uk/nb/

The ITU has updated a key recommendation for cross border usage of Emergency Communications Equipment. The new 2019 edition of ITU Recommendation M-1637 is clearer regarding countries facilitating the use of radio equipment that may be physically brought by visiting relief personnel into the territory where there is a disaster or emergency. The recommendation is intended to avoid delays due to customs procedures and type-approvals etc and facilitate the use of both professional, as well as amateur, radio equipment in such situations. URL for M1637-1 is www.itu.int/rec/R-REC-M.1637-1-201901-I

The RSGB is in the process of organising Train the Trainers courses for this year. If your club would like to host one then please contact tec.chair@rsgb.org.uk. Further details and the list of requirements for hosting the course can be found at www.rsgb.org/train-the-trainers.

Amateur Radio on the International Space Station, otherwise known as ARISS, has planned another slow-scan television weekend. Transmissions will run until today, the 17th of February, at 1725UTC. SSTV images will be transmitted on 145.80MHz using SSTV-mode PD120. These can be received using equipment as simple as a 2m handheld radio, a scanner that covers that band, or even an online WebSDR receiver. Transmissions will consist of eight images from the NASA On The Air celebration and four ARISS commemorative images. Received images can be posted and viewed online. ARISS offers an ARISS SSTV Award for those who receive and decode at least one SSTV image in the session.

A date for your diary now. SOS Radio Week 2019 will take place between 0000UTC on the 1st of May to 2359UTC on the 31st of May. Individual amateur radio operators and clubs are invited to register as official SOS Radio Week stations and operate during the month. Stations can be run under individual, club, or special event callsigns, from home or other locations. There are few restrictions at to what can be done when, how, or where, other than to warn participants not to operate within the vicinity of a lifeboat or Coastwatch station without clearing it with them first. For more information, visit sosradioweek.org.uk.

Riley Hollingsworth, K4ZDH, will oversee the development and implementation phases of the ARRL's new Volunteer Monitors program. K4ZDH once handled amateur radio enforcement for the FCC Volunteer Monitors and will work in cooperation with the FCC. Volunteers trained and vetted by ARRL will monitor the amateur bands for possible instances of misconduct or to recognize exemplary on-air operation. Cases of flagrant violations or noncompliance will be directed to the FCC for action, in accordance with FCC guidelines. The program, aims to re-energise amateur radio enforcement efforts, although ARRL officials estimate that it will take 9 to 12 months before the first Volunteer Monitors begin filing reports.

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

Today, the 17th, the Radioactive Rally takes place at Nantwich Civic Hall, Cheshire CW5 5DG. The venue has free car parking and the doors open at 10.30am. There will be a Bring & Buy, as well as traders and RSGB book stall. Catering is provided on site. Contact Stuart Jackson on 07880 732 534.

Next Sunday, the 24th, the Rainham Radio Rally takes place at The Victory Academy, Magpie Hall Road, Chatham, Kent, ME4 5JB. Doors open 10am to 4pm and its £2.50 for adult entry with free entry for children. There will be local and national traders, the BRATS kitchen, a BRATS Interactive Zone for Kids, BRATS Junk and a Talk In Station on 145.550MHz using GB4RRR.

Also next Sunday, the 24th, the Red Rose Rally will be held at St Josephs Hall, Chapel Street, Leigh WN7 2PQ. Doors open 11am. There will be trade, individual and Club stands including an RSGB bookstall as well as a Bring & Buy. Anyone wishing to hire a table should contact Colin on rally@WMRC.co.uk. Catering will be available on site. Details on www.wmrc.co.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 about four months in advance for RadCom.

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

Jean-Pierre, F6CTF will be active as 3W9JF from the island of Phu Quoc, AS-128, from the 19th of February to the 6th of March. Plans are to be mainly on the 80, 40, 20 and 17m bands. QSL via eQSL or direct to EA5GL.

A group of operators will be on the air as KP3RE from Culebra Island, NA-249, between the 22nd and 24th of February. They will operate SSB, CW and FT8 Fox & Hound mode on the 80 to 10m bands. QSL for this operation is via EA5GL.

Shabu, M0KRI is visiting Burundi until the 26th of February. He has been issued with the callsign 9U4RI and plans to operate on the 40 to 10m bands using SSB and CW. QSL via Club Log OQRS.

A group of mainly German operators will be active from Kanton Island in Central Kiribati until the 5th of March. Their callsign will be T31EU and they will be on the 10 to 160m bands using CW, SSB, RTTY and FT8. QSL via Club Log OQRS.

Alan, G4DJX will be on the air as C5DX until the 23rd of February from the Gambia while here with a group of students. Activity will be in his spare time on the 40 to 10m band using only CW. QSL direct to home call.

Philip, HB9HFD will be active as D44TAQ from Sao Vicente, IOTA AF-086, in the Cape Verde islands from the 17th to the 22nd of February. Activity will be on the 40 to 10m bands using various digital modes. QSL via Logbook of The World.

Now the special event news

Members of Radio Club F6KMB will be active as TM6C until the 24th of March during the traditional Dunkirk Carnival. QSL via F6KMB.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that UK special event stations must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

The ARRL International DX contest ends its 48 hour run at 2459UTC today, the 17th. Using CW only on the 1.8 to 28MHz bands, the exchange is signal report and transmit power. American and Canadian stations will also send their State or Province details.

On Tuesday the 1.3GHz UK Activity Contest runs from 2000 to 2230UTC. Then on Thursday it’s the 70MHz UK Activity Contest, also from 2000 to 2230UTC. Both contests use all modes and the same exchange of signal report, serial number and locator.

Next Sunday, the 24th, the First 70MHz Cumulative Contest runs from 1000 to 1200UTC. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

The CW World Wide 160m DX contest runs for 48 hours from 2200UTC on the 22nd to 2200UTC on the 24th. Using SSB on the 1.8MHz band only, the exchange is signal report and CQ Zone, which for the UK is 14. American and Canadian stations will also send their State or Province.

The REF Contest runs from 0600UTC on the 23rd to 1800UTC on the 24th. Using SSB only on the 3,5 to 28MHz bands the exchange is signal report and serial number with French stations sending their Department Number or overseas prefix.

Now the propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 15th of February.

We had another spotless week as the Sun continued its decline into solar minimum. Geomagnetic conditions were varied with the beginning of week seeing the Kp index hitting one and two. But this didn’t last due to ongoing coronal hole activity, which saw the Kp index climb to three and four by Wednesday the 13th and Thursday the 14th.

To recap, coronal holes are lower energy areas on the Sun with open magnetic field lines. This allows the solar wind to flow out towards Earth. If the plasma’s ‘frozen in’ or embedded magnetic field has a south-facing component it is more likely to couple with the Earth’s, allowing the charged particles to enter the magnetotail. A magnetic recombination event can then see them accelerated back to the Earth’s magnetic poles, resulting in auroral displays and depressed maximum useable frequencies.

Coronal holes appear dark when the Sun is photographed in extreme ultraviolet light. Look for the images marked AIA 211 from the Solar Dynamics Observatory (or SDO) at solarham.com.

Next week NOAA predicts a solar flux index of around 72 with unsettled geomagnetic conditions around the 18th, 20th and 21st, due to yet more coronal hole activity.

Propquest.co.uk shows that the unsettled geomagnetic conditions can impact the critical frequency, which was topping out at around 4.5 to 5MHz during daylight at times. This means that 60 metres or the 5MHz band may struggle a little with NVIS, or near-local, signals.

Eighty metres may also struggle with close-in signals after dark as the critical frequency struggles around the 3-3.5MHz mark. The good news is that this should improve as the month moves on, which will no doubt be welcomed by participants taking part in the RSGB 80m Club Championships.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

The Es'hailSat 2 transponders have gone live and the 10GHz narrow-band downlink is at least as strong as expected using a satellite LNB and a 60cm dish. The 2.4GHz uplink is really sensitive with easy access via a second feed on the same dish, a small Yagi or patch antenna and a few Watts. More in the main news about this.

Back on Earth, the large high has done well with enhanced Tropo conditions during last week, and although the theme of high pressure continues into next week there is one subtle difference – it's simply where the air over the country is coming from.

Recent air flow has been from the Atlantic down to the southwest of the British Isles, and as a result, it contains plenty of moisture. This means more cloud than is ideal, but the moist layer of cloud provides a great contrast to the dry air above the temperature inversion at the top of the cloud layer. This is what gives the Tropo conditions, since moisture is a big player in the value of the refractive index of the air and changes of the index are what produces the ducting.

As we move into next week, the flow of air round the high is coming from across the continent, so it will be drier and therefore may not be so useful for maintaining Tropo. At the very least, we should expect Tropo conditions to be more variable, despite the high pressure remaining in control.

Moon declination peaked yesterday and with perigee tomorrow it's another good week for EME. Peak Moon elevation is around midnight, moving into the early hours as the week progresses.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for February 10th 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 10th February 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • New IOTA being activated for first time

  • Train the Trainers in Cambridgeshire

  • Next weekend it’s Thinking Day on the Air

 

A new Islands on the Air island, Inakari Island, EU192, is being activated by a small international team for the first time. It will be on the air until Monday the 11th of February at 0600UTC. Kataja/Inakari Island was added to the official IOTA list last year. Martti, OH2BH; Nigel, G3TXF; Niko, OH2GEK and Gerben, PG5M, will be travelling by snowmobile several kilometres over the frozen surface of Bothnian Bay to set up camp on the Finnish part of Inakari Island, where they will use an abandoned fisherman’s refuge. The Island is part of the Bothnian Bay National Park. The team will run two stations simultaneously on 80, 40, 30, 20, 17 and 15 metres using CW and SSB. The callsign to look for is OH10X. QSL via PG5M using Club Log.

A Train the Trainers course is being organised and hosted by Huntingdon Amateur Radio Society for the 30th of March. It will take place in Buckden, St Neots, Cambridgeshire. If you wish to reserve a place then please contact the organiser, David Howlett, by email to secretary@hunts-hams.co.uk He will be able to give you further details and take your booking.

Thinking Day on the Air takes place next weekend, the 16th and 17th of February. A list of known stations is displayed on the Station List page of the website www.guides-on-the-air.co.uk Currently, as well as UK stations, Guides and Scouts are taking part from Canada, USA, and the Netherlands. Please send in station details via the website or to lizowl@gmail.com If you hear these stations on the air, please give the young people taking part plenty of good contacts.

CQ Magazine has announced that nominations for the CQ Contest Hall of Fame are being accepted until the first of March. Individuals, clubs, and national organisations may submit nominations. Nominations should clearly indicate that they are for the Contest Hall of Fame and detail the reasons and basis for the nomination, which may be found at www.cq-amateur-radio.com Email submission is preferred, with a subject line of Contest Hall of Fame, to W2VU@cq-amateur-radio.com,

National Centers for Environmental Information scientists have updated the world magnetic model mid-cycle, as Earth’s northern magnetic pole has begun shifting quickly away from the Canadian Arctic and toward Siberia, an NCEI report said this week. The new model more accurately represents the change of the magnetic field since 2015. The alteration could have an impact on government, industry and consumer electronics. To read the full report, go to tinyurl.com/y8abnjag

The UK Six Metre Group is looking for a Membership Secretary. They say that the only qualifications are a thorough approach, good IT skills because their membership database is built using Microsoft Access, and the time to give the job regular attention. Plus, of course, a keen interest in the 6 metre bands! If you think you might be interested in getting involved, please get in touch by email to chairman@uksmg.org

Region 1 of the IARU has a Youth Contest Program where young people have the opportunity to take part in a contest from one of the top contest stations in the Region. So far, 9A1A, ES9C and 4O3A are signed up to support young amateurs, alongside LX7I, LZ9W, OZ5E and DP9A. An application form and more details can be found at www.ham-yota.com

This year’s RSGB Club of the Year competition has just one category for entrants and entries must be received by the 28th of February, so there’s still time to take part. See www.rsgb.org/main/clubs/national-club-of-the-year/ The RSGB would like to thank Waters & Stanton for their continue sponsorship of this competition.

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

Today, the 10th, the Harwell Radio & Electronics Rally will take place at Didcot Leisure Centre, Mereland Road, Didcot, Oxon, OX11 8AY, just 3 miles from Milton Interchange on the A34. Doors open at 10am and admittance is £3, with under 12s free. There will be traders, Special Interest Groups and an RSGB Bookstand. Refreshments will be available all day. Talk in is on 145.550MHz, using G3PIA. Details from Ann, G8NVI, by email to rally@g3pia.net

Next Sunday, the 17th, the Radioactive Rally takes place at Nantwich Civic Hall, Cheshire CW5 5DG. The venue has free car parking and the doors open at 10.30am. There will be a Bring & Buy, as well as traders and RSGB book stall. Catering is provided on site. Contact Stuart Jackson on 07880 732 534.

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 about four months in advance for RadCom.

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

Shabu, M0KRI will be on the air from Burundi between the 15th and the 26th of February. He will operate CW, SSB and PSK31 on the 40 to 10m bands. QSL via Logbook of The World or direct to M0KRI; logsearch on Club Log. Details are under the callsign 9U4RI on QRZ.com

Tom, K8BKM will be active as TO8T from Martinique, IOTA reference NA-107, between the 12th and the 19th of February, including an entry in the ARRL DX CW Contest. QSL via Logbook of The World, Club Log or direct to K8BKM.

Makoto, JI5RPT will be on the air as JD1BLY from AS-031 in Ogasawara between the 15th and 17th of February. He will operate CW, SSB and digital modes on all bands including 630m JT9. QSL via his home call, direct or bureau; Log Search on Club Log.

Jim, WB2TJO will be active as 3D2JS from Taveuni Island, OC-016, in Fiji until the 10th of March. He operates mainly CW. QSL direct to his home callsign.

Armin, DK9PY will be active as FY/DK9PY from French Guiana until the 17th of February. He will operate CW only on various bands, and will participate in the ARRL DX CW Contest. QSL via his home callsign.

Now the special event news

HS55RAST is active until the 31st of March in celebration of the 55th anniversary of the Radio Amateur Society of Thailand. QSL via HS5NMF.

ZW85LABRE will be active until the 31st of March to celebrate the 85th anniversary of Brazil's IARU member society.

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that UK special event stations must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

The CW WorldWide WPX RTTY contest ends its 48 hour run at 2359UTC today, the 10th. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

The PACC Contest ends its 24 hour run at 1200UTC today, the 10th. Using CW and SSB on the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number, with PA stations sending their Province too.

On Tuesday the 432MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 1955UTC, using FM only. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 432MHz UK Activity Contest from 2000 to 2230UTC. The exchange for both contests is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Wednesday the 80m Club Championships runs from 2000 to 2130UTC. It’s the data leg and the exchange is signal report and serial number.

On Thursday the 50MHz Machine Generated Mode Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 1955UTC, using MGM only the exchange is signal report and 4 character Locator. It is immediately followed by the all-mode 50MHz UK Activity Contest from 2000 to 2230UTC. The exchange for this contest is signal report, serial number and locator.

Next weekend the ARRL International DX contest takes place for 48 hours between 0000UTC on the 16th to 2459UTC on the 17th. Using CW only on the 1.8 to 28MHz bands, the exchange is signal report and transmit power. American and Canadian stations will also send their State or Province details.

Now the propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 8th of February.

Matter from a solar coronal hole pushed the Kp index to five in the early hours of Friday the 1st, eventually resulting in much reduced maximum usable frequencies as the ionosphere was depleted. Signals on Saturday the 2nd were noticeably poorer, with even 14MHz struggling. There were also reports of very visible aurora around the Arctic Circle. But the ionosphere recovered quite quickly and, as predicted, the rest of the week was much better.

There were some other HF highlights last week. Chris, G4IFX reported that New Zealand has been a regular on 5MHz FT8 on the long path in the mornings. Predtest shows that a path is currently possible, peaking at around 7am. Speaking of FT8, don’t ignore the higher bands, as 21 and even 28MHz often shows signs of life, with numerous European stations in particular being logged on 21MHz. The low bands also still continue to deliver results, Robert, G4TUK reports working Jeffrey, PJ2ND in Curacao and Ed, P49X in Aruba on 80 metres CW. Roger, G3LDI also worked numerous VK, ZL and W stations in the FOC Marathon on 80 and 40 metres. Make the most of 80m as the nights are slowly getting shorter!

Looking ahead, NOAA predicts that the solar flux index will remain around 71-72 over the next week. Uncharacteristically, geomagnetic conditions are predicted to be relatively quiet over the next seven days with a Kp index of two. This means that this could be a reasonable weak for HF propagation, within the limitations of a very low solar flux index.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

After a very stormy end to last week with gales and potential antenna damage, you will be relieved to hear that it's looking like a much quieter week to come. From Monday the pressure will start to rise and will soon establish an area of high pressure over the British Isles, which will then slowly drift east to affect much of the continent and Scandinavia. The structure of the likely inversions is such that the western side of the UK and Ireland will enjoy the stronger Tropo, but is likely to affect paths in the east as well, although these may be negatively influenced by colder dry air from northern Europe later in the week. Overall, the Tropo prospects look better generally than during the last two weeks or so.

With positive Moon declination reaching its peak next Saturday it's a good week for EME, with long Moon windows and falling path losses as the week progresses.

With the announcement that the Es’hailSat2 transponders should go live this month, we wait with bated breath for a chance to work via amateur radio’s first geostationary satellite. The AMSAT website says that the 10GHz narrow-band downlink should be receivable with a satellite LNB and a 75cm dish. The 2.4GHz uplink should be sensitive to around five watts to the same size dish with a suitable feed.

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

RSGB GB2RS News Bulletin for February 3rd 2019.

Posted by gb2rs in Ham Radio, RSGB, GB2RS

GB2RS NEWS

Sunday 3rd February 2019

 

The news headlines:

  • Enter Club of the Year

  • 50 years of Newsreading

  • Nominate for CWops Award

 

This year’s RSGB Club of the Year competition has just one category for entrants. As well as being open to clubs of all sizes, entries are welcome from all RSGB affiliated groups. The theme is ‘Meeting RSGB Strategy 2022’. Entries must be received by the 28th of February, so there’s still time to put in an entry. Clubs should read the rules at www.rsgb.org/main/clubs/national-club-of-the-year/ and send entries to their Regional Representative. The RSGB would like to thank Waters & Stanton for their continue sponsorship of this competition.

Victor Gracey, GI3WEM is stepping down as one of the GB2RS newsreaders for Northern Ireland after around 50 years of news reading. The RSGB would like to thank Victor for his service to his fellow amateurs and wish him well in his retirement. The RSGB is therefore looking to finds a replacement news reader in the area as soon as possible. Grant Smith, MI0AWL will continue as a back-up reader when necessary. If you are interested in this volunteer role, please contact the GB2RS Manager Ken Hatton, G3VBA, by email to gb2rs.manager@rsgb.org.uk

CWops is now accepting nominations for the CWops Award for Advancing the Art of CW. The purpose of the award is to recognise individuals, groups, or organisations that have made the greatest contribution or contributions toward advancing the art or practice of radio communications by Morse code. Anyone can make a nomination and it should be emailed to awards@cwops.org with a copy to secretary@cwops.org. In order to be considered, a nomination must be received by the 1st of March. Details of what to include in your nominations can be found at https://cwops.org/

The RSGB’s EMC committee has updated its advice leaflet number 15 on VDSL Interference. This leaflet explains how to recognise VDSL interference and summarises the measures that people have found that helped to reduce the interference. It must be emphasised that these are things you can try and they are not guaranteed to eliminate the problem at all locations. Indeed in some locations none of these suggestions reduce the problem significantly. It can be found via the EMC publications page on the RSGB website or directly at http://rsgb.org/emcleaflet15 and inks to other EMCC publications on VDSL are also included.

There is still time to organise a Thinking Day on the Air station, which takes place over the weekend of the 16th and 17th of February. Currently, as well as UK stations, Guides and Scouts are taking part from Canada, USA, and the Netherlands. A list of known stations is displayed on the Station List page of the website, www.guides-on-the-air.co.uk

Six News 138 is now available for UK Six Metre Group members to download from their website. It contains forty seven pages of news and comment dedicated to 6m. Get it from www.uksmg.org

One area where the IARU and RSGB volunteers have been active is regarding concerns from Wireless Power Transmission, or WPT. The latest development is the recent approval and publication of CEPT ECC Report-289 on high power WPT for electric vehicles, EV. Following a major effort and numerous contributions to CEPT meetings, this has significant content regarding amateur radio and concerns on spurious emissions. Comments by IARU Region 1, RSGB and Ofcom were included during the final consultation stage. The report is a key element in ongoing work for WRC-19 Agenda Item 9.1.6 on WPT-EV. It can be downloaded, along with many other CEPT documents, from www.ecodocdb.dk/document/category/ECC_Reports

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

Today, the 3rd of February, the 35th SEARS Canvey Radio & Electronics Rally will be held at its new venue, Cornelius Vermuyden School, Dinant Avenue, Canvey Island, Essex SS8 9QS. Admission is £3 and doors open at 10am, or fifteen minutes earlier for disabled visitors. There is free car parking and easy, level ground floor access to two large halls. Tea, coffee, soft drinks and bacon butties will be available. There will be radio, computing and electronics traders and special interest groups. More details via email to tony@tonystreet.net.

If you are fortunate enough to be heading to Florida on holiday in the next week, you may be interest to know that the 73rd Orlando HamCation runs from the 8th to the 10th of February. Head for the Central Florida Fairgrounds and Expo Park, 4603 West Colonial Drive, Orlando, Florida 32808, USA. There will be over 150 commercial sellers, over 200 swap table vendors and the largest tailgate area in the southeastern US. For details see www.hamcation.com

Next Sunday, the 10th, the Harwell Radio & Electronics Rally will take place at Didcot Leisure Centre, Mereland Road, Didcot, Oxon, OX11 8AY, just 3 miles from Milton Interchange on A34. Doors open at 10am and admittance is £3, with under 12s free. There will be traders, Special Interest Groups and an RSGB Bookstand. Refreshments will be available all day. Talk in is on 145.550MHz, using G3PIA. Details from Ann, G8NVI by email to rally@g3pia.net

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 about four months in advance for RadCom.

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

PJ4/WW4LL and PJ4/NN9DD will be active from Bonaire, IOTA reference SA-006, between the 4th and 10th of February. They will operate FT8, RTTY and SSB on all bands, and will participate in the CQ WPX RTTY Contest on the 9th and 10th as PJ4Z. QSLs via Logbook of The World or K4BAI.

Mike, W1USN and Bob, AA1M will be active as /TI5 from Atenas in Costa Rica until the 13th of February. They will operate CW, SSB, some digital modes and possibly a few of the FM satellites. QSLs via Logbook of The World or via their home callsigns, either direct or via the bureau.

Bogdan, SP2FUD as and Zen, SP2GCJ will be active as XV9FUD and XV9ZT respectively from Vietnam between the 4th and the 18th of February. They will operate CW, SSB and digital modes on the 40 to 12m bands. QSLs via Logbook of The World, Club Log’s OQRS, or via SP2GCJ.

A three-man team will operate from Manus Island, OC-025, in Papua New Guinea as P29VCX until the 5th of February. This will be followed by P29NI from Daru Island, IOTA OC-153, from the 6th to the 11th of February. QSL requests in each case should be sent directly to SM6CVX.

Now the special event news

Look for TM16AAW to be on air from the 10th to the 24th of February to celebrate the 16th Antarctic Activity Week. François, F8DVD will be operational from Mâcon in the east part of France using the 10 to 40m bands, mostly SSB. All info on this event on can be found on QRZ.com.

ARI Fidenza and the Guglielmo Marconi Foundation are running an award scheme based major Italian pioneers and their discoveries in wireless and radio technology. Running throughout the year, each month is dedicated to a specific scientist. February is celebrating Augusto Righi. Further details can be found at www.arifidenza.it

Please send special event details to radcom@rsgb.org.uk, as early as possible, for free publicity on GB2RS, in RadCom and online. Remember that UK special event stations must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known.

Now the contest news

Today, the 3rd of February, the 432MHz AFS contest runs from 0900 to 1300UTC. Using all modes, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Monday the 80m Club Championships run from 2000 to 2130UTC. It’s the SSB leg and the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

On Tuesday the 144MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1900 to 1955UTC. Using FM only, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator. Running concurrently is the 144MHz Machine Generated Mode Activity Contest, which has an exchange of signal report and 4-character locator. These contests are immediately followed by the all-mode 144MHz UK Activity Contest, which runs from 2000 to 2230UTC. 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.

On Saturday the 9th, the first 1.8MHz contest takes place from 1900 to 2300UTC. Using CW only, the exchange is signal report, serial number and your District.

Next weekend sees two contests. The CW WorldWide WPX RTTY contest runs for 48 hours from 0000UTC on the 9th to 2359UTC on the 10th. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number.

The PACC Contest runs for 24 hours from 1200UTC on the 9th to 1200UTC on the 10th. Using CW and SSB on the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and serial number, with PA stations sending their Province too.

Now the propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 1st of February.

Last week was a mixed bag in terms of HF propagation. The solar flux index was a little higher at 74, helped by a sunspot group that has now rotated out of view. Geomagnetic conditions were very settled in the first half of the week with the Kp index often sitting at zero. It seems quite a while since the index was this low.

But that couldn’t last as a very large elongated coronal hole on the Sun’s equator threatened the Earth with an enhanced solar wind. This eventually came to fruition on Thursday afternoon, pushing the Kp index to three at first and then five overnight, bringing minor G1 geomagnetic storming at higher latitudes. At the time of writing this looks like it is likely to bring continued unsettled HF conditions across the weekend, complete with depressed maximum useable frequencies.

NOAA predicts a solar flux index around 72 next week as the solar minimum continues. The good news is that once the effects of this coronal hole disappear we can expect more settled geomagnetic conditions and a return to seasonal averages when it comes to maximum usable frequencies.

The low bands are still at their optimum, with 160, 80 and 40m providing good propagation opportunities. Sixty metres, or the 5MHz band, is also providing inter-G and European contacts during the day, as the critical frequency is often sufficient to support propagation on the band.

Higher up, 20 metres is still the best band for reliable DX, although it tends to open late and close early at the moment, with occasional openings on 17m and perhaps even 15m.

And now the VHF and up propagation news.

It’s looking like a week to be getting on with those hardware and software projects in the warmth of the workshop while keeping an eye on the VHF DX clusters. Cold and unsettled would describe the first part of the week, with limited options for Tropo due to some wintry areas of low pressure. There are signs of a weak ridge of high pressure to the south of Britain at the start of the week, but this offers only marginal chances for paths to the south from southern England into the continent and Spain.

With the solar conditions, the weekend is looking likely to offer some chances of aurora due to the large coronal hole, so even if Tropo is not a strong contender, there are still some possible interests for VHF ops. For GHz bands enthusiasts, the snow showers early on may provide some rain scatter.

The Moon is at apogee on Tuesday and declination is negative, but rising all week. Moon windows will lengthen as the week progresses, but path losses will be at their highest.

One minor meteor shower occurs on the 8th, the Alpha Centaurids, but with a Zenithal Houry Rate of just six it’s not really a significant one for meteor scatter operation.

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

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