Sunday 16th April 2017
The news headlines:
Two new GB2RS readings
International Marconi Day stations
Voting for the RSGB AGM
Two new GB2RS services start later today. At 6.30pm, Mike, GD6ICR will lead with a news reading via GB3IM on the Isle of Man. In Northern Ireland at 7.30pm, the news will be read on DMR via GB3OM, GB7LY, GB7UL and GB7HB. To be able to receive the news on DMR via these repeaters, users will have to programme a new Talk Group into their radios. This new service, the first of its kind in the UK, will be receivable via these repeaters on Slot2 TG8. We are grateful to Paul, MI1AIB for agreeing to begin this service and if anyone can assist Paul, please contact Philip Hosey, the Region 8 RSGB Manager, at email@example.com for further information.
Dozens of official award stations have registered to take part in the 2017 International Marconi Day event, this year being held on the 22nd of April. The event is not a contest, but an opportunity for amateurs around the world to make point-to-point contact with historic Marconi sites. Go to www.QRZ.com/db/GB4IMD for details of the event.
The RSGB President, Nick Henwood, G3RWF would like to remind RSGB Members that if you are not planning to come to the RSGB AGM in Cardiff on the 22nd of April and have not already voted, please do so now. Online is easiest, just click the red box at http://rsgb.org/main/about-us/agm-2017. Postal votes are also available, ask for one by calling HQ on 01234 832 702. The elections are independently managed by the Electoral Reform Society and the deadline for vote receipt by the ERS is noon on the 20th of April. Don’t delay, vote today! If you are attending the AGM, the opportunity to pre-register on the RSGB website has now passed but we still look forward to seeing you on the day.
Every year on the 18th of April, radio amateurs worldwide take to the airwaves in celebration of World Amateur Radio Day. It was on that day in 1925 that the International Amateur Radio Union was formed in Paris. World Amateur Radio Day is the day when IARU Member-Societies can show our capabilities to the public and enjoy global friendship with over three million amateurs worldwide.
Following a resolution that appeared in the Panama Official Gazette of the 27th of December 2016, the National Authority for Public Services of the Republic of Panama published their 2016 National Frequency Plan that contained the WRC-15 amateur secondary allocation of 5351.5 to 5366.5kHz.
The RSGB’s third YOTA 2017 vlog has been released, featuring John Gascoigne, 2E0XLX. He is part of the Radio Scouting team at Gilwell Park, where the RSGB will be hosting the IARU YOTA 2017 event in August. Watch it via the RSGB website www.rsgb.org/yota and, while you’re there, why not take a look at all the other YOTA 2017 information and updates you’ll find in those web pages.
A new Fusion mode Node MB6IOX, number 31368, Room 4136 has been made operational by David, G0TKV near Reading. The Node is attended and not on 24/7, but will be on most evenings and weekends. The locator is IO91LM at 600ft ASL. The system has superior audio quality. It has a good bandwidth capable of carrying Text and Images.
Chertsey Radio club will be running its second virtual buildathon at the end of May or the beginning of June. They will be building a home-brew dual band Yagi antenna and diplexer to use on satellites. For full details see the club blog post at https://tinyurl.com/ms3mtv8
The RSGB response to the Ofcom consultation on regulations and proposed technical parameters in the 5 GHz band can be found on the RSGB website at https://tinyurl.com/mongfhq
And now for the details of rallies and events for the coming week
There are no rallies in the diary for the Easter weekend, the 14th to the 17th of April.
On the 23rd, the Ripon Radio Rally takes place at Hugh Ripley Hall, Ripon, North Yorkshire, HG4 2PT. Doors open to stallholders at 7.30am and to the general public at 10am. Entry is £2 on the door, under 16s are free. Enquiries can be made via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Also on the 23rd, the 33rd Yeovil QRP Convention will be held in Digby Hall, Hound Street, Sherborne, Dorset DT9 3AA. There are disabled facilities at this venue. The doors will be open between 9.30am and 3pm. There will be trade stands, a Bring & Buy, RSGB bookstall and stands for RSARS and RAFARS. A programme of talks will take place on the day. Refreshments are available on site. Details from Bob Harris by email to email@example.com
The Andover Radio Amateur Club Spring Boot Sale takes place on the 23rd of April at Wildhern Village Hall, Tangley, Andover SP11 0JE. Doors open from 10am to 4pm, with disabled visitors gaining access earlier. Admittance is £2. There are tables in the hall and outside pitches. Hot food and drinks will be available. Contact Paul, G4KZY on 07775 738 200.
If you have any rally or event information you’d like to appear in future editions of GB2RS News, in RadCom and on the RSGB website, please email full details to firstname.lastname@example.org.
And now the DX news compiled from 425 DX News and other sources
Tynemouth Amateur Radio Club is away on another IOTA trip, this time to the Isle Of Mull, EU-008, between the 21st and the 28th of April. They will be operating as GS0NWM on the 10 to 80m bands using most modes with four HF stations. In addition they will have a VHF/UHF station. Full details of the trip are already on QRZ.COM
Alexander, RX0QM is now stationed at the Russian Base on King George Island in the South Shetland Islands. He is using the callsign RI1ANB and will be on the air when time permits. The South Shetlands count as AN-010 for the Islands on the Air Award. QSLs go via EW4DX.
Helmut DJ7CF is on the air as 6Y5/DJ7CF from Greenwood, Jamaica until the 28th of April. Look for him on SSB, CW and PSK31. QSLs go via his home call.
Tony, CT1FFU will be active from Sal Island, part of the Windward Islands group, between the 18th and 25th of April with the call D4T on HF using CW, SSB and digital modes. This is IOTA reference AF-086. QSL via CT1FFU and Logbook of The World.
Dave, GM0LVI plans to operate holiday-style from Barra Island, EU-010, between the 16th and 22nd of April. QSL via his home callsign either direct or via the Bureau.
Now the special event news
Mid Ulster ARC is taking part in International Marconi Day on the 22nd from Navan Fort, 81 Kilrea Road, Armagh BT60 4LD between 8am and 5pm.
The Kerry Amateur Radio Group will participate as an Award Station in International Marconi Day on the 22nd from the site of the former Marconi Station at Ballybunnion, Co. Kerry. Operation from 0000UTC to 2359UTC is planned. Two HF SSB stations are planned for this year on the site as well as a HF data station using the callsign EI6YXQ, see qrz.com for more information.
OE17ATOM will be on the air for International Marconi Day on the 22nd from a nuclear power plant in Austria that was never put in operation. See qrz.com for full details.
The Amateur Radio Section of the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation and the Documentary Archives Radio Communication QSL Collection will operate O17M for 72 hours only, starting at 0000UTC on the 21st. This is an official International Marconi Day station and contacts on the 22nd only are valid for the IMD award. See qrz.com
GB2RAF, the permanent special event station at RAF Neatishead Air Defence Radar Museum in Norfolk will be on the air every second Saturday of the month and some Tuesdays and Thursdays until November. This station is affiliated to the Royal Air Force Amateur Radio Society and can also give out contact points for Airfields on the Air. QSL cards are available via the RSGB Bureau, RAFARS Bureau, eQSL, or SAE to Terry, G4PSH QTHR.
Now the contest news
The Worked All Britain Data Contests takes place today, the 16th of April, on the 3.5, 7.0 and 14MHz bands. There are two separate contests one for RTTY and one for PSK. Each contest is split into two parts to get optimum conditions on all three bands. The RTTY contest is from 1200 to 1400 and 1800 to 2000UTC. The PSK contest is from 1400 to 1600 and 2000 to 2200UTC. Note that club and multi-operator stations can only score points in the first of the two sessions. The exchange is signal report, serial number and WAB square. Full details are at www.worked-all-britain.org.uk
On Monday the IRTS 70cm Counties contest runs from 1200 to 1300UTC. Using FM and SSB, the exchange is signal report and serial number with EI and GI stations also giving their county. Immediately following, the IRTS 2m Counties contest runs from 1300 to 1500UTC. Using FM and SSB the exchange is signal report and serial number with EI and GI stations also giving their county
On Tuesday between 1900 and 2130UTC the 1.3GHz UK Activity Contest takes place. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
On Thursday the 70MHz FM Activity Contest runs from 1800 to 1900UTC. Using FM only the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator. Immediately following, from 1900 to 2130UTC is the 70MHz UK Activity Contest. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
Next weekend from 1200UTC on the 22nd to 1200UTC on the 23rd SP DX RTTY contest takes place. Using the 3.5 to 28MHz bands the exchange is signal report and serial number with SP stations sending their Province code too.
The UK/EI DX CW contest takes place next weekend from 1200UTC on the 22nd to 1200UTC on the 23rd. Using all HF contest bands except 160m, there are 24 hour and 12 hour sections. UK and Irish stations send a 2 letter district code as part of their exchange. These are multipliers for the rest of the world so all UK and EI contesters, including those with modest stations and antennas, will experience the fun of being a 'multiplier' for the DX in a worldwide contest. Full details at www.ukeicc.com
On Sunday the 23rd the UK Microwave Group 2nd Low Band contest runs from 1000 to 1600UTC on the 1.3 to 3.4GHz bands. Using all modes the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.
Also on Sunday the BARTG Sprint 75 will take place from 1700 to 2100UTC. Using RTTY on the 3.5 to 28MHz bands the exchange is just your serial number.
Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Thursday the 13th of April.
Last week was a mixed bag again in terms of HF propagation. While the solar flux index was stuck in the mid 70s, geomagnetic disturbances due to coronal hole effects made their mark. The K index hit four on Tuesday and brought a pre-auroral enhancement. With the critical frequency over the UK almost reaching 7MHz, this meant the maximum useable frequency over 3,000km just exceeded 21MHz for a brief spell. But by Wednesday conditions were much worse and even 14MHz was struggling to open.
Due to the Easter holiday, this report is being prepared a day early, but we'll try to give you a feel for how propagation may pan out next week.
Firstly, NOAA predicts the solar flux index will rise over the next week into the 80s and even low 90s. But as usual HF conditions will be mainly governed by geomagnetic effects.
The first half of the week may be unsettled due to a high speed solar wind stream. This may see the K index rise to five with associated auroral conditions. We may then have a little respite for the rest of the week.
Looking forward to International Marconi Day on Saturday the 22nd of April, HF conditions may be settled. But they then get much worse with NOAA predicting a K index of up to six from Sunday the 23rd onwards due to another recurrent coronal hole.
And now the VHF and up propagation news.
On the face of it, the next week looks very promising with high pressure dominating the charts in several models for the next week or so. This is quite a common feature at this time of the year and the only problem, so far as Tropo goes, is that these Spring highs can often have cold dry air near the surface under the inversions, which is generally seen as a poor contributor to an ideal Tropo event.
Mid April is when we can often expect super refraction propagation across the North Sea to start making itself felt by an increasing number of continental beacons becoming audible on the VHF, UHF and microwave bands. Warmer air blowing out across the cold sea can lead to the formation of some very strong ducts.
With EME, the early part of the week sees an early morning, waning, moon with high moon-path degradation. As the week progresses the moon will also climb higher in the sky to be visible until around lunchtime. As the moon declination improves (in the northern hemisphere) the degradation will also reduce.
Meteor shower activity will start to build towards the end of April and the Lyrid meteor shower will peak on the morning of the 22nd of April. This coincides with a weak crescent moon so it may also result in a good visual display. The Lyrids can sometimes show in higher than normal reflections, so it may be worth trying for that elusive locator.
And that’s all from the propagation team this week.