RSGB - GB2RS News for Sunday 28th October

Oct 26 15:20 [raw]

GB2RS NEWS Sunday 28th October 2018 The news headlines: • NRC opening 7 days a week • Register for GB18YOTA • Contesting consultation ends The RSGB is pleased to announce that the RSGB’s National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park will now be open seven days a week, starting from this week. Thanks to all the volunteers that make this possible. RSGB Members can download a free admission voucher to Bletchley Park from the RSGB website. Last call for applications to host GB18YOTA during YOTA Month this December has been extended to Sunday the 4th of November. Clubs, groups and individuals from all over the country are invited to set up stations and host the callsign over the 31 days of December. Please see for further information and application details. The RSGB VHF Contesting Consultation closes at midnight tonight, the 29th of October. Go to to take part in the survey. International delegates were pleased to learn that an Amateur Radio on the International Space Station plan is under consideration by NASA’s Deep Space Gateway program. NASA Gateway Utilization Manager informed those attending the annual ARISS International in-person meeting that ARISS is the only non-commercial entity whose ideas are under study by the program. The ARISS plan focuses on amateur radio communication, including optical communication channels, as well as equipment development, team cooperation, education and public outreach. Mexico’s IARU member-society is asking radio amateurs to avoid 7.060, 7.130 and 14.120MHz, where hurricane emergency nets are operating in Spanish. Mexico’s National Emergency Net activated the nets earlier this week. Also, storm Yutu is said to be the strongest storm on record to hit the Northern Mariana Islands, home to about 55,000 people. Four ARRL HF/VHF Ham Aid kits in Guam are available for use in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. Another seven kits are positioned in Hawaii. Radio amateurs in Guam and Hawaii are attempting to get in touch with amateurs who can assist on Saipan. Amateur radio teams that had planned to operate in the CQ World Wide DX SSB Contest from Saipan this weekend have cancelled their trips. UKube-1, the UK Space Agency’s first CubeSat, was launched into space in July 2014. It completed its successful nominal mission fourteen months later in September 2015. Since that date, the FUNcube-based payload has continued to provide a transponder for use by radio amateurs and, additionally, 30+ channels of real time telemetry for STEM outreach and for use by schools and colleges. These downlinks have operated continuously on the 145MHz band and more than 450 stations have supported this ongoing activity. They have uplinked the telemetry data to the FUNcube Data Warehouse, where it is stored and available for research. Just before midnight on Thursday the 18th of October, the Warehouse received a data frame from KB6LTY in California. This is the last record of signals being received from the spacecraft and since that date, careful observations have failed to detect any signals from either of the transmitters carried by the spacecraft. An early analysis of the last telemetry received has not shown any obvious anomalies, but this work continues. Although it is obviously sad for both the amateur and educational worlds to lose such a valuable resource, both AO73-FUNcube 1 and EO88-Nayif 1 continue to operate nominally and JY1SAT and ESEO are expected to launch before the end of 2018. Two lectures from the RSGB’s 2018 Convention are now available for RSGB Members to view on the RSGB website. Neil Smith, G4DBN speaks on FT8 Performance Secrets and William Eustace, M0WJE on Microwave Engineering – From Death Rays to Dinner. These join a wide selection of videos on the RSGB website. Go to and then select RSGB Convention Lectures. ---- And now for the details of rallies and events for the coming week On the 3rd of November, the VERON Ham Radio Convention takes place in The Netherlands. Open from 9.30am to 5pm, entry is €9 and on-site car parking is €5. Full details, in English, can be found at The West London Radio & Electronics Show, otherwise known as the Kempton Rally, that was scheduled for the 4th of November has been cancelled. The Bushvalley Amateur Radio Club annual radio rally takes place on the 4th of November at the United Services Club, 8 Roe Mill Road, Limavady, Co Londonderry BT49 9DF. Doors open from 11am to 4pm with disabled visitors gaining access at 10.50am. Admittance is £3. There will be an auction, trade stands, a Bring & Buy, RSGB Book Stall and Special Interest Groups. A talk-in station will be on the air. Catering is available on site. Contact Jason Smyth, MI3UIW, 07793 314 313 for more details. To get your event into RadCom and GB2RS, please send details as early as possible to – we need to know at least three to four months in advance to get your information into RadCom. ---- And now the DX news from 425 DX News and other sources Janusz, SP9FIH will be active again as E44WE from Palestine until the 11th of November, including a single-band entry on 20m in the CQ WW DX SSB Contest. He will operate SSB, some RTTY and FT8 on the 20, 17 and 15m bands, and possibly on 160m. QSL via Club Log's OQRS, or via his home callsign. Lee, DS4NMJ is active as DT8A from the King Sejong Station on King George Island, South Shetlands, IOTA reference AN-010, until the 18th of December. He operates FT8, CW and SSB on the 40, 20, 17, 15 and 12m bands. QSL via HL2FDW and Logbook of the World. Peter, DC0KK will be active as 4S7KKG from Sri Lanka, AS-003, from the 1st of November to the 1st of April 2019. He operates mainly CW and digital modes. QSL via his home callsign, either direct or via the bureau and Logbook of The World; OQRS on Club Log. Madhu, VU3NPI and others will be active AT4DK from Pamban Island, AS-173, on the 3rd and 4th of November. The team plans to operate SSB, CW and FT8 on the 80 to 10m bands. QSL via the operator’s instructions. ---- Now the special event news The HMS Belfast Radio Group has obtained the special callsign GB100ARM to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Armistice that ended fighting in World War I on the 11th of November 1918. The callsign will be active from the 1st to the 28th of November 2018 from the Bridge Wireless Office onboard HMS Belfast. QSL details are available on or via the group’s QSL manager, Marc Litchman, G0TOC, via email to During the month of November, Chippenham & District ARC will be active with the special callsign GB1WWI to commemorate the ending of World War 1. Activity will take place from the Chippenham & District ARC’s new QTH at Kington Langley Village Hall. Special callsign TM5PAX will be active on all bands and modes until the 11th of November for the 100th anniversary of the Armistice. QSL via F5JSQ, Logbook of The World and eQSL. Commemorating the 100th anniversary of the battle that marked the end of World War I on the Italian Front, II3BVV will be on the air until the 4th of November. Main activity will be on the 80, 40 and 20m bands, using SSB, CW and digital modes. All QSOs will be confirmed automatically via the bureau and eQSL. We are very happy to publicise your event on GB2RS, in RadCom and on the RSGB website. Please send details to as early as possible. One condition for getting a UK special event callsign is that the station must be open to the public, so our free publicity can help make your efforts more widely known. ---- Now the contest news The CQ WorldWide DX SSB contest ends its 48 hour run at 2359UTC today, the 28th. Using the 1.8 to 28MHz contest bands, the exchange is signal report and your Zone, which for the UK is 14. On Wednesday the UK EI Contest Club 80m event runs from 2000 to 2100UTC using CW only. The exchange is your 4 character Locator, for example IO85. Next weekend it’s the Marconi CW Contest on 2m from 1400UTC on the 3rd to 1400UTC on the 4th. Using the 144MHz band only, the exchange is signal report, serial number and locator. ---- Now the radio propagation report, compiled by G0KYA, G3YLA and G4BAO on Friday the 26th of October. We were blessed with quieter geomagnetic conditions this week. And despite the solar flux index only being around 70, a more settled ionosphere meant there was DX to be had. The 6G’s VK9XG DXpedition to Christmas Island off the north-west of Australia has been worked on many bands from the UK, including 160 and 80m. As well as RTTY, SSB and CW, it is also running FT8 as the primary data mode in ‘fox and hound’ configuration, so there is a chance of a contact for lesser-equipped stations too. VP6D on Ducie Island, east of Pitcairn Island, is also active and it too is using FT8 as well as other modes. So generally, HF conditions have been better this week, helped too by the more advantageous Autumnal conditions. Next week NOAA predicts the solar flux index will be pegged at 68. Geomagnetic conditions may be unsettled on Monday the 29th due to a small coronal hole, but the rest of the week should be better with a maximum K index of 2. Make the most of the better conditions as the prediction is that we are in for a geomagnetic disturbance across the weekend of the 3rd of November, and into the beginning of the following week, due to recurrent coronal hole activity on the Sun. This is likely to be due to the return of a coronal hole that pushed the K index up to five on the 7th of October, and which has taken around 27 days to rotate back into view. And don’t forget that this weekend is the SSB leg of the CQ Worldwide contest, when there will be many high-powered and well-equipped stations on the band. ---- And now the VHF and up propagation news. After some very good tropo for those in the south and west of the UK last week, the weather is changing. British Summer Time has ended and we see a cold northerly airstream flooding down across the country. This is also a signal that the high-pressure system and its tropo of last week are gone, now replaced by windy, showery-type weather. In terms of propagation weather, there could be some useful rain scatter on the microwave bands as heavy showers develop in some coastal regions. Some models do suggest that there may be a hint of high pressure later in the week, but it’s not looking like a very strong contender. Tropo chances could improve though, as the week progresses. While it will be a quiet week for weather-related propagation, there’s always aircraft scatter on the microwave bands to keep the DX interesting. The digimode JT9F Fast seems to be the best for these bands if fast CW or repetitively chanting callsigns and reports on SSB is not your thing. The Moon reaches maximum declination on Monday and perigee on Wednesday with lowest path losses meaning a good week for EME. There are no meteor showers this week, so look for the usual enhancement around local dawn for the best meteor scatter contacts as our side of the Earth is rotating into the flux of meteoric particles. And that’s all from the propagation team this week. That's all from the GB2RS News team this week.

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