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IRTS Radio News Bulletin Sunday May 20th 2001

IRTS Annual General Meeting

The Annual General Meeting of the Irish Radio Transmitters Society will be held at the Lakeside Hotel, Ballykeeran, Athlone on Saturday May the 26th at 1430. The venue is just outside Athlone on the Cavan Road. Full catering facilities will be available. There will not be a trade show associated with the AGM this year.

Nominations are still being sought for the following awards: Pat Conway Cup, Arup Cup and the Collins Cup. These are awarded for service to the Society or the hobby. Send your nominations to Peter Grant EI4HX at QTHR. Entries for the construction awards will be accepted up to 1400 on the day.

Six Metre Awards

There is some confusion about the year 2000 six metre activity award. Points will be awarded as follows, 1 point per each unique QSO. Multiplied by the total number of locator squares worked (first four characters only). And again Multiplied by the number of DXCC countries worked. Completed logs with cover sheets should be sent to the contest manager John McDonnell EI6IR at Phone 094-60127.

Internet Repeater Linking Project

A new project is in place linking amateur radio repeaters to the internet. The software will have a few basic services in that users will be able to use it on a PC connected to the internet with an easy to use interface,showing which stations are active and where they are located. Mobiles will have control over the link and be able to switch links quickly. This will also incorporate security features to enable logout, callsign verification and blacklist registration of illegal stations.

iLINK was born in MAY 2001 and will allow access to the repeaters from the internet. The system is expanding daily and the first public release is due shortly. For more information visit

IATV and Microwave Convention

Due to the foot and mouth situation, the Irish Amateur Television club in association with the Microwave Society of Ireland will unfortunately not be able to hold their second annual convention as planned. This event will be deferred to a later date, possibly around September. The new date for this event, when it is scheduled, will be announced in the radio news. The e-mail address of the Irish Amateur Television Club is

South Dublin Radio Club

Congratulations to SDR member Kevin Craig EI3FCB, who has recently passed the Morse Test and is now awaiting his new call.

Space News

Dennis Tito, KG6FZX and two companion Russian Cosmonauts landed on May 5th at 05:41 UTC near Astana, Kazakstan. On landing, the radio amateur space traveller was quoted as saying his stay on the International Space Station was a personal experience that went well beyond his dreams.

The world’s first space tourist and his fellow flyers Talgat Musabayev and Yuri Baturin were each given an apple. The apple is a national symbol in Kazakhstan and is traditionally presented to cosmonauts returning from space.

During his visit, KG6FZX was hosted by Russian Commander Yury Usachev, UA9AD along with US astronauts Susan Helms, KC7NHZ, and Jim Voss.

Tito's remarks regarding the importance of ham radio to him were made at a press conference in Russia after his return from the International Space Station. Several terrestrial radio amateurs report having spoken to Tito while he was aboard the ISS where he operated using the NA1SS callsign. A QSL card for the ISS is currently being designed.

AMSAT AO-40 Update

The first successful transponder test of the AMSAT Oscar 40 satellite has taken place. On Saturday, the 28th of April the satellite's 70 and 23 centimetre receiver passbands were connected to the 13-centimetre transmitter downlink and were briefly checked out by command stations G3RUH and W4SM, using PSK,CW, and SSB signals for the uplink. The tests worked extremely well. Peter DB2OS, President of AMSAT-DL, commented on behalf of the AO-40 Command Team that, "This prepares the way with confidence for transponder operation very soon". The transponder has been opened again for experimental use and there are reports that several stations made successful QSO’s using the satellite. If you want to try AMSAT OSCAR 40, the uplink frequencies are 435.550 to 435.800 MHz and 1269.250 to 1269.500 MHz. The downlink passband is 2401.225 to 2401.475 MHz. The transponders are inverting, so a downward change in uplink frequency will result in an upward frequency shift in the downlink.

AMSAT-UK has announced a contest to develop a new logo for the AMSAT Oscar 40 satellite. The competition is open to all and requires the design of a badge that can be employed as a visual tag for Oscar 40 in print and on web sites etc. Entries should be submitted by e-mail in GIF or J-PEG format to The closing date of the competition is July 15th, 2001.

PW QRP Contest Cancelled

The PW QRP contest scheduled for June 2001 has been cancelled. Restrictions on access to farmland and countryside areas in response to the foot and mouth disease outbreak means that many portable locations in the UK cannot currently be used. Practical Wireless expresses regret at having to take this step, but it is an inevitable consequence of the restrictions imposed to prevent the spread of foot and mouth disease.

Items for inclusion in Echo Ireland should be forwarded to Dave Moore EI4BZ at 021-4353853 in the evenings or at 021-4823172 during office hours. Items can be submitted to Dave by e-mail at and you can fax him at 021-4354113.

Items for inclusion in the Radio News should be forwarded to Mark Wall EI7IS at QTHR or via e-mail to or Items can also be sent to Mark over the phone at 087-6302026.

News can also be submitted via e-mail to for automatic forwarding to both news services.


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