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IRTS Radio News Bulletin Sunday November 11th 2007

ComReg/IRTS Meeting Outcome

Last week’s news carried the full text of the agreed report of a very productive meeting with ComReg. Last weeks news script is available in the News Archives section of the IRTS website at Those who missed the bulletin last Sunday are advised to read this but the following are the highlights of the report;

Four 3 kHz channels at 5 MHz are being granted. These are centred on 5280, 5290, 5400 and 5405 kHz. This follows extensive contacts with the military authorities and with ComReg by the Society. The facility will be available for an initial trial period of a year and individual application is required. The power allowed will be 23 dBW (200 watts) to an antenna with not more than 0dBd gain e.g. a dipole. Some or all of these channels are also in use in the UK, Iceland, Finland, Norway, Canada and the USA. Some administrative details remain to be attended to by ComReg but it is anticipated that the first variations of licences could be issued at the end of this month or early December.

Permission for a 5 MHz beacon has been granted and a call sign and frequency is awaited.

70 MHz will become a general allocation as soon as some administrative details are attended to by ComReg. It is anticipated that these will be completed at the same time as those relating to the 5 MHz channels.

Arising from the meeting information is being collected to submit an application for increased station power for experimenters.

Certain anomalies about the acceptance of some US licences as CEPT equivalents, which arose as a result of some incorrect information being submitted by the FCC to CEPT were cleared up arising from discussions at the meeting. The US Technician, General, Extra and the old Advanced classes of licences are all now accepted as CEPT equivalents.

Theory Examination

The next theory examination for the experimenter licence will be held on Wednesday 6 February 2008 at 2pm at the ComReg Offices in Dublin. A second centre outside Dublin could be utilised if warranted by the numbers wishing to sit the examination. The fee for the exam is 50 Euro or 25 Euro for repeat candidates, full time registered students, those who are retired, unemployed or have a disability. Anyone wishing to sit the examination should send the appropriate fee to Sean Nolan EI7CD, 12 Little Meadow, Pottery Road, Dunlaoghaire, Co Dublin.

A contact phone number and an e-mail address if available should be included. Sean's address is available in the Call Book section of the IRTS website at and his e-mail address is “ei7cd at gofree dot indigo dot ie”. Also available in the Where do I Start? section of the website are Examination Notes with a sample examination paper as well as a link to the ComReg Experimenter Pages which contain some very useful information. The examination consists of a multiple choice question paper of 60 questions divided into three main sections A, B and C and the time allowed is two hours. The pass mark is 60% and a pass is required in each of the three main sections of the paper.


The World Telecommunications Conference in Geneva has completed its third week and will continue until the 16th of November. The last ten years has seen unprecedented developments in the field of radio communications. The Conference must seek to balance the conflicting demands and meet the needs of all users of the finite resource that is the radio spectrum.

There are over 3,000 delegates representing 191 Member States, 700 Sector Members and Associates of the International Telecommunications Union. The IARU has a strong team at the Conference and it is within this milieu that the team must lobby to represent the case for amateur radio to the Member Country delegations who ultimately take the decisions.

Ireland is part of a grouping of 48 European CEPT countries that have formulated European Common Positions in order to seek to negotiate from a position of strength. CEPT supports a secondary allocation at 5260 to 510 kHz for the amateur service by way of a footnote to the ITU Radio Regulations. However, news from the Conference on the 5 MHz front is not good at present. The agenda item concerned deals with a review of allocations to all services in the HF bands between 4 and 10 MHz excluding allocations in the frequency range 7.0 to 7.2 MHz i.e. the new 40-metre allocation agreed at WRC-03. With this and other exclusions the focus of the agenda item is principally on the fixed, land mobile and broadcasting services. At present there is something of an impasse on the item and we may well need to be lucky to see our expectations of a new 5 MHz band fulfilled. This scenario highlights the importance of the four channels at 5 MHz, which the Society has secured through negotiations with the military authorities and with ComReg


The AREN winter NETS will reconvene on the first and third Wednesday of each month for training purposes on 3.690Khz, with an alternative frequency of 7.099kHz at 2130Hrs local beginning 21st November. This is a members only net. Non-members may call in with reports at the end of the net when invited to do so by the Net Control Station. Full details will be circulated to members in due course.

The AREN stand at the recent Waterford rally was well received. The Demonstration included APRS and Pactor 3. One of the stations set up for the day was used to call into the IRTS 80 metre news bulletin. AREN will also be represented at the upcoming Mayo Rally.


Some good news for NVIS users was released at the weekend. See full text below. Sometimes the Critical Frequency is below 7Mhz and there is too much absorption on .5Mhz or either band to allow NVIS operation. The 5Mhz and very often will work in this situation. The other advantage is hat because these are defined channels outside the regular Amateur allocations and require a specific extension of the experimenters licence, they are largely QRM free. Good news indeed for AREN.

Mayo Rally

The Mayo Radio Rally will take place on Sunday the 18th of November in the Belmount Hotel, Knock, Co. Mayo. For more information contact Padraic Baynes, EI9JA @ QTHR.

Contest Results

The following are the results of the contests held over the summer and autumn.

The UHF/VHF Field Day Open Section was won by EI9E/P and the Restricted Section by EI3Z/P.

The SSB Field Day went to EI3Z/P.

The 2 Meters Counties (Autumn Leg) FM only section was won by EI3FFB, the High Power Fixed section byEI2JD and the High power Fixed outside EI, GI4SRQ. The Low Power Fixed section was won by EI9O, while the High Power Portable section went to EI2SBC/P. The Low Power Portable category was won by EI2GLB.

Congratulations to all the winners, and thanks to all who took part and sent in logs and check logs.

South Eastern Amateur Radio Group

On Monday the 26th of November next, Cormac EI4HQ will give a talk to SEARG about AIS (Automatic Identification System), a recently introduced radio based ship transponder technology. AIS is quickly becoming an indispensable information & safety tool at sea. Cormac will describe why AIS is interesting from a radio point of view, and he will suggest a few ways it can be of use in amateur radio applications.

Foyle and District Amateur Radio Club

Foyle & District ARC play host to GB75PW on the 15th of November, the special event station to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Practical Wireless magazine. The club has the added advantage of having the ranks of their operators joined by Rob Mannion, editor of the magazine. Operation is expected to take place on a number of HF bands and also on 2 metres. For more information visit the clubs web site on

South Dublin Radio Club

This year’s South Dublin Radio Club Christmas Party will take place on Tuesday the 11th of December. After last year’s success, the venue will remain the same; "The Morgue", Tempelogue from 8.00 p.m. until late. Members of other clubs and visitors are very welcome to this social event. It’s always a great turnout. Limited free food will be available for paid up members while visitors can choose from the bar menu up to 9.00 p.m.

The club will then go on Christmas holidays until the return on the 8th of January.

Items for inclusion in next weeks Radio News should be forwarded to Mark Wall, EI7IS at QTHR or by phone to 051-853806 or 087-6302026. Items for the radio news can also be faxed to 087 5 6302026. News should be submitted via e-mail to “news at irts dot ie” for automatic forwarding to both the radio and printed news services. Please note that items for the radio news should reach the editor no later than midday on Friday in order to be guaranteed inclusion in the following Sunday’s bulletin.


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