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IRTS Radio News Bulletin Sunday 20th February 2011

Request for Return of IRTS Trophies and Cups

It is time once again to recall all trophies presented at the 2010 IRTS, AGM held in Dundalk.

Trophies and Cups can be returned to the IRTS Stand at the Phoenix Radio Club Rally in Coolmine on Sunday February 20th 2011 or to any IRTS Committee Member before end of February 2011.

This will allow for any engraving to be done, or to allow any repairs as needed.

Early return will be appreciated. Peter EI4HX can be contacted on ei4hxperimental / at/eircom / dot/ net.

IRTS Awards Nominations.

The time is here again for nominations for the several awards for IRTS Trophies and cups that are required from within the membership, this includes the awards for,

1. Service to the Society or to Amateur Radio. Awards in this category can be to members or non-members.

2. Awards for other achievements.

Awards in this category [2] include the 4 and 6 Meter Shields, the SWL Award, and the awards for Quality Construction Projects. These are confined to members only.

When considering your nominations, please refer to previous successful winners as included in

Nominations may be from Clubs or Individuals, must be by post or e-mail, and can be forwarded to the Awards Committee Members, Pat EI2HX and Pat EI9HX, or to Peter Grant EI4HX, Chair of Awards Committee, QTHR, or by e-mail to ei4hxperimental/ at/ eircom/ dot/ net.

Closing date for nominations is February 30th 2011.

IRTS AGM Annual Dinner and Rally 2011

You are reminded of the importance of attending the IRTS AGM weekend, including Annual Dinner and Rally will be held this year on Saturday March 26th and Sunday March 27th. The event will be hosted by the Limerick Radio Club. The venue is the Radisson Blu Hotel, Ennis Road, Limerick.

For more information contact, Ger McNamara EI4GXB on 087 2532512 or ei4gxb/ at /gmail/ dot/ com. A new website for the Rally in Limerick on 27 March 2011 is now available, please go to for more details.

The AGM dinner tickets priced at €35 are now available from Tony Condon at QTHR or by email to condona /at / eircom/ dot/ net.

International Marconi Day

International Marconi Day takes place this year on Saturday 30th April. The Howth Martello Radio Group will be participating once again as an award station using the call-sign EI0MAR.

This is not a contest but there are several nice awards available for working the officially listed stations, each of which has an historic connection with Marconi. The event is organised by the Cornish Amateur Radio Club. For more information please visit the club's website

EI0MAR operates from the Martello Tower overlooking the East Pier in Howth. The tower now houses a vintage radio museum. In 1905 the British Post Office carried out wireless telegraphy experiments at the tower in Howth using Marconi equipment.

Visitors are always welcome at the museum and the group hopes to see many visitors during the IMG event in April. The HMRG's website is where a free information booklet in PDF format can be downloaded.

The North Cork Radio Group are pleased to announce that they will be active from the Marconi Signal Station at Goleen, Mizen Head, West Cork, where Marconi sent many of his first test transmissions to America.

Further details will be posted nearer the event, however, please pencil the day free if you'd like to attend or work the station. The Official call sign for the event will be EI-0-IMD and it is hoped we will be excepted on the official International Marconi Day Awards Program.

South East Amateur Radio Group

The South Eastern Amateur Radio Group and the Lough Erne Amateur Radio Club will ensure that Ireland again has its say in the 2011 International Geopark Communication weekend on 28 & 29 May, with special stations, likely EI2GEO again, at the Copper Coast Geopark and, likely GB2MAC again, at the Marble Arch Caves International Geopark in Fermanagh which straddles the border into Cavan.

Geoparks are areas recognised by UNESCO to have exceptional geological heritage. Across Europe there are 42 in 16 countries that include only these two on the island of Ireland. As well as the scientific interest, Geoparks are often major tourism attractions. There are six in Great Britain. This event, in its fourth year, was initiated by Martin Foster G3VOF and others with GB6GEO on the English Riviera Geopark.

LEARC’s Alan Gault Gi6PYP will again be licence holder for GB2MAC. Last year’s station, with mobile mast and caravan was in a hilltop lay-by just above the Caves entrance building. Six operators logged 51 QSOs with 16 countries, most in Europe, others as far east as Asiatic Russia, and west to USA, Cuba and Argentina.

Last year EI2GEO made many QSOs on various HF bands. On site were Francis EI5GOB, Declan EI5GRB, Jim EI8IG, John EI7IG, John EI8JA and Mark EI7IS. Saturday visitors included scouts interested in radio. Martin EI8FFB did some late night 40 and 20 metre operating. Special thanks to Jim EI8IG for the camper van.

Hopes for 2011 again are enjoyable amateur radio, involving a lot of club members in both Irish stations, north and south, and other Geopark stations in Great Britain and mainland Europe. Amateur radio is an international educational and scientific culture, so it is entirely appropriate that we be involved with Geoparks, recognised as they are by UNESCO – the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation.

For more information contact

Mark Wall, EI7IS, SEARG P.R.O & Webmaster. Email markwall / at/ Vodafone / dot /ie

Michael Clarke, Mi5MTC, Chairman Lough Erne ARC. Email mi5mtc /at/ learc/ dot /eu

South Eastern Amateur Radio Group

The Annual General Meeting of South Eastern Amateur Radio Group will take place on Monday 28th February in the Roanmore Social and Sports Centre, Cleaboy Road, Waterford. All are welcome.

For up to date information about the club, visit


Until a couple of years ago, Fermanagh rarely featured in January’s 80M counties contest, a gap well plugged now by Lough Erne Amateur Radio Club with its club station and other stations active this year and last.

LEARC’s 2011 club station, set up by a team of eight at Herbie Gi6JPO’s QTH on a hill-top in Cavanacaragh, near Enniskillen, logged about 73 QSOs and 28 counties, compared to 43 and 23 last year. Other logs duly submitted by 2 February brought Fermanagh’s QSO total to near 120, across Ireland and including a few with Britain and mainland Europe.

These are very modest figures compared to many heard, or listed in 2010 results, yet a good measure of enjoyment of amateur radio together for club and county. It was good to see almost half of those involved were recent new Foundation licensed members building up experience. Two, both teenagers, are pictured Jamie Mi6JNU and Gemma Mi6GDM.

Michael Clarke, Mi5MTC, Chairman LEARC. Email mi5mtc/ at /learc /dot/ eu


Lough Erne Amateur Radio Club asks anyone who was at its first Rally in April 1982 or others in the next three decades, to contact the Club with memories and memorabilia of events that were always well attended from North and South.

Cliff GI4CZW was Secretary in 1982, when he sent news of the first Enniskillen Rally to Short Wave Magazine. Down the years GI4CZW gathered memorabilia.

More stories and photographs are welcome for a display at this April’s thirtieth rally.

RSGB and IRTS will both attend this special Pearl Anniversary rally, as will the usual displays set up by the Club’s neighbours, West Tyrone Amateur Radio Club and the

Club’s cousin, Mayo Radio Experimenters Network. Fermanagh Talking Newspaper will be there. More displays by Amateur Radio organisations are welcome.

The Club is keen to make its Pearl Anniversary Rally a grand celebration of thirty years of progress and companionship among radio amateurs and experimenters.

Contact Michael Clarke MI5MTC, Chairman, Lough Erne Amateur Radio Club. 3/048–6862-1436. mi5mtc / at / learc /dot / eu

DX News

Nick G3RWF has returned to Uganda and will once again be active as 5X1NH. He will be mainly QRV using CW and hopes to operate all bands 80 – 10m. Look for him on the bands between now and April 14. QSL info is via the home call and also Logbook of the World.

A special event station is on the air from Las Palmas in the Canary Islands signing EG8ISS. The station is QRV from a local college campus and celebrates the first International Space Station contact with the college. They will be on the air till March 11th.

A trip to the Caribbean will see Jeff VA3QSL active from St Martin as FS/VA3QSL and from Saint Maarten as PJ7/VA3QSL. He will be there from February 23 – 27. Both calls count for IOTA NA-105 but are obviously different DXCC countries.

Svalbard will be on the air until February 25 when LA8XRA and LA9VDA activate their JW8XRA and JW9VDA call signs. They will probably be using the club station JW5E on Spitsbergen Island.

The well known DXpeditioner Baldur DJ6SI is now active from Chad as TT8DX. He operates mainly CW and will be there till February 24th.

The North Cork Radio Group

Today, 20th February we will be on air as EI1NC/P operating CASHOTA ref EI009/C from Blackrock Castle in Cork City

19th and 20th March we will be operating EI1NC/P from the original broadcast station of 6CK based in the Governors House at Cork city Gaol and Radio Museum, further enquires are to be made to ascertain if the event would be considered for stately home registration with CASHOTA Ireland, details to follow.

Sun Spot Activity

Following on from last week's item on solar flares, there was further evidence during the week of increased solar activity. On Tuesday last the sun unleashed its strongest flare in four years as NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded an intense burst of ultraviolet radiation from a sunspot. The Northern Lights (aurora borealis) have already been seen much further south than expected including in the north of Ireland. Further solar activity was expected over the following few days. It looks like the sun is awakening after several years of very low activity. Solar Cycle 24 is now predicted to peak in May of 2013.

Sunspot numbered 1158 which was responsible for the recent solar flare has expanded rapidly in recent days and further solar activity is expected. Chinese state media has already reported some disruption to short-wave radio communications. In 1972, a geomagnetic storm caused by a solar flare knocked out long-distance telephone communications across the State of Illinois in the USA, while in 1989 a similar storm plunged six million people into darkness in Quebec, Canada. Scientists have about 30 minutes notice before the burst of charged particles from the sun hits the Earth's magnetic field.

Further sun spot activity is imminent.

Items for inclusion in next week’s Radio News can be

submitted via e-mail to “newsteam /at/ irts / dot / ie” for automatic forwarding to both the radio and printed news services. Urgent news items for the radio news maybe telephoned to the radio news editor, Aidan, EI7JC on 085 7100511.

Please note that items for the radio news should reach the editor no later than midday on Thursday in order to be guaranteed inclusion in the following Sunday’s bulletin.


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