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IRTS Radio News Bulletin Sunday 6th July 2014


HF News Broadcast

Firstly, apologies to those who tuned in to hear the HF news bulletins on Sunday last: due to the absence of newsreaders, the broadcasts did not take place. This provides an opportunity to call again for volunteers to join the panel of newsreaders available to read the HF news from time to time. Please send an email to info /at/ irts.ie


ARISS Schools Contact heard in EI

Last Wednesday 2nd July saw some northerly passes of the International Space Station in the middle of the day. A schools contact was scheduled for a pass at 1204 UTC with DLR School Lab in Neustrelitz in the east of Germany. The downlink on 145.800 MHz (plus and minus because of Doppler shift) could be heard in Dublin using a 2-metre vertical antenna and a handheld. The orbit prediction was done using the free software WXtrack. At its nearest point the ISS was at 51 degrees north at a distance of 535 kilometres. Astronaut Alexander Gerst DP0ISS (Delta Papa Zero India Sierra Sierra) answered 15 questions from students at the school for this direct contact, which was primarily in the German language.

More information about the ARISS (Amateur Radio on the International Space Station) programme can be obtained from www.ariss-eu.org Unfortunately the waiting list for schools in the ARISS Region "Europe - Africa - Middle East" has grown considerably and new candidates would have to wait at least 3 years. As a result until further notice no new applications will be considered. Séamus EI8BP is an ARISS-Europe School Contact Mentor and will be happy to hear from anyone with an interest in ARISS.


Tipperary Amateur Radio Group

The next meeting of the Tipperary Amateur Radio Group will be held at The Park Hotel, Clonmel on Thursday 10th of July at 8.30pm. This meeting is open to all and Short Wave Listeners are in particular very welcome to attend. A number of radio related topics are up for discussion as well as plans for participation in up coming events. For more information about Tipperary Amateur Radio Group go to the group website www.ei7trg.ie


Islands On The Air (IOTA)

The IOTA programme is designed to encourage contacts with island stations world-wide. It was created in 1964, and therefore celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. The programme includes a range of awards for confirmed contacts with island groups. One of the highlights of the programme every year is the IOTA contest, which takes place on the last full weekend of July - 26th and 27th July this year. There has always been significant participation by EI and GI stations in this contest, with mainland and offshore island operations. This year in the offshore category, we are aware that Papa Lima DX-Group are hoping to make a big splash in the contest from Great Blasket Island EU-007, while Cork Radio Club are planning to operate from Clear Island EU-121.


City of Belfast Radio Amateur Society

This club meets on the first Monday of each month at the Shorts Recreation Club, Holywood Road, Belfast. A warm welcome awaits all visitors.


The Brendan Awards

A major attempt to achieve a QSO from North America to Europe on two-metres is scheduled to take place from the 4th to the 12th of July. A group of Canadian and US radio amateurs have set up in Newfoundland, aiming their signals towards Ireland, primarily using digital modes. If all went according to plan, this attempt should be underway as we speak. See www.brendanquest.org for more information on the Canadian operation, and www.irts.ie/brendan for more on the Brendan Awards.

We are aware of two groups setting up in Ireland to participate in the quest for a two-metre transatlantic QSO. Members of Limerick Radio Club will be pointing their beams west from Loop Head Lighthouse from Friday 4 to Saturday 12 July, while we understand that West Tyrone Amateur Radio Group will also be attempting to have a QSO with the Canadian-based station.

The Limerick Radio Club operators will be participating the the VHF/UHF Field Day this weekend, and will also be on the HF bands during their stay at Loop Head.


Radio Propagation

Radio amateurs are among the users of the radio spectrum that take a keen interest in solar activity and how this affects propagation. Much of the data we use comes from overseas sources such as NASA and the Royal Observatory of Belgium. We were interested therefore to read about a new source of solar information much closer to home: the Rosse Solar-Terrestrial Observatory at Birr Castle (operated by the Astrophysics Research Group of Trinity College) was recently opened. It remains to be seen whether the research group will publish data that would be of interest to the amateur radio community.


DX News

T88KH will be active from Koror Island in Palau from 9 – 13 July. This is a return visit by Ken BM2JCC who was there earlier this year in May. He will be QRV 80 – 6m in SSB. QSL to his home call.

Alain F5LMJ will sign TO5MJ from Guadaloupe from 7 – 17 July. Logs will be uploaded to Logbook of The World.

Joel K2QBV will be operating holiday style from Rarotonga in the South Cook Islands as E51QBV from 8 – 21 July. This follows on from a short stay in New Zealand where he operated as ZL/K2QBV.

Larry AG6OU is expected to be active as XW6OU from Vientiane in Laos from early July. Larry is the son of XW0ZJZ. QSLs go via E21EIC.


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 may be 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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