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IRTS Radio News Bulletin Sunday 4th March 2018

Silent Key – Aidan Murphy EI5HW

We regret to inform you of the death on Monday 26th February of Aidan Murphy EI5HW of Dunshaughlin, Co. Meath. Aidan had been ill for some time before his untimely death at just fifty years of age.

Aidan was founder of the Ballooning and Amateur Radio Club of Ireland and he held both balloon and helicopter pilot’s licences.

For at least fourteen years Aidan with his good friends Seán EI7CV and Gerry EI9DZ had a club stand at Frtiedrichshafen through which they made worldwide friendships. Aidan’s funeral took place on Wednesday 28th February.

To his wife Alison, his daughter Aoife, his father Pat, his brothers Willie and Ronan as well as to his wider family and his many friends we extend our sincerest sympathy. May he rest in peace.

Passing of Betsy Croly

Regretfully we announce the passing of Betsy, XYL of Benjy EI8EQ (who now lives in Malta), who died in the past week. Ben was a member of South Dublin Radio Club when he lived in Ireland. Betsy who Ben affectionately called “the Bird” was well known to many of the Radio Amateurs in EI. Our thoughts go out to Benjy at this sad time. May she rest in peace.

Echo Ireland

The Spring edition of Echo Ireland contains the Committee Report for 2017, summarising IRTS activities for the past year as reported by the society's officers. The society's accounts for 2017 are also included, along with formal notice of the 2018 Annual General Meeting, including the committee's nominations for president, vice-president and committee positions for the forthcoming year.

Updates as well as plans for 2018 from ten clubs are included in the section on "News from around the Clubs". Separately, the "Wild Atlantic Way Report" by Simon EI7ALB summarises the highlights of the WAW project and also provides some useful statistics on activity by the WAW stations. This project was one of the outstanding activities of 2017, it resulted in almost 160,000 QSOs by WAW stations and undoubtedly raised the profile internationally of the Wild Atlantic Way tourism initiative.

Given current weather conditions, climbing the hills is probably the last thing on everyone's mind this weekend, however looking ahead to better weather over the coming weeks and months, some of us may be planning Summits On The Air (SOTA) activity. To encourage such activity, Albert EI6KO describes his experiences on recent summit activations. Albert has also produced a leaflet about SOTA, available on the downloads page of the IRTS web site. Sending Signals via Satellites is the subject of an article by Keith EI5KJ. In the article, subtitled "How to work DX with 5 watts VHF", Keith explains the technical aspects of satellite operation as well as equipment requirements.

VHF activities from a different era are recalled in a report on two issues of "The Upper Spectrum" - a newsletter published in the early 1950s by the VHF Research Society of Ireland, and unearthed by Aengus EI4ABB. Reminiscences from the 1950s appear in an article about his "Almost Sixty-Five Years of Radio" by Tony EI5EM; Tony explains how a shared interest with his Dad in shortwave listening led eventually to his involvement in amateur radio.

The latest Echo Ireland also includes a report by the IRTS Licence Examination Board, highlighting some of the areas that candidates in recent exams had difficulties with. This examination report - and indeed previous examination reports - contain observations and advice that should be of assistance to anyone studying for the licence exam. The document "Studying for the Harmonised Amateur Radio Examination Certificate" available at includes Examination Reports published since 2007.

IRTS Annual General Meeting

This year on the 14th and 15th April, the IRTS AGM will be taking place in the Galway Bay Hotel overlooking the sea front and popular holiday resort. Lectures will be held on Saturday afternoon from 2pm. These will include the 7Q7EI Dxpedition (by Pat O’Connor, EI9HX and Enda Broderick EI2II), An Introduction to Digital Radio (by Steve Wright, EI5DD, and John Ronan, EI7IG), Having Fun in Space by Graham Shirville G3VZV and Weak Signal mode - FT8 (by Keith Wallace, EI5KO).

The Annual dinner will take place in the evening at 7:30pm. Tickets for the Dinner may be purchased from the IRTS website - see the IRTS AGM tab. On Sunday the Rally will take place in a spacious conference hall located underneath the Hotel. Doors will open at 10:00 am to facilitate a longer time for the Rally. Tables and any enquiries should be addressed to: Steve Wright, EI5DD, email “wrights1 /at/ eircom /dot/ net” or phoned to 087 2451218.

Meals will be available on Sunday in the Carvery for all the weary travellers prior to the AGM.

Those seeking a room at the hotel should mention the IRTS when booking to get the special rate for the weekend. There are numerous B&Bs in the area of Salthill which may be found on the B&B finders on the internet.


EI100MCV is the call sign issued by ComReg to the National Maritime Museum Radio Club in Dunlaoghaire for the year 2018. This call sign which includes the letters of the original call sign ‘MCV’ of the RMS Leinster is to commemorate the Centenary of the sinking of the RMS Leinster in the Irish Sea on 10 October 1918 just a month before the end of World War 1.

The call sign may be used throughout the year 2018 by all members of the National Maritime Museum Radio Club as well as by any licensed EI amateur radio operator who would like to commemorate this historic centenary. The Club encourages other operators to get involved on a similar basis to the Wild Atlantic Way initiative. The event will be coordinated by Dave O’Connor EI6AL who has acted in this capacity for many similar events.

Operators who wish to use the call sign should contact Dave at “dave /dot/ ei6al /at/”. Anyone who operates the call sign must forward an ADIF log by email to Dave EI6AL. Dave will maintain a master log and will do the necessary upload to Clublog.

The sinking of the Leinster by a torpedo was, and still is, the single largest loss of life in the Irish Sea with a total of 567 lives lost. The Maritime Museum Radio Club hopes that many operators will avail of the opportunity to use this unique call sign and so give extensive coverage to this important centenary year.

North Cork Radio Group

Activation of Blackrock Castle Observatory will take place on Monday 19th March 2018 by the North Cork Radio Group. They will be activating the castle under the World Castles Award. Open for the public from 10AM onwards.

NCRG will be operating HF mainly, but will have showcase equipment, go boxes and other gadgets to show to the public. The NCRG hope to see many of you there on the day, or, of course, on the air.

Mid-Ulster Amateur Radio Club

Mid-Ulster Amateur Radio Club over the next number of months will have a number of speakers.

11th March John McCullough Gi4 BWM on DMR. 8th April Philip Hosey Mi0 MSO region 8 manager. 20th May Paul Lewis Mi1AIB WAB & BYLARA talk. 10th June talk on Digital Selective Calling. Everyone is welcome members and visitors.

South Dublin Radio Club

South Dublin Radio Club AGM will now take place at 8pm on Tuesday 20th of March 2018 at Ballyroan community centre on the Marian road in Rathfarnham. All members are asked to attend.

Limerick Radio Club

The Limerick Radio Club will meet on this coming Thursday 8th March in the Limerick Institute of Technology starting at 7:30 pm. The talk this month is on the Marconi Salvita Transceiver and will be given by LRC Club member John Power SWL. For those not in the know, the Salvita was the transceiver of last resort for Marine Radio Officers. Installed in the lifeboat, and hopefully still working, it was the Radio Officer's only hope of maintaining radio contact until rescuers arrived. There will be some extracts from first hand accounts of rescues - it promises to be a most interesting talk. John will be bringing a Salvita to the meeting.

The LRC Rally is scheduled for Sunday the 25th March in the Radisson Blu Hotel Limerick. Anyone wishing to book tables please contact Michael Kingston EI2IX e-mail “michaelkingston /at/ eircom /dot/ net” or to Harry O'Loughlin e-mail “oloughlin /dot/ harry /at/ gmail /dot/ com”

As for previous years the LRC website will advertise for sale items, so please send your list to Michael's e -mail address.

The finer organisational elements for the LRC Rally will be discussed at the meeting.

Brendan EI0CZ, Harry EI2KL and Tom EI5CA continue with Morse Practice, on the Limerick 2 metre repeater after the IRTS News at 20:00 on Mondays, and at 20:00 on Tuesdays.

Wexford Wireless Club

Reminder that on Wednesday 7th of March, John Tubbritt EI3HQB will give a show and tell about a tilt over telescopic mast that he has recently built over the last few months, as amateur radio operator's a mast like this is a great addition to a station to be able to perform maintenance tasks with ease and to be able to let down antenna's with ease if adverse weather is on its way! The talk will start at 2030 sharp, all club members or anyone interested is asked to attend.

Wexford Wireless Club hold weekly meetings every Wednesday evening from 2000 to 2200 in Gorey Scout Group Hall just off Esmonde Street in Gorey,Co . Wexford, everyone is as always very welcome

For more information about the club please contact the club secretary Michael Fitzgerald EI9GGB at QTHR or by dropping an email to “wexfordwirelessclub /at/ live /dot/ ie”

DX News

Ten German operators will be active as XR0YD from Easter Island until 15th March. They will be on all bands 160 - 10m using CW, SSB and Digital. QSL via Club Log OQRS.

A large multi-national team led by Hrane YT1AD will sign 9M0W from the Spratly Islands from 6th - 13th March. Activity will be on all bands 160 - 6m CW,SSB and Digital. Direct QSLs should be sent to YT1AD.

Iain G4SGX will be QRV from Belize from 6th - 16th March. His actual QTH will be Ambergris Caye which counts as NA-073 for the IOTA Award. The callsign to look for is V31GX. He will be mainly on CW with possibly some FT8. QSL via Club Log OQRS.

Members of the F6KOP Team who are well-known for previous DXpeditions will be visiting the west African country of Benin from 7th - 18th March. Their callsign is TY7C and they will be on all bands 160 - 10m CW, SSB and Digital.

DXers will be familiar with the callsign JY9FC which has been on the air from Jordan for the past four years. The operator, Jovica E78A, has now relocated to Cairo, Egypt and is back on the air as SU9JT. As before QSLs go via E73Y.

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, Mark EI6HPB on 086 355 2370.

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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