Archived News Script
Irish Radio Transmitter Society Radio News Bulletin Sunday 26 March 2023
If You are listening to this bulletin You already know that the clocks went forward by an hour on Sunday morning: The UTC clock in the shack is the only one that does not need adjustment.
The NN-CW Net
The Nervous Novices CW 80m net at 20:30 local time each Wednesday evening has more and more callers and listeners every week. Eamo EI7LC finds a free QRG around 3.550 to 3.555 MHz and then starts the net, and with the help of experienced CW operators creates the perfect setting for old-timers to impart the trade-craft to the novices, all while having QSOs at a comfortable speed. There is no maximum speed, however, the net requires that all operators QRS to the slowest participant so that everyone can copy. If you are still new to CW, do not miss this opportunity for an enjoyable way to improve your skills. CQ NN CW on 80m, between 3.550 and 3.555 MHz, every Wednesday from 20:30.
South Eastern Amateur Radio Group EI2WRC
The March meeting of the South Eastern Amateur Radio Group EI2WRC will take place on Monday, the 27th of March 2023, at 8 p.m. sharp at the New Community Men's Shed, Ozanam Centre, Coffee House Lane, Waterford. New members, or anyone interested in learning more about amateur radio or the group are as always very welcome to attend.
Members of the South Eastern Amateur Radio Group will be QRV as EI2IMD on Saturday, the 22nd of April for International Marconi Day 2023. The station will be active from the Burrows Car Park, Tramore, Co. Waterford with thanks to Waterford City and County Council, and special thanks to the Cornish Radio Amateur Club for organising Marconi Day, their website is at www.gx3crc The club will be active on HF, VHF, UHF, DMR and digital modes. The EI2IMD call-sign will also be on air on the Southern Ireland repeater network, with thanks to the Southern Ireland Repeater Group. More details will be made known in the run up to the event on the SEARG Facebook and EI2IMD QRZ pages. For anyone who wishes to find out more about the South Eastern Amateur Radio Group and their activities you can drop them an email to southeasternarg /at/ gmail.com or please feel free to go along to any of their meetings. You can check their website www.searg.ie and you can also find them on Facebook. You can also follow them on Twitter /at/ seargnews
EI-DX travels to Antigua
Eleven members of the EI DX Group are on their way to Antigua Island, IOTA Reference NA-100. They hope to get V26EI on the air in time for this weekend's CQ WW WPX SSB Contest. During their nine days on Antigua V26EI will use CW, SSB, RTTY and some FT8. Progress reports will be posted to a blog at v26ei.eidxg.com. The group look forward to seeing many EI and GI calls in the logs. QSL is via Charles M0OXO, his website is at www.m0oxo.com . All logs will be uploaded to LoTW after the trip.
New Regulations for Austrian Hams
Austria has become the latest country to impose restrictions on Amateur Radio operation in the 23 cm band to protect ground-based receivers for the Galileo RNSS satellite constellation. The maximum output power allowed on 1240 to 1300 MHz has dropped from 200 Watts to 10 Watts only. Repeaters with more than 16 kHz bandwidth must cease operation by December 31, 2024. Higher microwave bands see their power limit raised from 100 Watts to 200 Watts, except on 10 GHz. To the delight of EME operators the output power on 70 cm has been raised to up to 1000 Watts, making it the same as on 2 meters. However, the raised power levels apply only to station with high gain antenna arrays. The 6 meter band has been extended from 52 to 54 MHz, but remains limited until the end of 2030 for Amateur Radio Wireless Regional Area Network research above 52 MHz. From 50 to 52 MHz the maximum power level is now 200 Watts, above 52 MHz it is 100 Watts. On 80, 40, 20, 17, 15, 12 and 10 meters permits for up to 1000 Watt output power may now be approved for Class-1 licenses after 1 year of trouble-free operation. The power limit of 200 Watts on 7100-7200 kHz has been dropped, and amateur radio now has primary status on that segment. The 30 meter band remains at 200 Watts maximum power. On the 160 meter band from 1810 to 1850 kHz a maximum of 200 Watts, and on 1850-2000 kHz 100 Watts can be used. This listing only outlines the wide-ranging changes for hams in OE, precise details can be found on the Austrian's Society webpage at www.oevsv.at
The 24 hour UK/EI DX CW Contest takes place from Wednesday 12:00 Zulu, until Thursday 12:00 Zulu on the 80 to 10 meter band contest segments. This year the RSGB HF Contesters join the fun, in partnership with the IRTS and the GMDX Group. In the middle of this, the one hour duration UKEICC 80 Meter Contest of the 2022-23 series also takes place on Wednesday, the 29th of March, starting at 20:00 Zulu. The Bonus call-signs EI5G will be operated by Pete EI7CC, and G5GEI will be operated by Tim G4FJK, counting 15 points each. See UKEICC.com for the rules and how to upload the logs.
The RSGB FT4 International Activity Day starts at 08:00 Zulu and runs for twelve hours on April's Fool's Day, the logs must be submitted within 24 hours after the end of the contest. Using 160 to 10 meters and a maximum power of 100 Watts, each contact within Europe is worth one point, and three points for each contact outside of Europe. Consult www.rsgbcc.org for details.
The Spanish EA RTTY Contest runs for 24 hours, starting next Saturday at 12:00 Zulu. Each contact with a Spanish station is worth three points, and one point each for all other contacts. Expect to see busy RTTY segments on 80 to 10 meter. the Organiser's English language webpage is at concursos.ure.es/en .
160 to 10 meter will also be used by the SP DX Contest, adding to the HF and Topband contest mayhem next weekend. The Polish DX Contest is for CW and SSB operators, the exchange is signal report and serial number for stations outside SP, Polish stations send signal report and their 1-character province code. Scoring is three points for working a SP prefix, all others count one point. Visit www.spdxcontest.pzk.org.pl for entry rules and log uploads.
Longwave Radio phased out in Iceland
A longwave AM broadcast station in Iceland has been shut down and its 218 meter vertical antenna was demolished at the end of February. 207 kHz is now silent, but another transmitter on 189 kHz will continue operating for a little longer from the West of Iceland with a 412 meter vertical, Iceland's tallest structure.
The February newsletter of the IARU Region-1 Monitoring System highlights the growing activity of a Russian taxi dispatch with 23 different stations logged, but also reports Brazilian CBers intruding our 10 meter band. Screenshots and descriptions of the military RADAR and digital signals help identify the growing number of incursions to our frequency allocations. Michael EI3GYB is a regular contributor to the monthly reports, have a look at 'Spectrum' section at www.iaru-r1.org
Our friends at the RSGB are running a series of monthly Live Webinars called 'Tonight at 8', and the next one is not to be missed. The RSGB news-team writes Heather Nickalls, M0HMO will give a presentation titled 'Sheep Worrier: A High Altitude Balloon Flight and Recovery System.'. It's an introduction to flying High Altitude Balloons, the radio systems involved, some science experiments she did on their flights, the recovery system she developed to help find the payload when it lands and, of course, lots of pictures from “almost” the edge of space. Heather's presentation will be live-streamed with the help of the British Amateur Television Club, and also on the RSGB YouTube channel. Details about this 'Tonight at 8' event on the 3rd of July can be found on www.rsgb.org/webinars
The International Space Station raised its orbit a fortnight ago to avoid a close approach by an Argentinian imaging satellite. A Progress MS-22 spacecraft currently docked to the station fired its thrusters for over six minutes. This changed the station’s velocity by 0.7 meters per second. This means each orbit takes a bit longer. Amateurs using the ARISS repeaters will want to be sure to have updated Keplerian elements for prediction and tracking software.
The Propagation Horoscope
Thick clouds may have prevented Aurora being visible in Ireland, but its effect could be heard on all bands from Thursday onward, between deep radio blackouts. On Wednesday an already elevated solar wind of 520 km per second, combined with a medium proton count around ten particles quickly rose, due to a strengthening solar wind from the large coronal hole in the southern hemisphere, pushing the newly arrived remnants of last Monday's CME into our magnetosphere. This caused a severe geomagnetic storm starting on Friday, the effects of which have not yet subsided. The storm reached G4 level, the kP shot up to 8, therefore we can expect much degraded propagation conditions early in the week. An equatorial coronal hole is becoming Earth-facing on this weekend, and another coronal mass ejecta is expected to hit us early next weekend, likely affecting the many HF contests mentioned earlier in this bulletin. Difficult conditions often go hand in hand with enhanced VHF propagation. John EI7GL reports on his blog a number of 6 meter FT8 contacts from the Esperanza Base at the northern tip of Antarctica to eleven European stations around the Mediterranean on Tuesday, with great circle distances of up to 13,500 kilometers. Robbie, EI2IP and Paul G9PUV were again pushing the boundaries on the 8 meter band, their 40 MHz FT8 signals were logged by ZL1RS, at a calculated distance of 18,000 kilometers. Congratulations to Robbie and Paul for their pioneering success!
That is the news for this week. Items for inclusion in next week's radio news can be submitted by email to newsteam /at/ irts.ie for automatic forwarding to both the radio and printed news services.