Archived News Script

IRTS Radio News Bulletin Sunday 6 March 2022


IRTS Launch New Group Email Service

The IRTS Committee are delighted to announce the launch of their new group email service using the groups.io platform. The service launched on Friday March 4th and has already attracted great interest. While everybody can access the service and read the discussions, only IRTS members can comment and post. The IRTS hope that the new service will help all participants become better radio amateurs by learning from one another in a friendly, courteous, and supportive environment. The new service is intended to replace the existing IRTS Facebook Group which will be discontinued soon. Please visit irts.groups.io for more information.


Limerick Clare Amateur Radio Club

LCARC members will activate the club station in the Shannon Aviation Museum on Thursday, the 10th, and Friday, the 11th of March during Engineer's week 2022. It is expected that up to 300 students will attend the Museum. Thanks to Brendan EI0CZ, Morse Code tutoring continues on the Clubs 70cms repeater, on Monday evenings, immediately after the IRTS News which is read at 20:00.


South Eastern Amateur Radio Group

The 2022 AGM of the South Eastern Amateur Radio Group took place on Monday the 28th of February 2022 at 8 p.m. on the Zoom platform. Even though the meeting was held on Zoom many members were in attendance. Club Chairman Mark EI4FNB welcomed the members and thanked them for attending. He started the meeting by observing a minute’s silence for silent keys and for the people of Ukraine. He then asked club secretary John EI3HQB to read the minutes of the 2021 AGM. Once that had concluded Mark then went on to give a report on the year that 2021 had being for the club. Mark listed the activities that the club had been involved in throughout 2021 and hoped that 2022 would be an even better year with activations. He was delighted to see that the club had planned to do some new activations this year and was also looking forward to the IRTS AGM which the club are hosting in Carlow in April. Club treasurer Sue EI1826 gave a report on the finances of the club noting that 2021 had been a successful year financially and that club finances are once again in a very healthy position. She also noted that 2021 was a record-breaking year for membership with 61 members 13 of which are SWL’s. Mark then thanked the outgoing committee members for all their hard work over the previous year and the following committee was then deemed elected for 2022: Chairman Mark Kilmartin EI4FNB, Vice Chairman Ray Cowman EI6HFB, Secretary John Tubbritt EI3HQB, Treasurer Sue McCormick EI1826, Public Relations Officer Sean Byrne EI2HZB, Club Officer 1 Sam Wilson EI3IUB, Club Officer 2 David Stearn EI7FYB & Club Officer 3 Roger Greengrass EI8KN.

All available tables for the SEARG Radio Rally on Sunday the 10th of April at the Woodford Dolmen Hotel, Carlow have now been booked and no further tables will be made available. The rally will open its doors at 10:30 a.m. sharp and close at 2:00 p.m. There will be no admittance to the rally to the public until 10:30 a.m. The rally promises to be a great day with Ireland’s main radio dealers and equipment suppliers in attendance. There will also be many individual traders also in attendance so come early to grab a bargain! Entry to the rally will be €5. Dinner tickets for the Gala Dinner on the Saturday evening can be prebooked from John EI7IG. Tickets cost €35 and must be prebooked before the 4th of April. For more information about the weekend please see www.irtsagm2022cw.blogspot.com

For anyone that 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 their meetings. You can check their website www.searg.ie and you can also join them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.


MH370

Australia's television service reported in their '60 Minutes Australia' news and current affairs broadcast that with the help of the digital data mode WSPR it may be possible to finally locate MH370. The airline jet left Kulala Lumpur, Malaysia, on the 6th of March 2014, but the plane never arrived in Bejing, China. 239 passengers and crew have perished, only few pieces of wreckage from the aircraft have been found. Aircraft scatter is a well know phenomena, typically observed, sometimes used on the VHF and UHF frequencies. WSPR is mainly used on shortwave, but scatter effects from an airplane's fuselage have an effect on HF transmissions, too. Aeronautical engineer Richard Godfrey analyzed traffic reports of contacts made by WSPR, short for 'Weak Signal Propagation Reporter'. Looking at the data, he says that he identified 160 propagation interference points caused by MH370, allowing to plot the track the aircraft had taken. Only one other aircraft was over the Indian Ocean at the time, hundreds of miles away. A detailed article and whitepaper can be found on www.mh370search.com


Ukraine

Radio amateurs in Ukraine appear to be maintaining radio silence, as required by a decree issued over a week ago.

Romanian radio amateurs have been contacted by the government, and asked to offer their expertise should the situation in neighbouring Ukraine deteriorate.

In Poland, mobile phone providers are setting up temporary mobile phone stations. Refugees are granted free use of mobile phones and trains. Furthermore, Polish radio amateurs have also activated more Winlink gateways to give Ukrainian radio amateurs more options for communication should the cellular networks fail.

Ending 76 years of shortwave broadcasting in 2008, the BBC is again broadcasting news bulletins via its shortwave transmitters on 15735 kHz and 5875 kHz from 18:00 to 20:00 UTC, and 00:00 to 02:00 UTC, aiming to provide coverage in Ukraine and parts of Russia.

Any radio amateur who is currently transmitting from the Ukraine is risking his or her life. If you listen to a Ukrainian station, you should definitely not reply, or inform others about call signs, locations and frequencies. In the current situation, the best we can do is listen. If you hear the words “Emergency”, “Welfare Traffic” or the abbreviation “QUF”, stop transmitting, listen and follow a few simple rules: When you receive such traffic, listen and write down everything you hear. Stay on the frequency until it’s clear you can’t help and someone else is helping. Don’t transmit until you are certain that you can help.

Follow the instructions of the control station. The control station is the station that has the emergency or has been designated as such by the station in distress. Keep it short. Do not exchange useless information. Take notes.

When did it happen? Write down date, time, and frequency. Where did it happen? What happened? How can we help? Who can help? The emergency call can then be passed on to the local Gardai, who have the appropriate contacts in the Foreign Office. Of course, you have to explain calmly and factually what kind of information you have.


DX News

Mamuka Kordzakhia, 4L2M, President of the National Association of Radio Amateurs of Georgia, NARG, will be active on 160 meters until the 10th of March. His antennas are a full size vertical and a Delta loop for transmission, and four one-wavelength beverages for receiption. QSL via EA7FTR.

Serial DXer Nobby, G0VJG, will once again be active as 8Q7CQ in the Maldives until the 18th of March. This will be his third trip to the Maldives, this time he is activating the Island of Innahura, IOTA AS-013. Activity is on 80m to 10 meters, including 60m, using SSB and the Digital modes. Nobby is using a Butternut vertical and 1KW QRO. QSL via M0OXO's OQRS or direct.

Operators Wolfgang, DK7DR/4S7DRG and Peter, DC0KK/4S7KKG can be heard from Sri Lanka until Wednesday. During breaks of the regular transmission schedule they are allowed to use the antennas of the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation at the SLBC transission site at Trincomalee. They are using the station's high gain curtain antennas on 40m to 15m, but also testing the over 100m tall two-masted medium wave antenna on 80m and topband. Modes are SSB and some FT8. QSL is via their home callsigns, DC0KK and DK7DR.


RSGB funding for a 50MHz Beacon

The RSGB reports that it will provide funds towards a 50MHz beacon designed to study meteor trails above the UK. It will beam vertically up, using circular polarisation. The 50MHz band is well suited for such observations, as meteors tend to create strong ionization trails affecting the 6m band. The beacon will be housed at the Sherwood Observatory of the Mansfield and Sutton Astronomical Society.


The Propagation Horoscope

On the 22nd of March, at 1739 UT, sunspot AR2958 exploded, producing an M2-class solar flare. A few minutes after the strong flare, noise levels on all HF bands increased sharply. Type 2 solar radio bursts are caused when shock waves ripple through the sun’s atmosphere. Affecting the higher bands first, this flare could be heard on lower bands, the noise floor was still elevated on the 25th and 26th. Such flares are typically indicating that a CME is leaving the sun's surface. NOAA reported that the CME was moving with about 690km/s, parts of it it will continue to hit earth, explaining the irregular conditions on all HF bands this week. The effects will peak on Wednesday. Plasma density will again increase to about 10 particles per cubic centimeters, with a solar wind speed levelling off at above 300km/s. The Australian Space Weather Services also predicts possible geomagnetic disturbances mid-week. The high air pressure over Ireland will allow for troposheric contacts on VHF and above, combined with the increased MUF2 around noon. A combination of trope and sporadic-E may bring brief long distance contacts, especially on 8m and 6m.

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. The deadline is midnight on Friday.

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