Archived News Script

IRTS RADIO NEWS BULLETIN Sunday June 21st. 1998

Donegal Radio Club

Nine members of the Donegal Club spent a very enjoyable few days on Arranmore Island over the June bank holiday weekend. This has become a very popular annual event and the social side is at least as important as the radio operating.

The Donegal Club will hold their next meeting on Wednesday next June the 24th at their usual venue in Jackson's Hotel in Ballybofey and the feature of this meeting will be a presentation on weather satellites. Visitors will, as usual, be very welcome.

IRTS Committee Meeting

The next IRTS Committee meeting will be held in Athlone, at a venue to be decided, on Saturday July the 11th at 2.30pm. Clubs are again reminded that they may send a representative to this meeting.

WestNet visit the Saltees

Members of the WestNet Group together with the Swiss based Saltee Dog DX Group will be active from the Great Saltee Island during the coming week from the 25th to the 29th of June.

Activity will be on all bands and modes, 160 to 2 metres and worked All Ireland square chasers should note that the square is X99 and the group will visit the WAI frequency of 3.680MHz when conditions allow. The IOTA number for the Saltees is EU103.

Fifteen operators are making the trip, four of them are from HB9, 3 from GI, 1 from GW and 7 from EI.

The callsign will be EJ7NET and QSLs for this operation should be directed to Tony EI2GX. The group plan to QSL all contacts via the bureau system.

Andy Thomas says thanks from MIR

US astronaut Andy Thomas KD5CHF said goodbye to the Russian Space Station MIR on Monday June the 8th as he left for home aboard the shuttle Discovery after 130 days in space.

Before he left, he broadcast a general thank you to the worldwide amateur community via the R0MIR packet system.

He again apologised for not being able to give individual replies to mail received.

During his stay on MIR, Thomas spoke frequently with his family via amateur radio, sometimes with Tony VK5ZAI serving as the earth station.

Tony also set up phone patches for family members.

The return of Thomas to earth marked the official end of the American Shuttle-MIR programme.

In all seven American astronauts spent a total of 977 days in space aboard the space station.

National Packet Meeting

A national packet meeting was held in Athlone on Saturday June the 6th and representatives from five areas attended. Unfortunately, the national co-ordinator Peter Maile was unable to attend due to last minute work commitments and the East Cork Cluster representatives were otherwise engaged on CW Field Day.

The current state of the network was discussed and possible improvements were identified. Another meeting will be held in the coming months.

Anyone with comments or suggestions should contact the co-ordinator whose number and e-mail address appear in the recent Newsletter.

HF Bands

Conditions on the HF bands are quite poor at the moment, at least during normal operating hours. Reports suggest that some nice DX is available on 20 metres around four oclock in the morning. Two US operators have announced their intention of activating the Aran Islands during their visits here.

Don W4ZYT/EI2IM from Virginia has indicated that he would be active from Inishmore from the 12th to the 25th June, so keep a listen over the next few days.

W0GLG/EJ4VVF will be on the Aran Islands during July. No specific dates have been announced.

Canadian amateurs may use special prefixes until the 15th of July to celebrate the 125th anniversary of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. VA stations can use XK, VE stations may use VX , VO can be XL and VY can use XN.

A special event station CK3MP will be active until July 31st. There is a special award available for working specific French stations during the world cup.

For the basic award you need to work 20 French stations with the special prefix FBC plus five of the ten special event stations in the TM0CMF to TM9CMF series.

For the advanced award you will need 50 of the FBC prefix stations and all ten of the TM special event stations.

An expedition to the northern Scandinavia area to activate nine IOTA references will run from June the 27th until July 22nd. The operators will be Matthias DK4WD who will operate mainly CW and Don DK4UN who will operate SSB.

They will QSL all contacts via the bureau. DirectQSLs to DK4WD at QTHR. Vito I3BQC will be active until July the 12th from various Greek Islands. QSL via home callsign.

Items for inclusion in the Radio News can be faxed to 021-632730 or passed on the telephone to Dave EI4BZ at 021- 632444 during the day and at 021-883555 in the evening.

Input for the Newsletter should be sent to Kevin EI7IM at QTHR or on 01-4509514 or on E-mail to All input to either the Radio News or the Newsletter can also be sent by e-mail to