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  1. Full weekend Foundation Licence course and assessment plus upgrade assessments. View the full article
  2. 01/17/2017Ulrich L. Rohde, N1UL, of Synergy Microwave Corp was invited to deliver the sixth Sir J.C. Bose Memorial Lecture at the IEEE Hyderabad Section on December 2 during a joint session of the IEEE MTT, AP, and EMC Societies in Hyderabad, India. Rohde’s talk was “Next Generation Networks: Software Defined Radio — Emerging Trends.” While working under a US Department of Defense contract at RCA in 1982, Rohde’s department developed the first SDR, which used the COSMAC (Complementary Symmetry Monolithic Array Computer) chip. Introduced by RCA in early 1976, the RCA CDP1802 eight-bit CMOS microprocessor — a 40-pin LSI integrated circuit chip — was the company’s first single-chip microprocessor. Rohde was among the first to present publically on this topic with his February 1984 talk, “Digital HF Radio: A Sampling of Techniques” at the Third International Conference on HF Communication Systems and Techniques in London. The Hyderabad lecture’s namesake, Sir Jagadish Chandra Bose, was a Bengali scientist who lived in British India in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and was an expert in math, physics, biology, and archaeology. Bose pioneered the investigation of radio and microwave optics, contributed significantly to plant science, and laid the foundations of experimental science. Much of Bose’s original scientific work was in the area of microwaves. He produced extremely short radio waves and was the first to use a semiconductor junction to detect radio waves. Bose’s research on the response of tissues to microwaves and other stimuli led to many significant findings in that field, and the IEEE named him one of the fathers of radio science. — Thanks to Microwave Journal View the full article
  3. 01/17/2017Hamvention® is ready to deal with the anticipated heavy traffic flow when the event opens on May 19 at its new location, the Greene County Fairgrounds and Expo Center in Xenia, Ohio. Mike Kalter, W8CI, said the all-volunteer Hamvention organizers have turned to professionals to address this aspect of the event. Kalter, who is treasurer of the sponsoring Dayton Amateur Radio Association (DARA), was interviewed last week by DX Engineering’s Tim Duffy, K3LR. “We recognized that we needed to reach out to a professional engineering firm that does this all over the country to help us to work with the local government officials, so that we can have a good solid plan to keep the people flowing in,” Kalter told Duffy. Kalter said arrangements have been made to have staging areas for those needing to either offload or load equipment from the indoor exhibit areas or the flea market. He also pointed out that on-site parking would be free, and that no one will have to park in the mud. Kalter said areas set aside for parking are well drained, and he doesn’t anticipate any problems, even if it rains during Hamvention. That goes for the flea market area as well, he said, noting that the arena infield area gets used events in good and bad weather alike. Kalter said Hamvention expects to be able to post the plan for flea market spaces on its website soon. The layout for indoor vendor and exhibitor booths is already available on the Hamvention website. Kalter said that if everyone who attended Hamvention 2016 at Hara Arena shows up again this year, they will find plenty of room at the new venue. Maps are available on the website. Turning to traffic of a different sort, Kalter noted that Greene County has brought in a high-speed Internet “pipe” to the new venue, and AT&T will drop telephone lines wherever they’re needed. Duffy asked whether the new venue would have an area similar to that outside Hara Arena, where those attending Hamvention could sit down with friends for a bite to eat or a drink. Kalter said there will be plenty of picnic tables as well as a temporary structure dedicated for socializing. He also promised that Hamvention 2017 will offer “a wide variety of great things to eat.” That will include food vendors and food trucks. Kalter said some 600 volunteers in all are required to make Hamvention happen each year, and the leadership team consists of 86 individuals. Reflecting its new venue, “Hamvention — Same Friends, New Home” will be the theme for the 2017 event. Last summer’s closure of Hara Arena forced the move to the new location more than 20 miles to the southeast. The price of admission to Hamvention has gone up slightly; tickets will now cost $22 for all 3 days ($27 at the door). Accompanied minors 12 or younger may attend free. Online ordering is not yet available, but those planning to attend can order tickets by mail. Hamvention runs from Friday, May 19, until Sunday, May 21. View the full article
  4. 01/17/2017VHF DXer and propagation expert Pat Dyer, WA5IYX, of San Antonio, Texas, has died. Licensed in 1963 and an ARRL member, he was 69. “Pat contributed greatly to our understanding of sporadic E propagation, through both his professional research the Office of Telecommunications in Boulder, Colorado, and later through his personal observations,” Les Rayburn, N1LF, said in a post to the VHF Contesting reflector. Dyer’s research led to articles in both QEX and QST, and he delivered presentations at Central States VHF Society (CSVHFS) conferences. He also contributed to Ham Radio, Popular Electronics, CQ VHF, and CQ. Dyer posted an extensive archive of propagation observations on YouTube. According to Rayburn, Dyer was a prominent TV and FM broadcast-band DXers and an active contributor to the Worldwide TV FM DX Association’s VHF/UHF Digest. “Pat gave true meaning to one of the cornerstones of our hobby, which is to advance the state of the radio art,” Rayburn continued. “A citizen-scientist bar none, much of what we know about these mysterious would have remained hidden longer without his efforts.” View the full article
  5. The Amateur Radio Experimenters Group is pleased to announce that it has been invited back to participate in the International Space University’s Southern Hemisphere Space Studies Program (SHSSP) for 2017. This year, the club will be extremely busy with plans to simultaneously launch two balloons from two launch sites. This means double the number of payloads to track and double the fun for the launch and tracking teams as well! Flight Times / Locations: Horus 41 – McLaren Vale – 10:00am ACDT RTTY Telemetry: 434.650MHz 100 bps Wenet Imagery Payload 441.2MHz 115Kbit/s Horus 42 – Mt Barker – 10:00am ACDT RTTY Telemetry: 434.075MHz 100 bps Wenet Imagery Payload: 443.5MHz 115Kbit/s Both balloons are intended to be launched simultaneously! Listen on the VK5RSB 70cm repeater for the launch coordination. Launch Site Map Image from Horus 40 – sample of whats to come for Horus 41/42 Payload Information The university project this year is using the Wenet payload designed by Mark VK5QI to accommodate 2 cameras taking alternate photographs, both facing downwards. One will be shooting in the visible light spectrum while the other will be photographing the IR spectrum. Additional telemetry is now being included also, with an Inertial Measurement Unit on board giving payload orientation data. The hope is to combine the data from both balloons into a stereoscopic representation of the terrain and vegetation below. All of the images are being collected live and will be available via the Internet (watch this page for details closer to the day). How to get involved? Visitors are welcome at the launch sites on Sunday morning. AREG members are encouraged to dress in their club apparel as there will (hopefully) be lots of media around, at least at the McLaren Vale launch site at Serafino’s Winery. You can get involved in tracking the flights from home. The more stations involved, the better! We will have our hands full with two balloons in the air so help from ground stations collecting telemetry and forwarding it to the Internet for us. For the adventurous, you may also like to get involved in receiving the Wenet transmissions and receiving the pictures directly! All you need is a Linux based PC running Ubuntu 16.04 RX, an RTL-SDR Dongle, a preamplifier (because the RTL-SDR needs all the help it can get) and a suitable UHF 70cm antenna. Details of the receive system are given on Mark VK5QI’s GitHub page: https://github.com/projecthorus/wenet If you would like more information, contact the president, Matt VK5ZM@wia.org.au More news as the launch gets closer and details are confirmed. We wont know with reasonable certainty that we are flying until ~48hrs before liftoff. Share this: Like this: Like Loading... View the full article
  6. Born on the 29th December 1921, Charles Bryant became a silent key on the 30th December 2016, the day after his 95th birthday. Charles had a love of radio from an early age. He learnt Morse code at school when he should have been playing games, which he hated. At the age of 14 he obtained an Artificial Aerial licence with the callsign 2BXZ and was elected a Corporate Member of the RSGB on the 13th October 1936. The original certificate is in my care, together with most of his meticulously kept records. By September of 1938 he received his Full Licence. His Log Book No 1 shows the first QSO using his new callsign G3SB was with none other than Pat Hawker, 2BUH (later G3VA), who was a friend and near neighbour. A QSL card 2BXZ/2BUH is among the tens of thousands that he kept neatly filed and which will be archived electronically by the RSGB. His log shows a poignant entry on 31st August 1939: “All amateur licences cancelled”. Charles told me that the following day a man from the GPO arrived to confiscate all his radio gear but refused to issue a receipt. Some time later a nattily-dressed gentleman arrived at the family home and asked Charles to sign a piece of paper. This turned out to be the “Official Secrets Act” and thus it was he became a Voluntary Interceptor. Given lists of times and frequencies, the enemy traffic he heard was copied and posted off to that mysterious Post Office Box in Barnet. He wasn’t to know at the time but many years later learned that it ended up at Bletchley Park to be decoded, helping to shorten the war. He received a somewhat anonymous certificate of thanks for his vital work. There is some speculation that he continued to copy Morse TFC during the Cold War. The next entry in the log is dated 24th January 1946: “Licence re-issued”. Charles lost no time in getting back into his favourite hobby and made QSOs at a staggering rate, mainly by CW. A move to Wales brought a new prefix but no change in enthusiasm. We became good friends in 1984. When a move into a Residential Home became necessary I set up his station there so he could stay on air. I was with Charles a few hours before he died. He couldn’t talk but he did manage to tap out both our callsigns on his knee. His beloved Morse was with him to the end and I feel honoured to have had that last QSO just before he went Silent Key. Charles, 2BXZ/G3SB/GW3SB was a true gentleman both in life and of the æther. TU SU AR SK Tribute by Bruce Morris, GW4XXF Category: Silent Keys View the full article
  7. The club has been awarded 3rd place certificate for its entry to the Trans Tasman Low Band Contest in July 2016. We operated a Multi-operator / Two Transmitter entry on 160m, 80m and 40m in SSB, CW and RTTY modes. This was a first attempt at a multi-multi operation from the club site -a great effort in co-ordination and co-operation from the club radio shack and using antennas on site. Well done to the team! Full contest results http://www.b4h.net/vkcc/transtasman/ttlbcresults2016.php Vk2bvTT2016 View the full article
  8. 01/16/2017AMSAT reports that the launch date for RadFxSat (Fox-1B) has been moved to August 29, 2017. RadFxSat is one of four CubeSats making up the NASA ELaNa XIV mission, riding as secondary payloads aboard the Joint Polar Satellite System JPSS-1 mission. RadFxSat features the Fox-1 style Amateur Radio FM U/V repeater, with an uplink on 435.250 MHz (67.0 Hz CTCSS) and a downlink on 145.960 MHz. Satellite and experiment telemetry will be downlinked via the “DUV” subaudible telemetry stream and can be decoded with the FoxTelem software. JPSS-1 will launch on a Delta II from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. RadFxSat is a partnership with Vanderbilt University ISDE and hosts four payloads for the study of radiation effects on commercial off-the-shelf components. RadFxSat construction and testing was completed in the fourth quarter of 2016, and the CubeSat is currently in clean storage at Fox Labs, awaiting delivery and integration, now scheduled for June. — AMSAT News Service via AMSAT Vice President-Engineering Jerry Buxton, N0JY View the full article
  9. 01/16/2017The old Alexanderson alternator SAQ at World Heritage Grimeton Radio Station in Sweden was heard by more than 400 listeners on December 24, 2016, setting a new record. SAQ traditionally broadcasts at Christmas with the 1920s-era electro-mechanical transmitter that operates on 17.2 kHz. SAQ has released a report that summarizes the success and a map that shows the locations of those who heard SAQ. The vast majority of reports came from listeners — many of them radio amateurs — in Europe, but several hams in the US and Canada were among those able to hear the 17.2 kHz transmission. “Excellent reception,” reported LF enthusiast Joe Craig, VO1NA, in Newfoundland. “I look forward to visiting SAQ someday.” Dave Riley, AA1A, at historic Brant Rock in Massachusetts reported “very good” copy, with the SAQ signal at 10 dB above the noise. SAQ was even heard in Alaska, by Laurence Howell, KL7L, in Wasilla, who gave SAQ a 449 signal report. View the full article
  10. 01/16/2017H.R. 555 — a new “Amateur Radio Parity Act” bill — has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill’s language is identical to that of the 2015 measure, H.R. 1301, which passed in the House late last summer but failed in the waning days of the US Senate to gain the necessary support. As with H.R. 1301, the new measure introduced on January 13 in the 115th Congress was sponsored by Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), with initial co-sponsorship by Rep. Joe Courtney (D-CT) and Rep. Greg Walden, W7EQI (R-OR). Walden now chairs the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, to which the new bill has been referred. H.R. 555 will get an initial airing in the Subcommittee on Communications and Technology. When H.R. 1301 came up in committee, Walden spoke forcefully in favor of the measure, which ultimately attracted 126 House cosponsors. “Rep. Kinzinger has again stepped forward to introduce this important legislation,” said ARRL CEO Tom Gallagher, NY2RF. “His commitment stems from exposure to what the Amateur Radio community brings to the service of all communities. The ARRL and radio amateurs nationwide owe Rep. Kinzinger a resounding ‘Thank You!’ for his efforts on their behalf.” The new bill would entitle a radio amateur living in a deed-restricted community to install and maintain an “effective outdoor antenna.” The bill’s language preserves the existing language of the limited federal preemption known as PRB-1, as well as all important case law with respect to municipal land use regulation. H.R. 555 calls on the FCC to establish rules prohibiting the application of deed restrictions that preclude Amateur Radio communications on their face or as applied. Deed restrictions would have to impose the minimum practicable restriction on Amateur Radio communications to accomplish the lawful purposes of homeowners association seeking to enforce the restriction. The ARRL Board of Directors is expected to discuss the pending legislation when it meets January 20-21. View the full article
  11. 01/16/2017The Southeastern VHF Society (SVHS) has issued a call for papers and presentations (PDF attached below) for delivery at its convention, April 28-29, in Charlotte, North Carolina. Papers and presentations are solicited on both technical and operational aspects of VHF, UHF, and microwave “weak-signal” Amateur Radio. Suggested topic areas include transmitters, receivers, transverters, RF power amplifiers, RF low-noise preamplifiers, antennas, construction projects, test equipment and station accessories, station design and construction, contesting, roving, DXpeditions, EME, propagation (sporadic E, meteor scatter, troposphere ducting, etc.), digital modes (WSJT, etc.), digital signal processing (DSP), software-defined radio, amateur satellites, and amateur television. Submissions for publication in the conference proceedings should be in Microsoft Word or Microsoft PowerPoint formats. Submissions for presentation at the conference should be in Microsoft PowerPoint format and delivered at the conference on a USB memory stick or CD-ROM, or posted for download. The submission deadline is March 13. Those submitting papers or presentations should indicate if they plan to present in person. Contact Jim Worsham, W4KXY, to submit papers and presentations or for more information. View the full article
  12. 01/13/2017ARRL has reintroduced the popular title Experimental Methods in RF Design as a classic reprint edition. Immerse yourself in the communications experience. Build equipment while understanding basic concepts and circuits. “This is a...classic, extremely good text on designing circuits for the ham,” ARRL Life Member Bob De Varney, W1ICW, a professional radio communication technician and avid experimenter said. “If you do any building at all and want to know the ‘why’ behind things, this is a very worthwhile addition to your bookshelf.” Experimental Methods in RF Design classic reprint edition is available from the ARRL Store or your ARRL Dealer (ARRL item 0574), ISBN: 978-8-87259-9239-9, $49.95 retail. Contact ARRL Publication Sales or call 860-594-0355 (toll-free in the US, 888-277-5289). This Classic Reprint Edition of a previous ARRL publication contains dated content and references that may no longer be relevant or valid. Software referenced throughout the book is not included and not available. View the full article
  13. 01/13/2017Maxim Memorial Station W1AW has received equipment donations from Heil Sound and Radiohaus/America. Heil Sound recently gave W1AW a Gold Grill PR781G Studio Microphone, a PR40 Gold microphone, a couple of PRO7-DY headsets (pink and red), a PS Elite 6 PRO-SET Elite headset with HC6 element, three FS-3 single footswitches, two “Topless” mic booms, and replacement PRO-SET Plus cords and PS3 cables. W1AW Manager Joe Carcia said most of the gear will repair or replace items at the station that have seen a lot of visitor use over the years. W1AW has also received a “Callsight” lighted call sign display from Erwin Hübsch Neto, PY2QI/KK4CGD, at Radiohaus/America in Brazil. A remote control allows the user to change the display color as well as choose flashing or strobe display mode. “We’re extremely grateful to Bob Heil and Erwin Neto for their generous donations,” Carcia said. View the full article
  14. 01/13/2017Radio amateurs in Nebraska will celebrate the state’s 150th anniversary during the Sesquicentennial Anniversary Celebration Week QSO Party, starting on Saturday, February 25, and continuing until Sunday, March 6. That time period includes the actual anniversary date, March 1. Nebraska amateurs may operate from their own stations or as part of Nebraska historical site activations, appending “/NE150” to their call signs. A Facebook page has been established. Nebraska stations transmit name, signal report, and Nebraska county (plus historical site, if appropriate). Non-Nebraska stations transmit name, signal report, and state, Canadian province, or DXCC entity. A special QSL card will be available with a self-addressed, stamped envelope and QSL to the Nebraska station contacted. Contact ARRL Midwest Division Vice Director Art Zygielbaum, K0AIZ, or ARRL Nebraska Section Manager Matt Anderson, KB0BOJ, for additional information. The Nebraska Sesquicentennial Amateur Radio Commemorative QSO Party is an official Nebraska Sesquicentennial event sanctioned by the Nebraska Sesquicentennial Commission. View the full article
  15. 01/13/2017The February edition of Digital QST is now available for viewing on your desktop or laptop. Click here to view the issue. It is also available for reading on your Apple, Android, or Kindle Fire devices. ● Build a halo antenna for 6 meters. ● Add a panadapter to your receiver or transceiver. ● Try a resonant speaker for CW. ● Go to the edge of space with students in Texas. …and much more! Enjoy Content You Won’t Find in the Print Edition… ● See our video walkthrough of the FlexRadio 6500 software defined transceiver. View the full article