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Amateur Radio Newsline Report 2415 for Friday February 9th, 2024

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Amateur Radio Newsline

Feb 9, 2024, 8:00:15 AMFeb 9
Amateur Radio Newsline Report 2415 for Friday February 9th, 2024

Amateur Radio Newsline Report Number 2415 with a release date of Friday
February 9th, 2024 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a QST. Another radio tower is dismantled and stolen. A
giant in DXing and contesting becomes a Silent Key -- and the music of
Valentine's Day, CW-style. All this and more as Amateur Radio Newsline
Report Number 2415 comes your way right now.



JIM/ANCHOR: Our top story takes us to Alabama, where antenna and tower
thieves have struck again at yet another broadcast property. Kent
Peterson KC0DGY has that story.

KENT: Only weeks after a radio station in Oklahoma suffered the
destruction of its tower and broadcast site by vandals in search of
copper, an AM radio station in Alabama discovered that its 200-foot
tower had gone missing overnight. General manager Brett Elmore of WJLX
radio posted on various social media platforms on Friday, February 2nd
that a worker doing landscape cleanup made the discovery that morning.
He said the guy wires had been cut and the tower was gone. The
station's transmitter was also stolen from the nearby building.

Unlike in the Oklahoma case, the targeted material was not copper but
stainless steel. Jasper, Alabama police were investigating. The AM
station, which is licensed to operate on 1240 kHz, has an FM translator
that broadcasts on 101.5 MHz from a different site.

This is Kent Peterson KC0DGY.



JIM/ANCHOR: A top DXer and contester from Slovenia who was called a
friend by many, has become a Silent Key. Slavko, S57DX, was being
remembered on internet postings by friends everywhere and by those who
logged contacts with him over the years. On DXSummit, many of those
hams were spotting his callsign for the final time on 14 MHz, with the
message "RIP." The first such posting was made on the 4th of February,
the day of his death, which was announced in a forum post by
his younger brother, Janez, S51DX.

It was only last July that Slavko celebrated 50 years as a radio
amateur by operating a month-long special event using the callsign
S573DX. On the QRZ page for that special event, he wrote that as a
newly licensed 16-year-old amateur in July of 1973 [quote] "my
heartbeat was near 200 at the time of first contact." [end quote]
Despite his success in worldwide events, he also had time for young
radio operators. In 2022, youngsters attending YOTA camp at Voice of
America in West Chester, Ohio, were thrilled to log him as their first
DX contact.

He was a veteran of the Slovenian military where he was a specialist in
telecommunications. He was also a proud member of a ham radio family
that includes his wife, Pavla, S56DX, brother Janez, S51DX, and
youngest brother, Bojan, S53YT. Radio, he wrote on, was "love
at first sight" and even 50 years later, the excitement never died.



JIM/ANCHOR: Qualifying CubeSats from developing nations will be able to
get a free ride into space soon under an agreement signed last month
between the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs and Exolaunch
GmbH (Exolaunch). Jason Daniels VK2LAW has those details.

JASON: UN member countries involved in space exploration are gaining a
boost from a pact the UN's Office for Outer Space Affairs has signed
with the Berlin-based company known as Exolaunch. The agreement is part
of the Access to Space for All programme that opens the door to
experience in space exploration for countries that might not otherwise
have such access. The programme also presents opportunities for the
next generation in developing countries to put their STEM education to
work with an eye toward pursuing a space-related career.

This is Jason Daniels VK2LAW.



JIM/ANCHOR: Satellite enthusiasts said a final goodbye to the popular
AMSAT CubeSat known as AO-92, which re-entered the earth's atmosphere
on the 3rd of February after six years of service. Before its weakening
batteries made the satellite unreliable, its FM transponder was
well-used and allowed many hams to set distance records for contacts.
The satellite's payloads also included an L-band converter, an
experimental camera, and a MEMS GYRO experiment.

Meanwhile, despite the announcement that Sapienza Space Systems and
Space Surveillance Laboratory would decommission the ham digipeater on
satellite IO-117, known as GreenCube, the satellite remained in
operation after the 5th of February. Petition drives and a letter from
AMSAT's president Robert Bankston, KE4AL, made last minute appeals to
keep the satellite and its well-used digipeater in action. As Newsline
went to production, AMSAT's Paul Stoetzer, N8HM, told Newsline that the
amateur community was still awaiting a response from the Italian Space
Agency, which owns the satellite and is leaving it in operation pending
a decision.



JIM/ANCHOR: The earliest of the sweeping changes to UK ham licenses are
to begin this month. Jeremy Boot G4NJH tells us about some of them.

JEREMY: The first of the changes to be made to ham licenses in the UK
are to be implemented by the end of this month. Amateurs have already
begun receiving information from Ofcom newsletters or to read about the
changes in the latest issue of RadCom published by the Radio Society of
Great Britain. Some of these first changes include permission for
Foundation licensees to build their own equipment and to operate on the
2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands. The new rules also permit third-party
operation under supervision. Regional Secondary Locators are to become
optional. Foundation and Full licensees in England may optionally use
"E" as an identifier. Changes to power levels include the ability to
transmit while airborne on primary ham bands but with power limited to
500mW EIRP.

The main documents containing these and other changes to the licensing
framework can be found on the Ofcom website. Follow the link that is in
this week's text version of Newsline at

Additional changes are expected to be phased in later this year.

ng-amateur-radio-licensing-framework ]

This is Jeremy Boot G4NJH.



JIM/ANCHOR: If you look at a map of the United States, you'd never
guess for one minute that the highway known as Route 66 - The Mother
Road - doesn't just travel between East and West but it actually leads
to Pluto! Randy Sly W4XJ explains.

RANDY: How did radio amateurs start the special event marking the
discovery of Pluto in 1930? By getting on Route 66! We're talking about
the annual Pluto Anniversary Countdown, a 10-year-long activity,
counting down to the discovery's centennial year 2030. The event,
however, has an interesting beginning. Doug Tombaugh, N3PDT, nephew of
Clyde Tombaugh, the astronomer who made the discovery, told Newsline
that it began when he contacted Bob Wertz, NF7E, during the Route
Sixty-six special event, which Bob helps organize with the Northern
Arizona Dx Association.

DOUG: "Bob was running the Route Sixty-Six Station out of Flagstaff.
And I called him and I got in. I said, that's great. And I said, by the
way, my last name's kind of famous in Flagstaff. And he asked who Iwas.

"We had a nice little chat about that and he contacted me via email
later just to say hi. Then just, we've kind of kept in contact. They
said they were going to have a countdown to the hundredth anniversary.

"Northern Arizona DX Association... Well, you know, they do events. So
they did this Pluto event up well and really, really a great bunch of
guys and gals and really nice to be associated with them and be
included in this. It's a lot of fun."

RANDY: This year, W7P at the Lowell Observatory and W7P/0, lead by
Doug, will be active for the fourth year of the countdown from February
11th through the 19th. For more information, visit the Northern Arizona
DX Association Website at

This is Randy Sly, W4XJ.


BREAK HERE: Time for you to identify your station. We are the Amateur
Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world including
the Cookeville Repeater Association's W4HPL repeater in Cookeville,
Tennessee on Tuesdays at 8:30 p.m. Central Time.


JIM/ANCHOR: August may seem like a long way off but for one
international group of YLs, the days between the 4th and the 10th of
that month can't come soon enough. Sel Embee KB3TZD tells us why.

SEL: Imagine having access to a first-class contest station in Europe
for a whole week. In between getting on the air, imagine attending
workshops on how to solder more efficiently, how to set up a station
for the digital modes and how to build a 20-meter dipole that can be
carried back to the home QTH after the week is over. The OK5Z contest
station in the Czech Republic will be the centerpiece of a full week of
YL radio adventures. The hosts will also share their accounts of SOTA
activations, DXpeditions to Africa and various flora and fauna
activations in the OKFF programme.

For information about hotel accommodations or activities during the
week, or to reserve a place, contact Eva HB9FPM/OK3QI at the email
address shown in the text version of this week's Newsline script at

This is Sel Embee KB3TZD.




JIM/ANCHOR: A radio command center staffed by hams played an important
role for the first time this year at a major festival in India. Jim
Meachen ZL2BHF tells us how they did it.

JIM: For the first time in its 18 years, a major festival in West
Bengal, India, known as the Dooars Utsav, invited amateur radio
operators to provide critical support.

The festival took place on the central parade grounds in Alipurduar in
late December, concluding at the end of January, drawing three quarters
of a million attendees. Anurag, VU3IYJ, told Newsline in an email that
this was the first time licensed hams were present to set up a command
centre to assist with the crowds. Priyam, VU3IYI, donated the VHF and
HF base stations for field support.

The North Bengal Amateur Radio Society, led by Swarup, VU3KOX, was
assisted by volunteers from the OSCAR India training programme,
including Jeet, VU2OIJ, and Niladri, VU3FOY. The hams also activated
special event station AT28BDU.

Anurag told Newsline that the hams were able to conduct some public
education as well on behalf of amateur radio, leading an awareness
program and having posters on display to explain the contributions that
hams make to the community.

This is Jim Meachen ZL2BHF.



JIM/ANCHOR:The innovative spirit of California's Silicon Valley has its
roots in the innovative spirit of amateur radio, according to one
expert who has spent his life in both worlds. On the 23rd of February,
he will share his observations in a presentation that anyone can attend
- from anywhere. Ralph Squillace KK6ITB tells us about him and his
unique history lesson.

RALPH: California's Santa Clara Valley literally blooms with
innovation. Its technology-rich landscape is populated by Big Data,
blockchain, mobile communications, biotech, AI and other creations that
were once only blueprints and dreams. Add to that list - amateur radio
- which Paul Wesling, KM6LH, believes contributed heavily to the start
of it all. He will share a presentation on the valley's evolution into
an innovation center when she visits the California Historical Radio
Society where he can be seen and heard in person as well as via Zoom.
Registration is required for both means of attendance.

This has been a popular talk wherever it has been presented by Paul,
who is an engineer and lecturer. He traces the influence of ingenuity
and inventiveness during and after the Second World War from Palo Alto,
California into the Santa Clara Valley, starting with the names of
now-famous tinkerers throughout history: Lee de Forest, Bill Eital
W6UF, David Packard, 9DRV and Bill Hewlett. He takes the history lesson
right up to Apple computer's Steve Wozniak, WA6BND and Atari's Nolan
Bushnell, W7DUK.

For registration details and additional information, see the historical
radio society's website by following the link in the text version of
this week's Newsline script at

This is Ralph Squillace KK6ITB.

oots-in-ham-radio/ ]



In the World of DX, BJ, WA7WJR, will be on the air holiday style from
Vietnam as XV9WJR from the 12th to the 22nd of February. He will be
operating CW, SSB and digital modes on 20, 17, 15, 12 and 10 metres.
QSL direct to his home call.

Listen for Chuck, KG9N, operating as V26CV from Antigua, IOTA Number
NA-100, until the 20th of February. He is using mainly CW and SSB. See for details.

Listen throughout February for the special callsign SC50AG, marking the
Scandinavian CW Activity Group's 50th anniversary. All QSOs will be
confirmed automatically via the bureau and LoTW.

A monthlong celebration of World Radio Day (13 February) and the 100th
anniversary of the start of regular radio broadcasting in Spain, is
happening on the air with the special callsign AO100RADIO (AY OH ONE
ZERO ZERO R A D I O) until the 29th of February. See for



JIM: We dedicate our final story to the holiday known as Valentine's
Day - an occasion for many in some countries to celebrate the people
and even the things of which they are fondest. For many of us, that
includes ham radio but - what else? Ah, that's a musical question and
in this case Paul Braun WD9GCO has the answer.

PAUL: You're about to hear a love story. It's about Junie, N1DUC, who
loves amateur radio. It's about Don Smith, a Mississippi song writer
who loves music. Last year when the two met at a local coffee shop
where Don was practicing some of his songs, Junie asked him if he could
help create a song for her YouTube channel. Don said yes -- and then
asked: Is there a way to send an affectionate message using Morse Code?
Junie replied: Of course, you send the number "88," dah-dah-dah-di-dit.
That's all the rhythm and inspiration that Don needed. With a little
bit of research and a little bit of songwriting, he was back a week or
so later, serenading Junie while they were seated outside the
Bright-Eyed Brewing Coffee Shop. He also recorded the moment on his own
YouTube channel: "Love and Kisses" is a love song to a form of
communication that may not be quite as old as music itself, but just as
effective as sending the message.

So here's a message from Newsline to Don and Junie, with apologies to
William Shakespeare, who predates Samuel Morse by more than just a few
years: [quote] "if Morse Code be the food of love, play on." [endquote]

This is Paul Braun WD9GCO.

JIM: You can find links to Don's song in both a guitar and piano
version in the text version of this week's Newsline script at



Don't be so busy chasing DX or activating those parks that you forget
to write a haiku about your experience by sending an original haiku to
us here at Newsline. Use the entry form on our website,
and please follow the rules for writing your three-line haiku -- we
cannot accept any entries that aren't written in traditional haikuform.

NEWSCAST CLOSE: Newsline would also like to take this moment to
congratulate our friends at the Ham Radio Workbench podcast on
producing their 200th episode.

With thanks to Amateur Radio Daily; Anurag, VU3IYJ; ARRL; California
Historical Radio Society; CQ Magazine; David Behar K7DB; Don Smith;
DXWorld; Eva, HB9FPM; Exolaunch; FCC; 425DXNews; Junie N1DUC;;
Radio World; RSGB's RadCom; Raisa, R1BIG; SATNOG;;
SOTA Reflector; Sapienza Space Systems; UN Office for Outer Space;
Wireless Institute of Australia; Worldwide DX; YouTube; and you our
listeners, that's all from the Amateur Radio Newsline. We remind
our listeners that Amateur Radio Newsline is an all-volunteer
non-profit organization that incurs expenses for its continued
operation. If you wish to support us, please visit our website at and know that we appreciate you all. We also remind our
listeners that if you like our newscast, please leave us a 5-star
rating wherever you subscribe to us. For now, with Caryn Eve Murray
KD2GUT at the news desk in New York, and our news team worldwide, I'm
Jim Damron N8TMW in Charleston West Virginia saying 73. As always we
thank you for listening. Amateur Radio Newsline(tm) is Copyright 2024.
All rights reserved.

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