Amateur Radio Newsline Report 2023, August 7, 2016

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The following is a closed circuit advisory and not for broadcast.

Newscast #2023 is an expanded edition of Amateur Radio Newsline, containing special reports. This newscast has three segments and there are 2 breaks for identification.

And now, here's this week's anchor, Stephen Kinford, N8WB.


Amateur Radio Newsline Report Number 2023 with a release date of Friday, August 5, 2016 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a QST. Dayton Hamvention has found a new home now that Hara Arena is closing. We proudly introduce the 2016 Bill Pasternak WA6ITF Memorial Young Ham of the Year -- and we devote a special segment to celebrating a few other young amateurs who've distinguished themselves on and off the air. Hear all this and more in our expanded edition of Amateur Radio Newsline, Report Number #2023 coming your way right now.





STEPHEN/ANCHOR: We open this week with our top story: With Hara Arena's closing, the big question looming was "Where will Hamvention go?" Now we know. Amateur Radio Newsline's Paul Braun, WD9GCO, tells us more.


PAUL: For the first time since 1964, the Dayton Hamvention has a new home!

ESTHER PIERSON: We are excited, I'm telling you! This is going to be the greatest thing for this fairground. We're really happy!

PAUL: That was the response from Esther Pierson from the Greene County Fairgrounds and Exposition center in Xenia, Ohio, talking about the news that Hamvention will be moving there for 2017.

Ron Cramer, KD8ENJ, General Chairman of Hamvention, and Michael Kalter, W8CI, spokesman for the event, talked about the new venue on Wednesday evening’s HamNation podcast:

RON CRAMER: Well, we are moving from Hara. We are going to Xenia, Ohio, which is almost a suburb of Dayton. We are going to the Greene County Fair and Exposition Center.

PAUL: For those concerned that there won’t be enough space for Hamvention, they wanted to assure everyone that there definitely is:

RON CRAMER: One hundred and four acres are available to us, and a part of that is in parking. It is going to take a lot of parking spaces. We are hoping we can park everyone on the site.

PAUL: Cramer and his team have big plans for the 2017 show. Kalter said that they’re not aiming for “Good enough”:

MICHAEL KALTER: we are not going to just start out good and get better. We want to start out great and get awesome.

PAUL: The future of Hamvention, which only a week ago seemed rather bleak, appears now to be very bright indeed.

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Paul Braun, WD9GCO.



STEPHEN/ANCHOR: The Amateur Radio Newsline is proud to announce the winner of its 2016 William Pasternak WA6ITF Memorial Young Ham of the Year Award. Amateur Radio Newsline's Mark Abramowicz has the details:

MARK'S REPORT: He is Skyler Fennell KD0WHB of Denver, Colorado.

The 17-year-old is the son of Karl and Carol Fennell. He's a recent honors graduate of the Denver School of the Arts.

Skyler credits a family member with introducing him to what he hopes will become his career...

"Back in third grade is really where my interest in electronics sparked," Sklyer recalls. "To my great grandpa, he gave me, it was a snap circuits kit on starting building simple electronic circuits and I was so interested I built everything in it."

But Skyler says it didn't stop there as he continued work on other projects going through middle school...

"I built a laser spirograph in eighth grade which take a laser pointer and it had some mirrors and stuff and it made cool shapes," Skyler says. "Then, about ninth grade, my friend, KD0MLV really sparked my interest in amateur radio."

Talk of the technical, Skyler admits, and what ham radio could do really got his attention...

"He said he had his license but he told me that, 'Oh, you can talk around the world with HF and all the different bands' and how wavelengths on antennas, like different sections of wavelengths make good antennas," Skyler says. "I started doing research and I'm like, wow, this seems like an amazing hobby and I quickly got my Technician license the summer of that year."

Skyler says he got involved with repeaters - designing and building them - thanks to his first, on-air contact...

"My first contact was a broadcast engineer KE0VH. He kind of started answering questions about repeaters and everything when I used them," he recalls. "I was like, how does this work, and he started mentoring me as well as some other broadcast engineers."

Skyler got involved with satellite communications thanks to Colorado Amateur Satellite Net and expanded that to an affiliation with AB0BX STEM School Amateur Radio Club in nearby Littleton, Colorado.

He says there he got exposed to Edge of Space science missions and helped put together payloads for the balloon launches.

Skyler also started the Denver School of the Arts Amateur Radio Club and became trustee of its call sign, KE0FXH.

Skyler had spare time growing up to become involved in the Boy Scouts and earned the rank of Eagle Scout by the age of 13.

And, then, there was music and the piano - a passion he developed at an early age thanks, he says to the support and patience of his parents.

"Have a lot of fun with it, whether it's jazz or classical," Skyler says. "Been involved with a lot of different things with my school - orchestra, the band and really it's been a big part of my life. Really fun."

So what's next for Skyler? You could say the sky is the limit...

"I'm headed off to New Mexico Tech for electrical engineering," Skyler says. "So, I hope to gain more knowledge about electronics, that I get a deeper understanding of how it all works.

"And, of course, continue on with music. Eventually, I see myself designing my own electronics, prototypes, maybe starting a business."

Congratulations Skyler and our best wishes for great success in school and your future from all of us at Amateur Radio Newsline.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Mark Abramowicz, NT3V, in Philadelphia.

STEPHEN/ANCHOR: Skyler will be recognized at the Huntsville Hamfest in Huntsville, Alabama on Aug. 20. And, a special thanks to our sponsors, CQ magazine, Yaesu USA, Heil Sound, and Radiowavz.



STEPHEN: Skyler Fennell is in good company. A young Ohio ham has just won one of the ARRL's biggest honors. Amateur Radio Newsline's Paul Braun, WD9GCO, spoke with him.

PAUL: The winner of the A-Double-R-L’s 2015 Hiram Percy Maxim Award is 13-year-old Chris Brault, KD8YVJ.

I had the opportunity to speak with this remarkable young man. He explained that getting licensed was actually a father-son project. His father, Jocelyn Brault, is KD8VRX :

CHRIS: I was first licensed in 2014 and my dad, when I was a Scout, he would do JOTA - Jamboree On The Air - and what he would do, when I was in the Cub Scouts, he became a Scoutmaster. And we were wondering if we could do Jamboree on the Air. He did some research and found out how to get a ham license and got his. And then he had a little HT and he would put it in the car with a mag mount and I would be in the back seat and I would do a third party and that's pretty much how I got started. I wanted to get licensed and I did - and now I'm a General. I love doing HF, DXing and even some satellite work.

PAUL: I asked Chris what he enjoyed most about ham radio:

CHRIS: Probably DXing and a little bit of contesting. I like talking to different places and seeing how far I can get with my antennas and my dad's antennas, and just seeing what we can do to get the farthest distance and stuff like that.

PAUL: As to what it means to him to receive this award, Chris said:

CHRIS: It is amazing. It makes me feel really special and that I can do anything I set my mind to do. Of course, there are a lot of people that helped me get here, a bunch of my Elmers at the West Chester Amateur Radio Association, our club station, and the YACHT [Young Amateurs Communications Ham Team] group.

PAUL: I asked Chris what he has to say to other young people in today’s world of internet, smartphones, and instant messaging who might think ham radio is old-fashioned:

CHRIS: Well, your Bluetooth, your Wifi, your cell phone, all the stuff that you use that's wireless, is radio! Cellular is a more advanced version of radio, and I am kind of doing a more simple version. But mine is more powerful and we have different antennas we can make and use more power and directional antennas.

PAUL: According to the A-double-R-L press release, Chris is active in a wide range of Amateur Radio-related activities, including antenna building and bicycle mobile operation.

He is also active in the recruitment and training of new amateurs by participating in such events as Jamboree On The Air (JOTA) and activities at the West Chester Amateur Radio Association/Voice of America Museum (WC8VOA), where he serves as a volunteer. Brault was involved in developing an Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) contact proposal, in cooperation with iSPACE and the WCARA/VOA Museum.

I was first licensed as a novice at the age of 15. But looking back on what I accomplished compared to what Chris Brault has accomplished, what we mostly have in common is that we both like amateur radio, both like the space program, and share the first four letters of our last names.

Chris Brault is a remarkable young man, and gives you hope in the future of our hobby.

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Paul Braun, WD9GCO.



Time for you to identify your station. We are the Amateur Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world, including the West Chester Amateur Radio Club repeater WC8VOA in West Chester, Ohio, on Monday nights.



STEPHEN/ANCHOR: We continue our look at promising young amateurs with this special report on the IARU's Youngsters on the Air camp, which recently wrapped up its activities in Austria. Amateur Radio Newsline's Neil Rapp, WB9VPG, spoke to one of the two Americans lucky enough to be invited to attend this year.

NEIL: Two young radio amateurs from the United States are the first hams to attend the IARU Region 1 Youngsters on the Air camp in Austria, held July 16 through the 23rd. Sterling Coffey, N0SSC, of St Louis, Missouri, and Sam Rose, KC2LRC, of Syracuse, New York, were invited by Glenn Johnson, W0GJ, from the Northern California DX Association and Ward Silver, N0AX, from the Yasme Foundation, in an effort to learn from the event and hopefully develop a similar event in the U.S. The camp is for 15- to 25-year-olds, and is designed to expose young hams to additional modes, and step up their skills to the next level.

YOTA is in its sixth year and is growing in number of countries participating. Sam Rose told us the planners had an excellent balance of radio events and social events to promote international goodwill.

SAM: We partook of various events which were workshops where we learned about things like using a Raspberry Pi to transmit WSPR, or HamNet, which is a high-speed amateur radio data protocol based on WiFi. There were some demonstrations such as an ISS contact. We had a good balance of that and some just plain touristy things, like going to see the largest ice cave in Austria and going and seeing one of the castles.

NEIL: Sam said YOTA included a contact with the ISS, as well as a European style fox hunt on 80 meters.

SAM: What you would do is do a race to see who could find the five foxes the fastest. So each fox had a little punch on the top and you would be timed. People would start on 1 minute, zero, and you could go through and punch your card with one of the punches from each of these foxes. The goal was to be the fastest person to find all the foxes and return. So it was both a competition in how good you were at radio direction finding and how athletic you are.

NEIL: The U.S. team's reports will be made available by the fall to help facilitate creation of a hoped-for camp in Region 2 here in the U.S. Meanwhile, Sam and Sterling are thinking back on a great time, when the two Americans, as camp first-timers, also enjoyed a bit of minor celebrity.

SAM: It was really exciting for a lot of the attendees there to see people from the U.S. There were attendees from Ethiopia and South Africa. And it was, "Oh God, I get to take my picture with an American, this is so cool!"

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Neil Rapp, WB9VPG



STEPHEN/ANCHOR: The FCC is cracking down again on violators. We hear first about one Georgia amateur who the agency has described as a repeat offender. Here's Amateur Radio Newsline's Heather Embee, KB3TZD.

HEATHER: Saying that a Georgia radio operator has shown "deliberate disregard" for prior warnings, the FCC has fined him $1,000 for failure to properly identify himself on the air.

David J. Tolassi, W4BHV, of Ringgold, Georgia, received a Forfeiture Order from the agency, one year after the FCC sent him a Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture. In proposing the fine last year, the FCC said Tolassi had disregarded an earlier warning about his failure to send his call sign properly while operating on 20 meters.

The FCC states that Tolassi told the agency he had identified properly during the 10-minute window while transmitting on 14.313 MHz - but the FCC has challenged his assertion, saying that 15 minutes had elapsed without identification during the time agents were monitoring him.

The FCC has determined that he repeatedly violated Section 97.119, and reaffirmed those charges in the recent Forfeiture Order, released July 29. He has 30 days to pay the fine. Tolassi had earlier asked the agency to cancel the Notice of Apparent Liability and issue a Warning Letter, but the agency denied that request.

The Enforcement Bureau reports that Tolassi has had other enforcement issues relating to other violations, years earlier.

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Heather Embee, KB3TZD.

STEPHEN/ANCHOR: In another FCC action, the agency has also fined a California amateur $25,000 for intentional interference. William F. Crowell, W6WBJ (formerly N6AYJ), of Diamond Spring, California, has been assessed the full amount that had been proposed in a December 2015 Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture. In an August 2 Forfeiture Order, the FCC said that its fine is based on QUOTE "the full base forfeiture amount as well as an upward adjustment reflecting Mr Crowell’s decision to continue his misconduct after being warned that his actions violated the Communications Act and the Commission’s rules.” ENQUOTE

The FCC said its December notice was issued after complaints from the Western Amateur Radio Friendship Association, whose 75 meter nets had been challenged by Crowell. According to the FCC, Crowell had interfered with amateurs on the air there in August of 2015. The FCC described Crowell as someone who has a long-standing record of interaction with the FCC Enforcement Bureau.




STEPHEN: In the UK, a computer upgrade is completed and radio license holders and applicants have access to what the licensing authority OFCOM hopes is an improved online experience. Amateur Radio Newsline's Jeremy Boot, G4NJH, has more on that story.

JEREMY: The UK licensing authority OFCOM has rolled out its new Amateur Radio and Ships Radio Licensing Portal. They expect the update will improve customers' on-line experience while keeping information secure.

The new portal is being called the first stage of an ongoing effort to refresh services and OFCOM acknowledged on its website, that some technical issues can be expected along the way. Hams may use the redesigned portal to apply for and manage all amateur radio licenses, including those held by clubs.

In this early stage of the roll-out OFCOM is looking for feedback on user experience and asks that any visitors to the portal send an email with comments to

Visit the website at

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Jeremy Boot, G4NJH in Nottingham, the UK.




STEPHEN: Speaking of licensing, there are some important changes - and a deadline - looming for some licensees in South Africa. Amateur Radio Newsline's John Williams, VK4JJW, has those details.

JOHN: If you're a South African amateur radio operator with a ZU license and you're older than 25, time is running out for you. Newly enacted age restrictions for ZU licensees require an upgrade to Class A. This means that by April 1 2017, anyone 25 and older who still possesses a ZU license will be unable to renew it.

The next Radio Amateur's Examination will be offered this coming October and registration has already begun. The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa is urging all affected ZU license-holders to begin their studies now for the Class A license and be prepared for the test this fall. For the registration web page on the SARL website, visit

This will be the only chance to take the test before the April expiration date.

Under the regulation changes, amateurs younger than 20 are able to hold a ZU license, which is a Class B license, until they are 25 years old. After that, they must take the Class A exam for the ZS/ZR license.

Applicants must achieve a passing grade of at least 65 percent on the test, with at least 50 percent in both the technical and regulatory sections.

So hit the the clock is ticking!

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm John Williams, VK4JJW.




Time for you to identify your station. We are the Amateur Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world, including the Riverland Amateur Radio Club's WR9ARC repeater in LaCrosse, Wisconsin on Sundays.



STEPHEN/ANCHOR: Now here's some news that Space Geeks around the world won't be able to resist! There's a big meeting this fall about the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station program and it's being held, not in space but on Planet Earth - in Houston Texas. Here's Amateur Radio Newsline's Graham Kemp, VK4BB.

GRAHAM: What's happening in Texas this coming November might well be considered the ultimate Eyeball QSO: It's the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station's global face-to-face meeting. American team members will serve as hosts in Houston as the worldwide team gathers there on November 15 through November 18.

These meetings are open for the public to observe and there is no registration fee -- although it's going to take some planning if you want to attend. The dates this year were selected to coincide with the 20th anniversary of ARISS which had its first meeting -- not surprisingly -- at the same NASA Johnson Space Center where this gathering will occur. In fact, a tour of the space center will be given to meeting attendees on the afternoon of Monday, Nov. 14.

To learn more about attending the meeting, email Rosalie White at, or Frank Bauer at

The agenda is an ambitious one and will obviously look forward to the program's next 20 years - and beyond.

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Graham Kemp, VK4BB.



In the world of DX, two members of the Ukrainian DX Team, operators Alex/UX0LL and Alex/UT5UY, will be on the air as 5H1XX from Zanzibar Island between August 13th and August 22nd. They can be heard on various bands and modes. Send QSLs to M-Zero-URX.

The Essex UK based Martello Tower Group will be operating the special event station GB5RC ( G-B-5 Radio Caroline) from August 5th to the 8th on-board the MV Ross Revenge in the River Blackwater to commemorate five decades of offshore radio broadcasting in the UK . The group will be active on 40 to 10metres  with full UK legal output power. A special QSL card will be available.

Listen for operators Dietmar/DL3DXX, Rene/DL2JRM, Kurt/DJ4XX and Robin/DO2XX working as OJ0DX from Market Reef between August 11th and 16th. They will be transmitting on 80-6 meters using CW, SSB and RTTY. They also have plans to be in the Worked All Europe CW Contest that takes place August 13th and 14th. Send QSLs to DL3DXX.

A special event station, operated by a team of Cuban amateurs will be on the air between August 11th and 14th. The call sign is T42FRC. Listen for them on 160-10 meters where they will be using CW, SSB, PSK31, PSK63, PSK125, RTTY and JT65. Send QSLs to CO2WL.




STEPHEN/ANCHOR: We end this week's newscast with the tale of a magazine notice that led to a happy marriage, with the help of an amateur in Georgia.

No, this isn't the story of two people who went out on a date and found romance. It's about the happy marriage between one museum and a vintage Morse Code-generating machine it had been wanting for about a decade.

Last year, the Chatham Marconi Maritime Center in Massachusetts placed a notice in the ARRL's QST magazine saying it was looking for something called a Creed keyer to add to its collection. The keyer generates one-way Morse Code messages to ships at sea at speeds as fast as 100 words per minute, using tapes with holes punched ahead of time - player-piano style - by another machine.

The museum  had been searching for the perfect match for its collection for 10 years - and Gene Greneker, K4MOG, of Powder Springs, Georgia, proved to be the ultimate match-maker. The ham radio operator had the machine, which he and a friend had found and bought from a small RCA wireless station in Lantana, Fla.

After some fundraising on behalf of the museum, the Creed machine was sold, shipped and enroute to its new home in Massachusetts.

The Maritime Center's president, Dick Kraycir said the next step is to pair the machine with another mate: a translator that converts the Creed machine's output into dots and dashes that museum visitors will be able to hear. A vintage translator is currently undergoing restoration and once that's done, the two are expected to live happily ever after.



NEWSCAST CLOSE: With thanks to Alan Labs; the ARRL; ARISS; Cape Cod Chronicle; CQ Magazine; the FCC; Hap Holly and the Rain Report; Irish Radio Transmitter Society; Ohio-Penn DX Bulletin; QRZ; the South African Radio League; Southgate Amateur Radio News; Ted Randall's QSO Radio Show; Wireless Institute of Australia; WTWW Shortwave; and you our listeners, that's all from the Amateur Radio Newsline. Please send emails to our address at More information is available at Amateur Radio Newsline's only official website located at

For now, with Caryn Eve Murray, KD2GUT, at the news desk in New York, and our news team worldwide, I'm Stephen Kinford, N8WB, in Wadsworth, Ohio, saying 73 and as always we thank you for listening.

Amateur Radio Newsline(tm) is Copyright 2016. All rights reserved.

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