Amateur Radio Newsline Report 1853 - February 15 2013

14:12 Fernando Luiz de Souza 0 Comments







The following is a Q-S-T.  Ham radio responds to a Nor-
Easter that hits the U-S-A and Canada; the IARU to do a
review of the Region 2 High Frequency bandplan; a Utah
Medical Center adds ham radio as a major back-up; the STRAND
One ham radio phone-sat to launch late this month and a
Charlotte North Carolina TV station accomplishes what hams
have been doing for over a decade.  Find out the details are
on Amateur Radio NewslineT report number 1853 coming your
way right now.


(Billboard Cart Here)


**

RESCUE RADIO:  HAM RADIO RESPONDS TO NORTH-EAST BLIZZARD
NEMO

Ham radio was ready when a severe winter storm hit the North-
East.  Amateur Radio Newsline's Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF,
reports:

--

Amateur radio operators in the North-East were kept busy as
a gigantic midwinter storm nick named Nemo buried the
Northeast in snow on Saturday, February 9th.  The storm left
behind a geographic region digging out of heavy white drifts
and reeling from gale-force winds.  And ham radio severe
weather spotters were on the job as well.  Take a listen:

--

Taunton Skywarn audio.

--

That was the sound of the Taunton Skywarn Amateur Radio
Club's emergency activation network in Massachusettes as the
network passed along snow levels to the National Weather
Service while the mega storm continued on its Northward
trek.  During the storm WX1BOX was also tweeting flooding
information down on the coast and reported that Martha's
Vinyard had suffered some storm related damage.

In all, more than three feet of snow fell on parts of
Connecticut, and more than two feet accumulated on New Yorks
Long Island.  The storm also caused coastal flooding that
forced evacuations of some Massachusetts low-lying
communities.  This as waves off the south shore of Boston
and parts of Cape Cod measured as high as 20 feet.

According to news reports, hundreds of thousands of people
were without power as wind gusts of up to 80 miles per hour
cut power lines and toppled trees.  More than 400,000
customers were reported without power in Massachusetts and
at least another 180,000 in Rhode Island.   Also lost in
some areas was both wireline and cellular telephone service.
For some it was several days before utilities were restored.

Meantime, hams involved in Skywarn and other severe weather
spotting services did their best to keep the National
Weather Service and through it the public informed on the
very latest in information regarding this bitterly cold Nor-
Easter as it played havoc with those in its path.

With thanks to Lloyd Colston, KC5FM, for supplying the
WX1BOX audio clip, I'm Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, in the
newsroom in Los Angeles.

--

(KC5FM)

**

RESCUE RADIO:  CANADIAN HAMS READY WHEN STORM HITS

But the United States North-East was not the only region
affected by Nemo.  The storm then moved North into Canada
and Stefan Kinford, N8WB, has that part of the story:

--

After several days of warnings, a major winter storm moved
into the Canadian Maritimes.  Messages from Bob Robichaud,
VE1MBR, at the Atlantic Storm Prediction Centre in Dartmouth
were being sent out to all CANWARN members to prepare them
in case of activation.  Information was also being posted on
the Maritime Amateur website.

On Friday morning the call was made to activate CANWARN in
Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island on Saturday February
9th beginning at 8am Atlantic Time.  A message went out to
all CANWARN members to let everyone know of the net and that
information Environment Canada would be looking for.

At 8 a.m. Saturday Morning, Net Control began operations by
linking up 13 repeaters throughout Nova Scotia through the
MAVCOM system, IRLP, Echolink and HF operations on 80 meters
3.770 MHz.  CANWARN spotters were asked to record snowfall
amounts each hour, visibility, wind speed, direction and
storm surge.  Notes would also be kept for any changeover
from snow to freezing rain, ice pellets, rain, flooding and
any other damage reports.

Starting at 11 a.m. damage reports starting coming in of
trees down, roofs being blown off, flooding in coastal areas
and roads being breached. Power outages were reported all
over the province.

Over the next 12 hours Net Control recorded close to 200
messages. As darkness approached hams were told by
Environment Canada that hams could close the net for the
evening after the high tide at 10 pm in case of any reports
of storm surge.  The net activated again Sunday morning for
only one hour to record any damage reports. At that time the
net was terminated.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, Im Stephan Kinford, N8WB,
reporting.

--

More information about CANWARN Atlantic can be found on The
Maritime Amateur website at www.maritimeamateur.ca  (VE1JBL)

**

RESCUE RADIO:  UTAH MEDICAL CENTER ADDS HAM RADIO EMCOMM
BACKUP

Utah's Intermountain Healthcare Southwest Region's Dixie
Regional Medical Center has completed installation of two
special antennas.  Both will serve as a part of its backup
communications system powered by amateur radio.

Bob Vosper, AE7HY, is the Technical Manager for Washington
County Amateur Radio Emergency Service.  He notes that much
of Intermountain's communications system is Internet-based.
He notes that if the web connection goes down, that a
possible communications blackout could occur.

To cope with this potential situation, the hospital arranged
for Washington County Amateur Radio Emergency Service to
install an amateur radio system as a back up that can
function without the aid of the Internet or local radio
repeaters.  The system will also be able to transmit large
blocks of data over amateur radio bands.

According to Vosper, other backup systems were already in
place but adding ham radio is just an added redundancy.
(StGeorge.com)

**

WORLDBEAT:  IARU TO REVIEW REGION II HF BABDPLAN THIS YEAR

The ARRL reports that the International Amateur Radio Union
Region 2 High Frequency bandplan will be a topic of
discussion at a conference will be held later this year in
Mexico.  According to the League, the Region 2 conference is
held every three years and is attended by delegations from
the national Amateur Radio societies in the western
hemisphere that are members of the IARU.

The ARRL is the IARU Member Society for the US.  It notes
that IARU band plans are voluntary guidelines.  It adds that
they do not have the force of FCC regulations and that for
radio amateurs in the US, IARU band plans are informational,
not regulations.  However most other countries do not have
the detailed sub-band regulations as are in place here in
the United States, so for radio amateurs in those nations
the voluntary IARU band plans may offer the only guidance on
frequency usage.

Hams living in Region 2 can find the current bandplan on-
line at www.iaru-r2.org/band-plan. The Region 1 and Region 3
band plans are also posted there as well.  (ARRL, IARU)

**

HAM RADIO IN SPACE:  STRAND-1 AMATEUR RADIO SMARTPHONE
CUBESAT TO LAUNCH FEBRUARY 25

The BBC says that the world's first 'smartphone-sat' project
called STRAND-1 will be ready to launch at the end of
February.  The STRAND-1 CubeSat will carry a Google Nexus
One Android smartphone into space to demonstrate the
feasibility of using cheap smartphone's electronics to
control a spacecraft.

Also included will be a software-based speech synthesizer to
commemorate the U-O-SAT family of amateur radio satellites
that were launched in the 1980's. There will also be an
amateur radio AX.25 packet radio downlink on 437.575 MHz.

The STRAND-1 satellite was built in Guildford in the United
Kingdom by volunteers from the Surrey Space Centre and
Surrey Satellite Technology Limited in their spare time.  It
is planned to be launched on February 25th into a 785 km
orbit by the Indian Space Research Organization rocket.
More is on-line at www.amsat-uk.org and we will have more
ham radio space related news later on in this weeks Amateur
Radio Newsline report.  (AMSAT-UK)

**

BREAK 1

From the United States of America, We are the Amateur Radio
Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world
including the N3EVW repeater serving Scranton Pennsylvania.

(5 sec pause here)


**

ENFORCEMENT:  CONTINUED UNLICENSED OPERATION BRINGS NEW
$25000 FINE

The FCC has affirmed a second $25,000 proposed fine to
Whisler Fleurinor for unlicensed operation and this one it
says its going to collect in full.  Amateur Radio Newsline's
Norm Seeley, KI7UP, has more:

--

You may remember back to October of 2011.  That's when the
South Central Region of the Enforcement Bureau issued a
Forfeiture Order to Whisler Fleurinor affirming its findings
in a 25,000 Notice of Apparent Liability for unlicensed
operation of a radio transmitter.  At that time the agency
agreed to reduce the forfeiture amount to $500 based solely
on his inability to pay claim.  Fleurinor then paid the $500
forfeiture and that was supposed to be the end of the
matter.  But it turned out to be just the tip of a much
larger unlicensed radio iceberg.

On several dates in late 2011, agents from the Miami Office
used direction-finding to locate the source of radio
frequency transmissions on the frequency 99.5 MHz.  Once
again the signal was traced it to Whisler Fleurinor's
commercial property in Fort Lauderdale.  As a result, the
Miami FCC Office issued Fleurinor a second Notice  of
Apparent Liability for Forfeiture on February 1, 2012, which
proposed a $25,000 forfeiture.  This included a $15,000
upward adjustment because of the deliberate nature of the
violation and given that Fleurinor had already been fined
and issued multiple Notices of Unlicensed Operation for the
same infringement.

In his response to the proposed fine Fleurinor denied that
he violated the Communications Act or any FCC order.  He
asserted that there had been no radio transmission of any
kind for at least 6 months, and that there is no radio
equipment at this location.  Fleurinor also asserted that
the only remnant of any radio equipment is a roof antenna
which has been disconnected and was not operational.
Finally, Fleurinor states that he is unable to pay the
forfeiture and urged cancellation on that basis as well.

However, in its February 8th decision, the FCC says it's not
buying Fleurinor's explanation or defense.  It notes that
agents from the Miami Office determined that unlicensed
radio transmissions on the frequency 99.5 MHz weew
transmitted from the antenna located on top of Fleuronior's
commercial property on several occasions during 2011.  Also
that he admits that the antenna at issue was his, but denies
that he was operating the unlicensed station on the
specified dates.  This says the FCC says it does not find
credible because its agents collected their evidence over
several months.

As to his inability to pay the proposed fine, the FCC says
that hes going to have to find a way to do so.  This is
because in an
individual's inability to pay a forfeiture is just one of
the factors we consider in determining the appropriate
forfeiture penalty.  In this case the FCC says that the
record evidence in this case shows that Fleurinor is a
repeat offender, having already received and paid a
forfeiture for the very same violations at issue and has
been in violation, either continuously or intermittently
since at least 2008.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Norm Seely, KI7UP,
watching this one from out here in Scottsdale, Arizona

--

The bottom line is that the $25,000 fine stands and
Fleurinor was given the customary 30 days to pay it, or the
matter may be turned over to the Department of Justice for
further action.  And Norm adds that the other voice - er -
bark you heard in his report is that of Henry J who wants a
bit of credit too.  (FCC)

**

RADIO CRIME:  COPPER THEFT TAKES NWS RADIO SITE OFF THE AIR

National Weather Service Coordination Meteorologist Hector
Guererro reports that a case of vandalism at the Coleman
National Weather Service transmission site in Texas.  One
that took the Weather Radio station transmitter temporarily
off the air.

Guererro said that county authorities reported that vandals
broke into the transmitter building north of Coleman and
stole the copper data feed lines that come from the city of
San Angelo.  The weather alert transmitter, which identifies
as WXN-89, operates at 162.475 MHz.  News reports say that
many area Weather Alert radios and scanners are tuned to
that frequency.

The lines are being replaced and the transmitter should be
back on the air by the time you hear this report.  Federal
officials as well as Coleman county authorities are
investigating the break-in and vandalism that damaged the
federal government transmitting facility. (Nuizer.com,
Brownwooid News)

**

RADIO CRIME:  KWWK KNOCKED OFF THE AIR BY COPPER THIEF

Rochester Minnesota police are investigating a recent copper
theft that took a local radio station off the air.  Early
Monday, February 4th, someone broke into the KWWK radio
transmitter and tower site.  The thief made off with both
copper transmission line and a motor.  An engineer found the
crime when he went into work around 4 a.m..  Damage to the
property is estimated at $550.  (KTTC, others)

**

DELIVERY NOTICE:  USPS TO SUSPEND SATURDAY MAIL DELIVERY

Receiving a QSL card could soon take a little bit longer.
This with word that the United States Postal Service has
announced that effective the week of August 5th, it will
stop Saturday delivery of most mail  first-class and
standard mail, periodicals and direct-mail advertising.  The
only exceptions will be packages, mail-order medicines,
priority and express mail which will still be delivered six
days a week. At least for the time being.  (USPS, others)

**

HAM RADIO BUSINESS: HARBACH TO DISCONTINUE PETER DAHL
TRANSFORMER LINE

The famed Peter Dahl line of transformers used in many ham
radio power amplifiers is going away.  According to an
announcement on the Harbach Electronics website, the company
says that producing these transformers in these hard
economic times is simply no longer cost effective.
According to Jeff Weinberg, W8CQ, of Harbach, he is in
negotiations with other entities for someone else to take
over the manufacture of Peter Dahl transformers and other
components in that product line but as of airtime nothing
has been decided.  Harbach will discontinue the Peter Dahl
product like effective February 14th.  More is on-line at
harbachelectronics.com.  (Harbach Electronics)

**

HAM HAPPENINGS:  HEIL SOUND TO AGAIN HOST NAB HAM RADIO
RECEPTION IN LAS VEGAS

Heil Sound has once again signed on as a major sponsor of
the Amateur Radio Operators Reception at this years National
Association of Broadcasters Convention.  The gathering is
slated for Wednesday, April 10 from 6 to 8PM Pacific at the
LVH Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada.

This will be Heil Sound's eighth year as a sponsor and,
according to company president Sarah Heil, there will be a
"pile of Heil" with prizes being awarded throughout the
evening.  Company founder Bob Heil, K9EID, will be on hand
to help emcee and entertain the crowd with his stories from
the Ham Radio world.

Again that's The 2013 Amateur Radio Operators Reception,
sponsored by Broadcast Supply Worldwide, Heil Sound, Ltd.,
and Turner Engineering, will be held on Wednesday, April
10th from 6 to 8PM at the L-V-H Hotel for the 2013 NAB
Amateur Radio Operators Reception.  This reception is open
to all NAB badge holders and Bob and Sarah Heil say that
they hope to see you there.  (Heil Sound)

**

HAM HAPPENINGS:  CENTRAL STATES VHF CONFERENCE JULY 15 - 18

Conference registration is now open for the 2013 Central
States VHF Conference that will be held July 25th to the
28th at the Elk Grove Holiday Inn in Elk Grove Village,
Illinois.  Conference features this year include an antenna
test range, various talks and presentations as well as a
special area for rover vehicles to be displayed.  ARRL C-E-O
Dave Sumner, K1ZZ, is slated as the banquet keynote speaker.
More information is on-line at
www.csvhfs.org/2013conference.  (ANS, Central States VHF
Society)

**

NAMES IN THE NEWS:  ALEX TARSHA, N0AMT JOINS QRZ.COM

Alex Tarsha, N0AMT, has joined QRZ dot com  as a full time
staff member in its systems engineering department.  Tarsha
is a US Air Force veteran who comes to QRZ from the defense
industry where he has recently been serving as a Lead
Software Security engineer.  At QRZ he will function as an
Information Technology Engineer performing server
maintenance and software development.  Prior to Alex's
arrival, and for the past 20 years, all of the software and
engineering behind QRZ dot com  has been done by site
creator and owner Fred Lloyd, AA7BQ. (QRZ)

**

NAMES IN THE NEWS:  CHIP MARGELLI, K7JA JOINS INNOVANTENNAS

And word that Chip Margelli, K7JA, has joined InnovAntennas.
At Innov Margelli will manage sales and marketing activities
in the Americas and will also contribute to the company's
global strategic planning.

For those of you who might not be aware, K7JA has been as a
champion contester, DXer and DXpeditioner for over his five
decades and was a 2008 inductee into the CQ Amateur Radio
Hall of Fame.  On the professional side Margelli has over 35
years experience in the amateur radio industry with stints
at Yaesu, Heil Sound and CQ Communications.
(InnovAntennas)

**

BREAK 2

This is ham radio news for today's radio amateur.  From the
United States of America, We are the Amateur Radio Newsline
with links to the world from our only official website at
www.arnewsline.org and being relayed by the volunteer
services of the following radio amateur:

(5 sec pause here)

**

THE CHANGING OF THE GUARD:  FORMER HAMVENTION CHAIRMAN
WALLACE WRIGHT AD8N - SK

The changing of the guard in ham radio continues with word
of the passing of former Dayton Hamvention General Chairman
Wallace Wright, Jr. AD8N, on Sunday, January 27th.
According to Ron Moorefield, W8ILC, Wright, then WA8ZCA
served in the Hamvention's leadership role in the 1977 year.

Wallace Wright spent most of his career with Dayton Power
and Light retiring after 32 years of service.  He also
provided spiritual leadership in several communities within
Southwest Ohio for over 40 years as an AME pastor and
pastoral assistant at Agape Bible Fellowship.

Wallace Wright, AD8N, is survived by his wife of over 43
years, Sylvia and his two children.  At the time of his
passing he was age 73. (W8ILC)

**

EMERGING TECHNOLOGY:  SDR TOUCH TURNS TABLET OR PHONE INTO
SDR RECEIVER

Ham Radio Science reports on an interesting new app called
SDR Touch.  This is software that allows you to use your
Android tablet or cell-phone along with a RTL2832U USB plug
in thumb drive as a Software Defined Radio.

All you need do is to plug the relatively inexpensive drive
into your Android 4.0 devices USB port and load the SDR
Touch app.  The combination is reported to allow you to tune
and decode the audio from it.  Simple, easy and if we may
add, cheap.

More about the device itself is on-line at
www.realtek.com.tw.  A video showing it in action is at
tinyurl.com/sdr-tablet.  (Southgate, Ham Radio Science)

**

HAM RADIO IN SPACE:  ARISS SWITCHES TO ERICSSON RADIO AFTER
EXPERIENCING PROBLEMS WITH THE KENWOOD D700

ARISS has switched radios.  After experiencing issues with
the Kenwood D700 on two consecutive school contacts, Amateur
Radio on the International Space Station operations have
announced plans to  use the Ericsson radio on the Columbus
module for all contacts until problems with the D700 are
resolved.

Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, is AMSAT's Vice President for Human
Spaceflight Programs.  He says that for some reason signals
from the Service Module Kenwood D700 radio are much
diminished.  He notes that a recent contact with Israel had
low audio levels.  Another contact with the Hospital for
Sick Children was even worse.  Only one student was able to
talk to Chris Hadfield before signals on the ground were
lost even though the crew reports hearing the ground station
well.

It should be noted that both these contacts were with made
using telebridge stations which have above average gear.
Also astro-ham Hadfield used the space stations IP Phone,
immediately after the hospital radio contact and answered
all the student's questions so that all was not lost.  A
later contact with a school in Japan using the Columbus
Module Ericsson radio proved very successful. (ANS, ARISS)

**

ON THE AIR:  CELEBRATING 50 YEARS OF THE ALGERIAN AMATEUR
RADIO ASSOCIATION

On the air, listen out for members of a group of Algerian
hams who will activate special event callsigns 7T9A and
7T50ARA.  This to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the
Algerian Amateur Radio Association.  QSL both callsigns by
the Bureau or direct to: PO Box 1, Algiers RP 16000,
Algeria.  Sorry, but no International Reply Coupons will be
accepted for this one.  (Via e-mail)

**

DX

In DX, V47JA will again be operating from his Calypso Bay,
St. Kitts, vacation home from February 20th until March
21st. Active will be on 160 throuhgh 6 meters and will
include 60 meters.  Jon also advises Amateur Radio Newsline
that he plans to take part in the CQ 160 Meter Contest
February 22nd through the 24th and the ARRL International DX
Contest on March 2nd and 3rd, both on SSB.  QSL's via W5JON
either direct or electronically via Logbook of the World.

VE3DZ will be on the air from Jamaica as 6Y2T until February
19th. He's reportedly operational on 160 through 10 meters
using CW, SSB and RTTY. QSL via VE3DZ.

An international team will be on the air from Burundi
through February 23rd. In total they will have 9 operators
and four stations using the callsign 9U4U.  Activity is on
160 through 10 meters using CW, SSB and RTTY.  The
operations QSL Manager is M0URX

W1VE will be active as 8P9RM from Barbados starting February
26th. His operation will be on 160 through 6 meters with a
focus on CW and the lower bands. QSL via W1VE.

An International group, along with the Tunisian Radio
Amateurs and the Engineering University of Gabes, are
planning another DXpedition to Djerba Island between April
29th and May 6th.  The Tusisian Amateur Radio Society is
expected to receive the callsign TS8TI on or about March
15th.  Operations for this DX outing will be on all HF bands
including the 30, 17 and 12 meters using CW, SSB, RTTY,
AMTOR and PSK31.  Late word is that they are looking for
operators, sponsors and individual contributions to make
this operation possible.

Lastly, Bill Moore NC1L, the ARRL's Awards Branch Manager
says that the current 5X8C operation from Uganda, along with
the T6TJ and T6BP operations from Afghanistan have been
approved for DXCC credit.  If you've had cards declined
except Logbook of the World applications please send an e-
mail to bmoore (at) arrl.org to be placed on the list for an
update.  If your QSOs were confirmed only via Logbook of the
World, they were not imported to DXCC since at the time of
your application these were not yet approved.  Moore says
that Logbook of the World confirmed QSOs' can be reclaimed
via your next submission only.  Also from NC1L word that the
Zed-81-A and Zed-81-D operations commencing back in 2012
from Republic of South Sudan have also been approved,

**

THAT FINAL ITEM:  TV STATION LAUNCHES BALLOON TO EDGE OF
SPACE

And finally this week, , Charlotte NBC affiliate WCNC,
decided to do what ham radio operators have been doing for
many years.  That being to put some consumer grade video
cameras inside a box, tie it to a helium filled balloon and
launch it toward near-space.  Amateur Radio Newsline's
Cheryl Lasek, K9BIK, has the story of this unexpected
extended flight:

--

Corrie Harding is WCNC's news director.  He says that he saw
a video on YouTube of two people launching a beer can toward
space and wanted to see if his station could do the same
thing.  So with the help of Hackerspace Charlotte the
station took two Go-Pro cameras, a lunchbox, a helium filled
balloon, a 3D model of an astronaut with meteorologist Larry
Sprinkle`s face attached and launched it to see how high it
would reach.

The balloon rose to an altitude of 102,457 feet before
breaking and sending both the cameras and the astronaut
model plummeting back toward Earth.  The package took 3 1/2
hours to ascend and 45 minutes to fall back to Earth. The
station says that the package was found 25 days after the
balloon was found by an air search lying in several acres of
briars 172 miles from where it launched.

You can watch the video of the flight and the payload
recovery at tinyurl.com/wcnc-balloon.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Cheryl Lasek, K9BIK, in
Zion, Illinois.

--

According to Mark Garrett at least one ham radio operator
was involved in the WCNC mission.  Garrett identifies him as
August Flassig, N6TYE, whose APRS call was used for the
flight.  (Media World)

**

NEWSCAST CLOSE

With thanks to Alan Labs, AMSAT, the ARRL, the CGC
Communicator, CQ Magazine, the FCC, the Ohio Penn DX
Bulletin, Radio Netherlands, Rain, the RSGB, the Southgate
News, TWiT-TV and Australia's WIA News, that's all from the
Amateur Radio NewslineT.  Our e-mail address is newsline
(at) arnewsline (dot) org.  More information is available at
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at Amateur Radio NewslineT, 28197 Robin Avenue, Santa
Clarita California, 91350

For now, with Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, at the editors' desk,
I'm Skeeter Nash, N5ASH, near Houston, Texas, saying 73 and
we thank you for listening.

Amateur Radio NewslineT is Copyright 2012.  All rights
reserved.

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