Amateur Radio Newsline™ Report 1909 - March 14, 2014

23:20 Fernando Luiz de Souza 0 Comments

Amateur Radio Newsline™ report number 1909 with a release
date of March 14 2014 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a Q-S-T.

Ham radio is called to play a part in the Malaysian Airlines
mystery; the DARC says the number of German ham radio
operators is declining; a new GPS system forces the closure
of a pair of amateur television repeaters; steps 1 and 2 of
the commissioning of the new ISS Ham Video transmitter
considered a success, lots happening on the FCC enforcement
scene and FEMA introduces a new wireles alert frequently
asked questions web page.  Find out the details are on
Amateur Radio NewslineT report number 1909 coming your way
right now.

(Billboard Cart Here)



The disappearance of a Malaysian Airline Boeing 777 jetliner
with 239 passengers on board is a mystery that nine nations
are trying to solve.   But during its early hours ham radio
was called in to help with the human aspect of the situation
as we hear from Amateur Radio Newsline's Jim Meachen, ZL2BHF:

When Malaysian Airline flight MH370 bound for Beijing,
disappeared from the air traffic radar, the Emergency
Management Centre at Kuala Lumpur Airport provided
accommodation for all next-of-kin at the Everly Hotel at
Putrajaya.  The Malaysian Amateur Radio Transmitters'
Society President, Mohd Aris Bernawi 9M2IR, said his group
was asked to provide a communications link between the
airport and the hotel.

9M2IR said the Malaysian Amateur Radio Transmitters'
Society quickly set up a station at the hotel led by Zanirul
Akhmal Zanirun 9M2PRO.  Azizi Samsuri 9W2ZZE as the team
leader.  The Malaysian Amateur Radio Transmitters' Society
also provided a cross-band VHF/UHF link to avoid any
unnecessary interference from the public services.  An HF
link was later added.  The Negeri Sembilan Amateur
Radio Club provided the volunteers for the station at the
airport's Emergency Management Centre.

During the call-out there were 11 volunteers at the airport
and 23 at the hotel, all on rotating shifts.   9M2IR oversaw
the entire process for the Malaysian Amateur Radio
Transmitters' Society.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Jim Meachen, ZL2BHF, in
Nelson, New Zealand


Meantime the mystery surrounding Malaysian Airline flight MH
370 continues.  (VK3PC)



The German national amateur radio society, the DARC, reports
the number of amateur radio licenses in that nation fell by
3.2% in 2013.   As of last December 31st there were 68,191
amateur radio licenses as opposed to 70,446 at the end of
2012 and 71,659 at the close of 2011.  The total including
Club Stations, repeaters, beacons and special calls and
training calls was 75,031 at the end of 2013 versus 77,089
in 2012 and 78109 as 2011 drew to a close.  This says the
DARC shows a continuing the pattern of steady decline in
recent years.

Nor did the number of new people joining the hobby did show
a hoped for increase in 2013 with only 829 receiving an
amateur radio certificate and 724 in 2012.  DARC says that
these figures fall far short of the number needed to
stabilize the nations amateur population.  The DARC say the
number of exam participants were 909 in 2013 and 804 in

But there may be some light at the end of this downward
tunnel.  According to the DARC educational training
callsigns showed an increase in 2013 with 2711 D-N calls
issues.  That's 183 more than in 2012 when only 2528 were
issued.  The German N calls are held by amateur radio
educators and are used by unlicensed people operating under
the direct control of those trainers.  (DARC, Southgate)



Hams in Belgium appear on the verge of getting some new
regulations.  On  Tuesday, February 19, the Belgium national
society the UBA met with the regulator the nations
telecommunications regulator to discuss what is known as a
the forthcoming Royal Decree or R D for radio amateurs
expected out later this year.  Among the proposed changes
are the disconnecting from holding an operator license which
is valid for 5 years and a transmitting station license for
which there will be an annual tax.  The intention is that
the total cost remains unchanged for most radio amateurs but
a lot less expensive for those who do not own station or who
just want to use a club station.  Te full list of proposed
changes are on the national society's website at and  BelgiumUBA is spelled as one
word.  (UBA via Southgate)



A new Global Positioning System headquarted in Germany has
led to the closure of a pair of co-sited Amateur Television
repeaters.  On March 4th the owners of the Munich-based
DB0QI repeaters operating analog  on 1276 MHz and digital on
1291 MHz took them out of service after being informed by
the nations Federal Network Agency that they were
interfering with the operation of the Global Positioning
System's Galileo Satnav Control Center.  As elsewhere, the
23 cm band in Germany is allocated to radio amateurs only on
a secondary use basis.  So far no other ham radio operations
in Germany have been affected.   (Southgate, others)



Steps 1 and 2 of the commissioning of the new Ham Video
transmitter system on board the International Space Station
have been completed and deemed a total success.

Presently Ham Video is transmitting a blank image and no
audio in what is being called configuration 1.  The signal
is on 2422 MHz with a Symbol rate 1.3.   Blank transmission
will then move to 2395 MHz at the same Symbol rate.    These
blank transmissions will continue until the next
commissioning step which is planned April 12th.

Reports from ground stations during blank screen
transmissions are welcome and will allow further analysis of
their performance and radiation characteristics from the
ISS.  They can be filed on line at
Recordings of signals received during commissioning steps at
Matera ground station will be made available on the British
Amateur Television Club server.  (ON4WF)



Due to the increased work load of Astronaut and ham radio
operator Koichi Wakata,  KC5ZTA, ARISS has had to move 3
schools back to its long term waiting list.  Planners say
that they hope to get all of them rescheduled and completed
by this fall.

Also, there are also several other schools that are on the
list for possible postponement to the fall season.  This is
because for the period from May 12th to June 15th there will
be no licensed radio amateurs on-board the International
Space Station.   (ARISS)



In DX up front, word that JH1AJT will be in Myanmar for a
Foundation for Global Children mission through March 21st.
During that time he plans to be on the air as as XZ1Z  from
Sunday the 16th but only during his spare time.  Activity
would probably be on high bands. QSL via JH1AJT.  (JA1TRC,



Also get ready for ZS4TX to be on the air as 7P8Z from
Lesotho on March 28th and the 29th.   Although this is
mainly a VHF activation to explore possible F2 and Trans
Equatorial Propagation openings on 6 meters, ZS4TX may also
be active on 10 and 12 meter CW.   The actual operating site
is at 10,800 feet situated right  next to the Afriski Resort
which also claims to have the highest Restaurant and Pub in
Africa.  QSL as directed by the operator

Still in Lesotho, news that EI7CC is on the air as as 7P8PB
through April 3rd.  Activity will be limited because he will
be on a family holiday and will only operate when
circumstances permit. Logs will be uploaded to Logbook of
the World immediately upon his return to Ireland.  QSL via
EI7CC either direct or via the bureau.



Time for you to identify your station.  We are the Amateur
Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world
including the W0EF Repeater Swap Shop Net serving
Minneapolis, Minnesota.

(5 sec pause here)



Even though he said he had no malicious intent, Brian Ragan,
KF6EGI, will have to pay a pretty hefty FCC fine for making
unlicensed broadcasts in the FM band and not permitting the
FCC to inspect his station.  Amateur Radio Newsline's Ralph
Squillace KK6ITB, has more:


Back in 2012 field personnel from the FCC's Enforcement
Bureau T-hunted a signal on 104.9 MHz to Brian Ragan's
garage in Suisun City, California.  While there the agents
heard the station identify itself on the air as KBRS.

According to the regulatory agency's account, at the time
the agents tried to inspect the station but no one
responded.  Ragan later told the FCC he had been afraid to
open the door when he heard them identify themselves as
being with the agency's Enforcement Bureau.  He also
admitted to having operated the unlicensed FM broadcast
entity for six months.

This led to a notice of apparent liability for $17,000 for
operating an unlicensed station and failing to allow FCC
personnel to inspect the premiss.  In his reply Ragan didn't
contest the facts but appealed, saying that he'd had no
malicious intent adding that he had immediately complied
with the notice of unlicensed operation.  Ragan also
submitted a required written statement saying that he was
now in compliance with Section 301 and no longer engaged in
unauthorized operation.

But that cut very little ice with the FCC.  In its March
10th Forfeiture Order the regulatory agency  upheld most of
its findings.  Among other items it noted that it need not
demonstrate an intent to violate a rule to make a finding
that a license holder engaged in willful misconduct.  But
based on his compliance as a radio amateur with that
service's rules that it was reducing the fine to $13, 600.

At the same time it reiterated that, as a licensed ham for
at least six years, Ragan should be aware that, among other
things, radio equipment at his station must be made
available for inspection when requested by the FCC.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Ralph Squillace, KK6ITB.


Ragan was then given the customary 30 days from release of
the Forfeiture Order to pay it in full or arrange a time
payment method with the agency.  If he does not respond
within that time period and the forfeiture is not paid, the
case may be referred to the U.S. Department of Justice for
further enforcement.  (FCC)



The FCC has affirmed an $18,000 Forfeiture Order previously
issued against Nathaniel Johnson of Pittsburgh,
Pennsylvania.  This for his alleged repeated failure to make
his CB station available for inspection by authorized FCC
representatives and his failure to comply with the
restricted hours of CB Station operation set forth in an
official FCC notice.

On May 14, 2013, the Enforcement Bureau's Philadelphia
Office issued a Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture
in the amount of $18,000 to Mr. Johnson.  Although the FCC
has evidence that Johnson received a copy of the notice that
was sent by Certified Mail, he has not filed a response.
Based on the information before it the Commission has now
affirmed the forfeiture order.

As is usual in these cases, the FCC has given Johnson the
usual 30 days from the March 12th release of the order to
pay the fine in full, arrange for time payments or file an
appeal.  If he fails to do any of these the matter will
likely be turned over to the Department of Justice for
further action.  (FCC)



A New Jersey CB radio shop is the subject of a citatation
from the FCC.  Amateur Radio Newslines Stephan Kinford,
N8WB, has the details:


The FCC has issued an official Citation to Thomas Wilson
doing business as the Redman CB Stop of Absecon, New Jersey.
This for its alleged violation of Section 302(b) of the Act
and Sections 2.803, and 2.815(b) of the Commission's rules
by  marketing to consumers in the United States unauthorized
radio frequency devices.  In this case the devices are
described as 16 makes and models of non-certified RF power
amplifiers capable of operation with both the 11 meter
Citizens Band as well as in the 10 meter amateur service.

Examples of what the FCC terms as the non-certified RF
amplifiers observed on the Redman CB Website included such
units as the Fatboy 900 Mobile Amplifier,  the Zombie
Products 500 Watt Effective Rradiated Power Linear Amplifier
2290 Driver, and the Palomar FET 450 HD Export Ham Radio
Mosfet Linear Amplifier.  According to Commission records,
these devices have not received an FCC grant of
certification, which is required for external radio
frequency power amplifiers operating on frequencies below
144 MHz and marketed in the United States.  As such, Section
2.815(b)(1) of the FCC's Rules prohibits persons from
offering for sale any external radio frequency power
amplifier that is capable of amplification between 26 MHz
and 28 MHz.

Redman was warned to immediately cease all sales of this
equipment in The United States or face punitive action that
could include monetary forfeitures not to exceed $16,000 for
each such violation or each day of a continuing violation,
and up to $112,500 for any single act or failure to act.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Stephen Kinford, N8WB,


Redman was told that if it chooses to respond to the
Citation to challenge the factual and legal findings, that
it has 30 days from the March 5th release date of the
document to do so.  (FCC)



The Federal Emergency Management Agency has developed a new
Frequently Asked Questions or F-A-Q web page dealing with
alerts sent directly to wireless and mobile devices.  The
page answers such questions as what are  Wireless Emergency
Alerts and why they are important to the recipient.  What
types of alerts will be received; what such messages look
like and more.  The page appears to be a truly valuable
asset to anyone involved in rescue radio or first response
operations.  Its on the web at
emergency-alerts   (FEMA)



The FCC has approved a new call sign for a recently created
SATERN station located in the Salvation Army's Alabama-
Louisiana-Mississippi Division's Emergency Disaster Services
center.  The new call of WB5ALM stands for William Booth 5
Alabama Louisiana Mississippi and is dedicated to William
Booth who was the founder of the Salvation Army.

The WB5ALM call was activated for the first time on March
5th during a check-in to the International SATERN Net on 20
meter phone.  SATERN, which is an acronym for Salvation Army
Team Emergency Radio Network, is the volunteer amateur radio
communications arm of the Salvation Army's Emergency
Disaster Services.  (Nevada Amateur Radio Newswire)



If you live in the Boston, Massachusetts area and would like
to participate in an important public service event, listen
up.  Volunteer ham radio communicators are needed for this
years Project Bread Walk for Hunger slated for Sunday, May
4th.  This will be the 46th running of the event and hams
are needed to provide communications support for the Project
Bread staff as well as along the the 20 mile route of the
walk.  Those interested in helping out this year should
apply via the web at and fill out the sign-
up form.  If you have questions please send an email to
wfh14 (at) mmra (dot) org  (KA1NCF)



CQ Communications has announced the appointment of David
Chartock to head the company's advertising department,
effective immediately.  Chartock will guide CQ magazine's
advertising sales as the magazine charts new ground as a
part-print, part-digital "hybrid" publication covering the
entire communications hobby.

Chartock has more than 25 years' experience in publishing,
both in editorial and sales positions.  From 1989 to 2002,
he was Editor-in-Chief and Web Content Editor of the trade
magazine, New York Construction News.  Since 2002, he has
been an independent sales representative, working with start-
up publications and the annual journal of New York's
Concrete Industry Board.   He can be contacted by e-mail to  (CQ)



When you need the sound of a working spark gap transmitter,
the best place to turn is the ARRL.  So when the daily
National Public Radio series All Things Considered needed
such a sound, that's exactly where it went.

The sound effect was required for an episode titled "What if
World War I Had Never Happened?"  In order to provide sound
effect, ARRL Media and Public Relations Manager Sean Kutzko,
KX9X, took a short trip over to the ARRL Lab where there
just happens to be a working spark transmitter.

There he took the provided script and sent it by hand as the
sound of the spark transmitter was recorded.  You can hear
the results of KX9X effort when the show airs on your local
NPR outlet or soon thereafter on the NPR website at   (KX9X via ARRL PR



This is ham radio news for today's radio amateur.  We are
the Amateur Radio Newsline with links to the world from our
only official website at and being
relayed by the volunteer services of the following radio

(5 sec pause here)


WZ8C - S.K.

We seem to use the term the changing of the guard more and
more these days.  Sadly and we must use it once again this
week after receiving a report that world renown Morse code
preservationist Nancy Kott, WZ8C, of Metamora, Michigan died
on March 2nd at the age of  58.

Nancy Kott was the former editor of WorldRadio Magazine and
was with it during its transition to  WorldRadio Online.
This was the United States very first electronic only
publication ham radio periodical.

But she is likely best remembered as the member of the
United Kingdom based Morse code preservationist group known
as the FISTS CW Club who was instrumental in bringing
knowledge of that society to U.S. Shores.  As such, she
operated the FISTS booth each year at the Dayton Hamvention
and was a speaker at several seminar sessions over the

According to the ARRL, WZ8C was a member of the it's A-1
Operator Club.  She was also an honorary member of the Texas
DX Society and a member of the groups DXpedition to Belize
in 2006.  She also operated from the British Virgin Islands
as VP2V stroke WZ8C in 2007.

Professionally Nancy Kott was a field representative for the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Survivors
include her husband, Tim Lange.  Those of us who knew her
will miss her very much.
(ARRL, The Daily DX, ARNewsline)



The new Fox series of ham radio cubesats are well on their
way to becoming a reality.  Amateur Radio Newsline's Jim
Damron, N8TMW, has the details:


AMSAT's Tony Monterio, AA2TX, has released an update on the
Fox CubeSat program via the AMSAT News Service.  According
to the report, the main point of Fox-2 is to develop and fly
an advanced SDX or software defined transponder.  An SDX
system can be programmed to be any kind of transponder but
will initially operate as a linear SSB and CW inverting mode-
J satellite.  This means using a VHF uplink and UHF downlink
by default.

As to the smaller Fox-1 satellites, all four units will use
the same hardware and avionics.  The universities involved
in this project will supply their experiment cards and the
software can be customized for each satellite as needed.
Once the Fox-1 flight models are built, the engineering team
can begin working on the larger Fox-2.  This will be a 3
unit sized CubeSat which is three times the size of the Fox-
1 birds.  As such, Fox-2 MicroSats will provide a lot more
power and space for the electronics.

I'm Jim Damron, N8TMW.


The Fox series of CubeSats will be among the most
sophisticated ham radio birds ever placed in the sky.  (ANS)



The University of Akron Amateur Radio Club is planning to
launch a high altitude balloon named UA-HABP2 on Saturday,
April 12th at around 11am EDT.  The payload includes a cross
band FM repeater with its input on 438.050 MHz and an output
of 145.600 MHz running 2 watts out.  With the balloon
expected to get as high as 80,000 feet, the repeater will
have a projected coverage area exceeding 200 miles for a
majority of the two to four hour flight.  The balloon will
also carry a slow scan television system as well as well as
a telemetry downlink.  For the latest information on this
pending repeater near space project keep an eye on the website for updated launch info as well as real
time tracking when the mission begins.  (KC8LIN)



On the air, plan to listen out March 29th and 30th for the
United Kingdoms Worcester Radio Amateur Association which
will be activating call sign GB1PER for the annual Airfields
on the Air oiperation.  This event will take place on the
grounds of the former Royal Air Force base at Perdiswell
which is where the Kings Flight was based during the Second
World War.  GB1PER will be on the H-F bands only.  More
details are on  (M0VNG)



In DX, Eye-One F-Q-H is again active as 5V7DX from Kpalime
Village in the central Togo.  Word is that he will be there
until late March on the top bands  using mostly CW with some
SSB.  QSL to his home callsign either direct, via the bureau
or Logbook of the World.

BA3AX and BD3AEO will be active slash B3 from Yuetuo Island
between March 21st through the 24th.  Their operation will
be 20, 17 and 15 meters meters using CW, SSB, RTTY and PSK.
QSL via BA3AX direct, via the bureau or using Logbook of the
World.  Kore information is on

N5JC and N5JR will be active stroke HH2 from Haiti between
March 25th and April 1st. Activity will be on 160 through 6
meters with a focus on CW, RTTY and the 30, 17 amd12 meter
bands. QSL both callsigns via N5JR direct, via the bureau or
electronically using Logbook of the World.

JA6WFM is now active as YS1/NP3J from San Salvador on 80
through 6 meters using CW and SSB.  He will be there through
the end of the year.  QSL via EA5GL.

Lastly, N7QT, AB1UH, W4VAB and N7UN will be operational as
5J0X from San Andres Island between April 2nd and the 14th.
Their activity will be primarily holiday style on 80 through
10 meters using CW, SSB and PSK.  QSL direct to N7QT.

BA3AX and BD3AEO will be active slash B3  from Yuetuo Island
between March 21st through the 24th.  Their operation will
be 20, 17 and 15 meters meters using CW, SSB, RTTY and PSK.
QSL via BA3AX direct, via the bureau or usung Logbook of the
World.  More information is on



And finally this week comes wiord that a group of ham radio
operators using equipment at an observatory in Germany  have
received signals from the NASA 's International Cometary
Explorer deep space probe. This is a spacecraft that was
retired from service back in in 1997.  Amateur Radio
Newslne's Heather Embee, KB3TZD, reports:


According to AMSAT-DL, on March 1st and 2nd, some unnamed
radio amateurs were able to detect the beacon signal from
the retired NASA International Cometary Explorer deep space
probe using facilities at the Bochum Observatory in Germany.
After some changes to the ground equipment and aligning the
receive antenna to the predicted position in the sky, the
beacon signal could positively be identified due to its
frequency, its position and the frequency shift due to the
radial velocity.

Initially known as the International Sun-Earth Explorer 3
the probe was launched in 1978 and became the first
spacecraft to orbit the Earth-Sun Lagrange point.  There it
measured the interaction between the Earth's magnetic field
and the Sun.  It was also the first spacecraft to detect the
stream of particles known as the solar wind approaching

In 1982 the spacecraft was renamed the International
Cometary Explorer and diverted to the Moon, where its
gravitational pull placed it on a heliocentric orbit.  In
1985, the comet Giacobini-Zinner was visited followed by
observation of Halley's Comet in 1986.

While the instrumentation on board was still functional and
fuel for more trajectory maneuvers was available, support
for the International Cometary Explorer mission was
terminated in 1997, though the spacecraft transmitter was
left on.  It was last detected by the NASA Deep Space
Network in 2008.  Its current orbit will result in the
spacecraft returning to Earth toMoon space in August.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Heather Embee, KB3TZD,
in Berwick, Pennsylvania.


According to researchers, a small propulsive maneuver and
lunar flyby could allow International Cometary Explorer to
be directed back into the  Earth to Sun  Lagrange point in a
halo orbit and perhaps resume a science mission.  However in
February a NASA study determined that the required resources
to contact the spacecraft were not available and due to
budgetary constraints no further attempts are planned.



With thanks to Alan Labs, AMSAT, the ARRL, CQ Magazine, the
FCC, the Ohio Penn DX Bulletin, Radio Netherlands, Rain, the
RSGB, the South African Radio League, the Southgate News,
TwiT-TV, Australia's WIA News and you our listeners, that's
all from the Amateur Radio NewslineT.  Our e-mail address is
newsline (at) arnewsline (dot) org. More information is
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located at  You can also write to us or
support us 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 Newsline™ is Copyright 2014.  All rights

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