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ARNewsline Report 1801 -- Feb 24 2012:

Bill Pasternak (WA6ITF) on February 24, 2012
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Amateur Radio Newsline™ Report 1802 – February 24 2012

Amateur Radio Newsline report number 1802 with a release date of February 24th, 2012 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a QST. Ham radio could have another new band a few years from now; The Republic of South Sudan gets its callsign block; the FCC asks Congress for more funds in fiscal year 2013 and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration asks for voluntary rather than mandatory compliance by car makers in combating distracted driving from automotive electronics. Find out more on Amateur Radio Newsline™ report number 1802 coming your way right now.


Some more good news out of Geneva, Switzerland. Somewhat overshadowed by last weeks announcement of the approval of a new ham radio band from 472 to 479 kHz at the now concluded WRC-12 comes word that yet another possible new ham radio allocation near 5 MHz. One that could become a reality at the next World Radio Communications Conference to be held in 2015. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Heather Butera-Howell, KB3TZD, has the details:

The band being proposed is from 5.250 to 5.450 MHz. According to ARRL Chief Executive Officer David Sumner, K1ZZ, who attended WRC-12, the original proposal came from Cuba.

In the ARRL Letter Sumner is quoted as saying that the International Amateur Radio Union team worked hard to line up support for this item. He said that the factor that worked most in their favor was that at W-R-C 07, a proposal for a 5 MHz agenda item for WRC-12 failed to gain enough support. As such, there was a feeling that the Amateur Service deserved better treatment this time around.

Sumner noted that there was active support from a number of administrations in Latin America which helped a lot, but a lot of others also had to agree to get it on the agenda. The coordinators of future Agenda Items on behalf of the regional telecommunications organizations, such as CITEL and CEPT, eventually agreed on a package of Agenda Items that included this item.

Tim Ellam, VE6SH, is the President of the International Amateur Radio Union. He noted that it always a challenge to have things placed on the agenda for future World Radiocommunication Conferences. As such Ellam says that that he is pleased that we were successful in having an Agenda Item for a potential allocation at 5 MHz on a secondary basis on the agenda.

Ellam does however caution that there will be a lot of work to do over the next International Telecommunications Union study group cycle. He adds that there is much appreciation is owed to the International Amateur Radio Union and the national delegation teams in Geneva for their hard work on this issue.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Heather Butera-Howell, KB3TZD, near Pittsburg Pennsylvania.

The permanent 5 MHz amateur band proposal will be Agenda Item 1.4 at WRC-15. More about it and the rest of what took place at the 2012 conference is on line at the ARRL website. A direct link to the story is at (ARRL)


The International Telecommunication Union has announced the official callsign allocation prefix block for the newly crated nation of the Republic of South Sudan will be Z8A through Z8Z. The Republic of South Sudan joined the United Nations on July 14, 2011 at which time it became the 193rd member of that august world body. (Facebook DX Forum)


The Federal Communications Commission is asking Congress for more money to ramp up its operations including enforcement. Its also talking new license fees. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Bruce Tennant, K6PZW, has the details:

The FCC has asked Congress to approve a 2013 fiscal year budget of $346 million. That compares to an approximate $6 million increase over the approximate $340 million the agency received for fiscal year 2012.

If approved as is by Congress, there would be 141 new FCC staff members, bringing the total to 1,917 over the current 1,776. The number of full-time staffers at the Media Bureau would increase from 197 to 213. The Enforcement Bureau would go from 276 to 299 and the Office of Engineering & Technology would increase from the current 81 to 87 staffers.

Part of the money would also be used for eight new vehicles and to replace obsolete signal analysis equipment with new direction-finding and wireless monitoring gear in existing vehicles. These are the mobile units that field agents use to detect unauthorized transmissions and resolve interference issues.

The commission would also have new authority to set user fees on un-auctioned spectrum licenses as a spectrum management tool. Fees would be phased in over time to determine the appropriate application and the monetary amount.

The FCC tentatively plans to begin levying such fees sometime this year, and estimate those could total $4.8 billion through 2022. Its unknown if such licensing fees would or even could be applied to Amateur Service, FRS or 11 meter Citizens Band operations. The latter two would be highly unlikely due to the non-licensed nature of operations on those bands. Amateur Radio is already bringing in a profit through the Vanity Callsign program.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Bruce Tennant, K6PZW, in Los Angeles.

The agency’s budget request is part of President Obama’s total budget submission of $3.8 trillion for fiscal year 2013, which begins October 1st. (RW)


The United States Broadcasting Board of Governors which oversees government supported broadcasts to other parts of the world has sent its 2013 fiscal year budget request to congress. The $720 million request is lower than its 2012 budget and includes program, transmission and staffing reductions at the Voice of America, Office of Cuba Broadcasting, Radio Free Europe, Radio Liberty, Radio Free Asia and the Middle East Broadcasting Network. Four broadcast language services are proposed for elimination including both Greek and Chechen. The 2013 request also calls for another $21 million in cuts in administrative and technical support services costs across the agency and of the board itself.

But what’s not going into on the air operations has another destination. Referring to the so called new media, the 2013 budget request contains $9 million in increases for elevated social media and building out the agency’s digital infrastructure. It also asks for $11.6 million in fighting Internet censorship.

The Broadcasting Board of Governors estimates the five government funded civilian broadcast networks it oversees currently reach 187 million people each week. Its 2013 budget request contains an overall 4 point 2% decrease over current spending levels that the Board hopes will be enough to meet the approval on Capitol Hill in this era of extreme economic austerity. (B&C)


Ham radio operators and other two-way radio users can breathe a proverbial sigh of relief. At least for now. This with word that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will not seek mandatory regulations regarding what types of technology controls will be placed on auto makers to help thwart distracted drivers. Instead they are issuing voluntary guidelines to the auto makers as we hear from Amateur Radio Newsline’s Cheryl Lasek, K9BIK.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has proposed voluntary safety guidelines for auto manufacturers, including a recommendation that they design dashboards so that distracting devices are automatically disabled unless the vehicle is stopped and the transmission is in park.

The guidelines, which are directed at passenger cars and sport utility vehicles, would exempt safety devices such as electronic warning systems that alert drivers to potential collisions or lane changes. GPS and other navigation devices that provide directions also would be permitted while driving, but the safety administration is asking that the systems be designed so drivers can't manually enter a destination unless the car is in park.

Other dashboard technologies recommended for automatic disabling include text-messaging, Internet browsing, social media browsing, phone dialing and computer screen messages of 30 characters or more that are unrelated to driving.

The guidelines would make exceptions for these devices if they are designed only for use by passengers and can't be accessed or seen by the driver. Also there is no mention of any cutoff to external power receptacles such as cigarette lighters which are used by many hams, CB’ers and G-M-R-S operators to power low-power two way transceivers.

David Strickland is the groups Administrator. He told the press that while his agency recognizes that manufacturers want to build vehicles that include the tools and conveniences expected by today's American drivers, that the guidelines they are proposing would offer real-world guidance to automakers. Also that it would help them develop electronic devices that provide features consumers want without disrupting a driver's attention or sacrificing safety.

Manufacturers also are urged to take steps to improve the safety of technologies that drivers are allowed to use while driving. That includes reducing to two seconds or less the amount of time drivers must divert their eyes from the road to use a device. Devices should be designed so drivers don't have to use more than one hand or glance through extraneous information.

According to Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, one reason National Highway Traffic Safety Administration decided to pursue voluntary guidelines instead of mandatory rules is that officials wanted to do something quickly. He noted that the process for writing federal rules often takes years to complete.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Cheryl Lasek, K9BIK, near Zion Illinois.

The final impact these new guidelines on the ability of hams to permanently install after-market two way radio gear in their vehicles will not be known until the new designs appear in car showrooms. And that’s likely several years away. (NHSTA release, other published reports)

From the United States of America, We are the Amateur Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world including the WD0FFV repeater serving Colorado Springs Colorado.


The nominating season for the 2012 Amateur Radio Newsline Young Ham of the Year Award is now open.

Created in 1986, this award is offered to recognize the accomplishments of a radio amateur age 18 or younger for his or her accomplishments in service to the nation, his or her community or to the advancement of the state of the art through amateur radio.

Nominees must reside in the United States 50 states or its possessions or in any of the 10 Canadian provinces.

As in years past, Yaesu USA will transport the winner to the Huntsville Hamfest in Huntsville , Alabama, where the award will be formally presented. Yaesu will also provide Hotel accommodations as well as convention tickets and a prize of amateur radio equipment to the winner. CQ Magazine will again treat this year’s recipient to a week at Spacecamp-Huntsville. Heil Sound Ltd. will be presenting this year’s winner with an additional prize. Amateur Radio Newsline will present the winner with the official Young Ham of the Year Award plaque which again this year is underwritten by Dave Bell, W6AQ, of DBA Entertainment in Hollywood, California.

If for some reason the person selected is unable to travel to the Huntsville Hamfest, Amateur Radio Newsline will attempt to arrange a special award ceremony where the recipient resides, such as at his or her school or amateur radio club.

Please note that the prizes given to the recipient are second in nature to the actual Young Ham of the Year Award. All nominations and materials required by the official rules must be received by ARNewsline before May 30, 2012.

Complete details, rules and a required nominating form in Adobe .pdf format are available on our website at Nominating forms can also be obtained by sending a self addressed stamped envelope to Amateur Radio Newsline Inc., Young Ham of the Year Award, 28197 Robin Avenue, Santa Clarita California, 91350.

Please note tat all nominating forms and support materials become the property of the Amateur Radio Newsline and cannot be returned.

Again the cutoff date for nominations is May 30, 2012. Nominating forms are on-line at (ARNewsline™)


The commission’s Media Bureau wants answers from Radio Power Inc. about W250BN, a translator on 97.9 MHz in Wisconsin. The translator started out in the city of Beloit is now living on the air in West Allis. This after a series of moves in the last two years. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Don Carlson, KQ6FM, is in Reno, Nevada, where Power Radio has its headquarters:

Last November the Milwaukee Free Radio Group wrote to the FCC, calling Radio Power’s actions in relocating its translator from site to site a preconceived scheme to move a translator a distance of 69 miles from Beloit to Milwaukee. It insinuated that Radio Power was trying to accomplish this by using minor changes so as to circumvent the requirement to wait for a window for filing a major change.

Now the FCC is acting. Peter Doyle is the chief of the FCC’s Audio Division of the Media Bureau. He has sent what is described as a strongly worded, certified letter to Radio Power in Reno, Nevada. In part the letter states that the Media Bureau is investigating potential statutory and rule violations and related instances of potential misrepresentation and/or lack of candor on the part of Radio Power Inc. Specifically, it is alleged that the licensee abused commission processes by effectuating a major change in the facilities of Station W250BN, now licensed to West Allis, Wisconsin by a succession of serial minor change applications.

The FCC told Radio Power to answer its questions within 30 days. It wants to know if Radio Power had a reasonable assurance that the specified sites would be available for the intended use. It demanded a copy of all documents relating to the securing of reasonable assurance of site availability; and it wants to know the precise length of time during which the licensee broadcast from each of the facilities.

The FCC also wants a copy of any documents relating to the station’s operation for each of the locations The FCC also wants to know the precise length of time during which the station was silent for more than 30 days, and why.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline I’m Don Carlson, KQ6FM, in Reno.

The FCC also wants to know what community the licensee of W250BN ultimately intends to serve, the primary station it intends to rebroadcast along with copies of all documents relating to the relocation of the station away from the city of Beloit. (FCC, RW)


The FCC appears to be on the hot seat with congress over the way its been handling the entire matter of the licensing of LightSquared’s proposal to create its high speed Internet service in spectrum adjacent to that used by the Global Positioning System or GPS.

In an e-mailed press statement, Iowa Senator Charles Grassley who has been investigating the FCC’s interactions with LightSquared, said that the agency put this project on a fast track for approval with what appears to have been completely inadequate technical research. As a result, Grassley is blocking two Obama administration Commission nominees until he gets more documents about the matter from the FCC.

Now the House of Representatives is also about to look at the LightSquared matter. Oregon Representative Greg Walden, W7EQI, chairs the House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology. He has said that he plans a hearing on how the agency’s handling of the LightSquared application for its broadband network led to a year of dispute. (Published reports)


From the some people never learn file comes a story you may find hard to believe. It’s about a person to who after being accused of running an unlicensed station and then paying a reduced fine apparently went right back on the air again. Jim Damron, N8TMW, reports:


There’s been a lot of unlicensed radio station fines issued by the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau to Florida residents in recent weeks.

The Commission has issued a new $25,000 Notice of Apparent Liability against Whistler Fleurinor of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. This for allegedly operating an unlicensed transmitter on 99.5 MHz in 2011.

The agency says that it raised the fine by $15,000 over the base amount because Fleurinor continued operating an illegal station on the same frequency from the same commercial property after he was issued an earlier fine of $20,000. In that instance, the FCC lowered the penalty to $500 based on Fleurinor’s proof of inability to pay the higher assessment.

In issuing the new forfeiture order the FCC noted that the fact that Fleurinor had again committed the same violation, and did so multiple times after he had already been found to be in serious violation in the first N-A-L. It said that this action by Fleurinor demonstrated not only the egregiousness nature of the violations, but also his deliberate disregard for the Communications Act and for the FCC’s rules.

For the amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Jim Damron, N8TMW, reporting.

Fleurinor was given the customary 30 days to pay the fine or to file an appeal. If he does the latter and basses his appeal on his inability to pay, it will be very interesting to see the FCC’s response this time around. (FCC)


Arizona’s Superstition Amateur Radio Club will be operating a special event station W7W on February 25th as in the city of Mesa. This is the annual celebration of The Lost Dutchman Mine story at the museum in Apache Junction. It is also in observance of the Arizona Statehood Centennial . More information can be found on line at (K2DFE)


Registration is now open for the 2012 Southeastern VHF Society Conference slated for Charlotte, North Carolina, from April 20th to the 21st. The meeting will feature technical programs, noise figure and antenna gain testing, banquet prizes, vendor displays, and an equipment auction. ARRL President Kay Cragie, N3KN, will be the banquet speaker. A downloadable registration form in Adobe .pdf format is on-line at (WA2ODO, VHF Reflector)


The 17th annual Islands on the Air or IOTA Dinner will be held in conjunction with the 63rd annual Visalia International DX Convention on Friday evening April 20th. The venue will be the Plaza Room of the Holiday Inn Hotel on Airport Drive in Visalia, California

This dinner is open to all who are active in the Islands on the Air program or who just want to see beautiful pictures of far away islands. Also, as at previous IOTA dinners, admission is free for those wishing to watch the programs without dining but paid attendees will receive priority seating.

At this time, buffet service is set for 50 attendees. The cost is $33 per person. Reservations must be prepaid by April 10th and go to Ray Benny, N6VR, 462 South Reed Road, Chino Valley, Arizona, 86323.

More about this years International DX Convention is on-line at (IOTA)


Some names in the news: First up is Vaughan Henderson, ZL1TGC, who has assumed the presidency of New Zealand's national society, the NZART. This following the resignation of Roy Symon ZL2KH on Monday, February 20th.

According to a press release, Symon had served as NZART President for the last three years and was completing his last term. He was due to finish at the 2013 Annual General Meeting where he had planned to hand over to his successor. Instead he tendered his resignation to the NZART citing personal reasons.

In accordance with the organization’s constitution, ZL1TGC who was serving as Vice-President became the new President. The NZART Executive Council will now have to elect a new Vice-President. (NZART)


Back in the United States, Scott Avery, WA6LIE and Brandon Hansen, KG6YPI will be guest speakers at the New Ham Forum at his years Radiofest being held in Monterey, California, on March 3rd. The two will be discussing remote radio operations and its applications. More information is on-line at (WA6LIE)

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 and being relayed by the volunteer services of the following radio amateur:


D-Star is truly going places where it has never been before. This with word that radio amateurs in Windhoek, Namibia now have their own D-Star repeater operational and on the air.

Reportedly, the biggest challenge to getting the system operational was obtaining a stable data connection to the internet. This was solved with a 3G connection and the help of the biggest cellular telephone service provider in Namibia.

Right now the system is at a temporary low level location. According to V51JP, the Repeater will be moved to its final site as soon as everyone is satisfied that it is performing correctly. V51JP also says that he thanks DL1YBL and DL5DI for their assistance in getting the new D-Star repeater up and running.

More about this new D-Star system in Namibia is on-line (V51JP)


QF Radio will launch an all-English broadcast on 91.7 FM in Quatar. The station is an operation of the Qatar Foundation, a social and educational foundation based in Qatar. It delivers its programs across all segments of society by means of on-air broadcasts, the Internet, smart-phones and other developing technologies. In addition to music and news, the station airs programs for students, featuring cultural and scientific issues. The station will also switch to an all Arabic format on 93.7 FM, where it currently airs a mix of Arabic and English-language programming. (MN)


The International Telecommunication Union has called upon the world’s nations to take all 'necessary actions to stop intentional interference with satellite transmissions. The change in regulations, which was approved at the just concluded World Radiocommunication Conference came after numerous complaints that international satellite TV programs in the Persian and Arabic languages were suffering from deliberate interference.

The new rule says that administrations shall ascertain the facts and take the necessary actions when they encounter jamming. What actions these might be were not spelled out in the document.

The two satellite operators that have been targeted are Eutelsat and Arabsat. They claim that the jamming signals originate from Iran and Syria. The interference, which has increased since September, 2011, has affected numerous broadcasters including programming from the British Broadcasting Corporation, Germany’s Deutsche Welle, and RFE’s Radio Farda.

Joining in backing the revised ITU anti-jamming rule to fight this willful and malicious interference to satellite transmissions were Radio Netherlands Worldwide and the European Broadcasting Union. (MN)


The Philippine Amateur Radio League is celebrating its Golden Anniversary in 2012. To commemorate this milestone the organization is sponsoring an on-the-air operation that will award a special commemorative certificate to hams world-wide who make contact with its members.

Also throughout 2012 the club will be operating with the special event call sign of 4G0LD. QSL information along with the rules to qualify for the Golden Anniversary award can be found at (DU1XX, NZART)


From the Radiosports file comes word that the first in the series of South African Radio League sponsored digital contests will be held on Sunday, February 26 from 13:00 to 16:00 UTC with PSK and RTTY activity on 80, 40 and 20 meters. The exchange is a simple R-S-T report and a serial number starting at 001. Stations maybe contacted twice per band, once on PSK and once on RTTY. Other contests date will be announced in the future. More is on-line at (SARL)


Dave Clingerman, W6OAL, reports that the Colorado 6 meter beacon is back up and running on its published frequency of 50.065 MHz. The beacon had gone into wander mode for a few days after a suspected crystal oven failure had it sliding around its normal operating frequency.

According to W6OAL, a spare local oscillator unit can sometimes come in handy. Installing it apparently was the fix. Dave adds that beacon reports are appreciated whenever the band is open. (VHF Reflector)


In DX, word that W5JON will once again be active as V47JA from his vacation home at Calypso Bay, St. Kitts from February 28th through March 28th. His activity will be on 80 through 6 meters using SSB. While on the island he plans to operate during the ARRL International DX Contest on March 3rd and 4th and the CQ WPX SSB Contest March 24th through the 25th. ALL QSL's to W5JON either direct

ON4AVT will be on the air as C5AVT from Gambia from February 28th to March 20th. He will be active mostly on 15 meters using the digital PSK mode. QSL via home call.

G3SWH and G3OLU will be operational from western Swaziland as 3DA0PW through February 29th. Their main objective is to work as many European and North American stations on as many different bands as possible and hope to make at least 15,000 QSOs. QSL via G3SWH, either direct, via the bureau or using the facility on

Members of the Malaysian Amateur Radio Transmitter Society and the 9M4SDX Team will be active as 9M0L from Pulau Layang Island from April 10th to the 24th. If you work them QSL direct to 9M2TO either direct or via the bureau to Malaysian Amateur Radio Transmitter's Society. More details will be forthcoming shortly.

DF7ZS, will be on the air from Aruba stroke P4 from P40V's QTH between March 21st to the 27th. Activity will be casual but he will operate during the CQ WPX SSB Contest using the callsign P41P. QSL P4/DF7ZS via DF7ZS. QSL P41P via W3HNK.

Nine members of the 'A DX Group' will be active from Coloane Island between May 17th and the 23rd. Operations will be on 160 through 6 meters, including the 30, 17 and 12 meter bands. Modes used will be CW, SSB and RTTY. There will be at least three stations on the air at the same time on different bands and modes. The group's callsign will not be announced until the beginning of their operations. QSL via EB7DX, direct or by the Spanish Bureau. All QSO’s will be confirmed electronically via Logbook of the World.

Lastly, DL1NL will be operational portable OA4 from Lima, Peru, until early March. His activity is only in his spare time on 160-10 meters CW, with some SSB, from the Radio Club Peruano station. QSL via DL1NL, either direct or via the bureau. No electronic QSL’s are accepted by this station.

(Above from various DX news sources)


And finally this week, the history of the early 20th century Amplion loudspeaker is a story told in a recently released video by Trilith Films in the United Kingdom. Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, is in the newsroom with more:

Titled “A Tale Retold” the video tells the story of UK radio amateur Frank Marshall who in 1998 told Trilith pictures about a collection of old motion picture films that had been stored under his workbench for decades. He thought that among them might be one film he had particularly enjoyed as a boy. It was an advertisement for an early loudspeaker called the Amplion. One that had been used in local cinemas in the 1920’s and by his father's pioneering radio business on the Isle of Portland.

When rescued from the pile of rotting nitrate film it was discovered that the film entitled "The Tale of the Amplion" was a here to fore unknown work by the famous illustrator William Heath Robinson. It is almost certainly the only animated cartoon that Robinson ever made.

The tale is retold by Frank Marshall who preserved the film, Gerry Wells of the Vintage Wireless Museum in London and Geoffrey Beare of the William Heath Robinson Trust. Included is the film as it originally appeared but with a especially composed musical sound track created by composer Stephen Deutsch.

A very interesting 20 minutes indeed.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, in the Newsroom in Los Angeles.

This video was shot and edited by John Holman for Trilith and now appears on Transition Vision's Heritage Channel. Its available for world-wide viewing on-line at YouTube. It can be found at (Southgate, ARNewsline™, others)


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 and Australia's WIA News, that's all from the Amateur Radio Newsline™. Our e-mail address is newsline(at) arnewsline (dot) org. More information is available at Amateur Radio Newsline's™ only official website located at You can also write to us or support us at Amateur Radio Newsline™, 28197 Robin Avenue, Santa Clarita California, 91350

For now, with Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, at the editors desk, I’m Don Wilbanks, AE5DE, saying 73 and we thank you for listening.

Amateur Radio Newsline™ is Copyright 2012. All rights reserved.

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