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ARNewsline Report 1858 -- Mar 22 2013:

Bill Pasternak (WA6ITF) on March 22, 2013
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Amateur Radio Newsline™ Report 1858 – March 22 2013

Amateur Radio Newsline report number 1858 with a release date of March 22 2013 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a QST. An antenna battle down under pits a ham antenna against a landscape view; a big win in New Jersey as a ham is finally granted approval for his tower and antenna; a Coronal Mass Ejection on the sun hits Earth on St. Patrick’s Day; the Federal probe of the so-called zombie attack on the United States Emergency Alert System continues and GPS jamming becomes a threat to public safety in the UK. All this and more on Amateur Radio Newsline™ report number 1858 coming your way right now.


A Nelson, New Zealand couple upset by the installation of a ham radio antenna in the middle of their expansive field of view from have taken their fight to city councilors. They also appear to want a change in local zoning law that would make all ham radio installations in that city subject to exceedingly strict human electromagnetic exposure limits. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Jim Meachen, ZL2BHF, has the details:

Dallas Woods is the complainant who made a presentation to the council's public forum. At that hearing Woods asked councilors to change the rules so that amateur radio antennas are no longer a permitted activity in residential zones or the landscape overlay which covers city ridgelines. Woods said the landscape overlay was supposed to mitigate adverse effects on visual qualities and to retain views from major vantage points. Also that the council's councils current plan acknowledged that in some areas use of structures such as antenna masts should be extremely limited.

But that presentation did not stop there. According to Woods testimony, with the modern communications now available, there was no justification for large ham radio antennas as a right in residential zones. Woods also stated that ham radio was no longer needed to help with emergencies. They are also concerned about the health aspects for themselves and passers-by who could be exposed to higher what Woods terms as a than acceptable amount electromagnetic radiation from the ham radio antenna when it was operating at full power. Woods wants the National Radiation Laboratory of the Ministry of Health should monitor the RF output from the antenna while the ham radio station is operating at maximum power.

The tower and antenna in question belong to Rick Kiessig, ZL2HAM. He has acknowledged that his antenna did impinge on his neighbors view to some degree, but noted that there was a gum tree in the same area which was taller than his antenna and blocked much more of the view. He also said that he had taken a number of additional steps to mitigate the effect of the antenna on the view of his neighbors. This included his using a self- supporting tower without lots of guy wires and an antenna made of translucent fiberglass rather than one with a large number of thick aluminum elements.

Nelson's environmental inspections manager is Stephen Lawrence. He acknowledges that he has received such a request from the Woods, but he notes that a rule in the Nelson Resource Management Plan specifies that any antenna transmitting on radio frequencies had to do so within the limits of the relevant New Zealand Safety Standard. He says that Kiessig has already submitted a very detailed self assessment to council that shows his antenna system complies with that safety standard. According to Lawrence, the council in the process of seeking someone to peer review this assessment as a double check, but he adds there are currently no grounds to believe that it isn't accurate or that the antenna system is operating outside of proper safety limits.

And that’s where this one stands as we go to air.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Jim Meachen, ZL2BHF, one the scene in Nelson, New Zealand.

According to ZL2HAM, amateur radio stations such as his that operate in the high frequency spectrum makes them safer at a given power density than cellphones or wireless internet. He notes that a ham radio station in the high frequency range would need to transmit about 12,000 watts of effective radiated power to have the same power density as a cellphone in normal use. (Fairfax NZ News, Others)


Back on this side of the Pacific a New Jersey ham has finally been granted a building permit to erect a 96 foot high antenna system. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Heather Embee, KB3TZD, is here with more:

In April 2012, Ira Saber, N2IS, filed an application for a building permit in Morris Township, New Jersey. A month later, the Township’s Code Enforcement Officer informed Saber that the proposed 96’ high private radio antenna system, on his modest one quarter acre property, may violate the height requirement in the zone.

On appeal to the Zoning Board of Adjustment, Saber submitted a “Showing of Need for Height of an Amateur Radio Antenna Support Structure,” prepared by Dennis Egan, W1UE. Also submitted was an ARRL pamphlet entitled “Antenna Height and Communications Effectiveness,” prepared by Richard Straw, N6BV and Gerald Hall, K1TD, and a brief by his lawyer, Fred Hopengarten, K1VR.

In December 2012, after soliciting opinions by the township’s RF consultant, the township planner, and the attorney to the Board of Adjustment, the Zoning Board of Adjustment held a hearing. Saber and Hopengarten appeared. At that time the Board voted unanimously that Saber’s building permit should be issued as requested.

But the most important aspect of this finding was what has come to light since. In an opinion letter the Board of Adjustment attorney said that it is apparent that the essence of the FCC’s preemptive intent as expressed in PRB-1 was to guarantee that each amateur radio operator could install functional antennas for all amateur frequency bands, at the licensee‘s residence.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Heather Embee, KB3TZD, a bit to the West in Berwick, Pennsylvania.

The full decision, and the opinion of the Board’s attorney, may be found under "Resolution of Findings and Conclusions, Ira J. Saber” at (QRZ)


The Southgate news reports that the skies over parts of North America turned green for St. Patrick's Day. This as a Coronal Mass Ejection or CME from the surface of the sun impacted on planet Earth during the early hours of March 17th.

The CME sparked bright auroras at latitudes as far south as Colorado. Other intense Aurora’s were spotted on March 18th mainly over the Arctic as Earth's magnetic field continued to respond to the solar impact. And if you heard or worked some stations on 50 MHz and above who sounded as if they were gargling while speaking, that was the sound of aurora propagation.

More information on this latest CME flare including photos and further updates can be found on line at (Southgate, Skywatch, others)


FCC Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau Chief David Turetsky says that the investigation continues into what happened to allow someone to hack some broadcast stations’ EAS encoders/decoders and insert false alerts of zombie attacks that were aired on some of those facilities.

According to Turetsky, the Internet which is a part of the EAS system will remain an important means of communication. Turetsky says that there is no silver bullet to cover all occasions. He says that all involved in EAS need to work hard to create greater security.

As previously reported, some stations that were hacked had connected their EAS encoder/decoder equipment directly to the Internet, rather than behind a firewall. Others had not changed the factory-provided password making both vulnerable to attacks by hackers. (RW)


A feud appears to be brewing between the broadcast community and the broadband industry over spectrum now used by broadcast auxiliary operations. This after the CTIA Wireless Association has requested that the FCC look to reclaim some of this spectrum for commercial reallocation. Amateur Radio Newslines Stephan Kinford, N8WB, has the details:

For its part the CTIA points out that the FCC has until February of 2015 to identify 15 MHz of contiguous spectrum for reallocation and licensing for mobile broadband and that the current broadcast auxiliary services band is a natural fit.

But the National Association of Broadcasters counters that such a move would amount to a threat to public safety. This is because the spectrum in question is currently used for electronic newsgathering and is where broadcasters were forced to move these operations when they reallocated satellite spectrum.

Perhaps the biggest dig at the CTIA proposal came from National Association of Broadcasters spokesman Dennis Wharton. He is quoted as having said that if the request were not such a serious threat to public safety, it would be amusing.

But the wireless industry does not seen to be amused. In his statement CTIA president Steve Largent wrote that this spectrum band is below 3 GHz, is contiguous and adjacent to current allocations, and would allow pairing in a readily achievable fashion. Largent added that the CTIA is not aware of any other spectrum bands as well-positioned as this band to meet all the key principles for mobile broadband spectrum that could be paired with the specific 15 MHz identified by National Telecommunications and Information Agency.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Stephan Kinford, N8WB, in Wadsworth, Ohio.

The bottom line appears to be that broadcasters who had been allied with wireless companies in opposition to the FCC's incentive auction band plan may be quickly heading in different directions and may well come to loggerheads over this new CTIA spectrum demand. (B&C,

From the United States of America, We are the Amateur Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world including the WA4TEP repeater serving Greenville North Carolina.


Federal authorities have shut down and seized equipment reportedly used by an unlicensed radio station in Brockton, Massachusetts. A station that is alleged to have interfered with air traffic communications in the Boston area. Amateur Radio Newslines George Bowen, W2XBS, tells us what happened:

The equipment was confiscated by the US Marshals Service, which executed a warrant March 1st. According to an affidavit filed in January by FCC Engineer Emmanuel Domkam, officials began investigating the unlicensed station operating on 91.7 FM in Brockton, in February 2010. However the station’s transmitter moved three times before it ended up on at the location the seizure occurred.

Domkan wrote that each time the move occurred after the FCC has issued and posted a written warning at the transmitter location. Investigators eventually traced the transmitter to an address on Rutland Street in Brockton. This after the Federal Aviation Administration filed a complaint last October that a possible unlicensed station, later identified as operating on 91.7 and playing Haitian music, was interfering with its ability of controllers to communicate with pilots flying in the Boston area.

The interference was likely from spurs generated by the stations transmitter. The FCC said the investigation became a top priority because this kind of interference could be dangerous to air to ground communications and public safety.

As we go to air the owner of the property where the equipment was confiscated has not been charged with any crime. Nor was immediately clear if that person or anyone else will be subject to a Notice of Monetary Forfeiture or other federal penalty. As regular listeners know, fines in similar cases start at $10,000 and run as high as $25,000 or more.

For the amateur Radio Newsline, I’m George Bowen, W2XBS, in Albany, New York.

This is not the first time that the FCC has confiscated an unlicensed station in the Brockton area. In an unrelated 2007 case an unlicensed radio broadcaster was cited by federal authorities for interfering with the traffic control at Logan International Airport in nearby Boston. In that incident the stations equipment was also seized. (Boston Globe, Boston Herald, Cape Cod Daily)


A Pennsylvania ham whom the FCC says operated outside of the amateur radio bands has had his fine reduced by $500.

Back on May 16, 2011 the FCC imposed a $4,000 monetary forfeiture against Jose Torres, N3TX, of Philadelphia. This for his alleged willful and repeated operation of his amateur radio station on an unauthorized frequency on April 17 and June 2, 2008. The frequency in question was 26.71 MHz.

On February 17, 2009, Torres met with agents in the Philadelphia Office to respond to the apparent findings in the N-A-L. During the meeting Torres claimed that he was not at home when the alleged unauthorized transmissions occurred. He also asserted that payment of the $4000 proposed fine would pose a financial hardship. At that meeting he produced the required documentation to back up his claim.

But in affirming the penalty, the FCC said that it finds that Torres’s Petition for Reconsideration fails to demonstrate a material error in the Forfeiture Order. That it only reiterates arguments previously presented to and rejected by the agency’s Northeast Region office. As such, it denies reconsideration of the Petition on this basis.

As to Torres’s claim of his inability to pay the forfeiture, here the FCC says that based on the materials he submitted that a reduction of $500 is warranted. Therefore the agency affirms the Northeast Region’s finding that Torres willfully and repeatedly operated on an unauthorized frequency but reduces the forfeiture amount to $3,500.

Torres was given the customary 30 days from the March 19th release of the Memorandum Opinion and Order in this matter to pay the reduced $3,500 forfeiture amount. (FCC)


The FCC has issued Gary Feldman a $25,000 Notice of Monetary Forfeiture for operating an unlicensed radio station in Miami, Florida.

Responding to a complaint, agents from the Enforcement Bureau’s Miami office traced the source of an unauthorized signal on 99.7 MHz to an FM antenna mounted on Feldman’s residence, in both 2011 and 2012. While monitoring the station, agents heard the website mentioned. A check showed the website domain registered to Feldman.

According to the FCC, during an inspection in 2012, Feldman admitted he operated the station but refused to either surrender the gear to the investigators or to destroy it. At that time the commission warned Feldman that operating an unlicensed station violated FCC rules and he could face further enforcement action.

Later in 2012 the FCC says that Feldman attempted to evade detection by moving his unlicensed operation to a commercial building he owns in Miami. The commission also found Feldman had earlier been issued a $10,000 fine for operating an unlicensed station in Fort Myers. That case had already been turned over to the Department of Justice for collection but the fine at that time has still remained unpaid.

In issuing the latest proposed fine to Feldman the agency noted that it had increased the amount to $25,000 because of his past record of non compliance with FCC rules and that the current violation is deemed as willful and repeated. It also warned him that he may face larger fines, criminal prosecution and equipment seizure if he fails to comply.

Feldman has 30 days from the February 21st date of the issuance of the proposed fine to pay it in full or to file an appeal. (FCC)


It appears that FEMA-IPAWS personnel won’t be going to the National Association of Broadcasters Convention in April due to the so-called “sequestration.” That’s the fancy word politicians in Washington made up to give a title to the more than $40 billion in across-the-board federal spending cuts within the remaining fiscal year.

One member of that office posted a message to the Society of Broadcast Engineers EAS list serve that at this time FEMA won’t have a presence at the National Association of Broadcasters Convention next month in Las Vegas, Nevada. That likely means FEMA won’t have a booth and no one can travel to the event, including those scheduled to be session panelists.

There’s no word yet on how the budget cuts might affect travel for the FCC personnel scheduled to speak in Las Vegas. During a recent Senate FCC oversight hearing Chairman Julius Genachowski said he has serious concerns about the effects of the cuts, since the agency is at its lowest employee level in some 30 years.

The FCC’s portion of the sequestration cuts is about $17 million, or 5% of its total $340 million budget. This in turn begs the obvious question as to how the sequestration mandated budget cuts might affect all aspects of ham radio oversight by the agency as well as FCC participation in major amateur radio conventions and other events. (RW, ARNewsline™)


KSUA, a student-run radio station at the University of Alaska at Fairbanks has been named as the best college radio station in the country. The station on 91.5 MHz FM won the 2013 MTVU'S Best College Radio Woodie Award, beating out competition from major universities in metropolitan areas from across the country.

MTVU is a division of the MTV Network that targets college-aged students and is available on more than 750 college campuses across the United States. The Woodie Awards are its top honors, which celebrate everything about college life from best musical artist and video to best radio station.

This year awards will be presented in Austin, Texas, during the South by Southwest festival. This is a major 10-day entertainment festival covering music, film and interactive formats such as video gaming and the online world. (


For the fourth year in a row, the Dayton Amateur Radio Association will provide financial support for the advanced session of the Teachers Institute sponsored by the ARRL. This advanced session on remote sensing and data gathering will be held July 22nd to the 25 at the Dayton Amateur Radio Association’s new classroom facility at their clubhouse in Dayton, Ohio.

There will also be two basic Teachers Institute sessions taking place this summer. One will be held July 8th to the 11th at ARRL Headquarters in Newington, Connecticut. The other from July 15th to the 19th on the West coast at Parallax, Inc in Rocklin, California.

More on all of these sessions is on line at (ARRL)


The International Museums Weekends special event will take place on the double weekends of June15th and 16th and again on June 22nd and 23rd. Hams world-wide are being encouraged to participate in this event by setting up stations in their local museums in third areas.

The events organizer Harry Bloomfield, M1BYT. He asks that all those intending to take part to register their museum via the web form on the International Museums Weekend website. Its in cyberspace at (GB2RS)


A new milestone for the Amateur Radio Newsline page on Facebook. As of this newscast, our page now has 1300 followers. Many of those who have signed on have also become contributors on news and events that do not always make it into our weekly newscast. For this we thank all of them for their volunteerism and support. If you are on Facebook and have not yet signed onto our page we invite you to do so and become a part of the Amateur Newsline on-line family. And a very special thank you to James Pastorfield, KB7TBT, who serves as the volunteer moderator of our presence on Facebook. (ARNewsline)


And a reminder that the 2013 The Southeastern VHF Society technical conference is less than 6 weeks away. This years gathering will take place April 19 to the 20th at the Cocoa Beach Hilton Hotel in Cocoa Beach, Florida.

The goal of the conference is to raise the technical level of amateurs. This by providing a forum for presenting papers relating to VHF, UHF, and Microwave while at the same time providing a focal point for discussions on operating practices and procedures and other topics that promote operation on amateur bands above 50MHz.

For further information and registration please visit the conference website at (VHF Reflector,

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:


Some names in the news. The SouthWest Ohio DX Association has announced that Dave Patton, NN1N, will be the featured speaker for its 28th annual DX dinner. This on Friday, May 17th at the Marriott Hotel in Dayton, Ohio.

Dave Patton was first licensed in 1977 as WD9DCL at the age of 12. Always an avid DX’er and contester Patton is a two-time World Radiosport Team Championship competitor has been on world record holding multi- operator teams at 6Y2A and HC8N.

For more information and to order dinner tickets please visit on the World-Wide-Web (OPDX)


And in celebration of the Netherlands Queen Beatrix handing over the throne to her eldest son Prince Willem Alexander, Dutch ham radio operator Jaap Van Duin, PA7DA, will take to the airwaves using the special callsign PB33Q between April 20th and May 1st.

The PB33BQ callsign stands for Princess Beatrix 33 years Queen and commemorates the more than three decades since she took over the throne of her mother Queen Juliana. That took place back on April 30th, 1980.

Keep an eye on for more information on this very special celebration. QSL PB33Q only via the bureau. (Various DX News Sources)


The National Radio Club has announced that its highly acclaimed DX Audio Service has ceased publication on cassette and is now available on CD.

Fred Vobbe, W8HDU, is the Publisher of the DX Audio Service and an anchor here on Amateur Radio Newsline. He notes that the audio magazine which targets blind and visually handicapped individuals has been published on cassette tape since 1985. But says W8HDU, the switch to CD distribution will increase the amount of time to present articles on radio and the radio listening hobby as well as represent an advancement in technology. With the move to CDs the club hopes not to just talk about the quality of a radio receiver, but let the members make their own qualitative judgments. According to Vobbe, the high quality of CD’s is what makes this possible.

The DX Audio Service magazine started with volunteers reading the printed version of DX News Magazine to tape. Two decades ago the subject matter was changed slightly from traditional AM DX’ing, to add general topics on radio listening, technical articles, and features on people in the broadcasting business.

A sample of the MP3 version is located on the World Wide Web at under the “Publications”, then “Download” links. A sample CD for United States and Canadian radio listeners is available for $3.00 from National Radio Club Publications, P.O. Box 473251, Aurora, Colorado, 80047 in the USA. More information is on the web at (W8HDU)


The Federal Communications Commission released a Public Notice to provide guidance concerning FCC licensing of spectrum for use by small satellites, including satellites that fall within the categories of pico- satellites, nano-satellites and cubesats. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Bruce Tennant, K6PZW has more:

The FCC’s rules set forth three different procedures for licensing satellites. The Commission’s Part 25 rules are primary for satellite licensing, and are used for regulating a wide range of satellite operations, including commercial communication and remote sensing satellites. The Commission’s Part 5 rules cover experimental operations. The Commission’s Part 97 rules cover amateur radio service satellite operations.

Currently, many small satellite missions involve experimental operations such as scientific and research missions including those conducted under government contract, and many operate in amateur frequency bands. These satellites are licensed under Parts 5 or 97 of FCC rules. Because of the significant interest in small satellites in the amateur radio and research communities, the primary focus of this new Public Notice is on those operations, although certain guidance in the Notice is also applicable to Part 25 licensing well in advance of a launch.

The FCC notes that the advent of small satellite designs has brought with it dramatically lower launch costs. This is enabling a larger range of organizations to directly launch satellites. Institutions such as universities and research groups that previously found it cost prohibitive to orbit their own satellite can now participate in the exploration of space at relatively reasonable cost. And because of this many of these new participants may be unfamiliar with the spectrum licensing, scheduling and other requirements attendant on satellites. The FCC says that this new Public Notice seeks to alert those planning to orbit a small satellite of these requirements and aid operators in the planning necessary for a successful launch operation.

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

The full public notice can be found on-line at And we will have more ham radio space related news later on in this weeks Amateur Radio Newsline report. (FCC, AMSAT)


Still with space related matters, E-M-E enthusiasts should take note that DL7APV has posted a 2013 weekend Moon Calendar to the World Wide Web. Titled the Lunar Weekend Calendar the page gives all sorts of information regarding the Moons position on weekends throughout the year along with ham radio events taking place on the same dates. You can access the DL7APV Lunar Weekend Calendar on-line at moon. (N4GIV, VHF Reflector)


Still with moonbounce communications, the April issue of the amateur radio 432 MHz and Above EME Newsletter is now available for download. The newsletter is available in Word, PDF and Text formats the newsletter can be downloaded free of charge at (VHF Reflector)


On the air. members of the Team Cartagena will commemorate the launch of the submarine Isaac Peral 125 years ago with the special station EH5SIP on the air through March 31st. Operation of this station is on SSB and the digital modes. QSLs will be sent automatically via bureau. (Southgate)


And keep an ear open for a special event stations operating from Japan. 8J4G can be heard through May 31st celebrating the 64th National Tree Planting Ceremony in Tottori prefecture on Honshu Island. QSL only via the JA Bureau. (Southgate)


In DX, JH1NBN is expected to be active from Bhutan as A52W through March 26th. He is there on business, so his activity will only be during his spare time. QSL via JH1NBN direct only.

F6BGC will be active as 8Q7NC from the Maldives through March 29th. He plans to operate holiday style on 40 through 6 meters using mostly SSB with some CW and RTTY. QSL via F6BGC, direct or by the bureau and electronically using Logbook of the World.

F5MNW will be active stroke FR from Reunion Island between April 6th and the 29th. Operations will be on the High Frequency bands using only CW. QSL via his home callsign either direct or via the bureau.

Lastly, ZS6AYU will likely be operational as C91GR from Mozambique between May 7th and 11th. We say likely only because the C91GR callsign has been applied for but not yet issued. Either way he plans to be on 40 through 10 meters operating CW only. QSL via his home callsign, either direct or by the Bureau.


And finally this week, word that jamming of the Global Positioning System by drivers on United Kingdom is becoming a growing threat to public safety. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Jim Damron, N8TMW, reports:

The United Kingdom’s Guardian newspaper reports that thousands of people in that nation may be using GPS jamming devices on UK roads. This to be invisible to any form of surveillance while driving.

According to the article there are a lot concerns that use of these devices could lead to the dangers to public safety. This includes overtired bus drivers or others staying on the roads despite the presence of monitoring equipment. More importantly they could also pose major a threat if vehicles equipped with the jammers were to go on in airport areas near aircraft which rely on the global positioning system for navigation.

The Guardian article also notes that the growing use of these devices could torpedo any plans to introduce pay as you drive insurance or road toll systems. This is because a vehicle owner would be able to block communications with monitoring systems.

GPS jammers, which can have a range of several hundred meters, can be bought in the United Kingdom for about £30 or about $45 in U-S currency. While not illegal to purchase and own in the U-K it is against the law to use them.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Jim Damron, N8TMW, in Charleston, West Virginia.

The full story is on-line at gps-jamming (Guardian)


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 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

A reminder that the nominating period for the 2013 Amateur Radio Young Ham of the Year Award is now open. Full details and a nominating form are on our website at

For now, with Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, at the editors’ desk, I’m Don Wilbanks, AE5DW, saying 73 and we thank you for listening.

Amateur Radio Newsline™ is Copyright 2013. All rights reserved.

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