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ARNewsline Report 1894 -- Nov 29 2013:

Bill Pasternak (WA6ITF) on November 29, 2013
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Amateur Radio Newsline™ Report 1894 – November 29 2013

Ladies and gentlemen, with a short message here’s our producer Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF:

As we here in the United States celebrate Thanksgiving 2013, I just want to pause for a moment and on behalf of all who make up the Amateur Radio Newsline production family to say thanks to all who have been so generous this past month after we put out our call for financial assistance. Because of you we are likely financially OK at least through the month of March and possibly into April.

I only wish there was a way to thank each of you individually, but as we do not have the resources, please accept this sincere and heart felt thank you to all who have contributed to keeping Amateur Radio Newsline in operation. And along with that my personal wish for a truly Happy Thanksgiving and a wonderful holiday season to follow.

I'm Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, and now here’s this weeks newscast.

Thanks Bill. Now Amateur Radio Newsline report number 1894 with a release date of November 29 2013 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a QST. Ham radio relief efforts continue in the Philippines; the long awaited United Kingdom FUNcube One ham satellite is now on-orbit; a new 76 Gigahertz record is set in Great Britain; lots of FCC enforcement action and the Consumer Electronics Association issues its Annual Trends to Watch. Find out the details are on Amateur Radio Newsline™ report number 1894 coming your way right now.

RESCUE RADIO: HAM RADIO CONTINUES TO ASSIST IN THE PHILIPPINES

Even though it’s been more than three weeks since Typhoon Haiyan laid waste to many parts of the Philippines, much of that nations telecommunications infrastructure is still not operational. As such, ham radio operators continue to be a primary information conduit into and out of those areas stricken by the storm. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Jim Meachen, ZL2BHF, has the latest:

The Philippine-based Ham Emergency Radio Operation or HERO stations are still at work providing help and communications after deadly Typhoon Haiyan, also known as Typhoon Yolanda wreaked its destruction in the central Philippines.

The current official death toll of 5,200 puts the Category-5 storm that landed on November the 8th as the worst typhoon in the archipelago, with its 314-km/h winds generating storm surges in coastal villages and devastating main cities.

As previously reported, in anticipation of the arrival of the super storm the Philippines Amateur Radio Association or PARA activated its HERO network. This after having already faced many storms this year and an earthquake in October.

PARA’s Vice Chief Operating Officer is Ramon Anquilan, DU1UGZ. He reports that in some areas mobile phone service is now available, but is patchy and unreliable. The same is true with electric mains power. DU1UGZ says that he knew that amateur radio emergency communications was effective, and the results saw many tearful moments when local people were able to get their message through to loved ones elsewhere.

Meantime, HERO stations have worked with the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, the National Telecommunications Commission, communities and non-government organizations. The frequency of 7 dot 095 MHz and several others are still in use and PARA thanks the world’s ham radio community for keeping them clear for emergency traffic.

As we go to air, PARA continues to work closely with authorities and hopefully obtain increased recognition of the HERO network. A very good job continues to be done by a group of truly dedicated ham radio volunteers.

With much of the information in this report provided by Jim Linton VK3PC, who is the Chairman IARU Region 3 Disaster Communications Committee, I’m Jim Meachen, ZL2BHF, reporting from the South Island in Nelson, New Zealand for the Amateur Radio Newsline.

It appears as if ham radio assistance in the aftermath of this killer typhoon will be ongoing for some time to come. (VK3PC)

HAM RADIO IN SPACE: UK FUNCUBE 1 HAMSAT NOW IN SPACE

When the FUNcube-1 satellite was first reached orbit its beacon transmitting just 30 milliwatts. And in a time compressed recording, it sounded like this:

That was recorded on Fun Cube-1’s very first pass over Croatia by Adam Alicajic, 9A4QV and posted to YouTube not long after the United Kingdom built ham radio satellite was declared to be on-orbit. We removed the long pauses between telemetry tones and did some noise reduction so you can get an idea as to what those first signals sounded like.

For its first two orbits FUNcube-1 was in this Safe Mode with the beacon transmitting low power just of only 30 milliwatts. The satellite was then commanded into Educational Mode which increased the power to 300 milliwatts. This enabled it to be copied on a SSB handheld with just a whip antenna.

By way of background, a Russian Dnepr launch vehicle carried FUNcube-1 and 18 other ham radio payloads successfully to orbit at 07:10 UTC on Thursday, November 21st. Approximately 8 minutes later, FUNcube-1 was deployed into orbit. Soon after the first telemetry was successfully received, decoded, and uploaded to the FUNcube Data Warehouse by ZS1LS and ZS6BMN in South Africa. Needless to say that there was a huge cheer and the FUNcube-1 Project team toasted the successful launch. Soon afterward the new bird was given the official designation of AMSAT- OSCAR-73 but it’s expected to be known as FUNcube-1 by the ham radio public.

FUNcube-1’s telemetry downlink is on 145.935 MHz running in the BPSK mode. The control team is encouraging all stations who may receive the telemetry to record it and upload it to the Data Warehouse at tinyurl.com/funcube-data. More about the overall Funcube -1 mission and its objectives can be found on the web at funcube.org.uk. The full length unedited audio clip is at tinyurl.com/fun-cube-sound (FUNcube-1, Southgate, YouTube)

HAM RADIO IN SPACE: WREN NOT HEARD SINCE LAUNCH

Meantime another new hamsat has not been as lucky. The WREN microsat team reports that it has had no confirmed reception of the signal from its Slow Scan TV Pocket Qube satellite which was launched on November 21st. The tiny bird is supposed to be transmitting on 437.405 MHz +/- 10 kHz for Doppler shift. The length of the beacon is 1.6 seconds and it is AFSK modulated. The team says that it needs help from every amateur radio operator and ground station operator it can get. More is at tinyurl.com/wren-in-space and at www.facebook.com/StaDoKo. (Southgate)

RADIO RECORDS: UK RADIO AMATEURS EXTEND 76 GHZ DISTANCE RECORD

Another new United Kingdom distance record of 80 miles has been achieved on 76 GHz. This on Saturday November 23rd with contacts between Brown Clee Hill in Shropshire and Winter Hill, Lancashire

Operating on three separate millimeter bands of 24, 47 and 76 GHz, were Ian Lamb, G8KQW, and John Hazell, G8ACE, at Brown Clee Hill. At the other end of the path at Winter Hill were Roger Ray,G8CUB, with John Wood G4EAT who was operating the 76GHz station.

Contacts on all three bands were made using narrow-band FM. Signals on 76GHz were exchanged for one hour with some QSB. This likely due to changes in atmospheric conditions along the path.

This success follows closely on the heels of the previous distance record that was set by Lamb and Hazell on September 14th with a contact over a 63 point 3 mile path. (Southgate)

Time for you to identify your station. We are the Amateur Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world including the Twin City Amateur Radio Club net serving Champaign and Urbanna Illinois.

ENFORCEMENT: FCC ORDERS KANSAS HAM TO PAY $4000 FINE FOR OPERATING AN UNLICENSED RADIO STATION

The FCC has ordered a ham to pay a $4000 monetary forfeiture but not for violating any of the Part 97 Amateur Service rules. Rather the FCC says that Glen Rubash, KC0GPV, operated the unlicensed radio transmitter on 88.3 MHz in the city of Manhattan, Kansas and Amateur Radio Newsline’s Don Wilbanks, AE5DW, is here with the details:

According to the FCC, on December 5, 2012, the Enforcement Bureau’s Kansas City Office issued a Notice of Apparent Liability to Monetary Forfeiture in the amount of $15,000 to Glen Rubash, KC0GPV. As reflected in the order there was no mention of any Part 97 violation. Rather, on September 26 and 27, 2012, agents from the Kansas City Office determined that an unlicensed radio station was operating from a detached garage in Manhattan, Kansas. The agents determined that Rubash had secured space and operated the unlicensed radio station.

On September 27, 2012, the FCC says that Rubash admitted over the telephone to its agents that he installed and owned the station’s radio transmitting equipment. He also demonstrated control over the station by stating that he would refuse to surrender the equipment to the agents from the Kansas City Office if required to do so.

In his subsequent written response, the regulatory agency says that Rubash requested cancellation or reduction of the proposed forfeiture. The FCC said that even though Rubash admitted via telephone interview to making the admissions, he later asserted that his statements were based on incorrect information. More specifically, in his written response he stated that he owned and installed a low power FM radio transmitter but that it operated within Part 15 unlicensed limits. He also claimed that it was only able to reach 300 feet beyond the garage housing the station. Also that its purpose was to teach a small group of college and high school students how to operate a community radio station.

Rubash want on to say that he attached his transmitter to a home-built antenna supplied by one of the students. He claims no knowledge of the radio transmitter that was in place when the agents inspected the station on September 27, 2012, because he was absent from the station from late July until September 29, 2012, due to illness. He went on to assert that someone must have replaced the transmitter while he was recuperating and claims that he should not be held responsible for unlawful actions which occurred during his absence. Finally, as an alternative, Rubash claimed that he is unable to pay the original forfeiture and requests a reduction.

But in denying most of Rubash’s requests the FCC said that it affirmed the Notice of Apparent Liability finding that he violated Section 301 of the Communications Act by using equipment without the required Commission authorization.

However based on the financial documents provided by Mr. Rubash, the FCC said it found sufficient basis to reduce the forfeiture to $4,000 and that’s the amount that he has been ordered to pay.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline I’m Don Wilbanks, AE5DW, reporting.

As is usual in these matters, Rubash was given the customary thirty days from the November 21si affirmation of the fine to pay in full or make arrangements with the FCC to pay on an installment plan. If he fails to do one or the other the matter will be turned over to the Department of Justice for enforcement of the forfeiture. (FCC)

ENFORCEMENT: OKLAHOMA CB OPERATOR FINED $15000 FOR USING LINEAR AMP

The FCC has issued a $15,000 Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture to Carlton Lewis, of Enid, Oklahoma. This for his alleged operation of a Citizens Band radio operator with an external power amplifier in violation of the Commissions Part 95 rules.

Back this past May 14th an agent from the Enforcement Bureau’s Dallas Office T-hunted down a strong signal on 27.1850 MHz which is CB Channel 19. He found it was coming from Lewis’ residence in Enid. The agent observed an antenna mounted on the roof of the home and traced a coaxial cable from the antenna into the residence.

The agent knocked on the door of the residence but no one answered the door for over 30 minutes. A person eventually answered the door and claimed that Mr. Lewis was not at home. However a few minutes later Carlton Lewis appeared and showed the agent his CB transmitter, which was warm to the touch.

The agent observed that no coaxial cables were connected to the CB transmitter but also noted the coaxial cable coming into the residence and traced it to a linear amplifier hidden behind a sofa. The linear amplifier was also warm to the touch. Lewis did not respond when asked whether he had used the linear amplifier.

Now in making its determination to issue the $15,000 proposed fine the FCC notes that prior to its May 14, 2013 inspection Lewis CB station that he had been issued two written warnings from the Dallas Office. Both advised him that using a linear amplifier with his CB transmitter voided his authority to operate. Also that it violated the Communications Act and the FCC’s Part 95 Rules.

The FCC says that the fact that Mr. Lewis operated overpower and used a linear amplifier despite being twice warned in writing that such actions violated the Act and Rules demonstrates a deliberate disregard for the Commission’s requirements and authority. As such a proposed fine of $15,000 is warranted in this case.

Lewis was given the customary 30 days from the November 26th issuance of the Notice of Apparent Liability to pay or to file an appeal. (FCC)

ENFORCEMENT: FCC UPHOLDS $14000 FINE FOR SELLING NON CERTIFIED GEAR

A California company has been dinged $14,000 by the FCC for making and selling unauthorized radio gear. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, has the details:

The FCC has issued a monetary forfeiture in the amount of fourteen thousand dollars to Custom Interface Technologies, a Division of Thornstar Corporation, in Joshua Tree, California. This for willfully and repeatedly violating rules against manufacturing and marketing of unauthorized radio frequency devices in the United States.

Back on November 17, 2011, the Enforcement Bureau’s Los Angeles Office issued a Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture for fourteen thousand dollars to Custom Interface Technologies for manufacturing and marketing uncertified video assist transmitters. In response to the proposed fine Custom Interface Technologies, did not deny the violations, but requested cancellation of the forfeiture based on its inability to pay.

However in affirming the forfeiture amount the FCC says while Custom Interface Technologies did provide the Commission with three years of tax returns and a bank statement to support its claim of an inability to pay, after reviewing of these financial documents that the FCC says that it declines to reduce the forfeiture amount and that the $14,000 fine is warranted.

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

Custom Interface Technologies was given the customary 30 days from the November 13th release date of its order affirming the fine to pay the amount in full. If it fails to do so the case may be referred to the U.S. Department of Justice for enforcement of the forfeiture pursuant to Section 504(a) of the Communications Act. (FCC)

RESTRUCTURING: BROADCASTERS AND DOD AGREE ON NEW SHARING OF 1755 TO 1780 MHZ

House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton and Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chairman Greg Walden, W7EQI, say that they welcome the National Telecommunications and Information Administration's endorsement of an important agreement. This between the Department of Defense and the National Association of Broadcasters on the relocation of a parcel of government spectrum to shared use.

The agreement was reached after bipartisan committee leadership worked with the Department of Defense, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration and the Federal Communications Commission. It paves the way for the Department of Defense to move systems out of the 1755 to 1780 MHz band by creating a sharing arrangement between it and the broadcast community in the shared use of the Broadcast Auxiliary Service. This spectrum is used by news organizations to originate material such as breaking news stories from outside of studio facilities. More is on the web at tinyurl.com/DOD-BROADCAST-SHARING. (House Energy & Commerce Committee release)

NAMES IN THE NEWS: FCC CHAIRMAN ADDS FOUR TO HIS SENIOR STAFF

Some names in the news. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has announced four new members to his Senior Staff. Those named are Shannon Gilson, who comes on board as Communications Director and Head of the Office of Media Relations; Jonathan Chambers as Chief of the Office of Strategic Planning and Policy Analysis; Gary Epstein, as Special Advisor to the Chairman on Incentive Auctions and John Leibovitz who will serve as a Special Advisor to the Chairman for Spectrum Policy. (FCC)

NAMES IN THE NEWS: VE3PU AND VE6NM INDUCTED TO THE CANADIAN AMATEUR RADIO HALL OF FAME

The Board of Trustees of the Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame has announced the induction of the late Ken Pulfer, VE3PU, and the late Earle Smith, VE6NM, to the Hall of Fame for 2013 year. The families of the two inductees will be receiving this award in their loved ones honor in early 2014. A summary of their contributions to amateur radio will be published in an upcoming issue of "The Canadian Amateur" magazine. (VE7EF)

With you every week, 52 weeks a year since 1977, 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:

D-STAR NEWS: HF TESTING CONTINUES FROM NORTH AMERICA

Kent Hufford, KQ4KK, reports that the International D-STAR HF Testing Net is continuing in North America with its just issued winter schedule. Net sponsors say that they routinely have two way communications coast to coast, north to south, and have had two way contacts to Europe and Japan.

The net is on each band only for 5 minutes and will spend less time if a given band is dead. The net also may need to move early or if the frequency is busy. It’s also wise for D-STAR operators to monitor reflector REF030C to coordinate.

Also, please keep an eye on hf.dstar- relay.net for the latest information. A video demonstration of how all this comes together is on YouTube at tinyurl.com/DSTAR- ON-HF. (KQ4KK, VHF Reflector)

HAM HAPPENINGS: CALL FOR PAPERS AT THE 2014 SOUTH AFRICA RTA SYMPOSIUM

The South African Radio League has put out a call for papers to be presented at the Radio Technology in Action symposium or to be included in the symposium CD. The event is slated for July of 2014 and if you have a subject that you would like to present at the Radio Technology in Action please send a synopsis by not later than December 15th to rta (at)sarl.org.za. Be sure to include your e-mail and other contact details. (SARL)

RADIO IN SPACE: MAVEN MISSION TO EXPLORE MARS PAST

A NASA spacecraft is headed toward Mars where its study of the upper atmosphere of the Red Planet. This in the hope of finding out how what was ione believed to be a warm planet became what it is today. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Jeff Clark, K8JAC, has the details:

The multi million dollar Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution or Maven mission began its 10-month voyage on Monday, November 18th atop an Atlas Five launch vehicle from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station with the mission spacecraft deploying 53 minutes after liftoff. After separating from the launch rocket, the mission spacecraft successfully set out its solar arrays with radio telemetry showing that all systems were reportedly functioning well early in into the flight. Maven is expected to arrive at Mars on September 22, 2014 after which it is expected to drop into an elliptical orbit around the Red Planet flying between 78 miles and 3,900 miles above the planets surface.

Previous missions have found evidence that water once flowed on the surface of Mars indicating conditions that would have required a warmer, denser atmosphere than exists today. Mars now is a cold, dry desert with a very thin atmosphere. These are conditions under which liquid water would freeze or evaporate. Scientists want to know where the water and gasses from Mars' early, thicker atmosphere went and they hope that data radioed back from the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution mission will provide an answer.

As an aside, maven is a Yiddish term meaning a trusted expert in a particular field, who seeks to pass knowledge on to others. It was derived from the Hebrew language where it related to one who understands, based on an accumulation of knowledge. Kind of very apropos name for this mission into Mars past.

I’m Jeff Clark, K8JAC.

More is on the web at tinyurl.com/maven-to- mars. (NASA, Wikipedia)

ON THE AIR: CELEBRATING THE LIFE OF SIR JAGADEESH CHANDRA BOSE

On the air, keep an ear open for special event station AU2JCB to be active through December 10th. This is to celebrate the 155th anniversary of the birth of Sir Jagadeesh Chandra Bose.

Activity for this event will be on 80 through 6 meters SSB, SSTV, PSK and FM. If higher frequency bands are open, operations will be on those as well. The operator will be VU2DSI. QSL direct with 2 International Reply Coupons to VU2DSI at his callbook address.

And as a historical note, Sir Jagadeesh Chandra Bose is considered to be India's greatest scientist and inventor. He is also considered to be India’s "Father of Wireless Communication." More about his life and his work in communications and other sciences can be found on Wikipedia.com. (Via e-mail)

DX

In DX two more operations have been approved by the ARRL Awards desk for DXCC credit. These are the current 2013 through May 2014 operations of ZS8C and ZS8Z from Prince Edward and Marion Islands. If your request for DXCC credit for these operations has been rejected in an earlier filing, please contact Bill Moore, NC1L, at ARRL headquarters to be placed on the list for an update to your record. His e-mail is bmoore (at) arrl (dot) org.

And less we forget to mention, Bill notes that two student hams are expected to join this operation upon completion of their licensing, which will make it four operators. NC1L says that he will update this approval when he has more information.

SM6JBC and SM6GOR are on the air from Mauritius Island signing as 3B8JB and 3B8 stroke SM6GOR, respectively. They will be there until December 16th. Activity is on 20 through 10 meters operating CW, SSB, PSK31 and PSK63. QSL via their home callsigns.

F5AHO is operating stroke FR Reunion Island through December 4th. Activity is on 20, 17, 15 and 10 meters using SSB and the Digital modes. QSL via F5AHO, either direct or via the bureau.

F6ICX is active as 5R8IC from Saint Marie Island and will be there until December 15th. Operations are holiday style using CW, RTTY, and PSK63. QSL via his home callsign.

VK3XPT is operating from Raratonga and neighborinh islands as E51XPT. Hes on the air holiday style running only five watts on 40, 20, and 10 meters. QSL only via his home call.

Lastly, OH6EI, will again show up from Aland Islands a OH0Z on all bands. No exact dates or operational times were given. QSL via W0MM.

(Above from various DX news sources)

THAT FINAL ITEM: CES FIVE TECHNOLOGY TRENDS TO WATCH

And finally this week a look into this future. This as the Consumer Electronics Association releases the 2014 edition of “Five Technology Trends to Watch.” This is an annual publication that examines five prominent technology movements that will influence the consumer electronics industry in the years ahead. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Norm Seeley, KI7UP, takes a look at what lies ahead:

According to a press release, this year’s “Five Technology Trends to Watch” examines key developments from the Internet to things like driverless cars, digital health care, robotics to the future of video distribution and consumption.

Geared toward industry professionals, the publication provides in-depth analysis and outlines related issues and market forecasts for the coming year. Each section also explores consumer perspectives, partnerships, key players and public policy issues. For example, a chapter titled “A Hundred Billion Nodes” looks at how the Internet is using the Web to “learn” consumer habits and needs.

The Consumer Electronics Association Senior Manager of Business Intelligence is Jack Cutts. He looks at where the major auto makers are in testing and refining their driverless vehicles. He also expounds on the legal and social implications of ceding the open road to science in “On the Road to Driverless Cars.”

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, Im Norm Seeley, KI7UP, watching emerging technology from Scottsdale, Arizona.

The publication was released during a panel discussion at Consumer Electronics Association Industry Forum in Los Angeles in October. (RW)

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 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 www.arnewsline.org. 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 Jim Damron, N8TMW, wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving holiday from the Amateur Radio Newsline. And as always, 73 and we thank you for listening.

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

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