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ARNewsline Report 1930 -- August 8 2014:

Bill Pasternak (WA6ITF) on August 8, 2014
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Amateur Radio Newsline™ Report 1930 – August 8 2014

Amateur Radio Newsline report number 1930 with a release date of August 8 2014 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a QST. Targeted shortwave broadcasting may soon come to an end in the United States; the ARRL issues an update on the Amateur Radio Parity Act; a ham radio floater balloon completes a trip around the world; students get introduced to amateur radio in India and ham radio will again celebrate Hollywood this September. Find out the details are on Amateur Radio Newsline report number 1930 coming your way right now.

**

RADIO POLICY: US COMMITTE FINDINGS CHALLENGE CONTINUING SHORTWAVE BROADCASTS

Shortwave broadcasting using full carrier AM may be on its way out in the United States. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Skeeter Nash, N5ASH, is here with the details:

--

The United States Broadcasting Board of Governors has released a specially prepared report assessing current and projected use of shortwave radio. This, as a platform for targeted programming by U.S. international media.

According to the report, United States international media must optimize delivery by audience and market. While there is still a critical need for shortwave in certain key countries, but it is a medium of marginal and continuously declining impact in most markets. Even in countries with currently significant levels of shortwave usage, audiences will migrate to other platforms as they become more accessible.

The report goes on to note Shortwave users generally have viable alternative means of accessing content from the United States. As such, top target demographic audiences are unlikely to use shortwave exclusively or at all. It also found no evidence that shortwave usage increases during crises. Rather, in these instances target audiences continue to use their existing platforms or seek out anti-censorship tools including online firewall circumvention, private chat software, flash drives, and DVDs to access content.

The report goes on to note that Shortwave transmission is a relatively expensive platform to operate and maintain. It also says that Digital Shortwave such as Digital Radio Mondiale is not likely to become an established mass media distribution method in enough of the Broadcast Board of Governors current or future markets to justify the costs. As such, the committee supports almost all of the shortwave broadcast reductions previously approved by the Broadcasting Board of Governors under sequestration and the implementation of the Fiscal Year 2014 operating Plan. However, given current situations in Ukraine and other nearby states with large Russian-speaking populations, the Committee recommends revising the Operating Plan and ensuring that shortwave broadcasts to Russia and the Caucasus be continued at current levels, subject to re-evaluation during Fiscal Year 2016’s budget formulation processes.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Skeeter Nash, N5ASH, reporting.

--

The bottom line is that the Committee has recommended that the Broadcasting Board of Governors take an aggressive approach to reduce or eliminate shortwave broadcasts where there is either minimal audience reach or the audience is not one based on the Broadcasting Board of Governors support of United States foreign policy. The complete 44 page report in PDF format can be downloaded at tinyurl.com/BBG-on-shortwave. (Southgate, Critical Distance Weblog, G0SFJ, others)

**

RADIO LAW: ARRL ISSUE UPDATE ON HR 4969

The ARRL reports that early efforts on behalf of The Amateur Radio Parity Act known in the House of Representatives as HR 4969 continues to grow. This according to Dan Henderson, N1ND, who is the League’s Regulatory Information Manager.

In a statement, Henderson said that the organization is very pleased with the initial response, but adds that the more noise we make, the better our chances.

If enacted into law, HR 4969 would direct the FCC to extend the reasonable accommodation protections to those amateurs who are living in deed-restricted communities. Known as covenants, conditions and restrictions, these are the prohibitions and limitations placed on properties by builders or home-owner associations which prevent licensed Amateurs from erecting even modest antennas. HR.4969 would ensure that every radio ham in the US, regardless of the community they live in, would have the opportunity to practice their avocation from their own homes without breaking any rules or fear of reprisal.

According to Henderson, with Congress on break for the month of August the League is encouraging its members to meet with their representatives while they are home on break and urge their support for HR 4969. More is on the web at tinyurl.com/parity-update-1 (ARRL)

**

HAM RADIO NEAR SPACE: FLOATER BALLOON CIRCUMNAVIGATES THE NORTHERN HEMISPHERE

A ham radio floater balloon carrying an amateur radio payload has successfully circled the world’s northern hemisphere as we hear from Amateur Radio Newsline’s Heather Embee, KB3TZD:

--

It took some 19 days, but at about 16:30 GMT on Friday, July 31, the solar powered B-64 party balloon launched by Leo Bodnar, M0XER crossed the 1 degree West longitude. In doing so it completed its circumnavigation of the northern hemisphere.

After crossing the North Atlantic, it was first heard in Greenland by Peter Thulesen, OX3XR, before coming in range of the British Isles. Oliver De Peyer, M6ODP, happened to be visiting St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall at the time. He used his Kenwood TH-F7E handheld to receive an APRS packet from the balloon.

As the day progressed B-64 moved from just south of Cornwall up the English Channel. From there, hams and SWL’s from Manchester in the UK to Nantes in France were able to receive the 10 milliwatt Contestia 64 by 1000 and APRS signals on 434.500 MHz.

B-64 passed over the Isle of Wight and floated over Bognor Regis and across Kent heading out into the North Sea near Herne Bay.

As of Friday night, August 1st it was still flying and transmitting. If it’s still afloat when you hear this newscast you can track its whereabouts on-line at spacenear.us and clicking on thee icon for B-64.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Heather Embee, KB3TZD, reporting.

--

As previously reported, unlike their high altitude cousins that can reach altitudes of over 120,000 feet, floater balloons like B-64 are far smaller. Most are those silverized party balloons equipped with micro power ham radio tracking gear and follow the jetstream at altitudes of between 20,000 to 40,000 feet. Leo Bodnar, M0XER, has become one of ham radio’s recognized experts in this field with his latest success being the round the world flight of B-64. (ANS, Southgate)

**

RESTRUCTURING: ITALY ISSUES SPECTRUM CONSULTATION THAT MAY IMPACT HAM RADIO

The Italian Ministry of Economic Development has announced a public consultation on proposed changes to that nation’s radio frequency spectrum plan. For ham radio, this includes such items as incorporating the final acts of the 2012 World Radiocommunications Conference and resolutions made by the European Commission back in 2011.

Also being considered are decisions of the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications along with other items to meet Italy’s telecommunications needs.

A consultation in Europe is the equivalent of a Notice of Proposed Rule Making here in the United Stats. In the case residents of Italy have until September 5th to file comments. (Southgate)

**

DX UP FRONT: N7NG AND OH2BH TO LEAD UPCOMING HEARD ISLABD DXPEDITION

Next years Heard Island DXpedition will definitely take place. This according to a press release on the VK0EK web page that says that an informal agreement has been made with Wayne Mills, N7NG, and Martti Laine, OH2BH, to lead the Heard Island radio DXpedition team.

The release goes on to say that the duo will have complete authority and responsibility to build the team, interface with the DXing community, manage radio operations on Heard Island, and other issues relating to the radio part of the expedition.

Matters that concern the entire expedition planning such as safety, scheduling, logistics, communications, facilities, and finances will remain the responsibility of the Expedition Leader, Robert Schmieder, KK6EK. Schmieder is the founder and Expedition Leader of Cordell Expeditions, which is a nonprofit research group begun in 1977.

This latest operation will be centered on a scientific expedition to Heard Island during the Austral summer of 2015 to 2016. A formal agreement will be completed in the near future that specifies the various roles and responsibilities of all involved. More information will be provided as it becomes available and posted to the DXpedition web page at VK0EK.org. (OPDX, vk0ek.org, heardisland.org)

**

Time for you to identify your station. We are the Amateur Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world including the Baton Rouge Amateur Radio Club repeater serving Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

**

RESCUE RADIO: FEMA TO HOLD NEXT EAS TEST IN 2015

FEMA’s Integrated Public Alert and Warning System Program Management or Eye Paws Office is targeting late 2015 for another national Emergency Alert System or EAS test. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Stephan Kinford, N8WB, reports:

--

Phase One of the planning for such a national Emergency Activation System test has already occurred. This, with the bench testing of the transmission, encoding and decoding of a Common Alerting Protocol EAS message with a National Protocol Test header at the IPAWS Lab in southern Maryland.

Phase Two will involve sending a Common Alerting Protocol EAS message with through Eye Paws Open system in a closed test in West Virginia.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s IPAWS personnel have already met with several West Virginia emergency management officials to discuss such a plan. FEMA IPAWS conducted similar tests in Alaska before the previous national test that was held back in 2011.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Stephen Kinford, N8WB, reporting.

--

An in-depth look at the planning for this next evaluation of the EAS warning system is on the web at tinyurl.com/EAS-test-2015. (RW, bdr.net, others)

**

RADIO LAW: ARRESTS MADE FOR FLYING SMALL DRONES OVER GEORGE WASHINGTON BRIDGE

Radio remote controlled drone aircraft flown by members of the general public are in the news again and not in a very positive light. This with word that New York City police recently arrested two men for operating a pair of small drone aircraft over the George Washington Bridge on Monday July 7th one of which nearly hit a police helicopter.

The New York Police’s Aviation Unit helicopter was on patrol around 12:15 a.m. when it spotted one of the unmanned aircraft near the bridge. The drone continued to circle forcing the chopper to swerve to avoid it. Police said that one of the drones which were operated by remote control came within 800 feet of the police aircraft.

The Aviation Unit followed the drones north as they landed near Fort Tryon Part a few miles north of the bridge and overlooking the Hudson River. Police on the ground then arrested two men and charged them reckless endangerment.

The Federal Aviation Administration has not yet set standards for certifying the safety of civilian drones. As previously reported that agency is currently looking into creating regulations for their use, but there is very strong opposition coming from many sectors that believe these devices are a menace to public safety. (Various published news reports)

**

HAM HISTORY: HELP NEEDED TO PRESERVE THE EARLY DAYS OF THE CSVHFS

If you were living near Sioux Falls, South Dakota in 1965 or Sand Spring, Oklahoma in 1966, you may be able to assist in compiling a history what is now the Central States VHF Society. That’s because those are the cities where the first unofficial get-togethers took place. Also sought are photographs, color slides, home movies of those gatherings and similar material of the very first formal conference held near Tulsa in 1968. That was the event where the decision was made to officially incorporate the group as the Central States VHF Society.

According to Bill Smith, W0WOI, if you were, or know of any early Central States VHF Society Cattendee, please take a few moments to e-mail him so a list of those attending the early gatherings can be assembled. And if you happen to have any historic materials of any of these events please let Bill know so that he can make arrangements to copy them for posterity. You can contact Bill Smith by e-mail directly to W0WOI (at) AOL dot com. Any help in this project is sincerely appreciated. (VHF Reflector)

**

HAM HAPPENINGS: HAM RADIO CELEBRATES HOLLYWOOD TO BE REPRISED ON SEPTEMBER 28

The popular operating event Ham Radio Celebrates Hollywood will be reprised on Sunday, September 28th from 7:00 am to 3:00 pm Pacific Time. This, from Stage 9 of the CBS Studio Center facility in Studio City, California. Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, is in the newsroom with more:

--

For those not aware, Studio Center is a historic venue where such hit programs as Seinfeld, Spin City, the Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Defenders originated. Before that it was the home of many early films including those produced by the legendary Max Sennett.

Currently it is the home of the hit ABC situation comedy Last Man Standing that stars Tim Allen as the operator of a sporting goods store in Colorado who also happens to be a ham radio operator with the call letters KA0XTT. As such, ham radio has been a part of the shows plotline in past episodes.

The amateur radio gear seen as props on the show is actually operational and was used by members of the Southern California-based PAPA System for the first Ham Radio Celebrates Hollywood operation held back in October of 2012. Once again the call K6H will be used for this Septembers outing with operations taking place on HF, VHF, UHF, D-STAR, Echolink and IRLP.

It should be noted that this is not a contest. Rather it is a fun opportunity for hams world-wide to talk directly to the stage on the equipment seen on “Last Man Standing” each week. A special, limited edition QSL card will be issued to all confirmed contacts. A schedule of operating times and frequencies will be announced shortly.

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

--

For more information contact concerning K6H keep an eye on the PAPA System website at www (dot) papasys (dot) com. Also, the complete and very interesting account of Studio Center’s past and present can be found on the web at tinyurl.com/Studio-Center-History. (PAPA, Facebook)

**

HAM HAPPENINGS: 62 STUDENTS IN INDIA GET INTRODUCED TO HAM RADIO

61 students and 5 staff members from Department of Electronics and Communication Engineering at India’s Vardhaman College of Engineering participated in an Amateur Radio Awareness program. This held on Saturday, August 2nd under the auspices of that nation’s National Institute of Amateur Radio.

During the event, attendees enjoyed a screening of the video titled A Day in the Life of a Ham followed by presentation on amateur radio. Various communications modes used by hams were then demonstrated. These included Slow Scan television, Digipan and various forms of VHF communications.

Nest up those attending were invited to participate in a mini fox hunt held in the National Institute of Amateur Radio campus. All in all, a day of complete immersion of the students in our world of amateur radio. (NAIR)

**

HAM HAPPENINGS: COUNTDOWN TO A RECORD ILLW

With only a few days to go to the International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend, only 90 registrations are needed for it to be another record year.

The annual event, that began in 1998 with 158 registrations, has continually gained in popularity. Now a days there are usually some 500 entries from 50 countries throughout the world taking part.

Several nations, including Aruba, Austria, Cuba, Gibraltar and Lithuania have only recently joined. In the lead this year is the United States with 80 registrants, followed by Germany and Australia both with 62.

International Lighthouse and Lightship weekend will be held August 16th and 17th. To register a lighthouse or lightship for the event simply take your web browser to illw.net. (VK3PC)

**

NAMES IN THE NEWS: G3YJO BECOMES CHAIR OF SURREY SPACE CENTRE

Some names in the news. First up this week is Professor Sir Martin Sweeting, G3YJO, who is to take up the position of Chair of Surrey Space Center in the U-K. In a public statement, Professor Sweeting said that the Surrey Space Center has been steadily expanding its staff and activities. As such his new role as Chair will enable him to better help with the strategic research planning and external relations, as well as mentoring staff and students. It was also announced that Professor Guglielmo Aglietti will take on the role of Director of the Center. (SSC)

**

NAMES IN THE NEWS: ZS6YH TO RECEIVE IARU YOUNG HAM AWARD

Michel Mynhardt, ZS6YH, the SARL youth coordinator, has been awarded the Outstanding Young Radio Amateur of the Year Award by IARU Region 1. Mynhardt became a radio amateur in his early teens and has been active on both local and international competitions. He has served the East Rand Radio Club as youth coordinator and was for the past six years also involved with the scouting Jamboree on the Air. The award will be presented to ZS6YH at the Radio Technology in Action Symposium by the IARU Secretary, Dennis Green, ZS4BS. (SARL)

**

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 www.arnewsline.org and being relayed by the volunteer services of the following radio amateur:

**

WORLDBEAT: MALAYSIAN RADIO COMMISSION PRAISES HAM RADIO

In news from around the world. the National News Agency of Malaysia reports that nation currently has 11,626 amateur radio operators who can offer help in emergencies or natural disasters.

Roszeta Kassim is the head of the Southern Region of the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission Southern Region. She told the newspaper that the Malaysian peninsular has 9,919 licensed operators, including 1090 in Melaka and Johor. Also that Sabah had 1487 and Sarawak, 220.

Roszeta said the amateur radio operators play an important role to help the authorities during emergencies and disasters. She went on to cite the 2007 situation in Johor was it was hit by massive flooding. At that time a group of amateur radio operators offered assistance as the cellular network was disrupted. (BERNAMA.COM)

**

WORLDBEAT: BBC WORLD WAR 1 AT HOME EVENTS

The British Broadcasting Corporation says that it will mark the centenary of World War One with a series of events running through 2018. This summer BBC Learning will create eight large-scale inspirational Great War events which will take place throughout the UK. These will reflect the dramatic impact the war had on local families and communities. (GB2RS)

**

HAM RADIO IN SPACE: AMSAT-UK SPACE COLLOQUIUM VIDEOS NOW AVAILABLE

Thanks to the volunteers from the British Amateur Television Club videos of the presentations given to the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium held in Guildford on July 26th and 27th are now available to view online or download. Links to the presentation videos, slides and the schedule are at tinyurl.com/2014-coloq-video (ANS)

**

HAM RADIO IN SPACE: AMSAT TO USE FUNDRAZR CROWDFUNDING FOR FOX-1C

AMSAT has announced that it will be using the Fund Razr crowd funding platform to accept donations for the Fox-1C CubeSat. AMSAT has an immediate need to raise funds to cover both the launch contract and additional materials for construction and testing for Fox-1C.

As previously reported, AMSAT has teamed with Spaceflight Inc. for integration and launch utilizing Spaceflight’s SHERPA system to place the cubesat into a sun-synchronous orbit in the third quarter of 2015. More on the funding campaign is on the web at tinyurl.com/help-launch-one-c. (AMSAT)

**

RADIO FROM SPACE: NASA'S MARS 2020 ROVER GAINS SEVEN NEW INSTRUMENTS FOR EXPLORATION

NASA plans to add advanced technology to its next Mars rover scheduled to launch in 2020. Reportedly it will carry tools that will allow it to explore the surface of the Red Planet in different ways than ever before.

The space agency says that the next rover will likely have seven research instruments. These include what is called a Mastcam-Z, a SuperCam, a Planetary Instrument for X-ray Lithochemistry and four others.

The Mastcam-Z is described as an advanced camera system with panoramic and stereoscopic imaging capability. It will be used to determine mineralogy of the Martian surface and assist with rover operations.

The Super Cam is an instrument that can provide imaging, chemical composition analysis, and mineralogy. The instrument will also be able to detect the presence of organic compounds in rocks from a distance.

Meantime, the Planetary Instrument for X-ray Lithochemistry is a fluorescence spectrometer that will also contain an imager with high resolution. It will be used to determine the fine scale elemental composition of Martian surface materials.

The new Mars 2020 rover is part the agency's Mars Exploration Program, which includes the Opportunity and Curiosity rovers, the Odyssey and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft and the soon to arrive MAVEN orbiter. (NASA)

**

ON THE AIR: GB2VJ SPECIAL EVENT STATION TO MARK V-J DAY

On the air, members of the Essex CW Group will be operating special event station GB2VJ from August 8 to September 4 to mark World War 2’s Victory over Japan or V-J Day. GB2VJ’s operations will be on the lower HF bands using only CW. More information on the club and this event is on the web at sites.google.com/site/essexcw. (Essex CW Club)

**

ON THE AIR: PANAMA CANAL 100TH ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL EVENT

Hams in Panama are currently celebrating the 100th anniversary of the opening of the Panama Canal on August 15th 1914. To commemorate centennial, special event station HO100CANAL will be operational through this August 15th. Listen out for this special station on 160 through 10 meters using CW, SSB and RTTY. QSL’s go via HP1AVS. (Various)

**

DX

In DX, word that KB5FLA will be on the air stroke PJ7 from Sint Maarten until August 12th. Activity is holiday style on 40 and 20 meters using CW and SSB. QSL via his home callsign direct or electronically via Logbook to the World or eQSL.

DJ8NK signing GJ0VNK and F6EXV as MJ0EXV will be operational from Jersey Island between August 8th to the 12th. Activity will be on all bands 160 through 6 meters using CW, SSB, RTTY and PSK31. There is the possibility that the duo could turn up on 60 meters as well. Logs will be uploaded to ClubLog and Logbook to the World. QSL via their home callsigns, direct or via the bureau.

ON4BR will be active as D44TLO from the Windward Islands between August 16th and the 23rd. Operations will be on 40 through 10 meters using CW only. QSL via his home callsign.

G3ZVW will be active as ZD8N from Georgetown on Assencion Island between August 21st and the 29th. Operations will be on 80 through 10 meters using CW, SSB and the Digital modes. QSL via his home callsign either direct or via the bureau.

WB6OJB and K5LBU will be an the air as C81AK and C81CF, respectively from Tenda Tora Lodge in Bilene between August 25th and September 2nd. WB6JOB will be operating on SSB and CW, while K5LBU will be on PSK and possibly RTTY. QSL’s for this one go to each operators home address or via Logbook to the World.

Lastly, down the road a bit comes word that K8PGJ will be operational stroke as FO from Bora Bora between February 15th and the 24th of 2015. Plans are for him to operate holiday style on the High Frequency bands. QSL via his home callsign either direct, via the bureau or electronically using Logbook to the World.

(This weeks DX news courtesy of the Ohio-Penn DX Newsletter)

**

THAT FINAL ITEM: ELON MUSK PLEDGES 1,000,000 TO TESLA MUSEUM

And finally this week, it looks as if the creation of the Tesla Science Center and Museum in Shoreham, New York, has gotten another step closer to reality. This thanks to a well known entrepreneur who truly believes in celebrating the past as well as planning the future. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Cheryl Lasek, K9BIK, has the details:

--

The effort to build a science center and museum in honor of the legendary scientist and inventor Nikola Tesla has received a special gift. This after it was announced that Elon Musk, the entrepreneur and inventor behind electric-car company Tesla Motors and the aerospace company Space X had pledged $1 million to the Tesla Science Center Museum in Shoreham, New York.

The back story goes this way. Matt Inman is the originator of the web-comic The Oatmeal. In 2012 he created a tribute to Tesla titled: “Why Nikola Tesla was the greatest geek who ever lived.” Inman also started the fundraising campaign to purchase the Shoreham Wardenclyffe Tower which was Tesla’s former laboratory in New York, and convert it into a museum. The campaign raised $1.37 million in 45 days, far surpassing the $850,000 goal.

The land to build the museum was successfully purchased in 2013 by Tesla Science Center at Wardenclyffe. This is a nonprofit group that had been trying to acquire the property for 18 years. But getting the property was only the first step.

This past May, Inman did a cartoon review of the Tesla Motors Model S automobile. At the conclusion Inman referred to the company’s namesake and included what he called a teensy request to Elon Musk. While Musk had contributed to first fundraiser, monies were still needed to perform the extensive renovation of the land and build the science center and museum itself.

Within hours of the comic being posted, Musk sent Inman a message on Twitter that simply said that he would be happy to help. Ironically, Musk’s donation came just in time for the celebration of what would have been Nikola Tesla’s 158th birthday.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Cheryl Lasek, K9BIK, reporting.

--

In addition to the donation toward creating the museum, complex dot com reports that moinies will also be included to build a charging station in the parking lot, so that owners of Tesla's electric automobiles can charge them quickly while they visit the facility. (complex.com, Slashdot.org, other published reports)

**

NEWSCAST CLOSE

With thanks to Alan Labs, AMSAT, the ARRL, CQ Magazine, the FCC, the Ohio Penn DX Bulletin, 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 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 Davis, W2JKD, saying 73 from Vero Beach, Florida, and we thank you for listening.

Amateur Radio Newsline™ is Copyright 2014. All rights reserved.

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