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News Articles

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Ham Searches Hills for Balloons, Tracker that Circumnavigated Globe:
by on November 24, 2016
LANDAFF -- There are many mysteries and secrets in the town’s high hills, including most recently the whereabouts of two silver mylar balloons and the homemade electronic tracker they carried around the world. Mike Hojnowski, an amateur radio enthusiast and systems engineer at Cornell University, launched the balloons and tracker at 12:58 p.m. Oct. 19 from Rhodes Hall at the Ithaca, N.Y. school. Ten days later, he determined that they had crashed here in Landaff, on a west-facing slope and at an elevation of between 1,000 and 1,300 feet after encountering a storm. Hojnowski has been back twice to Landaff to look for the tracker. If he recovers the tracker, he would be only one of seven radio hobbyists who’ve circumnavigated the globe with a homemade tracker, and the only one who actually recovered the device.

SKYWARN Recognition Day On-the-Air Event is Saturday, December 3:
by W1AW Bulletin via the ARRL on November 23, 2016
The annual SKYWARN Recognition Day (SRD) on-the-air activity will take place Saturday, December 3, from 0000 until 2400 UTC (starts on the evening of Friday, December 2, in US time zones).

DX News -- ARRL DX Bulletin #48:
by W1AW Bulletin via the ARRL on November 23, 2016
This week's bulletin was made possible with information provided by AJ9C, WB2TJO, QRZ DX, the OPDX Bulletin, 425 DX News, The Daily DX, DXNL, Contest Corral from QST and the ARRL Contest Calendar and WA7BNM web sites. Thanks to all.

Riding the Radio Waves of Success at Norfolk Amateur Radio Club:
by on November 23, 2016
The award, in the “large club” category, was presented at the RSGB’s annual Hamfest event in Newark and recognised the hard work the club puts into promoting the hobby and encouraging newcomers. Steve Nichols, Narc’s public relation officer, said the club’s members were thrilled with the result. He said: “We were very pleased to win the award, which recognises the massive amount of work that goes on within the club to promote the hobby and provide radio communications training.” The club has more than 100 members, a history dating back to the 1950s and has an active calendar of talks, events, special event stations and courses. Its activities include putting on special event radio stations to celebrate events such as inventor Guglielmo Marconi’s birthday and Railways on the Air, plus “Bright Sparks” events for youngsters who are interested in electronics.

Who's Jamming the Hams?
by on November 23, 2016
City’s radio hams have been left baffled by cryptic signals in a foreign language which are originating in the deep seas off the Arabian coast. They have written to central government agencies asking for an investigation. Mumbai’s circuit of amateur radio operators -- or hams as they are called -- is being rudely interrupted by indecipherable signals originating in the high seas off the west coast, prompting the group to write to the union ministry of telecommunications and other central government agencies to probe the source of this suspect transmission. The blips, being picked up by the radio operators’ VHF wireless sets for five or so months now, became a cause for concern only after they were traced to about 100 nautical miles, or 185 kilometres, off the Maharashtra-Gujarat coastline. When the hams homed in on the origin point with their direction-finding equipment and antennae, they shot off urgent letters to the wireless advisor at the ministry, the Prime Minister’s Office and top defence officers apart from the police, alerting them to the disturbance. The spokesperson for the citybased group Ham Radio Operators, Ankur Puranik, told Mumbai Mirror that the irregular signals are encroaching on the 144-146MHz bandwidth allotted to their two-way radio transmission. About 70 of the city’s 200 hams have heard these fishy signals at various times of the day, but mostly at night. What makes it all disquieting is that the signal dispatchers do not use the mandatory call sign -- a unique identifier for transmissions and broadcasting -- by which each ham in the world can be identified and tracked, implying that they do not want their identity or location to be known. “And they speak in a language we don’t understand,” Puranik said.

Hytera Enters USA Amateur Radio Market:
by Julio M Suarez (KP4UZ) on November 22, 2016
GigaParts announced today the release of five new models of amateur radios manufactured by Hytera. Highly regarded in land mobile radio for their quality, durability and innovation, Hytera dominates the DMR and Tetra markets in the US and the rest of the world. Hytera is the largest radio manufacturer to enter the amateur radio market in North America.

BridgeCom Systems BCD Duplexers Press Release:
by Tim King, KE0GWR on November 22, 2016
Introducing the New BCD line of duplexers. There are five duplexers available: BCD-144/440, BCD-220, BCD-144250 and BCD-440250. The BCD-144/440 is a small mobile style duplexer available in either VHF or UHF frequency Bands. It covers VHF (136-174 MHz) or UHF (400-520 MHz) frequencies, requires 5-8 MHz frequency split for up to 50W with 80 dB isolation. It's small size allows it to mounted inside the BCR repeaters for a compact installation.

Amateur Radio Station Recognized Around the World:
by on November 22, 2016
ZANESVILLE, Ohio -- One local man’s hobby has allowed him to experience the entire world without ever leaving his basement. Everett Jackson started his amateur radio station, WZ8P, back in 1962. Since then he has used his station in the basement of his Zanesville home to communicate with someone in every single country in the world. His passion started when he was just a teenager. “I loved the radio and I wanted to talk on it but it was illegal because CB radio was for small businesses. So my dad says ‘you need to get an amateur radio license.’ So he brought home some 33 1/3 records and I sat in bed and I played them and I listen to these records for two years to learn Morse Code to be able to go and take the exam and get a novice license,” said Jackson. It took Jackson 32 years to reach his goal of talking to every country. He now has a binder with post cards from every nation and island he’s been on air with.

Mystery Signals from Arabian Sea Baffle Ham Radio Buffs:
by on November 22, 2016
Mumbai: Amateur radio operators, also known as ham radio buffs, in Mumbai were baffled by unidentified mystery signal transmissions reportedly originating from the Arabian Sea on the country's west coast, an operator said here on Monday. Though the signals have been picked up by their VHF wireless radios since the past five months or so, they became suspicious after they tracked them down to the deep sea off Maharashtra-Gujarat coasts, said Ham Radio Operators Mumbai spokesperson Ankur Puranik. "We have written to the Wireless Advisor, Ministry of Telecommunications and IT, with copies to the PMO, other ministries, and top defence and police officials to take note and investigate these unknown signals," Puranik told IANS. They sent the memorandum to the Centre after analysing the signals with their direction-finding equipment and antennae and were alarmed to learn they originated around 100 nautical miles in the high seas off the Maharashtra-Gujarat coast. "They are encroaching on our allotted bandwidth 144-146MHz for our two-way radio, they don't use the compulsory 'call sign' by which each ham radio operator in the world can be identified and tracked, and they speak in a language we can't understand," Puranik explained. The amateur radio operators did not rule out the wireless signals originating from some anti-social elements or sea pirates or other groups with possible nefarious motives.

Breaker, Breaker...or is it QRT?
by on November 21, 2016
One of the most important roles in the operation of the El Tour happens behind the scenes. In fact, it is so out of the way in the Armory Senior Center, it shared a room with the folded up Tucson Table Tennis Club’s ping-pong tables. Communications director Cary Fishman sat at a small table barely big enough to hold the ham radio, the maps and spreadsheets with all his information on the ham radio operators at the aid stations, his thermos of coffee. It’s not easy to keep up: The 17 aid stations are broken into four sectors. One or two ham radio operators sat at each station.

St Barts DXpedition PJ7:
by tom Medlin (W5KUB) on November 21, 2016
This week Amateur Radio Roundtable will feature Emmett Hohensee, W0QH, Chief engineer of Radiowavz continuing his discussion of antennas and a visit to Stone Mountain Hamfest. We will also have KO8SCA, Adrian, direct from St Barts island in the Caribbean where he is a one man DXpedition in PJ7 land...

Stilesville Veteran Honored with Award for Wireless Radio Service:
by on November 20, 2016
It's been years since Alan MacKenzie sat behind a wireless radio receiver, but now his work as a radio operator during the Second World War has been recognized with a commemorative medal. The Bletchley Park commemorative badge recognizes the achievements of those who contributed to cracking the German Enigma code. The medal is named after the site of the British Code and Cypher School, where the breakthrough was made. MacKenzie never visited Bletchley Park, but his work as a Royal Canadian Air Force radio operator qualified him for the honour. "It feels good," he said, reclining in a chair in his Stilesville home. "I mean, to get an award like this, not know it was coming."

Mercer County Amateur Radio Club Wins National Award:
by on November 20, 2016
SPECIAL TO THE VINDICATOR The American Radio Relay League, a national association for amateur radio, presented the ARRL Special Service Club designation to the Mercer County Amateur Radio Club on Nov. 9. MCARC won the award for meeting qualifications of service in the community and the amateur radio industry. The presentation took place at the Shenango campus of Penn State University with about 100 amateur radio operators and their families in attendance. Tim Duffy, MCARC president, gave the acceptance speech. From left, are Tom Abernathy, ARRL Atlantic Division director; Tom Gallagher, CEO of ARRL; Duffy; and Joe Shupienis, ARRL Western Pennsylvania affiliated club coordinator.

HamRadioNow: AREDN Talk from the DCC:
by Gary Pearce (KN4AQ) on November 19, 2016
AREDN Project Manager Andre Hansen K6AH details this mesh based data network that's up and running in the San Diego CA area. It uses the 2.4 and 3.4 GHz ham bands to haul data across the region, and then distribute it to local users, with a primary EmComm goal.

Engineering Students 'Talk' to Satellite:
by on November 19, 2016
With the help of enthusiastic European ham radio operators, Aalborg University engineering students now have two-way communication with their home-built ESA-sponsored satellite AAUSAT5 that was sent into orbit around Earth from the International Space Station (ISS) on October 5. Initial problems communicating with the satellite from the control center in Aalborg made the team extra dependent on outside help. And there has been no shortage of help from well-placed ham operators further south in Europe.

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Manager - AB7RG
Clinton Herbert (AB7RG) Please submit any Amateur Radio related news or stories that you would like to see, here on If you need any help, we are glad to assist you with writing your article based on the information you supply. If there are any problems please let me know. (This includes any inappropriate posts on a topic, as I cannot monitor every topic.) Sincerely 73 de Clinton Herbert, AB7RG