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Amateur Radio Newsline 2165 for Friday, April 26, 2019:

James Pastorfield (KB7TBT) on April 26, 2019
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Amateur Radio Newsline 2165 for Friday, April 26, 2019

Amateur Radio Newsline Report Number 2165 with a release date of Friday, April 26, 2019 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a QST. New distracted-driving bans exempt amateur radio. Hams in Australia face more new fees -- and if you worked on the Grumman LEM, a New York club needs to hear from you. All this and more as Amateur Radio Newsline Number 2165 comes your way right now.


NEIL/ANCHOR: Our top story this week is the passage of more laws in the U.S. banning drivers from using hand-held electronic devices while behind the wheel. Hams, however, remain unaffected - as we hear from Andy Morrison K9AWM and Kent Peterson KC0DGY. We hear first from Andy.

ANDY: Amateur radio operators in Arizona breathed a sigh of relief as the state's governor signed into law a ban on the use of hand-held phones while driving. Ham radio operators' use of mobile rigs is exempt from the law which otherwise prohibits drivers from using any hand-held electronic device. Arizona has become the latest U.S. state to enact such a ban. The law was signed on April 22nd by Gov. Doug Ducey (doo-see) and although the law takes effect immediately, the penalties do not kick in until January 1st, 2021.

The law came about after two years of work between lawmakers and the legislative coordination staff of the ARRL in Arizona. The ban also exempts citizens band radio operators as well as commercial drivers who are using a radio to communicate with a dispatcher.

In making the announcement, the ARRL Arizona Section Manager Richard Paquette W7RAP, noted that successful negotiations with lawmakers will be acknowledged at the ARRL's state convention to be held in Prescott, Arizona on May 31st and June 1st.

For Amateur Radio Newsline I'm Andy Morrison K9AWM.



NEIL/ANCHOR: Meanwhile, Minnesota's own ban is poised to take effect this summer. Here's Kent Peterson KC0DGY.

KENT: Minnesota is joining a number of other U.S. States and Canadian Provinces in enacting a complete ban on operating wireless communications devices while in control of a motor vehicle unless the device can solely operate in a voice activated mode.

Minnesota Governor Tim Walz signed the legislation on April 12th and the new law takes effect on August first.

However there's good news for Hams in the Minnesota bill which states that [quote] "A wireless device does NOT include a two-way radio, citizens band radio or amateur radio equipment used in accordance with Federal Communications rules and regulations." [close quote]

Chances are good law enforcement will be out in full force this August and hams operating their rigs in a vehicle might consider printing out the new law and keeping a copy of it as well as their FCC license in the vehicle at all times.

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Kent Peterson KC0DGY


NEIL/ANCHOR: A Long Island amateur radio club is looking for hams - or their family members - who have a connection to the Lunar Excursion Module built by Grumman. Jim Damron N8TMW has those details.

JIM DAMRON: The world knew it as the LEM - or Lunar Excursion Module - and it carried America's first astronauts to the moon in 1969. To residents of Long Island, New York, the LEM became the pride of the community where it was built locally by the Grumman Corporation. When they activate Special Event station K2M this summer to mark the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11, the radio operators from the Great South Bay Amateur Radio Club will be fulfilling another important mission: honoring the men and women who had a part in the design and construction of the LEM, especially those who were hams or from ham families. Lou Maggio NO2C told Newsline that the club is looking for the names and call signs of those hams who have connections to the Grumman-built LEM, even if they have since become Silent Keys. The club would also like photos of the hams, if available, and a short description of the work they did in connection with the LEM. Lou said that club member Leon Gurinsky KD2ONC, who had worked directly on Apollo 11's LEM, is creating a certificate honoring the workers and there will also be a web page.

Listen for K2M from July 16th, the launch anniversary, through to July 24th, splashdown anniversary -- and meanwhile, send the names and details by email to Lou at EN-OH-TWO-SEE at arrl dot net. (

For Amateur Radio Newsline I'm Jim Damron N8TMW.




NEIL/ANCHOR: As ham radio embraces new technology so too do the training tools that give people the knowledge to get on the air should also change. The change has begun and in the UK, radio's entry level Foundation license leads the way as we hear from Jeremy Boot G4NJH.

JEREMY: The Radio Society of Great Britain's guide for Foundation Licence candidates is now available in electronic format. The 194-page study guide can be read using Amazon's Kindle book reader. It is divided into 15 sections, with discussion that includes antennas, propagation and technical basics. The book also includes tips on how to take the examination itself. The e-book is available from Amazon. The Foundation Licence Manual is of course also still available in conventional book format from the RSGB's shop. Like its electronic counterpart, it covers the syllabus for exams to be given starting in September 2019.

The manual was written by Alan Betts G0HIQ.

For Amateur Radio Newsline I'm Jeremy Boot G4NJH.



NEIL/ANCHOR: Congratulations to the Norwegian radio amateur who has been awarded the Intrepid Spirit Award from the Intrepid-DX Group. Mike Askins KE5CXP has those details.

MIKE: The big announcement at the 70th annual International DX Convention in Visalia California is that Kenneth Opskar, LA7GIA, is the recipient of the Intrepid Spirit Award. Ken's weeklong detention in Chad, following the shutdown of his solo DXPedition as TT8KO, made global news last October after security police stepped in and closed his station. He was not released until the 24th of October. The group chose him for the award in acknowledgement of his operations under difficult circumstances. The honor memorializes James McLaughlin T6AF who became a Silent Key in Afghanistan in 2011.

For Amateur Radio Newsline I'm Mike Askins KE5CXP.

NEIL/ANCHOR: Kenneth has written a detailed account of his experience in Chad - the story of his activation as well as his detention. You can read more at the link posted in the printed script of this newscast. Visit our website to see it.

[for print only, do not read:]



NEIL/ANCHOR: Fifty-five years after its founding in Mexico City, Region 2 of the International Amateur Radio Union is preparing for its General Assembly. Robert Broomhead VK3DN has that story.

ROBERT: The General Assembly of the IARU's Region 2 marks 55 years since the organization's founding as the Pan-American Amateur Radio Congress. This year's gathering later this year in Lima, Peru has an ambitious agenda that also includes the continent's regional telecom organizations. The General Assembly is working toward its participation later this year in the World Radiocommunication Conference in October and November in Egypt.

The assembly will be held September 30th to October 2nd.

Region 2, which was created on April 18, 1964 in Mexico City, represents 160 member societies and an estimated 3 million radio amateurs. A message from the region's vice president Ramon Santoyo, XE1KK, noted that the goals established so long ago by the founding participants in Mexico City can only still be achieved through the embrace of both traditional radio and new technologies.

For Amateur Radio Newsline I'm Robert Broomhead VK3DN.



NEIL: If you know a bright young U.S. or Canadian radio amateur who gives of himself or herself to the hobby and the community, you probably know a strong candidate for Amateur Radio Newsline's Young Ham of the Year Award. The honor is named in memory of Newsline's Bill Pasternak WA6ITF. The deadline to submit nominees by May 31st is fast approaching. Information about candidate eligibility is available on our website,, under the YHOTY tab. You can download a nomination form there to return to us. The award will be presented on August 18th at the Huntsville Hamfest in Huntsville Alabama. See you there!


Time for you to identify your station. We are the Amateur Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world including the WB9HXG repeater in Muncie, Indiana during the weekly net on Sunday nights at 9:30.


NEIL/ANCHOR: After responsibility for amateur radio exams was transferred to the Tasmania-based Australian Maritime College, exam price hikes sent shockwaves through the ham community. Now the national regulator, the Australian Communications and Media Authority, reports that there are price increases as well for license renewals but these will not be as extreme. John Williams VK4JJW has more.

JOHN: The ACMA has announced new fees that will apply to holders of amateur radio licenses, which must be renewed annually in Australia. They are considered in line with cost-of-living increases. A new licence issuance fee, previously $76, will now be $80. A licence variation fee, formerly $49, is going up to $51. The licence renewal fee, formerly $52, is being raised to $55. It will now cost $29 to issue a Repeater or Beacon Station Frequency Assignment Certificate and variation of a Repeater or Beacon Station is now also $29.

For Amateur Radio Newsline I'm John Williams VK4JJW.



NEIL/ANCHOR: The Flying Beers International Amateur Radio Club is marking its first spring trunk swap with Special Event Station K8FBI on May 5th in Ferndale, Michigan. They'll be operating on 40 meters during the swap, which takes place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. local time. Bob Perye W8SDF told Newsline the group is calling this their "Stinko De Mayo" celebration - at least unofficially - because of unfortunate aromas that filled the indoor hall the last time the club had a swap in February. Bob said the local event will also feature chips and salsa and Mexican beer but the operators are also hoping for good propagation for HF contacts. Local hams can talk in on the 442.600 and 442.075 MHz repeaters.



NEIL/ANCHOR: The amateur radio operator who was also the broadcast engineer behind the noted Texar Audio Prism modulation controller has become a Silent Key. Glen Clark W3JL, formerly of Sharpsville, Pennsylvania, died on the 19th of April in a New Castle, Pennsylvania hospice from liver cancer. Glen made his mark in commercial radio with the development of the Texar Audio Prism enabling broadcast stations to more easily deliver a strong signature sound. He was also adept in the realm of directional antennas. After developing the Audio Prism in 1988, he sold his company and created Glen Clark & Associates, focusing on computer software to design AM directional antenna arrays.

Glen Clark was 67.



NEIL/ANCHOR: An officer of Sri Lanka's national radio society has made a special radio listening tool available to hams and non hams alike. Here's Jim Meachen ZL2BHF with details.

JIM M: In Sri Lanka, amateur radio operators - or those who want to be hams - are getting a full experience of listening to the bands without the need to purchase expensive equipment, or for that matter any equipment at all.

Victor 4S7VK, the national radio society's secretary, set up access to the internet-based Kiwi SDR on a listen-only basis a number of months ago and has been encouraging shortwave listeners and members of the radio society to try it out. The free Kiwi SDR access is one of nearly 200 around the world. Victor explained to Newsline that all a listener needs is an internet connection and a browser - even one on a smartphone. Just search for Kiwi SDR or sdr dot hu ( He noted that the Firefox and Chrome browsers are compatible but Explorer is not.

Victor, who is a frequency coordinator in the broadcast industry, said the service allows listening to other types of broadcast beyond ham radio and covers frequencies between 1 Khz to 30 MHz and modes such as CW, SSB and digital.

Kiwi SDR receivers operate worldwide.

For Amateur Radio Newsline I'm Jim Meachen ZL2BHF.



NEIL/ANCHOR: There's a new CubeSat in space and it's a source of great pride for the nation of Nepal. Jason Daniels VK2LAW tells us more.

JASON: The community of satellites orbiting the Earth continues to grow and the latest newcomers to space include a "first" for the nation of Nepal. According to the Kathmandu Post newspaper, that country's first satellite, the NepaliSat-1, was launched on the 17th of April with an amateur radio payload on 435.375 MHz. The CubeSat's destination is the International Space Station. It was developed by two amateur radio operators.

In addition to its amateur radio role, the NepaliSat-1 will be gathering information about the Earth's magnetic field and its home country's topography. It was launched from NASA's Virginia Air and Space Center in the company of similar satellites from Japan and Sri Lanka. Abhas Maskey KG5WNC and Hari Ram Shreshtha Kay Eye Five See Oh Oh (KI5COO) developed the CubeSat, which carries the Nepali flag and the logo of the Nepal Academy of Science and Technology.

For Amateur Radio Newsline I'm Jason Daniels VK2LAW.



NEIL/ANCHOR: There's encouraging news from the Three Y Zero Eye 3Y0I Bouvet Island DXpedition Team which postponed its attempt to activate the island earlier this year. A posting on the website for the Rebel Dx Group notes that they expect the postponement to be brief. As they rest up, they've already got their licence renewed and their equipment remains in Cape Town South Africa in storage. Their plan? They hope to be Bouvet-bound when it's fall in the Northern Hemisphere.



Elsewhere in the World of DX, three hams will be operating holiday style from the Isle of Man from April 27th to the 1st of May. They are Hiro JF1OSL operating as MD0HWX, Toru JH0CJH operating as MD0ITP and Shin JR1NHD operating as MD0IUX. They will be active on 40-10 metres using SSB, CW and digital modes. QSL MD0ITP the home call sign, direct or through the bureau; QSL MD0IUX via JJ2VLY, direct only. The team plans to upload logs to LoTW and Club Log.

Between the 30th of April and the 5th of May, a team of eight Belgian operators will be active using the call sign GJ6EFW from the Island of Jersey. They will operate mainly SSB with some CW and FT8 on the HF bands and 6 metres. QSL via ON6EF, direct or by the bureau or through eQSL.

Be listening for Pasi, OH3WS using the call sign OJ0W from Market Reef between the 27th of April and the 4th of May. QSL via his home call, direct or bureau.

Sepp, OH1VR will be active as SV9/OH1VR from Crete until May 1st. Listen for Sepp on 80-10 metres using mostly CW with some SSB. QSL direct to home call.



NEIL/ANCHOR: For our final story, we head in our cars to Tennessee to do a little amateur radio sightseeing with Kevin Trotman N5PRE.

KEVIN: Take a drive along Interstate 40 in the state of Tennessee. What's visible on the side of the road there may well be the world's largest QSL card. It's a colorful sight that the ARRL says handles more traffic than even the most popular net on the air: Each year an estimated 6 million vehicles drive by that location near mile marker 336, according to ARRL Life member Cliff Segar KD4GT. Cliff should know: he's the owner of the ten-by-20 billboard, The bright blue sign carries its message in yellow and white lettering. The words "skill" "service" and "discovery" appear below two even larger words: "Radio Communications."

You don't need to know CW to decode the message that radio is still powerful, relevant and roadworthy.

For Amateur Radio Newsline I'm Kevin Trotman N5PRE.


NEWSCAST CLOSE: With thanks to Alan Labs; Amateur News Weekly; AMSAT; the ARRL; Arizona Capitol Times; Bouvet Island Dxpedition Website; CQ Magazine; FCC; Hap Holly and the Rain Report; IARU Region 2; Kathmandu Post; Lou Maggio NO2C; Ohio-Penn DX Bulletin; QRZ.COM; Radio Society of Great Britain; Radio Society of Sri Lanka;; Sharon Herald; Southgate Amateur Radio News;; Ted Randall's QSO Radio Show; WTWW Shortwave; and you our listeners, that's all from the Amateur Radio Newsline. Please send emails to our address at More information is available at Amateur Radio Newsline's only official website at For now, with Caryn Eve Murray, KD2GUT, at the news desk in New York, and our news team worldwide, I'm Neil Rapp WB9VPG in Bloomington Indiana saying 73 and as always we thank you for listening.

Amateur Radio Newsline(tm) is Copyright 2019. All rights reserved.

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