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You are listening to ZS6SRL, the official radio station of the South African Radio League, the national body for amateur radio in South Africa, with a news bulletin every Sunday at 08:15 CAT in Afrikaans and at 08:30 CAT in English. To listen to a webstream, visit, click on ARMI and follow the links for details. PLEASE NOTE: for audio via Echolink, connect to ZS0JPL-R.
You can download this bulletin and previous ones from and subscribe to receive future bulletins by e-mail.
Your news reader this morning is (name), (call sign), on 145,725 and 7,066 MHz from Pretoria, with relays on 28,325, 14,235, 10,130, 7,066 and 3,695 MHz SSB, as well as 52,750, 438,825 and 1 296 MHz FM in the Pretoria area. (Other newsreaders please change to suit).


SARLNEWS regrets that in last week’s bulletin the surname of ZS6CBG was erroneously stated as Brits, the correct name is Cornelis Genis.


In the news today




You are listening to ZS6SRL. Stay tuned for more detail on these and other important and interesting news items.


BACAR will be launched from a private airfield near Hartbeespoort dam. The airfield was chosen as it outside of the Air Traffic Management (TMA) and SFR area. The surrounding area is flat and ideal for a balloon launch. The expected prevailing wind is likely to take the balloon further away from air traffic lanes.
The payload includes an APRS system operating on 144,800 MHz which will be switched on 2 minutes before launch and allow APRS stations to follow the flight of BACAR. The callsign of the APR beacon is ZS6SAT. A VHF beacon on 144,825 MHz will be operating every 2 minutes for the first 30 minutes of the flight on voice, MCW and CW, for the following 119 minutes every 5 minutes and then revert to every 2 minutes.
A 40 metre beacon will be operating on 7 022 kHz with telemetry information every one minute. The information includes the inside and out temperature and the pressure in millibar. Visit for more information on the flight.
Get a certificate.
Radio Amateurs submitting a telemetry line of the 40 metre transmission together with details of their location will be awarded a BACAR certificate of participation. Telemetry details must be sent to on the day of the launch.
Ground control will be situated at the SARL National Amateur Radio Centre where the flight can be followed on a video display. If you are not planning to physical tracking BACAR, you are invited to the NARC and participate in the activity from there. Learners will be invited to visit the centre and participate in various tracking and telemetry experiments. The NARC will be operational from 07:00 with the launch expected between 08:00 and 08:15.


There is only a short time left to enjoy discount on your annual SARL membership fee which was due on 1 July. From 31 August the discount will fall away and the full fee of R340 is payable. The discounted rate is R320. The normal rate for senior members is R212 and the discounted rate R200.
New members joining before 31 August will also enjoy the discounted rates. Reminders are in the process of being sent out. If you are not sure about your membership, call Mariska on 011 675 2393 or send an email to


ICASA will be holding public hearings on proposed revisions to the table of frequency allocations in South Africa from 17 August. The SARL will be presenting the case for Amateur Radio. Last year the SARL made proposals that new amateur allocations be considered around 500 kHz and 5 MHz, the extension of 160 metres to the full 1 800 – 2 000 kHz and allocations 2 300 – 2 450 MHz and 3 300 – 3 500 MHz.
The SARL is currently preparing its case in greater detail motivating the reasons why these allocations will be beneficial to amateur radio and its contribution to propagation and other studies. You are requested to make input on why these allocation requests should be considered by ICASA. Please send your input to It would be useful to receive your input and comment by Tuesday night as the SARL Council is meeting on Wednesday evening to finalise the SARL approach.


The 2009 SARL Youth Sprint held on national youth day on 16 June enjoyed record participation. The contest committee received 46 log submissions made up of 38 young people and 8 not so young people. Twenty-two of the logs came from radio amateurs. Eight logs came from Namibia. The youngest participant was 8 years old and the eldest participant 87 years young. Well done to all and congratulations to the winners.
The detailed results are available on the SARL Forum as well as HF Happenings. All participants who submitted logs will receive a certificate of participation.
The winners are:
1st Andrew Mans, ZR3AM, (20) 189 points, who wins an ARRL Operating Manual;
2nd Dylan Walsh, ZU3DW, (13) 62 points, who wins a 40 m DC receiver kit;
The third place is shared by two 15 year old brothers Edwin and Heinz Breitenbach. Both operated from V51PP, in Walvis Bay, and scored 53 points each. They will each receive a lightning predictor kit as soon as stocks arrive mid August.
The winners of the lucky draw are:
Silvia Schenk (12) Namibia;
Morne Coertzen, ZR6RM (14);
Sane Erasmus (13);
Tiaan van Eeden, ZS6TVE (16);
Rieks Kampman, ZR6HK (17).
Each one will receive a wireless microphone kit.
Thanks to all participants who made this event a great success and congratulations to the winners.


You are invited to participate on Sunday 2 August in the Premier SARL Contest, the SARL HF Phone Contest. The aim of the HF Phone contest is for participants to contact as many radio amateurs in Southern Africa as possible on the 20, 40 and 80 metre bands. By participating and sending in a log you are automatically entered into the draw for a copy of the new ARRL Basic Antenna Handbook. Full details are available on


The Eastern Transvaal Lowveld Radio Club is planning a field week end at Steenkampsberg from 31 July to 2 August 2009. Contact them on 2 m, all modes, HF and 6 m. Steenkampsberg is situated between Roossenekal and Lydenburg. Their contact cell numbers are for Nico, ZS6MAJ, at 083 281 2049 or Dawid, ZS6VS, at 082 872 4081 or email to


Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP reports that the expected solar activity will be very low. The geomagnetic field is expected to be mostly at quiet levels. The expected Effective Sun Spot number for the coming week will be less than 5. There is currently no official sunspots but hopefully it will not remain that way for too long.
15, 17 and 20 m will provide best opportunities for DX. Conditions to the East and the West will be good from the afternoon onwards. During the late afternoon and early evenings it will be good towards the North. Early in the morning it may be possible to make contacts with Australia but New-Zealand is going to be challenging. During the evening 40 m contacts may be possible with Brazil. The North Easterly, North Westerly, South Easterly and South Westerly paths will be challenging.
10 MHz is looking promising late afternoon and after dark for the CW and digital enthusiasts.
The Northern California DX Foundation's international beacon network is monitored at the Hermanus Magnetic Observatory, ZS1HMO, and the signal strengths of the received beacons are automatically logged. The graphic results are available at and are very enlightening. Select "Ionospheric Data" and then "HF Propagation Conditions" to see which beacons were recently and not so recently received.
Vincent, ZS6BTY publishes an excellent graphical link reliability prediction for all the Ham bands on the Pretoria Amateur Radio Club's website. This prediction is available at Click on the "Propagation" tab.
The best way to defeat the current low solar activity is to improve your antenna setup. Dipoles or preferably directional antennas at at least 12 metres above ground level are required to ensure that the radiation angle is low enough for long distance propagation. A good antenna system is one of the best investments a Ham can make.
Local conditions are going to be good on 40 m during the day time. 80 m may perform well during the early mornings and late afternoons over the shorter distances, e.g. between ZS5 and ZS6. 30 m may perform well up to the middle of the day between ZS6 and ZS1.
80 m is the frequency of choice in the evenings. Fortunately the noise levels due to static discharges are on the decrease making contacts over the longer distances a bit more pleasant. Now is the time to start making those contacts for your 80 m "Worked All ZS" award!
Remember that this is only a prediction and that HF has the capability to pleasantly surprise you, but you will never know unless you switch your rig on, listen and also call CQ.
Please visit for further information.


25/26 July – Islands on the Air Competition;
26 July – Boland ARC 40 m Sprint;
28 July – Inputs regarding frequency allocations to be in;
1 August – Pretoria ARC flea market;
2 August – SARL HF SSB Competition;
3/7 August – National Science Week and ZS6SCI active;
03 August - First teleconference meeting of the SARL Public Information Officer network at 20:00;
8 August - BACAR flight;
22 August – Western Cape RTA;
30 August – SARL HF CW Contest.

SARL News invites clubs and individuals to submit news items of interest to radio amateurs and shortwave listeners. Submit news items, if possible, in both English and Afrikaans only to, not later than the Thursday preceding the bulletin date.
The SARL also invites you to listen to the Amateur Radio Mirror International programme every Sunday morning at 10:00 CAT on 145,750 MHz in the Pretoria area, with relays on 7 082, 7 205 and 17 570 kHz. There is also a podcast by ZS6RO. For the webstream and Echolink by ZS6FCS, visit, click on 'ARMI' and follow the links. A repeat transmission can be heard Mondays at 21:00 CAT on 3 215 kHz. Sentech sponsors the ARMI transmissions on the non-amateur frequencies.
You have listened to a bulletin of the South African Radio League, compiled by George, ZS6NE.
Thank you for listening, 73.


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Last modified: 14 April 2003