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SARL News Bulletin Archive


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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. The SARL broadcasts a news bulletin every Sunday at 08:15 CAT in Afrikaans and at 08:30 CAT in English. To listen to a web stream, visit, click on 'Amateur Radio Today' and follow the links for details. For audio via Echolink, connect to ZS0JPL-R.

You can download this bulletin and previous ones from and also subscribe there to receive future bulletins by e-mail.

Your news reader this morning is (name and call sign), on 145,725 from Pretoria, with relays on 7,066 MHz and 3,695 MHz SSB. (Other news readers change to suit).


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


Vincent Harrison, ZS6BTY, will concentrate on HF antennas for the popular DX bands, i.e. 20, 17, 15 12 and 10 m. He says he will specifically focus on the effect of the antenna height above ground and how that affects the radiation pattern.

Don't miss this presentation at the 2013 SARL Radio Technology in Action symposiums. Port Elisabeth will be the first stop on this year's tour which will also include Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg. The first event will be held on 27 July at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in Port Elizabeth.

Pre-register now to ensure that you benefit from lower rates and the assurance that the CD, SDR VFO kit and multimeter will be ready when you arrive. Get more details and the full programme from, where you can also download the order form which will give you the choice of what you would like to order. The CD will contain all the presentations and other interesting articles, videos and software as well as the details of how to construct the SDR VFO. If you would like to receive the programme and booking form please send an email to with PE RTA in the subject line

Walk in registrations will be possible on the day but there is no guarantee that all the items will be available. All delegates will participate in the attendance draw of five digital multimeters and other prizes.


SunSpace is getting a new home, well at least the company's intellectual property and 80% of the staff. The Minister of Science and Technology, Derek Hanekom alluded to solution for the ailing company in his budget speech on 21 May 2013. He announced that the majority of SunSpace's creditors have accepted the Department's offer of R55 million for the institutions intellectual property and tangible assets. This decision was recommended in a business rescue plan compiled by a practitioner appointed by the SunSpace Board.

The offer was made on the basis of an independent evaluation of SunSpace's intellectual property and tangible assets. The offer is in line with a Cabinet decision that the satellite manufacturing company be absorbed into the South African National Space Agency (SANSA). SANSA has entered into an agreement with Denel Dynamics to house the SunSpace capability.

As part of a process of absorbing SunSpace's capability within an appropriate entity, the company's employees have been offered employment in the new business unit, and most of them (more than 80%) have accepted the offer thus ensuring that key capabilities are retained. In this way, South Africa will retain the critical home-grown capacity developed by SunSpace.

SunSpace is the outflow of the Stellenbosch University SUNSAT project, South Africa's and Africa's first satellite launched on 23 February 1999 on Boeing-Delta II rocket from the Vandenberg Airforce base in California. SunSat was developed and built by post graduate students and lectures. The group built SumbandilaSat for the Department of Science and Technology in record time but it took several years before it was launched. Both SunSat and SumbandilaSat had amateur radio transponders as part of their payload.

Denel is no newcomer to space. The company was involved in the previous programme until 1996 and has maintained its space capability including key staff as well as the Houwteq satellite test facility near Grabouw. "This opportunity will allow Denel to optimise the synergy between the SunSpace capabilities and its own capability for broader national technological benefit," said the Group CEO of Denel, Mr Riaz Saloojee.


The South African Amateur Radio Development Trust invites amateur videographers to take part in a video competition and compete for some great prizes. Be creative with your camera or even your smartphone. Shoot a short video of an exciting Amateur Radio activity in South Africa and you could win a 5watt CW MFJ 40 metre transceiver kit valued at R1300 as well as one of many other prizes, the list is growing daily. The video format can be AVI, WMV or MPEG with a minimum resolution of 320 X 240. The length of the video should be between 3 and 5 minutes. The subject can be anything that illustrates the joy and excitement of amateur radio

Entries should be sent on a CD or DVD. Don't attempt to e-mail it. Send your video to: Amateur Radio Video Competition, P O Box 90438, and Garsfontein 0042. The closing date is 31 December 2013. The winners will be announced early in 2014.

For more details and the rules visit


If have not yet renewed your SARL subscription, join the 884 members who already have renewed by submitting yours now. Subscriptions were due on 1 July 2013. Invoices were sent to all members during June. If you have not received an invoice by email or by post, please contact Mariska at 011 675 2393 on Monday and a copy will be mailed to you.


The East Rand Radio Branch Annual General Meeting will be held on the 30th of August 2013 at 14h00 at the Clubhouse at Arrowe Park, Benoni.


The SARL Winter QRP Contest is intended to be a fun activity to promote QRP operation between radio amateurs in Southern Africa. The contest takes place from 12:00 UTC to 15:00 UTC on Saturday 20 July 2013. Home or field stations are encouraged to participate using SSB, CW or mixed with 5 watts (PEP) output or less and a station may be contacted once per mode.

The first hour is limited to the 40 m band only, the remaining two hours the contesters are free to use any HF (non-WARC) band as they see fit. Comply with the contest-preferred segments as detailed in the general rules.The exchange is a RS or RST and Grid locator. Please consider exchanging realistic RS(T) signal reports. Please use the full 6 character grid locator. e.g. KG43eu.

Each contact counts 1 point. Logs shall be submitted within 7 days after the contest by e-mail to Read all the rules on page 39 of the SARL Contest Manual.

"August is CQ ZS month," says Ward Silver, N0AX.

The aim of the SARL HF Phone, Digital and CW Contests is for participants to contact as many amateurs in Southern Africa as possible on the 20, 40 and 80 m amateur bands. The Phone contest takes place on Sunday 4 August, the Digital contest on 18 August and the CW contest on 25 August, each contest runs from 13:00 to 16:30 UTC on each Sunday.

Participation can be as Single Operator Single Band, Single Operator All Band, Multi Operator Single Band or Multi Operator All Band. Individual competitors and club stations are encouraged to compete. The exchange is a RS or RST report and a consecutive serial number starting at 001. SSB contacts count 1 point, PSK31/RTTY contacts count 1 point and CW contacts count 2 points. Two points are earned for each area worked per band and a further two points for each station worked on all three bands.

Certificates are awarded to the first three places and the highest single band score in each contest. There is also a trophy for the highest combined score in all three contests. A trophy is awarded to the CW contestant in his or her first year of CW achieving the highest score. Candidates for this trophy shall state the date of the issue of the licence on the summary sheet. Logs must be submitted by 12 August for the Phone contest, 26 August for the Digital contest and 2 September for the CW contest. Logs must be sent to Read the complete rules on page 54 of the 2013 SARL Contest Manual.


Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, reports that the solar activity is expected to be at low levels. Formerly-huge sunspot AR1785 is decaying, but it still has a 'beta-gamma-delta' magnetic field that harbors energy for X-class solar flares. It's noteworthy that AR1785 has posed a flare-threat for days without actually exploding. Decaying could undermine the stability of the sunspot's magnetic field and make a flare more likely.

If you want to do your own frequency predictions, the expected effective sunspot number for the week will be around 63.

All the bands from 20 to 10 m will provide lots of DX fun with 20 m providing the best openings with 15 m not far behind. There can also be some 10 m openings on east-west sunlit paths.

Please visit for further information.


1 July Due date for SARL Membership renewal
13-14 July IARU HF Championships
19 July Closing date for entry to RTA in Port Elizabeth
20 July SARL Winter QRP Contest
27 July RTA in Port Elizabeth
3 - 4 August - Hamnet Winter Challenge
30 August East Rand Radio Branch AGM at 14:00

SARL News invites clubs and individuals to submit news items of interest to radio amateurs and short-wave listeners. Submit news items - if possible in both English and Afrikaans to, not later than the Thursday preceding the bulletin date.

The SARL also invites you to listen to Amateur Radio Today every Sunday morning at 10:00 CAT on 145,750 MHz in the Pretoria area, with relays on 7 082, 7 205, and 17 660 kHz. There is also a podcast by ZS6RO. For a web-stream and Echolink by ZS6FCS, visit, click on 'Amateur Radio Today', go down the green column and click on 'LISTEN ON THE WEB'. A repeat transmission can be heard on Mondays at 16:30 UTC on 3 230 kHz. The website also lists various other retransmissions. Reception reports, comments and suggestions are invited. Send an email to Sentech sponsors the transmissions on the non-amateur frequencies.

You have listened to a bulletin of the South African Radio League compiled and edited by Louis Kirstein, ZS1LK.

Thank you for listening, 73.


Copyright 1997- 2006  South African Radio League
Last modified: 14 April 2003