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Good morning and welcome! You are tuned to a news broadcast of the South African Radio League read by ............................................. (name, call and QTH)

You can tune to the South African Radio League news broadcast on Sunday mornings at 08:15 central African time in Afrikaans and at 08:30 central African time in English on HF and on many VHF and UHF repeaters around our country. Echolink listeners can connect to ZS0JPL for a relay. A podcast is available from the South African Radio League web site.

This audio bulletin can be downloaded from the South African Radio League website at You will find this bulletin and previous bulletins in text format under the news link on the left-hand side of the webpage. While you are there, you can sign up to receive future bulletins by e-mail.

It is with regret that SARLNEWS has learnt that two radio amteurs became silent keys recently. They are:
Sammy de Beer, ZS6AWI, of Ottosdal on 11 January 2015 and the passing of Peter Botha, ZS1CA, of Cape Town on 16 January 2015 must be announced.

We extend our sincere condolences to their families and friends.








Stay tuned for more on these and other interesting stories

** SARL@HOME on Saturday 7 February features another surface mount technology workshop where you will learn how to work with surface mount components. Book now to prevent the event from being cancelled, a minimum of five participants are required.

The workshop includes building a small project to put your new gained knowledge into practice. The cost for the workshop is R150 for South African Radio League members and R300 for non-members. This includes the PC board and components for the project and a CD containing a wealth of information and videos. Full details are available on the League website. The workshop starts at 08:30

The second event on 7 February is a WSPR discussion starting at 14:00. Learn more about the South African Radio League's fascinating 5 MHz propagation research project with Stewart Moss, ZS6SGM, and Hans van de Groenendaal, ZS6AKV. Let us know if you are attending so we can plan the refreshments

** The South African Radio League Interactive Technical Network or Intecnet is back on the air on Tuesday 10 February at 19:30. The guest speaker will be Herbert Teubner, the General Manager of Sinetech. He will talk about solar power for radio amateurs. He will explain the various types of solar panel and their application as well as how solar can be used as a back-up system to deal with load shedding. This is an on the air discussion you do not want to miss.

Clubs wishing to link to the network via landline, are invited to send their details to by not later than 5 February 2015.

** 13 February is International Radio Day. As part of International Radio Day, the South African Radio League would like to do brief interviews with young people about “what does (amateur) radio mean to you?” The interviews will aired on the web on 13 February and made available to other radio stations. To take part, send your landline details to and arrangements for the brief interviews will be made.

** An early analysis of the PEARS National VHF/UHF contest shows that the weather once again affected conditions along the east coast with rain on Friday night and gale force winds at East London on Saturday afternoon, including power outages in some areas. Nevertheless, conditions were reasonable in other divisions based on logs so far received.

The highlights appear to be the number of digital contacts made from Namibia to Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and the Gauteng area on both 50 and 144 MHz and the long distances covered. Another surprise was the first-ever Aircraft Scatter contact made in South Africa during a VHF contest between Ettienne, ZS1AX, and Pine, ZS6OB, on 50,233 MHz FSK441 over a distance of 1 290 km. This is also a new South African Radio League record for Aircraft Scatter. As the logs start coming in, PEARS will have a better idea about analogue long distance activity and how the new divisional 144,400 MHz FM category fared. However, it appears that a number of Rover stations were also active.

What we did notice in Division 2 is that local activity was down with reference to the 2014 contest mainly due to the absence of our star field stations Allan, ZS2BO, and Terence, ZS2VDL, who keep the bands alive. Terence informed PEARS that due to commitments, they had to miss the contest this year, but will be back with a bang next year. Over the years, it has been observed that field stations do have a tremendous effect on local participation. In the early days, the South African Radio League VHF contests blossomed because many Club stations participated.

Please make a sincere effort to submit your log sheet as long as it contains the date, time, station worked, locator and signal report received, PEARS will sort it out and calculate the distance. Your log is also needed for PEARS to analyse and assess the footprint of VHF activity in this country. The closing date for logs is Sunday 15 February.

** The HABEX-10 Mission is scheduled for launching on Saturday 25 April 2015. This will be part of the Global Space Balloon Challenge 2015, of which HABEX is a part. HABEX is the acronym for High Altitude Balloon EXperiment.

The first mission meeting will take place at the ERB Clubhouse in Ebenezer Street, Benoni, just off the N12 Atlas Road, from 19:00 to 20:00 CAT on Thursday 5 February. Everyone is invited to the mission meeting. For further details, contact the convenor Chris, ZS6COG, on e-mail ZS6COG@GMAIL.COM

You are listening to a bulletin of the South African Radio League

** Using the new OPERA Dynamic MF/LF beacon mode, A.E. Russel, VK5CV, transmitted at 16:30 UTC on 15 January using 477 kHz and was spotted by Tom, G8HUH, receiving at -37 dB. Data recovered from the PSK-Map database shows the capture to fit exactly with the OPERA Dynamic time signature. Opera Dynamic provides an additional 5 or 6 dB gain over the conventional Opera Beacon and is automatically engaged should the decoder fail. The facility is linked to the OP8 477 kHz and OP32 136 kHz modes only. VK5CV reported using 50 watts carrier power to 160 m inverted L with a base loaded variometer. Those involved say that this may have been one of the ‘Flash’ propagation events linked to the MF band. To date UK/EU to Australia has yet to be achieved.

** An application for membership of the South African Radio League has been received from Andries Stefanus Kruger, ZSL1132.

Any objections against the acceptance of application must reach the Secretary before or on the Tuesday after this bulletin. Membership of the South African Radio League currently stands at 1 605 members and 35 affiliated clubs.

** The next amateur radio examination or RAE will be held on Thursday 21 May 2015. The closing date for registration is Thursday 9 April and no late registration cab be accepted. Get the full details on the League website.

** The Antique Wireless Association’s CW Activity Day will be held from 10:00 UTC on Saturday 7 February to 10:00 UTC on Sunday 8 February with activity on 80 40 and 20 metres. There are four categories of participation in the activity. The exchange is a RST report, the operators name and grid locator. QSOs count 1 point for low power and 2 points for QRP. Certificates are awarded to the first places and the highest single band score. Log sheets must be submitted by Monday 23 February to

** The South African Radio League National Field Day will take place between 10:00 UTC on Saturday 14 February and 10:00 UTC on Sunday 15 February with CW, phone and digital activity on 160 to 10 metres, excluding the WARC bands. The Bloemfontein ARC is planning a field station with a Valentine’s dinner on the Saturday evening.

** The Africa all mode International DX Contest will be run from 12:00 UTC on Saturday 14 March to 12:00 UTC on Sunday 15 March with CW, phone and RTTY activity on 160 to 10 metres, the WARC bands are excluded. The objective of this all mode contest is to stimulate contesting from Africa. All participating stations worldwide may work any country during the contest period, but QSOs with radio amateurs from Africa is encouraged as reflected in the higher points being awarded in the scoring mechanism.

Find all the rules in the 2015 Blue Book available for download from the League website.

** The East Rand Branch hosts its next swop meet on 31 January 2015 from 12:00 until 16:00 at their Clubhouse in Ebenezer Street, Benoni. Contact Judy on 079 730 2030 or via e-mail to for table bookings at R20 per table.

** In the propagation report, Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, reports that the expected solar activity will remain at low levels. An unnamed region on the southeast limb of the Sun has the possibility to produce M- and X-class solar flares. If you want to do your own frequency predictions, the expected effective sunspot number for the week will be around 74.

The 20 to 10 m bands will provide lots of DX fun. Please visit the website for further information.

And now the diary of events

31 January – the final day for your nominations for the South African Radio League awards, the Flea market at the ERB Clubhouse in Ebenezer Street, Benoni and closing date for the Summer QRP contest logs
5 February – HABEX Mission meeting at the ERB Clubhouse; last day to send you landline request for Intecnet
7 February – SARL@Home
7 and 8 February – the AWA CW Day
10 February – Intecnet about solar power
13 February – International Radio Day
14 and 15 February – the National Field Day
15 February - closing date for PEARS VHF/UHF logs
14 and 15 March – the Africa all mode International DX Contest
9 April – closing date for May RAE

We end this bulletin with a quick recap of our leading story.

** SARL@HOME on Saturday 7 February features another surface mount technology workshop where you will learn how to work with surface mount components. Book now to prevent the event from being cancelled, a minimum of five participants are required. Full details are available on the League website.

** You are invited to submit news items of interest to the South African Radio League by following the news inbox link on the South African Radio League webpage. News items for inclusion in the bulletin, should reach the news team no later than the Thursday preceding the bulletin date.

You are welcome join us every Sunday morning for the weekly amateur radio magazine program Amateur Radio Today at 10:00 Central African Time. The programme can be heard on VHF and UHF repeaters countrywide and on 7 082 kHz lower side-band and on 7 205 kHz and 17 760 kHz AM. There is also a podcast available by Dick, ZS6RO. A rebroadcast can be heard on Monday evenings at 18:30 Central African Time on 4 895 kHz AM. We welcome your signal reports, comments and suggestions; send these by e-mail to Sentech sponsors the radio transmissions on the non-amateur frequencies.

You have listened to a news bulletin compiled and edited by Dennis Green, ZS4BS.

From the entire news team, best wishes for the week ahead and be radio active.

73’s and thank you for listening


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Last modified: 14 April 2003