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SARL News Bulletin Archive


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Good morning and welcome to the weekly news bulletin of the South African Radio League read by ………………………….. [your name, call sign and QTH]

You can tune into the South African Radio League news bulletin 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 the country. Echolink listeners can connect to ZS0JPL for a relay. A podcast is available from the League’s web site.

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

In the news today





Stay tuned for more on these and other interesting news items.

**** China's state-run Xinhua news agency says the Five-hundred-metre Aperture Spherical Telescope (FAST) will be completed in 2016 - allowing researchers to detect radio signals - and potentially, signs of life - from planets orbiting a million stars and solar systems.

The country's military-led space program is constructing the world's largest radio telescope, a massive construction project - when completed the dish itself will be the size of 30 football fields - has the potential to be a game-changer for our understanding of the Universe, and our search for life on other planets. Construction on the FAST project began in 2011 and it is nestled in a natural indentation in Guizhou province's spectacular Karst mountains. This half a kilometre diameter dish will eclipse the 305 metre dish at Arecibo in Puerto Rico, but only our SKA array when completed will be more sensitive.

**** The entries for the Hamnet National Communications exercise are now officially closed. The exercise will take place from 12:00 on Saturday 24 October to 12:00 on Sunday 25, times being SAST. This year’s exercise has a blackout theme and all teams are expected to run their stations off-grid, which includes heating, cooling, cooking and lighting. We have moved away from a competitive environment to more of a learning exercise. While many stations have previously run radios from batteries they have used electricity for cooking or lighting. Please be self-critical when evaluating your performances and see where your weaknesses lie.

We have a total of 16 teams.
From Division 1:
Touws River

Division 2:
Port Elizabeth

Division 3
Black Rock

Division 4

Division 5

Arrow Park

V51 - Spitskop

This gives a nice spread of teams across the country and having it held almost into summer will make for some interesting changes from the last few exercise. While Div 1 might be worried about the heating of operators, I am sure that some of the other divisions are more concerned about the cooling.

The final information packs should be out by the broadcasting of this bulletin and if not, please contact Grant on 0824903465 or email

**** A call for articles for Radio ZS. As you will have read on page 4 of the October 2015 issue of Radio ZS, a theme has been coupled to each issue of Radio ZS.

For the November/December 2015 issue, it is antennas and feed lines and the closing date for material is the 8th November 2015. The theme for the January 2016 issue is field stations and operating mobile, get your article in by the 23rd December 2015. In February 2016, we are looking at VHF/UHF and Microwaves; the editor would like your articles by the 24th January 2016. In the March issue, we will focus on emergency communications and community service. The closing date is the 2nd February 2016. Send your articles to

**** The Administrative Council of the International Amateur radio Union (IARU) has adopted a resolution asking IARU member organisations to encourage local governments to recognise the importance of the Amateur Radio Service and associated amateur radio antennas. The Administrative Council held its 38th conference in Bali, Indonesia, at the same time as the IARU Region Three conference.

The antenna resolution included a call to member organisations to plead for planning and development regulations that will recognise the importance of an amateur radio antenna, and not place unnecessary restrictions on the erection of such antennas. It also asked organisations to discourage any fees related to the installation of amateur antennas, particularly in the light of the volunteer nature of Amateur Radio, and its popularity amongst students and retired persons.

The Administrative Council completed its preparations to represent Amateur Radio at the World Radio Communications Conference 2015 (WRC-15), to be held in Geneva during November. The Administrative Council revises IARU positions and strategies regarding every WRC-15 agenda item which might affect amateur radio. This includes proposals for a secondary amateur allocation near 5.3Mhz. The Council has also looked at items for the next WRC, presumed to take place in 2019, which might include an amateur allocation near 50Mhz in Region One (Europe and Africa), and global harmonisation of the 1800 to 2000Khz allocation. "It is expected that an intense campaign by the IARU will be necessary in the preparation for WRC-19 to defend the amateur allocations between 137 and 960Mhz, in the light of pressure for spectrum for small non-amateur satellites," the Administrative Council said in a statement. "Finer coordination of regional strategies will be necessary".

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

**** Results of the SARL Spring QRP Contest. The committee received 12 logs for the SARL QRP Contest help on Saturday 3 October.

1st West Rand ARC, ZS6WR, 516 points
2nd Hammies ARC, ZS6ZU, 420 points
3rd Andre Botes, ZS2ACP, 384 points
4th Pretoria ARC, ZS6PTA, 328 points

The combined results for the four QRP Contests for 2015

1st West Rand ARC, ZS6WR, 2 600 points
2nd Rudi Venter, ZS6DX, 1 911 points
3rd Hammies ARC, ZS6ZU, 1 134 points
4th Pretoria ARC, ZS6PTA, 1 048 points

Congratulations to the winners. The full results may be found in HF Happenings 676. The full results (all 4 contests) may be found at

**** The results of the ZS4 Sprint. The committee received 16 logs for the ZS4 Sprint run on Sunday 7 June 2015.

1st Jan Botha, ZS4JAN, 145 points
2nd Warren Reilly, ZS4W, 122 points
3rd Johan van Zijl, ZS4DZ, 107 points
4th OTL Radio Club, ZS6OTL, 62 points

The full results are available in HF Happenings 676 and certificates have been e-mailed to the winners.

**** The provisional results of the SARL 80 Metre QSO Party held on 1 October have been released. The committee received 13 logs and it was determined that 37 amateurs were active on the band.

1st Thanie Gibson, ZS4AZ, 320 points
2nd Sydney Smith, ZS1TMJ, 310 points
3rd Johan Van Zijl, ZS4DZ, 260 points
4th Romeo Nardini, ZS6ARQ, 250 points

Congratulations to Thanie. No logs were received for the first leg in April due to heavy QRM. The committee requests that logs for the 80 metre QSO Party must only be sent in Microsoft Excel format.

****This week’s propagation report. Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, reports that the solar activity is expected to be at moderate levels. Active region 2434 has a complex magnetic configuration and may produce M-class solar flares.

If you want to do your own frequency predictions, the expected effective sunspot number for the week will be around 64.

The 20 to 10 metre bands will provide lots of DX fun, especially during the late afternoons and in the evenings.

Please visit the website for further information.

**** And now for the diary of events

16 till 18 October - Jamboree-on-the-air
17 October - CQ Hou Koers
24 and 25 October - the CQ WW DX SSB contest
10 November – closing date for articles for the November/December issue of Radio ZS

To end this bulletin, a recap of our main news items this morning.

**** China's state-run Xinhua news agency says the Five-hundred-metre Aperture Spherical Telescope (FAST) will be completed in 2016 - allowing researchers to detect radio signals - and potentially, signs of life - from planets orbiting a million stars and solar systems.

**** The entries for the Hamnet National Communications exercise are now officially closed. The exercise will take place from 12:00 on Saturday 24 October to 12:00 on Sunday 25, times being SAST.

**** In a correction from previous news bulletins, Brian Utterson’s surname was miss-spelled in previous bulletins, so apologies from the news team for any inconvenience caused or suffered.

You are welcome to join us every Sunday morning for the weekly amateur radio magazine programme ‘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 from Dick Stratford, ZS6RO. A rebroadcast can be heard on Monday evenings at 18:30 Central African Time on 3 230 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 by Etienne Naude, ZS6EFN, edited by Richard Stratford, ZS6RO and read by Dave Reece, ZS1DFR.

From the entire news team, best wishes for the week ahead.

73 and thank you for listening


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Last modified: 14 April 2003