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SOUTH AFRICAN RADIO LEAGUE NEWS SUNDAY 21 FEBRUARY 2016

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

You may tune in to the South African Radio League news bulletin on Sunday mornings, at 08:15 Local Time in Afrikaans and at 08:30 Local Time in English, on HF as well as on many VHF and UHF repeaters around our country. Echolink listeners may connect to ZS0JPL for a relay.

This audio bulletin may be downloaded from the League website at www.sarl.org.za where you will find this as well as previous bulletins in text format under the news link on the left-hand side of the web page. While you are there, you may sign up to receive future bulletins by e-mail.

IN THE NEWS TODAY

ICASA INCREASES RADIO LICENCE FEES

HAMNET SOUTH GAUTENG INVOLVED WITH TWO MAJOR SPORTING EVENTS

OLD CALLBOOKS REVIVED

SARL HALL OF FAME LAUNCHED

and

THE FIRST SARL DIGITAL CONTEST KICKS OFF NEXT SUNDAY

Stay tuned for more on these and other interesting news items

** The Amateur Radio licence fee will increase from 1 April to R126 per annum. To safeguard against future increases radio amateurs may take out a 5 year licence at R525. ICASA advised the SARL that they will start their billing process next week which means that licencees should receive their bill in the next few weeks.

When making payment please ensure that you include your licence number which can be found on your current licence and your call sign. If you decide to opt for a 5 year licence, please send an email with your payment details and a request to convert to a 5 year licence to DKuhrau@icasa.org.za.

Electronic Funds Transfer, EFT, is preferable. Details of the ICASA account may be found on www.sarl.org.za


** On Sunday 14 February 2016, Hamnet Gauteng South, Kempton Park Amateur Radio Technical Society and East Rand Branch, under leadership of Leon ZS6LMG and Glynn ZS6GLN, assisted with the Dischem Ride for Sight Cycle Race which took place around Boksburg, Alberton, Midvaal and Heidelberg.

The 116km long race and 62km short race employed 5 Water points and 18 sweeping operators, distributed evenly along the routes. Roughly 37 Radio Amateurs were involved in the event in various support positions.

With APRS, key vehicles were tracked in near real time at the Joint Operations Centre. Radio operators provided swift assistance with a couple of major incidents.

Race organizers decided to halt the race around midday due to high temperatures. Hamnet Gauteng South will once again be involved with the Carnival City "Mac Steel" National Classic Cycle Race today the 21st of February.


** Gary Immelman ZS6YI is busy collecting all the old call sign books ever published by the SARL, digitizing them and placing them on Dropbox with a link on the SARL page for all to download and to enjoy. The link may be found under the general forums on the SARL webpage.

If you happen to have a call sign book, not currently listed,please allow Gary to copy it. He is trying to compile the complete list of all call sign books issued by the SARL and to make digital copies available to all interested people. Contact him on gary@meds.co.za


** The first inductees into the SARL Amateur Radio Hall of Fame will be announced at the SARL Awards Dinner in April.

The Hall of Fame recognises South African licensed radio amateurs who have made lasting contributions to the development of amateur radio. It aims to preserve the history of radio in South Africa.

Nominations to the Hall of Fame must be submitted in the form of an essay outlining the person's contribution. The inclusion of photographs is strongly encouraged. The essay should contain between 200 and 500 words.

Sustained activity over a period of at least five years is required. The outcome must benefit amateur radio as a whole and must last for decades.
Personal operating achievements are not grounds for inclusion into the Hall of Fame.

Nominations that comply with the requirements outlined above will be included with the minutes of the SARL Annual General Meeting and archived on the Hall of Fame home page on the SARL Web site.

Nominations are due before the end of February. Nominations already received, rules and a template can be found on the SARL Web site. There is a link under "Activities" on the front page.

Eleven nominations have been received, but there are many deserving candidates that have not been nominated. Please spread the word. Here is our chance to recognise those that shaped our hobby!


** Mike Bosch has brought new SARL VHF records established during the past year to our attention.

40 MHz, 8m, Digital:

Ian Roberts, ZS6BTE, and Willem Badenhorst, ZS6WAB, covered 288 km using FSK441 via Tropo Scatter on 16 August 2015.

Andre Botes, ZS2ACP, and Willem Badenhorst, ZS6WAB, covered 1184 km using FSK441 via Meteor Scatter on 6 September 2015.

50 MHz, 6m, Digital:

Ettienne Vosloo, ZS1AX, and Jan "Pine" Pienaar, ZS6OB, covered 1290 km using FSK44l on 17 January 2015 via Aircraft Scatter that was probably enhanced by high altitude Tropo Ducting.

144 MHz, 2m, Analogue:

Andre van Deventer, ZS2BK, and Phillippe Mondon, FR5DN, covered 3245 km using SSB via Tropo Ducting on 7 October 2015.

Please note that the SARL Record Table for 2015 is now being prepared in a new format, and will soon be posted on the SARL website.


** Applications for membership of the SARL have been received from the following person:

ZS1AAC: Johan M Becker

The following club has submitted an application for affiliation.

Hammies Amateur Radio Club: ZS2ZU: Port Elizabeth

Any objections to the acceptance of these applications must reach the Secretary before or on the Tuesday after the bulletin.

Membership of the SARL currently stands at 1631 plus 46 affiliated clubs


** You can join the SARL for the remaining period of the financial year for only R240 as a full member. If you are a pensioner and over 65 years of age the rate is R140. If you join now you will be a member till 30 June 2016 when the SARL will invoice you for the next year's membership. Full details are on www.sarl.org.za and select membership in the left-hand column. For more information call Vonnie at the NARC at 011 675 2393. Join the SARL today, it is the right thing to do if amateur radio is important to you.


** Frequency Counter kit again available - The SARL frequency counter kit is now available by mail order or collection from the National Amateur Radio centre. There are two mail order options, via Postnet or post office small parcel service with tracking number.
The frequency counter features a maximum working frequency above 40 MHz, a 10 Hz resolution, low power consumption, and is easy to build. Hurry up and get this ideal weekend project now before stocks run out.

For those who want to use the basic unit above the normal HF frequencies, space for a pre-scalar IC circuit is on the PCB layout and in the schematic layout. This IC is not included in the basic kit but can be ordered at an additional cost. This kit is ideal to meet the requirements of the amateur radio regulations which require that every amateur has a reliable method of measuring the transmit frequency.

Benefit from a "Special Easter" discount for SARL members - order before 23 March and get an additional discount of 10%. The order form is available on the SARL web site.


** The first Digital Contest for 2016 will take place from 13:00 UTC to 16:00 UTC on Sunday 28 February 2016 with PSK and RTTY on 80 metres, 3 580 to 3 600 kHz; 40 metres, 7 040 to 7 060 kHz and 20 metres 14 070 to 14 099 kHz. A station may be contacted twice on each band once on RTTY, once on PSK31.

The exchange is a RST report and a sequential serial number starting at 001. Contacts with stations in Southern Africa are worth 3 points and contacts with stations outside Southern Africa are worth 1 point. Logs, in ADIF, Cabrillo or MS Excel format and labelled "your call sign Digital Contest," must be submitted by 6 March 2016, by e-mail to contest@sarl.org.za


** Logs for the National Field Day must be submitted by midnight this evening to zs4bfn@gmail.com.


** The Westrand Amateur radio club is hosting its next flea market at 12:00 on Saturday 27 February 2016 at their clubhouse in Kroton street, Weltevredenpark, Roodepoort. Everybody is welcome. For more information contact Johan ZS6JVV 082 558 5811.


** The SARL news team is constantly on the lookout for new talent to join our team. You may assist with the actual compilation or translation, proofreading or recording of the weekly SARL bulletins.

Interested parties may contact Dawie, ZR6DHC, on email zr6dhc@zs6rtb.co.za


PROPAGATION REPORT

Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, reports that the solar activity is expected to be at low levels. All the currently visible sunspots are stable with a very low probability for serious solar flares.

If you want to do your own frequency predictions, the expected effective sunspot number for the week will be around 39.

The 20 to 10 m bands will provide lots of DX fun.

Please visit the website spaceweather.sansa.org.za for further information.

Now for the diary of events:

21 February - Zululand ARC 21st Birthday luncheon
24 February - closing date for articles for the March 2016 Radio ZS
27 February - the West Rand ARC Flea Market
28 February - The SARL Digital Contest
29 February - the Leap Year Challenge
1 March - closing date for AWA CW logs


We end this bulletin with a summary of the main news item:

ICASA Has anounced an increase in the annual licence fee. Amateur radio licence fees of R 126,00 will be due on 1 April 2016. You may avoid the impact of these increases by converting your licence to a 5 year period which provides some protection from annual licence fee increases. More information available in the printed version of this news bulletin


And that brings us to the end of this bulletin


** Clubs and individuals are invited to submit news items of interest to radio amateurs and shortwave listeners, if possible, in both English and Afrikaans, by following the news inbox link on the South African Radio League web page. News items for inclusion in the bulletin should reach the news team no later than the Thursday preceding the bulletin date.

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; please send these by e-mail to artoday@sarl.org.za. Sentech sponsors the radio transmissions on the non-amateur frequencies.

You have listened to a news bulletin compiled by Dawie Conradie, ZR6DHC, edited by Dick Stratford, ZS6RO, and read by ..............

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

73 and thank you for listening.

/EX


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Last modified: 14 April 2003