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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 in to 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 can 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.

** In SARL News for 24 April, it was incorrectly reported that the RAE would take place on 12 May 2016. The examination will take place on Thursday 19 May 2016 at 19:00. Best wishes to all students with their preparation for the Radio Amateur Examination. If any student has not received an examination number, they need to contact the RAE manager at The news team apologises for this error.

** Notice is hereby given to all members of the South African Radio League that the Annual General Meeting will be held at 09:00 on Saturday 21 May 2016 at the Be My Guest Lodge in Sasolburg. Registrations for the AGM will start at 07:30. The Registration form and Agenda, together with all supporting documentation, is published in the member’s only section of the League website at

In terms of the constitution, any member who is not able to personally attend an AGM, is entitled to appoint any member of the League, entitled to vote, to attend the AGM and vote on his/her behalf. Any vote so cast shall be binding as if cast by the member. The provisions of Rule 1.8 shall apply to any person appointed as a proxy holder. A proxy form is included with all the supporting documentation on the website referred to above.

Should you have any other enquiries, please contact the Secretary of the SARL at

** Students from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology will present a paper at the AMSAT SA Space Symposium on the high frequency beacon transmitter developed to test a three element direction finding array constructed at SANSA Space Science in Hermanus to receive the 14 099 kHz HF beacon signal from ZACUBE-1 and future ZACUBE-i space weather missions. A ground-based transmitter was developed for verification and calibration of this array. The signal will be used to verify the operation of the hardware and software used to determine the direction of arrival of the incoming signal. More about the symposium on 28 May 2016, details on the many papers to be presented and how to register for the event can be found on

** Why are our radio amateurs not exploring microwaves like their foreign peers? The DUBUS amateur radio magazine publishes many amateur microwave experiments that happen worldwide. It records amateur activities on Super High Frequency (SHF), 3 - 30 GHz. from countries such as Germany, UK, Spain, Italy, France, Sweden, Australia and USA, etc., as well as on Extremely High Frequency (EHF), 30 - 300 GHz spectrum and the establishment of many new records.

In earlier years a number of South African amateurs set up records on the microwave bands too, that are still standing today. It all started in 1962 at East London when Arthur, ZS2CK, and Mike, ZS2FM, recorded the first microwave amateur QSO on 10 GHz (3 cm) using homebuilt klystron transceivers. With the advent of Gunn diode oscillators, a spate of new microwave records were established from 1976 on microwave frequencies between 1,3 GHz and 47 GHz all on FM, which featured ZS6BNT, ZS6ML, ZS6BG, ZS6ANL, ZS6ASO, ZS6KX, ZS6BTY, ZS6BMS and ZS6AOU.

The current terrestrial microwave records on 1,3 GHz and 2,3 GHz are still held by Dave, ZS6BNT, and Gary, ZS6ASO, over 422 km and 198 km respectively. Ivo, ZS6AXT, and Jon, ZS6JON, established the present records on 5.7, 10 and 24 GHz over distances of 151, 299 and 56 km, respectively. The one and only record set up on 47 GHz by Arnold, ZS6BMS, and Julian, ZS6AOU, is still standing on 21,2 km. Ivo, ZS6AXT, pioneered EME on microwaves, his current EME records are: 1,3 GHz with WB0QMN 15 407 km; 2,3 GHz with NU7Z 16 482 km and 5,7 GHz with W7CNK 14 745 km. Who will be next to break any of these records?

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

** Three new CubeSats now in orbit. Signals have been received from the three CubeSats launched 25 April on Soyuz flight VS14 from the Kourou spaceport in South America. The three CubeSats were developed by student teams under the European Space Agency (ESA) Education Office “Fly Your Satellite!” program, which is aimed at training the next generation of aerospace professionals. The satellites are OUFTI-1 from the Université of Liège, Belgium; e-st@r-II from the Polytechnic of Turin, Italy and AAUSAT-4, University of Aalborg, Denmark.

The signal from the e-st@r satellite’s 1 200 bps beacon is very weak which may indicate an antenna deployment issue or unexpectedly low transmit power. ESA report the e-st@r team is working to consolidate the radio communication link with their satellite. OUFTI-1 carries the first dedicated amateur D-Star satellite transponder. More information can be found in the VHF Happenings section of HF Happenings 702 available on the League web site under publications.

** The Antique Wireless Association’s Valve QSO Party is on the air over the weekend of 7 and 8 May with the AM QSO Party running from 13:00 to 17:00 UTC on Saturday 7 May and the SSB QSO Party from 13:00 to 17:00 UTC on Sunday 8 May. Activity takes place from 7 063 to 7 100 kHz and 3 603 to 3 650 kHz and the exchange is your call sign, a RS report, a consecutive serial number starting at 001 and the type of radio used. The log sheets must be submitted by 23 May 2016 to All the information on the QSO Party is available in the 2016 Blue Book.

** The May 2016 issue of Radio ZS is ready for publication - it will be available for download later today. In this issue, you can read about the repeater expedition carried out by the Western Cape Repeater Working Group and PEARS along the southern Cape coast. Mike, ZS2FM, gives you plans to build a 10-element high gain narrow band Yagi for 144 MHz DX and the Sasolburg Radio Club provide more information about the SARL National Convention, which they are hosting from 20 to 22 May.

James, KH2SR, reviews the MDT Amateur Radio 40 m Transceiver Kit and Henry, ZS6IIX, tells us about leaky feeder communications in underground mining. Selim, M0XTA, says we have an on-air crisis while Rob, ZS1SA shows us how to crimp electrical connectors. In the YL Beam, the YLs are chasing penguins! This and more in the May issue.

Articles for the June 2016 issue can be sent to the editor on e-mail and the closing date is 23 May.

** The results of the SARL 80 Metre QSO Party held on 7 April have been released. The contest committee received six logs and state that it was a pleasure checking the Excel logs.

1st Romeo Nardini, ZS6ARQ - 250 Points
2nd Johan van Zijl, ZS4DZ - 230 points
3rd Andy Cairns, ZSZ6ADY - 200 points
4th Roy Walsh, ZS3RW - 80 points
5th Sidney Freeman, ZS6SID - 70 points
6th Chris Tippett, ZS5CEV - 40 points

** Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, reports that the solar activity is expected to be at low levels. Sunspot AR2535 is currently crackling with C-class solar flares. If you want to do your own frequency predictions, the expected effective sunspot number for the week will be around 27.

The 20 to 15 m bands will provide lots DX fun with some 10 m openings also possible on sunlit paths. Please visit the website for further information.

Now for the diary of events

4 May - Hamnet Western Cape meeting at 19:30 at the Tygerberg Hospital
7 and 8 May – the AWA Valve QSO Party
8 May – the SARL Youth Net
15 May – the ZS3 Sprint
19 May – the May RAE
20 to 22 May – the SARL National Convention
21 May – the SARL AGM in Sasolburg
23 May – closing date for articles for the June 2016 issue of Radio ZS
28 May – the AMSAT SA Space Symposium and the Pretoria ARC Flea Market

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

In SARL News for 24 April, it was incorrectly reported that the RAE would take place on 12 May 2016. The examination will take place on Thursday 19 May 2016 at 19:00. Best wishes to all students with their preparation for the Radio Amateur Examination. If any students have not received an examination number, they need to contact the RAE manager at

** 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; 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 Dennis Green, ZS4BS, edited by Dave Reece, ZS1DFR, and read by ……………………………………………..

73 and 88, thank you for listening


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Last modified: 14 April 2003