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SOUTH AFRICAN RADIO LEAGUE NEWS FOR SUNDAY 19 AUGUST 2018

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 Central African Time in Afrikaans and at 08:30 Central African Time in English, on HF as well as on many VHF and UHF repeaters around the country. The bulletin is relayed via Echolink by ZS6JPL. A podcast is available on the League website. Audio and text bulletins may be downloaded from the League website at www.sarl.org.za where you can also sign up to receive future bulletins by e-mail.

In the news, today:

THE SARL HF DIGITAL CONTEST TODAY AND THE CW CONTEST NEXT SUNDAY

YOTA 2018 WAS A MIND-BLOWING EXPERIENCE

and

THE SOUTHERN AFRICAN LIGHTHOUSE AWARD

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

THE SARL HF DIGITAL CONTEST TODAY AND THE CW CONTEST NEXT SUNDAY

The second of the SARL HF Contests, the HF Digital Contest, is on the air this afternoon between 14:00 and 17:00 UTC on Sunday 19 August 2018 with digital activity on 20, 40 and 80 metres. The exchange is an RSQ report and a consecutive serial number starting at 001. If you are going to use FT8, you can add the serial number in the F4 sequence, which allows for free text, but you will need to increment the number for each contact.

The last of the SARL HF Contests, the HF CW Contest, is on the air next Sunday 26 August between 14:00 and 17:00 UTC with activity between 14 000 and 14 060 kHz; 7 000 and 7 040 kHz and 3 510 and 3 560 kHz. The exchange is an RST report and a consecutive serial number starting at 001. The full set of rules can be found in the August issue of Radio ZS or the 2018 Blue Book

For both contests, submit your log in ADIF (with a summary sheet), Cabrillo (with a summary sheet) or MS Excel format (the summary sheet is part of the Excel spreadsheet) and labelled "my call sign HF Digital" by Monday 27 August 2018 and labelled "my call sign HF CW" by Monday 3 September 2018 by e-mail to zs4bfn@mweb.co.za.

YOTA 2018 WAS A MIND-BLOWING EXPERIENCE

"YOTA 2018 was a mind-blowing experience" - This was the comment from the participants who represented 23 countries in Europe and Africa. It was the first time that the event was held on the African continent and the first time attended by a large group of young people from African countries.

The other first for YOTA was the train the trainers theme. While the participants had fun, learned more about amateur radio and experienced great technology first hand, time was spent on how to take that experience to other young people in their own countries. The future of Amateur Radio is our youth, Nico was Rensburg, ZS6QL, SARL President said. "I believe YOTA 2018 made a major contribution to foster that"' he said. "The SARL will not sit back, we will take hosting the YOTA 2018 experience to develop local YOTA events to immerse more of our youth in amateur radio and the great technology that will drive amateur radio forward."

A special word of thanks to Lisa Leenders, PA2LS, the IARU Region 1 Youth Working Group Chairman for choosing South Africa to host YOTA 2018 and the trust she placed in us to present the event. I would like to extend a sincere thank you to the organising team, our members and sponsors for their generous contributions to deliver on our promise to make YOTA 2018 the best YOTA ever. Finally, a word of thanks to every participant for your support and co-operation during the week, you are an awesome group of young people!

KLETSKOUS PLAGUED BY BATTERY FAILURE

Kletskous on BACAR 6 worked perfectly on the ground while being assembled in the train of BACARSats to prepare for launch on a high-altitude balloon and for a short period while ascending on the balloon. Then suddenly the transponder switched off. After recovery it was found that the battery had failed, the one cell was dead.

"We are obviously disappointed but also pleased that the space frame stood up to the rapid descent and the hard landing. This was the first time we flew a nearly complete Kletskous. Only the solar panels and the on-board controller were left on the ground", Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, the Kletskous Project Manager said. "It is a concern that the battery failed and that is a matter to be investigated. As part of the next phase in the development, the designer of the transponder, Leon Lessing, ZS6LMG, is subjecting the transponder to some vigorous ground testing. When that is successfully completed Kletskous will be placed on a high site for operational testing. More information is available on www.amsatsa.org.za.

SOLE DISTRIBUTORS FOR YAESU AMATEUR RADIO EQUIPMENT

Tewsol International Pty Ltd has been appointed, with immediate effect, the sole distributors for Yaesu Amateur Radio equipment in Southern Africa and all other SADC entities. Tewsol are already agents for Kenwood, Icom and Hytera and other ancillary equipment. The company is headed up by John Smith, ZS6BNS and Danny Liebenberg, ZS6AW.

The Company which is well-known in the para-military and security industry has identified the lack of a single company with the necessary skills and back-up to serve the amateur fraternity. It is envisaged to open a showroom in the Johannesburg area shortly where prospective buyers can play with a range of new and used equipment from several manufacturers. Existing Yaesu dealers will remain as such, and new ones established where the need is identified.

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

THE 2018 SOUTHERN AFRICAN LIGHTHOUSE AWARD

The 2018 Southern African Lighthouse Award will be issued to radio amateurs/Clubs who made a QSO with 10 of the South African and Namibian lighthouses active during the ILLW this weekend. A listing containing the date, time (UTC), call sign and name of the lighthouse must be sent to zs4bfn@mweb.co.za. The Award certificate will be available in PDF format and will be sent via e-mail. The list of lighthouses can be found in the SARL Communication of Thursday 16 August 2018.

FCC LICENCE EXAM SESSION TO BE HELD ON 25 AUGUST.

Chris Burger, ZS6EZ, says that the Pretoria Amateur Radio Club has agreed to let us use the facilities of the Pretoria Old Motor Club from 08:00 CAT on Saturday 25 August. The PARC flea market will start at 10:00 and the Club AGM will take place later in the day.

Full details of the exam can be found at http://zs6ez.org.za/fcc-exam.htm. Please follow the entry instructions as soon as possible. We have to ensure that enough exam material is available. You have to register before the time and Chris needs the following information from you your name, ZS call sign and FCC callsign (if any) and the exams you hope to write (Technician, General, Extra). You can write all three with one entry fee.

ICASA QUICK TO ACT ON INVERTER INTERFERENCE

Following a complaint about interference from a neighbour's mains back-up system, ICASA acted quickly and ordered that the equipment had to be removed as it was radiating signals across the medium wave and all the HF amateur radio bands. An amateur's neighbour had installed a battery backup system which from day one caused major radio interference. While the installer tried to install filters, they did not succeed in eliminating the interference. The SARL advised the amateur to direct a complaint to the ICASA Regional Manager, Gauteng. The ICASA inference complaint section was quick to respond and proved that the interference came from a power back up system.

If you experience interference, first ensure that it is not caused by equipment in your residence. The simplest way to achieve this is by switching of the mains and run a receiver from a battery source. Another method is to use a portable AM radio and walk around the house. Having done that and ensured that the interference is not generated by equipment in your house, direct a complaint in writing. giving as much detail about the interference as possible, to the Regional Manager ICASA in the province where you reside.

THE RESULTS OF THE SARL HF PHONE CONTEST

The Contest Committee received 18 logs and 1 check log for the SARL HF Phone contest held on Sunday 5 August 2018. Thank you to these participants who submitted logs.

1st Max Rossi, ZS5MAX 174 points, recipient of the Silent Keys Memorial SSB Trophy
2nd Woody Collet, ZS3WL 135 points, recipient of the Joseph White Trophy for the highest score on a single band
3rd Pieter Jacobs, V51PJ 122 points

Charmaine Schutte, ZS5CVH receives the AKYAB Trophy for the highest score by an amateur in the first year of licence.

The Club Competition, with two contests to go!
1st Highway ARC 243 points
2nd Bo-Karoo ARC 155 points
3rd Bloemfontein ARC 133 points

THE WEST RAND FLEA MARKET

The West Rand Amateur Radio Club is hosting its next flea market at 12:00 on Saturday 1 September 2018 at their clubhouse in Kroton street, Weltevreden Park, Roodepoort. Everybody is welcome, so bring your surplus and support the vendor on the day. For more information contact Phillip, ZS6PVT on 083 267 3835.

PROPAGATION REPORT

Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, reports that the solar activity is expected to remain at low levels. Currently there is only a single, tiny sunspot visible with no threat of solar flaring. If you want to do your own frequency predictions, the expected effective sunspot number for the week will be around one. The 20 and 30 m bands may provide lots of DX fun. Please visit the website spaceweather.sansa.org.za for further information.

Finally, a Diary of some upcoming events:

This afternoon - the SARL HF Digital Contest
25 August FCC Exams at the PARC; PARC Flea market and AGM; Cape Town ARC meeting
26 August the SARL HF CW Contest
27 August the closing date for HF Digital logs
1 September the West Rand Flea market
3 September the closing date for HF CW logs

To conclude our bulletin a quick overview of our main news item:

The second of the SARL HF Contests, the HF Digital Contest, is on the air this afternoon between 14:00 and 17:00 UTC on Sunday 19 August 2018 with digital activity on 20, 40 and 80 metres. The exchange is an RSQ report and a consecutive serial number starting at 001. If you are going to use FT8, you can add the serial number in the F4 sequence, which allows for free text, but you will need to increment the number for each contact.

This concludes our bulletin for this morning.

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 program, 'Amateur Radio Today' at 10:00 Central African Time. The program 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 Dennis Green, ZS4BS, edited by Dave Reece, ZS1DFR and read by ..............

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

/EX


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Last modified: 14 April 2003