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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]

The South African Radio League broadcasts a news bulletin each Sunday in Afrikaans as well as in English at 08:15 and 08:30 Central African Time respectively on HF as well as on various VHF and UHF repeaters around the country. The bulletin is relayed on Echolink by Johan, ZS6JPL. A podcast is available on the League website. Audio and text bulletins may be downloaded from the League website at where you can also sign up to receive future bulletins by e-mail.

We start the bulletin with news of a silent key.

It is with deep regret that we must announce that the key of Gary Vorster, ZS5VG went silent on Sunday 4 August after a long sickbed. He was a member of the Northern Natal Amateur Radio Club.

We extend our sincere condolences to his family and friends.


In the news, today:





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


Clarissa Clarke, ZS6LIS and Alastair Skudder, ZS6S are representing the South African youth at the 2019 YOTA Summer Camp near Sofia in Bulgaria. The 2019 YOTA event starts today 11 August and runs to Saturday 17 August. News and information about the Summer Camp will be published on Listen out for LZ19YOTA from the summer camp, QSL via the bureau to LZ1BJ.


The International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend on 17 and 18 August is not a contest, there are no prizes, certificates or other enticements to participate and therefore, participation is free. Each station's operators decide how they will operate their station regards modes and bands.

At the time of writing this bulletin, the following 16 Southern African Lighthouses have been registered on - Pelican Point, V51NAM; Cape Columbine, ZS1BK; North Head, ZS3VDK; South Head, ZS3ZU; Robben Island, ZS9V; Green Point, Cape Town, ZS1CT; Slangkop, ZS1FRC; Roman Rock, ZS0RR; Cape Hangklip, ZS1CRG; Danger Point, ZS1OAR; Cape Agulhas, ZS1BAK; Cape Recife, ZS2ABZ; Donkin Reserve, ZS2PE; North Sand Bluff, ZS5HAC; Cooper, ZS5D and Tugela Bluff, ZS5ZLB. Robben Island also counts for IOTA AF-064 and ZSFF-0322.

One of the easiest lighthouses to activate must be Umhlanga Rocks, but there are no takers. The 2019 Southern African Lighthouse Award will be available for QSOs made during the ILLW activity. Get all the details on page 8 of the August 2019 issue of Radio ZS.


The second contest in the SARL HF Contest series is the Digital contest taking place from 14:00 to 17:00 UTC on Sunday 18 August 2019 with RTTY and PSK activity on 80, 40 and 20 metres. The exchange is an RSQ report and a serial number starting at 001. There are two trophies to be won for this contest. Submit your log in ADIF or Cabrillo with summary sheet, or use the MS Excel spreadsheet, and label your log “my call sign HF Digital” by Monday 26 August by e-mail to Find the rules on page 38 of the 2019 SARL Blue Book. The HF CW Contest will be run on Sunday 25 August.


The Contest Committee has received 27 logs for the HF Phone contest held on 4 August. The closing date for logs is midnight on Monday 12 August and they must be sent to The 80 m Club Sprint still holds the records of 51 log submissions. Can we get another 25 logs for the HF Phone contest?

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


The IARU Secretary, David Sumner, K1ZZ, has contributed to the latest edition of ITU News Magazine, published by the International Telecommunication Union. The issue is devoted to "terrestrial wireless communications," which includes the Amateur Radio and Amateur Satellite services. David’s article, "Self-training, intercommunication and technical investigations: the amateur service in the 21st Century," discusses Amateur Radio within the context of a global network of experimenters and communicators who, in his words, "expand the body of human knowledge and technical skills that are essential to development and offer a resource that can literally save lives when natural disasters disrupt normal communications channels.”

"Amateur licensees are grateful that ITU member-states continue to recognize the benefits of providing direct access to the radio spectrum to qualified individuals," said David. The International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) is an ITU sector member. He points out that access to frequency bands "spaced throughout the radio spectrum" is critical to Amateur Radio's future. He notes that the initial pattern of amateur allocations dates back to 1927 and the International Radiotelegraph Conference. Allocations have been expanded at subsequent conferences, most recently at World Radiocommunication Conference 2015 (WRC-15), when amateur radio obtained a tiny secondary band near 5,3 MHz. An earlier WRC was responsible for the Amateur Service's two lowest-frequency allocations, 135.7 - 137.8 kHz and 472 - 479 kHz. The 1979 World Administrative Radio Conference (WARC) extended terrestrial allocations above 40 GHz to include amateur allocations.

"If a future World Radiocommunication Conference extends allocations above 275 GHz, adequate provisions for amateur experimentation should be made," David observed.
The first item on the agenda for WRC-19, which takes place this spring in Egypt, calls on delegates to consider an allocation at 50 MHz to the Amateur Service in ITU Region 1 (Europe, Africa, and the Middle East) that aligns with existing allocations in Regions 2 and 3.
David notes that ITU "plays an essential role" in keeping the spectrum clear of unwanted interference and emissions, an effort he said is "especially vital to the Amateur Service, which uses sensitive receivers to compensate for practical and regulatory limitations on antennas and transmitter power levels."

Dave Sumner also pointed to the role radio amateurs can play in developing and refining communication protocols, including digital techniques, to improve weak-signal performance. He noted that Joseph Taylor, K1JT, a code developer of such digital modes as FT8, FT4, and JT65, received an ITU Gold Medal in recognition of his outstanding contributions to radiocommunication. As David explained, the IARU - a federation of more than 140 Member Societies - represents the interests of radio amateurs around the world before ITU. IARU's contribution to the work of ITU began in 1932 with its admission to participate in the work of the International Radiocommmunication Consultative Committee (CCIR). IARU is a member of the ITU Radiocommunication and Development sectors. "The IARU is proud to be an active member of the ITU community," Dave Sumner said.
(ARRL Letter)


Hannes Coetzee, ZS6BZP, reports that the solar activity is expected to remain at low levels. There is currently only a single, tiny sunspot visible, but no flaring is expected. If you want to do your own frequency predictions, the expected effective sunspot number for the week will be around one. The 18 to 30 m bands may provide some DX fun. Please visit the website for further information including a daily as well as a 7 day propagation report.

Finally, a Diary of some upcoming events:

11 to 17 August – the 2019 YOTA Summer Camp in Bulgaria
12 Aug – International Youth Day and closing date for HF Phone logs
13 August – the maximum of the Perseid Meteor Shower
17 August – the closing date for YL Sprint logs
17 and 18 August – the International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend
18 August – the SARL HF Digital Contest and the closing date for Youth Sprint logs
25 August – the SARL HF CW Contest
26 August – the closing date for HF Digital logs
2 Sept – the closing date for HF CW logs

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

Clarissa Clarke, ZS6LIS and Alastair Skudder, ZS6S are representing the South African youth at the 2019 YOTA Summer Camp near Sofia in Bulgaria. The 2019 YOTA event starts today 11 August and runs to Saturday 17 August. News and information about the Summer Camp will be published on

This concludes our bulletin for this morning.

Clubs and individuals are invited to submit news items of interest to radio amateurs and shortwave listeners, in both English and Afrikaans if possible, 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. A rebroadcast by Andy, ZS6ADY can be heard on Monday evenings at 19:30 Central African Time on 3 620 kHz. We welcome your signal reports, comments and suggestions; please send these by e-mail to

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.

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Last modified: 14 April 2003