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Default Amateur Radio Newsline(tm) Report 1668 - July 31 2009

Amateur Radio Newsline(tm) Report 1668 - July 31 2009

Amateur Radio Newsline report number 1668 with a release date of
Friday, July 31st, 2009 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a Q-S-T. California hams assist in a mountain rescue.
We have the sound from the scene. Also, a new radio telemetry system
could be a big challenge to BPL for power grid control, another
petition to ban closed and private repeaters is filed with the FCC and
Johannes Kepler is honored with his own spaceship. Who was Johannes
Kepler you ask? Find out on Amateur Radio Newsline(tm) report number
1668 coming your way right now.

(Billboard Cart Here)



A pair of Southern California hams have helped to coordinate a mountain
rescue. This after one received a report from the other over a 2 meter
repeater that a hiker had been injured on one of the highest peaks in
the San Gabriel Mountain range.

Rich Lippucci, KI6RRQ, was monitoring the Catalina Amateur Radio
Association repeater from his home in the city of Vista on Saturday,
July 11th . That's when he heard a station ask if there was anyone
monitoring. He responded and learned that the caller, Kirk Gustafson,
KE6MTF, was on his handheld transceiver hiking around the Mt Baldy
area. He was about 2.5 miles off road at the San Antonio Ski Hut when
other hikers informed him that a woman was hurt up the trail in the
backcountry. They suspected she might have a broken ankle but were not
sure. They also had no cellphone service:


Rescue audio. Hear it in the audio version of this newscast
downloadable at


Using his wireline telephone, Lippucci called the local 911 emergency
number and was eventually connected to the San Bernardino County
Sheriff's dispatch center. He then worked with an operator only
identified as Chelsea and coordinated the rescue with the San
Bernardino Fire Department who sent a foot patrol to the area:


Rescue audio. Hear it in the audio version of this newscast
downloadable at


Meantime, the local sheriff's office dispatched a helicopter to meet
someone at the ski hut to take them to where the hiker was down.
Unfortunately, the chopper could not land in the rugged terrain.

In the meantime, the group of hikers had transported the injured woman
down the trail to the ski hut, stabilized her leg and determined it was
probably not broken. But they also realized that they could not carry
her out of the area due to the steepness of the trail. The dispatcher
told Lippucci that the helicopter would perform a skid rescue. That's
where a crew member suspends a basket from the helicopter the victim is
strapped in and pulled back up. It was not long before the helicopter
was getting ready:


Rescue audio. Hear it in the audio version of this newscast
downloadable at


At that point Gustafson relayed back that the rescue would likely
happen momentarily.


Rescue audio. Hear it in the audio version of this newscast
downloadable at


After about 15 minutes from arriving on scene the helicopter crew got
the victim airlifted out and on her way to treatment.

According to Lippucci both the 911 emergency dispatch and the Sheriff's
office accepted the ham radio emergency call without hesitation. The
San Bernardino Sheriff's office has had a long and very positive
relationship working with that county's radio amateurs. In fact,
Lippucci says that they used a ham radio operator to relay questions to
through him to Gustafson. This, in order to gain all the information
they wanted and needed to put assets on the emergency.

The rescue was truly a success for ham radio. Lippucci says that as a
CERT member, this was the very reason that got his radio license for,
in the first place. ( KR6AL)



Still with rescue radio news, word that the Kentucky Division of
Emergency Management and its Department of Military Affairs has invited
the states organized emergency communications groups to take part in a
statewide pandemic influenza exercise. One that is planned for August
3rd to the 7th.

According to the planners, the communications portion of the exercise
will begin each day at 8:00 A.M. and run until approximately 8:00 P.M.
Monday through Thursday and will end at 2:00 P.M. on Friday. One of
the goals is to use pre-identified 2 meter and 80 meter frequencies to
facilitate contact with all 120 counties in the Commonwealth. Some UHF
repeaters and Echolink equipped stations will also take part.

Planners say that to some degree the ham radio aspect of the exercise
will be like operating a week long net with a station in the
Commonwealth Emergency Operations Center used to pass traffic and log
check-ins. More information on this massive Kentucky emergency
planning exercise can be found at (KG4KBU



FM subcarriers on broadcast stations also called SCA channels could
challenge BPL in the area of power grid monitoring. Jerry Gaul,
KE7GGV, has the details:


B-P-L watch out. Here comes S-C-A. This, as e-Radio and Direct Energy
announce that they are partnering with manufacturers of smart grid
devices such as thermostats, in-home displays, load controls and
appliances to use broadcast RF as a way to monitor power consumption

Using FM subcarriers leased from radio stations, e-Radio transmits the
notifications to the home-based receivers across a municipality or
utility service area that results in significantly reduced peak energy
demand. The technology can also intervene on the consumer's behalf,
cycling off appliances for set periods of time during peak periods.

E-Radio and Direct Energy say that their Utility Message Channel allows
utilities, energy retailers or government agencies to send alerts,
messages and commands to smart grid-enabled devices and consumer
appliances. This is information that tells them to lower their energy
consumption and operate more efficiently.

The two partnering companies have conducted pilot tests in California,
Texas and Ontario, Canada. In Texas, Direct Energy's affiliate, CPL
Retail Energy, has launched a demand-response and energy efficiency
pilot program for residential customers. The pilot uses e-Radio-enabled
thermostats to achieve and measure peak period reductions.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Gerry Gaule, KE7GGV, in Albany,


Direct Energy has an agreement with e-Radio, which operates wireless
communications networks and makes FM receiver modules for "smart grid"
devices to partner in this energy saving project. (RW)



From the United States of America, We are the Amateur Radio Newsline,

heard on bulletin stations around the world including the KF4ADM
repeater serving Williamsburg Virginia.

(5 sec pause here)



Ham radio history is once again repeating itself. This as a Washington
D.C. area ham becomes the latest to say its time to outlaw all closed
and private repeaters and has asked the FCC for a rules change to
outlaw these type of systems. And in a recent interview with Hap
Holly, KC9RP, of the Rain Report, Murry Green, K3BEQ, of Cheverly,
Maryland, explained what he is asking the regulatory agency to do:


Green: "I've asked the FCC to change the rules to prohibit limiting
the use of frequencies used by closed repeaters directly or indirectly
except where a user blatantly violates the Commissions rules."


Green told Holly that he's taking this action because he believes that
the spectrum used by repeaters really belongs to all radio amateurs and
that the claim by closed repeaters that limiting access helps share the
financial burden has little merit:


Green: "Closed repeaters and its regulated frequency should be open to
all amateurs having the proper class of licensee and not on a pay for
use basis. Voluntary contributions work for the large majority of open
repeaters throughout the United States. It can work for closed
repeaters provided users are given that opportunity."


Green also appears to see closed and private repeaters as both
discriminatory and a violation of the FCC's rules:


Green: "Its not a closed society. Its not an elitist group. You
simply can't discriminate. And also it violates the FCC rules which
state that frequencies are to be regulated effectively and used
effectively. If you have an elitist group that's discriminating on who
can come in, its wrong. It's simply wrong. Its not amateur radio."


Green is not the first ham to file a rules change request asking the
FCC to outlaw closed and private repeaters. Since Newsline began in
1977 we have reported on at least 6 similar petitions, and maybe more.
All of these were denied for the same reasons. First is that the FCC
does not recognize the terms open, closed and private in regard to
repeaters. To the FCC, a repeater is a repeater and the words open,
closed and private are nothing more than ham radio terms that you will
not find in the rules.

Also, as recently as last May's Dayton Hamvention FCC Forum, the
agency's rules man, Bill Cross, W3TN, reiterated the FCC long standing
position that is not in any way discriminatory for a repeater owner
operator to be selective in whom he or she chooses to repeat:


Bill Cross, W3TN: "One of the common misunderstandings is that amateur
radio repeaters are not common carrier systems. There is no duty to
serve on a non-discriminatory basis.

"If you want to limit it (access to a repeater) to people in a DX club,
that's fine. If you want to limit it rush hour messages that are going
to be traffic related or mobiles get priority, that's fine.

"You put the repeater up. Its yours to run and (its) your obligation
to control it and limiting it is allowed."


At airtime, its not known if the FCC will assign a Rule Making
designation to the K3BEQ rules change request or simply dismiss it as
being non relevant based on past proceedings. After all, if the
regulatory agency does not even recognize the existence of closed and
private repeaters as separate and distinct entities, how can it act to
make a rule to make them go away. (ARNewsline(tm) with audio provided
by RAIN)



Malicious interference and other firms of on the air abuse are still
plaguing repeaters in London, England. Because of this at least one
system is considering some drastic action with support of government
regulators. Jeramy Boot, G4NJH, reports:


Repeater users in the London area will be aware that abuse continues to
mar the network with a minority making it unpleasant for those who
simply wish to enjoy the hobby. The East London 2m repeater, GB3EL,
has been suffering from abuse recently and the Keeper has instigated a
curfew between the 6pm and 6am to reduce the instances of abuse.

This action has proven effective in the past and the RSGB Emerging
Technologies Committee and Ofcom support the Keeper's actions. The
ETCC encourages proactive measures by all Keepers to manage their
repeaters in accordance with the terms of their NoVs. Users are
especially asked to consider their own actions and not to react when
abuse is heard, as this is just what abusers are hoping will happen.

Im Jeramy Boot and you are listening to the Amateur Radio Newsline.


The Term NOV used in that report stands for Notice of Variation to a UK
ham license that permits one to put up a repeater. Unlike the United
States where anyone install a temporary repeater to replace one that's
gone dark to fight user abuse, in the UK it's the national society that
holds all of the repeater operators licenses. An individual who
decides to put one up without it being licensed could wind up doing
some serious time in the old gray bar hotel. (RSGB)



The U.S. Senate has confirmed President Obama's nominations of Democrat
Mignon Clyburn, and Republican Meredith Attwell Baker, to the
remaining two seats on the Federal Communications Commission. Clyburn
is the daughter of House majority whip James Clyburn, and the former
publisher and editor of the Charleston weekly newspaper, the Coastal
Times. She currently serves on the South Carolina Public Service
Commission. Baker, the daughter of former Senate Majority Leader
Howard Baker, is a former Commerce Department official who oversaw the
$40 coupon program for converter boxes during the digital television
transition. Both were approved on Friday, July 24th (FCC) **


A product warning from the Consumer Products Safety Council. It says
that About 94,000 Kidde model PI2000 dual sensor smoke alarms, have
been recalled. This, because the agency says that an electrostatic
discharge can damage the unit, causing it not to warn consumers of a
fire. The recall includes the date codes 2008 Aug. 01 through 2009 May
04. The products were sold at retail, department, and hardware stores
and through electrical distributors nationwide from August 2008 through
May 2009. Details by Web at or
(CPSC Release)



Amateur radio is finding a receptive young audience among some
California school age youngsters. This, according to an article in the
Los Angeles Times by writer Bob Poole who says that teenagers in one
Los Angeles suburban middle school have been discovering shortwave
radio and getting their ham radio licenses

Thanks to science teacher Karl Beutel, KE6MAO, some 75 teenagers in
have already become licensed amateur radio operators and more will
likely become hams in the coming years. This as the course will
continued to be offered at the school.

Buetel said he was motivated to become a ham radio operator by the 1994
Northridge earthquake. You can read the LA Times story at,1740751.story
?trac k=rss (ARNewsline(tm))



The publisher of Passport to World Band Radio has told readers that the
future of the famed SWL guide is in "limbo." Acknowledging on the
Passport's Web site that "solid content" is essential to the success of
a publication, publisher Larry Magne cited what he termed as other
considerations as the reason behind the decision to possibly cease

According to the ARRL, Magne gave no exact reason for the decision, but
indicated that it reflects the decline in popularity of shortwave
listening, as well as the availability of shortwave schedules on the

Magne noted that Passport to World Band Radio, which just released its
25th edition this year, will continue to maintain the WorldScan
database and uphold all of its proprietary material. He says that this
should help allow for an orderly return to production, should
conditions allow. (ARRL)



The Oklahoma City DX club recently celebrated the peak summer 6 and 10
meter Sporadic E Season DX season by operating with the call W5E. Its
is now looking to expand the celebration in 2010 by asking clubs in
other call districts to reserve a W prefix and E suffix call for next

Club spokesman Graham Welch, WE5I, says that the W5E call has already
been reserved by him for July 2nd to the 11th of 2010. He is now
looking for clubs or individuals in each of the 1 to 4 and 6 through 0
call areas who are interested in reserving one of the remaining nine
such calls in a joint celebration of the 2010 peak of sporadic E
season. Graham says to contact him by e-mail to we5I (at)cox (dot) net
if your club or group is interested in taking part. (Oklahoma DX Club)



A group of scouts from Blue Springs Missouri Troop 58 are operating a
High Frequency station at the H. Roe Bartle Scout Reservation located
in Camp Osceola. The scouts will be on the air in pursuit of their
Radio Merit Badge through August 4th on 3.940 and 7.280 MHz using the
special call N-Zero-Z. They will also be looking to exchange QSL cards
via their Scoutmaster Michael Pratt, KB0EPY, whose address is good in
the callbook or on QRZ dot com. (KB0EPY)



This is ham radio news for today's radio amateur. From the United
States of America, We are the Amateur Radio Newsline with links to the
world from our only official website at and being
relayed by the volunteer services of the following radio amateur:

(5 sec pause here)



Take one part scouting. Add to it a high altitude ham radio balloon
launch and a contact with the International Space Station. Mix it all
together and you wind up with an event called Space Jam 3. Jack
Parker, W8ISH, has the details:


While the world was watching replays of the history making moon walk
last week, dozens of Illinois Boy Scouts were taking their first steps
toward space technology.

Space Jam 3 got off the ground last week with a high altitude balloon
launch in Rantoul, Illinois. Space Jam is sponsored by DePauw
University. It's purpose is to get Scouts into technology.

With assistance from the Vermillion County Amateur Radio Association,
they were able to launch a helium filled balloon and use the cross band
repeater for amateur radio contacts across the Midwest.

The longest radio contact occurred when the balloon reached the
99-thousand foot level. Two stations, one in Walbridge, Ohio the other
in Mexico, Missouri, completed a 470 mile QSO.

On the ground, Dave Cline KB9ZMF, said he thought 200 Boy Scouts were
on the radios throughout the Space Jam. They also worked on high tech
merit badges in Space Exploration, ,Aviation, Radio & Electronics and
on Nuclear Science Composite Materials

Talking with Astronaut Robert Thirsk, VA3CSA, onboard the International
Space Station, topped the weekend Space Jam activities.

Reporting for Amateur Radio Newsline, this is Jack Parker W8ISH.


Space Jam Four is already being planned for August of 2010. (W8ISH)



AMSAT-UK has announced a new amateur satellite project called FUNcube.
This is an educational single cubesat project with the goal of
educating young people about radio, space, physics and electronics.

FUNcube will support the educational science, technology, engineering,
and math curricula and at the same time provide an additional resource
for the Radio Society of Great Britain's GB4FUN Mobile Communications

The target audience consists of primary and secondary school pupils and
FUNcube will have a high power 145 MHz telemetry beacon that will
provide a strong signal for the pupils to easily receive. It will also
carry a UHF to VHF linear transponder that will have up to 1 watt and
which can be used by radio amateurs worldwide for SSB and CW

The FUNcube project has already received initial funding from the
United Kingdom based Radio Communications Foundation and is expected
be developed in collaboration with ISIS-Innovative Solutions in Space.



The long awaited South African Balloon Carrying Amateur Radio or BACAR
flight will take place on Saturday, August 8th. The lighter than air
craft will lift off Africa between 08:00 and 08:15 and with a
multi-payload which should be of interest to radio amateurs and
shortwave listeners around the globe.

The payload includes an APRS system operating on 144.800 MHz which will
be switched on 2 minutes before launch and allow APRS stations to
follow the flight. A 40 meter beacon will be operating on 7.022 MHz
transmitting telemetry information every one minute. The data will
include the inside and outside temperature and the pressure in

The callsign of the APRS transmitter will be ZS6SAT. A full commentary
of the launch activity to be broadcast on 7.082 MHz and streaming via
EchoLink and on the world wide web. Please visit
for more information on the flight. (Southgate)



Ham radio is growing in China. According to the Chinese Radio Sports
Association which oversees licensing for hobbyists in the world's most
populous country, some 90,000 of the worlds radio amateurs live in are
in that nation and the number has been steadily growing in recent
years. This, despite mobile phones and the Internet becoming
commonplace in nearly all of the country. (Published news report)



Meantime, the famed museum at London's Bletchley Park will be
celebrating the essential contribution of radio to the war efforts.
This, with the family event the weekend of August 1st and 2nd called
Wireless Waves. Various radio societies and other groups will
demonstrate a range of equipment from World War Two onwards. Groups
taking part include the Vintage and Military Amateur Radio Society,
Milton Keynes Amateur Radio Society, Bletchley Park Radio Society and a
World War Two replica German field radio station. Full details are at (GB2RS)



The WA1ZMS trans-Atlantic beacon operated by Brian Justin on 144.285
MHz is now running a 500 watt transmitter and giving the system a 7
kilowatt Effective Radiated Power signal beaming toward Europe. The
beacon is G-P-S locked and the antenna is made up of two stacked
5-element yagi's beaming at 60 degrees from grid locator FM07fm. More
about this system is on-line at



Turning to contest news, Saturday, August 1st is the European HF
Championship contest. This event runs from 1200 until 2359 U-T-C using
SSB and CW on all HF bands from 80 to 10 meters. The interesting
exchange being used this year is the last two digits of the year you
were licensed in addition to the obligatory signal report. An
interesting exchange indeed. (Via e-mail)



In DX, word that a multi-national operation from Swaziland will be on
the air through August 11th. They will sign 3DA0SS from the Hawane
Resort and a campsite near Manzini. Plans are to cover as many bands
and modes as possible, including PSK31, RTTY and CW. Operations will
be on or near to scout frequencies. QSLs should be sent via GI4FUM.

P49T and W3TEF portable P4 will activate P41USA over the anniversary
date of the USA attacks on September 11th, 2001. Listen for P41USA to
be active on all bands between September 8th and the 17th. Activity
will include the September VHF Contest. All QSLs go to W3TEF.

OY1CT was active from Streymoy in the Faroe Islands during the RSGB
IOTA Contest. If you work him QSL direct to OY1CT.

LA1BN and LA1LO will be operational on 50.155 MHz from grid square JO39
in the Norwegian mountains from August 10th to the 15th. QSL as
directed by the operators.

Lastly, JA6VDB and JE6AQP will be active slash 6 from Japan's Nozaki
Island, Ojika Island and Goto Island between August 8th to the 12th.
Their operation will be on 40 through 15 meters using CW and SSB. QSL
via their home callsigns, direct or via the bureau.

(Above from various DX news sources)



And finally this week, any ham who operates or tracks ham satellites is
well aware of the term Keplerian Elements. That's the mathematics
numbers used to point your antenna. Well in honor of the man who
developed them, Europe's next space freighter will be called Johannes
Kepler. This, in honor of the great 17th Century German scientist's
work. Frank Lusa, VK2FJL, has the rest of the story.


Johannes Kepler was the father of celestial mechanics. His three laws
describe planetary motion and allow scientists to predict how objects
will move through the solar system.

The Automated Transfer Vehicle is currently being assembled in Bremen
ready for its 2010 mission to resupply the International Space Station.

European Space Agency delegates agreed to the name at a recent meeting.
The first ATV was called Jules Verne after the French science fiction
writer and completed a flawless maiden mission last year. It
delivered more than five tones of supplies to the orbiting outpost
before dropping back to Earth in a controlled burn-up over the Pacific

The ATV is one of the most capable spacecraft ever developed in Europe.
After launch, the space truck can work out where it needs to go in
space, and then makes a fully automatic docking once it arrives at its


Another Kepler spacecraft is also about to make the headlines. The US
space agency has also used the Kepler name for its news planet hunting
telescope due for launch in August. (WIA News)



With thanks to Alan Labs, AMSAT, the ARRL, the CGC Communicator, CQ
Magazine, the FCC, the Ohio Penn DX Bulletin, Radio Netherlands, Rain,
the RSGB, the Southgate News and Australia's W-I-A News, that's all
from the Amateur Radio Newsline(tm). Our e-mail address is
. More information is available at Amateur
Radio Newsline's(tm) only official website located at You can also write to us or support us at Amateur
Radio Newsline(tm), P.O. Box 660937, Arcadia, California 91066.

For now, with Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, at the editors desk, I'm Jim
Davis, W2JKD, saying 73 and we thank you for listening.

Amateur Radio Newsline(tm) is Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.

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