ICOM IC-7610 “Contest Grade” SDR Transceiver introduction

Recently ICOM UK were able to experience  a pre-production sample of the new IC-7610 HF/50MHz SDR transceiver and took the chance to  produce a short introduction video giving their first impressions.

The video classes the transceiver as “contest grade” and demonstrates that it has a significant number of additional features compared to the widely acclaimed and significantly cheaper IC-7300, including digital front end selectivity, dual receivers, multiple antenna sockets and inbuilt server.

EANET Sprint Contest Nov 5 2017 0800 to 1200 utc

Devoted to the “Radio Clubs of the World” the 2017 EANET Sprint takes place on November 5 from 08:00 to 12:00 UTC.

In just four hours you have the chance to win original and funny prizes that you can share with your mate or friends: hotels, restaurants, wellness or adventures.

Moreover, you will have the opportunity to contact those radio clubs you still needed to complete the EANET Award.

EANET Sprint Contest 2017 – Radio Clubs of the World Award

As a tribute to all associations and Radio Clubs of the World, key elements in maintaining the spirit of amateur radio, the EA Digital Federation (FEDI-EA), with the support of the European Radio Amateurs’ Organization (EURAO) , established in 2008 the EANET Award, of international scope and permanent duration.

This Contest is intended to complement that Award with an specific activity, fun and entertaining, with a certain degree of competitiveness, necessary to keep the ability to operate in adverse circumstances.

Contest Rules

  1. Participants: Any radio amateur and radio club who desire can participate in EANET® Sprint Contest, with no discrimination of nationality nor association membership.
  2. Purpose: To contact as many stations as possible, around the world, participating in this Contest.
  3. Bands and modes: Any frequency and mode authorized for amateur service, including satellites.
  4. Period: Valid contacts are those done from 08:00 to 12:00 UTC of November the 5th of 2017.
  5. Categories: Two main categories of participants will be established: radio amateurs and radio clubs, according to if the holder of the callsign is an individual or an association.In its turn, these categories could be divided in two subcategories: National and International, depending on if the participant’s station is in Spain or in another country.In the case of radio clubs, besides, also two subcategories will be considered: members and friends, depending on their relationship with FEDI-EA and/or EURAO.
  6. Punctuation: Each contact done, and confirmed, will have a value in points depending on the kind of correspondent:
    • member radio club: 5 points
    • friend radio club: 3 points
    • radio amateur: 1 point.

    Only ONE contact between a participant and another specific one will be considered, so repetitions are worth zero additional points.

    For both, radio amateurs and radio clubs, only the amount of points received will be taken into account, ie the QSOs actually confirmed by the correspondents lists.

    As multipliers, the number of different contacted countries and continents will be used, the final score will be the outcome of the formula:

    Points x Countries x Continents.
    In order to encode the location of each station, standard ISO 3166-1 alpha-3 is taken into consideration for the country and one of the following abbreviations for the continent: AF, AN, AS, EU, NA, OC or SA. Or what is the same, the hierarchical address of the closest packet radio BBS.
  7. Call: “CQ EANET Sprint Contest“.
  8. Lists: To validate contacts, participants should send their log in Cabrillo or ADIF format to: eanet-sprint@fediea.org, within two weeks of the contest.The subject must contain: “EANET Sprint log of XXXXXX”, where XXXXXX is the callsign used during the contest. The attached log file should be named “XXXXXX.log” or “XXXXXX.adi”, replacing, if applicable, any “/” (bar) with “-” (dash).The body of the message will show: full name or corporate name, category in which it participates (radio amateur/radio club), preferred language.
  9. Prizes: For the first, second and third finishers in each category there will be the following packs of incentive:
    1. Weekend Hotel
    2. Restaurant
    3. Wellness or Adventure (spa, rafting, …)

    All the stations with at least 25% of the scoring champion in its category will get Certificate of participation.

  10. Registrations: Sending lists of participation shall be deemed registration for this Contest, assuming full acceptance of its conditions.
  11. Unforeseen: Any circumstance not covered in these rules shall be settled by the Organization of the Contest and its decision is final.

Explanatory notes

  • Unlike the EANET Award, this Contest is not based on eQSL for contact verification, but on the lists received from the participants themselves.
  • Note that, for the consideration of country, DXCC is not taken into account, but the geo-political definition of a territory in accordance with standard ISO 3166.
  • Do not forget to express log time in UTC. Otherwise, the software may consider some contacts invalid.
  • Alternatively, those who can not provide their log in ADIF or Cabrillo format, may do so using this Excel spreadsheet. Special attention must be given to the time field that should be 4 numbers but formatted as text.
  • Those associations that have not club station callsign assigned, but wish to participate in radio club category, may do so with a temporary callsign authorized by their PTT. The Organization reserves the right to request copies of relevant documents for verification.

RadFxSat Fox-1B FM Satellite Set to Launch November 10th

The next AMSAT Fox-1 satellite, RadFxSat (Fox-1B), is scheduled to
launch on November 10 at 0947 UTC. RadFxSat (Fox-1B), which will
carry a 435/145 MHz FM transponder, is one of four CubeSats making
up the NASA ELaNa XIV mission, riding as secondary payloads aboard
the Joint Polar Satellite System-1 (JPSS-1) mission. JPSS-1 will
launch on a Delta II vehicle from Vandenberg Air Force Base,
California.

Information on ElaNa can be found at,
https://www.nasa.gov/content/about-elana .

RadFxSat is a partnership with Vanderbilt University Institute for
Space and Defense Electronics (ISDE) and hosts four payloads for the
study of radiation effects on commercial off-the-shelf components.
It will carry a Fox-1 style FM U/V repeater with an uplink on
435.250 MHz (67.0 Hz CTCSS) and a downlink on 145.960 MHz. Satellite
and experiment telemetry will be downlinked via the DUV subaudible
telemetry stream, which can be decoded using FoxTelem software.

The FoxTelem software can be downloaded from,
https://www.amsat.org/foxtelem-software-for-windows-mac-linux/ .

Spanish Geodesic Vertices Diploma

The Radio Club Henares operates the Geodesic Vertices Diploma of Spain, which has similarities to both the Worked all Britain Trig Point Award and to SOTA. Information about the award (in Spanish) can be found of the Radio Club Henares website (unfortunately this does not appear to interact very well with the online translation systems)
The geodesic vertex are usually represented by a cylinder 120 cm high, mounted on a concrete pedestal, and painted white (instead of cylinders, they can also be represented by prismatic signals). The signal is used to place topographic instruments on the cylinder to make measurements. In additon, from each signal other geodesic vertices can be seen, which is why they are always placed in high locations, clear of obstructions and with ample vision of the surrounding landscape.
The geodesic vertices are classified in categories of 1st, 2nd and 3rd order. The network of 1st order has its vertices separated by 40 km. The second order is separated by about 20 km. The third order is between 4 and 5 km. The 1st order network is the one with the highest precision.
In order to protect and maintain the geodetic vertices, the “Geodesic and Geophysical Signals Act” has been in force since the 1970s. This law entrusts custody of signals to mayors and municipalities, not only in but also the prevention of activities that could hinder their use, or the construction in the surroundings that could create screens for the work of surveyors, cartographers and geologists.
Recently, the National Geographic Institute has launched the REGENTE network, acronym of National Geodetic Network for Space Techniques, which aims to establish a network of very high precision throughout Spain. This new network is a mesh of points that were already geodesic vertices of the first order, and have been chosen so that in each sheet of the National Topographic Map at scale 1: 50000 there is a single REGENT, that is, one by every 500 square kilometers. The application of this network will be to provide effective help to users of measurement techniques by GPS systems.
A list of Vertices locations can be found at http://www.radioclubhenares.org/dvge/utilidades/
The Geodesic Vertices Diploma of Spain operates according to the following rules:
  1. Participation in this diploma, supposes the full acceptance of these rules.
  2. The present Diploma DVGE or Diploma Geodesic Vertices of Spain, will have effect and validity from 1st November 2006.
  3. The Diploma will be issued in four categories: Mixed, CW, MGM (digital modes) and QRP.
  4. Contacts made from fixed, portable and mobile stations will be valid. In no case will the stations in maritime or aeronautical mobile, nor those made through any type of repeater will be valid. Communications made through “bridge stations” or third parties, or fictitious communications with stations that are not present will not be tolerated. Operators will adhere to the IARU band plans.
  5. Location references will be assigned by the initials VG followed by the letter of the province plus the assigned reference number
  6. To obtain the diploma, the requesting station must contact a minimum of 100 different references. Listeners will be able to obtain the diploma, sending a list to dvge@radioclubhenares.org with at least 100 activations, detailing a minimum of 3 QSOs heard of each activation.
    Activators have the possibility of obtaining a diploma, within three categories: Bronze, Silver and Gold for having activated, respectively 25, 75 and 150 different references.
    The diplomas in PDF format, are free, and can be downloaded from the following link: http://www.radioclubhenares.org/dvge/solicitar-diploma-dvge-en-pdf/
    The remaining prizes have a cost to be paid by the applicant. See section of the web “Request Awards” http://www.radioclubhenares.org/dvge/solicitar-dvge/
  7. In the case of registering contacts with a following contact in either QRO and QRP, only the last registered will be validated. That is, only one contact will be validated in QRO or QRP, but not both.
  8. In case of errors in the log, only the manager of the activity can request corrections of the LOG.
    If it is a correction of callsign, you must indicate: the date of the activity, the reference activated, the call sign used during the call, band and mode, as well as the correspondent’s erroneous call sign and the correct one. If it were an inclusion in the log, the maximum term is two months from the date of the activity.
  9. To certify an operation as valid, the following obligatory requirements must be met:
    ● The antennas used should be located no further than 200 meters from the Geodesic Vertex worked.
    ● The activator must be on the air for at least 1 hour or perform a minimum of 100 QSO
    ● The activator mus go to the Radio Club Henares website (www.radioclubhenares.org/dvge/validar-activity-dvge/), within a maximum period of 10 days from the activity and:
    ○ Upload the log of the operation in ADIF format. The log should indicate the actual time of each contact, expressed in UTC. The operators of the activity can be added at the end of the activity, so that the reference from which they are transmitting can be qualified for the diploma.
    ○ Upload one or several photographs of the activation, where you can see, without a doubt:
    ■ The Geodesic Vertex. No reference will be valid, and therefore invalidated activities performed from it, in which the Vertex signal is not present or destroyed. At least one of the two parts, or the base or the cylinder, must be present. However, sending the photograph may be exempted in cases where, in the IGN’s file, it is CLEARLY indicated, that the landmark is in a non-accessible location, because it is at the top of a building. The location of the landmark within a private estate, will not exempt the presentation of this photograph
    ■ Geodesic vertex and radio and / or antenna equipment with which it is transmitted. In case it is not possible, a video will be provided, in which, without cuts, you can see the vertex and the equipment, or georeferenced photographs in which the real situation of the operators can be verified.
    ■ In the case of activities with several operators, photographs or videos should also be sent in which all the operators are seen

    It is not permitted to include photographs or videos of the activities, whose content has a marked political or religious character. Neither are photographs allowed that may be considered of bad taste or disrespect to third parties.
    Link to  Manual for,uploading logs, photos and validate DVGE activities0

  10. Each expeditionary can only participate in the activation of a maximum of two references per day, with an interval of 2 hours between the end of the first operation and the beginning of the second and regardless of the indicative used.
  11. The organisation has created a section on the diploma website where all the expeditionaries can announce operations that they plan to carry out. Activities may not be announced more than 15 DAYS in advance. Although the announcement is voluntary, we strongly urge activators to announce their activities in advance to avoid, as much as possible, several activators trying to perform the same activity simultaneously. The advertisement, provided that it is made at least 24 hours in advance, will ensure that, from the publication of the announcement and until the completion of the announced activity, no one else can activate such a reference. Click here to announce your activation.
  12. Exemplary conduct of all amateurs participating in this diploma is expected. This diploma is governed by the Code of Conduct of the DXista
  13. The knowledge of intentionally irregular practices and / or ethically inappropriate behavior in any aspect of participation in this diploma, the irregular use of activity announcements, such as any threat against the diploma committee, as well as in the omission of compliance with the current regulation, will lead to open a file with all the evidence to be processed and resolved by the DVGE Vocalía del Diploma.
  14. The Activation Manager accepts and expressly authorises all documents (including photographs and videos) submitted, to be displayed on the Radio Club Henares website.
  15. Any question not contemplated in the rules, or of different interpretations, will be debated by the Vocalía del Diploma DVGE, with any decisions taken being unappealable.
  16. For any doubt, query or claim use  the email address: dvge@radioclubhenares.org
D.V.G.E. Geodesic Vertices Diploma of Spain
Radio Club Henares, EA4RCH
Post Office: 69
28830 S. Fernando de Henares – Madrid

Contest Loggers for the Scottish DX Contest

The Scottish DX Contest is now supported by

The organisers will be working with ​the compilers of other contest logging packages for the 2018 contest.

The Scottish DX Contest is the only dedicated Amateur Radio competition with Scotland at the forefront and the 1st SDXC will take place over the weekend 22-23 July 2017.  The Goal is to make contact with as many DXCC and Scottish Council regions as possible.

Full details about SDXC can be found here and the rules can be found here.

IQ6NE Special Event from Martinsicuro Fishing Museum

IQ6NE will operate from the Martinsicuro Fishing Museum on the 14th, 15th, 16th July and 4th, 5th 6th August.  The station will operate on both SSB and CW and CW frequencies have been advised as between 7020.0 and 7025.0 kHz and on 14052.0 kHz

Inbetween the two three-day activations, on the seafront of the same town on 23rd July there will be the 7th Exhibition of Vintage Radio.

Photographs of the Fisheries Museum can be found here.

 

About

EURAO Party On The Air – Watching SSTV – 17 & 18 June

The European Radio Amateurs’ Organization has announced a new party on the air, this time with the motto: “watching SSTV“. This is not a contest, it is just a radio meeting with a few simple recommended ‘rules’.

Purpose: SSTV (Slow Scan TeleVision) is not a new mode, but it is incredibly fun, even as a SWL.

Date & time: June 17th and 18th, 2017, Saturday and Sunday, 00:00-24:00 UTC.

Bands & modes: these are the recommended frequencies (+/-) for SSTV: 3.730, 7.058, 10.132, 14.230, 21.340, 28.680, 50.510 and 144.500 MHz.

Call: “CQ EURAO Party”.

Exchange: because this is a QSO event, not a contest, you can send/watch whatever you want, in any language, and for as long as you like. Here are some topic suggestions to get the conversation going: name, city, locator, weather, antennas, rigs, etc.

Also talk about QSL interchange. Tell the truth. Say “no, thanks” if you are not interested in QSL cards. But if you would like to have a memory of your contact, feel free to use our EuroBureauQSL (see below).

Logs: for statistic purposes only, we ask participants to submit their logs in ADIF format to party@eurao.org, where the filename should be your callsign (e.g. EA3RKF.ADI).

There will be no results or league tables, only statistical information about number of QSOs, countries, callsigns, OMs/YLs/Clubs, etc.

Certificate of Participation: for those sending the log and with a minimum of 10% QSOs confirmed.

EuroBureauQSL: you can use it to interchange QSLs even if you are not member. In this case, just send the QSL to the entry point in the country of contacted station.

Irish Amateur Station Licence Examination

In Ireland, the next Amateur Station Licence Examination will be held on Thursday 29th June 2017 in the ComReg offices in Dublin and at other centres if warranted by the numbers.

The closing date for applications to sit this examination is Monday 12th June 2017.

Places for examinations at the ComReg Offices are limited, they are allocated on a first come first served basis and are only reserved on receipt of an application form and the examination fee.

To reserve a place for the exam, candidates should forward a completed application form to …

Download the application form here.  The exam fee is €50 or €25 for full-time registered students, repeat candidates and those who are retired, unemployed or have a disability.

Payment may be made by credit card or PayPal using our online payments system.  Alternatively, Cheques or Money Orders payable to IRTS may be sent to the address above.

N.B.  A completed application form must be submitted and payment must be made before a candidate can reserve a place for the exam.

Intending candidates should note that anyone who fails to produce a photo identity on the day of the examination will not be allowed to sit the examination.  The photo ID can be a driving licence, a passport, an employment photo identity card or a student card containing a photograph.  A national Garda photo ID is also acceptable.

IARU Region 1 Youth Contesting Programme 2017

The IARU Region 1 Youth Contesting Program (YCP) continues in 2017. Youth members (under 26 years old) from IARU Region 1 member societies are invited to take part in a contest from   “Top-Gun” stations.

Applications are open: apply here.

These young Radio Amateurs will learn how to operate the contest station, improve their contest skills and will aim for the best results together as a team in a live contest.
A youngster will probably be coming for the first time to the host country and will get the chance to experience this country and share amateur radio knowledge with local youngsters.
Contest locations:conteststationsycp
  • ES5TV ARI International DX contest (6-7 May 2017)
  • 9A1A 9A1RBZ  CQ M International DX contest (13-14 May 2017)
  • 4O3A CQWW RTTY contest (23-24 September 2017)
  • Further contests may be added to stay tuned to the web pages listed below
Rules:
  • Young people aged under 26 years.
  • 1 or 2 participants per member society
  • All levels of contest experience are accepted. A participant should have at least basic knowledge about contesting and using a transceiver.
  • Member societies are asked to select young people who are  willing to experience a contest in a “big-gun”station, eager to learn more about amateur radio and who are aiming to get the best results out of the contest. A group of ±6 international youngsters and ±6 domestic youngsters will take part per contest.
  • Participants are asked to fund their own travel costs. All other costs will be covered.

Example Schedule for participants

When taking part in a 24 hours contest the participant will arrive on Friday and leave on Monday.
This is an example time schedule from 9A1A:

Friday: Arrive to host city (in this case Zagreb ). Social event in late afternoon and
evening hours. Sleeping  in one of Zagreb hostels.
Saturday – Sunday: Travel to contest location (in 9A1A case about 40 km). Introduction to the
contest location, its capacities and possibilities. Team will take part in the contest.
Team will sleep on Sunday/Monday night on contest location.
Monday: Travel to home.

Find out more at these web locations:-