VK9MT - The Mellish Reef Story


QSL-VK9MT-Single-4By Gene Spinelli K5GS:

Mellish Reef is an uninhabited coral atoll in the Coral Sea located approximately 1,150 kilometers north-northeast of Brisbane, Australia. The reef itself is approximately 10km long by 3km wide. However, the only useable land mass is “Herald’s Beacon”, a small sand cay which stands two meters above the high water line.

The surface is composed of crushed coral and pumice stone to a depth of about 12 inches (30 cm) over a coral base. The reef is home to thousands of surface nesting seabirds including boobies and petrels with an active population of hermit crabs. Surrounding the island are submerged coral heads which make navigation hazardous. The beauty of the white sand against the blue water and submerged coral is stunning. The sun reflecting off the water and coral produces some of the most beautiful colors in the spectrum. The coral heads required our boat to anchor about 500 meters offshore, we used a Zodiac to transit to and from the island, carefully navigating around the coral.

Read more: VK9MT - The Mellish Reef Story

How does the Qsl process actually work?

D7K 1996Of course I am a little biased on this subject as I am a QSL Manager for a number of Stations and therfore I am pretty passionate about the whole 'traditional' QSL Card system.

Part of the fun of amateur radio is collecting cards, called QSL cards, from other amateurs that you've msde contact with on the radio. Some people like to collect stamps form various parts of the world but hams collect QSLs. If you are also a stamp collector you will find that often a card comes from a distant country with an interesting stamp on the envelope.

Another reason for collecting QSL cards is to participate in the many certificate programs available to amateurs. Whether it's getting your DXCC, IOTA or WAS Awards, getting cards to confirm contacts with 100 or more DX countries etc, in most instances will need the cards to support your claim for the award.

Read more: How does the Qsl process actually work?

Asteroid 'will narrowly miss Earth'......

BEASTA newly discovered near-Earth asteroid "2014 HQ124" now dubbed "The Beast" will make its closest approach to the Earth on June 8, 2014. Just before 06:00 UTC "The Beast" will fly-by our planet at a close but safe distance of 0.0084 AU (3.3 LD, 1.25 million km).

2014 HQ124 is on the list of Potentially Hazardous Asteroids (PHA). An asteroid is considered a PHA if its minimum orbit intersection distance with respect to Earth is less than 0.05 AU (7.5 million km, 4.6 million miles, approximately 19.5 LD) and its diameter is at least 100 to 150 meters (330 to 490 ft).

This is big enough to cause regional devastation to human settlements unprecedented in human history in the case of a land impact, or a major tsunami in the case of an ocean impact. NEOWISE data estimates that there are 4,700 ± 1,500 potentially hazardous asteroids with a diameter greater than 100 meters. Asteroids larger than 35 meters across can pose a threat to a town or city.

According to JPL, asteroid 2014 HQ124 has an estimated diameter of 320 m. It will fly-by Earth at the speed of 14.5 km/s.

Formation of a Supercell

CapturestormPictured is a time-lapse video taken last Sunday detailing the formation of one such violent supercell in eastern Wyoming, USA. Starting as part of a large and dark thunderstorm complex, the supercell comes together along with a large rotating updraft of air known as a mesocyclone.

During the middle part of the video, the kilometer-wide supercell can be seen swirling ominously with a nearly flat bottom. Toward the end of the video, another swirling supercell cloud forms but then quickly dissipates.

Click image to see the movie.

Latest Bureau Mailing...

D7K 2001QSL cards have been posted to all World Bureaus, Monday June 2nd 2014. 


This mailing is a joint mailing between M0OXO Charles and M0URX Tim
I would very much appreciate feedback from you when the QSL cards start arriving at World Bureaus. This Bureau mailing includes VK9MT ZD8UW & 3B9FR.


Total amount of QSL cards 11,146
Total Weight 37.5 kg

Total Cost £227.78

per kg £6.07
Average postage cost  2p per QSL card.


For a detailed breakdown click the green ''read more'' button here.

Read more: Latest Bureau Mailing...

Huge CME footage

K800 sunRare footage of an eruption of solar material surging off the sun has been captured by Nasa.

A coronal mass ejection (CME) happens when huge clouds of superheated particles are emitted from the sun's corona - the outermost and hottest layer - and can reach speeds exceeding one million miles per hour.

The CME, captured on the 9th May was the first seen by Nasa's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph, or IRIS.

To capture the phenomenon, the IRIS must be pointed at the sun a day ahead of time and involves a degree of luck, according to Nasa.

The field of view seen in the footage is about five Earth's wide and about seven and a half Earth's tall.

Click image to see movie.

TO4C & VK2/G7VJR cards mailed...

g7vjrQsl Cards for VK2/G7VJR (OC-001) and TO4C (NA-007) arrived this morning and all have been processed. Direct cards will be mailed this week and bureau cards first week in June with my next batch.

Your Qsl Cards are NOT required so please do not send them via the Bureau.

The fastest way to receive any Qsl Card I manage is to request them via M0OXO OQRS


ZM90DX - 50K Qso's

131125qslsampleZM90DX is a special event station celebrating 90 years of DX in ZL.

Great news from the team in that they have now passed the 50,000 qso mark and still have around 6 months of the event still to run.

''1923 and 1924 marked the zenith of long distance communication records and which culminated on the 18th of October 1924 with the First Trans-Global radio contact. Between 0615 and 0730 UTC Frank Bell (a sheep farmer) Z4AA (ZL4AA) in Shag Valley Otago New Zealand and Cecil Goyder (an 18 year old student) at Mill Hill School in London using the school callsign G2SZ communicated on the 90 metre band''.

Thanks to all that have supported and worked the station so far.

A beautiful Award is available for contacts wmade with ZM90DX and the special Callsign will run until October 31, 2014, See their website for more information http://www.zm90dx.com/.

Jupiter's Red Spot gets smaller


jupiterJupiter's trademark Great Red Spot - a swirling anti-cyclonic storm larger than Earth -- has shrunk to its smallest size ever measured.

Recent NASA Hubble Space Telescope observations confirm the Great Red Spot now is approximately 10,250 miles across, less than half the size of some historical measurements. Astronomers have followed this downsizing since the 1930s.

Historic observations as far back as the late 1800s gauged the storm to be as large as 25,500 miles on its long axis.  NASA Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 flybys of Jupiter in 1979 measured it to be 14,500 miles across. In 1995, a Hubble photo showed the long axis of the spot at an estimated 13,020 miles across. And in a 2009 photo, it was measured at 11,130 miles across.

NASA's Juno spacecraft is hurtling toward Jupiter now, due to reach the giant planet in July 2016.  Point-blank examination by Juno's instruments will undoubtedly help unravel the mystery.



FO 2 001Thanks to Yoshi JJ8DEN for 3 IOTA confirmations received yesterday.

FO/KH0PR IOTA Tour in 2013 gave me PukaPuka Atoll (OC-062), Napuka Atoll (OC-094) and Reao Atoll (OC-238), all 3 party of the islands that make up the Tuamotu Islands in French Polynesia.

Thanks Yoshi-San!

FO 1 001

DXCC Milestone (LOTW)


A new milestone achieved this morning when I did my latest upload to Logbook of the World (LOTW).


I now have 300 DXCC (Mixed) confirmed with 318 DXCC (Mixed) worked. Mode breakdowns are;

DXCC Mixed (All time) 321 (W) 303 (C)

DXCC Mixed (Current) 318 (W) 300 (C)

DXCC SSB (Current) 318 (W) 295 (C)

DXCC CW (Current)  293 (W) 253 (C)

DXCC RTTY (Current) 186 (W) 156 (C)

All the above are Statistics for LOTW only.

New Sunspots

eruptHuge Solar Plasma eruption in progress right now! Here it is shown with Earth to scale.

The sunspot number is increasing this week as a crowd of dark cores emerges over the sun's eastern limb.

K800 newspots anim

MDXC Qsl Service

S21ZBC 001Thanks to the Mediterranean DX Club (MDXC) for their great Qsl Service.

Today I received confirmations from T33A (Banaba), S21ZBB/S21ZBC (Bangladesh), W8A (American Samoa) and also XR0ZR (Juan Fernandez).

These four cards alone confirmed 26 Band Slots and one all time new DXCC.

Check out the MDXC on this link http://www.mdxc.org/



g7vjrMichael G7VJR will be visiting Australia in May 2014.

He will be qrv occasionally as VK2/G7VJR. Qsl Cards have been ordered and will arrive in due course. They will be available via M0OXO.

Your Qsl Cards are NOT required so please do not send them via the Bureau.

The fastest way to receive any Qsl Card I manage is to request them via M0OXO OQRS

Earth-size Planet found in the 'Habitable Zone'


splash2Using NASA's Kepler Space Telescope, astronomers have discovered the first Earth-size planet orbiting in the "habitable zone" of another star. The planet, named "Kepler-186f" orbits an M dwarf, or red dwarf, a class of stars that makes up 70 percent of the stars in the Milky Way galaxy. The discovery of Kepler-186f confirms that planets the size of Earth exist in the habitable zone of stars other than our sun.

The "habitable zone" is defined as the range of distances from a star where liquid water might pool on the surface of an orbiting planet. While planets have previously been found in the habitable zone, the previous finds are all at least 40 percent larger in size than Earth and understanding their makeup is challenging. Kepler-186f is more reminiscent of Earth.

The artist's concept depicts Kepler-186f , the first validated Earth-size planet to orbit a distant star in the habitable zone.

Read more: Earth-size Planet found in the 'Habitable Zone'

3B9FR Cards mailed....

3B9FRI am pleased to say that 320 3B9FR Qsl Cards went in the mail a few days ago in response to those of you that requested them via M0OXO OQRS.

Yesterday I received a box of Direct Qsl requests that had been forewarded to Berti HB9SLO (previous Qsl manager).

All of those requests (approx 120) are currently being processed and will hit the mail on Friday 18th April using my Priority Air Mail Service, For the people that sent mail via HB9SLO I would like to offer my thanks for your patience. The handing over process from HB9SLO to M0OXO took around two weeks to complete but now ALL qsl requests received for Robert 3B9FR have all been completed with none left pending. If you havent received your Direct card in the next 7 to 10 days then please email me and I will check the log and records here.

I also now have full Logs for 3B9FR up to and including 15th April 2014 so Log checks are welcome via my email address (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ).

Nice feedback

131125qslsampleI am used to the odd complaint, thankfully few and far between but less often people now and again take time to thanks me for the Qsl service which is really pleasing to hear. Here is one such message ;


Today I received the QSL card confirming my contact with ZM90DX 22 Mar 14.  I was amazed at how quickly it came.

I just want to tell you that I am most impressed with the quality of the correspondence and the speed with which you handled the transaction.

Thank you and continued good luck with the QSL-managing business. Whoever has you as their manager are lucky indeed.

Best 73.John D  VE3CSJ

The Colonies''

Thanks for the flowers John, 73.......

TO4C - Martinique QRV

MartinRich now qrv from the Island of Martinique until 1st April 2014.

TO4C is his Callsign on Martinique (IOTA NA-107) and he will take part in the CQ WPX DX Contest.

QSL will be via M0OXO OQRS.

The fastest way to receive any Qsl Card I manage is to request them via M0OXO OQRS.


3B9FR - IOTA AF-017

3B9FRRobert 3B9FR has joined M0OXO Qsl service.

3B9FR is Rodrigues Island IOTA AF-017 and part of the Republic of Mauritius.

I am in the process of handing over from Robert's previous manager so processing of cards will take a few weeks to complete. new Qsl Cards have been ordered and will arrive in around 2 to 3 weeks.

Thanks to Berti HB9SLO for his past work on Roberts behalf, it was most appreciated.

M0OXO OQRS is now open for 3B9FR. Your Qsl cards are NOT required, please DO NOT send them by Bureau.

The fastest way to receive any Qsl Card I manage is to request them via M0OXO OQRS.

MX0SSW - New Hexbeam by MW0JZE

WP 20140322 006MX0SSW - Silcoates School in Wakefield, West Yorkshire yesterday took possession of theire new 6 Band Broadband Hexbeam courtesy of Ant MW0JZE. http://www.g3txq-hexbeam.com/

The Hexbeam was mounted on the roof of the School about 40 feet above ground, the School itself being pretty high above sea level in the local area.

Listen out for the kids (10 - 17 years of age) as they will be QRV most days on HF, Digital and SSB during their School days, lunch times and breaks.

Supervised by their Teacher, Nigel Wears M0NJW, the Hexbeam will make a great addition to their School Radio Shack and help them progress further through the hobby.

ZM90DX - QSL stats

131125qslsampleHaving broke the 40,000 Qso mark several weeks ago now, here are a few statistics for the

ZM90DX Qsl work;

Qsl Cards sent - 3049
Qsl Cards rxd - 723 (and recycled)
Qsl return rate - 24%
Qsl Cards are available via M0OXO OQRS
Thursday the 5th. Web Design and Web Hosting.
Copyright 2014