Archive - November 2012

St Peter & St Paul Rocks – PT0S Update


6 meters: We had a number of good contacts with South America and Southern Europe, but no major openings so far. We continue monitoring 50.110 and call CQ regularly.

Low Bands: Finally we can hear on 160! Now that we can hear, we can hear the noise! Noise on the TX antenna is around S6. We have two receive antennas: a vertical Flag of about 4 m x 4 m and a horizontal Flag of 4m x 4m. We use a pre-selector and a ultra low noise pre-amp that makes these small loop antennas usable. All three antennas are being used on receive, sometimes one, sometimes the other one is better. We have found that around SR and SS the horizontal Flag is the best, but often, the best reception is on the vertical Flag. The horizontal Flag is now only 2 meters about ground, but it is on the edge of a 25 meter cliff facing north. Today we will try to raise to 10 m, which should improve its performance. Unfortunately, overall conditions last night were poor on 160, with a lot of QSB and hollow sounding signals. 80 m was poor in the evening but has recovered by the 2300 Z. 40 meters was excellent all night

VU3BPZ/P at Bharati Station

VU3BPZ P 2012

The members of 1st Winter Over Team at new and most advanced Indian Research Base “Bharati”, East Antarctica are now eagerly waiting for return voyage after successful completion of all assigned task.

The 13 members outgoing Team tested all the new installation, facilities, processes and technology under the leadership of Dr. Rupesh M. Das.

Apart from this, some scientific activities in the field of Geomagnetism and Space –weather were also conducted to investigate the response of Polar region space environment system during the adverse space weather phenomenon.

Also, the station is well connected with the world  wide HAM community and the credit goes to Antarctic and HAM veteran operator VU3BPZ.


Nasa & the Rubber Chicken ;-)

2012-11-10 074400

NASA has found a cure for a common phobia–the fear of asking “stupid” questions. It’s not a pill.  No therapy is required.  The cure is a rubber chicken !!

School kids and even their teachers can find themselves tongue-tied when they come face to face with an astronaut or astrophysicist but no-one minds talking to a chicken. NASA’s ambassador is named “Camilla” and is taking classrooms by storm.

Outfitted in her own personal spacesuit, Camilla travels far and wide to meet with kids at schools, science centers, and even sci-fi conventions.  She helps break the ice for astronauts and other space-celebrities when they meet the general public.

Total Eclipse of the Sun

2012-11-10 072505

People from around the world are converging on the coast of northeast Australia.  The attraction isn’t the Great Barrier Reef, just offshore, or the surrounding rain forests full of wildlife and exotic plants. They’re going to see a total eclipse of the sun.

On the morning of 14th Nov. (Australia time), about an hour after sunrise, the Moon will pass directly in front of the sun. Residents and visitors of the city of Cairns, also known as the Gateway to the Great Barrier Reef, will enjoy an early morning eclipse lasting 2 minutes with the sun only 14 degrees above the eastern horizon.

After totality is over, the moon’s shadow will sweep out across the South Pacific Ocean, tracing a line thousands of miles long across uninhabited waters, reaching almost, but not quite, the coast of South America. Back on the beach, scientists will be taking a first look at their data while tourists starting thinking about breakfast–and snorkeling in the reef.  For all concerned, it’s a great way to begin the day.

P29VCX Solomon Islands IOTA OC-135

2012-11-08 101659

Thanks Hans for the third new IOTA in the same amount of weeks whilst on your Papua New Guinea trip.

Emirau Island (OC-103) in the St. Matthias IOTA Group, Tatau Island (OC-099) in the Tabar IOTA Group and today, Buka Island (OC-135) in the Solomon Island IOTA Group. Lets hope the final one (OC-205) goes well in the coming days. Thankfully I have the Woodlark group confirmed from your trip back in 2009. That brings me to #547 IOTA (W).

i feel I must also thank the tuner for his prolonged activity on Hans’ frequency. You made such an impact it was truly amazing, I stayed for ages listening to you and it really did make my day, hope you sleep well you prat!


US Postal Service to phase out IRCs

2012-11-08 070108

If the US Postal Service (USPS) gets its way, it will no longer sell International Reply Coupons (IRCs) after 27th January 2013. According to the October edition of the Federal Register, there is not sufficient demand for the USPS to continue offering IRCs to customers; however, per the Universal Postal Union (UPU) regulations, the USPS must continue to exchange (redeem) IRCs that have been purchased in foreign countries and presented at USPS facilities. The current Nairobi model is valid through 31st December 2013. Comments on this proposed change will be accepted through 23rd November 2012.

IRCs provide foreign addressees with a prepaid means of responding to inquiries, solicitations or other types of communications — such as QSL cards — that are initiated by US senders. IRCs are exchangeable for postage stamps by postal administrations in member countries of the UPU. Each IRC is equivalent in value to the destination country’s minimum postage price for an unregistered airmail letter. The purchase price is in the US is currently $2.20 per IRC.

**Click this link for information on the UK’s plans for this subject.

LoTW still Off Line


Logbook Of The World (LOTW) is still off line today. The team are working on a solution but this message posted on their site this morning still shows its clearly a big headache for them ;

”The ARRL Logbook of the World Server is temporarily off-line. Service will be restored as soon as possible.

2012-11-06 1355Z: Logbook team is investigating the issue. Any problems –

Fingers crossed its not too serious and hope for a solution to it soonest.

Lenticular Clouds over WA

lenticular clouds

Are those UFOs near that mountain? No — they are multilayered lenticular clouds.

Moist air forced to flow upward around mountain tops can create lenticular clouds. Water droplets condense from moist air cooled below the dew point, and clouds are opaque groups of water droplets. Waves in the air that would normally be seen horizontally can then be seen vertically, by the different levels where clouds form.

On some days the city of Seattle, Washington, USA, is treated to an unusual sky show when lenticular clouds form near Mt. Rainier, a large mountain that looms just under 100 kilometers southeast of the city.

Superstorm Sandy from formation to fandfall

K1024 hurry

It was the largest hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean. The cost of its devastation is still unknown.

Pictured above is a movie of Superstorm Sandy taken by the Earth-orbiting GOES-13 satellite over eight days in late October as the hurricane formed, gained strength, advanced across the Caribbean, moved up the Atlantic Ocean along the US east coast, made an unusual turn west, made landfall in New Jersey, turned back to the north over Pennsylvania, and then broke up moving north-east over the northern US and Canada.Although Sandy’s winds were high and dangerous, perhaps even more damaging was the storm surge of water pushed onto land ahead of Sandy, a surge that flooded many coastal areas, streets, and parts of the New York City subway system.

Spanning over 1500 kilometers, US states as far west as Wisconsin experienced parts of the storm. Although Hurricane Sandy might have formed at any almost time, concerns are being raised that large storms like Sandy might become more common if water in the Atlantic continues to edge higher in power-enhancing surface temperature.

15Kw HF Amplifier


Homemade HF Amplifier 15KW (4CX10000D)……

Nice !!!!