Archive - March 2020

M0OXO Postage – Covid-19

Royal Mail has a page on the website updated for “International Incident Bulletins” this link will take you to the page so that you can see what restrictions are in your country and where delays may apply.

Updated 24/03/2014 – As air flights around the world reduce very significantly to avoid the spread of Covid-19. This has a knock on effect on a restriction of air freight available to send post around the world. International Post WILL be more expensive and will also experience delays as most flights are not available to carry mail. 

Thee below images (courtesy of Flightradar24) show the decreased capacity from February 26th to March 25:






This WILL affect outgoing mail from my service. In these uncertain times we are all worries about how things will continue so should you have a question about postage please drop me an email at any time.

OFCOM engineers shine a light on interference

OFCOM engineers shine a light on interferencecaused to Aircraft

23 March 2020

Ofcom’s spectrum assurance team recently solved a sky-high interference case that took more than a little detective work to crack.
The team were contacted by National Air Traffic Services to let them know that aircrafts flying in and out of Glasgow airport were being affected by interference when they were between 6,000 and 10,000 feet in the air.
The interference was affecting voice communications between the controllers on the ground and the aircraft. Whenever the aircraft were in the vicinity of the interference the crew would not hear any air traffic control messages as the signal was swamped by the noise of the interference.

Needle in a haystack

But what was causing the problem – and crucially, where was it? The next step was for the team to locate and identify the source of the interference.
However, due to the height of the aircraft (not to mention the speed of their flight!), the team described how identifying a potential cause would be like looking for a needle in a haystack.
Our spectrum engineering officers spoke to the National Air Traffic Services (NATS) in order to narrow down the search area.
They were able to create an ‘area of probability’ on a map, in which they could focus the search for the source. This was done by using flight-tracking software, which allowed them to make a note of where the aircraft were when they reported the issue – and this in turn helped to identify a corresponding location on the ground.
Following this discovery, the search turned into a ground-level investigation centred on a small town.
This monitoring involved using vehicle mounted receivers and driving the suspected area until the interference was heard. Once the team have located a location where the signal is strongest they then use hand held equipment to cover the remainder of the search area on foot. The team visited a number of properties that were adjacent to the property where they eventually located the source. After a search phase, the source of the interference was found to be a home. Specifically, the cause was four ‘vintage’ lightbulbs that the homeowner had recently bought online.

What’s that noise?

Due to the construction of the bulbs, they were found to be radiating a ‘noise’ when they were switched on that affected a wide range of spectrum, rather than just one frequency. The house was directly underneath the flightpath of the aircraft and therefore every time an aircraft passed and the bulbs were in use, the crew suffered the interference.
Unfortunately for the owner – but fortunately for the crew and passengers of flights in and out of Glasgow airport – the bulbs were removed from the sockets and checks with NATS and aircraft operators confirm that the area is now free of interference.
Now our spectrum enforcement team will follow up the case with the lightbulb suppliers, to make sure the bulbs aren’t sold to any more unwitting customers.

M0OXO Postage Covid-19

I have had several inquiries about how Covid-19 affects the delivery of your QSL cards. It is a fluid situation and after taking advice from Royal Mail i can inform you that posting from the UK is continuing as normal.
Nearly all mail is sorted by machine so is not touched by human hands. Large mailings are bagged from here and sent directly to London Heathrow Distribution Centre and the bags put on onward flights to the destination country.

Royal Mail has a page on the website updated for “International Incident Bulletins” this link will take you to the page so that you can see what restrictions are IN YOUR OWN COUNTRY and where delays may apply or indeed occur.

9J2LA now qrv from Zambia

9J2LA are now qrv from their base near Lusaka in Zambia.

Following on from 7P8LB last year and Z2LA in 2018, the Team arrived in Zambia today.

Please take a browse through their website and check out the Operators, their Operating Plans and also the QSL information.

Try to remember to report ALL busted or missing calls using the form on the Bespoke OQRS ONLY (not via email or social media) and of course don’t send us your QSL Card via the bureau. We do NOT need your QSL Card so try to use M0OXO Bespoke OQRS in all instances.

If you can support the Team in any way please do so also on their website.

Gene Schumat UA9AB

For anyone interested, here is the link to an article about the late Gene Schumat UA9AB from his Son, Andy..
It contains video slides about Gene and the radio club of the small town of Troitsk. During 1971 – 2020. There are some really interesting images of gene and the equipment through the decades.