• Amateur Radio Newsline (C)

    From Daryl Stout@618:250/33 to All on Thu Dec 31 19:49:25 2020

    Time for you to identify your station. We are the Amateur Radio
    Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world, including the
    K3ALG repeater in Palmerton, Pennsylvania, on Sundays at 4:30 p.m.
    local time.



    PAUL/ANCHOR: It's been a discouraging year for amateur radio in Japan
    -- but in South Africa, new amateur radio operators are celebrating
    their new privileges. Jason Daniels, VK2LAW, reports on both stories.

    JASON: The number of licenced amateur radio stations has decreased once
    again in Japan, according to Japan's Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications. There were 389,343 licenced hams this past December, a
    drop of 12,837 from December 2019 figures. In that month, there were
    402,180 licensed stations but that number as well signified a drop of
    about 15,000 from the previous year.

    The majority of Japanese radio operators hold a Class 4 licence, which
    was introduced as an entry level licence in the 1950s.

    Meanwhile, a new group of licenced amateurs is ready to get on the air
    in South Africa. Test results are in and the South African Radio League reports there was a 95 percent pass rate for those who sat for the
    exam. That means 81 new hams. Two of the candidates took the exam for a
    Class B licence, which is the entry level license and is assigned a ZU

    The next radio amateur exam will be given on May 22, 2021.

    Congratulations to all the new hams.

    For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Jason Daniels, VK2LAW.




    PAUL/ANCHOR: The new year brings some changes for amateur radio
    operators in Switzerland but it's mostly procedural. Ed Durrant, DD5LP,
    has that story.

    ED: In Switzerland, changes have been made under the new
    Telecommunications Act affecting the administration of amateur radio operations and related costs. The Swiss regulator Ofcom is moving to a licence-exempt model that will require hams to have a certificate of
    ability after passing a qualifying examination. Hams will be charged
    110 Swiss francs, or about $122 in US dollars for call sign issuance.
    Swiss hams will be required to pay an reduced annual fee of 50 Swiss
    francs, or $55 in US dollars, down from 96 Swiss francs for their
    annual license. Repeater and remotely operated stations continue to
    need to be registered and they will pay a one-time fee of 70 Swiss
    francs, or nearly $78 dollars. The same one-time registration fee
    applies to systems operating above 1 GHz such as those hams wishing to
    use the QO-100 satellite system.

    In short, many procedures remain largely unchanged, according to
    Switzerland's national amateur radio society. The USKA said in an announcement: [quote] "The path to amateur radio is still the same and
    for the already active radio amateurs everything remains as it was.
    Only the management of frequencies and the associated terms have been rearranged." [end quote] The changes are in effect beginning January
    1st, 2021.

    For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Ed Durrant, DD5LP.




    PAUL/ANCHOR: December YOTA Month is over and now the wait begins for
    the awards. Andy Morrison, K9AWM, picks up the story from here.

    ANDY: Youngsters on the Air closed out a very active December YOTA
    Month by announcing some good news for hams and shortwave listeners who
    chase YOTA stations. YOTA is now providing awards for SWLs as well as transmitting hams. SWLs need to register on the YOTA event website
    where they can log QSOs they heard on the air, qualifying them for
    awards at bronze, silver, gold and platinum levels. SWLs are also able
    to use the website to request QSL cards after entering data about the
    QSO they heard. To receive these cards, listeners must have an SWL
    callsign and belong to a national society to use its QSL service.

    Meanwhile, as December YOTA Month wrapped up its activity, organizers announced that award plaques were going to be presented in seven
    categories: Most Stations Contacted in CW; Most Stations Contacted in
    SSB; Most Stations Contacted in Digital and Most Stations Contacted.
    Awards will also be given to Best Overall Score OM; Best Overall Score
    YL and Best Overall Score Youngster for operators younger than 26.

    For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Andy Morrison, K9AWM.

    --- SBBSecho 3.11-Win32
    * Origin: The Thunderbolt BBS - tbolt.synchro.net (618:250/33)
  • From Daryl Stout@618:250/33 to All on Fri Jan 8 00:44:58 2021

    STEPHEN/ANCHOR: A popular net control operator with the Handiham Program
    for disabled amateurs has become a Silent Key. Christian Cudnik, K0STH,
    tells us about him.

    CHRISTIAN: James Golden, KD0AES, a Life Member of the Handiham Program,
    was perhaps best known as net control for the Tuesday Handiham Radio
    Club net, a busy gathering place for disabled amateurs like him.
    According to his obituary in the Nevada Daily Mail, the Nevada, Missouri
    radio operator, who had cerebral palsy, brought such enthusiasm to his
    on-air responsibilities that at one point he served as net control for
    three nets a week. Grateful for his skill in handling busy traffic in an always-polite manner, a number of amateurs pooled their money to
    purchase a Handiham Life Membership for him.

    James continued with his activity until two weeks before his death on
    December 9th. James Golden, who was 46, died of COVID-19.

    For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Christian Cudnik, K0STH.




    STEPHEN/ANCHOR: We also report the death of NA Contest Logging Software Developer Dave Pruett, K8CC. Dave became a Silent Key on the 29th of
    December. A chairman of the Michigan QSO Party and a log-checker for the ARRL's 10-meter and 160-meter contests, Dave's most widely known
    contributions were perhaps in the area of contest log development. Early
    on, he was the developer of a program for RadioShack computers that
    checked logs for duplicate contacts. He also created the NA contest
    logging software which is capable of handling a number of contests. He
    was also a former editor of the National Contest Journal.

    Dave was 66.




    STEPHEN/ANCHOR: An influential member of the Canadian Amateur Radio
    Community has become a Silent Key. John Williams, VK4JJW, tells us about
    his long career.

    JOHN: Farrell Hopwood, VE7RD, who had been president of RAC, and a
    member of the Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame, has become a Silent
    Key. Known as Hoppy, he died on December 8th. The son of a telegrapher
    father and a Teletype-operator mother, Hoppy began his long career in telecommunications in his native British Columbia in 1948. In 1955,
    Hoppy became an amateur radio operator with the call sign VE7AHB. Those
    who attended Expo 86 in Vancouver saw the amateur radio station and
    exhibit there that was created by Hoppy and his team. An avid DXer, he
    was also involved in VHF/UHF linking and packet.

    Hoppy became an early member of the Canadian Radio Relay League and the Canadian Amateur Radio Federation, rising through its ranks into
    leadership. He also became involved in key discussions to merge the two organisations into the RAC. Hoppy later became president of the RAC,
    retiring from the post in 1998 after serving three terms.

    He was inducted into the Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame in 2015.

    Hoppy was 91.

    For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm John Williams, VK4JJW.




    STEPHEN/ANCHOR: A recent winter contest hosted by one Canadian amateur
    radio club turned out to be a disaster -- and the members couldn't have
    been happier. Kevin Trotman, N5PRE, has those details.

    KEVIN: The Halifax Amateur Radio Club called their contest the "2-Meter
    Get on the Air Winter Event," and it was designed to challenge the hams' ability to stay connected in the face of an emergency. For four hours on January 2nd, it was a dry run for disaster for John Bignell, VE1JMB, the club's director-at-large, and 50 or so other club members. It also
    turned out to be a frozen run: the contest went forward despite a heavy snowfall that covered much of Nova Scotia. John, who is also an EHS
    Advance Care Paramedic, said the contest underscored the need for hams
    to have a reliable communications network when disaster strikes, as it
    did in 2017 when Bell Aliant suffered a connection outage of landlines
    and cellphones in Eastern Canada.

    John told the Saltwire Network website that the contest was also about
    having fun but it's important to remember too that when the Red Cross,
    rescue teams or ground-search personnel need communications backup, hams should be there and ready. That makes everyone a winner in every

    For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Kevin Trotman, N5PRE.

    --- SBBSecho 3.11-Win32
    * Origin: The Thunderbolt BBS - tbolt.synchro.net (618:250/33)