Monthly Archives: March 2022

“Cannibal CME” to hit Earth during early hours of March 31, 2022

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Ed, who writes:

Readers of the SWLing Post blog might be interested in leaning that a “Cannibal CME” is approaching Earth. The Wikipedia page about the Carrington Event says it was probably 2 CME’s in rapid succession -like this description from SpaceWx of what’s coming:

Estimated time of arrival: March 31st

Space Weather News for March 29, 2022
https://spaceweather.com
https://www.spaceweatheralerts.com

A ‘CANNIBAL CME’ IS APPROACHING EARTH: A strong G3-class geomagnetic storm is possible later this week when a ‘Cannibal CME’ hits Earth’s magnetic field. It’s a ‘cannibal’ because it ate one of its own kind en route to our planet. The mash-up of two CMEs could spark naked-eye auroras visible from northern-tier US states. Full story @ Spaceweather.com ( https://spaceweather.com).

Thank you for the tip, Ed! 

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Carlos’ Shortwave Art and recording of Vatican Radio

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor and noted political cartoonist, Carlos Latuff, who shares his radio log art, this time following coverage of the Russian invasion of Ukraine through Vatican Radio.


Carlos notes:

Vatican Radio, 9705 kHz, special broadcasting, message from Pope Francis in Ukrainian and Russian to Kiev and Moscow due the war in Ukraine.

Broadcasting from Santa Maria di Galeria, Italy, listened in Porto Alegre, Brazil.
March 28, 2022, 04h49 and 05h14 (UTC).

Click here to view on YouTube.

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Radio Taiwan International adds new frequency for Russian language service

(Source: Radio Taiwan International)

Note: English Google translation below, click here for the original Russian version at RTI.

6005 kHz from 20:00 to 20:30 UTC – a new broadcast frequency of the Russian MRI service!

Dear listeners of the programs of the Russian MRI Service!

Starting March 27, we will be switching to a new broadcast frequency: 6005 kHz from 20:00 to 20:30 UTC .

Broadcasting region – the European part of Russia, Ukraine, Belarus.

We ask our official monitors (and all listeners) to inform us about the audibility on the new frequency by e-mail russ@rti.org.tw.

Broadcasting at a frequency of 5900 kHz from 17:00 to 17:30 UTC and at a frequency of 9490 kHz from 11:00 to 12:00 is preserved!

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Radio Waves: Solidarity Radio, BBC Shortwave & Dark Web, RnaG at 50, and CIDX Focus on Ukraine Update

Radio Waves:  Stories Making Waves in the World of Radio

Because I keep my ear to the waves, as well as receive many tips from others who do the same, I find myself privy to radio-related stories that might interest SWLing Post readers.  To that end: Welcome to the SWLing Post’s Radio Waves, a collection of links to interesting stories making waves in the world of radio. Enjoy!


On air! Prague’s ‘solidarity radio’ targets Ukrainians (MSN)

Ukrainian refugees fleeing the war to the Czech Republic got a fresh morale booster this week as a new radio station based in Prague started offering broadcasts in Ukrainian.

The new channel called Radio Ukrajina broadcasts news, tips for refugees, music and fairy tales for children, as well as spiritual comfort passed on by Ukrainian churches.

Run by the Media Bohemia group comprising several radio stations, it broadcasts from an office building in central Prague via a mobile app and on the internet.

“It’s a solidarity radio,” said on-air manager Natalia Churikova, who spent 27 years working for the Prague-based, US-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.

“We are targeting Ukrainian war refugees who have moved here and trying to give them information they need to start a new life here before they can go back home, which we hope will eventually happen,” she told AFP. [Continue reading…]

BBC turns to dark web and shortwave radio to bring outside news to Russian people amid wartime crackdown (iNews)

Russian citizens are going underground to keep abreast of news from outside Kremlin-controlled sources

The BBC is trying techniques new and old to give Russians access to news from the outside world in the wake of a Kremlin crackdown on critical media.

It is just one of a number of western news sources – including social media platforms – being accessed through the so-called “dark web”, an underground version of the internet which can allow users to avoid being tracked.

“The BBC is doing what it has a long tradition of doing – making independent news available to people, often in places where authorities are trying to restrict access,” a spokesman for the broadcaster told i.

“So BBC will use the tools at its disposal – whether that was shortwave in the past or using circumvention tools now.” [Continue reading…]

RnaG at 50: A radio station created by the people for the people (The Irish Times)

RAIDIÓ NA GAELTACHTA HAS HAD A PROFOUND EFFECT ON THE GAELTACHT OVER THE LAST 50 YEARS, BUT IT DIDN’T HAPPEN OVERNIGHT.

I’m a year older than Raidió na Gaeltachta, so I can’t remember a time that it wasn’t a presence in my life. So many memories are bound up in it,” says Gormfhlaith Ní Thuairisg, presenter of Raidió na Gaeltachta’s weekday morning news programme, Adhmhaidin.

On April 2nd, 1972, 50 years ago next weekend, the State delivered on a promise first made in the 1920s to establish a radio station dedicated to serving Irish speakers in their own language.

“It will not cost a great lot of money, and the intention is that it should provide a programme in keeping with the language of the people,” minister for posts and telegraphs JJ Walsh told the Dáil during a debate on the Wireless Telegraphy Bill in November 1926.

But by the time the 1960s came around, and with still no sign of an Irish language radio service, Irish speakers had had enough of what they saw as empty promises made by the State. [Continue reading…]

Canadian Int. DX Club’s “Focus on Ukraine – Version 2.1” now available (CIDX)

“Focus on Ukraine” is a compilation of news reports, feature articles, references, web links, monitoring information, radio frequencies, independent monitoring reports and more, focusing on the media, communications, radio broadcasting, etc. related to the Russian invasion of Ukraine

Version 2.1 of the special feature “Focus on Ukraine” is now available on the Canadian Int. DX Club’s webpage at https://cidxclub.ca/ukraine-v2/

NOTE: Items marked NEW in Version 2.1. are additions and updates to Version 1.1 of “Focus on Ukraine”, published March 9, 2022

Version 1.1 is also available at https://cidxclub.ca/ukraine/


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Paul is impressed with the HanRongDa HRD-747

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Paul Jamet, who writes:

Hello Thomas,

I have just received the HRD-747 I ordered a fortnight ago.

Of course, I quickly made some tests and I’d like to share two of them with you and the regulars of the SWLing Post:

1 – This is a recording made yesterday (23 March 2022) on 12125 kHz; RFA in Tibetan from Tinian Island; the signal is very stable, very clear.

The HRD-747 is sitting in the grass at the foot of a tree in a park! Nearby a pond. Only 6 of the 7 segments of the telescopic antenna are deployed.

My Locator: JN19cc – Locator Tinian Island: QK25TB – 13225 km

Recording:

2 – My second recording is of Radio Tamazuj in Juba Arabic on 15150 kHz 15h45 from Talata Volonondry. This recording was made in the same conditions as the previous one. Again, only 6 of the 7 segments of the telescopic antenna are deployed. The reception is still quite good, isn’t it?

My Locator: JN19cc – Locator Talata-Volonondry: LH31TF – 8526 km

My first SSB tests also allowed me to listen to Russian or Ukrainian radio amateurs in the 20m band. This little device seems to me really very promising.

3- I also made this recording made ton March 27, 2022 in a small park in my city (L’Isle-Adam – Locator: JN19CC) NW of Paris.

It is a ham radio picked up on 14328.80 kHz at 15h30 UTC. No other antenna; only the telescopic antenna of the receiver! 

The HRD-747 has 100 memories per band; this proved insufficient to store all the stations detected during the scan of the entire spectrum from 3.2 to 30 MHz … The scan stopped in the 19 m band!

First impressions? I am impressed by this tiny receiver (only 108 grams with its battery and strap).

I would like to point out that the first version of the manual which was proposed on the site is particularly useful to me. Indeed, most of the keys are multifunction. It’s a habit to get used to, even if everything seems to have been thought out in a very judicious way.

With my best regards. 73’s

Paul JAMET
Radio Club du Perche

Thank you so much for sharing this, Paul. Those results are promising, indeed! The audio sounds quite good in your recordings–especially for such a compact radio.

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Radio Waves: Why BBC WS Shortwave Matters, WTWW to Russia/Ukraine, Radio 5 to BBCWS, Finns Stock Up on Radios, and Asheville Radio Museum’s Amazing Volunteer

Radio Waves:  Stories Making Waves in the World of Radio

Because I keep my ear to the waves, as well as receive many tips from others who do the same, I find myself privy to radio-related stories that might interest SWLing Post readers.  To that end: Welcome to the SWLing Post’s Radio Waves, a collection of links to interesting stories making waves in the world of radio. Enjoy!


Why the BBC World Service’s New Ukrainian Shortwave Service Matters (The Rand Blog)

n March 2, the BBC World Service announced that it was restarting four-hour daily shortwave transmissions in English to Ukraine. The decision to resume Ukrainian shortwave broadcasts came after Russian forces began to deliberately target Ukrainian communications equipment, including the Kyiv television tower.

Why do these four-hour daily transmissions matter so much when the world supposedly has moved away from radio and adopted social media and the Internet? Isn’t shortwave an obsolete, century-old technology that harkens back to memories of World War II and the Cold War?

Despite its age, shortwave remains an enduring tool in the global fight against disinformation. In part, this is due to its unique broadcasting qualities. FM and broadcast television can only travel to just beyond the horizon. But shortwave can travel vast transcontinental and transoceanic distances. It accomplishes this feat by bouncing between the ionosphere and the earth—over mountains, skyscrapers, and digital firewalls.

It’s this last obstacle that’s most important here. Russia is demonstrating that it can destroy Ukraine’s television and FM broadcasting infrastructure. It can use hackers and such Kremlin-affiliated subversive agencies as the Internet Research Agency to take down or otherwise block Internet sites of Western and Ukrainian media agencies seeking to provide accurate information about the conflict. Cellphones only have limited range; they need towers to transmit longer distances. Russia has demonstrated that it can shut down cellphone communications in areas of Ukraine it has captured or is shelling, including nuclear power plants.

What about satellite reception? In theory, satellite reception can break through these issues. Last week, Starlink CEO Elon Musk sent “a truckload of satellite dishes” to Ukraine to provide “space Internet service.” But Russia can identify the satellite signals, seek to jam them, and locate those who have the dishes in Ukrainian areas now under its control.

This leaves shortwave, the venerable analog signal infamous for how it fades in and out as each wave is received. Shortwave cannot be hacked. It cannot be bombed or otherwise destroyed because it is being transmitted from far outside Ukraine. Shortwave is notoriously difficult to jam, despite Russia and China’s best efforts. The shortwave signal is always drifting slightly, making it difficult to precisely focus jamming equipment. The shortwave signal can also be more powerful than that of the jammer, effectively overriding the interference.

Shortwave only works if people listen. Fortunately, many Ukrainian families likely still have old, often cheap Soviet-era shortwave sets in their basements that can be powered by batteries or wall sockets. They are usually small and can be easily hidden from prying eyes. Some can even fit in a pocket. Shortwave radios can also be brought in as nonlethal aid. [Continue reading…]

Lebanon radio station tunes broadcast to Ukraine and Russia (WVLT)

LEBANON, Tenn. (WSMV) – Right now, the people of Ukraine need positive messages. One Lebanon family found a way to give them that with what they do best – a radio broadcast.

We all know there’s AM and FM radio, but there’s also shortwave radio. It’s listened to on a small device the size of a phone. While it may not be common in the U.S., radio personalities said it’s how people in Europe listen to radio continents away.

From the comfort of his home, Ted Randall brought comfort to those who need it most.

“We are broadcasting to the Ukraine and Russia,” Randall explained. “We are playing American rock and roll because our email responses have been saying, ‘please, no news, we are tired of hearing the news.’” [Continue reading…]

BBC Radio 5 Live suspends overnight programmes temporarily (RadioToday via Southgate ARC)

Overnight shows at BBC Radio 5 Live have been temporarily suspended due to a shortage of staff at the station’s MediaCity HQ.

BBC World Service will be rebroadcast instead until at least April 4th 2022.

Weekday overnight presenter Dotun Adebayo tweeted yesterday saying there will be no shows through the night until further notice, with a reply coming from weekend overnight host Hayley Hassall confirming the news.

An increase in COVID cases at the station means more staff are off work than usual.

A BBC spokesperson told RadioToday: “Due to increased COVID cases, we have temporarily suspended our overnight programming and will broadcast BBC World Service instead.”

The overnight show usually runs from 1am till 5am.

In other 5 Live news, the station’s new logo has now been uploaded to social media channels, and BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra has been renamed to BBC Radio 5 Sports Extra.
https://radiotoday.co.uk/2022/03/bbc-radio-5-live-suspends-overnight-programmes/

Finns stock up on portable radios after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine (YLE News)

One retailer said last week’s sales of battery-powered radios were triple that of the same time last year.

Electronics retailers in Finland have seen increased sales of battery-powered radios in the past few weeks, suggesting that some residents are preparing for the possibility of a coming emergency situation.

Sales of portable radios began to tick up at the electronics chain store Veikon Kone in Sodankylä, shortly after Russia’s deadly invasion of Ukraine, according to shop manager Jukka Haavisto.

“Radio sales rose to an entirely new level than they were,” he explained, adding that battery-powered radios were products that mostly sold in the summer.

“It’s a surprise to everyone and there are already availability issues,” Haavisto said.

Portable radio sales have doubled at the electronics store chain Gigantti, according to the retailer’s sales manager, Sami Kinnunen, who noted that last week’s sales were about triple that of the same time last year.

“We’re selling all kinds of radios, but ones with batteries are the most popular. It can be said that the change is significant, but we’re not talking about sales of thousands, but rather hundreds,” Kinnunen explained, noting that some models have sold out.

A noticeable uptick in sales of radios at electronics retailer Verkkokauppa.com has been seen on a weekly basis, according to the firm’s commercial director, Vesa Järveläinen.

He said the most popular radios were basic FM models that sell for around 20 euros.

“Right now we’re often selling about 100 radios a week, while before the increase the figure was a few dozen or so,” Järveläinen said. [Continue reading…]

Radios restored at Asheville museum, preserving vital part of communications history (WLOS)

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (WLOS) — At the Asheville Radio Museum, Tim McVey tunes in an RCA Radiola 20, built in 1927 but still kicking.

“This one still requires that you manipulate two dials to tune it in, and you have another dial here that fine tunes this dial. And this controls the filaments in the tubes,” says McVey, as he tunes the sound of several radio stations with static, down to one station with clear sound.

McVey retired from the FBI and moved from the Washington D.C. area to the mountains a year and a half ago.

“I get giddy thinking about it, because Tim has been such a remarkable addition to the museum,” says Asheville Radio Museum Curator Stuart Smolkin.

Smolkin says McVey has restored some of the most important radios in the museum, built in the 1920’s and 30’s, preserving a vital part of communications history.

“Without radio, we would not have cell phones,” Smolkin explains. “We would not have GPS. We would not have wireless internet routers, or wireless Bluetooth speakers. The list goes on and on.”

McVey tunes in another radio, this one from 1931, sounding great. [Continue reading…]


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Discrepancies in REE published and announced 2022 summer schedules

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Richard Langley, who shares the following in reply to our recent post about the REE 2020 summer broadcast schedule:

Thomas:
I heard this schedule announced on Wednesday evening myself and my iPhone translated it. But it is at odds with the schedule posted on Glenn Hauser’s WoR io group site a couple of days ago:

De lunes a viernes, para África Occidental y Atlántico sur, Oriente Medio e Índico, desde las 15 horas hasta las 23 horas UTC (Tiempo Universal Coordinado), 17 a 01 hora oficial española.

Las frecuencias de emisión:

– África Occidental y Atlántico sur, 11.670 Khz., banda de 25 metros.

– Oriente Medio e Índico, 15.520 Khz, banda de 19 metros.

Hacia América del norte y sur, Radio Exterior de España transmite en onda corta, de lunes a viernes, de 18 a 02 horas UTC, 20 a 04 hora oficial española.

Las frecuencias de emisión:

– América del sur, 11.940 Khz, banda de 25 metros.

– América del norte, 17.855 Khz, banda de 16 metros.

Los sábados y domingos, transmite su señal de 14 a 22 horas UTC, 16 a 24 hora oficial española. Frecuencias de emisión y las zonas de cobertura :

– África Occidental y Atlántico sur, 11.670 Khz, banda de 25 metros.

– América del sur, 11.940 Khz, banda de 25 metros.

– América del norte, 17.855 Khz, banda de 16 metros.

– Oriente Medio e Índico, 15.520 Khz, banda de 19 metros.

Los cambios de programación y frecuencias son efectivos desde el 27de marzo de 2022 hasta el 30 de octubre de 2022.

This is a more typical summer schedule for REE when they switch from 9690 kHz for NA, which gives excellent reception in NB, for a much higher frequency, which is not as good especially later in the evening.

As I mentioned in the group:

“I guess the REE announcers didn’t get the memo about this schedule.” 😉

All the best
— Richard

Thank you so much for sharing this, Richard! I bet you’re right: someone simply didn’t get the most updated memo! 🙂

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