Author Archives: Thomas

Grimeton Radio / SAQ LF transmitter on the air May 1, 2018

Alexanderson alternator in the SAQ Grimeton VLF transmitter.

(Source: ARRL via Mike Hansgen)

Low-frequency World Heritage Grimeton Radio Station, SAQ, will transmit from Sweden on May 1 as participation in the European Route of Industrial Heritage’s “Work It Out” observance.

“As part of the event, we plan for the first SAQ transmission since 2016,” said Lars Kalland, SM6NM. The transmitter start-up will begin at 0930 UTC, with the transmission to follow on 17.2 kHz CW at 1000 UTC.

A live video stream of the event will be available. Kalland said no QSL cards will sent, nor will SAQ post a list of reports, but SAQ does invite brief listener reports via e-mail.

“We sincerely hope that all the SAQ transmission on 17.2 kHz will go as planned,” Kalland said. “But, as always, there is a reservation that the transmission [may be] cancelled on short notice.”

Click here to read on the ARRL website.

WTPF’s former site: A “Time Capsule from the 1940’s”

(Source: ABC11.com via Mike Hansgen)

Photo source: WTPF.com

The distinct Art Deco style clearly defines the WPTF radio station as a 1940’s classic.

With rounded windows and curved edges, the building looks tiny on the outside, but cuts deep underground into a shelter that allowed announcers to broadcast through wars and hurricanes.

Today, it’s hidden behind tall shrubs, a chain-link fence, and a set of train tracks – it often goes unnoticed, a relic from a long past era of Raleigh history.

Decades ago, this station was staffed 24-hours a day, which means it provides amenities like a kitchen and shower. However, this enticing building has been closed to the public, mostly forgotten, for decades. Nearly 80 years old and sealed to most of the outside world, it harbors dust-coated secrets that time forgot, like a living time capsule.[…]

Click here to read the full article and view photos of the site.

Also, check out the following photos of WTPF courtesy of this imgur.com account:

Former WPTF 680 AM art deco studio – Cary, NC

Video: Russian numbers station on the 19 meter band

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Moshe, for sharing the following video:

I uploaded this video I made in a rush, holding our baby in one hand and my smartphone in the other one…

The receiver is my Ben-Gal Verdi.

I caught the station by accident, while tuning to VOA 15580kHz to listen to Boarder Crossings.

Click here to view on YouTube.

Fantastic catch, Moshe! Thank you for sharing. I can’t tell you how many times in the past I played radio while also holding a baby in my arms. Always a challenge!

Listening to ARISS contacts last week

I get just as excited as my kids when I receive any communications from the International Space Station. This past week, we fit an ARISS contact fit into our hectic schedule during lunch break. I gave both of my kids a handheld radio and we all listened together as the ISS passed overhead.

Right on schedule, we heard NA1SS, but it sounded like they were struggling to make contact with KD2IFR at the Central Islip Union Free School District in Central Islip, NY.

I made a short video about one minute into the scheduled contact. I believe both parties were forced to move to their backup channel because we never heard an exchange–only NA1SS calling KD2IFR:

Click here to view on YouTube.

Still…we heard an astronaut live, so mission accomplished!

SWLing Post contributor, Mark Hirst, had much better luck last week monitoring an ARISS contact with King’s High School in Warwick, UK. Check out his excellent video:

Click here to view on YouTube.

Thanks for posting that video, Mark. By the way, I love your FT-817ND setup!

In fact, the King’s High School ARISS contact snagged some excellent publicity via the BBC.  Here’s an article via the Southgate ARC:

King’s High School ARISS contact on BBC TV

On April 19 student Eleanor Griffin led the live question and answer session between King’s High School (GB4KHS) and astronaut Ricky Arnold KE5DAU on the International Space Station (OR4ISS)

King’s High School strongly encourage their girls to develop their interests both inside and outside the classroom. This culture of empowerment led one of their girls to apply to ARISS Europe (Amateur Radio on the International Space Station) for a highly prestigious link-up to the International Space Station.

Nicola Beckford reporting on the contact for the BBC – credit KHS

When Eleanor Griffin was selected to hold a space conversation with an astronaut, she was inspired to set up the Warwick Mars Project, for students across the Warwick Independent Schools Foundation, to further interest in Space Science. Eleanor says: “The moon landings belong to the generation of our grandparents, and the International Space Station to our parents. What will happen in our generation? Will Mankind travel to another planet?”

When asked what the incredible experience of the ISS contact had taught her Eleanor replied “Just do it! No one is going to stop you, if you just go and pursue your dreams, you really can do anything.”

Watch the BBC TV news item broadcast on Midlands Today @bbcmtd. Fast forward to 18:45 into the recording at
https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b09z9tw6/midlands-today-evening-news-19042018

Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS)
http://ariss.org/
https://twitter.com/ARISS_status

King’s High School Warwick
https://twitter.com/KHSWarwick

If you missed these ARISS contacts, no worries! Check out the ARISS “Upcoming Contacts” page where future ARISS QSOs are listed. ARISS contacts are a great opportunity to show kids of all ages what you can hear with even a modest radio!