Tag Archives: CW

“Night of Nights” CW Event Returns Tonight!

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Brian Smith (W9IND), who shares the following announcement:

“Night of Nights” CW Event Returns Friday (U.S. Time) 

“It was 20 years ago today,” say members of the Maritime Radio Historical Society, but they’re not covering a famous Beatles song.

They’ll certainly be on key, however, when they fire up two maritime CW stations, KPH and KFS, and their amateur radio club station, K6KPH, for the 20th annual “Night of Nights” at 8:01 p.m. Eastern Time on Friday, July 12/0001 UTC Saturday, July 13. (Alas, several previously participating stations will be absent again this year, including ship-to-shore stalwart WLO of Mobile, Alabama, and a quartet of Coast Guard stations.)

This weekend’s event marks the date in 1999 when commercial Morse code operations ceased in the United States. One year later, the preservation-minded MRHS staged its first “Night of Nights,” treating shortwave radio enthusiasts to the dits and dahs of historic maritime station KPH and other callsigns that were once presumed dead on shortwave CW frequencies.

This year, the society has put out a special appeal to anyone (licensed or not) with CW proficiency to help operate K6KPH. While KPH and KFS transmit “code wheels” (repeating messages), personal messages, and tributes to long-gone maritime stations and operators, K6KPH will make CW contacts with other amateur stations on 3550, 7050, 14050 and 21050 kHz.

Whether reporting for CW duty or not, the public is welcome to observe today’s event and tour the facility, located at 17400 Sir Francis Drake Boulevard in the Point Reyes National Seashore. Doors open at 3 p.m. local (Pacific) time.

And if you’re not within driving distance, you can tune in the Morse signals on the following medium wave and shortwave frequencies:

KPH:  426, 500, 4742.0, 6477.5, 8642.0, 12808.5, 17016.8, 22477.5 kHz

KFS:  12695.5 kHz

Reception reports go to P.O. Box 392, Point Reyes Station, CA 94956. Please include an SASE if you’d like a QSL.

The following links provide additional information:

Maritime Radio Historical Society: 

http://www.radiomarine.org

http://campaign.r20.constantcontact.com/render?m=1109843077277&ca=156b371f-da9f-4fed-8819-4bb55bd7bd44

http://campaign.r20.constantcontact.com/render?m=1109843077277&ca=b54f353c-4692-4564-b79a-0059721f9206

National Park Service: https://www.nps.gov/pore/planyourvisit/events_nightofnights.htm

Okay, Brian…that “being on key” bit? Clever! 🙂

Looking forward to some sweet CW music on the Night of Nights! Thank you for sharing!

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Tips on receiving Lightsail 2 telemetry and CW ID

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Grayhat, who shares the following update to our post regarding the Lightsail 2:

Some updates about the micro-satellite; first of all, sounds like it may be possible to receive the satellite CW beacon and FSK telemetry data using an SDR and a 70cm Yagi antenna, at least according to what is reported at the RTL-SDR website:

Solar Sail Satellite Lightsail-2 Now Transmitting Morse Code Beacon

Click here to read.

By the way, one will also need to be between 42° and -42° latitude to have some hope to pick up the satellite signal; also, the satellite now got a different NORAD ID (44339) so the N2YO tracking URL is now:

https://www.n2yo.com/?s=44339

The above may be useful to track the satellite and know when to attempt receiving its signals, other than that, the mission is proceeding well and the “mission dashboard” is now active:

http://www.planetary.org/explore/projects/lightsail-solar-sailing/lightsail-mission-control.html

The only missing bit for hams willing to track the satellite status is a piece of software to decode the telemetry data, whose format is publicly available:

https://planetary.s3.amazonaws.com/projects/lightsail/manuals/ls2-beacon-info-v01.txt

Also, given that, once the satellite will deploy the solar sail, its orbit will change, I think that it would be a good idea attempting to receive it now, since later on, it may become more difficult.

Thank you sharing these tips, Grayhat. I will attempt to receive the CW signal from Lightsail 2. I do miss one crucial element: the 70cm yagi. I’m willing to bet I know a local radio friend that has one, though!

If you successfully receive the CW ID or telemetry data from Lightsail 2, please comment and share your results here. A video or audio recording would be wonderful!

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CW used to prove song lyrics had been lifted

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Ed, who shares this article from Mashable:

Genius is, well, genius. The company recently accused Google of lifting song lyrics from its site, reports the Wall Street Journal.

How did Genius know Google was stealing? In 2016, Genius made a few changes to the punctuation in its song lyrics. Sometimes, it used a straight apostrophe. Other times, a curly one.

Genius did this in a very specific sequence because (are you ready for this?) when “the two types of apostrophes were converted to the dots and dashes used in Morse code, they spelled out the words ‘Red Handed.'”[…]

Click here to read the full article at Mashable.

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Smithsonian: Morse Code Celebrates 175 Years and Counting

The U.S. military J-41-A straight key (Photo by WD8RIF)

Many thanks to a number of SWLing Post readers who shared the following article from the Smithsonian Magazine:

The first message sent by Morse code’s dots and dashes across a long distance traveled from Washington, D.C., to Baltimore on Friday, May 24, 1844 – 175 years ago. It signaled the first time in human history that complex thoughts could be communicated at long distances almost instantaneously. Until then, people had to have face-to-face conversations; send coded messages through drums, smoke signals and semaphore systems; or read printed words.

Thanks to Samuel F.B. Morse, communication changed rapidly, and has been changing ever faster since. He invented the electric telegraph in 1832. It took six more years for him to standardize a code for communicating over telegraph wires. In 1843, Congress gave him US$30,000 to string wires between the nation’s capital and nearby Baltimore. When the line was completed, he conducted a public demonstration of long-distance communication.

Morse wasn’t the only one working to develop a means of communicating over the telegraph, but his is the one that has survived. The wires, magnets and keys used in the initial demonstration have given way to smartphones’ on-screen keyboards, but Morse code has remained fundamentally the same, and is still – perhaps surprisingly – relevant in the 21st century. Although I have learned, and relearned, it many times as a Boy Scout, an amateur radio operator and a pilot, I continue to admire it and strive to master it.[…]

Click here to continue reading the full article at the Smithsonian online.

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Morse code safety shoes are a thing…

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributors, Richard Langley and Robert Gulley, who shares this news item from the BBC:

Morse code shoes send toe tapping texts at MWC 2018

A pair of smart shoes has been created to let industrial workers keep in touch via toe-typed coded messages.

The footwear was inspired by Morse code, but made possible by the latest communication technologies.

BBC technology correspondent Rory Cellan-Jones meets the firm responsible at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Click here to view at the BBC.

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