Tag Archives: DW

Radio Waves: Border Blaster Early Days, Resistance on the Radiowaves, Towers With Flared Skirts, and Palau Restores AM

Radio Waves:  Stories Making Waves in the World of Radio

Welcome to the SWLing Post’s Radio Waves, a collection of links to interesting stories making waves in the world of radio. Enjoy!


In border radio’s early days, psychics and mystics ruled the airwaves (Mexico News Daily)

Charlatans originally built powerful ‘border blaster’ stations to evade scrutiny by US authorities

In radio’s early decades, among the oddball attractions found on the airwaves from 1920 to 1940 included a husband-and-wife team of psychics broadcasting from the U.S.-Mexico border under the stage names of Koran and Rose Dawn who became so popular that their extensive following helped them create a secondary income source: an organization called The Mayan Order.

Those who applied for membership and received its periodicals, the founders suggested, could harness the ancient Mesoamerican civilization’s secrets.

The pair were just two of the many psychics and other broadcasters of questionable integrity on the airwaves along the Rio Grande during radio’s beginnings. These characters built “border-blaster” stations of such epic size and scope that they could transmit from the Mexican side of the border into the United States.

Author John Benedict Buescher’s new book, Radio Psychics: Mind Reading and Fortune Telling in American Broadcasting, 1920–1940, unearths Koran and Rose Dawn’s forgotten story, as well as those of about 25 other border-blaster radio personalities on the Rio Grande who were heirs to a longtime American fascination with the occult.

“I was surprised how really dominant this stuff was in the early days of radio,” Buescher said. “Radio historians typically have just waved it off, not really focused on it, didn’t really take it seriously.” [Continue reading…]

Ukraine’s resistance on the radiowaves (DW Video)

Ukraine is fighting with more than weapons. The airwaves are also a frontier. Ukrainian computer specialists and radio operators have managed to jam Russian communications or intercept them. revealing some shocking details of the war’s brutality.

Click here to watch the view at DW’s website.

Why Well-Dressed Towers May Wear Flared Skirts (Radio World)

Cox, Dawson explore the benefits of umbrella-spoke feed for MW towers

Ben Dawson and Bobby Cox will talk about flared skirts at the NAB Show.

“A flared skirt is a set of symmetrically spaced cables around the tower, which attach electrically near the top of the tower, extend outward from the tower along a path similar to the top guy cables, and then turn back in toward the tower base at a point roughly halfway down the tower,” said Cox, senior staff engineer at Kintronic Labs.

“Insulators at this midpoint insulate the cables from ground. The cables terminate on an insulated feed ring encircling the tower base above ground level, similarly to a conventional skirt feed. The antenna is driven between this feed ring and RF ground. The resulting flared skirt takes the shape of a diamond, looking rather like umbrella spokes.”

These systems are used to provide a feed arrangement for grounded towers that is mechanically simple but has certain attractive aspects.

“The wide bandwidth characteristics of the flared skirt make these antenna designs extremely useful for multiplexing several AM stations onto a common antenna,” said Dawson, consultant engineer at Hatfield & Dawson. [Continue reading…]

Palau restores AM radio service (RNZ)

After erecting a new tower Palau’s state broadcaster has restored its AM radio service.

The previous AM tower was destroyed during Typhoon Bopha, in 2012.

Rondy Ronny, head of programming said that the new AM tower and radio service will benefit all the 16 states of Palau.

“A lot of the outlying states are not able to connect into the internet and just don’t have that capability or have very high tech phones like how we do here in Koror. People don’t expect people from Angaur, from Babeldaob to be on their phones all the time.”

Ronny said that the new tower will be crucial to Palauans during natural disasters. [Continue reading at RNZ…]


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Radio Waves: RTUK Demands License, Finding MH370 via Signal Disturbances, Massive Collection of Antique Radios, and Free Tech License Class

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!


Turkey demands Deutsche Welle, VOA and Euronews apply for a licence (Broadband TV News)

Turkish media regulator RTÜK has given three international broadcasters 72 hours to apply for a licence or have their online content blocked.

Voice of America (VOA), Deutsche Welle (DW) and Euronews are including video on their websites and are seen as among the few independent news sources still available in Turkey.

RTÜK published a statement on its website Monday, signalling the start of the 72 hour period.

If the procedure for applying for a licence is underway, a broadcaster can continue on-air for another three months, providing the anticipated licence fee is paid to the regulator in advance. [Continue reading…]

Finding MH370: New breakthrough could finally solve missing flight mystery (60 Minutes Australia via YouTube)

Is the biggest aviation mystery of all time, the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, about to be solved? Yes, if you believe the man you’re about to meet. Richard Godfrey is no crackpot; he’s a respected British aerospace engineer and physicist who says he’s found the doomed airliner. If he’s right, he’ll provide desperately needed answers for the families of the 239 passengers and crew who were aboard the Boeing triple-seven when it vanished eight years ago. But knowing where it is isn’t the end of the story – Richard also has to convince authorities to resume the search that’s already cost hundreds of millions of dollars.

Click here to view on YouTube.

Retired electrical engineer, 85, has £15,000 collection of 200 antique radios that he has been building up for 50 years – including one of the oldest sets in the UK (The Daily Mail)

A grandfather-of-five has revealed his impressive antique radio and test instrument collection worth up to £15,000.

Richard Allan, a retired electrical engineer, has spent the last fifty years collecting antique transistor, valve and crystal sets and has now shown off his impressive collection of more than 200 pieces.

The 85-year-old from Norfolk, first fell in love with radios because of his father, Alexander William, who built his own transmitter and spoke to people all over the world through the airwaves.

In fact, Richard’s first – and favourite radio within his collection – is the one his father, a HAM, or amateur radio lover, played non-stop during World War II after purchasing in 1938.

Another notable piece within his collection is an E52b German military radio, captured in a vehicle at Foxhill, Bath, which was where his father worked in the Admiralty. [Continue reading…]

Free online amateur radio Technician license class (Southgate ARC)

The Montgomery Amateur Radio Club in Maryland is offering a free online Zoom amateur radio Technician license class on seven Saturdays from March 19, 2022 through April 30, 2022 from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM with an outdoor free test session on Sunday, May 1, 2022 8:30 AM to 11:00 AM.

More information about this Zoom class is at
https://www.marcclub.org/mweb/education/classes/technician.html

This is a great opportunity for you to get your amateur radio license. To learn more about amateur radio, also known as ham radio, go to http://www.arrl.org/what-is-ham-radio

To register for this free class, send an email to education@marcclub.org .

Also, please distribute this announcement to anyone who expresses an interest in getting their ham license and to any newly licensed hams.

Thank you,

David Bern, W2LNX
MARC education committee


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Channel Africa and other broadcasters affected by closure of Meyerton Shortwave Station

Meyerton Shortwave Station

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Gaétan Teyssonneau, who notes that Channel Africa will end their shortwave service on March 31, 2019. The Meyerton Shortwave Station is closing which will effectively end Channel Africa’s shortwave service but also end Africa relays for a number of other major international broadcasters.

Alokesh Gupta reports:

“It is confirmed that Sentech of South Africa is ending SW broadcast from 31 March 2019. So Channel Africa (Old Radio RSA), BBC, NHK, VOA, AWR. Deutche Welle & South Africa Radio League etc.broadcasting via Meyerton transmitting site will be only in memory shortly informs Jeff White in the AWR Wavescan program of 24th Feb 2019. (Via Jose Jacob)

Meyerton Short Wave Broadcasting Relay station is operated by SENTECH in South Africa, the signal distributor for the South African broadcasting sector. The organisation began operations in 1992 as the signal distributor of the SABC. Sentech now operates as a commercial enterprise.”

Channel Africa is asking for your feedback and will even have management live in-studio on the dates below:

Click here to view contact details on the Channel Africa website.

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The history of Deutsche Welle’s interval signal and signature tune

(Source: Deutsche Welle via Mike Hansgen)

Beethoven on the air: the DW signature tune

When Deutsche Welle went on the air 65 years ago, the broadcaster opted for a melody from “Fidelio” for its signature tune. Ludwig van Beethoven’s opera is about an act of liberation.

A political prisoner is starved and nearly tortured to death because the prison’s military governor knows that the prisoner could incriminate him. The incarcerated man’s wife masquerades as a young man and, thus camoflaged, makes her way into the dungeon. When the governor attempts to stab the prisoner, the woman jumps between them and pulls out a pistol. At that very moment, trumpets sound out and the Minister, a higher authority, enters the scene. A friend of the prisoner, he recognizes what has been going on and sets the political prisoners free.

At this happy ending of the opera “Fidelio” by Ludwig van Beethoven, Minister Fernando sings the words “Es sucht der Bruder seine Brüder” (The brother seeks his brothers), and continues: “Und kann er helfen, hilft er gern” (And if he can help, he does so gladly.)

The melody to the words is anything but catchy; it is nearly ungainly in fact. Nonetheless, it was chosen as the signature tune when Germany’s international broadcaster began its shortwave radio transmissions on May 3, 1953.

The symbolism in the words

The choice not only had to do with the musical motif, but was also based on the symbolism in the words. Only eight years after World War II’s end, building new friendships and international relationships was no easy task for the new Federal Republic of Germany.

One sought to proceed in a “brotherly” manner with listeners and partners abroad through friendly exchange. Trust was to be built in a fair and impartial sharing of information.

For many years, the melody, played on a celesta keyboard, penetrated the constant ebb and flow of interference noise on the shortwave radio spectrum. It thus made its way to the speakers of shortwave radio sets around the world – often in endless repetitions leading up to the news at the top of the hour.

Click here to download a clip of the DW interval signal recorded on February 22,1982 at 1400 UTC. (Source: IntervalSignal Database)

The broadcaster then had its headquarters in Cologne, and the Beethovenfest classical music festival took place only sporadically in Bonn, 30 kilometers upstream the Rhine.

The move from Cologne to Bonn, and the media partnership with the re-established and much bigger music festival, had to wait until the new millennium. Then it seemed only fitting that Deutsche Welle should once again associate itself with Beethoven.[…]

Continue reading and listen to a number of “Fidelio” variations at Deutsche Welle.

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Daniel shares recent QSLs

Daniel (W3DI) writes:

I have been enjoying some shortwave broadcasts recently and received some nice QSL cards. Wanted to share the cards and some station information.

 Deutsche Welle - copied broadcast on 15,275 KHz - Jan 20 , 2013 at 1930 UTC

Deutsche Welle – copied broadcast on 15,275 KHz – Jan 20 , 2013 at 1930 UTC

China Radio International - copied broadcast on 9,580 & 6,020 KHz - Dec 29 & 31 , 2012   at 0130 UTC

China Radio International – copied broadcast on 9,580 & 6,020 KHz – Dec 29 & 31 , 2012 at 0130 UTC

IMG_0002

VOA -  Africa service - They sent not only a QSL but a beautiful 2013 calendar.

VOA – Africa service –
They sent not only a QSL but a beautiful 2013 calendar.

Daniel addeded:

Shortwave listening was my first step to becoming an amateur [radio operator]. First receiver was a Lafayette HE – 10 with a Q mulitplier I built. Now using a WinRadio 313 – things have really changed.

Shortwave listening was also my first step to becoming a ham radio operator. The Lafayette HE-10 is a beautiful little 9 tube radio. I love the split dials on the front–much like the venerable Hallicrafters S-38.

The Lafayette HE - 10 (Photo: RigPix.com)

The Lafayette HE – 10 (Photo: RigPix.com)

Halli-S-38

The Hallicrafters S-38 (Photo: The S-38 Guy)

 

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International Broadcasters support freedom of information

JointStatementThe international broadcasting arms of France, Australia, the US, the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan and the Netherlands issued a joint statement in support of press freedoms across the globe. With the exception of the Netherlands (RNW), all of these countries still broadcast over the shortwaves.

(Source: BBC Media Center via Kim Elliott)

We, the representatives of Audiovisuel Extérieur de la France (AEF), Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) [Australia], British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) [United Kingdom], Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) [US], Deutsche Welle (DW) [Germany], Nippon Hoso Kyokai (NHK) [Japan] and Radio Netherlands Worldwide (RNW), have met in Berlin to discuss common concerns.

We find international journalism is facing unprecedented challenges from countries that seek to deny their own citizens access to information from outside their borders in violation of Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which states:

“Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.”

We call upon the world’s nations to strengthen their commitment to Article 19 and to support expanded opportunities to share information across borders through digital and mobile technologies.

Yet we note with dismay that certain governments continue to control the flow of information. For example, China routinely blocks the Web and social media sites of our broadcasters and jams our shortwave signals, or Iran and Syria interfere with the satellite signals that carry our programs. Governments in Eurasia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America also seek to control what their own citizens can see, hear and read.

Many of these actions, including intentional jamming of satellites, violate international regulations. We condemn them without reservation.

We also call attention to troubling new challenges to free expression. Some governments are seeking to enact far-reaching telecommunications regulations to stymie free speech.

At the World Conference on International Telecommunication (WICT) in Dubai, representatives of the world’s nations have considered telecommunications rules that might explicitly apply to the Internet for the first time.

We cast a wary eye on such efforts to control the Internet, and we denounce efforts to identify and track Internet users in order to stifle free expression, inquiry and political activity.

We have agreed to increase, whenever possible, our support for efforts to circumvent Web censorship through the use of new and innovative hardware and software tools. We also agreed to increase our advocacy for Internet freedom.

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Open Radio for North Korea hopes to contribute to gradual change in North Korea

North Korea

Without a doubt, North Korea is one part of the world that is information starved. Open Radio for North Korea uses the shortwaves to get their messages across the border:

(Source: Deutsche Welle)

The North Korean regime suppresses all forms of free information within the country. “Open Radio for North Korea” broadcasts international news via shortwave and FM from neighboring South Korea for the North. World in Progress talked to the radio station’s founder, Tae Keung Ha, about the role of outside broadcasters for the people of North Korea.

Tae Keung Ha: I find the human rights situation and the media control in North Korea, I think, the most severe, the most serious in the world. Radio is very special for the North Korean people to get outside news, because in North Korea they don’t have any Internet connections. Social network services, Facebook, Twitter are impossible inside of North Korea.

Also, all the calls in North Korea are monitored, strictly wired by the North Korean regime. And their TV system is different from the South Korean system – they cannot watch South Korean TV.
Domestic phonecalls in North Korea are controlled by the government

Internal information is strictly blocked by the regime, so a person in the northern part of North Korea doesn’t know what’s happening in the southern part of North Korea. The North Korean media only broadcast their own propaganda, so we have underground correspondents inside North Korea, 10 to 20, it varies. They offer us news about what’s happening inside North Korea.

Read full transcript/interview at DW-Welle.de

This isn’t the first time we’ve mentioned stations targeting North Korea, click here to read our previous–yet still totally relevant–article. Also, check out this 2009 article from the LA Times.

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