Tag Archives: WRMI

HFCC Announces the Passing of its Founder, Oldrich Cip

(Source: WRMI & HFCC)

HFCC Announces the Passing of its Founder Oldrich Cip

Oldrich Cip, founder and Vice Chairman of the High Frequency Coordination Conference, known as the HFCC, passed away on 27 July following a sudden illness.

Oldrich was involved in radio since he was a child — first as an amateur radio hobbyist and later as a staff member of Czechoslovak and then Czech Radio in the international broadcasting departments. A college graduate in the field of Humanities, he spent most of his working life as a frequency manager and schedule planner. For a number of years he hosted a DX program on Radio Prague under the pen name Peter Skala.

After the end of the Cold War, he believed that broadcasters from both sides of the conflict should come together and develop a new system of planning and coordination for shortwave broadcasting. This led to the establishment of the HFCC in 1991. Oldrich was Chairman of the HFCC until 2015. Since then, he was a Vice Chairman of the group.

Oldrich lived in Prague, although he frequently spent time in his country house, where he enjoyed woodworking, guitar and country music, vintage graphics, photography and time with his family. His son Vladislav said he spent his last day there: “He enjoyed a quiet evening in the country house, with our families, all four grandchildren around, no symptoms of anything bad coming. All of a sudden, he suffered probably a heart attack or stroke. An ambulance arrived immediately but he died a few hours later.”

Oldrich was married with two adult sons, Oldrich Jr. and Vladislav. Vladislav is the HFCC Secretary who manages the day-to-day operations of the organization.

From 1953 until 1997 Oldrich was an employee of Czechoslovak and later Czech Radio in Prague. He worked as a technical consultant for Czech Radio from 1998 to 2010. He specialized in planning schedules and frequencies, international coordination and distribution of shortwave radio programs for foreign countries.

Beginning in 1959 and for more than 25 years, Oldrich produced a weekly English-language program “Radio Prague Calling All Radio Hobbyists,” using the nom de plume Peter Skala. In the program, he answered questions from shortwave listeners in many countries and covered a variety of scientific and other topics from the radio industry.

During the Soviet occupation of Czechoslovakia in 1968, Oldrich used his technical expertise to aid the “free Czechoslovak Radio,” putting himself in danger in an effort to provide factual news and information about the events taking place. Thanks to the large number of smaller facilities of Czechoslovak Radio scattered all over Prague and complicated infrastructure that connected them, they were able to continue broadcasting for quite some time.

In the period of reforms around the year 1968, he established secret contacts with his colleagues from Western radio stations. He re-established the contacts after the fall of communism and started an initiative to eliminate interference on shortwave. He became the Chairman of the HFCC, which has continued to meet twice each year in different parts of the world for shortwave stations to coordinate their frequency schedules for the coming broadcast season, thus eliminating interference before each season begins. The principles of international coordination were incorporated into the ITU’s International Radio Regulations during the 1997 World Radio Conference.

Oldrich was also an adviser to the Government of the Czechoslovak Republic in the preparation of the first Radio and Television Broadcasting Act after 1990, as well as a member of several EBU and ITU radiocommunication working groups. At the HFCC, he spearheaded the International Radio for Disaster Relief project whereby shortwave stations have allocated specific frequencies in each band for the transmission of emergency information in the event of natural disasters around the world.

Jeff White, Oldrich’s successor as HFCC Chairman, said: “The shortwave broadcasting and listening communities have lost one of our most important proponents. The contributions of Oldrich over the years are simply unequalled. He was a humble man, but people in this industry realized the importance of his work. And he has left us a lasting legacy — an organization which has largely eliminated interference on the shortwave bands, and it has enabled stations to use less power to reach their target areas with a good signal. For that, he will always be remembered.”

Oldrich Cip was also a frequency consultant for WRMI. His assistance was greatly appreciated.

For more information, contact Jeff White, HFCC Chairman, at jeff@wrmi.net.

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Jazz From The Left: A slight schedule change

Many thanks to Raoul with Jazz From The Left, who writes:

My program, Jazz from the Left, continues on WRMI. With a slight schedule change.

From Jeff White:

“We now have Jazz from the Left on at 0000 UTC Wednesday on 7730 kHz, and at 0100 UTC Thursday on 5850, 9395 and 9455 kHz.”

By the way, for fans of jazz on shortwave radio, I recently found dozens and dozens of air checks of Willis Conover playing jazz on the VOA. These are all excellent quality recordings from the 1950’s through 1970’s [at the University of North Texas Library]. Click here to browse the recordings. Enjoy!

Thank you, Raoul! Your show is excellent–the new time on WRMI has been noted in my calendar.  And thanks for mentioning the UNT archive–it is indeed a superb collection (click here to read an archived post).

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WRMI Open House & Party on December 1, 2017

(Source: WRMI via Facebook)

Dear Friends and Colleagues:

December 1, 2017 will mark the 4th anniversary of WRMI’s broadcasts from the Okeechobee, Florida transmission site. We broadcast from a site in Hialeah, Florida for 20 years prior to that.

To celebrate our 4th anniversary in Okeechobee, we cordially invite you to join us for an Open House/Christmas/Anniversary Party on Friday, December 1 from 10:30 am till 6:00 pm. Stop in anytime for a tour of the plant, where you can see our 14 transmitters (most of them 100,000 watts each) and 23 antennas beaming religious, political and cultural programs in many languages 200 hours a day, seven days a week to virtually all parts of the world. WRMI is the largest shortwave radio station in the Western Hemisphere. You can meet members of our staff and clients who broadcast programs on the station. And there will be plenty of food and drink, so please arrive hungry!

WRMI is very pleased to have been part of the Okeechobee community for four years now, and we look forward to being here for many years to come. Our address is below, and your GPS should be able to find it with no problem. We’re located 15 miles north of the city of Okeechobee via Highway 441, and then seven miles west on NW 240th Street. You can’t miss the 68 antenna towers on the south side of the road. If you get lost or have any questions, feel free to call or e-mail us. I hope to see you on December 1st.

Jeff White, General Manager

WRMI Radio Miami International, 10400 NW 240th Street, Okeechobee, Florida 34972 USA
Tel +1-305-559-9764 Fax +1-863-467-0185 E-mail: info@wrmi.net

Queridos amigos y colegas:

El 1 de diciembre de 2017 será el cuarto aniversario de las transmisiones de WRMI desde el sitio de transmisión de Okeechobee, Florida. Anteriormente, transmitimos desde un sitio en Hialeah, Florida durante 20 años.

Para celebrar nuestro 4to. Aniversario en Okeechobee, lo invitamos cordialmente a que se una a nosotros para una Fiesta de Casa Abierta / Navidad / Aniversario el viernes 1 de diciembre de 10:30 a.m. a 6:00 p.m. Puede visitar en cualquier momento para un recorrido por la planta, donde se pueden ver nuestros 14 transmisores (la mayoría de ellos 100.000 vatios cada uno) y 23 antenas radiando programas religiosos, políticos y culturales en varios idiomas 200 horas al día, siete días a la semana para prácticamente todas partes del mundo. WRMI es la emisora de onda corta mas grande del Hemisferio Occidental. También puede conocer a miembros de nuestro personal y clientes que transmiten programas en la estación. Y habrá mucha comida y bebida, así que ¡por favor llegue con hambre!

WRMI está muy contento de haber sido parte de la comunidad de Okeechobee durante cuatro años, y esperamos estar aquí por muchos años más. Nuestra dirección está arriba, y su GPS debería poder encontrarla sin problema. Estamos ubicados a 15 millas al norte de la ciudad de Okeechobee a través de la autopista 441, y luego a siete millas al oeste en la calle 240 del noroeste. No se pueden perder las 68 torres de antena en el lado sur de la carretera. Si se pierde o tiene alguna pregunta, no dude en llamarnos o enviarnos un correo electrónico.

Espero verle el 1 de diciembre.

Jeff White, Gerente General, WRMI Radio Miami International

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Radio World: Shortwave Station Bends But Doesn’t Break

A second tower holding the 44-degree antenna was snapped in the middle.

(Source: Radio World via Richard Langley)

Among the many victims of Hurricane Irma in September was the transmitter/antenna farm of Radio Miami International, WRMI in Okeechobee, located on a cattle ranch 40 miles inland from Port St. Lucie on Florida’s Atlantic coast.

On Sunday Sept. 10, Irma’s roaring winds tore across the flat plains housing WRMI’s 23 antenna systems, comprising a total of 68 towers — the largest commercial shortwave radio transmission site in the United States. The hurricane-force winds snapped one of WRMI’s towers in half, leaving the torn metal lattice dangling suspended in the transmission lines. A second tower was bent in half like a paperclip. Many transmission lines radiating from WRMI’s central 16,000-square-foot transmitter building to the arrays also were knocked down along with the telephone poles that supported them.

The post-Irma scene looked as if a drunken giant had wandered across the cattle ranch and tripped repeatedly, taking down whatever he had stumbled across.[…]

Continue reading a Radio World.

Click here to view photos of the WRMI damage. 

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Photos of WRMI antenna field damage

Since we’ve been following WRMI in the wake of Hurricane Irma, I’ve posted a few photos below that WRMI shared on their Facebook page. These photos give us an idea about the magnitude of damage to their antenna farm.

Amazingly, Jeff White confirmed a few days ago that WRMI is back up to full power on all of their frequencies.

All of the caption below were noted by WRMI:

One of the towers holding our 44-degree antenna to Europe was folded in the middle by the hurricane.

A mess of crossed transmission lines in the field.

Transmission lines on the ground that should be above ground on poles.

Transmission line poles were knocked down.

A second tower holding the 44-degree antenna was snapped in the middle.

We had some requests a few days ago from listeners who wanted to see a diagram of our transmitter-antenna connections. This may blow your mind, but here goes…

For all WRMI updates, please bookmark the WRMI Facebook page.

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