QCWA NC CHAPTER 70
Minutes of the Meeting of May 20th, 2003
- With 45 members and guests in attendance Gerry King VE3GK welcomed all and introduced the head table. Guests were Betty Newkirk, VE3ZBB, and Aline Breton.
- Gerry noted that Keith, VE3GFI was ready to receive those who need to renew their Chapter 70 membership.
- A round of applause was given to Keith, VE3GFI for the work he has done on the web site.
- With regard to QCWA HQ announcements George, VE3BNO reported that he had received news of an SK. Wess Randles, W4COW has been around for a long time. He was the net control for the 20 meter net and also was the QCWA historian. The QCWA Hall of Fame Award has been presented to W4RNL, L.B. Cebik. His web site is http://www.cebik.com where there is a lot of information about antennas in language you can understand. Do not forget the part about the Wouff-Hong and the Rettysnitch. The QSO Party produced log submissions that were 29% higher than the best we have ever had. The QCWA Journal comes out four times a year. George held up the Spring 2001 copy with a picture of the Fred Hammond museum on the cover. The Chapter 70 report inside had a picture of Don Dashney, VE3RM and another picture of Bob Knapp VE3CDG and Fred Carroll, VE3PNX receiving awards. At our last executive meeting it was learned that 30 of our life members do not get the Journal. George urged members to fill in the application form (available on the web site) and send away for a subscription in order to really find out what is going on in the rest of QCWA. For $25 US you will get 12 issues over 3 years. The International Convention will be in Dallas Texas on Oct. 19 to 20.
While we have a very active Chapter Gerry noted that if you can, bring a friend, as this is the best way to recruit new members.
- A member in ill health is George Collins, VE3FJO who has had a throat operation and doing well but has difficulty talking.
- The Chapter 70 Constitution, and also ham equipment estate forms, are available on our web site at http://www.qcwa70.cyberus.ca for downloading.
- Doug, VE3XK indicated that this year we have a lot of people that are earning year pins and certificates and in keeping with policy they will be awarded in September at the Spouses Dinner. However, we have a number of new QCWA members. 55 year pins and certificates were awarded to Bert Barry VE3QAA and Bill Wilson VE3NR. A 50 year pin and certificate was awarded to Ken Willing VE3CV. 40 year pins were awarded to Graham Ide VE3BYT; Ken Oelke VE6AFO (absent); and Rick Bandla VE3CVG (absent). Pins with no year, (less than 40) were awarded to Dick Bonnycastle VE3FUA; Bill Bruyn VE3JBW; Marg VE3EQE and Don VE3NJH Heaslip; Brian Jeffrey VE3UU (absent); and George Morgan VE3GM (absent).
- An error in the Minutes of the February 18, 2003 meeting was the spelling of the name of Bill Barrie, VE3AAS. Motion to approve the minutes of the Feb., 2003 meeting was moved by George VE3BNO; seconded by Croft Taylor, VE3CT. Carried.
- The Treasurer's Report was presented by Keith, VE3GFI
Bank Balance on February 18th, 2003 $1758.66
Bank Balance on May 20th, 2003 $1432.51
Acceptance of the treasurer's report moved by Keith, VE3GFI; seconded by John Barnhardt VE3ZOV.
- Secretary Clare, VE3NPC reported that correspondence included acknowledgment by the CNIB of receipt of our donation of $100, and thanks from QCWA for our donation of $100 to the QCWA memorial fund in remembrance of Chapter 70 year 2002 Silent Keys.
Keith, VE3GFI reported that our Chapter 70 membership currently stands at 75.
- George, VE3BNO noted that we had a very good convention in 1996 with 260 some people attending. We know where the convention is this year and in 2005 it will be an Alaskan cruise. But in 2004 nobody is sponsoring a convention. About two thirds of the people who did our last convention are still around. The executive has considered the proposal to have the next convention here in Ottawa and is quite enthusiastic. It will be in Sept. or Oct. 2004. It requires about 8 to 10 dedicated people. We may not get it as another Chapter has offered to host it so the executive at Dallas will have to make that decision. George asked that if we can get the 2004 convention here in Ottawa would the members approve and support? This time we would not run three papers at a time. This was done as we opened the convention to all radio amateurs. George has offered to chair the convention. His proposal was accepted unanimously by those present.
- Our guest speaker, Martin Potter, VE3OAT was introduced by Jim Dean, VE3IQ. When we hosted the Region II IARU convention in Niagara Falls Jim learned quite a bit about what the IARU is and does, and in working in the preparation for WARC he has learned even more. He learned what a potent and important force the IARU is working globally on behalf of amateur radio. At the various conventions Jim learned about the IARU intruder watch system for monitoring. At the 1998 Marguerite Island IARU conference Martin was there speaking on the IARU Region II monitoring system. Some of his stories were quite incredible. All of us have heard of the problems with stations on 12 meters and 10 meters that do not identify and many strange signals on the other bands, some of which may be legitimate but many are not. Martin is going to talk about the intruder system. What the IARU does and what amateurs can do to assist. Martin has been an amateur since 1983 but he got interested in electronics in the 1950's and like so many of us in short wave radio. He enjoys DXing and discussing antennas. He is interested in HF propagation and finding the right antenna. A special interest in precision frequency measurement, and he has done quite a bit of work on the VHF/UHF bands. He has made an EME moon bounce contact on 2 meters with W5UN on two occasions with 160 watts into a single 15 element yagi. He is getting close to VUCC on 2 meters using aurora and meteor scatter. His other hobbies include astronomy and family history. He became a volunteer intruder watch monitor for the RAC in 1992. He became the IARU Region II intruder watch coordinator in 1998. There is a lot of work involved and he is hardly on the air anymore.
- Martin informed us that he is the Region II Intruder Watch Coordinator. The official name is the Monitoring System and it is referred to that way in almost all of the official documents but the term intruder watch is much more descriptive. There are a number of non-amateur signals that appear in the amateur bands. Some are legitimate but most are not. The IARU intruder watch system was instituted a few years after World War II. Over the years the system has been successful in a goodly number of problems but unsuccessful in some others. While not using the word prosecuting, they have been chased off of the amateur bands.
- The objectives of the monitoring system are:
1) To collect and analyze information about cases of interference to amateurs by non-amateurs. We achieve this by working very closely with national amateur radio societies who are members of the IARU.
2) To get those sources of interference removed from the amateur bands. We are not always successful in that. It is to be noted that the monitoring system is not a police force. It has absolutely no authority to enforce the radio regulations and neither does the ITU. That falls under the national telecommunications administrations like Industry Canada.
Some of the notable intruders are the CB and pirate radio operators that occupy our 10 and 12 meter bands. They are probably the most significant sources of interference. They are particularly predominate in certain countries in Southeast Asia, throughout Central and South America, several countries in Africa and a few countries in Europe. There is very little hope of actually removing one of those stations and the only real hope we have for removing that class of intruder is to get the administration of a country to enforce their regulations. Multi channel data signals are heard on 40 meters and on the 20 meter band. They are usually Russian or Chinese in origin and are military associated. North Korea is a particular offender. In Japan they can be heard on nearly any band. Here in Eastern Canada the only two evidences of Radio Kung Yang are on 3560 in the 80 meter band and on the 20 meter band on 14.250. One called the Havana Gurgle, is a broadcasting jamming transmitter and the third harmonic falls in the middle of the 17 meter band on 18090 kHz. The fundamental is targeted against the Radio Marquee propaganda broadcast from the United States directed at Cuba. Various short wave broadcasts appear from time to time in the amateur bands. One of the particular cases is on 7100 kHz. There are at least two broadcasters which seem to feel they can use that channel which is the bottom edge of the band that is allocated to them in Regions I and III. The problem is that the lower side band of an AM broadcast signal extends into the exclusive amateur band. Great efforts have been spent in trying to get these broadcasters to not use that channel. But they are still in use and they are both in the Middle East. Foreign fishing vessels on the high seas in international waters and sometimes within coastal waters have been appearing more and more frequently in the last few years on all bands. Ralph Cameron can tell you about Japanese fishing vessels that operate off the West Coast of Canada on the 80 meter band. They are not the only ones and reports are received all the time from the monitor in Argentina who picks up a number of different foreign fishing vessels operating in the Southern Atlantic off the coast. They use 20 and 40 meters recently 15 meters.
- There are two historical cases. The 80 meter buzz on 3500, 3600 and 3700 kHz, which turned out to be a Canadian signal. It is partly amusing and partly a sad long tale. Due to the efforts of Jim Dean it was moved off of the amateur band in Oct 1999. The other historical one is the Russian teleprinter signal that sat on 14.126 kHz for quite a few years, operating mostly in the summer. It took a concerted effort by the monitoring system people in Region I in Europe, to get the Russians to finally move it. It finally disappeared on Oct of 1998.
- From time to time spurs from the major short wave broadcast stations such as the BBC and Voice of America appear. They are very cooperative and respond very quickly when notified of the frequency and times of interference.
- Many amateur bands are shared with other services. Forty meters for example is, except for a few countries in the Middle East and Africa, from 7000 to 7100 kHz exclusive amateur. So almost any station you hear in that band that is not an amateur is automatically an intruder unless it is in one of those few countries which allow the fixed service to use that band. The bottom 250 kHz of 20 meters is exclusive amateur. All of 15, 12 and 10 meter bands are exclusive amateur and all of the bottom 2 MHz of the 2 meter band, except in China. Any non-amateur signal you hear in these bands is an intruder. The other bands are more complicated. It depends on where you are located and where the apparently offending transmitter is located. For example in Region II the band from 3500 to 3750 kHz is allocated exclusively to the amateur service. However from 3750 to 4 MHz it is on a shared basis in many countries in South America. If you hear teletype signals there they are legal. The 160 meter band from 1800 to 1850 is exclusive amateur in Region II, above 1850 it could be anybody, as a number of services share that band, especially in region I and III. The guideline in the monitoring system is that any non-amateur signal should be reported and treated as an intruder unless the monitor knows for certain that that particular station is legal. Then we let the monitoring system coordinators sort out which ones are truly intruders and which are not.
- What do you do if you hear an intruder? The best thing to do is report it. Make up a short report with the date and time, the frequency as accurately as you can determine, what mode of emission is involved, signal strength, and any identifying characteristics, i.e. language, geographic references, any apparent schedule of activities; any technical characteristics of the signal, i.e. number of channels, packet etc. and if you have a beam antenna from what direction the signal is maximum.
- If you have three reports to send in, make up three separate reports. Three separate e-mail messages are much easier for the monitoring coordinator to work with than a single e-mail with three reports. In Canada send your reports to Don Moman, VE6JY who is the RAC monitoring system coordinator. He is our man whether you are an RAC member or not. If you hear an intruder send your report to him at email@example.com.
- For further information contact Don directly or go to the web site at www.rac.ca/monitor. Martin's website at www.echelon.ca/iarumsr2 also has a lot of relevant information. Martin now has a data base of all the reports from all the Region II coordinators and it now has over 8100 records since 1998. So there are a lot of intruders out there.
- If an intruder uses an amateur frequency and no one reports him he is not likely to move. He may go off for a while, but if he found a clear channel and nobody bothered him he will come back.
- The best way for amateurs to keep the amateur bands free of intruders is for amateurs to occupy those frequencies. If we don't use the amateur frequencies other people will. The choice is ours.
- Ken VE3PU thanked Martin for his presentation.
Gerry King (VE3GK) Clare Fowler (VE3NPC)
President 225-3426 WebPage - http://www.qcwa70.cyberus.ca Secretary. 730-1081
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