Digipeating the ISS, RTTY and QRP

Stories you’ll find in our May, 2019 issue:

Digipeating: APRS to the International Space Station – At Your Convenience
By Richard Fisher KI6SN

Making contact with the International Space Station by amateur radio is challenging on its face—the ISS orbit must be somewhere above your horizon; it is a moving target, and your antenna needs to be tracking its position as the space station moves across the sky. For FM voice contact, you may be in competition with lots of other Earth-based stations with the same goal as yours. But, thanks to the ISS’s digital repeater, contact with ISS is quite possible, but even so, for success, there are still lots of stars that must align. Richard tells us how it’s done.

TSM Reviews: The Mobile VHF/UHF COMPACtenna
By Bob Grove W8JHD

Is it possible for a 7.5-inch antenna to provide equal, or even superior, performance compared to a conventional 18-inch whip? After all, doesn’t a longer element capture more signal energy than a smaller element? Even with some reduction in signal strength, would overall improvement in uninterrupted reception translate to better performance? Bob examines this new mobile VHF/UHF antenna.

TSM Reviews: COMPACtenna for Shortwave
By Chris Parris

Chris was recently offered a chance to use the COMPACtenna SW (shortwave) model at home. The “SW” specifications show that it is 20 inches tall, designed for continuous receive over 3 MHz to 30 MHz and uses a standard 3/8-inch – 24 thread mount that most CB antennas are designed for. As someone who has tried for many years to find a good mobile/portable shortwave antenna solution, this seemed too good to be true. He decided to take the COMPACtenna out and try it on his personal vehicle along with several radios and other shortwave antennas to see how it fared.

RTTY: Old School Digital
By Cory GB Sickles WA3UVV

In his previous articles about other forms of digital communications as well as his three-part series on “Piggy Bank Ham Radio,” Cory found that there appears to be a good deal of interest in radioteletype and a desire to use some older gear. Coupling that with questions about pre-1990 HF rigs, there would seem to be a convergence of ideas. While older gear may not be suitable for the latest in digital modes, they are still perfectly fine radios and the fun of RTTY awaits you – with several ways to get on the air. Cory traces the history and continued use of this vintage amateur mode.

CRKits HT-1A Dual Band QRP Transceiver
By James Hannibal KH2SR

This dual band transceiver, available as a kit or factory-built, has a transmit frequency range of 7.0-7.2 MHz and 14.0-14.35 MHz. And, even though it only transmits CW, it does have the ability to listen to SSB signals. It also has an extended receive range, covering everything between 5.9-16 MHz, which means shortwave broadcast reception while in SSB mode. James puts this little rig to the test as it was meant to be used, outside in the wild with a small battery pack and portable antenna.

Scanning America
By Dan Veeneman
Groton, Connecticut; Amtrak Update

Federal Wavelengths
By Chris Parris
Have Scanner, Will Travel

Milcom
By Larry Van Horn N5FPW
Monitoring the 14thFighter Training Wing

Utility Planet
By Hugh Stegman
South Korean HFDL Takes Off

VHF and Above
By Joe Lynch N6CL
Owen Garriott W5LFL Silent Key

Digitally Speaking
By Cory GB Sickles WA3UVV
Get Yourself Connected

Amateur Radio Insights
By Kirk Kleinschmidt NT0Z
Are You a Member of the “Tower Tribe?”

Radio 101
By Ken Reitz KS4ZR
Baseball on the Radio: 2019

Radio Propagation
By Tomas Hood NW7US
E-Layer Sporadic Ionospheric Propagation

The World of Shortwave Listening
By Jeff White, Chairman, HFCC
Shortwave Broadcasters Discuss Future of the Medium and Time Changes or Does it?

The Shortwave Listener
By Fred Waterer
Radio Lectures; Classical on SW and Radio Santa Cruz

Amateur Radio Astronomy
By Stan Nelson KB5VL
Long Duration Meteor Trails

Adventures in Radio Restoration
By Rich Post KB8TAD
Millen’s Ham Superhet: The National FB-7

The Spectrum Monitor is available in PDF format which can be read on any desktop, laptop, iPad®, Kindle® Fire, or other device capable of opening a PDF file. Annual subscription is $24. Individual monthly issues are available for $3 each.

Ken Reitz, KS4ZR, is publisher and managing editor of The Spectrum Monitor. Contact him at [email protected].

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