Update: Trans-Atlantic Balloon Delayed

PBH-10 is delayed:

The launch has been postponed. It appears that the best weather for launching is 0000-0300 UTC, 4 May 2009, though this may change with relatively short notice based on ground wind conditions at the launch site and the position of the jetstream relative to the launch area. To clarify: we do anticipate the best time to launch is 0000-0300 UTC; however, the exact launch day may move to the right or left from 4 May 2009.

As always, the latest updates are available via PBH3 Twitter account

New 6m Repeater On The Air!

Rick Zach, K1RJZ, writes on the GEMOTO listserv:

This evening we placed into service the southern link to the Gunstock Mountain 6M repeater which natively covers north to Franconia Notch, NH and south to the Mass Pike. Tonight we just placed into service the “Hopkinton Node” with the antenna height at 734ft AMSL and is one mile south of the start of the Boston Marathon.

Bottom line: We now have continuous mobile-mobile coverage from Franconia Notch, NH to the Cape Cod Canal (max) with only two full-time linked repeaters. This system was actually designed from day-1 to allow NOAA Grey Maine to talk to NOAA in Taunton, MA and that was a key premiss for us to obtain site access.

Sponsor: Central NH ARC

Gunstock Mtn, NH User RX 53.77 PL 100.0
Gusstock Mtn, NH user TX 53.07 PL 71.9

Hopkinton, MA User RX 51.74 PL 100.0
Hopkinton, MA user TX 51.24 PL 71.9

Rick also requests that folks join CNHARC’s regular 6M net this Thursday at 8PM on this repeater for reception reports.

Trans-Atlantic APRS Balloon Launch Wednesday Night!

The transatlantic APRS balloon attempt (PBH10) will use the callsign of KC2TUA-10 with an anticipated launch window 8-11 PM EDT Wednesday April 29th. The anticipated flight path from Oswego, NY is northeast through New England, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Greenland, and Iceland on to Europe.

The balloon will have both a an APRS beacon operating at 144.800 (To maximize the potential for reception in Europe the balloon will operate on the European frequency) and a 40 meter CW beacon on HF at 7.102.55MHz (+/-100Hz). To track the early part of the track, APRS operators throughout the flight path are asked to tune their receivers to the 144.800 frequency and to activate their stations as WIDE1-1 digipeaters or as IGates so that the packets are digipeated over onto the USA frequency while the balloon is over the USA and Canada in order to provide tracking.

Please see the PBH3 Twitter account for the latest information and email them with any questions at pbhdata-at-gmail-dot-com.


Listen live to police, fire and rescue departments as they fight the worst wildfires seen in over 30 years in Horry County (Myrtle Beach area) in South Carolina.

International Marconi Day – April 25, 2009

Bob, K1VV reports that over 50 Special Event Stations Worldwide taking part in this commerative event. Various awards are available for confirming 15 of the Special Event Stations. See Cornish Amateur Radio Club, Cornwall England for more details. UK. W1AA/MSC will take part representing the Marconi 1901 Nantucket Island Shore Station “MSC”. DX QSL via the bureau, Stateside via W1AA via QRZ with an SASE. Watch the DX Summit for spots. 0001 UTC to 2359 UTC. Bob- K1VV

Massachusetts QRP Convention Announced

Announced today, he first Massachusetts QRP Convention (MassCon) will be held March 12-13, 2010 in the Westford Regency Inn Conference Center in Westford, Massachusetts. The event is made possible by a generous contribution from Buddipole Antennas, and PART, the radio club of Westford, Massachusetts, host of the event, and also a major contributor.

Presentations from leading figures in the QRP world will be made in a comfortable, modern classroom setting from 8 AM through 5 PM on Saturday (March 13). Speakers expected to present include Allison Parent (KB1GMX), Dave Siegrist (NT1U), Bruce Beford (N1RX), Michael Rainey (AA1TJ), John Sexton (KO1H), and QRP Hall of Fame members George Heron (N2APB), Joe Everhart (N2CX), and Dave Benson (K1SWL). Attendees will receive a conference proceedings, CD, and other gifts at registration.

Registration for the conference is $25 in advance, $35 at the door. Seating will be limited. Details about how to register, obtain hotel reservations at the conference rate, and banquet reservations will be published on the conference web site later this summer.

Further information for the event may be found on the event web site http://www.masscon.org.

W1HQV/R Off The Air

AA1PL posts some bad news on the 76 LISTSERV:

The 146.760 repeater is off the air. I shut it down on Monday due to long periods of noise that was keeping the repeater keyed up. When I later tried to turn the repeater back on, it would not respond to the remote commands. It is stuck in the “knowck-down” state until one of us from the board of directors can get up to the repeater site and check things out.

We are slowly working on building a new 76 repeater but I’m not sure when it will be ready.

AA1PL points out the other repeaters are available during the interim:

  • 146.940 repeater in Cumberland, RI (PL 67.0)
  • 223.760 repeater in Scituate, RI (No PL)
  • 447.425 in Scituate, RI (No PL)

AA1PL also pointed out the 447.425 in Scituate, RI (No PL) and 443.850 in Exeter, RI (PL 141.3 repeaters. These two UHF repeaters are linked together.

While most of the repeaters don’t have the same coverage that the Scituate, RI repeater, the K1CR repeater in Cranston, RI is the best choice. However, W1HQV/R will be missed and hopefully will have a speedy recovery.