Wednesday, July 29, 2015

About Radio New Ireland SW Transmitter

Recently I learned the 10 kW shortwave transmitter of NBC Radio New Ireland in Kavieng, PNG would be phased out.

For many years the station operated on 3.905 kHz, and could be heard occasionally outside New Ireland in regions as far flung as North America, South America, Asia and Europe. I noticed a few months back that  their signal had disappeared, here in South East Asia, and I had thought it was perhaps a seasonal anomaly.

When I received a QSL from Radio New Ireland, just a few days ago, it was the first news I had heard of their imminent closure. On learning this I contacted Michael Samuga, NBC Provincial Radio Network Manager, to enquire about NBC's future plans for Radio New Ireland.

He had this to say about the SW transmitter at Radio New Ireland, "Unfortunately our SW Tx in Kavieng has finally succumbed to age and lack of parts. NBC already has plans to bring back our SW service both on National and Provincial front, but the cost is pretty much a challenge which we will furnish to government for funding on a phased basis. The new SW Tx we are looking at are DRM compatible. As I've said, it's still in plan and I am in no position to give you a timeline".

Hopefully, Radio New Ireland will indeed return to shortwave in the near future, with not only a much stronger signal but for many more years to come.

Radio Brasil Central* QSL, Postcards & Stamps

Radio Brasil Central*, transmitting from Goiania (Brazil), followed up with a paper QSL of their previous confirmation. It and three postcards representative of Brazil arrived in an envelope covered with colourful Brazilian stamps. If you are into philately -- and I am, more or less -- then this is another reason why communication abroad is so fascinating. While the practice is not so common nowadays, on the rare occasion some truly exotic stamps appear on QSLs and letters from international broadcasters.  

*Logged using remote SDR receiver at the University of Twente (The Netherlands)

Die Stimme Vietnams

Voice of Vietnam (Die Stimme Vietnams), transmitting from Dhabbaya (UAE), sent along this QSL card, postcard and German language programme schedule. VoV is among a select few stations whose foreign language departments still send out distinctly different QSLs and materials. This is one of the benefits of listening to their various language services. Do give them a listen. Happy DXing!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Farewell QSL from International Serbia Radio

Here's another 'Farewell QSL'. This one comes from International Radio Serbia. A letter postmarked with a couple of lovely Serbian postage stamps arrived today, 29 July 2015. Enclosed with the letter was their QSL card for a May 2014 reception report and -- here's the disturbing part -- a note stating, "By decision of Serbian government, International Radio Serbia - Radio Yugoslavia, ceases to exist on 31 July 2015".

So, once again I have mixed feelings. I have great memories of listening to and verifying both Radio Belgrade and International Radio Serbia in past years. And now, it is disheartening news to see another shortwave broadcaster leave the airwaves.

THANK YOU International Radio Serbia for one last QSL and 79 years of service.

Farewell QSL from Radio New Ireland

SWEET SUCCESS, FINALLY!!! This fantastic QSL from NBC Radio New Ireland (Singaut Bilong Drongo), transmitting from Kavieng, New Ireland, Papua New Guinea. After first hearing the station in 2012 and attempting numerous times to obtain their verification NBC Radio New Ireland replied on 29 July 2015. At the same time -- on the reverse side of the card --  I was informed the station's shortwave service was recently phased out. So, while I am deeply disheartened on the one hand, I am doubly delighted on the other hand to receive this long awaited QSL.

AND, it was not an easy QSL to acquire, unlike other Papua New Guinea stations. Countless emails, letters, registered letters and Facebook messages to NBC and Radio New Ireland were sent over the years. Always, just when it seemed a QSL was imminent, the key person (usually the station manager) failed to follow-up and verify.

At long last with the help of Allen Arifeae (NBC Executive Director), Michael Samuga (NBC Provincial Radio Network), Alwin Anetul (NBC Radio New Ireland Provincial Station Manager) and Roline Likas (New Ireland Journalist), this prized QSL has now been added to my collection.  

THANK YOU VERY MUCH for this exceptional QSL and your many years of shortwave service. You will be missed.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Radio Progreso* (Cuba)

Radio Progreso*, transmitting from  Quivicán (Cuba), was logged on 26 July 2015. A Spanish language broadcast with uninterrupted Cuban music and occasional station IDs was observed from 02.20 till 03.00 UTC. Reception on the shortwave frequency of 4.765 kHz was (SINPO): 25342 -- weak but clear and audible signal, despite atmospheric noise and light fading.

Audio excerpts of this transmission may be heard HERE and HERE
An attempt to email a reception has bounced at a couple of accounts, and not certain the one I have is actually directed to the station.


*Remote SDR receiver at the University of Twente (The Netherlands)


Reach Beyond Australia

Reach Beyond Australia was logged on 25 July 2015. An English language broadcast to Myanmar, featuring the programme "Spotlight", was heard from 23.00 till 23.15 UTC, followed by a broadcast in Burmese. Reception on 11.765 kHz was (SINPO) 34343 -- fair signal, slight transmitter hum, slight fading and prominent atmospheric noise was present initially, otherwise transmission was audible and clear. Reception improved around 23.10 UTC to 44444 -- transmitter droning persisted along with atmospheric noise.

Reception report was emailed the following day: