Friday, April 29, 2016

VOA Radiogram for April 30 - May 1

From Kim Andrew Elliott:

Hello friends,

This weekend's VOA Radiogram will include a news item in Olivia 64-2000. This might be an opportunity to investigate why some listeners do not have successful decodes of this mode. One way to do this is to use two radios, with two different bandwidths. The hypothesis is that a wider bandwidth should work better with the wide Olivia 64-2000 mode. You could decode "live" from one radio while recording  from the other radio for later decoding.

Here is the lineup for VOA Radiogram, program 161, 30 April-1 May 2016, all in MFSK32 except where noted:

 1:33  Program preview
 2:43  Russia launches rocket from new cosmodrome*
 6:44  Freedom House press freedom report*
14:01  Olivia 64-2000: Dwarf planet has a moon*
23:31  MFSK32: Old RFE/RL transmitting site in Spain*
26:07  Closing announcements*

* with image

Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com.

VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5745 kHz
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.

The Mighty KBC will transmit a minute of MFSK32 Sunday at about 0220 UTC (Saturday 10:20 pm EDT) on its new summer frequency of 9925 kHz, via Germany. This is part of the KBC broadcast to North America, 0000-0300 UTC. Eric will want to know how the new 9925 kHz frequency is working, so please send reports to themightykbc@gmail.com .

DigiDX will transmit DX news in MFSK32 and perhaps other modes on its usual schedule:
Sunday 2130 UTC - 15770kHz via WRMI Florida
Sunday 2330 UTC - 11580kHz via WRMI Florida
Monday 2000 UTC - 6070kHz via Channel 292 Germany
Consult https://www.facebook.com/digidx/ for any additions or changes to this schedule.

Thanks for your reception reports.  I'm compiling the images from program 159 (not 158 as previously mentioned) and hope to send those out this weekend. 

I hope you can tune in and write in.

Kim

Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
Twitter: @VOARadiogram (active especially before, during, and after broadcasts)

Friday, April 22, 2016

Selected recent logs

All received in Southern California, unless there is a star (*), which means they were on the U. of Twente WebSDR in the Netherlands.

518.0    "W"     Sitor-B     FRL, French CROSS MED (Centre Regional
Operationnel de Surveillance et Sauvetage en Mediterranee), La Garde,
NAVTEX (NAVAREA 3) WA06 for gunnery exercise off Provence   0444  *

3831.0    ZLST   ALE    German Customs, Cuxhaven, raised ZHEL, Zollboot
Helgoland, then hissy exchange and TWS cleardown       2206  *

3850.0     BP21   ALE    German Bundespolizei patrol boat, clg BPLEZS
(control, Cuxhaven), then hissy ARQ type exchange  2251  *

5352.5   HG7BHB    CW      Amateur propagation beacon, Hungary, rptg
"VVV DE HG7BHB QTH JN97LE34SF PWR 50W"    2222 *

5909.5    709      ALE/voice      US Coast Guard HC-130H #1709 on COTHEN,
setting up flight following with CG ComComm, planning to do training
approaches and then "go back to Sacramento," then PAC clearing    0019

6474.0     KSM   CW    MRHS San Francisco Radio, MMP Free Press at ~26
wpm, usual s9+30   1829

6559.0    RV1851   HFDL   Caspian Airlines (Iran) flight with position
37 38 36  N  LON 112 22 48  W for San Francisco   2017

6785.0    WUE6   ALE  US Army Corps of Engineers District Ofc., Nashville,
TN, sounding  0150

7602.0    3A7D  CW      Chinese Mil (M89), calling marker "V DKG6 DKG6
 DKG6 DE 3A7D 3A7D"        2247 *

8345.0    RKA80    CW   Unknown Russian Navy Pacific Flt vessel, possibly
Missile Cruiser Varyag, loud, wkg unknown duplex stn (not heard), with long
msgs in 5L Cyrillic groups   2227

10943.0   CFH    STANAG 4285    Canadian Forces, Halifax, NS, repeating
marker "NAWS DE CFH ZKR F1 2822 3394 4158 6242 12371 16552 AR"
(75L/5N1)  2201 *

14023.0   VP8SGI     CW     South Sandwich/ South Georgia amateur
DXpedition, good op working orderly pileup   0030

18003.0   HIK0111111   ALE    USAF, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam,
apparently calling self for an ALE text message L/C HOW ME?//    2322

22251.0  E8KV   CW   Russian Military, working several outstations with long
messages in Cyrillic Morse   2245 *

Hopefully no RHC co-channel with VOA Radiogram for April 23-24

From Kim Andrew Elliott:

Hello friends,

Last weekend, Radio Habana Cuba had a special transmission on 17580 kHz, creating an interesting co-channel situation with VOA Radiogram Saturday at 1600-1630. RHC caused only minor interference in Europe, but in parts of the Americas, decoding VOA Radiogram was difficult. In this video by Tim in Colorado, VOA Radiogram and RHC are fairly evenly matched …   


[Here neither one was particularly audible, but RHC wins on points.  That distinctive voice they use faded in and out more times than the VOA's digital tones, which stayed pretty much out.  -Hugh]

 Last weekend’s Olivia 64-2000 provided some good decodes despite poor reception conditions.  Here is an example from a receiver in Sydney, NSW, Australia …


On the other hand, some listeners were not as successful with Olivia 64-2000, and found that this mode did not perform as well as MFSK32 – which is much faster. I wonder if the problem is related to the receiver’s bandwidth. Olivia 64-2000 extends to 2500 Hz above and below the carrier. If any of that data is “clipped,” the decode might be less than 100%. We could try some experiments with this in future programs.

This weekend, all the content will be in MFSK32, except for the transmission schedule in Olivia 64-2000 mixed with the closing music.

Here is the lineup for VOA Radiogram, program 160, 23-24 April 2016, all in MFSK32 except where noted:

 1:34  Program preview
 2:44  Can AC and DC power integrate?*
12:13  Radio Farda TV signal jammed in Iran*
16:38  New report finds media freedom declined globally*
26:53  Closing announcements*
28:17  Olivia 64-2000: Frequency schedule under music

* with image

Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com.   

VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5745 kHz
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina

The Mighty KBC will transmit a minute of MFSK32 Sunday at about 0220 UTC (Saturday 10:20 pm EDT) on 6040 kHz, via Germany. This is part of KBC’s North America broadcast at 0000-0300 UTC. Reception reports to Eric: themightykbc@gmail.com .

DigiDX will transmit DX news in MFSK32 and perhaps other modes:  
Sunday 2130 UTC - 15770kHz via WRMI Florida
Sunday 2330 UTC - 11580kHz via WRMI Florida
Monday 2000 UTC - 6070kHz via Channel 292 Germany
Consult https://www.facebook.com/digidx/ for any additions or changes to this schedule.

Thank you for your reception reports from last weekend. I’m still compiling the gallery of MFSK images from program 158 and hope to send those out this weekend.

I hope you can tune in and write in.

Kim

Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
Twitter: @VOARadiogram (especially active just before, during, and after shows)

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Is ANPOPS in Southern California?

It's long been assumed that the Rockwell Collins "ARINC UrgentLink" station using the 2G ALE address of ANPOPS is at or near the old ARINC headquarters in Annapolis, MD.  Perhaps it was at one time.

Lately, however, hundreds of ALE decodes have given a clear indication that it is most likely coming from somewhere in Southern California.

Let's look at some statistics. Here are the average S/N (as shown on PC-ALE) and the average frequency for the only stations audible at this QTH in SoCal:

Stn           S/N       Fq
010MDR    8.7    11206.2
103SCC    6.3    11300.3
104LKW    6.7    10559.3
105LAN     6.8     6792.7
ANPOPS    9.0    6163.0

As noted above, the sample on these is rather large.  It's over 50 normal sized pages of PC-ALE orderwire loggings. It includes a couple of all-night runs, to somewhat lessen the effect of diurnal band changes.  As far as I know, all of these stations are using very similar 125-watt radios with simple vertical antennas.

Note that ANPOPS actually averages a higher signal to noise ratio than the four other stations, all of which are known to be in the direct RF field at my location.  The only station whose average comes even close is 010MDR, Marina Del Rey, which is verified as coming from a business park only a few miles away from here.

ANPOPS also tends to be heard on lower frequencies.

Neither condition would support an origin in Maryland.  This result is simply not consistent with the known characteristics of recent transcontinental propagation. Band conditions have not been especially good, and genuine F2 skip from the eastern US has been weaker than normal.

And so we have something of a mystery, but then this system has been known for those.

Friday, April 15, 2016

US Department of Veterans Affairs ALE log

All received in Southern California in spring 2016. All soundings in 2G ALE, except for one call from 6030 to 5290 on 22921.6.

2025.6   6051 6543 6602 6603 6640

2726.0   6051 6491 6602 6603 6640

3355.1   5313 6051 6052 6491 6543 6602 6603 6620 6640

3393.6   5313 6051 6052 6491 6543 6602 6603 6640

5038.5   6640

6335.6* 3031

6981.1   5311 5810 6030 6051 6052 6191 6203 6400 6491 6543 6601 6602
              6603 6620 6640 6714 6780

7480.0   1616 5286 5287 5290 5311 5312 5313 5420 5810 5950 6030 6051
              6052 6053 6191 6203 6400 6491 6541 6542 6543 6601 6602 6603
              6620 6640 6714 6743 6780 13536

10389.6   3033 5190 5287 5311 5312 5313 5420 5287 5810 5826 5897 5898
                5899 5950 6030 6052 6203 6400 6543 6601 6602 6603 6620 6640
                6714 6741 6743 6780

14441.6   3033 5190 5311 5313 6030 6203 6601 6741

17492.6   5190 5420 5520 5810 5897 5898 5950 6030 6203 6790 13536

20200.1   5090 5287 5290 5400 5420 5520 5810 5950 6030 6191 6203 6260
                6714 6790

22738.0*  2002

22921.6   3033 5090 5190 5290 5400 5420 5520 5810 5950 6030 6191 6714
                8356 7570


*ShipCom / ARINC UrgentLink frequency.  It is not known why DVA ID's
would turn up on ShipCom/ ARINC UrgentLink frequencies,or even if they
are real DVA calls.

In addition, 7480 is an Operation SECURE frequency in the US, and the
reason for its inclusion in the DVA allocation is not known.

VOA Radiogram for April 16-17

Hello friends,

Reception was good last weekend, allowing for successful decodes, including the nuances of the gray-scale images. Here is the photo of the migrant as decoded by Dmitry in Kursk, Russia, on 15670 kHz …


VOA Radiogram this weekend will include a seven-minute segment of Olivia 64-2000, so let’s hope for poor reception to give this slow-but-robust mode a workout. If reception conditions are good, try a cheap receiver, or a compromised antenna, or a location with electrical noise.

Here is the lineup for VOA Radiogram, program 159, 16-17 April 2016, all in MFSK32 except where noted:

 1:31  Program preview
 2:39  Octopus makes daring escape*
 7:53  Kerry calls for more connectivity in poor countries*
12:42  Trolleybuses in Moscow to be retired*
16:10  Olivia 64-2000: Tiny spacecraft to explore space
23:21  MFSK32: Closing announcements*

*with image

Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com.

VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5745 kHz
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.

The Mighty KBC will have an extra digital mode transmission this weekend. The usual minute of MFSK32 is Sunday at about 0220 UTC (Saturday 10:20 pm EDT), on 6040 kHz, via Germany, part of KBC’s broadcast to North America Sunday 0000-0300 UTC.  Eric van Willegen’s Giant Juke Box show will then be repeated to Europe, Sunday, 0800-1000 UTC, on 6095 kHz, also via Nauen, Germany. The MFSK32 will be at about 0920 UTC. Outside of Europe, you can listen via http://websdr.ewi.utwente.nl:8901/ .

DigiDX will transmit MFSK32 and possibly other modes …
Sunday 2130-2220 UTC - 15770kHz - via WRMI Florida
Sunday 2330-2400 UTC - 11580kHz - via WRMI Florida
Monday 2000-2030 UTC - 6070kHz – via Channel 292 Germany
Consult http://www.digidx.uk/ for any additions or changes to this schedule.

Thank you for your reception reports last weekend. In keeping with the pattern of alternating between oldest and newest reports, I am now compiling the gallery of MFSK images from program 158.  I hope to start sending those out this weekend.

Please tune in and write in.

Kim

Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
voaradiogram.net
Twitter: @VOARadiogram

Friday, April 08, 2016

Germany reverses digital AM ban (VOA Radiogram for April 9-10)

Desk, get me rewrite.  Stop the presses.  Kill the front page.
(This will be the second revision of the May column.  Poor Ken.)

The German government now says it was all a misunderstanding.

From Kim Andrew Elliott:

Hello friends,

The German communications regulator Bundesnetzagentur has changed its mind about allowing digital modes on shortwave broadcast transmitters in Germany. Apparently BNetzA thought that Channel 292 was transmitting the text and images in single sideband (SSB), which is how amateurs, military, etc, transmit the digital modes. Now that they know that the MFSK32 and other modes are sent as program audio on an analogue amplitude-modulation shortwave transmitter, their objections were withdrawn.  (It's similar to A2A modulated CW.)

BNetzA prefers that the term MFSK32 not be used to describe these broadcasts, but we have to specify the mode so that you can set Fldigi or other decoding software to the correct mode. In any case, the weekly MFSK32 transmission will resume on The Mighty KBC, and DigiDX will return to Channel 292.

Meanwhile, VOA Radiogram this weekend will be all MFSK32 except for the transmission schedule in Olivia 64-2000 under the closing music.

Here is the lineup for VOA Radiogram, program 158, 9-10 April 2016, all in MFSK32 except where noted:

  1:32  Program preview
  2:46  China domain name rules*
11:58  South Korea blocks North Korea Tech website*
18:09  Mars Opportunity rover photographs dust devil*
23:01  Photo of migrant from RFE/RL Top Shots*
26:24  Closing announcements*
28:01  Olivia 64-2000: Frequencies under music

* with image

Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com

VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5745 kHz
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.

The Mighty KBC will (after a one-week break) transmit a minute of MFSK32 Sunday at about 0220 UTC (Saturday 10:20 pm EDT) on 6040 kHz, via Germany.  Sometimes the MFSK32 is as late as 0228 UTC. Reports for this KBC reception to Eric: themightykbc@gmail.com

DigiDX will broadcast DX news in MFSK32 (and perhaps other modes)  …
Sunday 2130 UTC 15570kHz via WRMI (Florida)
Sunday 2330 UTC 11580kHz via WRMI (Florida)
Monday 2000 UTC 6070kHz via Channel 292 (Germany)
Check http://www.digidx.uk/ for any changes or additions to this schedule.

Thank you for your reports to VOA Radiogram last weekend.  I am now compiling the MFSK image gallery from program 136 (November 2015) and hope to send that out this weekend.

Fldigi saves decoded MFSK images as png files in the folder \fldigi.files\images\.  When you send a reception report, please attach those png files.

I hope you can tune in and write in this weekend.

Kim

Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
Twitter: @voaradiogram (especially active before, during, and after broadcasts)

Saturday, April 02, 2016

Oops! (VOA Radiogram for April 2-3)

I got busy writing the next TSM column, and missed posting the weekly VOA Radiogram notice when it had a lot of news in it. Mostly, this is that the German government has banned narrowband digital modes on AM analog transmitters.  Huh?  DRM is digital, and that's still legal.  Also, I forgot to make the frequency change for the first broadcast, and got an SDR file of nothing.  Sigh.

--------------
From Kim Andrew Elliott:

Hello friends,


New this weekend is the elimination of the digital text modes from shortwave transmitters in Germany.

The German regulator Bundesnetzagentur has ruled that the digital modes are not allowed in the broadcast bands. Because of this, there will be no MFSK32 on The Mighty KBC this weekend, because it uses a transmitter in Nauen, Germany.  And, for the time being, there will be no DigiDX MFSK broadcasts on Channel 292, 6070 kHz, and Radio 700, 3985 kHz.


Listeners in Germany might want to note these arguments for the digital modes on the shortwave broadcast bands: 1) It is broadcasting, not point-to-point communication. 2) It can be received on any shortwave radio, even inexpensive portables with no SSB capability. (Software is required to decode the text and images, but this can be included in future shortwave radios.) 3) DRM is legal on the shortwave broadcast bands, and DRM can transmit text and images.  4) Text and images via analog radio requires less spectrum (bandwidth) than DRM. 5) Text and images via analog radio are a useful new application for underutilized shortwave transmitters and frequencies. 6) Text and images via analog radio extend the range of a shortwave transmitter, resulting in accurate content in conditions where voice transmissions may be unintelligible. 7) Digital modes via shortwave can be a useful alternative when the Internet is not available due to disasters or to net censorship by dictators.



VOA Radiogram, program 157, 2-3 April 2016 is all MFSK32 except for the transmission schedule in Olivia 64-2000 under the closing music:



  1:35  Program preview
  2:48  Asia at risk for water shortages*
10:25  Seismic risk map now includes quakes caused by humans*
17:05  Latvia blocks Russia's Sputnik website*
22:20  View bald eagles in Washington via Nest Cam*
25:30  Closing announcements*
28:05  Olivia 64-2000: Transmission schedule



* with image

Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com.

And visit voaradiogram.net.

Twitter: @VOARadiogram


VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5745 kHz
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.


Digital modes on The Mighty KBC (via Germany) and DigiDX (via Channel 292, 6070 kHz, and Radio 700, 3985 kHz, both via Germany) will not be available this weekend for reasons stated above. DigiDX will be available via WRMI, Florida, Sunday at 2130-2200 UTC on 15770 kHz and 2330-2400 UTC on 11580 kHz.



Thank you for your reception reports to VOA Radiogram last weekend. I am now compiling the gallery for program 136 (November 2015) and hope to send it to listeners this weekend.


Kim


Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
voaradiogram.net
Twitter: @VOARadiogram.net


Friday, March 25, 2016

Easter VOA Radiogram for March 26-27

Hello friends,

Propagation last weekend was difficult on Saturday, especially within North America. Fortunately, it improved by Sunday.

If you are new to the program, note that Fldigi automatically saves decoded images as png files in the folder \fldigi.files\images\ probably within your C:\Users hierarchy. Operating systems other than Windows may have different folder names. When sending reception reports, please attach those png files.

VOA Radiogram this weekend  is all in MFSK32 except for the new VOA Radiogram transmission schedule in Olivia 64-2000  under the closing music. The only frequency change is Saturday at 0930-1000 UTC: 26 March is the last day for 5865 kHz; effective 2 April, 5745 kHz will be used during that broadcast.

Here is the lineup for VOA Radiogram, program 156, 26-27 March 2016, all in MFSK32 except where noted:

  1:34  Program preview
  2:39  Efficient internal combustion engine*
  9:00  Crop wild relatives for food security*
15:05  Rare flower blooms at US Botanic Garden*
19:49  Urban birds are smarter*
24:10  Closing announcements*
Olivia 64-2000 transmission schedule under closing music.

* with image

Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com.

VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5865 kHz (Changes to 5745 kHz effective 2 April.)
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.

The Mighty KBC will transmit a minute Saturday at about 0220 UTC (lately it has been after 0225 UTC) (10:20 pm EDT or later) on 6040 kHz, via Germany. Reports for this KBC reception to Eric: themightykbc@gmail.com . The KBC North America broadcast is Sunday 0000-0300 UTC (Saturday 8-11 pm EDT)
on 6040 kHz.

DigiDX this weekend is all in MFSK32, except for some MFSK128 in German.  Consult www.digidx.uk for any updates:

Date
Time
Frequency
Transmitter
Friday, 25 March
2000-2030 UTC
3985 kHz
Radio 700, Germany
Saturday, 26 March
2000-2030 UTC
6070 kHz
Channel 292, Germany
Sunday, 27 March
1100-1130 UTC
6070 kHz
Channel 292, Germany
Sunday, 27 March
2330-0000 UTC
11580 kHz
WRMI, Florida

Thanks for your reports.  I’m now compiling the gallery from program 153 and will try to begin sending them out this weekend.

I hope you can tune in and write in this weekend.

Kim

Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
Twitter: @VOARadiogram (active especially before/during/after broadcasts)

Friday, March 18, 2016

Note N. America local time changes for VOA Radiogram 3/19-20

From Kim Andrew Elliott:

Hello friends,

In most of the United States and Canada, VOA Radiogram is now one hour later by local time because of the change to daylight time. The UTC times remain the same (see schedule below). Effective 2 April, the Saturday 0930 UTC broadcast changes to 5745 kHz.

VOA Radiogram this weekend will include an 8-minute stretch of Olivia 64-2000. Let’s hope for poor reception – or create poor reception conditions – to give the Olivia 64-2000.

VOA Radiogram reception and decodes were very good last weekend. Here’s an example by Alessandro in Italy, 13 March 2016, 1930-2000 UTC, 15670 kHz:



Here is the lineup for VOA Radiogram, program 155, 19-20 March 2016, all in MFSK32 except where noted:

 1:32  Program preview

 3:01  NASA plans large fire on spacecraft*

 7:26  Rotten tomatoes produce renewable energy*

11:54  Olivia 64-2000: Legislation to counter propaganda

19:48  MFSK32: Over the horizon radar in amateur HF bands*

25:04  Early General Electric shortwave broadcasting*

27:05  Closing announcements

* with image

Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com

VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):

Sat 0930-1000 (5:30 am EDT) 5865 kHz (will change to 5745 kHz effective 2 April)
Sat 1600-1630 (noon EDT) 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 (Saturday 10:30 pm EDT) 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 (3:30 pm EDT) 15670 kHz

All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.

The Mighty KBC will transmit a minute of MFSK32 Sunday at about 0220 UTC (10:20 pm EDT) on 6040 kHz, via Germany. Reception reports for KBC reception to Eric: themightykbc@gmail.com . KBC is determining whether it will have enough sponsors to maintain its broadcast to North America, currently at 0000-0300 UTC on 6040 kHz.

DigiDX will transmit MFSK32, and some MFSK128L, this weekend:

Friday 18th March: 2000-2030UTC - 6070kHz (Channel 292, Germany)
Sunday 20th March: 1100-1130UTC - 6070kHz (Channel 292, Germany)
Sunday 20th March: 1230-1300UTC - 6070kHz (Channel 292, Germany)
Sunday 20th March: 2330-0000UTC - 11580kHz (WRMI, Florida)

Another DigiDX transmission Sunday at 0030 UTC on 6070 kHz (via Germany) will be in Olivia 64-2000, with some MFSK16 at the end. For listeners in the Americas, it will be interesting to see if these digital modes will decode under CFRX in Toronto, also on 6070 kHz.

Visit http://www.digidx.uk/ for any updates to this schedule.

Thanks for the VOA Radiogram reception reports last weekend, including several from new listeners. I finally sent out the MFSK gallery from program 135 (Halloween weekend!) last weekend. I’m now compiling the gallery from program 153 and hope to send that out in the next few days. 

I hope you can tune in and write in this weekend.

Kim

Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
Twitter: @VOARadiogram (especially active before, during and after the broadcasts)

Friday, March 04, 2016

Pythons and astrophysics and other fun stuff on VOA Radiogram for March 5-6

From Kim Andrew Elliott:

Hello friends,

VOA Radiogram this weekend is all in MFSK32. There is no time for a slow mode such as Olivia 64-3000, because the MFSK32 stories are too interesting to cut.  

Here is the lineup for VOA Radiogram, program 153, 5-6 March 2016, all in MFSK32:

 1:34  Program preview
  2:36  Ridding Bangkok of pythons and other snakes*
12:57  Astronomers locate source of a fast radio burst*
17:57  Distinguished visitors at the South Pole*
27:13  Closing announcements*

* with image

Decode with Fldigi or MultiPSK for PCs, or AndFlmsg or TIVAR for Android devices.

Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com.

VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5865 kHz
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.

The Mighty KBC will transmit a minute of MFSK32 Saturday at about 0220 UTC (Sunday 9:20 pm EST) on 6040 kHz, via Germany. Reports for KBC reception to Eric: themightykbc@gmail.com .

DigiDX continues its MFSK32 transmissions this weekend via Channel 292, 6070 kHz, in Germany. The schedule is Friday (today) at 2000-2030 UTC and Sunday at 1100-2030 UTC (presumably including several repeats). This weekend’s DigiDX broadcast includes MFSK32 at the usual audio frequency of 1500, plus, simultaneously (a few minutes into the broadcast) at 600 Hz. You can decode both at the same time using two instances of Fldigi. Additional transmissions of DigiDX are possible during the weekend (consult facebook.com/digidx) as well as digital IDs by Channel 292 itself. 

Thank you for your reports from last weekend.  I’m still working on the gallery of MFSK images from program 135, and hope to be sending this out soon.

I hope you can tune in and write in this weekend.

Kim

Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
@VOARadiogram   

PS:  See my new essay about BBC’s planned North Korean service.

Friday, February 12, 2016

VOA Radiogram Celebrates World Radio Day Feb.13-14

From Kim Andrew Elliott: Hello friends,

February 13 is World Radio Day. VOA Radiogram this weekend will include content pertaining to World Radio Day. 

In addition to our usual MFSK32, one VOA News story will be in MFSK16. MFSK16 and MFSK32 are both 16-FSK, but MFSK16 is about half the speed and occupies about half the bandwidth (316 Hz). MFSK16 performed well in difficult reception conditions in past VOA Radiogram and Radio Australia broadcasts. 

Here is the lineup for VOA Radiogram, program 150, 13-14 February 2016, all in MFSK32 except where noted:

  1:35  Program preview
  2:55  MFSK16: Galaxies behind the Milky Way (MFSK32 image*)
  9:43  SpaceX will attempt another launch later this month*
15:39  Da Vinci drawings converted to real objects*
21:34  World Radio Day*
26:57  Closing announcements*

* with image

Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com

VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5865 kHz (might still be audible in Europe via the gray line)
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.


The Mighty KBC will transmit a minute of MFSK32 Sunday at about 0220 UTC (Saturday 9:20 pm EST) on 6040 kHz, via Germany. Reports for KBC decodes to Eric: themightykbc@gmail.com .

Here is the World Radio Day logo as decoded last weekend by VOA Radiogram listeners around the world ...

http://voaradiogram.net/post/139005577392/the-world-radio-day-logo-as-transmitted-on-voa

And here are videos of last weekend's VOA Radiogram produced by listeners in Italy, Colorado, and Japan. You can watch the decoding, or decode the modes yourself from the audio ...

http://voaradiogram.net/post/138987733077/text-and-images-via-shortwave-herald-world-radio


https://t.co/ESLiXP7uV1


Thanks for your reception reports. I'm still answering the reports from program 145. Hope to have that finished today. 

The Winter SWL Fest is 19-20 February at Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia. Information at http://swlfest.com. I don't know yet if I will be able to attend, but I recommend this event for anyone interested in radio.

Kim

Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
voaradiogram.net
Twitter: @voaradiogram

Friday, February 05, 2016

31.3 baud VOA Radiogram for February 6-7

Hello friends,

This weekend, the only departure from our usual MFSK32 is one news item in MFSK31.  Both MFSK31 and MFSK32 have a symbol rate of 31.3 baud, but MFSK31 is only half the speed: 55 wpm. MFSK31 also has half the bandwidth, 330 Hz. Its modulation is 8-FSK, meaning 8 tones, rather than the 16 tones of MFSK32. (This table of modes may be helpful.) We’ll see if the performance of MFSK31 is better or worse than that of MFSK32, especially if reception conditions are difficult. (MFSK31 does not do images, hence the MFSK32 image following the MFSK news story.)

During the past several weeks, you have seen VOA RADIO GRAM transmitted as “video text” in the waterfall.  To see all three lines of the video text, make this adjustment in Fldigi: Configure >  Waterfall > FFT Processing > change Waterfall height in pixels to a higher value – try 185 and adjust from there. And note that the change does not take effect until Fldigi is started again.

Here is the lineup for VOA Radiogram, program 149, 6-7 February 2016, all in MFSK32 except where noted:

 1:34  Program preview
 2:52  2018 NASA space launch will carry 13 cubesats*
 9:24  MFSK31: Russian spacewalk (MFSK32 image)*
16:16  MFSK32: Afghan IS radio station destroyed*
22:34  Coming events* and closing announcements*

* with image  

Due to last minute edits, the times listed above may vary somewhat from the actual broadcast times.

Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com.

VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5865 kHz
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.

The Mighty KBC will transmit a minute of MFSK32 Sunday at about 0225 UTC (Saturday 9:25 pm EST) on 6040 kHz, via Germany. Please send reports for this KBC reception to Eric: themightykbc@gmail.com .

A reminder that the TIVAR app is available for decoding the modes on an Android device.

Thanks for the reception reports sent for last weekend’s VOA Radiogram. I am now answering reports to Program 145, then will start on an older program this weekend.

I hope you can tune in and write in this weekend.

Kim

Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
Twitter: @voaradiogram

Friday, January 29, 2016

VOA Radiogram for January 30-31

Hello friends,

We will test slow modes again this weekend, so let’s hope for some bad reception. In addition to the Olivia 64-2000 that we have tried the past few weeks, we will transmit  the same news item in MFSK8, which is slightly faster, about 30 words per minute. MFSK8 does require very precise tuning, so a 15-second tuning signal will be transmitted before the news content begins. The 15-second signal will also be transmitted before the Olivia 64-2000.

Here is the lineup for VOA Radiogram, program 148, 30-31 January 2016, all in MFSK32 except where noted …

 1:35  Program preview (now)
 2:56  Very wide solar system found*
 7:25  ISIS radio in Afghanistan*
13:56  Olivia 64-2000: New satellite tracks sea level**
19:40  MFSK8: Same news item**
24:44  MFSK32: Image, closing announcements, image*

* with image

** preceded by 15-second tuning signal

Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com .

VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5865 kHz
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.

The Mighty KBC will transmit a minute of MFSK32 Sunday at  about 0223 UTC (Saturday 9:23 pm EST) on 6040 kHz, via Germany. Reports for KBC reception to Eric: themightykbc@gmail.com .

Shoveling snow and other recovery from last weekend’s big snow in the eastern USA has put me another week behind in answering your emails, but I will work on them this weekend.  Your reception reports are very much appreciated, even if I’m not able to answer them promptly.

I hope you can tune in this weekend.

Kim

Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
Twitter: @voaradiogram  

Friday, January 22, 2016

Planetary VOA Radiogram for January 23-24

Hello friends,


Last weekend's long transmission of Olivia 64-2000 was very interesting. It did result in some successful decodes under difficult conditions. You can see some examples here ...


http://voaradiogram.net/post/137804494562/olivia-64-2000-noise-prevails-over-local-noise


http://voaradiogram.net/post/137594112122/olivia-64-2000-from-north-carolina-decodes-in


One thing I discovered is that, when receiving and decoding Olivia 64-2000, it is important that the receiver bandwidth be wide enough to include all of the data, which extends to 2500 Hz above and below the carrier frequency. Otherwise, you cannot take advantage of all the redundancy built in to the Olivia 64-2000 mode.
Those of you who can record the audio using an SDR receiver can experiment with various bandwidths, shape factors, AM versus SSB, etc.


Anyway, last weekend's Olivia 64-2000 was so much fun that we'll include one news item in that mode this weekend, in addition to our usual MFSK32.


Here is the lineup for VOA Radiogram, program 147, 23-24 January 2016, all in MFSK32 except where noted:


 1:32  Program preview
 2:49  Evidence of "Planet Nine."*
 8:15  Plastic in oceans*
12:51  Olivia 64-2000: Papal Fiat to be auctioned
23:02  MFSK32: Image, closing announcements, and snow*

* with image


Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com .


VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5865 kHz
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.



The Mighty KBC will transmit a minute of MFSK32 Sunday at 0220 UTC (Saturday 9:20 pm EST) on 6040 kHz, via Germany. Please send reports for KBC reception to Eric: themightykbc@gmail.com .


I will use this weekend of snow in Washington to catch up on your reception reports. I'm now alternating between the oldest and newest reports, gradually working my way to the middle. If you haven't seen the gallery of MFSK32 images I send in response to reports, a recent example is posted here ...



http://voaradiogram.net/post/137590152087/pictures-in-color-no-less-via-shortwave


If you have an Android device, try TIVAR to decode the modes on VOA Radiogram. For computers, Fldigi.



I hope you can tune in and write in this weekend.


Kim


Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
voaradiogram.net
twitter.com/voaradiogram (see examples of decoded MFSK images here)


Friday, January 15, 2016

Slow VOA Radiogram for January 16-17

From Kim Andrew Elliott:


Hello friends,


A reminder that this weekend's VOA Radiogram will be mostly Olivia 64-2000. If reception conditions are poor (as they were in Europe on 15670 kHz last weekend), this could be interesting, because the Olivia 64-2000 might be able to overcome the difficult reception. If reception is good, it could be boring, because Olivia 64-2000 is very slow: about 25 words per minute.


Program 146, 16-17 January 2016 (modes as noted)

  1:34  MFSK32: Program preview
  2:51  Olivia 64-2000: Blog post from Antarctica
23:36  MFSK32: Image from Antarctica
26:32  Closing announcements


Please send reception reports to radiogram@voanews.com .


VOA Radiogram transmission schedule
(all days and times UTC):
Sat 0930-1000 5865 kHz
Sat 1600-1630 17580 kHz
Sun 0230-0300 5745 kHz
Sun 1930-2000 15670 kHz
All via the Edward R. Murrow transmitting station in North Carolina.



The Mighty KBC will transmit a minute of MFSK32 Sunday at 0220 UTC (Saturday 9:20 pm EST) on 6040 kHz. This is part of the KBC broadcast to North America at its new time of 0000 to 0300 UTC Sunday, on the new frequency of 6040 kHz. Reports for KBC reception to Eric: themightykbc@gmail.com .



I've returned from my Asian travels and will resume answering reception reports during the weekend.


Kim


Kim Andrew Elliott
Producer and Presenter
VOA Radiogram
voaradiogram.net