HAPPY NEW YEAR FROM TEAK PUBLISHING
Welcome to the Btown Monitoring Post, the official blog site of the Teak Publishing Co. in western North Carolina. This where we post current news items, radio related bulletins, and reference material that will be of interest to a wide variety of radio monitors. Copyright © 2006-2021 by Teak Publishing, who is solely responsible for the content on this blog. All rights reserved and redistribution these pages in any format without prior permission is prohibited. Links to stories are permitted.
Rise and set. Day and night. For many, that is the most observation that is required of the sun.
For radio hobbyists, however, our celestial neighbor holds a larger influence on our daily lives, requiring much closer examination. The role it plays in our hobby can be that of a great awakener or a great destroyer.
Now, as we stand on the first steps of Solar Cycle 25, which is already positioning itself to be one of the most talked about solar cycles among radio hobbyists in decades, there is a renewed energy in the hobby for all things HF. Many are venturing out, some for the first time, into the vastness of radio bands that once again crackle with life.
For this journey, you will need an experienced and knowledgeable guide. Gayle Van Horn, as she has for the past 30 years, has stepped up to answer that call.
Teak Publishing is proud to announce the 15th Edition of the Amazon bestselling e-book, the Global Radio Guide (Winter 2020-21), by Gayle Van Horn, W4GVH.
“This publication will have wide appeal to amateur radio operators, shortwave radio hobbyists, news agencies, news buffs, educators, foreign language students, expatriates, or anyone interested in listening to a global view of world news and major events as they happen,” says Larry Van Horn, co-founder of Teak Publishing and editor of the Global Radio Guide (GRG)
With the help of the GRG, you can tune in shortwave broadcast stations from hotspots such as China, Cuba, India, Iran, North/South Korea, Taiwan, and many other counties. If you have a shortwave radio receiver, SDR or Internet connection, pair it with this unique radio resource to know when and where to listen to the world.
This newest edition of the GRG carries on the tradition of those before it with an in-depth, 24-hour station/frequency guide with schedules for selected AM band, longwave, and shortwave radio stations. This unique resource is the only radio publication that lists by-hour schedules that include all language services, frequencies, and world target areas for over 500 stations worldwide.
The GRG includes listings of DX radio programs and Internet website addresses for many of the stations in the book. There are also entries for time and frequency stations as well as some of the more “intriguing” transmissions one can find on the shortwave radio bands.
Gayle has also updated her now famous SDR Buyer’s Guide, a must-have compendium that helps you navigate through revolutionary world of software-defined radios (SDRs), the digital frontier of the radio hobby.
New in this 15th edition of the GRG, Gayle dives into how and where to hear exotic shortwave stations transmitting in the world’s tropical radio bands. Located in the lower portion of the HF spectrum, these stations serve as a window into the culture and daily lives of countries not served by large international broadcast stations. Even in an increasingly connected and digital world, for many of the citizens in these countries, these radio stations serve as the only source of news and information they have at their disposal.
Spectrum Monitor magazine editor, Ken Reitz checks in with a primer on where you can hear global radio and television media broadcasters via satellite.
Fred Waterer, also of Spectrum Monitor, checks in with a feature on listening to music from around the globe on shortwave. There is a nostalgic look back at radio in 1922 by our friends at AWR Wavescan. Teak Publishing's Larry Van Horn will give the reader an exclusive tour of frequencies and radio services below 530 kHz in Radio's Basement Bands.
Whether you monitor shortwave radio broadcasts, amateur radio operators, or aeronautical, maritime, government, or military communications in the HF radio spectrum, this book has the frequencies to help you to hear it all. Teak Publishing’s Global Radio Guide "brings the world to you."
You can find this edition of the Global Radio Guide, along with all of our titles currently available for purchase, on the Teak Publishing Web site at www.teakpublishing.com
The 15th edition of the Global Radio Guide e-Book (electronic book only, no print edition available) is available worldwide from Amazon and their various international websites at
The price for this latest edition is US$8.99. Since this book is being released internationally, Amazon customers in the United Kingdom, Germany, France Spain, Italy, Japan, India, Canada, Brazil, Mexico and Australia can order this e-Book from Amazon websites directly servicing these countries. Customers in all other countries can use the regular Amazon.com website to purchase this e-Book.
You can read any Kindle e-Book with Amazon’s ‘free’ reading apps on literally any electronic media platform. You do not have to own a Kindle reader from Amazon to read this e-book. There are Kindle apps available for iOS, Android, Mac and PC platforms. You can find additional details on these apps by checking out this link to the Amazon website at https://www.amazon.com/kindle-dbs/fd/kcp.
The US Coast Guard has invited comments by January 21, 2021, on a proposal to discontinue HF voice watchkeeping. The proposal appeared on November 20 in the Federal Register. The USCG proposes to cease monitoring 4125, 6215, 8291, and 12,290 kHz, in the contiguous US and Hawaii, due to a lack of activity.
“We believe this change would have a low impact on the maritime public, as commercial satellite radios and Digital Selective Calling (DSC) marine-SSB HF radios have become more prevalent onboard vessels,” the Coast Guard said. “However, we would like your comments on how you would be affected if we terminated monitoring HF voice-only distress frequencies within the contiguous US and Hawaii, particularly if you use HF, but do not currently have a commercial satellite radio or an HF DSC-capable radio aboard your vessel.”
The Coast Guard said it would continue to monitor HF DSC distress alerting for all existing regions and voice distress and hailing from Kodiak, Alaska, and Guam. The Maritime Mobile Service Net (MMSN) on 14.300 MHz remains available to less-equipped mariners who need assistance in emergencies.
1050 kHz 11/18 at 1756 EST: End of "Grace to You" 1/2 hour religious prgm, then Pastor George Cook of New Jerusalem House of Prayer in West Chicago, on various Christian beliefs. This was followed by a low modulation YL talking about powering stn down at sunset. During a very brief quiet period heard a CHUM-AM ID (finally got them after all these years) then heard the start of the Radio Bible Study program. My best guess is WROS-AM The Rose out of Jacksonville, but I can't completely eliminate KJBN-AM Little Rock.
560 KWTO MO, Springfield - 11/18 1758 In what appeared to be a local ad block with a YL anncr giving callsign only IDs between local ads then at TOH ID for 93.3 and AM 560 KWTO then f/out to the news (?). First time I have heard this station since our days when we were stationed at NAS Dallas back in early 1980s. (LVH-NC)
570 WIDS KY, Russell Springs - 11/18 1800 Hrd an ID for WIOK-FM then WIDS TOH ID for Russell Springs and Jamestown by OM anncr. Not bad for 500 watts. New #1048 (LVH-NC)
580 WILL IL, Urbana - 11/18 1756 NPR All Things Considered, guest talking about ancestor sharecroppers, then sponsors list, f/fown and mixing with WIBW for dualing TOH IDs. Then back to All Things Considered. New #1049 (LVH-NC)
580 WIBW KS, Topeka - 11/18 1759 Mixing with WILL for dualing TOH IDs. Made audio recording of Will/WIBW. New #1050 (LVH-NC)
590 CJCL ON, Toronto - 11/18 1756 Local ad block for Toronto biz. McDonald's ad mentioned Canadian eggs for their Egg McMuffin, TOH Full ID including slogan, big surprise, never hrd B4. New # 1051 (LVH-NC)
590 WCAB NC, Rutherfordton - 11/18 1800 Could hear WCAB u/CJCL during quiet period w/call sign only ID at 228 watts. (LVH-NC)
600 WREC TN, Memphis - 11/18 Ben Ferguson talk show gave local studio #535-9732 (tie up on Goggle search w/WREC) WREC ID at TOH. Last time heard here in Btown 10/14/1994. (LVH-NC)
640 WOI IA, Ames - 11/18 1800 Station ID right after WBIN Atlanta ID then NPR's All Things Considered. WCRV/WBIN/WOI battling on the frequency. Another station not heard since 1990s in New Orleans. New #1052. (LVH-NC)
690 KGGF KS, Coffeyville - 11/18 1756 Local ad then program promo by host of Openline 0830-1100 on the Mighty 690 KGGF ID, Sean Hannity Show FoxNew promo. Relog from 1/2020. (LVH-NC)
770 KAAM TX, Garland - 11/18 1756 What sounded like a religious program then instrumental music to OM w/K Double A M call sign ID. New #1054. (LVH-NC)
800 WHOS AL, Decatur - 11/18 1759 In the 800 mess TOH ID for WBHP Huntsville, WHOS Decatur, and at least one more stn sig in mud, "an iHeart station" then fade out to mess. New #1055. (LVH-NC)
1500 WLQV MI, Detroit - 11/18 1801 Promo for advertising on the station then full TOH ID for AM/FM stations - Faith Talk Detroit 92.7 & 1500. New #1043 (LVH-NC)
1520 WPAY OH, Rossford - 11/18 1802 CCR music then nice TOH Full ID for AM/FM 92.1 (not 93.1 per NRC Log). I heard that the K-Love classics network closed down on 11/2/2020 but it doesn't appear so based on their online presence. New #1044 (LVH-NC)
1610 CHHA ON, Toronto - 11/18 1801 SS music, slogan ID // Online feed, o/u CHRN. (LVH-NC)
1620 WTAW TX, College Station - 11/18 1758 Ad for a local jeweler then TOH ID // Online feed u/WNRP. First time heard since 2006. (LVH-NC)
1640 WSJP WI, Sussex - 11/18 1759 Religious program, TOH ID (full) including Relevant Radio slogan ID. New #1046 (LVH-NC)
1660 KWOD KS, Kansas City - 11/18 Local ad block including one for Preferred Asphalt and Concrete in Grandview, f/down to other ads callsign only heard then gone. New #1046 (LVH-NC)
1700 KKLF TX, Richardson - 11/18 1802 Mex Tejano music slogan ID just under dominate KBGG. New #1047 (LVH-NC)
Equipment: SDRPlay RSPdx, W6LVP Mag Amp Loop (WSW-ENE), Airspy HF+Discovery, YouLoop with an Airspy Hi-Z amp prototype. (LVH-NC) Larry Van Horn (N5FPW), Brasstown, NC
|Example of monitoring via Airspy HF Discovery|
|ORTM Mali signal on 9635 kHz|
|Radio Fana via Qatar SDR|
|SRTC Sudan Radio signal on 7205 kHz|
|Voice of Turkey via Airspy HF Discovery|
Icom Incorporated (Headquarters: Hirano, Osaka, Japan/President: Masataka Harima) releases the ID-52A/E*, VHF/UHF dual-band digital transceiver that supports D-STAR (Digital Smart Technologies for Amateur Radio).
* ID-52A is the USA version, ID-52E is the European version
The ID-52A/E is equipped with a color display. The display size is increased to 2.3 inches (1.7 inches for the ID-51A/E), and a transflective display is used to achieve excellent visibility, even in bright sunlight. The transceiver also supports Bluetooth® communication as standard. Wirelessly connect to Android™ devices with ST-4001A/ST-4001I Picture Utility Software and RS-MS1A Remote Control Software installed, the optional VS-3 Bluetooth® headset is also available, for hands-free operation.
And the following features are enhanced from the previous ID-51A/E models. Simultaneous reception in V/V, U/U, V/U as well as DV/DV. Airband reception is expanded from VHF to UHF (225 to 374.995 MHz). The new model can be charged via a micro USB connector. Audio output is significantly increased from 400 mW to 750 mW. The latest function of D-STAR enables you to send, receive, and view saved photos on an installed microSD card using only the ID-52A/E.
In addition to the above, the ID-52A/E has a variety of attractive features such as the DR function with easy set-up, built-in GPS receiver, micro SD card slot, IPX7* waterproof construction, and Terminal/Access Point modes. The ID-52A/E is a product that leads the amateur radio digital communications with enriched features that satisfy any users, from beginners to even heavy users who want to fully enjoy D-STAR.
* 1m depth of water for 30 minutes.
Scientists associated with the National Center for Atmospheric Research, the University of Maryland, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, and other institutions are offering a "bold prediction" on how Solar Cycle 25 will play out. In a paper, "Overlapping Magnetic Activity Cycles and the Sunspot Number: Forecasting Sunspot Cycle 25 Amplitude," they assert that the next sunspot cycle will be of major proportions. The forecast stands in stark contrast to the consensus of forecasters who predict that the magnitude of the nascent Cycle 25 may not be much different from the current unremarkable solar cycle, which appears to have reach its low point.
"From the dawn of modern observational astronomy, sunspots have presented a challenge to understanding -- their quasi-periodic variation in number, first noted 160 years ago, stimulates community-wide interest to this day," the abstract points out. "A large number of techniques are able to explain the temporal landmarks, (geometric) shape, and amplitude of sunspot 'cycles,' however, forecasting these features accurately in advance remains elusive."
Monthly sunspot numbers since 1749. The data values are represented by dots, and the 12-month running average values are illustrated as a red shaded area. Vertical blue dashed lines signify the magnetic activity cycle termination times that trigger the rapid growth of sunspot activity.
The paper notes that recent studies have illustrated a relationship between the sun's 22-year Hale magnetic cycle and the production of sunspot cycle landmarks and patterns, but not the amplitude of the cycle.
"Using discrete Hilbert transforms on 270 years of monthly sunspot numbers to robustly identify the so-called 'termination' events -- landmarks marking the start and end of sunspot and magnetic activity cycles -- we extract a relationship between the temporal spacing of terminators and the magnitude of sunspot cycles," the abstract explains. "Given this relationship and our prediction of a terminator event in 2020, we deduce that Sunspot Cycle 25 will have a magnitude that rivals the top few since records began. This outcome would be in stark contrast to the community consensus estimate of Sunspot Cycle 25 magnitude."
NASA's Solar Dynamic Observatory captured this image of a sunspot, with a core larger than Earth.
According to the paper, low-amplitude solar cycles appear to correspond with widely separated terminators, while larger-amplitude cycles correspond to more narrowly separated terminators.
"[O]ur best estimate for the [sunspot number] amplitude of Solar Cycle 25 is 233 spots, with a 68% confidence that the amplitude will fall between 204 and 254 spots," the paper posits. "We predict with 95% confidence that the Cycle 25 amplitude will fall between 153 and 305 spots."
The researchers concede that their forecast is outside of the scientific consensus, based on different paradigms. "Over the coming months, as [Solar Cycle] 25 matures, it will become evident which of these paradigms is most relevant," the paper says. "Very early indications of the spot pattern are appearing at higher-than-average latitudes (â¼40Â°). Historically, high-latitude spot emergence has been associated with the development of large amplitude sunspot cycles -- only time will tell."