YU2AX/MM – M/V “Sider Atlantic”

Dear Sparks,

today at time 12:27 UTC I had a QSO on frequency 14012.0 kHz with OM Zele c/s YU2AX/MM. Zele is on board Bulk Carrier “SIDER ATLANTIC”, the ship is bound to Belgium from Argentina, PSN is SW of Portuguese Coast in GRID IM37. Some ship details:

IMO: 9618795

MMSI: 256410000

Call Sign: 9HA2856

Flag: Malta [MT]

AIS Vessel Type: Cargo

Gross Tonnage: 15545

Deadweight: 24252 t

Length Overall x Breadth Extreme: 157m × 24.8m

Year Built: 2011

Have a GUD WATCH and 73’s


Atlantic Patriot[2]

SP1ST/MM – M/V “Atlantic Patriot”

Following maritime mobile activity reported by OM John DAVIES – G4ETQ:

I’ve just worked Kris SP1ST/MM on Atlantic Patriot. He is active on SSB, 14.303.
TR was Atlantic ocean 1000 Nm from/bound Cuba.

The Sun’s Magnetic Dynamo Is Weakening

Dear Sparks,

far away from our age here the future of the Solar Cycle…

Astronomers now confirm that the Sun’s magnetic dynamo is likely to eventually disappear causing our star to lose its 11 year magnetic cycle. In fact, a billion years from now, they say, interplanetary spaceflight could become even more treacherous, since the Sun’s protective magnetic heliosphere would weaken or even disappear — leaving our solar system unshielded from incoming cosmic rays.

In a paper submitted to the journal Solar Physics, co-author Travis Metcalfe confirms that the Sun, a yellow dwarf (G-spectral type) star is indeed making a long term transition in its magnetic activity cycle.

Over the next one to two billion years, we have confirmed that the Sun’s magnetic cycle period will get longer before disappearing entirely, Metcalfe, a research scientist at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo., told me. Such changes in the Sun’s evolutionary state, he says, could even altogether eliminate Earth’s signature auroras — the source of our polar Northern and Southern lights.

Last year, in a paper appearing in The Astrophysical Journal, Metcalfe and colleagues first reported that for the last 400 million years, the Sun has been magnetically transitioning into a new evolutionary phase. That is, a phase thought to affect all middle-aged stars.

This new work, says Metcalfe, suggests that the Sun’s 11-year magnetic cycle may be growing longer on stellar evolutionary timescales, and that its cycle might disappear altogether sometime in the next 800 million to 2.4 billion years.

“Our previous discoveries identified an unexpected transition in the rotation and magnetism of middle-aged stars,” said Metcalfe. “We now have direct evidence that the stellar dynamo — the mechanism inside stars that sustains their magnetic fields — actually shuts down during this  transition.”

But the process by which the stellar dynamo shuts down may take billions of years to play out.

Metcalfe says that to understand our own Sun’s life story, astronomers need numerous observations of sunlike stars of very different ages, masses, rotation rates and magnetic fields.

Three stars currently make the best references for what’s happening to our 4.6 billion year-old Sun. They include the slightly younger 4.1 billion year-old 18 Scorpii; the 5.4 billion year-old alpha Centauri A and the 7 billion year-old stars 16 Cygnus A & B. They provide the strongest evidence yet that the Sun is currently going through a magnetic transition, says Metcalfe. The rotation rate for nearby star alpha Centauri A has stayed almost constant but its magnetic cycle takes 19 years. And in the stars 16 Cygnus A & B, Metcalfe sees no magnetic cycle at all.

“During the first half of their lives, the rotation rate and magnetic cycle period in stars slowly change together,” said Metcalfe. But when they reach middle-age, he says, their rotation locks and their magnetism eventually decays away.

What’s next in fine-tuning this hypothesis?

Future tests of this hypothesis, says Metcalfe, will primarily come from two sources; the first will be continued ground-based monitoring of stars first observed by NASA’s Kepler space telescope.

And NASA’s upcoming Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) will provide precise masses and ages for bright stars that have known magnetic cycles.

“Within a few years,” said Metcalfe, “we should have a much clearer picture of how this magnetic transition plays out because we’ll have the necessary observations of many more stars.”

(By Bruce Dorminey,

Follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Google +. And like my ‘Distant Wanderers’ exoplanet Facebook

Amateur radio – a 21st Century hobby

Dear Sparks,

here is a PROMOTIONAL youtube clip from RSGB:

“Whether you enjoy writing software, getting hands-on with practical equipment, developing new technology or simply want to use what’s already there to communicate with others across the world, you’ll find all of this – and more – within amateur radio. It is also great fun. Why don’t you try it?”

Enjoy the clip and 73’s

MV Leinster January 1986

Dear Sparks,

this post to switch back in 1986 when in Merchant Marine all had a true and deep sense, in the Deck dept. in the Engine dept. and in the Radio Room.

I propose you the following video recorded on board F/B Leinster, starting at minute 4.1 the camera went into radio room where the R/O was on watch between his Marconi Marine gears.

I suggest to watch the entire movie. M/V Leinster was employed for passages between Liverpool and Dublin and from Dublin to Holyhead.




From Australia a new Broadcast station

Dear Sparks,

while big broadcasters continue to close the greatest radio stations around the world…small broadcasters continue to rise like mushrooms populating MF and SW, this time from the Italian magazine for SWL and BCL (RADIORAMA) the following news:

AUSTRALIA. 5055kHz new shortwave station to launch from Queensland in May Radio 4KZ from Innisfail in  North Queensland will commence transmission on 5055 kHz between 4pm and about 9am [AET = 0600-2300 UTC] seven days a week.
The station will run 1.5 kW into an inverted V antenna and will be a full simulcast of 4KZ, 531 kHz.
It’s expected that the service will provide satisfactory coverage to remote areas of the Cape where there are no AM or FM services available.
Sincerely, Al Kirton, General manager, NQ Radio

(Bill Richards, Adelaide-AUS, 11 Apr dxld; via BrDXC-UK “Communication” magazine May 2017 via BC-DX 1298)



radio caroline

Radio Caroline back “On The Air”

Dear Sparks,

following News received by OM Alex Santucci I5SKK:

The former ship-based pirate station, Radio Caroline, has been handed its first full-time AM broadcast licence.

It allows the service, which is currently an internet and digital station, to broadcast on medium wave to Suffolk and parts of north Essex.

Manager, Peter Moore, wants to broadcast from its ship MV Ross Revenge on the River Blackwater in Essex.

It comes 50 years after the 1967 Marine Broadcasting Offences Act that was intended to stop pirate broadcasters.

The Staff now announces that the AM frequency will be 648 kHz with a power of 1000 watts. This is ERP or simply the power radiated by the aerial.





Dear Sparks,

tonight at 00:00 zulu will start the International Museum Ships Week-end. All details with the list of ships, frequencies and more on website:

Best regards