RSGB 2020 Convention lectures

Because of the global COVID-19 pandemic the RSGB 2020 Convention was conducted entirely online for the first time

The lectures were divided into two live streams, details of which are below—follow the links to watch these lectures on the RSGB YouTube page

Keynote address by Eric Swartz, WA6HHQ

Stream 1: an introduction to…

  • The Small Station

    Joe Chester, M1MWD
    Most of us don’t have the good fortune to own several acres of land on which to erect tall towers for beam antennas. Nor are we collectors of radio equipment, but have just one or two transceivers, and an ATU, on the corner of a table. But there is lots of fun to be had operating even the most modest radio station, and that is what this presentation addresses, with some technical notes on how to get the best from limited equipment, or space

  • Turning Amateur Radio into an Adventure

    Kevin Richardson, G0PEK and Lauren, 2E0HLR
    Kevin and Lauren talk about youngsters using amateur radio and combining it with other activities such as cycling, hiking, canoeing and kayaking. They also look at some of the issues encountered and how they overcame or dealt with them. Finally, they talk about some of their future projects and ideas.

  • The Magic of Six Metres

    Chris Deacon G4IFX
    Why are people so keen on the 50MHz band? It’s not HF, it’s not really VHF. Or is it both? Join Chris, G4IFX to learn what makes ‘The Magic Band’ so special, how to get started, and how to get the best out of it. 

  • How to Get the Most Out of Your Dealer for Your Part-exchange

    Martin Lynch, G4HKS
    After over 42 years in the amateur radio business, Martin knows a thing or two about trade-in values for equipment and accessories. In his presentation Martin goes through the best method of achieving the most for your part exchange or outright sale. This not only applies to selling privately but to a dealer. He turns the tables and gives you his tips on how to handle the negotiation when you’re trying to get the most for your radio and the dealer is trying to give you the least.

  • A Pictorial Introduction to Datamodes

    Mike Richards, G4WNC
    In this talk, Mike guides you through the basics of datamodes operation, explaining the commonly used terms and the development of the modes in general use today. The talk employs animations to explain the underlying principles, and includes operational guidance for popular data modes.

  • Antenna Modelling with MANNA-GAL

    Steve Nichols G0KYA
    It is now possible to get a good idea of how well an antenna might work using modelling software. In this talk Steve, G0KYA looks at the free MMANA-GAL package and give hints and tips on how to use it, complete with some examples.

  • Why Radio and Weather Go Together…

    Jim Bacon, G3YLA
    It’s amazing how often a discussion about radio conditions brings in comments about the weather.  This talk is a quick introduction to those areas where a little weather awareness can add greatly to your radio operating enjoyment.

Stream 2: learn more about…

  • QRO Magnetic Loop Antennas

    Rael Paster, M0RTP
    A transmitting magnetic loop antenna (TMLA) offers the amateur radio enthusiast a compelling option for getting on the air and having access to all the HF bands when restricted by size and height of the antenna system at your QTH. This talk covers DIY construction tips, tricks and traps for QRO operation, and provides an overview on how to remotely tune a magnetic loop. The talk includes an overview of Rael’s experience with FT8 and WSPR DX performance using the various loops constructed, along with some recommendations.

  • VHF Propagation and Weather

    Jim Bacon, G3YLA
    Jim describes the processes behind compiling the GB2RS propagation bulletin. This takes in aspects of weather forecasting, tropospheric propagation and links to high pressure systems, rain scatter propagation and how to identify suitable candidates from forecast charts, and lastly sporadic E and its relationship to weather. This includes a quick précis of the basics of its formation, but also some pathways for its prediction and recent insights gained from events in the 2020 season.

  • Having Fun with HF Contesting

    Olof Lundberg, G0CKV
    Contesting provides an opportunity to add some competitive adrenalin to your radio activity. You need a combination of operator skills, propagation know-how, station-building and antenna skills. You can learn from your own experiences and from others, and planning and some thoughts on strategy almost always pay off. There are so many factors that influence the results—radio contesting rarely takes place on an even playing field. The most fair competition might well be with yourself—you would always try to improve on what you achieved last time. Most of all it is a great way to have some concentrated fun for a weekend, or part thereof.

  • Ionoscatter on 50 and 144MHz

    Palle Preben-Hansen, OZ1RH
    If you are you an experienced DXer you may know that you can use troposcatter to work stations 500-800km away on VHF/UHF/SHF regardless of band conditions. Scatter can also take place in the ionosphere. Ionoscatter is caused by scattering from irregularities in the ionosphere at 65-85km of height giving QSOs at app. 1,000-2,000km. In this lecture ionoscatter is examined closer in order to evaluate its possibilities for QSOs on 50 and 144MHz.

  • VHF/UHF Radios for Contesting and DXing

    Alwyn Seeds, G8DOH
    This talk discusses the important specifications for high performance VHF and UHF radios and how these can most easily be achieved. Emphasis is placed on achieving adequate receive sensitivity in the presence of strong unwanted signals. For transmitters, the importance of achieving low radiated noise is explained. The talk is illustrated with measurements for a variety of radios based on both conventional and software-defined radio design approaches.

  • DSP: Underlying Concepts

    William Eustace, M0WJE
    Digital signal processing has become commonplace in amateur radio. In order to understand why it works, it is helpful to delve into the underlying concepts and mathematics: this lecture introduces some basic mathematical principles of signal processing in what is hoped to be an approachable and explained manner. Nonetheless, the talk contains a fair bit of maths: a background roughly at A level would be very helpful in understanding the content fully.

  • Take your CW to the Next Level

    Bruce Pea, N9WKE
    Happily, a lot of people are learning the code, getting on the air, and having fun with CW. Many want to develop their skills further and become better CW operators. This presentation explores methods and options for improving your CW, head copy skills, and increasing your speed. Several of the latest internet training resources are highlighted, as well as a few fun CW activities that can help you take your CW to the next level!