BBC TV to show Michael Portillo moonbounce

Noel Matthews G8GTZ, Michael Portillo, Brian Coleman G4NNS, Matthew Crosby Chief Scientist Goonhilly, Ian Jones CEO Goonhilly and Tim Fern G4LOH at Goonhilly in June 2017

Noel Matthews G8GTZ, Michael Portillo, Brian Coleman G4NNS, Matthew Crosby Chief Scientist Goonhilly, Ian Jones CEO Goonhilly and Tim Fern G4LOH at Goonhilly in June 2017

BBC TV’s Great British Railway Journeys is expected to show former MP for Enfield Southgate, Michael Portillo, using 5.6 GHz amateur radio to bounce a signal off the surface of the moon.

In 2017, a team led by Noel Matthews G8GTZ and Brian Coleman G4NNS made several visits to Goonhilly Earth Station in Cornwall to use the 32 metre GHY6 dish for 3.4 GHz and 5.760 GHz Earth-Moon-Earth (EME) operation. During one of the visits, Michael Portillo and the Great British Railway Journeys team visited and filmed a sequence including EME operation.

The show will be broadcast on Friday, January 12, 2018 at 6:30pm on BBC2.

Described as “Going to the moon by way of the Cornish Riviera” the sequence will show Michael talking to Brian G4NNS and operating his station under supervision to “talk to the moon” and hear his echos coming back.

The BBC description reads:

Steered by his early 20th-century Bradshaw’s railway guide, Michael Portillo boldly goes to the moon by way of the Cornish Riviera Express! On the trail of an historic achievement made at the dawn of the Edwardian era, he investigates the first radio signal to be sent across the Atlantic. In Plymouth, Michael uncovers what happened to surviving crew members of the most famous ocean liner in history, the Titanic. And at Fowey, he rediscovers a lost literary figure known as Q, who immortalised the town in his novels.

The show will be available online for 30 days from January 12 at

GB6GHY – Hello Moon, this is Goonhilly calling!

This was not Michael Portillo’s first encounter with amateur radio, in 2014 he send Morse code at Chelmsford, Essex under the guidance of Peter Watkins M0BHY

What is Amateur Radio?

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RSGB amateur radio video – a world of possibilities

The Radio Society of Great Britain have released a new amateur radio promotional video which features amateur radio satellites.

Amateur radio is a hobby with so many aspects it can be hard to describe – and difficult to know what to try first! We’ve tried to give a taster of just some of the many exciting, challenging and fun things you can do with amateur radio. We’re planning to take a look at other parts of the hobby in the future – what’s your favourite?

Watch RSGB amateur radio video – a world of possibilities

Among those featured in the video is the RSGB VHF Manager John Regnault G4SWX. He will be giving a talk titled “Introducing Moon Bounce” at 7:30pm on Tuesday, May 3 to the Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society (CARS). The meeting will take place at the Oaklands Museum, Moulsham Street, CM2 9AQ. Car parking and admittance are free, visitors are most welcome

What is Amateur Radio?

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A free booklet is available aimed at introducing newcomers to the hobby that can also be used as a handy reference while getting started, see

50th anniversary of historic Chelmsford EME contact

15 foot (4.5m) Moon bounce dish used by Peter Blair G3LTF in 1964

G3LTF’s 15 foot (4.5m) Moonbounce dish at Galleywood, Chelmford in 1964 – Credit Peter Blair G3LTF

June 13 is the 50th anniversary of the first UK amateur radio moonbounce (EME) contact which was made by Peter Blair G3LTF from Chelmsford in Essex.

Arecibo 305m diameter dish antenna

Arecibo 305m diameter dish antenna

The RSGB GB2RS News Service reports:

July 2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the first time that amateur signals from the UK reached other parts of the world by bouncing off the moon, a technique now known as moonbounce or earth-moon-earth, EME. In the July 1964 edition of Radio Communications the RSGB announced that at 20.20 GMT on June 13, 1964, G3LTF at Galleywood, Chelmsford, and KP4BPZ in Puerto Rico, made contact on 430 Mc/s [MHz] by bouncing their signals off the moon. Signal reports were RST459 both ways.

A further contact took place one hour later. KP4BPZ was fortunate in having the 1000ft [305m] radio-telescope dish aerial at Arecibo, Puerto Rico at his disposal. G3LTF’s equipment included a 15ft [4.5m] dish aerial and an AF139 transistor preamplifier for reception. Power input to the PA was 150 watts. What is more remarkable is that Peter, G3LTF is still active on moonbounce and is one of the world’s leading pioneers.

The RSGB offers Peter, G3LTF our heartiest congratulations on this 50th anniversary of his achievement.

Source GB2RS News:

CARS-GX0MWT-roundel-badgeThe Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society (CARS) send their congratulations to Peter for his achievement 50 years ago and all the pioneering EME work he has carried out since.

Read an article by Peter G3LTF on the potential impact of the new Galileo GPS system

CARS run short amateur radio training courses. If you’d like to find out more about the hobby speak to Clive G1EUC.
Tel: 01245-224577
Mob: 07860-418835
Email: training2014 at

What is Amateur Radio ?

Influence of ham radio on astronaut

Astronaut Alexander Gerst KF5ONO

Astronaut Alexander Gerst KF5ONO

In this video ISS Astronaut Alexander Gerst KF5ONO talks about how his grandfather, a radio ham, helped him bounce a signal off the moon (EME) when he was six and the influence amateur radio had on his career.

Watch Alexander Gerst KF5ONO Crew Profile