Thursday, October 23, 2014

Special QSL: Airplane Monitoring, AFRS, Adana, Turkey

          Jack Brown interviews Lauren Bacall and Humphrey Bogart for
broadcast to troops overseas on AFRS during World War II
For our weekly feature about unusual, rare and unique QSLs, our DX editor Adrian Peterson tells the story about his QSL card verifying the reception of a low powered radio broadcasting station in Turkey.  Back in the year 1980, he was flying from India to the United States to attend meetings at the head office for Adventist World Radio in suburban Washington DC. 
            While the passenger airliner was flying high over Turkey, he was invited into the flight deck of the passenger airliner and given the use of one of the planes radio receivers.  He tuned the radio to 1590 kHz and heard his desired station, the low powered AFRS American Forces Radio Station which was installed in the American Air Base near Adana, in the Mediterranean corner of Turkey. 
            At the same time as he was seated in the comfortable high flying airplane, he could see in the distance the clear figure of Mt Ararat, covered in brilliant white snow.  Mt Ararat is a reminder of another method of travel, in a long distant era, with a huge wooden boat, Noahs Ark, the remains of which are said to be in that area to this day.
            In due course, a do-it-yourself, self-prepared tourist travel QSL card, replete with American postage stamps, was received.  This card, with full QSL details, verified AFRS Adana, with just 10 watts on 1590 kHz.  Interestingly, the wavelength is shown as 61886.792 feet which is actually a mistake in calculation.  By moving the decimal place by two positions, the equivalent is indeed 1590 kHz.

            This unusual QSL card features a unique threesome: a receiver in the flight deck of a passenger airliner, a low powered medium wave station on the ground, and a wavelength measured in feet, not metres.
(AWR Wavescan/NWS 295 via Adrian Peterson)