Special commemorative QSO with Sweden

M.R. Chakrarot Chitrabongs, HS1VRD, at the microphone

Thailand's Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Culture M.R. Chakrarot Chitrabongs (HS1VRD) exchanged greetings with the Governor of Sweden's Jamtland County, Maggi Mikalesson, on the 20 metre amateur radio band on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the King Chulalongkorn Memorial Amateur Radio Society in Ragunda, SI9AM.
The Thai side of the commemorative QSO was conducted from RAST's newly-outfitted club station at the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT), HS0AC, using the special callsign HS72B, issued to mark Her Majesty the Queen's sixth cycle (72 years) birthday on August 12, 2004.
Other operators at HS72B exchanging greetings with senior representatives of SI9AM and the Thai community in Ragunda, in northern Sweden, included RAST Vice-President Chaiyong Wongwuticomjon (HS1QVD) and event co-organiser Svante Nordenstroem (Sam), HS1ZDY, also SM3DYU.

Some of those gathered for the event at HS72B

The event was witnessed by over 20 Thai hams who joined the operators at the new RAST club station on the AIT campus, among them being Tsuneo Hara, JA8ATG, President of the Japan UNICEF Ham Club, and his daughter Sachie.
On behalf of RAST President, Mrs Mayuree, who was unable to participate, 1st Vice President Chaiyong read out a message of congratulations to SI9AM on the occasion of the memorial station's fifth annivesary.
107 years ago this year, Thailand's King Chulalongkorn visited the small Swedish community of Utanede, an occasion that is celebrated every year in this small community and which has led to the construction of the largest Thai pavilion outside Kingdom.
Five years ago, an amateur radio station was established at the site with a special callsign that denotes the close ties with Thailand: SI9AM. The QSO on Sunday, July 18, began at 14.00 GMT, when radio amateurs and regional representatives in Sweden sent their greetings to Queen Sirikit, HS1B, for her 72nd birthday in August.
Among those From SI9AM, and in addition to Jamtland County Governor Maggi Mikalesson, chairman of the executive board of Ragunda Municipality Elisabet Yngstrom, President of the Thai Society in Ostersund Vanida Granli and other radio amateurs also sent their messages to Thailand's Queen. Leading the Swedish radio hams with greetings was President of the King Chulalongkorn Memorial Amateur Radio Society in Ragunda, Lars Aronsson, SM3CVM.

M.R. Chakrarot (HS1VRD) listens to SI9AM, as Sam, HS0ZDY, looks on

Thailand's M.R. Chakrarot said on the air that he regretted not being able to participate in the events in Sweden personally this year, which he had done several times. However, this year, Thailand's Minister of Culture Anurak Chureemas visited an exhibition staged by SI9AM and signed the station's guestbook and also a special ``congratulation book'' that was being sent to Her Majesty Queen Sirikit.

M.R. Chakrarot with RAST Vice President Chaiyong, HS1QVD

Signals at the beginning of the QSO were of medium strength on a noisy band, conditions which precluded planned cross-band operations in Thailand to relay activities on two metres. However, as propagation improved, so signals built up to S9+ during the exchanges of congratulations and greetings that continued over the period of an hour or so. Over this period, many Swedish and Thai stations exchanged greetings and signal reports, along with other well-wishers.
Among those taking the microphone on the Thai side were RAST vice presidents Tony Waltham, HS0ZDX, and Winit Kongprasert, HS1CKC.
For more information about the Thai Pavilion in Ragunda Sweden and activities to commemorate the anniversary of the historic visit of King Chulalongkorn there on July 19, 1897, please visit the SI9AM web site.