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"Wavescan" is a weekly program for long distance radio hobbyists produced by Dr. Adrian M. Peterson, Coordinator of International Relations for Adventist World Radio. AWR carries the program over many of its stations (including shortwave). Adrian Peterson is a highly regarded DXer and radio historian, and often includes features on radio history in his program. We are reproducing those features below, with Dr. Peterson's permission and assistance.

Wavescan 332, May 6, 2001

Tribute to Moosbrunn

At the beginning of this new transmission period, Adventist World Radio began a new era in its shortwave outreach with a relay via the ORF-ROI transmission facilities located near Moosbrunn in Austria.  Already, reception reports and monitoring reports from many different parts of the world indicate a nice coverage for AWR programming from this new relay site.

In honor of the new relay arrangement between AWR and ORF-ROI, we present in this edition of Wavescan a "Tribute to Moosbrunn."

The atlas tells us that the town of Moosbrunn is located about 12 miles southeast of Vienna on the edge of the famed Vienna Woods, as immortalized in the beautiful music from Johann Strauss.  The dictionary
tells us that the word "Moosbrunn" means "Mossy Well."

Actually, Austria lays claim to the first broadcast of the human voice.  Professor Otto Nussbaumer invented a wireless "detector circuit," and as a demonstration he yodelled an Austrian folk tune into his equipment and it was received on similar equipment in the next room.  This was in the year 1901.

The first wireless communication stations in Austria were erected in country areas beginning around 1915, and the first radio broadcasting station went on the air in Vienna on October 1, 1924.  The studio was located in a government building, the transmitter was a 700 watt Telefunken unit, the channel was 530 metres (565 kHz), and the callsign was ORV.

On the shortwave scene, the first broadcasts from Austria went on the air in 1926 under the callsign OHK2 from a 300 watt transmitter located at Rosenhuegel near Vienna.  The channel for these test broadcasts was 6075 kHz, and the programming was a relay from the mediumwave Home Service. 

In 1931 under new radio regulations, the callsign was changed from OHK2 to UOR2, and later again to OER2.  By this time the power output had been increased to 2 kw.

Around this same time, a mobile shortwave station was launched under the callsign EATH.  This station was on the air for just four hours each week, with local news reports and commentaries. 

Now we come to the Moosbrunn era.  This large property was procured in 1959, and the first transmitters on the air from this location were units taken from submarines.  Several of these units, installed in a temporary wooden building, were linked together to give a total output of 100 kw. 

When the new and permanent transmitter building was completed, four Telefunken units at 100 kw were installed progressively.  The large antenna farm contained a variety of antennas:  rhombics, curtains, a vertical incidence array, and a rotatable log periodic with reflector.

Currently, ORF-ROI maintains a complement of six shortwave transmitters at Moosbrunn, four at 100 kw and two at 500 kw.  Two of the 100 kw units are in regular use, and two are available for backup service.  The two units rated at 500 kw are on the air at 300 kw due to antenna constraints.

The new AWR relay service from Moosbrunn is on the air over the two larger transmitters.  One is in use 12 hours daily to Africa and the Middle East, and the other for a few hours daily to Europe.

On the occasion of this significant new development in international radio co-operation, Adventist World Radio honors Radio Austria International in appreciation for this new relay service.