Friday, 27th May 2016

The K7RA Solar Update

Solar indices pulled back this week, when average sunspot number was 25.3 for the May 19-25 period, down 38.8 points from the previous week’s average of 64.1.

Likewise, average daily solar flux over the same period was 97, down 3.4 points from the previous week’s average of 100.4.

Planetary A index average was 7.1, down 2.8 points from 9.9, and average daily mid-latitude A index was 7, down 3.9 p...

Thursday, 26th May 2016

FCC Denies Petition for Consideration in Vanity Call Sign Dispute

The Yasme Foundation Announces Excellence Award Recipients

The Board of Directors of The Yasme Foundation has announced three Yasme Excellence Award recipients. The Award is presented to individuals who, through their own service, creativity, effort and dedication, have made a significant contribution to Amateur Radio. The contribution recognize technical, operating, or organizational achievement. The recipients are:

Tim Duffy, K3LR: “While Tim is invol...

ARRL “Strongly Supports” Petition to Drop 15 dB Restriction for Amateur Amplifiers

In comments (attached below) filed on May 26, the ARRL said it “strongly supports” a petition to the FCC seeking to eliminate an Amateur Service rule, spelled out in §97.317(a)(2), that amateur amplifiers not be able to boost the RF input signal by more than 15 dB. The Petition for Rule Making (RM-11767), was submitted in April on behalf of an amateur amplifier distributor, Expert Linears Ameri...

ARRL Headquarters Will Be Closed on Memorial Day, Monday, May 30

ARRL Headquarters will be closed Monday, May 30, in observance of Memorial Day. There will be no W1AW code practice or bulletin transmissions that day. ARRL Headquarters will reopen Tuesday, May 31, at 8 AM (EDT).

We wish everyone a safe and enjoyable holiday weekend! 

Wednesday, 25th May 2016

Search Continues for STMSat-1 Radio Signal

Youngsters at St Thomas More Cathedral School in Virginia remain optimistic that their STMSat-1 CubeSat, deployed on May 16 from the International Space Station, will begin transmitting a signal. The CubeSat was rebooted from the ground just after 0400 UTC on May 24. Helping in the search is the Space Science Center at Morehead State University in Kentucky, which is using its 21 meter dish to s...

Amateur Radio to Play Major Role in June Pacific Northwest Earthquake Exercise

Cascadia Rising, the largest FEMA exercise of 2016, will get under way on June 7, and Oregon and Washington ARES/RACES organizations both will be heavily involved, with a significant investment of HF activity planned. The scenario will be an earthquake and tsunami disaster involving the entire Pacific Northwest, and the exercise will start with a blackout of all normal, regular communication sy...

New ARRL Extra Class License Manual Available as Softcover, Spiral-Bound, or E-Book

Achieve the highest level of Amateur Radio licenses. The new ARRL Extra Class License Manual (11th edition) is available in softcover, spiral-bound, or e-book versions. With the optional academic-style spiral-bound edition (ARRL Item 0550, ISBN: 978-1-62595-055-0, $32.95), the manual lies flat, making it more convenient for both students and instructors.

The exam questions-and-answer key is buil...

Kosovo Z60A CQ WPX CW Participation a Dry Run for IARU HF Championship HQ Station Debut

Nigel Cawthorne, G3TXF, will be at the helm of the Kosovo Amateur Radio Association (SHRAK) station Z60A during the CQ WPX CW contest over the Memorial Day weekend. SHRAK is the newest International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) member society. The operation will be in preparation for SHRAK’s debut as an official headquarters station for the IARU HF Championship July 9-10.

SHRAK became an IARU memb...

Four New Section Managers to Take Office this Summer

Tuesday, 24th May 2016

Hamvention 2016 Post-Show “Satisfaction Survey” Under Way

Was Hamvention® 2016 a hit? The sponsoring Dayton Amateur Radio Association (DARA) and the various committees responsible for making Hamvention happen want to know. Hamvention has posted a post-show “Satisfaction Survey” to solicit comments and observations from those who attended this year’s big show.

“Comments and observations are important in the continual effort to make improvements,” DARA s...

Monday, 23rd May 2016

Annual Pre-Hurricane Season Station Test at WX4NHC Set for May 28

[UPDATED 2016-05-24 @1256 UTC] Now in its 36th year, WX4NHC at the National Hurricane Center (NHC) in Miami, will conduct its annual NHC Station Test on Saturday, May 28. The event, which gets under way at 1300 UTC and wraps up at 2100 UTC, is conducted each year in advance of hurricane season.

“The purpose of this event is to test Amateur Radio Station equipment, antennas and computers prior to...

School Hoping Reboot will Bring STMSat-1 to Life

It’s been a week since the St Thomas More Cathedral School’s STMSat-1 CubeSat was deployed from the International Space Station, and the spacecraft has yet to phone home. Students and faculty and the Washington, DC-area grade school now are pinning their hopes on a reboot signal that will be sent to the satellite at around 0400 UTC on May 24.

“As with any satellite, you have to be able to commun...

Dayton Hamvention 2016, Day 3: Sunshine and Served Agencies

Day 3 of Hamvention is finished, and with it the 2016 Dayton Hamvention has ended. The sun was shining all day, allowing hams to explore the flea market and make any last-minute purchases.

Traffic slowed down in the ARRL EXPO and the ARRL Store after days of long lines. In Hara Arena, vendors gradually packed up their displays and carefully took down antennas.

At the Amateur Radio Disaster and Em...

Sunday, 22nd May 2016

Integrating Amateur Radio into Engineering Classes is International Microwave Symposium Topic

Using Amateur Radio to enhance engineering education will be the discussion topic during a May 24 session at the IEEE International Microwave Symposium (IMS), taking place this week in San Francisco. For the fourth consecutive year, the ARRL will be represented at the IMS. This year’s theme is, “Connecting minds, exchanging ideas.” The IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques Society sponsors the c...

Dayton Hamvention 2016, Day 2: Awards, Remembrance, and Intermittent Rain

Saturday, 21st May 2016

Dayton Hamvention 2016, Day 1: Meet and Greets, Cautious Optimism on Parity Act, and Late-day Rain

Friday, 20th May 2016

Elementary Schoolers Tracking STMSat-1 While Awaiting 70 Centimeter Signal

[UPDATED 2016-05-23 @ 1327 UTC] Pupils at St Thomas More (STM) Cathedral School in Arlington, Virginia, have begun tracking the orbit of STMSat-1, the 1U CubeSat they built and which was deployed on May 16 from the International Space Station. It is object 41476. After being place in orbit, the CubeSat had continued roughly in the same orbit as the ISS and of other satellites deployed on May 16...

CQ Announces its 2016 Hall of Fame Inductees

CQ magazine has announced its 2016 Hall of Fame inductees. The list includes the election of non-amateurs to the CQ DX Hall of Fame for only the second time. There are two new inductees to the CQ Contest Hall of Fame, and 21 newcomers to the CQ Amateur Radio Hall of Fame.

CQ Amateur Radio Hall of Fame

The CQ Amateur Radio Hall of Fame honors individuals, licensed or not, who have made significant...

Arrrr, Mateys! Pirates Abound:

Ahoy! Ever-persistent Hassan the Pirate from Baghdad, Iraq, continues to plague the Amateur Radio bands. According to The Daily DX, this individual has been pirating and bootlegging multiple call signs for several years. He’s been heard bootlegging YI1HR, YI1H, YI1HRP, and YI1HI, and pirating the call signs YI1BGD, YI1IRQ, YI1DZ, and, most recently TA7/YI1RZ.

Telecommunication enforcement in Ira...

Wednesday, 18th May 2016

RAC to Induct Larry Price, W4RA, as Honorary Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame Member

Radio Amateurs of Canada (RAC) will induct ARRL and IARU President Emeritus Larry Price, W4RA, of Statesboro, Georgia, as an Honorary Member of the Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame on Saturday, May 21, at Dayton Hamvention®. The 10:30 AM induction ceremony will take place at the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) booth in the ARRL EXPO area of Ball Arena.

The appointment recognizes Pric...

Norfolk Island DXpedition to Coincide with WIA General Meeting

New Date for ARRL Understanding Local MOUs Webinar

The date has changed for an ARRL Headquarters webinar training session on local, section, and state level Memorandums of Understanding for ARES. The training webinar, aimed at for ARES Emergency Coordinators, District Emergency Coordinators and Section Emergency Coordinators, now will take place on Wednesday, May 25, at 2400 UTC.

Register for the webinar here. The webinar will be recorded and ma...

Hamvention® Offers ARISS Challenge Coins as Door Prizes to Spotlight ARISS Fundraising

Hamvention® will offer a set of Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) Challenge Coins as a door prize this year, Prize Committee Chair Tom Holmes, N8ZM, said. The two keepsake coins are positioned side by side in a display box, with each side of the coin visible. Commemorative ARISS Challenge Coin sets are a premium to anyone contributing $100 or more to ARISS, which is kicki...

ARRL CEO Taking His Open Door to Dayton, League Leadership Available for Input

ARRL CEO Tom Gallagher, NY2RF, said he’s looking forward to hearing in person from ARRL members when he makes his inaugural appearance at Hamvention®, May 20-22. Gallagher, who succeeded David Sumner, K1ZZ, as CEO in April, not only will be at Dayton for the first time on behalf of the ARRL but for his first time ever.

“My message to members is simple,” Gallagher said. “I am listening closely to...

New LED Prize Numbers Display to Debut at Hamvention® 2016

The Sunday afternoon Grand Prize Drawing at Hamvention® 2016 will feature a bright new LED display that will present winning ticket numbers as they are drawn. It will be visible throughout Hara Arena’s main arena, where the prize drawings will take place. Hamvention 2016 Assistant Prize Chair Bill Serra, N8NRT, said a lot of work went into crafting the innovative device, which was the brainchil...

Monday, 16th May 2016

Hollywood Producer, ARRL Patron Dave Bell, W6AQ, SK

Award-winning Hollywood producer and ARRL benefactor Dave Bell, W6AQ, of Encinitas, California, died on May 13. He was 84 and had been a radio amateur for 65 years. Bell had been suffering from cancer and was in hospice care. An ARRL Life Member and a former chair of the ARRL Public Relations Committee, Bell directed Amateur Radio Today and produced several other ham radio-related promotional v...

Elementary School’s STMSat-1 CubeSat Now in Orbit

[UPDATED 2016-05-17@ 1307 UTC] Students at St Thomas More (STM) Cathedral School in Arlington, Virginia, erupted into cheers and celebration on May 16 as their STMSat-1 CubeSat finally was deployed from the International Space Station at 1440 UTC. Equipped with a slow-scan TV (SSTV) payload, STMSat-1 will transmit on the 70 centimeter Amateur Radio band (437.800 MHz FM). The satellite is the fi...

Maritime Mobile Service Network Responds to Mayday Call from Stranded Vessel

The crew of a sailing vessel that foundered on a reef in the South Pacific in early May was safely rescued, thanks in part to the alert ear of Maritime Mobile Service Network (MMSN) member Russell Taylor, AI6GV, of San Marcos, California. On May 3, Taylor monitored a “Mayday” call on 14.300 MHz from the Alaska-based Morning Dove, at the time some 200 miles northeast of French Polynesia. The ves...

Saturday, 14th May 2016

SATERN Founder Pat McPherson, WW9E, SK

[UPDATED 2016-05-15 1949 UTC] Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network (SATERN) Founder and past National Director Maj Patrick E. “Pat” McPherson, WW9E, of Coloma, Michigan, died May 14 at Lakeland Medical Center in St Joseph, Michigan, where he’d been admitted on May 10 with breathing difficulties. He was 70. After serving as SATERN Director for more than 23 years, McPherson stepped down 5 ...

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