Wednesday, 27th May 2015

Got Grids? ARRL June VHF Contest is June 13- 15

Amateur Radio Volunteers Muster for “Unprecedented” Weather Event

When extremely heavy rainfall hit Texas and Oklahoma over the Memorial Day holiday weekend, Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) and SKYWARN volunteers scrambled to assist local emergency operations centers and National Weather Service (NWS) offices.

“This has probably been the most significant weather event to hit Texas,” ARRL South Texas Section Manager Lee Cooper, W5LHC. “We have had major ...

Nick Lance, KC5KBO, SK — Prepared Astronauts to Become Radio Amateurs

Nick Lance Jr, KC5KBO, of Houston, Texas, died May 24. He was 65. A retired NASA engineer and an ARRL member, Lance was a veteran member of the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) team, and one of his roles was to prepare the astronauts to pass their Amateur Radio license exams. Lance was named ARRL Professional Educator of the Year in 2003. ARISS International Chairman Fra...

Tuesday, 26th May 2015

Alberta ARES Requests Priority Access to 14.135, 7.135, and 3.675 MHz Due to Fires

Alberta, Canada, ARES volunteers are responding to assist with communication during a wildfire emergency that has caused the evacuation of thousands of residents. Radio Amateurs of Canada is requesting that Canadian and US amateurs avoid 14.135, 7.135, and 3.675 MHz and give priority access to Alberta ARES as it supports the Alberta government during the emergency.

According to Alberta Wildfire ...

Logbook of The World Will Be Down Briefly on May 28

Logbook of The World (LoTW) will be offline for maintenance on Thursday, May 28, from 1200 to 1300 UTC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

China Set to Launch Several Amateur Radio Satellites this Summer

CAMSAT has announced that the CAS-3 amateur satellite system is nearing completion, and six Chinese amateur satellites will be launched in mid-July.

“All six satellites are equipped with substantially the same Amateur Radio payloads, a U/V mode linear transponder, a CW telemetry beacon and an AX.25 19.2k/9.6k baud GMSK telemetry downlink,” the CAMSAT announcement said. CAMSAT said that each Amat...

Saturday, 23rd May 2015

ARRL to Change Administrator for Insurance Plans

Effective May 26, 2015, the ARRL will be changing the program administrator for its sponsored Equipment and Club Liability insurance plans. Beginning on that date, all program administration including policy application, issuance and claims administration will be handled by Risk Strategies, a privately held, national insurance brokerage firm. The ARRL programs will be administered from their of...

Friday, 22nd May 2015

US Naval Academy PSK31 CubeSat Transponders Active

FCC Eliminates Amateur Radio Vanity Call Sign Regulatory Fee

The FCC is eliminating the regulatory fee to apply for an Amateur Radio vanity call sign. The change will not go into effect, however, until required congressional notice has been given. This will take at least 90 days. As the Commission explained in a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, Report and Order, and Order (MD Docket 14-92 and others), released May 21, it’s a matter of simple economics.


Nepal Now Has a Second Repeater in Operation

A VHF repeater that had been held up in customs in Nepal during the response to the April 25 magnitude 7.8 earthquake now has been installed at Tribhuvan University in Kathmandu. The new system will be put to use during the current earthquake recovery effort and available for any future emergencies, if needed. Initially disrupted by a magnitude 7.3 aftershock earlier this month, the installatio...

Friday, 22nd May 2015

The K7RA Solar Update

Sunspot numbers drifted below 100 over the past week (May 14-20), and so the average daily sunspot number declined from 146.9 over the previous seven days to 92.1 in the recent period. Average daily solar flux dropped from 156.3 to 123.3.

You can see the decline in solar flux in addition to the decline in predicted numbers by downloading the spreadsheet at, which shows us t...

Thursday, 21st May 2015

ARRL Headquarters Will Be Closed on Memorial Day, Monday, May 25

ARRL Headquarters will be closed Monday, May 25, in observance of Memorial Day. There will be no W1AW code practice or bulletin transmissions that day.

ARRL Headquarters will reopen Tuesday, May 26 at 8 AM (EDT). We wish everyone a safe and enjoyable holiday weekend!

Updated Amateur Radio Emergency Service Manual Now Online

The latest edition (March 2015) of the Amateur Radio Emergency Service® (ARES) Manual now is online.

This edition includes various Incident Command System (ICS) forms for ARES use, clarifies the role of the Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES), contains an improved chapter on ARES training, and includes all current ARRL memoranda of understanding/agreement.

ARES consists of Amateur Radio...

Dayton Hamvention 2015: Great Weekend, Friendly Crowd

Another Dayton Hamvention® is in the log, and the sponsoring Dayton Amateur Radio Association (DARA) already has begun counting down to the 2016 event (May 20-22, 2016). While Hamvention traditionally provides an ideal occasion for Amateur Radio manufacturers to introduce their latest offerings, new gear was in somewhat shorter-than-usual supply at the 2015 event. On the other hand, this may ha...

Wednesday, 20th May 2015

“North American CW Weekend” Set for June 5-7 in DC Area

Don Lynch, W4ZYT,  has issued an invitation to “all CW operators, Morse mavens, [and] code aficionados” to gather June 5-7 in the Washington, DC, area for the “annual North American CW Weekend.” This is a month later than previous events.


According to Lynch, the event “is primarily aimed at Amateur Radio operators with an interest in CW operation, but is open to any person with an interest in M...

AMSAT-NA Solicits Board of Directors Nominations

AMSAT-NA is soliciting nominations for its Board of Directors. Four directors’ terms expire this year: Barry Baines, WD4ASW; Alan Biddle, WA4SCA; Mark Hammond, N8MH, and Jerry Buxton, N0JY. In addition, up to two alternates may be elected for 1-year terms.

A valid nomination requires either one Member Society or five current individual members in good standing to nominate an AMSAT-NA member for ...

Tuesday, 19th May 2015

Utah Section Manager Re-Elected, Two New SMs Coming Aboard in July

One incumbent Section Manger overcame a challenge to win his bid for a new term of office, while two SM candidates who ran unopposed will assume office this summer. All new 2-year terms of office begin on July 1.

Ballots in the two-person race in the ARRL Utah Section were counted on May 19 at ARRL Headquarters. Incumbent Section Manager Mel Parkes, NM7P, received 342 votes, while Pat Malan, N7P...

Radio Amateur Sworn In as New NASA Deputy Administrator

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) professor Dava Newman, KB1HIK, has been sworn in as the deputy administrator of NASA. President Barack Obama appointed Newman last October, and the US Senate confirmed her appointment on April 27. The swearing-in took place on May 15 in her MIT office in Cambridge. Newman is Apollo Professor of Astronautics and Engineering Systems and the director of ...

Monday, 18th May 2015

Nepal Amateur Radio Earthquake Relief Response Again Suspended

Amateur Radio emergency operations on 20 meters, resumed in the aftermath of the second Nepal earthquake, now have been suspended, according to Jayu Bhide, VU2JAU, the Amateur Radio Society of India National Coordinator for Disaster Communication. Bhide said he discussed the situation on May 17 with Satish Kharel, 9N1AA, and that the decision was based on the fact that all systems in the affect...

Cape Verde 2 Meter Beacon Heard in Bonaire

Wednesday, 13th May 2015

Colorado ARES Volunteers Support Grueling Race

Pikes Peak Amateur Radio Emergency Service (PP ARES) volunteers provided communication support on May 2 for the 2015 Falcon 50 Ultra-Marathon. Competitors in the “military-heavy” 50-mile event carry 35-pound rucksacks while wearing boots and uniform, said Pikes Peak ARES PIO John Bloodgood, KD0SFY. He said 170 runners tested their mettle on the rugged terrain and high altitude of the marathon c...

US Navy-Marine Corps MARS Program to End

The US Department of Defense is phasing out the US Navy-Marine Corps Military Auxiliary Radio System (MARS) program. Its operational mission will transition to the other MARS service branches by the end of September. The head of the US Navy-Marine Corps MARS program in Williamsburg, Virginia, made the announcement. The Navy-Marine Corps MARS program also supports the US Coast Guard as well as t...

US Navy-Marine Corps MARS Program to End

[UPDATED 2015-05-14 1219 UTC] The US Department of Defense (DoD) is phasing out the US Navy-Marine Corps Military Auxiliary Radio System (MARS) program. Its operational mission will transition to the other MARS service branches by the end of September. The head of the US Navy-Marine Corps MARS program in Williamsburg, Virginia, made the announcement. The Navy-Marine Corps MARS program also supp...

K0BG Wins May QST Cover Plaque Award

The winner of the May 2015 QST Cover Plaque award is Alan Applegate, K0BG, for his article “The Modern Mobile.”

The QST Cover Plaque Award -- given to the author or authors of the most popular article in each issue -- is determined by a vote of ARRL members on the QST Cover Plaque Poll web page. Cast a ballot for your favorite article in the June issue today.


Oklahoma Amateur Radio Volunteers Rally as Severe Weather Strikes

Tuesday, 12th May 2015

ARRL Will Mark 100 Years of QST at Hamvention®

The ARRL will join 20,000 or more of its closest friends this week, as the Amateur Radio world turns its attention to Dayton Hamvention® 2015, Friday through Sunday, May 15-17. Hamvention is the world’s largest Amateur Radio gathering. As it has for the past several years, ARRL will showcase its products and activities at the ARRL EXPO in the Hara Arena Ballarena. This year, the League will cel...

Amateur Radio Nets Crucial Link in Maritime Rescues

Amateur Radio played a crucial role in two recent at-sea rescues. On April 8, sailors Randy (VA3ORT) and Dawn (VA3PBT) Ortiz of Ontario, Canada, ran into heavy seas that led them to abandon their 42-foot sailing yacht Nirvana Now in a remote portion of the South Pacific while en route to the Marquesas. The Ortizes were able to summon help via the Pacific Seafarer’s Net on 14.300 MHz, and the No...

Propagation and Radio Science Now Available as E-Book

ARRL’s new book, Propagation and Radio Science by Eric Nichols, KL7AJ, is now available as an e-book for the Amazon Kindle. Propagation and Radio Science presents a comprehensive overview of one of the most fascinating and rewarding activities in Amateur Radio. KL7AJ uses his lively, engaging approach to present the complex subject of radio propagation in simple, easy-to-understand terms. This ...

Past New Mexico SM Bill Weatherford, KM5FT, SK

Former ARRL New Mexico Section Manager William O. “Bill” Weatherford, KM5FT, of Albuquerque, died on April 5. He was 78. Weatherford, a retired US Foreign Service communications officer, was New Mexico SM from 2003 until 2007 and was an Assistant SM from 2001 until 2003.


Weatherford spent 35 years with the US Department of State, serving in 10 countries in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Africa,...

Brian Moran, N9ADG, Named as New Editor of The ARRL Contest Update

Brian Moran, N9ADG, will take over as editor of The ARRL Contest Update, starting with the May 20 issue. Current editor Ward Silver, N0AX, is stepping away after 13 years as the radiosporting newsletter’s head honcho in order to concentrate on other ARRL projects. Moran, who lives in Kirkland, Washington, has been in Amateur Radio for more than 35 years.

“My vision for the Contest Update is to c...

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