ARRL NEWS

Friday, 20th January 2017

The K7RA Solar Update

Last week’s bulletin featured zero sunspots for the entire seven days. This week (January 12-18) the average daily sunspot number rose to 22.6.

Average daily solar flux rose from 72.5 to 77.1. Average planetary A index declined from 14.3 to 6.

Predicted solar flux is 80 on January 20-23, then 78, 77 and 75 on January 24-26, 77 on January 27 through February 1, 76 on February 2, 75 on February 3-8...

FEMA Region X Reports Another Successful HF Interoperability Exercise

Participation appears to be growing in the monthly Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Region X HF interoperability exercises, which take place on 60 meters (center channels 5,332 and 5,348 kHz) on the third Wednesday of each month. Check-ins include state, tribal, federal, and Amateur Radio stations, to test HF interoperability in an emergency or disaster response. FEMA Region X is made...

CEPT Meeting Makes Progress on WRC-19 Agenda Items Affecting Amateur Radio

Progress was made regarding World Radiocommunication Conference 2019 (WRC-19) agenda items of interest to Amateur Radio when European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT) Conference Preparatory Group Project Team D (PTD) held its second meeting January 10-12 in Helsinki, Finland. According to International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) Region 1 President Don Beattie, ...

Thursday, 19th January 2017

Harry K. Wolf, W6NKT, SK at 107; May Have Been World’s Oldest Active Radio Amateur

Harry K. Wolf, W6NKT, of Morro Bay, California, has died. Just a couple of weeks short of his 108th birthday, Wolf may have been the oldest active radio amateur in the US, if not in the world, although no official records are maintained. Licensed since 1936, Wolf was an ARRL member and a Life Member of the Quarter Century Wireless Association (QCWA). Wolf was on the air daily, mostly on 40-mete...

ARRL Board of Directors Scheduled to Meet in Connecticut

The ARRL Board of Directors will convene January 20-21 in Windsor, Connecticut. The full Board gathering will be preceded by new Director and Vice Director orientation and meetings of the Programs and Services and Administration and Finance committees.

The prime topic on the agenda will be the new Amateur Radio Parity Act bill, H.R. 555, just introduced in the US House.

In addition to discussing ...

N0KC Wins the January 2017 QST Cover Plaque Award

The winning article for the January 2017 QST Cover Plaque award is “A Small, Lightweight Switch-Mode Power Supply” by Ralph J. Crumrine, N0KC. 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 February issue today.

Wednesday, 18th January 2017

Nobel Laurate Joe Taylor, K1JT, W1AW/KP4, to Attend ARRL Puerto Rico State Convention

Nobel Laureate and Amateur Radio software developer Joe Taylor, K1JT, will be an honored guest January 27-29 at the 5th annual ARRL Puerto Rico State Convention in Hatillo. Taylor was the 2016 Dayton Hamvention® Amateur of the Year.

Special event station W1AW/KP4 will be on the air as part of the festivities.

Admission is free. The event is organized by the Caribbean Amateur Radio Group and the P...

Hams Upset, as New Hotel Owner Wants Repeater Antennas Removed from Roof

Huntsville Hamfest Association President Charles Emerson, N4OKL, SK

Huntsville Hamfest Association President Charles “Charlie” Emerson, N4OKL, of Huntsville, Alabama, died on January 14. An ARRL member, he was 71.

“Charlie had come to be the face and voice of Huntsville Hamfest,” said a statement issued by the Huntsville Hamfest Board of Directors. “Huntsville Hamfest was Charlie's pride and joy, and he never missed an opportunity to promote the show or ham radi...

Several CubeSats with Amateur Radio Payloads Deployed from ISS

Several CubeSats carrying Amateur Radio payloads were placed into orbit on January 16 from the International Space Station (ISS). Six CubeSats delivered to the ISS in December were deployed from the Kibo airlock using the new JEM Small Satellite Orbital Deployer (J-SSOD).

Satellites carrying Amateur Radio payloads included ITF-2, Waseda-Sat-3, AOBA-Velox-3, and TuPOD (including Tancredo-1). Univ...

Tuesday, 17th January 2017

Ulrich Rohde, N1UL, Recognized for Pioneering Work on SDR

VHF Propagation Guru, DXer Patrick J. Dyer, WA5IYX, SK

VHF DXer and propagation expert Pat Dyer, WA5IYX, of San Antonio, Texas, has died. Licensed in 1963 and an ARRL member, he was 69.

“Pat contributed greatly to our understanding of sporadic E propagation, through both his professional research the Office of Telecommunications in Boulder, Colorado, and later through his personal observations,” Les Rayburn, N1LF, said in a post to the VHF Contestin...

Hamvention Ready to Deal with Anticipated Traffic Flow at New Venue

Hamvention® is ready to deal with the anticipated heavy traffic flow when the event opens on May 19 at its new location, the Greene County Fairgrounds and Expo Center in Xenia, Ohio. Mike Kalter, W8CI, said the all-volunteer Hamvention organizers have turned to professionals to address this aspect of the event. Kalter, who is treasurer of the sponsoring Dayton Amateur Radio Association (DARA), ...

Monday, 16th January 2017

Sweden’s SAQ Alexanderson Alternator Station Reports “Successful” Christmas Transmission

The old Alexanderson alternator SAQ at World Heritage Grimeton Radio Station in Sweden was heard by more than 400 listeners on December 24, 2016, setting a new record.

SAQ traditionally broadcasts at Christmas with the 1920s-era electro-mechanical transmitter that operates on 17.2 kHz. SAQ has released a report that summarizes the success and a map that shows the locations of those who heard SAQ...

RadFxSat (Fox-1B) Launch Moved to Late August

AMSAT reports that the launch date for RadFxSat (Fox-1B) has been moved to August 29, 2017. RadFxSat is one of four CubeSats making up the NASA ELaNa XIV mission, riding as secondary payloads aboard the Joint Polar Satellite System JPSS-1 mission.

RadFxSat features the Fox-1 style Amateur Radio FM U/V repeater, with an uplink on 435.250 MHz (67.0 Hz CTCSS) and a downlink on 145.960 MHz. Satellit...

New “Amateur Radio Parity Act” Bill Introduced in US House of Representatives

Southeastern VHF Society Issues Call for Papers

The Southeastern VHF Society (SVHS) has issued a call for papers and presentations (PDF attached below) for delivery at its convention, April 28-29, in Charlotte, North Carolina. Papers and presentations are solicited on both technical and operational aspects of VHF, UHF, and microwave “weak-signal” Amateur Radio.

Suggested topic areas include transmitters, receivers, transverters, RF power ampl...

Friday, 13th January 2017

ARRL Reintroduces a Popular Classic — Experimental Methods in RF Design

ARRL has reintroduced the popular title Experimental Methods in RF Design as a classic reprint edition. Immerse yourself in the communications experience. Build equipment while understanding basic concepts and circuits.

“This is a...classic, extremely good text on designing circuits for the ham,” ARRL Life Member Bob De Varney, W1ICW, a professional radio communication technician and avid experi...

The February Issue of Digital QST is Now Available!

Nebraska Sesquicentennial Celebration QSO Party Set for February, March

Radio amateurs in Nebraska will celebrate the state’s 150th anniversary during the Sesquicentennial Anniversary Celebration Week QSO Party, starting on Saturday, February 25, and continuing until Sunday, March 6. That time period includes the actual anniversary date, March 1. Nebraska amateurs may operate from their own stations or as part of Nebraska historical site activations, appending “/NE...

Thursday, 12th January 2017

More Countries Join the Growing 60-Meter Community

Radio amateurs in Kazakhstan now have access to the band 5,351.5-5,366.5 kHz on a secondary basis. The allocation came in the wake of a request by the Association of Amateur Radio Services in Kazakhstan (AARSK) to telecommunications regulators. Permissible power output has not yet been established.

Radio amateurs in Slovenia and Niger also have been granted access to the new, 15 kHz 60-meter ba...

Apparent Pirate Station Transmitting SSTV on 10 Meters

In what might be a “first,” the December edition of the IARU Region 1 (IARU-R1) Monitoring System newsletter includes a report of an apparent pirate station transmitting Slow Scan TV (SSTV) on 28.001.5 MHz. The station has been transmitting latitude and longitude coordinates as part of the image, which would put the offender in northeast Italy, although it’s not certain if these indicate the st...

Kazakhstan Joins the Growing 60-Meter Community

Radio amateurs in Kazakhstan now have access to the band 5,351.5-5,366.5 kHz on a secondary basis. The allocation came in the wake of a request by the Association of Amateur Radio Services in Kazakhstan (AARSK) to telecommunications regulators. Permissible power output has not yet been established. AARSK is advocating that Kazakhstan follow the provisional IARU Region 1 band plan for 60 meters....

Wednesday, 11th January 2017

QRP ARCI Four Days in May Event Registration Open

Registration is open for Four Days in May (FDIM), the QRP Amateur Radio Club International (QRP ARCI) annual convention held in conjunction with Hamvention. The hosting Holiday Inn in Fairborn, Ohio, has sold out, but other accommodations are available in the vicinity.

The event features a day of seminars (including a free kit), Buildathon, vendors’ night, evening lecture, pizza night, QRP club ...

ARRL Foundation 2017-2018 Scholarship Application Deadline Looms

The deadline is Tuesday, January 31 (at 11:59 PM ET), to receive completed ARRL Foundation scholarship applications from eligible radio amateurs pursuing post-secondary education in the 2017-2018 academic year.

Individuals and clubs support many of the more than 80 scholarships that the ARRL Foundation manages, with awards ranging from $500 to $5,000. Applicants for all scholarships must be acti...

Nevada ARES Standing Down as Flood Threat Abates

Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES®) volunteers and emergency operations centers (EOCs) in Nevada are now standing down as the threat of additional widespread flooding damage diminishes. Over the weekend, ARES members in Nevada stood ready to support the disaster response effort. Recent heavy rainfall, sparked by a weather system called the Pineapple Express, caused flooding along rivers and...

New Digital Modes Gain Traction for Moonbounce, but Occasionally Show Up on HF

In December, Joe Taylor, K1JT, released the latest version (1.7) of his WSJT-X software suite, designed to facilitate basic Amateur Radio communication using very weak signals (WSJT stands for “Weak Signal communication by K1JT”). Version 1.7 included the new modes MSK144 and QRA64, as well as ISCAT (ionospheric scatter). MSK144 and QRA64 (and QRA64A) are finding a home within the VHF Earth-Moo...

CWops Seeks Nominees for its Advancing the Art of CW Award

CWops is seeking candidates for its annual Advancing the Art of CW Award, which recognizes individuals, groups, or organizations that have made the greatest contributions toward advancing the art or practice of radio communication by Morse code. Candidates may include:

  • Authors of publications related to CW
  • CW recruiters, trainers, mentors, coaches, and instructors
  • Public advocates of CW
  • Organize...

UK Regulator Ofcom No Longer Listing Unassigned Amateur Radio Call Signs

Monday, 9th January 2017

Warm Up with the January VHF Contest, January 21-23

If you’re feeling a chill in the air, it must be time for the January VHF Contest! Those in the northern tier of the US (or in a good part of the US this winter) are experiencing brisk winds, temperatures dipping southward, piles of snow or ice, or heavy rain. This means the ARRL January VHF Contest is near. What a great way to warm up for the 2017 VHF+ contest season, even if it's already warm...

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