Date: Fri, 14.02.20 10:05
The Weekly ARRL Letter
February 13, 2020
* ARRL Board of Directors Re-Elects President Rick Roderick, K5UR
* ARRL Board Grants Awards and Recognitions
* ARRL Creates New HF Band Planning Discussion Group
* ARRL Podcasts Schedule
* New ARRL Repeater Directory Now Shipping
* The ARRL International DX Contest (CW) Is Just Ahead
* The K7RA Solar Update
* Just Ahead in Radiosport
* QRZ.com Ends Identity Verified Program
* Foundation for Amateur Radio Invites 2020 - 2021 Scholarship
* In Brief
* Upcoming ARRL Section, State, and Division Conventions
ARRL Headquarters Will Be Closed for Presidents Day, Monday, February
17. There will be no W1AW bulletin or code practice transmissions on
that day. Headquarters will reopen on Tuesday, February 18, at 8 AM
ARRL Board of Directors Re-Elects President Rick Roderick, K5UR
Meeting January 17 - 18 in Windsor, Connecticut, the ARRL Board of
Directors re-elected ARRL President Rick Roderick, K5UR, to a third
2-year term. Roderick outpolled the only other nominee, Pacific
ARRL President Rick
Division Director Jim Tiemstra, K6JAT, 8 - 7. New England Division Vice
Director Mike Raisbeck, K1TWF, was elected First Vice President,
succeeding Greg Widin, K0GW, who did not seek another term. Raisbeck
was the sole nominee. A successor will be appointed to fill the Vice
Director seat that Raisbeck has vacated. Bob Vallio, W6RGG, was
re-elected as Second Vice President as the only nominee.
On a 9 - 6 vote, the Board voted not to re-elect Howard Michel, WB2ITX,
as Chief Executive Officer. Michel was in the post for 15 months.
Former ARRL Chief Financial Officer and Chief Executive Officer Barry
Shelley, N1VXY, has come out of retirement to serve as interim ARRL
CEO. He also was elected as Secretary. Shelley was ARRL's CFO for 28
years and served as CEO during 2018 before his retirement, following
the departure of former CEO Tom Gallagher, NY2RF. The ARRL Board has
appointed a committee to spearhead the search for a new CEO. That panel
will screen suitable CEO candidates, presenting three to the Board for
In other action, former ARRL President and IARU Secretary Rod Stafford,
W6ROD, was elected International Affairs Vice President, succeeding Jay
Bellows, K0QB, who did not seek another term. Also re-elected by the
Board were Treasurer Rick Niswander, K7GM, and Chief Financial Officer
Diane Middleton, W2DLM.
Elected as members of the Executive Committee were Atlantic Division
Director Tom Abernethy, W3TOM; Central Division Director Kermit
Carlson, W9XA; Roanoke Division Director Bud Hippisley, W2RU; New
England Division Director Fred Hopengarten, K1VR, and Great Lakes
Division Director Dale Williams, WA8EFK. The Executive Committee
addresses and makes decisions regarding ARRL business that may arise
between scheduled Board meetings.
Hudson Division Director Ria Jairam, N2RJ, was elected as a member of
the ARRL Foundation Board for a 3-year term. Tim Duffy, K3LR, and Jim
Fenstermaker, K9JF, were elected to the Foundation Board for 3-year
terms as non-ARRL Board members.
Relief From Private Land-Use Restrictions
The Hoc Legislative vocacy Committee provided the Board with
drafts outlining three legislative approaches to address relief for
radio amateurs facing private land-use restrictions impacting outdoor
antennas. The Board signed off on the draft legislative approaches "as
presented and possibly modified" and directed the committee "to proceed
to obtain congressional sponsorship, employing any of these three
approaches and using its best judgment on any alterations or
modifications that our advisors or sponsors may require or suggest."
HF Band Planning
Outgoing chair of the HF Band Planning Committee Greg Widin, K0GW,
presented the panel's report and entertained questions. Board members
noted that staff turnover and funding limitations at the FCC might
impact ARRL's efforts to tweak the bands. The Board agreed that ARRL
would post the report and solicit comments from members on it.
Contests and Operating Awards
Radio Amateurs of Canada President
Glenn MacDonell, VE3XRA (left), and
IARU President Tim Ellam,
VE6SH/G4HUA, conveyed greetings from
their respective organizations.
Seated behind them is ARRL Technical
Relations Specialist Jon Siverling,
WB3ERA. [Michelle Patnode, W3MVP,
The Board approved raising the maximum number of contacts a Field Day
GOTA station can make to 1,000. It amended the ARRL RTTY Roundup rules
to add Multi-Two and Multi-Multi categories and to permit multioperator
stations to operate for the entire contest period, and it divided entry
categories into RTTY only, Digital only (i.e., no RTTY), and Mixed
(both RTTY and digital).
Matt Holden, K0BBC, presented the DX visory Committee report, telling
the Board that the panel engaged in extensive discussion on a proposal
to change the 5-Band DXCC award from the current required band to offer
credit for any five bands. The committee unanimously rejected the
The Board revised rules governing ARRL Division and Section Manager
elections to clarify some terminology, to extend the campaign period
from the call for nominations to the deadline for ballots received, and
to make other miscellaneous changes. Revisions will become effective by
February 15, 2020.
The Board elected Greg
Widin, K0GW, as an
ARRL Honorary Vice
In the interest of "openness and fairness," the Board also approved a
measure that would offer candidates and members an opportunity to be
present during the counting of ballots. Candidates may also designate
one ARRL member to attend as a surrogate if they're unable to observe
ballot counting, or to accompany them at the count. The Board further
approved an amendment to permit ARRL members, upon petition, to travel
at their own expense to witness the counting of ballots from their
The Board charged the Programs and Services Committee to consider
changes to the ARRL By-Laws that would give members, upon petition, the
opportunity to attend the public portion of the Annual Meeting in
January. The number of members permitted to attend would be subject to
available space and fire code regulations.
Public Service Enhancement Working Group Chair, Roanoke Division
Director Bud Hippisley, W2RU, reported that with field adoption of the
2019 ARES Plan now under way, the group is putting increased focus on
the National Traffic System, including plans for dialog with
representatives of Radio Relay International.
Reduced Dues for Younger Applicants
as an ARRL
The Board approved an amendment giving the CEO discretion to raise the
eligibility age for reduced full ARRL membership dues from 22 to 26,
provided the rate not be less than one-half of the established rate. In
addition, the Board approved the establishment of a reduced-rate,
revenue-neutral Life Membership for individuals age 70 or older, with
cumulative annual membership of 25 years or more, at an initial rate of
$750. Headquarters staff will work out the administrative details of
the program, subject to approval of the ministration and Finance
The Board also agreed to allow for a "digital-only" access membership,
at the discretion of the CEO, discounted no more than 10% from the
established dues rate.
In other business, the Board:
* Approved a grant of $500 to the Youth on the Air (YOTA) in the
Americas program, which is sponsoring a camp in June for young
radio amateurs. Neil Rapp, WB9VPG, a former ARRL Youth Coordinator,
is heading the initiative, which is funded through the non-profit
Electronic Applications Radio Service Inc.
* Authorized creation of an Emergency Management Director Selection
Committee, with its chair and members to be named by the president.
The minutes of the January Annual Meeting of the ARRL Board of
Directors are posted on the ARRL website.
ARRL Board Grants Awards and Recognitions
Meeting January 17 - 18, the ARRL Board of Directors bestowed several
honors, awards, and recognitions. The Board conferred:
* The ARRL President's Award to David H. Bernstein, AA6YQ, in
recognition of "exemplary, outstanding, and continuing service" to
ARRL and its members as part of the ARRL Logbook of The World team.
Bernstein was a charter member of the ARRL Logbook Committee and a
"founding, influential, and devoted member" of the Committee on
Communication with ARRL Members.
* The 2019 Bill Leonard, W2SKE, Professional Media Award for Audio
Reporting to Roman Battaglia and the associated producer and staff
of Jefferson Public Radio in Oregon. Battaglia produced a feature
story on amateur radio emergency services in and around the
Jefferson Public Radio listening area.
* The 2019 Bill Leonard, W2SKE, Professional Media Award for Print
Reporting to Zack Plair and the Columbus and Starkville Dispatch in
Mississippi. Plair wrote a feature for the paper describing how
amateur radio has proven fulfilling to various participants,
including new and experienced radio amateurs.
* The 2019 Bill Leonard, W2SKE, Professional Media Award for Video
Reporting to reporter Jim Altman and affiliated producers and staff
of Fox 61 News in Hartford, Connecticut. Altman's report, "American
Radio Relay League Ready for Hurricane Season," focused on ARRL's
participation in a May 2019 emergency drill conducted in
association with the American Red Cross.
The Board recognized and thanked the Delaware Valley Radio Association
of New Jersey and the Clark County Amateur Radio Club of Vancouver,
Washington, for their 90 years of assistance in fulfilling the ARRL
mission of, "advancing the art, science, and enjoyment of amateur radio
within their community."
The Board bestowed the honor of Honorary Vice President on John B.
"Jay" Bellows, K0QB, and on Greg Widin, K0GW, in recognition of their
outstanding contributions to ARRL and amateur radio.
ARRL Creates New HF Band Planning Discussion Group
ARRL has created a new HF Band Planning Discussion Group. HF Band
Planning Committee Chair Mike Raisbeck, K1TWF, will moderate the group,
which will focus on the ARRL HF Band Planning Committee's
recommendations and other band-planning activities. Earlier this month,
the ARRL HF Band Planning Committee invited comments and suggestions
from the amateur radio community on its report to the ARRL Board.
At the Board's January meeting, the committee presented its specific
recommendations in graphical form for each HF band and US license
class, with the goal of increasing harmony on the HF bands,
particularly between CW and digital users.
Those responding to the initial call for comments and suggestions are
encouraged to cross-post their remarks to the new HF Band Planning
ARRL Podcasts Schedule
The second episode of ARRL's "On the Air" podcast is now available.
Topics focus on building the ground-plane antenna featured in the first
issue of On the Air magazine, a discussion of open-wire feed lines, and
an interview with a relatively new public service volunteer. New "On
the Air" podcast episodes are available each month.
The inaugural episode of ARRL's new "Eclectic Tech" podcast is now
available. The first episode includes a discussion of amateur radio
activity on the Qatar-OSCAR 100 satellite, an interview with Assistant
ARRL Lab Manager Bob Allison, WB1GCM, about handheld transceiver
testing at Dayton Hamvention and other conventions, and an interview
with Carl Luetzelschwab, K9LA, about propagation conditions.
Both podcasts are available on iTunes (iOS) and Stitcher (Android) as
well as on Blubrry -- On the Air | Eclectic Tech.
New ARRL Repeater Directory Now Shipping
The 2020 ARRL Repeater Directory^(R) is now shipping. It includes
"crowdsourced" listings contributed by users, repeater owners, and
volunteer frequency coordinators. This means more listings that are
updated more often. With 21,000 listings, it's the most complete
printed directory of on-the-air repeaters, covering repeater systems
throughout the US and Canada.
Repeater systems are listed by state/province, city, and operating
mode. Digital repeater systems included are System Fusion, D-Star, DMR,
NXDN, and P25 systems. It is available in one size -- 6 * 9 inches --
with a convenient lay-flat spiral binding. The cover includes space to
personalize your directory, so you can make it yours.
Pages of supplemental information include VHF/UHF and microwave band
plans, and repeater operating practices. For decades, The ARRL Repeater
Directory has been an invaluable source for locating repeater
frequencies while traveling. New hams often use the Repeater Directory
to find local activity after purchasing a new handheld radio, and
public service volunteers keep a copy nearby or in their emergency "go
Order the 2020 ARRL Repeater Directory from the ARRL Store, or find an
ARRL publication dealer. Order ARRL Item No. 1267, ISBN:
978-1-62595-126-7, $19.95 retail. For additional questions or ordering,
call 860-594-0355, or, toll free in the US, 888-277-5289.
Repeater listings appearing in The ARRL Repeater Directory(R) are
provided by RFinder Inc. If a repeater has been omitted, or if a
listing is inaccurate, contact RFinder directly.
The ARRL International DX Contest (CW) Is Just Ahead
The CW weekend of the always-exciting ARRL International DX Contest
kicks off this weekend, February 15 - 16 (UTC). This event is a huge
opportunity for new, casual, and seasoned radiosport enthusiasts to
enjoy the thrill of working some new DX entities.
The terrific part is that DX stations work only US and Canada and not
each other. So, the DX operators need your contact for points.
You don't need a powerhouse contest station to join in the fun. It's
possible to work DX with simple wire dipole antennas and 100 W.
Participating in the ARRL International DX Contest is a whole lot of
fun and can really help build your DXCC totals and QSL collections.
Complete details are available via the ARRL Contests web page. The ARRL
International DX Contest phone weekend is March 7 - 8 (UTC).
The K7RA Solar Update
Tad Cook, K7RA, Seattle, reports: No sunspots appeared during the
reporting week, February 6 - 12. Average daily solar flux declined by
more than 1 point to 71.1. Average planetary A index increased from 6.7
Predicted solar flux for the next 45 days is 72 on February 13 - 20; 73
on February 21 - 22; 74 on February 23 - 29; 72 on March 1 - 3; 71 on
March 4 - 11; 72 on March 12 - 18; 73 on March 19 - 20; 74 on March 21
- 27, and 72 on March 28.
Predicted planetary A index is 5 on February 13 - 16; 8 on February 17
- 20; 5 on February 21 - 24; 10 on February 25 - 26; 5 on February 27 -
29; 8 on March 1 - 3; 5 on March 4 - 22; 10 on March 23 - 24; 5 on
March 25 - 27, and 8 on March 28.
Sunspot numbers for February 6 - 12 were 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, and 0, with
a mean of 0. The 10.7-centimeter flux was 71.3, 70.8, 72, 70.6, 70.2,
71.1, and 71.6, with a mean of 71.1. Estimated planetary A indices were
15, 15, 6, 7, 5, 6, and 4, with a mean of 8.3. Middle latitude A index
was 13, 11, 4, 5, 4, 6, and 4, with a mean of 6.7.
A comprehensive K7RA Solar Update is posted Fridays on the ARRL
website. For more information concerning radio propagation, visit the
ARRL Technical Information Service, read "What the Numbers Mean...,"
and check out K9LA's Propagation Page.
A propagation bulletin archive is available. Monthly charts offer
propagation projections between the US and a dozen DX locations.
Share your reports and observations.
Just Ahead in Radiosport
* February 14 -- PODXS 070 Club Valentine Sprint (Digital)
* February 15 -- Feld Hell Sprint
* February 15 - 16 -- ARRL International DX Contest (CW)
* February 15 - 16 -- Russian PSK WW Contest
* February 15 - 16 -- AWA Amplitude Modulation QSO Party
* February 17 -- Run for the Bacon QRP Contest (CW)
* February 19 -- AGCW Semi-Automatic Key Evening
See the ARRL Contest Calendar for more information. For in-depth
reporting on amateur radio contesting, subscribe to The ARRL Contest
Update via your ARRL member profile email preferences.
QRZ.com Ends Identity Verified Program
The popular QRZ.com amateur radio website has dropped its verified
member program, which the site instituted last year in an effort to
combat fraud and password phishers. Termination of the program was due
to "a number of factors," the site's founder and president Fred Lloyd,
AA7BQ, explained in a post. Lloyd said the change will "transition our
online swapmeet rules to reflect more open policies." The site had
offered the option of establishing two-factor authentication (2FA) for
its registered users, which would secure a user's password on the site.
The site introduced two-factor authentication last June, and the
verified member program later.
"While two-factor authentication has worked very well, the identity
verified program hasn't worked as well as we'd hoped. There has been a
net decrease in swapmeet traffic, primarily due to members not wishing
to take the extra steps to get verified. The swapmeet did seem to get
safer, but also notably quieter. The forum has lost some of the
excitement that it used to be known for."
Lloyd said the identity verified program was designed to provide an
extra level of confidence to swapmeet participants, but "in practical
terms, its validation methods were not sustainable." Not only was it an
administrative burden, Lloyd explained, but the majority of its
participants were only complying reluctantly. "The bottom line is that
it's been unpopular," he said.
Lloyd said that by dropping the identity verified requirement, QRZ
expects to see an increase in equipment listings and greater
Individuals listing equipment will still need to provide photos of
actual items for sale, and photos must include the seller's call sign.
Only ham members -- those having a listed call sign page -- may sell in
the swapmeet. Those perusing the listings will generally be allowed to
post comments or questions about any listing, Lloyd said. Read more.
Foundation for Amateur Radio Invites 2020 - 2021 Scholarship
The Foundation for Amateur Radio Inc. (FAR) has invited applications
for the 2020 - 2021 academic year for the scholarships it administers.
Applications must be submitted via the online form. Several questions
ask for essay responses. The deadline for initial submissions is April
30, 2020. Applicants may amend their applications until May 7.
All applicants must hold a valid amateur radio license and be enrolled
or accepted for enrollment at an accredited university, college, or
technical school. Applicants attending school outside the US must
provide a brochure describing the school. Students do not apply for
specific scholarships; each application will be considered for all of
the scholarships for which the applicant is qualified. Quarter Century
Wireless Association (QCWA) scholarships and the Chichester Memorial
Scholarship all require recommendations to be awarded.
Data entered onto the application goes directly into an encrypted,
password-protected PDF file available only to the review committee. No
part of the application is stored online.
More information is available on the FAR website, or contact Dave
Prestel, W8AJR, telephone 443-812-4403.
The FCC has invited comments on a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM)
in WT Docket 19-138, which said the FCC would take "a fresh and
comprehensive look" at the rules for the 5.9 GHz band. The FCC proposes
to make 5.850 - 5.895 GHz available for unlicensed operations and to
authorize transportation-related communication technologies to use
5.895 - 5.925 GHz. The FCC is not proposing to delete or otherwise
amend the 5-centimeter secondary amateur radio allocation at 5.650 -
5.925 GHz, part of which includes the 75 megahertz under consideration.
Comments are due by March 6, and reply comments are due by April 6.
ARRL will be filing comments supporting no change to 5.850 - 5.925 GHz
for amateurs, as included in the FCC proposal.
Successful 47 GHz Amateur Radio Moonbounce Test Reported. Mitsuo Kasai,
JA1WQF, successfully decoded a 47 GHz signal bounced off the moon on
February 10 by Al Ward, W5LUA. More tests are planned. Ward posted news
of the achievement on the Moon-Net email reflector. "These were one-way
tests, with only me transmitting," he said in his post. "I started out
by sending single tones to Mitsuo, which he copied well, and then sent
several sequences of calls and grid. Mitsuo was able to decode calls
and my grid at 1146 UTC and 1234 UTC. Signal levels were -23 dB and -25
dB." Ward noted that the first EME (Earth-moon-Earth) contact on 47 GHz
took place in early 2005. "More 47 GHz tests are being run in the next
few days with Manfred Ploetz, DL7YC," he said. "We hope for similar
Two Winlink development team members were recently awarded the Military
Department of Tennessee jutant General's Distinguished Patriot Medal.
Steve Waterman, K4CJX, was awarded "for his distinguished patriotic
service as the Winlink Network ministrator," citing his "vision, hard
work, and dedication to emergency communication [that] contributed
significantly to the disaster readiness and communications
interoperability of the emergency responders across the United States
and the world." Phil Sherrod, W4PHS, was awarded the medal "for his
distinguished patriotic service as the lead developer for Winlink,"
with "technical skill, hard work, and dedication to emergency
communication [that] contributed significantly to the disaster
readiness and communications interoperability of the emergency
responders across the United States and the world."
US Marines with Information Group II Marine Expeditionary Force (II
MIG) participated in an amateur radio general licensing course. The
course was conducted on base January 27 - 31 as part of the group's
High Frequency Auxiliary Initiative. Members of the Brightleaf Amateur
Radio Club of Greenville, North Carolina, helped the Marines in the
class learn the principles of HF radio operations as a contingency
against a peer-to-peer adversary in real-world operations. During the
course, Marines learned ham radio theory, band allocations,
conventional and field-expedient antenna theory, and general ham radio
operation and control. II MIG Commanding Officer Colonel Jordan Walzer
created the High Frequency Auxiliary Initiative after recognizing the
need for additional options in combat environments. "Right now, our
adversaries are aggressively pursuing counter-space weapons to target
our satellites and ground stations," Walzer is quoted in the article.
"If our satellites get knocked out, what do we do then? [High
frequency] radio has been around for well over a century and is still
used today. Why? Because it's a reliable, low-cost alternative to
satellite communications. With the right training and education, a
Marine with a radio and some slash wire can communicate
over-the-horizon for long distances, even between continents."
Initial reports indicate considerable interest among amateurs in
tracking and capturing data from the newly deployed HuskySat-1. The
satellite, designed at the University of Washington, was launched to
the International Space Station last November and subsequently deployed
into a higher orbit from the ISS on January 31, and began telemetry
transmissions on 435.800 MHz. HuskySat-1's 1,200 bps BPSK beacon is
active and decodable with the latest release of AMSAT's FoxTelem
software. The HuskySat-1 CubeSat will demonstrate onboard plasma
propulsion and high-gain telemetry for low-Earth orbit that would be a
precursor for an attempt at a larger CubeSat designed for orbital
insertion at the moon. HuskySat-1 is expected to carry out its primary
mission before being turned over to AMSAT for activation of a 30 kHz
wide V/U linear transponder for SSB and CW. -- Thanks to AMSAT News
Upcoming ARRL Section, State, and Division Conventions
* February 14 - 15 -- Southwest Division Convention, Yuma, Arizona
* February 22 -- Vermont State Convention, Colchester, Vermont
* March 7 -- Delta Division Convention, Russellville, Arkansas
* March 13 - 14 -- North Carolina Section Convention, Concord, North
* March 14 - 15 -- Great Lakes Division Convention, Perrysburg, Ohio
* March 14 -- Nebraska State Convention, Lincoln, Nebraska
* March 14 -- West Virginia Section Convention, Charleston, West
* March 21 -- West Texas Section Convention, Midland, Texas
* March 29 -- Virginia Section Convention, Annandale, Virginia
* April 10 - 11 -- Oklahoma State Convention, Claremore, Oklahoma
* April 11 -- Roanoke Division Convention, Raleigh, North Carolina
* April 18 -- Delaware State Convention, Georgetown, Delaware
Find conventions and hamfests in your area.
ARRL -- Your One-Stop Resource for
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Copyright (c) 2020 American Radio Relay League, Incorporated. Use and
distribution of this publication, or any portion thereof, is permitted for
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--- Squish/386 v1.11
* Origin: Outpost BBS * Limestone, TN, USA (1:18/200)