ARRL

ARRL Letter

 

***************
The ARRL Letter
Vol. 20, No. 5
February 2, 2001
***************

IN THIS EDITION:

* +Hams work 24/7 in quake relief effort
* +ARRL participates in ITU unwanted emissions studies
* +ARISS school QSO goes off without a hitch
* +FCC starts WRC-2003 preparations
* +W8HKY: Hamming it up at 100
* +W4DR wins first DeSoto Cup
* +Four clubs earn Club 2000 Achievement awards
*  Solar Update
*  IN BRIEF: 
     This weekend on the radio
     ARRL E-Mail Forwarding Service experiences outage
    +Furchtgott-Roth to leave FCC
     No services planned for Bill Orr, W6SAI, SK
     Andrew A. Andros, W0LTE, SK
     Transatlantic tests participant Hendrik Jesse, PA0CII, SK
     League luminaries to grace Miami Hamboree
     OMIK now an ARRL-affiliated club

+Available on ARRL Audio News

===========================================================

==>INDIAN HAMS WORKING AROUND THE CLOCK IN QUAKE RELIEF

One week after a devastating earthquake struck the State of Gujarat in
Western India, Amateur Radio continues to play a major role in the relief
effort. Amateurs have established HF and VHF nets throughout Gujarat to aid
in supplying food, clothing, medicine and shelter to the earthquake victims.
More than 20,000 have perished, and the death count is expected to go much
higher.

The US and India do not have a third-party traffic agreement, and no plans
have been announced at this point to seek a suspension of that arrangement
to permit international third-party message traffic via Amateur Radio. Raj
Kumar, VU2ZAP, in Bangalore has agreed to accept earthquake-related
inquiries via e-mail from the US to vu2zap@yahoo.com . VU2ZAP says he is in
touch with Amateur Radio teams and Amateur Radio Society of India officials
and will do his best to assist those seeking information. He requests that
all inquiries include all possible information, in particular telephone
numbers. There's no guarantee of a reply, however.

Amateurs from ARSI--the IARU member-society--and from the National Institute
of Amateur Radio have been on the scene since January 27 providing
communications support and information on victims. D.V.R.K. Murthy, VU2DVO,
reports that amateurs are "working round the clock." Most telephone service
in the earthquake zone remains out.

Traffic is being handled on 40 and 20-meter frequencies as well as on VHF.
Indian amateurs have asked for cooperation in maintaining clear frequencies
in the vicinity of 14.155 and 14.160 MHz as well as on various net
frequencies between 14.250 and 14.270 MHz.

B.L. Manohar, VU2UR, in Bangalore, says media reports about ham radio's
presence in the quake zone have led to a flurry of calls from all over India
requesting hams to radio the affected region for information on friends and
loved ones. "Most of the Amateur Radio operators manning the stations in
Gujarat do not know the local language or the streets and areas of the city
where they have stations established," he said. "With no help in the form of
local people to run about, all such messages are getting piled up."

The epicenter of the 7.9 magnitude earthquake January 26 was reported to be
20 km northeast of Bhuj. Manohar said more than 250 aftershocks have been
reported in the affected area. "All sorts of help is pouring in--equipment
to move debris, gas cutting sets, concrete cutting saws, huge excavators,
and many others," he said. 

==>ARRL TAKES PART IN ITU STUDY OF UNWANTED EMISSIONS.

The ARRL Technical Relations Office in Washington participated in
just-completed International Telecommunication Union studies of "unwanted
emissions" in the radio spectrum. Unwanted emissions consist of out-of-band
and spurious emissions. The ITU-Radiocommunication Sector has conducted two
multi-year studies of unwanted emissions during the past decade.

ARRL Technical Relations Manager Paul Rinaldo, W4RI, of the League's
Washington office chaired a second-round task group with an international
membership, drafting out-of-band emission specifications. ARRL Lab
Supervisor Ed Hare, W1RFI, and his staff participated in task group meetings
and provided technical support. Representatives of the International Amateur
Radio Union also took part.

"Had we not invested all those hours and travel, the amateur and
amateur-satellite services probably would have some unwanted emission limits
that would be more difficult to meet and make amateur equipment more
costly," Rinaldo said. The panel's recommendations are being circulated to
governments for final approval.

Out-of-band emissions are those falling outside the necessary bandwidth of a
signal and are the result of modulation. "Amateurs know them as key clicks
and splatter," Rinaldo said. Out-of-band limits for amateur equipment were
agreed upon at the final task group meeting last year, and Rinaldo says
these are consistent with the idea of establishing a safety net--not
stringent levels of emission.

The ITU defines spurious emissions as emissions beyond 250% of the necessary
bandwidth, but the definition is still under debate. Spurious levels already
are spelled out in the international Radio Regulations. ARRL Lab tests have
shown    that amateur gear could meet a standard of -50 dB relative to main
signal for HF and -70 dB for VHF bands and above.

A suite of ITU-R recommendations on unwanted emissions is being circulated
and should be approved by mid-year.

More work lies ahead for the ARRL Washington staff. Radio astronomers and
earth-exploration passive services are not satisfied with present levels of
unwanted emissions from satellites and are concerned about interference to
their sensitive receivers. A new ITU task group is studying the issue and
preparing information for presentation at WRC-03.

==>ARISS QSO WITH TEXAS SCHOOL GOES OFF WITHOUT A HITCH

Youngsters at George West Elementary School in George West, Texas, enjoyed
the latest in a series of successful Amateur Radio on the International
Space Station school contacts. "The contact this morning went without a
hitch, with a full 10 minutes of QSO from horizon to horizon!" exulted Gene
Chapline, K5YFL, the ARISS Amateur Radio coordinator for the school.
"Signals were Q5 all the way." 

Chapline says 10 students asked two questions each of Space Station Alpha
Commander William "Shep" Shepherd, KD5GSL, with time left over for what
Chapline called "a civilized 'thank you, good luck and 73' to Shepherd"
before contact was lost. Students asked several questions related to
microgravity aboard the ISS, including how it might affect viruses, plant
growth and even the dreams the crew might have. Teacher Keith Rogers said
Shepherd's replies impressed him and his young charges. "His kind and caring
answers really impacted my students," he said. "He will forever be their
hero!" 

Assisting were members of the Boy Scout Troop 277 Amateur Radio Club.
Thirteen-year-old Bradley Henicke, KD5FAL, served as the primary operator,
and 16-year-old Alonzo Cuellar, KD5FAM, was the standby operator. "It was
perfect," Chapline said of the QSO. A crowd of about 75 teachers and
relatives filled the classroom. Two Scouts escorted interested parties
outside during the contact to see the ISS pass overhead while listening to
the QSO on a hand-held scanner. 

Reporters were on hand from several newspapers as well as local TV, and
Boy's Life magazine has scheduled a story on the event. For more information
on the ARISS program, visit the ARISS Web site, http://ariss.gsfc.nasa.gov
.--Gene Chapline, K5YFL 

==>FCC BEGINS WRC-2003 PREPARATIONS

In preparation for the next World Radiocommunication Conference in 2003, the
FCC's WRC-03 Advisory Committee met for the first time January 30 at FCC
Headquarters in Washington. The FCC International Bureau's Planning and
Negotiations Division has primary responsibility for guiding the FCC's
WRC-03 efforts.

A WRC-03 Web site has been set up at http://www.fcc.gov/wrc-03 along with a
mailbox for the committee, wrc03@fcc.gov .

The Advisory Committee provides an opportunity for interests outside the
federal government to develop and debate US draft proposals for possible
adoption by the FCC, the National Telecommunications and Information
administration and the US Department of State.

WRC-03 will deal with wide-ranging telecommunications issues, including
IMT-2000 or so-called "third-generation" or "3G" cellular telephone devices,
fixed services, mobile and fixed-satellite issues, HF broadcasting,
satellite broadcasting, and regulatory matters.

Amateur Radio-related issues on the WRC-03 agenda include the revision of
Article S25 of the international Radio Regulations--the basic rules for the
Amateur and Amateur-Satellite services. This includes the issue of whether
to retain the treaty requirement to demonstrate Morse code proficiency for
access to amateur bands below 30 MHz.

WRC-03 also will review the terms and definitions of Article S1 to the
extent required as a consequence of any changes made in Article S25. Among
other things, Article S1 contains the definition of the Amateur and
Amateur-Satellite services. In addition, WRC-03 participants are expected to
review the provisions of Article S19 concerning the formation of call signs
in the amateur services, in order to provide flexibility for
administrations.

WRC-03 will consider realignment of amateur and broadcasting bands around 7
MHz on a worldwide basis. The long-standing problem was identified in a
WARC-92 recommendation that called for realignment at a future conference.
The International Amateur Radio Union is committed to supporting a
"harmonized" worldwide 300-kHz allocation in the vicinity of 7 MHz. 

An examination of the adequacy of HF broadcasting allocations from
approximately 4 to 10 MHz also is on the agenda. Conference participants
also will consider abandoning an earlier commitment for HF broadcasters to
shift from double to single-sideband AM modulation and move instead to
digital modulation.

Among other issues that could affect Amateur Radio, WRC-03 will consider
allocations for non-geostationary, non-voice mobile satellites (the
so-called "Little LEOS") below 1 GHz, as well as spectrum above 1 GHz for
feeder links. In addition, the conference will consider Earth
Exploration-Satellite Service in the 420 to 470-MHz band.

ARRL Technical Relations Manager Paul Rinaldo, W4RI, says that most of the
issues of concern to amateurs have been assigned to the WRC-03 Advisory
Committee's Informal Working Group 6. ARRL Technical Relations Specialist
Walt Ireland, WB7CSL, has been appointed as vice chairman of IWG-6. Rinaldo
says Ireland's presence "will be key in seeing that amateur issues have fair
treatment." He said Ireland's experience with the Voice of America also will
be helpful in dealing with HF broadcasting issues being considered by the
panel.

Expected to take place in Venezuela, WRC-03 is scheduled to begin June 9,
2003, and continue until July 4, 2003.

==>W8HKY: HAMMING IT UP AT 100

ARRL member Michael J. Anuta, W8HKY, of Marinette, Wisconsin, turns 100
years old on Sunday, February 4. In anticipation of the momentous occasion,
the ARRL has sent special greetings to Anuta, who is among the very oldest
League members.

"We at the League are so happy that you are one of our senior members and
still an active and vibrant Amateur Radio operator," wrote ARRL Executive
Vice President David Sumner, K1ZZ. On behalf of the ARRL Board of Directors,
Sumner congratulated Anuta on attaining centenarian status.

First licensed as WN8HKY in 1952, Anuta upgraded and remained active through
the 1970s. When he moved into a retirement apartment, he sold his equipment
but, fortunately, kept his General license current.

Last year, Mike Anuta read a newspaper account of the 50th anniversary of
the Marinette and Menominee Amateur Radio Club, and he decided to rejoin. He
bought a 2-meter hand-held radio and now regularly checks into the club's
Sunday night 2-meter net--usually the first to do so, according to Ed
Engleman, KG8CX. Anuta also rejoined the ARRL.

Although into middle age when he became licensed, Anuta remembers his first
encounter with the radio hobby during World War I, when, as a teenager, he
erected an "aerial" on the roof of the family's house in Milwaukee and
listened to spark gap signals. He later worked as a railroad telegrapher.

Anuta spent 67 years as an attorney. He and his wife, Marianne, recently
celebrated their 79th wedding anniversary.--Jim Callow, K8IR; Badger State
Smoke Signals

==>W4DR IS 2000 CLINTON B. DESOTO CUP WINNER

Bob Eshleman, W4DR, of Midlothian, Virginia, is the winner of the Clinton B.
DeSoto Cup for 2000. The DeSoto Cup--a new ARRL award being presented for
the first time--recognizes the station that's on top of the DXCC Challenge
List as of September 30 each year. The Cup will be presented in May at
Dayton's "DX Dinner" sponsored by the Southwest Ohio DX Association.

Eshleman is practically a lifelong DXer and DXpeditioner. First licensed in
1950 as W4QCW at age 14, Eshleman says his first station was a
crystal-controlled 6L6 oscillator on 80 meters, a folded dipole made of
300-ohm TV twin lead and a BC-454 military surplus receiver. He subsequently
graduated to grander gear and much more effective antennas. By 1954, he had
DXCC in the bag (#2037).

After completing dental school and starting a family, he soon achieved DXCC
Honor Roll and the first-ever Five Band DXCC, among other DXCC honors,
including the first single-band DXCC awards on 40 and 10 meters. He credits
the 119 countries he worked in the 1980s and 1990s on 6 meters as being
"probably decisive in winning the first DeSoto Cup."

Now retired as a full-time dental school faculty member, he's used the
intervening years "to catch up on the WARC bands" he'd neglected while
chasing DX on 6 meters. He and his wife Rosalie, N4CFL, are headed for a
month's trip to Syria and Egypt, during which they will be operators as
YK9A. His sons Curtis and Lee both are licensed, KK4HJ and WA4CSG
respectively.

==>CLUB 2000 ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS GO TO FOUR OUTSTANDING CLUBS!

When the ARRL Volunteer Resources Committee met recently in Texas, they had
a 10-gallon size job in front of them--to review the ARRL Headquarters work
party's recommendations of four clubs to receive the first-ever Club
Achievement Awards. 

The winners were the 10-70 Repeater Association of Wanaque, New Jersey, in
the Over 100 Members category; the Big Rapids Area Amateur Radio Club,
Paris, Michigan, in the Under 100/More than 25 Members category; Peninsula
Electronic Amateur Radio Society, Hampton, Virginia, in the 25 or Fewer
Member category, and Central Bible College Amateur Radio Club, Springfield,
Missouri, in the School Club category.

Throughout last year, clubs from all over the US visited the ARRL Web site
to learn about the program and start the process of documenting all facets
of their club's special achievements. The new incentive awards were aimed at
recognizing clubs that are growing, thriving, and developing positive
community relations. 

Participation in emergency and public service activities, public relations
and ham radio recruitment, building ARRL membership, volunteer examination
participation, outreach to the disabled, educational and instructional
innovations, and Field Organization volunteerism were important criteria. A
$1000 award for the Top Achiever Club in each category was ARRL's way of
saying, "Great job!" Awards for this program were funded by The ARRL
Foundation Inc. 

Submittals arrived from more than 40 clubs. The ARRL hopes to offer this
achievement incentive for clubs again in two years. Honorable Mention clubs
will be posted later on the ARRL Web site, http://www.arrl.org . --Mary Lau,
N1VH

==>SOLAR UPDATE

Propagation guru Tad Cook, K7VVV, Seattle, Washington, reports: Solar flux
and sunspot numbers dipped from our last reporting period (January 11-17) to
the next (January 18-24) and then rose again over the past week. Geomagnetic
conditions have been pretty stable, but on January 21, 24 and 31 planetary A
indices were 18, and planetary K indices briefly were at five.

Geomagnetic conditions are expected to remain stable, and solar flux should
rise over the next few days. Solar flux for Friday through Tuesday is
predicted to be 165, 165, 170, 175 and 175. Monday and Tuesday's values are
the expected peak for the short term, and the next peak is predicted around
March 7.

Average daily solar flux for November, December and January was 178.8, 173.6
and 166.6. Average daily sunspot numbers for the same three months was
149.9, 146.4 and 142.7. This indicates the gradual decline of cycle 23, but
these values are not far below the peak of the cycle, which probably
occurred last summer.

Sunspot numbers for January 18 through 24 were 99, 134, 91, 108, 108, 178
and 186, with a mean of 129.1. The 10.7-cm flux was 151.5, 152.5, 153.2,
151.5, 162.1, 167.1 and 172.5, with a mean of 158.6. The estimated planetary
A indices were 4, 4, 8, 18, 10, 11 and 18 with a mean of 10.4.

Sunspot numbers for January 25 through 31 were 163, 157, 134, 124, 142, 128
and 130, with a mean of 139.7. The 10.7-cm flux was 168.6, 165.6, 166.8,
167.6, 165.4, 159.6 and 153.3, with a mean of 163.8. The estimated planetary
A indices were 4, 10, 4, 6, 13, 4 and 18 with a mean of 8.4. 

__________________________________

==>IN BRIEF:

* This weekend on the radio: The North American Sprint (SSB), the Minnesota,
Delaware, Vermont and New Hampshire QSO parties, the FYBO Winter QRP Field
Day, the Ten Ten International Net Winter Phone QSO Party, the YL-OM Contest
(CW), and the Delaware Valley 2 meter FM simplex contest are the weekend of
February 3-4. (New Hampshire QSO Party software is available at
http://www.nhradio.org .) JUST AHEAD: The North American Sprint (CW), the
YL-OM Contest (SSB), the Winter Fireside SSB Sprint, the WorldWide RTTY WPX
Contest, the PACC Contest, and the FISTS CW Winter Sprint are the weekend of
February 9-11. See the ARRL Contest Branch page,
http://www.arrl.org/contests/ for more info.

* ARRL E-Mail Forwarding Service experiences outage: E-mail routed via the
ARRL E-Mail Forwarding Service was delayed the evening of January 31. The
problem was cleared up by the following day, and the flow of queued-up
messages resumed. "While it has taken some time for the volume of queued
messages to be delivered, the system is back to normal operation," the
ARRL's Barry Shelley, N1VXY, said February 1. 

* Furchtgott-Roth to leave FCC: FCC Commissioner Harold W. Furchtgott-Roth
has announced that he will not seek reappointment to a second term and will
instead return to the private sector. The announcement leaves President
George W. Bush with another slot to fill on the FCC. A Republican and a
Clinton appointee, Furchtgott-Roth's first term expired last June 30. "It
has been a great honor to serve for more than three years on the Federal
Communications Commission, more than half a year beyond the expiration of my
term," Furchtgott-Roth said in a statement. "However, there comes a time
when every free market advocate in government must fulfill his dream by
returning to the private sector. For me, that time has arrived."
Furchtgott-Roth said he will continue to serve on the Commission "until a
mutually agreeable departure date is worked out with the Administration." 

* No services planned for Bill Orr, W6SAI, SK: According to family friend
Tiff Tiffany, W6GNX, no funeral or memorial service is planned for Bill Orr,
W6SAI, who died in his sleep January 24 at the age of 81. "It is my
impression that while Bill always appreciated expressions of gratitude, they
were not as important to him as was whatever help he may have been to hams
everywhere," Tiffany said. W6GNX has been helping the family to inventory
Orr's station equipment. Condolences may be sent to the family care of Orr's
daughter: Judy Moltzen, 1015 Monte Rosa, Menlo Park, CA 94025. 

* Andrew A. Andros, W0LTE, SK: The co-founder of Hy-Gain, Andrew "Andy"
Andros, W0LTE, of Houston, Texas, died January 23. He was 76. Andy and his
brother, Ted, W0URN, founded Hy-Gain Electronics in 1949 with $6, their
dad's ladder and Ted's car. Andy Andros designed the company's TH-3 triband
trap beam, which became an instant success. A succession of multiband beams
and verticals followed. The Hy-Gain LP-13-30 log periodic antenna, designed
for MARS and installed at military locations worldwide, also found its way
to the rooftop of many embassies. At its height, Hy-Gain, which was
headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska, was a multi-million dollar corporation
employing thousands. Hy-Gain, which had been owned by Telex, was purchased
in 1999 by MFJ Enterprises.--Ted Andros, W0URN, The Houston Chronicle

* Transatlantic tests participant Hendrik Jesse, PA0CII, SK: Hendrik "Henk"
Jesse, PA0CII, of Leyden, the Netherlands, died January 24. He was 95. Using
the self-assigned call sign PCII, Henk Jesse took part in the 1923
Transatlantic Tests organized by the ARRL and is believed to be the last
living participant of those pioneering experiments. Jesse was involved in
the third transatlantic contact, on the night of December 27-28, 1923,
between US station 1AGB and the Dutch PCII, with Jesse at the key. As Dick
Rollema, PA0SE, tells it, "The contact is perfect and lasts over two hours."
But there was a problem: While the US, England and other countries already
were licensing Amateur Radio operators, the Netherlands was not, which meant
Jesse was a pirate. After the contact, he was hauled into court, where the
prosecutor complimented him on his achievement, Rollema said. Although Jesse
had violated the Telephone and Telegraph Act, the judge considered the
offense insignificant and imposed no penalty. Jesse got his gear back, but
by the time the Netherlands started issuing ham tickets in 1929, he was too
busy with his transformer and electronic equipment manufacturing business.
Sixty years after Henk Jesse's historical contact, however, PTT decided to
officially recognize his achievement, and he was issued an amateur license
and call sign PA0CII--as close as possible to his 1923 pirate call sign.
"Henk is the only Dutch amateur who received a license without sitting for
the radio amateur examination," Rollema says.--Dick Rollema, PA0SE 

* League luminaries to grace Miami Hamboree: ARRL President Jim Haynie,
W5JBP, IARU President Larry Price, W4RA (a former ARRL president), and a
host of other ARRL and Amateur Radio luminaries will be on hand Saturday and
Sunday, February 3-4, for the Miami Tropical Hamboree and ARRL Florida State
Convention. ARRL Southeastern Divison Vice Director Evelyn Gauzens, W4WYR,
invites all to this 41st Miami Hamboree, held at the Fair Expo Center in
Miami, 9 AM-5 PM Saturday and 9 AM-4 PM Sunday. A highlight of this year's
Hamboree will be the presentation of the 2000 ARRL International
Humanitarian Award to The Hurricane Watch Net and Net Manager Jerry Herman,
N3BDW. ARRL Lab Supervisor Ed Hare, W1RFI, will discuss RFI (what else?),
antennas, and other Amateur Radio technical topics. Reports on the status of
AO-40 and ARISS will be presented by AMSAT experts. ARRL Vice President Kay
Craigie, WT3P, will discuss "The Big Project" during a section workshop and
luncheon, hosted by Southern Florida Section Manager Phyllisan West, KA4FZI.
For more information, visit the Hamboree Web site, http://www.hamboree.org
.--Evelyn Gauzens, W4WYR 

* OMIK now an ARRL-affiliated club: OMIK, the national organization of
African-American amateurs, now is an ARRL-affiliated organization. An ARRL
Charter of Affiliation was presented to OMIK January 27 in Atlanta, since
OMIK President Frank T. Smith, K1UB, resides in Fayetteville, Georgia. OMIK,
which is pronounced "Oh-Mike," was organized in 1952. The name OMIK stands
for Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, and Kentucky. 

=========================================================== 
The ARRL Letter is published Fridays, 50 times each year, by the American
Radio Relay League--The National Association For Amateur Radio--225 Main St,
Newington, CT 06111; tel 860-594-0200; fax 860-594-0259;
http://www.arrl.org. Jim Haynie, W5JBP, President

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