*************** The ARRL Letter Vol. 20, No. 39 September 28, 2001 *************** IN THIS EDITION: * +ARES/RACES NYC activation ends * +President Haynie praises ham radio response * +Three schools talk with ISS crew * +Solar activity grounds satellite launch * +FCC staff member Steve Linn, N4CAK, SK * +Michigan ham gets short-term renewal, upgrade * +Former Midwest Division Vice Director Chuck Miller, WA0KUH, SK * Solar Update * IN BRIEF: This weekend on the radio Correction Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Class Level II openings remain Continuing Legal Education Seminar set for Pacificon 2001 Two more amateurs reported lost at World Trade Center Maryland tornado prompts RACES activation Ham-sailor pins down arrival in US Southeastern Vice Director wins 2001 CHAMP Award Transpacific LF "insurance test" is a success Wisconsin PRB-1 bill clears committee University of Texas Amateur Radio Club to mark 80 years with special event VHF radio designer Ed Clegg, W8LOY, SK Vote on QST Cover Plaque Award +Available on ARRL Audio News =========================================================== ==>ARES/RACES NYC EFFORT STANDS DOWN; REACT SEEKS VOLUNTEERS After more than two weeks of intense effort, the Amateur Radio volunteer activation in New York City is winding down. ARRL New York City-Long Island ARES Section Emergency Coordinator Tom Carrubba, KA2D, says all ARES/RACES World Trade Center operations in support of the American Red Cross and the NYC Office of Emergency Management ceased early this week. REACT International continues to seek additional Amateur Radio and licensed GMRS users, primarily to support the Salvation Army's relief efforts in New York City. REACT International Secretary Lee Besing, N5NTG, said his organization has been lining up volunteers, and Jeff Schneller, N2HPO--who's affiliated with the Salvation Army Team Emergency Response Network (SATERN)--has been doing the scheduling for the support effort. REACT needs up to two dozen volunteers a day. Those who are willing and able should first visit the REACT International Web site <http://www.reactintl.org/tragedy_09112001.htm> or send e-mail to NYCHelp@reactintl.org. Carrubba says the American Red Cross closed all shelters that remained open in New York City on Sunday, September 23, while the New York City Office of Emergency Management shut down Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service support Monday, September 24. Any remaining Amateur Radio Emergency Service activity will be handled by volunteers from the Greater New York City area, he said. New York City District Emergency Coordinator Charles Hargrove, N2NOV--who served as incident commander--has expressed his appreciation to all amateurs who volunteered their time and equipment. Hargrove outlined Amateur Radio's role in the disaster response in a September 27 interview on Bloomberg Radio's WBBR in New York City. ARRL New York City-Long Island Section Manager George Tranos, N2GA, also expressed his gratitude to all Amateur Radio operators who came forward to assist the ARES/RACES effort. "The system works and our 'hobby' has performed well as a 'service' to the public," he said. Tranos said some 500 Amateur Radio volunteers helped out with communications support for the disaster. "The ARES organization has done a good job in mobilizing--some being on scene and ready on the morning of September 11," he said. Tranos also praised Carrubba, who, he said, "showed the way and was instrumental in the administration, organization and logistics of the operation." "Thanks and congratulations go to each of those who helped," Tranos concluded. "Now, hopefully, we can try to return to some degree of normalcy." ==>ARRL PRESIDENT PRAISES AMATEUR RADIO EMERGENCY EFFORT ARRL President Jim Haynie, W5JBP, took advantage of a visit to New York City hams to express his gratitude for the overall Amateur Radio volunteer effort in the wake of the terrorist attacks September 11. "On behalf of the 680,000 ham operators in the US, thank you for doing such a fine job," he said during a September 21 visit with Amateur Radio Emergency Service volunteers at the heart of the communication effort. ARRL Hudson Division Director Frank Fallon, N2FF, accompanied Haynie on his visit. "From the very first day I have been proud of the way ARRL members in the Hudson Division responded in overwhelming numbers," Fallon said. "So many responded that many, unfortunately, were turned away." "It really has been our finest hour!" Fallon continued. "It has made us all very proud to be Amateur Radio operators." John MacInnes, a Red Cross communications officer based in Tucson, Arizona, expressed high praise for the Amateur Radio community and for ARRL. "We wouldn't be where we are today without the ham radio operators," he told Haynie. He said Haynie should be very proud of ARRL and asked him to relay his message of thanks throughout the amateur community. ==>THREE SCHOOLS ENJOY ISS INTERVIEWS Students at schools in Florida and Virginia got to talk with International Space Station Expedition 3 Crew Commander Frank Culbertson, KD5OPQ, this month. The contacts were arranged as part of the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station program. On September 14, 15 youngsters and their teacher at Altamonte Elementary School in Altamonte Springs, Florida, questioned Culbertson about life in space and how he and his crew are coping. Given that the contact was just a few days after the World Trade Center and Pentagon terrorist attacks, Culbertson told pupils that, for a change, he and the crew wished they had TV aboard. "This is the only week that I have been up here that I wish I could have watched TV, because of all the things that are happening down there which obviously touch all of us very deeply," he said. Culbertson also referred to attacks during a September 19 ARISS QSO with students at Western Albemarle High School in Crozet, Virginia. Culbertson said the crew members heard about the World Trade Center and Pentagon attacks from a doctor on Earth while they were involved in a medical conference. "Obviously it was quite a shock, and it took a while to get me the details," he said. "Of course, it was hard to believe, at first." On the lighter side, when asked by another high schooler about how the ISS smells, Culbertson replied, "We think it smells pretty good, but I bet you'll have to ask the next crew what they think when they get here." Early on the morning of September 25, Culbertson was quizzed by 13 first and second graders at Ladysmith Primary School in Ruther Glenn, Virginia. Among other things, the pupils there wanted to know what crew members did with their dirty clothes, how they got rid of garbage (both are burned up in Progress rockets sent zooming into Earth's atmosphere) and how they washed dishes (they don't use dishes). "It was a tremendously positive experience," said Jim Whitaker, KQ4RH, who helped organize the Ladysmith contact and whose wife, Carolyn, KF4RXJ, is a kindergarten teacher at the school. "Frank Culbertson was wonderful! You can tell he understands children and wanted to make this special for the kids." Altamonte teacher Cricket Scheer, KG4EGW, called her school's QSO "an experience of a lifetime, and a happy, positive one during a very frightening time." For more information on the ARISS program, visit the ARISS Web site <http://ariss.gsfc.nasa.gov> ==>SOLAR FLARE ACTIVITY POSTPONES KODIAK STAR LAUNCH Solar flare activity continued this week to postpone the Kodiak Star launch from Alaska. An Athena I launch vehicle will carry three Amateur Radio payloads, including the APRS-equipped PCSat, built by midshipmen from the US Naval Academy. The midshipmen worked under the guidance of Academy Senior Project Engineer Bob Bruninga, WB4APR--the recognized "father of APRS"--who's in Alaska for the big event. Word this week was that the launch would not happen before Saturday, September 29. A severe X-class flare and a high-velocity earthbound coronal mass ejection--or CME--were observed at 1038 UTC on September 24. The solar event, said to be the second largest in the 30 years, hurled slower-moving particles toward Earth, driving proton flux levels well above those allowable for a safe launch and keeping the rocket on the ground. The CME also triggered geomagnetic storms and spectacular auroral displays in northern latitudes. High levels of charged particles can affect the reliability of the launch vehicle's guidance system. The launch will be the first orbital shot from the Kodiak launch complex in Alaska. In addition to PCSsat, the Athena I launcher will carry the Starshine 3 and Sapphire payloads. PCsat is a 1200-baud APRS digipeater designed for use by amateurs using hand-held transceivers or mobiles. It will operate on 145.825 MHz. Starshine3 is a "disco" mirror ball with AX.25 9600 baud telemetry on 145.825. Sapphire has 1200-baud AX.25 telemetry and a voice replay on 437.1 MHz. Starshine 3's "disco" ball will be visible to the eye and give earthbound students the opportunity to participate in its primary mission of satellite tracking. The Kodiak Star initially was scheduled to launch in late August. The launch was postponed previously as a result of air travel problems caused by the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. For more information, visit the PCSat Web site, <http://web.usna.navy.mil/~bruninga/pcsat.html>. For more information on Sapphire, visit the Stanford University Space Systems Development Laboratories Web site, <http://ssdl.stanford.edu/aa/projects/squirt1/sapphire_overview.html>. The Starshine Web site is <http://www.azinet.com/starshine/> ==>FCC STAFF MEMBER STEVE LINN, N4CAK, SK The FCC and Amateur Radio communities are mourning the loss of FCC staff member Steve Linn, N4CAK, of Lower Allen Township, Pennsylvania. Linn, 50, and his wife, Lesley Ellen Nearman, 44, died September 21 as a result of an automobile accident in Maryland. The couple's two children, ages 9 and 12, survived the wreck. ARRL President Jim Haynie, W5JBP, said he was deeply saddened by the news. "Steve had not only been a valued employee at the FCC but also a good friend to the Amateur Radio community," he said. "Having just visited with Steve a few days ago in Washington, I will remember his jovial spirit and dedication to the success of ham radio. Our prayers will be with their children, Steve and Lesley's families and all the employees of the FCC who will long feel this great loss." Linn was among the FCC staff members who turned out September 18 for the ARRL "Amateur Radio Demo and Education Day" at FCC Headquarters. At the time of the fatal mishap, Linn and his family were on their way to the Virginia Beach Hamfest where he and Haynie were scheduled to do a forum presentation together. FCC Special Counsel for Amateur Radio Enforcement Riley Hollingsworth said Linn was well-liked by the FCC staff members and contractors he worked with at the FCC's Gettysburg office. "He was a very, very nice guy, a good engineer and he had common sense," Hollingsworth said. "He knew the value of Amateur Radio and saw the big picture." Hollingsworth said that the Enforcement Bureau was increasingly relying on Linn for Land Mobile and Amateur licensing and technical matters. "We will miss him very much," he added. An ham since the 1980s and an ARRL member, Linn was deputy chief of the Licensing and Technical Analysis Branch for private wireless within the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau. He had worked for the FCC for about 25 years. His supervisor, Mary Shultz, said called Linn's death "a major shock" to the branch. "He'll be difficult to replace as an employee," she told ARRL, "but impossible to replace as a friend." Linn frequently served as a source of information on the Universal Licensing System and the Commission Registration System, CORES. He spoke about ULS during the 2000 Dayton Hamvention FCC Forum. He also was a presenter at local hamfests. Services for the couple were held September 24. ==>MICHIGAN HAM GRANTED SHORT-TERM RENEWAL, UPGRADE The FCC has acted on longstanding renewal and upgrade applications from a Michigan ham whose operation had come under Commission scrutiny. The FCC this month renewed the license of Allen J. Stap Sr, N8OKU, of Gobles for a two-year term, provided he follows FCC rules. It also granted his application to upgrade to General. Stap's upgrade was held in abeyance for more than a year while the FCC evaluated his written responses and on-the-air behavior following earlier sanctions. A letter from FCC Special Counsel for Amateur Radio Enforcement Riley Hollingsworth noted that Stap had entered a plea of no contest in May 1997 to an alleged violation of a Michigan statute that makes it a misdemeanor to "prevent, interfere, obstruct or impede a public safety radio communication." Stap was accused of intentionally interfering with a RACES station engaged in test operations in support of civil defense communications, Hollingsworth said. Stap served a "delayed" sentence of nine months after agreeing not to operate on 2 meters and to surrender his radio equipment to the police. After nine months, the restrictions against Stap were lifted and the charge dismissed. Subsequently, Stap was notified by the FCC to answer to complaints alleging that he had interfered with with Kalamazoo repeaters. Stap received a warning letter in February 2000. Stap's license came up for renewal in May. Hollingsworth said that since the FCC had received no complaints about Stap since last year, it would grant the two-year renewal. At the same time, the FCC acted favorably on Stap's application to General class. Hollingsworth told Stap that he may routinely renew his Amateur Radio license if he follows the rules during his current two-year term. But he warned that valid complaints of rules violations could lead to a license revocation hearing. ==>FORMER MIDWEST DIVISION VICE DIRECTOR CHUCK MILLER, WA0KUH, SK Former ARRL Midwest Division Vice Director Lyndell "Chuck" Miller, WA0KUH, of Kansas City, Missouri, died September 24 after a lengthy illness. He was 75 and had been a ham for nearly 40 years. An ARRL Life Member, Miller served as Midwest Division Vice Director from January 1988 to December 1991 and was a founder and life member of the PHD Amateur Radio Club. "Chuck was the main driving force behind the Club," said former Kansas Section Manager, Bob Summers, K0BXF. "Its success and the PHD hamfest were due to his undying effort." Larry Staples, W0AIB, called Miller "truly a remarkable man and a credit to the Amateur Radio Service." Miller also helped establish the PHD Scholarship Award <http://www.arrl.org/arrlf/scholgen.html>. The program awards $1000 annually to a licensee living in the ARRL Midwest Division (Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska), who is either enrolled in a course of study of journalism, computer science or electronic engineering, or is the child of deceased radio amateur. Survivors include Miller's wife, Mary Carolyn, and two daughters. Services were September 27. Memorial contributions are invited to the PHD Scholarship Fund <http://www.arrl.org/arrlf/contribs.html#memorial> c/o ARRL, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111. ==>SOLAR UPDATE Solar sage Tad Cook, K7VVV, Seattle, Washington, reports: This has been an incredible week for solar activity. The solar flux hit a new high for this sunspot cycle when it rose to 282.6 on Wednesday. The previous high solar flux was 273.5 on March 28, 2001, and before that was 262 on May 17, 2000. The high activity at the end of March and during this week would seem to shift the peak of the solar cycle forward, but that reading is always based on a smoothed running average and is determined long after the peak. But the high activity this week was not isolated. Trends have been solidly higher for two months. Average daily solar flux rose dramatically this week from last by nearly 45 points. Average daily sunspot numbers were up almost 90 points! With all the new sunspots and associated energy radiating from the sun, there were some geomagnetic upsets also. The worst days were Sunday and Wednesday, when the planetary A index was 27 and 24. Sunday had a rapid rise in geomagnetic indices, starting out the UTC day with the planetary K index at zero, then going to five only six hours later. The most recent projection shows geomagnetic indices stabilizing briefly with a planetary A index of 10 on Friday, then rising to 15 on Saturday and 18 on Sunday. Projected solar flux is 265 for Friday and 260 for both Saturday and Sunday. Since we have just passed the autumnal equinox, the fall DX season is in full effect. Now is a great time to enjoy the best propagation in years on 10 and 12 meters. Sunspot numbers for September 20 through 26 were 276, 258, 293, 275, 315, 320 and 278, with a mean of 287.9. The 10.7-cm flux was 226.8, 238.6, 255.2, 258.5, 279.3, 275.1 and 282.6, with a mean of 259.4. Estimated planetary A indices were 5, 5, 10, 27, 6, 18 and 24, with a mean of 13.6. __________________________________ ==>IN BRIEF: * This weekend on the radio: The CQ WW RTTY Contest, and the Louisiana, Texas and Alabama QSO parties are September 29-30 weekend. See the ARRL Contest Branch page, http://www.arrl.org/contests/ and http://www.hornucopia.com/contestcal/weeklycont.html for more info. * Correction: An amateur team consisting of members of the Vienna Wireless Society, the Arlington County Amateur Radio Club and other amateurs provided communication and technical support to the American Red Cross relief effort at the Pentagon site. An report in The ARRL Letter, Vol 20, No 38 (9/21/01) incorrectly identified one of the primary clubs involved with this effort. * Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Class Level II openings remain: A few seats remain for the September on-line class Level II (Intermediate) Emergency Communications Course (EC-002). This class begins the week of October 1. Taking the Level I course first is not mandatory. If you want to learn more about emergency communications and net procedures, Level II offers new tools for your local use. Visit the ARRL Certification and Continuing Education Registration Page <https://www.arrl.org/forms/cce> to take advantage of this continuing education opportunity. Answers to most questions are on the ARRL Certification and Continuing Education home page <http://www.arrl.org/cce> and the C-CE links at the right, including the CCE Syllabus, FAQs, Classroom Courses, and much more. To learn more--or if you have problems registering--contact ARRL Certification and Continuing Education Coordinator Dan Miller, K3UFG, firstname.lastname@example.org. * Continuing Legal Education Seminar set for Pacificon 2001: ARRL Volunteer Counsel Harry Styron, K6HS, and Phil Kane, K2ASP, will conduct Pacificon's annual Continuing Legal Education Seminar on October 19 in Concord, California. The session will be held at the Sheraton Concord (Airport) Hotel from 9 AM until noon. The $75 cost of the seminar for includes a copy of Antenna Zoning for the Radio Amateur by Fred Hopengarten, K1VR, a $49.95 value. The seminar covers in-depth state and local antenna regulation with the focus on amateur issues and other legal topics affecting Amateur Radio. Registration is exclusively at the seminar site, and three hours of MCLE credit is available to California attorneys. More information on Pacificon 2001 is available on the Pacificon Web site, <http://www.pacificon.org>. * Two more amateurs reported lost at World Trade Center: ARRL has learned that two more amateurs were lost and presumed dead in the World Trade Center attack September 11. Gerard J. "Rod" Coppola, KA2KET, was a transmitter engineer for WNET, channel 13. He was 46 and lived in New York City. Winston A. Grant, KA2DRF, was a computer technician with Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield. He was 59 and lived in West Hempstead, New York. A fund has been established to assist the families of broadcast engineers. Send checks made out to "Ennes Educational Foundation Trust" to The Society of Broadcast Engineers Inc, 9247 N Meridian St, Suite 305, Indianapolis, IN 46260, ATTN: Broadcast Engineer Relief Fund.--some information courtesy of Paul Sanchez/Emmis Broadcasting * Maryland tornado prompts RACES activation: Prince George's County Maryland Emergency Coordinator and RACES Radio Officer Jim Cross, WI3N, reports that the Prince George's County Emergency Operations Center was activated September 24 in response to an F3 to F4 tornado in the northern part of the county. The tornado, which arrived at the height of rush hour, damaged buildings and vehicles on the campus of the University of Maryland and caused two deaths. In addition utility poles and trees were knocked down on Route 1 in Beltsville, and the storm damaged Laurel High School and approximately 50 homes in the Laurel area. Traffic was halted in several areas. The EOC activated RACES, and a net was established at 6:35 PM Eastern Time on the Green Mountain Repeater Association 146.61 MHz repeater. The GMRA's 146.88 repeater also was used. Members checked in to the 146.61 repeater and stood by. Other RACES members were able to drive through neighborhoods and report damage to net control at the EOC. "Fortunately the GMRA installed battery backup for its repeaters about a year ago. The power was out to about 11,000 homes including the 146.61 repeater," Cross said. The 147.225 repeater was activated subsequently, and trustee (and Montgomery County Deputy RACES Radio Officer) John Creel, WB3GXW, stood by as it was used to relay traffic between the EOC and a Red Cross shelter in Laurel. Operations were secured at 11:35 PM Eastern Time. Deputy RACES Radio Officer HD Scott, K3HDM, handled net control duties during the crisis. * Ham-sailor pins down arrival in US: David Clark, KB6TAM, who's trying to be the oldest person to sail solo around the world, has set Pearl Harbor Day, December 7, as his new "confirmed" date of arrival in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Clark currently is in Trinidad, sitting out the Atlantic hurricane season. Clark told his wife, Lynda, that he was saddened by the September 11 terrorist attacks. "He has been following the news in Trinidad via TV," she said. "It makes him homesick to be back in the USA where he can be close to his family, and he is very anxious to get under way again." Clark will leave Trinidad the first week in November. He plans to complete his trip at the Marriott Marina on 17th Street Causeway, Fort Lauderdale. A gala celebration will ensue. * Southeastern Vice Director wins 2001 CHAMP Award: ARRL Southeastern Division Vice Director Evelyn Gauzens, W4WYR, is the recipient of the 2001 Citizens' Ham Mobile-Marine Patrol (CHAMP) Award. Gauzens is cofounder of the Tropical Hamboree and a prominent community activist. The annual award is presented to an Amateur Radio operator for an exemplary act of service to the community during the preceding year, or to an amateur who has demonstrated years of distinguished service to both Amateur Radio and the community. The CHAMP Award will be presented October 5. * Transpacific LF "insurance test" is a success: A second claim has been made of Amateur Radio LF reception across the Pacific. Organizer of the transpacific tests Bob Vernall, ZL2CA, reports that on September 22, ZL6QH, ZL3PN, ZL3JE, ZL4OL, ZL4MD and AX2TAR (VK7ZAL) transmitted test signals in the 165-190 kHz band. "Various DX listeners had prior knowledge of the schedule of individual test frequency and coding used by each station," Vernall reports. As happened in the initial successful listening test on June 30, Steve McDonald, VE7SL, of British Columbia, Canada, managed to receive signals from ZL6QH sometime before dawn. "This time VE7SL obtained an ARGO capture of both frequencies of the DFCW [dual-frequency CW] transmission," Vernall said. "The path length is estimated to be 11,709 km." The uniquely coded transmission consisted of repetitive sending of the letter "Q" sent using dual-frequency CW, with all elements being of 120 seconds duration. * Wisconsin PRB-1 bill clears committee: Wisconsin's Amateur Radio antenna (PRB-1) bill AB-368 this week was voted out of committee for Assembly floor action. AB-368 will be taken up in full session on October 2, according to Cari Lee, aide to Rep Luther Olsen, who has taken charge of AB-368 in the Assembly following the resignation of Rep Joan Wade, the bill's original sponsor.--Jim Romelfanger, K9ZZ * University of Texas Amateur Radio Club to mark 80 years with special event: The University of Texas Amateur Radio Club, N5XU, will operate special event station K5T from September 29 to October 7, to celebrate its 80th year as an Amateur Radio club. Experimental/Amateur station 5XU was first licensed in 1921 and made its first transmissions from the university on October 1 of that year. K5T will also be active as a multi-operator station in the Texas QSO Party, September 29-30. Visit the N5XU web site, <http://n5xu.ae.utexas.edu/80years/>. For information on the Texas QSO Party, see <http://www.k5vuu.com/tqp/> * VHF radio designer Ed Clegg, W8LOY, SK: Edward T "Ed" Clegg, W8LOY, of Cincinnati, Ohio, died September 7. He was 80. An ARRL member and a New Jersey native, Clegg was founder of Clegg Communications Corporation, one of the early and popular amateur VHF radio manufacturers. Among his designs were the Clegg Zeuss transmitter and companion Interceptor receiver, the FM 27-28 transceivers, the Clegg 99er 6-meter rig and the AV-44 All Bander receiving converter. In 1964, Clegg authored an article on speech clipping for QST. Clegg retired to Ohio in the early 1990s. His wife, Mavis, is among his survivors. * Vote on QST Cover Plaque Award: The winner of the QST Cover Plaque Award for September was Frank Gentges, K0BRA, for his article "The AMRAD Active LF Antenna." Congratulations, Frank! The winner of the QST Cover Plaque award--given to the author of the best article in each issue--is determined by a vote of ARRL members. Voting takes place each month on the Cover Plaque Poll Web page, <http://www.arrl.org/members-only/qstvote.html>. As soon as your copy arrives, cast a ballot for your favorite article in the October issue of QST. Voting ends October 15. =========================================================== 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 The ARRL Letter offers a weekly e-mail digest of essential news of interest to active amateurs. The ARRL Letter strives to be timely, accurate, concise, and readable. Visit ARRLWeb at http://www.arrl.org for the latest news, updated as it happens. The ARRLWeb Extra at http://www.arrl.org/members-only/extra offers ARRL members access to informative features and columns. Material from The ARRL Letter may be republished or reproduced in whole or in part in any form without additional permission. 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