*************** The ARRL Letter Vol. 24, No. 44 November 11, 2005 *************** IN THIS EDITION: * +Indiana, Kentucky hams respond to killer tornado * +White House taps two for FCC seats * +ISS commander logs 200th ARISS school contact * +ARRL Holiday Toy Drive TV announcement available * +Dedicated LFers ply the nether spectrum * +It's Frequency Measuring Test time again! * Solar Update * IN BRIEF: This weekend on the radio ARRL Certification and Continuing Education course registration +ARRL "Public Service Stories" page proves popular +Hurricane volunteers to be honored in QST Hurricane Wilma ARES/RACES Southern Florida activation praised Improved search capability debuts on ARRL Web site ARRL represented at USA Freedom Corps briefing Foundation for Amateur Radio announces scholarships SSETI Express is now OSCAR 53 George Steber, WB9LVI, wins October QST Cover Plaque Award Darrell L. Thomas, N7KOR, SK DXCC Desk accredits operations +Available on ARRL Audio News <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/> =========================================================== ==>Delivery problems (ARRL member direct delivery only!): firstname.lastname@example.org ==>Editorial questions or comments: Rick Lindquist, N1RL, email@example.com =========================================================== ==>INDIANA TORNADO "LIKE A THIEF IN THE NIGHT," HAM RADIO VOLUNTEER SAYS Amateur Radio volunteers continue to assist relief and recovery efforts in the wake of a November 6 tornado that left 22 people dead and hundreds injured. The twister, with winds of up to 200 MPH, originated within a line of thunderstorms that struck during the early morning hours. It cut a more than 40-mile swath through part of Kentucky and extreme southwestern Indiana, wiping out a section of a trailer park in Vanderburgh County where 18 of the fatalities occurred. "It was like a thief in the night, striking and having no mercy for anyone or anything in its path," said Amateur Radio volunteer and police officer Bob Pointer, N9XAW. For the first couple of days after the tornado, Amateur Radio assisted Red Cross emergency response vehicles (ERVs) in the field to communicate with their headquarters, a new facility in Evansville where the communication system was not yet up and running. At week's end, Pointer was expecting ham radio support for Red Cross recovery and feeding operations to pick up again. "We'll have to set up units at a warehouse and a couple of outlying cities," he told ARRL. During most of the week, Amateur Radio volunteers have been supporting relief activities of The Salvation Army. The need was to set up communication between mobile field and canteen units and The Salvation Army headquarters in Evansville. "The Salvation Army is very, very pleased with the ham radio service," Pointer said. "We have units in areas where the cell phones cannot function or they're so busy, it's hard to get a line." Amateur Radio has been able to get messages through when they otherwise wouldn't, Pointer added, "and it's helping make things go much more smoothly." Calls came from prospective volunteers as far away as New York. "It was truly a rewarding feeling," Pointer said. "Thanks to the ARRL for putting out the call so quickly." Local hams calling in on the repeater to offer assistance soon found themselves assigned to field stations. "This was a good exercise in trying out the grab-it-and-go kits," Pointer said. Pointer says that within hours of setting up, ARRL Section Manager Jim Sellers, K9ZBM, called to offer assistance and got the ball rolling. ARRL Indiana Section Emergency Coordinator David Pifer, N9YNF, contacted ARRL Headquarters to spread the word. "ARRL Headquarters even called to check on us," Pointer said. "You see, your membership is more than a magazine a month. It is hams from all over the world ready to support you." Three Salvation Army mobile kitchens and three field units have been deployed in Vanderburgh and Warrick counties. The daily routine involves moving food from a warehouse to mobile kitchens to feed tornado victims as well as the hundreds of volunteers deployed in several locations across a wide area. Ham radio volunteers have been handling requests for supplies, messages to workers and notices to staff volunteers. Pointer said he expected the Amateur Radio tornado relief support operation to continue into early next week. "I am privileged to work with a great bunch of people down here," Pointer concluded. Kentucky SEC Ron Dodson, KA4MAP, says SKYWARN was active as the storms moved in. "I had our Amateur Radio net going with National Weather Service (NWS) Louisville and monitored those in the counties west of me as it approached," he told ARRL. SKYWARN nets were active in Daviess and Hancock counties. Breckinridge, Grayson and Meade counties west of Louisville were active with the linked Wide Area Repeaters Net (WARN), Dodson said. NWS Louisville's amateur station WX4NWS was on the air for three hours as the storms moved across counties on both sides of the Ohio River. ==>WHITE HOUSE NOMINATES NEW FCC COMMISSIONER, COPPS TAPPED FOR NEW TERM President George W. Bush has nominated Deborah T. Tate of Tennessee, a Republican, to serve out the remainder of the term of former FCC Chairman Michael K. Powell, which expires June 30, 2007. Powell announced his resignation one day into President Bush's second term, and he departed the FCC last March. Under FCC Chairman Kevin J. Martin, a Republican who succeeded Powell, the FCC has been operating with four members ever since. The White House this week also reappointed Commissioner Michael J. Copps, a Democrat, for a new five-year term, starting last July 1. Both appointments are subject to US Senate confirmation. "If confirmed, Debi Tate will be an excellent addition to the Commission," said Martin. "She has a distinguished career in state government, and she has worked closely with the Commission in her role as Director of the Tennessee Regulatory Authority." Martin said he also looked forward to continuing to work closely with Copps, who has served on the FCC the past four years. "I respect his insight and thoughtfulness on issues before the Commission," Martin added. Since Martin, a member during the Powell regime, took over the chairmanship, the political balance on the Commission has been split evenly between two Republicans and two Democrats. Members of a president's political party hold a majority on the FCC. Another FCC opening is looming. Republican Kathleen Q. Abernathy is obliged to step down when the current session of the US Senate expires, probably later this year. She's been on the FCC since 2001. Copps said he was "deeply honored" to be reappointed. "I look forward to working with Congress, the Administration, the Chairman of the FCC and my fellow Commissioners to help bring the best, most accessible, and cost-effective communications system in the world to all of our people," Copps said in a statement. Jonathan Adelstein is the other Democrat on the Commission. ==>NEARLY EVERY DAY IS "CASUAL FRIDAY" ABOARD ISS, JAPAN YOUNGSTERS LEARN ISS Expedition 12 Commander Bill McArthur, KC5ACR, completed the 200th Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) school group QSO November 3. ARISS arranged the direct VHF QSO between 8J4ISS on behalf of the Kawachi Citizen's Committee for Youths in Japan and NA1SS onboard the ISS. McArthur told the participating youngsters that the climate aboard the ISS permits the crew to dress lightly. "It is very, very comfortable," McArthur said. "Normally we just wear short pants and short-sleeve shirts and socks." And, when those clothes get dirty, he said in response to another youngster's question, the crew simply throws them out and puts on fresh clothing. Some of the youngsters were curious about how well the ISS crew could spot landmarks on Earth from their perch 220 miles high in space. "We cannot see the Tokyo Tower with just our eyes," McArthur responded to one questioner, "but sometimes we can see such objects through a telephoto lens on a camera or with binoculars." He also told the kids that he had not yet seen the Great Wall of China from the ISS but "we have taken pictures of the Great Wall of China from space." McArthur and crewmate Valery Tokarev this week completed their mission's first spacewalk to install a new camera on the station's exterior. Onboard the ISS for a little more than a month, they'll return to Earth in April after 182 days in space, McArthur told the youngsters. McArthur was able to answer 19 of the youngsters' questions during the nearly 10-minute contact. An audience of more than 100 parents and relatives and representatives from five TV stations--including national network NHK--and three newspapers was on hand for the occasion. ARISS <http://www.rac.ca/ariss> is an international educational outreach with US participation by ARRL, AMSAT and NASA. ==>HOLIDAY TOY DRIVE VIDEO ANNOUNCEMENTS NOW AVAILABLE A video public service announcement (PSA) now is available to promote the ARRL/The Salvation Army 2005 Holiday Toy Drive. Offered in three formats, these clips feature 2005 Holiday Toy Drive National Chairperson and country music artist Patty Loveless, KD4WUJ. "Patty caught the feeling of the Toy Drive perfectly in the video," said ARRL Media and Public Relations Manager Allen Pitts, W1AGP, the ARRL Headquarters point person for the drive. "She expresses her concern, compassion and a deep pride in being an Amateur Radio operator." Pitts says Loveless and producer Richard Lubash, N1VXW, joined forces to produce the high-quality public service video for the drive. PSA versions are available for television broadcasters as well as for Web, club and meeting presentations. There's a 3 MB MP4 file, a 9 MB .wmv file and a 480 MB .mov file (for TV broadcasters). Visit <http://www.hello-radio.org/> to download. The goal of the ARRL/The Salvation Army 2005 Holiday Toy Drive is to brighten the holidays for youngsters displaced or left homeless by hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Between now and December 10, radio amateurs from all across the US will be collecting new unwrapped toys for boys and girls aged 1 to 14 and sending them with a QSL card (or a card bearing their call sign) to: ARRL Toy Drive/The Salvation Army, 1775 Moriah Woods Blvd--Suite 12, Memphis, TN 38117-7125. Gifts already have begun to show up in Memphis from all over the US. ARRL invites its members to send cash donations, if they prefer, to: ARRL Toy Drive, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111. The League is asking all radio amateurs to make the holiday season a little bit brighter for kids affected by hurricanes Katrina and Rita. "The hams who were in the Gulf Coast returned with stories of devastated families and children," Pitts noted. "Perhaps we cannot save the whole world, but as the holiday season gets closer, we are showing the best traits of a long history of service to others when we remember those children. Sending a new toy is a minor inconvenience and expense to most of us, but to the child on the other end it can mean everything." ==>LF EXPERIMENTATION BY RADIO AMATEURS CONTINUES QUIETLY Experimentation by radio amateurs in the nether regions of the radio spectrum continues quietly and largely unnoticed outside of the LF community. Since the FCC turned down the ARRL's 1998 petition to create an Amateur Radio "sliver band" in the vicinity of 136 kHz, some US amateur licensees have obtained FCC Part 5 Experimental licenses to research the possibilities of LF, including transatlantic and transpacific propagation. A few hams in Canada have obtained special permission from Industry Canada to operate on LF using Amateur Radio call signs. The latest noteworthy accomplishment was a 137 kHz QSO <http://www.w1tag.com/XDWQSO.htm> October 29 between US Experimental licensees Laurence Howell, KL1X--operating as WD2XDW--and John Andrews, W1TAG--operating as WD2XES. "This is the second two-way between US Experimental licensees in that frequency range, the first being a 25-mile CW contact between K2ORS/WD2XGJ and myself last year," said Andrews. The QSO between Andrews, in Massachusetts, and Howell, in Oklahoma, spanned some 1340 miles. In 2001, Larry Kayser, VA3LK (SK), and Laurie Mayhead, G3AQC, received a special Transatlantic Challenge plaque for completing the first two-way Amateur Radio LF contact between the UK and Canada earlier that year. Another plaque went to Dave Bowman, G0MRF, John Currie, VE1ZJ, and Jack Leahy, VE1ZZ, for completing a crossband (HF/LF) transatlantic QSO in 2000. A year ago, New Zealand LFer Mike McAlevey, ZL4OL, copied Howell's WD2XDW 137 kHz carrier "bursts" over a path of more than 13,000 km (8000 miles), while Jim Moritz, M0BMU, copied LF signals from WD2XDW, Andrews' WD2XES and Joe Craig, VO1NA, in Newfoundland. Craig and Alan Melia, G3NYK, described their LF exploits and experiences in "The Transatlantic on 2200 Meters," in July 2005 QST <http://www.arrl.org/qst/2005/07/craig.pdf>. More recently, the first confirmed transpacific reception of Canadian Amateur Radio LF signals occurred October 4 when the very slow speed (QRSS) CW signals of VA7LF were heard by ZM2E in New Zealand. "Signals from the ZM2E club station were heard in Canada as well, but propagation was not of sufficient duration to enable a QSO to be completed," said Steve McDonald, VE7SL, one of the VA7LF operators. ZM2E and UA0LE hold the current Amateur Radio two-way LF world record at a distance of 10,311 km (6393 mi). The distance between VA7LF and ZM2E is approximately 11,700 km (7254 mi). LFers typically use very low data rates and process the incoming sound-card audio in real time using DSP software like WOLF or ARGO. During the October 29 contact, which took more than two hours to complete, Andrews was running 200 W output into a large, tree-supported vertical loop. Howell was running 1 kW into a tree-supported vertical loop. Experimentation under FCC Part 15 rules in the vicinity of 160 to 190 kHz has been going on for years by radio amateurs and non-amateurs alike. Amateur Radio licensees in Europe and elsewhere have an allocation at 135.7 to 137.8 kHz, and most Amateur Radio experimentation takes place in this band. ==>ARRL 2005 FREQUENCY MEASURING TEST SET FOR NOVEMBER 17 UTC Returning to the airwaves November 17 at 0245 UTC (Wednesday, November 16 in US time zones), the 2005 ARRL Frequency Measuring Test (FMT) once again will call on participants to measure the frequency of an audio tone modulating the carrier. "Measuring the tone frequency, as opposed to that of the carrier, reinforces the understanding of the relationship between carrier frequency and the actual components of a transmitted signal," Engineer and ARRL Contributing Editor Ward Silver, N0AX, says in "Tune In the 2005 Frequency Measuring Test," in November QST (p 54), www.arrl.org/w1aw/fmt/2005/05fmtsilver.pdf. "With the carrier largely suppressed for SSB signals, only the sideband components remain. A single modulating tone results in a single transmitted component." But, Silver notes, the frequency of the absent carrier is what the operator sees on the radio's display. The FMT signals will emanate from Maxim Memorial Station W1AW this year on 160, 80 and 40 meters. The 20-meter transmission has been dropped for 2005 because of the generally poor conditions during evening hours on that band. The frequencies will be 1855, 3990 and 7290 kHz, and all transmissions will be on lower sideband (LSB). The FMT will replace the W1AW phone bulletin normally transmitted at 0245 UTC on November 17 (November 16 in US time zones). Participants may utilize either direct or indirect techniques to determine the tone frequency. "Direct measurements assume a carrier frequency and measure the audio tone frequency directly," Silver explains. "Indirect measurements obtain the transmitted frequency of the tone component at RF, then compute the difference between the published carrier frequency and measured frequency." Silver advises that since the W1AW exciters are independent units and not fed with a single local oscillator, participants can expect the measured tone frequency to differ slightly on each band. The test itself will consist of three 60-second tone transmissions on each band, followed by a station identification. The whole test will run for about 15 minutes and will end with a station ID. Submitted reports should include the participant's name, call sign and location plus the time of reception and the tone frequency. Those using an indirect measurement method should show how they calculated the tone frequency. Participants may submit separate reports for each band. A Certificate of Participation is available to all entrants. Those coming closest to the measured frequency as determined by the ARRL Laboratory will be listed in the test report and will also receive special recognition on their certificate. Entries must be received via e-mail <fmt@ arrl.org> or postmarked by December 16, 2005. Send hard-copy entries to W1AW/FMT, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111. ==>SOLAR UPDATE Solar sage Tad "Tequila Sunrise" Cook, K7RA, Seattle, Washington, reports: We may be in another period of no sunspots. From October 24-28 there was a sunspot count of zero on each day. Three days at the beginning of the month were no-sunspot days, and four months ago there were five days--July 18-22--with no spots. A year from now expect to see longer periods of zero sunspot readings--possibly up to several weeks--based on what the periods between previous sunspot cycles were like. Geomagnetic conditions should be fairly active today. Predicted planetary A index for Friday through Monday, November 11-14, is 15, 8, 5 and 5. The Prague Geophysical Institute predicts unsettled to active conditions on November 11 and 12, unsettled conditions on November 13, quiet to unsettled on November 14 and 15, and quiet conditions November 16-17. Sunspot numbers for November 3 through 9 were 24, 22, 18, 34, 31, 38 and 13, with a mean of 25.7. 10.7 cm flux was 76.8, 77.4, 79.3, 81.7, 79.4, 79.4, and 78.1, with a mean of 78.9. Estimated planetary A indices were 24, 20, 10, 10, 6, 3 and 3, with a mean of 10.9. Estimated mid-latitude A indices were 19, 16, 10, 12, 6, 2 and 1, with a mean of 9.4. __________________________________ ==>IN BRIEF: * This weekend on the radio: The WAE DX Contest (RTTY), the JIDX Phone Contest, the SARL Field Day Contest, the OK/OM DX Contest (CW), the CQ-WE Contest are the weekend of November 12-13. JUST AHEAD: The ARRL November Sweepstakes (SSB), the NA Collegiate ARC Championship (SSB), the LZ DX Contest, the EUCW Fraternizing CW QSO Party, the All Austrian 160-Meter Contest and the RSGB Second 1.8 MHz Contest (CW) are the weekend of November 19-20. The CQ World Wide DX Contest (CW) is the weekend of November 26-27. See the ARRL Contest Branch page <http://www.arrl.org/contests/> and the WA7BNM Contest Calendar <http://www.hornucopia.com/contestcal/index.html> for more info. * ARRL Certification and Continuing Education course registration: Registration remains open through Sunday, November 20, for these ARRL Certification and Continuing Education (CCE). Program on-line courses: Emergency Communication Level 1 (EC-001) Antenna Design and Construction (EC-009), Technician Licensing (EC-010), Radio Frequency Interference (EC-006), Digital Electronics (EC-013) and Analog Electronics (EC-012). Classes begin Friday, December 2. To learn more, visit the CCE Course Listing page <http://www.arrl.org/cce/courses.html> or contact the CCE Department <firstname.lastname@example.org>. * ARRL "Public Service Stories" page proves popular: Amateur Radio volunteers have posted dozens of reports on the ARRL's new "Public Service Stories" page <http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/PublicServiceStories/>. The League thanks those who have taken the time to share their experiences. Additional stories are welcome! At present, the site is open to reports from radio amateurs who provided public service in the aftermath of hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma and want to tell the world about their public service contributions. The Public Service Stories page accepts both text and photos for all to see. Submissions from ARRL members who are logged onto the League's Web site will be published immediately. Others' submissions will be reviewed before posting. * Hurricane volunteers to be honored in QST: Amateurs who provided communication support during recovery efforts for hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma will be honored with a special listing, including names and call signs, in the February issue of QST. To be eligible for the list, complete the ARRL Hurricane Relief Volunteer Service Report on the ARRL Web site <http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/agencies/vol-report.html>. The reporting deadline for the QST list is December 9. You do not have to be an ARRL or ARES member to be included in the list. * Hurricane Wilma ARES/RACES Southern Florida activation praised: ARRL Southern Florida Section Emergency Coordinator Jeff Beals, WA4AW, reports that all Amateur Radio support in the Southern Florida Section in response to Hurricane Wilma secured Monday, October 31. All out-of-area operator assistance was released the next day. "Some shelters and feeding stations were still in operation through the week, and many affected areas are still without power and telephone service," he told ARRL November 4. Beals said officials at the Broward and Palm Beach county emergency operating centers (EOCs) reported that Amateur Radio assistance was invaluable in conducting their tactical operations. In addition to volunteering to supplement communication at the EOCs, ham radio volunteers also assisted at American Red Cross shelters for hurricane evacuees and at staging areas. * Improved search capability debuts on ARRL Web site: A new search engine now is active on the ARRL Web site, Webmaster Jon Bloom, KE3Z, <email@example.com> has announced. "The ARRL Web site's search capability has long been a weak spot of the site," he allowed. "To address that problem, we've replaced the site's search engine with an entirely new search page that uses a Google <http://www.google.com/> search appliance--a separate computer running Google's search system--that indexes and searches the ARRL Web site." Bloom says the change means that those using the "Search" box atop any page on the site not only will obtain more comprehensive and accurate results but will get them much faster than previously. "We hope our site users enjoy the new search capability, which was instituted largely at the request of numerous ARRL members," Bloom added. * ARRL represented at USA Freedom Corps briefing: ARRL Chief Development Officer Mary Hobart, K1MMH, represented the League October 14 at a USA Freedom Corps post-Katrina briefing in Washington, DC. She was among representatives of some 120 representatives of nonprofit organizations attending the White House gathering. Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of USA Freedom Corps Desiree Sayle, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson, White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card and Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) CEO David Eisner were among those who addressed the briefing, which focused on hurricane recovery and reconstruction. CNCS grants subsidized Amateur Radio emergency communications training for some 5500 completed courses as well as the League's "Ham Aid" program to assist Amateur Radio Gulf Coast hurricane volunteers with out-of-pocket expenses. Hobart said the team of Bush Administration representatives thanked nonprofits for their contributions and detailed plans to continue the Gulf Coast recovery effort, in which Amateur Radio volunteer involvement continues. "The ARRL was able to talk with CNCS leadership about future funding for Amateur Radio," Hobart added. * Foundation for Amateur Radio announces scholarships: The Foundation for Amateur Radio (FAR) plans to administer 54 scholarships for the 2006-2007 academic year to assist Amateur Radio licensees attending institutions of higher education full-time. A non-profit organization headquartered in Washington, DC, FAR is composed of more than 75 area Amateur Radio clubs. FAR fully funds three of these scholarships, 10 are funded with income from grants and FAR administers the remaining 41 without cost to the donors. Radio amateurs may compete for these awards if they plan to pursue a full-time course of studies beyond high school and are enrolled in or have been accepted for enrollment at an accredited university, college or technical school. The awards range from $500 to $2500 with preference given in some cases to residents of specified geographical areas or to those who are pursuing certain courses of study. Clubs, especially those in Delaware, Florida, Maryland, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and Wisconsin, are encouraged to announce these opportunities. For additional information and an application form, send a letter or QSL card postmarked prior to April 30, 2006, to FAR Scholarships, PO Box 831, Riverdale, MD 20738. FAR is an exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954. * SSETI Express is now OSCAR 53: AMSAT-NA has designated the now-problematic SSETI Express satellite as OSCAR 53--XO-53 for short. Launched October 27, the satellite, which carries an Amateur Radio package and deployed three ham radio cubesats, went silent after about five orbits. Based on telemetry received during its short period of operation, SSETI Express Project Manager Neil Melville has cited an apparent onboard power system anomaly. The spacecraft went into a "safe mode" due to an "undervoltage" condition caused by battery charging problems, Melville has said, adding that ground-based hardware tests confirm the possibility of a further failure mode of the specific component that would allow the batteries to charge and the spacecraft to resume operation. In thanking AMSAT's Bill Tynan, W3XO, and the AMSAT Board for notifying the project of the designation, Melville remained upbeat. "As you are no doubt aware XO-53, to use its new designation, has some significant problems right now," he said. "However, we remain vigilant and hopeful, perhaps it can be recovered." Graham Shirville, G3VZV, says analysis of the actual cause of SSETI Express's problems continues, and a full review will take place later this month. Shirville says a number of automated ground stations have been set up in Europe to listen for SSETI Express on 437.250 MHz. He also invites valid reception reports via e-mail from the Amateur Radio community, "and if you do hear it first we can promise you a bigger prize than just a special T-shirt!" he added. "We believe that there is a small but finite chance of recovery, so your efforts could be very worthwhile." * George Steber, WB9LVI, wins October QST Cover Plaque Award: The winner of the QST Cover Plaque Award for October is George R. Steber, WB9LVI, for his article "A Low Cost Automatic Impedance Bridge." Congratulations, George! The winner of the QST Cover Plaque award--given to the author or authors of the best article in each issue--is determined by a vote of ARRL members on the QST Cover Plaque Poll Web page <http://www.arrl.org/members-only/QSTvote.html>. Cast a ballot for your favorite article in the November issue by Wednesday, November 30. * Darrell L. Thomas, N7KOR, SK: Former Montana ARRL Section Manager Darrell Thomas, N7KOR, died October 16. He was 69. Thomas served as SM for 10 years, from 1993 until 2003, when he stepped down because of ill health. "Darrell was an effective SM and, despite his battle with cancer, was always the optimistic sort.," said ARRL Northwestern Division Director Greg Milnes, W7OZ. " He will be missed." Thomas was a member of the ARRL and of the Great Falls Area Amateur Radio Club. A retired fire chief for the Montana Air National Guard and the Great Falls International Airport, Thomas has also worked as a 911 dispatcher for the City of Great Falls. Survivors include his wife, Joanne, N7VTP, and a daughter and son. The family invites memorial donations to the Animal Foundation of Great Falls, PO Box 3426, Great Falls, MT 59403 or to the GFAARC Repeater Fund, PO Box 1763, Great Falls, MT 59403.--some information from the Great Falls Tribune * DXCC Desk accredits operations: The ARRL DXCC Desk has approved these operations for DXCC credit: 6O0JT, Somalia, September 30, 2004 through April 30, 2005; 5X1W, Uganda, August 3-12, 2005; DX0K, Spratly Islands, February 1-April 30, 2005. For more information, visit the DXCC Web page <http://www.arrl.org/awards/dxcc/>. "DXCC Frequently Asked Questions" can answer most questions about the DXCC program. ARRL DX bulletins are available on the W1AW DX Bulletins page <http://www.arrl.org/w1aw/dx/>. =========================================================== 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 <http://www.arrl.org/> for the latest news, updated as it happens. The ARRL Web site <http://www.arrl.org/> offers access to news, informative features and columns. ARRL Audio News <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/> is a weekly "ham radio newscast" compiled from The ARRL Letter. 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