*************** The ARRL Letter Vol. 25, No. 04 January 27, 2006 *************** IN THIS EDITION: * +League to boost emphasis on grassroots lobbying, disaster planning * +ARRL Board announces award winners * +School space contacts include questions on fires and electrical grounding * +FCC brings Amateur Service rules into line with WRC-03 actions * +ARRL Headquarters seeking to fill three job openings * +ISS commander puts WAS and WAC under his belt * Solar Update * IN BRIEF: This weekend on the radio ARRL Certification and Continuing Education course registration +New Technician class question pool released to the public +Amateur Radio Hurricane Conference set ULS will be down Saturday, January 28 Correction +Available on ARRL Audio News <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/> =========================================================== ==>Delivery problems (ARRL member direct delivery only!): email@example.com ==>Editorial questions or comments: Rick Lindquist, N1RL, firstname.lastname@example.org =========================================================== ==>ARRL BOARD RAMPS UP FOCUS ON GRASSROOTS LOBBYING, DISASTER PLANNING The ARRL Board of Directors will place even greater emphasis on the League's nascent grassroots lobbying effort. Implemented last year, the Grassroots Legislative Action Plan involves direct contact with lawmakers in members' home districts and motivating legislative support for Amateur Radio-related legislation through letter writing by members. "We want to step up the pace of implementing that plan," ARRL CEO David Sumner, K1ZZ, explained after the January 20-21 Board meeting in Windsor, Connecticut. Acting on a motion by outgoing Grassroots Legislative Action Committee Chairman Frank Fallon, N2FF, ARRL Hudson Division Director--the Board adopted a resolution shifting oversight of the Grassroots Legislative Action Committee to the ARRL Executive Committee (EC), which also will monitor its success. Fallon said afterward that putting the grassroots initiative under the EC will "clarify the reporting responsibility and incorporate the program into the Board culture." Fallon also sits on the EC. Fallon turned over the chairmanship of the panel to Great Lakes Division Director Jim Weaver, K8JE, but he will remain a committee member and says he's encouraged by the changes the Board made and the fact that new ARRL President Joel Harrison, W5ZN, made the grassroots program a significant part of his post-election remarks to the Board. The Grassroots committee has been focusing its energy on garnering support and additional cosponsors for House Resolution 230 (H.Res 230) concerning Broadband Over Power Line (BPL), the Spectrum Protection Act of 2005 (S 1236 and HR 691), and the Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Consistency Act of 2005 (HR 3876). More information on these bills is available on the ARRL Government Relations page <http://www.arrl.org/govrelations/>. The Board also resolved to establish an ad hoc ARRL National Emergency Response Planning Committee "to appropriately prepare for future large-scale disasters." The panel will develop a comprehensive recommendation for ARRL responses to national, regional and international disasters. The Board will consider the recommendations at its 2007 annual meeting next January. The Board also adopted an ARRL Education Mission and Vision Statement. The document calls on the League to "advance the art and science of radio through education" through several avenues. These include providing instruction and instructional materials to prepare newcomers for licensing and current amateurs for upgrading as well as engaging young people in "the magic of radio." The Board charged the ARRL Technology Task Force with identifying the application of digital voice, software defined radio (SDR) and high-speed multimedia (HSMM) to the Amateur Radio Service in 2010 and beyond. The task force also "shall investigate and identify new technologies or concepts that should be considered for development." In other action, the Board changed the name of the ARRL Antenna Case Assistance Committee to the Amateur Radio Legal Defense and Assistance Committee and broadened its mandate. Legal cases considered for League funding, subject to an upper limit of $10,000 per case, not only may include litigation involving antenna height and placement but cases related to interference, RF safety, aesthetics, structural safety, environmental issues and other matters that could impact Amateur Radio. Outgoing ARRL President Jim Haynie, W5JBP, was named an ARRL President Emeritus "in view of his 15 total years of ARRL Board service that includes his six years of exemplary service as ARRL President." Additional details on the ARRL Board of Directors annual meeting are on the ARRL Web site <http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2006/01/24/3/>. The Minutes of the ARRL Board's annual meeting are on the League Web site <http://www.arrl.org/announce/board-0601/>. ==>ARRL NAMES LEONARD, INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN AWARD WINNERS The ARRL Board of Directors has named the winners of the 2005 Bill Leonard, W2SKE, Professional Media Award and the 2005 International Humanitarian Award. The Board affirmed committee recommendations of both award winners when it met January 20-21 in Windsor, Connecticut. The recipient of the 2005 Bill Leonard, W2SKE, Professional Media Award is Marilu Lozada, the coordinating producer at WPBT (Channel 2), South Florida Public Broadcasting in Miami. She produced a video segment about the 2004 ARRL Holiday Toy Drive for the weekly TV magazine "New Florida." The segment incorporated coverage of the role South Florida Amateur Radio operators played during the very active 2004 hurricane season. "Her coverage of the ARRL Toy Drive, which first aired on December 23, 2004, was a wonderful piece of television journalism that not only caught the magic of ham radio, but the spirit of the Amateur Radio community in the first Toy Drive for children in Florida following a series of hurricanes there," said ARRL Media and Public Relations Manager Allen Pitts, W1AGP. Lozada says she wants to share credit with videographers Jeremy Nicholson and Robert Makovicka and editor Sean Hickey. In addition, she said, WPBT's vice president of creative services Jeff Huff, K3JMH, "was very supportive and helpful with my work on that story." The Leonard Award goes annually to a media professional or group who does the best job during the previous calendar year of covering Amateur Radio in print, photo essay, audio or video formats. As 2005 winner, Lozada will receive a $500 check and an engraved plaque. She'll receive the award February 4 during a presentation at the 11th annual Amateur Radio Hurricane Conference at the National Hurricane Center in Miami. The Board named members of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands VU4RBI/VU4NRO DXpedition team to receive the 2005 ARRL International Humanitarian Award: Bharathi Prasad, VU2RBI; D.N. Prasad, VU2DBP; S. Ram Mohan, VU2MYH; R. Sarath Babu, VU3RSB, and D. Varun Sastry, VU3DVS. The International Humanitarian Award recognizes "truly outstanding Amateur Radio operators in areas of international humanitarianism and the furtherance of peace." Following years of planning and patience, the DXpedition team, sponsored by the National Institute of Amateur Radio, secured permission to operate from the remote Andamans. The Indian government had not permitted any amateur operation from VU4 since 1987, and final approval came just two weeks before the scheduled December 2004 operation. As the Amateur Radio community now knows, the December 2004 earthquake and resulting tsunami that devastated South Asia coastal areas swiftly shifted the role of the DX operation, headquartered in Port Blair, into an emergency communication link with the Indian mainland. "The group's immediate actions and their use of Amateur Radio to render assistance to victims of the December 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami while on location in the Andaman Islands are in the highest tradition of Amateur Radio," the ARRL Board's resolution said. During the emergency operation in the tsunami's wake, local authorities on the Andamans sought the team's help in handling a wide range of communications under very trying conditions, earning the praise and appreciation of the Indian government. The winners of the 2005 ARRL International Humanitarian Award will receive an engraved plaque. ==>ONBOARD FIRES, SAFE GROUNDING QUESTION TOPICS FOR NA1SS SCHOOL CONTACTS Speaking from the International Space Station's NA1SS, Expedition 12 Commander Bill McArthur, KC5ACR, recently greeted students at his college alma mater in Georgia and an elementary school on Long Island. McArthur answered questions put to him via W4AQL by students at Georgia Tech on January 19 and via N2RBU by pupils at Abequogue School--some 100 miles east of New York City--on January 24. The direct VHF contacts were arranged by the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) program. Both school groups wanted to know what the ISS crew would do in case a fire broke out aboard the ISS. "The first thing we want to do is try to protect the crew, so we immediately gather at a common location--it's called the Central Post in the Russian Service Module, which has a lot of data available, and from there we plan how to address the fire," McArthur told the Georgia Tech group. "Now, if it's an obvious fire right in front of you, you use the fire extinguisher or turn the electrical equipment off. If it's not something so obvious then we methodically go to the source of the fire, try to assess what is the source of the fire and then address it either by removing electrical power or using the fire extinguisher." McArthur later told the Abequogue youngsters that the crew does considerable training on what to do in case of fire. He said that if the crew members were unable to get a fire under control, they'd get into the Soyuz vehicle, abandon the space station and return to Earth. One of the Georgia Tech students also asked McArthur about electrical safety grounding aboard the ISS. "We don't really have a problem making it safe for human contact," McArthur replied. He explained, however, that equipment grounding differs from the Russian side to the American side of the spacecraft. "On the American side, we use a common ground much like an automobile does," he said. "The Russian electrical equipment actually does have a separate ground wire--a return to ground." McArthur told the college students that the overarching goal of all scientific research and experimentation aboard the ISS is to understand how to keep space travelers safe, healthy and productive on a long-term voyage, such as one to Mars. During the subsequent contact between NA1SS and N2RBU at Abequogue School, one of the elementary pupils asked if McArthur had seen anything mysterious in space during his time aboard the ISS. "I think the only mysterious things I've seen have been some personal items floating around," McArthur responded. "I have a little orange-red 'Koosh' ball, and I think it's just kinda neat when it escapes on its own and floats around on the air currents," he added, eliciting giggles from some of the kids. He told another youngster that the crew has no problems keeping down its food in the microgravity environment. "It stays in our stomachs very nicely," he said. "The human digestive system seems to function very, very well in space." Teacher and Peconic Amateur Radio Club (PARC) President Roberta Keis, N2RBU--an ARISS school contact veteran--served as the control operator for the Abequogue contact. PARC members assisted in setting up the Earth station. ARISS <http://www.rac.ca/ariss> is an international educational outreach with US participation by ARRL, AMSAT and NASA. ==>FCC ORDERS AMATEUR RULE CHANGES TO CONFORM WITH WRC-03 The FCC has ordered several rule revisions to implement changes agreed to at the international level during World Radiocommunication Conference 2003 (WRC-03). Acting Wireless Telecommunications Bureau Chief Catherine W. Seidel signed the Order, released January 19. The changes affect §97.111, Authorized transmissions; §97.113, Prohibited transmissions; §97.115, Third party communications, and §97.117, International communications. "These amendments will ensure that the Commission's Amateur Radio Service rules conform to Article 25 of the international Radio Regulations adopted at the 2003 World Radiocommunication Conference, and will further the Commission's ongoing efforts to streamline its Amateur Service Rules," the FCC said. "The overall effect of this action is to update the Part 97 Amateur Radio Service rules in the Code of Federal Regulations to conform to now-effective international agreements." The rule changes will become effective upon publication in The Federal Register. The FCC Order revises: * §97.111(a)(1) to permit "transmissions necessary to exchange messages with other stations in the Amateur Service, except those in any country whose administration has notified the ITU that it objects to such communications. The FCC will issue public notices of current arrangements for international communications." The old language permitted communication among amateur stations in different countries "except those in any country whose administration has given notice that it objects to such communications." The FCC said the change does not prejudice its proposal to amend §97.111(a)(2) to clarify that amateur stations may, at all times and on all authorized channels, transmit communications necessary to meet essential needs and to facilitate relief actions. * §97.115(a)(2) to facilitate the transmission of international communications on behalf of third parties in emergency or disaster-relief situations, whether or not a third-party agreement is in place between the US and the countries involved. The revision now permits communication with any non-US station "when transmitting emergency or disaster relief communications" as well as with any non-US station "whose administration has made arrangements with the United States to allow amateur stations to be used for transmitting international communications on behalf of third parties." The revised rule further provides that no station may transmit third-party traffic other than emergency or disaster relief communications to a station in a country lacking a third-party arrangement. Still excepted from the prohibition is any third party eligible to be the control operator of an amateur station. * §97.113(a)(4) to prohibit amateur stations exchanging messages with amateur stations in other countries from making transmissions that are encoded for the purpose of obscuring their meaning, except for control signals exchanged between Earth command stations and space stations in the Amateur-Satellite service, something Part 97 already provides for. The old rule referred to the use of "codes and ciphers." The same rule also already prohibits transmitting music, communications intended to facilitate a criminal act, obscene or indecent words or language and false or deceptive messages, signals or identification. * §97.117 to state that amateur stations may transmit communications incidental to the purposes of the Amateur Service and to remarks of a personal character. The FCC also revised §97.3 and 97.309 to update the definition of International Morse code and of various digital codes in the amateur rules to reflect changes in the international Radio Regulations. ==>ARRL SEEKING TO FILL THREE JOB OPENINGS AT HEADQUARTERS The ARRL is looking for a few good people. Specifically, the League has openings at its headquarters in Newington, Connecticut, for a Business Services Manager, a Membership Manager and an Assistant Editor. All three positions are fulltime with benefits. Among other duties, the Business Services Manager oversees sales of ARRL products and services to the Amateur Radio commercial industry and manages and develops the sales and sales support staff. An Amateur Radio license and on-the-air experience are highly desirable. For a Business Services Manager, the League is seeking a competitive individual with demonstrable selling ability and customer service experience. This person should be a true motivator who enjoys "significant customer interaction." In addition to superior written and oral communication skills, the ideal candidate should be flexible and team oriented and be dedicated to fair and ethical business practices. The Membership Manager will have responsibility for ARRL membership recruitment and retention. The top priority of the Membership Manager will be to develop and put into place member recruitment and retention activities in addition to analyzing membership growth patterns. This individual also will supervise the League's membership renewal process and oversee and maintain member records for the department. Among additional duties, the Membership Manager will work across department lines and with the ARRL Field Organization to direct the delivery of all member benefits and maintain "regular and meaningful contact" with ARRL members. This position requires a bachelor's degree in business or equivalent experience--preferably at least five years of member services and/or association experience, two of them in supervision, as well as a thorough understanding of association management, customer services and programs. Knowledge of Amateur Radio or an Amateur Radio license and significant ham radio experience are a plus. The candidate selected will possess excellent organizational, communication and customer service skills; must be detailed oriented and have proven record of accomplishment designing, implementing, and maintaining membership recruitment and retention programs. This position requires the ability to travel during the normal work week as well as on weekends. The Business Services and Membership managers' positions are in the League's Sales and Marketing Department, headed by Dennis Motschenbacher, K7BV. The ARRL also has an opening for an Assistant Editor. The successful candidate will work on a variety of material for publication in QST and for the League's Web site. Primary responsibilities include preparing general interest and some technical material for publication, writing articles for publication, and ensuring that manuscripts are well written, engaging and conform to the rules of grammar, spelling, usage and ARRL style. Applicants should hold an Amateur Radio license and have on-the-air experience. Paid experience in an editorial field and a college degree in a related field are preferred, as are a demonstrated ability to work effectively as part of a team and under deadline pressure, proficiency in Microsoft Word, ability to use the Internet for research, experience with a digital camera and attention to detail. Some weekday and weekend travel may be required. For additional details, visit the Employment at ARRL Web page <http://www.arrl.org/announce/jobs/>. To apply for any of these positions, send a cover letter and resume to LouAnn Campanello <email@example.com>, ARRL, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111. No telephone calls please! ARRL is an Equal Opportunity Employer. ==>ISS COMMANDER COMPLETES WAS FROM SPACE, GAINING ON DXCC International Space Station Commander Bill McArthur, KC5ACR, has achieved his goal of working all US states from NA1SS, and he's continuing his efforts to wrap up DXCC as well. On Saturday, January 21, he worked Alaska for his final state. In addition, he's already worked all continents, including Antarctica, on both VHF and UHF, from NA1SS. McArthur has been one of the most active radio amateurs ever to inhabit the ISS, although the space station crew's activities in advance of a February 3 space walk--or EVA, as NASA calls it--could curtail his casual operating for several days. "Bill is likely to be very busy preparing for the EVA and has not been as active during the week," Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) Ham Radio Project Engineer Kenneth Ransom, N5VHO, told ARRL this week. McArthur has been most active during weekends. Ransom also notes that McArthur and crewmate Valery Tokarev will be altering their schedule during the runup to the space walk. "The crew will be waking about 1100 UTC and going to sleep about 0230 UTC until Jan 29, and shift to a wake up time of 1300 UTC and sleep time of 0430 UTC until the day of the EVA," he said. McArthur added several new DXCC entities to his growing list last weekend, Ransom says, and is better than three-quarters of the way toward working 100. To date, McArthur has more than 1000 QSOs and 77 DXCC entities in the NA1SS logbook, the vast majority of his casual contacts with stations in the Americas and Europe. "He could really use some stations in Africa and Oceania," Ransom noted. Information on which DXCC entities McArthur still needs is available from the ISS Fan Club Web site <http://www.issfanclub.com/>. WAC, WAS and DXCC awards for contacts from NA1SS are honorary, since the award rules make no provision for contacts made from space. McArthur also is on track to set an ARISS milestone--the most school group contacts by an ISS crew member and the most of any mission. As of January 27, he had handled 20 school group QSOs, while Tokarev had done one from RS0ISS. The current individual record is held by Expedition 10's Leroy Chiao, KE5BRW, who logged 23. During the scheduled February 3 space walk, McArthur and Tokarev will release "SuitSat-1"--quite possibly the most unusual Earth satellite ever. SuitSat consists of a surplus Russian Orlan space suit converted into a transmit-only satellite with an FM downlink frequency of 145.990 MHz. Using the call sign RS0RS, it will transmit voice messages, telemetry and an SSTV image on a nine-minute cycle as it orbits Earth. The batteries powering the satellite are expected to last about a week, and SuitSat's free-floating, decaying orbit should cause it to re-enter Earth's atmosphere after some six weeks in space. The SuitSat signal should be strong enough to hear using a VHF transceiver or scanner and a simple antenna. For more information, see "This is SuitSat-1 RS0RS!" by Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, on the AMSAT Web site <http://www.amsat.org/amsat-new/articles/BauerSuitsat/index.php>. The Science@NASA Web site also has published an informative article about SuitSat <http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2006/26jan_suitsat.htm>. ==>SOLAR UPDATE Ra the Sun god Tad "Ain't No Sunspots" Cook, K7RA, Seattle, Washington, reports: The average daily sunspot number this week rose nearly 25 points to 49.4, about double last week's count of 24.6. Average daily solar flux rose by nearly 11 points to 91.4. This week Double Sunspot 848 continued to expand as it transited the earth-facing side of our nearest star. But as of January 27, it was moving out of the sun's visible area. At mid-week the interplanetary magnetic field moved south, and a moderate solar wind drove the planetary A index to 29 on January 26. By this time next year solar activity will probably be even lower than it is now, with no visible sunspots for many days in succession. These periods of low activity are not good news for those who enjoy the higher HF bands, but they can be great for 80 and 160 meters. For this week look for a planetary A index of around 12 for today, January 27, and then 5 (very quiet) on every day through February 2. Geophysical Institute Prague predicts unsettled activity for January 27, quiet to unsettled for January 28 and February 1 and 2, and quiet conditions for January 29 to 31. Sunspot activity will remain low, and the 10.7 cm solar flux is predicted around 85 for January 27-28 and 80 from January 29 through February 2. Sunspot numbers for January 19 through 25 were 48, 33, 28, 60, 73, 62 and 42, with a mean of 49.4. The 10.7 cm flux was 88.6, 90.7, 93.8, 92.8, 92.4, 92.6, and 89, with a mean of 91.4. Estimated planetary A indices were 7, 6, 4, 6, 15, 7 and 7, with a mean of 7.4. Estimated mid-latitude A indices were 5, 4, 4, 4, 13, 6 and 8, with a mean of 6.3. __________________________________ ==>IN BRIEF: * This weekend on the radio: The CQ 160-Meter Contest (CW). the REF Contest (CW), SARL Youth Day, the BARTG RTTY Sprint and the UBA DX Contest (SSB) are the weekend of January 28-29. JUST AHEAD: The North American Sprint (SSB), the Vermont, Delaware and Minnesota QSO parties, the YL-ISSB QSO Party, the 10-10 International Winter Contest (SSB), the YLRL YL-OM Contest (CW), the AGCW Straight Key Party and the Mexico RTTY International Contest are the weekend of February 4-5. The ARCI Winter Fireside SSB Sprint is February 6, the ARS Spartan Sprint is February 7 and the KCJ Topband Contest is February 9-10. 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. 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, February 5, for these ARRL Certification and Continuing Education (CCE) Program on-line courses: Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 2 (EC-002), Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 3 (EC-003), Antenna Modeling (EC-004), HF Digital Communications (EC-005), VHF/UHF Beyond the Repeater (EC-008) and Radio Frequency Propagation (EC-011). Classes begin Friday, February 17. To learn more, visit the CCE Course Listing page <http://www.arrl.org/cce> or contact the CCE Department <firstname.lastname@example.org>. * New Technician class question pool released to the public: The National Conference of Volunteer Examiner Coordinators (NCVEC) Question Pool Committee (QPC) has released the new Technician (Element 2) Amateur Radio examination question pool. The new Element 2 question pool is available for viewing or download in Adobe PDF, MS Word, RTF and ASCII text format from the NCVEC Web site <http://www.ncvec.org/ama_news_article.php?id=81>. The new question pool becomes effective for all examinations administered on or after July 1, 2006, and it will remain valid until June 30, 2010. The current Element 2 question pool will expire June 30, 2006. The new Technician pool contains 396 questions, from which 35 are selected for an Element 2 examination. This question pool contains no graphics or diagrams. The QPC requests that anyone spotting possible errors or suggesting corrections contact the Question Pool Committee via e-mail <email@example.com>. Reference the question pool (ie, Technician, General, Amateur Extra) in the subject line, and include the question number(s) involved plus a brief explanation. Forward comments and suggestions for new questions or changes in topic areas for any of the three question pools, Element 2, 3 or 4.--NCVEC * Amateur Radio Hurricane Conference set: The 11th annual Amateur Radio Hurricane Conference will take place Saturday, February 4, 8-10 AM, at the National Hurricane Center in Miami. Admission and refreshments are free, but seating is limited to about 40 people. WX4NHC Amateur Radio Volunteer Coordinator John McHugh, K4AG, will host the gathering, which will feature presentations on how ground-level reporting of hurricane-related weather data by Amateur Radio observers aids forecasters. This year marks 25 years for ham radio at the NHC, and Assistant Amateur Radio Coordinator Julio Ripoll, WD4R, will talk about the history of ham radio at the center during the conference. Hurricane Watch Net Manager Mike Pilgrim, K5MP, will discuss the operation of his net, which works hand in hand with WX4NHC. The National Hurricane Center is located at 11691 SW 17th Street in Miami, just a few blocks west of the Tropical Hamboree taking place the same weekend. Those planning to attend should contact McHugh via e-mail <firstname.lastname@example.org> as soon as possible. * ULS will be down Saturday, January 28: The FCC's Wireless Telecommunications Bureau has announced that the Universal Licensing System (ULS) <http://wireless.fcc.gov/uls/> will be partially offline Saturday, January 28, for scheduled maintenance. The ULS application search, license search, license manager, and public access functions will be down from 8 AM until 3 PM Eastern Time (1300-2000 UTC). Electronic Batch File processing will be down from 9 AM until 1 PM Eastern Time. Volunteer Examiner Coordinators will still be able to send and retrieve files during the down period, however, and public access files will be created and posted once maintenance is completed. * Correction: A sentence in the story "Mining Disaster Survivor Randy McCloy, KC8VKZ, Reported Improving" in The ARRL Letter, Vol 25, No 03 (Jan 20, 2006) should have read: "McCloy was the only survivor among 13 men trapped for more than 40 hours in an Upshur County coal mine that filled with deadly carbon monoxide following a January 2 explosion." =========================================================== 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/>. Joel Harrison, W5ZN, 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. 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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