*************** The ARRL Letter Vol. 25, No. 39 September 29, 2006 *************** IN THIS EDITION: * +500 kHz experiment reports first QSO * +Kentucky ARES fills communication gap following flooding * +Ham radio in space triple-header sets new ARISS benchmark * +K0CA appointed ARRL Midwest Division Vice Director * +FCC opens new Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau * +Digital modes part of communication mix for Georgia drill * Solar Update * IN BRIEF: This weekend on the radio ARRL Certification and Continuing Education course registration +New member of ARRL family arrives Past Georgia SCM/SM Eddy Kosobucki, K4JNL, SK ISS Expedition 3 Commander Ken Bowersox, KD5JBP, leaving NASA Broadcaster-radio amateur receives national radio award Post-2001 IRCs bear expiration dates WRTC 2006 QSL cards ready to roll We stand corrected! +Available on ARRL Audio News <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/> =========================================================== ==>Delivery problems: First see FAQ <http://www.arrl.org/members-only/faq.html#nodelivery>, then e-mail <email@example.com> ==>Editorial questions or comments only: Rick Lindquist, N1RL, <firstname.lastname@example.org> =========================================================== ==>ARRL 500 kHz EXPERIMENT IN ORGANIZATIONAL PHASE The project manager for the ARRL 500-kHz experiment, Fritz Raab, W1FR, says The 500 KC Experimental Group for Amateur Radio is still in the organizational stages but has already recorded its first two-way contact. The FCC's Office of Engineering and Technology on September 13 granted Part 5 experimental license WD2XSH to the ARRL on behalf of a group of radio amateurs interested in investigating the LF spectrum. The two-year authorization permits experimentation and research between 505 and 510 kHz (600 meters) using narrowband modes at power levels of up to 20 W effective radiated power (ERP). "It will probably be a free for all through October as guys get their stations on the air," Raab told ARRL Headquarters. "The Midwest stations will be limited to 505 to 508 kHz for the time being, and the rest can use 505 to 510 kHz." He said a couple of the WD2XSH participants got on the air the day after the license was issued, and several others activated the first week, generating a number of reception reports. "Many are for distances of about 300 miles, of course, but some are much longer," Raab told ARRL Headquarters. He reports that W0RPK in Iowa copied the WD2XSH/20 station in Oregon early on September 26 - a distance of 1500 miles. The first QSO took place September 21 between the stations in Tennessee and North Carolina - a distance of some 300 miles. Raab eventually would like to see at least a secondary 600-meter Amateur Radio allocation from 495 to 510 kHz. He envisions eventual use of the spectrum to provide Amateur Radio emergency communication via groundwave. Announcement of the license grant earlier this month brought a few requests from radio amateurs interested in joining the experimental group. Raab says there are no plans to expand the group's membership, however. He does invite reception reports of transmissions made by group members <http://w5jgv.com/500kcreportform.htm>. For the time being, the WD2XSH group is only using CW. The ARRL Part 5 application had requested permission to use both CW and PSK31, but the license grant omitted the latter mode. Raab says he's working to secure permission to add PSK31 to the grant. During October, the 21-station experimental group will develop a band plan that assigns frequencies for QRSS -- very slow speed CW -- as well as for CW beacons and for two-way communication, Raab said. WD2XSH participant Conrad Murray, WS4S (WD2XSH/11) reports he's transmitting a QRSS beacon on an irregular basis on 505.505 kHz from his Tennessee QTH. News of the WD2XSH license grant opened another line of communication for Raab. "The announcement brought me a bunch of e-mails, and contact with someone I knew from college and hadn't seen since the 1970s," he said. More information is on the 500 kc Experimental Group for Amateur Radio Web site <http://www.500kc.com/>. ==>AMATEUR RADIO FILLS COMMUNICATION GAP DURING WEEKEND FLOODING When telephone and Internet service in Kentucky fell victim to flooding over the September 22-24 weekend, Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) teams took over to bridge the communication gap. Kentucky ARRL Section Emergency Coordinator Ron Dodson, KA4MAP, says the deluge, the product of up to nearly 10 inches of rain in Kentucky and Southern Indiana, resulted in states of emergency in 19 Kentucky counties and 12 cities, including Frankfort, the capital. Dodson says the high water, which evoked memories of severe flooding in March 1997, left at least 10 dead and many others homeless. "All phone communications to the state emergency operations center (EOC) went down as early as 2 AM Saturday, returned and then went out a second time around 5 AM," Dodson reports. Emergency managers contacted Dodson to activate the Kentucky Emergency Net on 3.993.5 MHz to provide support communication between the EOC and Kentucky's 120 counties. Dodson says telephone service in the EOC came back around mid-morning on September 23, although the Kentucky Emergency Net remained in operation as heavy rainfall began in western Kentucky. "Within minutes, Shelby Ennis, W8WN, in Hardin County reported via the K4ULW 146.625 repeater that all telephone service, including the Hardin County E-911 facility, had gone down," Dodson said. "Cell phones soon overloaded and also shut down, basically stranding the whole county without outside contact except via Amateur Radio." He explained that conventional telephone systems failed in Hardin County because the provider had installed all its systems in a basement area that flooded. For the next several hours, Dodson said, communication between the state EOC and Hardin County took place via the Bullitt Amateur Radio Society's KY4KY 146.700 repeater in Brooks. "The American Red Cross headquarters in Louisville also used this machine to communicate with their shelter and Hardin County emergency management," Dodson said. While the KY4KY repeater supported command-and-control communication, other operations took place via the W4BEJ 146.98 repeater in Elizabethtown and the neighboring K4ULW 146.625 repeater in Meade County. Communications Supervisor Bob Stephens, WA4CMO, of the Kentucky Department of Military Affairs said the Kentucky Emergency Management command vehicle was positioned adjacent to the state EOC to provide communication on both Amateur Radio and MARS frequencies. Pat Compton, KF4FMZ, and Bull Uschan, K4MIS, staffed the Amateur Radio side, while Richard Howe, KB5WCH, represented the Civil Air Patrol during the Saturday operation, which continued for several hours. "We operated all systems during the afternoon and provided critical communication between the EOC and Hardin and Meade counties," Stephens reported. The American Red Cross summoned members of ARES District 6 -- the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro area -- to assist with damage assessments and to maintain communication with the Hardin County shelter operation. According to Jefferson County Emergency Coordinator John Hesse, KF4IZS, those operations continued on Sunday as additional damage assessment details deployed in Louisville and in Fisherville in Spencer County. The Franklin County Chapter of the American Red Cross also contacted Woodford County EC Jerry Mueller, KC4WZO, Sunday morning seeking Amateur Radio volunteers to support communication in the flooded Millville area. "The Red Cross had three disaster relief teams in the Millville area, and cell phone communication was not reliable," Dodson said. Paul Harrington, KB4ENQ, Rob Hutchinson, KI4ODT, and Mueller responded, joined by Compton from the Capitol Amateur Radio Society. Hutchinson and Compton went to Millville for several hours to provide communication for the Red Cross and to help deliver meals, drinks, ice and supplies. Harrington and Mueller remained at the Red Cross Chapter to handle net duties in case communication assistance was needed in another area. Dodson said Stephens told him afterward that Kentucky Adjutant General Lt Gen Donald Storm and Kentucky Division of Emergency Management Director Maj Gen Maxwell Bailey "were pleased with the way Amateur Radio functioned in providing communication when all else failed. They extend their thanks to those amateurs who gave of themselves in this effort." ==>CIVILIAN SPACE TRAVELER, ASTRONAUTS PULL OFF ARISS HAM RADIO TRIPLE HEADER Students at three schools participated in a bit of ham radio history Friday, September 22, when they spoke with the International Space Station's first female civilian space visitor and two astronauts. The Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) program sponsored the separate, direct VHF contacts with US civilian space traveler Anousheh Ansari, European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Thomas Reiter, DF4TR, and US astronaut Jeff Williams, KD5TVQ. Ansari told students gathered at George Washington University, her alma mater, that everything looks "so beautiful" from the ISS. "It's great up here," Ansari told the students, "The weightlessness feels fantastic. It's like floating like a feather." Youngsters from Washington, DC-area elementary and middle and high schools joined GWU students in interviewing Ansari, who spoke via NA1SS with Williams as the control operator. Ansari, who returned to Earth September 28 with Williams and ISS Expedition 13 Commander Pavel Vinogradov, RV3BS, said she misses her family on Earth, but "otherwise, I think I'm just going to stay up here," she quipped. Goddard Amateur Radio Club (GARC) members set up and operated the necessary station equipment for the contact between NA1SS and GWU Earth station KE4GDU. In addition to the GWU event, Ansari, using the Russian RS0ISS call sign, made random Amateur Radio contacts during her ISS stay with a number of hams around the world. At one point she was seeking stations in her native Iran. Space Adventures Ltd arranged with the Russian Space Agency for Ansari to join the Expedition 14 team of Commander Michael Lopez-Alegria, KE5GTK, and cosmonaut Mikhail Tyurin, RZ3FT, on the Soyuz "taxi flight" to the ISS last week. Earlier on that same orbit, during a contact arranged by the ESA in cooperation with ARISS, Reiter chatted via HB4FR with students at the Gymnase Intercantonal de la Broye, in Payerne, Switzerland, using the German DP0ISS call sign. The contact was conducted in English. Reiter answered eight questions from the 15 to 17 year olds - 22 in all - as 50 onlookers gathered around the radio and another 350 witnessed the contact via an Amateur TV link. The contact attracted media coverage from several TV outlets and newspapers. The school set up for the contact in the museum Clin d'Ailes at the Payerne Swiss Air Force Base, the home of HB4FR. First to greet Thomas on the air was his friend and Museum Foundation President Claude Nicollier, HB9CN, the first Swiss astronaut. The event was part of "Swiss Space Days" activities organized by the Swiss Astronautics Association. During the five-minute radio contact, eight students got to ask questions. Responding to one of them, Reiter said the ISS crew has been trying to spot the Great Wall of China from space but has not been successful. He said he'd make another attempt and see if he could get a photo. Reiter this week officially became part of the ISS Expedition 14 crew. On the following ISS orbit, Williams answered questions put to him by students at Crete-Monee Middle School in Crete, Illinois. The contact was Williams's 15th and final school QSO of his ISS duty tour before he headed home September 28. Williams told the youngsters that while he was looking forward to returning to Earth and reuniting with his family, his time in space has been both exhilarating and very rewarding "for all the obvious reasons." As Williams put it: "Getting here is very exciting, being here is very exciting with all the unique things you can do in weightlessness and the unique things you can see from here, and, of course, going home's going to be pretty exciting too." Williams said eating in space can be difficult "if you don't manage your food" in the microgravity environment where meals won't simply sit on a plate. "It's a lot of fun to play with your food," he added. As the approximately nine-minute contact between NA1SS and AJ9N drew to a close, Williams urged the students to set their goals high and "go for them!" An audience of 800 - mostly other students - was on hand, and representatives from two TV stations and a local newspaper showed up to report the event. Members of the Lake County Amateur Radio Club (LARC) and the Kankakee Amateur Radio Society (KARS) set up the station at the school for the ARISS contact, and audio was streamed onto the KARS W9AZ repeater. The Expedition 13 of Vinogradov and Williams returned to Earth September 29 (UTC) in the steppes of Kazakhstan. The Soyuz TMA-8 spacecraft landed some 50 miles northeast of Arkalyk, and Russian recovery forces and NASA officials arrived at the site shortly after touchdown. ARISS <http://www.rac.ca/ariss> is an international educational outreach with US participation by ARRL, AMSAT and NASA. ==>CLIFF AHRENS, K0CA, APPOINTED ARRL MIDWEST DIVISION VICE DIRECTOR Cliff Ahrens, K0CA, of Hannibal, Missouri, is the new ARRL Midwest Division Vice Director. ARRL President Joel Harrison, W5ZN, announced the appointment September 26. Ahrens, an appellate court judge, succeeds Bruce Frahm, K0BJ, who became Midwest Division Director following the death August 31 of Director Wade Walstrom, W0EJ. "I'm pleased to have the opportunity," Ahrens commented, "and I look forward to working with Director Frahm, President Harrison and the members of the Board of Directors to promote, protect and strengthen our great Amateur Radio fraternity." An ARRL Life and Diamond Club Member, Ahrens has been a radio amateur since 1979 and previously held the call signs KI0W, N0BQN, and KA0EZR. He's also a Life Member of the Quarter Century Wireless Association. Ahrens already has served the League in various other capacities. He's an Midwest Division Assistant Director. Since 1997, he's been the Midwest Division representative on the DX Advisory Committee and chaired the panel from August 2000 until March 2003. He's currently DXAC vice chair. He's served in the past as an ARRL Volunteer Counsel. An active DXer, Ahrens enjoys No 1 DXCC Honor Roll status with all 337 current entities confirmed. He's also earned CW and Phone Honor Roll and stands at 2445 band entities in the ARRL DXCC Challenge. Ahrens is a member of the Mississippi Valley DX/Contest Club, the Eastern Iowa DX Association, the Kansas City DX Club, the Hannibal Amateur Radio Club and the Western Illinois Amateur Radio Club. He's a past president of the Hannibal ARC, and is trustee for that club's call signs. Professionally, Ahrens is an appellate judge on the Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District in St Louis. Ahrens also has been active in various public, civic and charitable organizations. He and his wife Kim have three grown children -- sons Todd, W0CTA, and Joe, K4CJA, and daughter Ann. Besides ham radio, Ahrens also enjoys photography, reading and computers, and spending time with his family. ==>FCC LAUNCHES NEW PUBLIC SAFETY AND HOMELAND SECURITY BUREAU The FCC has formally launched its new Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau (PSHSB) <http://www.fcc.gov/pshs/>. The PSHSB will assume some functions that had been under the umbrella of the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau (WTB), where the Amateur Radio Service will remain. WTB Public Safety and Critical Infrastructure Division Chief Michael J. Wilhelm, WS6BR, has assumed a role within the new bureau, however. "The events of September 11, 2001, and last year's hurricane season underscored America's dependence on an effective national telecommunications infrastructure," the Commission said. "The new bureau will build on the Commission's longstanding commitment to meet the needs of public safety by promoting robust, reliable and resilient communications services in times of emergency." Addressing interoperability issues will be a part of that process, Acting Bureau Chief Ken Moran told the Commission September 26. The PSHSB is responsible for the combined public safety-related functions previously spread among other bureaus and offices. It will include Policy, Public Communications Outreach and Operations and Communications Systems Analysis divisions. Wilhelm will serve as deputy chief of the PSHSB's Policy Division. The Public Communications Outreach and Operations Division will operate the FCC's Communications Center and the High Frequency Direction Finding Center. Some observers had speculated that Amateur Radio would be shifted to the PSHSB, thus removing it from the WTB's market-based approach to regulation. Moving some of the WTB's current responsibilities to the new bureau could nonetheless speed up the process of moving Amateur Radio-related proceedings through the Commission. The FCC Order setting up the new bureau is on the FCC Web site <http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/FCC-06-35A1.pdf>. ==>JAPANESE UNIVERSITY LAUNCHES AMATEUR RADIO CUBESAT Hokkaido Institute of Technology's HIT-SAT satellite has joined several other CubeSats carrying Amateur Radio payloads in space. The tiny satellite launched successfully September 23 (Japan Standard Time) from the Uchinoura Space Center in Japan, and its CW telemetry was copied around the world on the satellite's initial orbits. Over the weekend, HIT-SAT's CW telemetry was halted as a power-saving measure during attitude control procedures, and it remained silent after attitude control should have ended. But on September 27, ground controllers were able to restore the CW telemetry. "Although the cause was still unknown, we hope the transmission of CW continues normally," the HIT-SAT team said on its Web site. "We appreciate the cooperation and help of radio amateurs all over the world. Please hear the beat of our satellite's heart." HIT-SAT's FM packet transmitter has been operating normally from the time the spacecraft reached orbit, and ground controllers have been able to obtain telemetry data from it. Like other university-built CubeSats, HIT-SAT was constructed using mostly off-the-shelf parts. The 1200 bps FM packet downlink is on 437.425 MHz, while the CW telemetry downlink is on 437.275 with a transmitter power of 100 mW. The CubeSat uses a VHF uplink. The HIT-SAT team is seeking reception reports, including audio files. The satellite's call sign is JR8YJT. Once it's fully operational, HIT-SAT will permit Earth station operators to request certain parameters by transmitting DTMF commands on the 145.980 MHz uplink. The satellite can report back time/date, temperature and power supply voltages and thank the Earth station by call sign. Only HIT-SAT ground station controllers can access the satellite at this point, however. The diminutive satellite is a project of the Hokkaido Institute of Technology's ham radio club. HIT-SAT hitchhiked on the M-V-7 vehicle that carried the Solar-B satellite into orbit. The satellite is in a sun synchronous orbit with an orbital altitude of 250 km at perigee and 600 km at apogee and an inclination of 97.79 degrees. A 12-cm square cube, HIT-SAT weighs 2.2 kg. AMSAT has not yet assigned HIT-SAT an OSCAR designation. ==>GEORGIA ARESMAT EMPLOYS DIGITAL, VOICE MODES FOR DRILL The Georgia Amateur Radio Emergency Service Mutual Assistance Team (ARESMAT) made use of both digital modes -- in the form of Winlink 2000 -- and voice modes during a drill conducted with the Air National Guard earlier this month. Georgia ARESMAT District Emergency Coordinator Scott Royle, KK4Z, says the September 20 exercise simulated a large Category 3 hurricane hitting the Georgia coast at Savannah. "The drill included evacuation of civilians via C-130 aircraft," he explained. ARESMAT was responsible for providing "reach-back" communication between Savannah, Tift Henry Airport in Tift County and Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Marietta. Royle said Georgia ARESMAT deployed five Winlink stations and six team members to handle digital and voice nets for the exercise. The Winlink net accepted checkins from stations outside those directly involved in the operation. Savannah and Chatham and Tift counties also established local nets to test emergency circuits in those areas, and communication was established between Dobbins Joint Operations Center and Georgia Emergency Management's State Operations Center. Royle says Georgia ARESMAT used various antennas including an inverted V dipole, a Buddipole, a J-pole and a whip. "The training ARESMAT gained from this exercise will be invaluable as the team continues to prepare to operate under these conditions," Royle said, expressing his appreciation for all who participated. A complement to the normal ARES function, the ARESMAT concept recognizes that a neighboring section's ARES resources can be quickly overwhelmed in a large-scale disaster, necessitating communication support from ARES personnel outside the affected area. ==>SOLAR UPDATE Solar swami Tad "Sunny" Cook, K7RA, Seattle, Washington, reports: Average daily sunspot numbers were down this week by less than one point to 12.7. The average daily solar flux was down by five points from the previous week to 72. Geomagnetic indices were down a bit as well. The Air Force projects that September 29 geomagnetic conditions will be quiet, with a planetary A index of 8, rising to 15, then 20 on Sunday, and dropping back to 8 on Monday, October 2. Currently the interplanetary magnetic field is pointed south, signaling that Earth is vulnerable to solar flares or solar wind from coronal holes. Sunspots 913 and 914 are rotating into view, and sunspot number and solar flux should rise slightly by Monday. Geophysical Institute Prague projects unsettled conditions for September 29, quiet conditions on September 30, unsettled to active conditions on October 1, unsettled October 2, quiet to unsettled for October 3, then quiet conditions on October 4-5. For more information concerning radio propagation, see the ARRL Technical Information Service Propagation page <http://www.arrl.org/tis/info/propagation.html>. Sunspot numbers for September 21 through 27 were 11, 17, 13, 13, 11, 13 and 11, with a mean of 12.7. 10.7 cm flux was 71.4, 72.3, 70.4, 69.8, 70.2, 70.7, and 72, with a mean of 71. Estimated planetary A indices were 4, 3, 9, 23, 6, 6 and 4, with a mean of 7.9. __________________________________ ==>IN BRIEF: * This weekend on the radio: The CIS DX Contest, the Arkansas QSO Party, and the F.I.S.T.S. Coast to Coast Contest are the weekend of September 30-October 1. The UBA ON Contest and the RSGB 21/28 MHz Contest are October 1. The ARS Spartan Sprint and the German Telegraphy Contest are October 3. The YLRL Anniversary Party (CW) is October 3-5. The 432 MHz Fall Sprint is October 4. The SARL 80-Meter QSO Party is October 5. The TARA PSK Rumble Contest is October 6. JUST AHEAD: The California QSO Party (CQP), the Oceania DX Contest (SSB), the International HELL-Contest, the EU Autumn Sprint (SSB), the PRO CW Contest and the UBA ON Contest (SSB) are the weekend of October 7-8. 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, October 8, for these ARRL Certification and Continuing Education on-line courses: Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 2 (EC-002), Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 3 (EC-003R2), Antenna Modeling (EC-004), HF Digital Communications (EC-005), VHF/UHF -- Life Beyond the Repeater (EC-008), and Radio Frequency Propagation (EC-011). Classes begin Friday, October 20. These courses will also open for registration Friday, October 6, for classes beginning Friday, November 17. To learn more, visit the CCE Course Listing page <http://www.arrl.org/cce/courses.html> or contact the CCE Department <email@example.com>. * New member of ARRL family arrives: ARRL Rocky Mountain Division Vice Director Brian Mileshosky, N5ZGT, and his wife Katelyn, KA5TLN, have announced the birth of their first child, a daughter - Audrey Meredith - this week. Audrey was born September 25, weighing in at just shy of 6 pounds, 2 ounces (and 19 inches long). At 26, Mileshosky is the youngest-ever ARRL vice director and was the 1999 winner of the ARRL Hiram Percy Maxim Memorial Award. For several years, he edited the "Youth@HamRadio.Fun" column on the ARRL Web site <http://www.arrl.org/news/youth/>. He's been in office since January 2005. The Mileshoskys live in Albuquerque, New Mexico. * Past Georgia SCM/SM Eddy Kosobucki, K4JNL, SK: Edmund J. "Eddy" Kosobucki, K4JNL, of Columbus, Georgia, died September 11. He was 81. An ARRL member, Kosobucki served for 12 years as Georgia Section Communications Manager/Section Manager -- from 1979 until 1991. "Eddy was a vibrant part of Amateur Radio here in Georgia for many years and served as mentor for more people than just about anyone I know," said Georgia SM Susan Swiderski, AF4FO. Kosobucki was a longstanding member of the Georgia Single Sideband Net, the Quarter Century Wireless Association and the Columbus Amateur Radio Club. He also served as the Georgia Section's Official Bulletin Station and as a net control station for the Georgia Traffic and Emergency Net. A service was set for September 22 in Columbus. An on-line guest book is available <http://www.legacy.com/Ledger-Enquirer/GB/GuestbookView.aspx?PersonId=192094 06>. The family invites contributions to the Columbus Alliance for Battered Women, PO Box 4182, Columbus, GA 31904, The Knights of Columbus Wheelchair Fund, PO Box 12517, Columbus, GA 31907 or Visticare Hospice, 850 Brookstone Centre Pkwy, Columbus, GA 31906. * ISS Expedition 3 Commander Ken Bowersox, KD5JBP, leaving NASA: NASA has announced that International Space Station Expedition 6 Commander Ken Bowersox, KD5JBP, will be departing the space agency. Bowersox will leave his position as director of flight crew operations this month. Pending his retirement from the US Navy, where he holds the rank of captain, he'll move into a support position in the office of Johnson Space Center Director Michael Coats. An astronaut since 1987, Bowersox, who will turn 50 in November, moved into NASA management in February 2004 following four shuttle flights and his six-month ISS mission. Astronaut Ellen Ochoa, KB5TZZ -- a veteran of four spaceflights -- will succeed Bowersox as director of flight crew operations, which oversees the Astronaut Office and Aircraft Operations. She's served as deputy director since 2003. * Broadcaster-radio amateur receives national radio award: The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) has announced that David E. Kennedy, WA8WAL -- most recently president and CEO of Susquehanna Media Co -- received the NAB National Radio Award September 20 during the NAB Radio Show luncheon in Dallas. "Throughout his career, David has exemplified a tremendous commitment to the business of radio," NAB President and CEO David K. Rehr said in a statement. "NAB salutes David Kennedy for his many contributions to radio, and we are proud to include him in this prestigious group of radio broadcast icons." Kennedy has served in numerous leadership positions throughout his 35-year radio career, including stints as NAB Radio Board chairman and NAB Joint Board chairman. The NAB Radio Show is the largest annual convention for radio broadcasters.--NAB * Post-2001 IRCs bear expiration dates: Many DXers still use International Reply Coupons (IRCs) <http://www.upu.int/irc/en/> issued by the Universal Postal Union (UPU) to cover return postage for QSL cards. As of January 1, 2002, UPU-issued IRCs bear expiration dates, after which the coupon has no value. The so-called "Beijing model 1" IRC expires December 31, 2006. The newest IRC, the "Beijing model 2," expires December 31, 2009. Check any IRCs you've got on hand for an expiration date! Curiously, the United States Postal Service International Mail Manual states that the period of exchange for IRCs issued by the UPU on or after January 1, 1975, is unlimited. The UPU says IRCs are exchangeable in all member countries for the minimum postage of a priority item or an unregistered air mail letter sent to a foreign country. An IRC costs $1.85 in the US. Although US post offices are not obliged to sell IRCs, it is mandatory for post offices in UPU member countries to exchange the coupons. * WRTC 2006 QSL cards ready to roll: World Radiosport Team Championship 2006 (WRTC 2006) Chairman Atilano de Oms, PY5EG, has announced that QSL cards for WRTC 2006 stations have been printed and are ready for mailing <http://www.wrtc2006.com/release70.html>. "We are ready to confirm all QSOs via air mail or bureau," Oms said. "If you want the QSL via air mail, please send your card with SASE and IRCs to our QSL manager, Vantuil Barbosa Dias, PP5VB, PO Box 13, IMBITUBA - SC - CEP 88780-000 BRAZIL." Oms added that stations may QSL via the bureau using PP5VB as the manager. * We stand corrected! We misspelled Allan Severson's name in the news brief that appeared in The ARRL Letter, Vol 25, No 39 (Sep 22, 2006) reporting N8IO as the 2006 Allan Severson, AB8P, Memorial Award winner. =========================================================== The ARRL Letter is published Fridays, 50 times each year, by the American Radio Relay League: ARRL--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 and general news of interest to active radio amateurs. Visit the ARRL Web site <http://www.arrl.org/> for the latest Amateur Radio news and news updates. The ARRL Web site <http://www.arrl.org/> also offers informative features and columns. ARRL Audio News <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/> is a weekly "ham radio newscast" compiled and edited from The ARRL Letter. 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