*************** The ARRL Letter Vol. 26, No. 18 May 4, 2007 *************** IN THIS EDITION: * +FCC "Smart radio" order good news for ham radio * +Scarborough Reef DXpedition draws a crowd * +Space station construction activity will affect ham radio operations * +FCC ends hearing, denies application in license hijacking case * +Motorola puts its Access BPL system on back burner * +ARRL Foundation contribution to boost ham radio in space * Solar Update * IN BRIEF: This weekend on the radio ARRL Certification and Continuing Education course registration +Armed Forces Day Crossband Radio Communications Test Set AMSAT announces Dayton Hamvention activities FCC posts Amateur Radio enforcement correspondence Amateur Radio on display during ITU disaster relief conference +Texas radio amateur is among 2007 NOAA Environmental Heroes David A. Rosenthal, N6TST, SK +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 <firstname.lastname@example.org> ==>Editorial questions or comments only: Rick Lindquist, N1RL, <email@example.com> =========================================================== ==>ARRL FINDS WELCOME NEWS IN FCC "SMART RADIO" ORDER In a recent Memorandum Opinion and Order (MO&O) <http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/FCC-07-66A1.pdf> on cognitive or "smart radio" systems, the FCC has affirmed its favorable policy toward the regulation of amateur software defined radios (SDRs). A cognitive radio system is an SDR that can adapt its operating parameters by interacting with its RF environment. The FCC's April 20 MO&O was in response to petitions seeking clarification of the Commission's March 2005 Report and Order (R&O) in ET Docket 03-108. In that proceeding the agency declined to adopt any new regulations for cognitive Amateur Radio transceivers or for digital-to-analog (D/A) converters. ARRL Chief Technology Officer Paul Rinaldo, W4RI, says the April MO&O indicates that the FCC intends to treat Amateur Radio SDRs the same as any other Amateur Radio equipment. "This is welcome news from the FCC as it clarifies the matter of certification of amateur equipment," Rinaldo remarked. "It applies not only to terrestrial amateur equipment but also to amateur satellites, which increasingly are using SDR in their designs." AMSAT-NA has announced it's revamped the design of its Project Eagle satellite to take maximum advantage of software defined transponder (SDX) technology. The "cognitive radio" proceeding is emblematic of the FCC's ongoing struggle to address thorny regulatory issues to keep pace with cutting-edge technology. In its 2005 R&O, the FCC concluded that neither software programmable amateur transceivers nor high-speed D/A converters "present any significantly greater risk of interference to authorized radio services" than conventional hardware radios. April's MO&O was in response to petitions from Marcus Spectrum Solutions (MSS), owned by Mike Marcus, N3JMM, a former FCC staffer and a member of the ARRL Software Defined Radio Technology Working Group, and from Cisco Systems. While the League was satisfied that the FCC's 2005 R&O had exempted Amateur Radio SDRs from its certification requirement, MSS felt the Order was ambiguous and sought further assurances. In response, the FCC said it "did not intend to impose any new certification requirements for Amateur Radio equipment" in its 2005 R&O, including SDR equipment that may be modified by someone other than the manufacturer. The Commission noted, however, that external RF amplifiers operating below 144 MHz and marketed for amateur use "will continue to require certification before they can be marketed." MSS also requested a Further Notice of Proposed Rule Making with respect to digital-to-analog (D/A) devices. Marcus predicted that if high-power, high-speed D/A converters with antenna-like connectors ever became readily available, it could bypass the entire FCC equipment certification program and open the door to D/A-equipped computers capable of operating on any frequency. The FCC declined to act on Marcus's request, saying MSS did not "demonstrate any current need for regulation of D/A converters." The FCC reiterated that it "may revisit the issue of the certification of amateur equipment with software modifiable features in the future, if misuse of such devices results in significant interference to authorized spectrum users." ARRL General Counsel Chris Imlay, W3KD, expressed confidence that it would not prove necessary for the FCC to revisit the issue, however, "as no misuse of amateur SDR technology is anticipated." For the FCC to impose any limitations on amateur SDR equipment "would be contrary to the goals enunciated for the Amateur Radio Service in §97.1 of the FCC's rules," he added. Cisco had asked the FCC to revise its rules to better specify those classes of devices that do not require SDR certification. It also wanted the FCC to establish a policy that software that supports security measures not be made public if doing so could compromise security or enable illegal operation. In response, the FCC revised §2.1(c) its rules to state that only radios with software "designed or expected to be modified by a party other than the manufacturer" -- such as downloading from the Internet -- and that would affect frequency range, modulation type, maximum power output or the circumstances under which the transmitter operates legally, would have to be certified as SDRs. The FCC said it anticipates Commission requests for software source code would be extremely rare. "It would not be burdensome for a manufacturer to request confidentiality for software source code in the event we request it," the Commission added. ==>SCARBOROUGH REEF BS7H OPERATION SHUTTING DOWN THIS WEEKEND If you haven't already snagged BS7H on Scarborough Reef <http://www.scarboroughreef.com/>, there's precious little time left to put the world's most-wanted DXCC entity into the log. The BS7H DXpedition has announced operation will cease by 0000 UTC on May 6. The Daily DX <http://www.dailydx.com/> reports the BS7H team plans to keep two stations on 20 meters around the clock. Earlier this week, Wolf Harranth, OE1WHC, of Documentary Archives Radio Communications in Vienna interviewed BS7H team member James Brooks, 9V1YC, via satellite telephone. Brooks explained that the team has been operating from wooden platforms mounted atop each of the reef's four rocks that are exposed during high tide. "Basically, we're like little birds perched on a small rock in the middle of the ocean," Brooks told Harranth. "It's a very dangerous reef," he went on to say. "There's lots of hazards. There's rain, there's wind, there's lightning, there's piracy." The coral is also very sharp, and most of the team members have suffered cuts and scrapes. Changing shifts three times a day has been difficult and time consuming, and Brooks says the individual stations have barely been able to see each other during daylight. Brooks said the DXpedition team was visited by several fishermen from the Philippines who asked for fuel and water. Visit the Dokufunk Web site <http://www.dokufunk.org/index.php?ID=2094#A2094> and click on the "BS7H Scarborough Reef 2007 -- Interview" link. The interview also is available from the BS7H DXpedition Web site. The most difficult path from BS7H has been to the US Northeast, although many stations have been successful in the past few days in working the DXpedition on 30, 20 and 17 meters, and signals have been reasonably strong. Not everyone was thrilled with the extremely large pileups, however. On 20 meter SSB, the pileups often extended 50 kHz or more up the band from the BS7H transmitting frequency and interfered with other activity. Stations trying to work BS7H should exercise courtesy and make sure they have a clear frequency before transmitting, to avoid interfering with ongoing communications unrelated to the DXpedition. Judging from anecdotal information, stations in the Eastern US should start listening around 1100 UTC. One station in Florida reported hearing BS7H on 20 meter CW from 1130 until 1630 UTC, The Daily DX reported. Brooks explained to Harranth that Europe, Japan and Oceania are easy to work most any time of the day, however. The first QSO was made on April 29. As of 1400 on May 2, BS7H was operating four stations from four separate rocks, with two stations dedicated to 20 meters. All stations now are running 800 W, and activity has been on 10 through 40 meters. Substantial QRN on 40 and 30 has prevented the operators from hearing most stateside signals, however. In part because of high winds, the team by week's end had not launched the helium-filled weather balloon to support an antenna for 80 and 160 meters. On the other bands, BS7H used vertical antennas, taking advantage of the salt water for a ground plane. ==>UPTICK IN ISS CONSTRUCTION TO AFFECT HAM RADIO OPERATIONS FROM SPACE In a recent Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) <http://www.rac.ca/ariss> progress report, ARISS International Chair Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, addressed some questions regarding ARISS operations and equipment upgrade and repair. Bauer says that with the successful space shuttle return to flight, ISS construction again has shifted into high gear. Delivery and assembly of two new ISS modules now are on the near horizon. But that activity's not without a downside for Amateur Radio activity from the ISS. "If all goes well, the new European Columbus module and Japanese Kibo module will be installed on the ISS in the next 12 months," Bauer told the ARISS team. "This substantial workload on the crew is impacting ARISS operations directly." Bauer explained that the launch of any new or replacement ham radio gear or computers to support ARISS operations "has been significantly curtailed due to the extremely limited 'upmass' capability." That's NASA's way of saying the cargo weight limits on construction flights are very tight. "There are just too many higher priority activities from an international space agency perspective, and frankly we are a lower priority," he continued. "The extra workload on the crew has taken its toll on ARISS -- they have had very little extra time for Amateur Radio activities beyond school contacts." Bauer concedes that while these developments are "somewhat frustrating" both to the ham radio community at large and to the ARISS International Team, ARISS nonetheless is pleased that space station crew members have "been able to speak so often with youth groups worldwide, piquing their interest in Amateur Radio, science, technology, engineering and math." One hoped-for fix during the recent flight of civilian space traveler Charles Simonyi, KE7KDP, was that Simonyi would be able to restore the Kenwood D700 ARISS Phase 2 transceiver to full functionality after it was inadvertently reprogrammed during Expedition 13. That has kept the packet system off the air. "The ARISS team worked diligently with the Simonyi team to get Charles licensed, trained, and prepared to perform the Kenwood reprogramming," Bauer explained. "Unfortunately, the ARISS team hit a major hurdle a few weeks before Charles's launch." Bauer said ARISS learned at the eleventh hour that additional software certification would be required to allow Simonyi to reprogram software to be used on the ISS computers. "Through heroic efforts by the team, final software certification was successfully completed," Bauer reported this week. "Unfortunately, this was completed only a few days before Charles' return from space." As a result, there was not enough time for Simonyi to reprogram the D700. "This last minute hiccup in software certification was not predictable," Bauer allowed, "so there was no way the ARISS team could have better prepared for Charles' flight." Bauer says that at this point, it appears that reprogramming the D700 to get it back to its normal ARISS configuration "will require a substantial, concerted effort with full cooperation from our international colleagues and the Russian and US space agencies." This means identifying, purchasing (if necessary), certifying, testing and flying the components necessary to ensure the reprogramming is successful, he pointed out. Given the challenge of weight restrictions on shuttle payloads devoted to transporting construction materials, Bauer said, the process "will likely take several months to accomplish, as the team will have to begin from square one." ARISS meanwhile is looking into some partial, temporary workarounds. In the near term, ARISS will request the crew do some investigative analysis of the Phase 2 station. "This will enable the ARISS team to determine if the radio can be partially restored to provide some of the unattended operations that it once provided," Bauer said. "With Charles's successful landing, we have started down this new path." Despite the setbacks, Bauer vowed that ARISS will continue working aggressively on the issue. "While our plans to have Charles reprogram the radio were thwarted, we were happy that he could speak to so many hams around the world during his short stay, and capture the imagination of students around the globe," he said. ==>FCC TERMINATES HEARING, DENIES APPLICATION IN "HAM LICENSE HIJACKING" CASE The FCC has terminated with prejudice a hearing proceeding involving a case of apparent ham radio identity theft. The FCC has said its evidence suggests that Joseph W. Hartmann Jr of Lansing, Michigan, "intentionally submitted fraudulent administrative updates" to obtain the privileges associated with the General class license of a Delaware radio amateur with a very similar name. In a Memorandum Opinion and Order (MO&O) released March 23 <http://gullfoss2.fcc.gov/prod/ecfs/retrieve.cgi?native_or_pdf=pdf&id_docume nt=6518915438>, the FCC further ruled to dismiss with prejudice Hartmann's pending new Amateur Radio license application, which he filed after the FCC questioned his attempts to change the Delaware ham's record in the Universal Licensing System (ULS). After several apparently unsuccessful attempts to deliver a Hearing Designation Order (HDO) to Hartmann and even affording him more time to file a written appearance, Hartmann sent Presiding Administrative Law Judge Arthur I. Steinberg three identical e-mail messages. "Mr Steinberg I am writing you in regards to this letter. I do not have the resources to obtain legal counsel for this hearing nor have the resources for driving to hearing in Washington.D.C," the FCC quoted Hartmann, noting that capitalization, punctuation, spelling and spacing were reproduced as they appeared in Hartmann's e-mails. "is there another way we can please have a phone conference in regards to this matter. please write back with your reply." Several pieces of Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested to Hartmann came back to the Commission as unclaimed, the FCC recounted in its March MO&O. "Interestingly, neither of the regular First Class Mail envelopes sent to Mr Hartmann's Lansing, Michigan, addresses has been returned," the Commission noted. The FCC had put Hartmann's January 2006 application for an Amateur Radio license on hold while it was looking into why he'd filed a half-dozen administrative updates during 2005 seeking to change the name and address of Joseph V. Hartman Sr, K3GUX, of Oceanview, Delaware, to his own name and address. In its March MO&O, the FCC declined to accept Hartmann's e-mails to Judge Steinberg as a proper written appearance, because he did not file in accordance with FCC rules. Consequently the Commission dismissed the hearing proceeding and Hartmann's pending Amateur Radio application with prejudice "for failure to prosecute." The FCC had scheduled a hearing on Hartmann's January 2006 Amateur Radio license application after deciding that his alleged actions had raised "a substantial and material question of fact as to whether he possesses the requisite character qualifications to be a Commission licensee." In its December 2006 HDO, the Commission said Hartmann's repeated attempts to alter licensee information for the call sign K3GUX from Joseph V. Hartman Sr's name and address to his own name and address also raised "substantial and material questions of fact as to whether Hartmann Jr made false certifications, misrepresented facts to the Commission, and/or demonstrated a lack of candor." ==>MOTOROLA SUSPENDS POWERLINE LV BPL DEVELOPMENT Less than two years after announcing its Powerline LV Access BPL product, Motorola has decided to suspend product development and to devote its resources to more promising markets, industry sources say. Motorola reportedly has decided to focus on a product called Powerline MU, which is for use within multiple-unit dwellings. The decision to stop work on its Access BPL product reflects declining interest in residential broadband service delivery among utilities coupled with more immediate demand for in-building BPL systems. Motorola has indicated that it's not scrapping Powerline LV altogether, however. Powerline LV united Motorola's Canopy wireless broadband Internet platform with enhanced ham band-notching HomePlug technology, drastically reducing BPL interference potential by restricting the application of high-frequency RF to the low-voltage side of the power transformers serving customers' homes, not the medium-voltage wires that line many residential streets. As a result, Powerline LV avoided the system architecture that poses the greatest risk of BPL interference to radio communication -- radiation from the medium-voltage power lines. ARRL Chief Executive Officer David Sumner, K1ZZ, expressed appreciation for Motorola's approach to the thorny issue of radio interference from BPL systems. In an effort to minimize interference, particularly to the Amateur Radio bands, Motorola designed its Powerline LV system in close cooperation with the League's technical staff, Sumner noted. A test stand Access BPL system was in operation briefly at ARRL Headquarters. Measurements and subjective listening tests on the ham bands showed that Powerline LV was Amateur Radio-friendly. "As one would expect from a company with such a distinguished record in the field of radio communication, Motorola acknowledged at the outset the seriousness of the interference problem," he said. "Motorola's system architecture influenced other vendors, raised industry awareness of the interference issue, and demonstrated the value of working with the ARRL to find positive solutions." ==>ARRL FOUNDATION PROVIDES SECOND DONATION TO ARISS COLUMBUS PROJECT The ARRL Foundation has granted an additional $2000 toward the cost of constructing and installing Amateur Radio antennas and equipment on the International Space Station's Columbus module, set to launch later this year. The ARRL Foundation earlier contributed $5000 to the project. Columbus will house an additional Amateur Radio station, including the first digital Amateur Radio TV (DATV) station in space as well as a ham radio transponder. Funding to finish and install ham radio antennas on the European Space Agency (ESA)-built laboratory module has been uncertain, however. Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) Vice Chairman Gaston Bertels, ON4WF, says donations from various sources covered a payment of 9000 Euros -- approximately $12,000 -- in March. A second payment is due this fall. Bertels says the IARU Region 1 Executive Committee also donated 2000 Euro to the project. The antennas have been manufactured and will be tested for acceptance at the European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC) before delivery to Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland, where a silicon dioxide coating will be applied before the antennas are installed on the Columbus module, Bertels explained. "Their development and manufacturing cost is now nearly covered, but not yet the cost of certification tests," Bertels told ARRL. Other donations have come from AMSAT-NA and AMSAT-UK, among other organizations, as well as from many individual donors. The yet-to-be-built Columbus Amateur Radio gear will make it possible for ARISS to establish wideband and video operations for the first time and allow continuous transponder operation. AMSAT-Belgium has set up a bank account to receive additional donations for the Columbus project. Details are on the ARISS-EU Columbus Web page <http://www.ariss-eu.org/columbus.htm>. Click the "Donate" button in the left column. ==>SOLAR UPDATE Solar sage Tad "Sunspot Baby" Cook, K7RA, Seattle, Washington, reports: The string of zero sunspot days ended Wednesday, April 25, and -- relative to the bottom of the solar cycle -- sunspot numbers over the past few days have been quite an improvement. Average daily sunspot number jumped from the previous week by 23 points to 25.1, and average solar flux increased over 14 points to 84.8. This modest increase in sunspot activity may noticeably improve propagation compared to weeks with no sunspots. For the near term, the US Air Force Space Weather Operation predicts a planetary A index of 5 for May 4-5, 8 for May 6-7 and 5 again for May 8-18, so the expectation is for quiet geomagnetic conditions. Based on the last period of higher geomagnetic activity, April 28-29, the 27.5 day solar rotation probably is what led to a prediction of 25 for the planetary A index on May 25. Geophysical Institute Prague predicts quiet geomagnetic conditions for May 4, quiet to unsettled on May 5, unsettled May 6-7, and quiet to unsettled again on May 8-9. Sunspot numbers for April 26 through May 2 were 17, 18, 20, 18, 38, 32 and 33, with a mean of 25.1. The 10.7 cm flux was 80.5, 82.7 84.9, 84.8, 87, 86.3, and 87.4, with a mean of 84.8. Estimated planetary A indices were 6, 16, 26, 23, 20, 8 and 3, with a mean of 14.6. Estimated mid-latitude A indices were 4, 10, 20, 16, 13, 5 and 1, with a mean of 9.9. For more information concerning radio propagation, visit the ARRL Technical Information Service Propagation page <http://www.arrl.org/tis/info/propagation.html>. __________________________________ ==>IN BRIEF: * This weekend on the radio: The New England QSO Party, the MARAC County Hunter Contest (CW), the 10-10 International Spring Contest (CW), the Microwave Spring Sprint, the Seventh Call Area QSO Party, the NA High-Speed Meteor Scatter Spring Rally, the US IPARC Annual Contest (CW and SSB), the Portuguese Navy Day Contest (CW/SSB and PSK31), the Indiana QSO Party and the ARI International DX Contest are the weekend of May 5-6. The RSGB 80-Meter Club Championship (SSB) is May 7. The ARS Spartan Sprint is May 8. The SKCC Sprint is May 9. The NCCC Sprint Ladder is May 11. The Military/Amateur Radio Communications Tests to celebrate Armed Forces Day (see below) and the Nevada Mustang Roundup are May 12. The SBMS 2 GHz and Up WW Club Contest, the VK/Trans-Tasman 80-Meter Contest (phone), the CQ-M International DX Contest, the VOLTA WW RTTY Contest, the Mid-Atlantic QSO Party, the FISTS Spring Sprint, the EACW International Contest, the 50 MHz Spring Sprint are the May 12-13 weekend. The RSGB 80-Meter Club Championship (Data) is May 16. The NAQCC Straight Key/Bug Sprint and the QRP Minimal Art Session are May 17. The NCCC Sprint Ladder is May 18. 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, May 22, for these ARRL Certification and Continuing Education (CCE) online courses beginning Friday June 1: The ARRL Ham Radio License Course (EC-010), Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 1 (EC-001), Radio Frequency Interference (EC-006), Antenna Design and Construction (EC-009), Analog Electronics (EC-012) and Digital Electronics (EC-013). These courses will also open for registration Friday, May 18, for classes beginning Friday, July 6. 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>. * Armed Forces Day Crossband Radio Communications Test Set: The US Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard will co-sponsor the annual military/Amateur Radio Communications Tests to celebrate the 57th Armed Forces Day. Although Armed Forces Day falls on Saturday, May 19, the 2007 Armed Forces Day Military/Amateur Crossband Communications Test will take place a week earlier, on Saturday, May 12, to avoid conflicting with the Dayton Hamvention May 18-20. The annual celebration features military station-to-amateur station crossband tests on SSB and copying the Secretary of Defense message via digital modes. Full details on participating stations, times and frequencies are available on the Army MARS Headquarters Web site <http://www.netcom.army.mil/mars/docs/ARMEDFORCESDAYFinal.doc>. * AMSAT announces Dayton Hamvention activities: AMSAT-NA invites Amateur Radio satellite enthusiasts to its events and activities during Dayton Hamvention 2007 <http://www.hamvention.org/>. A pre-Hamvention pizza party takes place Thursday, May 17, 6:30-10 PM, at Marion's Piazza, 1320 North Fairfield Road. The AMSAT booth will be open Friday, May 18, 9 AM-6 PM, Saturday, May 19, 8 AM-5 PM, and Sunday, May 20, 8 AM-1 PM, Eagle area with operating components, and outdoor satellite demonstrations; the AMSAT Forum is Friday, May 18, 11:15-2 PM in Room 1, Hara Arena; the IMAX movie "Space Station" is Friday, May 18, 5-5:45 PM at the Air Force Museum; the AMSAT/TAPR banquet is Friday, May 18, 6-10 PM, at the Air Force Museum. AMSAT booth volunteers are welcome. Contact Gould Smith, WA4SXM <email@example.com>, if you can help, indicating the hours you're available. AMSAT needs volunteers for two-hour shifts Friday, Saturday and Sunday as well as volunteers to set up Thursday afternoon and tear down Sunday afternoon. The "AMSAT at the 2007 Dayton Hamvention" Web page <http://www.amsat.org/amsat-new/hamvention/Dayton2007.php> has additional information and directions. -- AMSAT News Service * FCC posts Amateur Radio enforcement correspondence: The FCC has posted new Amateur Radio enforcement correspondence on its "Amateur Radio Service Enforcement Actions" page <http://www.fcc.gov/eb/AmateurActions/Welcome.html>. Special Counsel in the FCC Spectrum Enforcement Division Riley Hollingsworth sent a Warning Notice to Anthony M. Amato, KR4UQ; a Warning Notice and request for station information to Edib Zildzo, K2AAW; and a Warning Notice and request for station information to John C. Kimbrough, WR3S. The FCC also has posted a Memorandum Opinion and Order (MO&O) in the case of Joseph W. Hartmann Jr, and a Forfeiture Order (NoF) to Parker Construction Inc. Direct all questions concerning the Amateur Radio Service Enforcement Actions Web postings via e-mail only to Riley Hollingsworth <firstname.lastname@example.org> in the FCC Spectrum Enforcement Division. * Amateur Radio on display during ITU disaster relief conference: Egypt Amateur Radio Assembly (EARA) <http://www.qsl.net/egyptham> operators attending an International Telecommunication Union (ITU) joint disaster relief and information technology conference in mid-April logged more than 1000 contacts from special event station SU8DRM (QSL via SU1KM). The Regional Joint Conference on Disaster Relief and Management (DRM) -- International Cooperation and Role of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) took place April 14-17 in Alexandria, Egypt. The conference's primary objective was to promote awareness of the important role that Amateur Radio plays in disaster relief communications. In his presentation, "Amateur Radio as a First Aid and a Tool of Emergency Communications," International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) Region 1 EmComm Coordinator Seppo Sisättö, OH1VR, told the gathering that World Radiocommunication Conference 2007 this fall could serve to augment emergency communication opportunities for the Amateur Radio Service if there are proposals to establish a 300 kHz worldwide Amateur Radio allocation on 40 meters and a worldwide 60-meter band. EARA said the special event operation introduced many conference delegates to Amateur Radio and what it has to offer in disaster relief situations. * Texas radio amateur is among 2007 NOAA Environmental Heroes: Charlie Campbell, KC5EZZ, of San Angelo, Texas, was among ten 2007 National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Environmental Heroes. NOAA says Campbell organized a repeater network to transmit "timely severe weather reports from NOAA National Weather Service SKYWARN-trained storm spotters to cover longer distances without degradation." The annual Environmental Hero awards commemorate Earth Day by recognizing individuals and organizations that volunteer their time to help NOAA carry out its mission. Meteorologists at the San Angelo National Weather Service office nominated Campbell for the national award, presented April 20 in Washington, DC. NWS Warning and Coordination Meteorologist Hector Guerrero, KC5BRB, also organized a gathering in San Angelo to recognize Campbell. * David A. Rosenthal, N6TST, SK: QST author, DXpeditioner and photographer David Rosenthal, N6TST, of Ridgecrest, California, died March 16 after a long illness. He was 58 and an ARRL member. Between 1989 and 2002, Rosenthal contributed to QST on several occasions. He received the February 2006 QST Cover Plaque Award for his article, "Polar Bear Portable." During his military career, Rosenthal served as a combat helicopter pilot and as a photojournalist. During the Vietnam War, he earned two Distinguished Flying crosses and a Purple Heart. He worked for more than 30 years at China Lake Naval Weapons Station. Earlier, he worked an engineer for Hewlett-Packard. He also was a science reporter for CNN and a science correspondent for Radio Nederland. A world traveler, his photographs appeared in several regional and national publications, and he documented his adventures and accomplishments on his Web site <http://www.ridgenet.net/~n6tst>. A memorial service was held in March. Survivors include his wife Donna, KF6ZVE. The family has invited memorial donations to the Wiseman Cancer Research Foundation, 201 S Alvarado St, Suite 321, Los Angeles, CA 90057. =========================================================== 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. It's also available as a podcast from our Web site. 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