*************** The ARRL Letter Vol. 27, No. 38 September 26, 2008 *************** IN THIS EDITION: * + Montana Ham Assists in Rescue of Fellow Amateur 600 Miles Away * + Simulated Emergency Tests Scheduled for October 4-5 * + Richard Garriott, W5KWQ, Follows Dad Owen, W5LFL, into Space * + FCC Assigns Contested Vanity Call to Wisconsin Amateur Radio Club * ARRL to Participate in Combined Federal Campaign * + Walt Ireland, WB7CSL, Retires from ARRL * + IARU Award Certificates Get New Look * Solar Update * IN BRIEF: This Weekend on the Radio ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration + New Section Managers Get Ready to Converge on Newington + DX Engineering Acquires Comtek Systems North American Missions Board Stands Down after Gustav, Ike +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: S. Khrystyne Keane, <email@example.com> =========================================================== ==> MONTANA HAM ASSISTS IN RESCUE OF FELLOW AMATEUR 600 MILES AWAY On Sunday, September 21, Bob Williams, N7ODM, of Bozeman, Montana, was just tuning around on 40 meters, giving his rig a test just before a scheduled QSO with his brother Rich, K7URU, in Spokane, when he heard a faint CW signal around 1 PM (MDT): Glenn Russell Ruby Jr, W7AU, of Corvallis, Oregon had broken his leg and was using a portable radio and Morse code to send out a call for help. Williams said he was able to understand the injured man's code even when his signal became very weak. "He called me. He must have heard me testing out the radio. When I finished, I signed off with my call, and then I heard, 'N7ODM, this is W7AU/7,' so I answered," Williams told the ARRL. "I told him to go ahead, I had solid copy. He told me that he was a hiker that had fallen and broken his leg. He identified himself as Russ, provided information as to his GPS coordinates, the shelter, food and water on hand, as well as his detailed physical condition. He told me exactly who I needed to contact for assistance." According to Williams, Ruby had slipped on a wet rock and broken his leg while out hiking in the Buck Creek Pass area of the high Cascades in Western Washington, 600 miles away from Williams. "Russ really had his act together," Williams said. "Before he even called for help, he set up his tent. It was raining when he fell, so he climbed into his tent and got into some warm clothes and had a snack of sunflower seeds and dried apricots. After that, he strung up a wire antenna, fired up his Elecraft K1 and called me." Williams said that Ruby told him he had a "couple of weeks worth of battery power" for the radio. Ruby asked Williams to notify the Snohomish County Search and Rescue in Washington State. "I didn't have their number, so I called my local 911 dispatcher. All they had was the info for King County in Washington, so I called them and they gave me the number for Snohomish. When I got a hold of Snohomish County Search and Rescue, they asked me to obtain additional info from Russ, such as the color of his tent and if he was in a clear or wooded area, and remain in contact with him as long as possible," Williams said. "Russ and I were able to maintain contact until about 8 PM on Sunday, during which time I was able to pass additional traffic between Russ and Search and Rescue, but then his signal got so weak where I couldn't copy it anymore. Before he faded, we had agreed to try and make contact in the morning. I tried, starting around 6:30, but he never heard me. I finally heard him calling me around 9 on 7.051 MHz. We kept in contact until he was evacuated from the site by Search and Rescue at about 10:35 AM," Williams told the ARRL. On Sunday, rescue crews reached Ruby, who had set up camp on Buck Creek Pass, at about 6000 feet just west of the Chelan County line. He was taken to safety Monday on horseback. Williams said that bad weather Sunday prevented a helicopter rescue: "It was snowing all night; Russ told me that when he woke up Monday morning, his tent was all covered in snow." "I just happened to be at the same frequency," Williams said. "It's just a stroke of luck that turned out great. It was quite an experience. I'm just glad that he was a ham radio operator and that I was able to talk to him. It made the difference for him. What I did was not anything special. I'd like to think that any ham in Montana would've done the same thing." ==> SIMULATED EMERGENCY TESTS SCHEDULED FOR OCTOBER 4-5 When emergency or natural disaster strikes, Amateur Radio is often called into the limelight of public service to establish a line of communication to and from the stricken areas. Amateur Radio networks, once established, sustain communication during the emergency efforts by helping the disaster relief workers and public with point-to-point communications or health and welfare messages. During weather related threats or during the actual occurrence of severe weather, Amateur Radio networks are commonly on standby to gather information and report this data to the National Weather Service or other pertinent authorities. You've read about and/or have heard about these important stages of Amateur Radio public service in QST or on the Web or elsewhere. Make this the year that you take a role to learn more and become ready to serve in public service and emergency communications. The ARRL sponsors a nationwide trial for Amateur Radio operators for a role in the Amateur Radio Emergency Service, the Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service, the National Traffic System, the National Weather Service's SKYWARN, the Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network (SATERN) or other groups as well. It's the ARRL's annual Simulated Emergency Test (SET), and you're invited to join on October 4-5, 2008, or whenever it is held in your area. To participate in this year's emergency test, contact your local ARRL Emergency Coordinator or Net Manager to find out the details. Although October 4-5 is the focal point weekend, ARRL Sections, ARES teams and nets may conduct their exercises anytime during September through December. If you don't know who to call, please touch base with your ARRL Section Manager for assistance (see page 16 in any QST for contact information or consult the ARRL Web page <http://www.arrl.org/sections>). Whether you're a new licensee or an experienced radio amateur, the SET is a golden opportunity to learn or practice useful skills in traffic handling, net operation and emergency communications protocols and management. ARRL Section Leaders and local or District Emergency Coordinators are encouraged to work closely with served agencies in planning these exercises. This not only helps to heighten awareness of Amateur Radio in the community, but also helps ensure that effective communication networks will be in place if an actual emergency occurs. ARRL maintains National Memoranda of Understanding with several organizations and entities, and the SET is a prime chance to put these agreements into action. More details may be found here <http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/mou/>. You are encouraged to consider this year's ARRL Simulated Emergency Test and all preparations, as well as post-exercise evaluations, as a demonstration of your readiness and Amateur Radio's readiness. Be an active participant in SET, and join others nationwide. Additional background on the annual SET is presented in the article, 2007 Simulated Emergency Test Results. See July 2008 QST, pages 62-65. Also, guidelines and specific SET reporting forms for the ARRL Section and Field Leaders will be posted on the ARRLWeb site <http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/forms>. ==> RICHARD GARRIOTT, W5KWQ, FOLLOWS DAD OWEN, W5LFL, INTO SPACE Richard Garriott, W5KWQ, a well-known programmer and designer in the video game world, will soon be a household name to those who follow space flights. He's the next private citizen to be flown to the International Space Station (ISS) by the Russian Federal Space Agency (RKA), and is taking ham radio into space just as his dad Owen Garriott, W5LFL -- the first ham to make QSOs from space -- did in 1983. Richard's fiery ride to space will be on a Russian Soyuz TMA-13, due to be launched on Sunday, October 12; the Soyuz is set to dock with the ISS two days later. According to ARRL Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) <http://www.rac.ca/ariss/oindex.htm> Program Manager and ARISS International Secretary-Treasurer Rosalie White, K1STO, Richard is the sixth private citizen to be accepted by the Russian Space Agency for a short-term mission on the ISS. HIs term as an official crew member of the Soyuz TMA-13/17S crew is scheduled to end with the undocking of the Soyuz on October 22 for its journey back to Earth. Twenty-five years after his father made that first QSO from space, Richard is bent on honoring him by operating ham radio in space. Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, ARISS International Chairman, said, "The ARISS Team is very happy to be able to make Richard's time in space extra special, since his flight coincides almost exactly 25 years from when his father made history." The first thing Richard did after passing his Technician exam was to start talking to ARISS in earnest. "ARISS coordinates and sponsors everything to do with ham radio in space, and NASA Mission Control will be handling all of the ham radio schedules," White said. In mid-August, ARISS Team Member Kenneth Ransom, N5VHO, set up a training session at NASA Johnson Space Center for Richard. Following that, Richard completed his Russian radio training. ARISS Team Member Sergej Samburov, RV3DR, trained Richard on SSTV, packet, the use of the ARISS equipment, and the onboard computers in Star City, Russia at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre. The next month, Samburov had Richard learn how to handle radio ops, especially pile-ups. School QSOs are nothing new for ARISS, so what exciting new thing is Richard planning while he spends his time in space? White said he plans on transmitting a show of downlink video images. "Beforehand, SSTV testing will be conducted between him and the ARISS Team, uplinking high resolution images," she said. "The SSTV downlinks will take place during his official Earth observations duties, allowing students and hams to compare images to ones previously downloaded. He may have the SSTV equipment running at random times for the pleasure of ham radio operators. He will use his call sign -- W5KWQ -- on the downlinked video pictures while operating the RS0ISS and NA1SS equipment, with permission from station trustees Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, and Sergej Samburov, RV3DR. According to ARISS International Chairman Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, Richard plans to take a Kenwood VC-H1 SSTV communicator with him on board the Soyuz for his flight and leave it on the ISS for future ARISS use. "The VC-H1 has completed all hardware certification on the US and Russian sides," Bauer said. "The final test, an EMI radiated emissions test, was performed last week and the test data was delivered to Sergey Samburov, RV3DR, in Russia this week. The VC-H1 provides a very simple interface for ISS crew members and does not require the use of a computer. Computer usage has been a real challenge for ARISS, so the VC-H1 represents a lesson learned to improve ARISS operations." Richard is the sixth private citizen to be flown by the Russian space agency to the ISS; all other private citizens who have ventured to the ISS before him have also made ARISS QSOs. NASA, the Russian Space Agency, RSC Energia, Space Adventures Ltd and ARISS have developed various agreements to allow space citizens to entice students to science and engineering through ARISS QSOs. For more information about Richard, his space activities and what he hopes to accomplish in space, visit his Web site <http://www.richardinspace.com/>. ==> FCC ASSIGNS CONTESTED VANITY CALL TO WISCONSIN AMATEUR RADIO CLUB In an "Order on Reconsideration and Order Proposing Modification" released on Wednesday, September 24, the FCC decided that Falls Amateur Radio Club (FARC) was the rightful recipient of call sign W9CQ. FARC and the QRQ CW and Contest Group (QRQ) had both claimed they were entitled to use the call <http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-08-2138A1.pdf>. In 2007, the Commission was notified that Paul Kent, to whose amateur station call sign W9CQ was then assigned, had died on January 1, 2006. Therefore, the call sign was due to become available for reassignment through the vanity call sign system on January 2, 2008. On April 3, 2007, Robert C. Moldenhauer filed an application requesting W9CQ as a vanity call sign, stating that he was eligible for the call sign prior to the expiration of the two-year waiting period because he was an in-law of Paul Kent; the application was granted on April 21, 2007. On August 3, 2007, Moldenhauer filed another application requesting modification of his amateur station call sign to, among other call signs, W9IS. This application was granted on August 21, 2007, resulting in his license for call sign W9CQ to be surrendered and canceled. On November 1, 2007, after inquiry by the Commission's Enforcement Bureau, Moldenhauer reported that he had surrendered call sign W9CQ after realizing that he was related to a different Paul Kent and therefore was not eligible for the call sign prior to the end of the two-year waiting period. On January 2, 2008, FARC filed an application requesting to modify its Amateur Radio station license to W9CQ. The Commission dismissed the application on the grounds that the call sign was not available, because it was less than two years since it had been surrendered by Moldenhauer. On January 23, 2008, FARC filed a petition for reconsideration of the dismissal, arguing that the call sign should have been made available to the vanity call sign system on January 2, 2008 because Moldenhauer was not eligible for the call sign prior to the expiration of the two-year waiting period. Additionally, FARC requested that call sign W9CQ be assigned to its station license since it was the only applicant that requested call sign W9CQ on that date. On May 23, 2008, QRQ submitted an application to modify its amateur radio station license to show the call sign W9CQ. The application submitted to the FCC stated that QRQ was acting with the written consent of a nephew of Paul Kent. This application was granted on June 10, 2008. The Commission, in their decision, stated that they agreed with FARC that call sign W9CQ should have been made available to the vanity call sign system on January 2, 2008, as Moldenhauer was not eligible for the intervening grant of the call sign: "As specifically provided in public notices setting forth the procedures of the vanity call sign system, 'Where a vanity call sign for which the most recent recipient was ineligible is surrendered, canceled, revoked or voided, the two year requirement does not apply.'" The FCC also found that since FARC was the only applicant for that call sign on January 2, 2008, the call sign should have been assigned to FARC's amateur station. The FCC did not see how, at this time, they could set aside QRQ's application for W9CQ, saying that grant is a "final action," but went on to say that "Section 316(a)(1) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, provides the appropriate vehicle to correct this error." This section permits the Commission to modify a station license "if the action will promote the public interest, convenience, and necessity." The FCC proposed to modify QRQ's Amateur Radio station license "to show the call sign KC9MWH, which was the call sign assigned to QRQ's amateur station prior to the grant of its application. The proposed modification would serve the public interest by ensuring that the procedures of the vanity call sign system are followed." The FCC stated that upon the modification of QRQ's license, they would then be able to assign call sign W9CQ to FARC "pursuant to its application." The FCC ordered that the petition filed by FARC is granted "to the extent indicated" in the Order and their application is returned to pending status. It was further ordered that "it is proposed that the license of QRQ be modified" by returning the previous call sign of KC9MWH. In its decision, the Commission said that in accordance with Section 97.27(b) of the Commission's Rules, they will not issue a modification order until QRQ has received notice of the proposed action "and has had an opportunity to file a protest. To protest the modification, QRQ must, within thirty days of the release date of this 'Order on Reconsideration and Order Proposing Modification,' submit a written statement with sufficient evidence to show that the modification would not be in the public interest. The protest must be filed with the Office of the Secretary, Federal Communications Commission." The FCC further stated that if no protest is filed, "QRQ will have waived its right to protest the modification and will be deemed to have consented to the modification." ==> ARRL TO PARTICIPATE IN THE COMBINED FEDERAL CAMPAIGN For the seventh year running, the US Office of Personnel Management has designated the ARRL to participate in the 2008 Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) <http://www.opm.gov/cfc/>. In the past, this campaign for federal government civilian employees, US Postal Service workers and members of the military has generated more than $120,000 for ARRL programs; in 2008 alone, ARRL has received $37,475 in pledges from CFC participants and direct contributions of $21,316. The CFC provides an easy way to support ARRL's effort to represent its members and all radio amateurs. Similar to the United Way, the CFC encourages individuals to pledge by payroll deduction to non-profit organizations of their choice. The ARRL encourages eligible radio amateurs to consider the League when designating campaign recipients. Payroll deduction through the CFC is an easy way for participants to support ARRL over and above their annual membership. Such contributions support programs that are not funded by member dues, enriching ARRL's ability to serve its members and all of Amateur Radio. Those wishing to select the ARRL to receive all or part of their payroll deductions should designate organization 10099 when completing their CFC donor forms. Donations to ARRL can be designated for Diamond Club contributions, the ARRL Spectrum Defense Fund or the ARRL Education & Technology Program. Donors may also make unrestricted contributions to the League. One important note: Since the CFC does not provide the ARRL with the names of individual donors, the ARRL Development Office <firstname.lastname@example.org> would appreciate a copy of the donor form to ensure that each contribution is applied according to the donor's wishes and the contribution or pledge can be properly acknowledged. The 2008 CFC ends December 15. ==> WALT IRELAND, WB7CSL, RETIRES FROM ARRL Technical Relations Specialist Walt Ireland, WB7CSL, part of the ARRL's Technical Relations Office (TRO) in Washington, DC, retired from the League this past summer. Ireland came to ARRL in April 1997 from the Voice of America (VOA) where he was responsible for building HF radio broadcasting stations. While at the TRO, he participated in the preparation cycles for three World Radiocommunication Conferences (WRC) - 2000, 2003 and 2007 -- and served as vice chair of the FCC Informal Working Groups that dealt with US proposals for HF broadcasting and amateur requirements. At the request of the FCC and with the approval of then-ARRL Chief Technology Officer Paul Rinaldo, W4RI, Ireland accepted the Chairmanship of US Working Party-6E (which dealt with HF broadcasting) in 1997; he held this position until WRC-07 after which all US Working Party chairs were assigned to government employees. As Chairman of US Working Party-6E, he headed all of the US delegations to meetings at the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in Geneva, Switzerland. While there, Ireland often chaired ITU-R Drafting Groups. Ireland was selected to be Vice Chair of Informal Working Groups of the FCC's WRC Advisory Committees (WAC) in preparation for WRCs-03 and 07. He was also selected by the US Department of State to attend WRC-07 as a Technical Advisor. Several of the major ITU-R issues Ireland participated in were the protection of 7 MHz from HF broadcasters, protection of the 70 cm band from European and NASA Synthetic Aperture Radars, Broadband over Power Lines (BPL) and Ultra-Wide Band (UWB) transmissions. Ireland served as the chief instructor for ARRL Amateur Radio Administration Course for Regulators (ARAC), sponsored by the United States Telecommunications Training Institute (USTTI) for the past several years. He now resides in Nevada. ==> IARU AWARD CERTIFICATES GET NEW LOOK On September 19, the ARRL Awards Branch unveiled a new design for two IARU award certificates: the Worked All Continents Award (WAC) and the 5 Band Worked All Continents Award (5BWAC) <http://www.arrl.org/awards/wac/>. WAC is awarded to amateurs who have confirmed contacts on any band with Africa, Asia, Europe, South America, North America and Oceania, while 5BWAC recognizes hams who have made confirmed contacts with those continents on 10, 15, 20, 40 and 80 meters. The WAC/5BWAC rules state that all contacts must be made from the same country or separate territory within the same continental area of the world. Contacts made on 10/18/24 MHz or via satellites are void for the 5-band certificate and 6-band endorsement. All contacts for the QRP endorsement must be made on or after January 1, 1985 while running a maximum power of 5 W output or 10 W input. US amateurs must be ARRL members to receive these awards; foreign amateurs must be members of their IARU Member-Society and should apply through their Member-Society. According to ARRL DXCC Manager Bill Moore, NC1L, the WAC award -- originally announced in the April 1926 issue of QST -- continues to be a popular award around the world with more than 6000 participants since its inception. "Besides the certificate design change, the WAC certificate will also display the award holder's name alongside their call sign. We do this already on the 5BWAC certificate." Moore said there are a couple of ways that hams interested in applying for WAC or 5BWAC can do so. "They can download the form from the WAC Web site <http://www.iaru.org/wac/wac.pdf> and send it via regular mail (along with QSL cards and payment) to ARRL, or DXCC recipients can send an e-mail <email@example.com>, referring to their DXCC award. We can look into your account to verify the contacts; just include your payment information in your message," he said. WAC is currently not supported in ARRL's Logbook of The World (LoTW), but Moore said that an upgrade to do so is currently in the planning stages. Any comments or questions regarding the WAC or 5BWAC program should be referred to the WAC Desk <firstname.lastname@example.org>. ==>SOLAR UPDATE Tad "From the Sun that 'round me roll'd in its autumn tint of gold" Cook, K7RA, this week reports: This week saw the appearance of another sunspot -- a new Solar Cycle 24 spot -- larger and lasting a little longer than last week's Solar Cycle 23 sunspot. It appeared for two days, September 22 and 23, with sunspot numbers of 18 and 16. Geomagnetic activity is very quiet; on September 25, the K index was 0 for a good part of the day. This was true for the mid-latitude index, planetary and the college K index in Alaska. The three corresponding A indices for the day were 4, 1 and 1, respectively. This is especially nice for the lower part of the HF spectrum, such as our 160 and 80 meter bands, and something we don't see during periods of higher sunspot activity. Geophysical Institute Prague predicts quiet conditions September 26-29, unsettled September 30, active October 1 and unsettled conditions on October 2. Sunspot numbers for September 18-24 were 0, 0, 0, 0, 18 16 and 0 with a mean of 4.9. The 10.7 cm flux was 67.2, 67.9, 67.8, 67.9, 69.1, 69.4 and 68.4 with a mean of 68.2. The Estimated planetary A indices were 9, 5, 3, 2, 4, 3 and 4 with a mean of 4.3, and the estimated mid-latitude A indices were 5, 3, 1, 1, 2, 2 and 1 with a mean of 2.1. For more information concerning radio propagation, visit the ARRL Technical Information Service Propagation page <http://www.arrl.org/tis/info/propagation.html>. To read this week's Solar Report in its entirety, check out the W1AW Propagation Bulletin page <http://www.arrl.org/w1aw/prop/>. This week's "Tad Cookism" brought to you by Edgar Allen Poe's "Alone" <http://www.doctorhugo.org/synaesthesia/poe.html>. __________________________________ ==>IN BRIEF: * This Week on the Radio: This week is the NCCC Sprint on September 26 and the AGCW VHF/UHF Contest on September 27. Look for the CQ Worldwide DX Contest (RTTY), the Texas QSO Party and the Scandinavian Activity Contest (SSB) on September 27-28. The UBA ON Contest (CW) is September 28 and the 222 MHz Fall Sprint is September 30 (local time). The RSGB 21/28 MHz Contest is October 1. Next week is the German Telegraphy Contest on October 3. The YLRL Anniversary Party (CW) is October 3-5. The EU Autumn Sprint (SSB), the TARA PSK Rumble Contest and the NCCC Sprint are October 4. The Oceania DX Contest (Phone), the International HELL-Contest and the California QSO Party are October 4-5. The UBA ON Contest (6 meters) is October 5, the 432 MHz Fall Sprint is October 8 (local time) and the RSGB 80 Meter Club Sprint (CW) is October 9. All dates, unless otherwise stated, are UTC. See the ARRL Contest Branch page <http://www.arrl.org/contests/>, the ARRL Contest Update <http://www.arrl.org/contests/update/> and the WA7BNM Contest Calendar <http://www.hornucopia.com/contestcal/index.html> for more info. Looking for a Special Event station? Be sure to check out the ARRL Special Event Station Web page <http://www.arrl.org/contests/spev.html>. * ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration: Registration remains open through Sunday October 5, 2008 for these online course sessions beginning on Friday October 17, 2008: Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 2 (EC-002); Antenna Modeling (EC-004); HF Digital Communications (EC-005); VHF/UHF -- Life Beyond the Repeater (EC-008), and Radio Frequency Propagation (EC-011). Each online course has been developed in segments -- learning units with objectives, informative text, student activities and quizzes. Courses are interactive, and some include direct communications with a Mentor/Instructor. Students register for a particular session that may be 8, 12 or 16 weeks (depending on the course) and they may access the course at any time of day during the course period, completing lessons and activities at times convenient for their personal schedule. Mentors assist students by answering questions, reviewing assignments and activities, as well as providing helpful feedback. Interaction with mentors is conducted through e-mail; there is no appointed time the student must be present -- allowing complete flexibility for the student to work when and where it is convenient. To learn more, visit the CCE Course Listing page <http://www.arrl.org/cce/courses.html> or contact the Continuing Education Program Coordinator <email@example.com>. * New Section Managers Get Ready to Converge on Newington: The 16th annual New Section Manager Workshop October 10-12 will give 14 newly elected or appointed Section Managers a chance not only to visit ARRL Headquarters for the first time, but also to gain some perspective on their new leadership positions. During the weekend gathering, participants will not only meet many HQ staffers, but learn some of the ins and outs of how to become effective Section leaders and administrators. According to Steve Ewald, WV1X, Supervisor of the ARRL Field and Public Service Team, the Section Manager Workshop is an orientation and training event for new Section Managers who have come on board within the past year. "The primary purposes of the Workshop sessions are to share ideas and to provide basic administrative, management, leadership and motivational training. We also cover the responsibilities and functions of the Section Manager's position, and the SMs are able to visit with ARRL Headquarters staff members and learn more about the many programs that ARRL supports. The Workshop sessions are presented by several ARRL Headquarter staff members who are experts in their respective areas," Ewald said. * DX Engineering Acquires Comtek Systems: On September 24, DX Engineering <http://www.dxengineering.com/> announced it had acquired North Carolina-based Comtek Systems <http://www.comteksystems.com/>. Comtek's manufacturing and customer service operations will move to DX Engineering's Akron, Ohio facility. "Comtek's products are highly regarded among Amateur Radio operators," said DX Engineering president Paul Sergi, NO8D. "The addition of these products to our popular line of antennas enhances our ability to supply complete, high quality, directional antenna systems. It's a win-win for DX Engineering and Comtek Systems customers." James Miller, K4SQR, principal of Comtek Systems concurred: "DX Engineering will continue the tradition of top quality products and customer satisfaction that we have provided for years. DX Engineering and Comtek Systems have complementary product lines and the synergy created by combining the two companies will bring many benefits to the Amateur Radio fraternity." * North American Missions Board Stands Down after Gustav, Ike: On Wednesday, September 24, the hams with the Southern Baptist Disaster Relief <http://www.namb.net/site/c.9qKILUOzEpH/b.224451/>, a program sponsored by the North American Missions Board, NA4MB <http://www.namb.net/>, stood down after assisting with Hurricanes Gustav and Ike. The group had been helping providing backup communications options in areas that were isolated since August 31. NAMB National Communications Coordinator Terry Jones, W4TL, said that in his opinion, "The thing that worked best in areas that did not have good Internet and cell phone coverage were Winlink Airmail on both the amateur and the MARS side. This medium worked flawlessly and Airmail messages were transmitted via HF radio when voice communications were not possible due to extremely poor propagation. EchoLink worked very well, as did D-STAR. We were able to communicate directly with units in Texas through the D-STAR Gateway via the KI4SBA repeater in Cumming, Georgia. Satellite Internet service also worked well for those that have this technology. What did not work well at all were voice communications from the affected area to NA4MB due to very poor HF propagation." Southern Baptist Disaster Relief -- based in Alpharetta Georgia -- is a partnership ministry of the state Baptist conventions and the North American Mission Board, Southern Baptist Convention. It has at its disposal approximately 1500 mobile units, including feeding, chainsaw, mud-out, command, communication, child care, shower, laundry, water purification, repair/rebuild and generators. =========================================================== 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. Material from The ARRL Letter may be republished or reproduced in whole or in part in any form without additional permission. Credit must be given to The ARRL Letter/American Radio Relay League. ==>Delivery problems (ARRL member direct delivery only!): firstname.lastname@example.org ==>Editorial questions or comments: S. Khrystyne Keane, K1SFA, email@example.com ==>ARRL News on the Web: <http://www.arrl.org/> ==>ARRL Audio News: <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/> or call 860-594-0384 ==>How to Get The ARRL Letter The ARRL Letter is available to ARRL members free of charge directly from ARRL HQ. To subscribe, unsubscribe or change your address for e-mail delivery: ARRL members first must register on the Members Only Web Site <http://www.arrl.org/members/>. You'll have an opportunity during registration to sign up for e-mail delivery of The ARRL Letter, W1AW bulletins, and other material. To change these selections--including delivery of The ARRL Letter--registered members should click on the "Member Data Page" link (in the Members Only box). Click on "Modify membership data," check or uncheck the appropriate boxes and/or change your e-mail address if necessary. (Check "Temporarily disable all automatically sent email" to temporarily stop all e-mail deliveries.) Then, click on "Submit modification" to make selections effective. (NOTE: HQ staff members cannot change your e-mail delivery address. You must do this yourself via the Members Only Web Site.) The ARRL Letter also is available to all, free of charge, from these sources: * ARRLWeb <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/>. (NOTE: The ARRL Letter will be posted each Friday when it is distributed via e-mail.) * The QTH.net listserver, thanks to volunteers from the Boston Amateur Radio Club: Visit Mailing Lists@QTH.Net <http://mailman.qth.net/mailman/listinfo/letter-list>. (NOTE: The ARRL cannot assist subscribers who receive The ARRL Letter via this listserver.) Copyright 2008 American Radio Relay League, Inc. All Rights Reserved
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