ARRL

ARRL Letter

 

***************
The ARRL Letter
Vol. 28, No. 5
February 6, 2009
***************

IN THIS EDITION:

* + ARRL Executive Committee Issues Mobile Amateur Radio Operation
Policy Statement 
* + ARRL Announces Second Homebrew Challenge 
* + Look for the March Issue of QST in Your Mailbox 
* + Save the Date: ARRL National Convention to be Held at 2009 Dayton
Hamvention 
* + North Dakota to Offer State QSO Party in March 
* + Awards Conferred at 2009 ARRL Board of Directors Annual Meeting 
*  Solar Update 
*  IN BRIEF: 
      This Week on the Radio 
      ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration 
    + William E. Packard, NN9U, Wins January QST Cover Plaque Award 
    + Antarctic Station QRV Until February 18 
      Swedish Amateurs Granted New Privileges 

+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
<letter-dlvy@arrl.org>;
==>Editorial questions or comments only: S. Khrystyne Keane, K1SFA
<k1sfa@arrl.org>;
===========================================================

==> ARRL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE ISSUES MOBILE AMATEUR RADIO OPERATION
POLICY STATEMENT 

On January 30, at the instruction of the Board of Directors at its
January 2009 meeting, the ARRL Executive Committee adopted a policy
statement on mobile Amateur Radio operations. The statement addresses
the growing number of proposed state and local laws and ordinances
regulating the use of cellular telephone and text messaging,
inadvertently affecting Amateur Radio mobile communications
<http://www.arrl.org/govrelations/MobileAmateurRadioPolicyStatement.pdf>
. 

In its statement, the Executive Committee urges state and municipal
legislators to limit the scope of their proposals, limiting them to
devices such as full duplex wireless telephones and related handheld or
portable equipment. Alternately, it suggests that licensed Amateur Radio
operation be listed specifically as an exclusion to the proposed
regulations.

"At the start of each new session, you see a flurry of this type of
proposal in state legislatures across the country," said ARRL Regulatory
Information Manager Dan Henderson, N1ND. As of February 1, 2009,
Henderson said that the ARRL is aware of proposals in 11 states:
Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Montana, Texas, Utah,
Virginia and Wyoming, as well as several local city or town proposals.

"These proposals are usually intended to regulate cellular telephone and
text messaging by drivers as a matter of safety but, when they are
written in very broad terms, can include Amateur Radio mobile operations
in the 'net' they cast," Henderson continued. "The Executive Committee's
policy statement gives a good, concise background of the role the
Amateur Service plays in public safety and service communications. It
also highlights the differences between communications conducted by
cellular telephone and those using Amateur Radio. Finally, the statement
offers some suggested statutory language for state motor vehicle codes
which would protect Amateur Radio mobile operation."

The ARRL recognizes that driver inattention is a leading cause of
automobile accidents. The policy statement raises the fact that cell
phones utilize full duplex communications -- where the user is talking
and listening simultaneously. The Executive Committee statement says
"Two-way radio use is dissimilar from full-duplex cellular telephone
communications because the operator spends little time actually
transmitting; the time spent listening is more similar to, and arguably
less distracting than listening to a broadcast radio, CD or MP3 player.
There are no distinctions to be made between or among Amateur Radio,
public safety land mobile, private land mobile or citizen's radio in
terms of driver distraction. All are distinguishable from mobile
cellular telephone communications in this respect."

The ARRL Policy Statement also recognizes the responsibility of the
amateur community to conduct its activities in a manner that does not
create unsafe operation of their motor vehicle. "Safety has to be a top
concern at all times," Henderson concluded.

==> ARRL ANNOUNCES SECOND HOMEBREW CHALLENGE 

The first ARRL Homebrew Challenge, announced in the August 2006 issue of
QST, offered a prize for the best 5 W, 40 meter CW and voice transceiver
our readers could build. The only requirement was that the rig had to be
built for less than $50 of new, readily available parts. In 2009, ARRL
ups the ante in the Second Homebrew Challenge by upping the power limit
to 50 W. All entries are due no later than February 28, 2010
<http://www.arrl.org/qst/hbc/>.

"Low power (QRP) operation is fun, but often a little more power is even
more fun," said ARRL Technical Editor Joel Hallas, W1ZR. "For our new
challenge, we are asking readers to design, or adapt a published design
(with appropriate credit), and build a 50 W amplifier to follow a 5 W/40
meter transceiver. This could be used behind one of the radios from the
original challenge, or from other QRP radios at similar power level."
There will be two cash prizes for this challenge. In addition to the
prizes, the winners will receive the usual QST page rate for published
articles.

The amplifier must operate on 40 meters. It must operate as a linear
amplifier capable of accepting a QRP input signal and putting out a
minimum of 50 W PEP into a 50 ohm load. It must meet all FCC
requirements for spurious emissions. The amplifier must include control
circuitry to switch from transmit to receive through a single contact
closure and provide a path from antenna to receiver during receive mode.
Hallas suggested taking a look at the two part series by Rick Campbell,
KK7B, "Designing and Building Transistor Linear Power Amplifiers," in
the February and March 2009 issues of QST.

Hallas listed some basic requirements for the Homebrew Challenge: 
* It must meet all requirements while operating from a 13.8 V dc power
supply. 
* It must put out 50 W PEP on 40 meters with a 5 W PEP input. 
* It must be a linear amplifier with third order and higher
intermodulation products must be below -28 dBc (28 dB below the carrier)
as measured using the procedures described in the ARRL Lab product
review Test Procedures Manual
<http://www.arrl.org/members-only/prodrev/testproc.pdf>. 
* It must be capable of key down operation at 40 W CW output for 5
minutes without more than a 5 percent reduction in output level. 
* Single contact transmit/receive switching is required. 
* Parts must be readily available either from identified national
retailers or by mail order. No "flea market specials" allowed. 
* The total cost of all mechanical and electrical parts required for
duplication of the amplifier cannot exceed $125. 
* All entries must be received at ARRL Headquarters no later than
February 28, 2010. 
* The amplifier that meets all the basic requirements at the lowest cost
will receive a prize of $200. 
* An additional prize of $300 will be awarded for an amplifier that
meets all the basic requirements and, in the sole judgment of the
reviewers, provides the most useful mix of the following additional
attributes within the $125 cost limitation:
* * Full output with an input lower than 5 W, perhaps as low as 2 W, to
allow operation with other popular radios.
* * Use of aluminum oxide or other types of power transistors rather
than beryllium oxide. 
* * Operation on additional bands besides 40 meters. 
* * Operation in support of full break-in (QSK) mode. 

Hallas noted that some RF power transistors, and even some conduction
cooled vacuum tubes, are built on a beryllium oxide substrate or heat
conduction base. "Beryllium oxide is inert and safe if properly
handled," he said. "If crushed, drilled or filed, however, the resulting
dust can be harmful if breathed. Many new power transistors use an
aluminum oxide substrate that avoids this problem. It is recommended
that aluminum oxide be used if possible. If you do choose to use
beryllium based transistors for your amplifier, please treat them with
the respect that they deserve, and dispose of them as hazardous material
outside of normal household waste disposal channels if they fail or are
no longer needed."

Each entrant must submit the fully operational amplifier, as well as a
documentation package. This package should include a draft QST article
with a discussion of the design considerations and tradeoffs and a
description of the construction techniques. The article will also
include test and alignment steps, operating instructions, along with a
readable schematic with a list of all parts used, their source and
price.

Those who do not have the capability to measure the desired and
undesired output products accurately may submit amplifiers early for an
unofficial pre-test in the ARRL Lab. Hallas advised entrants allow two
weeks (from ARRL's receipt of the package) to be notified of the
results.

The station will first be evaluated in comparison to the basic
requirements by the ARRL Laboratory. Entries determined by the Lab to be
acceptable on the basis of FCC spectral purity and output requirements
will be further evaluated by the QST Technical Editorial Staff.

While the basic rules and evaluation criteria were provided in the
original announcement, Hallas said that there are always questions on
interpretation. "We have thus again provided a Web resource
<http://www.arrl.org/qst/hbc/> to provide the questions and answers
(FAQs) to all interested participants. Answers provided should be
considered a part of the rules and are binding on all entrants."

==> LOOK FOR THE MARCH ISSUE OF QST IN YOUR MAILBOX 

The March issue of QST, our annual antenna issue, is jam-packed with all
sorts of things today's Amateur Radio operator needs. From product
reviews to experiments to contesting, the upcoming issue of QST has
something for just about everyone. 

Jim Steible, K4DLI, and Pete Gaddle, W6XX, designers of the 160 meter
beam used on the 3Y0X DXpedition to Peter I, relate how the extreme
polar environment provided extreme antenna performance. If you have a
small area -- and a small budget -- be sure to check out the article by
Leo Shoemaker, K4KIO, detailing his five band G3TXQ broadband hexagonal
beam antenna. David Hannon, KE7TTT, recommends a vertical antenna that
requires no permanent mounting that is both easy and efficient.

If you've never participated in a contest but wondered what all the fuss
was about, or if you are the type to plan family vacations around the
contest calendar, you won't want to miss "This Month in Contesting" by
ARRL Contest Branch Manager Sean Kutzko, KX9X. This month, Sean features
a primer on the ARRL International DX Phone Contest; this contest runs
from 0000 UTC March 7-2400 UTC March 8. The results of the 2008 ARRL
September VHF QSO Party, the 2008 ARRL 10 GHz and Up Contest and the
2008 IARU HF World Championship are in. Did you top your score from last
year? How did your closest rival do? Also, find out about upcoming
contests in the Contest Corral. 

ARRL Test Engineer Bob Allison, WB1GCM, compares five analog HF/VHF
wattmeters in the March issue. According to the ARRL Lab test results,
"These reasonably priced HF/VHF wattmeters offer power and SWR
measurements at several power levels. Each model offers something
different, but one is sure to be a match for your station requirements."
Also in the March issue, ARRL Technical Advisor Bruce Prior, N7RR, takes
a look at six high end dual-lever keyer paddles: "Finely crafted from
top quality materials, these high end-dual-lever keyer paddles are
designed for the discerning CW operator. Some are better suited to heavy
fisted operators, while others reward a light touch."

Of course, there are the usual columns you know and expect in the March
QST: Hints & Kinks, The Doctor Is IN, How's DX, Vintage Radio, Hamspeak
and more. This month also features Technical Correspondence, the
Emergency Communications Course Honor Roll and the ARRL VEC Volunteer
Examiner Honor Roll. Look for your March issue of QST in your mailbox.
QST is the official journal of ARRL, the national association for
Amateur Radio. QST is just one of the many benefits of ARRL membership.
To join or renew your ARRL membership, please see the ARRL Web page
<http://www.arrl.org/join>. 

==> SAVE THE DATE: ARRL NATIONAL CONVENTION TO BE HELD AT 2009 DAYTON
HAMVENTION 

The ARRL National Convention will be held at the Dayton Hamvention May
15-17 at Hara Arena <http://www.hamvention.org/>. According to ARRL
Sales and Marketing Manager Bob Inderbitzen, NQ1R, the ARRL National
Convention will be filled with activities and exhibits. "Our host
organization, the Dayton Amateur Radio Association, has three big days
planned, chock-full of every bit of Amateur Radio you can think of,"
Inderbitzen said. "ARRL volunteers from across its 15 National Divisions
will be present, alongside thousands of out-of-towners who will make
Dayton their home-away-from-home during the event. The centerpiece of
ARRL's convention planning is ARRL EXPO -- a huge showcase of ARRL
program representatives and activities. Many new exhibits are being
planned, with special focus on operating and project-building." A
preview of what is planned for ARRL EXPO can be found at the ARRL EXPO
Web site <http://www.arrl.org/expo>.

The ARRL EXPO, located in the large exhibit area in the Ballarena Hall
(near the 400-numbered booths), will showcase exhibits and activities to
enhance the ham radio experience. Open to both ARRL members and
nonmembers, ARRL EXPO is packed with official ARRL program
representatives, activities and forums. Visit the ARRL bookstore for
popular publications and products, join the ARRL or renew your
membership, and pick up official ARRL merchandise. All who join the ARRL
or renew their membership at the Dayton Hamvention will receive a free
gift. 

Personnel from the ARRL DXCC Branch will be on hand to check DX cards
and applications. All cards will be eligible for checking -- including
old cards, cards for deleted countries and cards for 160 meters.
Applications will be limited to 120 cards (more cards will be checked as
time and volunteer Card Checkers are available). Check out the ARRL
Awards Web site for the latest program information and current forms
<http://www.arrl.org/awards/dxcc>.

Inderbitzen said that a special event operating station is planned, so
be sure to have a copy of your license on hand -- get in the hot seat of
W1AW/8 and get on the air! You can also meet W1AW Station Manager Joe
Carcia, NJ1Q, part of the team that supports the Hiram Percy Maxim
Memorial Station at ARRL Headquarters.

The ARRL Youth Lounge in the ARRL EXPO is the place to meet and
socialize with other young hams. Whether you're 1 or 21, the Youth
Lounge is sure to offer something that young hams will enjoy. Come to
chat with other hams, listen to music, grab a snack or participate in
one of the many activities, such as fox-hunts, scavenger hunts, Morse
code fun, a QSL card designing contest, crafts, prizes and more. Whether
or not you're licensed, you are welcome to come by and join the fun! If
you are looking for other young people at Hamvention, check out the
youth calling frequencies at 145.540 MHz (107.2 Hz CTCSS) primary and
146.430 (233.6 Hz CTCSS) secondary.

If you enjoy waxing-nostalgic over the gear of yesteryear, then drop by
the exhibit area to meet vintage equipment photographer Joe Veras,
K9OCO. He will be autographing of his new book, "50 Years of Amateur
Radio Innovation" <http://www.arrl.org/catalog/?item=0228>, recently
published by ARRL. There are some other "vintage" surprises planned, as
well, Inderbitzen said.

"If you can't make it to Dayton," Inderbitzen said, "you can still catch
all the latest news on the Convention's Weblog
<http://www.arrl.org/blog>. QST Editor Steve Ford, WB8IMY, will once
again be blogging about Hamvention. Proving you can indeed go home
again, Steve will regale readers with the adventures of staying with his
mother at his childhood home in Dayton." For the past few years,
thousands of readers have been entertained as Steve has related stories
about new gear making its debut at Hamvention, the weather in Dayton and
the overall feel of the event -- as well as the ever-popular antics at
"Casa de Mi Madre."

The ARRL will introduce a new blog at this year's National Convention:
ARRL Youth Editor Duncan MacLachlan, KU0DM, will blog from a young ham's
perspective. MacLachlan, who will be assisting former Youth Editor
Andrea Hartlage, KG4IUM, and her father Scott, KF4PWI, in the ARRL Youth
Lounge, will explore the Hamvention exhibits, forums and events, giving
his first-time take on the Hamvention experience. "Duncan's youth
perspective is a welcome addition to the ARRL National Convention team,"
Inderbitzen said. "We hope you'll explore all of Dayton's nooks and
crannies through his reporting."

ARRL staff are getting ready for all the excitement that a National
Convention brings. Teaming up with the Dayton Hamvention is sure to
bring everything to a fever pitch, so why not make plans to join in on
the fun? Travel and lodging information is available on the Hamvention
Web site <http://www.hamvention.org/travel.php>. 

==> NORTH DAKOTA TO OFFER STATE QSO PARTY IN MARCH 

Stations working on their Triple Play Award
<http://www.arrl.org/awards/> or Year of the State QSO Party Award
<http://www.arrl.org/awards/ysqso/> will want to be on the air on
Saturday, March 21 as North Dakota -- always a rare state -- will hold
their first QSO Party in 14 years.

"The North Dakota QSO Party (NDQP) is certain to put North Dakota on the
map -- and hopefully off the Needed List of many a deserving amateur,"
said ARRL Contest Branch Manager Sean Kutzko, KX9X. The contest is
sponsored by the North Dakota Radio Association (NDRA) with help from
several other North Dakota clubs.

Newly appointed North Dakota Section Manager Lynn Nelson, W0CQ, told
Kutzko that interest has been high for starting the event up again. "I
had many hams asking me to kick off a State QSO Party," Nelson said. "We
are encouraging North Dakota stations to work 20 meters in the afternoon
hours. This will help to tackle the demand of the state -- and its many
rare counties -- for several Amateur Radio awards, including the ARRL's
Triple Play and Year of the State QSO Party."

The North Dakota QSO Party runs from 1700 UTC Saturday, March 21-0100
UTC Sunday, March 22. All bands from 160-2 meters (except 60, 30, 17 and
12 meters) are acceptable. Complete rules and forms can be found on the
NDRA Web site <http://k0ln.com/>. Don't miss your chance to work one of
the rarest states in the country -- get in on the fun of the North
Dakota QSO Party!

==> AWARDS CONFERRED AT 2009 ARRL BOARD OF DIRECTORS ANNUAL MEETING 

At the 2009 Annual Meeting, the ARRL Board of Directors voted to convey
two awards for 2008: The Bill Leonard, W2SKE, Professional Media Award
and the ARRL Humanitarian Award.

* The Bill Leonard, W2SKE, Professional Media Award

Ted Randall, WB8PUM, was named the recipient of the Bill Leonard, W2SKE,
Professional Media Award. Every week, Randall hosts the QSO Radio Show,
featuring guests who have ties to the amateur community, such as country
music artist Ronnie Milsap, WB4KCG, Amateur Radio licensing instructor
Gordon West, WB6NOA, and Monitoring Times publisher Bob Grove
<http://www.tedrandall.com/>.

This annual award honors a professional journalist whose outstanding
coverage in TV, radio, print or multimedia best reflects the enjoyment,
importance and public service value of Amateur Radio. The award was
created as a tribute to the late CBS News President Bill Leonard, W2SKE.
Leonard was an avid Amateur Radio operator, most active on the air
during the 1960s and 1970s. As the recipient of the Bill Leonard Award,
Randall will receive a plaque and a cash prize of $500.

"I want to thank you all for this award, on behalf of the radio show,
more than for myself," Randall said. "I believe the award will add
credibility to the show and will help us continue to get to our goals.
This is just one of the many reasons why doing the QSO Radio Show is so
important to me. The folks who 'are' Amateur Radio and the ARRL have
stories to tell that the rest of the world needs to hear. Little on
radio today is authentic and compelling. The QSO Radio Show brings all
these special people into the homes and listening posts of people in
every continent. We are taking a story of goodwill and friendship, the
story of Amateur Radio, 'up close and personal' to millions of listeners
around the world. We are also collecting a fraternity of folks together,
around what comes natural to us, the radio. We saw this magic take place
in 2008 on Field Day, with Field Day locations calling in from
everywhere, including Iraq. Magicians appear to perform magic on stage,
but what these folks did is real magic!"

ARRL Media and Public Relations Manager Allen Pitts, W1AGP, said Randall
was cited for his ongoing coverage of Amateur Radio through his
profiling of key figures and personalities as host of the QSO Radio
Show: "Each week, Ted broadcasts interesting information, interviews and
news about the Amateur Radio world to the world. The power of his
shortwave broadcast medium was pleasantly made very real to me when,
following an interview, I was flooded with e-mails asking for more
information. Not only were they coming from the USA, but just as many
came from foreign countries such as China, Canada and Japan. Ted is a
tireless promoter of the Amateur Radio Service -- not just on the air,
but to every broadcast engineer and celebrity he meets."

* The ARRL Humanitarian Award

The Board voted to confer the 2008 ARRL Humanitarian Award to the
amateurs of the Sichuan Radio Sports Association, the Chinese Radio
Sports Association (CRSA)<http://www.crsa.org.cn/english.php> and the
many Amateur Radio operators in China who assisted with communications
support during the aftermath of the May 2008 earthquake in that country.

In the wake of the earthquake, the CRSA called on its members to "take
actions to ensure their Amateur Radio stations to operate properly, and
to the extent possible stand by on often used short-wave frequencies. If
any radio signal is heard from the disaster area, please do your best to
understand what is most needed by people in that area and report it to
the local government authority. If people in the surrounding areas need
to pass messages to their loved ones over the radio, please help them to
get in touch and get the messages across as soon as possible. Amateur
Radio stations in the disaster area and surrounding areas if in working
condition should be used unconditionally to assist the local earthquake
disaster relief authorities, and subject to permission by the said
authorities, to provide communications services to them. For emergency
communications purposes, Amateur Radio stations may also be used to pass
messages for local residents on a temporary basis until local
telecommunications services resume. Amateur Radio stations of all
regions should give way to and stand by for emergency communications."

According to the CRSA -- the Chinese IARU Member-Society -- Chinese
government officials and the news media recognized that when normal
communications failed after the earthquake, Amateur Radio operators
stepped in to provide vital links. CRSA acknowledged that the main
organizer of local Amateur Radio traffic, Luo Minglin, BY8AA,
"continuously coordinated VHF/UHF communications for a 100 km radius
from Chengdu, the capital of southwest China's province of Sichuan. More
repeaters were set up in both Beichuan and Mianyang -- among the worst
hit areas outside the epicenter -- to form an effective Amateur Radio
communication network."

Zhang Zhen, BG8DOU, said that right after the earthquake, "Two ham radio
operators drove to the center of the earthquake area and had a repeater
set up by the morning of May 13. This repeater enabled the transmission
of rescue instructions and status reports, and was a main communication
channel for public use. The repeater carried communications for the
Mayor of Mianzhu City who gave orders to those on the front line rescue
and recovery activity."

On May 12 at 1858 UTC, Liu Hu, BG8AAS, of Chengdu, reported that the
local UHF repeater in that town "keeps busy running after the quake. It
helps to direct social vehicles to transport the wounded from
Dujiangyan, Beichuan and other regions. Another UHF repeater also
started working in Mianyan, supported by generators, but they are going
to face a shortage of gas."

According to ARRL Programs and Services Committee Chairman Bruce Frahm,
K0BJ, the PSC Committee itself put forward the nomination. "We received
three nominations from the public for other groups or individuals,"
Frahm said, "but we as a committee felt the Chinese amateurs and their
organizations exemplified the highest level of dedication to public
service."

==>SOLAR UPDATE 

Tad "The slant Sun of February" Cook, K7RA, this week reports: We still
have had no hint of sunspots or sunspots to come, though there was some
geomagnetic activity on February 4 from a possible coronal mass
ejection, raising the planetary A index to 16 that day. Sunspot numbers
for January 29-February 4 were 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0 and 0 with a mean of 0.
The 10.7 cm flux was 69.3, 69.1, 69.4, 69.5, 69.1, 69.3 and 69.5 with a
mean of 69.3. The estimated planetary A indices were 4, 4, 7, 3, 2, 4
and 16 with a mean of 5.7. The estimated mid-latitude A indices were 3,
3, 4, 1, 0, 2 and 10 with a mean of 3.3. 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 William Cullen Bryant's "A Winter Piece"
<http://poetry.poetryx.com/poems/11716/>. 

__________________________________

==>IN BRIEF:

* This Week on the Radio: This week, the School Club Roundup is February
9-13. The Minnesota QSO Party and the FYBO Winter QRP Field Day are on
February 7. On February 7-8, look for the Vermont QSO Party, the 10-10
Winter Phone QSO Party, the Worldwide Peace Messenger Cities, the
British Columbia QSO Challenge, the New Mexico QSO Party and the FMRE
International RTTY Contest. The Delaware QSO Party is February 7-9, and
the North American Sprint (CW) and the FM Simplex Contest are February
8. Next week, the Valentine's Day Sprint and the YL-OM Contest are
February 13-14. The Asia Pacific Sprint and the FISTS CW Winter Sprint
are both February 14. On February 14-15, look for the CQWW WPX Contest,
(RTTY), the Northern New York QSO Party, the EU EME Contest, the New
Hampshire QSO Party, the Dutch PACC Contest, the Louisiana QSO Party,
the OMISS QSO Party and the RSGB 160 Meter Contest. The North American
Sprint is February 15 and the Classic Exchange is February 15-16. 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, February 22, 2009 for these online course sessions
beginning on Friday, March 6, 2009: Amateur Radio Emergency
Communications Level 1; Radio Frequency Interference; Antenna Design and
Construction; Technician License Course; Analog Electronics, and Digital
Electronics. 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/cep/student> or contact the Continuing Education
Program Coordinator <cce@arrl.org>;.

* William E. Packard, NN9U, Wins January QST Cover Plaque Award: The
winner of the QST Cover Plaque Award for January is William E. Packard,
NN9U, for his article "Morse Code: Efficient or Over the Hill?"
Congratulations, William! The winner of the QST Cover Plaque award --
given to the author or authors of the best article in each issue -- is
determined by a vote of ARRL members on the QST Cover Plaque Poll Web
page <http://www.arrl.org/members-only/QSTvote.html>. Cast a ballot for
your favorite article in the February issue by Saturday, February 28. 

* Antarctic Station QRV Until February 18: KC4USV, the Amateur Radio
station at McMurdo Station
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McMurdo_Station> on Ross Island in
Antarctica is now on the air. According to Bill Erhardt, K7MT, who is
stationed at McMurdo, the station boasts a new transceiver, amplifier
and antenna. "We set up the equipment on January 19, tested it and went
on the air," Erhardt said. "The station will be in operation on Sundays
on 14.243 MHz, starting at 0001 UTC. We had a nice pile up Sunday,
February 1 with US hams on the East Coast and in the Midwest." Erhardt
leaves McMurdo on February 18 and is unsure if the station will be on
the air over the Antarctic winter.

* Swedish Amateurs Granted New Privileges: On January 29, the Swedish
Post and Telecom Agency (PTS) announced that Amateur Radio operators in
that country will now have access to 50-52 MHz (6 meters) with a power
output limit of 200 W <http://www.pts.se/sv/Radio/Amatorradio/>. Before
the change, Swedish amateurs were allowed on the band only with a
special license at an additional cost. The Foreningen Sveriges
Sandareamatorer (SSA), Sweden's IARU Member-Society, also announced that
as of April 1, Swedish amateurs will gain access to 7.0-7.2 MHz (40
meters), bringing Sweden into line with the WRC-03 decision to shift
broadcasting stations in Regions 1 and 3 out of the 7100-7200 kHz band
and to reallocate the band exclusively to the Amateur Service in those
two regions as of March 29 <http://www.iaru.org/rel030703.html>. Each
country in Regions 1 and 3 is permitted to determine their own timeline
for the amateur allocation. While the band has been vacated by
commercial broadcasters, no country is required to give amateurs
privileges on those frequencies.

=========================================================== 
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!):
letter-dlvy@arrl.org
==>Editorial questions or comments: S. Khrystyne Keane, K1SFA,
k1sfa@arrl.org
==>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 2009 American Radio Relay League, Inc.
All Rights Reserved

 

The ARRL Letter

The ARRL Letter offers a weekly summary of essential news of interest to active amateurs that is available in advance of publication in QST, our official journal. The ARRL Letter strives to be timely, accurate, concise and readable.

Much of the ARRL Letter content is also available in audio form in ARRL Audio News.

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 and The American Radio Relay League.

Back issues published since 2000 are available on this page. If you wish to subscribe via e-mail, simply log on to the ARRL Web site, click on Edit Your Profile at the top, then click on Edit Email Subscriptions. Check the box next to The ARRL email newsletter, the ARRL Letter and you will receive each weekly issue in HTML format. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Delivery problems (ARRL member direct delivery only!): letter-dlvy@arrl.org

Editorial questions or comments: Rick Lindquist, WW1ME, at ww1me@arrl.org.

Plain-Text

The ARRL E-Letter e-mail is also available in plain-text version:

Outlook Express

1. From the Inbox view, select the Tools menu and the Options selection.

2. Click the Read tab

3. Check the Read All Messages In Plain Text box.  When you open the e-mail, it will be in plain text without images. Other e-mail programs may be able to make a Mail Rule for e-mail received from the address memberlist@www.arrl.org so that the plain-text-only display is selected automatically.

Outlook 2007

Use the same procedure as for Outlook Express, although the global option is under "Tools/Trust Center/E-mail Security".

Thunderbird

Use the menu item "View/Message Body As/Plain Text" or "View/Message Source" options.

OS X Mail (Mac)

Use the "View/Message/Plain Text Alternative" menu item.

GMail

Use the "Message text garbled?" link in the drop-down menu at the upper right of the displayed message block. pine, alpine Set "prefer-plain-text" in your ~/.pinerc configuration file: feature-list=..., prefer-plain-text, ...