*************** The ARRL Letter Vol. 28, No. 18 May 8, 2009 *************** IN THIS EDITION: * + ARRL Grassroots Legislative Action Committee Solicits Member Support for HR 2160 * + FCC Releases Unredacted BPL Case Studies after ARRL FOIA Request * + ARRL Southeastern Division Vice Director Sandy Donahue, W4RU (SK) * + DX Activities Abound at ARRL EXPO and National Convention * + Oregon Hams Participate in Statewide Disaster Drill * + Noted QST Author, DXpeditioner Lee Bergren, W0AR (SK) * + FCC Affirms Vanity Call Sign Rules * Solar Update * IN BRIEF: This Week on the Radio ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration + No ARRL Audio News on May 15 +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, K1SFA <email@example.com> =========================================================== ==> ARRL GRASSROOTS LEGISLATIVE ACTION COMMITTEE SOLICITS MEMBER SUPPORT FOR HR 2160 One of the biggest challenges that amateurs face is antenna restrictions -- those implemented by local governments and those originating from deed restrictions and building development covenants. As many hams know, the FCC's PRB-1 limited preemption order <http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/regulations/PRB-1_Pkg/prb-1.pdf> offers amateurs some relief when facing zoning and building restrictions; however, PRB-1 does not extend to include covenants, conditions and restrictions (known as CC&Rs). These deed and property use restrictions strongly and negatively affect the ability of Amateur Radio Service licensees to perform valuable emergency and disaster communications. Finding a method to extend the PRB-1 protections is a key component of the ARRL Legislative Action Program <http://www.arrl.org/govrelations/laprog-faq.html>. On April 29, Congresswoman Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX) introduced House Bill HR 2160 -- the Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Enhancement Act of 2009 <http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2009/04/30/10792/?nc=1>. If enacted into law, HR 2160 would instruct the Secretary of Homeland Security to undertake a study and report its findings to Congress within 180 days. The study would spell out uses and capabilities of Amateur Radio communications in emergencies and disaster relief. The study shall: * Include recommendations for enhancements in the voluntary deployment of Amateur Radio licensees in disaster and emergency communications and disaster relief efforts. * Include recommendations for improved integration of Amateur Radio operators in planning and in furtherance of the Department of Homeland Security initiatives. * Identify unreasonable or unnecessary impediments to enhanced Amateur Radio communications -- such as the effects of private land use regulations on residential antenna installations -- and make recommendations regarding such impediments. * Include an evaluation of Section 207 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-104, 110 Stat 56 ). * Recommend whether Section 207 should be modified to prevent unreasonable private land use restrictions that impair the ability of amateurs to conduct, or prepare to conduct, emergency communications by means of effective outdoor antennas and support structures at reasonable heights and dimensions for the purpose in residential areas. The bill does not automatically extend PRB-1 to include CC&Rs, but it takes a first big step in that direction by determining the extent that things such as CC&Rs impede the Amateur Service in performing public and emergency service communications. HR 2160 has been assigned to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. Getting the bill out of committee is the first major hurdle to overcome -- and that is where ARRL members play an essential role. As part of a phased campaign, members of the ARRL's Legislative Action Committee and Division Directors sent letters to some ARRL members earlier this week; these members reside in a congressional district whose Member of Congress serves on that committee. The next phase will include all ARRL members. This first set of members was encouraged to send letters expressing their support of HR 2160 to their congressional representative via Chwat & Company, the League's Washington legislative consultant. Due to security measures imposed on mail sent to congressional personnel, representatives from Chwat will hand deliver the letters to the respective Member of Congress. "Getting HR 2160 passed is going to be a challenging process -- and every ARRL member needs to be involved," said ARRL Regulatory Information Manager Dan Henderson, N1ND. "The actions this week by the Grassroots Legislative Action volunteers are just the first step in our journey into getting the bill signed into law." Amateur Radio operators across the US repeatedly demonstrate their commitment to public service and emergency communications. Through their work with Homeland Security activities, state and local Emergency Management offices, as well as with numerous private agencies, Amateur Radio operators make a difference. HR 2160 can go a long way toward assisting thousands of amateurs who are restrained unreasonably by CC&Rs, but it will take a concerted effort by all amateurs for this effort to be successful. For more information on HR 2160 or the Legislation Action Program, please contact Henderson via e-mail <firstname.lastname@example.org>. ==> FCC RELEASES UNREDACTED BPL CASE STUDIES AFTER ARRL FOIA REQUEST Earlier this month, the FCC released the redacted portions of the studies on which they relied with regard to its Broadband over Powerline (BPL) rulemaking in 2004 after ARRL filed an Freedom of Information Act request <http://www.arrl.org/news/files/BPL_FOIA_Request033109.pdf> on March 31 for the studies. In October 2007, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit heard ARRL's case against the Commission <http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2007/10/25/102/>, stating, among other things, that the FCC not only withheld the internal studies until it was too late to comment, but had yet to release portions of studies that may not support its own conclusions regarding BPL. The FCC claimed that the studies were "internal communications" that it did not rely upon in reaching its decision to adopt the BPL rules. In its April 2008 ruling, the Court ordered the FCC to release the studies <http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2008/04/25/10064/>. In its decision, the Court agreed with the ARRL that the FCC had failed to comply with the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) <http://biotech.law.lsu.edu/Courses/study_aids/adlaw/> by not fully disclosing for public comment the staff studies on which it relied and that "there is no APA precedent allowing an agency to cherry-pick a study on which it has chosen to rely in part." Writing for the three-judge panel of Circuit Judges Rogers, Tatel and Kavanaugh, Judge Rogers summarized in the Court's decision that "The Commission failed to satisfy the notice and comment requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act ('APA') by redacting studies on which it relied in promulgating the rule and failed to provide a reasoned explanation for its choice of the extrapolation factor for measuring Access BPL emissions." The Court concluded that "no precedent sanctions such a 'hide and seek' application of the APA's notice and comment requirements." Judge Tatel agreed with Judge Rogers, saying, "[I]n this very case the Commission redacted individual lines from certain pages on which it otherwise relied...there is little doubt that the Commission deliberately attempted to 'exclude [ ] from the record evidence adverse to its position'" After almost a year after the Court's decision, the FCC had done "literally nothing" about releasing the complete studies <http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2009/03/04/10685/>. When President Obama came into office in January 2009, new Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) guidelines <http://www.state.gov/m/a/ips/> were put in place. Using these new guidelines, the ARRL filed an FOIA request on March 31 for the studies. The FCC responded to the FOIA request and released the unredacted studies the last week of April. A look at the unredacted studies show that the FCC knew BPL was not a point source, but these same studies in redacted form show just the opposite -- information proving BPL was not a point source was deleted. In one study concerning Main.net's BPL system, the FCC clearly disregarded information provided by a BPL provider's Chief Technical Officer, considering the point -- "[i]f distance scaling were based on distance to the pole ground wire rather than the nearest part of the BPL system, measurements would have passed with 1 dB margin at the selected quasi-peak measurement location" -- as "invalid" <http://www.arrl.org/news/files/Redacted1.pdf>. Another unredacted study from 2003 in Allentown, Pennsylvania, plainly showed that BPL was not a point source, noting: "NOT A POINT SOURCE. Emissions exhibit no noticeable decay 230 m down from the coupler." In the redacted version, this information was deleted, but all other information, including a graph, was left intact <http://www.arrl.org/news/files/Redacted2.pdf>. A study regarding Access BPL showed the same thing, but all information had been redacted from the file, leaving just a blank page. The unredacted study concluded that "The tested overhead PLC devices do not act as point sources. Emission from line shows virtually no decay 230 m from coupler. Differential two-wire signal injection affects the polarization of radiated emissions from overhead devices" <http://www.arrl.org/news/files/Redacted3.pdf>. "Comparing the redacted and unredacted documents will take some time," ARRL Chief Executive Officer David Sumner, K1ZZ, said, "but these three sets of pages...show exactly what prompted Judge Tatel to say what he did. We are continuing to analyze all the documents and we'll see just what has been going on." ==> ARRL SOUTHEASTERN DIVISION VICE DIRECTOR SANDY DONAHUE, W4RU (SK) The ARRL is sad to report that Southeastern Division Vice Director Sandy Donahue, W4RU, of Dothan, Alabama, passed away on May 4. He was 63. Donahue, an ARRL Life Member, served as Vice Director since January 2002 and as Georgia Section Manager from 1997-2001. In his professional life, Donahue worked at a television station in Atlanta for almost 25 years before retiring. Licensed for almost 50 years, Donahue received his first call sign -- WA4ABY -- at age 15. Exhibiting a lifelong commitment to public service throughout his amateur career, he always supported the ARRL and the Amateur Radio Service. Donahue was a fixture at every major hamfest in Southeastern Division -- and many across the country -- as well as many of the smaller ones in his area, promoting the ARRL. He spent the weekend of May 2-3 at the BirmingHamfest 2009 <http://www.w4cue.com/fest.html>. Former Southeastern Division Director and current ARRL Honorary Vice President Frank Butler, W4RH, appointed Donahue as an Assistant Director in 1982. "We spent hours and hours together at the ARRL table at so many hamfests and conventions," Butler recalled. "Sandy became my Vice Director in 2002, and in the next six years, I got to really know him. Over the past 26 years, we must have sold more a ton of ARRL books, study guides, operating aids, pins, patches and stickers. Sandy was always promoting the League to hams, encouraging them to become active members of the ARRL. He took great pride in the number of people who joined the ARRL through him." Butler said that after a hard day's work at the ARRL booth, "all Sandy ever wanted was a good dinner! He loved to eat, and he showed me many fine places to do that, from Atlanta to Birmingham, to Orlando to Miami! I'm glad we got to do that again the last weekend of his life -- at the BirmingHamfest 2009." Current Southeastern Division Director Greg Sarratt, W4OZK, fondly remembered Donahue: "I was happy to say that I spent this past weekend with Sandy where he spent the last day of his life doing what he loved -- in the ARRL booth, representing the ARRL at the Birmingham, Alabama hamfest, catching up with old friends. Sandy was, as usual, in rare form all weekend, joking and having a good time." Sarratt said that on Sunday, May 3, "Breakfast began with Sandy surrounded by a group of friends, where he, as usual, did his dead level best to get the best of me with a joke. On this occasion, he managed to succeed, and, in fact, he continued to enjoy this until we parted ways at the conclusion of the hamfest. Sandy could relate to all hams, both old and young. He -- and his sense of humor -- will be sorely missed." ARRL Chief Executive Officer David Sumner, K1ZZ, said that even before Donahue sought elective office in the ARRL, "Sandy was a fixture at conventions and hamfests, promoting the League and supporting the association in any way he could. Sandy thought of the ARRL as his family, and he was an important part of it." Jeff Beals, WA4AW, was a long-time friend of Donahue's. "I've known Sandy for more than 25 years," he told the ARRL. "He was very, very devoted to Amateur Radio, especially the public service side: Emergency Communications, traffic handling and helping out wherever and whenever he could. We had a lot in common." Beals currently serves as an Assistant Section Manager and Affiliated Club Coordinator in the ARRL's Southern Florida Section. "Sandy had developed an interest in community theatre these past couple of years," Beals said. "He had been involved in a few productions with The Featured Players group <http://www.freewebs.com/featuredplayers/> in Dothan." ARRL Technical Relations Manager Brennan Price, N4QX, said that Donahue was one of the three ARRL Volunteer Examiners who administered his first license exam back in 1997: "He was helpful after the exam as well, always eager to share his experience with a variety of Amateur Radio activities with me and other impressionable young hams at the Georgia Tech Amateur Radio Club. While I suspect that his stories were sometimes accompanied by a degree of exaggeration for dramatic effect, I enjoyed them and will miss them." According to Beals, a graveside service will be held at 4 PM on Saturday, May 9 at Sunset Memorial Park, 1700 Barrington Rd, Midland City, Alabama. An additional service will be held on June 6 at 1 PM in conjunction with the Atlanta Hamfest at Jim Miller Park in Marietta, Georgia. For more information, please contact Beals via e-mail <email@example.com>. ==> DX ACTIVITIES ABOUND AT ARRL EXPO AND NATIONAL CONVENTION ARRL Membership and Volunteer Programs Manager Dave Patton, NN1N, reports that plans for a plethora of DX activities at the ARRL EXPO -- part of the 2009 ARRL National Convention at the Dayton Hamvention -- are wrapping up <http://www.arrl.org/expo>. "We are excited about the activities that will be taking place," he said. "Visitors to the EXPO will see a lot of activities relating to DX, including an expanded International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) <http://www.iaru.org/> area." The National Convention will take place May 15-17 at Hara Arena, located near Dayton, Ohio. The IARU area, led by incoming IARU President Tim Ellam, VE6SH, will feature each of the three IARU Regions. The Deutscher Amateur Radio Club (DARC) <http://www.darc.de/>, representing Region 1, will be running a world flag identification contest throughout the show. ARRL, representing Region 2, will sponsor a RUFZ <http://www.rufzxp.net/> CW copying competition throughout the event. The Japan Amateur Radio League (JARL) <http://www.jarl.or.jp/English/0-2.htm>, representing Region 3, will be on hand to check applications for the IARU's Worked All Continent (WAC) and 5-Band WAC awards <http://www.iaru.org/wac/>. According to Patton, they will check QSL cards and issue the award certificates on the spot. "The 2009 ARRL National Convention marks the first time we have offered the WAC and 5-Band WAC awards on the spot," Ellam said. "It is definitely exciting to be able to walk away with your award certificate in hand." To be eligible for WAC, applicants must submit QSL cards (no photocopies, please) confirming contacts with at least one other amateur in each of six continents: North America, South America, Asia, Europe, Oceania and Africa. The 5-Band WAC award recognizes amateurs who have made confirmed contacts with these continents on 80, 40, 20, 15 and 10 meters. JARL representatives will also check applications for certain JARL awards (AJD, WAJA, JCC, JCG, ADXA and ADXA-Half) and issue them at the convention. JARL staff members Masa Ebisawa, JA1DM, and Hiro Tamama, JA1SLS, will check applications for other JARL awards at the JARL corner; certificates for these awards will be mailed from JARL headquarters. Ebisawa and Tamama will be glad to answer questions about JARL activities, as well as the reciprocal licensing procedures. Applicants for JARL awards do not need to have the QSL cards present; a list showing the call signs of stations worked, date, band and mode (or other data required by each award) of the contacts is sufficient. A statement making an oath that the QSL cards of the contacts listed are in the possession and that the items are correctly listed should be attached to the application. Applicants may use a DXCC Record Sheet for their QSL card list. The JARL award fee is $16. Check out the JARL Web site for more information about JARL awards <http://www.jarl.or.jp/English/4_Library/A-4-2_Awards/Award_Main.htm>. ARRL staff and DXCC Card Checkers will offer full DXCC card checking and award applications as always, and will also be able to check applications and QSLs for the Worked All States (WAS) <http://www.arrl.org/awards/was/> and the VHF/UHF Century Club (VUCC) <http://www.arrl.org/awards/vucc/> awards. Visitors to the ARRL EXPO will be able to check out the Logbook of the World (LoTW) "Call Sign Lookup." This nifty program will allow anyone to see how many times LoTW users have submitted their call sign to the 222 million QSO log database! ARRL staff will also be able to assist with LoTW signup and problems throughout the weekend. For those who have not yet signed up to use LoTW, bring a copy of your license to show to staff and they will be able to help expedite the sign-up process <http://www.arrl.org/lotw>. For the first time ever, ARRL members will be able to drop off their QSL cards to be sent through the ARRL Outgoing QSL Bureau <http://www.arrl.org/qsl/qslout.html>. If you have QSLs that you would like to send through the ARRL Outgoing QSL Bureau (your QSLs going to foreign stations --no US-US QSLs please), you can save the shipping cost to ARRL by bringing them to Dayton and the League will transport your cards to the Bureau in Newington. In order to take advantage of this exciting benefit, all of the standard QSL Bureau rules must be followed: Cards must be sorted by DXCC country; they must go to countries where a bureau exists, and you must be an ARRL member to use the Outgoing QSL Bureau. Patton said that hams utilizing this service do not need to box the cards, but they should be wrapped with rubber bands; ARRL will weigh the cards on-site in the ARRL EXPO area. The rates are $5 for the first .5 pounds of cards or portion thereof. Keep in mind that approximately 75 cards weigh .5 pounds. The rates increase to $10 for one pound, and then $5 for each additional half-pound. For example, a package containing 1.5 pounds of cards should include the fee of $15. A package of only 10 cards or fewer costs only $1.50, 11-20 cards are $2.50 and 21-30 cards are $3.75. Members can pay for this service via check, cash or credit card. Why not make 2009 your year to go to Dayton? Where else can you experience all the fun and excitement of the ARRL EXPO, the 2009 ARRL National Convention and the Dayton Hamvention under one roof? It's not too late to make plans to join us in Dayton May 15-17. ==> OREGON HAMS PARTICIPATE IN STATEWIDE DISASTER DRILL The State of Oregon conducted a full-scale week long exercise April 24-30, simulating a 9.2 magnitude earthquake on the Cascadia Subduction Zone <http://www.pnsn.org/HAZARDS/CASCADIA/cascadia_zone.html>. According to Tillamook County Emergency Management Director Gordon McCraw, WX7EM, if an earthquake struck the zone, it would cause "major destruction" from the Cascade Mountains all the way to the West Coast. Instead of focusing on the actual disaster, the exercise instead concentrated on the 72 hours after the event. This, officials said, would put the primary focus on life-saving response and debris removal, as well as mass-casualty and short-term recovery. The Cascadia Subduction Zone -- a very long sloping fault that stretches from mid-Vancouver Island to Northern California -- separates and connects the Juan de Fuca Plate and North American Plate. The Zone is creating new ocean floor off the Washington and Oregon coasts; as more material wells up along the ocean ridge, the ocean floor is pushed toward and beneath the continent. "The simulation -- codenamed Cascade Peril -- included a major tsunami striking the coastline," McCraw said. "Such an event would result in a severe disruption to local utilities, including electricity and phone services, so local Amateur Radio operators were called upon to relay message traffic from the Tillamook County Sheriff's Office Command Center to the Incident Command Team. From there, officials evaluated the needs request and forwarded the traffic on to the Regional Facility that had been set up at a National Guard Base near Cannon Beach, Oregon. Emergency Management officials then consolidated these requests and sent them to the State Emergency Management Office in Salem." McCraw said that officials participating in Cascade Peril expected that if this were an actual event, roads would be affected, so as part of the simulation, the US Coast Guard dispatched a helicopter to the Tillamook Airport. There it picked up three Tillamook area Amateur Radio operators and flew them to Camp Rilea National Guard Base in Warrenton, about 65 miles north of Tillamook. At Camp Rilea, the hams established communications on 2 meters and Winlink between all facilities. "Amateurs relayed message traffic on voice, and many new hams used Winlink for the first time, having received their license only a couple months prior to the exercise," McCraw said. "In Tillamook County, we used 11 hams at two locations. Four Tillamook hams at Camp Rilea participated with hams from neighboring Clatsop County. These hams sent and received a total of 37 messages on Friday and 32 messages on Saturday before the exercise was terminated around noon." In the months leading up to the exercise, McCraw said Tillamook County installed amateur stations at the Tillamook County Sheriff's Office -- home of the Emergency Operations Center and the back-up 911 center -- and at the primary regional 911 center in downtown Tillamook, where the Incident Command Team operates during disasters. "Because of the excellent service the Amateur Radio community provided during the December 2007 storm events that saw a severe disruption of landline and cell phone service in many coastal communities, including Tillamook County, Emergency Management officials installed the Amateur Radio stations at these facilities," McCraw said. "Both the county and the state recognized the capabilities Amateur Radio offered and they provided some of the equipment needed to install these stations." McCraw said that Tillamook County has been called the most "disaster rich" county in Oregon: "This past November, December and January, Tillamook County experienced three floods and a severe snow event that resulted in Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski declaring these areas disaster zones. As has now become standard practice during activation of the Incident Command Team, Amateur Radio operators were on the scene, attending all briefings and manning the stations until the event was terminated." ARRL District Emergency Coordinator for Oregon's District One David Kidd, KZ7OZO, told the ARRL that Tillamook County is "very lucky" to have Gordon McCraw, WX7EM: "Not only is Gordon the Emergency Coordinator (EC) for the County ARES unit, but he is now the County Emergency Management Director after serving as a Senior Deputy since his arrival in Oregon. Gordon brings his vast experience in law enforcement and emergency management to the county from his time spent working in both fields during Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. This is important since Tillamook County has been the focal point for several severe weather events in the recent past. Gordon takes is job very seriously and has his people train hard so they are ready for the real thing." Kidd said that McCraw -- appointed as EC in April 2007 -- has helped to build a very effective unit "from scratch" -- the county had not had an ARES unit for more than 10 years before McCraw's appointment. "Tillamook County is a rural county and volunteers are an absolute necessity to get the mission accomplished here," McCraw concluded, "and Amateur Radio operators are at the top of that list. I consider them amateurs in name alone." ==> NOTED QST AUTHOR, DXPEDITIONER LEE BERGREN, W0AR (SK) Albert "Lee" Bergren, W0AR (ex-W9AIW, W0AIW), of Kansas City, Missouri, passed away May 1 after a brief illness. He was 93. An electronics engineer, author, designer and advisor with special accomplishments in the field of antenna and radio amplifier design, Bergren led or participated in many of the first Amateur Radio DXpeditions. In 1956, Bergren and a team of five amateurs activated Socorro Island, XE4A, in 1956 <http://p1k.arrl.org/cgi-bin/topdf.cgi?id=38695&pub=qst>. Prior to this activation, the island had only seen Amateur Radio activity when a Spanish-speaking radio operator with a temporary Mexican weather station had a limited number of contacts on 40 meters phone. In 1959, Bergren also activated the Seychelles Islands as VQ9AIW in 1959. In 2002, he was inducted into the CQ DX Hall of Fame as Member #41 <http://www.cq-amateur-radio.com/dxhof.html>. Other than keeping up with his friends on the air, DX was always Bergren's focus in Amateur Radio. After the bands opened up after World War II, he received DXCC #191 for Mixed Mode and DXCC #124 for voice in 1948. According to the June 1965 issue of QST, Bergren earned DXCC Honor Roll with 313 countries. In 1963, Bergren developed the multi-element cubical quad antenna, and later that year, QST published his article "The Multielement Quad" <http://www.arrl.org/members-only/tis/info/pdf/6305011.pdf>. The antenna had a driven element, reflector and two directors. Horizontal crossarms were broken by insulators to minimize coupling to the antenna. Continuous wire loops with no stubs were used for each element. In a June 2002 QST article, Bergren recalled "The First Field Day" in 1933 <http://p1k.arrl.org/cgi-bin/topdf.cgi?id=102850&pub=qst>, remembering that back then, only portable stations were allowed to participate. Together with Bill Bishop, W0UF (SK), Bergren owned and served as President of Radio Industries, a company that manufactured the Loudenboomer linear amplifier and antenna rotator in the early 1960s <http://www.qsl.net/la5ki/louden.htm>. The company was also known for two-way 30 mc radios used for village communication during the Vietnam War and two-way 160 mc communication radios for railroads and pipeline controls that they designed and manufactured. Bergren and Bishop sold the company to Hallicrafters in the mid-1960s. ARRL Youth Editor Duncan MacLachlan, KU0DM, knew Bergren well. "Lee was an amazing man with an amazing story," MacLachlan said. "He taught me much in the two years I knew him, and even at 93 he left too soon. Lee spent 78 years in ham radio, dedicating his time, talent and treasure to the hobby. He will be sincerely missed in the Kansas City amateur community, especially among QCWA Chapter 35 and Kansas City DX Club. Lee was the greatest man one could be, and he now belongs to the ether." Bergren was a Life Member of the ARRL and the Quarter Century Wireless Association (QCWA). He co-founded the Kansas City DX Club in 1952 and the Mid-Continent Chapter 35 of QCWA in 1967. Bergren is survived by his wife Betty. A memorial service is planned for 10:30 AM Tuesday, May 5 at the Lutheran Church of the Resurrection, 9100 Mission Rd, Leawood, Kansas. Donations may be made to the American Heart Association. ==> FCC AFFIRMS VANITY CALL SIGN RULES The FCC dismissed a petition filed by Richard Essen, N6CX (ex-AB3IQ), of Silver Spring, Maryland, regarding the issuance of a vanity call sign to Allan Corderman <http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-09-997A1.pdf >. In its decision, the FCC said that Corderman's application for his new call sign was valid and the call sign was "properly granted" by the FCC. On December 22, 2006, Winfield Brantley of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, surrendered his call sign -- W3ZD -- when the FCC approved his application for a new call sign. On December 10, 2008, Allan Corderman, WB1EFN, of New Orleans, Louisiana, applied for W3ZD, stating he was a close relative of a former holder of the call sign. Section 97.19(c)(3) of the FCC rules regarding vanity call signs state that while a surrendered call sign is not available to the vanity call sign system for two years, certain relatives of the deceased former holder or clubs (in certain circumstances) may apply for the call sign in the two year "grace period" <http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/cfr_2002/octqtr/pdf/47cfr97.19.pdf>. Corderman stated in his application that he was the son of Roy C. Corderman, now deceased, and a former holder of W3ZD. In January 2009, Richard Essen, N6CX (ex-AB3IQ), of Silver Spring, Maryland, petitioned the FCC, asking that the Commission reconsider Corderman's application for W3ZD, saying that the application should not have been granted because the exception in the vanity call sign system's rules apply only to close survivors of the most recent person to hold the call sign, and not to close relatives of any deceased prior holder. The FCC disagreed with Essen's petition, saying that "[w]hen the Commission adopted Section 97.19(c)(3), it stated that it was granting priority to 'close relatives of deceased holders,' and did not say that the priority applied only to close relatives of certain deceased holders. The rule has always been interpreted to afford priority to close relatives of any deceased former holder." According to Section 97.19(c)(3), "Except for an applicant who is the spouse, child, grandchild, stepchild, parent, grandparent, stepparent, brother, sister, stepbrother, stepsister, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, or in-law, and except for an applicant who is a club station license trustee acting with the written consent of at least one relative, as listed above, of a person now deceased, the call sign shown on the license of [a] person now deceased is not available to the vanity call sign system for 2 years following the person's death, or for 2 years following the expiration of the license grant, whichever is sooner." ==>SOLAR UPDATE Tad "Sunshine trickles on the floor" Cook, K7RA, this week reports: A Solar Cycle 23 spot appeared for two days -- April 29-30 -- in an area that soon rotated out of view. Sunspot numbers were 15 and 12, but for the last seven days, we haven't seen any spots. This may end soon -- we get the advance word because of the STEREO mission <http://stereo.gsfc.nasa.gov/where.shtml>, which is gradually able to see more and more of the sun not visible from Earth. On May 5-6, the STEREO B satellite was able to see an eruption from an active region around the eastern edge of the Sun, outside of our view. If sunspots emerge, they will be Solar Cycle 24 spots, due to their relatively high latitude. Sunspot numbers for April 30-May 6 were 12, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0 and 0 with a mean of 1.7. The 10.7 cm flux was 69.4, 68.5, 68.3, 68.6, 68, 68 and 68.7 with a mean of 68.5. The estimated planetary A indices were 3, 5, 5, 5, 4, 2 and 6 with a mean of 4.3. The estimated mid-latitude A indices were 2, 2, 3, 2, 2, 2 and 6 with a mean of 2.7. 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 John Clare's "May" <http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/may-2/>. __________________________________ ==>IN BRIEF: * This Week on the Radio: This week, look for another running of the NCCC Sprint Ladder on May 8. The FISTS Spring Sprint is May 9. On May 9-10, look for the SBMS 2 GHz and Up WW Club Contest (local time), the CQ-M International DX Contest, the VOLTA WW RTTY Contest, the Nevada Mustang Roundup and the 50 MHz Spring Sprint. The SKCC Weekend Sprint is May 10. Next week is the Feld Hell Sprint on May 16. The EU PSK DX Contest, His Majesty King of Spain Contest (CW) and the Manchester Mineira All America CW Contest are May 16-17. The Run for the Bacon QRP Contest is May 18 and the NAQCC Straight Key/Bug Sprint and QRP Minimal Art Session are May 21. 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, May 24, 2009, for these online course sessions beginning on Friday, June 5, 2009: Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 1; Radio Frequency Interference; Antenna Design and Construction; Ham Radio (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 <firstname.lastname@example.org>. * No ARRL Audio News on May 15: Due to staff attendance at the ARRL National Convention and Dayton Hamvention, there will be no ARRL Audio News on May 15. The ARRL Letter will be distributed that day. ARRL Audio News will resume regular distribution on May 22. =========================================================== 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!): email@example.com ==>Editorial questions or comments: S. Khrystyne Keane, K1SFA, firstname.lastname@example.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.
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