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The ARRL Letter
September 23, 2010
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+ Available on ARRL Audio News

+ On the Air: United States Supports Secondary Amateur Radio Allocation at 461-469 and 471-478 kHz

The Federal Communications Commission and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration -- the spectrum regulators for United States private sector and government users, respectively -- have agreed to support a secondary MF allocation to the Amateur Radio Service at 461-469 kHz and 471-478 kHz at the 2012 World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC-12), to be held in Geneva, Switzerland from January 23-February 17. FCC and NTIA officials formally presented the proposal at a meeting of the Second Permanent Consultative Committee of the Inter-American Telecommunication Commission, held August 30-September 3 in Fortaleza, Brazil. Read more here.

ARRL Awards Committee Makes Statement on Dissolution of Netherlands Antilles

To clarify the administrative process by which the anticipated changes to the two existing Netherlands Antilles DXCC entities will be made, the ARRL Awards Committee has determined that at 0400 UTC (12:00 AM local time in the islands) on October 10, 2010, the two Netherland Antilles DXCC entities will be deleted. Commencing at 0400 UTC (12:00 AM local time) on October 10, 2010, operation from the islands of Curacao, Bonaire, Sint Maarten, Saba and St Eustatius will count for a yet-to-be-determined number of new entities under the DXCC List Criteria and Political Entities, Rule 1 and/or Rule 2 Geographic Separation Entities. When the Awards Committee determines what Rule 1 or Rule 2 actions apply, it will announce the final disposition of the entities on the DXCC list. The DXCC desk will not accept confirmations for these new entities until after January 1, 2011.

+ Public Service: 2010 Atlantic Hurricane Season Proves to Be a Busy One for Hams

Hurricane Igor as it moved toward the Canadian Maritimes on Tuesday, September 21. [Photo courtesy of NASA]

So far, with nine tropical storms and four hurricanes, the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season has indeed been a busy one. Beginning with Hurricane Alex in June, hams at WX4NHC -- the Amateur Radio station at the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida -- and weather spotters around the country have kept an eye on these storms. Hurricane Earl came in late August and early September, Hurricane Karl in September and now Hurricane Igor is making its way across the Canadian Maritimes. The 2010 Atlantic hurricane season officially began on June 1 and will continue through November 30. Read more here.

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+ HQ Happenings: Five New Section Managers to Meet in Newington for Training

This weekend, five newly elected or appointed Section Managers are in Newington for an orientation workshop. The primary purposes of the workshop sessions are to share ideas and to provide basic administrative, management, leadership and motivational training.

"The Section Manager Workshop is an orientation and training event for new Section Managers that have come on board within the last year or so," said ARRL Field Organization Team Supervisor Steve Ewald, WV1X. "The ARRL has conducted this training each year at HQ for the past several years, and it has been well received by past participants. The Membership and Volunteer Programs Department Staff and its Field Organization Team are the lead coordinators of the event. We also cover the responsibilities and functions of the Section Manager position, and the SMs are able to visit with ARRL Headquarters staff members and learn more about the many programs that the ARRL supports. The workshop sessions are presented by several ARRL Headquarters staff members who are experts in their respective areas."

The following five Section Managers are attending the orientation workshop: Nebraska Section Manager Art Zygielbaum, K0AIZ; North Carolina Section Manager Bill Morine, N2COP; Oklahoma Section Manager Kevin O'Dell, N0IRW; South Carolina Section Manager Marc Tarplee, N4UPF, and Southern Florida Section Manager David Fowler, K4DLF. Zygielbaum, Morine and Tarplee are current Section Managers; O'Dell and Fowler begin their terms October 1.

+ Tim Duffy, K3LR, to Receive RCA's Goldwater Award

Tim Duffy, K3LR, has been selected as the 2010 recipient of the Radio Club of America's Barry M. Goldwater Award. Here, Duffy operates CW on 160 meters -- his favorite mode and band -- during one of the many contests from his QTH in Western Pennsylvania. [Photo courtesy of Tim Duffy, K3LR]

The Radio Club of America (RCA) has named Tim Duffy, K3LR, of West Middlesex, Pennsylvania, as the recipient of its Barry Goldwater Amateur Radio Award. The Goldwater Award is given to an RCA member who is also a licensed amateur in recognition of a long record of service to the public through the use of Amateur Radio. He will receive the award at the RCA's 101st annual awards banquet held November 19 in New York City. Duffy -- an ARRL Life Member who became an RCA member in 1999 and serves on the RCA Board of Directors, as well as chairman of its Marketing Committee -- will also be inducted as an RCA Fellow this year. Read more here.

+ Nominations Now Being Accepted for the George Hart Distinguished Service Award

The George Hart Distinguished Service Award is named in honor of George Hart, W1NJM.

At its July 2009 meeting, the ARRL Board of Directors established the George Hart Distinguished Service Award to be given to an ARRL member whose service to the League's Field Organization is of the most exemplary nature. The Distinguished Service Award is named in honor of George Hart, W1NJM, long-time Communications Manager at ARRL Headquarters and chief developer of the National Traffic System. Read more here.

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On the Web: Hamfests and Conventions

This week, we've made several improvements to the Hamfest and Convention pages on our Web site, including quick and easy links to the Hamfest Planner, Application and Sanctioning information, as well as an updated version of the Speaker's Bureau.

You can quickly get to the Hamfest pages by going to the "Get Involved" section on the ARRL Web site.

Other highlights:

  • Added a clearer description of the benefits of ARRL Sanctioning
  • Added more call outs to Hamfest section
  • Links to the Hamfest Application from the ARRL Sanctioned page, as well as links to the Rules and Regulations.
  • One other improvement of note, if you visit www.arrl.org/get-involved, you'll see a direct link to the Hamfest pages from the first panel of the carousel.
+ PBS Show Features History Mystery with an Amateur Radio Twist

Chuck Roedel, WA2MXR, of Beverly Hills, Florida, contacted the PBS show History Detectives to discover more about this 4 inch square of material that could be a part of the US space race against Soviet Russia. [Screenshot from History Detectives]

In the PBS show History Detectives, a group of researchers helps people to seek answers to various historical questions they have, usually centering around a family heirloom, an old house or other historic object or structure. So when Chuck Roedel, WA2MXR, of Beverly Hills, Florida, had what he thought may be an artifact from the turning point in the US space race against Soviet Russia, he called on the detectives to help him sort it all out. The show featured Roedel and his history mystery back in June, and his segment was just made available to the public on the History Detectives Web site. Read more here.

+ ARRL to Welcome USTTI Students

Next week -- September 27-October 1 -- the ARRL will welcome students who want to learn how to administer and regulate Amateur Radio programs in their home countries. This course, offered by the United States Telecommunications Training Institute (USTTI) for learners from developing countries, will help the participants create, administer and foster an Amateur Radio Service in their countries. Read more here.

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+ Solar Update

The Sun, as seen on Thursday, September 23, 2010 from NASA's SOHO Extreme Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope. This MDI (Michelson Doppler Imager) image was taken in the continuum near the Ni I 6768 Angstrom line. The most prominent features are the sunspots. This is very much how the Sun looks in the visible range of the spectrum.

Tad "There's a little black spot on the Sun today" Cook, K7RA, reports: The autumnal equinox occurred early today at 0309 UTC. Conditions were good this week, with sunspots visible every day -- and with very little geomagnetic activity. The average daily sunspot numbers rose more than 24 points to 40, and average daily solar flux was up nearly five points to 82.9. The solar flux is expected to rise to 88 for the next few days, September 23-27. Geomagnetic activity should be unsettled to active for today and tomorrow, September 23-24, with the planetary A index for September 23-30 at 18, 18, 12, 6, 6, 8, 10 and 5. Bill Magruder, KD7KST, sent in an interesting link that allows the user to view live aurora from Yellowknife in Canada's Northwest Territories, which is at 62.433 degrees north latitude. Go here to have a look -- after dark, of course. Look for more information on the ARRL Web site on Friday, September 24. For more information concerning radio propagation, visit the ARRL Technical Information Service Propagation page. This week's "Tad Cookism" is brought to you by Gordon Sumner's King of Pain.

This Week on the Radio

This week:

  • September 24 -- NCCC Sprint Ladder
  • September 25-26 -- CQ Worldwide DX Contest (RTTY); Texas QSO Party
  • September 25 -- AGCW VHF/UHF Contest
  • September 27 -- QRP Homebrewer Sprint
  • September 28 -- 222 MHz Fall Sprint (local time)

Next week:

  • October 2 -- TARA PSK Rumble Contest; F9AA Cup (CW); EU Autumn Sprint (SSB)
  • October 2-3 -- ARRL EME Contest; California QSO Party; EPC Russia DX Contest; Oceania DX Contest (SSB); International HELL-Contest
  • October 3 -- F9AA Cup (SSB); UBA ON Contest (SSB); RSGB 21/28 MHz Contest; German Telegraphy Contest
  • October 5 -- ARS Spartan Sprint
  • October 6 -- 432 MHz Fall Sprint (local time)
  • October 7 -- SARL 80 Meter QSO Party

All dates, unless otherwise stated, are UTC. See the ARRL Contest Branch page, the ARRL Contest Update and the WA7BNM Contest Calendar for more info. Looking for a Special Event station? Be sure to check out the ARRL Special Events Station Web page.

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The ARRL Letter

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