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ARRL Letter

The ARRL Letter
July 28, 2022
John E. Ross, KD8IDJ, Editor
ARRL Home PageARRL Letter ArchiveAudio News


QST Now Offering a Column for Radio Clubs

ARRL invites you to be part of "Club Station," the newest column in QST. This column is a space for radio clubs to share the different ways in which they're successful to help other clubs grow. They do this by offering advice, and practical solutions to common experiences and problems.

In each issue, a different club will share how they undertook a specific activity or project, how and why it was successful, and any challenges they may have had to overcome throughout the process. Some

The York County Amateur Radio Society (YCARS) in South Carolina provides a welcoming environment for members to learn new skills. Here, members are learning how to program a Raspberry Pi. Be sure to read "Club Station" in the September issue of QST to find out more about YCARS and how they rebuilt their radio club.

examples include, but aren't limited to, successful community club projects, innovative ways to attract new members, getting youth involved with ham radio, and developing active hams.

"Clubs are the backbone of the amateur radio community," said ARRL Field Services Manager Mike Walters, W8ZY. "If your club is doing something that will inspire other clubs, we want to hear from you!"

"In order to help you tell your story, ARRL has published author guidelines that are geared toward 'Club Station,' and they include a club profile form," said QST Editor Leanna Figlewski, KC1RMP. Both of these documents can be found at "You don't have to have writing experience to be published in QST. If your submission is accepted, our editorial staff will work with you to get your story ready for publication."

All clubs are welcome to participate. The first iteration of "Club Station" appeared in the August 2022 issue of QST ( and includes more information about what members can expect to see from the column.

If you have any questions, contact us at We look forward to hearing from you about your radio club!

Hams on SOTA Event Help Prevent Major Forest Fire

While participating in the Black Hills Amateur Radio Club's (ARC) annual Summits on the Air (SOTA) event in South Dakota on July 16, 2022, two amateur radio operators helped spot a potential forest fire.

Ryan Lindblom, KE0LXT, President of the Black Hills ARC, and Christopher Jaques, KD0RAS, had made their trek to Cicero Peak. Just before heading back down, they noticed what might be smoke or dust to the south near Hot Springs. Lindblom made a contact on their simplex frequency to ask a local amateur radio operator if there had been any reports of Forest Service activity in the area.

An off-duty ranger was monitoring a local ham repeater from his home, heard traffic from Cicero Peak, and called in the alert. A fire crew and a helicopter were able to contain a small fire 2.5 miles south of Pringle, South Dakota.

Ward Hall, WC0Y, attending the Black Hills SOTA weekend for his second year, reported that a forest ranger on Bear Mountain stepped out of the ranger tower to greet him, but at the time, was busy monitoring firefighting traffic.

"I could hear the radio activity while I was on the ground near the tower," said Hall. "The ranger later told me that the Forest Service was alerted to a small fire when an off-duty ranger was monitoring a local ham repeater and heard the traffic from Cicero Peak." Hall said the ranger credited the ham activity for an early alert that allowed them to address the fire while it was small. "He was very appreciative of how the ham activity helped them and asked that I pass it on," Hall added.

ARRL Dakota Division Director Bill Lippert, AC0W, applauded the work of the amateur radio operaters for early reporting of what could have been a major fire, as well as credited the Forest Service for their quick response.

The Black Hills Amateur Radio Club had 12 people participating in their Black Hills SOTA weekend. The club has 75 members and covers the Black Hills region of South Dakota, which is in the southwest corner of the state. They are headquartered in Rapid City, South Dakota, and they are an ARRL Affiliated Club.

ARRL Field Day 2022 Contacts Rise to Over 1.2 Million

Updated numbers from ARRL Field Day 2022 now show 1,235,265 total reported contacts as of July 26, 2022.

ARRL Contest Program Manager Paul Bourque, N1SFE, reported that 4,774 Field Day entries have been submitted, and there were 28,250 Field Day participants.

The class breakdown is as follows:

1,141 Class A (club / non-club portable)

598 Class B (one or two person portable) and Battery (one or two person portable)

56 Class C (mobile)

2,093 Class D (home stations)

735 Class E (home stations using emergency power)

151 Class F (Emergency Operations Centers)

The last day to submit entries was Tuesday, July 26, so the numbers will change in the coming weeks.

Bourque added that 237 entries are missing, either the required dupe sheet (or in lieu of that, a Cabrillo-formatted log) or supporting documentation for claimed bonus points. He encourages all entrants to check the ARRL Field Day Entries Received page at to verify that their entry has been accepted, and if it is complete or pending any supporting documentation.

Additional documentation and log files can be added to previously submitted Field Day entries by using the link that was provided in the confirmation email that was received upon submittal. Any questions regarding Field Day entries should be directed to

Amateur Radio in the News

ARRL Public Information Officers, Coordinators, and many other member-volunteers help keep amateur radio and ARRL in the news.

"Amateur radio group holds Field Day to test readiness" / Up and Coming Weekly (North Carolina), July 12, 2022. -- The Cape Fear Amateur Radio Society is an ARRL Affiliated Club.

"Stanly Amateur Radio Club hosts Field Day at Morrow" / The Stanley News & Press (North Carolina), July 18, 2022. -- Stanly County Amateur Radio Club (K4OGB) is an ARRL Affiliated Club.

"Ham radio enthusiasts connect in West Virginia" / The Herald-Dispatch (West Virginia), July 25, 2022. -- The Mountaineer Amateur Radio Association is an ARRL Affiliated Club.

"Local ham participates in national radio program for teachers" / The Crescent-News (Ohio), July 25, 2022.

"NORTHERN NEW YORK AMATEUR RADIO ASSOCIATION TO HOLD HAMFEST" / Hamilton County Express (New York) July 27, 2022 -- Northern New York Amateur Radio Association.

Share any amateur radio media hits you spot with us.

ARRL Podcasts Schedule

The latest episode of the ARRL On the Air podcast (Episode 31) provides an overview of the 222 MHz frequency band.

The latest edition of the ARRL Eclectic Tech podcast (Episode 65) features a discussion about lightning protection with Ron Block, NR2B.

The On the Air and Eclectic Tech podcasts are sponsored by Icom. Both podcasts are available on iTunes (iOS) and Stitcher (Android), as well as on Blubrry -- On the Air | Eclectic Tech.


The 35th Annual Satellite Educators Association (SEA) Conference will be held on July 29 - 30, 2022. This year's theme is "Earth Speaks -- We Listen!" The event is hosted by the Charter College of Education at California State University in Los Angeles. This year's convention will feature Fredric Raab, KK6NOW, presenting "Classroom Activities with the AMSAT CubeSat Simulator." Rabb will explore how to engage students with CubeSat operation and transmission of data using the AMSAT CubeSat Simulator. The presentation will highlight the work by the CubeSatSim educational materials team of Paul Graveline, K1YUB; Alan Johnston, KU2Y; Fredric Raab, KK6NOW; Mark Samis, KD2XS, and David White, WD6DRI. SEA is an organization of educators supporting science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) learning for pre-kindergarten to post-graduate students using real-world applications from satellites and satellite data. -- Thanks to Paul Stoetzer, N8HM, at AMSAT for the updated information

In Brief...

Oh, that feeling of accomplishment when you've built your own radio! Charlie Holte of Stevens Point, Wisconsin, built an ARRL receiver kit at KidVenture, and hands-on exhibit area for children attending EAA AirVenture.

The annual EAA AirVenture is underway in Oshkosh, Wisconsin through Sunday, July 31, 2022, and amateur radio is represented throughout the air show. An ARRL "Radio Communications" exhibit is supported by member-volunteers in Hangar B (booth #2152), and has attracted hundreds of attendees seeking information about becoming a ham. ARRL is posting photos from the event to its Facebook page. Children attending AirVenture can build a small ARRL radio receiver kit designed by Levi Zima, KN4YHS, as part of KidVenture, a hands-on exhibit area at AirVenture. Among the other ham radio exhibitors and participants are Icom America, Ham Radio Outlet, and West Mountain Radio. Look for special event stations on the air from AirVenture including W9W at the historic War Birds of America aircraft display and supported by Icom America (40 - 10 meters near 7.225, 14.250, 21.235, and 28.425 MHz), and W9ZL, organized by members of the Fox Cities Amateur Radio Club (on, or near, 7.250, 14.270, and 50.150 MHz).

On the weekend of September 10 - 11, 2022, the Sommerkamp Facebook Group is inviting all amateur radio operators to participate in the Sommerkamp Memorial Activity.
The on-air event is to honor Wolfgang Sommerkamp, DJ2YL (SK), the founder of the Sommerkamp Radio company who passed away in 2021. Activity will be on 80 meters, 40 meters, 20 meters, 15 meters, 11 meters, 10 meters, and 2 meters with frequencies:

  • 7.101 MHz

  • 14.301 MHz

  • 21.301 MHz

  • 28.301 MHz

  • 144.301 MHz

Organizers emphasized this is not a contest and there is nothing to win. The on-air memorial is designed as a "friendly get -together on the airwaves" to share what equipment you use and when you purchased it and, if you are a longtime Sommerkamp radio owner, and how you acquired your radios. More information about the event is available at their special website or at the Sommerkamp Facebook page.

The K7RA Solar Update

Tad Cook, K7RA, of Seattle, Washington, reports for this week's ARRL Propagation Bulletin:

Although images of the sun this week showed plenty of sunspots, only two new spots emerged: one on July 21, and another on July 25.

Average daily sunspot number declined from 137.3 to 91.1, and the average daily solar flux softened by 50 points to 107.6.

Geomagnetic indicators began this reporting week fairly active, with planetary A index at 22, then it quickly quieted down to an average of 11.7 for the week, higher than the 9.4 average reported last week. Average middle-latitude A index increased from 9 to 10.4.

[Photo courtesy of NASA SDO/HMI]

A look back a year ago shows this cycle is progressing nicely. In ARLP030 in 2021 average daily sunspot number was just 48.9, and average daily solar flux only 81.3.

A year prior, the average daily sunspot number in 2020 was just 3.1! That is because there were five days with no sunspots, and then two days with a sunspot number of only 11, which is the minimum non-zero sunspot number.

A sunspot number of 11 does not mean 11 sunspots. It means there was just one sunspot group (which counts for 10 points) and one sunspot in that group (counting for 1), producing a total of 11, because of the arcane historical method of counting sunspots.

Predicted solar flux shows it peaking at 130 on August 11. Predicted flux is 98 on July 28, 96 on July 29 - 30, 98 again on July 31 and August 1, 96 on August 2 - 3, 98 on August 4, then jumping to 115 on August 5 - 6, 113 on August 7 - 8, then 120, 125, 130 and 125 on August 9 - 12, 120 on August 13 - 15, 118 on August 16 - 17, then 114 and 110 on August 18 - 19, 108 on August 20 - 21, then 106 and 102 on August 22 - 23, 100 on August 24 - 27, and 108 on August 28 - 29.

Predicted planetary A index is 8 on July 28-29, 12 on July 30, 8 on July 31 and August 1, 5 on August 2 -3, 8 on August 4, 5 on August 5 -10, 8 on August 11 -12, 5 on August 13 - 16, 22 on August 17, 15 on August 18 - 19, 8 on August 20 -21, 5 on August 22 - 25, 10 and 12 on August 26 - 27, and 5 on August 28 - 29.

Sunspot numbers for July 21 - 27, 2022 were 124, 107, 96, 80, 100, 78, and 53, with a mean of 91.1. 10.7-centimeter flux was 121.7, 114.7, 110.5, 107.1, 102.3, 98.8, and 98, with a mean of 107.6. Estimated planetary A indices were 22, 11, 17, 9, 6, 8, and 9, with a mean of 11.7. Middle latitude A index was 14, 11, 15, 9, 8, 7, and 9, with a mean of 10.4.

Send your tips, questions, or comments to

A comprehensive K7RA Solar Update is posted Fridays on the ARRL website. For more information concerning radio propagation, visit the ARRL Technical Information Service, read "What the Numbers Mean..." and check out the Propagation Page of Carl Luetzelschwab, K9LA.

A propagation bulletin archive is available. For customizable propagation charts, visit the VOACAP Online for Ham Radio website.

Share your reports and observations.

A weekly, full report is posted on ARRL News.

Just Ahead in Radiosport
  • July 28 -- RSGB 80-Meter Club Championship (digital)

  • July 30 -- Feld Hell Sprint (digital)

  • July 30 - 31 -- RSGB IOTA Contest (CW, phone)

  • July 30 -- WAB 144 MHz Low Power Phone (phone)

  • July 30 - 31 -- Satellite Tennessee State Parks on the Air (all)

  • July 31 -- ARS Flight of the Bumblebees (CW)

  • August 2 -- Worldwide Sideband Activity Contest (phone)

  • August 2 -- ARS Spartan Sprint (CW)

  • August 3 -- Phone Weekly Test (phone)

  • August 3 -- 144 VHF-UHF FT8 Activity Contest (FT8)

  • August 4 - 5 -- Walk for the Bacon QRP Contest (CW)

  • August 4 -- SKCC Sprint Europe (CW)

  • August 5 -- QRP Fox Hunt (CW)

Visit the ARRL Contest Calendar for more events and information.

Upcoming Section, State, and Division Conventions

Search the ARRL Hamfest and Convention Database to find events in your area.

Have News for ARRL?

Submissions for the ARRL Letter and ARRL News can be sent to -- John E. Ross, KD8IDJ, ARRL News Editor

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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.

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