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ARRL in Action: What Have We Been Up to Lately?


Compiled by S. Khrystyne Keane, K1SFA
ARRL News Editor

This feature -- including convenient Web links to useful information -- is a concise monthly update of some of the things ARRL is doing on behalf of its members. This installment covers the month of December.

In an ex parte filing with the FCC, the ARRL made the case for the Commission to require mandatory notching of the amateur bands by companies providing Broadband over Power Line (BPL) services. In another FCC filing concerning BPL, the ARRL documented ongoing harmful interference and egregious rules violations by systems installed by IBEC, Inc. in three states.

A US proposal for a secondary allocation to the Amateur Radio Service at 461-469 and 471-478 kHz gained inter-American support at meetings of the Inter-American Telecommunication Commission (CITEL) in Colombia.

ARRL Chief Technology Officer Brennan Price, N4QX, was elected Secretary of the United States ITU Association. USITUA develops consensus private sector views on issues before the ITU and advocates those views in appropriate forums.

New rules affecting vanity and club station call signs within the Amateur Radio Service were published in the Federal Register. These new rules will go into effect on February 14, 2011.

The National Conference of Volunteer Examiner Coordinators (NCVEC) released the new General class (Element 3) question pool, including graphics and diagrams. It will become effective for all General class examinations administered on or after July 1, 2011 and will remain valid until June 30, 2015.

US Representative Greg Walden, W7EQI (R-OR), tweeted in Morse code the news that he will be chairing the House Subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet when the 112th Congress convenes in January.

The ARRL Lab conducted tests on LED bulbs and ultraviolet lights that were found to exceed Part 18 limits.

ARRL’s Logbook of The World (LoTW) is being upgraded to let users apply for awards based on Maidenhead grid squares, such as VUCC and the Fred Fish Memorial Award.

The ARRL’s Incoming and Outgoing QSL Services saw a dramatic increase in the number of cards received from ARRL members that were sent to foreign QSL bureaus, as well as the number of cards we sent out to the bureaus. The number of DXCC applications -- including those for initial awards and endorsements -- also increased.

David Drummond, W4MD, was appointed Alabama Section Manager effective January 1, 2011. He replaces Jay Isbell, KA4KUN, who resigned.

The Official Observer Desk received reports concerning ongoing on-the-air infractions on 75 meters in South Texas, an ID problem on a repeater in Western New York, repeater interference in Western Massachusetts and California, interference on 40 meters in North Carolina, as well as Over-the-Horizon radars on 15, 17 and 40 meters. On the international front, the Official Observer Desk prepared intruder reports that included the Havana Gurgle on 18.090 MHz, fishermen using 7.116 MHz (USB) and a “sweeping” signal around 3.990 MHz. The Desk received complaints about operations on 3.814 MHz, possible CODAR interference in the southeast and a foreign broadcast station on 7.295 MHz.

Bob Heil, K9EID, owner of Heil Sound, donated a new microphone to W1AW.

The ARRL announced its first-ever video contest.

New ARRL Publications: The ARRL released the fifth edition of ON4UN’s Low-Band DXing: Antennas, Equipment and Techniques for DXcitement on 160, 80 and 40 Meters by John Devoldere, ON4UN, and The ARRL Guide to Antenna Tuners: A Radio Amateur’s Guide to Antenna Matching by QST Technical Editor Joel R. Hallas, W1ZR

The ARRL QuickStats page has been updated with new questions.

The ARRL Homebrew Challenge now has its own Web page.

W1AW, the Hiram Percy Maxim Memorial Station was on the air for the ARRL 160 Meter Contest and ARRL Straight Key Night.

Member Contact: QST Technical Editor Joel Hallas attended the West Central Florida Convention.

DXCC News: The DXCC Desk approved the following operations: H40HP (Temotu Province, 2009), 7Z1HB (Saudi Arabia, 2007-present), 9Q/DK3MO (Democratic Republic of the Congo, 2007-present), 3C0C (Annobon, 2010), 3C9B (Equatorial Guinea, 2010), 3V9A (Tunisia, 2010), 3V0A (Tunisia, 2010), TS7TI (Tunisia, also includes /p operation, 2010), TS8P (Tunisia, also includes /p operation, 2010) and TS9A (Tunisia, 2010).

The February issue of QST and the January/February issues of NCJ and QEX were released to the printer.

The winner of the QST Cover Plaque Award for December is Eric Nichols, KL7AJ, for his article “Gimme an X, Gimme an O. What’s that Spell? -- Radio.”



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