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ARRL Letter

The ARRL Letter
May 19, 2011
John E. Ross, KD8IDJ, Editor
ARRL Home PageARRL Letter ArchiveAudio News


+ Available on ARRL Audio News

Dayton Hamvention: 2011 Dayton Hamvention® Coverage Starts Friday, May 20

Beginning Friday, May 20, check the ARRL website for daily summaries of Dayton Hamvention activity, complete with news and photos from the show. Videos may also appear on the ARRL HQ YouTube channel. If you are a member of Facebook, you can also follow the action on the ARRL's Facebook page. Watch for photos and comments in the 2011 Dayton Hamvention Facebook album.

+ Friends Use Ham Radio to Summon Help when Alaska Amateur Is Mauled by Bear

While on a hunting trip with friends, Wes Perkins, KL0FM, was mauled by a grizzly bear. His friends called into a local repeater to summon help.

Wes Perkins, KL0FM, of Nome, Alaska, was seriously mauled by a grizzly bear during a hunting trip on Sunday, May 14. According to the Alaska State Troopers, Perkins and two friends had been tracking the bear east of Nome -- located on the Seward Peninsula -- when the big grizzly charged the group. Perkins' companions shot and killed the animal during the attack. Perkins was badly hurt, including severe injuries to his face. The hunters called for help using an Amateur Radio handheld transceiver. Read more here.

+ FCC News: FCC Upholds $4000 Fine to Pennsylvania Amateur

The FCC announced that on May 16, it issued a Forfeiture Order of $4000 to Jose Torres, N3TX, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, "for willfully and repeatedly operating his amateur station on an unauthorized frequency at his residence, in violation of Section 1.903(a) of the Commission's Rules." This action follows a 2009 Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture (NAL) against Torres. In 2009, the FCC issued the NAL against Torres, after receiving a complaint of interference in 2008. Agents in the Enforcement Bureau's Philadelphia Office used mobile direction finding equipment in April and June of that year to determine the source of interference. Both times, they found that the source coming from Torres' residence and that the interference consisted of unauthorized radio transmissions on 26.71 MHz. Read more here.

+ Honoring Amateur Radio: Puerto Rican Amateurs Recognized on Día del Radioaficionado de Puerto Rico

Radio amateurs in Puerto Rico celebrated Puerto Rico Amateur Radio Operator Day (Día del Radioaficionado de Puerto Rico) on May 10, as provided by Law No. 50 of June 7, 1996. The law establishes the second Tuesday of May for this recognition.

Carlos Rosado, KP4CAR (left), awaits the proclamation by AEMEAD Executive Director Heriberto Sauri announcing Día del Radioaficionado in Puerto Rico. [Jorge Rodriguez, NP3SE, Photo]

That same day -- at a ceremony recognizing a number of voluntary organizations in the headquarters of the Puerto Rico Emergency Management Agency (AEMEAD) -- AEMEAD Executive Director Heriberto Saurí presented the proclamation celebrating Puerto Rico Amateur Radio Operator Day, signed by the Governor of Puerto Rico Luis G. Fortuño. Carlos Rosado, KP4CAR, accepted the proclamation on behalf of all radio amateurs in Puerto Rico, and especially on behalf of the Amateur Radio Volunteer Corps of Puerto Rico (CVRPR), who work closely with the agency in both drills and emergency situations.

"With this proclamation, we have the opportunity to promote and publicize Amateur Radio as a tool of vital importance when maintaining active communications in the event of a breakdown in traditional communications systems due to an emergency and to maintain the flow of information, whether internal or external, as well if necessary," Saurí said at the ceremony. Click here to read the proclamation.

On the Air: Live Webcam from the Dayton Crowne Plaza Continues through Saturday Night

Thanks to the hard work of Ben Townsend, AK2X, and support from ICOM America, the North Coast Contesters are proud to host the Dayton Contest Cam -- live from the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Downtown Dayton.

"Live camming began Wednesday evening and will continue through Saturday night," said Contest University Chairman Tim Duffy, K3LR. "The cam has an interactive text chat, so you can text the folks that you see on the cam and they can 'talk' back to you via the audio feature on the Dayton end."

Duffy said that while the cam is running, attendees will come up to it and tell viewers what is going on at Contest University on Thursday, the TopBand Dinner on Friday night and even the Super Suite each night through Saturday. "We'll also try and cover the Contest Dinner on Saturday night," he said. "With noted contester and DXer Scott Redd, K0DQ, giving the keynote speech, this is something that you don't want to miss. We're going to try and move the cam around to give viewers a feel of what is going on here. This is our first time trying this out and it might be a little clunky, so please bear with us."

You can reach the cam by going to anyone of the four contesting website front pages --,, and -- and clicking on the "Click to Watch Live Dayton Contest Cam" link.

"We hope this new cam helps bring some of the Dayton Contest experience to all of those that cannot be here this weekend," Duffy said.

+ On the Air: Bob Heil, K9EID, to Headline New Internet Show

On Tuesday, May 24, Bob Heil, K9EID -- owner of Heil Sound -- will premier a new netcast show on Leo Laporte's website. Called HamNation, the show will focus on equipment, applications, tips and general information for the Amateur Radio operator. Heil's first guest will be rock star, friend and fellow radio amateur Joe Walsh, WB6ACU. Walsh also wrote the theme music for the show. The show will be broadcast each week over the Internet at at no cost. Read more here.

+ On the Air: WRTC 2014 Announces Advisory Council Members

Three radio amateurs have been selected to be on the Advisory Council for the 2014 World Radiosport Team Championships (WRTC): Tim Duffy, K3LR, of Edmond, Oklahoma, Craig Thompson, K9CT, of Trivoli, Illinois, and George DeMontrond III, NR5M, of Houston Texas. The WRTC Advisory Council consists of individuals who have not only have experience in the execution of major events, but can provide significant financial resources to the project. Read more here.

+ 2011 ARRL/TAPR Digital Communications Conference Call for Papers

Technical papers are solicited for presentation at the 30th Annual ARRL/TAPR Digital Communications Conference, to be held September 16-18 in Baltimore, Maryland. Papers will also be published in the Conference Proceedings. Authors do not need to attend the conference to have their papers included in the Proceedings. The submission deadline is July 31, 2011. Read more here.

Solar Update

The Sun, as seen on Thursday, May 19, 2011 from NASA's SOHO Extreme Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope. This image was taken at 304 Angstrom; the bright material is at 60,000 to 80,000 Kelvin.

Tad "If I look hard enough into the setting Sun" Cook, K7RA, reports: We saw a decline in sunspot activity this week with a 23 point drop in the average daily sunspot numbers and a nearly 9 point decline in the average daily solar flux. These compare, of course, to the numbers for the previous reporting week, which always runs from Thursday through Wednesday. But with this decline in activity, there were three new sunspot groups on May 14 and then one new sunspot group each day following, through May 18. Enhanced geomagnetic activity occurred from May 15-17, with the planetary A index in the low double-digits. The latest prediction from NOAA/USAF is for solar flux readings of 95 on May 19, then 92 on May 20-26 and jumping to 110 on May 27-30. The predicted planetary A index is 5 on May 19-26, then 22, 18, 15, 15 and 8 on May 27-31. Look for more information on the ARRL website on Friday, May 20. For more information concerning radio propagation, visit the ARRL Technical Information Service Propagation page. This week's "Tad Cookism" is brought to you by the Rolling Stones' Paint It Black.

Voting Now Open for June QST Cover Plaque Award

Now that you've thumbed through and read the June 2011 issue of QST cover-to-cover, we're sure that an article sticks in your mind. So go ahead and cast your vote for your favorite article in the issue. The article with the most votes will receive the QST Cover Plaque Award.

  • A One Person, Safe, Portable and Easy to Erect Antenna Mast, by Bob Dixon, W8ERD
  • Is There an Optimum Height for an HF Antenna? by Kazimierz "Kai" Siwiak, KE4PT
  • Direct Digital Synthesis for Those Classic Rigs, by Joe Lunsford, N4YG
  • A Single Element Vertical "Beam," by David Robbins, K7BKI
  • Two Small Helical Antennas for 2 Meters, by John E. Portune, W6NBC
  • Get Up and Get-on-the-Air, by Gary Pearce, KN4AQ, and Dick Orander, KD4ISC
  • DXpedition to Ponza Island, by Ruth L. Vano, KB0USC

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. Only non-Headquarters staff authors are eligible to receive votes.

+ DXCC News: DXCC Desk Approves 2011 Andaman and Nicobar Island DXpedition

ARRL DXCC Manager Bill Moore, NC1L, reports that the 2011 VU4PB DXpedition to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands has been approved for DXCC credit. If you have any questions about this operation, please send an e-mail to the ARRL DXCC Desk.

This Week on the Radio

This week:

  • May 20 -- Feld Hell Sprint
  • May 21-22 -- UN DX Contest; Aegean RTTY Contest; His Majesty King of Spain Contest (CW); EU PSK DX Contest; Baltic Contest
  • May 25 -- SKCC Sprint
  • May 25-26 -- CWops Mini-CWT Test

Next week:

  • May 27 -- NCCC Sprint Ladder
  • May 28-29 -- CQ WW WPX Contest (CW)
  • May 29 -- ARCI Hootowl Sprint (local time)
  • May 29-30 -- Michigan QRP Memorial Day CW Sprint
  • June 2 -- QRP Minimal Art Session

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

Upcoming ARRL Section, State and Division Conventions and Events

To find a convention or hamfest near you, click here.

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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.

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