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ARRL Letter

The ARRL Letter
November 17, 2022
John E. Ross, KD8IDJ, Editor
ARRL Home PageARRL Letter ArchiveAudio News


Dayton Hamvention Announces Theme for 2023

Dayton Hamvention® 2023 is just over 6 months away, and next year's Hamvention team has selected "Innovation!" as the event theme.

The team reports that, in just one word, the theme encompasses the world of amateur radio today. "There are so many exciting 'Innovations!' worldwide in amateur radio. We want to capture the spirit, and we expect to see many of these throughout the coming year and presented at [Hamvention 2023]," said Hamvention 2023 spokesperson Michael Kalter, W8CI.

Dayton Hamvention is the largest annual amateur radio gathering in the US, and among the largest in the world. With nearly 700 volunteers, next year's event boasts more than 500 indoor exhibits and more than 2,500 outdoor exhibits. They will showcase the latest in amateur radio equipment, technology, and computer software and hardware, along with hard-to-find radio and computer accessories and equipment.

In a message to the 2022 exhibitors, Inside Exhibits Chairman Mike Berger, WD8OMX, announced on November 14 that the Hamvention online vendor portal is open to accept credit card orders for the 2023 show. There will be no price increase for vendor booths, and early bird pricing is available through March 15, 2023. Inside Exhibit vendors who had booths for the 2022 show will have until March 15 to pay for their booths in full. All booths not paid by March 15 will be made available to the public at the full rate.

ARRL is planning its large exhibit area and overall participation for the event. Hamvention is an ARRL-sanctioned event.

Hamvention 2023 runs from May 19 - 21 at the Greene County Fairgrounds in Xenia, Ohio. Tickets are on sale now, and can be purchased at

More information about Hamvention 2023 is available on their website.

Eastern Massachusetts Section to Welcome New Section Manager; Incumbent Section Managers were Reelected

Jon McCombie, N1ILZ, will become Section Manager (SM) of the ARRL Eastern Massachusetts Section on January 1, 2023. McCombie, of Eastham, was the only nominee to submit a petition to run for office when the nomination period closed in early September. As the sole nominee, he has been declared elected.

This past year, McCombie has been Assistant SM to Tom Walsh, K1TW, who has been the SM of the Eastern Massachusetts Section for the last 8 years. Walsh, of Bedford, decided not to run for a fifth 2-year term of office.

There were no balloted elections during this fall season's SM election cycle. The following incumbent SMs ran unopposed, and they were declared reelected, beginning their new 2-year terms of office on January 1: Cecil Higgins, AC0HA (Missouri); Matt Anderson, KA0BOJ (Nebraska); Jim Mezey, W2KFV (New York City-Long Island); Rocco Conte, WU2M (Northern New York); Marc Tarplee, N4UFP (South Carolina); Tom Preiser, N2XW (Southern New Jersey); Michael Douglas, W4MDD (West Central Florida), and Joe Shupienis, W3BC (Western Pennsylvania).

Thanks to ARRL Field Organization Supervisor Steve Ewald, WV1X, for information contained in this story.

2022 ARRL November Sweepstakes Phone Begins Saturday, November 19

The 2022 ARRL November Sweepstakes Phone will run from 2100 UTC on Saturday, November 19 to 0259 UTC on Monday, November 21. This is the phone/SSB version of the contest, as the CW Sweepstakes counterpart ran during the weekend of November 5 - 7 -- so get your microphones ready!

The annual ARRL November Sweepstakes is the premier domestic contest in the US and Canada, and the oldest domestic radiosport event (the first was in 1930). The SS contest exchange has deep roots in message-handling protocol and replicates a radiogram preamble. In SS, stations exchange:

  • A consecutive serial number. Operators do not have to add leading zeros on contact numbers less than 100.
  • Precedence -- Q for Single Op QRP; A for Single Op, Low Power (up to 100 W output); B for Single Op, High Power (greater than 100 W output); U for Single Op, Unlimited, regardless of power; M for Multioperator, regardless of power, and S for School Club.
  • Your call sign.
  • Check -- the last two digits of the year of first license for either operator or station.
  • Section -- ARRL/RAC Section.

Each year, thousands of amateur radio operators, at all skill levels, attempt to beat their personal contact records, win awards in various categories, and achieve the coveted Clean Sweep by contacting all 84 ARRL and Radio Amateurs of Canada (RAC) Sections in a single weekend. Overall and Division winners will be awarded a plaque recognizing their efforts. Plaques are sponsored by individuals, groups, clubs, or by the principal awards sponsor, Icom America. Certificates will be awarded to those who have the top scores for CW and phone operations in each category and each ARRL/RAC Section and Division. Printable certificates will be available for download at ARRL Certificates. More information about the 2022 ARRL November Sweepstakes is available at

CW Operators' Club Accepting Nominations for Advancing the Art of CW Award

The CW Operators' Club (CWops) is now accepting nominations for the 2023 Advancing the Art of CW Award. This award recognizes individuals, groups, or organizations that have made the greatest contribution(s) toward advancing the art or practice of radio communications by Morse code.

Award candidates must be one or more of the following: authors of publications related to CW; CW recruiters, trainers, mentors, coaches, or instructors; public advocates of CW; organizers of CW activities; designers and inventors who advance the art or practice of CW, and other contributors to the art or practice of CW.

The award is not limited to amateur radio operators or their organizations, and nominations may be made by anyone, not just CWops members.

Nominations must be emailed to and by March 10, 2023. Those submitting nominations will receive an email confirmation acknowledging receipt. Nominations must include: a detailed explanation supporting nominee qualifications according to the above criteria; nominee(s) name(s), call sign(s) if applicable, and contact information, including their postal address(es), email address(es), and telephone number(s); as well as the name, telephone number, email address, and call sign (if applicable) of the person submitting the nomination(s).

The winners will be announced and presented with a plaque at Dayton Hamvention® 2023. If a recipient is not present, their plaque will be sent to them.

Information about past recipients, dating back to 2016, can be found at For more information about the award criteria, visit

Amateur Radio in the News

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

"Free amateur radio program offered" / Altoona Mirror (Pennsylvania), November 15, 2022. -- The Bedford County Amateur Radio Society is an ARRL Affiliated Club.

any amateur radio media hits you spot with us.

ARRL Podcasts

The latest episode of the ARRL On the Air podcast features details from avid satellite operator Sean Kutzko, KX9X, about how to get started on the amateur satellites -- an activity that's available to hams of all license classes.

Listen to ARRL Audio News, available every Friday. ARRL Audio News is a summary of the week's top news stories in the world of amateur radio and ARRL, along with interviews and other features.

The On the Air podcast is available on iTunes (iOS) and Stitcher (Android). The On the Air podcast and ARRL Audio News are also on Blubrry -- On the Air | ARRL Audio News.


The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Emergency Management Institute (EMI) has released a new online study course and exam, titled, Preparing the Nation for Space Weather Events. The course identifier is IS-66. ARRL Director of Emergency Management Josh Johnston, KE5MHV, took the course and passed the exam. "This course provides some interesting insight into the federal government's role and response to space-weather events," Johnston said. He went on to say that the course "explains the levels of response the government uses in regard to [these] events. [It] would be a good training course for any ham to gain a better understanding of how space weather affects communications here on Earth." Johnston deemed the course useful and shared that it only takes about 2 hours to complete online. A FEMA student ID is required, and is free from the EMI website. -- Thanks to ARES Letter Editor Rick Palm, K1CE, for the information contained in this story.

The K7RA Solar Update

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

Solar disk image taken November 17, 2022, courtesy of NASA SDO/HMI.

Sunspot numbers and solar flux did not seem to correlate this week. Flux rose, and spots fell.

The average daily sunspot number declined from 79.8 to 72.3, but average solar flux numbers rose from 129.9 to 137.2. This tells me that the number and area of sunspots was less, but the 10.7-centimeter radiation from those spots increased.

A new sunspot emerged on November 10, another on November 13, and two more on November 16, the last day of our reporting week, which runs Thursday through the following Wednesday.

In our bulletin from 1 year ago, the average daily sunspot number was only 36.4, and solar flux was 89.1, so if the latest activity seems a bit lackluster, we can see that the sunspot cycle is making progress and is expected to peak around July 2025.

We get better HF propagation at higher frequencies when X-rays from the sun are more intense, and they correlate with sunspot numbers and the 10.7-centimeter radiation. This radiation charges the ionosphere, increasing density.

Back in 1957 - 1959, at the peak of Solar Cycle 19, the radiation was so intense that (I've been told) 10 meters was open worldwide, around the clock. Cycle 19, had, by far, the highest recorded sunspot count in history, with nothing like it before or since.

Here is the prediction for solar flux: 133, 125, and 122 on November 17 - 19; 120 on November 20 - 21; 122 on November 22; 125 on November 23 - 24; 115 on November 25 - 26; 120 and 125 on November 27 - 28; 130 on November 29 - 30; 135 on December 1 - 12; 120 and 110 on December 13 - 14, and 105 on December 15 - 18.

Predicted planetary A index, which gives us a clue into possible geomagnetic unrest, is 5, 8, 16, 20, and 12 on November 17 - 21; 8, 5, 8, 15, and 18 on November 22 - 26; 12, 8, 5, 5, 12, 18, and 8 on November 27 through December 3; 5 on December 4 - 7; 8 on December 8 - 9; 5 on December 10 - 11; 10 on December 12 - 13; 5 on December 14 - 16; 15 on December 17, and 18 on December 18 - 19.

The ARRL 10-Meter Contest is coming up, and will take place during the weekend of December 10 - 11. Expect better propagation than we saw in 2020 and 2021. Although predicted solar flux is not high, the prediction above shows the highest solar flux (135) over that weekend, and planetary A index at a low value of 5, indicating predicted geomagnetic stability. But of course, things may change.

Sunspot numbers for November 10 through 16 were 79, 57, 65, 74, 77, 69, and 85, with a mean of 72.3. The 10.7-centimeter flux was 138.7, 137.6, 138.2, 137, 141.5, 134.2, and 132.9, with a mean of 137.2. Estimated planetary A indices were 2, 9, 5, 7, 4, 2, and 2, with a mean of 4.4. Middle latitude A index was 2, 9, 3, 6, 3, 2, and 2, with a mean of 3.9.

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
  • November 16 -- VHF-UHF FT8 Activity Contest (FT8)

  • November 16 -- RSGB 80-Meter Autumn Series SSB (phone)

  • November 17 - 18 -- Walk for the Bacon QRP Contest (CW)

  • November 17 -- NAQCC CW Sprint (CW)

  • November 17 -- NTC QSO Party (CW)

  • November 19 - 20 -- LZ DX Contest (CW, phone)

  • November 19 -- All Austrian 160-Meter Contest (CW)

  • November 19 - 20 -- REF 160-Meter Contest (CW)

  • November 19 -- Feld Hell Sprint (digital)

  • November 19 -- RSGB 1.8 MHz Contest (CW)

  • November 19 - 21 -- ARRL Sweepstakes Contest SSB (phone)

  • November 20 -- Homebrew and Old-time Equipment Party (CW)

  • November 20 -- FISTS Sunday Sprint (CW)

  • November 20 - 21 -- Run for the Bacon QRP Contest (CW)

  • November 22 -- Worldwide Sideband Activity Contest (phone)

  • November 23 -- SKCC Sprint (CW)

Visit the ARRL Contest Calendar for more events and information.

Upcoming Section, State, and Division Conventions
  • December 9 - 10 | Tampa Bay Hamfest, hosting the ARRL West Central Florida Section Convention, Plant City, Florida

  • January 7 | Ham Radio University, hosting the ARRL New York City-Long Island Section Convention, an Online Event

  • January 20 - 21 | Southwest Florida Regional Hamfest, hosting the ARRL Southern Florida Section Convention, Fort Myers, Florida

  • January 27 - 28 | Capital City Hamfest 2023, hosting the ARRL Mississippi State Convention, Jackson, Mississippi

  • January 28 | Winterfest, hosting the ARRL Midwest Division Convention, Collinsville, Illinois

  • February 10 - 12 | Orlando HamCation, hosting the ARRL Southeastern Division Convention, Orlando, Florida

  • February 25 | HAM-CON, hosting the ARRL Vermont State Convention, Colchester, Vermont

  • March 3 - 4 | Greater Houston HamFest, hosting the ARRL Texas State Convention, Rosenberg, Texas

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

Getting it Right...

In last week's edition of The ARRL Letter, the news story "Ellen White, W1YL, Silent Key, Devoted Lifetime to Amateur Radio and ARRL" included an incorrect date for White's passing. Ellen White, W1YL, passed away on Saturday, November 5, 2022 -- not November 6. ARRL thanks George Wagner, K5KG, for confirming the information with a family member.

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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  • Listen to ARRL Audio News, available every Friday.

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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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