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ARRL Letter

The ARRL Letter
June 15, 2023
John E. Ross, KD8IDJ, Editor
ARRL Home PageARRL Letter ArchiveAudio News


Legislation to Remove Private Land Use Restrictions on Amateur Radio Introduced in Congress

Congressmen Bill Johnson (OH-06) and Joe Courtney (CT-02) reintroduced a bill in the US House of Representatives on June 12 -- H.R.4006 (see full text of bill in this PDF) -- to remove private land use restrictions that prohibit, restrict, or impair the ability of Amateur Radio operators from operating and installing reasonable antennas on property that they own or control. Similar legislation, H.R. 9670, was introduced by Congressman Johnson in 2022.

"I reintroduced the Amateur Radio Emergency Preparedness Act to remove barriers to disaster and emergency communications and training, and to promote education in STEM subjects related to critically needed wireless technology,"

Congressman Bill Johnson (OH-06).

Congressman Johnson said in a release. "Passage of this bill will promote developing and sustaining our nation's wireless future and facilitate and encourage amateur radio operations as a public benefit."

"As their actions during recent natural disasters such as Hurricane Sandy proved, amateur radio operators in Connecticut can be a critical component of disaster response and emergency management. It is in our communities' best interest that we give them the capabilities to operate at the highest level, and with the re-introduction of this bill, we've taken a strong step in that direction," said Congressman Courtney.

Congressman Joe Courtney (CT-02).

The exponential growth of communities bound by private land use restrictions that prohibit both the operation of Amateur Radio and the installation of amateur station antennas has significantly restricted the growth of the Amateur Radio Service.

ARRL The National Association for Amateur Radio® continues its multi-year efforts to eliminate private land use restrictions that prevent Amateur Radio operations and has pledged to strongly support Congressman Johnson and Congressman Courtney in their efforts on behalf of Amateur Radio.

Rick Roderick, K5UR, President of ARRL, on behalf its Members and America's Amateur Radio community extended his thanks and appreciation for the leadership of Congressman Johnson and Congressman Courtney in their tireless efforts to support and protect the rights of all Amateur Radio Operators and to further STEM education and the advancement of American expertise in wireless technology.

2023 Field Day: T-Minus 1 Week!

2023 ARRL Field Day is just a week away and social media is bristling with posts and stories about amateur radio operators getting ready for the big operating event. ARRL will be live streaming on YouTube from W1AW, the Hiram Percy Maxim Memorial Station at ARRL Headquarters in Newington, Connecticut. Hams from around the world will get the chance to have their local event featured in the live cast by tagging ARRL in their photos and videos on social media. Include the hashtag #ARRLFD with your posts, and your content might wind up featured!

On the pre-check list are antennas, transceivers and different types of power supplies, site locations, all -weather gear, and make-shift operating tables. Also remember to have sunscreen, snacks, and plenty of water. Be sure to do a quick check of the rules (there are a few minor changes since last year), coordinate with friends and other operators, and synchronize timekeeping devices.

But getting ready is just part of the fun of Field Day, as gathering with your local amateur radio community and making contacts is a reward in itself! Whether you make one or 100 contacts, hearing a return to your CQ is what makes Field Day special. In 2022 nearly 30,000 operators made over 1.2 million contacts -- now that's exciting!

ARRL has several web pages that can help make help you make sure are ready. Check out ARRL's Field Day website for the information you'll need from start to finish including the event dates and times. Field Day is always the fourth full weekend in June. This year's event will begin at 1800 UTC on Saturday, June 24 and run until 2059 UTC on Sunday, June 25.

The web page also includes a link to the ARRL Field Day Facebook Group where you can share information, ask questions, and use the use hashtag #ARRLFD on to receive 100 bonus points!

FCC ULS down, Amateurs Unable to Submit Applications, Filing Deadlines Extended

The FCC Universal Licensing System (ULS) has been experiencing an outage since Friday, June 9, 2023. Amateur licensees are unable to submit applications or process renewals. Filing deadlines have been extended. The FCC has been communicating updates with VECs, including ARRL VEC about the situation, which remains fluid. As of late afternoon on Thursday, June 15, 2023 the FCC had no timeline for when the ULS would be back online.

For the latest information, watch the ARRL News feed. The story about the issue posted there will remain updated with the latest information.

Amateur Radio Helps Air Show Fly High

More than 40 members of the Nashville Amateur Radio Club, Williamson County ARES®, and Stones River Amateur Radio Club partnered to provide operations support leading up to and throughout the 2023 Great Tennessee Air Show.

On June 10 - 11, 2023, the show was headlined by the US Navy Blue Angels demonstration team. Tom Delker, K1KY, Air Show Communications Coordinator, said that amateur radio operators from the Middle Tennessee Emergency Amateur Radio System have been supporting the air show since the mid-1980s.

Operators were able to employ multiple technologies during the event, including simplex radio operations, RF mesh networking, mobile VoIP phones, IP surveillance cameras, APRS tracking, and weather monitoring and measurement.

Smyrna/Rutherford County Airport Authority Director John Black and Deputy Director Salil Rai expressed their sincere appreciation for the team and all those whose worked the event. This volunteer amateur support translates to operations money that can go directly towards community projects.

In addition to the US Navy Blue Angels demonstration team, historic aircraft, including the Spirit of Detroit DC-3 and the Blue Angles' "Fat Albert" C-130 Hercules, also highlighted the show.

Event organizers said they expected more than 50,000 people to attend the event. The next Great Tennessee Air Show is scheduled for 2025.

Cal Poly Amateur Radio Club achieves 2,000th License Milestone

Updated 7/10/2023

Student-run Cal Poly Amateur Radio Club (CPARC) at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo County just hit a licensing milestone. On May 23, 2023, Kyle Wiens became the 2,000th person to pass the amateur radio exam given by CPARC since they started in 2009.

Wiens, now KK6FIX, is a Cal Poly alumnus and CEO of iFixit, a company that produces electronics repair guides for consumers. After learning about the approaching landmark, Wiens expressed immediate interest in being that 2,000th licensee.

Weins and several interested members of the iFixit staff took a course from CPARC officers Mathew Shaham, KM6WIU, and Hunter Herring-Alderete, KN6RJA. Then they took an exam.

CPARC VE team with group from iFixit. [Marcel Stieber, AI6MS, photo.]

The session had 28 applicants and was the largest group of the year held by CPARC's Volunteer Examiners. Alumnus Marcel Stieber, AI6MS, served as session liaison and worked closely with student lead Andrew Fahey, KN6FIJ, to coordinate the exam.

CPARC uses an accelerated course licensing technique that became popular through Dr. Dennis Derickson's, AC0P, Freshman Licensing Initiative which started in 2011. Up until 2022, when the FCC began issuing a fee for new licenses, the initiative provided class credit in the introductory course, BS Electrical Engineering EE 111, for obtaining an amateur radio license.

The effort gave new electrical engineering students a preview of topics covered in further classes. It also afforded students a practical outlet for skills like radio contesting and volunteering as communications support for events. At the peak of the initiative, CPARC was licensing more than 100 operators in one 50-minute class period.

"It's a big milestone. Most exam teams don't make it to license number 2,000. I'm really proud to support the students running these exam sessions," Stieber said after the exam session. As the last papers were graded, the majority of student applicants passed in addition to every member of the iFixit crew.

Amateur Radio in the News

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

"STEM Outreach: Embry-Riddle to Connect Students, Astronauts" / ERAU News, Embry - Riddle Aeronautical University (Florida), June 8, 2023 -- The Daytona Beach CERT Amateur Radio Association is an ARRL Affiliated Club.

"Rochester Amateur Radio Club to participate in national field day" / West Central Tribune (Minnesota), June 7, 2023 -- The Rochester Amateur Radio Club is a ARRL Affiliated Club.

"Local amateur radio club invites public to try radios at field day event" / The Review (Ohio) June 9, 2023 - The Lisbon Area Amateur Radio Association is an ARRL Affiliated Club.

"Preps underway for ham radio field day" / The Highlander (Texas) June 9, 2023 -- The Highland Lakes Amateur Radio Club is an ARRL Affiliated Club.

Share any amateur radio media hits you spot with us.

ARRL Podcasts

On the Air
Sponsored by

For the June 2023 episode of the On the Air podcast, ARRL Radiosport & Regulatory Information Manager Bart Jahnke, W9JJ, and ARRL Contest Program Manager Paul Bourque, N1SFE, join us to talk about a popular Field Day fixture known as the GOTA (Get On the Air) Station. If you're a newer ham, or new to Field Day operating, you can find a local Field Day setup that's running one of these beginner-friendly stations. Tune in to find out how, so you can make plans to operate from a Field Day GOTA Station during Field Day weekend, June 24 and 25.

ARRL Audio News
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 Annual 13 Colonies Special Event will take place July 1 - 7, 2023. The 13 Colonies Special Event is an on-air amateur radio event honoring the original 13 colonies, US independence, active military personnel, and veterans. All amateur radio operators are welcome to participate, including shortwave listeners. Certificates will be available for all participants. Each US state that was one of the original 13 colonies has a special call sign. All HF bands will be open, including the WARC bands, with the exception of 60 meters. Simplex on 2 and 6 meters is encouraged and the use of 40 - 160 meters is encouraged for stations in the southern east coast. All modes of operation may be used, including SSB, CW, RTTY, and digital. The mode of operation is up to the individual colony/state station. Please refer to each special event station's QRZ page for more details and information.

In Brief...

The Radio Society of Great Britain (RSGB) has received a generous donation of His late Majesty, King Hussein of Jordan's UK amateur radio equipment. Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan chose to donate the UK amateur radio equipment to the Society. King Hussein, JY1 (SK), who died in 1999, was a prolific radio amateur who made contacts with many hams from around the world. He was known for operating modestly, never announcing himself as King Hussein, but opting to go by 'Hussein from Jordan' instead. A permanent display is being organized at the RSGB National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park.

The K7RA Solar Update

Tad Cook, K7RA, of Seattle, Washington, reports for this week's ARRL Propagation Bulletin, ARLP024:

Solar disk image taken June 15, 2023, courtesy of NASA SDO/HMI.

Solar activity declined this week, with average daily sunspot numbers dropping from 139 to 122, and the average daily solar flux decreasing from 166.8 to 154.8. This contrasts the current reporting week of June 8 - 14with the previous 7 days.

The average daily planetary A index decreased from 7.3 to 5.7, and average daily middle latitude A index from 8.6 to 6.7.

On June 14, reported two new sunspot groups emerging across the sun's southeastern horizon.

Forecasters Gervase and Kiser of the U.S. Air Force predict that the solar flux will be 150 on June 15 - 16; 155 on June 17 - 18; 150, 155, 155, and 165 on June 19 - 22; 170 on June 23 - 25; 168, 165, and 162 on June 26 - 28; 160 on June 29 through July 4; 165 on July 5; 170 on July 6 - 8; 155, 157, 153, and 160 on July 9 - 12; 150 on July 13 - 14, and 155 on July 15 - 17.

Predicted planetary A index is 8, 14, 10, and 8 on June 15 - 18; 5, 5, and 8 on June 19 - 21; 5 on June 22 - 26; 12 on June 27 - 28; 5 on June 29 - 30; 12 and 8 on July 1 - 2; 5 on July 3 - 7; 12 on July 8 - 10; 5, 5, and 12 on July 11 - 13, and 10 on July 14 - 15.

These predictions look great for ARRL Field Day (June 24 - 25) because solar flux peaks at 170 on June 23 - 25, and the predicted planetary A index is a nice, quiet 5 on June 22 - 26. Next week, we will present an updated forecast just prior to Field Day weekend.

Follow the link below for an image of the ISS over a sunspot:

This link shows the same, but in video format:

Check out this link for a study of the sun's coldest region:

More sunspots can be seen at the following link:

Sunspot numbers for June 8 - 14, 2023, were 149, 152, 116, 116, 116, 98, and 107, with a mean of 122. The 10.7-centimeter flux was 168.5, 164.3, 161.2, 153.8, 146.1, 146.3, and 143.5, with a mean of 154.8. Estimated planetary A indices were 5, 4, 5, 9, 6, 6, and 5, with a mean of 5.7. Middle latitude A index was 6, 6, 4, 10, 8, 8, and 5, with a mean of 6.7.

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

Yearlong -- ARRL Volunteers On the Air (VOTA). See the State Activations Schedule for weekly W1AW Portable Operations, including:

  • June 28 - July 4 -- Maryland W1AW/3

  • June 28 - July 4 -- Illinois W1AW/9

  • July 5 - July 13 -- Hawaii W1AW/KH6

  • July 12 - July 18 -- Wisconsin/W1AW/9

Upcoming Contests:
  • June 16 -- SARL Youth QSO Party (phone)
  • June 17 -- Pajajaran Bogor DX Contest (phone)

  • June 17 - 18 -- All Asian DX Contest (CW)

  • June 17 - 18 -- SMIRK Contest (CW, phone)

  • June 17 - 18 -- IARU Region 1 50 MHz Contest (CW, phone)

  • June 17 - 18 -- Stew Perry Topband Challenge (CW)

  • June 17 - 18 -- West Virginia QSO Party (CW, phone, digital)

  • June 17 -- Feld Hell Sprint (digital)

  • June 17 -- ARRL Kids Day (phone)

  • June 18 -- WAB 50 MHz (phone)

  • June 21 -- NAQCC CW Sprint (CW)

  • June 21 -- VHF-UHF FT8 Activity Contest FT8 (FT8)

  • June 22 -- RSGB 80m Club Champ, SSB (phone)

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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