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The American Radio Relay League (ARRL) is the national association for amateur radio, connecting hams around the U.S. with news, information and resources.
Updated: 5 days 16 hours ago

ARRL DX Advisory Committee is Seeking Comment on Award Criteria, DXCC Annual List

Mon, 01/06/2020 - 19:46

The ARRL DX Advisory Committee (DXAC) is seeking feedback from members on two items as soon as possible. Email comments to your DXAC representative (list is also linked from the DXAC page).

The first issue involves the question of revising 5-Band DXCC (5BDXCC) requirement to accept contacts on any five band as opposed to the existing requirement of 80, 40, 20, 15, and 10 meters. The DXAC wants t...

Australian Bushfires Causing Major Telecommunication Outages, Hams Asked to Remain Alert

Fri, 01/03/2020 - 16:06

Wireless Institute of Australia (WIA) President Greg Kelly, VK2GPK, says the bushfires in Australia have caused or are expected to cause significant disruption of telecommunication services in the states of Victoria and New South Wales. 

“The scope and range of these impacts is unknown at this stage but are predicted to cover all internet and phone (fixed and mobile) and other commercial radio s...

The K7RA Solar Update

Fri, 01/03/2020 - 10:02

Sunspots appeared recently, all indicating cycle 25 due to their polarity, opposite from spots in cycle 24. Sunspots appeared December 24-26, and it looks like a new cycle 25 spot on January 1. NOAA did not report it (too weak?) but reported a sunspot number of 11 on January 1.

On January 2 NOAA reported the new spot with a sunspot number of 23.

Sorry, but the final propagation b...

San Joaquin Valley Section Manager Dan Pruitt, AE6SX, SK

Fri, 01/03/2020 - 08:30

ARRL San Joaquin Valley Section Manager Dan Pruitt, AE6SX, of Fresno, California, died on December 27. He was 68. At the time of his death, Pruitt had been hospitalized as a result of a fall. First licensed in 1965, Pruitt had served as SJV SM since 2009 and earlier this year began a new 2-year term. A successor will be appointed.

Pruitt had previously served as Fresno County Emergency Coordinat...

Prominent DXer Roger Western, G3SXW, Continues to Recover from Fall Injuries

Fri, 01/03/2020 - 08:12

Well-known DXer and DXpeditioner Roger Western, G3SXW, continues his recovery from serious injuries suffered in a fall on October 27 as he was clearing leaves from a rain gutter. No bones were broken, but he was badly bruised when he fell, and he struck the back of his head. According to a report in The Daily DX, Western was able to make it back into his house alone “but was in a bad way,” his ...

South Orkney Islands DXpedition will Use VP8PJ

Fri, 01/03/2020 - 06:52

The Perseverance DX Group’s DXpedition to South Orkney, set for February 20 until March 5, will use the call sign VP8PJ. The group initially announced that it would use VP8/VP8DXU.

“Alan Armstrong, VK6CQ, a recent addition to the team, holds the call sign VP8PJ that was issued to him for operation from the British Antarctic Territory,” the DXpedition has announced. “After submission of a copy of...

Radio Amateurs of Canada Announces a New Section

Thu, 01/02/2020 - 16:44

The number of Sections needed for a clean sweep in the ARRL November Sweepstakes (SS) will rise to 84 in 2020, with the addition of a new Prince Edward Island (PE) Section. Radio Amateurs of Canada (RAC) announced this week that the new Section will become effective on April 1.

RAC said its Prince Edward Island members have been working for some time to create a separate Section for RAC ARES act...

MIT Radio Society W1MX Announces January Lecture Series on “Everything Radio”

Thu, 01/02/2020 - 11:57

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology Radio Society (W1MX) and the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science are hosting a lecture series in January that may answer some of your questions about such topics as radar techniques, interferometry, imaging, and radio astronomy, to antenna design and modern chip-scale RF devices. No prior experience with radio is necessary, and all...

Ring In the New Year with Straight Key Night!

Tue, 12/31/2019 - 14:05

 It’s time to break out (and/or dust off) the brass and set some time aside on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day to take part in Straight Key Night (SKN). The annual event begins at 0000 UTC on January 1, 2020 (New Year’s Eve in US time zones) and continues until 2359 UTC. Not a contest, SKN is dedicated to celebrating Amateur Radio’s Morse code heritage.

The idea is simple: Get on the air and e...

IARU Region 1 Monitoring Service Coordinator DK2OM Receives IARU Diamond Award

Tue, 12/31/2019 - 12:27

After many years of monitoring and tracking intruders on the amateur bands, Wolf Hadel, DK2OM, of Siegbach, Germany, is stepping down at year’s end as coordinator of the International Amateur Radio Union Region 1 Monitoring System (IARUMS). IARU Region 1 President Don Beattie, G3BJ, announced this week that Hadel has been awarded the IARU President’s Diamond Award in recognition of his efforts....

Texas Scout Leaders Promote Amateur Radio as a Communication Resource

Tue, 12/31/2019 - 09:16

In 2017, Category 4 Hurricane Harvey left the region of Texas where Assistant Scoutmaster Scott deMasi, KC5NKW, lived under water. With roads flooded, bridges washed away, and cellular service and power out, deMasi said it soon became clear that his Scout troop’s emergency preparedness plan wasn’t designed for a storm of this magnitude. It was frustrating, deMasi says, to discover he couldn’t r...

Yahoo Groups Shutdown has Ham Radio Interest Groups Seeking to Save Content

Tue, 12/31/2019 - 07:49

Yahoo Groups, which has hosted a considerable number of ham radio interest groups over the years, is shutting down. All previously posted content on the site became unavailable in mid-December, but Yahoo is processing requests to download content until January 31, 2020. Yahoo also has provided group administrators (“admins”) a way to export data ahead of that deadline. Groups will continue to l...

New 70-Centimeter Tropo Contact Record Claimed

Tue, 12/31/2019 - 07:29

[UPDATED 01-02-20 @ 1445 UTC] On January 1, 2020, Callum MacPherson, GM0EWX, on the Isle of Skye worked work D41CV on FT8 extending the IARU Region 1 2-meter tropo record to 4,776 kilometers (2,961 miles)

Tropospheric propagation is being credited with enabling a 70-centimeter contact between the Cape Verde islands and Scotland that may be a new world record. Exceptional tropo conditions over th...

New England Radio Amateur Hosts Video on Tower Safety

Tue, 12/31/2019 - 07:01

Jim Idelson, K1IR, of Sudbury, Massachusetts, recently provided a club meeting program on ham radio tower safety for the Billerica Amateur Radio Society (BARS). Kayla Creamer, W2IRY, recorded and edited the presentation and made it available online. It runs approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes.

In his presentation, Idelson said an estimated 38,000 amateur radio towers are standing in the US, wit...

Computer Bulletin Board System Co-Inventor Randy Suess, ex-WB9GPM, SK

Tue, 12/31/2019 - 06:53

The co-inventor of the Computer Bulletin Board System, Randy Suess, ex-WB9GPM, died on December 10. He was 74. According to his obituary in The New York Times, Suess and IBM engineer Ward Christensen collaborated on the system in 1978, during the dial-up era, a year before Compuserve began offering online consumer service. The computer bulletin board was a forerunner of today’s proliferation of...

“Black Friday Sale” on ARRL Award Applications Made via LoTW

Fri, 11/22/2019 - 15:31

Starting at 0000 UTC on November 28, ARRL will be offering a 10% discount on all applications for DX Century Club, Worked All States, and VHF/UHF Century Club awards and endorsements, including plaques, made through ARRL’s Logbook of The World. (For WPX and WAZ, only award credits can be discounted as CQ Communications is the issuer of these awards.)

The 10% discount will be taken off the total ...