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The ARRL Letter, Vol 25, No 17 (Apr 28, 2006)

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  • Tom VanderMel
    ... From: ARRL Letter Mailing List To: Sent: Friday, April 28, 2006 6:30 PM Subject: The ARRL Letter, Vol 25, No
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 29, 2006
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      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "ARRL Letter Mailing List" <letter-dlvy@...>
      To: <kb8vee@...>
      Sent: Friday, April 28, 2006 6:30 PM
      Subject: The ARRL Letter, Vol 25, No 17 (Apr 28, 2006)

      > ***************
      > The ARRL Letter
      > Vol. 25, No. 17
      > April 28, 2006
      > ***************
      > * +BPL study amendment attached to House telecoms bill
      > * +Kevin Martin tapped for new FCC term
      > * +Andamans operation helps slake VU4 demand
      > * +California adopts BPL deployment regulations
      > * +KB0WZA is 2006 Goldfarb Memorial Scholarship winner
      > * +West Mountain Radio to be RTTY Round-UP Principal Awards Sponsor
      > * +European hams hear signal from far-distant Voyager 1 spacecraft
      > * +Long-lost QSL card finds its way back home
      > * Solar Update
      > * IN BRIEF:
      > This weekend on the radio
      > ARRL Certification and Continuing Education course registration
      > Armed Forces Day 2006 military/amateur activities set
      > SuitSat-1 still in orbit
      > Hugh L. Tinley, K0GHK, SK
      > DXCC Desk approves operations for DXCC credit
      > +Available on ARRL Audio News <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/>
      > ===========================================================
      > ==>Delivery problems: First see FAQ
      > <http://www.arrl.org/members-only/faq.html#nodelivery>, then e-mail
      > <letter-dlvy@...>
      > ==>Editorial questions or comments only: Rick Lindquist, N1RL,
      > <n1rl@...>
      > ===========================================================
      > The US House Energy and Commerce Committee's version of the Communications
      > Opportunity, Promotion and Enhancement (COPE) Act of 2006 includes an
      > amendment requiring the FCC to study the interference potential of BPL
      > systems. The panel voted April 26 to send the much-talked-about "telecoms
      > rewrite" bill to the full House for its consideration. "Outstanding news!"
      > was the reaction of ARRL CEO David Sumner, K1ZZ.
      > "This is a major victory for the ARRL," he exulted, noting that the
      > amendment "received significant opposition" from utilities. Rep Mike Ross,
      > WD5DVR (D-AR), proposed the amendment, and, with the support of Committee
      > Chairman Joe Barton (R-TX), the committee agreed by voice vote to include
      > it
      > in the bill.
      > A year ago, Ross sponsored House Resolution 230 (H Res 230)
      > <http://www.arrl.org/tis/info/HTML/plc/filings/hres230/HRes230.pdf>, which
      > calls on the FCC to "reconsider and revise rules governing broadband over
      > power line systems based on a comprehensive evaluation of the interference
      > potential of those systems to public safety services and other licensed
      > radio services."
      > "Hundreds of ARRL members who wrote their congressional representatives in
      > support of Rep Ross's H Res 230 helped to achieve this week's success with
      > the COPE Act amendment," Sumner observed.
      > A more-widely reported Internet "network neutrality" amendment to the COPE
      > Act bill was defeated. The measure will get a number next week.
      > A statement released by Ross's office notes that his amendment, which
      > received unanimous committee support, "would guarantee that valuable
      > public
      > safety communications and Amateur Radio operators are not subject to
      > interference." One of two radio amateurs in the US House, Ross said
      > infrastructure-free Amateur Radio, "often overlooked in favor of flashier
      > means of communication," can maintain communication in disasters that
      > bring
      > more vulnerable technology to its knees. Ham radio operators "are often
      > the
      > only means of communication attainable in a devastated area," he said.
      > "I believe it is imperative that the interference potential [of BPL] is
      > thoroughly examined and comprehensively evaluated to ensure that
      > deployment
      > of BPL, which I do support, does not cause radio interference for Amateur
      > Radio operators and first responders who serve our communities," Ross
      > added.
      > The COPE Act BPL amendment adds a section (under Title V) to the proposed
      > legislation that would require the FCC to study and report on the
      > interference potential of BPL systems within 90 days of the bill's
      > enactment. "This puts the House Energy and Commerce Committee on record as
      > having concerns about BPL interference," Sumner said. "If we are vigilant
      > in
      > protecting it against deletion on the House floor--assuming the bill is
      > approved by the House--the BPL language will be included in the
      > legislation
      > that goes on to the Senate."
      > President George W. Bush has tapped FCC Chairman Kevin J. Martin of North
      > Carolina for a second, five-year term on the Commission starting July 1.
      > The
      > White House this week submitted Martin's name to the US Senate for
      > confirmation. Martin says he's honored to be nominated for a second term
      > as
      > a commissioner and as FCC chairman.
      > "This is an exciting time of growth and innovation in the communications
      > sector," Martin said in a statement. "I look forward to working with the
      > Administration, Congress, my fellow commissioners and the talented staff
      > at
      > the FCC to provide all Americans with the services and opportunities
      > offered
      > by the best communications system in the world today."
      > Judging by their statements, his three FCC colleagues have confidence in
      > his
      > leadership. Martin succeeded Michael Powell as FCC chairman in 2005.
      > In the meantime, politics reportedly is keeping the FCC from having a full
      > slate of commissioners. In February, the White House nominated Republican
      > Robert M. McDowell of Virginia to fill the still-vacant fifth FCC seat.
      > The
      > Senate Commerce Committee okayed the telecommunications attorney's
      > nomination, but US Senator Mary Landrieu (D-La) reportedly has blocked any
      > of President Bush's non-judicial nominations--including McDowell's--from
      > going forward to a vote by the full Senate. Landrieu is said to be unhappy
      > with the pace of Hurricane Katrina recovery assistance to the Gulf Coast.
      > The situation leaves the FCC split at two Republicans and two Democrats.
      > If
      > the Senate stalemate continues, Martin could continue to serve on the FCC
      > beyond his term's expiration.
      > For several days this month, the tiny Andaman Islands became the DX mouse
      > that roared--well, sort of. Just how loudly depended on your position on
      > the
      > globe and fickle propagation. A first-of-its-kind event, "Hamfest - (VU4)
      > India - 2006," made rare VU4 (Andaman and Nicobar Islands) widely
      > available
      > worldwide April 18-25. With activities centered in Port Blair on South
      > Andaman Island, more than 100 VU4AN stations made a joyful noise on
      > several
      > modes and bands. Despite the current ebb in the sunspot cycle, many US
      > radio
      > amateurs were able to take advantage.
      > "They weren't rock-crushingly loud, but they seemed to be making a lot of
      > QSOs in North America," said ARRL CEO David Sumner, K1ZZ--one of the lucky
      > ones. Sumner said he worked VU4 on CW and SSB and noted that some of the
      > stations were spotted quite a lot on RTTY.
      > Sumner expressed pleasure that one of his QSOs was with Bharathi Prasad,
      > operating as VU4AN/VU2RBI. She led the December 2004 VU4 DXpedition that
      > turned into a disaster-communication operation after being cut short by
      > the
      > devastating South Asia earthquake and tsunami. As a result, Prasad and her
      > team won the 2005 ARRL International Humanitarian Award, and she was named
      > Dayton Hamvention's Radio Amateur of the Year.
      > Telecommunication authorities in India authorized the issuance of
      > short-term
      > licenses to some 40 Indian nationals and 70 foreigners. While VU4AN
      > signals
      > were dicey or non-existent in some North American locations, many stations
      > in the US and elsewhere were able to add this rare one to their DXCC
      > total--some on more than one band.
      > According to The DX Magazine's 2005 survey of DXers, Andaman and Nicobar
      > Islands was the 10th most-wanted DXCC entity. This month's massive
      > operation--sponsored by the National Institute of Amateur Radio
      > (NIAR)--may
      > have put a dent in the demand. The NIAR offered certificates for stations
      > working more than four VU4AN stations as well as awards for working the
      > most
      > VU4AN stations in several categories.
      > In addition to operating, several participants delivered presentations at
      > the NIAR gathering that stressed the positive aspects of Amateur Radio
      > operating as well as various technical topics. The intention was to
      > promote
      > ham radio and to invite more-friendly governmental regulation.
      > "This VU4-Andaman Islands project took some eight months from start to
      > finish and involved many hours and financial support by members of NIAR,"
      > commented QST "Hows DX?" and The Daily DX Editor Bernie McClenny, W3UR,
      > after returning from the Andamans where he operated as VU4AN/VU3OHA.
      > "Heavy-duty negotiations between NIAR and the many different government
      > branches took place for this activity to happen." McClenny also reported
      > that there are now two newly licensed hams in Port Blair, Andaman.
      > Unless otherwise announced for individual stations, VU4AN QSLs go to Jose
      > Jacob, VU2JOS, National Institute of Amateur Radio, 6-3-1092/93, Raj
      > Bhavan
      > Rd, Somajiguda, Hyderabad 500082 INDIA.
      > Saying that broadband over power line (BPL) will bring Internet access to
      > "underserved communities," the California Public Utilities Commission
      > (CPUC)
      > has adopted regulatory guidelines for electric utilities and companies
      > that
      > wish to develop BPL projects in that state. While the Commission's BPL
      > guidelines include a requirement to maintain the safety and reliability of
      > the electric distribution system, the state agency has no jurisdiction
      > over
      > radio frequency interference, which received no mention in the PUC's news
      > release. ARRL Laboratory Manager Ed Hare, W1RFI, points out that the
      > utility
      > industry still must meet another tier of federal regulations that govern
      > permitted BPL signal levels and interference issues.
      > "Although this action addresses how BPL operators will be responsible to
      > state regulators, it does not address any of the technical problems with
      > BPL
      > in any way," Hare observed. "Utilities will still have to carefully choose
      > BPL vendors with a proven track record of preventing interference
      > complaints."
      > The CPUC said it wants to foster BPL deployment to solve the "last mile"
      > problem of broadband delivery and to increase consumer choice in broadband
      > providers. "BPL has the potential to bring broadband Internet services to
      > communities who do not have broadband service available today from the
      > telephone companies or cable companies," said CPUC President Michael R.
      > Peevey.
      > One commissioner suggested that BPL faces an uphill battle. "This is a
      > nascent technology with technological, market, and financial hurdles
      > before
      > it," commented CPUC member John Bohn. "By removing unnecessary regulations
      > from its path, we free BPL entrepreneurs to invest and take the risks they
      > want, while protecting ratepayers from any downside."
      > ARRL CEO David Sumner, K1ZZ, said that while the League's concern is with
      > BPL interference and not with BPL's viability in the broadband
      > marketplace,
      > "it's odd to see the California PUC echoing the pro-BPL rhetoric that was
      > coming out of the FCC two years ago and that is so demonstrably wrong
      > today." Sumner points out that BPL has been around for years now, and
      > "after
      > all the hype," the most-recent FCC statistics show no more than about 4000
      > BPL lines in service across the US.
      > "The California PUC would better serve its citizens by focusing on more
      > capable broadband technologies, such as fiber and wireless, that do not
      > have
      > the potential to disrupt radio communication," Sumner concluded.
      > The policy the CPUC adopted April 27 stemmed from a draft developed by
      > CPUC
      > member Rachelle Chong, a former FCC commissioner.
      > Seventeen-year-old Mellissa Ann Meye, KB0WZA, of Camdenton, Missouri, has
      > been named the recipient of the 2006 William R. Goldfarb Memorial
      > Scholarship, the ARRL Foundation Scholarship Committee has announced. Meye
      > is the first young woman to receive this generous award. Licensed in 1996,
      > Meye has actively promoted Amateur Radio in her community, was
      > instrumental
      > in establishing the Osage Amateur Radio Club at her school and serves as
      > the
      > club's president.
      > "The establishment of this club took many hours of work and convincing the
      > school administration of its value," said Lloyd Wood, N0GYE, who
      > recommended
      > Meye's selection. "Mellissa was so successful in convincing school
      > personnel
      > of Amateur Radio's value that the high school principal and some of the
      > faculty members are presently studying to take their exams."
      > The terms of reference of the generous Goldfarb scholarship award require
      > that recipients demonstrate financial need and significant involvement
      > with
      > Amateur Radio, in addition to high academic performance. "Ms Meye meets or
      > exceeds all of our criteria," the selection committee said. A high school
      > senior and General-class licensee, Meye ranks sixth in a class of 132
      > pursuing an advanced academic diploma course of study. She plans to attend
      > the University of Missouri-Rolla to study petroleum engineering.
      > Amateur Radio runs in the Meye family. Her father David is KL7QW.
      > Beyond her academic accomplishments, Meye sports a well-balanced and
      > impressive list of extracurricular and community activities. She's a
      > member
      > of her school's advanced concert chorale, Science Research Team, the
      > Fellowship of Christian Athletes and the Future Business Leaders of
      > America.
      > She also has participated in the Upward Bound Math and Science Program
      > held
      > summers at Northwest Missouri State University and was selected two years
      > running.
      > Said one of her church leaders, Robert D. Ashford: "She has led other
      > young
      > women of her age group to be better people and has conducted music for the
      > entire congregation."
      > The William R. Goldfarb Memorial Scholarship is intended to assist a
      > qualified student to obtain a bachelor's degree at an accredited school in
      > one of the following courses of study: business-related computers, medical
      > or nursing fields, engineering or sciences. The four-year award to an
      > active
      > radio amateur is based on outstanding qualifications, need and other
      > funding
      > sources.
      > The Goldfarb Scholarship is the result of a generous endowment from the
      > late
      > William Goldfarb, N2ITP. Before his death in 1997, Goldfarb set up a
      > scholarship endowment of close to $1 million in memory of his parents,
      > Albert and Dorothy Goldfarb.
      > More information on the Goldfarb Scholarship is available on the ARRL Web
      > site <http://www.arrl.org/arrlf/goldfarb.html>. Applications for the
      > Goldfarb Scholarship and other ARRL Foundation Scholarship applications
      > are
      > accepted each year beginning October 1 and ending February 1 for the
      > academic year that starts the following August/September.
      > ROUNDUP
      > West Mountain Radio, which manufactures the popular RIGblaster digital
      > modes
      > radio-to-sound card interfaces, has generously agreed to be Principal
      > Awards
      > Sponsor for the 2006 and 2007 runnings of the ARRL RTTY Round-Up. During
      > the
      > annual event, which takes place the first full weekend in January, radio
      > amateurs around the globe contact and exchange QSO information using
      > Baudot
      > RTTY, PSK31, ASCII, AMTOR and attended packet operation. ARRL COO Harold
      > Kramer, WJ1B, said West Mountain Radio's participation will provide the
      > events' top scorers with plaques that might not otherwise be available.
      > "We are pleased that West Mountain Radio has agreed to be the Principal
      > Awards Sponsor for the ARRL RTTY Round-Up," Kramer said. "Participation in
      > the ARRL RTTY Round-Up has been increasing every year, and we are grateful
      > to West Mountain Radio for its support. It is particularly appropriate for
      > West Mountain Radio to associate itself with this operating event because
      > of
      > its continuing commitment and technical contribution to digital
      > communication and support of this interest group." West Mountain Radio
      > will
      > be Principal Awards Sponsor for all unsponsored plaques for the events.
      > West Mountain Radio's Dan Gravereaux, N1ZZ, said he hopes the cooperative
      > arrangement will help to spur more interest in digital mode contesting and
      > operating. "We are delighted to be the Principal Awards Sponsor," he
      > commented. "We at West Mountain Radio have worked very hard to make RTTY
      > and
      > other digital modes more accessible to the Amateur Radio community."
      > Gravereaux says he believes the League, the various digital-mode software
      > developers and his company have made an effort to promote more exciting
      > modes and "to keep ham radio really fun," and he sees West Mountain
      > Radio's
      > participation as Principal Awards Sponsor an extension of that activity.
      > RTTY Round-Up plaques will go to the top-scoring low and high-power
      > entrants
      > in each overall contest category within each ARRL Division and Canada.
      > Entry
      > categories include single-operator low power and high power and
      > multioperator single-transmitter, low power and high power. Plaques that
      > West Mountain Radio is underwriting will bear the company's logo, as will
      > all contest certificates sent to contest category winners. Other plaques
      > already are underwritten by clubs, individuals or other organizations.
      > Based in Norwalk, Connecticut, West Mountain Radio
      > <http://www.westmountainradio.com/> produces several RIGblaster models for
      > operating digital modes with a computer. It also makes the RIGrunner for
      > distributing 12 V dc power, PWRgates for emergency backup, RIGtalk for rig
      > control, and CBAs for battery testing. Gravereaux says the West Mountain
      > Radio team plans to be on the air for the ARRL RTTY Round-Up next January
      > using the company's K1WMR club station call sign.
      > Hams in Germany and Portugal reportedly have received signals from the US
      > Voyager 1 spacecraft <http://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov/> in March and April. On
      > March 31, AMSAT-DL (Germany) radio amateurs at the Institute for
      > Environmental and Future Research (IUZ) at Bochum Observatory used a
      > 20-meter radio telescope dish to detect Voyager 1's 8.4 GHz signal.
      > Using Doppler shift and sky positioning, the German team received the
      > signal
      > from a distance of 8.82 billion miles (14.7 billion km)--nearly 100 times
      > the distance from the sun to Earth. This is the first recorded reception
      > of
      > signals from Voyager 1 by radio amateurs.
      > Members of the AMSAT-DL/IUZ team included Freddy de Guchteneire, ON6UG,
      > James Miller, G3RUH, Hartmut Paesler, DL1YDD, and Achim Vollhardt,
      > DH2VA/HB9DUN. Assisting were Theo Elsner, DJ5YM of IUZ, and Roger Ludwig
      > of
      > Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), as well as the Deep Space Network (DSN)
      > tracking station in Madrid, Spain.
      > Luis Cupido, CT1DMK, in Portugal reported April 15 that he spent "two
      > nights
      > without sleep" to hear Voyager I at his QTH using a 5.6-meter dish. To
      > detect the signal, Cupido says he had to acquire and integrate
      > spectrograms
      > over an extended period.
      > "I did several acquisition periods of 15 minutes (900 s), the minimum I
      > would expect to see something," he said on his Web site
      > <http://w3ref.cfn.ist.utl.pt/cupido/dsn.html>, noting that any longer time
      > period would be incompatible with his Doppler-shift correction scheme.
      > "The
      > receiver is operated at fixed frequency, and the Doppler variation was
      > corrected by skewing successive spectrograms in software while
      > accumulating
      > [images]."
      > He based positive identification of Voyager 1's signal on the fact that
      > signal is "only visible for the right skew amount that corresponds to the
      > Doppler variation as predicted by the relative velocity calculation."
      > Voyager 1 was launched in September 1977 to conduct close-up studies of
      > Jupiter and Saturn, Saturn's rings and the larger moons of the two
      > planets.
      > Designed to last only five years, the probe is expected to send back
      > astronomical information to NASA and JPL until at least 2020. Voyager 1
      > will
      > study ultraviolet sources among the stars, and its fields and particles
      > instruments will continue to search for the boundary between the sun's
      > influence and interstellar space.
      > George Hitz, W1DA, of Sudbury, Massachusetts, can finally account for one
      > of
      > his QSL cards--one he sent in 1956. While a newly licensed teenager living
      > in DeLand, Florida, Hitz, then KN4DPI, fired up his Johnson Viking
      > Adventurer transmitter and made contact with Dave, KN6MSI, on 40 meters.
      > Like a good operator, Hitz sent off a QSL card, addressed only to "Amateur
      > Radio--KN6NMI, Chief Op Dave, Address Unknown, Riverdale, Calif." This
      > turned out to be David Leaven, later WI6J, who became a Silent Key in
      > 2003.
      > "I was 14, and like me, Dave was a new ham, and he wasn't in the call
      > book,"
      > Hitz told ARRL. "I hoped there would be someone at the Riverdale post
      > office
      > that would know who Dave was, and it would get to him." But Hitz made one
      > mistake: he addressed the card to Riverdale instead of to Dave's actual
      > QTH,
      > Riverside. That simple error left the card sitting in QSL limbo from 1956
      > until now.
      > "In 1956, I was just a Novice operator with a primitive station and even
      > more primitive operating skills," Hitz explained. "Back then, with my
      > radio
      > built from a kit and my BC-348 World War II Army Air Corps surplus
      > receiver
      > and a 60-foot long wire antenna that was 15 feet high, California, was
      > like
      > a whole other country. And I needed that California QSL!"
      > Hitz had put a return address on his card, but for reasons perhaps best
      > known to the US Postal Service, it finally was returned to his former
      > Florida address in early April. It turned up in the mailbox of Mack
      > McCormick, a nonham now living in Hitz's childhood home.
      > "The card apparently has been in the 'Twilight Zone' for 50 years,"
      > McCormick said. "It's not wrinkled or anything."
      > McCormick offered to return the card to Hitz, but Hitz declined. "What
      > would
      > I do with it?" he said. "I understand the guy who found it is going to
      > frame
      > it and place it on his coffee table!"
      > The story of the long-lost QSL card received worldwide attention. "The
      > press
      > has run wild with this," Hitz said. "I heard this story has been in
      > newspapers in India, Iceland, Ireland--all over the world, over 100
      > countries! It's almost like I could have DXCC from all the countries that
      > have reported it."
      > ==>SOLAR UPDATE
      > Solar flash Tad "That Lucky Ol' Sun" Cook, K7RA, Seattle, Washington,
      > reports: Geomagnetic conditions were quiet this week in most places, but
      > on
      > April 22 there was a geomagnetic storm at high latitudes caused by solar
      > wind and a south-pointing interplanetary magnetic field (IMF). The College
      > A
      > index in Fairbanks, Alaska, reached 38, and the K index was 7 at its
      > highest. The Mid-Latitude A index for the day was only 10--just slightly
      > unsettled.
      > On April 27 there was a strong, but brief, solar flare from Sunspot 875,
      > but
      > this was not expected to cause major geomagnetic activity. At the time of
      > the flare, around 1552 UTC, X-rays caused a radio blackout of nearly a
      > quarter-hour.
      > Sunspot numbers and solar flux have been rising, and solar flux is
      > expected
      > to remain around 100 over the next week. Geomagnetic conditions may become
      > active again around May 2 and May 6, with a big increase in activity
      > expected around May 10-13 because of similar activity during the previous
      > solar rotation.
      > Sunspot numbers for April 20 through 26 were 30, 14, 15, 24, 38, 33 and
      > 60,
      > with a mean of 30.6. The 10.7 cm flux was 78.7, 76.4, 82.4, 86.7, 92.8,
      > 95.1, and 100, with a mean of 87.4. Estimated planetary A indices were 5,
      > 8,
      > 18, 8, 7, 5 and 5, with a mean of 8. Estimated mid-latitude A indices were
      > 3, 6, 10, 8, 4, 1 and 2, with a mean of 4.9.
      > __________________________________
      > ==>IN BRIEF:
      > * This weekend on the radio: The North America High Speed Meteor Scatter
      > Spring Rally is April 29 until May 7. The SBMS 2 GHz and Up World Wide
      > Club
      > Contest, the Helvetia Contest and the Alabama QSO Party are the weekend of
      > April 29-30. JUST AHEAD: The AGCW QRP/QRP Party and the RSGB 80-meter Club
      > Championship (SSB) are May 1. The ARS Spartan Sprint is May 2. The
      > Thursday
      > NCCC Sprint Ladder is May 5 UTC. The New England, Seventh Call Area and
      > Indiana QSO parties, the MARAC County Hunter Contest (CW), the 10-10
      > International Spring Contest (CW), the Microwave Spring Sprint, and the
      > ARI
      > International DX Contest are the weekend of May 6-7. The RSGB 80-meter
      > Club
      > Championship (Data) is May 10. The Thursday NCCC Sprint Ladder is May 12
      > (UTC). See the ARRL Contest Branch page <http://www.arrl.org/contests/>
      > and
      > the WA7BNM Contest Calendar
      > <http://www.hornucopia.com/contestcal/index.html> for more info.
      > * ARRL Certification and Continuing Education course registration:
      > Registration remains open through Sunday, May 7, for these ARRL
      > Certification and Continuing Education (CCE) Program on-line courses:
      > Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 2 (EC-002), Amateur Radio
      > Emergency Communications Level 3 (EC-003), Antenna Modeling (EC-004), HF
      > Digital Communications (EC-005), VHF/UHF--Life Beyond the Repeater
      > (EC-008),
      > and Radio Frequency Propagation (EC-011). Classes begin Friday, May 19. To
      > learn more, visit the CCE Course Listing page
      > <http://www.arrl.org/cce/courses.html> or contact the CCE Department
      > <cce@...>.
      > * Armed Forces Day 2006 military/amateur activities set: The US Army, Air
      > Force, Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard will cosponsor the annual
      > military/Amateur Radio communications tests Saturday and Sunday, May 13-14
      > t56th Armed Forces Day. Although the actual Armed Forces Day is Saturday,
      > May 20, the Armed Forces Day on-the-air activities will take place
      > earlier,
      > to avoid conflicts with those who might be attending Dayton Hamvention,
      > May
      > 19-21. The annual activity features traditional military-to-amateur
      > crossband (ie, hams transmit on amateur frequencies and receive military
      > stations on nearby military channels) SSB voice tests and copying the
      > Secretary of Defense's annual Armed Forces Day message via digital modes
      > (RTTY, PACTOR, AMTOR, PSK-31 and MT63). "These tests give Amateur Radio
      > operators and Short Wave Listeners an opportunity to demonstrate their
      > individual technical skills and receive recognition from the Secretary of
      > Defense and/or the appropriate military radio station for their proven
      > expertise," the US Armed Forces Day announcement says. QSL cards will be
      > provided to those making contact with military stations. Commemorative
      > certificates will be awarded to those receiving and copying without error
      > the digital Armed Forces Day message from the Secretary of Defense. The
      > tentative schedule of on-the-air events--including a list of participating
      > stations, the Secretary of Defense's message transmission schedule and
      > more
      > information--is available on the US Army MARS Web site
      > <http://www.netcom.army.mil/mars/news/ARMED%20FORCES%20DAY%20(2006).doc>.
      > The schedule is subject to change without notice.
      > * SuitSat-1 still in orbit: Tossed into orbit three months ago from the
      > International Space Station, SuitSat-1 continues to orbit Earth--although
      > its batteries are long since dead, Spaceweather.com reported this week
      > that
      > skywatcher Kevin Fetter videotaped SuitSat-1 as it passed over his
      > Brockville, Ontario, Canada, home (the bright star in the movie is Vega)
      > <http://science.nasa.gov/spaceweather/swpod2006/27apr06/fetter.wmv>. A
      > spare
      > Russian Orlan spacesuit equipped with a voice transmitter, slow-scan TV
      > system, voice recordings and various sensors, SuitSat-1 was the brainchild
      > of the Russian Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS)
      > team. From the outset, radio signals from the unusual satellite were very
      > weak due to an undetermined problem. Even so, SuitSat-1 remained in
      > operation for more than two weeks, easily outlasting initial predictions
      > that it would only transmit for about one week. The last confirmed
      > reception
      > of SuitSat-1's voice audio was on February 18. Calling the project
      > "tremendously successful," ARISS International Chairman Frank Bauer,
      > KA3HDO,
      > says SuitSat-1 captured the imagination of people around the world,
      > despite
      > its much-lower-than-expected signal strength. Eventually, SuitSat-1 will
      > sink into Earth's atmosphere and disintegrate in a flash of fire. Another
      > surplus Orlan suit remains aboard the ISS, so SuitSat-2 could be in the
      > offing.
      > * Hugh L. Tinley, K0GHK, SK: QST author and World War II historical figure
      > Hugh Tinley, K0GHK, of Omaha, Nebraska, died April 27. He was 88. Tinley
      > had
      > been suffering from bone cancer. His article, "Riding the Magic Carpet,"
      > in
      > April QST about using EchoLink to put hospital patients in touch with one
      > another proved very popular with readers. An officer on the staff of Gen
      > Dwight D. Eisenhower during World War II, Tinley was one of the last
      > surviving individuals to have witnessed the signing of the German
      > surrender
      > documents that ended the war. In 2005, he appeared in an ABC Evening News
      > segment, "Old Soldiers," marking the 60th anniversary of the victory in
      > Europe. Retired as president of Farmers International, he had been a radio
      > amateur for 46 years. During the 1960s, he was an active participant in
      > the
      > Military Affiliate Radio System's "Operation Hello," helping provide phone
      > patches between servicemen in Vietnam and their families. He was a member
      > of
      > ARRL and the Heartland DX Association.
      > * DXCC Desk approves operations for DXCC credit: The ARRL DXCC Desk has
      > approved these operations for DXCC credit: YI9AQ (Iraq), current
      > operation,
      > effective September 21, 2004; D6/WB4MBU (Comoros), operation from May 24
      > to
      > October 27, 2001; D68JC (Comoros), operation from October 23 to November
      > 8,
      > 2001, and 4W2AQ (Timor-Leste), operation from June 18 to December 17,
      > 2003.
      > For more information, visit the DXCC Web page
      > <http://www.arrl.org/awards/dxcc>. "DXCC Frequently Asked Questions" can
      > answer most questions about the DXCC program. ARRL DX bulletins are
      > available on the W1AW DX Bulletins page <http://www.arrl.org/w1aw/dx/>.
      > ===========================================================
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