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The ARRL Letter, Vol 25, No 22 (Jun 2, 2006)

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  • Tom VanderMel
    ... From: ARRL Letter Mailing List To: Sent: Friday, June 02, 2006 5:59 PM Subject: The ARRL Letter, Vol 25, No
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 2, 2006
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "ARRL Letter Mailing List" <letter-dlvy@...>
      To: <kb8vee@...>
      Sent: Friday, June 02, 2006 5:59 PM
      Subject: The ARRL Letter, Vol 25, No 22 (Jun 2, 2006)

      > ***************
      > The ARRL Letter
      > Vol. 25, No. 22
      > June 2, 2006
      > ***************
      > * +Ham radio provides emergency communication following earthquake
      > * +Robert McDowell makes it a full house at the FCC
      > * +Ham radio lets youngsters in Italy learn more about space travel
      > * +Mobile T-hunters die in vehicle mishap
      > * +Ham radio gears up for the hurricane season
      > * +WA5TMC appointed Delta Division Vice Director
      > * +SKYWARN volunteers are environmental heroes
      > * +ISS astronaut honored for ham radio accomplishments
      > * Solar Update
      > * IN BRIEF:
      > This weekend on the radio
      > ARRL Certification and Continuing Education course registration
      > US Power Squadrons, ARRL join forces for W1AW operating event
      > Ham-Com 2006 set for June 9-10 in Plano, Texas
      > Staten Island ARES participates in storm rehearsal
      > Radio amateurs take part in National Communications System training
      > Revised DXCC awards fee schedule becomes effective July 1
      > +Available on ARRL Audio News <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/>
      > ===========================================================
      > ==>Delivery problems (ARRL member direct delivery only!):
      > letter-dlvy@...
      > ==>Editorial questions or comments: Rick Lindquist, N1RL, n1rl@...
      > ===========================================================
      > Amateur Radio operators in Indonesia are providing emergency communication
      > for relief operations in the wake of a 6.3 magnitude earthquake May 27
      > affecting Yogyakarta and surrounding area. The quake has left more than
      > 6200
      > people dead, injured more than 30,000 and leveled entire communities. Some
      > 650,000 people are reported homeless. Indonesia's International Amateur
      > Radio Union (IARU) member-society, the Organization of Amateur Radio for
      > Indonesia (ORARI) has been coordinating an emergency communication network
      > comprised of so-called "Zulu Stations" and individual volunteer radio
      > amateurs. As is the practice in Indonesia, ORARI has designated several
      > zulu-suffix emergency communication stations to handle disaster-related
      > traffic on HF and VHF.
      > "Beside several local emergency zulu stations and operators, there is an
      > emergency zulu station portable from Jakarta, YC0ZRA, operated by Achmad
      > Sanusi, YCOLJH, and Budi Sabara, YCOCSR," reports Wyn Purwinto, AB2QV. A
      > native of Indonesia, Purwinto has been gathering information on the
      > disaster
      > response from his home in New York. He says the portable station also
      > supports the Indonesian Offroad Federation (IOF) with its heavy-duty all
      > wheel drive vehicles. IOF volunteers transported food and supplies
      > following
      > the 2004 tsunami.
      > Purwinto reports that several radio amateurs and their families in the
      > Yogyakarta area were among the thousands affected by the earthquake,
      > hindering their ability to help with any emergency operations. "But more
      > hams coming from other districts day by day," he said this week.
      > Soejat Harto, YB6HB, a physician, has joined a ham radio emergency medical
      > team in Yogyakarta. Purwinto notes that Dr Harto was among the Amateur
      > Radio
      > volunteers who helped in the tsunami disaster relief effort in Aceh and
      > North Sumatra.
      > Praharto, YB2BFZ, of the ORARI branch in Banyumas, 200 km west of
      > Yogyakarta, has deployed his emergency radio communicator (ERC) team to
      > Yogyakarta with generators. Several ERC teams from the Indonesian capital
      > of
      > Jakarta, Bekasi and the W Java provincial capital of Bandung headed to
      > Yogyakarta this week to offer additional support.
      > Deta, YB2VTO, just back from Bantul to check on family and friends,
      > reports
      > that local emergency communication is taking place on two ORARI VHF
      > repeaters that cover the whole disaster area. Zulu stations YC2ZEB in
      > Bantul, YC2ZEJ in Yogyakarta and YC2ZES are handling whatever traffic
      > there
      > is. Zulu station YC2ZEB is on HF from Bantul, where local radio amateurs
      > installed an 80-meter dipole.
      > Purwinto is updating his "Emergency Communication in Yogyakarta" Web page
      > <http://www.qsl.net/ab2qv/yogya.htm> with information he's compiled on the
      > Indonesian ARES response to the earthquake.
      > Relief volunteers still in Indonesia since the 2004 tsunami have shifted
      > their efforts to aiding earthquake victims. The United Nations and various
      > relief agencies, including the Red Cross and the Global Rescue Network,
      > have
      > begun transporting food, water and other basic supplies to the affected
      > region. Electrical power and telecommunication services are said to be
      > still
      > erratic.
      > Robert M. McDowell has been sworn in as an FCC commissioner by FCC
      > Chairman
      > Kevin J. Martin, returning the agency to its full five-member complement
      > for
      > the first time in more than a year. Earlier this week, after some delay
      > due
      > to political maneuvering, the US Senate confirmed the nomination of
      > McDowell, of Virginia, to fill the seat vacated last December by Kathleen
      > Q.
      > Abernathy. His term will expire June 30, 2009.
      > "I am honored and humbled to be joining such a distinguished group of
      > commissioners as well as the fine career public servants at the FCC,"
      > McDowell said in a statement. "I am confident that our efforts will help
      > bring the most advanced and efficient communications systems in the world
      > to
      > all American consumers."
      > Martin applauded McDowell's arrival, which gives him a Republican majority
      > on the FCC for the first time in his tenure as chairman. Since Martin--an
      > FCC member during Michael Powell's tenure as chairman--took over the
      > chairmanship, the political balance on the Commission has been split
      > evenly
      > between two Republicans and two Democrats. Members of a president's
      > political party hold a majority on the FCC.
      > In addition to Martin, McDowell--a telecommunications attorney--will join
      > fellow Republican Deborah T. Tate, who officially came aboard January 3.
      > The
      > Commission's two Democrats are Michael J. Copps, who is in his second
      > term,
      > and Jonathan Adelstein.
      > McDowell brings to the FCC nearly 16 years of private-sector experience in
      > the telecommunication industry. Prior to his FCC appointment, he served as
      > senior vice president and assistant general counsel for the Competitive
      > Telecommunications Association (COMPTEL).
      > Youngsters attending the Virgilio Primary School in Mestre, near Venice,
      > Italy, got to hear firsthand about life in space from US Astronaut Jeff
      > Williams, KD5TVQ. The Amateur Radio on the International Space Station
      > (ARISS) program arranged the direct VHF contact May 22 between NA1SS in
      > space and IW3GPO at the school in northern Italy. Control operator Paolo
      > Rosin, IW3GPO, posed all questions, including one asking if language
      > problems ever arose between crew members from different countries.
      > Williams
      > said the language barrier still exists aboard the ISS.
      > "I've been studying Russian language for almost four years. Pavel
      > [Vinogradov, the Expedition 13 commander] studies English--he has studied
      > for several years as well," William explained, "but still it takes a long
      > time to learn a foreign language, as you know. So there's always a little
      > bit of a struggle with foreign languages."
      > Unfortunately, the youngsters couldn't ask their own questions because the
      > US does not have a third-party traffic agreement with Italy.
      > During the approximately eight-minute contact--conducted entirely in
      > English--Williams said he enjoys observing and photographing Earth, doing
      > scientific experiments and even his two hours of mandatory daily exercise.
      > But there are some tasks he doesn't much care for.
      > "They're similar to jobs we don't like doing on the earth," Williams
      > responded. "Cleaning things I don't like doing. Going into the equivalent
      > of
      > a closet to try to find things or collect things for a job--that sometimes
      > is very tedious, and I don't like doing that very much. But, of course, we
      > have to do jobs that we like, and we have to do jobs that we don't like."
      > In several of his answers, Williams referred to the pending arrival of the
      > space shuttle in July, when European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Thomas
      > Reiter, DF4TR, of Germany will join ISS crews over a period of several
      > months. The shuttle is the only vehicle capable of transporting the
      > components remaining to complete the ISS, including the ESA's Columbus
      > module. Williams noted that the shuttle will bring water to the ISS when
      > it
      > arrives this summer.
      > He also said space walks are one of the hardest jobs astronauts and
      > cosmonauts undertake, but it's not scary to work in space. On June 2,
      > Williams and Vinogradov completed a 6-1/2 hour spacewalk to make repairs
      > and
      > retrieve experiments, among other tasks.
      > "The most enjoyable thing that we do is do a spacewalk," Williams said,
      > "because to be able to go outside and see the entire Earth--not through a
      > window but through the visor of your helmet--it is fantastic!"
      > In later remarks, Williams paid tribute to the beauty of Italy as seen
      > from
      > space. "I love your country," he said. "I've flown over Venice many times
      > and I love to take pictures of the seashore and the cities, Mt Etna on
      > Sicily--there are many, many beautiful things on the planet Earth to see
      > from space."
      > Virgilio Primary School has an enrollment of 210 pupils. A town of about
      > 150,000, Mestre is connected to Venice some six miles away via a long
      > bridge
      > on the lagoon. Local radio amateurs Francesco De Paolis, IK0WGF, Kira
      > Collevati, IW3EXQ, Giorgio Pagan, IW3IBG, and Stefano Mannelli, IZ5ENH,
      > assisted in the ARISS event. The technical team set up a satellite station
      > as well as a vertical backup antenna.
      > Reporters for two newspapers and four TV outlets were on hand to cover the
      > ARISS event. Peter Kofler, IN3GHZ, served as the ARISS mentor for the QSO.
      > ARISS is a nine-nation international educational outreach with US
      > participation by ARRL, AMSAT and NASA.
      > Two ARRL members from California are dead after the vehicle in which they
      > were riding during a mobile hidden transmitter hunt May 27 went over a
      > cliff
      > in rugged terrain near Lake Isabella in Kern County. They were identified
      > as
      > Michael G. Obermeier, K6SNE, of Anaheim, and David A. Gordon-Ross, N6IDF,
      > of
      > Yucaipa. Obermeier, an ARRL Official Observer in Orange County, was 46.
      > Gordon-Ross was 35.
      > "Mike and Dave were some of the best T-hunters in the biz," said Scott
      > Press, N6SAP, calling both "true assets to this hobby." In his role as an
      > OO, Obermeier reportedly had participated in the infamous Jack Gerritsen
      > radio jamming case in the Los Angeles area.
      > According to media accounts, a Kern County Sheriff's Department
      > search-and-rescue team located the victims early Monday, May 29. Obermeier
      > was driving the 1991 4-wheel-drive Jeep Cherokee that apparently went out
      > of
      > control on Cook Peak Road while the pair was proceeding to the next hidden
      > transmitter site. After caroming off a rock wall, the vehicle crossed the
      > road and plunged down a 900-foot cliff. They were reported missing after
      > failing to check in with T-hunt organizers.
      > Greg Pitta, KF6DBJ, reports Obermeier and Gordon-Ross were on a half-day
      > multiple-transmitter T-hunt. "Both K6SNE and N6IDF were expert transmitter
      > hunters, each with hundreds of hunts completed, ranking with top scores in
      > most," he said.
      > ARRL Amateur Radio Direction Finding (ARDF) Coordinator Joe Moell, K0OV,
      > knew both men. He notes that Obermeier had suffered a sports-related
      > spinal
      > cord injury that left him a paraplegic. "He did all the adaptive work on
      > his
      > vehicles, of which he had quite a few that he used over time for RDF,"
      > Moell
      > said. Despite his physical limitations, Obermeier also enjoyed foxhunting
      > from his wheel chair.
      > Moell says Gordon-Ross had been a proficient mobile T-hunter for many
      > years.
      > He took a brief hiatus after his first child was born in April 2005 (his
      > wife, Melanie, is KF6GWV), but he recently became active again.
      > According to Moell, the mobile transmitter hunts take place on the fourth
      > Saturday of each month on 2-meter FM simplex, starting out from a hilltop
      > in
      > Rancho Palos Verdes. He says it's not uncommon for the main hidden
      > transmitter to be hundreds of miles away--175 highway miles in this
      > instance.
      > The 147.435 Amateur Radio Repeater System is collecting donations to help
      > Melanie Gordon-Ross, a stay-at-home mom. It also will donate all proceeds
      > from its 16th annual 435 Chili Cook-off June 10. Visit the 147.435 Web
      > site
      > <http://www.435online.com> for additional information.
      > Scientists within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
      > (NOAA)
      > predict an 80-percent chance of an above-normal 2006 north Atlantic
      > hurricane/tropical storm season, which runs from June 1 through November
      > 30.
      > A repeat performance of the devastating 2005 season is unlikely, however.
      > Weather experts at NOAA's Climate Prediction Center, National Hurricane
      > Center and Climate Prediction Center produced this year's outlook
      > <http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/outlooks/hurricane.shtml>.
      > "For the 2006 north Atlantic hurricane season NOAA is predicting 13 to 16
      > named storms, with eight to 10 becoming hurricanes, of which four to six
      > could become 'major' hurricanes of Category 3 strength or higher," says
      > NOAA
      > Administrator Conrad Lautenbacher.
      > The Hurricane Watch Net (HWN) <http://www.hwn.org> activates on 14.325 MHz
      > when major tropical storms threaten the US. It works in concert with
      > WX4NHC
      > <http://www.wx4nhc.org> at the National Hurricane Center to relay
      > real-time
      > ground-level weather data to forecasters.
      > On average, the north Atlantic hurricane season produces 11 named storms,
      > with six becoming hurricanes, including two major hurricanes. In 2005, the
      > Atlantic hurricane season experienced a record 28 storms, including 15
      > hurricanes. Seven were "major," and a record four hurricanes hit the US.
      > While NOAA is not forecasting a rerun of last year's season, the potential
      > for hurricanes to strike the US is "high," Lautenbacher said.
      > The first named storm of the 2006 season will be "Alberto." The name
      > "Katrina" has been removed from the list of storm names.
      > ARRL President Joel Harrison, W5ZN, has appointed Karl W. Bullock, WA5TMC,
      > to be Delta Division Vice Director. Bullock, of Ripley, Mississippi, will
      > complete the term of Henry Leggette, WD4Q, who took over as Delta Division
      > Director in January after the ARRL Board of Directors elevated past
      > Director
      > Rick Roderick, K5UR, to be an ARRL Vice President.
      > "I'm honored to have been chosen by President Harrison," Bullock said,
      > "and
      > I look forward to serving the fine folks in the Delta Division and
      > representing Amateur Radio in general."
      > First licensed at age 14 as WN5TMC in 1967, Bullock, 53, has remained an
      > active radio amateur ever since. He now holds an Amateur Extra class
      > license
      > as well as an FCC commercial license. He's active on all bands and modes
      > from 160 meters through 70 cm.
      > His ham radio career has included starting up the Mississippi Training and
      > Traffic net--later the Mississippi Slow Net. He's also a member of the
      > Brass
      > Pounder's League, the recipient of several public service awards, a past
      > officer of the Northeast Mississippi Amateur Radio Club and, most
      > recently,
      > ARRL District Emergency Coordinator for North Mississippi as well as
      > Emergency Coordinator for Tippah County.
      > He's a Life Member of the ARRL, a charter member of the Tippah Amateur
      > Radio
      > Association and a control operator for a local 2-meter repeater. He also
      > enjoys telling others about his Christian faith and about Amateur Radio.
      > On the professional side, Bullock has operated his own telecommunications
      > consulting company, Bullock & Associates, since 2001 and is involved in a
      > startup dedicated to residential fiber connectivity. His consulting
      > activity
      > focuses on competitive local exchange carriers--CLECs.
      > His wife Amy is N5TBB, the ARRL Public Information Coordinator for the
      > Mississippi Section and current president of the Tippah Amateur Radio
      > Association.
      > "We both love DX, contests, and going to hamfests," Bullock says. "Amy
      > fell
      > in love with hamfests after the first one I carried her to, and soon
      > afterward passed her exam. We still like to make the Dayton trip whenever
      > we
      > can."
      > Bullock's current term as Vice Director will end January 1, 2009.
      > South Florida SKYWARN Coordinator Don Morris, KG4JHH, of Miami, and his
      > South Florida SKYWARN team have received a 2006 NOAA Environmental Hero
      > Award for outstanding volunteer service during the 2005 hurricane season.
      > Morris and his SKYWARN team volunteered more than 100 hours to staff
      > Amateur
      > Radio station WX4MIA, located at the NOAA National Weather Service (NWS)
      > Weather Forecast Office in Miami. The volunteers gathered real-time
      > hurricane damage and weather reports, disseminated NWS information and
      > warnings and verified NWS warnings with on-the-spot information.
      > "The intent of the award is to recognize all of us who have worked on
      > SKYWARN and/or WX4MIA," said Morris, who accepted the plaque during a May
      > 22
      > presentation. "Local Amateur Radio is the main infrastructure we depend on
      > for SKYWARN. It is way cool to be part of it." Morris also credited those
      > who filed reports by telephone, Internet or fax or who have "just been
      > ready
      > if needed."
      > Along with other SKYWARN volunteers and even family members, Morris kept
      > the
      > WX4MIA severe weather net in constant operation as Hurricane Katrina moved
      > ashore near Hallandale Beach and then southwest across Miami-Dade County.
      > He
      > did the same thing for Hurricane Wilma, staying all night right through
      > landfall around 6 AM in Collier County and through noon when Wilma finally
      > moved off the Palm Beach County coastline near Jupiter.
      > Over the years, NOAA said, Morris has volunteered hundreds of hours as
      > "the
      > voice" of WX4MIA, soliciting storm reports and disseminating the latest
      > warnings and statements for hurricanes and severe storms.
      > Established in 1995 and given annually in conjunction with Earth Day, the
      > Environmental Hero Award is presented to individuals and organizations
      > volunteering their time and energy to help NOAA carry out its
      > mission.--NOAA; Evelyn Gauzens, W4WYR
      > SPACE
      > International Space Station Expedition 12 Commander Bill McArthur, KC5ACR,
      > has been honored as the first astronaut to work all states from space and
      > for inspiring others through his ham radio activities from NA1SS.
      > McArthur,
      > who returned to Earth in April, received an ARRL Worked All States (WAS)
      > plaque during a May 25 ceremony at Johnson Space Center in Houston. During
      > his six-month duty tour, McArthur became the most active radio amateur
      > ever
      > to serve aboard the ISS. His track record from NA1SS is impressive: In
      > addition to WAS, he handled a record 37 Amateur Radio on the International
      > Space Station (ARISS) school contacts, worked all continents, including
      > Antarctica, on both VHF and UHF--and racked up QSOs with some 130 DXCC
      > entities.
      > "The Amateur Radio on the ISS program was developed to inspire
      > students--our
      > next generation of explorers--through Amateur Radio communications with
      > the
      > ISS crew," remarked ARISS International Chairman Frank Bauer, KA3HDO, who
      > presented the WAS plaque to McArthur. "Using Amateur Radio, the Expedition
      > 12 crew took the worldwide community of radio amateurs, the school
      > students
      > and the general public to unprecedented heights."
      > The last QSL McArthur needed to confirm WAS--from Wyoming--arrived at ARRL
      > Headquarters not long before the end of his ISS duty tour. McArthur also
      > logged a phenomenal number of casual contacts with earthbound radio
      > amateurs--more than 1800 in all. Bauer noted that McArthur "was very
      > approachable" with students during the ARISS school contacts. "He inspired
      > them with his vision, quick wit and sense of humor."
      > Bauer said McArthur motivated hams and non-hams alike through his
      > on-the-air
      > activity. He told of hearing from a teacher in Orlando who said one of his
      > students added Advanced Placement Physics to her course schedule after
      > participating in an ARISS school contact. In another inspirational
      > instance:
      > When a prospective licensee learned he could speak to the ISS via ham
      > radio,
      > he studied and passed his Amateur Radio examination and made a contact
      > with
      > McArthur at NA1SS in March, Bauer said.
      > "Throughout this expedition, Bill McArthur's enthusiasm for the ham radio
      > hobby kept bubbling to the surface," Bauer said, calling McArthur's ham
      > radio accomplishments from NA1SS "a testament of success."
      > "All who have been touched by your efforts will remember their special ISS
      > connection for the rest of their lives," Bauer concluded.
      > ==>SOLAR UPDATE
      > Ra the Sun god Tad "I Saw the Sun" Cook, K7RA, Seattle, Washington,
      > reports:
      > Solar activity continues to be low as we head toward the bottom of the
      > sunspot cycle. With fewer sunspots, the higher frequencies aren't as
      > useful.
      > There is a direct correlation between the maximum usable frequency (MUF)
      > and
      > the number of sunspots. That's why 10 meters is much more usable at the
      > peak
      > of a solar cycle than at the bottom. We received several e-mails this week
      > about sporadic E (Es) propagation.
      > For the next few days, it looks like solar wind from coronal holes could
      > be
      > mildly disruptive. The planetary A index forecast for June 2-3 is 20, then
      > settling down to quiet conditions a couple of days later. Average daily
      > sunspot numbers were up this week over last and are expected to rise
      > slightly over the next few days.
      > Sunspot numbers for May 25 through 31 were 33, 51, 69, 78, 54, 51 and 44,
      > with a mean of 54.3. 10.7 cm flux was 83.7, 81.6, 83, 84.7, 81.1, 80, and
      > 78.4, with a mean of 81.8. Estimated planetary A indices were 5, 5, 3, 7,
      > 3,
      > 9 and 6, with a mean of 5.4. Estimated mid-latitude A indices were 4, 1,
      > 1,
      > 5, 1, 7 and 4, with a mean of 3.3.
      > For more information concerning propagation and an explanation of the
      > numbers used in this bulletin see the ARRL Technical Information Service
      > Propagation page <http://www.arrl.org/tis/info/propagation.html>.
      > __________________________________
      > ==>IN BRIEF:
      > * This weekend on the radio: The SEANET Contest, RSGB National Field Day,
      > IARU Region 1 Field Day (CW) and the QRP TAC Sprint are the weekend of
      > June
      > 3-4. The RSGB 80-Meter Club Championship (Data) is June 5, the ARS Spartan
      > Sprint is June 6, and the Thursday NCCC Sprint Ladder is Jun 9. JUST
      > AHEAD:
      > The ARRL June VHF QSO Party, the ANARTS World Wide RTTY Contest, the
      > Portugal Day Contest, the Asia-Pacific Sprint (SSB), the GACW WWSA CW DX
      > Contest and the REF DDFM 6-Meter Contest are the weekend of June 10-11.
      > The
      > NAQCC Straight Key/Bug Sprint and the RSGB 80-Meter Club Championship (CW)
      > are June 14. The Thursday NCCC Sprint Ladder and SARL Youth Day are June
      > 16.
      > 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, June 25, for these ARRL
      > Certification and Continuing Education (CCE). Program on-line courses:
      > Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 1 (EC-001), Radio Frequency
      > Interference (EC-006), Antenna Design and Construction (EC-009), Analog
      > Electronics (EC-012) and Digital Electronics (EC-013). Classes begin
      > Friday,
      > July 7. To learn more, visit the CCE Course Listing page
      > <http://www.arrl.org/cce/courses.html> or contact the CCE Department
      > <cce@...>.
      > * US Power Squadrons, ARRL join forces for W1AW operating event:
      > Representatives of the United States Power Squadrons (USPS)
      > <http://www.usps.org/> are joining ARRL Headquarters staffers this weekend
      > for a special W1AW operating event to mark National Safe Boating Week.
      > Operation commenced Friday and will continue Saturday, June 3, starting at
      > 1200 UTC. Look for W1AW on HF plus 6 meters as well as on satellites and
      > digital modes. A special QSL card will be available. All contacts will be
      > uploaded to Logbook of the World (LoTW) <http://www.arrl.org/lotw> after
      > the
      > event. At a W1AW reception prior to the on-air activities. ARRL CEO David
      > Sumner, K1ZZ, presented Don Stark, N3HOW of the USPS with a welcoming
      > letter
      > from ARRL President Joel Harrison, W5ZN.
      > * Ham-Com 2006 set for June 9-10 in Plano, Texas: ARRL President Joel
      > Harrison, W5ZN, will address the ARRL West Gulf Division forum during
      > Ham-Com 2006 <http://www.hamcom.org>, Friday and Saturday, June 9-10, at
      > the
      > Plano Centre in Plano, Texas. In addition, ARRL Chief Development Officer
      > Mary Hobart, K1MMH, will discuss the importance of the League's
      > development
      > activities to Amateur Radio, while HQ Staffer Chuck Skolaut, K0BOG, will
      > talk about ARRL Headquarters' response to Hurricane Katrina. The doors
      > will
      > be open from 7 AM until 6 PM both days. Talk-in is on the 147.18 MHz
      > repeater (CTCSS 107.2 Hz), and parking is free. In conjunction with
      > Ham-Com
      > 2006, the Lone Star DX Association will host W5DXCC 2006, which features a
      > banquet Friday, June 9, at the Southfork Hotel. Featured speaker will be
      > Bob
      > Allphin, K4UEE, co-leader of the recent 3Y0X DXpedition to Peter I Island.
      > Complete details are in the "Ham-Com Flyer"
      > <http://www.hamcom.org/ccp51/media/PDFs/HamComFlyer2006.pdf>.--Barry
      > Goldblatt, WA5KXX
      > * Staten Island ARES participates in storm rehearsal: Lessons learned
      > during
      > last year's devastating hurricanes on the US Gulf Coast have not been lost
      > on the New York City emergency response community. In preparation for the
      > upcoming storm season, Staten Island and New York County Amateur Radio
      > Emergency Service (ARES) members participated May 21 in an American Red
      > Cross drill dubbed "The Staten Island Storm Rehearsal." The exercise was
      > designed to prepare volunteers by providing a hands-on experience in
      > emergency shelter operations. "ARES is relied upon by our clients, like
      > the
      > Red Cross, to be able to quickly, adequately and professionally set up and
      > run a portable communications system to help those affected by a
      > disaster,"
      > said ARRL New York City District Emergency Coordinator Mike Lisenco,
      > N2YBB.
      > "ARES members participate in drills such as this to hone our skills." ARES
      > participants served as primary communicators for most of the drill, for
      > which the scenario included outages of both cell phone service and
      > electrical power. During the "blackout" scenario, ham radio volunteers
      > were
      > able to provide a seamless transition to battery power to maintain
      > critical
      > communication with the Red Cross EOC in Manhattan. Ten ARES volunteers
      > took
      > part in the exercise. ARRL Staten Island Emergency Coordinator Joe Nieves,
      > N2TEE, said, "We need to be prepared at all times should we be called upon
      > to support our community."
      > * Radio amateurs take part in National Communications System training:
      > ARRL
      > members Gary Sessums, KC5QCN, Dale Stauffer, W4DS, and Jim La Follette,
      > WB4WBL, last week demonstrated digital and voice capabilities of a Shared
      > Resources (SHARES) Transportable Auxiliary Radio Station (STAR) at a
      > National Communications Systems (NCS) training session. The week-long
      > Emergency Support Function 2 (ESF-2) training session at Homestead Air
      > Reserve Base in Florida was developed in the aftermath of Hurricane
      > Katrina.
      > It was specifically designed to prepare ESF-2 responders at the federal
      > level to function effectively when called into action to support the
      > National Response Plan. SHARES stations are NCS assets that deploy with
      > "fly-away" HF radio packages to disaster scenes to provide communication
      > support to the federal government. Sessums, Stauffer and La Follette are
      > SHARES stations through their involvement with the Military Affiliate
      > Radio
      > System (MARS) and the Civil Air Patrol (CAP). They set up portable HF
      > SHARES
      > stations operating on generator power, erected near-vertical incidence
      > skywave (NVIS) wire antennas and made voice and digital HF radio contacts
      > around the US as part of the program. Sessums and La Follette are members
      > of
      > the Hillsborough County, Florida, ARES/RACES team that deployed to Hancock
      > County, Mississippi, last August to support Hurricane Katrina recovery
      > operations. Sessums is Hillborough County ARRL Emergency Coordinator.
      > * Revised DXCC awards fee schedule becomes effective July 1: The ARRL DXCC
      > Desk has announced DXCC program fees will rise slightly when a new awards
      > fee schedule
      > <http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2006/05/23/3/fees-06Jul.html>
      > goes into effect July 1. The fee for a basic DXCC application (including
      > certificate and pin for initial applications only, 120 QSO maximum) and
      > for
      > first endorsement applications within a year will increase to $12 for ARRL
      > members and to $22 for foreign nonmembers. Second and subsequent
      > endorsements (120 QSO maximum) within a year will be $22 for ARRL members
      > and $32 for foreign nonmembers. The $10 fee for a basic DXCC application
      > (120-credit maximum) was established in 1990, and the current overall fee
      > schedule has been in effect since 1998. "It costs us to provide this
      > service," explains ARRL Membership Services Manager Wayne Mills, N7NG. "We
      > don't make any money from DXCC." The cost of other DXCC-related items such
      > as plaques and pins also will go up July 1. Mills advised that DXCC fees
      > will increase further in the years ahead--possibly at two-year
      > intervals--at
      > least to catch up with the Consumer Price Index, which has risen 49
      > percent
      > since 1990. He estimates the active population of DXCC members at between
      > 15,000 and 18,000.
      > ===========================================================
      > The ARRL Letter is published Fridays, 50 times each year, by the American
      > Radio Relay League--The National Association For Amateur Radio--225 Main
      > St,
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