ARRL Amateur Radio News

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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: 25 min 9 sec ago

Help the Ham Aid Response Effort in Florida and the US Virgin Islands

Wed, 09/13/2017 - 15:20

Due to this busy hurricane season, ARRL’s inventory of Ham Aid kits has been severely depleted. ARRL’s Ham Aid program loans Amateur Radio equipment kits to established ARES and partner agencies during disaster response, in order to establish Amateur Radio communications support.

ARRL has been supplying Ham Aid kits for the Hurricane Irma emergency response efforts in Florida and the US Virgin I...

Two Radio Amateurs are Among Three New ISS Crew Members

Wed, 09/13/2017 - 08:21

After a 6-hour flight, astronauts Mark Vande Hei, KG5GNP, and Joe Acaba, KE5DAR, and cosmonaut Alexander Misurkin arrived at the International Space Station on September 12. The trio launched aboard the Soyuz MS-06 spacecraft from Kazakhstan, orbited Earth four times, and then docked at the space station. The hatches between the spacecraft and station opened early on September 13.

The arrival of...

QST Announces 2017 Antenna Design Competition Winners

Wed, 09/13/2017 - 08:07

QST has announced the winners of its 2017 Antenna Design Competition. Following a solicitation for entries earlier this year. members submitted nearly 100 antenna designs in three categories: 160 Meters and Lower Frequencies, 80 Through 10 Meters, and 6 Meters and Higher Frequencies.

Winners will receive certificates and cash prizes. The winning designs are also eligible for publication in QST a...

State of Emergency Continues in Southern Mexico, Emergency Net Could Activate

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 15:23

A state of emergency continues in Southern Mexico as new aftershocks occurred today in the wake of a magnitude 8.1 earthquake last Thursday. The aftershocks were in the coastal zone of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec.

Preliminary reports indicate a magnitude 5.0 temblor today 35 kilometers to the south of Salina Cruz, Oaxaca; a 4.7 magnitude aftershock today 125 kilometers southwest of Tonala, Chiapa...

Hurricane Irma Extensively Damages International Broadcast Station in Florida

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 12:50

Radio Miami International (WRMI) reported on its Facebook page that Hurricane Irma did extensive damage to the station’s studio/transmitter site in Okeechobee, Florida. The station is off the air entirely.

“Two antenna towers are down and many poles holding transmission lines are also down. Power went out at around 2030 UTC Sunday, and it may not be restored for days. Meanwhile, all transmitter...

In Irma’s Wake, Palm Beach County ARES Cancels Meeting, Advises on Florida 211

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 12:27

ARRL South Florida Section Emergency Coordinator Barry Porter, KB1PA, announced that the Palm Beach County ARES meeting scheduled for September 13 has been cancelled.

“Over 50% of homes in the county are without power, shelters are still open, and roads are unsafe to drive on,” he told ARRL.

Porter also reported that the out-of-state centers that are backing up Florida 211 are starting to get a l...

Moderate Geomagnetic Storm Watch Issued

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 11:11

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC) has issued a moderate (G2) geomagnetic storm watch for September 13. A coronal hole high-speed stream, originating from a recurrent, positive polarity coronal hole on the Sun’s surface, prompted the prediction. Minor (G1) geomagnetic storming is possible on September 14.

It’s been a turbulent time on the...

Caribbean Emergency and Weather Net Requests Clear Frequencies

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 10:23

With the passage of Hurricane Irma, radio amateurs in the Eastern Caribbean have been extremely busy passing information into and out of the affected area, Eric Mackie, 9Z4CP, told ARRL.

“The Caribbean Emergency and Weather Net (CEWN) has been facilitating this exercise,” Mackie said. “We have however, been experiencing QRM from stateside stations from time to time.”

Mackie said the CEWN is askin...

Amateur Radio Volunteer Response Continues to Historic Hurricane Irma

Mon, 09/11/2017 - 13:31

“We have survived Hurricane Irma.” That assessment came this morning from ARRL West Central Florida (WCF) Section Manager Darrell Davis, KT4WX, who reported that the storm’s eye passed over the Hardee County emergency operations center just before midnight EDT on September 10. (Davis also is the Hardee County Emergency Coordinator). Irma has now been downgraded to a tropical storm, but flooding...

Wireless Association of New York City’s WA2NYC Commemorates 9/11 Anniversary

Mon, 09/11/2017 - 10:12

WA2NYC has been on the air since September 8 to commemorate the anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks in 2001.

“This station will commemorate the 16th anniversary of the attack on the World Trade Center in New York City,” said the post on the club’s QRZ.com website. “We remember the over twenty-nine hundred people who lost their lives on that day.”

The special event is operating on or near 7.2...

The K7RA Solar Update

Sat, 09/09/2017 - 01:11

Tad Cook, K7RA, Seattle, reports: Wow! What a week for solar activity. Although the solar cycle is trending toward a solar minimum in around 2020, we will still see notable upticks in activity, such as this week’s surprises. 

On August 31, Spaceweather.com reported a G1 (minor) geomagnetic storm. The planetary A index was 59. The following day Spaceweather.com reported geomagnetic unrest with a ...

Hurricane Irma Amateur Radio Emergency and Priority Traffic is Moving; Health & Welfare Traffic Queued For Later Delivery

Fri, 09/08/2017 - 16:26

At this time, it is ARRL’s understanding that only Amateur Radio Emergency or Amateur Radio Priority traffic is moving in and out of areas affected by Hurricane Irma. Amateur Radio Health and Welfare communications are being queued up for later delivery into the affected area, as the emergency and priority traffic eases. 

In the aftermath of a natural disaster, it is human nature for persons ou...

Space Weather Prediction Center Says Solar Phenomena May Continue

Fri, 09/08/2017 - 15:56

The Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC) said today that G4 (Severe) geomagnetic storm levels were observed at 2350 UTC on September 7 and again at 0151 UTC and 1304 UTC on September 8, due to the effects of a coronal mass ejection (CME). A G3 (Strong) or greater warning was in effect until 1500 UTC today.

Solar flares have adversely affected HF nets attempting to gather information on the thr...

Operating Procedures During Hurricane Irma

Fri, 09/08/2017 - 15:49

Please be aware that due to the breadth of this series of weather events, numerous emergency and public service nets are in session, especially on the 80, 40, and 20 meter bands. US licensees are reminded that Part 97.101 (c) always gives priority to stations providing emergency communications. All stations should be aware that in a large-scale natural disaster, immediate threats to life and pr...

ARRL Establishes Hurricane Irma Hotline for ARRL Section Leadership

Fri, 09/08/2017 - 15:38

ARRL has set up a temporary phone number that ARRL section leadership can use to communicate Hurricane Irma-related information or requests to ARRL Headquarters. The number will be monitored at W1AW when the station is staffed. During off-hours, the number will be forwarded to an on-call ARRL staffer. This number should also be used to report problems such as extended interference with ongoing ...

VoIP Hurricane Net to Activate

Fri, 09/08/2017 - 06:44

The VoIP Hurricane Net will activate at 2300 UTC Friday, September 8, until Saturday, September 9, at 0600 UTC to track the impact of Hurricane Irma, expected to affect Cuba and the Bahamas, and of Hurricane Katia, expected to reach southeastern Mexico.

A VoIP Hurricane Net activation for Hurricane Irma will restart on Saturday, September 9, at 0600 UTC, to address the storm’s impact as it depar...

ARES Teams in Three West Central Florida Section Counties Ready to Support Shelters

Thu, 09/07/2017 - 12:48

As Hurricane Irma moves closer to the Florida Peninsula, ARRL West Central Florida Section Manager Darrell Davis, KT4WX, reports that Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) teams have been requested to provide communication support at evacuation shelters in Highlands, Hillsborough, and Polk counties.

“Other counties in the West Central Florida Section are considering shelter operations,” Davis s...