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ARNewsline Report 1892-5 -- Dec 6 2013:

Bill Pasternak (WA6ITF) on December 6, 2013
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LISTEN TO OR DOWNLOAD THE AUDIO VERSION AT WWW.ARNEWSLINE.ORG

Amateur Radio Newsline™ Report 1895 – December 6 2013

Amateur Radio Newsline report number 1895 with a release date of December 6 2013 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a QST. Four youngsters get their names in space thanks to ham radio; the ARRL files erratum to its "symbol rate" rule making petition; The Department of Homeland will be giving emergency communications training at Hamvention 2014; VHF Communications magazine ceases publication after 45 years and its Youngsters on the Air Operating month in IARU Region One. Find out the details are on Amateur Radio Newsline™ report number 1895 coming your way right now.

HAM RADIO IN SPACE: NAMES OF FOUR PRE-TEENS NOW ON-ORBIT

The names of four pre-teens from the town of North Pole, Alaska, have been sent into space, and its all thanks to ham radio. Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, is in the newsroom with the story of how it came about:

North Pole, Alaska is just outside of the city of Fairbanks and its where Daniel Perry, age 10, Derik Perry, 9, Riley Perry, 9, and Kailey Perry, 5 all live. But these four youngsters now have something very special in their lives because their names are orbiting some 400 miles above the Earth on a microsat and its all because of friendship between to ham radio operators.

The honor comes courtesy of their grandfather, Mike Perry, AL7F, who became caretaker to some satellite-monitoring equipment about a year and a half ago. This happened after he became close friends with Mark Kanawati, N4TPY of Space Quest Ltd, which is a technology company based in Fairfax, Virginia. AL7F says it all came about because of a note to the local ham radio club:

AL7F: “The way this all got started was that Mark, the owner of Space Quest, being a ham radio operator got in touch with the Arctic Amateur Radio Club here in Fairbanks and had a letter posted to our membership site looking for someone who had some property or knew of somebody who had some property that would be a good location for him to install a satellite tracking station. I own some property right off the side of the highway that’s sub-divided into lots and I offered to let him put his tracking station on one of the lots.”

This lead to a close friendship developing between AL7F and N4TPY and in turn to Kanawati offering to fly the names of Perry’s grandkids on a satellite that was to be launched this past November.

AL7F: “I was more than happy to have my grandkids names put into the satellite. It just launched on the 21st of November on a Russian ICBM from Kazakhstan and there were quite a few ham radio cube-sat satellites along with his and several different university cube-sats that went up also.”

But the Perry kids are not the only people whose names have flown in space. Putting names or initials on vehicles bound for the final frontier is believed to be something of an unwritten tradition in the space launch industry. One apparently dating back to its earliest days. But according to newsminer.com at SpaceQuest, the practice has reached a new level. It says that photos and names are commonly tucked inside the company’s micro-satellites and N4TPY personally speaks to school classes about space. He says that putting children’s names on-orbit is one way to spark their interest.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, in the newsroom in Los Angeles.

According to AL7F, the youngsters don’t quite realize how rare it is to be part of an orbiting satellite. But he adds that will likely appreciate it a lot more as they get older. (ARNewsline, Newsminer.com)

BREAKING NEWS: REWRITE OF THE COMMUNICATIONS ACT ANNOUNCED

Some breaking news out of the nation’s capital. This with word that House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Michigan Representative Fred Upton and Technology Subcommittee Chairman Oregon Representative Greg Walden, W7EQI, plan to update the Communications Act.

Making the announcement on Google Hangout the committee leaders and former FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell outlined the need to adapt the law to today’s marketplace. Upton termed the project a multi-year effort that will be focused on updating the communication laws to fit the Internet age.

Meantime Walden noted that the Communications Act is now painfully out of date. He said that when the Act was last revised nearly 18 years ago, the 56 kilobits-per-second via dial-up modem was state of the art.

The actual revision will involve a series of white papers asking questions about what to do to improve the laws governing the communications marketplace. These will also seek to learn the best way to a robust conversation using digital media platforms.

To make it easier for the public to participate in this re-write, you can follow the event on Twitter using the hashtag #CommActUpdate. (RW)

RADIO RULES: ARRL FILES ERRATUM TO "SYMBOL RATE" PETITION FOR RULE MAKING

The ARRL has filed an Erratum or modification of its request with the FCC. This to correct an error in its "symbol rate" Petition for Rule Making filed November 15 and put on public notice for comment as RM-11708 a few days later.

The League's petition asks the FCC to delete the symbol rate limit in part 97.307(f) of its Amateur Service rules and replace it with a maximum bandwidth for data emissions of 2.8 kHz on amateur frequencies below 29.7 MHz.

The Erratum, filed November 26, removes an erroneous reference in the appendix at 97.307(f)(3) to "unspecified digital codes" and includes a corrected appendix. The revised proposed 97.307(f)(3) will read: "Only a RTTY or data emission using a specified digital code listed in 97.309(a) of this part may be transmitted. The authorized bandwidth is 2.8 kHz." (ARRL)

RESCUE RADIO: DHS TO PROVIDE EMCOMM TRAINING WITH HAMVENTION 2014

The Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Emergency Communications will be on hand at Hamvention 2014 to conduct its nationally recognized emergency communications training course. The purpose of this program is to educate qualified amateur radio operators so they may assist their local, county and state governments with backup communications if requested to do so.

The training will be held in the Dayton area on May 13th to the 15th. These are the three days prior to the start of Hamvention 2014. Registration will begin on February 1st. More information is on the front page of the Dayton Hamvention website at hamvention.org. (Dayton Hamvention)

WORLDBEAT: SOUTH AFRICA ONE YEAR HAM LICENSE RENEWALS DUE

South Africa's telecommunications regulator ICASA has advised the South African Radio League that hams who hold one-year amateur radio license should re-apply for renewal before 31 December 31st.

ICASA notes that South Africa Telecommunications Regulation 9 stipulates that radio amateurs must reapply annually for a license renewal unless they have opted for a multi-year license. In that case they only need to reapply when their license is about to expire.

According to the regulatory agency, to date over 300 have already submitted their applications. (SARL)

DXCC UP FRONT: DXCC 2013 DEADLINE IS DECEMBER 31

In DX up-front, Bill Moore, NC1L, who is the ARRL Awards Branch Manager wants to remind to all DXCC program participants that the deadline for the 2013 calendar year ends on Tuesday December 31st. Moore says that in order to appear in the Annual Listing published in the electronic version of the DXCC Yearbook, you must have your submission postmarked no later than that date. Since the DXCC workload usually peaks around this time each year, Moore recommends that applicants not wait until the last minute to get their submissions in. Complete details are posted on the web at arrl.org/dxcc-blog. And we will have more DX news later on in this week’s newscast. (ARRL DXCC)

Time for you to identify your station. We are the Amateur Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world including the Golden Empire Amateur Radio Club’s W6RHC repeater serving Chino, California.

ENFORCEMENT: ILLINOIS MAN CHARGED WITH RACIAL SLURS OVER POLICE RADIO

A Waukegan, Illinois man who may be a former ham was arrested on Tuesday, November 26th. This after authorities allege that he breached security on a Lake County Sheriff’s Office radio communications system and transmitted racially offensive language.

according to Sara Balmes of the sheriff’s office, 24 year old Raymond J. Kelly was charged with two counts of tampering with jail communications. HE also faces one count of harassment through electronic communications,

According to news reports, officers allegedly heard Kelly repeatedly using a racial epithet over the communications system overnight on the previous Saturday and Sunday. Officials said that during a search of Kelly’s residence, authorities seized radio and other electronic equipment.

While several news reports referred to Kelly as a ham radio operator a check of the Universal Licensing System shows that he is not licensed by the Federal Communications Commission at this time. However there are indications that at one time he did hold an amateur radio ticket. (Published news reports)

RADIO LAW: BROADCASTERS SUED OVER USE OF HD RADIO STANDARD

Yet another patent infringement lawsuit is in the offering. This one aimed at broadcasters who use what commonly known as HD radio. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Jeff Clark, K8JAC, has the details:

In a major lawsuit a large number of radio broadcast groups have been sued alleging patent infringement for using its technology for their H-D Radio broadcasts. The filing by Wyncomm LLC and Delaware Radio Technologies claims the broadcasters are using In-Band On-Channel or IBOC technology and therefore infringing on U.S. patent no. 5,506,866 or simply 866 as well as several other associated patents.

The ’866 patent is titled “Side-Channel Communications in Simultaneous Voice and Data Transmission.” It was applied for in 1993 and granted in 1996 and originally assigned to AT&T by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The patent specifically describes radio transmission techniques used in the In Band On-Channel standard adopted by the National Radio Systems Committee in 2005.

The litigation lists Delaware Radio Technologies as the exclusive licensee for the technology. HD Radio developer iBiquity Digital is not named nor identified in any of the lawsuits. That company licenses the HD Radio technology used by the radio broadcasters.

This is Jeff Clark. K8JAC, reporting.

How the broadcast community will respond to this latest patent infringement claim is not known as we go to air. (RW)

LAW: ANTI-PATENT TROLL MEASURE PASSES HOUSE COMMITTEE AS ASSERTION COMPANIES READY TO FIGHT BACK

A law against patent trolling is making headway in Congress, but the trolls appear organizing to fight back. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Stephan Kinford, N8WB, has more in this report:

The House Judiciary Committee passed a bill to curb patent abuse by so-called patent trolls, officially known as Patent Assertion Companies that buy patents, not to make anything, but to sue end-users.

The committee sent to the full House a measure titled the Innovation Act of 2013. Sponsored by Committee Chair Virginia Republican Bob Goodlatte, the bill seeks to curb vague demand letters trolls send to end- users that place the burden on users to prove they’re not infringing on a patent, rather than on the sender to prove they are.

Among other things, the bill requires lawsuit plaintiffs to specify which patents are at issue and what products allegedly infringe. The Innovation Act also allows a court to require the loser in a patent case to pay the winners costs if the case was not reasonably justified.

But the so-called patent trolls are not sitting idly by waiting for the end to come. With millions if not billions of dollars in future income at stake may have are reported to be taking on a new role. This, by doubling as government lobbyists for their patent-assertion companies.

The newsletter Politico reports that one of America’s largest patent-assertion entities, is investing in lobbying help to protect its interests on Capitol Hill by pushing back against legislation designed to curb patent trolls ability to extract rents from other companies. Unnamed sources also told Politico that several patent-assertion entities are even trying to create their own advocacy group to give them a larger voice in Washington. The prospects of this actually happening are at this point in time unclear.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m, Stephen Kinford, N8WB, in Wadsworth, Ohio.

”Patent Trolls” is an informal term for firms whose only business is acquiring patents and using them as a basis to sue other companies even though they don’t actually produce any products based on the patented technology. And if congress passes laws to restrict these patent assertion companies, it’s very likely that they will challenge such regulations all of the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court. (RW, Politico, BGR)

RADIO BUSINESS: VHF COMMUNICATIONS MAGAZINE CLOSES

The famed United Kingdom publication VHF Communications magazine is closing after 45 years of continuous publication. A message on the magazine website says that by the end of 2013 the number of subscribers was not sufficient to support the magazine. Also the supply of articles had become difficult because a lot of good articles are published direct to the Internet.

From 1969 to 2013, VHF Communications was one of the foremost construction oriented publication for radio amateurs and professional RF communications engineers. A DVD containing the complete collection of magazines is available. More is on the web at www.vhfcomm.co.uk (Southgate)

RADIO READING: ONE FREE ARTICLE FROM QST PER MONTH TO HELP WITH OUTREACH

The ARRL has a deal that you can’t refuse. This according to the League’s Contact public relations newsletter that notes that one QST article a month will be made available free of charge to non League members and the general public.

Traditionally, content from QST has been available only to members, who have access to the print and digital editions of the ARRL membership journal. According to the Contact article, this has hampered the ARRL’s ability to send articles to the non-amateur community, and consequently, impacting on other efforts.

Beginning with the December 2013 issue, one QST article per month from each issue will be made available in PDF format on the “This Month In QST” page of the ARRL web site. The December 2013 article will be on the Colorado flooding of 2013 and Amateur Radio’s role in the disaster. You will find it at www.arrl.org/this-month-in-QST. (ARRL)

PUBLIC SERVICE: HAM RADIO VOLUNTEERS NEEDED FOR 2014 BOSTON MARATHON

Registration to be a 2014 Boston Marathon ham radio communications volunteer is now open. If you'd like to help out as a radio operator at the Marathon on Monday April 21st or the smaller races on Saturday April 19th, you can register at marc.mmra.org.

One note. Due to security issues, volunteer signup will end in early March and organizers will not be able to accept volunteers up to the last minute as has been the case in years past. So if you wish to volunteer, please do so as soon as possible.

Again that URL to volunteer is marc.mmra.org. (K1IW)

HAM HAPPENINGS: W5KUB LIVE WEBCAST FROM R & L CUSTOMER APPRECIATION DAY

W5KUB.COM will be webcasting live the R and L Electronics Customer Appreciation Day from Hamilton, Ohio on Saturday, December 14th. In addition to the actual event, Tom will also stream forums on D-Star and another by ham radio’s Mr. Audio Bob Heil, K9EID.

The Netcast will begin on Friday December 13th where you can follow Tom and his crew on their 500 mile trip from Memphis, Tennessee, to Hamilton, Ohio. During their airtime from R and L, there will be a number of special guests. Those tuning in and joining the chat room will be eligible for prizes. It will all be on-line at w5kub.com. (W5KUB)

NAMES IN THE NEWS: FCC CHAIR APPOINTED DEFENSE COMMISSIONER

Some names in the news. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has yet another duty as he is appointed as the Commission’s Defense Commissioner. This position is purely procedural in nature and pertains to internal organization and delegations of authority within the structure of the FCC. The Defense Commissioner directs the homeland security, national security and emergency preparedness, and defense activities of the Commission. (FCC)

NAMES IN THE NEWS: NATIONAL VOA MUSEUM OF BROADCASTING NAMES EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

John T. Dominic has been named executive director of the National Voice of America Museum of Broadcasting in West Chester, Ohio. This, effective March 1, 2014.

Dominic is a 38-year broadcast veteran, serving as a station manager at WCET and at Cincinnati Public Television, where he was instrumental in the consolidation of WCET in Cincinnati and ThinkTV in Dayton. He will retire as WCET executive vice president and station manager in February.

The exhibits at the museum feature the Voice of America at the VOA-Bethany Ohio station, Media Heritage’s Greater Cincinnati Museum of Broadcast History, the Gray History of Wireless Museum and the West Chester Amateur Radio Association. The museum is also implementing a docent program and seeks volunteers to learn about the museums and help lead tours. (Press release)

This is ham radio news for today’s radio amateur. We are the Amateur Radio Newsline with links to the world from our only official website at www.arnewsline.org and being relayed by the volunteer services of the following radio amateur:

WORLDBEAT: TOKYO’S FAMED “THE RADIO STORE” CLOSES AFTER 64 YEARS

One of the landmarks that helped to create Tokyo Japan’s famed Akihabara electronics district has closed its doors for good. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Heather Embee, KB3TZD, is here with the details:

On Saturday evening, November 30th local time the business known as The Radio Store ceased operations after 64 years.

The Radio Store building opened on March 8, 1950. It was the first of Tokyo’s electronics superstores, built by ten of the prominent vendors at the time.

The building originally housed only those first ten stores but it lead to the creation of business area that eventually became home to hundreds of other electronics retailers and gained recognition world-wide. Its said that The Radio Store was responsible for giving this area of Tokyo its Electric Town nickname

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Heather Embee, KB3TZD, in Berwick, Pennsylvania, here in the USA.

The complete story of The Radio Store’s rise to fame and its decision to close can be read at tinyurl.com/Tokyo-Radio-Store-Closes. (Southgate, others)

WORLDBEAT: CANADIAN NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR THE BLIND HAM RADIO STUDY GUIDES

The Canadian National Institute for the Blind has recently confirmed to Radio Amateurs of Canada that it still has amateur radio study guides and other resources available in various formats for those who are blind or vision impaired. If you live in Canada and wish to avail yourself of these services, please contact Radio Amateurs of Canada which will assist you in contacting the Canadian National Institute for the Blind to obtain the assistance that you desire. (RAC, VA3GX/ VE2HHH)

WORLDBEAT: INTERNATIONAL MUSEUMS WEEKEND 2014 TO GO WORLD WIDE

John O’Toole, M0HEM, reports that the 2014 International Museums Weekends will take place on June 14th through the 15th and again on June 21st through the 22nd.

For well over a decade the International Museums Weekend has been growing particularly in the United Kingdom, but with only a few radio amateurs taking part from the rest of the world. So for 2014 the event administrators are hoping to turn it into a truly international experience. As such stations can be set up from absolutely any type of location which might be broadly classified as a museum. This might include air, railway, radio, agricultural and doll museums. Even entities such as preserved jails and warships will qualify.

O’Toole who is the Public Relations manager for the event says that there is absolutely no cost involved for taking part, nor is there any charge for any of the International Museums Weekend Awards. More details about the event, its history and how to register can be found at tinyurl.com/imw-2014. (M0HEM, Southgate)

HAM RADIO IN SPACE: LIVE ISS VIDEO STREAM VIA N2YO.COM

If life aboard the International Space Station interests you, then listen up. The N2YO satellite tracking website also provides limited live video streaming from the International Space Station.

The Ustream video is available only when the orbiting complex is in contact with the ground through its high-speed communications system via NASA’s Tracking and Data Relay Satellite or TDRS System. During loss of signal periods, you will see a blue screen.

Since the station orbits the Earth once every 90 minutes, it sees a sunrise or a sunset every 45 minutes. When the station is in darkness and there is established contact, an external camera video has the ability to provide spectacular views of city lights below if any are in range.

The URL for live video stream from the ISS can be found at www.n2yo.com/space-station. (Southgate)

ON THE AIR: CELEBRATING MONACO HAM RADIO SOCIETY AT 60

On the air, members of the Monaco Ham Radio Society will celebrate the clubs 60th anniversary by signing 3A60ARM through December 31st. Activity is on all bands and modes. A special QSL card to confirm all contacts will be sent after March 2014 via bureau. Sorry but there will be no electronic QSLing available for this event. (Press release)

ON THE AIR: VX9MRC TO BE ON 472-479 KHZ DECEMBER 14 – 15

The Marconi Radio Club of Newfoundland’s Experimental station VX9MRC has been issued a two-day temporary authority by Industry Canada. This to transmit on 472 to 479 kHz on December 14 and 15th. The purpose of this special permit is to call attention to the possible creation of a new amateur service radio band in Canada while also highlighting the role ham radio plays in emergency communications. (RAC)

DX

In DX, W8YCM, is currently on his annual trip to Jamaica and will be active as 6Y5/W8YCM until the new year. His operations are mostly on 17 meters using SSB. QSL via his home callsign.

G0KOK, is currently active as 8P9CC from Barbados and will be there through mid December. He uses a FT897D into a dipole antenna. QSL via G0KOK.

8P9JB will be operational QRP from Barbados beginning at 1400 UTC on December 13th. Radio gear consists of an Alinco DX-70 at 5 to 10 watts out to verticals and wire antennas. QSL as directed on the air.

F5MCC, will be active stroke FM from Martinique Island through December 21st. Operations will be on 40 through 10 meters using CW and SSB. He will also activate 4 lighthouses on the island. QSL via the bureau to his home callsign.

F5PLC, is currently operational stroke FR from Reunion Island. The length of his stay is not known. Activity will be on the HF bands only QSL via his home callsign, direct or by the REF Bureau.

K9EL will operate stroke FS from St. Martin between June 8th to the 27th of 2014. Activity is usually on 160 through 10 meters using CW, SSB and possibly RTTY. Daily uploads to ClubLog and LoTW are planned. QSL via his home callsign.

THAT FINAL ITEM: DECEMBER IS IARU REGION 1 HAM RADIO YOTA MONTH

And finally this week, following on the heels of the success of last summers European Youngsters on the Air operating events comes Youngsters on the Air Operating month. This as several nations in IARU Region one band together to get stations on the air with youngsters operating throughout the month of December and using the YOTA as a suffix in their callsign.

Lisa Leenders, PA2LS, is the IARU Region 1 Youth Coordinator. She tells Amateur Radio Newsline that part of the event is to break the ice for some already licensed youngsters by simply getting them to take a microphone in the hand:

PA2LS: “Now that it’s getting bigger, it gives them a chance to speak with people of their own age”

According to Leenders, over the years she has seen both youth in ham radio as well as the Youngsters on the Air group growing with more young people participating in the hobby.

PA2LS: “The youngsters who already have their licenses are getting more active on the bands and there are also more youngsters getting ham licenses. We are also seeing this with YOTA getting more and more youngsters (taking part) from all of the countries in Europe.”

And if this growth keeps up, maybe one-day YOTA could become a world-wide operating event.

PA2LS: “We would like to grow bigger. It’s now in Europe but we want to expand it into all of (IARU) Region 1 and later to the U.S. and to the rest of the world.”

A truly noble goal but for this year there are only some 17 stations from 14 countries with young operators active using YOTA suffix calls. If you hear any of them on the air please take a moment and give them a QSO. Remember that its today’s young hams from around the world that will be the future developers of technologies of tomorrow. They will also be the ones carrying on the traditions of amateur radio for decades to come.

More information about Europe’s Youth on the Air program is on the web at www.ham-yota.eu (Southgate, PA2LS)

NEWSCAST CLOSE

With thanks to Alan Labs, AMSAT, the ARRL, the CGC Communicator, CQ Magazine, the FCC, the Ohio Penn DX Bulletin, Radio Netherlands, Rain, the RSGB, the Southgate News, TWiT-TV and Australia's WIA News, that's all from the Amateur Radio Newsline™. Our e-mail address is newsline (at) arnewsline (dot) org. More information is available at Amateur Radio Newsline's™ only official website located at www.arnewsline.org. You can also write to us or support us at Amateur Radio Newsline™, 28197 Robin Avenue, Santa Clarita California, 91350

For now, with Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, at the editors’ desk, I’m Skeeter Nash, N5ASH,, near Houston, Texas, saying 73 and we thank you for listening.

Amateur Radio Newsline™ is Copyright 2013. All rights reserved.

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