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ARNewsline Report 1904 -- Feb 7 2014:

Bill Pasternak (WA6ITF) on February 7, 2014
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Amateur Radio Newsline™ Report 1904 – February 7, 2014

Amateur Radio Newsline report number 1904 with a release date of February, 7th 2014 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a QST. The Dayton Hamvention announces its 2014 award winners; the FCC opens a short window to comment on WRC 2015 preparations; an FCC reform measure is introduced in the United States Senate; a think-tank says its time to merge the Federal Trade Commission with the FCC; A Russian Special Events Station celebrates the 2014 Winter Olympics and a new ham radio video podcast will be coming soon from the UK. All this and more on Amateur Radio Newsline report number 1904 coming your way right now:

HAMVENTION 2014: DAYTON AWARD WINNERS ANNOUNCED

The Dayton Hamvention has announced the winners of its 2014 Radio Amateur of the Year, Special Achievement, Technical Excellence and Club of the year awards. Bill Pasternak, WA6ITF, is in the newsroom with more:

KD8JZR: “The 2014 Amateur of the Year is Dr. Larry Price, W4RA.”

That was Dayton Hamvention General Chairman Charles Kaiser, KD8JZR, announcing on the TWiT TV podcast Ham Nation that Dr. Larry Price, W4RA, had been chosen to receive one of ham radios most prestigious honors. Dr. Price served as president of the IARU from 1999 to 2009, and prior to that as ARRL president from 1984 to 1992. The Hamvention’s Awards Committee said that Dr. Price’s leadership had significant and direct impact on the development of Amateur Radio throughout the world.

Among his many achievements, the panel cited the protection of frequency allocations; the adoption of an ITU Recommendation on the minimum qualifications of radio amateurs; the expansion of the 40 meter band in ITU Regions 1 and 3, and the allocation of new Low Frequency spectrum for use by radio amateurs.

Named to receive this years Special Achievement Award recipient is ARRL Executive Vice President David Sumner K1ZZ. He was cited for his contributions to the international Amateur Radio community through his work with the IARU and for his leadership in the fight against Broadband over Power Line interference to radio amateurs.

The Technical Excellence Award this year goes to David Freese Jr, W1HKJK. He is recognized for his development and of the Fast Light Digital Modem Application better known as FL DIGI. This is a family of programs for use in amateur radio and emergency communications. FL DIGI operates in conjunction with any conventional radio transceiver and uses a computers sound card as the main method of input and output to and from a radio.

Last but by no means least is the Gwinnett Amateur Radio Society of Gwinnett County, Georgia, which was chosen as Club of the Year. In making this selection the Awards Committe noted that the Gwinnett Amateur Radio Society supports several well rounded training programs with many aimed specifically at youth. It also said that the group continually hosts and supports other amateur radio programs and participates in a multitude public service events.

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

The winners will receive their honors at Hamvention 2014 slated for May 16th to the 18th at the Hara Arena in Dayton Ohio. (DARA)

RADIO LAW: FCC INVITES COMMENTS ON WRC 2015 PREPARATIONS

The FCC has invited comments on the latest group of draft recommendations of its Advisory Committee for the 2015 World Radiocommunication or WRC 2015 Conference. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Heather Embee, KB3TZD:

At its January 27 meeting, the Advisory Committee approved draft recommendations on a number of issues that will be considered at the 2015 conference. And some of the items could affect the Amateur and Amateur- Satellite services. This includes consideration of W-R-C 2012 Resolution 649 that invited WRC 2015 to consider allocating an appropriate amount of spectrum to the Amateur Service on a secondary basis within the band 5250 to 5450 kHz. However such an allocation might or might not be but contiguous bandspace.

The conference will also consider a number of issues that could impact amateur allocations above 420 MHz. This includes a possible extension of the current worldwide allocation to the Earth Exploration Satellite service in the band 9300 to 9900 MHz by up to 600 MHz within the frequency bands 8700 to 9300 MHz and/or 9900 to 10,500 MHz.

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

The comment filing period on this matter is very short with a closing date of February 18th. The entire proposal is available on the web in PDF format at tinyurl.com/wrc- 2015-fcc. (ARRL)

COMMUNICATIONS LAW: FCC REFORM MEASURE INTRODUCED TO US SENATE

FCC reform has now reached the United States Senate. This with word that United Sates Senator Dean Heller of Nevada has introduced legislation similar to a bill that passed in the House of Representatives earlier this year.

Among other things the proposed Federal Communications Commission Process Reform Act of 2014 would require the agency to survey the state of the marketplace through a Notice of Inquiry before initiating new rulemakings. This says Heller would ensure the Commission has an up-to-date understanding of the rapidly evolving and job-creating telecommunications marketplace.

Heller’s measure would also prevent regulatory overreach by requiring any conditions imposed on transactions to be within the Commission’s existing authority and be transaction-specific. Heller also introduced a Senate version of a previous House bill consolidating a number of FCC reports that are required from the agency. The full story is on the web at http://tinyurl.com/senate-fcc-reform (B&C)

COMMUNICATIONS LAW: THINK TANK WANTS TO MERGE THE FCC AND FTC

A Washington DC think tank says its time to combine two government agencies into one to better serve the nations future telecommunications needs. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Stephan Kinford, N8WB, reports:

The American Enterprise Institute wants to combine the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Communications Commission into a single agency to better manage the future of telecommunications in the United State.

The publication The Hill reports on a comment submitted to the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Friday, January 31st by the Institute. In it a team of scholars affiliated with the organization argues that the country’s communications law should be rewritten to combine the FCC’s industry expertise and capabilities with the generic statutory authority of the Federal Trade Commission.

The scholars contend that the current FCC structure is a poor fit for a modern and converged communications marketplace. They say that the Communications Act of 1934 raises questions and creates uncertainty about the FCC’s regulation of the Internet. It notes that this was recently shown when the U.S. Court of Appeals threw out the FCC’s Net Neutrality rules. The American Enterprise Institute appears to believe that a single agency combining the powers of the FCC and the FTC is what’s needed to guide the future of this resource.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Stephen Kinford, N8WB, reporting.

As noted before, the issue of Net Neutrality is important to ham radio in that more and more services used by the hobby involved unimpeded Internet connectivity. (The Hill)

WORLDBEAT: CUBAN 5 MHZ OPERATION WILL BE DOMESTIC ONLY

As reported last week, Cuban hams will be getting limited access to 5 MHz, but with more strings attached than originally thought. According to an update from Pavel Costa, CO7WT, and made public via the Southgate News, Cuba’s Telecommunications Regulatory Agency has issued a clarification in response to questions submitted by Cuba’s national ham radio association the FRC.

In its reply the regulatory body made it clear that the use of the 60 meter band is for emergencies and experimentation within that nation and only in communication with other Cuban hams. As such, no contacts are allowed with other countries until further notice.

As to the process by which hams in Cuba will be licensed to operate on 5 MHz, the regulator said that the amateur radio community will have to wait until the regulatory body creates the procedures for this license upgrade and this could take some time. (CO7WT, Southgate)

ON THE AIR: R0000OR CELEBRATES WINTER OLYMPICS IN SOCHI RUSSIA

Special event callsign R0000OR (R-Zero-Zero- Zero-Zero-O-R) will be on the air through March 31st in celebration of the 2014 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games being held in Sochi, Russia. The Four zero’s in the call are to symbolize the Olympic rings. QSL’s go via UA1OJL direct or electronically using Logbook of the World or eQSL. (WIA News)

Time for you to identify your station. We are the Amateur Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world including the KD8LWR repeater serving Washtenaw County, Michigan.

RESCUE RADIO: W. VA. CELL TOWER COLLAPSE KILLS THREE AND DESTROYS HAM REPEATERS

Two contractors and a firefighter were killed and several repeaters were destroyed after two towers collapsed on Saturday, February 1st near Clarksburg, West Virginia. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Jeff Clark, K8JAC reports:

West Virginia State Police Corporal Mark Waggamon says that the first structure to fall was a 300 foot high cellular telephone tower. The weight of the collapsed tower then put stress on guy wires supporting the near-by smaller tower causing it also to fall.

According to Corporal Waggamon, three of the workers were more than 60 feet up on the 300 foot tower at the time the accident occurred. One of those workers was killed along with a co-worker who was about 20 feet up when the tower toppled. A firefighter with the Nutter Fort Volunteer Fire Department was killed when the second tower collapsed while he was trying to rescue a severely injured worker from the wreckage of the first tower. Two other contractors working on the larger tower were hurt and taken to a hospital with what were described as minor injuries.

The tower collapse also had an impact on local ham radio communications. Hal Tate, N8FXH is a member of the Stonewall Jackson Amateur Radio Association. He tells Amateur Radio Newsline that the club's 147.21 and 444.175 repeaters--along with backbone gear for the HAMTALK linked repeater system--were sited on the shorter tower and are QRT for now. He tells us the 2-meter machine had just had a new antenna installed.

Steven Thompson is a member of the Summit Park Volunteer Fire Department. He said that some three dozen people from eight fire departments in the area responded. He said rescue personnel had to use four-wheel-drive and all-terrain vehicles because snow had made it hard to reach the site which was on a ridge about 200 feet above a main road. He said the first crews still arrived 10 to 15 minutes after the first call was received.

Now, the Nutter Fort Volunteer Fire Department prepares a funeral with full honors...the department's first line-of-duty death.

Firefighter/EMT Michael Jarrett was just 28 years old. This week, he's being called a hero... by his colleagues the world over.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Jeff Clark, K8JAC.

Both towers were owned by SBA Communications, which hired workers from S&S Communications. When the taller tower fell the crew was doing maintenance to strengthen its support system which included removing its diagonal supports and replacing them with new ones. The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration says that it will investigate. (K8JAC, Clarksburg Daily Journal)

TELECOMMUNICATIONS LAW: DEMOCRATS INTRODUCE NET NEUTRALITY LEGISLATION IN CONGRESS

Congressional Democrats have introduced legislation in the Senate and House of Representatives to preserve network neutrality principles in law. This, until the Federal Communications Commission rules on the matter.

H.R. 3982, or the Open Internet Preservation Act, is described as a simple two-page measure which states that the FCC's previous ruling on net neutrality stays in operation. The bill follows last month's court ruling that the FCC wasn't entitled to block telecommunications companies from giving differing priorities to internet traffic.

H.R. 3982 does not dictate exactly what net neutrality rules should be enforced and will only remain in force until the FCC has set out its own new net neutrality standards. This is a move the FCC chairman Thomas Wheeler has pledged to sort out.

As to passage, moist observers say that the bill is likely to make its way in the Democratic controlled Senate with but is highly unlikely to pass the Republican controlled House of Representatives. At least as it is currently written. President Obama has said he supports net neutrality legislation. (published news reports)

HAM HAPPENINGS: YAESU DONATES FT-DX1200 TO KP4AO RADIO CLUB AT ARECIBO BIG DISH

Yaesu and the Caribbean Amateur Radio Group have joined together in supporting the Arecibo Observatory Amateur Radio Club station KP4AO. During a recent visit to the station Yaesu’s Exec Vice President for North American Sales Dennis Motschenbacher, K7BV, presented the group with an FT-DX 1200 transceiver for use at its new Visitor Center station.

According to club president Angel Vazquez, WP3R, the club is establishing the new station in the exhibition hall of the Angel Ramos Visitor Center located at the observatory. Construction of the station is expected to be completed in about 3 months.

The Arecibo Observatory which is the home of the world’s largest radio telescope was completed in 1963. It recently celebrated its 50th Anniversary during which the KP4AO group hosted a special event station as a part of that celebration. (Southgate)

HAM PUBLICATIONS: WINTER 2014 5 MHZ NEWSLETTER NOW AVAILABLE

The winter 2014 edition of the 5 MHz Newsletter is now available for download. In addition to the latest 60 meter news, there's also an article titled The Supremacy of 5 MHz as a Communication Bridge, a feature on the new South African ZS6KTS Beacon plus items on digital voice and the latest worldwide 5 MHz Amateur Allocations Chart. You can find The 5 MHz Newsletter in PDF format at tinyurl.com/o26huzb. (Southgate)

HAM HAPPENINGS: IOTA DINNER AT THE INTERNATIONAL DX CONVENTION

The 19th annual Islands on the Air Dinner will be held in conjunction with the 2014 Visalia International DX Convention on Friday, April 4th. The venue this year is the Charter Oak Room at the Visalia Marriott Conference Center in Visalia, California. All information about the dinner and the convention is on the web at dxconvention.org. (IOTA News)

HAM HAPPENINGS: NEW RADIO HAM'S MUSEUM OF ANTIQUATED TECHNOLOGY

The Boston Globe reports on the creation of the Museum of Antiquated Technology in Hanson, Massachusetts, founded by Mark Vess, KC1ACF. The paper describes the museum as being the home to a vast collection of rare antique radios that are being displayed to the public for the first time. The vintage gear was previously owned by Bruce D. Hayden, NI1X, of Raynham, who bequeathed his collection to Vess at his death last October. You can read the entire Boston Globe story at tinyurl.com/vintage-radio-museum) (Boston Globe)

NAMES IN THE NEWS: KB7SI HONORED FOR HIS HAM RADIO OUTREACH

Some names in the news. First up is Oregon that State Senator Betsy Johnson, KF7HHF, who recently presented Terry Wilson, KB7SI, an Outstanding Contribution Award to for his dedication to emergency communications. Wilson is the chief engineer for Coast Community Radio station KMUN and serves as a club trustee. He was honored for his work in convincing numerous local residents to obtain their amateur radio licenses, including Johnson. He was also recognized for his work in keeping communications functioning during a severe storm back in December 2007. The award was presented at a potluck dinner of the Sunset Empire Amateur Radio Club in Astoria, Oregon, on January 25th. (eHAM, The Astonian)

NAMES IN THE NEWS: K9LA WINS 2013 BILL ORR W6SAI TECHNICAL WRITING AWARD

Carl Luetzelschwab, K9LA, of Fort Wayne, Indiana, has been named the winner of the Bill Orr, W6SAI, Technical Writing Award for the 2013. The ARRL Foundation Board of Directors selected Luetzelschwab at its January 21st meeting for his article "The Sun and the Ionosphere" which appeared in the March 2013 issue of QST Magazine. K9LA had previously been awarded the March 2013 QST Cover Plaque Award for the same article. (ARRL)

NAMES IN THE NEWS: ART BELL W6OBB UPDATES HIS FUTURE VIA FACEBOOK

Art Bell, W6OBB, who departed Sirius XM satellite radio only a few weeks after his new show began last fall has issued an update on his plans via Facebook. In his January 31st posting, Art explains that he left the satellite service due to what he termed as serious problems with the streaming aspect of the service and its refusal to allow free streaming until it could be fixed. Bell said that he felt it was not reasonable to ask people to pay about $180.00 a year to try and listen to a stream that so many complained was not working right.

Bell says that he wants to get back on the air. He says that he has asked to be released from the Non-Compete aspect of his contract but that the sat-caster has refused. So for now he has decided to simply will wait it out and then start a show that will air for free on the Internet. He notes that he does already have a time segment in mind which he says that he will announce as he gets closer to that time. (Art Bell W6OBB via Facebook)

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: NEW UK BASED HAM RADIO TV SHOW ANNOUNCED

Three United Kingdom hams will be taking to Internet television later this month with a new amateur radio based video podcast program of their own. Amateur Radio Newsline’s Norm Seeley, KI7UP, has the details:

The new show is called The TX Factor. Its hosts are Bob McCreadie, G0FGX, Mike Marsh, G1IAR and Nick Bennett, 2E0FGQ. All are broadcast professionals who sat that they plan to explore all aspects of amateur radio’s fascinating hobby as the show progresses month to month.

For example, episode one later this month will visit the United Kingdom’s Marconi Centre. It will also spend time with the Norman Lockyer Observatory Group learning about how repeaters function and also visit a mountaintop location to discuss the Summits On The Air project. Episode 2 in March will include a visit to the world famous Bath Buildathon and a close up look at the FUNcube Dongle. This is a simple Software Defined Receiver that permits reception of the recently launched FUNcube satellite.

Down the road look for shows dealing with such topics as the history of amateur radio, the gear available to hams, antennas, operating modes, propagation, radio sports, current news and just about anything related to the magical world of amateur radio.

The downloadable video podcast stream should be compatible with most smart phones, tablets and smart TV’s as well as traditional laptops and desktop PC’s. This means that it can literally viewed almost anytime and anywhere.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Norm Seeley, KI7UP, this side of the Atlantic and far out West in Scottsdale, Arizona.

The TX Factor is sponsored by Yaesu Musen Company of Japan and United Kingdom ham radio supplier Martin Lynch & Sons Ltd. It will be available free of charge to download beginning on February 21st at www.txfactor.co.uk. (GB2RS)

EMERGING TECHNOLOGY: NEW SOFTWARE RELEASE FOR BROADBAND-HAMNET

The Broadband-Hamnet project has announced the release of new firmware that enables Ubiquiti 2.4GHz devices to join the ever growing high speed multi media ham radio mesh. This release adds a line of current products, available from a variety of commercial sources that will natively interact and mesh with the original nodes built on Linksys WRT54x gear.

The newer devices supported include the Rocket M2, Bullet M2 HP, AirGrid M2 HP, NanoStation Loco M2 units. All of these are reported to have higher quality radios with more stock power than the WRT54x node units while still providing the same interface.

You can find more details about this software release and the entire mesh networking project by visiting www.broadband-hamnet.org on the World Wide Web. (K5KTF)

HAM RADIO IN SPACE: AMSAT FUNCUBE DASHBOARD UPDATED

The AMSAT FUNcube developers have announced that version 820 of the FUNcube Dashboard Software can now be downloaded. Also announced was that a few changes have been made to the way Fitter Messages are handled or displayed on the Data Warehouse. Details are at warehouse.funcube.org.uk. (AMSAT)

PROPAGATION STUDY: 70MHZ WG2XPN NOW BEACON ACTIVE ALL YEAR

According to the GB2RS news, the United States based WG2XPN 4 meter experimental propagation beacon on 70.005MHz is now active year round. Located on Apple Orchard Mountain in Virginia’s Blue Ridge mountain range, the beacon transmits Morse at an effective radiated power of three kilowatts from a 3-element Yagi antenna beamed at 60 degrees towards Europe. The beacon’s exact location is in grid square FM07fm. (GB2RS)

ON THE AIR: PA530ROT CELEBRATES PARIS TO ROTTERDAM RELAY RACE

On the air, listen out for Netherlands special event station PA530ROT to be operational through February 28th. This in celebration of the annual Paris to Rotterdam 100 hour nonstop relay race. PA350ROT will be operational on all of the High Frequency bands using various modes. If you make contact please QSL via PAZ0ABM. (DXNL)

ON THE AIR: CAYMAN ISLANDS ARC CELEBRATES 35 YEARS

To celebrate 35 years of the founding of the Cayman Amateur Radio Society, its members have been authorized by the Cayman Islands Information and Communications Technology Authority to use the ZF35 callsign prefix through January 19, 2015. QSL each station as directed on the air. (QRZ)

DX

In DX, W4VKU will be on the air as VU4K from Port Blair in the Andaman Islands between March 23rd and the 30th. His operation will be on 40 through 10 meters using SSB and RTTY. QSL via W4VKU.

W6HGF should be on the air stroke FP from Miquelon Island through February 18th. Activity was to be on 160 through 10 meters but focused on the Digital modes mostly RTTY. His stay will include including entry into the CQ World Wide RTTY Contest and the ARRL CW Contest. QSL to W6HGF direct, electronically via Logbook of the World, eQSL or using Club Log OQRS.

BA3AX and BD3AEO will be on the air stroke 3 from Yuetuo Island between March 21st to the 24th. Operation will be on 20, 17 and 15 meters using CW, SSB, RTTY and PSK 31. QSL information can be found on QRZ.com

KT1K will be active stroke TF from Iceland in March with operations on all of the High Frequency bands. His stint will include entry into the March 1st and 2nd ARRL DX SSB contest. QSL’s go via his home call

GM3WOJ who also holds the call ZL1CT has announced that he will be on a DXpedition to Tonga using the callsign A35V between April 4th and the 18th. Activity will be on 160 through 10 meters using CW and SSB, with some RTTY. QSL via N3AL.

LA7GIA will be operational as 7Q7GIA from Malawi between May 31st and June 8th. Activity will be on 40 through 10 meters using CW and SSB. QSL via LA7GIA.

Lastly, members of the Italian DXpedition Team are planning to be active from Zambia as 9J2T in the not to distant future. I2YSB, is heading up the effort. Look for more details to be forthcoming.

(Above from OPDX and various other DX news sources)

THAT FINAL ITEM: DISPELLING THE RUMORS ABOUT CQ MAGAZINE

And finally this week, word that the print edition of CQ Magazine is alive well and catching up on its paper publication after a bout with distribution problems. This according to CQ editor Rich Moseson, W2VU, in a recent interview with Hap Holly, KC9RP, of the Radio Amateur Information Network. W2VU says that the folks at CQ are hard at work to get things back to normal:

W2VU: “We’ve has over the past few months some significant problems with distribution of our print issues. We apologize to all of our readers and are hoping that a lot of these changes we are making can help get us back on schedule. We really, really appreciate everyone’s patience with us and hope that you will continue to be patient as we work our way back to a normal schedule on our print issue.”

And what about the rumor that CQ is abandoning print in favor of digital only distribution? Moseson says that’s not going to happen with CQ:

W2VU: “We have no intention of abandoning print, but if you look around the magazine marketplace today, virtually every magazine that’s out there has a digital edition as well as a print edition. It’s just where the industry is going and what readers expect. They expect to have a choice between a digital and a print edition of a magazine.”

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What about CQ’s other magazines? W2VU says that they will become a part of the expanded version of CQ found only on the web:

W2VU: “Beginning with the February issue of CQ we are incorporating elements of Popular Communications, CQ VHF and Worldradio Online into an expanded digital edition which we are calling CQ Plus. Its going to be another 50 pages long every month. Those other magazines are no longer going to be published independently so their content is going to be merged into this expanded digital edition of CQ.”

Moseson has a lot more to say about the future of CQ and publishing in general. You can hear the first part of this two part interview on line right now at www dot therainreport dot com. And therainreport is spelled as one word. (KC9RP, RAIN)

NEWSCAST CLOSE

With thanks to Alan Labs, AMSAT, the ARRL, the CGC Communicator, CQ Magazine, the FCC, the Ohio Penn DX Bulletin, 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 2014. All rights reserved.

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