Volume 26, Number 11 November, 1996
Copyright © 1996 by EMARC
It's election time again, for the club, that is. This is your last chance to run for club office. It is also a club tradition that anyone not showing up may be elected for any office.
The speaker will be Alan Margot, W6FZA on the topic of Ham Radio in the 1930s. Alan is a retired design engineer and business owner who was first licensed when nine years old in 1932. Those who attended Home-Brew Night saw an example of his design and construction technique.
In addition to his professional careers, Alan has an impressive resume in amateur radio. He started with CW on home brew equipment in the Thirties and added VHF and UHF operation and experimentation after WW II. He authored two articles in QST and bounced signals off the Moon in the process.
EMARC Calendar of Events
EMARC Monthly Meeting: Fourth Friday of the month (except for possible changes in June, Nov. & Dec.) at 7 PM; Business Meeting, 7:30 PM; Program starts 8 PM. At the Covington School in Los Altos; directions on last page. See specific date listings above . EMARC events are also listed on packet (to EMARC@allscv); on the N0ARY event bulletin board (type EVENT or List Clubs); and on the automatic enunciator on the W6APZ repeater (145.23-). Note: The 4th Friday is not necessarily the last Friday.
The Station Open House program for 1996 is expanding! Omri, AA6TA, will host open houses on Tuesdays from 7 to 9 PM local time on an "as available" basis. The emphasis in the Tuesday open houses will be satellite operations and HF digital modes (RTTY, AMTOR, etc.). Please check with Omri (he is available virtually anytime on the W6APZ repeater, 145.230-, 100PL before coming. The Wednesday open houses, typically hosted by Bob, KD6VIO. The station open houses are for EMARC members and their invited guests only. Please do not discuss on the air the exact location of the station.
EMARC NET is held Thursdays at 8 PM on the W6APZ repeater, 145.230-; the 100 Hz PL is off for the net.
9 AM net. Weekdays at 9 AM on W6APZ, 145.23- (100Hz PL). A very informal rag chew net with mostly EMARC members. This used to be the 10 AM net.
Foothill Flea Market: 2nd Saturday (starts pre-dawn), March thru September. Bring 4 quarters for the parking meters. At Foothill College, just west of I-280 at the El Monte/Moody Rd. exit in Los Altos. Talk-in: 145.27-
Project OSCAR meets following each Foothill Flea Market about 11 AM at Harry's Hofbrau in Mt. View, 399 El Camino Real at Bonita St., north of Grant and south of Castro, on the west side of the street.
No formal program - just get to know each other and (if you wish) have lunch together.
PS There is a Project OSCAR / AMSAT net every Wednesday evening at 19:30 local time on the W6APZ repeater, 145.230-, 100 Hz PL. All hams welcome - you do not need to be active on the satellites to participate.
Livermore Flea Market: 1st Sunday (starts 7 AM) year round, rain or shine. At Las Positas College, Airway Blvd. exit off I-580 just west of Livermore. Talk-in 147.120+ or 145.35-(100Hz PL). Parking is free.
The NorCal QRP Club meets following the Livermore flea market at 11 AM at the California Burger in Pleasanton, about. 2 miles from the flea market.
10-10 Net. The local net for 10 meters enthusiasts meets every Monday at 8 PM on 28.475 MHz; net control: Neal, WA6OCP.
Shel Edelman, KM6GV N6RD
EMARC announcement mailing list is moderated, so you cannot reply directly to the list. To subscribe, send the word "subscribe" to: email@example.com; For help, send the word "help" to firstname.lastname@example.org; For human assistance, email to: email@example.com.
The EMARC Relay is the official monthly newsletter of the Electronics Museum Amateur Radio Club. Club meetings are held at 7 PM on the fourth Friday of each month except January (Winter Banquet); and 3rd Friday in June, Nov. & Dec. Annual membership $20; family $25. Visitors are always welcome! Directions on the back page. Talk-in: W6APZ (145.23-, 100Hz) or W6ASH repeater (145.27- or 224.36-).
Contributions to the newsletter from members, family, and guests are earnestly solicited! Contributions subject to editing and/or compression. ASCII files via packet, Internet or diskettes preferred; but all readable forms welcome. Here are the various ways to reach the editor:
VHF voice: KD6WRG on W6APZ, 145.23- (100Hz PL) 10AM net weekdays; EMARC net Thursdays 8 PM; Various other times.
Mail: 1093 Kelly Drive, San Jose CA 95129-3222
Voice: 408-996-1613 (Until 9 PM); Fax: 408-725-1036
Eyeball: at EMARC meetings.
NEED A BADGE?
BOARD MEETING REPORT
The EMARC Board of Directors met on Nov. 6. Present were: Mikel KN6QI, Andy AC6GN, Shel KM6GV, Dave KD6WRG, Bill KQ6FY, and Dick, N6ATD.
After much discussion it was decided to book the banquet at the Blue Pheasant on a Sunday night if another site could not be found. See Shel's report elsewhere in this issue.
It was also decided to sell the old club HF rig, a Kenwood 530, since there are two other HF rigs in the club station.
Also discussed: Speakers for the meetings, badges, and the need to update the club roster.
EMARC Holiday Banquet
The banquet will be held at The Blue Pheasant on Sunday evening, January 12, 1997, starting at 6:00 p.m. Cost per person (complete dinner as usual, with wine for each table) will be $25.00, and there will be a no-host bar.
Dave and I got our heads together on possible venues after the board meeting, and he called more than a few. Those that bothered to respond were both too expensive and too limited in meal choices. So I went back to The Blue Pheasant, and they assured me again that, while the DJ does work Sundays, it is with quieter music for a quieter crowd -- not quiet, but definitely quieter. So I decided to go ahead with them, and I already have the menus.
Does anyone have a bark collar? I mean the remote control type used to train a dog not to bark. When the dog barks, a button is pushed on the remote and it shocks the dog. I wouldn't use one on a dog because it would be too cruel, but DJs are fair game. Shel thinks I'm kidding. I'm not.
AMATEUR RADIO NEWSLINE
SPECIAL WELCOME Hello and welcome. This newscast represents our 1000th week of delivering to radio amateurs worldwide news and information about our communications service. We had planned on bringing you a special retrospective on the stories that we have covered the past nineteen and a half years, but there is so much breaking news that we are preparing a separate program instead. That show will be aired for us by RAIN -- the Radio Amateur Information Network based in Chicago -- and by other services -- at a later date. Right now, here is the very latest news.
PRES. CLINTON DECLARES AMATEUR RADIO WEEK
"I was just totally elated. I can not put words into how I felt when I received this. I just went to cloud twenty seven. Because a lot of work, a lot of effort went into this. It took me several months and it took a lot of calling. I won't even think about my phone bill."
Darlena Mayo only learned of the proclamation on Tuesday October the 8th. She faxed us a copy of the announcement and it reads like this:
"Warm greetings to everyone observing October 7 through 13, 1996, as Amateur Radio Week.
In the past century, the medium of radio has changed the way we live and the way we view our world, and amateur radio operators have played a vital role in this communications phenomenon. Sharing knowledge and technological expertise, connecting computers via radio equipment, and linking people all across the globe, ham radio operators have helped to make our world a true global village. But even more important, they have provided a crucial lifeline of relief in times of disaster and hardship, ensuring that hope and help are on the way to those in need.
Amateur Radio Week offers us a welcome opportunity to thank our nation's amateur radio operators for their commitment to excellence and their willingness to work for the well-being of others.
Best wishes for a wonderful week.
Our congratulations to Darlena Mayo, KB2EPU, on a job well done and to President Bill Clinton for taking the time out of his busy campaign schedule to issue the declaration honoring the Amateur Radio service.
FEMA TO FCC: NO SHARING OF 2 METERS AND 70 CM The Federal Emergency Management Agency better known as FEMA is saying no to sharing or reallocating the 2 meters and 70 centimeter ham bands to Low Earth Orbiting Satellites. In a letter to the FCC task force currently evaluating new spectrum for use by LEO satellites, FEMA Manager Paul Reed, tells the committee that his agency opposes any such change.
Reed says that Amateur Radio operators have a history of supporting state and local government emergency operations by providing needed communications. He says that many local communities served by ham radio have extremely limited resources and would be without any form of back-up communications without Amateur Radio.
Reed says that FEMA has been in contact with its state and local emergency management partners across the nation. That it is their belief that authorizing access to the mobile satellite service in the 2 meter and 70 centimeter bands will seriously degrade the ability of these groups to support their public service requirements.
The FEMA Manager ends his letter by strongly urging the FCC task force to remove both of these ham bands from any further consideration as a new home for Low Earth Orbiting Satellites. He says to leave them for use by ham radio and its emergency service partners, nationwide.
NWS AND HAM RADIO If you're a ham interested in using your skills and equipment during emergencies, you may get a request for help from the government. The Weather Service wants to make more use of hams.
Amateur radio communications was one of the topics at a mid-September Weather Service Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. Among those invited to speak was Newsline's David Black, KB4KCH.
These are times of big changes for the National Weather Service. The agency is undergoing what's called modernization. Some offices are closing, while others assume more responsibility. Offices which used to issue weather warnings for roughly a dozen counties may have to cover more than twice that number under the new plans.
At Salt Lake City, meteorologists from eight western states discuss establishing and strengthening amateur radio communications networks. Paul Flatt, KC7OVO, is a Weather Service warning coordination meteorologist.
"In Tucson, Arizona, we started the year with about 40 ham radio operators as SKYWARN spotters. I think we are up to 75 or 80 at this point in time. I would like to see that grow higher, to put an upper number on it, I couldn't really do that. To cover the area so the entire portion of where I'm at, southeastern Arizona, has some ham radio operators somewhere nearby."
The Conference addresses issues including how to establish spotter groups, frequencies and resources available, and the various types of emergency communications groups including RACES and the Amateur Radio Emergency Service. Rich Douglas is the Conference organizer.
"We could do a lot more and hope to do a lot more and are trying to plan to do a lot more with amateur radio. I would say three or four years ago we did not take advantage of this wonderful opportunity. Now we are trying to organize ham radio networks. Working with our offices, each of the 24 offices, for about two or three years most of our offices have installed radio equipment. Our Regional Director, Dr. Tom Byer supports this program. And he not only says he does, he does with his budget. He makes sacrifices in his budget to make sure we start getting' some equipment."Concern is expressed over the ability of hams to provide emergency communications services if their frequencies are invaded by commercial users. Several meteorologists say they will write letters opposing possible allocations to a commercial satellite service said to be considering the 2 meter and 440 MHz amateur bands.
Conference attendees learn about amateur equipment and radio systems, packet and amateur television. Even with Doppler radar and other high tech equipment, hams are needed to help confirm conditions forecasters often suspect but have no proof exist. Again, Rich Douglas:
"First of all, they're very dedicated people. We have found they are among the most reliable group that we can count on. And of course the advantage of instant communications by way of a radio."
The Weather Service continues to install amateur radio equipment in various offices, as the agency moves ahead with plans to make more use of ham radio in serving the public.
SKYWARN storm spotting isn't the only amateur service that forecasters learned about during the Conference. Attention also focused on using ham radio for backup communications when normal circuits fail. That's exactly what happened in early September when Hurricane Fran knocked out phone lines to Weather Service offices in North Carolina.
AMATEUR RADIO LO-JACK And finally, most people are familiar with the Lo-Jack system for recovering stolen vehicles. Amateur radio operators have been experimenting with a similar system called APRS which really isn't designed to recover stolen cars, but certainly could be used in that mode.
Now, the San Diego California Responder newsletter reports that recently, as Scotty Leikett, W8KXX, was going to bed, he looked out his window and noticed that his APRS-equipped car was missing. One glance at his computer terminal showed that the vehicle was across town and moving! He notified the San Diego Police Department, but the dispatcher would not believe that an owner had the ability to track his stolen car by radio.
When the policeman arrived, Scotty explained the ARPS system and showed him the car's symbol with the unique amateur call on an APRS city map. The officer relayed the precise location to the police cruisers.
As it happened, the stolen car and a police cruiser were stopped at the same red light with the thieves were still in the car. Surprised at the officers' sudden attention, the culprits made an illegal left turn and the chase was on. Soon after the crooks abandoned the car and escaped, leaving a hand gun behind. The car was recovered without major damage thanks to ARPS and ham radio.
THANK YOU ALL Before we go we want to pause for a moment to thank the worldwide ham radio community for is support of Newsline for the past nineteen and a quarter years. For almost two decades we have had the honor of bringing you news and information that we hope has helped you to understand the service a bit better and to enjoy it even more.
No, not every story we report is good news. Sometimes what we detail brings the same tears to our eyes as it does to yours. Unfortunately, not all news is good news and as the messenger it is our job to present it in as objective a way as we can. We do not succeed every time, buy we can assure you that we do try.
So as we close Newscast number 1000 and head to number 1001, we again say thank you -- thank you for supporting us and giving us the drive to continue. Your messages and letters and ongoing financial support tell us that what we do is appreciated.
And for this week, and for the first 1000 weeks, that's all from the Amateur Radio Newsline.
DID PRESIDENT CLINTON HANDLE PHX JAMMER? Did President Bill Clinton or his staff take an active part in bringing a Phoenix, Arizona jammer to justice? That possibility comes to light in a letter received by Arizona Repeater Association Local Interference Committee Chairman Lance Halle, KC7FVX, from the FCC's Beverly Baker. Baker is the Chief of Compliance and Information Bureau. In her letter she says that President Clinton has asked her to personally respond to Halle's inquiry regarding interference problems in Phoenix.
She goes on to mention that a Notice of Apparent Liability to monetary forfeiture in the amount of six thousand dollars was issued to Timothy Hoffman on August 30th. She further states:
"Be assured that the Commission will evaluate the effectiveness of this action to determine whether additional enforcement measures are warranted."While its doubtful that Bill Clinton asked that the fine be issued against Hoffman, there is more than ample reason to believe that some form of pressure from the White House finally got the FCC to move in this case.
CITIES TO CHALLENGE FCC Look for a major court challenge by city planners, community managers and homeowners associations to recent rulings by the FCC. Rulings that forbid states, cities, municipalities, homeowners associations, and even individual landlords from enacting rules forbidding the installation of those pizza sized satellite television dishes.
When it used its power and preempted local jurisdiction and land use regulations to permit anyone to install one of these mini satellite antennas, the FCC said it was doing do to insure that the general public had access to the latest in television transmission technology. But according to recent news reports, some cities, states and many homeowners organizations disagree. A spokesmen for a coalition of urban planning groups say that the federal government has no right to dictate the aesthetic look of a community. That controlling satellite dishes and any antenna structures must be done on a community planning level.
With both sides now having their views cast in concrete, it will be up to the legal system to decide who has the final word. Urban planners say that they will be going to court in an all or nothing effort to wrestle the power of federal preemption away from the FCC. While it will be many years before any final determination is made, whatever the outcome, the future of many radio services that use visible antennas -- including Amateur Radio -- may well hang in the balance.
JAPAN TO FIGHT RADIO MODEM HACKERS Japan says it is going to actively pursue computer hackers, especially those that intercept data using radio modems. Authorities in Japan say that they are setting up a special investigatory unit to combat the spread of computer virus attacks and other electronic criminal acts.
According to news reports, Japan's National Police Agency has requested 2.3 million dollars to fund a plan to actively attack the problem that they see as a threat to their nations national security. A spokesman for the National Police Association says that the money will be used to fund the creation and training of a Security Systems Countermeasures Team. A team that would go after hackers before they have the opportunity to create havoc.
ENCOURAGING THE DEAF TO GET INTO AMATEUR RADIO Ham radio should be available to the deaf. So says John Rothert, KC4IYO, of Orlando, Florida.
Rothert reports via the ARRL Letter that he is working with a group of deaf students in central Florida called "New Friends." This is a nonprofit organization for deaf and hearing impaired children. Its purpose is to provide an atmosphere where deaf children can meet to socialize and share learning experiences.
Rothert says that some of the group's objectives are to learn about space science, show how computers can help people communicate, learn about the Internet, spark interest in ham radio, and communicate with the space shuttle.
During the first official New Friends workshop some 25 students found out what Amateur Radio is all about. Each student received a packet of information from the ARRL along with an Archie ham radio comic book and a copy of the Shuttle Amateur Radio Experiment Bulletin put together by AMSAT and the ARRL. Amateur Radio operators demonstrated voice transmission and packet via ham radio and showed how to track the shuttle and other spacecraft. Participants also had a hands-on opportunity to try packet and a table was set up for students to write letters to the astronauts.
The Lake Monroe Amateur Radio Society has volunteered to give Amateur Radio classes designed for the hearing impaired. Several students have already signed up.
Rothert says that he would like to get in touch with deaf and hearing impaired hams. He's also looking for any ideas that may help make Amateur Radio more exciting and inviting for these young people. His address is: 14131 Hunter Grove Dr. Orlando, FL 32828
NEW MIR FREQUENCIES News from the ham radio space program. Word that a set of new recommended frequencies for future Mir and International Space Station operations has been agreed on and released by AMSAT organizations worldwide. For voice contacts, the recommended channels are 144.45 and 155.47 MHz uplink and 145.81 MHz as the downlink. Packet operation will use 144.49 MHz uplink and 145.81 MHz to downlink.
A secondary downlink of 145.84 MHz will be used to avoid interference when the two space platforms are in close proximity. Any simplex operations will probably use 144.45, 145.47 and 145.49 MHz.
PHASE 3D UPDATE Some good news for AMSAT. Jean-Marie Luton who is the Director General of the European Space Agency and Alain Bensoussan, Chairman of the French Space Agency say that the launch of Ariane 502 has now been tentatively set for mid-April, 1997. It is also now confirmed that the Phase 3D International Amateur Radio Satellite will be on this flight. The other payloads are to be a pair of technological measurement packages for validation of the launch vehicle's ability to place two satellites into a geostationary transfer orbit.
DX In DX, Members of the Oklahoma DX Association are returning to Belau and should be on as we go to air. N5CG and N5OK will be operating all bands from 10 through 160 meters, including the WARC bands on CW and SSB. Normal DX operating frequencies will be used. QSL: Belau DXpedition Box 88 Morris, Oklahoma 74445
Also, TF1MM, continues to be active as OD5/TF1MM from Naqoura, South Lebanon. This is the UN headquarters and he has been permitted to use a 16 element Log Periodic. He was heard on 14.016 MHZ at 15:45 UTC and on 10.103 MHZ at 19:50 UTC. QSL via 4X4DX.
CONGRESS DIRECTS FCC TO SELL PART OF 2.3 GHZ BAND Part of a ham band is being put up for auction to the highest bidder and the United States Congress is sponsoring the sale.
For what may be the first time in history, the U.S. Congress has ordered that specific radio frequencies be re-allocated. This includes 5 MHZ that Amateur Radio shares with government services between 2305 and 2310 MHZ. During its final hours before adjourning, members of the 104th Congress approved a provision as part of a larger appropriations bill. That provision directs the FCC to take 30 MHZ of spectrum from the 2.3-GHz region and sell it to the highest bidder. This, to help balance the budget. Back in May of 1994, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration identified the amateur segments 2300-2310 MHZ and 2390-2400 MHZ for reallocation. But this latest move by Congress comes as a big surprise, nonetheless. That's because of what happened last year when hams scored a major victory by getting primary allocations on the 2390-2400 MHZ and 2402-2417 MHZ subbands. While many assumed that the government would now leave the entire band alone, Capitol Hill lawmakers proved them wrong. The recent congressional action reallocates 2305 to 2320 MHZ and 2345 to 2360 MHZ to wireless services that are consistent with international agreement concerning spectrum allocations. The action was included in the massive, 2000 page Omnibus Consolidated Appropriations Act, which Congress passed and President Clinton signed. The act is now Public Law 104-208 it's only a matter of time before the FCC tells hams to leave. The big question on everyone's lips. Is this an isolated action by congress or a precursor of things to come.
MORE HF BANDS Will there be more ham bands in the future for ham radio? Possibly, according to ARRL President Rod Stafford, KB6ZV. In answer to a question posted at the Leagues recent Southwestern Division Convention in Mesa Arizona, Stafford said that with the move of many communications services to new communications technology in the UHF and microwave spectrum that more frequencies in the high frequency range could become available in the future. Stafford stressed that nothing is concrete and that the ARRL is not now actively pursuing new low band allocations, but that an eye is being kept on the situation to see what happens as we approach the next century.
UNIVERSAL RECIPROCAL HAM LICENSE A universal reciprocal ham license, good in 32 nations worldwide, is now under serious consideration by the FCC. The agency has issued a Notice of Proposed Rule Making with the intent of permitting hams from numerous foreign countries to operate their stations while on short visits to the United States.
If approved, the new policy will codify two pending international reciprocal operating agreements that have been under consideration for several years. Hams from about two dozen European nations and ten Central and South American countries would be included in the agreement.
NEW KENWOOD FTP SITE On a brighter note, Kenwood Communications has announced the addition of an extensive FTP site that includes many service bulletins and product application notes dating back to 1975. The company says that it receives over 100,000 hits to its website every year and expects the new service to be of great help to its customers and service providers.
The address of the Kenwood home page is: www.kenwood.net
The ftp site is: ftp://ftp.kenwood.net
ARRL ON LINE The American Radio Relay League is dropping two of its on-line accounts due to a noticeable decline in use by League members. Effective November the 1st, the ARRL will no longer be active on either GEnie or Prodigy.
Pointers to other sites still offering League services, such as ARRL Web, InfoServer, CompuServe and America Online will be posted on both Prodigy and GEnie before the ARRL disappears from these services. These pointers will include instructions on how to subscribe directly to W1AW bulletins.
For those not aware, it appears as if America Online's Ham Radio Club BBS is fast becoming the hottest spot for mainline ham radio discussions. Compuserve still remains the favorite of those involved in the high tech aspect of our hobby.
NEWSLINE HOME PAGE Speaking of on-line services, a quick reminder that Newsline maintains a major presence in the America Online Ham Radio Club.
We also have a new home page created by Dale Cary, WD0AKO that contains the weekly scripts, profiles on Newsline personnel, information on the Young Ham of the Year Award program and other interesting topics. The Universal Resource Locator to reach the Newsline home page on the World Wide Web from your computer is: rrnet.com/rrra/newsline.htm>
SAFEX ON THE AIR SAFEX 2, the German built ham radio FM repeater in space is now fully operational. SAFEX, which is a German acronym for the Space Amateur Funk Experiment, is operating from aboard the Russian MIR Space Station Complex.
The test configuration has been powered on since July 12, 1996. The first hardware tests involved only the stations digital speech recorder. During that phase of operation, pre-recorded messages from the MIR crew were copied by many ground stations on 437.925 MHZ. The messages were received with hand- held radios.
Joerg Hahn, DL3LUM, the SAFEX International Coordinator, reports that the F-M repeater section was brought on line for testing back on July 19th. There, a short contact was achieved by Matt Bordelon, KC5BTL, operating as W5RRR with one of the cosmonauts. The first open use of the repeater to establish a ground to ground QSO was performed between DF0VR, IV3WLQ, and LY3BH. Dave Larsen, N6JLH, performed the first ground-to-ground QSO in North America with Scott Avery, WA6LIE.
SAFEX II is a project of the German Amateur Radio Club, and managed by the Ham Radio Group, DF0VR, at the German Aerospace Research Establishment. The project is supported by DARC, DLR, NPO Energia and Russian radio amateurs. More about operating through the SAFEX 2 ham radio repeater in space can be found on the AMSAT bulletin board and other sites on the world wide web.
SAT-MED DEMO Technologies for the emerging practice of telemedicine have been demonstrated to doctors in Africa. This, in conjunction with a recent International Telecommunications Conference in Geneva. The ITU says it held the demonstration to assist the African Regional Telecommunications Conference held in Abidjan. One demonstration used an Inmarsat type B satellite to transmit audio and video of a medical procedure. Another demonstration transmitted medical data through an Inmarsat type M bird to a mobile satellite terminal.
FCC EXPANDS TOLL FREE PHONE SERVICE Closer to home, the FCC says that residents of 26 states now can reach the FCC's National Call Center by simply dialing 1-888-CALL-FCC.
Arizona, Washington DC, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Hampshire, Oregon, Rhode Island, Texas and Washington state are the latest to join the growing list as the Commission phases in the toll-free information service geographically. States added to the system earlier this year include Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia and Wyoming.
Plans call for the service to be available nationwide by early 1997. The Call Center, located in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, operates between 8 AM and 5:30 PM Eastern Time.
DX OPERATIONS In DX news, WB2DND will once again be active from the United Arab Emirates from November 3rd to the 8th from A61AD's QTH. He will be on all bands including 160 meters. Don has reportedly shipped a 1000 feet of wire to put up an inverted L and beverage aimed at Europe and North America.
SM0BFJ, reports that Gus, 5X1D, in Uganda is active every day between 1730-1800z on 50.150 MHZ. He also says that Gus is the first station ever to be active from Uganda on 6 meters. QSL 5X1D via SM0BFJ.
FCC STOPS RENEWAL REMINDERS If you forget to renew your ham license, the FCC will no longer send you a reminder. Due to cutbacks in the federal budget, the FCC discontinued issuing its recently introduced Form 610 R license expiration notices effective October 22nd.
The Form 610R was a reminder to hams that their tickets are going to expire within the next 90 days. The demise of the Form 610 R means that hams whose licenses are issued for ten year periods, must now remember the renewal date and file a regular Form 610. An FCC spokesman says the Commission hopes to have a Form 610 available soon on the World Wide Web to permit on-line renewals.
The last 610 R renewal notices sent by FCC covered into February 1997, although the cutoff specific date was not announced.
WESAT REPORT The Weather Satellite Report has been acquired by Woodhouse Communication of Plainwell, Michigan. The quarterly magazine is dedicated earth and atmospheric imagery from space. It was formerly published by R. Myers Communications of Fountain Hills, Arizona.
AMSAT MEETING COMING TO TUCSON The 1996 AMSAT Annual Meeting is being held in Tucson, Arizona November 8th to the 10th. The conference will feature forums on all aspects of amateur satellite operations and the status of satellites under construction. In addition there will be displays of satellite related technology and amateur satellite ground stations.
An interesting sidelight to the meeting will be a Beginners Workshop with 3 to 4 hours of presentations specially designed to inform the satellite beginner. There will also be demonstration satellite stations to provide beginners with experience in making satellite contacts.
On closing day there will be a special tour of the Radio and Optical telescopes on Kitt Peak.
DIGITAL CONFERENCE Couldn't attend the 1996 ARRL and TAPR Digital Communications Conference held in Seattle, Washington? Well - here is your opportunity to listen to and see pictures from the conference. All this available on the Internet at: www.tapr.org
Lyle Johnson, WA7GXD, was the Saturday evening Banquet Speaker. He gave an exceptional talk regarding the future and past of amateur radio. Both the transcript and audio from the talk are available at the website address.
DISABLED PERSONS NET A new net for hams with disabilities has started been established by Bob Mauro, KZ2G. If you'd like to discuss disability and the Internet, check in on 14.265 MHz, Mondays at 18:30 UTC. Or you can contact Bob via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org .
WA6TEM - Silent Key It is with deep sadness that we report the passing of Rick Grambsch, WA6TEM. Rich, who was only 49 became a silent key on Friday October 11th due to cancer.
WA6TEM was well known in the Sunnyvale, California area as the trustee of the repeater bearing his call sign. He is survived by his wife Frances, KB6JBQ, his mother Loretta, and his sister Barbara.
DX In DX, K3TEJ and WA3WSJ, will be on Great Abaco Island in the Bahamas from November 19th to the 26th. They plan to operate CW and SSB on 160 to 10 meters including WARC bands. During the CQ World Wide CW Contest they will be using C6A/K3TEJ.
Meanwhile, the DX News Sheet reports that W7FKF, will be active as W7FKF/C6A. Mike will also participate in the CQ Contest probably as C6AHU.
For further information on renewing your ham license, please contact the FCC's Wireless Telecommunications Bureau Consumer Assistance Branch toll free at 1-800-322-1117.
LITTLE LEO FIGHT CONTINUES An update on the fight by ham radio to keep from sharing its heavily populated 2 meter and 70 cm bands with low earth orbiting satellites. Following the initial furor, the so called "Little LEO" threat has slipped from the headlines, but efforts continue to thwart the inclusion of their commercial activities on our popular VHF and UHF bands.
While the Little LEO proponents have not backed off, neither have they submitted any technical documentation to show that sharing with the wide variety of amateur uses could actually work. As a participant in the informal working group, the American Radio Relay League has submitted a 42 page technical paper in late September that details why the League believes sharing to be unworkable. So far, the Little LEO industry had not responded with a technical basis in favor of sharing. With the groups final report due November 15th, the clock is running out to include any sharing studies involving amateur bands.
Unless an attempt is made to short circuit the process -- a possibility that cannot be completely ruled out in the present Washington climate, a U.S. proposal for sharing could not be made in the absence of such a inquiry. Also, under the procedures announced for WRC-97, any U.S. proposal must first be subjected to an FCC notice and public comment process and must be accepted by the U.S. Department of State and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration.
SAFEX REPEATER GEAR More this week on the European built SAFEX 2 ham radio repeater operating from on board the Russian MIR space station. The repeater operates under the call sign RR0DL and a 141.3 Hz access tone access is required to communicate through it. After the repeater has been activated by someone with the proper tone, other stations without tone access can also work through it. It is even possible to use the repeater to contact the MIR crew if one of them is at or near the local control microphone.
The frequency to call up to RR0DL is 435.750 MHZ and listen on 437.950 MHz. Note that this is a 20 MHZ input to output separation and the offset in your radio must be adjusted accordingly. Also remember that you will have to compensate for about 10 KHz of Doppler shift during any given pass of the MIR space station and its SAFEX 2, repeater in space.
MIR QSL CARDS Speaking about the MIR. Dave Larsen, N6JLH, is the U.S. MIR QSL manager for contacts made with crew members. QSL cards must include date, time, and mode of contact. Cards for SWL reports are not be handled by Dave. If a contact is made with the MIR packet radio personal message system, then the message number issued should be included on the QSL card.
QSLs must also be accompanies by a business sized self addressed stamped envelope and sent to: David Larsen, N6JLH P.O. Box 1501 Pine Grove, California 95665
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