ARRL Action Request: Commercial Interests Petition FCC for High Power Allocation on Shortwave SpectrumARRL Action Request:

[Updated 7/18/2023]

7/11/2023

The ad hoc group “Shortwave Modernization Coalition” petitioned the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to allow data communications on multiple bands within the HF 2 – 25 MHz range with up to 20 KW, including in bands immediately adjacent to spectrum allocated to the Amateur Radio Service. This group appears to represent high-speed stock trading interests. 

ARRL  The National Association for Amateur Radio® is treating the petition as a subject of concern for its members and the greater Amateur Radio Service. ARRL Laboratory staff are studying the matter from a technical standpoint, including analysis of transmitted signals potentially interfering with Amateur Radio communications on Amateur Radio spectrum. The results from this expert review are being finalized and will inform ARRL’s filed comments on the matter.

The FCC has assigned the petition RM-11953. Comments are due by July 31, 2023, and reply comments by August 15. While the petitioners exclude the amateur bands, high power operations on immediately adjacent bands are proposed.

A copy of the petition is at: https://www.fcc.gov/ecfs/document/1042840187330/1 (PDF).

Special Event Stations – July 22 – BOTA – Buffalos on the Air

Cross posted from Reddit: https://www.reddit.com/r/amateurradio/comments/14ubop0/buffalos_on_the_air_2023/

 

Event Updates / Frequencies: https://www.facebook.com/groups/751075983050671

July 22, 2023 from 1600 GMT til propagation allows

 

Hi I’m Phill, VA7XOZ from Comox, BC. I’m an Avionics Tech in the Royal Canadian Air Force and I have organized an event called Buffalos On The Air (BOTA) to celebrate the retirement of the De Havilland CC115 Buffalo, fixed-wing Search and Rescue plane.

I worked on the Buffalo as a tech for several years and now that we have retired them to museums across Canada I have arranged for amateur radio clubs across the country to hook up to the Buffalo’s beautiful mil-spec length of 45ft antenna wire to broadcast for this event using amateur radio equipment.

This is not a contest, but if you are able to make contact with more than one Buffalo you can request a certificate. You may also receive a QSL card just for making contact.

The event is on Saturday 22 July from 16:00 GMT into the evening. Each location has their own Canadian special event callsign and coordinator:

-VC7BUFF457 Comox BC – Phillip Tanner VA7XOZ

-VC4BUFF462 Winnipeg MB – Calvin Winter VE4AJ

-VC3BUFF456 Trenton ON – Dave Ackerman VE3UGT / VE3OX

-VY2BUFF451 Summerside PEI – Doug Silliker VY2DS

We have a facebook group and event setup to be able to send out info on what bands and modes we’re broadcasting on, answer questions, and stay coordinated. https://www.facebook.com/groups/751075983050671

If you’re in the area, we welcome you to come out to the actual Buffalo locations and come say hi.

I’ll try and answer as many questions as I can in this thread, please try and reach us on the day of. It’s a unique opportunity to be able to make contact with a retired air force plane’s antenna and I hope to continue this event in the future. Just be patient as unlike regular events, we only have the one antenna at each location to communicate with.

Thank you for your support, Phill VA7XOZ

 

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Find out more about this airframe and it’s service to Canada:

https://www.canada.ca/en/air-force/services/aircraft/cc-115.html

 

Fine Field Day!

Field Day national emergency communications preparedness event  is always the 4th full weekend of June annually in the United States and Canada. This year that weekend fell on June 24 – 25 and was an amazing day filled with fine people and weather throughout the operating 24 hours. Fine thanks to the Clarke County Fairgrounds for hosting us. Thank you to the Clarke County Sheriff’s Office for stopping by on Friday late evening to ensure everything was in order. Thank you also to Berryville Mayor (Jay) Harry Lee Arnold, Jr for visiting Saturday afternoon to learn how amateur radio can serve his community during communication and civil emergency.

Club members began at 8AM Friday morning to pack and transport gear from our clubhouse in Winchester to the Lions Club Pavilion at the Clarke County Fairground. Though conditions on the ground were soggy, the skies cleared with temperatures in the high 70’s / low 80’s during operations.

Thanks to K04SSD, Jeremy who lent his spiffy red light LED lanterns from LuminAid to ensure our night vision was preserved. Gratitude to KC4RCR, Rousseau “Mr Lightning” for lending a fine bug zapper to keep flying insects at a distance and his 2 meter 10 element yagi antenna.

Fine food during Saturday’s traditional group lunch at Mario’s Pizzeria. During the weekend all types food was shared by members including amazing grilled hot dogs, hamburgers. Sweets abound with fine selections of muffins, cookies, pie, and of course it’s not amateur radio without “power rings” also known as donuts from Dunkin Donuts. Thank you to Rob for making the gas grill spic and span and then cooked up sliders and hotdogs for dinner for us on Saturday evening. Thank you Rob! Thank you to Andy NR8N and Tom KM4FEC for making breakfast on Sunday morning.

Field Day Radios [Transceivers]

Our station, with club callsign W4RKC, operated 3A [three HF transmitters in club or non-club portable operation] this year, radios were:

3A stations each had a computer laptop and N3JFP logging software to document contacts on CW [Morse Code], Phone [Voice], and Digital [FT8]. FT8 is a digital mode capable of send and receive with milliwatts of power over high-frequency [HF] for global communications capability.

Field Day antennas in use this year included:

This year marked the passing of the Field Day operations lead from KW4CW, Tom to AF7YL, Frances and AE7YH, John for 2024. Thank you Tom for amazing dedication to the tradition of Field Day and the importance of having our club being prepared and ready when called up for service by our community. Tom served for the Club in this capacity from 2009 – 2023. A fine legacy to uphold! Thank you Tom.

If you would like the Shenandoah Valley Amateur Radio Club to provide an operations demonstration and / or speak with your organization about the importance of Amateur Radio to the communications infrastructure, or, speak to careers in S.T.E.M [Science, Technology, Engineering and Math], please contact us, we would be delighted to help. https://svarc.us/contact-us/

Action Request – ARRL Advocates for Radio Amateurs as FCC Proposes Changes to 60-Meter Band

Cross-post from ARRL.org

 

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is seeking comments about changing the secondary allocation available to radio amateurs on 60 meters. The FCC issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on April 21, 2023, that deals with the band. In a prior petition, ARRL The National Association for Amateur Radio® urged protecting the existing use of the band by amateurs when adding a new allocation adopted internationally.

Currently, radio amateurs in the US have access to five discrete channels on a secondary basis: 5332 kHz, 5348 kHz, 5358.5 kHz, 5373 kHz, and 5405 kHz. Users of these channels are limited to an effective radiated power (ERP) of 100 W PEP.

The FCC proposes to allocate 15 kHz of contiguous bandwidth between 5351.5 – 5366.5 kHz on a secondary basis with a maximum power of 15 W EIRP (equivalent to 9.15 W ERP). This allocation was adopted at the 2015 World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC-15).

The federal government is the primary user of the 5 MHz spectrum. The government’s manager of spectrum use, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), has expressed support for implementing the allocation as adopted at WRC-15. Doing so would result in amateurs losing access to four of the five discrete channels, and power limits would be reduced from 100 W ERP to 9.15 W ERP. However, it would provide access to a new contiguous 15 kHz band that includes one of the current five channels.

In 2017, ARRL petitioned the FCC to keep the four 60-meter channels that fall outside the new band, as well as the current operating rules, including the 100 W PEP ERP limit.

The ARRL petition stated, “Such implementation will allow radio amateurs engaged in emergency and disaster relief communications, and especially those between the United States and the Caribbean basin, to more reliably, more flexibly, and more capably conduct those communications.”

ARRL said that years of amateur radio experience using the five discrete channels have shown that amateurs can coexist with primary users at 5 MHz while complying with the regulations established for their use. The petition also stated, “Neither ARRL, nor, apparently, NTIA, is aware of a single reported instance of interference to a federal user by a radio amateur operating at 5 MHz to date.”

In the NPRM, the FCC recognizes that Canada has already adopted 60-meter allocations and related rules that align with those proposed by ARRL. The Commission wrote, “Finally, we note that Canada has essentially implemented the same rules as ARRL has requested.”

The FCC proposed to allocate the 15 kHz bandwidth, but stopped short of making a proposal on whether the existing channels should remain allocated to amateur radio and what the power limitations should be. They requested comments on their proposal and the related channel and power issues.

 

Comments will be due 60 days after the NPRM is published in the Federal Register, which is expected within the next two weeks.

Got Chirps? Whistles? and WWV

Take a moment to tune in at every 8 after the hour on WWV and 48 after the hour on WWVH transmitters. WWV, WWVH stations, HamSCI and NIST and investigating HF propagation.

The Characterization Signal will consist of a 45 second WAV file on minute 8 for WWV and minute 48 for WWVH.  Right now it is planned as a standard voice announcement, inserted into the broadcast chain as an audio file. 

This is an incredibly exciting opportunity for collaboration between Amateur Radio and the federal government’s lead physical science laboratory, NIST, and harkens back 100 years to the Fading Experiments coordinated between the then NBS and an early ARRL.

A full description of the Characterization Signal and audio files are available at https://zenodo.org/record/5182323

Updates on the efforts will be posted here at WWV ARC and also at the HamSCI website: https://hamsci.org/wwv  

WWV Frequencies [ MHz ]: 2.5; 5.0; 10.0; 15.0; 20.0 from Fort Collins, Colorado

WWVH Frequency: 2.5 MHz from Kauai, Hawaii

 

Resources: 

HamSCI: https://hamsci.org

WWV: https://www.nist.gov/pml/time-and-frequency-division/time-distribution/radio-station-wwv

WWVH: https://tf.nist.gov/stations/wwvh.htm

History of WWV: https://www.nist.gov/time-distribution/radio-station-wwv/history-radio-station-wwv

Remembering Pearl – Special Event Stations

December 7 in 2021 marks the 80th Anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor.  Below are the published special event stations commemorating this week.

 Dec 7, W4AVM, SS American Victory, Tampa Bay, FL

Frequency: 14.265

http://w4avm.org

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Dec 7, NI4BK, 14:00- 22:00Z, , Battleship NORTH CAROLINA

Frequency: 7.208 

Operating two stations aboard Battleship NORTH CAROLINA, the Azalea Coast Amateur Radio Club hosts a worldwide ham radio operator event commemorating the December 7, 1941, attack on Pearl Harbor. The Battleship is NI4BK, and HAM operators may contact the ship via voice, digital and Morse code. NI4BK looks forward to hearing from YOU!  Radio operators making contact will receive a special postcard verifying the contact.

For information, contact Allan Pellnat, or call 910-799-1694.

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Dec 7 NEPM, 1600-2359 UTC, Battleship IOWA

Frequencies SPLIT: 14.781.k KHz USB / Listen on 14343.0 USB

With operating authorization from the Navy’s 3rd Fleet Spectrum Manager, Battleship IOWA Amateur Radio Association, Inc. and the IOWA’s Innovation and Engineering Team will activate the ship’s legacy Navy call sign, NEPM, on December 7, 2021 in memory of Pearl Harbor Day. Operation will be from 1600 to 2359 UTC.

NEPM will TRANSMIT on 14781.5 KHz using J3E USB and listen on 14343.0 KHz J3E USB. Amateurs are reminded that they may NOT transmit on 14781.5 KHz. If there is traffic on 14343.0 KHz, the NEPM operator will advise of an alternate frequency where he is listening.

 QSL’s will be available if a SASE is provided. NEPM, NI6BB. or NE6PM are all listed on QRZ.com and any route will get your request to the QSL manager. Please visit BIARA’s website at https://biara.org for more information about radio operations aboard the Battleship IOWA soon to be the home of the National Museum of the Surface Navy.

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Dec 3-Dec 13, W2W, 1300Z-2200Z, , Baltimore, MD. Amateur Radio Club of the National Electronics Museum.

Frequencies: 14.241 | 14.041 |  7.241 |  7.041

Certificate & QSL. W2W-Pearl Harbor, P.O. Box 1693, MS 4015, Baltimore, MD 21203. Amateur Radio Club of the National Electronics Museum (ARCNEM) will operate W2W in commemoration of the anniversary of Pearl Harbor Day and the role of electronics in WWII. The primary operation will be Dec 3-Dec 7 with additional operation possible during the Dec 8-Dec 13 period as operator availability permits. Operation on 80M (3.541, 3.841) and digital modes possible during event. Frequencies +/- according to QRM. QSL and Certificate available via SASE; details at ww-2.us

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Dec 11, NI6IW, 1700Z-2359Z, USS Midway Museum Ship Special Event: Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day San Diego, CA. USS Midway (CV-41) Museum Ship.

Frequencies: 14.320 | 7.250 PSK and CW on various HF bands DSTAR on various reflectors.

QSL. USS Midway Museum Ship COMEDTRA, 901 N Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA 92101. Please check spotting networks to find us on HF. Consult www.dstarusers.org to find our call sign NI6IW and Reporting Note to see what reflector we’re using. Note: Typical QSL turn-around time is 4 to 6 weeks after receiving a request with SASE. www.qrz.com/db/ni6iw

The following websites may be helpful to locate active frequencies and other Pearl Harbor Special Event stations:

https://dxcluster.dxcenter.com

https://www.dxwatch.com

Listen in on the web via a web-based SDR – software defined radio:

http://websdr.org