Amateur Radio Newsline™ Report 1922 - June 13, 2014

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Amateur Radio Newsline™ report number 1922 with a release
date of June 13 2014 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a Q-S-T.  The FCC announces some changes to
Amateur Radio licensing and more; hams take issue with
indoor marijuana farmers over interference from grow lights;
a pair of X Class flares erupt on the Sun; Marines learn how
to T-hunt from a North Carolina radio club, Dayton announces
2014 Hamvention attendance and part two of our look at
Amateur Radio on the International Space Station.  All this
and more on Amateur Radio Newsline report number 1922 coming
your way right now.

(Billboard Cart Here)



The FCC says that the public interest will be served by
revising the Amateur Service rules to grant partial
examination credit for certain expired amateur operator
licenses, to permit examinations to be administered
remotely, and to permit amateur stations to use technologies
that stations in other services are already permitted to
use.  This is the gist of a Report and Order issued by the
regulatory agency on June 9th that acts on several long
stand rules changes requests.  Amateur Radio Newsline's
Bruce Tennant, K6PW, is here with the details:


In its decision the FCC will make it a bit easier for hams
whose licenses have expired to get back into the service.
This by granting written examination credit for test
Elements 3 and 4 to holders of expired licenses that
initially required passage of these elements.  However the
regulatory agency will require former license holders whose
lapsed licenses have gone past the two year renewal grace
period to pass the Element 2 Technician class exam to get
their licenses restored.

In the same action the Commission refused to give
examination credit to the holder of an expired Certificate
of Successful Completion of Examination.  Nor will it extend
the validity of them for the lifetime of the holder of these

The FCC has decided to continue the requirement that three
Volunteer Examiners be present at amateur testing sessions.
The agency had earlier proposed to drop that number down to
two after noting that some applicants could not find a test
session because it was not possible to find three volunteer
examiners in some rural geographic areas.

There was strong opposition to this proposal by the majority
of those filing comments as well as the American Radio Relay
league.  In deciding against making this change the FCC said
that it was persuaded to keep the current three Volunteer
Examiner rule to assure that the security and quality of
exams would not be compromised.

While the number of Volunteer Examinees will remain at three
the FCC did offer some relief for those who cannot find a
local exam session.  This in approving the concept of
allowing remote testing.

The report and Order says that allowing Volunteer Examineers
and V-E-C's the option of administering examinations at
locations remote is warranted.  It notes that as far back as
2002 the National Conference of Volunteer Examiner
Coordinators endorsed experimental use of videoconferencing
technology to conduct Amateur Radio testing in remote areas
of Alaska.  Also that the Anchorage Volunteer Examination
Coordinator group has long requested such a change.  It
cited the expense to provide amateur radio test sessions to
Alaska residents living in remote areas of that state.

The FCC declined to address the mechanics of remote testing
as this will likely vary from location to location and
session to session.  It stated that specific rules spelling
out how to administer exam sessions remotely could limit the
flexibility of conducting these sessions.  Instead it re-
asserted that the obligation on the part of Volunteer
Examiners and V-E-C's to administer examinations responsibly
applies in full to remote testing as well as any other test

Last but by no means least the FCC has adopted an ARRL
proposal to authorize certain types of Time Division
Multiple Access better known as T-D-M-A emissions for
permanent use by radio amateurs.  Back in 2013 the Wireless
Telecommunications Bureau had granted an League  request for
a temporary blanket waiver to permit radio amateurs to
transmit emissions with designators FXD, FXE, and F7E
pending resolution of the rulemaking petition.  In issuing
its final decision on this matter the FCC stated that those
commenting strongly supported such a change.  Also noted was
that such a modification to its rules is consistent with the
basis and purpose of the Part 97 Amateur Service.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Bruce Tennant, K6PZW, in
Los Angeles.


All of these rules changes become effective 30 days after
their publication in The Federal Register.  We should have
that date for you next week.




One ham very much concerned with ham radio testing
procedures is famed educator Gordon West, WB6NOA.  We asked
West what he thought of several of the changes starting with
reinstatement for those whose licenses had lapsed and who
had not renewed them within the two-year grace period.  He
gave us his personal experience with those wanting back in:


WB6NOA:  "We get once every two weeks a call from a ham and
I tell him thst he needs to take three exams to get back to
Extra class I never hear from them again.  But now Ill be
able to say just one examination, the Element 2 Technician
Class and then you will be reinstated to either your
General, Advanced or Extra class license you once held."


And what about the requirement that those seeking license
reinstatement outside the grace period be subject to taking
a new Technician class exam?  West says that he agrees with
the FCC on this:


WB6NOA:  "I think its good that a reinstated ham would have
to pass some sort of an examination and Element 2 is a good
starting point because Element 2 has a lot more rules and
regulations that encompass the overall ham radio service.
So I think they (the FCC) did it just right by asking the
applicant to consider taking the Element 2 exam if they want
yo get back their original general, advanced or extra class


We also asked WB6NOA for his thoughts on the FCC's decision
to permit remote testing for candidates unable to attend a
normal exam session in person:


WB6NOA:  "I think our VE program administered by VEC's is
pretty darn tight.  And I think that especially up in Alaska
where Jim Wiley had a lot to with some of these suggestions
to the Commission; I think there are areas that we can
monitor via teleconference to insure exam integrity and
getting more hams to pass tests amd upgrading that we might
not have had before because we could not get a three member
team to them."


Finally we asked him to give us his overall thoughts on the
way the FCC handled these changes to ham radio exam and
licenses reinstatement procedures.


WB6NOA:  "I'm delighted to see that the FCC has taken the
amount of time to consider all of the comments that fellow
hams and I have submitted to them on these three topics.  It
tells me that the FCC continuously listen to input and that
they cite those inputs to base on what their decision is and
I think its good that we have a Commission that listens as
well as enacts new rules."


The assessment of the regulatory changes to ham radio
licensing and testing from amateur radio educator Gordon
West, WB6NOA.  (ARNewsline)



In other news, the IARU Monitoring System newsletter reports
success in getting an Australian radar system removed from
the 20 meter ham band.

According to a report from Wolf Hadel, DK2OM, back on May
10th John Martin, ZL1GWE and another source informed him
about a Superdarn Radar found to be on 14 dot 050 MHz.  It
turned out that this radar system was being operated by the
La Trobe University in Australia.

At this point DK2OM got back to ZL1GWE who informed the
university that it was operating in a ham radio band.  Hadel
also sent the information to Peter Young, VK3MV who serves
as the IARU Monitoring System Region 3 coordinator.  He in
turn informed the Australian Department of Post and
Telecommunications of the situation.

The bottom line:  Thanks to the combined efforts of these
three hams the offending radar signal was gone from 20
meters within two days.  (IARUMS)



In DX up-front, word that a team of operators from Japan
will likely be on the air with their individual home
callsigns stroke C-E-Zero-Y from Hare Kapone on Easter
Island between January 9th to the 17th of 2015.  Activity
will be holiday style on 80 through 6 meters using CW, SSB
and the Digital modes.  QSL via the operator's instructions.



Time for you to identify your station.  We are the Amateur
Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world
including the NS4R repeater serving Jacksonville, Florida.

(5 sec pause here)



Various news sources report that the Sun unleashed a pair of
X-class solar flares in the span of one hour and 10 minutes
on Tuesday morning June 10th.  These flares came from a
sunspot on the lower left limb of our home star that had
just rotated into view and was named Active Region 2087 by
solar scientists.

The first flare was the more powerful of the two erupted at
7:42 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time and was declared a class X 2
point 2.  The second came at 8:52 a.m. Eastern and was
designated an X 1 point 5.

X-rays and Ultra Violet radiation from the double flare
created a wave of ionization in Earth's upper atmosphere,
altering the normal propagation of radio transmissions over
Europe.  Preliminary images from NASA's STEREO probes show a
bright Coronal Mass Ejection emerging from the blast area
but it was away from the sun-Earth line. As such, no strong
impacts were expected.

The area calmed down after its two violent outbursts but the
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Space
Weather Prediction Center says the new active region remains
a potent force.  As such there could be more flares that
could cause radio blackouts if they here on Earth if they
were to take place.  (Spaceweather, other published news



Marijuana growing operations using what are called indoor
grow lights are making life miserable for hams and S-W-L's.
That's because many of these units emit wide-band
interference all across the High Frequency radio spectrum.
Some can even wreck havoc on the bands from 6 meters and
above.  Amateur Radio Newsline's Mark Abramowicz, NT3V, has
more on the problem of pot growers versus two-way radio:


A recent story picked up by USA TODAY and the Associated
Press from the pages of The Coloradan newspaper reports on
this new source of interference for amateur radio operators.

The story tracks the problems faced by Thomas Thompson,
W0IVJ, of Boulder, Colorado, who discovered RF interference
which he traced to the ballasts of the grow lights being
used by some of his neighbors.  Thompson reported his
findings to the ARRL and also posted a page about the
problem on the web.  You can find it at

He notes the interference problem is significant on 40

Thompson, a retired electrical engineer, was able to find
the source of the interference with direction-finding
equipment, according to the news stories.  He then decided
that the best way to address the problem was to build
filters for his neighbors to take care of the interference.

The ARRL, according to the Coloradan, filed a complaint with
the FCC about the grow lamps.

The Coloradan says the FCC told its reporter that agency is
aware of the interference, but didn't say what it was going
to do about it.

The ARRL has produced information about the problem at a
link on its website. You can find that at
light-rfi.  It recommends filters and choke to alleviate the
problem, if you know the neighbor where you've identified
the source.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Mark Abramowicz, NT3V.


One word of caution to any ham thinking of confronting a
suspected Marijuana grower, especially if it's someone you
do not know.  In three words: "don't do it."  While there
may be some people out there who are growing these plants
for medical use, you could easily run into a large scale
cultivating operation being run by members of the underworld
who are armed and dangerous.  Instead, if you T-Hunt down
such a location just file a report of the interference and
where you believe it's coming from with your closest FCC
office and let the professionals handle it from there.
(The Coloradian, others)



United States Marines know that eing able to locate a lost
person or find an enemy might save lives and their training
prepares them for this.  But there are some things classroom
training can't teach, which is why Sergent. Philip Rice,
KK4NBK, and a dozen other Marines recently traveled from
Camp Lejeune to Salisbury, North Carolina to learn the art
of hidden transmitter hunting from members of the Rowan
Amateur Radio Society.

In an interview with the Sailsbury Post newspaper, Sergeant
Rice said he tries to locate opportunities for hands-on
training that will help members of his unit be more prepared
for their duties.  As a part of the days training, club
members Tommie Wood, N4YZ, and Gary Lang, K4GHL, showed some
of the specialized antennas used for radio direction-
finding.  Afterward, the Marines paired up with members of
the club as they fanned out through woods on the outskirts
of Salisbury for a T-Hunt practice session.

According to Sergeant Rice, amateur radio is a good way to
open people's minds, and prepare them for more than just our
current war on terror.  You can read the entire story of
this group effort between the Marines and the Rowan Amateur
Radio Society at  (Sailsbury



An interesting article on the demise of the High Frequency
Active Auroral Research Program, or HAARP facility in Alaska
appeared in the June 4th edition of the Anchorage Press

The article by Mary Lochner not only tells some of the
history of the multi-megawatt transmitting station but also
explains in easy to understand terminology just how the High
Frequency Active Auroral Research Program actually
functioned.  It also goes into some of the unsuccessful
efforts undertaken by supporters of the research facility to
keep it from being shuttered and torn down.

Titled HAARP Plays One Last Song, you can read the very
fascinating story on-line at
(Anchorage Press)



Radio supplier Baofeng has changed its product distribution
name to Pofung for all sales outside China.  In an
announcement on its website the company says that it feels
it's time to adapt its brand to the global stage.  It notes
that the current name Baofeng is a literal translation of
it's Chinese character name, and as such it may be difficult
for a hobbyist elsewhere in the world to pronounce.  The
company say that its new product name of Pofung is easier to
pronounce and more friendly to its customers, while
maintaining the phonetic symbolism of its brand.  The
company's official web domain will
remain unchanged.  (Baofeng)



It seems that each year after the close of Hamvention that
there is a big guessing game as to attendance.  Long ago it
was just between hams talking on the telephone, but since
the advent of the World-Wide-Web it's kind of become an on-
line sport or some such.  Well the final results are now in
and the number was announced at a recent meeting of the
Dayton Amateur Radio Association by this year's Assistant
General Chairman, Jim Tiderman, N8IDS:


N8IDS:  "Those who guessed close to 25,000 were the closest.
The actual number was 24,873."


So how does this compare with years past?  Well in 2013 some
24,542 hams made the trek to Hamvention for a net increase
of 331 attendees this year.  Its also way up from 2008 when
only 17,250 showed up at the Hara Arena gates.  The bottom
line is that as the world's economy improves so does the
number of visitors to the Dayton Hamvention and that's good
news for everyone concerned.  (ARNewsline with audio from
DARA meeting streaming)



Tim Duffy, K3LR, says that select video presentations from
the 2014 Contest University held at the recent Dayton
Hamvention are now available for viewing at the Contest
University website.  The shortcut URL is simply

Also, for the first time in eight years there will be a
second Contest University in the United States offered in
the same year.  This one will take place on Thursday, July
17th which is the opening day of the ARRL Centennial
Convention in Hartford Connecticut.  More information on
this is on the web at under All Day Training
Tracks.  (CTU)



Also now available on YouTube is a video produced by Joe
Eisenberg, K0NEB taken at these years Hamvention.  Titled
Sharp Dressed Man, it's actually a slide show set to music
as seen through the lens of Joe's Canon digital camera.
It's a very enjoyable 4 and a half minutes of Hamvention fun
that you can find it by taking your web browser to  (ARNewsline)



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 and being
relayed by the volunteer services of the following radio

(5 sec pause here)



A big celebration of early ham radio on earth to moon to
earth contacts will soon take place in the United Kingdom as
we hear from Jeremy Boot, G4NJH:


July 2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the first time that
amateur signals from the UK reached other parts of the world
by bouncing off the moon, a technique now known as
moonbounce or EME, earth-moon-earth.

In the July 1964 edition of Radio Communications the RSGB
announced that at 20.20 GMT on June 13th, 1964, G3LTF at
Galleywood, Essex, and KP4BPZ in Puerto Rico, made contact
on 430 Mc/s by bouncing their signals off the moon. Signal
reports were RST459 both ways.  A further contact took place
one hour later.

KP4BPZ was fortunate in having the 1000 foot radio-telescope
dish aerial at Arecibo, Puerto Rico at his disposal. G3LTF's
equipment included a 15 foot dish aerial and an AF139
transistor preamplifier for reception.  Power input to the
PA was 150 watts.

What is more remarkable is that Peter, G3LTF is still active
on moon-bounce and is one of the world's leading pioneers.

I'm Jeremy Boot G4NJH, in Nottiningham in the U.K. for the
Amateur Radio Newsline.


And less we forget our heartiest congratulations to Jeremy
and to the GB2RS Podcast team on having received 100,000
hits on their weekly newscasts on Podbean.   Each week the
the GB2RS audio newscast is uploaded to both iTunes and  (GB2RS)



The Brazilian Amateur Radio League has obtained special
permission from telecommunications regulator ANATEL.  This,
to permit foreign amateurs visiting that nation to operate
during the duration FIFA World Cup.

During June and July, any foreign amateur will be able to
operate in Brazil regardless of the existence of reciprocity
agreement between countries.  No special license is
necessary and no fees are required.

Hams who wish to take advantage of this opportunity need
only send the Brazilian Amateur Radio League copies of
certain documents.  These include a copy of the
identification pages of their valid passport, a copy of a
valid amateur radio license of his or her country, a list of
cities from where he or she intends to operate and an e-mail
address for contact.  The documents should be scanned and
sent via e-mail to executive (at) labre (dot) org (dot) br.

The FIFA World Cup, often simply the World Cup, is an
international football competition played by the
senior men's national teams all of whom are members of the
F�d�ration Internationale de Football Association.  (RAC)



In DX, ZL1GWE will be active as 5WZ1JM from Savaii, Samoa
until June 23rd.   He's reported to be operating on 40
through 10 meters using CW and SSB. QSL via his home

DL2JRM will be operational portable stroke CT9 from Madeira
Island through June 19th.  Activity is on 80 through 10
meters CW.  QSL via his home callsign, direct or by the

K2QBV will be active as E51QBV from Rarotonga Island between
July 8th to the 21st.  According to K2QBV this is not a
DXpedition but rather the second phase of his summer
vacation that will start in New Zealand.  QSL via his home
station address.

VK3ATX will be operational stroke P from Gabo Island on
August 16th and 17th.  Activity will be on the High
Frequency bands. QSL via his home callsign, direct only.

VK3VTH will be active stroke 7 from King Island between
August 14th to the17th.  His operation will be on 40 and 20
meters using SSB only.  QSL via VK3VTH either direct or via
the bureau.

OH4SS will be operational stroke OH0 from Brando Island
between June 28th and the 30th. Activity will probably be
only on 40, 17 and 15 meters on SSB only.  QSL direct only
via OH4SS.

Lastly, AF1G  is reported operational from Andros Island on
the weekends, U.S. holidays and some contests.  His activity
is on 80 through 6 meters using SSB and the digital modes.
QSL Logbook of the World or direct with a self addressed
stamped envelope direct only.  No bureau QSL's for this one.

(This weeks DX news courtesy of OPDX and other DX news



And finally this week we present part 2 of a look back at
the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station or
ARISS program.  Or in this case, maybe more of a look at it
today.  Here's Skeeter Nash, N5ASH:


According to Part 3 of KN4AQ's mini-documentary ARISS to the
MAX, NASA would like to see participation in an ARISS
contact to go beyond a few students involved in an exchange
with crew members on board the International Space Station.
And on the occasion of the contact with the Dixon Elementary
School in North Carolina two Public Information Officers
pitched in to assist.

Suzie Ulbrich is the PIO for Onslow County Schools, and
Janice Hopkins, KJ4JPE, a new ARRL PIO covering coastal
North Carolina.  Ulbrich explained that they had overlapped
in making their media contacts, and it helped:


Ulbrich:  "When we talked after we found out that we had
reached out to some of the same people.  But I think them
getting two notices worked because they really knew how
important it was hearing it from them and hearing it from
us.  We got responses immediately that "we'll be there."


Hopikns began doing Public Information informally for her
local club, saw how valuable it was, and expanded her


Hopkins:  I've been doing that for the last three years by
sending my information out to the different newspapers and
magazines.  Then I decided I was going to branch out and
(include) the clubs in the area.  Whaytever they did I would
try to get into the media.  I'm npow an official PIO for
Amateur Radio through the ARRL"


ARISS to the MAX then wraps up with a special treat,
especially for those who have never seen nor heard a space
shuttle launch.  Part Four is a look back at one of the
early SAREX contacts.  SAREX, which stands for the Shuttle
Amateur Radio Experiment is the predecessor to the ARISS
program.  It officially began in late 1985 with the flight
of Tony England, W0ORE on board the shuttle Challenger for
mission STS-51-F.  This sound you are about to hear is the
actual launch countdown from a SAREX mission number STS-50
in 1992 and was the 6th in the series of early manned ham
radio flights in to space.


Audio:  STS-50 countdown and launch.


The sound of ham radio history, as it was about to be made
more than a decade ago.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Skeeter Nash, N5ASH.


"ARISS to the MAX" can be seen at the web site Ham Radio Now
dot TV.  Look for Episode 144.
(Ed note:  Yes Flight STS-51-F did fly 7 years prior to STS-
50.  In 1984 NASA temporarily changed the shuttle flight
numbering system but returned to the original flight
numbering system in the late 1980's.  More on this is at



With thanks to Alan Labs, AMSAT, the ARRL, CQ Magazine, the
FCC, the Ohio Penn DX Bulletin, Radio Netherlands, Rain, the
RSGB, the South African Radio League, the Southgate News,
TwiT-TV, Australia's WIA News and you our listeners, 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 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  Ralph Squillace , KK6ITB, near Los Angeles saying 73
and we thank you for listening.

Amateur Radio Newsline™ is Copyright 2014.  All rights

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