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The American Radio Relay League (ARRL) is the national association for amateur radio, connecting hams around the U.S. with news, information and resources.
Updated: 5 hours 26 min ago

CAMSAT CAS-6 Amateur Radio Satellite Launched Successfully

Sat, 12/21/2019 - 17:53

CAMSAT has announced that the CAMSAT CAS-6 amateur radio payload launched successfully on December 20, piggybacked on a TIANQIN-1 technology test satellite.

“The satellite is currently in orbital testing,” CAMSAT’s Alan Kung, BA1DU, told ARRL on December 20. “The amateur radio payload is expected to be operational in about 3 days.”

The microsatellite will be known as CAS-6/TIANQIN-1, and the call...

The K7RA Solar Update

Fri, 12/20/2019 - 14:39

Still no sunspots, and it’s been the same for 37 consecutive days.

Geomagnetic conditions remained quiet, until “a minor stream of solar wind” (according to hit us on December 18. This drove the planetary A index to 13 from the low single digit values earlier in the week.

Average planetary A index for December 12-18 rose to 4.6, from 3.7 over the previous 7 days, while mid-latit...

China to Launch CAMSAT CAS-6 Satellite on December 20

Thu, 12/19/2019 - 19:29

The CAMSAT CAS-6 amateur radio payload is set for launch on Friday, December 20, at 0321 UTC from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center, piggybacked on a TIANQIN-1 technology test satellite, using a CZ-4B launch vehicle. The primary launch payload is the China-Brazil Earth Resources Satellite CBERS-4A.

The microsatellite, to be known as CAS-6/TIANQIN-1, will be placed into a sun-synchronous orbit ...

The Doctor Will See You Now!

Thu, 12/19/2019 - 13:00

FCC Office of Engineering and Technology Chief Julius Knapp Retiring

Wed, 12/18/2019 - 19:45

The chief of the FCC’s Office of Engineering and Technology (OET) Julius Knapp has announced plans to retire on January 3 after a lengthy career at the FCC. “There remains an outstanding team of engineers, attorneys, and professionals in the Office of Engineering and Technology who are up to speed on all of our many projects,” Knapp said. “I take comfort in knowing that everything is in great h...

ARRL Lifelong Learning Manager to Keynote Ham Radio University 2020 in January

Wed, 12/18/2019 - 18:45

ARRL Lifelong Learning Manager Kris Bickell, K1BIC, will be the keynote speaker at Ham Radio University 2020 (HRU 2020). The annual event, now in its 21st year, will take place on Saturday, January 4, in the Hillwood Commons Student Center at Long Island University-Post, 720 Northern Boulevard, Brookville, New York. HRU 2020 is billed as, “A day of education to share ideas, experiences, knowled...

Volunteers Celebrate 98th Anniversary of ARRL Transatlantic Tests at W1AW

Wed, 12/18/2019 - 18:38

A group of radio amateurs gathered on December 11 at W1AW to mark the 98th anniversary of the successful ARRL Transatlantic Tests. On December 11, 1921, a message transmitted by a group of Radio Club of America members at 1BCG in Greenwich, Connecticut, was copied by Paul Godley, 2ZE, in Scotland. Reporting on the accomplishment, ARRL Secretary Kenneth B. Warner, 1EH, declared “Excelsior!” Clar...

NTIA Spectrum Manager Stephen Veader, N4DXS, SK

Wed, 12/18/2019 - 18:35

Stephen Veader, N4DXS, of Dale City, Virginia, died on November 5. An ARRL Life Member, he was 67. As a spectrum manager for the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), Veader was deeply involved on the behalf of NTIA in the effort to secure a new amateur band at 5 MHz.

According to Ross Merlin, WA2WDT, when it became clear that a proposal for a 15 kHz band would not b...

ARRL Reshapes its Podcast Offerings for 2020

Mon, 12/16/2019 - 23:33

In conjunction with the launch of its new On the Air magazine, which is aimed at those just beginning their journey in amateur radio, ARRL is reconfiguring its podcast lineup.

Heading up the new schedule will be a free companion podcast to the bimonthly On the Air magazine. The “On the Air” podcast will take a deeper look into select features and projects from the magazine. Each month, host and ...

W6NBC Wins December QST Cover Plaque Award

Mon, 12/16/2019 - 21:43

The winning article for the December 2019 QST Cover Plaque award is “Slot Cube Antenna for 6 Meters” by John Portune, W6NBC.

The QST Cover Plaque Award -- given to the author or authors of the most popular article in each issue -- is determined by a vote of ARRL members on the QST Cover Plaque Poll web page. Cast a ballot for your favorite article in the January issue today.


AztechSat-1 CubeSat to Demonstrate Intra-Satellite Communication

Sat, 12/14/2019 - 19:44

The AztechSat-1 CubeSat, which traveled to the International Space Station (ISS) last weekend on the 19th Space-X Commercial Resupply Services (CRS-19) mission for NASA, will listen for emergency messages in the 439 MHz range and retransmit them for amateur radio operators to copy on the 437.300 MHz downlink using the Winlink protocol, once the CubeSat has been placed into orbit. The satellite ...

Bar Code Lead Developer George Laurer, K4HZE, SK

Sat, 12/14/2019 - 14:29

The lead developer of the bar code system that became the now-ubiquitous Universal Product Code (UPC), George Laurer, K4HZE, of Wendell, North Carolina, died on December 5. He was 94. While an electrical engineer with IBM in North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park in the early 1970s, Laurer led the effort to develop the bar code system. The UPC, composed of 30 unique black bars and a 12-digit n...

European Space Agency Issues Challenge to Radio Amateurs

Sat, 12/14/2019 - 14:25

The European Space Agency (ESA) is challenging radio amateurs (or anyone with appropriate receiving equipment) to hear the first signals from ESA’s OPS-SAT space software laboratory. The spacecraft is set to launch on December 17 into a low-Earth orbit from French Guiana. Once in orbit, the satellite will deploy solar panels and a UHF antenna and begin transmitting.

OPS-SAT will begin transmitt...

The Latest Episode of ARRL Audio News is Now Available

Fri, 12/13/2019 - 17:53

Listen to the new episode of ARRL Audio News on your iOS or Android podcast app, or online at Audio News is also retransmitted on a number of FM repeaters. Click here and then scroll down to see the list.


Collegiate QSO Party 2018 and 2019 Plaque Recipients Announced

Fri, 12/13/2019 - 15:32

The ARRL Collegiate Amateur Radio Initiative has announced plaque winners from the 2018 and 2019 rounds of the Collegiate QSO Party. They are:

K4FAU Florida Atlantic University Amateur Radio Club, 2018 First Place, High Power; W0QQQ Amateur Radio Club at Kansas State University, 2018 Second Place, High Power; W0YQ University of Colorado Boulder Amateur Radio Club, 2018 First Place, Low Power; W...

The K7RA Solar Update

Fri, 12/13/2019 - 14:52 reports that Wednesday, December 11 was the 28th consecutive day with zero sunspots. To date in 2019, 77% of days had no sunspots. Compare this to the previous solar minimum, when 2008 had zero sunspots on 73% of days and 2009 the number of spotless days stood at 71%.

Average daily solar flux this week (December 5-11) was 70.7, up marginally from the previous week when average f...

Year-Long German Special Event to Honor Beethoven

Thu, 12/12/2019 - 19:41

German special event station DL250BTHVN will be active between December 16, 2019, and December 17, 2020, to honor the 250th anniversary of the birth of famed composer Ludwig van Beethoven. The Beethoven anniversary year will take place under the auspices of Germany’s Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier. Beethoven was born in December 1770 in Bonn, Germany, and lived there for the first 22...