A new memorandum of agreement between the ARRL and the
Federal Emergency Management Agency has been posted on the ARRL Web
On July 18, 2014, ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio, and
the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) conducted a public
signing of a memorandum of agreement (MoA) at the ARRL’s Centennial
Convention. Signing for the ARRL was President Kay Craigie, N3KN, and
signing for FEMA was administrator W. Craig Fugate, KK4INZ.
This year’s Field Day was another enjoyable event for our Radio club. While only a subset our total membership actually participates, a good time is always had by all who attend.
Our club does not treat Field Day as a competitive event but a time to get together, get the kinks out of our HF gear, log some contacts and enjoy good conversation, food and drink.
Each year we experience a handful of unexpected outcomes. This year we gained new members due to our public relations setup and another as a result of our on-site VE test session.
Although the bands were rather poor on Saturday afternoon and few logistical problems had to be worked out, we managed to eek out a few hundred contacts between our digital, sideband and CW stations.
Two of our teen members came by for the afternoon. They had a lot of fun operating the HF gear and enjoyed experimenting with their own homebrew UHF and VHF antenna systems.
Overall I’d say that each year improves over the prior year’s event. The club is planning to set up a recently acquired 50 foot tower on-site some time this year so our chances of making more contacts during future events should improve quite a bit.
A special thanks to everyone who participated in this year’s event and those who took the time out to stop by and learn a bit about Amateur Radio.
As we all know it’s more than a hobby and Amateur Radio operators worldwide are the first to step up to the plate with their own equipment during man made and natural disasters.
The 8.9 earthquake near Sendai, Japan on March 11th, has caused the people of this island nation to struggle each day for their survival and with their recovery efforts. This earthquake has been noted as the worst in 140 years. As a result, the side effects of such an unprecedented earthquake is the tsunami, rolling power outages, lack of the basic human needs and the potential for a nuclear accident.
While phone and internet server are available in most parts of the country, the IARU and the JARL has asked that the7.030Mhz frequency be kept clear for emergency use. Other requested frequencies to be kept clear are: 3.525, 7.030, 7.077, 7.087, 7.097, 14.100, 21.200 and 28.200 MHz.
Japan Earthquake March 11, 2011
JA1RL, the JARL HQ station, along with many other amateurs are providing disaster relief operations wherever possible. The less damaged areas are getting their power restored and amateurs in those areas have set up stations and shelters. Other amateurs are using batteries and small generators to provide support to the disaster relief and rescue operations in the areas most affected by the disaster.
For more on how radio amateurs in Japan are providing communications support after earthquake, click here. For information on how US amateurs are helping out, click here. For more on how Japan, Hawaii and the Western US dealt with the immediate aftereffects of the earthquake and tsunami, click here.
Like so many others around the world, I have been following the devastation caused by the earthquake and tsunami. It has affected an untold number of fellow humans in a multifaceted way.
Of course as Ham Radio ops, we immediately think of ways to provide health and welfare traffic. There are many ways to provide assistance when you are in a “hands on” situation, when something happens in one of our local communities.
However, this incredible series of disasters are happening 1/2 way around the world. For most of us, providing any direct assistance is impossible. As Japan continues to be destroyed by continuous aftershocks, fires and potential radiation leaks, perhaps we come together as a world community and help our fellow man anonymously.
Between the earthquake, tsunami, fires, potential nuclear disaster and the inability to get the basics of food, clothing, shelter or medical assistance, the people of Japan are way beyond any condition a human should have to experience. As of today there are 1/2 million people in shelters.
Please consider donating a few dollars to help them in a time of their severe need.
Now we all know that the Chinese government is buying up our government’s debt these days but it seems that the Chinese have no intention of stopping there.
I recently noticed that some of the better known Ham Radio stores like AES and Universal Radio now sell the TYT and the WOUXUN (pronounced Oh- Sheng) HT’s. I was also a bit surprised to see a full review of one of the WOUXUN radios in a recent QST.
So you might ask yourself; why are these radios gaining traction in the Ham Radio stores and what is so attractive about these radios anyway? I have to fess up and say that I don’t actually own one of these HT’s but have spent a fair amount of time chatting with Joe, w2ofd about his recent purchase. Joe recently bought the TYT TH-UVF1 dual band HT and has favorably commented about its features and functionality on several occasions.
Joe’s recent purchase from Lentini Communications included the desk charger, car charger (for a limited time), software and programming cable for under $150 (shipping included). When listening to his TYT, the audio is strong and sounds very natural. Joe happens to also own a few Yaesu HT’s and as far as I am concerned, the audio of his TYT is superior to those radios.
Like most (if not all) new radios sold these days, programming is best done via the computer. I own the Kenwood TH-F6A and find that the advantage of programming it with the computer adds a new dimension to the term “user friendly”.
Programming via the computer makes frequency updates and adding alpha-numeric id’s a snap. Loading different, preprogrammed (profiles) into the radio is a real asset when away from the home QTH.
Rather than repeat the radio specs here, I have included a few links for your review.
Wide Band Receive, Clean Design, Solid Construction, Included Extras, Programming Software, Audio Quality, Low Cost
Poorly Written User Guide
If you are looking for a nicely designed radio (with extras) for a very reasonable price and you have the patience to decipher the user manual, then, in my opinion the TYT TH-UVF1 is a great buy for the money.
Even though the communications infrastructure in earthquake-ravaged Haiti is being rebuilt, there is still need for Amateur Radio communications. To assist in this effort, the ARRL’s Ham-Aid program is providing equipment for local amateurs to use.
On Friday, January 22, the League sent a programmed Yaesu VHF repeater with a microphone, as well as ICOM handheld transceivers, Yaesu mobile 2 meter rigs with power supplies and Kenwood mobile 2 meter rigs. Comet antennas, Larsen mobile antennas with magnet mounts, coax and batteries were also included in the package that was shipped to the home of the President of the Radio Club Dominicano (RCD) for distribution. All items were donated by their manufacturers.
“In the horror of this tragedy, there still are stars and the cooperation between the ARRL, IARU Region 2 and the Radio Club Dominicano and has been bright,” said ARRL Media and Public Relations Manager Allen Pitts, W1AGP .
“It was donations from our members and friends that began the Ham Aid program in Katrina’s aftermath. Now once again, that sharing between hams will provide help in another worst-case incident. ARRL members and donors need to know that their gifts will be used very well indeed.”
How You Can Help in Haiti
The ARRL Ham Aid Fund welcomes your contribution! In 2005, the ARRL established the Ham Aid Fund to accept contributions in support of Amateur Radio’s response to Hurricane Katrina and hams responded generously to help ARRL send equipment to the affected area.
“Now we are facing another devastating event in Haiti and Amateur Radio is ready to respond,” said ARRL Chief Development Officer Mary Hobart, K1MMH .
“With equipment contributed by our generous industry partners, the ARRL invites contributions to the Ham Aid Fund from hams who wish to help ARRL deploy equipment where it is needed most. Contributions from Amateur Radio clubs and individuals in any amount will go directly to supporting Amateur Radio’s response efforts in Haiti.”
Over the past few days, Charlie Wooten has had his ear on his ham radio. Steadily listening to updates from the devastation in Haiti.
He’s one of hundreds of amateur radio operators or “hams” in our area. He runs his ham from what he calls his shack at his home.
When the 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit Haiti, hams were the first ones to break the news.
Communications are still limited, but Wooten has been able to hear a Haitian priest and a U.N. worker on the Salvation Army’s amateur radio network.
“They want to set up some repeaters, vhf repeaters. They need the radios, equipment, walkie talkies to make that system viable for them to be able to hear in Port Au-Prince,” Wooten said.
In Wooten’s back yard, you’ll find this 70-foot tall beam tower. The tower rotates to find the best signals, giving ham operators like Charlie a way to communicate and provide a helping hand to those who can’t be heard.
“The equipment is so compact and very efficient and doesn’t require a lot of sophistication more than a car battery and a piece of wire to be able to be on the air to talk hundreds even thousands of miles,” Wooten said.
Charlie, who worked at Newschannel 7, said back in 1969, he and some of his fellow hams went down to cover Hurricane Camille.
He said for ten days, his crew was the only line of communication out of Pass Christian, Mississippi.
He calls his work an expensive hobby, but a very important hobby.
Most people on the street are clueless about the meaning of the Amateur Radio service. If they have heard of it, they respond by saying, oh yeah, you mean CB radio right?
Although many of us kick-started our interest in the radio hobby on 11 meters, nothing is more upsetting to a licensed amateur than that comment. To be classified along with a free-bander illegally running 1500 watts on HF is more than an embarrassment, it’s a personal insult.
Others, who know perhaps a little more about the service will say something like yeah, my grandfather was a ham radio guy back in the 50’s. Then they continue by spinning a short story about watching the tubes glow in Grandpa’s radios when they were small children.
As us “modern” Hams know the reflection of Grandpa’s tubes aren’t much more that a fading memory today. The need breed of Ham Radio operator has a wide variety of choices to investigate within the hobby and recognition of the Amateur Radio service has recently been placed into the limelight again with H.R. 2160, “The Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Enhancement Act of 2009”.
As a matter of fact, two hospitals in Mississippi now have Ham Radio Stations. The answer to the question why is simple.
As Larry Wagner stated in the article posted on 1/10/2010 in USA Today, “When all other communication systems go down in an emergency such as a hurricane, ham radio operators are the last ones who are still talking to one another.”
An interesting combo. This receiver reminds me of the old Grundig Yacht Boy but for the vhf spectrum. If you are the curious type like I am, here’s more info and a link to the web site.
“FM reception is a little better than the CCRadioplus while the Weather Band can keep you informed of any government-issued alerts. The addition of the 2-Meter Ham band may make the CCRadio-2 a life saver during an emergency like hurricane Katrina. 2-Meter Ham operators are early on the scene and they donate their time while handling perhaps 90% of the emergency coordination efforts. The CCRadio-2 can act like a simple radio scanner and search the five memories for ham operator communications. The sensitivity (squelch) can be adjusted for best results. More information about the 2-Meter Ham Band can be found at CCRadio.com/2-meter.”