This Week in Amateur Radio

Subscribe to This Week in Amateur Radio feed This Week in Amateur Radio
This Week in Amateur Radio: North America's Amateur Radio News Magazine. Articles on amateur radio and news stories in the media featured here.
Updated: 21 min 1 sec ago

RSS Feed URL Change - New TWIAR site

Fri, 05/29/2020 - 09:30
This Week in Amateur Radio ( had to move to a new host this week and we have debuted a new layout. The site also has an RSS feed that is published from the site itself. Previously, we had to manually update this RSS feed. Now we can use the site to post to our RSS feed for news items. The URLs for the podcasts will not change. Bookmark for your new RSS TWIAR news feed.

ARISS Multipoint Telebridge Contact via Amateur Radio Concept Proving Successful

Sat, 05/23/2020 - 01:30
Judging by the outcome of two tests so far, the new Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) Multipoint Telebridge Contact via Amateur Radio concept appears to be a winner. ARISS completed the second test of the new-style radio contact called Multipoint Telebridge Contact via Amateur Radio on May 15, when Airdrie Space Science Club members in Airdrie, Alberta, Canada, interviewe...Read more - via American Radio Relay League | Ham Radi

Socially Distanced In-Person Exam Sessions Held in US and Norway

Sat, 05/23/2020 - 01:30
With some states starting to relax restrictions on events and activities, the Grant County, Oregon, Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES®) held an in-person exam session on April 26 in the town of John Day that adhered to social distancing recommendations. Exam organizers held the gathering to within Oregon’s 10-person limit for gatherings, keeping everyone 6 feet apart and requiring all parti...

Two New Chinese Ham Satellites Expected to Launch in September

Sat, 05/23/2020 - 01:30
Two new Chinese amateur radio satellites are expected to launch on September 15. CAS-7A and CAS-7C follow in the wake of numerous amateur radio satellites put into space by CAMSAT. CAS-7A, a 27 kilogram microsat, will carry several transponders, including a 15-meter-to-10-meter (H/t) linear transponder, and a 2-meter-to-70-centimeter (H/u) linear transponder. CAS-7A also will include a V/u (2 m...

Amateur Radio Gearing Up for Predicted “Above Average” Atlantic Hurricane Season

Sat, 05/23/2020 - 01:30
Extended-range forecasts for the 2020 Atlantic Basin hurricane season anticipate above-normal activity, although a low-pressure system now off the coast of Florida could get a jump on things and develop into a subtropical depression or storm this weekend. The Atlantic hurricane season doesn’t start until June 1 and extends until November 30.

HuskySat-1 (HO-107) Transponder is Open

Sat, 05/23/2020 - 01:30
The transponder on HuskySat-1, now designated as HuskySat-OSCAR 107 (HO-107), has been activated and is open for use and testing, AMSAT Vice President – Operations Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA, reports. “It’s fairly sensitive, and 5 – 10 W is plenty most of the time. There are some fades due to satellite orientation, and some passes are definitely better than others. Strong signals may impact the beacon strength.”

Via the ARRL: Planning Your ARRL Field Day 2020 Operation

Sat, 05/23/2020 - 01:30
For most of us, ARRL Field Day 2020 is going to look quite different than it did in past years. Considering the impact of social distancing due to the pandemic, many radio clubs and large groups will not gather in their usual Field Day locations this year. Whether you are a seasoned veteran or a Field Day first-timer, there are many questions about how to participate in amateur radio’s largest ...

Venerable AO-7 Satellite Continues to Deliver

Sat, 05/23/2020 - 01:30
The nearly 46-year-old AO-7 amateur satellite made a remarkable contact possible on May 4 between Diego Feil, LW2DAF, in Buenos Aires, Argentina (GF05rk), and Tom Ambrose, ZS1TA, in Cape Town, South Africa (JF95fx). The contact spanned 4,329 miles across the South Atlantic, with both stations aiming at only 2 or 3 degrees above the horizon.

Federal Judge Okays Retrieval of Titanic Marconi Wireless Equipment

Sat, 05/23/2020 - 01:30
A US federal judge in Virginia has given permission to retrieve the ill-fated RMS Titanic’s Marconi wireless gear, which transmitted distress calls from the sinking ocean liner during its maiden voyage. Judge Rebecca Beach Smith of the US District Court in Norfolk ruled that the radio gear is historically and culturally important and could soon be lost within the rapidly decaying wreck.

Via HACKADAY: Radio’s Sordid History Of Being Blamed For Everything

Sat, 05/23/2020 - 01:30
In the surreal world of a pandemic lockdown, we are surrounded by news stories that defy satire. The idea that 5G cellular networks are to blame for the COVID-19 outbreak and a myriad other ills has the more paranoid corners of social media abuzz with concerned citizens leaping upon random pieces of street furniture as potential 5G infrastructure.

Ham-Com Cancels 2020 Show

Mon, 05/04/2020 - 21:30
Ham-Com will not take place in 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “While we have held out hope that this year we would be able to host Ham-Com 2020 as a light at the end of the long tunnel of the COVID-19 virus, it is with great sadness that we must inform all that we are canceling Ham-Com 2020, with the event postponed until June 17, 18, and 19, 2021,” Ham-Com Board of Directors President Bil...

FCC Providing Flexibility to Volunteer Examiners in Developing Remote Testing Methods

Sun, 05/03/2020 - 21:30
The FCC has clarified that nothing in its rules prohibits remote amateur radio testing, and no prior approval is needed to conduct remote exam sessions. “The Commission provides flexibility to volunteer examiners and coordinators who wish to develop remote testing methods or to increase remote testing programs already in place,” the FCC said in an April 30 news release. “We recognize that some volunteer examiner coordinators may not have the immediate capacity for widespread remote testing. We expect those volunteer examiner coordinators with limited remote testing capacity to work closely with those requesting such testing to prioritize any available remote testing slots.”

FCC Adopts a New Official Seal in Anticipation of Relocation

Fri, 05/01/2020 - 18:30
In anticipation of its upcoming move, the FCC has adopted a new FCC seal. The redesigned seal is the product of an agency-wide contest that solicited proposals from employees and contractors. The winning design, submitted by Umasankar Arumugam, was selected by a vote of the agency’s employees and contractors.

Response to IARU Region 2 Online Workshops Exceeds Expectations

Fri, 05/01/2020 - 18:30
International Amateur Radio Union Region 2 (IARU-R2) says the response to an announcement of online emergency communication workshops was far beyond their expectations. Some 230 individuals have registered so far, and registration remains open. Given the degree of interest, the IARU-R2 Executive Committee has appointed Augusto Gabaldoni, OA4DOH, as workshops coordinator to set up processes for ...

Via the ARRL: Frequency Measuring Test Results Posted

Fri, 05/01/2020 - 18:30
The results of the spring 2020 Frequency Measuring Test (FMT), conducted on April 24, have been posted. Coming in at the top of the list for stations entering readings of both the 40-meter and 80-meter frequencies was Steve Cerwin, WA5FRF. His average error rate was 0.004902 parts per million (ppm).The Top 10 looked like this, with average error rates in ppm. Bill De Carle, VE2IQ, has posted a ...

Russian DOSAAF-85 (RS-44) Amateur Radio Satellite Transponder Now Active

Fri, 05/01/2020 - 18:30
The amateur radio linear transponder (SSB/CW) on the Russian DOSAAF-85 (RS-44) has been activated. Dmitry Pashkov, R4UAB, explains that RS-85 is a small scientific satellite built by specialists at Information Satellite Systems and students at Siberian State Aerospace University (SibSAU).

ARRL/TAPR DCC Going Virtual

Sat, 04/25/2020 - 22:30
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the 2020 ARRL and TAPR Digital Communications Conference (DCC), originally planned for Charlotte, North Carolina, will take place as an online virtual conference on the same dates, September 11 – 13. Details of the virtual DCC will be announced in the coming months as event plans are finalized. Plans call for holding the 2021 DCC in Charlotte.

FCC Seeking World Radiocommunication Conference Advisory Committee Members

Sat, 04/25/2020 - 22:30
The FCC has announced that it’s looking for individuals or entities to serve on its World Radiocommunication Conference Advisory Committee. The committee will provide advice, technical support, and recommended proposals in the run-up to World Radiocommunication Conference 2023 (WRC-23). In particular, the committee will focus on international frequency spectrum issues identified on the WRC-23 a...

International Marconi Day Canceled

Sat, 04/25/2020 - 22:30
Add International Marconi Day (IMD) to the roster of amateur radio events canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. IMD celebrates the role of wireless pioneer Guglielmo Marconi played in the development of radio technology. The 24-hour event is held annually to celebrate Marconi’s birthday on April 25, 1874, and is typically held on the Saturday in April closest to that date. This year, IMD would...

RSGB Aims to Promote Health and Wellbeing within the Amateur Radio Community

Sat, 04/25/2020 - 22:30
The Radio Society of Great Britain (RSGB) has launched a major campaign — Get on the air to care (GOTA2C) — in association with the UK National Health Service (NHS) to help promote health and wellbeing within the amateur radio community during the COVID-19 pandemic. “Now, more than ever, we need to optimize all modes of communication to help reduce loneliness and isolation within communities,” said Paul Devlin, of the NHS England Emergency Care Improvement Support Team. “Amateur radio provides a wonderful, unprecedented opportunity to help make this a reality.” The RSGB is urging radio amateurs in the UK and around the globe to get on the air to chat and “support each other across the airwaves.”