This Week in Amateur Radio

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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: 2 hours 20 min ago

Circuit Board for Bare-Bones Ventilator Moves Toward Production with Radio Amateurs’ Help

Fri, 04/03/2020 - 18:30
We know many examiners have canceled amateur radio license exam sessions to meet the requirements and recommendations of national and local government and of health officials. The health and safety of examinees and our Volunteer Examiners (VEs) is first and foremost in any decision-making process. The ARRL Volunteer Examiner Coordinator (VEC) does not offer video-supervised online amateur radio licensing exams at the present time. We are aware, however, that some VE teams are exploring alternative formats on a local basis. Please use ARRL’s License Exam Search to find scheduled exam sessions in your area and verify with the local exam team that the session is still being held.

To All ARRL Members and ARRL VEC Accredited Volunteer Examiners

Fri, 04/03/2020 - 18:30
We know many examiners have canceled amateur radio license exam sessions to meet the requirements and recommendations of national and local government and of health officials. The health and safety of examinees and our Volunteer Examiners (VEs) is first and foremost in any decision-making process. The ARRL Volunteer Examiner Coordinator (VEC) does not offer video-supervised online amateur radio licensing exams at the present time. We are aware, however, that some VE teams are exploring alternative formats on a local basis. Please use ARRL’s License Exam Search to find scheduled exam sessions in your area and verify with the local exam team that the session is still being held.

International Marconi Day 2020 has been Canceled

Fri, 04/03/2020 - 18:30
The annual International Marconi Day (IMD) ham radio operating event that was set to take place on April 25 has been canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic. The 24-hour amateur radio event celebrates the birth of Marconi on April 25, 1874. Sponsored by the Cornish Radio Amateur Club, which operates as GB4IMD, International Marconi Day features participating stations operating at sites hav...

Some Countries Permitting “STAYHOME”-Suffix Call Signs during COVID-19 Pandemic

Fri, 04/03/2020 - 18:30
Some countries around the world are allowing radio amateurs to use special “STAYHOME” call sign suffixes. For example, listen for 8A1STAYHOME from Indonesia, and A60STAYHOME/# call signs from the United Arab Emirates. In Canada, Michael Shamash, VE2MXU, is using VC2STAYHOM “to raise awareness for social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.” Canada limits call sign suffixes to seven character...

Spain Grants Unlicensed Individuals Permission to Use Amateur Stations During Lockdown

Fri, 04/03/2020 - 18:30
Spain’s International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) member-society URE has obtained temporary permission from the country’s telecommunications regulator for unlicensed people to use amateur stations during the coronavirus lockdown. “The main objective of the request is to disseminate and promote amateur radio among schoolchildren who must be confined at home,” the announcement from the Ministry of ...

USA Amateur Radio Direction Finding Championships Canceled

Thu, 04/02/2020 - 10:30
The FCC has granted temporary permission to wireless internet service providers (WISPs) in rural portions of 29 states and the US Virgin Islands to operate in the 5.8 GHz band (5.850 – 5.895 GHz). The authorization, to help meet the temporary surge in demand for residential fixed broadband services during the COVID-19 pandemic, was one of multiple waivers issued in the past week that grant temporary access to a variety of bands in response to the uptick in residential broadband demand.

FCC Grants Temporary Emergency Authority to WISPs Operating in 5.8 GHz Band

Thu, 04/02/2020 - 10:30
The FCC has granted temporary permission to wireless internet service providers (WISPs) in rural portions of 29 states and the US Virgin Islands to operate in the 5.8 GHz band (5.850 – 5.895 GHz). The authorization, to help meet the temporary surge in demand for residential fixed broadband services during the COVID-19 pandemic, was one of multiple waivers issued in the past week that grant temporary access to a variety of bands in response to the uptick in residential broadband demand.

RSGB contest committees launch ‘Hope QSO Party’

Thu, 04/02/2020 - 10:30
To help and support radio amateurs who are isolated at home and would appreciate contact with other people, the RSGB Contest Committees are launching a new six-week initiative starting on Monday 6 April, called the ‘Hope QSO Party’. Open to every radio amateur, not just RSGB members, this contest will also welcome international participation with the scoring being on an “Anyone works Anyone” basis. The initiative follows a recent survey to discover people’s views on how to support radio amateurs in these challenging times. By 1 April, 571 responses had been received and a significant majority of respondents wanted to participate in a series of short QSO party-style weekday contests. The committees appreciate that not everyone is keen on the proposal but the majority view supports this new activity on a temporary basis. The survey will remain open until Friday 3 April and we’ll present the full results next week.

Radio Amateurs Team Up to Help University Design Low-Cost Ventilator

Tue, 03/24/2020 - 19:30
Amateur radio volunteers from around the world have volunteered to assist University of Florida Professor Sam Lampotang and his engineering team in their quest to rapidly develop an open-source, low-cost patient ventilator that can be built anywhere from such commonly available components as PVC pipe and lawn-sprinkler valves. The amateur radio volunteers are developing Arduino-based control so...

Club Log Allocates 100% of its Computing Resources to COVID-19 Protein Research

Tue, 03/24/2020 - 19:30
Michael Wells, G7VJR, has announced that Club Log is contributing 120 CPU cores (most running at 3.4 GHz) to the Folding@Home Project that’s simulating the dynamics of COVID-19 proteins to hunt for new therapeutic opportunities. Wells said he’s assigned a higher priority to the Folding@Home work, so radio amateurs may experience slightly longer upload times.“You can help, too, by contributing y...

International Amateur Radio Union Adjusting to COVID-19

Tue, 03/24/2020 - 19:30
The International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) has reported on how it is addressing the COVID-19 pandemic, given the various restrictions in place to slow the spread of the virus. IARU said the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Headquarters in Geneva remains off limits to visitors until April 17 at the earliest. ITU has cancelled some meetings, postponed others, and converted others int...

ARRL Headquarters is Closing

Tue, 03/24/2020 - 19:30
ARRL Headquarters will comply with an executive order from Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont that all non-essential businesses and not-for-profit entities reduce in-person workforces by 100% no later than March 23, 2020, at 8 PM. ARRL will equip as many Headquarters staffers as possible to work remotely.W1AW bulletin and code practice transmissions will continue. Customer service representatives ...

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