News For Amateur Radio Operators In And Around Hillsdale County
Lacking a quorum at the March 18 meeting we were unable to conduct any official business.
The next club meeting will be May 20.
The next Zoom net will be Thursday, April 15, at 7:00pm. If you've never used Zoom before, it is an online videoconferencing app that runs on your computer, tablet or smart phone. A link will be sent out a few days before the net. If you do not receive the link and want to participate, simply email K8HRC@arrl.net requesting the link and we’ll send it to you. We'll try to run it like a regular net. Update your Zoom name to your first name and call sign. We only have 40 minutes so hopefully we'll be able to get through everyone, maybe even two rounds. Hope to see lots of people Zoomed in! You don’t have to be a licensed amateur to participate.
No ham breakfast scheduled at this time due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Board met on March 6. Business was routine. The next Board meeting is scheduled for May 1.
Club membership stood at 14 as of March 31. There were one new member in March. Five members from 2020 did not renew before the end of the grace period on March 31, leaving nine members as of April 1.
NWS Offers Skywarn Spotter Training
The National Weather Service (NWS) Northern Indiana Office (IWX) is conducting 2021 Skywarn Spotter Training for the Spring Season in April. The online training is free and is limited to 150 people per session. Individual registration is requested and after registration you will be provided a confirmation via email with the webinar link. The training is not county specific. Training is open to anyone and you do not need to be a licensed amateur, but it is recommend that participants be at least age 14. Click here for more information, session schedule and registration links. All sessions are identical so you only need to attend one.
KB6NU Online Tech Class Starts April 19
If you know someone that wants to get licensed, or you are someone that wants to get licensed, Dan Romanchik KB6NU will be conducting his next online Technician Class amateur radio license class starting April 19. It will consist of four, two-hour sessions starting at 9:00pm and running until 11:00pm (Eastern time). The cost is $25 for adults. High school and college students can attend for free. Click here for more details.
HCEM To Constructs New Facility For Storage
Hillsdale County Emergency Management plans to commence construction of a new facility this spring, a 30 x 40-foot pole barn to house emergency equipment. Led by Doug Sanford N8WFB, the new facility will create storage for personal protective equipment, which there was a dire need for in the height of the pandemic, according to Sanford. “We quickly realized we didn’t have any place to store anything, so we made due, but we also made note that, if we could do so, we needed to build a storage facility,” Sanford said. by building Over $35,000 has been dedicated to this task, says Sanford, and he anticipates breaking ground by spring, weather permitting. (Hillsdale Collegian story)
FCC Not Yet Collecting $35 Application Fee
The FCC Part 97 rules establishing a new $35 amateur radio application fee go on the books on April 19, but the FCC won’t start collecting the fee “until the requisite notice has been provided to Congress, the FCC’s information technology systems and internal procedures have been updated, and the Commission publishes notices in the Federal Register announcing the effective date of such rules.” (ARRL story)
Sears Sold Ham Gear?
Who knew that Sears once sold amateur radio gear? On the CWops mailing list someone posted a link to the Sears 1940 Radio Amateur/Test Equipment/Sound Systems Catalog. Sears sold lots of things in the past, but who ever heard that they sold ham equipment. (KB6NU’s Ham Radio Blog post)
Amateur Radio Gets A Partial Reprieve On 3.5 GHz
Pending future FCC action, amateur radio secondary use of the 3.3- 3.45 GHz band segment may continue indefinitely. The FCC, as part of a lengthy Second Report and Order (R&O) for commercial licensing of 3.45-3.55 GHz adopted on March 17, agreed with ARRL that continued access by amateur radio to 3.3-3.45 GHz should be allowed until consideration of the 3.1-3.45 GHz spectrum in a later proceeding. (ARRL story)
Effort Under Way To Resolve Potential 70 CM Interference
ARRL, the FCC, and the US Department of Defense are cooperating in an effort to eliminate the possibility of amateur radio interference on 70 centimeters to critical systems at White Sands Missile Range (WSMR) in New Mexico. The Defense Department’s Regional Spectrum Coordinator contacted the FCC in March, seeking information on whom to contact regarding detected amateur transmissions it believed could pose a threat to a critical WSMR system operating on 70 centimeters. The FCC, in turn, asked ARRL to be involved in the discussion and any necessary remedial efforts. It is to be noted that the Amateur Radio Service is a secondary service on the band. (ARRL story)
NCVEC Seeks Input For Updated Tech Question Pool
The National Conference of Volunteer Examiner Coordinators (NCVEC) Question Pool Committee (QPC) is requesting input from the amateur radio community on new or modified questions for the 2022-2026 FCC Element 2 Technician Pool, which goes into effect on July 1, 2022. This may include suggestions for new questions, changes to current examination topic areas, or changes to existing questions in the current Technician Question Pool. (ARRL story) (2018-2022 Technician Question Pool)
Quantum Receiver Can Detect Huge Swath Of The RF Spectrum
US Army researchers have built a so-called “quantum sensor,” which can analyze the full RF spectrum and real-world signals, a report on Physics.org says. The quantum sensor, technically a Rydberg sensor, can sample the RF spectrum from 0 to 20 GHz and is able to detect AM and FM radio signals, as well as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and other RF communication protocols. (ARRL story)
HAM RADIO Friedrichshafen Cancels 2021 Show
The in-person HAM RADIO international amateur radio exhibition held in Friedrichshafen, Germany, has once again been cancelled. With the Covid-19 pandemic maintaining a firm grip on world events, the venue has been forced to postpone the event until 2022. The event is Europe’s major ham radio show, attracting some 15,000 visitors from around the world each summer. (RSGB story) (ARRL story)
FCC Amateur Radio License Database Activity In Hillsdale County
None in March.
For the first time in several years, there was no measurable snow in the month of March. We normally get a little snow in April, so don’t put those shovels away just yet! Here are the monthly snow totals for Hillsdale City for the past several years.
Club Leadership Positions Available: The Secretary, Treasurer And Board Member At Large positions remain open. The club seeks enthusiastic, qualified amateurs to fill these positions. Those interested should check the club constitution on our website for information about officer duties and election procedures. Feel free to contact any of the current club leadership for more information. A special election will be held at the next club meeting to fill the positions.
Hillsdale County Emergency Management: HCEM is always looking for volunteers, either to join the group or just to monitor the monthly tornado siren test. The first siren test and meeting of the year will be on March 1. Contact the HCEM office if you are interested. Meetings and siren tests are normally held on the first Monday of the month in the evening, March through October, with a few exceptions.
Monday Night Net Certificate: The club will award certificates for exceptional participation in the Monday night net. The purpose of the program is to encourage participation in the net, both as check-ins and as net control station. The certificate will be awarded to participants that attain at least 75 points during 2020. Rules and results are posted in the Net Control Schedule section of the club website.
Meeting Programs: We are always looking for interesting ideas for meeting programs. It doesn’t always have to be about ham radio. It could be something community related or maybe you know somebody that would be an interesting speaker. Club Vice President Dan Sprow KC8RYF leads the effort to arrange meeting programs for the club. Contact Dan or any member of club leadership if you have ideas for programs or are willing to present something yourself.
Monday Night Net Control Stations Needed: We have some Monday night net control slots open. Serving as net control station builds your skills and earns you extra points towards the net exceptional participation certificate. If you would like to serve as a net control station once month please let a member of club leadership know. Check the schedule for available dates.
Monday Night Net: Don’t forget to check in to the net every Monday at 7pm on the 147.06 MHz repeater. Different flavors of the net take place every week. The net usually runs anywhere from five to 30 minutes, depending on the number of check-ins. Participating regularly in a directed net helps you keep you operating skills sharp. Set up an alarm in your calendar on your computer or smart phone. The net schedule and results are posted on the club website.
FCC Reduces Proposed Amateur Radio Application Fee To $35: The FCC has agreed with ARRL and other commenters that its proposed $50 fee for certain amateur radio applications was “too high to account for the minimal staff involvement in these applications.” In a Report and Order released on December 29, the FCC scaled back to $35 the fee for a new license application, a special temporary authority (STA) request, a rule waiver request, a license renewal application, and a vanity call sign application. All fees are per application. There will be no fee for administrative updates, such as a change of mailing or email address. The effective date of the fee schedule has not been established, but it will be announced at least 30 days in advance. (ARRL story) The FCC originally proposed in August to impose a $50 fee. (ARRL story)
FCC To Require Email Address On Applications: Effective on June 29, amateur radio licensees and candidates must provide the FCC with an email address on all applications. If no email address is included, the FCC may dismiss the application as “defective.” Licensees can log into the ULS License Manager System with their FRN and password at any time and update anything in their FCC license record, including adding an email address. The FCC is fully transitioning to electronic correspondence and will no longer print or provide wireless licensees with hard-copy authorizations or registrations by mail. (ARRL story) The FCC has also added a reminder message on the Universal Licensing Service (ULS) landing page. (ARRL story)
Dayton Hamvention Cancels 2021 Show: Dayton Hamvention will not take place for the second year. “Unfortunately, several setbacks in the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic make necessary the difficult decision to cancel Hamvention 2021,” a January 11 announcement from the Hamvention Executive Committee said. Sponsored by the Dayton Amateur Radio Association (DARA), Hamvention was set to take place May 21-23 in Xenia, Ohio. The committee said the show would return in 2022 and hinted at a QSO party for Hamvention weekend. (ARRL story)
Note: Many events are being canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Although every effort is made to make sure this list is correct at the time of publication, reader should verify event status with the organizers.
April 7 – Skywarn Spotter Training
April 14 – Skywarn Spotter Training
April 15 – Zoom Net
April 17 – Michigan QSO Party
May 1 – Board Meeting
May 20 – Club MeetingMay 21-23 – Dayton Hamvention CANCELED
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