Thursday, March 9, 2023

KB3UJW Joins CQ Staff as Associate Editor

Sabrina Herman, KB3UJW, of Lyndhurst, Ohio, has been named CQ magazine's Associate Editor, succeeding Managing Editor Jason Feldman, KD2IWM, who is leaving CQ Communications after 12 years to pursue opportunities outside of publishing.

Herman has been a ham for close to 13 years and comes to CQ from Hermes Press, a small book publisher in Pennsylvania, where she served as Managing Editor and Promotional Coordinator.  At CQ, she will be an integral part of the editorial team producing each issue of the magazine and will work to expand CQ's social media presence as well.

 Herman says she hopes to learn more about the ham community in her new position, noting that nearly all of her friends are hams, including her husband, Jacob, about whom she says "he's the reason I decided to take the license exam back in 2010!"

 "I have two dogs who are my fur babies, Ginger Rogers and Noodle," she adds. "I am an avid collector of Disney paraphernalia, books of all kinds, and original comic book art. I play lots of Nintendo Switch games, my favorite being Animal Crossing." 

Hamvention Names 2023 Award Winners

The Dayton Amateur Radio Association has announced the winners of the 2023 Hamvention awards. The awards, among the most prestigious in amateur radio, recognize the Amateur of the Year, Special Achievement, Technical Achievement and Club of the Year.

Dayton’s 2023 Amateur of the Year is Carsten Dauer, DM9EE, a longtime advocate for youth in amateur radio (he and his children are featured in the 2021-22 CQ Amateur Radio calendar). Carsten was honored for his work in collecting and transporting amateur radio equipment to hams in Ukraine and, on the return trips, driving war refugees from Ukraine to safe havens in Germany, including his own hotel. To help, visit <>.

This year’s Technical Achievement Award goes to Dr. James Breakall, WA3FET, a prolific antenna designer and professor emeritus of electrical engineering at Penn State University. He helped develop the Numerical Electromagnetic Code, or NEC, which is the basis for most of today’s antenna modeling programs. He also worked with K1JT, WP3R and NP4A in 2010 to do moonbounce ftom the Arecibo Observatory (SK) in Puerto Rico.

The Special Achievement Award for 2023 honors Dr. Jason McDonald, N2TPA. A trauma surgeon by profession, his major ham radio interest is promoting amateur radio among young people, particularly through Radio Scouting, forming scout radio clubs in the U.S., Canada and the Philippines. Through these clubs, he has gotten more than 500 young people licensed and on the air.

The 2023 Club of the Year is the Delaware Valley Radio Association in Trenton, New Jersey, whose wide range of amateur radio activities and events has led the club membership to triple in size over the past six years.

The honorees will be formally recognized at the Dayton Hamvention awards dinner in May,

Sohn Withdraws as FCC Nominee

(CQ Newsroom
file photo)
Gigi Sohn has withdrawn from consideration for membership on the FCC, after her nomination by President Biden was not acted on by the Senate for nearly two years. 

According to “The Hill,” a Capitol Hill newspaper, Sohn’s decision came soon after West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin announced that he would not support her confirmation, which has been supported by most Democrats and opposed by most Republicans and many in the media and wireless industries. 

The White House has not yet indicated when the President might announce another nomination to fill the fifth Commission seat.

3Y0J Wraps Up Weather-Shortened DXpedition

The much-anticipated 3Y0J DXpedition to Bouvet Island is over and the team is safely back in friendlier climes. While the team’s original goal was to operate 12 stations simultaneously for 22 days and hoped to make 200,000 QSOs, they were only able to get two stations on the air and made about 19,000 contacts, according to the ARRL Letter

In addition to terrible weather and extreme difficulty getting equipment on shore, the only safe place on the island to set up camp had a huge rock blocking the short path to most of North America. Plus, the effort was beset by massive amounts of deliberate interference. 

CQ will have a complete report on the expedition in the May issue.

ARDC Releases 2022 Annual Report Showing $7 Million in Grants

The Amateur Radio Digital Communications foundation has released its annual report for 2022, outlining more than $7 million in grants made during the year. 

The ARRL Letter reports that ARDC made grants in four categories, amateur radio ($2.1 million), education ($2.3 million), scholarships ( $1.5 million) and research-and-development ($2.4 million). The foundation’s philanthropy included 47 grants to amateur radio clubs and projects, as well as 95 scholarships. For more information, visit <>.

“Human Security” Theme for World Amateur Radio Day

The International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) announced that this year’s World Amateur Radio Day on April 18 will have the theme of “Human Security for All,” of HS4A. The theme is the result of a partnership between IARU and the United Nations Fund for Human Security and the World Academy of Art and Science. 

According to the UN, “human security” includes “seven interrelated dimensions of security” – economic, food, health, environmental, personal, community and political – that are essential to an individual’s well-being. The IARU says amateur radio has “repeatedly demonstrated its ability to address human security needs.” The group and its member societies will have special event stations on the air between April 11 and 25 to call attention to the HS4A theme.

Nominations Open for Young Ham of the Year

Do you know a young radio amateur, age 18 or younger, who is doing extraordinary things for his/her community or for amateur radio? If so, the Amateur Radio Newsline Bill Pasternak Young Ham of the Year Award committee wants to hear from you. Nominations for the 2023 YHOTY award are being accepted through May 31. For more information and nominating forms, visit <> and click on the YHOTY tab. CQ is a corporate sponsor of the Young Ham of the Year award.

Milestones: Former FCC Chief Engineer W4QAW Silent Key

Raymond Spence, W4QAW, became a Silent Key in February at age 93. According to Newsline, Spence was retired from a career at the FCC capped off by service as the agency’s Chief Engineer. He was also a dedicated DXer and contester. He lived in Washington’s Virginia suburbs and was an for much of his life.

New Distance Records on IO-117 Satellite

The IO-117 satellite prior to
launch (AMSAT photo)
Italy’s IO-117 amateur satellite is bringing real DXing back to ham satellites. The AMSAT News Service reports on two recent contacts of more than 8000 miles – between KG0D and VU2LBW and between W5CBF and A65BR, the latter setting a new record for the medium-orbit bird of 8075 miles (12,996 kilometers) – as well as numerous hams using IO-117 to qualify for ARRL Worked All States and DXCC awards, plus the initial level of CQ’s Worked All Zones Satellite award (25 of 40 zones needed). The satellite was launched last summer.

Radio and Electronics Merit Badges Score Big Gains

The ARRL Letter reports that the Boy Scouts’ radio and electronics merit badges are gaining significantly in popularity. Quoting a study of merit badges in Scouting magazine, the report says Radio jumped from 98th-most popular merit badge in 2021 to #81 in 2022, a surge of 18 places and the biggest increase in popularity of any merit badge. The second-biggest jump was for the electronics badge, moving up 15 spots from 80th place to 65th

Scouts work their way toward the top rank of Eagle Scout by earning at least 21 merit badges, along with other requirements. 

Saturday, February 11, 2023

3Y0J On the Air From Bouvet

The 3Y0J DXpedition team has landed on Bouvet Island and is on the air. Team co-leader Ken Opskar, LA7GIA, reported to media officer Steve Hass, NA2J, that this is “the most extreme expedition I’ve been to,” adding that “Activating Bouvet is not like activating an island in the Caribbean. It is really windy, cold and exhausting to bring equipment up here.” Opskar added that the only way to get on shore was by floating 50 feet from the boat in survival suits while holding onto a line attached to a buoy; and that the equipment had to be floated in as well, then carried 800 feet up to the camp.

Early pileups were intense and Facebook was filled with reports of jamming and other bad on-air behavior making it difficult for hams to even hear the team’s 100-watt signals. Bouvet Island is a dot of land in the far southern Atlantic Ocean, roughly halfway between South Africa and Antarctica. It is #2 on the DX most-wanted list (North Korea is #1). For updates, please visit or the expedition's Facebook page..

Hams Respond to Turkish Earthquake - Please Keep 28.540, 7.092 and 3.777 MHz Clear

Search and rescue efforts under way in Turkey
and Syria following massive earthquake
(United Nations photo)
Amateur radio operators are actively involved in emergency response efforts following the massive earthquake that rocked Turkey and Syria in early February. 

According to the ARRL, the Turkiye Radyo Amatorieri Cemiyeti (TRAC) organization is coordinating the ham radio response in Turkey, primarily using 28.540 MHz, with 3.777 and 7.092 as backups. Hams are asked to keep these frequencies clear for emergency traffic.

IARU Region 1 (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) Emergency Communications Coordinator Greg Mosup, G0DUB, says TRAC President Aziz Sasa, TA1E, is now in the earthquake zone and is requesting assistance from the international community. However, he asks that any groups planning to come to Turkey to help coordinate their efforts through the Turkish embassy in their home countries. He also requests that all search-and-rescue groups have at least one radio amateur on their teams.

There is no information at this time on any possible quake-related amateur communications in Syria, as there are very few hams active there. The death toll from this massive earthquake is above 20,000 and climbing daily.

HRO ClosingSan Diego Store

Ham Radio Outlet is closing its store in San Diego, California. According to a post on its website, the building’s landlord informed the company in late 2022 that its lease would not be renewed. “Since that time,” said the announcement, “we have been searching the surrounding area for a new location. However, recent extreme increases in rent and non-business friendly policies by the state, county and city governments have made locating and affording a viable location all but impossible.” The San Diego store will close permanently on February 25.

Winter Field Day Heats Up the Airwaves

Another Winter Field Day is in the books, the 16th annual running of the event held on the last weekend in January. The purpose of the activity, according to Newsline, is similar to that of ARRL Field Day in June, but with the added challenge of practicing portable emergency communication skills in generally less-friendly winter weather. New for this year were a mobile/stationary mobile entry category and a 100-watt power limit for all participants. In 2022, more than 2500 logs were submitted (including those from home stations contacting portable or mobile stations). As of a week and a half after the 2023 event, more than 1900 logs had been submitted from over 1100 locations, with additional logs being accepted through March 1. For more information, visit the WFD website at <>.


Youth DX Adventure Heading to Curacao Again

Moving ahead to summer, the Dave Kalter Memorial Youth DX Adventure program will again activate call sign PJ2Y from the Curacao QTH of Geoff Howard, PJ2T, this coming July. Participation is open to licensed hams between the ages of 12 and 17; a parent or guardian must also attend. Most trip-related expenses for participants are paid through donations to the YDXA program. The application deadline is May 1. Additional information and application forms are available at <>.

Friday, February 10, 2023

DXpedition Boot Camp

Keep your ears open in the second half of March for activity from VK9/Norfolk Island, site of the upcoming DXpedition Boot Camp. According to Newsline, budding DXpeditioners will get the opportunity to learn from and operate with more experienced ops from an exotic locale between March 17 and 31. The camp, coordinated by Chris Chapman, VK3QB, plans to have stations on the air from 160 through 6 meters, operating CW, SSB and FT8. There will also be an opportunity for a SOTA (Summits on the Air) activation from nearby Mt. Bates. The camp itself is free, but participants have to pay their own travel and lodging expenses. At press time, there was no word on the call sign(s) to be used. For more information as the time grows closer, visit <>.

POTA Posts Big Activity Increase in 2022

The Parks on the Air program keeps growing by leaps and bounds. Newsline reports that the POTA organization tallied a total of 141,477 activations in 2022, a 195% increase over 2021, covering 14,818 parks in 72 DX entities, operated by 7,187 amateurs. The combined total of POTA QSOs in 2022 was more than 6.26 million, more than double the number in 2021. The POTA program encourages operations from national or state/provincial parks and preserves. For more information, visit <>.

Morse Makes a Splash on the BBC

The continued popularity of Morse code among hams was the subject of two different programs recently on two different BBC stations in the United Kingdom. Newsline reports that the current affairs program “PM on BBC Radio 4” featured Long Island CW Club co-founder Howard Bernstein, WB2UZE, discussing the ongoing appeal of Morse and his club’s instruction programs, which are available for free worldwide.

In addition, Mervyn Foster, G4KLE, a volunteer at the Radio Society of Great Britain’s National Radio Centre, spoke with BBC Three Counties Radio morning host Andy Collins about the resurgence of interest in Morse in the UK, both within and beyond amateur radio. 

At press time, both interviews were available online (but it’s uncertain how long they’ll remain posted). Howard’s is at <>, and Mervyn’s is at <>.

HAARP Thanks Hams for Help With Asteroid-Bounce Experiment

HAARP Antenna Array
(Univ. of Alaska Fairbanks photo)
The University of Alaska Fairbanks’s High-Frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) has thanked amateur radio operators and amateur astronomers for help with its asteroid-bounce experiment in late December. Signals were sent up to an asteroid passing near Earth’s orbit.

Over 300 reception reports were submitted to HAARP researchers, according to the ARRL. The goal was not two-way contacts as hams make off the Moon or streaking meteors, but rather efforts to study near-Earth objects and defend our planet from large asteroids with the potential to cause significant damage.


Friday, January 13, 2023

  Two Ham Radio Bills Introduced in Congress

Two bills aimed at helping hams were introduced in thewaning days of the 117th Congress. The ARRL reported that H.R. 9670, introduced by Ohio Rep. Bill Johnson, would pre-empt most antenna restrictions imposed by homeowners’ associations, and H.R. 9664, introduced by Arizona Rep. Debbie Lesko, would instruct the FCC to replace symbol rate limits in HF amateur radio communications with bandwidth limits, a topic on which the ARRL has had a rulemaking request pending for several years without Commission action. HOA antenna restrictions, of course, have been the subject of ARRL lobbying efforts over several decades.

As both bills were introduced in the final days of the 2021-22 Congressional session, they died without action at the end of the year. At press time in mid-January it was unclear if either bill had been reintroduced or whether the sponsors had plans to reintroduce them.

  Ohio Distracted Driving Law Exempts Hams

Amateur radio operators, first responders and utility workers are among motorists exempted from a new distracted driving law that took effect in Ohio at the beginning of the year. 

According to Newsline, Ohio’s new law holding a cellphone or similar device in your hand while driving a primary offense, meaning that a police officer may pull you over for that, even if you aren’t doing anything else wrong. 

It isn’t clear whether the exemption applies to all devices that an amateur may be using, or only to a non-cellphone radio transceiver.

Milestones: Orlando Award Winners Named

 The Orlando Hamcation® has announced the winners of this year’s Carole Perry Educator of the Year award and the new Gordon West Ambassador of the Year award. 

The 2023 Carole Perry award is being shared by Ken Lyons, KN4MDJ, and Jim Storms, AB8YK. While neither one is a professional educator, both have helped develop the next generation of hams and ham radio leaders. According to the award committee, Lyons is deeply involved in educating youth about radio through the Scouting program, regularly organizing and coordinating events that introduce amateur radio to more than 1000 Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts each year. Storms is co-founder and current team leader of the Dave Kalter Memorial Youth DX Adventure, a program that hosts young hams and their parents in Costa Rica each summer to “be the DX” – at no cost to the participants. Many of the previous attendees are already demonstrating leadership in the hobby.

John Bigley, N7UR, has the honor of being the first recipient of the Gordon West award, presented to “an individual who represents and inspires others, embodies the amateur radio spirit, and has made outstanding contributions to the amateur radio community.” Bigley is the creator of a one-day “boot camp” program for prospective amateurs and supports group activities and licensing classes, appearing in various alter egos, including Professor Elmer Sparkgap, Captain Coax and Jordon West (Gordon’s long-lost twin). He also hosts a weekly radio program about amateur radio and shortwave, and serves as the ARRL Nevada Section Manager.

Both awards will be presented at next month’s Orlando Hamcation. (Full disclosure: CQ Editor W2VU serves on the Carole Perry award judging committee.)

  Milestones: W7SAR Receives National Award

Civil Air Patrol Colonel Jerry Wellman, W7SAR, was named the 2022 National Volunteer Emergency Manager of the Year by the International Association of Emergency Managers. According to the ARRL Letter, this is the highest award bestowed by the association on a volunteer emergency manager.

Wellman is former commander of the Utah wing of the Civil Air Patrol, and has taught emergency management communications classes in Utah, Arizona and Colorado. He has also served on the Utah State Emergency Response Team and as ARRL Utah Section Emergency Coordinator. He received the award at a ceremony in November.

Milestones: Arnie Coro, CO2KK, Silent Key

 Longtime shortwave radio host, professor and former CQ VHF columnist Arnaldo “Arnie” Coro, CO2KK, passed away in early January, according to Region 2 of the International Amateur Radio Union, which he served as Area C Emergency Coordinator at the time of his death.

Many readers will recognize Arnie as the longtime host of “DXers Unlimited” on Radio Havana. He was also a college professor in Havana and very active in emergency communications through the FRC, the Federation of Radio Amateurs of Cuba. Coro received Cuba’s National Radio Award in 2017. He was 80 years old at the time of his death from complications of chronic health conditions.