Archive for 2010

Official Bulletin, RAC Ontario Section

December 26, 2010

RAC Ontario Section Bulletin for December 25, 2010

NATIONAL NEWS

1. Season’s Greetings from RAC

To Fellow Radio Amateurs, your Families and Loved ones: I bring you seasonal greetings from your national radio association; the Radio Amateurs of Canada. I hope that 2010 has been an excellent year for you and those that you hold dear.

As we enter this holiday season I want to wish each and every one of you a warm wish for a fabulous holiday season as well as a healthy and prosperous 2011. I am sure that you will be taking time to be with your friends and family. Being with those closest to you makes this the finest part of the year.

Take care. May 2011 be good to you.

— Geoff Bawden VE4BAW, President and Chair, RAC

2. Fast Facts on the New RAC Insurance Program

Since the RAC Bulletin advising Members about the changes to the RAC Insurance Policy came out there have been some questions being raised. With the intent of keeping our members better informed, Bob VA3QV asked First Vice President Ian MacFarquhar VE9IM to address some of the questions we have heard recently. Read Ian’s replies at blog.rac.ca/?p=1844

— RAC Blog

ONTARIO SECTION NEWS

ITEMS OF INTEREST

3. EmComm Quarterly Signing Off

EmComm Quarterly has ceased publication. This e-newsletter about amateur radio emergency communications started as EmComm Monthly in 2004, and became quarterly in 2009. Back issues will remain available at http://www.emcomm.org/em, and the web site will continue operation unitl funds are depleted.

— D. W. Thorne, K6SOJ, Editor / Publisher

4. Free Propagation E-Book

Steve G0KYA and Alan G3NYK, of the Radio Society of Great Britain’s Propagation Studies Committee, have released a free ebook called “Understanding LF and HF Propagation.” It is based on a series of features the two wrote for the RSGB’s “Radcom” magazine in 2008 and 2009. Download the book in PDF format for free at http://www.g0kya.blogspot.com

— AMSAT News

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Bulletin sent from Official Bulletin Manager Brad Rodriguez, VE3RHJ.

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Official Bulletin, RAC Ontario Section

December 18, 2010

RAC Ontario Section Bulletin for December 18, 2010

NATIONAL NEWS

1. Distracted Driving Legislation

On November 24th New Brunswick introduced a bill to control cell phone and “hand-operated electronic device” use while driving and this legislation will prevent amateurs from using mobile radios while driving. RAC agrees with the intent of the legislation but has argued for an exclusion for Amateur Radio operators in a December 9th letter from the President of RAC to the New Brunswick Minister of Public Safety.

Third reading on the bill is expected during the week of December 13 to 17. The Bill permits the government to proclaim the legislation at a time of its choosing anytime thereafter. For a more complete report visit http://www.rac.ca/en/news/bulletins/2010/39

— RAC Bulletin Service

ONTARIO SECTION NEWS

ITEMS OF INTEREST

2. January 1st is Straight Key Night

Straight Key Night is held every January 1 from 0000 UTC through 2359 UTC. This 24-hour event is not a contest; rather it is a day dedicated to celebrating our CW heritage. Participants are encouraged to get on the air and simply make enjoyable, conversational CW QSOs. The use of straight keys or bugs to send CW is preferred.
For more information see http://www.arrl.org/straight-key-night

— ARRL Web

3. Straight Key Night on Oscar

You are cordially invited to participate in Straight Key Night on OSCAR, conducted by AMSAT for radio amateurs throughout the world. There are no rules, no scoring and no logs required. Just operate CW on any OSCAR satellite, using a straight hand key, from 0000 UTC to 2400 UTC on 1 January 2011, working as many SKN stations as you can.

— AMSAT News

4. January 2nd is Kids’ Day

Kids Day is an on-air event to encourage young people (licensed or not) to have fun with Amateur Radio. It is designed to give on-the-air experience to youngsters and hopefully foster interest in getting a license of their own. Kids Day runs from 1800 to 2359 UTC on Sunday, January 2nd, 2011. Operate as much or as little as you like. Suggested exchange is name, age, location and favorite color.
For more information see http://www.arrl.org/kids-day

— ARRL Web

5. DX Code of Conduct

The ‘DX-Code of Conduct’ are some very important guidelines on how to best use your station, as well as providing good operating skills to make it into the DX log in a way that is both efficient and follows the ethical standards of operating on the amateur radio bands. Read it at http://www.dx-code.org

— Southgate ARC News

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Bulletin sent from Official Bulletin Manager Brad Rodriguez, VE3RHJ.

Official Bulletin, RAC Ontario Section

December 11, 2010

RAC Ontario Section Bulletin for December 11, 2010

NATIONAL NEWS

1. 2010 Canada Winter Contest

The RAC Canada Winter Contest runs 0000 to 2359 UTC on December 18, on 160, 80, 40, 20, 15, 10, 6 and 2 metres, phone and CW. Canadian stations send RST and province or territory; VE0s and stations outside Canada send RST and a serial number. For more information see http://www.rac.ca/en/rac/programmes/contests

— RAC Web Page

2. Call for Homebrew Articles

The Canadian Amateur magazine is looking for a variety of articles, long or short, describing Amateur Radio projects which you have conceived and built. Possible topics could include transmitters, amplifiers, receivers, tuners, keyers, computer-controlled devices, station control systems, measuring equipment, original construction techniques, or special software. Please send a preliminary outline of your article to the Editor by December 31. If accepted, you will be asked to submit the complete article by February 15, 2011. An Author’s Guide is at http://www.rac.ca/tca/tca_authors_guide.htm; send email submissions to tcamag (at) yahoo.ca.

— The Canadian Amateur

3. RAC Membership Changes

Due to the cost of mailing, Radio Amateurs of Canada is increasing its annual membership fees for U.S. and International memberships. These changes apply only for members receiving The Canadian Amateur; family and blind memberships remain unchanged.
See http://www.rac.ca for details.

— RAC Bulletin Service

ONTARIO SECTION NEWS

ITEMS OF INTEREST

4. FM Simplex Damaging Space Communications

FM operators are once again being asked to not use 145.8 to 146.0 MHz for terrestrial, point to point casual communications. This is because such operations are devastating to weak signal ground to space and space to ground satellite operations. Your cooperation is appreciated.

— Amateur Radio Newsline

5. Falcon 9 launches Amateur Radio CubeSat

The SpaceX Falcon 9 that launched on Wednesday, December 8, carried the Amateur Radio CubeSat CAERUS into Low Earth Orbit. The satellite transmits beacon data on 437.600 MHz, 1200 baud AFSK, using call sign KJ6FIX, with a power of 900 milliwatts. Reception reports are desired — for information see tinyurl.com/37w8map (Three Seven Whiskey Eight Mike Alfa Papa).

— Southgate ARC News

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Bulletin sent from Official Bulletin Manager Brad Rodriguez, VE3RHJ.

Official Bulletin, RAC Ontario Section

December 4, 2010

RAC Ontario Section Bulletin for December 4, 2010

NATIONAL NEWS

1. Important News About the RAC Insurance Program

For several years RAC has offered an Insurance Program to its members and incorporated Affiliated Clubs. The broker who provided this coverage recently informed RAC that it would no longer be available. RAC has successfully found a new insurance provider, and details will be emailed to participating RAC Affiliated Clubs.

Note that to be eligible for personal coverage, RAC members must also be a member of an Affiliated Club that participates in the RAC Insurance program. This is due to changes in insurance availability and requirements of the Insurer. Complete details of this new Insurance Program will be posted shortly on the RAC website at http://www.rac.ca.

— RAC Bulletin Service

2. New Section Manager for Saskatchewan

It is with great pleasure that I announce the appointment of Barry MacKenzie VE5TRF Section Manager for Saskatchewan effective immediately. Barry has a military background, and is currently active in Moose Jaw, Sask. Barry is the current President of the Moose Jaw Amateur Radio Club, an accredited examiner as well as Club webmaster. I would like to thank Barry for taking on this important role, and thank him for his continued support of the Radio Amateurs of Canada.

— Doug Mercer, VO1DTM, RAC Vice President Field Services

3. RAC is now on Twitter

On the 29th of November Radio Amateurs of Canada opened their new Twitter Account. If you are active on Twitter you can now follow RAC at @RACTWEETS. Up-to-date information is also available from the RAC website at http://www.rac.ca and the RAC blog at blog.rac.ca.

— James R. Hay, VE2VE, RAC VP Technical and Administrative Services

ONTARIO SECTION NEWS

4. Ontario Phone Net Time Change

Effective immediately, the Ontario Phone Net (OPN) will start at 18:00 Eastern Time, 23:00 UTC, with the warm up commencing ten minutes earlier. Hopefully, this change will be sufficient to compensate for band conditions which are likely to continue to ‘go long’ earlier over the next two months.

— Ian Cope, VE3HMS, OPN Net Manager

ITEMS OF INTEREST

5. Nominations Sought For 2011 Hamvention Awards

The Dayton Hamvention is seeking nominations for its 2011 awards. The Radio Amateur of the Year, Special Achievement, and Technical Excellence Awards are considered among the most prestigious honors in amateur radio. Also, the association is continuing its Radio Club of the Year Award, introduced last year. Nominations must be submitted by January 15, 2011. Details and nominating forms are available at http://www.hamvention.org.

— CQ News Service

6. Media Coverage of LASA 8

The Sun-Journal in Lewiston, Maine, has reported on the Lanark Space Agency’s successful launch and recovery of LASA 8, the record-holding high altitude balloon flight. Read it at http://www.sunjournal.com/city/story/948273

— Glenn Killam, VE3GNA

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Bulletin sent from Official Bulletin Manager Brad Rodriguez, VE3RHJ.

OPN Time Change

November 28, 2010

Be advised that, effective immediately, the start time of the OPN will be fixed to 2300 UTC with the warm up commencing at 10 minutes to the hour.
Hopefully, this change will be sufficient to compensate for band conditions which are likely to continue to ‘go long’ earlier over the next two months.

73 Ian VE3HMS OPN NM

Official Bulletin, RAC Ontario Section

November 27, 2010

RAC Ontario Section Bulletin for November 27, 2010

NATIONAL NEWS

1. Volunteers honoured for service to RAC

At a recent meeting in Ottawa, Radio Amateurs of Canada recognized the long term effort by the individuals who have operated the RAC QSL bureaus. Plaques were presented to Nenad Stevanovic VE3EXY, the manager of the National Outgoing Bureau for more than 10 years of service, and to Len Morgan VE9MY and the Loyalist City Amateur Radio Club, the manager of the National Incoming Bureau, for more than 15 years of service. Congratulations and big Thank You to these people for all their dedicated work from the Radio Amateurs of Canada.

— RAC Bulletin Service

2. Lanark ARES Balloon Launch, 20 November

The Lanark Amateur Space Agency, comprised of members of the Lanark North Leeds ARES Group, launched an Amateur High Altitude Balloon from Perth, Ontario on 20 November 2010. This launch was an attempt at the world height record for amateur balloons.
The flight was designated LASA 8 and transmitted as VE3REX-11 via APRS. It attained a record setting altitude of 39,899 meters, or 130,903 feet, before bursting and descending by parachute to land in Jay, Maine, where it was recovered. The balloon reached speeds of 256 kilometres per hour and travelled a distance of 598 kilometres.

— RAC Bulletin Service

3. CARAB News on Electrical Interference

On November 2, the annual Transmission Telecommunications Task Group meeting between Canadian Electricity Association (CEA) and Industry Canada was held. Industry Canada relayed to the Association concerns that had been raised by RAC, at the October 28 Canadian Amateur Radio Advisory Board (CARAB) meeting, relating to electrical interference.
The CEA thanked Industry Canada for bringing CARAB’s concerns to the meeting and acknowledged that there are benefits to locating sources of electrical interference. Industry Canada indicated that the CARAB would appreciate receiving the CEA’s views and reaction to this matter and the Association agreed it would respond.

— RAC Bulletin Service

ONTARIO SECTION NEWS

4. Bruce ARES Organizational Meeting

An organizational meeting for the Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) in Bruce County will be held on Tuesday, December 21, at 7 p.m., at the community room at Legault’s Independent Grocer, 1244 Goderich St., in Port Elgin. All amateurs and interested non-amateurs are welcome to attend.
If you have been previously involved with Bruce ARES, please come to this meeting. If you are unable to attend, please contact me by email, ve3rhj (at) rac.ca, so that I may renew your registration.

— Brad Rodriguez, VE3RHJ, DEC Bruce District

ITEMS OF INTEREST

5. Hams Invited to Listen for New Satellites

Five research satellites were carried to orbit November 19th, aboard a Minotaur V rocket from Kodiak Island, Alaska. All the satellites use Amateur Radio frequencies and hams have been invited to participate in their missions by monitoring and collecting data.
FASTRAC1 and FASTRAC2 are “nanosatellites” from the University of Texas. RAX is a CubeSat from the University of Michigan. O/OREOS is another nanosat, and NanoSail-D2 is a solar sail experiment. Information and web links for all these satellites can be found at tinyurl.com/35k4zyg (Three Five Kilo Four Zulu Yankee Golf).

— ARRL Web

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Bulletin sent from Official Bulletin Manager Brad Rodriguez, VE3RHJ

Official Bulletin, RAC Ontario Section

November 21, 2010

RAC Ontario Section Bulletin for November 20, 2010

NATIONAL NEWS

1. RAC Vision Statement Published

The Board and Executive of the Radio Amateurs of Canada, committed to the future of Amateur Radio in Canada and to the future of RAC, held a planning meeting in Ottawa from October 29th to October 31st as part of a process to map the future of RAC in the 21st Century. The Board and Executive have unanimously agreed upon a draft Vision for RAC. That statement can be viewed at tinyurl.com/racvision

Comments from members and amateurs are welcomed and should be sent to Paul Burggraaf, Secretary, Radio Amateurs of Canada by email to the RAC Corporate Secretary at pburggraaf (at) nf.sympatico.ca

— RAC Bulletin Service

ONTARIO SECTION NEWS

ITEMS OF INTEREST

2. 2010 Field Day Results Now Online

The results from the 2010 ARRL Field Day — including a copy of the QST article (with line scores) and a results database — are now available on the ARRL Web site, at tinyurl.com/2b2k3o7 (Two Bravo Two Kilo Three Oscar Seven)

— ARRL Web

3. ARRL Homebrew Challenge 3

ARRL’s Third Homebrew Challenge is to make a 25 watt SSB and CW transceiver, for 10 or 6 metres or both, with the highest quality, best performance and most features for under $150 single-band or $200 dual-band.

To be considered, each entrant must submit a working transceiver no later than November 1, 2011, suitable for testing in the ARRL Lab and for on-the-air judging by the ARRL staff judges. For full details visit tinyurl.com/2bhpfjo (Two Bravo Hotel Papa Foxtrot Juliet Oscar)

— ARRL Web

4. PileUp Seeks Contributions

The next issue of the Finnish contesting magazine PileUP! will be published in January. The editors are looking for contributions on propagation, antennas, station accessories, international contest coordination, contesting history, your thoughts on this year’s fall contest season, and humor! Contributions are due by 31 December.
Visit http://www.contestclubfinland.com for information.

— ARRL Contest Update

5. New Section Manager Appointed in Western New York

Steve Ryan, N2ITF, of Ashville, New York, has been appointed Section Manager of the ARRL Western New York Section, effective November 2. The position was made vacant when Scott Bauer, W2LC, announced his resignation for personal reasons on October 31. Bauer had served as Section Manager since January 2000. Ryan will complete the current term of office that continues until September 30, 2012.

— ARRL Bulletin Service

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Bulletin sent from Official Bulletin Manager Brad Rodriguez, VE3RHJ.

Official Bulletin, RAC Ontario Section

November 13, 2010

RAC Ontario Section Bulletin for November 13, 2010

NATIONAL NEWS

1. Indonesian Disaster Frequencies

All Amateur Radio operators are requested to note the following from the Organisasi Amatir Radio Indonesia (ORARI). All IARU Center of Activity frequencies, 21.360, 18.160, 14.300, 7.060 and 3.760 MHz should be kept clear. The disaster assistance effort is using 7.065.
Your usual cooperation is very much appreciated.

— RAC Bulletin Service

2. ITU Plenipotentiary wraps up

The ITU Plenipotentiary Conference ended with broad agreement on core issues. Delegates approved Financial and Strategic plans, and reinforced the Union’s mandate in development, standards-making and global management of radio frequency resources. For more information visit tinyurl.com/2wq89r5 (Two Whiskey Quebec Eight Nine Romeo Five)

— RAC Bulletin Service

3. Field Organization Review Project

I am pleased to report that a National Field Organization Review Project was started yesterday. With the assistance of Hew Lines VA7HU and Ian Snow VA3QT, and others, guidelines were adopted to review the entire RAC Field Organization, including but not limited to: Organizational structure, Focus, Training, Methodology, Communication to and from our members, and Technology.

This will be an ongoing process that will look at all aspects of how we operate and how we deliver Amateur Radio resources to our customers. If you would like to assist with this project, and feel that you have something to offer, please contact vo1dtm (at) rac (dot) ca

— Doug Mercer, VO1DTM, RAC Vice President Field Services

ONTARIO SECTION NEWS

4. Provincial Simulated Emergency Test

The 2010 Ontario Province-wide Simulated Emergency Test will be conducted on the following dates:
* EOC to EOC test: December 1st from 0900-1200 local time
* Province-wide SET: December 4th from 1000-1400 and 1900-2100 local

All Amateur Radio Operators are invited to participate. Complete details about the Province-wide SET can be found on the EMO ARES website, http://www.emoares.org

— Jim Taylor, VA3KU, EMO ARES

ITEMS OF INTEREST

5. Nominations Open for Lighthouse Activator of the Year

The Amateur Radio Lighthouse Society presents an annual award to the ham who has done the most to promote the activation of any of the world’s nautical light beacons. Criteria include the rarity of the beacons, their remoteness, and the technical difficulty. Any licensed amateur anywhere in the world is qualified for the award.

Nominations should include the nominee’s call, name, address, e-mail address (if available) and a brief paragraph (50-100 words) describing why the nominee should receive the award. They must be sent to the ARLHS via e-mail or by postal mail to the ARLHS HQ, 114 Woodbine Ave, Merchantville, NJ 08109, USA, no later than December 31st. For more information visit http://www.arlhs.com

— ARRL Web

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Bulletin sent from Official Bulletin Manager Brad Rodriguez, VE3RHJ.

Official Bulletin, RAC Ontario Section

November 6, 2010

RAC Ontario Section Bulletin for November 6, 2010

NATIONAL NEWS

1. Canadian Amateur Radio Advisory Board Meeting

The 35th meeting of the Canadian Amateur Radio Advisory Board took place on Thursday Oct. 28th. CARAB is composed of representatives from both RAC representing Canadian Amateurs, and Industry Canada, as the regulator of amateur radio. For the full report visit the RAC web page at http://www.rac.ca/en/news/bulletins/2010/27

— RAC Bulletin Service

2. VA3QT Appointed Special Advisor

It is with great pleasure that I announce the appointment of Ian Snow VA3QT, Special Advisor to the RAC National Field Organization Executive. Ian, an original National Training Resource Group member, will work closely with National NTS Coordinator Hew Lines VA7HU initially, looking at the manner in which the ARES and NTS stay useful and relevant to the Agencies we serve, from a messaging and use of technology standpoint.

I would like to welcome Ian, and thank him for his continued valuable support of the Radio Amateurs of Canada.

— Doug Mercer, VO1DTM, RAC VP Field Services

3. RAC Executive Meeting

On the weekend of October 30th, directors, executives, and key participants gathered in Ottawa to plan the future of RAC. An initial report can be read at http://www.rac.ca/en/news/bulletins/2010/30

— RAC Bulletin Service

ONTARIO SECTION NEWS

4. Killarney District ARES Report

On October 18, members of the Manitoulin ARES group, along with personnel from the Red Cross, OPP, Ministry of Natural resources, E.M.O., OMAFRA, and EMS, and Community Control Groups from the Townships of Billings, NEMI and Central Manitoulin, participated in a simulated emergency involving a forest fire on Manitoulin Island. The focus of the exercise was to evaluate the response, telecommunication and evacuation capabilities in a multi-jurisdictional emergency. The exercise was a success according to Jeannine Morin, Killarney Sector Field Officer, Emergency Management Ontario.

Sudbury EC Pat Dopson and and Killarney DEC Stiig Larsen VE3LBX attended the ARES Ontario meeting in Toronto at the Toronto Office of Emergency Management. Presentations by Al Boyd VE3AJB, Section Manager, and Ian Snow VA3QT were informative and discussed a role for the group that would be independent of RAC, the ARES Qualification System, and the establishment of a steering committee.

— Stiig Larsen, VE3LBX, Killarney DEC

ITEMS OF INTEREST

5. MMSSTV

MMSSTV is an easy to use SSTV program for your Windows PC which will allow you to receive and decode the SSTV signals from the International Space Station. Makoto Mori, JE3HHT released version 1.13A on September 29th. Download MMSSTV for free from tinyurl.com/mmsstv

— AMSAT News

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Bulletin sent from Official Bulletin Manager Brad Rodriguez, VE3RHJ.

McCrae House marks Remembrance Week with return of Guelph Amateur Radio Club

November 1, 2010

Remembrance traditions continue at McCrae House with the return of the Guelph Amateur Radio Club. Now in its 22th season, the group will again be sending and receiving remembrance messages at the birthplace of John McCrae from Saturday, November 6 thru Thursday, November 11. Approximate hours of operation are 1-5 p.m.

Members of the Radio Club look forward to contacting, via the airwaves, ham radio enthusiasts around the world. This is their opportunity to acknowledge Remembrance Day and exchange thoughts on its significance. The Club also assists the Museum in educating children and adult groups taking part in Remembrance programs offered throughout the week. Students, as well as the general public, are invited to share their thoughts and reacquaint themselves with John McCrae.

Listen for their special call “VA3IF” for In Flanders, talk to them and their students, and receive their commemorative QSL card.
They can be found on the amateur radio bands of 80, 40 20, 15, 10 and 2 metres, and also on the IRLP node of 2260.

McCrae House is the birthplace of John McCrae, doctor, soldier and author of the poem In Flanders Fields, one of the best known First World War poems. McCrae’s poem is credited with initiating the use of the poppy as a symbol of remembrance.

Join us on Thursday, November 11th beginning at 9:00 a.m. with a short flag ceremony organized by the Col. John McCrae Legion in the McCrae Garden. Admission to McCrae House on Remembrance day is by donation and the House is open until 5:00 p.m.

McCrae House is located at 108 Water Street. Open daily 1-5 p.m. leading up to Remembrance Day and open Remembrance Day 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Regular admission to the museum is: Adults- $4.00, Seniors & Students – $3.00, Families $10.00. Please contact Guelph Museums at 836-1221, ext. 2773 for more information.