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ARRL Letter

The ARRL Letter
January 5, 2023
John E. Ross, KD8IDJ, Editor
ARRL Home PageARRL Letter ArchiveAudio News


ARRL Volunteers On the Air Event is Underway

ARRL's yearlong operating event, Volunteers On the Air, or VOTA, began January 1, 2023. The event is organized as part of ARRL's 2023 theme, "Year of the Volunteers," which recognizes the contributions of ARRL member volunteers, and offers opportunities to become more active and involved in amateur radio and ARRL.

VOTA encourages participants to make contacts with ARRL members and volunteers, earning points for each contact. Point values have been assigned (see the Points Table at All scoring is automatically calculated through ARRL's Logbook of The World (LoTW, If you are already an LoTW user, continue to upload your QSOs there to participate. If you're a new LoTW user, visit Getting Started with LoTW.

As part of the event, there will be week-long activations by W1AW portable stations operating in all US states and territories. W1AW/# portable operations are worth 5 points for each contact, and they can be contacted on all bands and modes. There's also an opportunity to earn the W1AW Worked All States Award. There will be two week-long W1AW operations from each of the 50 states.

Later in the event, an on-line scoreboard, the VOTA Leaderboard, will be activated, allowing each participant to see how their score measures up with other participants throughout the year.

Only two-way contacts qualify for points (cross-band, cross-mode, and repeater contacts are not valid), using any mode (CW, phone, or digital) - including EME and satellite operations - on 160, 80, 40, 20, 15, 10, 6, 2, and 1.25 meters, as well as 70 centimeters, VHF/UHF/SHF, and microwave bands available to US amateurs above 2 meters (2190-, 630-, 60-, 30-, 17-, and 12-meter band contacts are not counted for credit in this event).

Join the fun! Visit the official VOTA website for further details:

More Amateur Radio Astronauts Head for the International Space Station

Three of the four new astronauts on February's planned launch of the SpaceX Crew-6 mission to the International Space Station (ISS) are amateur radio operators.

The four crew members that comprise the SpaceX Crew-6 mission pose for a photo during a training session on the crew access arm at the Kennedy Space Center's Launch Pad 39A in Florida. From left are, Mission Specialist Andrey Fedyaev, Pilot Warren "Woody" Hoburg, Mission Specialist Sultan Al Nedayi, and Commander Stephen Bowen. Photo Courtesy of SpaceX.

Pilot Warren "Woody" Hoburg, KB3HTZ; Commander Stephen Bowen, KI5BKB, and Mission Specialist Sultan Al Neyadi, KI5VTV, will join Mission Specialist Andrey Fedyaev on board the SpaceX Dragon spacecraft, Endeavour.

The spacecraft will be atop a Falcon 9 rocket and, while a launch date has not been selected, the earliest date would be mid-February 2023.

All crew members have learned about Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS), received guidance on studying and testing, and learned how to operate the ARISS radios and the basics of on-the-air protocol from ARISS team members at NASA's Johnson Space Center.

The crew will be able to participate in ARISS, using the ham radio station on the ISS to contact schools and other educational institutions.

ARISS is a cooperative venture of international amateur radio societies and the space agencies that support the ISS. In the US, participating organizations include NASA, the ISS National Lab, ARRL The National Association for Amateur Radio®, and AMSAT.

Bud Kozloff, W1NSK, Appointed as ARRL Connecticut Section Manager

Bud Kozloff, W1NSK, has been appointed as the ARRL Connecticut Section Manager starting on January 1, 2023.

Kozloff, who lives in Redding, Connecticut, is currently the president of the Candlewood Amateur Radio Association and a member of the Yankee Clipper Contest Club. He was appointed by ARRL Field Services Manager Mike Walters, W8ZY, after consulting with New England Division Director Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC. His term of office continues through September 30, 2024.

Kozloff takes the reins of the Connecticut Section Field Organization from Betsey Doane, K1EIC, who was appointed by ARRL Headquarters as the Connecticut Section Manager in November 2022 to fulfill the role on a temporary basis until a full-time Section Manager could be appointed.

Doane, of Shelton, was previously the Connecticut Section Manager for 25 years from 1991 to 2016. Chuck Motes, K1DFS, of Plainville, served as Connecticut's Section Manager for the last 6 years. He decided not to run for a new term of office when his third term concluded on September 30, 2022.

Service Academies Radio Group Now in Operation

The Service Academies Radio Group (SARG) was recently formed for alumni and amateur radio operators who are interested in the five U.S military academies.

William Curry, W5CQ, founder and net control operator for the SARG Net, said two months ago there was a new interest in forming a group and net. He noticed that only one military academy, West Point, W2KGY, was still operating a club station. At one time, every military academy had an operating club station.

"The club stations at the U.S. Military Academy, U.S. Naval Academy, U.S. Air Force Academy, U.S. Coast Guard Academy, and the U.S. Maritime Academy all have been off the air for some time," said Curry. "But we now have 50 new members, all who are interested in promoting amateur radio at all of the academies."

The SARG net meets every Thursday at 2200 UTC on 7.280 MHz, and every Saturday at 1600 UTC on 14.338 MHz. All amateur radio operators, whether they are veterans, or just have an interest in the military or history of the academies, are invited.

Curry has been licensed since 1950 and holds an Amateur Extra-class license. He is also an ARRL Life Member.

For additional information about the SARG Net, contact Curry at

Amateur Radio in the News

ARRL Public Information Officers, Coordinators, and many other member-volunteers help keep amateur radio and ARRL in the news.

"Ham radio club receives grant" / Effingham Daily News (Illinois), December 21, 2022. -- The National Trail Amateur Radio Club is an ARRL Affiliated Club.

"What's the frequency, Kenneth?": Watertown Amateur Radio Club celebrates 40th anniversary / Watertown Daily Times (Wisconsin), December 27, 2022. -- The Watertown Amateur Radio Club is an ARRL Affiliated Club.

"Looking to Ditch Twitter? Morse Code Is Back" / Smithsonian Magazine, January/February 2023, by Larry Kahaner, KN4XW.

Share any amateur radio media hits you spot with us.

ARRL Podcasts

On the Air
Sponsored by Icom
In the latest episode of the ARRL On the Air podcast, Ginger Wilder, KI5TJE, discusses her first time running an amateur radio net. Get ready to be the next Net Control operator for your local net.

ARRL Audio News
Listen to ARRL Audio News, available every Friday. ARRL Audio News is a summary of the week's top news stories in the world of amateur radio and ARRL, along with interviews and other features.

The On the Air podcast is available on iTunes (iOS) and Stitcher (Android). The On the Air podcast and ARRL Audio News are also on blubrry -- On the Air | ARRL Audio News.


Abstract submission is now open for the 6th Annual HamSCI Workshop to be held March 17 - 18, 2023, in person at The University of Scranton and virtually on Zoom. The workshop is very student and citizen scientist friendly and all amateur radio operators are invited to attend. The abstract submission form and more details are available at Abstracts are due February 1, 2023. The theme of the 2023 HamSCI Workshop is "Forging Amateur-Professional Bonds." The primary objective is to bring together the amateur radio community and professional scientists. While HamSCI's main focus is ionospheric and radio science, presentations are welcome from all related parts of the "Coupled Geospace System," including the sun, solar wind, magnetosphere, neutral atmosphere, and more. For more information, contact Dr. Nathaniel A. Frissell, Ph.D., W2NAF, at

In Brief...

Fred Laun, K3ZO, SK | 1937 - 2023 [Robert Wilson, N6TV, photo]

Amateur radio contesting great Fred Laun (Alfred A. Laun, III), K3ZO, of Temple Hills, Maryland, passed away on January 3, 2023. He was a member of the ARRL Maxim Society and Life Member, and a member of the Potomac Valley Radio Club. Laun was also a Director for The Yasme Foundation, an organization that supports awards and grants that recognize and advance the achievements made by radio amateurs. "Fred's service to Yasme and other amateur organizations, spanning decades, was unsurpassed, as were his contributions to amateur radio, for which he cared deeply," said Yasme Foundation President Ward Silver, N0AX, in a press release. "Well-known and respected around the globe, we know Fred's many friends world-wide will honor his memory, both on and off the air." Read a 2015 interview (PDF) with Laun, conducted by John Dorr, K1AR, for the National Contest Journal (NCJ).

The K7RA Solar Update

Tad Cook, K7RA, of Seattle, Washington, reports ARRL Propagation Bulletin ARLP001 for January 5, 2023:

Solar disk image taken January 5, 2023, courtesy of NASA SDO/HMI.

Two new sunspot groups emerged on December 29, 2022, one more on December 30, 2022, and another on January 1, 2023.

Solar activity was a little higher, with average daily sunspot numbers rising from 96.1 to 97, and solar flux averages rose 14 points to 157.8.

Predicted solar flux is 152 and 154 on January 5 - 6; 152 on January 7 - 8; 150, 148, and 146 on January 9 - 11; 150 on January 12 - 13; 145 on January 14; 140 on January 15 - 16; 145 on January 17 - 19; 150 and 155 on January 20 - 21; 160 on January 22 - 23; 165 on January 24 - 26; then 160, 155, 155, 158, and 155 on January 27 - 31.

Predicted planetary A index is 18, 12 and 10 on January 5 - 7; 5 on January 8 - 16; 8, 12, 25, 20, and 10 on January 17 - 21; 5 on January 22 - 24; 8, 28, 15, and 10 on January 25 - 28; 5 on January 29 - 30, and 18 on January 31 - February 1.

Article on Siberian Radioheliograph:

Sunspot numbers for December 29, 2022, through January 4, 2023, were 113, 121, 82, 94, 94, 89, and 86, with a mean of 97. The 10.7-centimeter flux was 162.8, 178.3, 164.9, 152.6, 146.4, 148.5, and 151, with a mean of 157.8. Estimated planetary A indices were 11, 31, 16, 14, 8, 7, and 21, with a mean of 15.4. Middle latitude A index was 8, 22, 10, 9, 5, 5, and 17, with a mean of 10.9.

Send your tips, questions, or comments to

A comprehensive K7RA Solar Update is posted on Fridays on the ARRL website. For more information concerning radio propagation, visit the ARRL Technical Information Service, read "What the Numbers Mean..." and check out the Propagation Page of Carl Luetzelschwab, K9LA.

A propagation bulletin archive is available. For customizable propagation charts, visit the VOACAP Online for Ham Radio website.

Share your reports and observations.

A weekly, full report is posted on ARRL News.

Just Ahead in Radiosport
  • January 5 - 6 -- Walk for the Bacon QRP Contest (CW)

  • January 6 -- QRP Fox Hunt (CW)

  • January 6 -- K1USN Slow Speed Test (CW)

  • January 7 -- PODXS 070 Club PSKFest (digital)

  • January 7 - 8 -- WW PMC Contest (CW, phone)

  • January 7 - 8 -- SKCC Weekend Sprintathon (CW)

  • January 7 -- RSGB AFS Contest (CW)

  • January 7 - 8 -- Original QRP Contest (CW, phone)

  • January 7 -- ARRL Kids Day (phone)

  • January 7 - 8 -- ARRL RTTY Roundup (digital)

  • January 7 - 8 -- EUCW 160-Meter Contest (CW)

  • January 8 -- NRAU-Baltic Contest, SSB (phone)

  • January 8 -- DARC 10-Meter Contest (CW, phone)

  • January 8 -- NRAU-Baltic Contest (CW)

  • January 9 -- 4 States QRP Group Second Sunday Sprint (CW, phone)

  • January 11 - 17 -- VHF-UHF FT8 Activity Contest (FT8)

Visit the ARRL Contest Calendar for more events and information.

Upcoming Section, State, and Division Conventions
  • January 7 | Ham Radio University, hosting the ARRL New York City-Long Island Section Convention, an online event

  • January 20 - 21 | Southwest Florida Regional Hamfest, hosting the ARRL Southern Florida Section Convention, Fort Myers, Florida

  • January 20 - 21 | Cowtown Hamfest, hosting the ARRL North Texas Section Convention, Forest Hill, Texas

  • January 27 - 28 | Capital City Hamfest 2023, hosting the ARRL Mississippi State Convention, Jackson, Mississippi

  • January 28 | Winterfest, hosting the ARRL Midwest Division Convention, Collinsville, Illinois

  • February 10 - 12 | Orlando HamCation, hosting the ARRL Southeastern Division Convention, Orlando, Florida

  • February 17 - 18 | LCARC Winter-Fest, ARRL Arkansas State Convention, Hoxie, Arkansas

  • February 25 | HAM-CON, hosting the ARRL Vermont State Convention, Colchester, Vermont

  • March 3 - 4 | BirmingHamfest, hosting the ARRL Alabama Section Convention, Trussville, Alabama

  • March 3 - 4 | Greater Houston HamFest, hosting the ARRL Texas State Convention, Rosenberg, Texas

Search the ARRL Hamfest and Convention Database to find events in your area.

Have News for ARRL?

Submissions for the ARRL Letter and ARRL News can be sent to -- John E. Ross, KD8IDJ, ARRL News Editor

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  • Listen to ARRL Audio News, available every Friday.

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The ARRL Letter

The ARRL Letter offers a weekly summary of essential news of interest to active amateurs that is available in advance of publication in QST, our official journal. The ARRL Letter strives to be timely, accurate, concise and readable.

Much of the ARRL Letter content is also available in audio form in ARRL Audio News.

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