Capital Area Kids’ Net

Capital Area Kids' Net logoThe first session of the Capital Area Kids’ Net will take place on Sunday, May 22, at 7:30 pm. The target group for this net is elementary & middle school aged children who check in with an adult control operator, but any licensed amateurs are welcome to check in. The goal of the net is to provide a positive experience of amateur radio for kids in this age group with the hopes that they will want to further explore the hobby.

This will be a directed net where adult control operators will be asked to check in and say the first names of any children with them who wish to participate. Every week will feature a kid-friendly question to encourage a little more than just single word responses (The question on May 22 will be “What’s you favorite kind of pizza?”).

The net will take place every Sunday evening at 7:30 pm on the KA1OKQ repeater in Pembroke, NH (147.225 MHz, minus offset, 100Hz tone) and is sponsored by the Capital Area Repeater Society. This repeater has a fairly wide coverage area, so please help us spread the word!

If you would like to receive email announcements about this net, please send me a note at

Jock Irvine, N1JI

Project “Big E” Receives Approval for Hosting an ARISS Contact!

Larry Krainson, W1AST, writes on the Project Big E list:

I just received word that the Big E Booth’s application for an ARISS [Amateur Radio on the International Space Station] contact has been APPROVED! 

We’re working closely with New England Sci-Tech President Bob Phinney, K5TEC, and our New England Division Director Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC, to make this happen.

We’re very excited as you all should be too!

There is still much to plan and put in place.

But a great way to start your Sunday!

[For more information about the Amateur Radio presence at the Big E, and to get involved, see <>.]

Amateur Radio Activities at CONNJAM, May 14, 2022

Connecticut Section Youth Coordinator Douglas Sharafanowich, WA1SFH, writes:

CONNJAM 2022 is less than  3 Weeks Out. Saturday – May 14, 2022 7 am – 4 pm

Ham Radio Volunteers Wanted to “Share the Magic”

Here is a great opportunity for you to be part of a team effort that will showcase a variety of Amateur Radio Activities to Scouts of all levels at their BIG Camporee in Orange.

CONNJAM happens only once every 3 or 4 years, and is sponsored by the BSA Connecticut Yankee Council. They are expecting about 2,500 scouts to attend, and we need your help to run a variety of Amateur Radio Activities for them. In fact, for most scouts, this will be their first time being exposed to Amateur Radio.


2 Ways to Volunteer:  On-Site + Off-Site

On-Site Volunteer Activities

  • Amateur Radio Direction Finding (aka: Fox hunting).
  • Teach scouts the basics and send them off to find the Lost Patrol (Fox hunting experience required)
  • Morse Code
  • Teach scouts how to send their name in CW
  • Very Easy. If you can say “DIT” and “DAH”, demonstrate the CW Practice Key (provided), and have a Beginner / “Novice” level knowledge of Morse Code, then you qualify.
  • 2 VHF/UHF GOTA Stations
  • Need Hams to help scouts have an ON THE AIR conversation with other stations.

Off-site Volunteer Activity (VHF/UHF FM and DMR)

  • Operate from Home/Mobile/Portable
  • Sign up to take a 1 hour Shift
  • Monitor local Repeaters from Norwalk to Killingworth and have short conversations with scouts.

Available 1 Hour Slots

Morning:    9 am, 10 am, 11 am     Afternoon: 1 pm,  2 pm,  3 pm
Let me know which time slot works best for you. (

Having Amateur Radio activities at CONNJAM 2022 is going to be a lot of fun!
Whether you are On-Site or Off-Site, you will have the opportunity to “Share The Magic” of Amateur Radio and “Excite” the imagination of many Scouts… possibly planting the seed for them getting their license.

To JOIN US, please contact me at my Event Email Address:

Thank you.

73, Douglas Sharafanowich – WA1SFH

Amateur Radio Coordinator – CONNJAM 2022

New England STEM/Youth Meeting, April 20, 2022

Dan Norman, N0HF, Assistant Director for Youth and STEM Outreach, will moderate a Zoom meeting on Wednesday, April 20 at 7 PM EST (~1.5 hrs) to discuss: youth involvement in clubs and other organizations, thoughts and comments on what is working and what plans and ideas people have.

He’s invited several guest speakers who will share their involvement and experiences.

“We have a great group of dedicated youth leaders across New England to learn from,” writes Dan.  “I look forward to meeting you.”

For Zoom details, contact dan at

Important Message from ARRL VEC

ARRL logoImportant Message from ARRL VEC

By Maria Somma, AB1FM, ARRL VEC Manager

The FCC released a Public Notice on March 23, 2022, stating that the amateur radio application fees, including those associated with Form 605 application filings, would become effective on April 19, 2022. The Federal Communications Commission’s authority to impose and collect fees is mandated by Congress.

The $35 application fee, when it becomes effective on April 19, will apply to new, renewal, and modification applications that request a new vanity call sign. The fee will be per application.

Administrative updates, such as a change of name, mailing or email address, and modification applications to upgrade an amateur radio licensee’s operator class*, will be exempt from fees. (*this new information was just confirmed by FCC staff on Tuesday, March 29.)

VECs and Volunteer Examiner (VE) teams will not have to collect the $35 fee at exam sessions.

Once the FCC application fee takes effect, new applicants will pay the $15 exam session fee to the ARRL VE team as usual and pay the $35 application fee directly to the FCC by using the CORES FRN Registration system. VEC and VE team licensing procedures will not change.

When the FCC receives the examination information from the VEC, it will email a link with payment instructions to each qualifying candidate. The candidate will have 10 calendar days, from the date of the application file number being issued, to pay. After the fee is paid, and the FCC has processed an application, examinees will receive a second email from the FCC with a link to their official license or, in very rare instances, an explanation for why the application was dismissed or denied. The link will be valid for 30 days.

Per usual procedures, examinees that pass multiple exams at one session, will have one application transmitted to the FCC reflecting the highest-level license class earned. Again, our procedures will not change. The new license candidates will have an extra step before the license is issued. VE teams can point candidates to our FCC Application Fee webpage. Our new ARRL VEC CSCEs also include information about the application fee and points candidates to the webpage. The FCC rule pertaining to CSCEs will not change. CSCE credit will continue to be valid for 365 days, starting from the date of issuance.

For VE teams holding exam sessions the weekend before April 19, the FCC advised that applications not received by the FCC before April 19 will be subjected to the fee. The ARRL VEC urges teams to upload sessions via our documents upload page to get your sessions to us as quickly as possible. Assuming the FCC electronic batch filing (EBF) system is functioning properly on Monday, April 18, the VEC staff will work to get these to the FCC before April 19. Email the VEC department at for the upload instructions.

Additionally, the FCC stated that the fee for applications processed and dismissed will not be refundable. This includes vanity requests where the applicant does not receive the requested call sign. However, returned applications that are missing information will not require an additional fee, if the missing information is submitted to the FCC within the proper amount of time.

Youth Licensing Grant Program

Anticipating the implementation of the fee in 2022, the ARRL Board of Directors, approved the ARRL Youth Licensing Grant Program in July 2021. Under the program, ARRL will cover a one-time $35 application fee for license candidates younger than 18-years old for tests administered under the auspices of the ARRL Volunteer Examiner Coordinator (ARRL VEC). Qualified candidates also would pay a reduced exam session fee of $5 to the ARRL VEC. ARRL is finalizing details for administering the program.

Further news and instructions will follow as the FCC releases them. Details for the ARRL Youth Licensing Grant Program will be posted when available. For additional information, visit the resources below.

ARRL VEC Application Fees webpage:

ARRL News Story:

FCC CORES Video Tutorials:

FCC Registration Help:

Amateur Extra “Continuous” License Classes Online, March-November, 2022 at New England Sci-Tech in Natick, MA


    From England Sci Tech logo


This ONLINE ham radio license course will get you ready to take the Ham Radio AMATEUR EXTRA license exam, the THIRD of three certification levels. Geared toward adults, as well as junior high, high school, and home-school students. Yes, we give online ham radio exams, too! (See below)

This is a FULL course taught by a 40-yr veteran teacher, not a discussion group or video service. You will learn much more than just watching a video or buying a book. You get a full 24 hours of instruction over eight 3-hour classes. Take the course from anywhere – it’s ONLINE!

Topics range from the science of radio electronics to the FCC rules governing the radio spectrum. Recommended text: ARRL Extra Class License Manual, 12th edition, for exams through June 30, 2024, (purchase on ARRL website). Regular practice and study is necessary to get the best results from this course.

[Full story]

ARISS is Accepting Proposals for ISS Amateur Radio Contacts with Astronauts on the ISS

The next proposal window for US schools and educational organizations to host an Amateur Radio contact with a crew member on board the ISS opened on February 21, 2022, for contacts to be scheduled for January 1, 2023 – June 30, 2023. Proposals are due to ARISS by March 31, 2022, at 11:59 PM Pacific Time. Kathy Lamont, KM4TAY and Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC, held an orientation session to help groups who want to apply for a contact to learn about the ISS contact process and to help them to prepare their applications. You can view the orientation session by clicking on the video below.

Working with a school or youth group to host an Amateur Radio Contact with the ISS is a great way for Amateur Radio Club to build a relationship with a school around STEM learning through Amateur Radio.

You can learn more about how to prepare a contact proposal and download the contact proposal template. You can also contact Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC, at if you have questions about applying for or hosting an Amateur Radio contact with astronauts on the ISS.



Dan Norman, N0HF Appointed Assistant Director for Youth Outreach

ARRL logoNew England Division Director Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC, has announced the appointment of Dan Norman, N0HF, Preston, Connecticut, as Assistant Director for Youth Outreach.

“I am pleased to have Dan Norman, N0HF join the ARRL New England Division team,” said Fred. “Dan’s experience and accomplishments in engaging young people in Amateur Radio activities and learning makes him a great choice for this role.”

Dan has served as an Elmer at BARC Jr. (Boulder Amateur Radio club for kids), NØQCX, by providing guidance with balloon launches, license preparation, contesting, Field Day, fox hunts, Dayton Youth Forum prep, and CW proficiency.  He managed many equipment donations and hamfest activities to fund the BARC youth club. Dan served as the club trustee for BARC (ham radio club WØDK) and maintained repeater systems for the group. Dan also served as president of his college Amateur Radio club, W1PTC, in Boston. He enjoys HF and VHF contesting in all modes.

Dan joins three other talented New England amateurs who serve as Assistant Directors in the division.

[See also: “New Assistant Director Appointments“]

AB1OC Helps Prepare Students for ARISS Contact at Sussex County Charter School for Technology, Sparta, NJ, February 23, 2022

ARISS logoNew England Division Director Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC, writes:

“It’s been my pleasure to work with the Sussex County Charter School for Technology (SCCST), as their ARISS Mentor, to prepare for their contact. The school has partnered with the Sussex County Amateur Radio Club to build a ground station which they will use to make their contact. Club members have also worked closely with the school to provide many Amateur Radio activities for SCCST students. The school has formed an Amateur Radio club at the school and conducted Amateur Radio activities as part of an outstanding STEM learning program. Working with a school such as SCCST is a great way for a local amateur radio club to build a strong, ongoing relationship with a group of young people interested in Amateur Radio.”

The downlink from the astronaut may be heard in New England on 145.800 MHz. The livestream will start at 9:50 AM and the ISS pass will start at 10:31 AM.

ARISS News Release No. 22-11
Dave Jordan, AA4KN


ARISS Contact is Scheduled for Students at Sussex County Charter School for Technology, Sparta, NJ, USA

February 21, 2022—Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) has received schedule confirmation for an ARISS radio contact with astronauts. ARISS is the group that puts together special amateur radio contacts between students around the globe and crew members with ham radio licenses on the International Space Station (ISS).

This will be a direct contact via amateur radio between students at the Sussex County Charter School for Technology, Sparta, New Jersey and Astronaut Mark Vande Hei, amateur radio call sign KG5GNP. Students will take turns asking their questions. Local Covid-19 protocols are adhered to as applicable for each ARISS contact. The downlink frequency for this contact is 145.800 MHz and may be heard by listeners that are within the ISS-footprint that also encompasses the radio relay ground station.

Amateur radio operators, using the call sign KD2YAQ, will operate the ham radio ground station for this contact.

The ARISS radio contact is scheduled for February 23, 2022 at 10:31 am EST (New Jersey), (15:31 UTC, 9:31 am CST, 8:31 am MST and 7:31 am PST).

Sussex Charter School for Technology (SCCST) is a STEM-focused, rural middle school in Sparta, NJ, serving 225 students. In preparation for this ARISS contact, through hands-on activities and class instruction, students worked with the local HAM radio club, high school, and university Physics departments to learn more about radio communications and solar influence on such communications. Members of the Sussex County Amateur Radio Club are supplying the direct contact equipment and will be conducting the ISS radio contact. New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) has partnered with the school to introduce modules on space weather, solar cycles and ionospheric phenomena into their curriculum. Faculty members of NJIT’s amateur radio club, K2MFF, are founding members of HamSCI, and will lead the NJIT-SCCST collaboration and assist in the ARISS event and follow-up activities. Sussex County Technical School is their neighboring vocational/technical high school, and will provide filming and streaming capabilities.

The public is invited to watch the live stream at:

As time allows, students will ask these questions:

  1. Do you have any telescopes on the ISS and, if so, how far can they see?
  2. In the event of space debris, asteroids, or solar flares collisions, what are the safety protocols or systems to ensure the astronaut’s/cosmonaut’s safety in situations like that?
  3. How do you exercise on the space station if there’s no gravity?
  4. What science experiments are you working on that will have an impact on the future?
  5. How do you feel about private space companies trying to make space travel open to civilians?
  6. What is the best space food you’ve eaten, and do you notice any improvement in the quality of the food since the Deep Space food challenge started?
  7. How often do you need to communicate with the Earth (Mission control)?
  8. What would you do if the communication with Mission Control broke down and you couldn’t communicate with Earth?
  9. Being that you see 16 sunrises and sunsets in each day, how do you regulate your sleep schedule?
  10. What steps are taken on the ISS to shield you from the pathway of the Sun’s radiation?
  11. How do astronauts control the robotic arm on the outside of the space station? Do you use a computer program or use a joystick like on a game controller?
  12. Who put the first pieces of the International Space Station together and will any of it be reused after the mission ends?
  13. How do astronauts maintain good hygiene on the ISS if there are no showers?
  14. What happens if an astronaut gets a serious virus or other illness while they are on the ISS?
  15. What is your least favorite chore or dangerous task that you do in space?
  16. What are the legal parameters followed in regards to the fly zones? If something should go wrong, while over a country other than the U.S., what fly zone rules are followed for legal purposes?
  17. How did your parents react when you arrived at the space station or when you left them?
  18. Considering the limited amount of your own items you can bring along with you from Earth, can you share with us one of the items you brought?
  19. What are the negative physical impacts on your body of being in space and does it go back to normal when you’re back on Earth?
  20. Would you let your own young kids, nieces, or nephews go to space if young people were given an opportunity to do so?
  21. If you could change one thing about space travel what would that be?

About ARISS:

Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) is a cooperative venture of international amateur radio societies and the space agencies that support the International Space Station (ISS). In the United States, sponsors are the Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation (AMSAT), the American Radio Relay League (ARRL), the ISS National Lab-Space Station Explorers, Amateur Radio Digital Communications (ARDC) and NASA’s Space communications and Navigation program. The primary goal of ARISS is to promote exploration of science, technology, engineering, the arts, and mathematics topics. ARISS does this by organizing scheduled contacts via amateur radio between crew members aboard the ISS and students. Before and during these radio contacts, students, educators, parents, and communities take part in hands-on learning activities tied to space, space technologies, and amateur radio. For more information, see

Youth Preparedness Council Applicants Sought

Youth Preparedness Council videoThe Youth Preparedness Council (YPC) was created in 2012 to bring together youth leaders interested in supporting disaster preparedness and making a difference in their communities by completing disaster preparedness projects nationally and locally.

The council supports FEMA’s commitment to involve America’s youth in preparedness-related activities. It also provides young people an opportunity to present their perspectives, feedback, and opinions to FEMA staff.  Members regularly meet with staff and attend the annual Youth Preparedness Council virtual summit. [Full story]