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CQ Amateur Radio

CQ Amateur Radio February 2020

CQ is the magazine for active hams, with a focus on the practical. Every article is clearly written and aimed at involving you, the reader...whether it's a story of operating from some exotic location, an article to deepen your understanding of ham radio science and technology, or a fun-to-build project that will have practical use in your ham shack. Join us on our monthly journey through the broad and varied landscape of the world's most fascinating hobby!

Country:
United States
Language:
English
Publisher:
CQ Communications, Inc.
Frequency:
Monthly
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12 Issues

in this issue

13 min.
announcements

FEBRUARY NORTH CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA — The Charleston Amateur Radio Society will hold the 47th Annual Charleston Hamfest and Computer Show from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, February 1 at the Armory Park Community Center, 500 Lackawanna Boulevard. Contact: Steven LaMendola, KE4THX, (336) 740-4382. Email: <steven.lamendola@gmail.com>. Talk-in 146.790-, 146.940-(PL 123), or 147.045+ (PL 103.5). VE exams, card checking. SPRINGFIELD, VERMONT — The Connecticut Valley FM Association will hold its Amateur Radio Swap Fest beginning 8 a.m., Saturday, February 1 at the VFW Post 771, 191 River Road. Email: <swapmeet@cvfma.org>. Website: <www.cvfma.org>. Talk-in 146.760-(PL 110.9). WORLDWIDE — The Fourth Annual AM Rally will kick off 0000 UTC, Saturday, February 1 and run through 0700 UTC, Monday, February 3 to encourage use of AM. Activity will be on the 160-, 80-, 40-, 20-, 15-,…

7 min.
ham radio news

Hams Provide Emergency Communications in Australia, Puerto Rico Ham radio is once again proving to be a vital communications resource in disasters, with amateurs supporting relief efforts for both Australia’s wildfires and the series of earthquakes that rocked Puerto Rico in January. The ARRL Letter reports that hams in Australia were working with the New South Wales Volunteer Rescue Association in support of the Rural Fire Service. In addition, the Wireless Institute of Australia reports that most of the amateur repeater network in the state of Victoria is off the air, due to a combination of power outages and direct fire damage. In Puerto Rico, hams are working with the American Red Cross, primarily on the southern part of the island, which has suffered the greatest earthquake damage. In addition, the ARRL…

3 min.
news bytes

Electricity Underfoot! In his column this month (p. 105), Propagation Editor Tomas Hood, NW7US, discusses the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) on which the solar wind travels, and the fact that it resembles a wavy sheet, with a positive polarity on one side and a negative polarity on the other. When the Earth passes through one of these waves, it results in a quick flip-flop of the field’s polarity as measured here, and that can have significant effects on the ground. An apparent example occurred early this year. Spaceweather.com reported that, on January 6, electrical currents began flowing through the ground in Norway. Researcher Rob Stammes of the Polarlight-center geophysical observatory <www.polarlightcenter.com> reported measuring “a sudden strong variation in both ground currents and our local magnetic field” (see graph). Just 15 minutes earlier,…

5 min.
the power of less power

Welcome to this year’s QRP Special. Low-power communication has been an essential element of amateur radio since its earliest days, and CQ’s coverage of it goes back to our very early days as well. The first mention is in the May 1947 DX column, about a ham operating from post-war Macau — then a Portuguese enclave on the coast of China — as CR9AN. He was running 20 watts, which was considered QRP at the time. There were many other mentions of QRP operating over the years, but it wasn’t until 1973 that we started a regular QRP column here in CQ. That first column, by Ade Weiss, K8EEG, appears elsewhere in this issue as one of our two “CQ Classic” articles this month. The second is “The Song of…

14 min.
“i’ll either get it done with qrp or it won’t happen!”

“Each QSO becomes an accomplishment instead of just another routine entry in your log.” An Interview With Two QRP Aficionados Many folks find February dull and dreary, but it is one of my favorite months. As a QRP operator, I look forward to the February issue of CQ, as it is dedicated to low-power communication with a focus on the equipment and fun in making contacts with just a fraction of the power most hams use. I already know what you are thinking and before you can ask your question, I will answer it for you … Yes, you can make contacts using only a few watts of power output. A good radiator, an efficient feedline, and the mindset that you can make contacts at QRP levels is all you need…

8 min.
intense dxing from cannon mountain

“Tell me everything.” That’s what I heard when I answered the phone yesterday morning. It was my pal and good friend, Jim Cluett, W1PID. He wanted to know how we could take advantage of a stunning summer day here in central New Hampshire. The forecast was for 80° F and sunny skies. We both know from experience that in just a few short months, we’d be longing for a warm sunny day as the cold November rains turn into dreadful December snow and ice. “I don’t know about you, but I’m going to ride the tram up to the top of Cannon Mountain to work some European radio stations,” I said. “What time are we leaving?” Jim blurted out after a momentary pause. His brain was whirring away at the possibilities the adventure might…