Hello to all….
For non-Amateur Radio SKYWARN Spotters, please note that through the gracious efforts of David-WD5M, the streaming audio feeds will be active with SRD activties from our net and from WX5FWD-Dallas-Fort Worth Texas operations. Below is a main link to the live feed server provided by David:
SKYWARN Recognition Day (SRD) will be held on Saturday December 6th, 2008 from 0000-2400 UTC which is 7 PM EST Friday December 5th through 7 PM EST Saturday December 6th. This will be the 10th anniversary of SKYWARN Recognition Day activities.
The *WX-TALK* Echolink Conference Node: 7203/IRLP reflector 9219 system will be utilized with a rotation of NWS Forecast Offices including the National Hurricane Center Amateur Radio Station, WX4NHC on that day. We hope to have NWS Forecast Offices on the system for the entire 24 hour period. If your NWS office is interested in participating on the network, please contact me. A number of NWS offices that were on the system last year will return to the system again this year and we may have a few new NWS offices on the system as well.
A NWS office is scheduled for a 1 or 2-hour time slot. If they run out of contacts, the NWS office that has that time slot can hand it off to another NWS office to make contacts for their rest of time period before handing it off to the next scheduled office. A schedule appears below and there are still three time slots available for any new NWS offices that would like the shifts or existing NWS offices that may want an additional shift. Here is the schedule:
Below is the latest 2008 SKYWARN Recognition Day Schedule on the Echolink Node: 7203 *WX-TALK* Conference/IRLP 9219 system.
Time in UTC NWS Office Call-Sign
0000-0100: WX0GLD (Change for this year)
0100-0200: WX1GYX (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
0200-0300: WX4MLB (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
0300-0400: KH6SW (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
0400-0500: KH6SW (Confirmed to kept the time slot)
0500-0600: WX9GRB (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
0600-0700: WX4HUN (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
0700-0800: N0NWS (Confirmed – new NWS Office)
0900-1000: WX7PHX (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
1200-1300: W7NWS (Confirmed – new NWS Office)
1300-1400: VE4WWO (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
1400-1500: WX4HUN (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
1500-1600: WX1BOX (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
1600-1800: WX4NC (Confirmed to keep the time slot, 2 hour time slot and time slot is from last year)
1800-1900: WX6MTR (Confirmed to take the time slot as a switch from WX0GLD)
1900-2000: K0MPX (Confirmed to keep a time slot and have switched to this time slot)
2000-2100: WX4MLB (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
2100-2300: WX4NHC (2 hour time slot is from last year and confirmed to keep the time slot)
2300-2400: W4IAX (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
There will be other conference systems utilized for SKYWARN Recognition Day. They are as follows:
The New England Reflector Gateway System will be utilized by the NWS Taunton, Mass. and NWS Gray, Maine offices from 0000-0500 UTC and 1200-2400 UTC. The New England Gateway system is on EchoLink Conference server *NEW-ENG* Node: 9123, IRLP reflector 9123. If other NWS offices would like to join the system, they are welcome to do so and participants in SKYWARN Recognition Day can also use that system to make contact with various NWS offices.
Also, the Western Reflector will be having NWS offices calling CQ as in past years on reflector 9250 and have its gateway system on IRLP 9258/EchoLink Conference *NV-GATE* Node: 125266 open for NWS offices. In addition, The NWS Honolulu, HI office, KH6SW, will be frequently monitoring the Hawaiian IRLP/EchoLink gateway system on IRLP reflector 9254/Echolink Conference *HI-GATE* Node: 357564 when they are not on the *WX-TALK*/IRLP 9219 system. Please contact Kent-W7AOR for additional information on the Western Reflector.
A few technical reminders for folks interested in making contacts with the NWS Forecast Offices on the *WX-TALK* Node: 7203/IRLP 9219 and New England Reflector Gateway IRLP 9123/*NEW-ENG* Echolink Node: 9123 systems:
-The system allows both EchoLink and IRLP connections. For EchoLink users, you connect to the *WX-TALK* Node: 7203 conference system. For IRLP users, you would connect to IRLP reflector 9219.
-If you are using EchoLink, the RF node or PC that you’re using must have EchoLink conferencing disabled. If it is not disabled, the system will automatically kick the node or PC off of the system.
The reason this occurs is to prevent unintentional interference from a conferencing station that may not know the node is connected somewhere else. This will keep traffic moving on the net and reduce interference considerably.
For more information on VoIP Technical Configuration Tips, please go to our web site at http://www.voipwx.net where we have a link to that information on the main menu of the web site. This announcement will also be on the web site.
Below is a link to an ARRL web page article on SRD 2008 and some background on the event:
There is also an article on SRD’2008 on page 55 of the December 2008 issue of QST Magazine.
Below is the ARES E-Letter Article on SRD 2008:
+ SKYWARN Recognition Day Celebrates Ten Years!
The 10th annual SKYWARN Recognition Day (SRD) special event will take place Saturday, December 6, 2008. SRD is co-sponsored by the National Weather Service and the ARRL. SKYWARN Recognition Day is a way to recognize the commitment made by Amateur Radio operators in helping keep their communities safe. During the 24-hour special event, Amateur Radio operators visit their local National Weather Service (NWS) office and work as a team to contact other hams across the world.
The original SRD concept took shape in the summer of 1999. Scott Mentzer, N0QE, Meteorologist-In-Charge of the NWS office in Goodland, Kansas was trying to think of a way to let storm spotters know how valuable their reports were to the National Weather Service. Since many of those storm spotters were also hams, it seemed like a natural fit for the recognition to be centered on Amateur Radio. Mentzer worked with Rick Palm, K1CE, of ARRL Headquarters, to formulate a plan.
With the approval of NWS headquarters and a commitment to participate from many local NWS offices, the first “National Weather Service Special Event” took place on November 27, 1999. At the end of the event, an amazing 15,888 QSOs were logged, with contacts made to all 50 states and 63 countries. The Des Moines forecast office took the honor of making the most contacts of any office that first year with 761 QSOs (and went on to lead the pack through 2003 by logging between 1300 and 1500 contacts each year).
Feedback from the first event was overwhelmingly positive from both the NWS staff and the local ham clubs. Suddenly there was incentive for more NWS staffers to either obtain a license or upgrade so that more people could work ham radio during severe events. In addition, many club members had never visited an NWS office, and they learned the value of their reports and how they were used in conjunction with existing technology.
And so began an annual tradition. The following year 85 of the 122 NWS offices participated in the event, making nearly 24,000 QSOs. Perhaps the most unusual one in 2000 was with an airliner 39,000 ft above Utah. The pilot ended the QSO with a request for a “spot weather forecast” for his arrival at Salt Lake City airport.
In 2001, the name of the event was changed to SKYWARN Recognition Day, which seemed to better relate what the day was all about. Each year since the inception of SRD, the number of NWS offices and local ham clubs participating has increased, until now over 100 offices sign up each year to take part. The most contacts made during any SRD occurred in 2006 when, thanks to the staff and local hams in the Grand Junction area, 1640 QSOs were logged!
Station call signs have also changed over the years. Some offices and clubs apply for a special event call sign such as W3B in Brownsville or N0Y in Aberdeen, South Dakota. Other call signs hint at office location, including WX9GRB in Green Bay and WX4NHC at the National Hurricane Center. Still others represent more of the big picture, as in KC0SKY in Pleasant Hill, Missouri.
Another change in recent years has been a greater use of digital communications in addition to CW, RTTY and packet radio. Each year more and more contacts are being made using Echolink, Winlink and the use of Reflectors.
2008 SKYWARN Recognition Day will be held from 0000 UTC to 2400 UTC December 6th. Last year contacts were made in all 50 states and 40 countries during the 24 hour event. If you haven’t joined in the fun, 2008 is your year! To learn more, check out our Web site:
— David Floyd, N5DBZ, Warning Coordination Meteorologist, NWS Goodland, Kansas
Further updates on SKYWARN Recognition Day 2008 will be posted over the next few weeks and we hope to hear you on the air for the event and we are looking forward to another fun SKYWARN Recognition Day on the *WX-TALK* Node: 7203/IRLP reflector 9219 system, New England Reflector Gateway system and Western Reflector system. Thanks to all for their support!
Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator
ARES SKYWARN Coordinator for NWS Taunton Massachusetts
Director of Operations for the VoIP Hurricane Net