RAC Canada 2020 Conference: Presentations now available for view

Canada 2020 Conference and AGM: Presentations now available on new RAC YouTube Channel

Radio Amateurs of Canada would like to thank all presenters, participants and volunteers for organizing and attending the RAC Canada 2020 Conference and Annual General Meeting.

All presentations are now available for viewing on the new RAC YouTube Channel.

Note: Unfortunately there was a problem with the recording of the FT8 DXing presentation by Ron Schwartz, VE3VN, and it cut off about halfway through. We are now looking into the problem. Stay tuned. The other presentations are now available for viewing on the new RAC YouTube Channel.

Please note that the videos are currently  in raw format and we hope to edit them at some time in the future. 

A detailed description of the presentations is provided below. 

Special thanks to all the presenters for rising to the challenge and creating great presentations under tight timelines while learning new technology at the same time. We realize that it was by no means an easy task and we thank you!

  • Tom Schuessler, N5HYP
  • Brian Jackson, VE6JBJ
  • Ron Thompson, VE8RT and Angela Gerbrandt, VY0YL
  • Phil A. McBride, VA3QR/VA3KPJ
  • Ron Schwartz, VE3VN
  • Cary Rubenfeld, VE4EA, Tom Haavisto, VE3CX and Gerry Hull, VE1RM;
  • Allan Boyd, VE3AJB
  • Chris Allingham, VE3FU/VO2AC
  • Kelly Shulman, VE3KLX
  • Guy Richard, VE2QG/VE2XTD
  • Allen Wootton, VY1KX

[RAC-Bulletin] Live at 1:15 pm EST today: Unveiling Ceremony to Commemorate Battle of Atlantic and Fern Blodgett Sunde

The ceremony and monument unveiling may be viewed live (and will be accessible after the event) on Cobourg Media Facebook and YouTube, or by accessing the links at:

Fern Blodgett Sunde Statue Unveiling Special


We cordially invite you to the virtual unveiling ceremony of the Fern Blodgett Sunde bronze monument, to be held today (Saturday, October 17, 2020) at 1:15 pm Eastern Daylight Time. The ceremony will take place in the meditation garden, Victoria Park, Cobourg, by Lake Ontario.

Fern Blodgett Sunde (1918-1991) grew up in Cobourg, with a dream of sailing the high seas. 

Determined to serve Canada when WWII broke out, she became the first Canadian woman to graduate with a professional wireless radio operator’s certificate, and the first woman ever to work deep sea as a ship’s radio operator (“Sparks”).

A fluke in Norwegian regulations, a shortage of radio operators, and her own persistence allowed her to sign onto the M/S Mosdale, a Norwegian merchant ship.

Fern carried out her duties with outstanding competence and great courage during the Battle of the Atlantic. It was incredibly dangerous, as Allied ships fighting to get personnel and crucial supplies to Britain faced U-boats, mined waters, enemy aircraft, and the perils of the sea as battlefield. 

Fern was aboard 78 of the Mosdale’s record 96 transatlantic crossings, opening the door to a sisterhood of Sparks. In 1943, she was awarded the Norwegian War Medal, the first woman ever to receive the honour.

Speakers will include His Excellency Jon Elvedal Fredriksen, Norway’s Ambassador to Canada; Rear-Admiral Jennifer Bennett, Royal Canadian Navy; Dr. Richard Gimblett, Command Historian of the Royal Canadian Navy (retired); Dr. Stéphanie Bélanger, Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research and Professor at the Royal Military College of Canada; Tyler Fauvelle, professional Canadian sculptor who created the monument.

Please join us! Soyez des nôtres en ligne pour cette celebration!

For more information about Fern Blodgett Sunde and her amazing achievement please visit:


Leona Woods, Chair and Helen Vari, Honourary Chair
Fern Blodgett Sunde and the Battle of the Atlantic Commemoration 2020

Alan Griffin
RAC MarCom Director


The Province of BC has five amateur radio groups registered to participate in this event. This annual event provides a time for radio groups to practice their emergency procedures and to raise awareness of their existence with the public. You can do it in an hour. COVID adds to the challenge. Surely we can do better than five groups for the entire province.


US FCC “Sunsets” Hams on 3.5 GHZ

ARRL Bulletin 28  ARLB028
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  October 8, 2020
To all radio amateurs

ARLB028 FCC Orders Amateur Access to 3.5 GHz Band to “Sunset”

Despite vigorous and continuing opposition from ARRL and others, the
FCC has ordered the “sunsetting” of the 3.3 – 3.5-GHz amateur radio
secondary spectrum allocation. The decision allows current amateur
activity on the band to continue, “grandfathering” the amateur
operations subject to a later decision. The FCC proposed two
deadlines for amateur operations to cease on the band. The first
would apply to the 3.4 – 3.5 GHz segment, the second to 3.3 – 3.4
GHz. The FCC will establish the dates once it reviews additional

“We adopt our proposal from the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to
remove the amateur allocation from the 3.3 – 3.5 GHz band,” the FCC
said in its R&O. “[W]e adopt changes to our rules today that provide
for the sunset of the secondary amateur allocation in the band, but
allow continued use of the band for amateur operations, pending
resolution of the issues raised in the Further Notice.”

The Report and Order (R&O) and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking
in WT Docket No. 19-348 adopted on September 30 followed a 2019 FCC
Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in which the FCC proposed
re-allocating 3.45 – 3.55 GHz for “flexible-use service” and
auctioning the desirable “mid-band” spectrum (generally defined as
between 1 GHz and 6 GHz) to 5G providers. These and other recent
spectrum-repurposing actions stem from the MOBILE NOW Act, enacted
in 2018, in which Congress directed the Commission to make
additional spectrum available to auction for mobile and fixed
wireless broadband. The FCC action is consistent with worldwide
allocations adopted by the ITU for these frequencies.

The Report and Order can be found online in PDF format at,
https://ecfsapi.fcc.gov/file/1002214202488/FCC-20-138A1.pdf .

In the run-up to the Commission’s decision, ARRL met with the FCC’s
professional staff to explain its concerns and to answer questions.
Subsequently, ARRL met with the wireless advisors to the FCC
Chairman and two Commissioners. In those meetings, ARRL reiterated
that continued secondary status for amateurs will not impair or
devalue use of this spectrum by the primary licensees intending to
provide 5G or other service. ARRL noted amateur radio’s long history
of successful coexistence with primary users of the 9 cm band,
sharing this spectrum with the federal government users and
secondary, non-federal occupants.

ARRL pointed out that vital links in amateur television and amateur
radio high-speed mesh networks using the band have been especially
valuable during such emergency situations as the wildfires currently
raging on the west coast. Deleting the amateur secondary allocation
will result in lost opportunities for experimentation and public
service with no public interest benefit to make up for that.

ARRL argued that deleting the secondary allocation would waste the
scarce spectrum resource, particularly in areas where commercial
services often do not construct full facilities due to small
populations. The FCC action means that amateur radio will lose
access to the 3.5-GHz secondary allocation even where commercial
operations do not exist. ARRL told the Commission that it should not
intentionally allow this spectrum to be vacant and unused, wasting
the public resource, when amateurs can use some portion of it in
many geographic areas with no detriment to any other licensee, just
as it has in the past. ARRL argues that amateur operations should be
permitted until and unless an actual potential for interference

Deletion of the 3.3 – 3.5 GHz secondary amateur allocation will
become effective on the effective date of the FCC’s order, but
amateur radio operation as of that date may continue while the FCC
finalizes rules to license spectrum in the 3.45 – 3.55 GHz band and
establishes deadlines for amateur operations to cease. The FCC
proposed allowing amateur operation in the 3.3 – 3.4 GHz portion of
the band to continue “pending further decisions about the future of
this portion of the spectrum,” the timing for which is unknown. The
Commission proposed to mandate that operations cease in the 3.4 –
3.5 GHz portion when commercial licensing commences for the new 3.45
– 3.55 GHz “5G” band, which is predicted to begin in the first half
of 2022.

“[W]e seek comment on whether it is in the public interest to sunset
amateur use in the 3.3 – 3.55 GHz band in two separate phases, e.g.,
first above 3.4 GHz, which is the focus of [the R&O] and later in
that portion of the band below 3.4 GHz,” the FCC said.

ARRL expressed gratitude to the many members and organizations that
joined ARRL in challenging the FCC throughout this nearly year-long
proceeding. They included multiple radio clubs, weak signal
enthusiasts, moonbounce participants, and the Amateur Radio
Emergency Data Network (AREDN), the Amateur Television Network
(ATN), AMSAT, and Open Research Institute (ORI).

ARRL will continue its efforts to preserve secondary amateur radio
access to 3.3 – 3.5 GHz. Members are invited to share comments by
visiting http://www.arrl.org/3-GHz-Band .

“We recognize that any loss of our privileges will most directly
impact radio amateurs who use the frequencies to operate and
innovate,” said ARRL President Rick Roderick, K5UR. “Such instances
only embolden ARRL’s role to protect and advocate for the Amateur
Radio Service and Amateur Satellite Service. There will be continued
threats to our spectrum. So I urge all amateurs, now more than ever,
to strengthen our hold by being ceaseless in our public service,
experimenting, and discovery throughout the radio spectrum.”

Update on Simulated Emergency Test: Saturday, October 31 2020

Update on Simulated Emergency Test: Saturday, October 31
Note: October 28 SET is not taking place

Update on Simulated Emergency Test: Saturday, October 31


For immediate release:

For what is certainly the first time in history, the upcoming Simulated Emergency Test (SET) will be held during a real global pandemic – not a simulation.

The SET is a North America-wide exercise in emergency communications, which is administered by Radio Amateurs of Canada (RAC) and the American Radio Relay League (ARRL).

There are different circumstances throughout the country and the various levels of governments (local, municipal, provincial/territorial and federal) continue to monitor the situation and develop strategies designed to ensure our safety while reducing the impact on the economy. It is of utmost importance, therefore, that all participants ensure that they stay safe and respect the specific rules and requirements in their jurisdiction – municipal, provincial, territorial or federal.

The rise in COVID-19 cases in various jurisdictions in Canada – and especially in Ontario and Quebec – has led to new restrictions and guidelines. These new policies include such items as the upper limit on the number of people allowed to gather and the closure of public buildings.

In Ontario, the Simulated Emergency Test will continue to be held on Saturday, October 31,  but the initial plan to hold the SET on Wednesday, October 28 in some areas has been cancelled since access to Emergency Operations Centres located in Municipal offices is no longer permitted.

SET Theme: A Severe Winter Storm

Planning for the SET

In Canada, the Simulated Emergency Test is administered by Emergency Coordinators (EC) and Net Managers (NM). This year I am encouraging all Emergency Coordinators to do a theme-based operation and to plan each stage using what 2020 has shown you so far and try to anticipate the next potential risk.

Starting from the Call-Out to your After-Action Reports, all teams across Canada must use the following common theme: a severe winter storm. We have provided some examples of severe winter storms on the RAC website to help you with the planning process.

Emergency Coordinators will be required to include a COVID-19 plan as part of their SET plan. As indicated above, all participants in the SET must follow the guidelines provided by the government and health officials in their respective area. The plan should include an outline covering social/physical distancing if operating outside a member’s personal residence.

A copy of the local Health Authority’s COVID-19 recommendations will be emailed to all members participating in the SET. An email list showing receipt of these instructions from all members participating in the SET will be kept by the Emergency Coordinator.

Please assess your local situation and address safety concerns according to local Health guidelines. If possible, please take part in the SET from your home or vehicle. 

As indicated above, all Emergency Operations Centres and served agencies’ stations (for example, the Red Cross, Emergency Social Services etc) will need to be simulated during the SET.

Unless you are participating in the SET from your own home or vehicle, you are required to wear a mask and follow all local Health Authority Guidelines.

For complete information about the upcoming SET on Saturday, October 31 please visit the RAC website at the links provided below:

Important Update:

Update on Simulated Emergency Test: Saturday, October 31


Main SET webpage:

Simulated Emergency Test: October 31


Jason Tremblay, VE3JXT
RAC Community Services Officer 


Alan Griffin
RAC MarCom Director


The following items are for sale. These items are being handled by Mike Hale VE7GN. If you are interested please contact Mike direct at the email noted.

Sold 2 $20.00 POWER METER HP 436A
Sold 7 $
Sold 8 $
10 $20.00 VHF OSCILLATOR HP 3200B
11 $50.00 RACAL-DANA COUNTER 1992
Sol4 14 $150.00 KNIGHT ML2010 MINI LAB
MIKE VE7GN ve7gn@shaw.ca

Registration for the Fall 2020 RAC Advanced Course Ends Oct 8 2020

The class will start on October 4 and 5, but we will accept latecomers. Registration will end on Tuesday, October 8.

We are also now working on another Basic Qualification Amateur Radio Course which will begin sometime in January. Stay tuned to the RAC website for additional information.

Additional information:

In response to the global pandemic, Radio Amateurs of Canada is once again offering an onlineAdvanced Qualification Amateur Radio Course so that individuals can upgrade their qualifications while continuing to practise social/physical distancing. 

With your Advanced Certificate, you can run higher power, operate a remotely-controlled station, obtain operating privileges when travelling overseas, set up repeaters, be the trustee for club stations and even become an Accredited Examiner. 

Course information:

The course will be 10 sessions in length and each session will be two hours long.

In order to offer maximum flexibility, we will be running two Advanced courses so students will be able to choose one of the following two options:

  • Sunday afternoons from 3 pm to 5 pm EDT (12 pm PDT) starting on Sunday, October 4, 2020 ending on Sunday, January 3, 2021


  • Monday evenings from 8:30 pm to 10:30 pm EDT (5:30 PDT) starting on Monday, October 5, 2020 and ending on Monday, January 4, 2021.

Note: There will be no sessions on Thanksgiving weekend, the weekend after Christmas or during the weekends of the CQ WW DX SSB and CW contests as follows: October 11 and 12; October 25 and 26; November 29 and 30; and December 27 and 28.

The course instructor is Dave Goodwin, VE9CB. Dave has been an Amateur since 1975, is an active HF Contester and DXer and has many other interests in Amateur Radio. Since 2015, Dave has been teaching Basic and Advanced certification courses with the Fredericton (NB) Amateur Radio Club. He is also RAC’s Atlantic Director.

Course Requirements:

The RAC Advanced Qualification Amateur Radio course is being offered at no charge to RAC Maple Leaf Operator Members – both current and future as described below. 

Participants in the course will need to meetall of the following requirements:

  1. Participants must already have the Canadian Basic Certificate of Proficiency in Amateur Radio and a Canadian call sign.
  2. Participants must already be a RAC Maple Leaf Operator Member or become one by joining RAC at the Maple Leaf Operator level or upgrading to that level.
  3. Participants must have a copy of the Canadian Amateur Radio Advanced Qualification Study Guide provided by Coax Publications. For more information please visit the RAC Study Guides webpage.
  4. Participants must have a computer and Internet connection capable of using the GoToMeeting (GTM) conference platform. You do not need your own account on GTM to take part in this course, but you will have to download an applet from the GTM site to participate.  
  5. Participants must have a working email address to receive course materials and links to the sessions.

For more information about the course please visit the Advanced Course webpage at:

Registration for RAC Advanced Amateur Radio Course ends October 8


Glenn MacDonell, VE3XRA
RAC President and Chair

Coast Emergency Communications Association