Saturday, November 10, 2012

Skywarn Recognition Day

It is hard to believe but another SKYWARN Recognition Day is upon us. The following is the first in the series of updates on SKYWARN Recognition Day (SRD) 2012 and Echolink/IRLP operations. My apologies for the lateness in getting this first update out. The SRD event was confirmed in mid October and between that and Hurricane Sandy's impact on Southern New England and the New York City/Long Island/New Jersey area, this delayed getting this information out to you.

EchoLink and IRLP are just a couple of modes people can utilize to contact NWS offices during SKYWARN Recognition Day. Many NWS offices will be on 2 Meters, 440 MHz, HF and other VHF/UHF bands. Additional details on SKYWARN Recognition Day can be found via the following link:

As in past years, the EchoLink *WX_TALK* Node: 7203/IRLP reflector 9219 system will be scheduling time for NWS offices in 1-2 hour time slots to act as a net control to make contacts with spotters that are on the system. If a NWS office runs out of contacts and there are other NWS offices on the system, the NWS office acting as net control can turn it over to a different NWS office to act as a net control on the system at their discretion.

We'd like to ask NWS offices to do their best to adhere to the schedule. Sometimes this is difficult due to the number of contacts received by NWS offices. We ask for everyone's patience and working cooperatively to respect the time slot schedule.

Below is the SRD schedule from last year. We would like to know if NWS offices would like to keep their time slot or change time slots. A couple of NWS offices have already asked to keep their time slot. See the list of NWS offices below:

Time in UTC NWS Office Call-Sign
0000-0100: WX0GLD (Time slot from last year)
0100-0200: WX1GYX (Time slot from last year)
0200-0300: WX4MLB (Time slot from last year)
0300-0400: W0ABR  (Time slot from last year)
0400-0500: WX1BOX (Time slot from last year)
0500-0600: WX9GRB (Time slot from last year)
0600-0700: WX4HUN (Time slot from last year)
0700-0800: N0NWS  (Time slot from last year)
0800-0900: KL7FWX (Time slot from last year)
0900-1000: KL7FWX (Time slot from last year)
1000-1100: KL7FWX (Time slot from last year)
1100-1200: WX4HUN (Time slot from last year)
1200-1300: W7NWS  (Time slot from last year)
1300-1400: KL7FWX (Time slot from last year)
1400-1500: WX7SLC (Time slot from last year)
1500-1600: WX1BOX (Time slot from last year)
1600-1800: WX4NC  (Time slot from last year)
1800-1900: WX6MTR (Time slot from last year)
1900-2000: K0MPX  (Confirmed to keep the time slot)
2000-2100: WX4MLB (Time slot from last year)
2100-2300: WX4NHC (Time slot from last year)
2300-2400: WX6NWS (Time slot from last year)

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. This is a great place to move off the *WX_TALK* Node: 7203/IRLP 9219 system after your scheduled time if other Amateurs or NWS offices whish to make contact with you.

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. 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 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.

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!

Director of Operations for the VoIP Hurricane Net
ARES SKYWARN Coordinator for NWS Taunton Massachusetts
Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator