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Hancock hams preparing for annual Field Day

NEWELL, W.Va. — Members of the Hancock AuxComm Team will be participating in the national Amateur Field Day at Clarke Field here starting at 2 p.m. Saturday, June 27, and remaining on the air until 2 p.m. Sunday, June 28. Social distancing will be observed.

Since 1933, ham radio operators across North America have established temporary ham radio stations in public locations during the annual Field Day Exercise to showcase the science and skill of Amateur Radio. This event is open to the public and we encourage everyone to come out and see what ham radio is all about. There will be hands on demonstrations in using ham radio with the opportunity for unlicensed individuals to Get On The Air and make a contact or two.

Field Day demonstrates ham radio’s ability to work reliably under any conditions from almost any location and create an independent communications network. Over 40,000 people from thousands of locations participated in Field Day 2019. “It’s easy for anyone to pick up a computer or smartphone, connect to the internet and communicate, with no knowledge of how the devices function or connect to each other,” said Dave Isgur of the American Radio Relay League, the national association for Amateur Radio. “But if there’s an interruption of your service or you’re out of range of a cell phone tower, you have no way to communicate. Ham radio functions completely independent of the internet of cell phone infrastructure, can interface with tablets or smartphones, can be set up almost anywhere in minutes. That’s the beauty of Amateur Radio during communications outage.”

Hams can literally throw a wire over a tree for an antenna, connect it to a battery operated transmitter and communicate half way around the world. Ham’s do this by using a layer of the Earth’s atmosphere as a sort of mirror for radio waves.

Anyone can become a licensed Amateur Radio Operator. There are over 725,000 licensed hams in the United States, as young as 5 and as old as 100. With clubs like the Hancock AuxComm Team it’s easy for anyone to get involved, right here in Hancock County.

For more information about Field Day, contact Roy Polmanteer at HancockAuxcomm@Gmail.com or 520-709-0713 or visit www.arrl.org/what-isham-radio.

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