The American Radio Relay League (ARRL) published proposed changes to the US HF band plan for comment in the April edition of QST. Being proactive, the RAC Band Planning Committee reviewed their proposals for potential impacts on Canadian Amateurs.
Most of the proposed ARRL changes increase the sub-bands allocated to digital operations by extending the existing frequency limits upwards into band segments usually used for phone communications outside the US. While the RAC Band Planning Committee understands and supports the ARRL’s goal to provide additional space to accommodate the growth in digital modes, the proposed changes will have unintended consequences. As Canadian phone operations in the 80m and 40m bands take place primarily below the current US phone sub-bands to minimize mutual interference, the effect of the proposed changes would be to reduce the space available to Canadian Amateurs. On 40m and 20m, the proposed changes would also negatively impact DX phone operations throughout the Americas, and the rest of the world.
RAC has formally communicated our concerns to ARRL with the request that they include these concerns in their consideration of any changes to the US sub-bands.
George Gorsline, VE3YV
RAC International Affairs Officer