ARRL Surveying Field Day Participants

The ARRL Programs and Services Committee is seeking input from stations and groups that participated in ARRL Field Day 2020 and 2021 and has posted a survey. The committee said the survey results may help shape the development of Field Day rules for 2022 and beyond. The survey has already been sent via email to some 13,000 Field Day participants, more than 2,400 Affiliated Clubs, and to the CQ-Contest and VHF-Contesting Reflectors.

“Specifically, as we look toward 2022 Field Day, health and social-distancing concerns may continue in June 2022 during the ongoing world pandemic,” said ARRL Radiosport Manager Bart Jahnke, W9JJ. “For 2023 and beyond, the assumption is made that the pandemic will be over, and COVID-related restrictions will be relaxed.”

Jahnke said the Programs and Services Committee invites participants’ insights, in advance of its January meeting, regarding what they consider appropriate for operating ARRL Field Day 2022 during the ongoing pandemic. The committee hopes to learn if participants prefer to continue Field Day under the pandemic accommodations afforded in 2020 and 2021, which included limiting home stations to the Low Power multiplier (150 W PEP), and whether stations in some classes or all other classes should be limited to 150 W PEP as well. Field Day stations operating at high power became the topic of some discussion in the wake of Field Day 2021, when some stations were reported to be running the legal limit on FT8 on crowded bands.

The committee is also interested in views on the 150 W versus 100 W change in the Field Day Low Power category definition, which is being implemented across all contest platforms.

During 2020 and 2021, ARRL permitted a couple of basic accommodations in the Field Day rules during the COVID outbreak.

Participants who could not or did not want to be in a group were allowed to operate from their home stations and contribute their individual scores to their club’s Field Day aggregate score. Members’ scores were combined to achieve an overall final club score, which then appeared in the ARRL Field Day results summary in QST and on the ARRL website.

In addition, Class D (Home, commercial power) stations were allowed to contact other Class D stations for point credit.

In 2021, Class D and Class E (Home, emergency power) stations were limited to a maximum transmitter output power of 150 W PEP (Low Power). The idea here was to minimize the advantage of well-established home stations with superior antenna systems and running up to the legal 1,500 W PEP limit, so they would not overpower Class A, B, C, or F stations on crowded bands.

Field Day participants may use this survey link or copy this URL into a web browser: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2022–ARRL-FIELD-DAY-SURVEY.

The survey will close on January 17, 2022. Direct any questions to the ARRL Contest Department.

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