Huntsville to Host Global EmComm Conference in August.  The 2007 Global Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Conference (GAREC-07) is scheduled for Thursday and Friday, August 16-17 in Huntsville, Alabama. GAREC-07 registrants will participate in emergency communications-themed presentations, discussions and demonstrations. The conference will be held just before the 2007 ARRL National Convention and annual Huntsville Hamfest, which take place on Saturday and Sunday, August 18-19.
In 2005, current IARU Region 1 Emergency Communications Coordinator Seppo Sisatto, OH1VR, organized the first GAREC meeting in Tampere, Finland. Tampere was the site of a 1998 intergovernmental meeting where
the Tampere Convention was adopted -- an international treaty that facilitates the use of telecommunications in humanitarian assistance. In 2006, GAREC met in Tampere for the second time, in connection with the International Conference on Emergency Communications (ICEC-2006) and the United Nations Working Group on Emergency Telecommunications.
According to IARU International Coordinator for Emergency Communications Hans Zimmermann, F5VKP/HB9AQS, "...GAREC wants to be a forum for the exchange of information. Many IARU Member Societies and specialized emergency communications groups have developed and implemented emergency concepts. Many others want to benefit from their technical, operational
and, not the least, their administrative or even 'political' experiences when establishing the necessary cooperation with partners in emergency and disaster response. GAREC also developed new concepts, such as the 'Center of Activity Frequencies,' meanwhile adopted by the IARU Region 1 and 3 conferences."
The packed GAREC-07 agenda includes reviews of advanced digital technologies and their applications to emergency telecommunications. The ARRL Alabama Section, Zimmermann said, "leads the way" with respect to D-STAR repeater systems, activities and users. There will also be a demonstration of the Automatic Packet Reporting System (APRS), another capability of the Amateur Radio Services. Zimmermann noted, "A demonstration of [APRS'] capabilities found much interest among the delegates of the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference in Turkey last November."
Zimmermann added that EchoLink and eQSO are "yet more such tools, and specialized groups have developed emergency applications for these modes. More technologies are being developed or have become available already. The two days in August will be packed with practical information, and experts will arrange demonstrations of the capabilities of 21st century Amateur Radio!" Emergency communication vehicles and equipment will be on hand throughout the conference.
Details for GAREC-2007 are now being finalized. Information about GAREC-07 and the related events is available at these Web sites: <> and < The sites will be updated as more information becomes available. To register for GAREC-07, please see the registration page <>. GAREC-07's tentative agenda <>is also available.


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The Management

de  Barbara Parsons KC8RHQ

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