2012 is the 75th anniversary of the ARRL’s DXCC Award. The world’s preeminent DXing award continues to be DXCC, so reaching the “Diamond milestone” is an event that we all want to celebrate. Going back to the roots of the award, and specifically reading the 1937 DXCC List (January, 1937 QST pages 52-3) to learn what countries were counted at the onset led us to create the Diamond DXCC Challenge.
The country list we will use for the Diamond DXCC Challenge is based upon the list of 231 places shown in 1937. We tried to find corresponding entities today that would represent the places listed in 1937, but there are four places (Baluchistan, British Cameroons, Canal Zone, Hejas) which were on the oldest list that just don’t exist today in a form that could even loosely be represented by someplace current. The Diamond DXCC List represents 227 of the 233 1937 “countries.” The list is fascinating and leads us to learn more about world history and how geopolitics has changed leading up to today.
As you “check-off” these entities during the course of 2012 working DX (which is an achievement even today) using spotting networks, pan-adapters, 200 watt rigs, and stacked tribanders, imagine how DXing was different in the early years of radio and DXCC! Working Tibet or Aldabra with 50 watts and crystal-controlled transmitters to simple wire antennas, had to be a thrill like no other in that time for ham radio operators.
We anticipate that this award will be very popular thanks to the unique nature of the entities which we will try to put-into the log in 2012. Not only are there traditional DXCC entities, but there are cities, Islands on the Air (IOTA by RSGB) island groups, and various sub-political entities inside DXCC entities, such as the Indian State of Goa and many States in Malaysia and islands in Indonesia. There are even three individual “countries” that make up today’s Yemen (7O — Yemen, Socotra Islands and the City of Aden)! Yes, we would like to have even one of them on the air. An interesting factoid about this 1937 list came via the late Jim Maxwell, W6CF. Jim said the only entity from the 1937 list to be removed without a single QSO being made was Wrangel Island.
For some entities that today consist of multiple countries, you may work any of today’s entities to qualify for that single, 1937 country. For example, French Equatorial Africa will be considered worked if you log a station in TL, TN, TR or TT in 2012. The Diamond DXCC country tables show the current entity names and prefixes that qualify for the 1937 countries.
The Diamond DXCC Challenge is an “Honor Award” and will not require acquisition or inspection of QSLs or proof of confirmation, although it still will be fun and useful to seek out cards or LoTW confirmations. We will provide forms online to use at your operating position to track what you have worked and forms for applying for awards and endorsements. As the year goes on, we will also provide hints and tips about what is happening with the Diamond DXCC Award and for instance, who might be on the air from Goa or Gdansk!
The Diamond DXCC certificate will be available for working 100 of the 226 entities, and will be endorsable at 5 levels: 125, 150, 175, 200 and 225. If anyone works all 226, there will be a special award for that remarkable achievement! We hope to publish award recipients’ call signs online during the year, and identify high numbers.
There will be a Diamond DXCC Challenge Honor Roll. The Honor Roll level will be determined by the leader in worked entities submitted to HQ, and the bottom of the Honor Roll will be 9 entities less than that of the leader. Example: If W1AW has worked 165 entities, the bottom of the Honor Roll will be 156 entities. In February, 2013, HQ will issue a final Honor Roll tally with overall leaders.
See the Diamond DXCC web page for more information and to read updates during 2012.
ARRL Diamond DXCC Challenge Rules
1. The Diamond DXCC Challenge Awards are available to all amateurs worldwide who contact a minimum of 100 countries from the Diamond DXCC List. US amateurs must be members of the ARRL. Generally, the rules for the Diamond DXCC Challenge are the same as the rules for the DXCC Program, except as listed here.
2. Contacts must be made from within the same DXCC entity by the same operator.
3. Contacts must be made during 2012 — from 0000Z on 1 January, 2012, through 2359Z on 31 December, 2012. All amateur bands may be used except for 60 meters.
4. There are no mode endorsements or band endorsements. The Diamond DXCC Challenge is considered to be a Mixed-Mode/Mixed-Band award. There are no power categories or restrictions for the award.
5. Confirmations are not required to obtain this award, but HQ will review submitted entries for accuracy and validity.
6. The Diamond DXCC Challenge certificate will be available for working 100 entities and will be endorsable with stickers at the following levels: 125, 150, 175, 200 and 225.
7. Applications should use ARRL-supplied forms available online or obtained by writing DXCC, 225 Main St., Newington, CT 06111.
8. The Diamond DXCC Award certificate fee is $12 including shipping within the USA, and $13 including shipping outside the USA.
9. Endorsement stickers are $1, including shipping in the US, and $2 outside the US.
I’m going to look a bit more at this to see if I can put into my 2012 Radio goals!