Rules for CQWW Xtreme Category
A wide variety of new technologies has emerged in amateur radio, including software-defined radios, remote stations, Internet-connected remote receiving sites, multi-channel CW decoders, fully-automated “robot” stations, etc. Some of these technologies are currently not permitted under the rules for existing CQ World Wide DX Contest entry categories. For example, the CQWW rules state that:
“All transmitters and receivers used by the entrant must be located within a single 500-meter diameter circle or within the property limits of the station licensee’s address, whichever is greater. All antennas used by the entrant must be physically connected by wires to the transmitters and receivers used by the entrant.”
The Xtreme category has been established to allow amateurs to participate in the CQ WW contest while experimenting creatively with Internet-linked stations and other new technologies.
The rules of the CQ World Wide DX Contest apply regarding contest period, exchanges and scoring. In addition to the basic rules, the Xtreme category includes the following:
- Entry categories: a) Single-operator, in which one licensed radio amateur serves as the control operator, performing or supervising all operating and logging functions; and b) Multi-operator, in which multiple operators perform or supervise all operating and logging functions. In the Multi-operator category, the operators may be located at different locations. A single operator may submit multiple entries using different remote sites in different countries. Each entry will be scored separately.
- QSO-alerting assistance: The use of QSO-alerting assistance using packet radio, the Internet, local or remote Skimmer-type devices, etc., is permitted in both the Single-operator and Multioperator categories. Self spotting or asking to be spotted is not allowed.
- Locations: The entrant’s transmitting sites must be located in a single country, as defined by the applicable licensing authority, and a single zone. Remote receiving sites may be located anywhere.
- Transmissions: One transmitted signal is permitted on a band at any time. Maximum signal bandwidth must not exceed the normal bandwidth of a single SSB voice (for SSB weekend) or CW (for CW weekend) signal. This prohibits multiple-carrier or time-multiplexed signals that occupy multiple channels in a single band
- Advance notification: Entrants must notify the CQWW Contest Committee by email at least one week in advance of the contest of their intention to enter this category. This notification should include a brief description of the technologies to be employed and callsign to be used. Entrants must also attest that their planned operation is compliant with the rules and regulations of the country in which the transmitter(s) are located. Advance notification and questions regarding these rules should be sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Control Operator(s): It is the responsibility of the human control operators(s) to ensure thatnormal precautions are taken before transmitting, such as listening to determine if a frequency is clear before calling CQ. Any station in this category found to be causing interference by not obeying this rule will be subject to disqualification.
- Log Submission: Logs must be sent via email to the normal addresses (email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org). Logs must be in Cabrillo format, and include this line: CATEGORY-OVERLAY: XTREME
- Scoring: Entries will be evaluated on two dimensions, score and innovation. First, a normal CQWW score will be computed on the basis of stations worked, and the zone and country multiplier. A minimum of 100 QSOs is required. The log will be processed with the same software used to verify all other logs to compute the final score, utilizing the contest’s existing penalty system. The second part of the scoring will be determined by an evaluation of the innovation employed by the entrant. This evaluation will be conducted by a panel of judges on the CQWW Contest Committee, In the case of a tie, the log with the lowest score reduction in the log-checking process will be declared the winner.
- Awards: The winning entry in the Single-operator and Multi-Operator categories will each receive a plaque.
- Club Scores: Entries in this category are eligible to contribute their CQWW scores to a club in the Club Competition, in accordance with the existing CQWW rules. Remote stations outside the club’s area may be counted as DXpeditions.
Scoring Example for the Xtreme Category
Entries will be evaluated on two equally-weighted dimensions, score and innovation. It is understood that many of the technologies will be experimental, and subject to possible failure or reliability issues. However, we want to recognize high degrees of risk-taking as well as the actual contest score achieved.
First, a normal CQWW score will be computed on the basis of stations worked, and the zone and country multiplier. The log will be processed with the same software used to process all other logs to compute the final score.
The highest score in each category (single-operator and multi-operator) will receive 100 “score points”, and the other entrants will receive a pro-rated score, normalized to the highest score. For example, if AA1AAA scores 1,000,000 points and ZZ9ZZZ scores 500,000 points, then AA1AAA will receive 100 “score points” and ZZ9ZZZ will receive 50 “score points”.
The second part of the scoring will be determined by a subjective evaluation of the technical innovation employed by the entrant. This evaluation will be conducted by a panel of judges on the CQWW Contest Committee, scored on a 0 to 100 “innovation point” scale, and will consider the novelty, creativity, and innovation of the technologies used. For example, an entrant who uses a single remote receiving site with off-the-shelf software will score lower on innovation than an entrant who writes his own software to control homebrew hardware interfaces in an automated multi-transmitter station that searches the bands for new stations to work, searches on-line databases in real-time to verify callsigns, and reports a score with zero errors.
The total of “score points” and “innovation points” will determine the winner. In the case of a tie, the most accurate log (as determined by the lower score reduction by the log-checking process) will be declared the winner.