What is HAM RADIO?
Amateur radio or ham radio is a fascinating hobby that has captivated the interest of countless thousands of people since its inception around 1898. Radio amateurs have lead the field in many aspects of radio development and today they are still trailblazing many areas of technology. Yet the hobby can also be a relaxation. Many radio amateurs or hams enjoy talking to friends around the globe. Others enjoy contacting people in far and distant lands, while others enjoy constructing their own equipment. What ever one's interest, ham radio has something for everyone.
Amateur radio is one of the most exciting hobbies today. There are over a million radio amateurs or "hams" around the world and this is an indication of its popularity. Since the first amateur radio experimenters at the beginning of the twentieth century, the number of people interested in the hobby have grown.
There are many aspects of amateur radio. Many people enjoy talking to "DX" stations at all corners of the globe. It is possible to talk to someone on the other side of the globe, or on a small island in the middle of an ocean, or just someone from the other side of town. All this can be done from your armchair. Even in today's high technology world there is a great fascination about being able to communicate with other radio hams, possibly using equipment you built yourself.
Other people enjoy linking their computers to their amateur radio gear. There are many ways in which computers can be linked to amateur radio gear. They can be used to perform many tasks such as predicting the propagation conditions, or logging the stations that have been contacted. However they can form an integral part of the station for use with the many data modes that are available nowadays. Using the computer as the controller and interface it is possible to send messages via a network of "mailboxes" to be picked up by the recipient when he next logs in.
Some enjoy the challenge of constructing their own equipment. Although much of today's equipment can be very technically advanced there is still a major place in the hobby for home construction. There is a variety of kits on the market that can be built. There is an enormous feeling of achievement when the first contact is made on equipment you have built.
There are other areas where the amateur can experiment. Often people enjoy trying out new forms of antenna. As the performance of the antenna governs the performance of the whole station, even small improvements in the performance of the antenna can pay great dividends.
Amateur radio is often used for the benefit of society. Hams often provide emergency communications support to the rescue and other essential services after a disaster. On several occasions amateur radio has provided the only form of communications to and from a storm hit island. Even where such major disasters are not quite so catastrophic, amateurs train and offer their equipment and unique expertise for when it might be needed.
Amateur radio can also lead into an interesting and rewarding career. Many people who have started in amateur radio have gone on to successful careers in radio or electronics. The blend of experimentation and challenges the hobby offers mean that many employers look for radio amateurs in preference to other candidates. This is particularly true with the booming growth in the cellular telephone industry where radio frequency skills are at a premium.
What is a REPEATER?
Say you want to chat with a friend on another side of a hill. Your radio transmissions can't make it to the other side of the hill and vice-versa. So what to do? Why not put a repeater on top of the hill? Both of you can now talk to each other, and often many other hams still further away will be able to to you too (depending on the height of the hill upon which the repeater sits).
What is APRS?
What is a NET?
read that a CTCSS of 67.0, used when accessing the Sharp Hospital Repeater will trigger
the Otay remote receiver. How does this work?
How do I get licensed?
How much does
Where do I take the test?
Do I have to be licensed to join SANDRA?
I'm licensed, live in another state, but frequently spend time in
the San Diego area. May I join SANDRA?
How do I join?
How does SANDRA support public safety?
I want to support your organization with a donation--how do I send
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permission to use a SANDRA repeater for a Net or special event?
Do I have to be a member
to use a SANDRA repeater for a Net or special event?
I need to update my
membership information. What should I do?