The last time I was active on air was a brief period in 2011. During this time, I just wasn’t that interested in radio and it took a back seat to other projects and interests.
Fast forward to July 2015. My lovely partner has gone overseas for a few weeks and I decided to spend a couple of evenings at my local radio club which holds amateur TV nights most Wednesday evenings. This wasn’t new to me. What was new however was a couple of work colleagues deciding to come up with me and the discovery that the stuff I couldn’t do before I now could, especially having bought a contemporary new transceiver.
So now I find myself not knowing which way to go first with many of these “old” things (and not so old) that are all new to me again:
- VK3YT’s endeavours with High Altitude Balloons I find just amazing, and can easily see this becoming science projects in high schools or colleges, promoting amateur radio, electronics and further research.
- JT65 Weak Signal Modes being used for high altitude balloons, HF communications, EME, Meteor Scatter and a whole range of other types of communications that are just not suitable for voice communications
- Traditional Modes such as BPSK, RTTY and STTV, and more exotic modes like THROB, Feld Hell and Contestia. Previously I did not have the hardware available to do this at home. Now I do. Enough said there really.
- Packet Radio. AX.25. One of the many projects I am currently running with. I have acquired an old TNC, and it’s just a matter of interfacing it with the radio.
- Speaking of interfacing, I need to make a suitable new interface for my Icom IC-706MkIIG that includes PTT and audio in.
- Amateur Satellite communications. It doesn’t seem as hard as it sounds remarkably, and I think that would be great fun.
- FreeDV – The new digital voice mode on the block. it’s achieving some amazing things like FM quality audio with weak signals, and is definitely a QSO mode I want to try.
This, along with station maintenance and improvements is definitely going to keep me busy in the foreseeable future. I’ll touch more on the station maintenance in a later post.