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Thursday, March 12, 2020

Thoughts on How Hams Can Use the Shortwave Broadcast Frequencies

Ed DD5LP sent us some very interesting information about a resurgence of shortwave broadcast activity in Europe.  Thanks Ed. 

Here is a collection of QSL cards sent out last year by some of these new stations.  

Hi Bill,

I'm just listening to the latest podcast and note your returning lovefor AM Broadcast stations and wondered if you also see the trend in the US that we are seeing in Germany?

 I know you have WTWW but that's a commercial SW AM Broadcast radio station, that has always been owned and run by a family of Hams. What we are seeing Germany is that when a commercial broadcaster such as Deutsche Welle closes down their Shortwave Broadcast stations, Amateurs are applying for and getting licences to the freed up frequencies. This started about 5 years ago with channel292 (Channel292.de) on initially 6070 kHz and then later also  on 7440 kHz. This amateur is located near Ingolstadt in Bavaria and runs 10 kW using the driver stage from the old DeutscheWelle 100 kW transmitter on the same frequency. He is partnered with a group in Austria who run a major AM station near Vienna that has two 500 kW transmitters and some fantastic massive antenna systems with 20dB gain across the whole  of the HF spectrum. That Austrian station is still owned by the Austrian government in case they need a broadcast station to transmit around the world at any time. It's kept "idling" at 100 kW in the meantime and like Channel 292 includes the German language "DARC Radio" amateur radio program in what it transmits.

New on the scene is "shortwaveradio.de" - Yes the station name is the same as their web address. They currently run just 1 kW into an Inverted-V wire antenna on 3975 kHz (in the 75m BROADCAST band over here) and 6160 kHz in the 49m broadcast band.  As they are located in North Germany, I don't get much of a signal from them down here in the south and the recording is using a WebSDR receiver. Their dipole is orientated to cover the Benelux countries and the UK. The lads at this station are always looking for English content, so if you want part of Soldersmoke to be transmitted on a shortwave AM broadcast station, (as you mentioned in the latest podcast) I can easily put you in touch with them.

One more for the list could be Radio Caroline in the UK. The station, which once was the main pirate radio station off the coast of the UK is now a volunteer historic preservation society (with some radio Hams involved) who have been granted a local radio service licence using a frequency (648 kHz) and transmitter site previously used by the BBC world service! Their old nemesis ! (http://www.radiocaroline.co.uk/#home.html )

73  Ed DD5LP / G8GLM / VK2JI.

1 comment:

  1. Don't think it would work in the US? Not enough broadcasting sites left to purchase and I do believe to get a license stateside you have to have a 50 KW minimum transmitter to start out with. Would be nice to have a Low Power Shortwave station license of 10 KW or so!


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