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Microwave
RAC

This page is devoted to the microwave bands. Click here for the RAC Bandplan for these bands. See also the  links that apply to several or all VHF, UHF and Microwave bands.

Be aware that Web servers do go down occasionally and that the response from overseas sites may be slow.

This page, dedicated to stirring up interest in what we believe to be the future of amateur radio, was constructed by Ken Pulfer VE3PU with help from Laura Halliday VE7LDH.

There is a whole world of amateur radio in the Microwave Bands, which we are not exploiting. Hundreds of megahertz of bandwidth are under-utilised. If we don't get up there and use them, the private sector communicators certainly will, and we will eventually be squeezed out.

At the ITU in Geneva, spectrum users from around the world are actively competing for frequency allocations all the way up to 275 GHz. Allocations up to 1000 GHz are now being discussed.

Microwaves are being used for commercial satellite up and down links, radio astronomy, earth and space based radars, passive remote sensing, weather observation from both earth and space, inter-satellite communications, radio navigation, broadcasting satellites, fixed and mobile land based communications, vehicle control systems, search and rescue, radio location, and of course microwave heating just to name a few. Is it any wonder that there is pressure on the amateur bands?

Some time ago, amateurs in Canada were relegated to secondary status in our own bands between 430 MHz and 10 GHz. This means that we can only operate there if we do not interfere with other users IN OUR BANDS. The way commercial use of microwaves is growing, we are in grave danger of losing our primary privileges in the bands above 10GHz. If we have any hope of regaining primary status we will have to be seen to be using them in ways that benefit the public.

Have a look at the Canadian Amateur Radio Frequency Allocations, and the RAC Bandplans. This will give you an idea of how much bandwidth we currently have available.

Some Canadian and US amateurs are using the bands. The ARRL have a data base of activity on the VHF, UHF, and Microwave Bands on their web site. Or you can visit VE6NTT's Western Canadian Weak Signal Registry

See also our own page on Canadian Claimed Microwave Records prepared by Steve Kavanagh VE3SMA

We can use these bands for satellite communications, communications to, and between, manned spacecraft, and moonbounce communications, just to name a few. Line of site land based communications is easy, but beyond the horizon communications is a challenge, and there is lots of room for experimentation.

At the very high microwave frequencies, atmospheric absorption of the signals becomes significant, and so commercial use is mostly limited to space to space communication.

On the other hand, the short wavelengths allow us to build small antennas with very high gains at a reasonable cost, which in turn allows us to work with low power transmitters and less sensitive receivers.

VE7LDH presented a paper on how to get started in microwave amateur radio at the AMSAT conference in Toronto, October 1997. Try and find a copy and read it.

In the meantime, here are a few sites on the internet where you can see what others are doing, where you can find help, and where you can look for components and equipment.

Clubs and Organizations

RAC Logo San Bernardino Microwave Society
RAC Logo Northeast  USA Weak Signal Group
RAC Logo Association Of Radio Amateurs In Slovenia
RAC Logo The 50 MHz and Up Group from Northern California.
RAC Logo Central States VHF Society Home Page
RAC Logo SETI Institute

Design Tools

RAC Logo SCALC RF-Microwave CAD

Equipment Suppliers

RAC Logo AA Antennas
RAC Logo Angle Linear Co
RAC Logo Digi-Key Corp
RAC Logo Down East Microwave Inc
RAC Logo Electronic Parts
RAC Logo
RAC Logo KB2AH 1296 Mhz Equipment
RAC Logo Linear Amp
RAC Logo M/A-COM Product and Technology Information Center
RAC Logo Mainline Electronics
RAC Logo Microwave Modules
RAC Logo Mini Circuits
RAC Logo Motorola Components
RAC Logo Parabolic Systems
RAC Logo Philips
RAC Logo Procom Microwave Parts
RAC Logo Radio-Astronomy Supplies Homepage (W6-PA0ZN)
RAC Logo RF Globalnet
RAC Logo Rogers PCB Materials
RAC Logo SHF Microwave Parts Company
RAC Logo SSB Electronics
RAC Logo SSB Technologies Inc.
RAC Logo Svetlana Tubes
RAC Logo Waveguide and Radio

Information Sources

RAC Logo An Introduction to 10 GHz Wide Band in Ontario
RAC Logo 10,368 MHz - Where, Why & How!  
RAC Logo Central States VHF Society Home Page
RAC Logo Antenna Gain Results
RAC Logo Noise Figure Results
RAC Logo 10 GHz Transceiver Kit
RAC Logo Retuning Micro Strip on Surplus Boards
RAC Logo Amateur Radio Microwave Information
RAC Logo VHF Communications Magazine
RAC Logo The World Above 1000MHz
RAC Logo N1BWT Online Microwave Antenna Book
RAC Logo DUBUS, magazine for Microwave Amateur Radio
RAC Logo Marsport - Dubus Magazine Information
RAC Logo Microwave Conference Proceedings
RAC Logo A New First for 47GHz
RAC Logo WA1MBA Amateur Radio Microwaves
RAC Logo VK3ZQB Microwave Kits and Projects

Laser

RAC Logo Amateur Radio Laser Communications  
RAC Logo The Laser Library Web Site  
RAC Logo MI Lasers 
RAC Logo Sam's Laser FAQ  
RAC Logo Lasers & Optronics Online

Microwave News

Other Microwave Links

RAC Logo Microwave Newsgroup
RAC Logo Microwave E-Mail reflector
RAC Logo EME News
RAC Logo RSGB Microwave Pages
RAC Logo ARRL Microwave Standings
RAC Logo 10 GHz Surplus Transceiver Kit
RAC Logo A New First for 47GHz
RAC Logo Introduction to Amateur Radio Microwaves (UK) - Q & A
RAC Logo G8ACE Microwaves Website (incl. 24 GHz Power Amps)
RAC Logo N1BWT Online Microwave Antenna Book
RAC Logo N6GN's Higher Speed Packet Page
RAC Logo WA1MBA Microwave Home Page

Personal Microwave Web Sites

RAC Logo AF9Y
RAC Logo G3PHO
RAC Logo G4KNZ
RAC Logo G4PMK
RAC Logo G6DER
RAC Logo G8ACE
RAC Logo GJ4ICD
RAC Logo K2UYH
RAC Logo N6CA
RAC Logo NY2US 
RAC Logo WA1MBA
RAC Logo WA8WZ