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Expand Communication Horizons by Learning New Radio Skills

While studying for your Amateur Radio Certification Exam, you will learn a wide variety of protocols, rules and regulations needed to operate a radio in the Amateur bands. Once learned, using the radio opens up all sorts of communication possibilities.

There are many digital modes available for Amateur Radio enthusiasts, but some of the most popular ones are:

FT8: A fast and efficient mode that uses very short transmissions and can work with weak signals. It is ideal for DXing and award chasing.

PSK31: A narrowband mode that uses phase shift keying to encode text. It is suitable for keyboard-to-keyboard communication and requires low power.

RTTY: The original digital mode that uses frequency shift keying to send Baudot code. It is still widely used for contesting and DXing.

MFSK: A mode that uses multiple frequency shift keying to send data on several tones simultaneously. It can handle noise and fading better than other modes.

How Does Morse Code Work?

Morse Code or CW

Radio Amateurs send signals to one another in many forms you are already familiar with and also some that may seem different and strange. Voice, text, video (television) are all used along with one of the very first methods of sending messages – Morse code!

International Morse code today is most popular among Amateur Radio operators, in the mode commonly referred to as “continuous wave” or “CW”. CW remains a popular form of radio communication and is practised by many Amateur Radio operators.

The Morse Code Translator website can translate to and from Morse code and also can play the sound of the code. Each letter has a unique sound made up of short and long tones (di and dah). Why not give it a try by clicking on on the following link and then enter your name in the box to hear what it sounds like in Morse code. If you want to hear the sound of each letter in your name, slow the speed using the configure box. While no longer required, CW remains a popular form of radio communication and is practised by many Amateurs. Besides, it’s just fun to learn!

If you want to learn more about Morse Code check out:

https://morsecode.world/international/translator.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iy8BaMs_JuI

D-Star Digital Radio:

Digital modes are newest forms of radio. D-Star (which stands for Digital Smart Technology for Amateur Radio) allows short distance communication which is crystal clear and easy to hear. It utilizes connections to the Internet to create “gateways” or reflectors that others can connect to, creating a huge network for radio communication around the world.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hC6aw4_mcBE

UHF/VHF Repeaters

Amateur Radio repeaters allow you to communicate locally on the UHF/VHF bands. A repeater is simply a system on a tall tower which can both receive and transmit radios signals, allowing for two-way communication. Operators in a given area, such as a city, can access local repeaters, allowing Amateurs to communicate with those who are nearby. Many repeaters are also equipped with Autopatch, which allows the repeater to connect to the telephone system for public service.

https://www.rac.ca/repeater-operation/

HF Bands for those Around the World

If you are up for a bigger challenge, try bouncing your radio signal off of the earth’s ionosphere and seeing where it lands. The operator at the other end of your signal could be a very long way away. HF radio requires specialized antennas and radios, but it is well worth the excitement of hearing voices from around the world.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GaCEv6rDlKc

 
Radio Fundamentals:

An Introduction to HF | Codan Radio Communications

RAC Youth Education Program

The RAC Youth Education Program (YEP) provides teachers, youth and community leaders with an innovative way of learning by introducing them to the wonderful world of Amateur Radio. It provides financial and personal support to teachers in schools and leaders in community youth groups. Teachers who wish to include an element of radio technology in their programs will be eligible for assistance in acquiring the necessary equipment, books and other resources.

For more information, please visit https://www.rac.ca/youth/