ARRL

ARRL Special Bulletin ARLX005 (2001)

SB SPCL @ ARL $ARLX005
ARLX005 LF-to-LF Transatlantic Amateur Contact is Completed

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QST de W1AW  
Special Bulletin 5  ARLX005
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  February 20, 2001
To all radio amateurs 

SB SPCL ARL ARLX005
ARLX005 LF-to-LF Transatlantic Amateur Contact is Completed

Amateur Radio history was made this month when amateurs in Canada
and the UK completed what appears to be the first two-way
transatlantic Amateur Radio exchange on 136 kHz. Larry Kayser,
VA3LK, and Lawrence ''Laurie'' Mayhead, G3AQC, managed the LF feat
using extremely slow CW that featured 90-second-long dits and
180-second-long dahs. The two-way contact took two weeks to
complete.

''We are the first to do a two-way QSO on LF across the North
Atlantic as far as I am concerned,'' Kayser said. ''We are the ones
who put the stakes in the ground; others will build on what we have
done.''

The VA3LK-G3AQC contact began February 5 and was completed February
19 with the reception and confirmation of VA3LK's report by G3AQC.
Both stations used spectrographic software and computers for
receiving. The participants agreed in advance to a ''firewall''
between them for the duration of the contact and that all QSO
information was exchanged over the LF radio link.

The UK has an amateur band at 136 kHz. While Canada has not yet
authorized general Amateur Radio operation on 136 kHz, Kayser and a
few other Canadian amateurs have received special authorization to
conduct LF experiments there.

G3AQC and VA3LK were using a combination of commercial and surplus
equipment at their respective stations. G3AQC estimated his
effective radiated power at 350 mW, while VA3LK said he might have
been at the 5 W ERP level.

In October 1998, the ARRL petitioned the FCC to create two amateur
LF allocations at 135.7-137.8 kHz and 160-190 kHz. The FCC has not
yet acted on the request.
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