FT8 Digital Mode Presentation

Attached is a copy of the FT8 Digital Mode Presentation I did about a month or two ago.

Click here to see it.

Special Visiting Guest Speakers - Wednesday March 22, 2017

There will be a special meeting tomorrow (3/22) from 7:15 pm (sharp) to about 8:30 pm in Squires 232 (not Squires 342). This meeting will feature presentations from visiting guest speakers Dr. Anthea Coster and Dr. Phil Erickson (W1PJE) of MIT Haystack Observatory. Dr. Coster will give a talk titled "Brief Introduction and Examples of Satellite Tracking at Radio Frequencies". Dr. Erickson will speak about "New Amateur Radio Collaborations at MIT Haystack Observatory". (See the following abstracts for details.) Everyone (members and non-members) are invited to attend and we will provide Carol Lee doughnuts. Also, before the meeting, we will be taking Dr. Coster and Dr. Erickson out to dinner at the Cellar (302 North Main Street, next to Chipotle) around 5pm. Everyone is invited to join us there for dinner and casual conversation!

Ken Karr's Presentation on the March 2016 Heard Island DXpedition

Last February, we had a member of the Heard Island DXpedition, Ken Karr (NG2H), give a presentation oto VTARA on this unique DXpedition. His PowerPoint for this presentation is available at the link bellow if you missed it or are interested in looking over it again.

Heard Island Expedition 2016

Paul Bernhardt presents on High Power HF Transmitter Sites around the World

Dr. Paul Bernhardt (KF4FOR) gave a presentation on High Power HF Transmitter Sites around the World at VTARA's February 17, 2016 meeting. Paul is Head of the Space Use and Plasma Environment Section of the Plasma Physics Division of the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, DC. His PowerPoint is available at the link bellow if you missed it or are interested in looking over it again.

HAARP for Hams

Vintage Radio Exhibition at Virginia Tech Library

As part of the Wireless@VT 25th Anniversary Symposium, a vintage radio exhibition will be held at the Virginia Tech Newman Library on Wednesday, May 27, 2015 from 3 PM - 8 PM in the basement multipurpose room. This exhibit will feature radio equipment from early in the 20th Century through modern day. Radios on exhibit include vintage consumer radio receivers in wooden cases, early shortwave receiving equipment, amateur radio transceivers, morse code keys (and live demonstration station), vintage military radio, radios from the Motorola Museum, and a variety of cellular phones.

Many of the pieces for this exhibition have been made available by members of the Virginia Tech Amateur Radio Association (VTARA/K4KDJ) and may also be seen in this history video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nbFgoGcQbcw.

More information on the 25th Anniversary of Wireless@VT may be found here: http://www.vtnews.vt.edu/articles/2015/05/051415-engineering-wireless25a...

VTARA Supports 2015 Virginia Tech Cycling Classic

Dedicated members of the Virginia Tech Amateur Radio Association (VTARA) gathered in the cold, wet parking lot of the Black Diamond Ranch in Maggie Valley at 7 AM this past Saturday (April 26, 2015) to provide communications for the annual Virginia Tech Cycling Classic. Maggie Valley and the Black Diamond Ranch are located in a rural part of Virginia, approximately 20 miles north of the main Virginia Tech Campus in Blacksburg. Cyclists race around the 2776 ft elevation (846 m) Seven Mile Mountain in a series of races that begin at 8 in the morning and finish by 6 in the evening. Because of the rugged terrain and poor cell phone service in this area, the Virginia Tech Cycling Team asks VTARA to provide communications across the entire course. VTARA has now supported this race for at least four seasons.

K4KDJ and the Fall 2014 School Club Roundup

K4KDJ was on the air during the week of October 20-24, 2014 for the Fall 2014 School Club Roundup.  The School Club Roundup is a week-long, biannual ham radio contest sponsored by the American Radio Relay League with a focus on increasing ham radio activity in schools radio clubs of all levels.  This semester's effort was led by Virginia Tech student John Herrick, KK4BSM. Other operators included W2NAF, and KJ4OAP. We also had help from numerous loggers and people providing support in various ways, including KM4EGE, KV4RJ, K3IW, KB3WPR, and many others.

For Fall 2014, K4KDJ claimed 1057 QSOs (contacts) and 358,848 points.  This is the highest score for the SCR in VTARA history, and likely the second highest score in School Club Roundup history to date.

VTARA Participates in Jamboree On the Air

On Saturday, October 18, 2014, members of the Virginia Tech ARA and the Floyd Amateur Radio Socitety introduced about twenty scouts and parents to amateur radio at the Chantilly Festival Farm in Floyd, Virginia during the annual Jamboree On the Air (JOTA). JOTA is an internation event that takes place the third full weekend of every October with the aim of connecting boy and girl scouts around the world through amateur radio. The scouts came from Blacksburg Troop 704 and various cub scout packs in the New River Valley Area. All operations were conducted under the N4USA call sign of the Foundation for Amateur International Radio Service (FAIRS).

Ham Radio License Test/VE Session Tonight

The Virginia Tech Amateur Radio Association will be holding a Volunteer Examiner (VE) session this evening:

A VE (Volunteer Examiner) Session is the time when amateur radio license exams are given.  At a VTARA VE session, tests are given for all three classes of the United States Amateur radio license.  In order, these classes are Technician, General, and Amateur Extra.  Higher class licenses come with more operating privileges.

Note that parking on campus after 5 PM is free in both F/S (Faculty/Staff) and C/G spots.  The Drillfield has different rules, so don't park there.  Town metered spots are also free at this time.

These tests are coordinated by the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) according to the rules set forth by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

When you come to take an exam, please bring:

  • Photo ID
  • $15 (Cash/Check/All Major Credit Cards)
  • Social Security Number or FCC Registration Number (FRN)
  • Pen/Pencil
  • Calculator (optional; we reserve the right to clear/check calculator memory or deny its use)

Homecoming Parade and NRV Rocket a Launch Success!

This past Saturday, September 27th, 2014 VTARA volunteers helped out with both the VT Homecoming Parade and a New River Valley Rocket Launch. Special thanks to all of the volunteers who came out to help make both events a success!


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