ARDC grants to fund expansion of amateur radio projects

10/21/2021

Two newer digital amateur radio communications (ARDC) Grants come to the Santa Barbara Amateur Radio Club (SBARC), K6TZ and Oregon HamWAN.

A $ 35,550 grant enables SBARC to build an amateur radio station at the new Chrisman California Islands Center (CCIC) in downtown Carpinteria, California, at the invitation of the Santa Cruz Island Foundation (SCIF). The station is slated to open in 2022, according to Levi Maaia, K6LCM, the trustee of the callsigns of the K6TZ club. SBARC promotes education and training programs for anyone interested in amateur radio. It also encourages and sponsors experiments in electronics and promotes the highest standards of practice and ethics in conducting communications.

The station will be prominently placed near the main CCIC entrance. An interactive display provides an overview of amateur radio communications and the role that amateur radio has played in the islands’ history.

When the station is not manned, visitors can interact with it through a custom touchscreen that controls an interactive presentation about ham radio and wireless technologies and their importance to sailors, aviators, scientists and explorers visiting the rugged islands off the California coast. Webcams connected to the station via SBARC’s microwave data network give visitors a real-time view of the island’s terrain.

A ARRL connected club, SBARC already has open repeaters, data systems and a club station in Santa Barbara County under the callsign K6TZ.

Oregon HamWAN has received an ARDC grant of $ 88,000 to expand its digital communications network. The project aims to improve digital amateur radio and emergency communication skills between Portland and Salem, Oregon.

The non-profit organization plans to expand its digital communications network through the use of 12 network backbone distribution locations between the two cities. Eventually, the sites will be connected to the Puget Sound Data Ring, which currently stretches from Seattle to Vancouver, Washington. The network would allow emergency management to communicate in the event of a disaster such as a major earthquake disrupting telecommunications systems. In such cases, radio amateurs can quickly set up network nodes where they are needed for emergency communications over Oregon’s digital HamWAN network. “This will fundamentally change emergency communications in the Portland area,” said Herb Weiner, AA7HW, the HamWAN project leader in Oregon.

“Financing decision [the] The HamWAN project in Oregon was an easy decision, ”said John Hays, K7VE, chairman of the ARDC Grants Advisory Committee. “It’s a well-organized and well-staffed project that uses multiple amateur radio technologies such as the 44Net IP address space, 5 GHz radios, and software best practices. It will provide a strong backbone network in Oregon and help preserve our microwave bands. “

ARDC is a California-based private foundation that supports innovative amateur radio projects. The foundation awards grants for projects and organizations that follow the practice of amateur radio and the tradition of technical experimentation in both amateur radio and digital communication science.

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