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Amateur Radio


There will be a number of radios running at the JOTA campsite using the callsign VK2SNR. The operators use different frequencies depending on the region they are trying to contact and the atmospheric conditions along the signal path.

There will also be an Echolink station remotely connected to the JOTA-E (E for English) Echolink conference.

Current Solar Terrestrial Conditions

If you don't understand what this table means, then you probably don't need to know :) You can find a detailed explanation by clicking on the image below.

Solar Conditions

Solar Conditions

Phonetic Alphabet and Morse Code

A phonetic alphabet or spelling alphabet is a set of words used instead of alphabetic letters in radio communication; each word stands for its initial letter. golf echo tango, india tango?

Morse code is a method for transmitting information using standardised sequences of short "dots" and long "dashes" to represent letters, numerals, punctuation and special characters. If you have an older phone that beeps when a text message cones in, did you know that the beeps were actually morse code? What letters might the beeps spell? (Hint)

Type the words into the text box below and select Morse Code or Phonetic Alphabet to see your message translated.

To include the Morse Code and Phonetic translator in your own web page, see the translator page for details of what is required. The translator code may be freely used for any purpose.

Q Codes

The International Q Code is an abbreviated way to exchange a great deal of information with a simple three letter code. QRV?

J Code

The J-code is a tool that enables a very basic conversation in those cases where there is no common language between the youngsters. The J-code is a set of abbreviations used for JOTA and JOTI similar to the Q-Code used by radio amateurs. JHJ

Challenge Questions

There is a page of Challenge Questions. These questions can be used with radio or IRC contacts to keep the conversation interesting. There will be a map to record locations.

Call Signs

Amateur Radio Operators identify themselves by using their call sign. This is a unique sequence of letters and numbers assigned to then when they receive their license.

Each country is assigned one or more unique prefixes for all operators or stations. In Australia we use VK followed by a number for each state, then an individial 2, 3, or 4 letter code. Here is a world map showing call sign prefixes.

Automatic Position Reporting System - APRS

APRS is an amateur radio system originally developed to maintain an ongoing record of the location of a mobile radio-transmitter.

Our local Amateur Radio group has fitted a transmitter to a helicopter. Read more about APRS and follow the helicopter's current and past trips.

On the JOTA weekend a tracker is fitted to the bus so we can see where it is.


Echolink uses the Internet to carry transmissions as Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) to another Echolink station. This allows low power UHF radios to make world wide contacts, even when weather conditions are not favourable. Here is a brief description of how Echolink works.

Amateur Radio Groups

There are many local, national and international associations, organisations and groups for Amateur Radio Operators.

Foundation Amateur License

In 2005, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) introduced an Amateur Radio Foundation license, targetted at a younger and less technical audience. The examination format for this license is typically a two day seminar, followed by a multiple choice test and practical examination.