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A closer look into an off-grid ham radio

Hey there, both seasoned radio enthusiasts and newcomers! Today we would like to talk a bit about how an Icom IC-705, Chameleon MPAS 2.0, Microsoft Surface Go2 and PowerFilm 100-watt thin-film solar panel will take a pretty long hike of nearly 11 miles or 17 kilometers. As always, this experiment will be conducted by Julian OH8STN in his Ham Radio series. The purpose of this endeavor is to test the portable ham radio setups. To do this, we’ll be using ham radio setups with winlink, off-grid and with no connection to the World Wide Web.  

In cases like this, it really is important to opt for the minimalistic approach when it comes to field testing. You can travel however you like – on a bike, skiing or even by foot, but you will definitely need to take with you only those things that are necessary to make the connection. So in our case it was Winlink with VaraHF. On the other hand, we could go for any other option, be it JS8Call or SELCAL with ION2G. We’re aimed at testing first and foremost. There’s room for failure here but it only means that we can learn from the failures and improve based on that experience. 

Also, do keep in mind that POTA, SOTA, as well as any other similar activities are not quite suitable for field testing when it comes to Comms Preparedness. Why? Well, just because they come with absolutely different goals, different focus and different purpose. Yes, they give you the opportunity to get a bit more comfortable with your setup ands gear, but other than that, you will not get anything that beneficial in the first place. One way or the other, in order to make the best from EMCOMM & Comms Preparedness, you will need to set some completely different goals and approach it in a different manner as well. Which is why this is not really the case for today’s research. 

For this experiment, we’ve used some pretty neat equipment including Icom IC-705, PowerFilm Solar FM16-6000, Chameleon MPAS 2.0, Microsoft Surface 2.0, andDIY599 PA500 amplifier. 

Sounds exciting? Well, it really is – and you can easily learn all about on one of the best resources dedicated entirely to helping you make the right call within the very least amount of time feasible. So, if that is the case and you are therefore already looking for the best ways to make the best from your needs as well as requirements, go now


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