Tuesday, February 26, 2008

LowFERS and MedFERS..are you ready ?

Here's an alternative to take advantage of while the DX season is prime. It's been called the most unusual amateur radio frequencies you can explore and definitely not for the faint-hearted.

Low Frequency Experimental Radio, and Medium Frequency Experimental Radio, consists of stations unlicensed but legal and not regulated by the FCC under Part 15. These two provisions allow the use of 1 watt power between 160-190 kHz in the long wave bands, and from 510-1705 kHz in the medium wave band. Hobbyists, depending on which bands they utilize are called LowFERS, MedFERS or both.

LowFERS are experimental beacons on 24 hours, sending their call in very slow morse code, repeated continuously. Some experimenters are amateur radio operators, although it is not required. MedFERS also use slow speed morse code for identifications. The optimum listening opportunity is winter, when static levels are at a minimum and propagation is usually stable. LF and MF hobbyists may hear signals from a few miles to several hundred miles.

Most LF and MF stations welcome reception reports and will confirm readily. Verifications require a prepared QSL card or form letter, mint postage stamps and a SASE. Taped or CD reports have proven successful. To learn more on experimenting with the LowFERS and the MedFERS, QSLing trends and more, go to the Longwave of America home page at: www.lwca.org or The Master List of Part 15 Radio Stations of North America http://home.att.net/~weatheradio/part15.htm Now is the time to explore this interesting DX during the current prime listening period.
(Source: Gayle Van Horn, QSL Report/Monitoring Times)