Ohio Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) will sponsor “NVIS Antenna Day” on Saturday, April 25. The idea, said Ohio Section Emergency Coordinator Stan Broadway, N8BHL, is to determine if the sometimes-vaunted near-vertical incidence skywave — or NVIS — concept really works as an antenna for emergency communication on HF. NVIS, is a technique that allows using HF for highly reliable short-range communication.
“We are encouraging groups in every Ohio county to devise several portable NVIS antennas that they think will perform, and then actually test them on the air,” Broadway said. The program grew out of an annual antenna party in Ashtabula Count that has been both operating event and early spring picnic, Broadway said. Participants “found a vast difference in actual antenna performance, and have been able to narrow down their choices for a real emergency setup,” he explained. Ashtabula County Amateur Radio Club-ARES is sponsoring NVIS Antenna Day.
Ohio ARES NVIS Antenna Day will begin at 1400 UTC with operation on both 40 and 80 meters at 100 W, “as you might during a real emergency,” Broadway said. “While a typical session might go through the afternoon, there is no official closing time.” He pointed out that those taking part in NVIS Antenna Day don’t have to set up completely portable or remote stations, the location should offer sufficient space for several antennas and be in a fairly quiet RF environment.
Suggested frequencies are 7240, 7244, 7248, and 7250 kHz, and 3850, 3870 and 3930 kHz on SSB and 3585 and 7072 for digital modes, all plus or minus existing activity.