Sit. Rep. #108: Radio Terms, Smile

1- A long list of Ham Radio Terms:  (credit goes to KB6NU- here is a link to his books) 

AC: Alternating current. Alternating current is the name for current that reverses direction on a regular
basis.  (Verses DC – direct current)
APRS: Automatic Packet Reporting System. APRS is digital communications system used by amateur
radio operators. While it is normally used for tracking the location and identification of mobile stations.
ARES: Amateur Radio Emergency Service.
AM: Amplitude modulation. The type of modulation that varies the amplitude of a radio signal in
accordance with the amplitude of a modulating signal.

CTCSS: Continuous Tone Coded Squelch System. A system that uses sub-audible tones, transmitted
along with the audio portion of a transmission to control whether or not a repeater will re-transmit a
CW: Continuous wave. This is the operating mode amateur radio operators use when sending Morse

DC: Direct current. Direct current is the name for current that never reverses direction.  Think batteries
DMR: Digital Mobile Radio
DTMF: Dual-tone, multi-frequency. DTMF is a type of signaling used to send data over voice channels.   It is called DTMF because every time a user presses a keypad button a unique tone consisting of two frequencies is transmitted.

FCC: Federal Communications Commission. This is the government body that sets the rules for
amateur radio in the U.S.
FM: Frequency modulation. The type of modulation normally used when operating on VHF and UHF

HF: High frequency. The range of frequencies between 3 MHz and 30 MHz.
HT: Handy-talky or handheld transceiver. They used to be called “walkie talkies.”

ITU: International Telecommunications Union. This is the international body which governs amateur
radio worldwide.

LSB: Lower sideband. Verses Upper Sideband

MFSK: Multi-frequency shift keying. A type of modulation used to send digital information over a
radio channel.

PL: Private Line. See CTCSS.
PSK: Phase shift keying. A method for sending digital information over a radio channel. A popular
amateur radio “digital mode” is PSK31, which uses PSK modulation and occupies only 31 Hz of
PTT: Push-to-talk

RACES: Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service. RACES is an amateur radio emergency
communications service created by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the FCC.
RIT: receiver incremental tuning.  A control that allows a user to set the receive frequency of a
transceiver either slightly higher or slightly lower than the transmit frequency.
RF: radio frequency

SSB: Single sideband. When a carrier is amplitude modulated, both upper and lower sidebands are
produced. This results in a signal that is 6 kHz wide. Since both sidebands carry the same information,
and the carrier carries no information, someone figured out that if they could filter out the carrier and
one of the sidebands, and put all the power into a single sideband, the efficiency of voice communications would be much greater.
SWR: Standing-wave ratio. The SWR of an antenna system is a measure of how closely the impedance
of the antenna and the feedline match the output impedance of the transmitter.

VHF: Very high frequency. The range of frequencies between 30 MHz and 300 MHz.

ULS: Universal Licensing System. The FCC’s Universal Licensing system contains information on all
FCC licensees, including amateur radio operators. For more information, go to
UHF: Ultra high frequency. The range of frequencies between 300 MHz and 3000 MHz.
USB: Upper sideband.

VFO: variable frequency oscillator. VFOs are used to control the receiving and transmitting frequencies
of amateur radio equipment.

An old, old Scouter was lying in his death bed upstairs.  His most favorite food in the world was chocolate chip cookies.  As he lay there, gasping for each breath, he was sure he could smell freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies.  He crawled out of bed and slowly limped down the stairs.  Sure enough, across the kitchen, there was a huge platter of chocolate chip cookies on the table. He finally made it to the table and he reached a shaking hand towards the cookies. Suddenly, his wife slapped his hand sharply and yelled, “DON’T TOUCH THOSE!-They’re for the funeral!”


Scoutmaster’s Minutes: by Thomas Mercaldo

Ray & Bubba  were standing at the base of a flagpole looking up. A woman walked by and asked what they were doing.
“We’re supposed to find the height of the flagpole,” said Bubba, “but we don’t have a ladder.”
The woman took a wrench from her purse, loosened a few bolts, and laid the flag pole down.
Then she took a tape measure from her pocket, took a measurement, announced, “Eighteen feet, six inches,” and walked away.
Ray shook his head and laughed. “Ain’t that just like a woman! W
e ask for the height and she gives us the length!”

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