Radio ham clubs to use Morse code

Amateur ham radio operators from around Munster will wind turn back the clock this weekend when they attempt to communicate via radio and Morse code with hundreds of radio clubs throughout the world.

Radio ham clubs to use Morse code

Limerick Radio Club, which comprises members from Clare, Kerry, Limerick and Tipperary, will broadcast non-stop for 48 hours from Loop Head Lighthouse in Co Clare, as part of the 17th International Lighthouse & Lightship Weekend.

Last year, the club successfully made contact with lighthouses and lightships as far away as Brazil, Australia, Tonga, French Guiana, Asiatic Russia, Ecuador, The Azores and The US Virgin Islands.

The majority of all radio contacts were made with operators in the United States (200), Germany (155) and Italy (76). Overall 61% of communication was conducted via radio, with the other 39% conducted via Morse code.

The group also attempted to communicate with its twinned club in South Jersey using Earth-Moon-Earth communication — also known as ‘moon bounce’ — where the Moon was used to reflect signals.

This year’s event will also give visitors the chance to listen into communications with some of the other participating ham radio operators broadcasting from 400 other lighthouses and lightships in 65 countries.

Loop Head Lighthouse, located at the mouth of the Shannon Estuary, dates back to the 1670s.

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