Volunteers Providing Emergency Communications for Multnomah County, Oregon

Digital Modes Training Net

A new recurring net has been created with the goal of exploring some digital modes that should be useful for emergency communications. We’re using UHF and we’re initially focusing on SSTV (slow scan television) for image transfer and Fldigi for keyboard-to-keyboard text-based conversation. The net meets on the first Tuesday of the month at 8:00pm on the 443.300 MHz repeater, which requires a 100.0 Hz tone.

A deluxe rig for both SSTV and Fldigi would include a laptop with an external sound card (such as the popular SignaLink USB sound card) cabled to your 70cm radio, but simpler setups can also work. For instance, there’s an SSTV program for the iPhone that can produce the right tones from the speaker, which you could hold close to your radio’s microphone. SSTV transmissions can then be decoded by holding your phone’s microphone close to your radio’s speaker. There are Fldigi apps available for Android, but we haven’t seen one for iOS.

This net is totally about troubleshooting and practice, so feel free to join even if you’ve never used these modes before and you aren’t sure whether your rig will work. Matthew AF7PV is the net manager, and questions about the net may be directed to him at digitalnetmanager [at] multnomahares [dot] org. Links to useful software can be found on the Digital Net page.