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Beacons are specially constructed amateur radio stations whole sole purpose is to transmit a predefined signal at a specific time on a specific frequency. A special type of beacon called a time beacon broadcasts the time.

International Beacon Network

This network is a co-operative project, jointly owned and managed by the International Amateur radio Union(IARU) and the Northern Californian DX Foundation (NCDXF). Operating frequencies are : 14.100MHz, 18.110MHz, 21.150MHz, 24.930MHz and 28.200MHz. The purpose of the beacons is two-fold; to provide reliable, frequency stable reference points, and to assist commercial and amateur operators in assessing propagation conditions. The system was designed and built by volunteers, and continues to be operated by a group of volunteers. Idents for these beacons are sent in CW at 22 WPM.

Beacon Locations

Eighteen beacons are in operation around the world in each continent.

Beacon Transmission Schedule

The beacons transmit every three minutes, continuously. This page has details of transmission schedules. ibp is a piece of software that allows you to track which beacon is active at what time.

Brief History

The first beacon was turned on in 1970. The complete 18 station system was started in 1995, with 12 of the 18 beacons being operational by the end of 1996. As of october 2010, 15 out of 18 were marked operational.

Local Beacons

Many amateur radio clubs operate beacons in the VHF and UHF bands. Amateurs can themselves, with the aid of built in functionality, use modern rigs to operate beacons. The Yaesu FT-897 is an example of a rig with this functionality built in.

National beacons

Australian Beacons

Most of the beacons in this list are owned or sponsored by Radio Clubs. Some information may be out of date and some beacons listed may not be operating. The most up-to-date list Australian beacons in PDF can be found here.

Correct on May 14th 2008.

Related pages

External links

10m Band Call Location Grid
28.200 VK6RBP Perth OF78
28.213 VK3RSX Western Vic QF13
28.2535 VK3RMV SW Victoria QF12
28.2565 VK3RMH Melbourne QF22
28.260 VK5RLZ Adelaide PF95
28.262 VK2RSY Sydney QF56
28.264 VK6RWA Perth OF78
28.268 VK8VF Darwin PH57
28.270 VK4RTL Townsville QH30
6m Band Call Location Grid
50.046 VK8RAS Alice Springs PG66
50.057 VK7RAE Devonport Tasmania QE38
50.058 VK4RGG Gold Coast QG62
50.066 VK6RPH Perth OF88
50.087 VK4RTL Townsville QH30
50.288 VK2RHV Hunter Valley QF57
50.289 VK2RSY Sydney QF56
50.293 VK3RMV SW Victoria QF12
50.295 VK3RMH Melbourne QF22
50.297 VK7RST Hobart QE37
50.304 VK6RSX North west WA OG89
50.306 VK6RBU South west WA OF76
50.310 VK8VF Darwin PH57
50.315 VK5RBV Barossa Valley PF95
52.315 VK3RSX Western Vic QF13
52.345 VK4ABP Western Qld QG26
52.425 VK2RBH Western NSW QF08
52.445 VK4RIK Cairns QH23
52.450 VK5VF Adelaide PF95
2m Band Call Location Grid
144.410 VK1R-- ACT QF44
144.414 VK2R-- Snowy Mtns QF43
144.420 VK2RSY Sydney QF56
144.424 VK2R-- Blue Mountains
144.430 VK3RTG Melbourne QF22
144.434 VK3RGI Gippsland QF31
144.438 VK3RRU Mildura area QF15
144.440 VK4RTT SE Queensland QG62
144.444 VK4RTL Townsville QH30
144.450 VK5VF Adelaide PF95
144.460 VK6RPH Perth OF88
144.474 VK7RAE Devonport Tasmania QE38
144.480 VK8VF Darwin PH57
144.485 VK8RAS Alice Springs PG66
144.510 VK2RBD Cooma - Monaro QF43
144.525 VK2RBH Western NSW QF08
144.530 VK3RGL Geelong QF22
144.534 VK3RTC North Central Vic QF24
144.550 VK5RSE South east QF02
144.560 VK6RBU South west WA OF76
144.564 VK6RST Southern WA OF85
144.568 VK6REP South east WA PF06
144.576 VK6RSX North west WA OG89
70cm Band Call Location Grid
432.410 VK1R-- ACT QF44
432.414 VK2R-- Snowy Mtns QF43
432.420 VK2RSY Sydney QF56
432.424 VK2R-- Blue Mountains - P
432.434 VK3RGI Gippsland QF31
432.440 VK4RBB Brisbane QG62
432.444 VK4RTL Townsville QH30
432.450 VK5VF Adelaide PF95
432.460 VK6RPH Perth OF88
432.474 VK7RAE NW Tasmania QE38
432.480 VK8VF Darwin PH57
432.510 VK2RBD Cooma - Monaro QF43
432.525 VK2RBH Western NSW QF08
432.530 VK3RGL Geelong QF22
432.534 VK3RTC North Central Vic QF24
432.536 VK3RMB Ballarat QF12
432.550 VK5RSE South east SA QF02
432.564 VK6RST Southern WA OF85
23cm Band Call Location Grid
1,296.410 VK1R-- ACT QF44
1,296.420 VK2RSY Sydney QF56
1,296.424 VK2R-- Blue Mountains - P
1,296.434 VK3RGI Gippsland QF31
1,296.435 VK3RRU Mildura area QF15
1,296.440 VK4RBB Brisbane QG62
1,296.444 VK4RTL Townsville QH30
1,296.450 VK5VF Adelaide PF95
1,296.460 VK6RPH Perth OF88
1,296.474 VK7RAE Devonport Tasmania QE38
1,296.510 VK2RBD Cooma - Monaro QF43
1,296.530 VK3RXX Melbourne QF22
1,296.532 VK3RLP Mornington Pen. QF21
1,296.534 VK3RTC North Central Vic. QF24
1,296.550 VK5RLZ Adelaide North PF95
1,296.550 VK5RSE South east SA QF02
1,296.560 VK6RBS W. Coast WA OF76
Other Bands Call Location Grid
2,403.420 VK2RSY Sydney QF56
2,403.424 VK2R-- Blue Mountains
2,403.440 VK4RBB Brisbane QG62
2,403.444 VK4RTL Townsville QH30
2,403.450 VK5VF Adelaide PF95
2,403.460 VK6RSP Perth OF77
2,403.530 VK3RXX Melbourne QF22
2,403.532 VK3RLP Mornington Pen. QF21
2,403.534 VK3RTC North Central Vic QF24
2,403.550 VK5RLZ Adelaide PF95
3,400.420 VK2RSY Sydney QF56
3,400.450 VK5VF Adelaide PF95
3,400.550 VK5RLZ Adelaide PF95
5,670.444 VK4RTL Townsville QH30
5,760.420 VK2RSY Sydney QF56
5,760.444 VK4RTL Townsville QH30
5,760.450 VK5VF Adelaide PF95
5,760.460 VK6RSP Perth OF77
5,760.550 VK5RLZ Adelaide PF95
Operating procedures
Operation Callsigns and ITU prefixes * Codes and Alphabets * Modes * Morse code * Nets * UK licensing * Terminology
DX and Contesting Awards and Certificates * DXCC * DX cluster * Field day * Gridsquares * Logging * QSL and QSL Bureaus * Records - Distance
Emergencies Emergency Frequencies * ARES * IRESC * SATERN * Weather spotting
QRP Trail-Friendly Radio
Utilities Beacons (/B) and Time Beacons