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Author Topic: Broadband Via HAM Radio?  (Read 1582 times)
W8WPC
Member

Posts: 5




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« on: April 13, 2008, 01:14:17 PM »

I'm not a ham - I used my father's call sign as my forum name just to see if there were any old timer's out there that might know him.

I am curious whether it is or could be possible in the future to get broadband internet via ham radio. It is possible via cellular so why not with ham radio?  I read some stuff about packet radio and it sounds like it might be a possibility?

Thanks

Greg
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KE4DRN
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Posts: 3714




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« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2008, 05:48:48 PM »

hi Greg,

have you posted to the stray forum
to see if anyone knows your father ?

http://www.eham.net/strays/viewstrays


73 james
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KB1HTW
Member

Posts: 48




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« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2008, 10:00:31 AM »

Greg,

Take this from a ham with almost 25 years in the telecom and Internet industries:

Besides the legal aspects, there's just no way to squeeze a broadband digital signal capable of carrying hundreds of kilobits/second, let alone modern broadband speeds reaching 100 megabits/second, in to a narrowband (3kHz for HF or 10kHz for 2m VHF) radio channel. Even the best military HF radio modems struggle to achieve 9600 bits/second.

Look at IEEE 802.11/b - WiFi. There's eleven channels allocated in the 2.4GHz band, and each one uses 22MHz. That's two thirds of the TOTAL bandwidth in the entire HF spectrum (3-30MHz)! Including commercial and government users - not just us hams. And it's taken up by a single WiFi channel! Not all eleven. And in perfect conditions, you get 11Mb/s over that 22MHz channel (802.11/g uses a different, more efficient coding scheme and can reach 54Mb/s).

As Montgomery Scott used to say, "Ya canna change the laws of physics, Cap'n!"

I'll let others pipe in about the legal challenges...
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W6CD
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Posts: 213


WWW

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« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2008, 11:40:49 PM »

"...There's eleven channels allocated in the 2.4GHz band, and each one uses 22MHz..."

I think you meant to say that each of the 11 channels is ~5 MHz wide, with the actual transmitted signal being ~22 MHz wide.

Agreed - the bandwidth requirements for high speed data far exceed the spectrum available on the HF ham bands.

Vince
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KG9NZ
Member

Posts: 26




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« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2008, 04:38:36 PM »

Not trying to be a wise guy here, but the original poster did specify "by ham radio", not necessarily any particular band.  Plenty of room for broadband above 300 GHz for sure.  Granted, not too practical at the moment - but I'm sure some day some innovative ham will set up an exceptionally fast broadband link using frequencies over 300 GHz (and I don't mean light).

73,
Frank KG9NZ
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EI8DRB
Member

Posts: 24




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« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2008, 06:37:29 PM »

Experimentation on the 2.4GHz band is permitted to amateurs (in Ireland at any rate).
This allows us to use such items as Linksys WRT54G or Mikrotik Routerboard with modified antennas and so on.
Of course, this cannot be used for commercial purposes or carry non-ham traffic... i.e. public emails.
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N8EKT
Member

Posts: 371




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« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2008, 07:43:04 AM »

Actually equipment is quite plentyfull and affordable!
The 902-928mhz ham band is currently being used for high speed internet as wll as 2.4ghz and 5.8ghz ham bands.
Yes as hams we are indeed allowed to use this equipment on these bands at up to 1500 watts!
Uses could include bullitin boards, IP communications etc.
Current rules won't allow providing  un filtered access to the internet but hams HAVE really dropped the ball utilizing available wifi equipment on these bands!
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W8WPC
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Posts: 5




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« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2008, 08:22:50 PM »

Thanks to all who've posted.

Where can I find out more about this? Where can I find out more about the wireless equipment available?

I've asked this question because my gut feeling is that the current monopolies who control the "last mile" internet are going to start playing games. That, and as I grew up going to field days I was taught that some of what being a ham was all about was the community service part. I also believe that ham radio was good insurance for some of our freedoms. Unfortunately some of that has changed over the years and the need / usefulness of HAM isn't what it once was. Since my office is one block east of the Hamvention in Dayton we have watched the event get smaller each year. I think the ability to do bullitin boards would bring a whole new crowd to the hobby. I also think that HAM could be very useful in the future if the truthfulness of the mass media continues on it's present course - Reporters Without Borders (a reporters trade group) rates each county on the freedom of it's press - in 2008 the US ranked 48th - down from 25th a couple of years ago (as if 25th wasn't bad enough)

Thanks again and any ideas of where I can learn more about this would be great.

Greg
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W8WPC
Member

Posts: 5




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« Reply #8 on: July 04, 2008, 08:02:27 AM »

Just in case other people would like to know more about this I did find some additional information. I found this while searching for open source firmware for my router.

Apparently broadband via ham radio is very possible. It even has a name - hinternet.  There is a wikipedia entry here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_speed_multimedia.

Any comments would be appreciated!

Greg

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