Thursday, April 4, 2019

Maritime mobile antennas

There is much to be said for maritime mobile operating. You can get away from interference sources, and if on the ocean you have a salt water ground. This can make your signal as strong as a good home station despite your use of simple non-beam antennas.

Some form of vertical antenna is the most popular choice. This can be fed at the bottom with an antenna coupler at the base. You could even load up the backstay. Such an arrangement can allow multiband HF operation over a good selection of bands. 

What are other things to consider? First of all the wet salty environment is bad for reliable electronics including transceivers. And it means you'll have to be more careful than usual with antenna connections due to the risk of diode junctions forming and potential harmonic radiation on transmit and problems on receive. Also you will have to figure out some sort of earthing arrangement that makes contact with the water. Or maybe use a tuned counterpoise coupled to the water like successful pedestrian mobile operators do. 

Some ideas on maritime mobile stations and antennas are below: 

PS: Want to read more about antennas and other amateur radio topics? These books could be of interest. Available in both electronic and paperback.

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