Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Robust antennas for beacon and repeater sites

Yesterday we talked about antennas in snowy environments.

A common example is at hilltop beacon and repeater sites.

Antennas at such places need to be super robust and super reliable.

That's not just because of the extreme weather high sites experience. 

Reliable operation is essential for a beacon and (particularly) a repeater that may be used for emergency communication. 

Sites may be a long drive away for those who maintain them. 

They may be inaccessible in winter. 

If they are owned by other users, sites may be difficult to gain access to.

And commercial users will probably insist on commercial standard equipment and antenna installations. 

These considerations are paramount. They probably outweigh matters like antenna lightness, gain and low cost that are top of mind for those planning what to put up for casual operating from home.

There don't seem to be a lot of resources online for repeater and beacon antennas. But the one source I found, WA6ILQ repeater builders' antenna information, proved a goldmine. Alternatively you can get some inspiration from commercial manufacturers who make ruggedised antennas for use in or near the amateur bands.

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