Short-Wave Radio: The H F Amateur Bands
An outline of the short wave (HF) amateur radio bands is shown below. These may have been change since I wrote this and allocations may differ slightly between global regions. The colours for daytime propagation (lower) and night time propagation (upper) have the same meanings as on my propagation diagram.
|160 Metre Band (also called 'Top Band'): 1·81 to 1·85 MHz (40 kHz wide). Normally local, but long distance possible during autumn & winter nights.|
|80 Metre Band: 3·5 to 3·8 MHz (300 kHz wide). Local during day, long distance at night all year round.|
|40 Metre Band: 7·0 to 7·1 MHz (100 kHz wide). World-wide at night. <1000 miles during day.|
7·000 to 7·045 MHz allocated to CW
7·045 to 7·100 MHz allocated to LSB
|30 Metre Band: 10·10 to 10·15 MHz (only 50 kHz wide). A 'transitional' band, ie it straddles the boundary between the 'night time only' and '24-hour'.|
|20 Metre Band: 14·00 to 14·35 MHz (350 kHz wide). World-wide day/early evening. 24-hour during solar peaks.
14·000 to 14·070 CW
14·070 to 14·100 USB
14·100 to 14·112 CW
14·112 to 14·350 USB
|17 Metre Band: 18·068 to 18·168 MHz (100 kHz wide). World-wide, less crowded than other bands.|
|15 Metre Band: 21·00-21·45 MHz (450 kHz wide). Out-performs 20 metre band during solar peaks.|
|12 Metre Band: 24·89 to 24·99 MHz (100 kHz wide). Allocated in 1979. Daytime during solar peaks.|
The 10 Metre Band: 28·0 to 29·7 MHz (1700 kHz wide - bigger than the Medium Wave broadcast band). Normally a local band, but biggest and best world-wide daytime band during solar peaks.
Different parts of each amateur band are often allocated to different kinds of amateur radio transmissions. For example, one part of a band may be reserved for ordinary amplitude modulation (AM) voice transmissions, another for single side band (SSB) voice transmissions, another for Morse code transmissions and another for frequency-shift keying [radio teletype (RTTY) or data] transmissions. Certain parts of a band may be used for two or more types of transmission. Some amateur bands - or parts thereof - are shared with other kinds of users. For full details check out this web site for the original ITU Document.
©April 1994 Robert John Morton