Mission

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The “North Central Texas Connection (NCTC), is a continuing work in progress. Without you, the donors, our technical staff and the various repeater owners and trustees, this system could never exist.

Most of the system is interconnected either by (420 Mhz.) full duplex links or NXU’s (Internet Extension Units “DMR, Wires-X, Allstar, and EchoLink”).

Our primary objective is to provide a backup system for the National Weather Service and their weather spotters during times of inclement weather. Please Read: “System Protocol”.

The secondary purpose is to provide for you the Amateur Radio Operator a way to communicate in the Dallas/ Ft.Worth metro area and the surrounding cities providing for technical talk and typical idle time chat.

Numerous long hours, weekends, donations of equipment and funding have allowed us to create this project. We hope you enjoy the system as much as we have enjoyed taking old equipment and giving it a new purpose. We look forward to hearing from you, and hope you enjoy this valuable resource.

No Strong Opposition to 144 – 146 MHz Reallocation Proposal at CEPT Meeting

06/25/2019

A World Radiocommunication Conference 2023 (WRC-23) agenda item proposing to study a range of frequencies, including potentially reassigning 144 – 146 MHz as a primary Aeronautical Mobile Service allocation, drew little opposition at a meeting of the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT) Project Team A. The team is responsible for some aspects of CEPT WRC positions, and the meeting was held June 17 – 21 in Prague, Czech Republic. Introduced by France, the proposal targeting 144 – 146 MHz would be part of a broader consideration of spectrum allocated to the Aeronautical Mobile Service. Another issue addressed during the meeting concerned the sharing of the Amateur Radio 1240 – 1300 MHz band with Europe’s Galileo GPS system.

“We hear only one admin[istration] (Germany) opposed the 144 MHz proposal — no one else,” the UK Microwave Group tweeted following the meeting. Otherwise, it has been carried forward to the higher-level CEPT Conference Preparatory Group (CPG) meeting in August.

The International Amateur Radio Union (IARU), which was represented at the Prague meeting, expressed “grave concern” to any proposal that would include 144 – 146 MHz in the proposed Aeronautical Mobile Services agenda item. That comprises the entire available 2-meter band in ITU Region 1. IARU has pledged to make every effort to fully protect Amateur Radio interests and seek the support of regulators for their view.

IARU Region 1 President Don Beattie, G3BJ, said prior to the meeting that the IARU would “energetically” promote its opposition in Regional Telecommunications Organizations (RTOs) and the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) “to obtain assurances that the spectrum will remain a primary allocation for the amateur services.”

The 144 – 146 MHz band is allocated globally to the Amateur and Amateur Satellite services on a primary basis, and is the only globally harmonized Amateur Radio VHF band. A widely used segment of the Amateur Radio spectrum, 2 meters supports a broad base of terrestrial users, repeater systems, and satellite stations, including the International Space Station.

According to the meeting minutes, the proposal provides no justification for targeting 144 – 146 MHz, and the IARU believes that sharing with airborne systems likely would be difficult and lead to constraints on the development of the Amateur and Amateur Satellite services there. IARU suggested that alternative proposals might be developed that could provide further spectrum for the aeronautical applications without impacting this Amateur Service spectrum.

IARU is expected to brief member-societies, requesting that they discuss the French proposal with their governments in advance of the August CEPT-CPG meeting. France could seek to introduce the same proposal to study 144 – 146 MHz for aeronautical use into other RTOs.

Meanwhile, further discussion on the 23-centimeter band study proposal is anticipated prior to the Conference Preparatory Group meeting in August. The proposal was raised in the wake of reports of interference to the Galileo navigation system, but IARU has said it’s aware of only “a handful of cases” of reported interference to the Galileo E6 signal on 1278.750 MHz. Work on this issue will continue in other specialized CEPT forums in the interim. 

System Status

Our friends on the ETECS system in the Tyler / Smith County area will be connected to NCTC today due to the severe weather threat today.

The NCTC is available for recreational use until the NWS Fort Worth Radio Desk needs to have the system. At that point please curtail all recreational traffic and yield to the NWS.

Thanks for your cooperation and participation if/when Fort Worth needs essential ground truth reports from your area.

Nathan N5REL

Arlington

Tomorrow at 3:30 pm KB5WB will be reinstalling the CAT800 controller at Arlington. There will be a interruption of service from East Bound to West bound during 3:00-4:00 pm. Allstar users will be disconnected and should connect back to KB5EDB Arlington node 47611. If the interference is gone, 443.850, Wires-x, and Plano will be back on line too.

Fort Worth

Fort Worth is now connected to the system. It is a long RF putt and has two repeater tails. Leave plenty of time between key ups, if using Fort Worth. It will stay connected as long as no issues arise. That leaves Plano, Wires X, and DMR not connected. Plano and DMR work as stand alone.

System Status

There are system repairs underway. Arlington is down. East bound is connected via Allstar through Paris’ link radio. West bound is connected via Allstar through N5KOU Echolink. East and West bound are tied via Allstar. Fort Worth and Plano are not connected to the system, but are in standalone. Fort Worth should be linked via RF to Allstar later this weekend. It is not the best performance and there are extra repeater tails. This is temporary, so use the system for needed communications only.