Communications are an important part of everyday life. The invention of radio has revolutionized communication for everybody. Using radio waves, we can now communicate all over the world with relative ease. We introduce you to radio communications, its limitations and its benefits.
Cadets are taught how a simple radio system works and how to operate it correctly and efficiently.Where possible Radios are used in expeditions, field Craft and other pursuits to provide real context and increase safety. The basics of VHF radio operation is taught at First Class Cadet level through to advanced radio and radio, satellite communications, which are syllabus items for more senior classifications.
The Air Cadet Organisation has its own nation wide system of radio stations for you to get in contact with and seeks to encourage Cadets to learn and practice the art of radio communication using established radio procedures.
Provisional Operator (UHF/VHF)
As the Cadets mainly use frequencies set aside for the military, there are a set of rules and operating conditions that must be adhered to. Cadets are taught to operate UHF/VHF systems in a structured training programme over a period of time.
This starts with an introduction to radio theory and radio procedures; followed and a number of practical exercises, which reinforce learning and ensure that Cadets have become confident enough to be classified as Provisional Radio Operators (VHF/UHF).With greater practical experience and continuous assessment, cadets can go on to earn their full operators licence (VHF/UHF).
Radio Communicators Badge
Cadets can then choose to pursue the ATC Radio Communicators Badge scheme, which allows a Cadet to progress through a training programme and enables them to demonstrate that they are competent with using radios unsupervised. This includes the use of HF, VHF and/or UHF radios and we also ensure they are conversant with the basics of radio and communication principles. The ATC has its own active radio networks where the Cadets can practice radio operating procedures and make contact with other ATC Squadrons and military units in the UK and abroad. Some go on to obtain Amateur Radio qualifications at Foundation, Intermediate and even Advanced level enabling them to make contact with Radio Amateurs across the world and even the International Space Station.
The skills learnt are useful not only in military life but civilian life too and can count towards classifications and Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Skills Section. Air Cadet Operators have also proven to be a valuable resource to the local community as they have been utilised at public events to pass safety and administrative messages on behalf of the organisers. Many people are not aware that radio is still fundamentally at the forefront of technology be it in the context of cellphones or satellite communication systems but we also focus on advances in computing, data transmission protocols, Internet design and technical aspects which are also encompassed into the Radio Communicators Badge scheme. Cadet can also learn about Morse Code, Codes & Cryptography and Field Telephones, which are not examined. Radio field day and contests are also open to those who wish to pursue their interest.
Another area we are developing is the ability to track and listen to transmissions from aircraft operating in the local area.