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W3APL is the club station of the APL Amateur Radio Club. The club station and beacon transmitters are located on the campus of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, grid square FM19NE.

The club previously used the call sign W3VD for more than 30-years. W3VD was reassigned to another amateur station in 2010.

The club operates the following radio beacon transmitters:

1296.060 MHz, 300 mW into an Alford slot at 125 feet, Morse code FSK emission

903.055 MHz, 7 Watts into a halo at 68 feet, Morse code CW emission

432.312 MHz, 7 Watts into a crossed dipole at 68 feet, Morse code CW emission

144.296 MHz, 5 Watts into a halo @ 57 feet (back on-the-air with new transmitter on 17 Sep 2014) Morse code CW emission; was 23 Watts until early 2014.; was 8 watts prior to 2013 (and out of service the second half of 2012)

50.064 MHz, 8 Watts into a halo at 53 feet, Morse code CW emission

28.296 MHz, 8 Watts into a dipole @ 55 feet, Morse code CW emission

QSL via E-Mail to: W3APL [at] jhuapl.edu

Note:  We currently do not have any paper QSL cards for our W3APL call sign, although we do have plans to design a new card.


Historical background: W3VD was the APL Amateur Radio Club Call. APL is an abbreviation for The Applied Physics Laboratory of the Johns Hopkins University. The beacon site is APL. Six simultaneous transmitters are keyed using a common keyer. Beacons are on 28.296 MHz, 50.064 MHz, 144.296 MHz, 432.317 MHz, 903.056 MHz and 1296.060 MHz.

The beacon concept was first started in Europe and Bill Tynan, W3KMV, now W3XO, requested permission for APL to test a beacon on 144 MHz. A STA was given for 1 year. The FCC determined that this beacon did not seem to cause a problem and thus has allowed them to this date.

The historical background was written by retired club member, W3TMZ (edited by AK3N).

1808243 Last modified: 2015-03-23 18:36:48, 2168 bytes

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