Packet radio is the fourth major digital radio communications mode. Earlier modes were telegraphy (Morse Code), teleprinter (Baudot) and facsimile. Like those earlier modes, packet was intended as a way to reliably transmit written information. The primary advantage was initially expected to be increased speed, but as the protocol developed, other capabilities surfaced.

The technology itself was a leap forward, making it possible for nearly any packet station to act as a digipeater, linking distant stations with each other through ad hoc networks. This makes packet especially useful for emergency communications.

Station configuration

A basic packet radio station consists of a computer or dumb terminal, a modem, and a transceiver with an antenna. Traditionally, the computer and modem are combined in one unit, the terminal node controller (TNC), with a dumb terminal (or terminal emulator) used to input and display data. Increasingly, however, personal computers are taking over the functions of the TNC, with the modem either a standalone unit or implemented entirely in software. Alternatively, multiple manufacturers (including Kenwood and Alinco) now market handheld or mobile radios with built-in TNCs, allowing connection directly to the serial port of a computer or terminal with no other equipment required.

Source: Wikipedia

We are currently looking for an experienced packet radio operator to give a presentation to the radio club and ARES group. Please contact KE5ZRT or N5YXN to help out.

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