What is Airband (Aviation Band) on a Radio?

© Frankljunior | Dreamstime.com – Air Traffic Control Tower And An Airplane Photo

This has become a popular question with our new CC Skywave™.

According to Wikipedia, Airband, also referred to as Aircraft or Aviation band, is a group of frequencies in the VHF radio spectrum that are allocated to civil aviation radio communications. VHF is a short range, line of site transmission. Our radio covers 118 – 137MHz for Airband. In most countries a license is required to operate airband equipment but that appears to apply only to transceivers, not receivers. In some countries it is illegal to listen to or monitor the Airband without authorization (even in the UK).

The language that is used to communicate on this band can be a challenge to follow. Ken Hoke’s article on Stuff Pilots Say, gives some great insight into the meaning of the seemingly cryptic language used on Airband.

The primary purpose of Air traffic control worldwide is to prevent collisions, organize and expedite the flow of traffic, and provide information and other support for pilots. It was difficult to find any “history” of airband but it appears that it was first used extensively after World War I and after 1921 at Croydon airport in London. Navigation and air traffic control have changed over time and many areas use higher frequencies and RADAR and other more sophisticated systems. The Airband radio frequencies still continue to play a part though, especially in ground communication with pilots. It is used almost exclusively in small airports that don’t have control towers. We have one customer who plans to use the CC Skywave for monitoring the ground to pilot communication at the local air races.

As to why we decided to include Airband in our radio? Here is Bob’s answer:

“When you are in a big airport you are sometimes subject to the whims of security and circumstance. TSA does a great job but when the process gets a little tense I yearn for more information. I want to know everything that will affect my tiny domain. When you listen to aviation band you can usually figure out more by reading between the lines on what pilots and the control tower are talking about. Sometimes you gain a sense of power and wisdom as you do with any knowledge.”

For more information on what you might hear or how to listen, visit the links below.




Super USB WiFi Antenna 3- It’s easy to install!

The Super USB WiFi Antenna 3 may seem a bit intimidating to install but really, it is quite simple. We created informative videos to better represent the Super USB WiFi Antenna 3 and how easy it is to set up. Before you know it, you’ll be connected to the WiFi hotspot and cruising your favorite websites.

As always, please feel free to contact us with any questions and we appreciate your feedback.

This video provides information about waterproofing the Super USB WiFi Antenna 3

Below is our amateur Super USB WiFi Antenna 3 install video recorded right in our very own C. Crane building. We had a little too much fun! 

The Importance of HAM (Amateur) Radio – By Tim Carter, Ask the Builder

Recently I was once again on the tallest peak in the Northeast – Mt. Washington. I was on my ham radio operating at the finish line of the Newton’s Revenge bicycle race up the mountain.

As you can see from the photo, it was a little windy and foggy up at the top. Every now and then there would be a break in the dense fog and clouds. The flags tell the tale. One of the riders wanted a photo of himself with his bike at the summit after he made the epic climb.

Newton's Revenge Finish Line

Wind, clouds and fog are the norm at the top of Mt. Washington. The temperature on Saturday morning was 52 F and the winds were sustained at 40-50 mph with 70 mph gusts. From time to time the wind blew me a

half-step forward. It was an experience indeed.

To bring home the importance of ham radio, I read a story onUSAToday.com about a big storm that hit the Smokey Mountains National Park on the evening of July 7th. Most of the damage was at Cades Cove. There’s only one long road back into this part of the park, so if it’s blocked, you’re SOL. This paragraph in the story tells you why ham radio operators are so important:

“Rescue efforts on Thursday night were hampered by power being knocked out to a key radio repeater in the area, which led to spotty transmission from campers seeking assistance. Jordan described the communications problems as “extremely frustrating” as emergency officials tried to plot their response.”

If there was a local ham radio club near there, they could have been on the air in hours, if not minutes. We bring our own power. We don’t need the utility company’s power.

On Saturday morning we had our radio central command post up and running in fifteen minutes. Those of us with powerful mobile radios in our cars and trucks have 24/7/365 communications.

If you want to be able to communicate to the outside world in an emergency, get your ham radio license, join an amateur radio club in your area and get up to speed. It’s not hard to do.

This content was provided with permission by Tim Carter, a licensed HAM operator call sign, W3ATB and a member of www.CNHARC.org. He is also an award winning builder and nationally syndicated columnist and the founder of AsktheBuilder.com a site that offers expert advice for your home.