Ground Wave Emergency Network Mission
The Ground Wave Emergency Network or GWEN is an ambitious ongoing project being carried out by Niagara Peninsula Amateur Radio Club (VE3VM) members and area radio amateurs to map ground wave propagation around the Niagara Peninsula and Southern Ontario using the 80 metre band (3.5 to 4.0 MHz) and vertical polarization. A Net takes place the first and third Monday each month at 19:30 local(commencing spring 2014) at 3607 kHz + or - QRM. Co-ordinate on the VE3NRS repeater. NPARC members and local amateurs have fun experimenting with antennas, operating at different power levels and measuring signal strength using side band (SSB), Morse code (CW) and PSK-31 (Digital). The goal is to set up a GWEN network in the Niagara Peninsula and then across southern Ontario from Windsor-Sarnia to Ottawa-Kingston to supplement the Amateur Radio Emergency Service or ARES in the unlikely event of total repeater failure.
Experimentation by NPARC members have proven 100% reliable communications to 100 kilometers using 100 Watts or less in all conditions and at any time of day using the 80 metre band and vertical polarization. Further experimentation with different modes and power levels will attempt to extend this range to 160 kilometres. We need your help to do this. Click-on the Southern Ontario map to the right to see possible GWEN coverage.
GWEN Mandate: To give additional support of long range radio communications in the event of a repeater failure of our Niagara ARES vhf / uhf emergency service.
GWEN Mode of Operation: The GWEN network will be self supporting and able to exist utilizing its own emergency power supply, and not relying on the grid. Propagation will be via ground wave but near vertical incident sky wave (NVIS) will be utilized to extend communications beyond ground wave limits on a frequency to be determined in the 80 meter ham band.
GWEN Requirements: An HF transceiver and antenna capable of 80 meter operation. The vertical antenna is preferred but a dipole using the Dipole/Vertical converter (ask ve3bbn) will cover both of the above modes of propagation. A generator or other means of self- sufficiency of power is paramount to emergency readiness, and most important, an unfailing desire to help your fellow man in the event of a disaster.
GWEN Executive: An executive will be formed within the first two meetings of the GWEN nets which will be on the 80 meter band on a frequency to be determined. This executive will set up a meeting with other GWEN / NVIS stations in the Hamilton and Toronto areas to give the needed extension of range laid out in the mandate.
GWEN Identification: The shirt/jacket patches of the Niagara and Frontenac chapters of GWEN have been made and are available for serious members.
GWEN Committment: Do you have that "unfailing desire"? Join GWEN!