[aprssig] VHF Aircraft Channels

Herb Gerhardt hgerhardt at wavecable.com
Tue Jan 24 13:36:52 EST 2006

Well, here are my two cents worth on this topic.

>From a ground station, you can not use any of the aircraft frequencies
unless you have a valid license to operate on that frequency AND a Type
Accepted Radio for that frequency.  The no license requirement is only
applicable to aircraft flying in the US and not ground support stations.

I just went through the process of obtaining a valid Aviation License for
our local DEM Office for use during SAR activities when we communicate with
aircraft during searches.  Well, let me tell you, that process was a
nightmare!  Our previous license expired about 6 years ago and the FCC had
no records of that license.  Doing a license application Online which is
what the FCC wants, was impossible since you don't have all the regulations
at your fingertips so you can't pick the correct codes.  All the web site
tells you is you made and error and where the error was made but does not
give you any hints as to what you needed to enter instead.  It was as
ridiculous as where it asked for which county you were going to operate in
and I entered Mason County.  Well that bounced, it turned out I could only
enter Mason and not Mason County.

I spent several months trying to get this license including sending several
emails and making several phone calls to the FCC.  I finally called and told
the person who was helping me that they could not hang up until the FCC site
accepted our application.  I spent close to an hour on the phone with her
and told her to tie into my computer so she could see my screen.  It was an
enlightening experience for both of us but we finally succeeded and we got
our license.

Now as far as the frequencies we got licensed for goes, they are 122.90 and
123.10 MHz.  I tried to get us licensed for several other frequencies but
that was not permitted.  Yes we have a type accepted aircraft radio in our
ComVan with those frequencies programmed into it.  Now during an actual
search, I have found that the supporting aircrafts usually have many other
non-aviation commercial frequencies that your county is authorized to use
available for communications, so keep that in mind and ask them which
frequency they want you to utilize.

Herb, KB7UVC
Mason County ARES/RACES  APRS Coordinator

Mason County ComVan:  http://map.findu.com/KB7UVC-1
Mason County Relay Truck:  http://map.findu.com/KB7UVC-2
Mason County EOC:  http://map.findu.com/KB7UVC-3
Mason County Foot Tracker:  http://map.findu.com/KB7UVC-6

Where I am walking:  http://map.findu.com/KB7UVC-7
Where I am driving:  http://map.findu.com/KB7UVC-8

  -----Original Message-----
  From: aprssig-bounces at lists.tapr.org
[mailto:aprssig-bounces at lists.tapr.org]On Behalf Of Ken Brown
  Sent: Tuesday, January 24, 2006 3:26 AM
  To: 'TAPR APRS Mailing List'
  Subject: RE: [aprssig] VHF Aircraft Channels

  The FCC eliminated the aircraft radio license requirement for US-based
aircraft flying domestically some years ago, so very few owners have them.
I do have a license for my Cessna Cardinal since it technically is required
to fly to Canada.

  73, ---Ken W2KB N16019  W2KB-7


  From: aprssig-bounces at lists.tapr.org
[mailto:aprssig-bounces at lists.tapr.org] On Behalf Of John Habbinga
  Sent: January 24, 2006 01:12
  To: TAPR APRS Mailing List
  Subject: Re: [aprssig] VHF Aircraft Channels

  Use of aviation radio frequencies requires an FCC license.  If you don't
have a license you can probably operate under the control of a licensed
aviation service organization.  Usually one that operates at the airport the
plane is kept at.  You would want to ask the plane's pilot what frequency to
use.  I know that 123.450 MHz is commonly used for informal chit-chat among

  On 1/23/06, Robert Bruninga <bruninga at usna.edu > wrote:

  Hummh... We all have these radios that tune the
  118-137 MHz AM aircraft band...  But what channels
  are available to communicate plane to plane or
  plane to ground?

  Our aerospace department has a plane they fly
  occasionally for flight studies.  What channel
  can I talk to them on to coordinate some GPS
  experiements for example?  (That isnt too
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