VHF radio

An aerial view of Tarbuck Crag near Davis
An aerial view of Tarbuck Crag near Davis. Photo: AAD

Marine band VHF radio is used for intra-station and local area communications. 

The main handheld VHF radio used at Casey, Davis and Mawson is the Icom IC-F30, with forty radios available at each station for issue by telecommunications personnel. These radios do not have keypads, which can be difficult to press when wearing thick gloves, nor do the have liquid crystal displays, which can freeze when subjected to the temperatures experienced during an Antarctic winter. 

The main handheld VHF radio at Macquarie Island is the Icom IC-M1. This radio has greater water resistance and is lighter than the IC-F30 and is thus more suitable for use in the wet environment of Macca, where all travel around the island is by foot.

Icom IC-M45 radios are installed in some station buildings and vehicles.

Most of the field huts around the continental stations are accessible by VHF, as are large sections of Macquarie Island.

Repeaters, located either at the stations or on high geographical features in the surrounding areas, extend the VHF radio range. Off-station repeaters are located at:

  • Mt. Parsons near Mawson,
  • Tarbuck Crag in the Vestfold Hills near Davis,
  • Mt Elder at Macquarie Island, and
  • Mt Jeffryes at Macquarie Island.

VHF air band radios are installed in the COMCENs at all stations for communication with fixed and rotary wing aircraft.