Over the years, AMRAD has been instrumental in advancing amateur radio technology and improving telecommunications for persons with disabilities.

Educational Activities:

  • Sponsored and/or hosted three ARRL Digital Communications Conferences in the Washington, DC area.
  • Convened 1999 AMRAD Technical Symposium in Falls Church, VA.
  • Authored the ARRL’s Spread Spectrum Sourcebook (used as a reference in the IEEE individual learning course).
  • Contributed to the spread spectrum material in the ARRL Handbook.
  • Hold monthly meetings devoted to presentations on technical subjects.
  • Meet weekly at Saturday luncheons to exchange ideas and project assistance.
  • Continue to publish the authoritative AMRAD Newletter as a source for experimental information.
  • Provided judges for Northern Virginia science fairs.


  • Made the first HF contact on packet radio on the east coast of the USA.
  • AMRAD/W4RI and K2SZE aired first amateur spread spectrum transmissions on HF.
  • Tested police radars for susceptibilty to amateur transmitters.
    Operated low-frequency (LF) transmitters in Northern Virginia under an FCC experimental license.
  • Jointly with the Radio Society of Great Britain (RSGB) and the Deutscher Amateur-Radio-Club (DARC), AMRAD sponsored competiton for first successful amateur transatlantic transmissions at LF.
  • Frank KØBRA, Bernie W4SW, and André N4ICK made field measurements on Broadband over Power Line (BPL) systems in Maryland and Manassas, VA.


  • Developed the AX.25 amateur packet protocol which was adopted by AMSAT and standardized by ARRL Digital Committee.
  • Built and operated a landline computer bulletin board believed to be the second in the USA.
  • Built and operated one of the first radio bulletin boards in the world.
  • Designed and constructed the AMRAD-OSCAR 27 satellite payload in conjunction with EYESAT.
  • Designed the popular AMRAD/KØBRA active antenna published in QST.
  • Developed the Computer Assisted Relay System used by many statewide deaf TTY relay services.
  • Developed the first BBS based ASCII-to-TTY converter (“TEDIVERTER”) for deaf telecommunications.
  • Contributed to FCC rules on spread spectrum and conducted spread spectrum testing with the FCC.

Operational Activities:

  • Provided safety communications for cross country races.
    Operates the W4CIA (formerly WD4IWG) FM repeater on 147.81/147.21 MHz near Tysons Corner, VA for use by experimenters.
  • Operated the Handicapped Educational eXchange (HEX) BBS for use with ASCII and TTY modems.
  • Provided Internet access for the Northern Virginia Resource Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Persons.