The Texas Youth Amateur Radio Club (TYARC) is being created to promote the many aspects of amateur radio to youth. Amateur radio, or "ham" radio as it is also known, has advanced over the years and in many ways is the leader in technological advancement in communications. Unfortunately, amateur radio has the public perception of being an antiquated hobby using out-of-date methods of communication. Nothing could be further from the truth. Much of the latest technology in communications systems was invented by amateur radio operators.
In addition to traditional radio modes such as FM, AM and Single Sideband (SSB), amateur radio uses various digital modes for both voice and data transmission. Amateur radio repeaters are in satellites and on the International Space Station and hams routinely talk to astronauts who are also amateur radio operators. Amateur TV is also popular and by combining amateur radio and the Internet, it possible to talk worldwide with a small handheld radio.
Amateur radio is not just a great hobby, it provides life-saving communications during disasters such as hurricanes, tornados and even tsunamis. This is when the true value of amateur radio operators is really appreciated by the public. Traditional phone lines and cell phone towers are often destroyed leaving many areas and countless thousands of people without any method of communication with critical emergency service personnel. Hams have saved many thousands of lives by providing much needed communication including voice, data, and even photographic information.
There is no minimum or maximum age for membership in TYARC, but the operational focus is on youth. Adults, especially parents, are encouraged to join and help the kids build and operate their club. The plan is to have chapters throughout Texas with a link system tying all of our repeaters together in a TYARC system.