Building a Solar Powered Ham Radio Station

December 21, 2023 Julian OH8STN 5

The Off-Grid Ham Shack series discusses creating a self-sufficient ham radio station or ‘Ham Shack’ capable of operating on solar power during any grid down scenario, emphasizing the importance of an energy strategy for off-grid communications. This system includes solar panels, a charge controller, battery, and power distribution system. Key elements are the use of photovoltaic (PV) panels to harness solar energy, a solar charge controller to regulate energy flow and prevent battery overcharging or damage, and a battery to store energy for later. As well, power distribution ensures the allocation of power to multiple devices simultaneously. A grid-down energy strategy is crucial to any communication-related emergency, be it CB, FRS, GMRS, MURS or PMR radio, UHF CB, DMR, DStar, Meshtastic or LoRa communications.