Two-Way Radio System Information

The Kettering University Radio System provides two-way radio communications to users in Campus Safety, Auxiliary Services, Physical Plant, Information Technology and the Recreation Center. Our system consists of two Motorola MotoTrbo UHF narrow band repeaters, and about 60 hand held portable transceivers. The radio system is licensed by the Federal Communications Commission, and is administered by Glenn Lechner of IT/Electronic Systems.

How it works

Users carry portable transceivers (often called 'HT's...short for 'handie talkies') that operate on UHF frequencies at power levels of 4-5 watts output. At UHF frequencies, useful range for one HT talking to another HT is basically line of sight. Reliable communications from within one campus building to another would be difficult at best. So how do we make it work? By using a repeater.  A repeater is a two way radio transceiver connected to a large outdoor antenna that receives radio transmissions from low power portable units, andre-transmits the audio back to the portables on another frequency. The repeater transmitter runs much higher power than the portable transmitters, and with the larger antenna, has a much greater range than the portable units.  The repeater signal easily covers the entire campus area, enabling the portable units reliable communication anywhere on campus.

Notes of interest

  • Our radio frequencies are shared with other licensees. When certain atmospheric conditions exist, we may experience "interference" from other stations many miles away. This is normal, and not a problem with the radio system
  • Our radio system provides two way radio coverage to the campus and surrounding local area. Our radios are not authorized for operation beyond the local area
  • The repeaters have battery backup power systems installed. This enables the repeaters to provide continuous communication in the event of a power outage
  • Our radio system has been converted to narrow channel FM operation per the FCC mandate. Our systems are fully compliant with the new regulations that take effect January 1, 2013

Current Radio specifications and new radio purchases

The Kenwood TK-3360 is currently designated as our preferred radio. Departments wishing to purchase new radios should contact me for purchase information. All new radios must be delivered to Electronic Systems for programming and performance checks prior to being used on our radio system.