bom radio receivers

When you are out to sea, it is crucial to keep on top of the weather forecasts, a change in swell and wind can change the sailing landscape from smooth to challenging.

The Australian Bureau of Meterorology (BOM) Marine Forecast Service provides regular weather forecasts and warnings Australia wide.

This information is broadcast on HF radio for mariners in two formats:

a. Broadcast (voice) of marine weather warnings, forecasts and observations.

b. Broadcast (radiofax images) of marine weather forecast and analysis maps.

The Bureau broadcasts its marine weather HF radio services for high seas and Australian coastal areas from transmitters at Charleville in Queensland and Wiluna in Western Australia. Identifiers are VMC (for services from Charleville) and VMW (for services from Wiluna). Services use USB (F3C) modulation.

VMC (Australia Weather East) broadcasts for the following areas:

· Coastal Waters areas off Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania.

· High Seas for the Northern, Southern, North Eastern and South Eastern high seas areas.

Marine weather warnings are broadcast on the hour (on the half-hour in CST) for NT, Qld, NSW, Vic, SA and Tasmanian coastal waters zones and for all high seas areas. The broadcast is available on the following frequencies (kHz):

· Day-time (0700 – 1800 EST): 4426, 8176, 12365, 16546

· Night-time (1800 – 0700 EST): 2201, 6507, 8176, 12365

Navigation Maritime Safety Information notices are broadcast at 25 past each hour on 8176 kHz. Marine forecasts and observations are broadcast from Charleville (VMC) on a four hour repeat cycle, according to the schedule below:

All times are in Eastern Standard time (0700-1800EST) DAY-Time schedule

0730hrs Queensland

0830hrs High Seas (Northern, North Eastern, South Eastern, and Southern areas)

0930hrs New South Wales, Victoria

1030hrs Tasmania

This schedule repeats every four hours until 1800EST after which time, the nigh-time frequencies are used.

When daylight savings is in force, add one hour to EST and CST to obtain Eastern and central daylight time equivalents.

 

VMW (Australia Weather West) broadcasts for the following areas:

· Coastal Waters areas off South Australia, Western Australia and Northern Territory.

· High Seas for the Northern, Western and Southern high seas areas.

Marine weather warnings are broadcast on the hour (on the half-hour in CST) for Qld Gulf, NT, WA and SA coastal waters zones and for all high seas areas. The broadcast is available on the following frequencies (kHz):

· Day-time (0700 – 1800 WST): 4149, 8113, 12362, 16528

· Night-time (1800 – 0700 WST): 2056, 6230, 8113, 12362

Navigation Maritime Safety Information notices are broadcast at 25 past each hour on 8176 kHz. Marine forecasts and observations are broadcast from Wiluna (VMW) on a four hour repeat cycle according to the schedule below:

All times are in Western Standard time (0700-1800WST)

0730hrs Western Australia (Northern Zones: NT-WA Border to North West Cape) NT

0830hrs Western Australia (Western Zones: North West Cape to Cape Naturaliste) Western Australia (Southern Zones: Cape Naturaliste to WA-SA Border)

0930hrs South Australia

1030hrs Queensland (Gulf waters) High Seas (Northern, Western, and Southern areas)

This schedule repeats every four hours until 1800WST after which night-time frequencies are used.

When daylight savings is in force, add one hour to EST and CST to obtain Eastern and Central daylight time equivalents.

 

BOM Marine Weatherfax service:

The BOM Marine Weatherfax service is also broadcast from Charelville (VMC) in the east and Wiluna (VMW) in the west. Both transmitters have a power rating of 1Kw, utilising F3C transmission.

Charleville: Call Sign VMC

 

Frequency: 2628, 5100, 11030, 13920, 20469 kHz

Broadcast (UTC) 0900-1900, 0000-2400, 0000-2400, 0000-2400, 1900-0900.

 

WilunaL: Call Sign VMW

 

Frequency: 5755, 7535, 10555, 15615, 18060 kHz

Broadcast (UTC) 1100-2100, 0000-2400, 0000-2400, 0000-2400, 2100-110

VMC & VMW Radio Fax Schedule

Time (UTC) Description of Item and Current Chart
0000* Indian Ocean Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
0015 VMC/VMW Schedule – 2 pages
0045 VMC/VMW Broadcast Information
0100 Recommended Frequencies for VMC (Charleville) – 3 pages
0131 Recommended Frequencies for VMW (Wiluna) – 3 pages
0203 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Forecast (H+36) Valid 0000
0245 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
0300 Australian Primary Swell Waves Forecast (H+24) Valid 0000
0315 Voice Broadcast Information for VMC and VMW
0345* Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
0400 South Pacific Ocean Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
0430 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure 4-day forecast – 2 pages
0500* Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure 4-day forecast – 2 pages
0600 Asian (Area A) Gradient Level Wind Analysis Valid 0000
0623 Asian (Area B) Gradient Level Wind Analysis Valid 0000
0645 Asian Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
0730 Indian Ocean Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
0745 Australian Total Wave Height and Direction Forecast (H+24) Valid 0000
0800 Australian Primary Swell Waves Forecast (H+24) Valid 0000
0830 South Pacific Ocean Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
0845 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0600
0900 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Forecast (H+36) Valid 0000
0915 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure 4-day forecast – 2 pages
1015 Southern Ocean Total Wave Height and Direction (H+24) valid 0000
1030 Indian Ocean Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
1045 Southern Hemisphere Mean Sea Level Pressure Forecast (H+48) Valid 0000
1100 Southern Ocean Total Wave Height and Direction (H+36) valid 0000
1115 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0600
1130 Asian Sea Surface Temperature Analysis
1145 VMC/VMW Information Notice
1200 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Forecast (H+36) Valid 1200
1215 VMC/VMW Schedule – 2 pages
1245 Indian Ocean Mean Sea Level Pressure Forecast (H+36) Valid 1200
1315 South Pacific Ocean Total Waves (H+48) Valid 0000
1330 Indian Ocean Total Waves (H+48) Valid 0000
1345 Pacific Ocean Sea Surface Temperatures
1400 Indian Ocean Sea Surface Temperatures
1415 Southern Ocean Total Wave Height and Direction (H+48) valid 0000
1430 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 1200
1500 Australian Primary Swell Waves Forecast (H+24) Valid 0000
1515 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Forecast (H+36) Valid 1200
1530 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure 4-day forecast – 2 pages
1600 Asian Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
1630 Recommended Frequencies for VMC (Charleville) – 3 pages
1701 Recommended Frequencies for VMW (Wiluna) – 3 pages
1800 Asian (Area A) Gradient Level Wind Analysis Valid 1200
1823 Asian (Area B) Gradient Level Wind Analysis Valid 1200
1915 Indian Ocean Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
1930 Australian Total Wave Height and Direction Forecast (H+24) Valid 1200
1945 Australian Primary Swell Waves Height Forecast (H+24) Valid 1200
2000 South Pacific Ocean Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
2015 Southern Ocean Total Wave Height and Direction (H+24) valid 0000
2030 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis (Manual) Valid 1800
2215 Southern Ocean Total Wave Height and Direction (H+36) valid 0000
2230 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure 4-day forecast, Days 1 and 2
2245 Southern Hemisphere Mean Sea Level Pressure Forecast (H+48) Valid 1200
2300 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure 4-day forecast, Days 3 and 4
2315 Southern Ocean Total Wave Height and Direction (H+48) valid 0000
2330 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Forecast (H+36) Valid 0000
2345 Indian Ocean Mean Sea Level Pressure Forecast (H+48) Valid 1200
*The following charts are repeat broadcasts on 11030 kHz only via a directional aerial pointing from Charleville (VMC) towards Tasmania.
0000 Indian Ocean Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
0345 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure Analysis Valid 0000
0500 Australian Mean Sea Level Pressure 4-day forecast – 2 pages
Suitable Receivers:

emergency weather warnings radio

Any HF receiver capable of tuning the correct frequencies and receiving SSB transmissions will be suitable for VMC and VMW voice transmissions. To decode facsimilie transmissions an external decoder will be required. The user must be able to access a headphones or line output socket on the receiver to facilitate connection.**

The provision of an external antenna socket is an advantage, this will allow a single wire connection to a backstay or other length of wire to improve reception over the standard telescopic whip.

All broadcast use USB and that mode must be selected on the receiver.

Suitable receivers in the Tecsun range are:
S-2000 desktop, PL-600, PL-660, PL-330, PL-880, PL-990, PL-365, S-8800,

Shop these radios here on our online webshop.

Information source: Australian Bureau of Meteorology

**There exists a radio fax decoder which operates on both Adroid and IOS phones and tablets, which does not require a wired connection.

Simply place your phone or tablet near the speaker of the receiver and the decoder will start.

The App is available from the App Store (HF Weather Fax Marine Radio Fascimile Decoder App) from Black Cat Systems- https://www.blackcatsystems.com/index.html

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