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Finding the Right Frequency, Interesting Radio Frequencies Past and Present

Updated on January 8, 2018
tamarawilhite profile image

Tamara Wilhite is a technical writer, industrial engineer, mother of 2, and a published sci-fi and horror author.

Introduction

There is only one radio frequency spectrum, which means almost all frequency ranges are allocated to someone by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). This means that the frequency's intended or authorized user is almost always known.

Some of the frequencies in this list are only used in one jurisdiction, while others are world wide. Some of these radio frequencies are historical, since the Central Intelligence Agency used the listed below in the 1990s but likely uses others for field operations today.

Note: Those that say nationwide are referring to the United States.

Here is a list of interesting and unusual radio frequencies, past and present. This is, however, only a partial list.

You do not need an amateur radio license to listen in to any of these frequencies, though you need a ham radio license to use some of them.
You do not need an amateur radio license to listen in to any of these frequencies, though you need a ham radio license to use some of them. | Source

Interesting Frequency Table

(click column header to sort results)
Frequency  
Service and Remarks  
Location  
EMS Call  
0.000
Geologic Resonant Frequency
Planet Earth
n/a
0.1143
Cave Radio ASS System
Worldwide
SSB
3.281
Lighter-Than-Aircraft
Worldwide
AM
3.818
EME Meteor Scatter
United States
LSB
3.990
ARRL Voice Bulletin
Newington, CT
CW
4.340
International Chess Players Frequency, also 2100 Hz
Worldwide
USB
5.500
Theta Brain Waves
All Humans
CW
5.688
US Air Force Global Command Net
Worldwide
USB
7.213
Jack In the Box Fraternity
Nationwide (US)
LSB
9.070
US CIA Field Operations
North America
USB
12.0225
US CIA Coded Broadcasts
Worldwide
USB
14.328
Amateur Net Elks 1800z Monday-Friday
Nationwide
USB
14.345
Amateur EME / Moonbounce
Worldwide
USB
21.350
Net Pitcairn of Pitcairn Island
South Pacific
USB
21.440
Baptist Amateur Radio
Worldwide
USB
27.035
Survivalist's AM Channel
Nationwide
FM
27.065
9 AM Highway Safety Channel
Nationwide
AM
27.115
CB Channel 13 Marine Channel
Nationwide
AM
27.125
CB Channel 14 Young People's Channel
Nationwide
AM
34.830
United States Parks and Wildlife Department
Nationwide
FM
36.330
United States Army Nuclear Test Site
Nevada, US
FM
53.500
Radio Control Models
Nationwide
FM
121.5
Emergency Aviation Frequency
Nationwide
AM
121.975
Private Air Craft Flight Service
Nationwide
AM
123.400
United States Army Golden Knights
Airshows in US
AM
143.000
United States Navy Blue Angels
Airshows in US
FM
143.625
Russian Space Station Mir's Voice Communications
Worldwide
FM
146.550
Survivalist Ham 55 Band
Nationwide
VHF
155.505
Survivalist's FM Channel
Nationswide
FM
155.160
Search and Rescue Land (SAR) VHF Band
Nationwide
FM
161.640
Goodyear Airship Ground Operations
Nationwide
FM
163.4375
Environmental Protection Agency
Nationwide
FM
166.700
United States Treasury Secret Service
Whitehouse, Washington, DC
FM
252.80
SAR Rescue Training
Nationwide
FM
372.200
NASA Channel 18 US Air Force SAC
Nationwide
FM
427.250
ATV Simplex
Nationwide
ATV
432.07
Weak Signal CW (Morse Code)
Worldwide
CW
435.00
Satellite Only Communications
International
n/a
462.6125
Family Radio Service Channel 3, Prepper Channel
Nationwide
FM
464.500
National Association of Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR)
Nationwide
FM
1800 kHz
160 Meter Ham Band
Worldwide
CW
3.5 MHz
80 Meter Ham Band
Worldwide
RTTY/Data DX
Term or Abbreviation
Definition
CW
Continuous Wave or Morse Code
ATV
Amateur Radio Television
AM
Amplitude Modulation, signals sent by changing the amplitude of the carrier wave
FM
Frequency Modulation, signals sent by changing the frequency of the carrier wave

Legal Disclaimers

It is legal to listen to communications on these frequencies. However, it is illegal to divulge information learned from electronic and radio broadcasts. Furthermore, it is illegal to use these radio frequencies for personal or financial gain.

It is also illegal to interfere with government and commercial operations that have licensed any of the frequencies listed above.

Organizations like the federal government can and may scramble their communications, but this is not allowed on ham radio or CB frequencies.


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