We listen to the Radio

The lighthouse at Cape Rachado, also known as Tanjung Tuan, has been around a very long, long time - it was first built by the Portuguese during the 16th century to guide its ships through the narrow Straits of Malacca.

Considered the oldest in Malaysia, the lighthouse still monitors the traffic through the Straits, albeit with the help of modern technology in the form of a MEASAT radar.

The original lighthouse operators could never have imagined their workplace would one day be the site to communicate with thousands of amateur radio operators around the world, but that is exactly what will happen on the weekend of 19-21st August.

Negeri Sembilan Amateur Radio Club (NESRAC) will host another of their popular International Lighthouse and Lightship weekends at Cape Rachado where they talk to people at other lighthouses around the world on radio.

International Lighthouse Lightship Weekend (ILLW) is held on the third full weekend in August every year and is run by the Ayr Amateur Radio Group, Scotland.

NESRAC participates in the event which sees radio club members all around the world setting up their equipment at over 500 lighthouses in more than 40 countries.

It is one of the most popular international amateur radio events in existence because there are very few rules and it is not the usual contest type event to "tick off" the most contacts, it is also free and there are no prizes.

One of the local event organisers, Rus Rizal Abd Ghani, says this is the 8th time NESRAC have participated and this time there will be some students attending who will learn how to make a crystal radio set, how to use morse code and generally how to set up and operate the antennae and equipment.

"It is a fun weekend speaking to people from all over the world," he said, "we look forward to it."


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