One of the earliest commercial wireless stations in Australia, A.W.A. Radio Centre, Pennant Hills, near Sydney, is to-day the largest and most modern of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere.
The chief functions of the Centre comprise the Beam Feeder Transmitters, operating with Melbourne; the Coastal Radio Transmitters, communicating with Rabaul, Fiji and Noumea, and also with Adelaide, Perth, Townsville and Brisbane; Sydney Radio short-wave long-distance transmitters communicating with ships at sea; the ordinary 600 and 800 metre marine transmitters; the N.S.W. Police Transmitter, keeping police headquarters in touch with the Police Patrol Cars; the 5 k.w. Broadcast Transmitters of Broadcasting Station 2FC; the Trawler Transmitter for communication with trawlers operating on the N.S.W. coast. In addition, A.W.A. Radio Centre, Pennant Hills, houses the short-wave broadcasting transmitters for overseas broadcasting to England, Canada and the United States, for relaying in those countries. While the whole of the above transmitting functions are carried out by A.W.A. Radio Centre, Pennant Hills, the actual operating of the various units is actuated by "remote control" from various parts of Sydney, and also from La Perouse.
The A.W.A. designed and manufactured 20 k.w. oil-cooled transmitter used for Empire and world-wide short-wave broadcasting and overseas telephony, is also installed at Radio Centre, Pennant Hills. The whole of the transmitters at this great station were designed and manufactured by A.W.A.
Sydney. On the heights of La Perouse, overlooking Botany Bay, is located the Sydney Receiving Centre of A.W.A.-the most important and the largest receiving station in the Southern Hemisphere. Wireless traffic is here received from a network of stations throughout the world. Messages from ships' stations in the Pacific and Indian Oceans and from the Coastal Radio Stations on the south-eastern seaboard of Australia. Two-way wireless telephony conversation is maintained between La Perouse and the trawlers operating off the N.S.W. coast; the latest news of the world is received from the English high power station at Rugby, while reception is effected of broadcast programmes transmitted from English, American, and Continental high power Broadcasting Stations. The enormous ranges to-day attained by short-wave working is demonstrated by the reception at La Perouse of experimental communications from short-wave stations in Great Britain and Europe, the United States and Canada, Africa, Asia, and the Dutch East Indies. The La Perouse Station maintains communication with all the short-wave stations in the Pacific, including Rabaul, New Guinea; Suva, Fiji; Noumea, New Caledonia; and San Francisco, while effective communication is also maintained with ships' stations equipped with short-wave apparatus, crossing the Pacific and Indian Oceans. The system of centralising wireless activities as conceived and developed by Mr. Fisk, Managing Director of Amalgamated Wireless (A/asia.) Ltd., has resulted in there being three large wireless centres in N.S.W.- the Transmitting Centre at Pennant Hills, the Receiving Centre at La Perouse, and the Control Centre at A.W.A. Headquarters, 47 York Street, Sydney. The following nine services are operated at La Perouse:-
The Beam Feeder Service from Melbourne. The Coastal Radio Service communicating with The Coastal Radio Stations at Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, and Townsville. Radio Service with Suva, Fiji. Island Radio Service communicating with New Guinea and Papua. Marine Wireless Services with ships at sea. Short-wave long distance Marine Services. The Trawler Telephony Service for communicating with trawlers operating off the N.S.W. coast. The reception of press messages from the British high power station at Rugby, and from stations in other parts of the world. The reception of broadcast programmes from Great Britain, the Continent of Europe and America, for re-broadcast by Australian Broadcasting Stations.
Messages from the Company's Island Radio Station at Rabaul, New Guinea; the A.W.A., Suva, Fiji, Station and the Beam Feeder Transmitting Station at Braybrook, Melbourne, are received at La Perouse and automatically relayed to Wireless House, York Street, where they may be automatically recorded by mechanical means or aurally received.
The Receiving Station at La Perouse has become famous throughout the world for the many noteworthy interceptions carried out there. From the time Squadr6n-Leader Kingsford-Smith left San Francisco until he reached Australia, operators at La Perouse were in touch with the 'plane, and in this achieved a record in 'plane to earth communication.
During the flight of the "Southern Cross" from Australia to England messages were received at La Perouse station from the time the 'plane left Sydney until she was passing over France. On another occasion A.W.A. operators at La Perouse were in two-way communication with the German steamer "Bremen" when she was establishing a record run across the Atlantic. Messages transmitted by Commander Byrd's Antarctic Expedition have been regularly heard by A.W.A., and, by way of reciprocity, the company transmitted a special programme to the Polar explorers.
The telephony tests between Sydney and Schenectady, New York, and between Sydney and Java, and between Sydney and London, carried out by Mr. Fisk, were effected through the La Perouse station so far as concerned the reception of the voices at the Sydney end.
The whole of the modern wireless equipment at both La Perouse and Pennant Hills was designed and manufactured by Amalgamated Wireless (A/asia) Ltd.
At Braybrook, Melbourne, is situated Radio Centre, Melbourne, owned and operated by A.W.A. This is the second largest Radio Centre in the Southern Hemisphere, and its Australian manufactured equipment is of the very latest design.
The transmitters comprise a 5 k.w. broadcasting installation for the transmission of programmes from Broadcasting Station 3L0, a 3 k.w. transmitter for communication with ships at sea, and A.W.A. coastal radio stations. There are also two 5 k.w. short-wave transmitters used in connection with the Beam Feeder service. These are the latest transmitters designed and manufactured by A.W.A., and though not in full service as yet, a highly satisfactory service is carried out daily between Melbourne and Perth, Adelaide and Brisbane.
The broadcast programmes emanate from the studio of Station 3L0 in Melbourne; the Marine transmitters are operated from the A.W.A. Receiving Station, VIM, in the Domain, while the feeder transmitters are operated by "remote control" from the Company's Beam Offices in Queen Street, Melbourne. Messages from ships at sea are intercepted at the A.W.A. Receiving Station in the Domain, where the operators by means of "remote control" actuate the marine transmitters at A.W.A. Transmitting Centre, Braybrook.
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