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HF Interoperability Exercise
ALE On-The-Air Week
International ham radio HF Interoperability Exercise (HFIE) also known as ALE On The Air Week (AOTAW) is sponsored by HFLINK and HFN.

Ham operators use the same standards as non-governmental and government organizations worldwide for interoperable HF communications. Interoperability training during this EMCOMM readiness exercise covers standard ALE (Automatic Link Establishment), NALE (Non-Automatic Link Establishment and SELCALL (HF Selective Calling). 

Ham operators are invited to participate at any time during the 10 days of this free and open informal training. Operators get real-world experience and become proficient in HF Interoperability communications. They initiate and respond to ALE calls and soundings, link up with fellow operators for text or SSB voice QSOs on HF, and share helpful information about setting up ALE stations.

Join the growing thousands of amateur radio operators worldwide with ALE-capable stations. Participants discuss, learn, and ask questions using the HFN ALE COMM CENTRE chat room.

The experience gained by operator participation in this readiness exercise is useful for HF Emergency/Disaster Relief communications.

All operators are reminded to be courteous and operate only on the recognised International Amateur Radio ALE channels and standards. AOTAW is not a competition. AOTAW is intended to provide a way for more operators to gain valuable practical knowledge and expertise in the operation of an Amateur Radio ALE station.

All operators are encouraged to send ALE soundings (station ID) hourly on the data channels.

ALE netcalls are to be used as the general CQ calls for the event.
DATA channels Netcall  = HFN
VOICE channels Netcall = HFL


1. How to call CQ: Transmit a CALL> NETCALL to either the "HFL" net on the voice channels or "HFN" net on the text/data channels. Wait at least 1 minute for responses.
2. How to call an individual station: Transmit an INDIVIDUAL CALL to the callsign. It may be necessary to first add the station's callsign (address) to your ALE address list.
3. Upon linking on a VOICE channel, use USB Voice for the QSO.
4. Upon linking on a DATA channel, send a short AMD message to the station you are linked with. Receive any AMD message in response.
5. When QSO is completed, transmit the CLEAR LINK signal.

After initial ALE link on a DIGITAL channel, use only the universal short text message for ALE, called an AMD. An AMD message request to the other operator can optionally ask for other digital text keyboarding, QSY, or a voice QSO. ALE AMD: is the "universal" ALE text message system common to all ALE software and hardware, also known as Orderwire Message,
or Automatic Message Display.

Amateur operators who use ALE for government and non-governmental organisations may be especially interested in participation, for it provides more chances to work with ALE linking and greater understanding of the system. It is a chance for operators to explore the various operational aspects of ALE that may not be utilised otherwise in a more structured organisation ALE network. The 10 days of AOTAW enables operators to participate as they can, for any amount of time in the event, and to experience ALE operation under various ionospheric propagation conditions.

Use the ALE COMM CENTRE chat room for real-time support with other ALE operators.
The HFLINK forum provides information exchange, help with ALE equipment setup, and advice for ALE operators.

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HF Interoperability is Automatic Link Establishment techniques. HFLINK is the international resource for ALE Automatic Link Establishment High Frequency Communications, HF Digital Messaging, Emergency / Disaster Relief, Interoperative HF Communications, HF Network, Ham Radio.