8U Radio Central

Main Radio Central, commonly called the “radio shack” supported both short- and long-range communications between ships and shoreside centers.  Messages were transmitted by voice or telegraph.  Morse code was also used when all other communications failed.  The space was normally manned by a watch supervisor and two radio operators.   In addition, all internal communication for the ship went through this location.

Sailors who worked in this area required a top secret (TS) clearance because of the sensitivity of the communications that went through this location, especially in times of war.  Since the USS Orleck served during the Korean and Vietnam Wars, it participated in numerous secret operations where secrecy was critical.

A pass-through window was provided to anyone with a lower clearance who needed to provide information to the group without entering the space.  There is also the Crypto area in the rear of the space to store highly classified documents or codes when not in use by the operators.

In today’s world the area is used for amateur radio operations during special events.  A similar format is used whereby there is a supervisor who holds the highest FCC radio license oversees multiple radio operators who are on the air broadcasting.

The USS Orleck registered an amateur radio club named Orleck Amateur Radio Society with the call sign WA4RC for use in normal radio operations.

If you would like get involved and volunteer, contact us at Radio Central Support.


With Support From

North Florida Amateur Radio Society (NOFARS)

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