This is the web page for the NCARC/NIST collaboration for the WWV Centennial, 1919-2019

Updated February 9, 2019 - scroll down for previous postings


February 9, 2019

On Friday, February 8, 2019, WWV committee members Darren Kalmbach KC0ZIE, Kevin Utter N7GES, and Dave Swartz WODAS met with John Lowe, WWV/WWVB/WWVH Station Manager, Matt Deutch, N0RGT and WWV Chief Engineer, and Glenn Nelson, WWV Electronics Technician. 

This was the first meeting for the committee and NIST since the government funding was reauthorized and the first to include NIST upper management.  The meeting was very productive, helping clarify the involvement of both NCARC and NIST in planning for the 100th anniversary. 

NIST management is “on board” with the celebration. 

John Lowe, NIST Station Manager, made it very clear that the government can’t fund any of the amateur radio special event station, but can allow it to use the already identified 15-acre parcel on WWV property. The operating site lies outside the security fence and simplifies logistics.  NCARC will also conduct RF and site tests through the summer, and are aiming for a dry run at the end of August/first of September.  Antenna installs will occur throughout September for the special event station, which will operate September 28 - October 2.

NIST will plan and produce the celebration on October 1, 2019, at the station site.  Plans include reflections and comments by NIST officials, as well as comments from local dignitaries and civic leaders.

NIST will issue a press release soon regarding the WWV 100th Anniversary, including more details.

Matt Deutch, WWV Chief Engineer, will be going to Dayton for the Hamvention May 17-19, to promote the 100th anniversary.

Discussions on Feb 8 included the need to pursue a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the involvement of both NIST and NCARC.  John Lowe will check with NIST lawyers for clarification of land use policy and liability issues related to having a special events station on NIST property.

John Lowe shared some handsome artwork related to the 100th anniversary, and we’ll post here once we’re allowed to.  Let’s just say it’s a working design!

NIST was also contacted by the US Northern Command MARS operations, and they are also interested in the special events amateur radio station.  NIST will facilitate discussions about their involvement in the special event amateur radio station.

NIST can support the celebratory events at the station proper on October 1.  NIST can NOT, however, provide consumables, as restricted by U.S. Government spending regulations.  This also prohibits the purchase of drinks and a birthday cake, but private donations will ensure we celebrate in style.   A 100th birthday party needs a really nice cake!

In summary, the 100th celebration of WWV will be October 1, 2019, at the station site north of Fort Collins.  NCARC will operate a special events amateur radio station on NIST property adjacent to WWV/WWVB from September 28 through October 2, 2019.

We are aware that many in the amateur community want to help operate the station, and we certainly can’t do this alone.  The initial press release in mid-January was to ARRL affiliated clubs in Colorado.  Hopefully this was shared with various club members, and a few hams out there are thinking about traveling to Fort Collins for the event.  NCARC is completing a review of the operator’s application and will post this on the website on March 1, 2019.  We’ll use the next few weeks improving some questions and also will investigate motel/hotel/RV camping options for potential operators.  There will be no on-site RV parking.  More to come on this soon.

In the meantime, amateurs interested in participating next fall may want to consider signing up as representatives of a club, or in a team of two as a minimum.  Operations will be a team of 2 for a two-hour block, with a suggested overlap of 30 minutes prior to and after each session.  The 2-person teams could potentially operate a second shift, but we also would like as many operators involved as practical.  Consider if you’d like to operate at the beginning of the 5-day period, the middle, or the end.  Also suggest several blocks of time to make assignments easier. You are welcome to hang out at the station as you’d like, but know it will be a busy place, and operators will designate their own working environment.  There are plenty of other things to do while here; we hope a Northern Colorado vacation becomes part of your fall plans.  Let us know if you have any questions.

The WWV committee will meet again in two weeks, at 4pm on February 22, 2019, at the WWVB conference room.


January 11, 2019

Nearly a hundred years ago, on October 1, 1919, the US Department of Commerce granted a radio license to the National Bureau of Standards (NBS), call sign WWV.

On October 1, 2019, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), formerly NBS, will celebrate the 100th anniversary of this famous radio station.  The Northern Colorado Amateur Radio Club (NCARC -, in partnership with NIST, will operate a special events amateur radio station to commemorate this important historical and scientific event.

NIST and NCARC recently met (Feb 8,2019) and agreed on the establishment of an on-site special event radio station to operate for 5 days, September 28 through October 2, 2019.  NIST will hold a special celebration on October 1, 2019 at the WWV site to commemorate the event.

The interest in this special events station from the world-wide amateur community is anticipated to be intense.  The goal of the station will be to make as many contacts (QSOs) on the HF bands as possible during the 5-day period of operation.  A special events QSL card, or series of cards, will be produced to verify QSOs and made available through ClubLog and OQRS.

The planning committee for the event is made up of 4 members of NCARC and one employee of NIST.  This core group will plan the framework for the event and coordinate logistics and outreach. As planning for the event unfolds, various sub-committees will be formed to help distribute the workload, so if you are interested in participating, there will be ample opportunities.  If you have ideas you’d like to share or offer particular skills, please contact the organizing committee by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


This page was last updated on February 9, 2019, and will be updated as needed.



To learn more about WWV, please visit:

An excellent history on WWV is available on the web:  and as a video cast :

The official NIST announcement of the 100th anniversary: