Down East Sideband Society

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newport area 915MHz Mesh Network

Meshtastic® is a Long-Range (LoRa) project that enables one to use small, inexpensive radios as a long range off-grid communication platform in areas without existing or reliable communications infrastructure.  The Meshtastic project is 100% community-driven and open source!  My LoRa node is mounted on a mast in my back yard and runs off solar power, and needs no cellular or WiFi service to communicate with other users within the Mesh on frequency of 915 MHz.  Messages are received on a node located in my radio room and displayed as text on a small OLE screen.  No FCC license is required to use LoRa, and messages to other users can be encrypted using AES 256.

No license is cuurently required for Mesh radios, and mesh radios are available online for under $100.

Meshtastic lets you use inexpensive ($30-ish) GPS radios as an extensible, super long battery life mesh GPS communicator. These radios are great for hiking, skiing, paragliding - essentially any hobby where you don’t have reliable internet access. Each member of your private mesh can always see the location and distance of all other members and any text messages sent to your group chat.  One of the compelling cases for Meshtastic and the network of LoRa devices that has been organically built has been “in case the grid goes down.” scenarios.  Our fragile telecom and power grid infrastructure has failed us in the past, and especially in the "down east" area of North Carolina where hurricanes landfall each year.  The advantage in meshtastic is that it is an off-grid, infrastructure-free system which allows point-to-point and point-to-mesh communications. You don’t need any infrastructure for it to work.  The signals are generated from your device and are sent long distances to the grid or directly to another device.

Messages can also be sent directly to a smartphone even without cellular or WiFi service, making the Mesh network totally independent of other service.

The LoRa WisBlock Mesh Radio

Download the Meshtastic app and get on the Newport Mesh network now!
Meshtastic mesh network app