Radio Merit Badge Pamphlet Radio Merit Badge

Radio


Requirements were REVISED effective January 1, 2009.
(New pamphlet issued August 1, 2008).

New text is in bold GREEN underlined Serif text like this sentence.
Deleted portions are struck through RED italic text like this sentence.

To see the requirements, without the changes highlighted, Click here.

For the previous requirements, Click here.


  1. Explain what radio is. Include in your explanation: the differences between broadcast radio and hobby radio, and the differences between broadcasting and two-way communicating. Also discuss broadcast radio and amateur radio call signs and using phonetics. Then discuss the following:
    1. The differences between broadcast radio and hobby radio.
    2. The differences between broadcasting and two-way communications.
    3. Radio call signs and how they are used in broadcast radio and amateur radio
    4. The phonetic alphabet and how it is used to communicate clearly.
  2. Do the following:
    Sketch a diagram showing how radio waves travel locally and around the world. How do the broadcast radio stations, WWV and WWVH, help determine what you will hear when you listen to a radio?
    1. Sketch a diagram showing how radio waves travel locally and around the world. Explain how the broadcast radio stations, WWV and WWVH can be used to help determine what you will hear when you listen to a shortwave radio?
    2. Explain the difference between a DX and a local station. Discuss what the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) does and how it is different from the International Telecommunication Union.
  3. Do the following:
    1. Draw a chart of the electromagnetic spectrum covering 100 kilohertz (kHz) to 1000 megahertz (MHz).
    2. Label the LF, MF, HF, VHF, UHF, and microwave portions of the spectrum on your diagram.
    3. Locate on your chart at least eight radio services such as AM and FM commercial broadcast, citizens band (CB), television, amateur radio (at least four ham amateur radio bands), and public service (police and fire).
    4. Discuss why some radio stations are called DX and others are called local. Explain who the FCC and ITU are.
  4. Explain how radio waves carry information. Include in your explanation: transceiver, transmitter, receiver, amplifier, and antenna.
  5. Learn the safety precautions for working with radio gear, particularly DC and RF grounding
    Do the following:
    1. Explain the differences between a block diagram and a schematic diagram.
    2. Draw a block diagram for a radio station that includes a transceiver, amplifier, microphone, antenna, and feed line.
    3. Explain the differences between an open circuit a closed circuit, and a short circuit.
    4. Draw eight schematic symbols. Explain what three of the represented parts do. Find three electrical components to match to three of these symbols.
  6. Explain the safety precautions for working with radio gear, including the concept of grounding for direct current circuits, power outlets, and antenna systems.
    Do the following:
    1. Explain the differences between a block diagram and a schematic diagram.
    2. Draw a block diagram that includes a transceiver, amplifier, microphone, antenna, and feedline.
    3. Explain the differences between an open circuit, a closed circuit, and a short circuit.
    4. Draw eight schematic symbols. Explain what three of the represented parts do. Find three electrical components to match to three of these symbols.
  7. Visit a radio installation (an amateur radio station, broadcast station, or public communications center, for example) approved in advance by your counselor. Discuss what types of equipment you saw in use, how it was used, what types of licenses are required to operate and maintain the equipment, and the purpose of the station.
  8. Find out about three career opportunities in radio. Pick one and find out the education, training, and experience required for this profession. Discuss this with your counselor, and explain why this profession might interest you.
  9. 7. Do ONE of the following: (a, OR b, or OR c )
    1. Amateur radio AMATEUR RADIO
      1. Tell why the FCC has an amateur radio service. Describe some of the activities that amateur radio operators can do on the air, once they have earned an amateur radio license.
      2. Using proper call signs, Q signals, and abbreviations, carry Carry on a 10 minute real or simulated radio contact using voice, or Morse Code, or digital mode ; use proper call signs, Q signals, and abbreviations. (Licensed ham amateur radio operators may substitute five QSL cards as evidence of contacts with amateur radio operators from at least three different call districts.) Properly log the real or simulated ham radio contact and record the signal report.
      3. Explain at least five Q signals or amateur radio terms you hear while listening.
      4. Explain some of the differences between the Technician, General, and Extra Class license requirements and privileges. Explain who gives administers amateur radio exams.
      5. Explain how you would make an emergency call on voice or Morse code. Tell why the FCC has an amateur radio service.
      6. Explain the differences between handheld transceivers versus and home "base" stations transceivers. Explain about the uses of mobile amateur radios radio transceivers and amateur radio repeaters.
    2. Broadcast radio BROADCAST RADIO
      1. Prepare a program schedule for radio station "KBSA" of exactly one-half hour, including music, news, commercials, and proper station identification. Record your program on audio tape audiotape or in a digital audio format using proper techniques.
      2. Listen to and properly log 15 broadcast stations; determine for five of these their transmitting power and general areas served. Determine the program format and target audience for five of these stations.
      3. Explain at least eight terms used in commercial broadcasting, such as segue, cut, and fade, continuity, remote, Emergency Alert System, network, cue, dead air, PSA, and playlist..
      4. Discuss the educational and licensing requirements and career opportunities in broadcast radio.
    3. Short-wave listening SHORTWAVE LISTENING
      1. Listen across several shortwave bands for two 4-hour four one-hour periods, one in the early morning and the other in the early evening - at least one period during daylight hours and at least one period at night. Log the stations properly and locate them geographically on a globe.
      2. For several major foreign stations (BBC in Great Britain or HCJB in Ecuador, for example), list several frequency bands used by each.
      3. Compare your morning and evening daytime and nighttime logs , noting ; note the frequencies on which your major foreign selected stations were loudest during each session. Explain the differences in the signal strength from one period to the next.
      4. Discuss the purpose of and careers in short-wave communications.
    8. Visit a radio installation approved in advance by your counselor (ham radio station, broadcast station, or public service communications center, for example). Discuss what types of equipment you saw in use, how it was used, what types of license are required to operate and maintain the equipment, and the purpose of the station.

BSA Advancement ID#: 93
Requirements last updated in: 2008
Pamphlet Publication Number: 35938
Pamphlet Stock (SKU) Number: 35938
Pamphlet Revision Date: 2008

Worksheets for use in working on these requirements: Format
Word Format PDF Format

Blanks in this worksheets table appear when we do not have a worksheet for the badge that includes these requirements.


Page updated on: May 25, 2012



Scouts Using the Internet Cartoon - Courtesy of Richard Diesslin - Click to See More Cartoons
© 1994-2014 - U.S. Scouting Service Project | Site Map | Disclaimer | Project Team | Web Stats | Contact Us | Privacy Policy

Materials found at U. S. Scouting Service Project, Inc. Websites may be reproduced and used locally by Scouting volunteers for training purposes consistent with the programs of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) [Links to BSA Sites], the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM) or other Scouting and Guiding Organizations. No material found here may be used or reproduced for electronic redistribution or for commercial or other non-Scouting purposes without the express permission of the U. S. Scouting Service Project, Inc. (USSSP) or other copyright holders. USSSP is not affiliated with BSA or WOSM and does not speak on behalf of BSA or WOSM. Opinions expressed on these web pages are those of the web authors. You can support this website with in two ways: Visit Our Trading Post at www.ScoutingBooks.com or make a donation by clicking the button below.
(U.S. Scouting Service Project Donation)


(Ruth Lyons Memorial Donations)