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Military Aeronautical Communications System (MACS) Trenton

Welcome to the MACS Trenton information page. I have assembled a few photographs of the MACS Trenton receiver and transmitter sites complete with a close-up of one of the typical steerable HF log periodic antennae found at both locations. Military communications monitors should appreciate the opportunity to have a glimpse into Canada's primary military aeronautical communications installation.

   Background

The services provided by MACS are of non-tactical air-ground communications and may be used for position reporting, weather information and search and rescue operations. MACS aeronautical stations have point-to-point relay capabilities which is also supported for message traffic by teletype. Therefore, position reports and messages destined for any location may be relayed through any MACS station.

Facilities are available at each MACS aeronautical station to provide official phone patch service in accordance with existing communication instructions. In addition to normal telephone lines, MACS have the capability of patching into GP CSN and AUTOVON. THIS FACILITY IS NON-SECURE and CLASSIFIED MATTERS SHALL NOT BE DISCUSSED.

Infrequently, occasional secure voice and data transmissions have been observed on the HF frequencies. Traditionally, data has been in the form of RTTY and as recently as April 2022, STANAG serial transmissions were noticed.

Trenton
Voice Call: TRENTON MILITARY
Initial MACS Contact Frequency: 11232.0 kHz and 9007.0 kHz

Edmonton
Remoted to Trenton
Voice Call: TRENTON MILITARY
Initial MACS Contact Frequency: 11271.0 kHz and 8989.0 kHz

St. John's
Remoted to Trenton
Voice Call: TRENTON MILITARY
Initial MACS Contact Frequency: 11232.0 kHz and 9007.0 kHz

Frequencies (USB Voice): 3047.0 3092.0 4703.0 5717.0 6706.0 6745.0 *6754.0 8989.0 9007.0 11232.0 11265.0 11271.0 13257.0 15031.0 *15034.0 17994.0 18012.0 23250.0 kHz.

*Exclusive Weather Broadcast Frequency - Not monitored.[1]

   MACS Trenton Receiver Site
 
MACS Trenton Receiver Site (circa 2021)MACS Trenton Receiver Site
  On the right is a photograph of the main building, circa 1999, which houses all of the HF receivers, the telecommunications equipment and the MACS radio operators. Just to the left of the building is one of the several HF rotatable log periodic antennae. The large predominant tower at the left rear of the building holds the microwave antennae used to transmit and receive the various audio circuits along with remote control and telemetry of the Trenton transmitters and related equipment located at remote sites. To the right of the building, and not visible in the picture, is a large curtain array log periodic antenna. Also not visible in the background are additional log periodic and various wire / dipole antennae. The receiver site satellite image is circa Google Earth September 2015.

Antennae List: Andrews model 2001-2-3K elliptically polarized broadband; Antenna Products LPH-89E broadband horizontally polarized rotatable log periodic and Collins model 237C-1 horizontally polarized fixed broadband log periodic.
   
   MACS Trenton Transmitter Site
 
MACS Trenton Transmitter Site (circa 2021)MACS Trenton Transmitter Site
  Located some distance away from the receiver site by the waters of Lake Ontario in Point Petre is the associated MACS Trenton transmitter site. At this location, on the left side of the picture, is a log periodic curtain array. At the far rear left side of the picture the transmitter building can be seen along with the microwave tower and microwave antenna at its top; more rotatable log periodics, some various wire / dipoles antennae and an HF vertical whip antennae (Shakespeare Style 120). Also visible on the right side of the photograph is an inverted cone antenna (looks like 6 telephone poles). The transmitter site satellite image is circa Google Earth September 2015.

Antennae List: Antenna Products LPH-89E broadband horizontally polarized rotatable log periodic; Collins model 237C-1 horizontally polarized fixed broadband log periodic and DND designed discone with a Granger model 794-42 curtain.
   
   Rotatable Log Periodic Antennae
 
Log Periodic AntennaThis is a close-up view of one of the large Antenna Products model LPH-89E broadband horizontally polarized rotatable log periodic antennae located at the receiver site. Identical antennae are located at the transmitter site.
   
   Operator Console
 
MACS Operator Console, circa 1999Housed inside the receiver building, the MACS operators handle various forms of global communication traffic from multiple operator consoles. Seen here are 4 independent stations each capable of remote controlling a bank of receivers (Rockwell Collins HF-2050), transmitters, antenna switch matrixes, the position steering of the log periodic antennae along with the other various remote control functions and monitoring of remote distance receiver/transmitter facilities. Control of the various elements is assisted by an integrated computerized system. Ancillary equipment includes telephone patch equipment, ICAO SELCAL encoders, meteorological systems for weather information and broadcasts and cipher systems for the handling of secure voice and data traffic.
   Picture courtesy Cpl J.B. Cross, circa 1999
   
   Other Operations

Trenton Military VOLMET on 6754.0 kHz and 15,034 kHz USB, call sign CHR.
Trenton Automated Hourly Broadcast Schedule: 6754 kHz 2300Z-1100Z, 15034 kHz 1000Z-0000Z.

Support to the National Search and Rescue Program, being home to Joint Rescue Coordination Centre Trenton (JRCC Trenton).

Canadian Mission Control Centre (CMCC) which is tasked with monitoring the Cospas-Sarsat system that detects transmissions from emergency locating beacons.


 Badges  

Badge - MACS AGA Aldergrove

Badge - MACS AGA Edmonton
Badge - MACS AGA Lahr Badge - MACS AGA Mill Cove
Badge - MACS AGA St Johns Badge - MACS AGA Trenton
Badges courtesy of Colin Blackburn  

 Further Resources

Wikipedia - CFB Trenton
Airports Worldwide - CFB Trenton

 References

1. Canada Flight Supplement / GPH 205


Information & Security Disclaimer

First published: September 08, 2018
Revised: April 25, 2022
(C) 1999-2022, Richard Lacroix. All rights reserved.

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