New RSGB Honorary Vice President

| April 22, 2017

We’re delighted to announce that Peter Blair OBE, G3LTF has been elected by the Board as Honorary Vice-President.

Peter Blair is a distinguished engineer who spent 45 years in research and development in the UK electronics industry. From a student apprenticeship at Marconi’s Wireless Telegraph Company, in 1962 he joined Standard Telecommunication Laboratories where he established the Defence Systems Laboratory. In 1985 he moved to Racal and managed their central R&D operation, Racal Research. His professional work has covered a very wide range including Gunn diodes, microwave links, radiating cable, GPS receivers, radar phased array antennas, adaptive antennas, signal processing and airborne satcom.

At his retirement in 2000, Peter Blair was Technical Director of Racal Defence Electronics, a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, a Fellow of the IET and a Chartered Engineer. In 1996 he was awarded the OBE for his contributions to British engineering, and in 1998, an Honorary Doctorate by the University of Surrey. After retirement he continued as a trustee/director of the Smallpeice Trust and the Arkwright Scholarship Trust, both of which are focused on encouraging young people into a career in engineering. Peter has encouraged Arkwright students to engage in amateur radio and, in recent years, an annual visit to the NRC at Bletchley Park has involved students taking the Foundation Exam.

Meanwhile, over those same years Peter was forging an equally strong ‘career’ within amateur radio. He has not only been consistently at the forefront of amateur radio technology but has also communicated his enthusiasm and expertise to others, becoming an inspiration to over three generations of radio amateurs.

In 1964 G3LTF was the first UK amateur to pioneer earth-moon-earth (moonbounce) communications. The 50th anniversary of this achievement was celebrated on GB2RS and Radio Communications in 2014.

Peter is respected highly by the world-wide moonbounce community for his consistent activity across the years and for the development of advanced techniques for moonbounce communication on our microwave bands. He has published many articles, particularly encouraging home construction of advanced UHF and microwave equipment, and has inspired audiences at many RSGB conventions from the mid-1960s to the most recent in 2016—at the age of 80.

Satellite navigation systems were an example where the crossover between Peter Blair’s professional and amateur expertise has been greatly to our advantage of amateur radio. In 2004 he was an Expert Witness (along with Professor Sir Martin Sweeting, G3YJO) to a House of Commons Select Committee. Meanwhile, as G3LTF, he also wrote a briefing paper demonstrating that the potential for interference to satellite navigation from terrestrial amateur radio is small. G3LTF’s paper has since proved instrumental in defending our 23cm amateur band within the CEPT countries.

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