Tuning across the bands you will be confronted by myriad call signs. The prefixes to these have been assigned to each country by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU).
For normal operations you will find that the VA, VE, VO and VOY blocks cover the Amateur fraternity in Canada. For special events, clubs or other groups may request a “special prefix” from Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED; formerly Industry Canada). These are issued for use for a specific period of time.
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada hosts a webpage which lists upcoming Special Events which have been granted approval for a special call sign. You will find it at:
Canada 150: Special Event Prefixes for Canada’s Sesquicentennial
Radio Amateurs of Canada has secured permission for all Canadian Radio Amateurs to use special call sign prefixes to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Canada's Confederation.
National, regional and local events will take place throughout 2017 to celebrate the anniversary and Canadian Amateurs will let their counterparts around the world know of our celebration by using the following special prefixes:
- Amateurs and clubs whose regular call signs start with VA will be able to use the CF prefix instead of VA (for example, VA3RAC will be authorized to use the CF3RAC call sign).
- Amateurs and clubs whose regular call signs start with VE will be able to use the CG prefix instead of VE (e.g., VE4RAC will be authorized to use CG4RAC).
- Amateurs and clubs whose regular call signs start with VO will be able to use the CH prefix instead of VO (e.g., VO1RAC will be authorized to use CH1RAC).
- Amateurs and clubs whose regular call signs start with VY will be able to use the CI prefix instead of VY (e.g., VY2RAC will be authorized to use CI2RAC).
These special prefixes are optional and Amateurs can choose if and when to use the special prefix vs their normal prefix at any time during the year. Stay tuned to the RAC website for additional information.
For more information on Canada 150 visit http://canada.pch.gc.ca/eng/1342792785740.