The Radio Amateur Club of Kourou, better known as RACK, is a non-profit association, which was born in 1977, january the 5th, at the instigation of Jean GRUAU, F8ZS, its honor chairman.
The club was first located in the city of Kourou (1977-1989), but no antennas were erected. Then it moved to the port zone of the CSG (Centre Spatial Guyanais, the European Space Port) in Pariacabo in 1989, and last there until 1995. The AMSAT/Germany gave a FB33 Fritzel tribander, and a WARC beam to the club.
Eventually, the RACK moved to the “leisure park” of the CSG in january 1995, and still remains there. It is located in a 50m x 50m area, and the shack is a 60 m² mobile home (not mobile any more …).
This piece of land is rather small for an HF antenna farm, but we can tighten up to 350 m beverages in some directions in a rather nearby clearing. Unfortunately, the closest environment is mostly the dense and high equatorial forest … The sea is few kilometers away from the site !
The major activity of the RACK is to host the hams of Kourou, most of them working directly or indirectly in the space business ! Besides this “normal” activity for a club station, the RACK members organized some expeditions to SA-020, and became involved in the contesting works in the early 90’s. They participated REF contest in 1990-91-92, and to the CQWW SSB contest in 1996 in M/S (F6EPM, FY5FY ops).
After few years of low activity, the contesting revival came in 2000.
You can read the 3rd millennium story in the “contesting” section.