Ham Radio

Friday, January 07, 2011
Happy Birthday CQD
CQD was the international distress code that predated SOS. It celebrates its 107th birthday today as on January the 7th 1904 it was established by the Marconi Company as the first international radio distress signal.
CQD is transmitted in Morse Code as — · — · — — · — — · · and although it is widely believed to be an acronym for ‘Come Quick Danger’ that is not the case. It is a general CQ call followed by D meaning distress.
Before CQD was established ships would just go missing at sea, when radios were introduced onto ships they initially used CQ as a general call, however the introduction of a distress signal was widely accepted to be a good idea.
Sadly CQD was short-lived as it was replaced by “SOS” at the Berlin Radiotelegraphic Conference of 1906 as three dots, three dashes and three dots could not be misinterpreted by anyone hearing it unlike CQD .
Still, happy birthday to CQD a ground-breaking use of Morse Code and radio, the introduction of which no doubt saved lives.
posted by Simon Davison @ 1:26 pm  
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