This release from ICOM about a new SHF Project is interesting and yet devoid of any real details. No target dates, no mock-ups, no more information other than that they are thinking about something that could be very interesting:

Icom Incorporated (Headquarters: Hirano-ku, Osaka, President: Hiroshi Nakaoka) has been doing technical research on a new project to create a product from scratch by utilizing our wireless communication technology know how cultivated over more than half a century.

Under the theme of “ICOM SHF Project – Super High Frequency Band Challenge –”, we started to develop a new amateur radio available for use in the 2.4 GHz and 5.6 GHz bands.

Icom engineers are working hard to research and develop a number of never cleared challenges within the SHF band, such as large cable loss and higher frequency stability requirements. The ultimate goal is to bring it to the market as a new radio product.

Their timing is good as interest in microwave activity among ham radio enthusiasts is as high as I’ve ever witnessed.

Or maybe they just took a good, hard look at the current solar data for Cycle 25 and concluded (as have I) that HF will remain mostly a dead zone for at least another decade?

It’s going to be a challenge to compete with all the small SDR modules and transverters that now comprise the typical microwave station, but I’m glad to see them willing to seriously consider this spectrum. It can only add momentum to another accelerating facet of amateur radio.