COMMSOPS.

 

 

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In (about) 1976, the TELEGs, TELSOPS and TPRINOPS musterings were amalgamated into the COMMSOP mustering. Some TELEGS moved to the SIGSOP mustering. Most of these operators that moved to the new COMMSOP mustering retained their old mustering name until about mid 1980ís where they had to all become COMMSOPís. Basic COMMSOP (COMMunicationS OPerator) Courses were trained at Laverton between approximately 1976 until 1991. In 1991 The EDPOP (Electronic Data Processer Operator) and COMMSOP musterings were amalgamated into what is now known as the CISCON (Communications Information Systems CONtroller) mustering.

 

Basic COMMSOP Courses were trained in typing 35 WPM (Words Per Minute) initially on 3 row keyboards then moved to 4 row keyboards around 1985. The majority of operators left RADSCHOOL just scraping a pass at 35 WPM but within 12 months it was common place for operators to be jamming up messaging equipment that could not handle their speed. Messaging was the bulk of training. Q and Z codes/signals (Q Codes/signals are mainly civilian whilst Z Codes/signals are mainly military) were taught to assist with servicing corrupt, missing, responses to and more for messages and for use on radio circuits. Messaging initially was taught for use on the RAAFNET (the messaging system of the day using protocol 25) which used model 28 and some model 14 equipments. Messaging did move into using computers for training at RADSCHOOL around 1988 when DINTS (Defence INTerim System) was taught along with the servicing of messages. Radio operation using AN/PRC 28 radios that required a power source of 28V but we were supplied by the RADSCHOOL battery shop with 2 x 12V heavy duty batteries that were charged to the maximum every time and did the job fine. This part of our training provided radio operator skills sufficient to be used in the AOCS, to be qualified to work in the AOCS you did need to complete a post grad course. The initial AOCS used Collins equipment sourced from the USA. Back room operation we were taught on KW26ís, KW7ís for on line work (this provided the security for the messaging circuits) and for off line work we were taught on KL7ís later changing to BID60ís then onto RACE (Rapid Automatic Cryptographic Equipment). Out in the field we covered a plethora of other radio, backroom, messaging equipments that were not taught at RADSCHOOL but required the operator to learn on the job.

 

The job entailed message handling, delivery, servicing, creation: radio operation both in the field and in the AOCS: backroom operation in both online and offline requirements.

 

Postings for COMMSOPS were to Base Squadrons and just about all RAAF bases had a Base Squadron up until the late 80ís, so COMMSOPS were sent everywhere there was a RAAF Base in Australia and Butterworth. Major changes to where they could get posted occurred when they became CISCONís. Then they could be posted into projects in at least five different overseas locations including the Sinai and Cambodia.

 

 
     
     
 

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