Ashhar Farhan, VU2ESE, joins ARDC’s Board of Directors

Ashhar Farhan (VU2ESE) headshot

Ashhar Farhan, VU2ESE

The team at ARDC is pleased to announce that on March 26, 2024, Ashhar Farhan (VU2ESE), joined our Board of Directors.

Licensed initially at the age of 15 as VU2FAX and “fascinated with electronics as a child,” Farhan became interested in amateur radio after being “hooked” following a local club coming to his school to perform a ham radio demo. Following a hiatus, he returned to the hobby in 2002 and obtained his general grade license as VU2ESE. Active in the amateur radio community, Farhan is the founding Vice President of the Lamakaan Amateur Radio Club (LARC), which he and his friends established in 2012; for the past seven years, the club has hosted an annual convention each December. Through LARC’s collaboration with the Digital Empowerment Foundation, Farhan actively promotes both ham radio and electronics in the inner cities.

Farhan’s technical contributions to amateur radio have earned him inductions into both the QRP Amateur Radio Club International (QRPARCI) Hall of Fame (2016), and the CQ Ham Radio Hall of Fame (2018). An avid radio and test equipment builder and designer, he is well-known for the BITX, a beginner friendly buildable QRP transceiver that is ideal for operating on 20m and modifiable for operating on other ham bands. The BITX, along with additional buildable transceivers, are available through HF Signals, a company Farhan co-founded with the goal of inspiring people to be active in ham radio around the globe.

Throughout his career, Farhan has worked in the fields of Internet telephony, free software, and voice codecs. An entrepreneur, not only has Farhan founded HF Signals, he has also co-founded Lamakaan, a cultural center in Hyderabad, as well as Exseed Space (now Satellize), which specializes in building satellites: to date, they have launched two amateur radio-carrying satellites into space. In addition to founding the above companies, Farhan is an angel investor in various technology startups.

“I am excited that Farhan agreed to join our Board of Directors,” says ARDC President Bdale Garbee KB0G. “Well-known for his open ham radio transceiver and test equipment designs that enable and encourage learning and experimentation, he also brings a wealth of career experience, and expands our understanding of opportunities and needs to a new geographic region. I am confident that his contributions will be invaluable as we work to achieve our long-term goals.”

“One of the first radios I built early in my ham radio career was Farhan’s BITX 20,” says ARDC Board Member Ria Jairam, N2RJ. “It was from that moment onward that I realized that he was dedicated to making homebrew and open source radios accessible. Farhan’s ideals of experimentation, open source hardware and software align very well with ARDC’s mission. I’m proud that he has decided to join ARDC’s board and look forward to working with him as one of our colleagues to shape the future of open source ham radio.”

“I really and truly am delighted to have him on board,” says ARDC Executive Director Rosy Schechter KJ7RYV. “He’s already bringing a lot to the table, and I can see him playing a key and positive role in ARDC’s continual evolution.”