The FT8 Digital Mode Club’s (FT8DMC) Worked VHF Grid Award (WVGA) honors operating achievement in working stations on the VHF bands using the FT8 digital mode in a given number of different Maidenhead grid squares. You can obtain the entry level award with a total of 50 grids.
The American Radio Relay League’s (ARRL) VHF/UHC Century Club (VUCC) award is the premier operating certificate on the VHF bands and above. However, for the 50 MHz and 144 MHz bands this totals 100 grids. While getting to 100 grids on 50 MHz is achievable even for modest stations given enough time, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to mark your progress earlier in the process?
I’m trying to get to 6M VUCC with a modest station using an end fed half wave antenna in my backyard. After surpassing 50 grids I was able to get this award from FT8DMC.
FT8DMC offers awards in 50 grid increments and I’ve seen examples for 50 MHz, 70 MHz and 144 MHz. Since bands at 220 MHz and above are considered UHF I presume awards for them are not part of this program.
The certificate includes a map of Europe with a closeup of a grid layout superimposed over the British Isles. Interestingly, this is the same image that appears on the Maidenhead Locator System Wikipedia page.
To apply for the Worked VHF Grid Award, and all other FT8DMC awards, you must install the UltimateAAC application on a Windows machine. That application scans your WSJT-X ADIF log file and will inform you when you’ve qualified for the award at various levels. FT8DMC issues the award in digital form only (JPG or PDF) with no printing or shipping costs. In fact, the award is completely free, like all of their other awards.