In December 2004, shortly before Christmas a signal on 3700kHz was being heard all over the USA at good strength. The signal, consisted of a short data burst followed by a piece of garbled speech and being sent every 50 seconds. Other monitors had heard the signal too, which had first been heard on Sunday December 19, 2004.
It was established that the transmission was cycling through four frequencies, one every ten seconds from low to high continuously, and was being transmitted in DSB, double sideband mode. The frequencies used were; 3700 - 4300 - 6500 - 10500kHz. Monitors reported the speech was a clip featuring the voice of Yosemite Sam saying "...varmint - I'm a going to blow you to smithereenies", which is an extract from the 1949 Bugs Bunny Cartoon "Bunker Hill Bunny"
Transmissions ceased on Thursday evening December 23, and after Christmas were heard again on January 14, 2005 - but the frequency use had changed. Now the international time frequencies of 10 - 15 & 20MHz were being used as well. The use of 3700kHz was not a wise choice, since it is in the middle of the Amateur Radio 80 metre band, and its use had attracted the attention of two licenced hams living in New Mexico, Mike Stark (WA5OIP) and Mike Langner (K5MGR). The signals were particularly strong in New Mexico and on Wednesday February 16 2005, and armed with a Potomac Field Intensity Meter, shielded loop antenna and a mobile rig the two hams set out West to track the signals. At about 2.30 pm local time the two Hams arrived at the Laguna Indian Reservation and approached a compound containing buildings, towers and antennas and were able to confirm that they had found the source of the transmissions, The MATIC Center.
Part of Laguna Industries Inc., a Native American business, The MATIC Center was a military contract facility developing mobile communications battlefield systems for the US Army. MATIC stands for Mobility Assessment Test & Integration. The Hams approach had not gone unnoticed, and as they took photographs of the buildings and antennas a man approached them yelling and ordering them to stop taking pictures. They retreated and headed home. The signal that had persisted for so long ceased sending its bizarre message three hours later and has not returned. Although Laguna Industries still exist, all references to The MATIC Center have now disappeared from their website.
- "Yosemite Sam" A bizarre and puzzling transmission heard in 2004 / 2005
- Company Overview of Laguna Industries Inc.