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Two-way VHF FM/PM mobile radio

FuG-8 (German: Funkgerät 8) 1 was an analogue two-way mobile radio set for for use in the VHF FM radio band, developed and built by various manufacturers, according to specifications layed out by the German Government. The FuG-8 devices from all suppliers have the same form factor, the same connections and a nearly identical front panel, but are completely different inside.

FuG-8 compliant radios were manufactured by various parties, including SEL, AEG Telefunken and Robert Bosch GmbH. The device consists of a large and heavy die-cast aluminium enclosure with a detachable front panel, or control head.

The radios were used by German public services, known as BOS, 2 like the police and fire brigade, but they were also used by the police in other European countries, such as in the Netherlands. The image on the right shows a typical FuG-8b made by AEG Telefunken for the Dutch Police. It is a modified variant of the German FuG-8b [2].
Telefunken FuG-8b

Some FuG-8 devices were (optionally) fitted with voice encryption or – more commonly – a voice scrambler, in order to offer protection against occasional or intentional eavesdropping. Some of these solutions were fitted internally, but most of them were added as an external device or, as in the case of the Bosch FuG-8, as an extra compartment below the bottom of the radio's enclosure.

  1. Funkgerät is the German word for radio or transceiver.
  2. BOS = Behörden und Organisationen mit Sicherheitsaufgaben (Public Safety Organisations).

FuG-8, FuG-8a, FuG-8b and FuG-8c radios on this website
AEG Telefunken FuG-8
Bosch FuG-8
Speech protection used with FuG-8
BBC Vericrypt 1100 voice scrambler
External voice scramblers for mobile radios
Plug-in frequency domain scrambler for Fug-8 (KF-802)
 Other speech protection systems
Data terminal
In Germany, the police also used the FuG-8b for sending digital text-based messages through the air, in order to interrogate the so-called INPOL database. INPOL contained information about car registrations, people, criminal records, suspects, terrorism, etc.

Especially for this application, AEG Telefunken developed the Telestar text terminal shown in the image on the right. It had a full-size keyboard and a built-in thermal printer.

 More information
Telefunken Telestar 121

In order to guarantee a fair competition, the German Government used to write out a tender for an FuG designated radio, in which they specified the exact features and in some cases even the layout of the front panel. In practice, the orders were often divided over the various suppliers. Similar (but not identical) FuG-8 radios were developed and built by the following manufacturers:

  1. Note that the products from Bosch, Ascom, Teletron and Pfitzner came from the same factory.

  1. Klaus Paffenholz, Verschlüsselte Sprach-/Datenübertragung
    Website: Geschichliche Entwicklung des BOS-Funks (German).
    Retrieved April 2017.

  2. Klaus Paffenholz, Telefunken FuG 8a/8b/8b-1
    Website: Geschichliche Entwicklung des BOS-Funks (German).
    Retrieved April 2017.

  3. Oppermann Telekom, Vielkanal Sprechfunkgerät FuG 8a/8b
    Retrieved April 2017.
Further information
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Crypto Museum. Created: Friday 07 April 2017. Last changed: Tuesday, 29 September 2020 - 14:23 CET.
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