small logo SETI Songs Aplenty

L, S, C, X, and Ku
lyrics and melody 2007 by Dr. H. Paul Shuch

Written to help radio astronomy students to learn the MIT RadLab microwave band designations.

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At the start of the Second World War
In secret, behind a closed door
The MIT nerds in the microwave lab
Had a hankering to settle a score.
Invisible beams were the key
Allowing our gunners to see
By day and by night, any plane, any height,
And they used them to keep our land free.


L, S, C, X, and Ku.
Outside the lab, nobody knew
What the frequencies mean, what the wavelengths had been
'twas a classified scheme through and through.
L, S, C, X, and Ku
Is still used by me and by you.
Just remember my song and you won't get it wrong,
For it's L, S, C, X, and Ku.

The whole MIT RadLab crew
Knew just what they needed to do
To make radar waves, entire countries to save.
They knew how to be secretive, too.
They spoke of the microwave bands
In a way no one could understand,
Both cryptic and vague. And, up to this day,
We can still use the RadLab's band plan.


L is the Low RadLab band
Wavelengths from one foot to one hand,
Spanning one to two gigs. Many microwave rigs
Are consistent with L band's demands.
S band resides Somewhat higher.
At two to four gigs, we conspire
To make radar behave with a three-inch-long wave,
And to tame it was RadLab's desire.


C band are shorter waves yet,
From four to eight gigs, you can bet,
Just an inch or so long, if you whistle my song
You'll Consider, and will not forget.
Eight to twelve gigs is X band,
eXtremely high, you understand.
It's a wave you can pinch, for each cycle's an inch,
And they use them to help aircraft land.


You can guess what I'm wanting to do:
Keep it Up all the way to Ku.
From twelve to eighteen GigaHertz, they are seen
As the short microwaves, it is true.
At some point, we'll just have to stop;
Millimeter waves make up the top
Of the microwave bands that you now understand,
Known as L, S, C, X, and Ku.


sheet music

Performed by Dr. SETI ® on the CD "Demented!" Demented! CD

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