Tony Roper has been taking photographs of aircraft and ships from around the age of 13, extending to writing and data collation/analysis not long after. What is now called OSINT (Open Source Intelligence) was around in the 1980’s – be it collating information posted to him on flights, tied in with aircraft registrations and movements of the aircraft between military bases throughout Europe and the USA. These were incorporated into magazines such as LAAS and Stansted Aviation News.

An interest in radio monitoring – in particular Military and Civil High Frequency (HF) radio – further broadened Tony’s knowledge in things such as communication techniques, equipment and radar. He also started studying the Russian military at this time.

A career in Air Traffic Control for 33 years has allowed Tony to further this knowledge. This has been both Military – with 9 years in the RAF – and Civilian in nature, working at airfields and area radar units.

From 2011 Tony started providing photos to Janes for their yearbooks and magazines – especially Janes Fighting Ships (JFS).

This soon led to carrying out research on the Russian navy, providing data to the JFS editor to help keep the information in the book and online portal as accurate as possible.

Janes Intelligence Review magazine soon beckoned, for whom over 30 articles have been written – specialising on the Russian military, radar, radio communications and other areas of intelligence gathering, such as satellite imagery analysis. Further work has been published in their other magazines – Defence Weekly, Navy International and International Defence Review.

As well as the Janes publications, articles and photos have been published in magazines such as Warships IFR, The Spectrum Monitor and in Airliner World. Several news outlets have consulted Tony on military matters.

Book publishers have used Tony’s photos – so too have aircraft leasing companies to showcase their aircraft for sale or lease.

In recent times, Tony has worked with PROCITEC, a German company that has created some of the best SIGINT gathering software in the world.

In his “spare time” Tony continues to monitor the HF radio bands, working with a small group of “amateurs” collating data on the Russian military.

He also brews his own beer with his girlfriend under the name “Ropicks Breweries” – all for fun of course.

He is also an occasional Stormtrooper.

For further information and potential commissioning work, Tony can be contacted by filling out the form below.

18 thoughts on “About

  1. Hello tony…..I am also interested in russian CW signs since a lot of time. So Suddenly i read just your last artikel about locations and using call signs etc……in one case i could give you some other informationen…in your explain of the message (wx)…can we write and talk private here ?

  2. Ciao Tony, witch frequency book would you recommend? I always bought the klingenfuss books but I looking for something more reliable on utilities stations and rtty systems . Would be nice to see on here a test between all different Hf frequencies books available on market.



    • Hi Claudio. There’s no definitive answer to that question as in general there’s no publication that can give 100% of the information needed – much like internet search “databases” such as the Global Tuners Frequency database. They are out of date on publication.

      But I can highly recommend the following two books. I use them both over the GT online database, especially as because they’re paper you can write your own notes or make additions to entries.

      The books:
      Michael Marten’s “Spezial-Frequenzliste”
      Roland Proesch’ “Frequency Handbook for Radio Monitoring HF”

      Using them both covers everything pretty much. I did a small review in March 2014 – https://planesandstuff.wordpress.com/2014/03/14/book-review-follow-up/

      If you can afford then I’d go for both. Roland has a complete series of books that you may also be interested in, Michael is planning on a new book for Autumn this year

      There’s links to Roland’s page in the review above; Michael’s sales page is here:



  3. Hi Tony
    Thanks a million for your complete infos about those Frequencies book , I will order Michael Marten’s “Spezial-Frequenzliste” on meantime have a great evening! and good catch on beautiful Hf bands !

    73 from Sunny Glasgow


  4. Just read your article in The Spectrum Monitor for October 2016. I’ve enjoyed the series of articles you’ve written in there very much – they are very informative!

    There is an article I’d like you to read and give feedback on. Please email me at your convenience, and I’ll send you a link to the article.


  5. Hi Tony,

    I would like to ask you some opinions or advice. I want to buy a new SDR but I am a little bit hesitating between several possibilities. How can I contact you?


  6. Hello Tony,
    Sorry that I didn’t find elsewhere to ask my question.
    I want to buy Jane’s Aircraft : Unmanned 2017-2018 and as I saw before in your website , you admit that the price is eye-watering and I want to buy this book for my very individual research.
    So, I want to know if it is enough to buy only this edition (2017-2018) or should I buy previous editions too (Like 2013,2015 and 2016) to have complete and comprehensive source for unmanned aircrafts?
    Does this edition (2017-2018) have all contents of it’s previous editions?

    • Hi Eli,

      As time goes by things will be dropped from the books – generally when they’re no longer in use or available to “buy”.

      Each yearbook is ever so slightly different in how they operate and how they keep details of things. The Armoured Fighting Vehicle book for instance keeps updating a type of vehicle until it effectively goes out of service. This means the whole history of a vehicle is available. The same would go for Fighting Ships.

      However, All the Worlds Aircraft is different in that it only lists aircraft that are in production/development and when this stops they move to the In Service book.

      I personally don’t have the Unmanned book so I can’t comment on it. One option for you though is instead of buying the book, you can get the online subscription – though this will make your eyes water even more I’m afraid. What it will give you though is access to all the history that you may need. If you can get your research done in a year then this may be a good option.

      The link to use is:

      There’s a further link where you have to fill out a form and they will contact you with pricing details


  7. It’s a pleasure to read such interesting articles about Russia or other possible foes. I’m working as a targeteer in Spain.

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