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Noisy night in North America masks some signals and makes for difficult listening; Unsettled geomagnetic conditions return overnight; Good trans-Atlantic openings but ‘bizarre’ trans-Pacific conditions

– Posted in: 630 Meter Daily Reports, 630 Meters

Wow – what a night for noise.  As I related to one operator, the night sounded like early June!  It seems a combination of precipitation static related to the snow that moved through earlier in the day coupled with big lightning-bearing storms in the southeastern US really made a mess of things here and sent a number of operators running for cover in the southeastern US.  Perhaps the saddest part of this session was that propagation actually seemed pretty good but I am sure that many signals were masked due to high QRN.  Even so, participation was huge and a lot of reports were exchanged and signals detected overnight.

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12-hour North American lightning summary

 

Geomagnetic conditions returned to unsettled levels overnight for one reporting period and one has to wonder if these conditions contributed to some of the good propagation observed.  The Bz component of the magnetic field has turned around to the North and has generally remained very close to unity through this session.  Solar wind velocities continue near 700 km/s and currently average 675 km/s.  DST levels have ranged from stable to erratic depending on which indicator was observed.  Propagation was hardly poor, at least at mid and low latitudes.

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Paul, W0RW / WA2XRM, operated his CW beacon once again, this time on 480.48 kHz to allow others with different “birdie” problems to have a chance to file a report.  Paul’s signal was down here during the evening, although copyable through the elevated noise.  He posted the following redux this morning on the 600-meter research group email reflector:

“WA2XRM Reception Reports from 7 Jan. 2017, (Zulu Day), on 480.480 kHz.  The cold Wx (+15F) and snow still has my antenna d’Q’ed. I could not get better SWR than 1: 2.0.  Reports received so far:

1. AA7U, Steve, in the Desert of AZ (590 miles),  coping my CW by ear but weaker than yesterday.   He copied all night until QRT at 0404z.
2. KB5NJD, John, Dallas TX, (615 miles), Receiving  OK but weaker than yesterday.  Read John’s Blog for all the day’s 600 meter activity, propagation data, WSPR operations and general LF technical information.  See :<http://njdtechnologies.net/category/630-meters/>.
3. W4OP, Dale TN, (1219 miles), Storm noise could not see on ARGO or copy by ear.
4. VE3IDS Don, (1286 miles), Hears weak CW, confirms my message duty cycle.
5. WA9ETW, Mark  WI, (Wi2XHJ), (844 miles) Still has BC birdies but just barely able to copy CW.
6. W7WKR, Dick  WY,  (WD2XSH/26), (377 miles), lots of noise, NIL.
7. KA9CFD Jay IL, (755 miles), Copies 589 by ear above the nasty lightning static.    He is using an LF Engineering L-400B e-probe mounted on a 10 foot piece of PVC pipe that is 200 feet from his house.  Good stuff at LF Engineering, <https://www.lfengineering.com/products.cfm>.
8. K3SIW, Garry in IL  (897 miles), also received my CW by ear using 3 kHz bandwidth filter.”

I would expect that Paul will be QRV tonight as well so check near 480 kHz after 0000z.

Trans-Atlantic reports continue to improve off of recent lows as N1BUG reported DH5RAE and G8HUH; WG2XKA received reports from DH5RAE, DJ0ABR, and G0VQH; WG2XXM was reported by F1AFJ/1; WD2XSH/17 reported DH5RAE and PA0A and received reports from DH5RAE, F1AFJ/1, G0LUJ, and G3XKR.  Report details for these stations can viewed here.

Rick, W7RNB / WI2XJQ, received reports from 27 unique stations and decoded seven WSPR stations.  Rick’s report details can be viewed here.

Ernie, KC4SIT (and soon to also be WI2XQU), submitted the following comments and statistics for the session:

“Snowed in Flat Rock North Carolina most of night with 7 inches of accumulation. Western US spots remain elusive and John WG2XIQ was spotted approximately 1 hour earlier this session. A new station, WI2XFI, showed up as my first spot of the night.”

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KC4SIT session WSPR activity

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Trans-Pacific report details for this session, excluding KL7 and KH6, are aggregated here.

Roger, VK4YB, reported “Bizarre conditions. Very low noise and QRN, but a near dead band. Then 09:12 WG2XXM -28, 10:12 WG2XIQ -28, 11:22 WG2XIQ -28, 12:44 WG2XXM -24. Only Larry W7IUV decoded my signal.”  He received reports from  JA1NQI, JA1PKG, JA3TVF, JE1JDL, JR1IZM and W7IUV.  Roger provided reports fro WG2XIQ, WG2XXM, and WH2XGP.

Phil, VK3ELV, received reports from JA1NQI, JA3TVF, JH3XCU, and JR1IZM.

Ken, K5DNL / WG2XXM, reported the he received decodes from 67 unique stations including VK4YB, F1AFJ/1, and ten decodes from WE2XPQ as 3 inches of snow remain on the ground with temperatures of +2 degrees F.

Larry, W7IUV / WH2XGP, received reports from 47 unique stations including VK4YB and VK2XGJ.  John, VK2XGJ, reported that Larry was first decoded at 0928z, very early in the session.  Larry provided reports for twelve unique stations.  As W7IUV and listening with the western receive antenna, Larry provided reports for nine WSPR stations including VK4YB.

The band was so noisy that most of my activity was  limited to WSPR although I did listen for WA2XRM  on 480.48 kHz CW during the evening.  Paul was perfect copy but required a bit more effort than the previous session with the elevated QRN.  I also called CQ on JT9 for about 25 minutes but no reports were received.  I will likely try again tonight. Thanks to VK4YB and WE2XPQ for WSPR reports.  It was an odd night for sure.  My WSPR transmission report details can be viewed here and my WSPR reception report details can be viewed here.  I hope to return to CW in the coming days as noise abates further.

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WG2XIQ 24-hour WSPR activity

 

Activity was extremely high with over 100 MF WSPR stations at 0000z and 118 MF WSPR stations by 0340z as reported on the WSPRnet activity page.  There were a number of new or recently new/returning stations listening overnight, including WA2NDV, W7KKE, W5PAT, KE0N, KG7GVF, KG9DUK AA5JD and KL9A/W7 who was reporting the wrong frequency of 503.9 kHz (see this post for details).

Regional and continental WSPR breakdowns follow:

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North American 24-hour WSPR activity

 

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European 24-hour WSPR activity

 

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African 24-hour WSPR activity

 

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Japanese 24-hour WSPR activity

 

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Australian and New Zealander 24-hour WSPR activity

 

Eden, ZF1EJ, indicates that he was listening at the main station using the 60-meter antenna, resulting in fewer reports.  He provided report for WG2XIQ, WG2XKA, WG2XXM, and WH2XZO.  Report details for these stations can be viewed here.  As ZF1EJ/1 and using the 630-meter transmit antenna, Eden provided reports for VE3CIQ, WD2XSH/17, WG2XIQ, WG2XKA, WG2XXM, WH2XGP, WH2XZO, and WI2XFI.  Report details for these stations can be viewed here.

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ZF1EJ 24-hour WSPR activity

 

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ZF1EJ/1 24-hour WSPR activity

 

Laurence, KL7L / WE2XPQ, does not appear to have been transmitting overnight but he managed to report WG2XXM as well as my signal in addition to WH2XCR and others in the western US.

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WE2XPQ 24-hour WSPR activity

 

Merv, K9FD/KH6 / WH2XCR, provided reports for 7L1RLL, VK3ELV and VK4YB and received reports from WE2XPQ, JA1NQI, JA3TVF, JR1IZM, VK2XGJ, VK3ELV, and VK4YB.  Merv reported  stations as far away as WG2XKA in Vermont.  There is a distinct gap in reporting stations in the Caribbean and southeastern US as QRN was very high from strong storms overnight.  Report details for Merv’s DX decodes can be viewed here.

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WH2XCR 24-hour WSPR activity

 


Additions, corrections, clarifications, etc? Send me a message on the Contact page or directly to KB5NJD gmail dot (com).