The details for February 1, 2017 can be viewed here.
The UTC amateur registration database is here.
Working grids for the first time in 2018? Be sure to upload your logs to LoTW so the 630m operators participating in the 2018 Grid Chase Event can receive credit. Details on LoTW can be viewed here.
The current band plan used on 630 meters can be viewed HERE
WAS operator list detailing stations that are two-way QSO-capable can be viewed here.
North America was quiet during the evening and mostly quiet this morning. A few storm off of the southern Pacific coast of Mexico may have impacted the West this morning. Isolated storms were present across Europe and Oceania is experiencing fewer storms than recent session but those that are present in Australia and New Zealand are generally impacting population centers.
Geomagnetic conditions were quiet to elevated-quiet. The Bz is pointing to the North this morning and solar wind velocities are averaging just above 400 km/s. DST values remain near the centerline but there have been more excursions to negative levels than in recent sessions.
Propagation was “anemic” on many early paths, as characterized by NO3M, and may have been the result of very active QSB in the early evening. A number of early QSO’s were completed but wild swings in S/N were reported. Trans-Atlantic openings were healthy once again, extending into the Caribbean and South America. Trans-Pacific openings continue from Oceania to Japan and North America.
Reverse beacon network reports follow:
Jim, W5EST, submitted the following screen capture of his WSJTx console showing JT9 activity observed at his station in Little Rock, Arkansas:
The following stations provided reports of their two-way QSO’s and/or any additional activity that might have occurred during this session (this is not necessarily a complete list – only what was reported!):
Paul, W0RW, completed CW QSO’s with three stations including KW7T, KB5NJD and K9KFR. He offered the following comments:
“Just worked Ike, KW7T, in Grand Junction, CO, 200 miles west of me. Some sky wave QSB going over some tall hills. He was 33N to 55N. 474.5 kHz. 0118z, 1 Feb, 2018. He has been working for months for this 1st QSO. Great job Ike !. Also worked Bob, K9KFR, IN, who was calling CQ on 473.5 at 0550z, 339. Fading every 5 minutes.”
Ike, KW7T, reported that W0RW was RST 559. When asked about the distance between the two stations, Ike noted that “Airline distance is just over 200 miles, but in between us is the Rocky Mountain chain. Grand Junction is just 27 miles from the Utah border. I’m in a valley (i.e. the Grand Valley) at 4900 ft. elevation). “
Al, K2BLA, reported that he had “Very little time on 630m in the past 24 hours due to other activities. Worked WA9CGZ this AM on JT9 with significant QSB. A few WSPR calls but still had good response. Heard by 48 including VE2,3,4,and 6 and YV7MAE. Heard 19 including EA5DOM. Very low noise last night a bit more this AM. No lightning crashes.”
John, WA3ETD, operated JT9 early in the evening, completing a JT9 QSO with K3MF. John reported that QSB was very active.
Wayde, K3MF, reported a CW QSO with K1RGO and JT9 QSO’s with WA3ETD, K9SLQ, VE3CIQ and K5DNL.
Phil, VE3CIQ, reported JT9 QSO’s with K3MF and WA9CGZ.
Al, WB0DBQ, reported a JT9 QSO with WA9CGZ.
Ted, KC3OL, reported a JT9 QSO with WB4JWM.
Ken, K5DNL, completed JT9 QSO’s with K3MF, K1UTI and WB4JWM. Using WSPR overnight, Ken reported 23 stations and he received reports from 79 unique stations including G8HUH, ON5KQ, YV7MAE, ZF1EJ and eight Canadian stations.
Toby, VE7CNF, reported during the evening that he, VE7VV and VA7MM were operating FSQcall on a 24-hour exercise, transmitting images and messages. W0YSE also exchanged a few messages with this group during the evening.
Roger, VE7VV, provided additional details and an image received from VA7MM over a 100 km path through a 192 second transmission cycle that occurred during the 24-hour FSQCall communication exercise with others in British Columbia:
“VE7VV, VA7MM and VE7CNF maintained continuous (at least every 30 minutes) communication on 477.8 kHz over the 100km path from Victoria to Vancouver BC using FSQCall at 4.5 baud (aprox 40 wpm) for 24 hours 31 Jan to 1 Feb. In addition to real time chat, we passed files, stored photos and live webcam (SSTV 240X320 pixels) images. Text and images were sent with automatic reception and also retrieved by remote request from the distant station. Automatic beacon transmissions were used to request s/n reports back from the remote stations. This test demonstrated the potential of 630m and the FSQCall system for emergency communication use, and it was a lot of fun!”
Dave, AA1A, operated WSPR during this session and posted the following comments and statistics on the 600mrg:
“This week’s hair brained scheme is to figure out how low to go with the WSPR beacon power so am taking the plunge just to see. Was surprised that in the past few days @ 500 milliwatts making it over to EU ‘TA’ and now am hearing more sigs from there then getting there on this low power.
Here is a recent sample:
If the numbers are correct then 0.501 watt eirp to LA3jj @ 3487 miles = 6960 miles per watt, yes?”
Mike, WA3TTS, reported a strong session, noting that changes in his system that have resulted in nulling or decreasing impact from an offensive station, allowing him to decode G0MRF a number of times. Mike reported that he was using a “…Combination of slow AGC, IF shift, audio DSP, and tweaking the band pass ripple in the narrow 630m filters (Butterworth Coupled Resonator before preamp, Telefunken FZ-01 after preamp—single 2N5109 W1VD design preamp) so the ripple valleys of the BPFs overlap at .650. Null to the SW on the NE EWE antenna helps considerably as well.” Mike submitted the following WSPR statistics:
It was very quiet at KB5NJD but QSB was active early as I completed a CW QSO with W0RW. I had been calling CW for a few minutes when I heard a calling station but QSB was deep enough to put the signal just out of reach. I finally figured out that W0RW was co-located on 474.5 kHz with me on a peak where he was exchanging reports with KW7T for his first QSO. Paul and I exchanged RST 559’s on a peak with QSB taking over by the end of his transmission. I was not hearing Ike but he reported me a few times during the evening. K4EJQ was loud on 473.8 kHz but subject to QSB. I made a few additional calls on 473 kHz, tuning around the azimuth but never heard additional CW callers although reverse beacon network reports suggest that they were present. I received a few reverse beacon network reports from the Northeast but it never really materialized into anything useful.
Trans-Atlantic WSPR summary follows:
ZF1EJ -> LA2XPA/2
DH5RAE -> AA1A
K5DNL -> G8HUH, ON5KQ
DL6TY -> N1BUG, KA1R
W3LPL -> LA2XPA/2, LA3EQ
VE3CIQ -> F1AFJ, F59706, G8HUH
G8HUH -> AA1A, AE2EA, N1BUG, WA3TTS
EA5DOM -> N1BUG, AA1A, K2BLA, KJ4YBS, YV7MAE
W4BCX -> F59706, F6GEX, G8HUH, LA2XPA/2, LA3EQ
AA1A – > F1AFJ, F59706, G8HUH, LA2XPA/2, LA3JJ
G0MRF -> AA1A, AE2EA, N1BUG, N2HQI, N3FL, VE2PEP, VE3CIQ, VE3IQB, WA3TTS
Trans-Pacific WSPR summary follows:
VK4YB -> 7L1RLL4, JA1PKG, JA3TVF, JA5AEA, JE1JDL, KL7L, KPH, KR6LA, SWLCN74XP, TNUKJPM, VE6XH, VE7BDQ, W1CK
Hideo, JH3XCU, submitted a dataset showing “472kHz WSPR-2, DX->JA Spots per Day (Dec. 1 2017 – Jan. 31 2018):
Regional and continental WSPR breakdowns follow:
Eden, ZF1EJ, reported fourteen WSPR stations and he received reports from 47 unique stations including LA2XPA/2 and YV7MAE.
Martin, YV7MAE, experienced a strong session, reporting fifteen WSPR stations including G0MRF and EA5DOM.
Laurence, KL7L, indicated that he remains in a receive-only capacity as high winds continue. Once they subside he can evaluate damage to his antenna system. He reported five WSPR stations including VK4YB. He indicated that he had no JT9 reports on his receive console.
Roger, VK4YB, reported that “There is occasional strong QRN but good low noise gaps in between. Still not a hint of any JT9 or WSPR signal on the waterfall all evening. Local reports are well down. TP WSPR reports are fewer than normal.” He received reports from eighteen WSPR stations including 7L1RLL4, JA1PKG, JA3TVF, JA5AEA, JE1JDL, KL7L, KPH, KR6LA, SWLCN74XP, TNUKJPM, VE6XH, VE7BDQ, W1CK.
Merv, K9FD (/KH6), was off air during this session.
Jim, W5EST, presents, “Figure More Antenna Performances: Interpret Software Models”:
“Free antenna modeling EZ-NEC software was discussed at: http://njdtechnologies.net/042516/ .
You can download EZ-NEC Demo 6.0 from: https://www.eznec.com/demoinfo.htm . You can divide an MF/LF antenna design into as many as 20 segments with the free software, which is often enough.
Now, suppose you have an antenna analyzer that covers 630m and can measure the system resistance Rsys . Rsys is the resistance of the whole antenna & grounding system with the system reactance resonated out. For example, consider a 40’ vertical made of 1.5” diameter copper tubing atop which a 60’ long top hat of #12 wire is centered symmetrically over real ground. The real ground might or might not have some radials.
Today’s two illustrations show EZ-NEC calculations–first for that lossy system, second for the same system modeled losslessly to show radiation resistance Rr. To start with, I specified a 1A current source to keep things simpler. Today’s TABLE interprets the EZ-NEC model, with table format and formulas applicable to this antenna and many other antennas you might plan for 630m or 2200m. Example performance numbers are entered for the above 630m top hatted vertical example.
The TABLE collects the EZ-NEC results and provides some calculations that EZ-NEC does not make, as far as I know:
I2/eirp: RF amps-squared per watt of EIRP. Your RF ammeter shows sqrt[(I2/eirp) x EIRP].
Rtot50 : Total system resistance needed for 50W TPO to yield 1W EIRP.
Vpk1A: Peak volts per RF ampere at antenna side of loading coil. Manage your antenna safety.
Calc. Gnd.: Re-estimates ground system conductivity, accounts for Rsys from antenna analyzer.
If your resonated antenna system resistance considerably departs from 50Ω, which is fine, consider an antenna tuning unit to provide a matching network or a suitable RF transformer.
TU & GL with LF/MF antenna design!”
*NOTE 1: Rtot50 = 50W / I^2 = 25W/[TRP/Rr] = 50W x Rr x10^(0.1 #dBi)/1Weirp.
Example: Rtot50 = 50 x 0.3588Ω x10^(0.478) = 53.9Ω
Rtot50 is maximum ant-&-gnd sys resistance that still allows 1W eirp @ 50W TPO. Find #dBi to use in the formula by consulting the FF Plot (elevation far field display) option of EZ-NEC. On EZ-NEC, set all load resistances and wire loss to zero, and specify perfect ground. Click “Src Dat” button to see radiation resistance Rr at midband. (It’s the resistive part, e.g. 0.3588Ω.)
Look down the main EZ-NEC screen get Ref Level dBi. Find Gain dBref by clicking “FF Plot” button. Add the two values. Their sum is #dBi in the TABLE.
Measure Rsys with an antenna analyzer. Expected TPO needed to get desired EIRP is:
TPO = EIRP x (Rsys / Rtot50) x 50.
For example, suppose you want 5W EIRP. Measured system resistance is 22Ω from the antenna analyzer. Modeling says you’ll need:
TPO = 5W x (22Ω / 53.9Ω) x 50 = 102 watts.
**NOTE 2: To get peak volts at antenna side of loading coil for a desired EIRP, say 5W, do:
Vpk = Vpk1A x sqrt[(I2 / eirp) xEIRP]
Example: Vpk = 2160 V/A x sqrt[ (0.927 amp-sq /wt) x 5W ] = 4650 volts peak.
***NOTE 3: To get EZ-NEC to do a far field pattern, SWR, etc. consistent with antenna analyzer measurements of total system resistance, you could repeatedly guess and put in values for ground conductivity σgnd until the total system resistance EZ-NEC computes matches that measured on the analyzer. To save some of the guesswork, here re-estimate average ground conductivity σgnd by correcting from an arbitrarily specified original ground system conductivity value σ0 = 9 mS/m illustrated. (Note: if you have radials in the system, you’re not estimating average soil conductivity itself. If you want that type of soil data, do the measurement also before the radials are installed.)
σgnd ~= σ0 x (R1A/Rsys) [when ground losses greatly exceed wire & ATU losses]
Example: σgnd ~= 9mS/m (52.2Ω / 22.0Ω) = 21.35 mS/m
You then enter re-estimate σgnd on EZ-NEC main screen to get revised patterns, etc.
Additions, corrections, clarifications, etc? Send me a message on the Contact page or directly to KB5NJD gmail dot (com)!