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Decent propagation in spite of unsettled geomagnetic conditions plus big terrestrial storms in the Midwest; Trans-Pacific openings shift to lower latitudes; JT9 QSO attempt between VK4YB and JR1IZM; Strong JA activity for WE2XPQ and WH2XCR

– Posted in: 630 Meter Daily Reports, 630 Meters

The summary from February 7, 2016 can be viewed here.

 It was a very noisy overnight and early morning in North America as a storm system popped up almost out of no where in the Midwest.  I admit that this one caught me be surprised as I had not seen any national weather reports in about 24-hours.  QRN and lightning crashes were not significantly elevated during the evening here in Texas.  Ken, SWL/K9, located in Indiana, reported that he had a rude awakening at 0822z and had to quickly disconnect his antennas.  Winter storms in the Northeast are likely increasing precipitation static for those stations and many were off air due to antenna icing.

12-hour North American lightning summary

 

Propagation was not bad for those who could hear through the noise, however, and there were a number of big openings, both domestically and on DX paths.

Geomagnetic conditions reached unsettled levels again after a couple of nights of quiet to elevated-quiet conditions.  The Bz has been pointing slightly to the South although solar wind velocities have decreased below 500 km/s into the moderate category where the current average solar wind velocity is near 475 km/s.  DST values continue at slightly negative levels but both Kyoto and Australian measurements have moderated significantly and returned to levels close to the centerline.

 

 

 

Trans-Atlantic WSPR reports were tempered a bit further during this session.  Many transmitting stations in the Northeast were off air due to more Winter weather conditions.  Report details can be viewed here.

G3KEV –> N1BUG

G8HUH –> N1BUG

ON5TA –> N1BUG

WD2XSH/17 –> F59706, G0MJI, G3XKR, G8HUH, PA0O, PA0RDT, PA3ANG, PA7EY, PI4THT

Al, K2BLA / WI2XBV, reported High QRN from lightning-rich storms to his West along the Mississippi River.  He decoded ten WSPR stations and was decoded by 23 unique stations including reports from WH2XCR, best report at -17 dB S/N.  Due to high QRN, Al was unable to reciprocate reports for Merv.

Paul, N1BUG, reported fourteen WSPR stations including G8HUH, G3KEV and ON5TA.  This session was an improvement on the trans-Atlantic path for Paul although he indicates that the transcontinental path once again failed to yield results during this session.

Rick, W7RNB / WI2XJQ, reported that the band has definitely changed for this session.  He decoded six WSPR stations and received reports from 24 unique stations.  His unique report details can be viewed here.

Doug, K4LY / WH2XZO, reported a bit of a down session in South Carolina:

“After a week of good to very good conditions we’re back to mediocre with 46 decoding XZO who decoded 10, but not XCR for the first time in almost a week.  No VE7s in the log.”

Larry, W0OGH, reported that he decoded twelve unique stations, including:

0106Z    WH2XXP        +11    DM33
0106Z    WG2XXM        -11    EM15
0108Z    WG2XIQ        -14    EM12
0202Z    WD2XSH/15    -23    EM34rt
0216Z    ZF1EJ        -24    EK99
0232Z    WH2XZO        -20    EM85
0304Z    WI2XRM        -25    EL98
0416Z    WI2XJQ        -25    CN87
0540Z    WH2XCR        -23    BL11
1344Z    WH2XCR        -24    BL11 last time heard

The trans-Pacific path shifted during this session, allowing a few stations at lower latitudes an opportunity to be reported.  There is also an on-going JT9 QSO attempt between VK4YB and JR1IZM.  Trans-Pacific WSPR report details, excluding KL7 and KH6, can be viewed here.

Roger, VK4YB, reported that band conditions were “poor to average” with high QRN although he provided numerous decodes for WG2XXM, WH2XXP and WH2XCR, generally in the mid -20 dB S/N range.  He added that “Only W1CK decoding my signals in the lower 48.”  Roger also received reports from JH1INM and JR1IZM.  He indicates that he will work again to return the JA antenna to operation in an effort to gain 6 dB over his northeastern antenna that favors North America in hope of completing a JT9 QSO with Kiyo, JR1IZM.

Kiyo, JR1IZM, continues his activity with JT9 near 474.2 kHz + 1350 Hz daily around 1300z.  He seems to hear extremely well.

Ken, K5DNL / WG2XXM, reports that he decoded eight WSPR stations and was decoded by seventy unique stations  including VK2XGJ, ZL2BCG, and VK4YB.

Ward, K7PO / WH2XXP, received reports from seventy unique stations including VK4YB, VK2XGJ, and ZL2BCG.

WH2XXP session WSPR activity (courtesy NI7J)

 

There have been reports recently of a mystery signal in Europe about 100 Hz above the noise anomaly observed regularly here in North America and other points around the world.  Martin, G8JUJ, posted the following comments on the RSGB-LF reflector about his recent efforts to DF the signal:

“Today after months of delay and finally getting around to building an active loop antenna, I took a bearing on the mystery signal on 475.74KHz.  I get a bearing along a rough line drawn between Lyme Regis in Dorset and Grimsby in Lincolnshire.  Plotting this along with the one other bearing give in this thread, the lines cross somewhere around the Seaborough and Drimpton area in Dorset.  I’m not aware of any likely sources around that area, but I’d prefer to have some more cross bearings before investigating further.  Regards,  Martin – G8JNJ”

Andy, KU4XR, has used creative antennas from his QTH for quite some time with remarkable, even mind boggling, results.  He posted the following comments, description and link to a picture of his current antenna:

“Just for the fun of showing this.. Sometimes it’s interesting to see what the other guy is using .. My antenna is certainly a off brand of anything named .. hi hi !! – I think I will call it my ” cobbled together sorta Inverted – L ” ..

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/49203948/Antenna%20at%20KU4XR.jpg

It is what used to be my 160 meter OCF dipole .. the 160 foot top load was the back leg of the OCF .. I added the extra 100 foot top load to make the ” fan ” section top loading .. For reasons I don’t know, this configuration has resulted in 2 S-units less noise, and better weak signal reception .. My 160 meter Transmissions are better, and reception below 500 KHz is considerably improved .. The top loading is going across my yard.. No radials that really matter in the antenna field – a few short ones at my ground rod next to the window ..”

I started WSPR at 2300z while getting started on a few projects in the shack, which kept me distracted for the duration of the evening until bedtime.  I did not observe high noise levels during the evening but signals were very strong.  My reception reports of other stations were down by almost half and this was the result of the increasing overnight noise.  Transmission reports were generally normal although slightly down from the previous session, likely due to the elevated noise levels overnight.  My transmission report details can be viewed here and my reception report details can be viewed here.

WG2XIQ 24-hour WSPR activity

 

Regional and continental WSPR breakdowns follow:

North American 24-hour WSPR activity

 

European 24-hour WSPR activity

 

Central / Asiatic Russian 24-hour WSPR activity

 

Japanese 24-hour WSPR activity

 

Australian and New Zealander 24-hour WSPR activity

 

Eden, ZF1EJ, received reports from eight WSPR stations and was reported by forty unique stations.  Eden was decoded by WH2XCR but it was not a two-way path, likely due to the very high noise level from storms on the US mainland.

ZF1EJ 24-hour WSPR activity

 

Laurence, KL7L / WE2XPQ, continues to fight noise in KH6 but back in Alaska it was a banner night of JA reports, many from late in the session on the approach to sunrise, including 7L1RLL4, JA8SCD, JA8SCD5,  JE1JDL, JH3XCU, and JR1IZM.  Laurence also shared two-way reports with VK4YB, where Roger reported Laurence late in the session.  It seems that whatever conditions were contribution to JA openings were also helping with the path from KL7 to VK.  Report details for these stations can be viewed here.

WE2XPQ 24-hour WSPR activity

 

Merv, K9FD/KH6 / WH2XCR, experienced another great session reports from 7L1RLL4, JA3TVF, JE1JDL, JH3XCU, JR1IZM. VK2XGJ, ZL2BCG, and two-way reports with VK4YB and WE2XPQ.  Two-way reports were difficult in the eastern US due to noisy storm conditions but Merv received reports from WA3TTS and reported WH2XZO, WI2XBV, and ZF1EJ.  DX report details can be viewed here.

WH2XCR 24-hour WSPR activity

 


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