The details for March 20, 2016 can be viewed here.
Several stations reported elevated noise overnight due to a lightning-rich storm system in the Midwest. Even QRN was low here in Texas and this morning QRN was limited to wide spaced lightning strikes but a number of stations reported a significant increase in noise over the previous very quiet session.
Geomagnetic conditions continue at very quiet levels for persistent periods. The Bz continues very near the centerline with many periods that were pointing solidly to the North. Solar wind velocities continue at very low levels, averaging near 320 km/s. DST values continue near the center line with numerous reporting periods located in positive territory.
David, G0MRF, clarified that all of the stations he reported in the previous session were, in fact, making two-way QSO’s with one another. It’s even possible that he said that originally and I just missed it or misinterpreted his comments. David added that the brevity of his original report was due to his marriage ceremony on Saturday and he somehow managed to briefly find some radio time. That’s dedication! Congrats to David and Victoria!
David also noted that the recent success and appearance of EA4GHB in trans-Atlantic reports may be the result of Alberto’s adding one of David’s class-D amplifiers. Also noted was the fact that Alberto’s reports were limited to N1BUG who seemed to have no problem hearing him. The problem seems to be the number of stations occupying or near 475.700 kHz, where Alberto was also transmitting. This situation illustrates yet another reason why lower transmit duty cycle is necessary due to the number of stations on the air at the same time.
Joe, DF2JP, received first time reports from N1BUG using his 12-meter tall vertical but his activity overnight abruptly ended due to an insulator that failed because of high voltage breakdown. This is a reason its a good idea to put a number of insulators in series with one another and is especially important when conductive supports, like trees, are used. Joe has a replacement insulator that is much more robust and is waiting for a day with low winds to install.
Trans-Atlantic reports were numerous again, with WH2XZO, in South Carolina, receiving reports from four different European countries while WI2XRM, located in Florida, received reports from six European stations. The higher latitude paths in the western US were missing during this session but openings did extend into the central US. Report details can be viewed here.
DF2JP -> N1BUG
DH5RAE -> N1BUG
EA4GHB -> N1BUG
PA0O -> N1BUG
G8HUH -> N1BUG, WD2XSH/17
WG2XXM -> F1AFJ, F59706
WG2XIQ -> F1AFJ, F59706
WH2XZO -> DL4RAJ, F59706, G0LUJ, PA0O
WI2XRM -> DL4RAJ, F1AFJ, LA2XPA/2, LA3EQ, PA0O, PA0RDT
WD2XSH/17 -> DC0DX, DF2JP, DF4UE, DF5FH, DH5RAE, DK7FC, DK8FTA, DL/PA0EHG, DL0HT, DL4RAJ, EA5DOM-1, EA7HPM, F1AFJ, F4DTL/2, F4KJI, F59706, F6GEX, G0LUJ, G3WCB, G3XKR, G4CPD, G4ETG, G8HUH, G8LCO, LA2XPA/2, LA3EQ, M0TAZ, M0XDK, ON5TA, OR7T, PA0O, PA0RDT, PA3ABK/2, PA7EY, PE1RKT, PI4THT
Paul, N1BUG, reported low noise to start the evening session followed by moderate noise in the late evening and overnight. He indicates that his trans-Atlantic reports were very good but transcontinental openings was less impressive. Something appears to have been going on back West. During one seventy minute period during the evening, Paul provide reports to G8HUH without missing any of Tom’s transmissions. Paul also reported EA4GHB, DF2JP (new for Paul), DH5RAE, PA0O, and WH2XGP on the transcontinental path from Maine. He decoded seventeen WSPR stations total.
Doug, K4LY / WH2XZO, experienced a very nice night of trans-Atlantic openings, maybe even a record for a single night for his stations. He provided these comments and statistics:
“Yesterday morning I wrote that the TA’s didn’t make it to the southeast, but they sure did last night with both XZO and XRM spotted by 4 different European countries. There was, however, no path west to Hawaii for those two stations, and XZO’s 11 unique decodes with 54 decoding XZO were mediocre at best and probably not entirely due to QRN.”
Patrick, F59706, reported that he decoded WH2XZO for the first time last night, bringing his total of US experimental stations received to eight, making this a record season. Patrick also notes that he is experiencing a record season on 160-meters.
Ernie, KC4SIT / WI2XQU, reported a problem that he is investigating and may keep him off air for a few day. He indicates that he was reported by twelve WSPR stations prior to the shutdown.
Al, K2BLA / WI2XBV, reported that he was hearing lightning during the evening but the QRN increased to a “full blitzkrieg” levels this morning. Al was decoded by 34 unique stations including WH2XCR, and was decoded by twelve WSPR stations including a few VE7 stations. Not a bad haul from Florida.
Ken, K5DNL / WG2XXM, provided reports for thirteen WSPR stations and was decoded by 67 unique stations including WE2XPQ, WH2XCR, F59706, F1AFJ and 12 Canadian stations.
Joe, NU6O / WI2XBQ, reported a below average session from Northern California, receiving reports from 24 unique stations. Joe indicates that West-to-East propagation was poor while East-to-West was good.
Rick, W7RNB / WI2XJQ, reported another good night, providing reports for fifteen WSPR stations and receiving reports from 31 unique stations. Rick’s unique report details can be viewed here.
Trans-Atlantic reports details, excluding KL7 and KH6, can be viewed here.
Roger, VK4YB, reported that “WH2XCR and WH2XXP came in early, just before the QRN got going seriously. Tx spots were well spread but S/N was generally weak. Good to see some JAs in there.” Roger statistics for his experiment with VE6XH follow: 160m 5 spots, best -15, 630m 2 spots, best -26. He also received reports from JA1NQI, JA3TVF, JH3XCU, TNUKJPM, VA7BBG, and VE7SL. Roger provided reports for WH2XXP.
Roger also indicates that he has been continuing his antenna comparison experiments between his end-fed wires and his tall verticals. He offered these comments which he is struggling to comprehend:
“I have been continuing my antenna comparisons. I now have two verticals and three 900 ft wires to compare. One vertical is 90 ft high with 50 ft top loading and 100 radials. The other is 80 ft high with 60 ft top loading and no radials. It is connected to the mains earth and the metal shed, which in turn is connected to the other vertical’s earth mat by the outer braid of 120 ft of coax. The results for transmitting so far:1) No difference between the verticals in any direction.2) Both verticals out-perform the long wires to all VK and ZL areas, with the exception that the SW long wire is better than the verticals in the SW direction only.3) At no time were the verticals heard in any DX location, even when the NNW and NE long wires were being consistently heard in North America, Hawaii and Japan.”
Regional and continental WSPR breakdowns follow:
Eden, ZF1EJ, provided reports for thirteen WSPR stations including WH2XCR and he was decoded by twenty unique stations.
Laurence, KL7L / WE2XPQ, continues to receive reports for most of the active JA stations with several notable reports late in the session. Those stations include 7L1RLL4, JA1NQI, JA1PKG, JA3TVF, JE1JDL, JH3XCU, JR1IZM, and TNUKJPM. Laurence provided reports for VK4YB and shared two-way reports with WH2XCR. Some of the late WH2XCR reports were in full sun for the entire path which is remarkable. Laurence notes that he was running at 100% duty cycle and 250-watt TPO on final approach to sunrise. Coverage of North America continues to be very good and Laurence’s reports have improved significantly compared to Winter when the band should have behaved like it is now. Laurence’s DX report details can be viewed here.
Merv, K9FD/KH6 / WH2XCR, experienced another strong night to JA with reports from JA1NQI, JA1PKG, JE1JDL, JH3XCU, and JR1IZM. He shared two-way reports with VK4YB and WE2XPQ and received reports from ZF1EJ but those reports were not reciprocated. Also notable was that some of the reports with WE2XPQ occurred after the entire path was in full sun. North America reports were down, likely due to elevated noise from storms in the Midwest. DX report details can be viewed here.