Radio: it's not just a hobby, it's a way of life

Current Operating Frequency and Mode

OFF AIR but returning after dark on Saturday night

What a difference a day makes – deteriorating geomagnetic conditions and terrestrial storms add complications to the session and significantly reduce trans-Atlantic reports; Early trans-Pacific openings favor path to Oceania; WI2XTC grant approved; More MF QSO party redux

– Posted in: 630 Meter Daily Reports, 630 Meters

The details for March 22, 2016 can be viewed here.

This session was rough.  Not only was noise elevated due to many storm systems across North America but geomagnetic conditions ramped-up significantly as the evening began.  The geomagnetic conditions will improve but I believe that the noise is here to stay for many months to come.  I said the same thing last week and it was quiet for a few days.  Maybe the same thing will happen again.

11-hour North American lightning summary


Geomagnetic conditions reached storm levels sending the Bz deeper to the South, recovering slightly overnight.  Solar wind velocities are averaging 650 km/s, in the high category, and DST values have moved to the South but have not yet exhibited the deep, pulsating behavior often observed under such conditions.  The Kyoto DST illustrates traditional “rise before fall” behavior.




Szigy, YO2IS, provided these comments and statistics for this weekend’s MF QSO Party that were posted on the RSGB-LF reflector:

“Resulted 20 QSO’s, two in QRSS, 3 in CW and the rst in JT9, the most popular mode on MF, here included my very first two WSQ2 QSO’s.  Had QSO-s with IW4DXW in all three modess, also in WSQ, best DX was G4GIR some days ago we have meet via the chinesse satllites XW2A & XW2C. My old H.M. setup performed well, despite some instability from the local TTL XO. Was glad that the JTDX works well on MF and the program sends E_QSL after the QSO was logged.”

Vinny, DL6II, worked quite a few stations through the QSO party weekend and is looking for your QSL via the bureau.  He provided these comments and list of stations worked each day:

“I was a bit late because of my QRL on Thursday and there have been some issues with my /p sound card so I only got 2 QRSS QSO’s. But JT9 and CW evenings have been very good! Especially working many call signs for the first time was great pleasure for me.  Antenna was a full size dipole, 30m above ground in the feeding point, 1m above ground at the ends. Some pictures will follow tomorrow…”




Joe, DF2JP, reports good weather which has allowed him to make progress with his 23-meter tall vertical.  His comments and a few images follow – check out that coil!:

The antenna carrier is a 23m GRP telescopic mast. At the top I have a toploading coil (100 μH) to get more current through the vertical part of the antenna. There are 4 TopCap wires of 35m length. Antenna capacitance will be around 900pF, so the loading coils for MF and LF need not be too large.  Tomorrow morning I will shoot with the crossbow and hope the wind is ok.

DF2JP 23-meter telescoping vertical


DF2JP loading coil at the top of the 23-meter vertical.  Joe says the coil weights only 1.5 kg but that can still be tough to manage high in the air!


Luis, EA5DOM, reported on the RSGB-LF reflector that he would be QRV last night on JT9, testing his new transmit converter.  A number of stations reported hearing his signal but noise problems prohibited Luis from hearing stations.  Apparently Luis has a remote receiver option that may help in future.  He provided these comments about his converter:

“Mix the FT817 signal on 27.474 with a 27MHz GPSDO referenced LO. The output of the mixer is buffered by a BS170 gate polarized at 2V5. Then I use a LPF by QRP Labs and drive my PAI do only need Tx as my Rx is in another QTH were I have the grabber running and also a JT9 instance “

Several stations in British Columbia were active on JT9 during the evening but with the active geomagnetic conditions and high noise level, it was a tough operating session.  Further attempts and even some with CW will be made once band conditions return to normal.

Trans-Atlantic openings were down significantly from the previous session and the fact that there were any reports at all is remarkable.  Report details can be viewed here.



Paul, N1BUG / WI2XTC, reported low to moderate QRN, decoding twelve WSPR stations including EA5DOM.  He indicates no transcontinental openings for the session.  Paul’s grant for 630-meter and 2200-meters was approved this morning.

John, WA3ETD / WG2XKA, reported that he was “burning in” a new transmit converter for a client and he had a great session at 24-watts TPO in spite of the very poor geomagnetic conditions.

WG2XKA session WSPR activity (courtesy WA3ETD)


Al, K2BLA / WI2XBV, exclaimed, “What a difference a day makes.  Big time QRN this morning. Heard only by 30, heard 8 only one spot over 4000km.”

Ken, K5DNL / WG2XXM, reported that he decoded thirteen WSPR stations and was decoded by 62 unique stations including two-way reports with WH2XCR at a distance of 6007 km.

Joe, NU6O / WI2XBQ, reported at 0655z that all of his activity was on North / South paths with single digit S/N levels out to 1000 km.  Joe also indicated that he was seeing a very strong JT9 signal but he did not indicate which stations he was hearing.  I suspect it was one of the previously mentioned VE7 stations.

Doug, K4LY / WH2XZO, reported rain and lightning during the evening but managed a few hours of operating time, providing reports for eleven WSPR stations and receiving reports from 38 unique stations.

Rick, W7RNB / WI2XJQ, reported that band conditions pulled back with no transcontinental reports.  He provided reports for ten WSPR stations and was decoded by 28 unique stations.  Rick’s unique report details can be viewed here.

Trans-Pacific report details, excluding KL7 and KH6, can be viewed here.

Hideo, JH3XCU, posted links to two tables showing NA/VK -> JA DX totals and NA/VK -> JA peak S/N for the session.

Roger, VK4YB, reported that “WH2XXP and WH2XGP decoded before the QRN ramped up. Only 3 spots of my signal in N America. One each by VE7BDQ, VE6XH and W7IUV, all -29. ”  Roger indicates that his streak of reports at VE6XH was almost broken as their on-going 160-meter / 630-meter comparison experiment continues.  Roger’s statistics at VE6XH follow:  160m 5 spots, best -21 dB S/N, 630m 1 spot, -29 dB S/N.  Roger also received reports from JA3TVF.

Phil, VK3ELV, received reports from JH3XCU and TNUKJPM.

Ward, K7PO / WH2XXP, received reports from 64  unique stations including VK4YB, ZL2AFP and VK2XGJ, who indicated that his first report for Ward came at 0948z in spite of QRN levels peaking S9.

WH2XXP session WSPR activity (courtesy NI7J)


Larry, W7IUV / WH2XGP, provided reports for fourteen WSPR stations and was decoded by 54 unique stations including VK4YB, ZL2AFP and JR1IZM.  As W7IUV, Larry provided reports for twelve WSPR stations including VK4YB.  He also added that noise was 6+ dB higher than normal at his QTH.

WH2XGP session WSPR activity (courtesy NI7J)


I began the session at 2200z and it was obvious very quickly that it was going to be a tough night.  All of my reports prior to 0200z were South of a line  from WG2XXM near Oklahoma City and W5EST near Little Rock, Arkansas.  I was also hearing significant flutter on WG2XXM’s signal only 200-mile away.  It sounded like I was listening to Russians over the pole on 20-meter CW.  East and West openings were very good as were signals moving South and there were relatively early reports from ZF1EJ.  A number of higher latitude signals eventually were heard here and my signal successfully pushed North overnight but between noise and the geomagnetic conditions, it really was a difficult night.  My WSPR transmission report details can be viewed here and my WSPR 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 and Asiatic Russian 24-hour WSPR activity


Japanese 24-hour WSPR activity


Oceania 24-hour WSPR activity


Eden, ZF1EJ, provided reports for nine WSPR stations and was decoded by 24 unique stations.

ZF1EJ 24-hour WSPR activity


Laurence, KL7L / WE2XPQ, experienced a night like one might expect when the geomagnetic field reaches storm levels.  The path to JA and VK have dried up but coverage of the western portions of the US and Canada were average.  Laurence shared two-way reports with WH2XCR and those reports have been included in Merv’s report details below.

WE2XPQ 24-hour WSPR activity


Merv, K9FD/KH6 / WH2XCR, provided reports for VK3ELV and ZF1EJ and he shared two-way reports with VK4YB and WE2XPQ.  Merv received reports from VK2XGJ, JA3TVF, JH3XCU, and JR1IZM.  Coverage in the eastern portions of North America was leaner than normal due to high QRN but he did receive reports from WG2XJM as the station furthest East to report him during this session.  Merv provided pre-sunrise reports for VK4YB and VK3ELV but those ended well before sunrise.  All other reports ended well before the sunrise.  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).