It was another good session overnight as the band has recovered some after the recent G1 storm. While reports in the early evening were relatively normal in spite of elevated noise levels, Phil, VE3CIQ, in Ontario reported a slow start to reliable openings and normal WSPR reports. It was still extremely noisy at 0330z and I was exhausted so I did not stay up late for any JT9 activity.
Geomagnetic activity is quiet and improving with periods of elevated but quiet Kp. The Bz is pointing slightly to the South and solar wind velocities have decreased below 500 km/s, averaging 450 km/s. DST values are starting to show recovery as well:
It was another strong night of reports on the Pacific path in the western US with Ward, K7PO / WH2XXP, receiving 76 WSPR reports from five WSPR stations in Australia, best report from VK2DDI at -18 dB S/N. Ward reports that he was decoded by 35 unique stations during the session:
Larry, W7IUV / WH2XGP was reported by VK2DDI. He decoded seven WSPR stations and was decoded by 21 unique stations, including a few East coast stations, although the East coast path as a whole was poor. Larry reports that he was listening with the E-probe:
David, VK2DDI, reports that “the night is young on 630-meters” with these early reports:
John, WA3ETD / WG2XKA, had a good night, with trans-Atlantic reports from DL4MAU and DL6RCN. John provided the following comments and map:
“A very strange session at WG2XKA. Again, the ‘big three’ from the western US were spotted here (WG2XIQ, WH2XKP, WH2XXP). It rained from 0000z but there was no lightning. The T/A path looks to be opening, as DL4MAU and DL6RCN spotted my signal – I’m not familiar with these calls from previous events. Again, the Eastern US was well represented.”
John also reports that for the CLE event this weekend he will be running a slow-speed CW beacon on 472 kHz starting at 1800z.
Mark, VA7MM, reported “VA7MM will operate a slow CW beacon on 475 kHz for CLE210. Beacon times are 03:00 to 14:00 UTC on August 27, 28 and 29. Location CN89og Coquitlam, British Columbia.”
Phil, VE3CIQ, has the same feelings as I do about these persistent storms and the noise that they are creating:
“Looks like we just need the storm noise to settle down and should see some dx. My best outbound is still VE4XC, and best inbound is one decode of WH2XXP at -31.”
Neil, W0YSE/7 / WG2XSV, started the session early with a daytime JT9 QSO with Rick, W7RNB / WI2XJQ, near solar noon:
“Rick and I were going at it for hours on JT9 today. I was decoding him at -24 to -27. He finally decoded me at -28 and then a -27 and we completed a 2 way qso, much to my amazement due to our 4 to 1 ratio of power levels, mine being 1 watt. This was completed around 1:30 PM local time.“
Neil also provided a post-mortem for the overnight portion of the session:
“Not a big night for RX or TX, altho I heard you and Merv ok. Those who heard me were pretty much up and down the westerm states.
Hearing: 14MDA (?QRN?), VE7BDQ, VE7CNF, WG2XIQ, WH2XCR, WH2XGP, WH2XXP, WI2XJQ
Heard by: AL7RF, N6RY, NO1D, VA7MM, VE7BDQ, VE7CNF, VE7IGH, WH2XGP, WI2XJQ
Another hot, near 100*F, day here in Vancouver WA today and again tomorrow. Then it cools back down to normal. Temperature seems to affect my ERP a bit to the negative…”
Neil’s “14MDA” report is interesting. Phil, VE3CIQ, and I have debated this one on a number of occasions. I’ve maintained that its a bogus call sign generated by noise and strong signal mixing but I admit that its odd because station reports show up over a wide geographic range on a variety of bands. Following Occam’s Razor, this is the simplest explanation since the call sign is not real and often reports signals on paths through daylight that cannot exist under any circumstances. The only other explanation that seems far less plausible (maybe I am giving society too much credit?) is that it is a prankster or group of pranksters conspiring to execute what is tantamount to a fraternity prank on the WSPR community. The world may never know the truth <Cue X-files music>.
Rick, W7RNB / WI2XJQ, sound like he is having fun and has made significant improvements to streamlining his process and the work appears to be paying off. Rick provided the following comments and statistics:
“JT9 alive and well, here – and with the addition of the X-phaser was able to hear Neil WG2XSV, mid -afternoon, although signals were not high SNR numbers copy was noted both ways.
Parts have been ordered for the amplifier hybrid combiner repair. Hopefully, all will be back to normal next week.
New transmitter has arrived and is on the bench. Hopefully it will be put into service next week.
From what I see in the numbers — it would appear that conditions were pretty normal. I didn’t see any new direction trends this round.”
Ken, SWL/EN61, in Indiana, sent a screen capture showing morning JT9 activity that included my signal and WI2XFI. What’s interesting about this capture is that in Linux, WSJTx appears to report local time rather than UTC. Its possible that there is a setting that toggles what time is being displayed. When I initially looked at this capture I was convinced that someone had been pirating my call sign since I was not QRV at 0500z last night. It did not help that I had not had much coffee at that point. My log suggested that I was transmitting on the same minutes as reported but 5 hours later. At this point the “light bulb” came on about the time format. It helped me realize this because I accidentally sent a transmission where I was calling WH2XGP from a couple of nights ago. Mystery solved!
Ken, W8RUT / WI2XFI, reported that he was decoding my JT9 CQ’s this morning but I was just not hearing him through the persistent noise again. The good news is that I have decoded Ken before on WSPR so a JT9 QSO is coming.
Peter, VK4QC, posted the following announcement on the VK 600-meter yahoo group about an upcoming special event:
“Doc/VK5BUG FISTS 14136 will activate Fists Down Under club callsign VK2FDU/5 on 630m (472.5kHz) and 160m (1808kHz) QRP manual CW @ Grey Line times during the period 28 August to 10 September 2016 inclusive.
Reception reports via email@example.com &on-air QSOs will both be most welcome.
Tnx & 73 de Doc/VK5BUG QTHR QRZ.com
On behalf of The International Morse Code Preservation Society (VK-ZL Chapter)
Please spread the word!!”
Regional and continental WSPR breakdowns follow:
There were no reports from the trans-African or trans-Equatorial paths. UA0SNV was present but no reports have been filed at this time.
Eden, ZF1EJ, somehow managed to decode WH2XXP and WG2XIQ overnight in spite of a very active weather night in the Caribbean:
Laurence, KL7L / WE2XPQ, operated two receiver / antenna combinations over night in the same configuration as the previous session. In conjunction with data and reports from other operators, the evidence suggests that higher latitudes continue to be unsettled and that is reflected in Laurence’s reports overnight although as this screen capture suggests from Laurence’s “472-snapper“, the salt water path is very healthy:
Merv, K9FD/KH6 / WH2XCR, was decoded in VK until after his sunrise, in addition to overnight reports with the western US and as far East as VE4XC:
Jim, W5EST, presents “RRR: REMOTELY RE-VIEWABLE RECEPTIONS, NOTE ON SCREEN-SHARING”:
“The Aug. 25 blog described the Join.Me™ app for viewing JT9 on another station’s receiver in your region of N. America, for instance. That way, you get more JT9 decodes and increase the chances of completing a QSO.
Now for some more about Join.Me. I tested it further by sending an invitation to a local e-mail destination other than mine from the W5EST shack PC that runs Windows® 10 operating system. I accessed the latter e-mail destination cross-platform using a Samsung Galaxy® S2 Tablet having the Android™ operating system. From the Windows PC in the shack I sent an e-mail inviting Tablet to join.
The Tablet showed a window saying “Knock to Join.” After clicking “Knock to Join,” the Tablet reported “Waiting to be admitted” and “Enter your name,” whereupon I entered the name Jim1 into the Tablet window.
Meanwhile the shack PC showed a new window “Allow Jim1 to join?” to which I clicked the orange button “allow” in it. Now the Tablet’s screen rapidly evolved a screen-shared image of the shack Windows PC. Next, on the shack PC I clicked the 2nd-from-left orange control circle symbolized with a white balloon on it. A chat window opened, and I optionally typed “Hello Jim1.” (Use of chat at all is merely optional for our JT9 purposes.) Clicking a down-arrow at bottom of this chat window offers choices of sending the message “Hello Jim1” to All in a meeting or only to Jim1. Here, it made no difference what to choose. So I chose Jim1, followed by pressing the keyboard Enter key to send that chat from the shack PC to the Tablet.
Regarding Join.Me chat at this point, no chat was visible on the Tablet. However, touch-clicking on a green banner stripe at top right of Tablet screen revealed a corresponding white balloon, whereupon I opened it to get a chat screen. There, I key-entered “Rrr” to respond to the shack PC and show that response on its own chat screen, etc. See illustration of the shack PC screen. Since the Tablet’s Join.Me chat window was obscuring the JT9 window entirely, I clicked an upper-left back arrow of that chat window to view the JT9 window on the Tablet thereafter.
Split-screen viewing of Join.Me and Tablet’s own screen is accomplished from a split-screen option on Tablet.
What about two-way screen sharing of JT9 at a pair of RX stations for RRR purposes? I want to minimize the shared screen on the Tablet, and open a JT9 window on the Tablet for viewing on the shack PC. It remains to be seen whether Join.Me can support this type of operation. I’ll describe how to accomplish that in a further blog post if I can demonstrate it.”
Additions, corrections, clarifications, etc? Send me a message on the Contact page or directly to KB5NJD gmail dot (com).