The band still seems noisier than it should be for October and this was particularly the case in the evening portion of this session. Curiously the lightning map was generally clear across the lower-48 with the closest major storms in the Caribbean, southern Mexico and Central America. I thought propagation, at least from here, was pretty good. The path that is due North from here always seems very robust, with many very good CW level reports into Minnesota at WD0AKX. Andy, KU4XR, continues to provide very good reports from Tennessee. For me this would be a good night of domestic propagation where equipped stations might be able to carry on a two-way QSO on CW over extended periods through the night.
Geomagnetic conditions are quiet once again and the forecast, according to Solarham is that these conditions should continue in the coming days. The Bz is currently pointing to the North, which is likely providing protection from the continued solar wind, whose velocity is averaging above 500 km/s at this time. DST values are significantly improved and in many cases have transitioned to positive levels:
John, W1TAG / WE2XGR/3, provided the sole trans-Atlantic reports for this session with decodes of Stefan, DK7FC:
John also decoded WH2XCR twice during this session and notes, “We may have a good break here. Next coronal hole flow due on 24th or 25th. If no filament collapses, then the northerly paths should recover.”
Ward, K7PO / WH2XXP, reports that he added 24 additional long radials and another ground rod, resulting in a significant change in tuning. Performance certainly was not hurt as a result of the addition. Ward reports that he was decoded by 59 unique stations over the previous 12-hours including six VK’s and 2 JA’s. No ZL reports were recorded last night, however. Ward adds that he received two reports from VK4YB 20-minutes before sunset in Queensland but that overall the path to VK seemed down:
Larry, W7IUV / WH2XGP, posted the following comments and statistics in the ON4KST chat:
“Was heard by 52 including 6 VK, ZL, ZF, and quite a few east siders…Heard 13 as XGP using east BOG…Heard 10 as W7IUV using west pointing RX antenna…Heard VK4YB on both antennas although he was better on west ant…Still some hi lat absorption going on but getting less every day.”
Roger, VK4YB, reported a “code-5” for this session. He and Steve, VE7SL, attempted a CW QSO this morning but the band was fickle. Roger also reports that his new NNW antenna has been somewhat of a disappointment so far, not experiencing the same tight pattern that the other two antennas appear to exhibit. More testing is needed. Roger submitted the following statistics:
“RX 15*wg2xxm (-22) 19*wh2xgp (-21) 31*wh2xxp (-12) 3*ve7bdq (-22) 3*wi2xbq (-27) 12*wh2xcr (-19)
TX 3*wh2xnv (-26)1*wh2xgp (-28) 5*w7iuv (-25) 13*ve7bdq (-19) 15*ve7sl (-20) 2*wi2vbq (-29) 3*we2xpq (-29) 28*wh2xcr (-9) 2*jh1inm (-24) 3*ja3tvf (-25) 1*zl2bcg (-26)”
Joe, NU6O / WI2XBQ, received a report from VK2XGJ and shared two-way reception reports with VK4YB:
Phil, VK3ELV, received reports from 7L1RLL4, JH1INM, and JH3XCU late in the previous session:
Ken, K5DNL / WG2XXM, reports decodes from 45 unique stations including VK4YB. He adds that he received 45 decodes from WH2XCR, best at +2 dB S/N:
Neil, W0YSE/7 / WG2XSV, operated JT9 during the evening and was received by Don, VE6JY, as detailed on PSKreporter. Don sent Neil an email with his operating conditions and raw JT9 data, which can be viewed here:
Overnight, Neil, operated WSPR and filed the following statistics and details:
Rick, W7RNB / WI2XJQ, reports that the session seemed a bit better for him in the Pacific Northwest, decoding nine WSPR stations and being decoded by 22 unique stations:
Doug, K4LY / WH2XZO, commented on a private discussion with Ken, SWL/EN61, in Indiana about the coincidence of sunrise peaks and fades on 630-meter and 160-meter signals. Both band seemed to have tracked when it came to final WSPR decodes over the previous few days. Doug indicates that he may try to set up an additional receiver to watch both bands simultaneously, just as Ken has done. Look for more details on this in the future.
Further review of my overnight WSPR data suggests that propagation was very good at times, with numerous CW levels reports across North America. The area between 600-1500 miles seems to have fared best with outliers such as VE6JY reporting a -6 dB S/N at one point during the session. This morning the QRN levels were down from the previous night, resulting in a nice CW sked. Additional CQ’s yielded no additional QSO’s, however. My WSPR transmission reports can be found here and my WSPR reception reports can be found here.
97 MF WSPR stations were observed at 0240z on the WSPRnet activity page.
Regional and continental WSPR breakdowns follow:
There were no reports from the trans-African path.
Eden, ZF1EJ, decoded WH2XCR yesterday and I missed the reporting due to a timing error on my part. I have included those reports with today’s report. Yesterday brought reports that were at sunrise while today’s reports came about 20 minutes prior. Eden also decoded a number of stations around North America including WE2XGR/3 and WH2XGP:
Laurence, KL7L / WE2XPQ, reports significant damage to one loop but was able to operate at 100w TPO into another loop overnight as winds began to increase once again. Laurence indicated that there were only a few weak Asian beat carriers from medium wave broadcast stations suggesting skywave continues to be poor.
Merv, K9FD/KH6 / WH2XCR, received two reports from WE2XGR/3 during this session, in addition to ZF1EJ and numerous other stations in the East and Midwest. The path to Alaska continues to be good in spite of wind damage at KL7L. Paths to Asia and Oceania are also very serviceable:
Jim, W5EST, presents, “630M WSPR OCT. 13, 2016: NO VK4YB-ve7sl , 8*VK4YB-ve7bdq -23dB. WHY?”:
“During the week ended Oct. 16, VK4YB delivered 47 decodes into VE7SL 11820km and 40 decodes 24km further to VE7BDQ at 11844km. For both paths, the signal headed out 43° from VK4YB and arrived 247° in BC.
TABLE 1 shows a day-by-day rundown that suggests possibly unusual 630m propagation on Oct. 13, which Steve VE7SL asked me about. During that Oct. 13 session, VE7BDQ decoded 8 spots of VK4YB peaking -23dB SNR while VE7SL decoded none.
For the last two weeks both the VE7SL and VE7BDQ stations have received peak VK4YB SNRs that generally track and roughly seesaw within a few dB of each other , except for Oct. 13.
Meanwhile, as shown by TABLE 2, WH2XCR has peaked generally higher at VE7BDQ while numbers of decodes of XCR at the two stations have seesawed.
From Hawaii, XCR-ve7sl/ve7bdq paths at 4295/4320 km distances both head out 36° and arrive nominally 236° in BC. The much longer 11,800 km VK4YB paths pass NW of Hawaii by about 700km.
While the Oct. 13 result could represent a mere statistical happenstance, it was sufficiently interesting to set off an extensive exchange of e-mails on this topic. More on the e-mails in another blog post!
TABLE 1: VK4YB DECODES AT TWO BC STATIONS OCT. 4-16
DATE #DECODES@ PEAK SNR
2016 VE7SL VE7BDQ VE7SL VE7BDQ
10/16 5 4 -25 -27
10/15 34 20 -19 -20 (both 1256z)
10/14 1 3 -27 -26
10/13 0 8 n/a -23
10/12 0 0 n/a n/a
10/11 6 4 -24 -26
10/10 1 1 -28 -29
10/9 0 0 na na
10/8 2 1 -28 -24
10/7 2 0 -29 na
10/6 3 4 -23 -22
10/5 10 6 -25 -21
10/4 17 rx off -22 rx off
TABLE 2: WH2XCR DECODES AT TWO BC STATIONS OCT. 3-16
DATE #DECODES@ PEAK SNR
2016 VE7SL VE7BDQ VE7SL VE7BDQ
10/16 90 81 -6 -2
10/15 80 90 -4 -3
10/14 55 82 -6 -4
10/13 75 69 -5 -6
10/12 28 55 -8 -7
10/11 55 43 -5 -2
10/10 55 61 -3 -6
10/9 67 58 -11 -9
10/8 77 62 -9 -11
10/7 92 80 -4 -7
10/6 51 71 -11 -5
10/5 79 69 -11 -5
10/4 99 rx off -6 rx off
10/3 65 84 -14 -7
(Note: XCR #decodes are within +/-5 due to JH eyeballing to save prep time.)”
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