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OFF AIR but hope to be back by 1115z Saturday morning if I don't oversleep

Great start to the night with strong, stable signals and lots of activity but something changed with the geomagnetic field later in the evening; Strong early trans-Atlantic openings while trans-Pacific openings lagged behind; One month anniversary of being on the air under Part-97 and it was a pretty strong showing; W5EST presents: ”Some 630m TX Loop Antennas and Concepts”

– Posted in: 630 Meter Daily Reports, 630 Meters

The details for November 14, 2016 can be viewed here.

The UTC amateur registration database is here.

HERE are a few mode-specific comments addressing where modes are located now and probably where they are best placed in the future

Operator lists detailing stations that are two-way QSO-capable can be viewed here.

Spot stations calling CQ on any mode here on DXSummit and help them find a Q


Storms were present in the Pacific Northwest into British Columbia during the evening into this morning but the continent was mostly free of lightning.  Atlantic storms into the Caribbean probably elevated noise levels in the eastern regions, however.  The Mediterranean  and southern Europe continue to experience strong storms.  That storm system has been in place for over a week now.  The same can be said for the system in the western Pacific and specifically Australia.  Northern Japan is also shrouded in lightning-rich storms once again.  These systems don’t seem to be moving very quickly.

11-hour worldwide lightning summary


Geomagnetic conditions were at quiet to elevated-quiet levels through this session although some areas located at higher latitudes reported  individual K-indices that were at unsettled levels.  The Bz is pointing slightly to the South this morning although has generally been variable through the session.  Solar wind velocities are averaging near 375 km/s but as with the Bz, there were isolated reports at higher latitudes where the solar wind stream was moving in excess of 500 km/s. DST values were very hopeful during parts of the session, even touching the center line but an evening disturbance resulted in a brief and comparatively deep decrease.




The onset of the disturbance that resulted in the strong decrease in DST may have accounted for very good early evening propagation, with some signals on 1200-mile paths that were at S9 before dark.  Others were near the noise floor but heard on paths that were atypical for that time of night.  QSB was observed to be very deep at times.  This morning propagation was average with periods of elevated noise but generally

Reverse beacon reports for the session follow:


PSKReporter select digital station distributions follow:

courtesy PSKReporter


Jim, W5EST, submitted these screen captures of his JT9 receive window located in Little Rock, Arkansas (click to enlarge.  Use the BACK button to return to report):





Using 474.2 kHz carrier frequency as a CW calling frequency worked well during this session.  I think it’s a keeper.

One thing that stood out during this session was the number of JT9 stations that were active.  Many were reported to be CQing and in many cases there was  no information about whether two-way QSO’s were completed but those active stations include VE7SL, WB0DBQ, W9XA, VE3CIQ, ZF1EJ, K5DNL, NO3M, KL7L, K9KFR, WE4X, W7IUV, W7WKR, K9MRI, AA1A, VE7CNF, VK4YB and VA7MM.  There were probably others stations but these were confirmed to have been on the air during the session.

Using CW, NO3M, KB5NJD, VE7CNF, N9EGT, W7WKR, VE7SL, DJ6CB and DK6SX/P were confirmed on the air.

The following stations provided reports of their two-way QSO’s as well as any additional activity that might have occurred during this session (this is not necessarily a complete list – only what was reported!):

Eric, NO3M, completed CW QSO’s with K4EJQ and KB5NJD.  He also completed a JT9 QSO with VE7SL.  Eric also indicated  multiple SWL reports from operators that said they were working on stations.  At the end of this first 30 days on the air under Part-97 rules, Eric reported the following statistics:

110 QSOs, 41 unique calls, 61 call/mode combos, 49 dupes, 21 WAS, 62 CW, 2 SSB, 40 JT9, 6 FT8, QSO leaders, 14 KB5NJD, 9 N3FL

Steve, VE7SL, started the evening with an early CW QSO with KB5NJD and completed a JT9 QSO with NO3M.

Ken, K5DNL, reported a JT9 QSO with ZF1EJ.  On WSPR overnight, Ken reported seventeen stations, including K9FD (/KH6), and he received reports from 91 unique stations, including seven Canadian stations.  Ken shared two-way WSPR reports with VE3CIQ and ZF1EJ.

Phil, VE3CIQ, completed his second QSO with ZF1EJ using JT9.  Phil indicated that the sequence during this QSO was much cleaner than the first.

Al, WB0DBQ, completed a JT9 QSO with Kermit, W9XA.

Toby, VE7CNF, completed a late evening JT9 QSO with CF7MM.  Toby also operated CW for a bit during the evening.

The session began at KB5NJD before it was dark with a true RST 599 signal coming from NO3M.  Eric was hearing me at RST 589 out of the West rather than the more direct Southwest path.  I also noted that he was louder using the short receive vertical than the loop arrays.   The following recording of Eric was from 0108z, about thirty minutes after the initial encounter:


Eric and I chatted again after dark for about ten minutes starting around 0118z.  The band remained strong and stable through the chat with no QRN to speak of.  Around 0145z, VE7SL reported CW on 474.5 kHz where I happened to be intermittently CQing.  He began CQing on frequency and he and I exchanged RST 449 on a very brief and early peak at 0153z.  It was an exciting highlight to the evening for me.  The following recording of Steve was from 0150z as his signal strength was increasing.  There is not much there but he was in the clear as we exchanged reports:


Larry, W7IUV, reported that he could not hear me at all during the QSO.  Shortly after this QSO I heard NO3M working K4EJQ.  Bunky was not hearing me when I called a bit earlier but he was loud while Eric was significantly weaker.  The band had definitely shortened-up quite a bit.  Only two evening reverse beacon reports were registered at VE6WZ ahead of the QSO with VE7SL.  This morning was more productive in that regard but I completed no additional QSO’s.  The morning was generally quiet with a few periods of high noise to the East.  The West was very quiet.

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

Hideo, JH3XCU, submitted this link detailing DX -> JA decode totals and DX -> JA S/N peaks for the session, as reported on the Japanese language 472 kHz website.

Roger, VK4YB, indicated that he “…sent some JT9 CQs early when QRN was mild. I changed to DE VK4YB QG62 when QRN was too high to permit decodes. WSPR was confined to the PNW and KL7 tonight.”  KL7L reported that Roger was “good jt9 copy 1247-1347z“.  Roger received WSPR reports from KJ6MKI, KL7L, KPH, KR6LA, KR7O, NT7S, VE6JY, VE6XH, VE7BDQ, VE7CNF, W7IUV and W7WKR. Roger reported WSPR from  K9FD.

Larry, W7IUV, reported WSPR and JT9 from VK4YB this morning in addition to many of the active JT9 stations during the evening.  A receive antenna problem ended a JT9 QSO attempt with KL7L.

Robert, KR7O, reported that he received very few transcontinental WSPR stations, with reports limited to W8RUT, K4LY, W4BCS.  Robert reported the following session best DX:

K9FD 91 spots, -3

ZF1EJ 1 spot, -30

KL7L 21 spots, -21

VK4YB 5 spots, -25

Trans-Atlantic WSPR report details can be viewed here.  The trans-Atlantic WSPR summary follows:


Ken, SWL-EN61, reported “5 decodes K9FD… best -25db.

Doug, K4LY, operated WSPR, reporting that “…81 decoded K4LY and 14 decoded by K4LY. I used the northeast favoring KAZ RX antenna all night which is maybe a reason why no K9FD reception.

There were 162 MF WSPR stations reported on the WSPRNet activity page at 0230z.  Regional and continental WSPR breakdowns follow:

North American 24-hour WSPR summary


South American 24-hour WSPR summary


European 24-hour WSPR summary


Asiatic Russian 24-hour WSPR summary


Chinese 24-hour WSPR summary


Japanese 24-hour WSPR summary


Oceania 24-hour WSPR summary


Eden, ZF1EJ, reported that he completed JT9 QSO’s with K5DNL and VE3CIQ.  On WSPR overnight, Eden reported eleven stations and he received reports from 52 unique stations.

ZF1EJ session WSPR summary


Laurence, KL7L, reported that VK4YB was “good jt9 copy 1247-1347z” .  Using WSPR, Laurence reported four stations including VK4YB and K9FD and he received reports from thirteen unique stations including JA1PKG. He shared two-way WSPR reports with KR6LA and N6GN.  Select DX report details can be viewed here.

KL7L session WSPR activity


Merv, K9FD (/KH6), remains in a stormy, noisy weather pattern.  He was not hearing anyone during this session but that may have been engineered to protect his receiver.  He received WSPR reports from 38 unique stations, however,  including 7L1RLL4, JA1PKG, JA3TVF, JR1IZM, KL7L,VK2XGJ, VK4YB and ZL4OL.  Select DX report details can be viewed here.

K9FD session WSPR activity


Jim, W5EST, presents, “Some 630m TX Loop Antennas and Concepts”:

“Many 630m stations use a TX vertical with more or less of top hat and radials.  The top hat and radials form a spatially extended, lossy capacitor, a few hundred picofarads. Ground resistance is parallelized with the radials, resulting in antenna resistance somewhere in the range 10-40 ohms. On 630m, the radiating vertical part of the antenna is roughly 1/32 wavelength and carries RF current up to the top hat, which capacitively returns the RF current.

Seen from above, the RF current is strong in the center vertical conductor, but far less dense outward where the current capacitively returns to the radials from the top hat as if through numerous return loops in all directions.  Radiation resistance is 1 ohm, in round numbers. The 630m radiation is roughly omnidirectional in azimuth and has a deep zenith null.   A loading coil or variometer resonates the vertical antenna system.

Today, the subject turns to 630m TX loop antennas and some modeling concepts.

One 600’ loop approach runs wire up about 60 feet, then over 200 feet, down 60 feet and comes back 200 feet.  A vacuum variable capacitor resonates this loop antenna system, which dispenses with radials.  Conveniently couple either to TX or RX or both. See “600m antenna choices…” by Dave AA1A Oct. 19 and 22, 2017, at:  http://w7ekb.com/pipermail/600mrg_w7ekb.com/2017-October/015723.html ; http://w7ekb.com/pipermail/600mrg_w7ekb.com/2017-October/015745.html  .

With either a vertical or a loop, the radiation resistance rapidly falls as the antenna height and horizontal size are decreased to accommodate smaller real estate. Can we multiply the RF current instead?  A first model concept suggests a 70’tall by 100’ top width inverted delta (▼) loop of #12 wire. It’s fed with one RF ampere (1A) slantwise to the top and tuned at ground level in such a way that about 2.3A RF current flows in the loop itself, to radiate well on 630m.  The slant feed contributes to a roughly omnidirectional azimuth pattern.  The elevation pattern is fairly fat, and there’s a modest 7 dB zenith null.  Real ground 3.3 mS/m is assumed.

http://njdtechnologies.net/061317/  .

A second top-fed loop TX antenna current multiplication concept pushes the size reduction strategy.  This inverted delta (▼) loop is 40’ high and 60’ wide across its top. The bottom is 10’ off the ground to reduce ground effects.  Current multiplication is 4.2x. To reduce 630m skin effect resistance and increase structural stability for higher-Q tuning, the model specifies ½” copper tubing.  http://njdtechnologies.net/061417/  .

Now picture a 6:1 turns ratio RF transformer at bottom driving 10A through a 40’x40’ TX loop antenna of #10 wire elevated 10’ from the ground, with top at 50’.  In this further modeling concept, four 4700 pF RF-duty capacitors divide the antenna into segments and greatly reduce the RF voltage needed to drive the antenna system.  Provide some minor loading inductance at the transformer primary to cancel out what remains of antenna system reactance.   The azimuth pattern is more nearly directional, as you would typically expect of a loop.

http://njdtechnologies.net/062817/  .

Would you like to experiment with 630m transmit loops?  Let us blog what you learn!  TU & GL on 630m.”


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