It was obvious through the daylight hours of this session that something was different about 630-meters. Maybe it was the fact that Doug, K4LY / WH2XZO, was also QRV with WSPR during the day as well, but activity seemed high and daylight reports seemed plentiful. It seems like we are starting to get into that portion of the season where the tilt of the Earth is just right and solar illumination is minimized enough that two-way daytime QSO’s are possible over reasonable sky wave distances. Even before sunset here in Texas, east coast WSPR stations were plentiful. John, WA3ETD / WG2XKA, reported very quiet conditions with strong signals, less the trans-Atlantic reports he had experienced in recent previous sessions.
The geomagnetic field mounted a comeback through the session, with the real-time conditions becoming quiet, but the consequences of this are 1) that the damage had already been done due to residual electrons, and 2) that there might not be enough “umph” to borrow a term from John, W1TAG, to support long-haul propagation. The latter certainly seems true, with fewer persistent trans-Atlantic reports through the session. Solar wind, which had been decreasing in speed, increased again to over 600 km/s during a few periods and the Bz component varied from + / – 10 nT during the session.
The Kyoto DST returned to positive territory and generally remained stable through the session.
So as far as I am concerned, the big news for this session is the JT9 QSO that I had with Merv, K9FD/KH6 / WH2XCR. Merv believes that this is the first time JT9 has been used on KH6 and certainly the first time on 630-meters in KH6. Signals near my bed time were neither strong nor plentiful to or from KH6 so Merv and I decided to call it off for this session and regroup later. It wasn’t until around 0700z that I woke up and decided to check the band anyway. Sure enough, two-way signals between my station and Merv’s were being reported on WSPR so I posted a message on the ON4KST chat/logger and Merv had just transitioned into the shack moments before. Before we knew it the JT9 sequences had begun and there was Merv’s signal climbing through the noise. We completed the QSO and patted ourselves on the back for a job well done. I admit that I was pretty stoked. As a recovering DXer that has been away from that sub-discipline for a while, I felt the itch to work more DX. I cannot wait for this band to open to US hams and be added to the ARRL and CQ awards programs!
Merv indicated that he could just barely hear my CW ID but it was not up to par for a CW QSO. I suppose that will be the next stop. I can’t wait!
Paul, W0RW / WA2XRM, was once again operating QRSS30 from Colorado. His signal was reported by Larry, W7IUV / WH2XGP in Washington state on his new grabber:
WSPR activity was very high, with 84 MF WSPR stations reported at one point during the North American evening. Two new WSPR reporting stations were identified through this session, but are not limited to are WD9EQD and KO6KL. As noted earlier, daytime conditions were strong and it was nice to have WH2XZO also QRV to give a littler perspective.
The region and / or continental WSPR breakdowns follow:
The trans-African path returned once again with Michel, FR5ZX, reporting both DK7FC and SV8CS:
Trans-Atlantic reporting stations included WD2XSH/17 and VE3IQB. There were no reports of North American stations in Europe during this session.
In the Caribbean, Eden, ZF1EJ, and Roger, ZF1RC, have a strong session, hearing just about all of the active stations in the eastern and southern US:
In Alaska, Laurence, KL7L / WE2XPQ, has the “particle blues” as he ran three modes on two bands at the same time through this session but it seems residual activity and electrons remaining in the ring current reservoirs are impacting his ability to get out from under the auroral region. Keep strong Laurence, and always keep your tin-foil hat with you!
In the Pacific, we have already mentioned some of the success that Merv, K9FD/KH6 / WH2XCR, enjoyed during this session. Merv’s WSPR efforts were no less phenomenal, with reports into JA once again, and into Eric’s, NO3M / WG2XJM, station in western Pennsylvania. Merv indicated in an email that he also received reports from Joe, NU6O / WI2XBQ, and Jay, KA9CFD for the first time.
In Australia, Phil, VK3ELV, continues to make the trip to JA:
I called CQ on 474.5 kHz CW through my sunset period of this session but did not generate any further QSO’s.
Additions, corrections, clarifications, etc? Send me a message on the Contact page!