July 16, 2005

Atlantic tropo CU8DUB Azores beacon heard.

The tropo forecast looked good all this week but only on tuesday was anything heard with strong ducting to EA8 (probably beyond) again, several stations were 59 and at 15:44 I worked EA8/DL4DWA who had 25W and an HB9CV antenna. The duct then closed rapidly before 19:00 when D44TD got on the band and worked several CT/EA7 stations...arrrgh, if ONLY he had been on earlier.

Today the Atlantic tropo looked poor but I left the radio on listening for pings from CU8DUB and finally heard some, then at 16:30 it popped out the noise on tropo too! Sorry it didn't make a great MP3 conversion and I may have been generous spotting it at 519....but the keying was fully readable for about an hour...

CU8DUB Beacon 144420.0

By my measurement the exact frequency is 144419.950MHz.

NO stations QRV unfortunately so no contacts.

Posted by Tim at 09:04 PM | Comments (0)

July 02, 2005

Passive reflection at 144MHz from Tiede Volcano

Definitely in the right place today for 144MHz. Some very impressive tropo ducting and sporadic E. It had started last night with EA8AVI 59 tropo from IL28fc 2600km at 21:06 so I got into the shack early this morning and sure enough...

0730 EA8AVI 59 59 IL28fc He's still there!

Joe CT1HZE called me on KST chat to say that he could hear the 5T5 beacon from IK28ac, Nicholas 5T5SN joined and we tried a CW tropo qso but nothing received either direction.

An interesting path was open though....

Path G4LOH-CT1HZE 2nd July 2005.JPG

0804 CT1HZE 59 59 IM57nh

CT1HZE was receiving the best signal when his antenna was beaming to EA8!! The tropo path to IM57nh from here is obscured by EA1 and all of CT but the duct to EA8 was so effective that I could hear the backscattered signal from Joe beaming South West, extraordinary.

We confirmed by trying direct path and heard only meteor pings but the backscattered path was still 59 both ways.

I initially thought that this path was caused by tropo backscatter within the duct but actually the signals were not distorted so I am now convinced that it was a reflection from the Tiede volcano or other reflectors of the Canary Islands.

So the Path was CT1HZE-Tenerife-G4LOH ..... 3805km!

Afterwards I thought that we should have tried with Joe beaming 330 degrees to forward scatter into the duct (forward scatter would surely be stronger signals) we didn't do it, but I think that because signals would have been stronger that we would have noticed this path if it had been open. Next time, we will try this experiment. It may provide further evidence that the path was by reflection from the islands.

Using Tiede Volcano as a reflector may make it possible to work EA7/CN/CT stations or even 5T on tropo also, an exciting possibility. Nicholas 5T5SN has now put the 17ele beacon antenna on a rotator so it will be possible to check this in future.

The tropo just got stronger and stronger over the next few hours.

0816 EA8BWY 59 57 IL18uk 2600km
0944 EA8BPX 59+ 59+ IL18sk 2600km
0956 EA8CDX 59+20dB 59+20dB IL18ni 2600km
1029 EA8EE 59 58 IL27hx 2605km His antenna was a 1/4 wave, vertical polarised.

1055 CT1HZE 559 579 IM57 QTF 210(G4LOH)/220(CT1HZE) 3805km Path still open....

1144 EA8BWY 55 55 2600km
1150 EB8AHT 59 59 2600km

1202 CT3HF/P 59+20dB 59+20dB IM12nr 2150km Great to hear Duarte after many attempts from his home locator in weaker openings. G7RAU and G4RRA also heard and worked him for new DXCC.
1205 CQ3A 59 59 100W/11ele at 1700m asl IM12nr 2150km Fantastic signals from the mountain top...I didn't have the recorder going but remembered just afterwards and caught part of the contact with G7RAU....

Download File

1302 CT3BD/p IM12or 2150km
1336 EB8BTV 59 59 2605km

Signals peaked just before the contest started at 1400 and I didn't hear CQ3A in the contest less than one hour later.

1408 CT3BD/P 59001 59006 IM12or
1410 EA8BPX 59002 59006 IL18sk
1413 EA8/DL6FAW/P 59004 59002 IL18at

Signals from EA8 stayed strong all afternoon, dropped out just before dusk then reappeared with EA8BPX working G stations and getting better reports than I could have given, late into the evening as the duct went over my head.

At 1805 in IO70JesusCrist "the blessed locator" there was even a brief sporadic E opening, much to the chagrin of those who had watched the Atlantic super tropo on the dxcluster all day.

1805 IC8FAX 59 59 JN70cn
1805 IK0WGF 59 59 JN52vc
1807 I0DLP 59 59 JN61
1813 I5BLH/5 59010 59092 JN53lk
1819 I0AKP 59 59 JN61fu

EA8BPX was still working G's as I wrote this, tropo was also moving overland with:

1931 DL0DR 59012 59311 JN48fx

This was the strongest Atlantic tropo I have heard from this location, great stuff.

G4LOH IO70jc 400W/2x16ele by I0JXX 150m asl

Posted by Tim at 11:17 PM | Comments (5)