The World of LF G3YXM

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.4. Getting On
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.7. Circuits
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.11. /P Diary
.12. LF/M!
.13. Logbook
.14. Topband.

-LF news past....2002.

  • December

  • 30/12. More ZL6QH reports. It seems the signal was again getting out very well. Best distance report so far is from Bill VE2IQ in Ontario. No confirmed reports from Europe yet but Mike KB6WFC in Daly City California (CM87SQ), has posted a screen grab here of the stonking signal he was receiving!.

  • 30/12. RU6LA expedition report. Ed has returned from his trip to Machta. His signal was very good around Europe and he made quite a few QSOs. No T/A reports received so far. More news as we get it.

  • 27/12. ZL6QH received already! John Andrews, W1TAG, in FN42CH has successfully received the ZL tests. He has posted 2 screen shots. First grab, Second grab. Lloyd, W3NF, in FM19MH Maryland also got a screen grab as did Dex, W4DEX. His grabs are here.

  • 22/12. RU6LA activity. Ed will be active from Machta (KN97LN) on Dec 27-28. On 27th from 17:30 onwards in QRSS3 on 137.700 or CW on 136.6. On 28th from 0500 - 1500 Ed will send a QRSS3/CW 1w ERP Beacon test ("RU6LA 1W"), from 1500 onward on 28th he will look for QSOs as above. He has access to the DX-cluster and it is possible to send a report to his pager via e-mail: vesso@crypt.rnd.ru Subject: 29600 , In body: text . Sunset is 1340, Sunrise 0510z.

  • 22/12. Jason to Norway. Steinar Aanesland copied M0BMU's Jason test last night. See his web-site for a screen-grab.

  • 18/12. First T/A "Jason". M0BMU's Jason test was received by W1TAG in Holden Mass. last night. See a screenshot here.

  • 17/12. G3LDO, 73k in LA. Steinar Aanesland has been busy again. This scan is taken at 01:40 and shows Peter's call coming up thoughout.

    "L, D, O"

  • 12/12. F6CWA Hube will be active on 136 QRSS and CW from December 28th to January 5th. He will be hoping to work as many stations as possible. His locator is JN24NI.

  • 11/12. More 73k T/A. G3LDO, G3AQC, G3XDV and MI0AYZ all transmitted slow CW on 73k last night. 'LDO and 'AQC were both received by W1TAG and W4DEX. Screenshot.

  • 7/12. 136k T/A tests tonight. Several European stations will be transmitting around 135.922kHz tonight. They will be using QRSS or DFCW at 30sec or longer dot rate.

  • 7/12. 73k trans/Atlantic. W1TAG and W4DEX both received G3AQC's 72.4kHz transmission last night. John (W1TAG) reported signals as being as good as anything he saw last year. Screenshot.

  • 6/12. Christmas ZL tests. (update) ZL6QH is planning LF beacon transmissions for 27, 28 and 29 December. Sunset at ZL6QH is nominally 0752 UTC, and sunrise nominally 1655 UTC for those days. As for previous beacon tests, the format is FSK transmission with 137.7890/137.7886 kHz, 120 second dot length, with identifier QQQQQ.... (info from ZL2CA)

  • 3/12. 73k activity. A few stations congregated on 73k on Tuesday morning during the Rugby monthly maintenance shut-down. Ian MI0AYZ, using his newly built 73k station, worked M0BMU and G3YXM. Signals were weak but good copy on QRSS. Ian worked G3AQC last Saturday on QRSS 73k.

  • 1/12. New new version of Argo. Alberto has released build 131 which cures the problems with slow PCs and: NDB mode added - Wave file read/write added - Screen capture dialog rewritten (now should work as intended). - A routine has been added to adjust capture timing to specify a screen-full. It's on the Downloads page.

  • November

  • 29/11. TransAtlantic signal plots. Dexter, W4DEX, is posting overnight signal level plots of HBG on 75kHz here. This is a "near real time" plot, regularly updated. He will also keep an archive of full 23hr plots at http://www.gostanly.com/w4dex/75khz/. This should give us more insight into methods of forecasting good T/A conditions. Note 6/12: Dex has ice-storm trouble at present so the server may be down.

  • 21/11. IARU Region 1 conference. John Gould reports: The proposed Guideline for 136kHz has been adopted, see here for info. Regarding the proposal for an amateur allocation around 500kHz, the Conference recognised that ITU policy is for no changes to take place around 500 kHz in the near future. However, it was agreed that this should not stop us putting a small Working Group together with a view to developing an approach, and it was suggested that we considered a 10kHz segment between 470 and 490kHz. This would be a long-term task, with a further proposal unlikely to be put forward until after WRC03.

  • 17/11. 73k tests continue. G3AQC and G3LDO have been continuing the 73k tests. Last night Steinar Aanesland near Oslo in Norway was getting very good reception of G3AQC In the small hours, interesting to see the signal fade At dawn.

  • 11/11. Russian firsts. Ed RU6LA / RU6LWZ made contact with SM5EUF, OZ8NJ, F6BWO, OK1DTN and PA0BWL this weekend. These are all firsts on 136. He also had more QSOs with G, DL and I, plus about 50 crossband QSOs around Europe and Russia. Ed also managed to receive G3AQC on 73kHz, another first! Ed's QSL info is: Ed Lesnichy, P.O. Box 1, Taganrog, 347900, RUSSIA.

  • 10/11. Double trans-Atlantic on 73. Both G3AQC and G3LDO were received across the pond by W1TAG in Holden Mass. last night using QRSS. Screenshots here.

  • 10/11. Matrix updated. The Russian firsts are now up to date thanks to Ed Lesnichy RU6LA and G3XDV. If you have info on any others I've missed please let me know.

  • 5/11. More Russian activity. Ed, RU6LA will be on from Machta Nov 6th - 10th. See here for full details.

  • 4/11. Indonesian beacon. YB3AQF, in Surabaya, will be transmitting CW beacon signals Monday, 4 Nov and Tuesday, 5 Nov, from 10:45 to 11:30 UTC. The frequency will be 137.000 kHz. The beacon format is: CW, keyed at 5 wpm. Text: test de yb3aqf yb3aqf (space), repeated. (info from ZL2CA)

  • 3/11. G - EA on 73k. EA1PX received Laurie's (G3AQC) test transmissions on 71.75kHz today. I think this was QRSS. Laurie, Mike (G3XDV) and Peter (G3LDO) are regularly transmitting QRSS tests around this frequency.

  • 3/11. Special LF event. To commemorate its 50th anniversary Germany's National Weather Service (Deutscher Wetterdienst - DWD) there will be an LF / Amateur Radio crossband event. DDH47 located in Pinneberg near Hamburg will transmit on 147.3kHz and QSX on 3565, 7025 and, if still open, 14052kHz. Amateurs are asked to send RST and their locator. The event will start on Friday, 8th November 2230UTC and end on Saturday 9th at 0520UTC. From hh:15 to hh:18 and hh:45 to hh:48 QRSS3 transmissions will be made. DDH47 runs 15kW into a 72m high vertical with a 3-wire top capacity. Pse see also the DWD web-site for further information.

  • October

  • 22/10. Jason Beta 0.95 The latest Beta version of Jason is available at www.weaksignals.com It has both 9600 and 19200 bps serial speeds, together with the infamous Hendrixizer and the Hard Clipper (ideally to be compared to see whether one of them can be discarded). It can also save/read both to/from WAV and JAS formats, the latter being a file format that contains the I and Q samples after the decimator. All reports all welcome. (to Alberto I2PHD)

  • 13/10. MB2HFC report. On Friday we managed to put up a nice 55m top at about 23m high with the help of G3XTZ's catapult but could only get 2A ant current with 800W (G0MRF's Decca tx). Despite this, signal reports were good and the noise level was low on receive. We also had a feed of MB7LF via 2m just in case (thanks to Crawley club). On Saturday we added another 40m to the top and got the current up to 2.5A max, still poor but we worked 17 stations in 5 countries and received reports from EA1PX and RU6LA (must be record for HFC!). All in all a good weekend. A pity it rained so much when we were taking down the aerial!

  • 11/10. Convention time. This year the RSGB HF convention is held at the Savill Court Hotel and Conference Centre in Egham, Surrey, over the weekend 12/13 Oct. There will be a 136kHz station on from the event starting on Friday afternoon. We hope the venue will be quieter than the Beaumont with its 100s of computers!

  • 3/10. RU6LWZ / RU6LA The guys were radiating a good signal which was copied on QRSS in Italy Germany, Greece, France, UK and Spain. On 26th and 27th, thunder-storms made copy difficult and the only QSO was a crossband to DJ8WX. The 28th was quieter and they worked IK5ZPV, DL3FDO. The beacon ran for much of the time and was widely received though it didn't seem to make it to W or ZL.

  • September

  • 25/9. Russian activity weekend. The RU6LWZ Club will be active on 136, 26 to 29 Sep from Machta (QTH-loc KN97LN, 50km N of Taganrog). Planned frequencies are137.7 for QRSS and 136.2 for CW. RU6LWZ will also be carrying out beacon tests (QRSS120): for ZL and UA-As, from 15:00 to 18:30z on Sep 27, and 22:30 to 03:30z on the night of 28/29. Freq will be 135.922 They will have access to the DX-cluster and it is possible to send a message to a pager via e-mail: e-mail: vesso@crypt.rnd.ru Subject: 29600 In body: text. They did very well in April with the big inverted L so lets hope for good conditions.

  • 25/9. ZL test results? Nothing much heard about last weekend's tests. All went well at ZL6QH, they are just awaiting reports.

  • 20/9. Activty day on Saturday 21st. Over the weekend 21/22 September the DK0UH club chapter "Hohenstaufen" DOK P41 will have an activity Day, from Wuerttremberg JN48TM (Westerheim, South Germany, nr. Stuttgart), on 136.5kHz, mode A1A. They would be grateful for as much activity as possible this weekend between Saturday afternoon and and Sunday afternoon. Confirmaton traffic: 7.022 MHz, A1A, QSU

  • 16/9. More ZL tests on 21st. ZL6QH will be on-air from nominally 0610 UTC (sunset) to 1813 UTC (sunrise). Dual frequency keying will be used, with 0.4 Hz frequency shift. The coding is for an ID character of Q, sent as hi, hi, lo, hi, key up. This code cycle is sent repeatedly. hi = 137.7890 kHz lo = 137.7886 kHz Each element is 120 seconds (dot length) so sending a Q takes 10 minutes. Each Q will start on the hour, and also keep close to 10 minute cycles. Reception reports can be emailed to vernall@xtra.co.nz

  • 15/9. Russian beacon test. RX3QFM (Vlad) is running regular test transmissions overnight on 136.51kHz (approx) using QRSS3. His TX power is now up to 100W. Vlad has no regular E-mail but can receive SMS messages (less than 160 characters) on his GSM phone via: 6503561@sms.beemail.ru -Thanks to Alex, RA9MB.

  • 10/9. Argentina on 136. An announcement has been received from the President of the Radio Club Argentino: As a result of a proposal made to the C.N.C. by the Radio Club Argentino, a portion of the 136 kHz band has been allocated to amateur service on a secondary basis in Argentina. The segment 135,7 to 135,8 kHz will be coordinated by the Radio Club Argentino until it is finally asigned on a primary basis, in one year. I wonder whether it actually means 135.7 to 137.8?

  • 5/9. DL Field-day station. They will be active from Sept. 7, 10.00 UTC to Sept.8, 10.00UTC from Berlin with a 120m vertical antenna. Call is DK0CQ or DN1VLF, special frequencies are 136,72 KHz and 137,72 kHz(QRSS). Thanks to Klaus Ollesch for the information.

  • 5/9. New Russian activity. RX3QFM (Vlad) will soon be able to TX on 136 kHz. TX output is only 10W initially but his antenna height is 45 m! He is receiving on the band now and copies DCF39 56 db over noise. Unfortunately Vlad has no regular E-mail. He can receive SMS messages (less than 160 characters) on his GSM phone via: 6503561@sms.beemail.ru -Thanks to Alex, RA9MB.

  • 2/9. First EA/G two-way. José Manuel EA1PX worked Jim M0BMU at 2100 today using QRSS. The ground is so hard at La Coruña that it needs a hammer-drill to get a stake in! The effort has been rewarded though, congratulations to both.

  • August

  • 24/8. Italian beacon testing. (updated)It is located in Northern Italy, a few km west of Lake Garda, 980m above sea level. The frequency is 135.800kHz and the ant is a sloping wire from the top of a 60m tower. The message is "IK2DED/B LF BEACON JN55FO" 2 or 3 times at 7 wpm full power, then in qrss "IK2DED/B JN55FO PWR HIGH" bat 40W, " PWR MED" at 4W and finally " PWR LOW" at 0.4W then restart in normal cw.

  • 23/8. Reports for ZL6QH test. The ZL6QH test transmission was again received by Steve VE7SL near Vancouver. No other trans-Pacific reports have been received but that's still a big distance.

  • 16/8. First EA / CT QSO. On Friday Brian CT1DRP worked José Manuel EA1PX using QRSS (3 second dots hand sent!) on 137.693. Signals were good over the 300km path.

  • 14/8. Lighthouse weekend. This weekend is the International Lighthouse / Lightship Weekend with lots of amateur activity. I have no information on LF activity but there often is, so keep a lookout !

  • 14/8. More tests from ZL6QH. ZL6QH will be carrying out beacon tests on Saturday 17 August, from nominally 0536 UTC (sunset) to 1912 UTC (sunrise) +/- a little extra to cover dusk and dawn. Dual frequency keying will be used, with 0.4 Hz shift. "Q" will be sent as hi, hi, lo, hi, then pause. hi = 137.7890 kHz lo = 137.7886 kHz. Speed is 120 seconds dot length so each Q takes 10 mins. "Q"s will start on the hour, and every 10 minutes after. They recommend using Argo with the RX set to 137.7888 kHz. Reception reports can be emailed to vernall@xtra.co.nz or posted to the reflector.

  • 8/8. First EA crossband (for 3 years!) José Manuel, EA1PX, had a crossband QSO (QRSS3 on 137.6kHz-CW to 14030kHz) with Jim M0BMU which is the first LF QSO with Spain since G3KEV worked EA1QX in 1999.

  • July

  • 24/7. Donebach 136 tests a success. The group of German amateurs who operated from the Deutschlandfunk masts whilst the 153kHz transmitters were off for maintenance had a good day. The best reports were from CT1DRP and EA1TF who copied them in normal CW. The ERP at the time was probably about 60W so that's 17dB up on a normal amateur signal. José Manuel, EA1PX also copied the signal, the first LF reception he has done. Since then he has received M0BMU's Jason test on Argo. This just illustrates the value of this kind of event, well done to all concerned.

  • 22/7. New version of Jason. Alberto has been tweaking Jason again... Now it has selectable decoders (including one based on Wolf from KK7RA), selectable serial output formats and the abilty to analyse wav files. Check it out at http://www.weaksignals.com or on the Downloads page.

  • 22/7. LF roundtable. The second LF rountable meeting, held this year at the Crawley club, seems to have been well received. Various topics were discussed. I am hoping for more news soon!

  • 18/7. Brazil to get 136kHz band. Marcus PY3CRX/PY2PLL reports: ANATEL - the Brazilian equivalent of the FCC - agreed that the 135.7 - 137.8 KHz segment can be alocated to Amateur Radio use on a secondary basis. This information in a July 17 press release from ANATEL. I hope this change arrives soon! For those who can read it, the document is here!

  • 15/7. Deutschlandfunk masts on 136kHz. On Wednesday, 24th of July, the 153KHz transmitter of Deutschlandfunk in Donebach (JN49ON, 50Km SSE of Frankfurt) will be off air for maintenance. Thanks to the kind co-operation of the site personnel and the regulation authorities, a small group of German LF amateurs has been granted access to one of the 360m masts between 7:00 and 15:00UTC. They intend to operate in CW and QRSS. They will have a receiving loop in case of noise problems, and will also be QRV on 7030KHz in CW. If all else fails, please call on +49 174 3692499, or email via the reflector or to dj2lf@darc.de or markusvester@aol.com. The group is: Markus - DF6NM, Walter - DJ2LF, Ralph - DL2NDO, Ralph - DK3GH, Roland - DL3NDR and Franz - DL5NER.

  • 7/7. LF Round-table meeting. The LF roundtable is on schedule for 21st July at the Crawley club. See http://www.carc.org.uk/html/lf_round.html for details. All those interested in LF are welcome. Instructions on how to get there are here.

  • 1/7. Weekend activity. SA6Q (and of course, SAQ) were on the air as promised. SA6Q was heard well in the UK, France and Germany. They worked into DL, PA and G with some receive problems. SAQ was heard all over Europe but sadly not in the USA or ZL/VK who were listening.

  • June

  • 23/6. First QSO from Yugoslavia. On Sunday Teo YU7AR and Szigy YO2IS had their first LF QSO at 07.03Z on 136.5kHz (449/559). Teo used 50W (with IRF630 FETs) TX and 80m umbrella antenna on a 35m high tower. His QTH is in KN05BW. Congratulations !!! Info from OM2TW

  • 23/6. Weekend activity. Dick PA0SE decided to fire up an original German World War II Hellschreiber ("Feldfernschreiber") made in 1944 on the 136 band this weekend. Several stations copied the transmissions, including DF6NM and G3XDV, they used rather more modern PC decoding software! On Sunday Dick had a two-way Hell QSO with DF0WD, using the machine to receive as well as transmit. G3XDV gave G3FYX his first LF QSO this weekend. Roy is in Bristol and runs 240W to a very small loop - 20ft x 63ft - so he is quite weak. Please look out for him.

  • 19/6. FCC seeks comments on new band proposals. The FCC now invites comments on the new bands including the 136kHz band. Interested parties may file comments via the FCC's Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS) website, http://www.fcc.gov/e-file/ecfs.html . Click on ''Search for Filed Comments'' and enter ''02-98'' in the ''Proceeding'' field. All comments and other correspondence--plus a copy of the NPRM--are available for viewing via the ECFS. (info from G3WKL)

  • 19/6. Grimeton on-air again. The historic Alexanderson alternator at Grimeton Radio (Sweden) will be fired up again on Sunday June 30th at 0830utc, 0845, 1330 and 1245. The callsign is, as usual, SAQ and the frequency and mode is 17.2kHz A1A. Special-event station SA6Q will be active from 0700 to 1400 on 136.8kHz except when the big TX is on. They will also be using 7015, 7050, 14035 and 14215kHz. Remember that you can use Spectrum Lab as a VLF receiver, check the Downloads page.

  • 8/6. USA gears up for 136. No date yet for the activity to start but many hams are preparing to get on the air. Much discussion of loop antennas has taken place and perhaps with the larger amounts of real-estate available over there, they'll be able to get some big ones up. They'll need to, the regulations are likely to allow an EIRP of 1W but only 100W TX power. The FCC are seeking guidance from any interested parties on these levels, let's hope they take the European experience into account and let ERP alone be the deciding factor.

  • May

  • 26/5. New pictures. Ed Lesnichy RU6LA has sent some great pictures of the RU6LWZ expedition. See them in the Gallery (under RU6LA).

  • 21/5. Activity seems a little thin at the moment, static levels are rising and night-time always seems to bring more. If you are planning any portable activity over the summer remember to post it on the portable noticeboard. One station who seems to have returned after a long absence is LX1PD, heard yesterday by G4CNN. Keep listening!

  • 10/5. 136 allocation in the US at last? The ARRL announced today on their news pages in an item about new allocations for US hams: The FCC also is ready to adopt at least part of ARRL's longstanding request for a low-frequency amateur allocation by proposing to permit operation on a 136-kHz "sliver band"The FCC announcement can be seen here. The "Notice of Proposed Rulemaking" regarding three new allocations is to be issued soon. How long it will be before permits are issued is anyone's guess.....

  • 7/5. RK2FWA. This club station from Kaliningrad (UA2) has been active over the past couple of weeks and is a 599 signal into Germany and a good signal into the UK. I'm not sure how good the receive setup is as many stations have called and failed to make it, but they have certainly worked DJ8WX.

  • 2/5. New version of QRS. Rik Strobbe has released version 3.17 of QRS. No new features, just bug fixes. Find it on the Downloads page.

  • 1/5. Noise blanker for LF. If you suffer from the kind of mains "buzz" produced by thyristor dimmers etc. then this mains driven noise blanker by PA0LQ may be useful. The circuit also includes a 30Hz b/w "non-ringing" audio filter. Kindly translated by PA0SE. See the design here.

  • April

  • 27/4. More Russian activity. Ed, RU6LA, will be active on LF again from Machta (KN97LN) on May 2, 3, 4. More details as I get 'em.

  • 25/4. New LF receiver design published. The May 2002 edition of "Radcom", the RSGB members magazine has a design by Ted Crowley EI3CY. It is direct conversion and uses op-amps for the gain stages. Ted has heard several countries on his.

  • 17/4. Rugby LF site to be sold for "development". BT is to close the Rugby site, home of GBR on 16kHz, MSF (the 60kHz time signal) and many other LF transmissions including that noisy thing in the middle of the 73kHz band! The contract for MSF runs until 2007, reports RSGB news, and I know that a new LF facility has been built "in the North..." so the site could even close before that. Anyone want an 800ft mast?

  • 17/4. Good T/A conditions (nobody on...) Alan, G3NYK, reports an opening to VE last night with signal levels 10dB above the level where a QRSS3 QSO could be made. This would probably have made a CW QSO possible. His opinion is based on the level of CFH (Halifax Nova Scotia) as received in the UK. See the "propagation popup" for full info.

  • 8/4. Russian firsts. The Russian crew of RU6LWZ (RU6LA,UA6LV,UA6LFQ) were active from the Taganrog site (locator is KN97LN) again last weekend. They operated mainly QRSS3 and, having solved the receiver problems which plagued them last week, made several QSOs. On Saturday evening Reino OH5UFO was worked in QRSS, then IK5ZPV in QRSS and also CW. Early on Sunday morning they made it with OM2TW and M0BMU (best DX at 2824km) both in QRSS. OK1FIG was a near miss despite Petr making a special trip to his cottage. Ed, RU6LA, reckons that this success has re-kindled interest in LF from Russia and thinks that several more stations will be active soon.

  • 7/4. More Russian activity. The Russians were active again last night. I don't as yet know what QSOs have been made but there were lots of reports on the DX cluster. It is suggested that IK5ZPV and OH5UFO made it but I am awaiting confirmation....

  • March

  • 31/3. Big signal from RU6LWZ. It seems as if half of Europe was calling RU6LWZ today. Their signal was received in Italy, Germany, UK and many other places, at distances of almost 3000km. Unfortunately they seem to have had receive problems and no QSOs have been reported. There was a near-miss between IK5ZPV and RU6LWZ who both seem to have copied eachother at different times. SV8QG was also listening and reported good signals from both stations.

  • 29/3. New version of Jason. V0.93 is now released. This version runs at full performance on a P150, should give slight decoding gain over V0.92 and remembers its settings. It is comapatible with V0.92. Check the Downloads page.

  • 29/3. ZL tests. The following ZL LF stations will be transmitting on Saturday evening, 30 March: ZL3VN with 10 second dot-length QRSS on 182.1 kHz, ZL3PN 2 second on/off pulsing on 182.7kHz, ZL3JE 3 second dot length QRSS on 183.5kHz, ZL3VN and ZL3JE intend to transmit from 0630 to 1300 UTC. Reports to the VK reflector or by email to Bob ZL2CA.

  • 26/3. Activity this weekend. Easter holidays are with us again and there should be plenty of activity. Hubert, F6CWA informs me that he will be active again from Nyons on 136.53 on 30/31 March and 1st April. Remember also that RU6LA and UA6LV will be on (see item of 19/3). I should be on from GM. Anyone else going to be out and about?

  • 24/3. ZL6QH reception. It seems that the signals were getting out well again but no records were broken. W1TAG in Massachusetts got a couple of good "Q"s at around 1030utc; W4DEX in North Carolina got a copy at around 0900utc and KB6WFC in California got some too. Nothing so far from Europe. It's amazing that these test transmissions have had 100% success rate so far, well done guys.

  • 22/3. ZL tests this Saturday. The tests are scheduled for dawn to dusk, European time, on 23rd March on the 136kHz band. See here for full details.

  • 19/3. Russian activity on 136. RU6LA and UA6LV are preparing the first Russian DX-pedition on LF, they intend to be QRV during the WPX contest weekend March 30-31, 2002, using a 135 m high antenna tower and 100 Watts output. The QTH is near Taganrog/Russia, the locator is KN97LN. They will try to be QRV in QRSS around 137.700 kHz with 3 second dots. Information from DK8KW.

    I hear that Bulgaria is also now allowed access to the band, so keep listening!

  • 14/3. DSP RX "back end" for W&G meters. The Wandel and Golterman selective level meters have a 10kHz IF output which can fed into a sound card for demodulation. Alberto, I2PHD has written a program to demodulate AM, USB or LSB between 40 and 20,000Hz and it has a phase meter built in. This should be a useful tool, it's only a beta vesion at present. Download it and try it, (updated today, please re-download if you have yesterday's version). Remember to set the soundcard to "line in" not via the mixer.

  • 14/3. Rudolf Hell dies at Age of 100. The inventor of Hellschreiber has died. Read an obituary here (sorry about all the adverts...).

  • 10/3. Weekend report. Excellent daytime conditions have seen good signals from CT1DRP, OM2TW, OK1FIG, IK5ZPV and OH1TN into the UK over the last few days. Petr, OK1FIG, has a new TX capable of 1kW so expect to hear him with an improved signal. Also returning to the band with QRO is G3KAU after a few months absence. Another returnee this week was Ron, G6RO, who has repaired his storm-damaged aerial.

  • 4/3. New arrivals. F6CWA has been active this weekend (JN24MF Nyons ) . Hube tells me he has worked G3AQC and G3KEV so he's getting out well. He has a Ropex so is presently stuck on 136.53 but is awaiting another crystal. His main problem is local noise which he is hoping to do something about. Look out for him at weekends and holidays.

    Also on 136.53 is DK7KO who has been testing his 400m LW at 7m agl. He has been heard in the UK but no QSO yet.

    DL2NDO has appeared on the band from Erlangen. Ralph is using 200W to a 20m wire about 10m high so it's a long shot that we'll hear him in the UK. Walter, DJ2LF, can hear him OK though, he's only 1km away!

  • 4/3. Weekend report. As well as F6CWA, HB9DFQ and OK1DTN were active this weekend. Alan reported that conditions were a little up during the day. Not much G activity again and I was away until Sunday afternoon so missed the new ones.

  • February

  • 28/2. More ZL tests. ZL6QH will be back on 136kHz on 22nd March from 0500-1900 utc. As this is just after the Vernal equinox it will be interesting to see what conditions are like. More info nearer the day.

  • 24/2. MT Hell again. DK8KW has been experimenting with DF6NM's program to generate a multi-tone signal viewable on a Spectrogram. I came across one of his transmissions last week and wanted to join in! We made a QSO this morning. See the Screen shots. Markus has agreed to release the software, it's on the exciting new downloads page!

  • 24/2. Weekend report. The Gs were thin on the ground again this weekend with only about half-a-dozen heard, come on chaps stoke it up! Conditions seemed a bit flat, maybe the night-time DX will improve now? (check the propagation pop-up for G3NYK's latest report). Stations logged around Eu include IK2DED, IK5ZPV, OK1DTN, OZ1KMR and many DLs. F6BWO tells of a new French station, F6CWA, who operates on 136.5, his QTH is 120km South of Lyon so it's a long haul from G!

  • 19/2. Vectorscope project. M0BMU's vectorscope project for displaying phase changes on an oscilloscope is now on the Features page.

  • 18/2. Weekend activity. Daytime conditions seemed good at the weekend with OM2TW, OK1DTN and IK5ZPV all putting good signals into the UK. The first QSO between Hungary and Italy was made when Valerio IK5ZPV worked Gyuri HA6PC. That's the first "first" for ages, congratulations to both.

    M0BMU's QRO PSK08 test transmission on Sunday evening was widely copied so it looks like a viable mode for LF.

  • 16/2. PSK08 is a slower version of PSK31 which is more suitable for weak signal work on LF. It seems to be slightly better than normal speed CW and QSOs between Germany and the UK have been made. Wolf DL4YHF has incorporated the mode into the digimode terminal in the latest version of Spectrum Lab. Find it on the downloads page.

  • 10/2. OH1TN data modes. Reino is keen to have QSOs on Jason 0.92 or PSK31 but he cannot operate in the normal "data" part of the band (137.4 to 137.6) due to QRM. He will be calling and listening around 135.950kHz.

  • 9/2. IK2DED big signal on 136kHz. Giulio was putting out a good signal this morning, he worked G3AQC amongst others. He explains:- This morning I was in my contest station, located in Porto Mantovano, 12 km north of the city of Mantova, the TX is 2 x IRF 640, running about 150 Watts output, feeding a vertical wire 80 meters long, sloping down on a tall tower used here to rebroadcast TV station. The antenna was originally a 2 element sloping dipole for 160, so now the east sloping dipole is short circuit at the feed point, and fed at the base with about a 2 mH coil. There's a picture of the mast here.

  • 5/2. Regular band-condition reports from G3NYK. Alan Melia, G3NYK, has been studying conditions on 136kHz for some time now and is usually able to predict DX "openings" based on solar activity. He has just launched his own very interesting web-site at http://www.alan.melia.btinternet.co.uk and is providing us with regular short "weather forecasts" of 136 conditions. These are available in a mini popup window (click "Propagation Pop-up" on the menu bar on the left) or, if your browser doesn't support popups, click here for a big window.

  • 3/2. Weekend activity. Very little G activity, I suspect due to the bad weather, (only G3OLB, G3AQC, G3KEV and myself logged), but there seemed to be some from around Europe. Good signals were heard here from IK5ZPV again, OM2TW was also heard in G and OE1KM was reported on the DX cluster. Some of the weaker Italian stations were calling fruitlessly on QRSS, around 137.72, and bemoaning the lack of activity in that mode. Some activity was heard from DL and F. I hope next weekend is better, when we've all got our aerials working properly again!

  • 2/2. New simple DDS design. If you're confused by PIC chips and don't like surface-mount devices, try this new DDS design by OK1DX giving full coverage of the 136 band in 10Hz steps. It uses good-old 74 series chips. I built mine on veroboard and it works a treat!

  • 2/2. Conditions update. For those of you who still have LF aerials despite the storms which have battered the UK and Northern Europe recently it seems that trans-Atlantic conditions sre still depressed. No good signals have been copied stateside in the last couple of weeks but daytime conditions have been good around Europe. There is some indication that the night-time conditions may be starting to improve.

  • January

  • 27/1. French DX tests. F6BWO will be sending QRSS10 tests over the next week. He will transmit from 2230 to 2330 on 135.923kHz. Jeff will listen for x-band QSOs on 7025kHz CW and on his own frequnecy after each transmission. There are several Eu stations in the "window" from 135.921 - 135.924 and it is hoped that conditions will improve soon so that some signals are seen across the ocean!

  • 26/1. Big sig from Italy. It looks like daytime conditions are good at the moment. During the week OH1TN was a nice 569 signal at mid-morning and today (Saturday) IK5ZPV put in a 579 signal at times with quite deep QSB. G3NYK tells me that good daytime conditions usually mean poor night-time DX conditions though.

  • 23/1. Search engine moved. The search engine has been moved to the "Help" page. It was making this page slow to load.

  • 19/1. First "Jason" QSO. Wolf DL4YHF, operating from club station DF0WD, worked G3YXM this afternoon. Copy was very good despite Wolf only using 50 Watts. See Screenshot. The first attempted QSO was between Geri DK8KW and G3YXM on Thursday but this was unsuccessful due to noise at Geri's end. Later note, new version of Jason now out. See here.

  • 16/1. Another new mode to try! Alberto I2PHD (creator of Argo) has come up with "Jason" (as in Argonauts). This is based on the work of Steve Olney VK2ZTO and is different from "7FSK" or DFCW in that it decodes the message for you and displays it as text. Read more and download the software.. The tests last night were a great success with my 150W Jason test signal being copied in Italy (by Alberto). One limitation found was that you needed a 300MHz or better PC to decode it. V0.91 addresses that problem by adding a "Slow" mode for slower PCs. Later note; tests now copied in Sweden and Portugal too!

  • 13/1. Weekend activity. Stations logged on 136k today were: G0VXG, G3LCB, G3KEV, G3YXM, G6RO, M0BMU, EI0CF, HB9ASB, F6BWO, DF0WD, DJ1YFK, DK6NI, DK7SU, DK8KW, DK8ND, DL3FDO, OK1DTN, ON7ZO. Not all were copied in the UK but it seems that there were more German stations active than any others. Where are all the Gs?

  • 13/1. First Italian signal detected in VE. It looks as though VE1ZJ got a fragment of IK5ZPVs signal last night. Conditions have been poor recently so there's hope for a full copy soon.

  • 5/1. First OM signal detected in US. Rich OM2TW has been sending 120 second QRSS over the holiday period and VE1ZJ's screen-shot shows the signal. Good effort!

  • 1/1. First G/W cross-band QSO. G3KEV worked W1TAG cross-band from 40m to 136kHz QRSS last night.

On to 2003.---Back to 2001.