The World of LF G3YXM

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.13. Logbook
.14. Topband.

-LF news past....2005.

  • December

    • 24/12. XES T/A on QRSS3. Hartmut Wolf copied WD2XES last night on QRSS3! Hartmut's copyJohn (XES) also had a QSO with WD2XDW on the same evening. It seems like conditions were good as WD2XDW's "staircase" signal was copied by several Eu stations last night (including me...)

    • 19/12. DI2AG crosses the pond. Walter Staubach's 440kHz beacon has been received by AA1A in Marshfield near Boston, FN42PC. A distance of 6075Km. DI2AG was running QRSS60 at 2W ERP on 440.044kHz. Steve W3EEE caught some fragments of the signal too. The beacon is to run overnight for the next few days.

    • 12/12. Fast Wolf QSO. WD2XES and WD2XDW made good use of the higher speed Wolf modes to complete a QSO this morning at 0200. They used Wolf at 20b/s and 40b/s and 5-minute "overs".

    • 5/12. New LF/VLF forum. G0KZZ of the Aerth Group has launched a forum which covers LF, VLF and ULF radio, Cave Radio, Earth Current Comm's, Natural Radio, and includes a section for the discussion of specialist modes too. Join in at: http://www.aerthgroup.org.uk/forum/

    • 3/12. SP0TPAX. Now that's a callsign and a half! It will be used on 136khz this weekend by SQ5BPM to celebrate the 80th anniversary of the first Polish international amateur contact by Tadeusz Heftman who was using the call "TPAX". Marek usually uses QRSS around 137.7kHz.

  • November

    • 20/11. A slow wolf crosses the Atlantic. Hartmut Wolf took a recording of the band on the night of the 18/19th and later put it through the new version of Wolf at the 2.5 symbols rate. Homing in on WD2XES's frequency he got one good decode of the message "WD2XES SLO WOLF". John was running 250W.

    • 13/11. WD2XKO spotted in ZL. ZL4OL got a positive id of 'XKO last night at 0930utc. Full info and screenshot on Dex's website.

    • 13/11. New version of the Wolf GUI. After the great success of DL4YHF's easy to use front end for KK7KA's "Wolf" mode, Wolf (DL4YHF) has included some extra modes for use over longer or shorter paths. You can now select 5 or 2.5 symbols/sec, in addition to the default 10, and also 20 or 40 symbols/sec for good signal conditions. Download it from http://people.freenet.de/dl4yhf/wolf/index.html

    • 10/11. Wolf howls from Oklahoma. Laurence KL1X has been transmitting QRO Wolf tests overnight for the past few days. Although conditions haven't been particularly good his transmissions have been decoded regularly on the East coast and last night by Scott VE7TIL in Vancouver. We're still looking for a trans-Atlantic copy!

  • October

    • 16/10. G3KMP Silent Key. I hear from Bill G0AKY that his good friend Colin G3KMP died earlier this year whilst on holiday in Germany. Although he didn't make all that many QSOs on LF Colin was a keen experimenter and a great guy to chat with about LF.

    • 14/10. Record distance for beacon TIL. VE7TIL's beacon in Vancouver has been detected by Jay Rusgrove in Connecticut, a distance of just over 3,900km. This is pretty good for Scott's "backyard" antenna system. TIL was transmitting his "squiggle" signal which varies slowly in frequency and shows up as a sine wave on Argo. Very distinctive!

    • 6/10. OE activity weekend postponed. More news of the rescheduled date when we have it.

    • 5/10. VA7LF detected in ZL. It seems that Steve & Scott's signal is getting out OK despite poor conditions last night. The Quartz Hill gang got the "7" on QRSS120. (Later note:) On days two and three some signals were received in the opposite direction. The ZL / UA tests with RU6LA (R6L) hit problems too with no transmission from R6L. They try again tonight.

    • 3/10. OE activity weekend. OE5EEP announces that there will be activity from a portable location in rural Austria this Saturday (8th Oct). A good antenna is being erected and they will be on the air from 0700 until the evening using CW and QRSS. Heinz will be joined by OE5ODL, OE5PGL, OE5MW and others. Activity may continue for a few further days if successful.

    • 1/10. VE to ZL attempt. VA7LF will be active from October 1st to 6th from South Pender Is. BC. They will be beaconing and attempting to conduct a trans-Pacific QSO with ZM2E. More info on times/frequencies soon but ZM2E is expected to be on 137.7890/137.7886 kHz DFCW as usual. Latest: VA7LF is on the air with 100ft vertical and radials into the sea. TX power is 900W max and the frequency is 137.7780kHz.

  • September

    • 25/9. SAQ makes it to East coast USA. The latest SAQ transmission (from the historic Alexanderson alternator at Grimeton Sweden) has been received by R.J. Mattson in Highland New York, FN31ar. Jay W1VD also got a copy on both sessions in CT. He has a recording.

    • 3/9. WD2XFE takes to the air. Bob Bicking W9RB has got his part 5 station up and running on 137.73 kHz from Freeport Illinois. He is using a G0MRF TX at 100W into a 31ft vertical top-loaded with a 24ft diameter capacity hat. He is awaiting reports.

  • August

    • 13/8. ON6ND silent key. News comes from Ruddy Sommereyns (ON6UX) that Werner (ON6ND) died on August 3rd aged 68 after a 1 year battle with cancer.
      Ruddy writes: " He was a very good friend, I first met him in 1969. From that time we did a lot of experimenting together especially on 10 GHz and for the last few years on 136 Khz. I could write a book about him... He was always building equipment, antenna's, windmills, pipe-organs, boats, telescopes and so on. He was a man with many, many talents".

    • 8/8. WD2XKO trans-Atlantic. Hartmut Wolff in North Germany received some signals from WD2XKO last night on QRSS. This is Dex's first T/A reception and impressive for less than 200W.

    • 1/8. WD2XKO on-air. Dex's (W4DEX) "Part 5" station in North Carolina has been radiating a beacon signal over the past week which has been received by Jay Rusgrove in Burlington CT, Larry WB3ANQ and Lloyd W3NF in Maryland, and John W1TAG in MA. Not bad for a temporary setup!

  • July

    • 12/7. Rugby full-time. The noise level on the 136kHz band has risen by 10dB or more over central parts of England following the deployment of the Loran C transmitter at Rugby. It now appears to be running all the time giving no respite from the clatter. Even those in the South of England are having problems as loops designed to null out the French Loran station at Lessay leave Rugby un-touched, and they have to contend with twice as many lines as before.

  • June

    • 19/6. SAQ on air July 2nd and 3rd. The 17.2kHz transmission on July 2nd will be at 12:30 UTC when a new visitor centre will be inaugurated. Sunday July 3rd will be an "Alexanderson Day" and transmissions will take place at 08:15, 09:15, 12:15 and 13:15 UTC.

    • 19/6. TM5AST on 136kHz. AstroRadio 2005 from JN18BL was heard on Saturday and Sunday with an excellent signal from their kite-supported antenna. Many QSOs into DL and G have been reported so far.

    • 17/6. Loran test from Rugby. This morning a test of the Loran C transmitter at Rugby Radio was observed by Markus DF6NM. The transmission started at 07:10 and ran until 10:50. It hasn't been heard since. No reports of the effect upon 136kHz reception have yet been received but as the full service is due to commence any day now we won't have to wait long to see what sort of QRM it causes...

  • May

    • 15/5. QRPP test success. John WD2XES did some QRPP tests with the new version of WOLF (DL4YHF's GUI version). John transmitted 10mW, 1mW and 0.1mW (Transmitter Power Output) into his loop which is about 0.3% efficient. Jay W1VD (70 miles from John) and Warren K2ORS (25 miles from John) copied his 10mW and 1mW (30 and 3 microwatt erp) signal. In addition, K2ORS copied John's 100 microwatt (T.P.O.) (0.3 microwatt erp) signal. Warren's Wolf copy can be seen here.

  • April

    • 26/4. Wolf crosses Atlantic on 15 Watts! The easy-to-use version of Wolf proved its worth last night when Alan G3NYK got a good copy of WD2XES which was running only 15W to the loop. There is a de-bugged version on DL4YHF's web-site. If you try it, bear in mind that frequency calibration is very critical, you need to be within 1Hz. John's beacon WD2XES is on 137.441kHz again tonight with 200W.

    • 23/4. Wolf goes GUI. Stewart Nelson's (KK7KA) weak signal mode "Wolf" has long been known as an excellent performer but it was difficult to use having only a console interface which ran in DOS and analysed recorded WAV files. Recently Wolf DL4YHF has written a real-time Windows Graphical User Interface for Wolf, making it accessible to all. So far it has proved its worth on several trans-Atlantic copies, last night WD2XES running 50W was copied by Hartmut Wolff. Download the newest version from Wolf's web-site. (rather a lot of Wolfs in that item!)

    • 11/4. Trace of G3AQC seen in ZL. The first sign of a G signal has been detected by Mike ZL4OL, confirmed by DF6NM who overlaid his grab of Laurie's signal onto Mike's grab to identify it. Screenshot.

    • 9/4. SP0PAPA. Marek SQ5BPM operated the club station SP5ZCC under the special commerative callsign SP0PAPA on 136kHz on Saturday. They only had 3 QSOs due partly to a high noise level and partly due to a lack of pre-publicity (for obvious reasons). Then the aerial started arcing due to rain which curtailed the activity. They hope to be back next weekend under the call SN25ZCC.

    • 9/4. CT1DRP received in Oklahoma. Laurence KL1X/5 had a partial copy of Brian's DFCW signal last night around 0300. The distance is about 7000km.

    • 7/4. More ZL reception. YU7AR was again detected by Bob ZL2CA and also by Mike ZL4OL. Bob also got a hint of RA3YO's signal but nothing of CT1DRP or G3AQC yet.

  • March

    • 27/3. EU to ZL. YU7AR's signals have been detected by ZL2CA at a distance of almost 18,000km. The reception was verified by DF6NM who also had a copy of YU7AR and was able to compare the traces.

    • 21/3. New LF site in Russian. Ed Lesnichy has started a Yahoo group for Russian LF enthusiasts. It's at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/lf_dw ("DW" is "LF" in Russian)
      Ed has also checked the status of several countries not often heard on LF: 4K (Azerbaijan), 4L (Georgia), EK (Armenia), EX (Kyrgyzstan), EY (Tajikistan), LZ (Bulgaria), UN (Kazakhstan) and ER (Moldovia) can only operate with special permits; ES (Estonia) has 1W ERP, EU (Belarus) can use CW at 100W, UR (Ukraine) is awaiting authorisation and YL (Latvia) has 100W Output.

    • 15/3. Icom R75 discontinued. The R75 receiver is a favourite of LF operators (and short wave ones too!) but the design is old now and Icom have ceased manufacture. No doubt it will be replaced by something with lots of menus, and DSP instead of filters? Some dealers still have stocks.

    • 11/3. RU6LA on from Machta 11th/12th. Ed will be at the "DX" site looking for QRSS and CW contacts tonight and tomorrow (Saturday) night. If stations reply to a QRSS CQ in CW, Ed will reply in CW. He will also call in CW around 136.6 after announcing "NW CW" on QRSS at 137.7kHz.

    • 4/3. ZM2E QSO tests. For the next two ZL nights (4 and 5 March) ZM2E at Quartz Hill, near Wellington will be trying for QSOs with VA7LF and RU6LA. The distance between ZL and VE7 is about 11,700 km. At 0715 UTC they will call VA7LF using FSK120 with frequencies 137.7890/137.7886 kHz (0.4 Hz shift). VA7LK will likely transmit from 0830 UTC using FSK120 with frequencies 137.7777/137.7771 kHz (0.4 Hz shift). If there is copy they will try for a QSO. The mutual dark path ends around 1440 UTC with VE7 sunrise. First results showed a copy of ZM2E at VA7LF but no news yet from ZL.

  • February

    • 28/2. WD2XES and WD2XGJ seen in Russia. RU6LA's grabber caught both signals in the early hours of 28th. Distance is almost 8000km.

    • 25/2. LW event in Sweden. The Nordic Radio Society, the Grimeton World Heritage Foundation and AerotechTelub are very pleased to confirm that the NRS/SAQ Longwave Seminar LW 05 will be held from 30 June - 2 July 2005 at Campus Varberg, Sweden. In addition, a tutorial in longwave propagation and technology will be held starting on 29 June. You may also want book the Sunday, 3 July, for participation in the Alexander Day and the rare event of on-the-air operation of SAQ, the Grimeton Alexanderson Alternator transmitter, which was declared a World Heritage in 2004. All the details are on the Grimeton website.

    • 28/2. Part 5 stations copied in Mexico. Laurence KL1X was in XE recently where he copied WD2XFX, WD2XES, WD2XDW and WD2XGJ on his car-mounted e-field aerial. He sent a nice picture of the Mexican sunshine to make us jealous!

    • 20/2. DLs get 1W ERP. Although this has been mooted for some time it has finally appeared in an official document. Get building those amplifiers!

    • 19/2. HF75PZK QRV today on LF. HF75PZK will be QRV today in the late afternoon / evening until about 2000z and then after 2300z, until the last calling station.
      Rules for the PZK Jubilee Award have been amended. To apply for the award, it is now enough to conduct a single QSO on LF (or EME or via satellite) with HF75PZK instead of collecting points as it is on other bands/modes. So if you're interested in a 75-th anniversary Polish Amateur Radio Union award with a "137kHz" sticker, this is a good chance to try.

    • 11/2. Z3 report. Teo, YU7AR, has sent some info and pictures from the Z3 expedition in January. He says that on 14th the wind was strong and they couldn't erect the beverage RX antenna. They did get the TX umbrella antenna up at 20m with 8 top-loading wires, each about 20m long. Some stations were worked in QRSS10 but signals were weak. Next day the 750m beverage was finished and was much better on RX, noise and QRM was low and sigs were strong but activity and propagation deteriorated. They had 26 QSOs and worked 9 countries. The Matrix has been updated.

  • January

    • 30/1. 2300km in day-time! Scott Tilley VE7TIL's beacon was received in Tucson Arizona by Kirk Wines. Scott is currently sending a "sine-wave" frequency modulated signal which is easily recognisable on Argo. The TX produces about 500W and 3A of aerial current in his 30ft high inverted L.
      TIL's sine wave in AZ

    • 27/1. SM6BHZ received in Siberia. Last night RA9MB in MO64rx got a good copy of Gus's QRSS120 transmission.

    • 19/1. SAQ copied in USA. The vintage Alexanderson alternator in Sweden was fired up for a special transmission at 1700utc today. The 17.2kHz CW message was receved by several East coast listeners such as W4DEX and Bill Ashlock.

    • 14/1. Z38AR on air with big signal. Wolf DL4YHF reports them working OK2BVG on QRSS at 1720 utc this evening.

    • 8/1. DI2AG beacon copied in Russia. This experimental beacon is operated by Walter DJ2LF and transmits about 0.5W ERP on 440.044kHz from locator JN59NO. Dmitri RA3YO got this copy at 00:00 this morning. So far it has been copied in G, LA, ON, F, DL and UA3. It's not really LF but I'll certainly take an interest in any future MF experiments.

    • 7/1. FYR Macedonia on 136. From 14th -16th January , there will be a activity from Z3 ( FYR Macedonia). YU7AR (Z38AR) and YU7AV (Z38AV) are to make the trip, with help from locals, Z31MM, Z31GX, Z33F, Z36W and YU7CM from YZ7A (YU7JDE) Club. They will be QRV on 137.730 QRSS and DFCW 3s..10s..30s..60s... and maybe CW on 136.600 KHz. They plan to use aTS950SD RX and a 1KW TX with DDS VFO. The Antenna will be 25m high, maybe umbrella or LW, plus a Beverage for RX.

On to 2006---Back to 2004.