SOTA Fun On Microwave

During ‘On-Air’ chats, members of WoSARS often hear me describe some of the fun that can be had on microwave frequencies; especially for myself 13cms (2.3/2.4GHz) whilst out Activating a SOTA summit.

These escapades evolved from the creation of the GM13 GROUP of likeminded amateurs in 2017.

CLICK – For Further Information

Following the successful launch and operation of OSCAR 100 in 2018/19; this has opened up the opportunity to predictably work distant stations around Europe, Asia, Africa and even South America. Using the Satellite’s 13cms UP and 3cms (10GHz)  DOWN translator; some of our hardy band of SOTA-microeers have put together kit to access this facility.

GM/SS-037 Hart Fell – G(M)4VFL- Microwave Kit (19/05/21) [PIC – G4VFL]

Andrew’s GM/SS-037 – LOG

Andrew G4VFL was an early adopter of this challenge (see WoSARS Web March 2020 Article – HERE ) along with his ‘partner-in-crime’ Nick G0HIK; they have been progressively ‘knockin’ off summits in LD (Lake  District) and SS (Southern Scotland).

G/LD-024 Pike O Blisco – Nick G0HIK Operating (19/05/21) [PIC – G0HIK]
Now not having quite the enthusiasm of the ‘twosomes’ as to lugging dishes up summits, I do however benefit from potential Summit-to-Summit’s S2S’s, utilising my 8 ele Bow-Tie and SG transverter (2W out) and the gain of the dishes at the other end.

GM/SS-142 Scawld Law – GM4COX’s 8 El Bow-Tie (19/05/21) [PIC – GM4COX]
Popping down to just below the 2.4GHz UP Oscar frequency (2399.950MHz), it is possible to work Point-to-Point (S2S) utilising the high gain of the dishes – with the majority of the contacts being made on FM (of course falling back on SSB/CW on marginal paths).

GM/SS-100 Croft Head – GM4COX Bow-Tie on Walking Pole (19/05/21) – see end of this Post for design information [PIC – GM4COX]
And Wednesday 19th (May) this week, saw us all heading out on a predetermined series of Activations; an LD for Nick (and Chris M0KPW), and SS’s for Andrew and myself.

Predicted Path Profile – G/LD-024 to GM/SS-037 [PIC – G4VFL – CLICK to View]
Path Routes – G/LD-024 to GM/SS-037,100, 142 [PIC – GM4COX – CLICK to View]
So why not join us. Just bring along your kitchen microwave to a suitable top – you never know who you’ll work. 🙂

And I’ll leave the last word to Nick:

“……… Hi Guys,

Thanks for the contacts today, it was staggering how strong you both were. I think GM/SS-037 was 110km and GM/SS-142 was 99km. Sorry we could not stay around for your 2nd one Jack …………..”
73
Jack(;>J
EDIT: 10/06/21 – The design for the 8el Bow-Tie has been added to the GM13 Site. If you would like a copy please email gm4cox@gmail.com (file size 4MB)

Cooperative Effort to Resolve Potential 70-Centimetre Interference Issue (US)

The FCC, and the US Department of Defense are cooperating in an effort to eliminate the possibility of amateur radio interference on 70 centimetres to critical systems at White Sands Missile Range (WSMR) in New Mexico. The Defense Department’s Regional Spectrum Coordinator contacted the FCC in March, seeking information on whom to contact regarding detected amateur transmissions it believed could pose a threat to a critical WSMR system operating on 70 centimetres. The FCC, in turn, asked ARRL to be involved in the discussion and any necessary remedial efforts. It is to be noted that the Amateur Radio Service is a secondary service on the band…………READ MORE  .

German Radio Hams Tackling RF Noise Pollution

DARC reports 35 Electrical Noise Area Monitoring Systems (ENAMS) have been delivered and another 20 locations are sought as part of the effort to monitor the interference from human-made noise on the HF bands

ENAMS is based on nationwide installed measuring stations that work as a network. With their help, the DARC can make scientifically reliable statements about interference levels on the frequencies. As is well known, the interference has increased in recent years, as various consumer devices drive up the noise level.

The ENAMS project was funded by the DARC Membership Pro in 2018.

ENAMS – https://www.darc.de/der-club/referate/emv/enams/

The Bath Based Distance Learning – Courses for March to June

 

 

The Bath Based Distance Learning team helped nearly 800 students to pass the Advanced exam under the old syllabus. After reworking their training material, the team are now planning their first course for the Full level exam syllabus.

The course will run from March to June this year. Students will receive weekly work packages via a virtual classroom and will have access to weekly online tutorials.

There will be no charge for the training, but applicants will need to work through a pre-course classroom and quiz to be eligible for a place. The deadline for course applications is Wednesday the 17th of February. To request full details and an application form, please e-mail Steve, G0FUW via g0fuw@tiscali.co.uk.

60 Years ‘Young’ for GB3VHF

GB3VHF & GB3UHF – Click For More Info

This December (2020) is the 60th Anniversary  of a well ‘Kent’ beacon in Kent.

As an enthusiastic VHF dx-er in my early years in amateur radio, GB3VHF was one of the primary beacons to monitor in the UK. Living with my parents in Baillieston (E Glasgow or part of Lanarkshire in the early 70’s) my 5 el homebrew quad (replaced later with a pair of J-Beam 6 el Quads) was invariably pointing south – monitoring VHF or slightly to the west GB3CTC (Cornwall – long gone!).

Along with tropo enhancement (in the case of VHF & CTC) and other propagation mechanisms, auroral monitoring was carried out with the assistance of GB3LER (Lerwick, Shetlands – again long gone.)

Cheers

Jack(;>J

Students Marine Buoy Actively transmitting on 20m WSPR

By Colin Butler of https://www.icqpodcast.com/

Phil Karn KA9Q, Randy Standke KQ6RS and students at the Mount Carmel High School Amateur Radio Club have constructed and deployed an amateur radio marine buoy, callsign KQ6RS, transmitting 14.0956 MHz USB WSPR. About 700 km off the coast of southern California, the buoy is transmitting WSPR on 20m using the callsign KQ6RS and is being received all over the US and into Canada and Brazil.

The electronics is the 20m WSPR version of the WB8ELK “pico tracker” that has been flown quite a few times (including by us) on long-duration balloons. We removed the solar panels and substituted 21 ordinary alkaline D-cells wired to supply 4.5V. We estimate the battery lifetime will be 6 months.

The basic design was inspired by Bob, WB4APR, at the US Naval Academy. Physically, the buoy is just a 5′ section of 4″ PVC pipe, ballasted at one end to float vertically in the water. The top is closed by a sewer pressure test plug I found at Home Depot; it has a bolt in the centre that acts as a convenient feed-through and mounting point for the antenna, a stainless steel CB whip with a matching network designed, tested and carefully tuned by Randy. We use the sea as a counterpoise, but to avoid direct metal/seawater contact we lined the inside of the pipe with copper tape to form a capacitive connection. We probably spent too much time on this; Randy even modelled the electrical fields in the seawater with a professional RF analysis package.

Checkout the Bouy’s Latest – HERE .