Sunday, March 31, 2019

WW8II on CW at 510 miles was again 519 today at W4DEX.  AB4AM on SSB at 216 miles was S3 to S5 at W4DEX.  A weak SSB signal was heard several times at W4DEX but not good enough identify.  The signal was likely from N3EIO or W3BQG in PA at over 300 miles.  KGØVL reported no copy on a CW transmission from W4DEX.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Solar flux was low and geomagnetic field quiet but propagation wasn't very good today.  Just before 1630UT WW8II on CW was barely detectable at W4DEX.  A second transmission made at approximately 1645 UT was improved but still only about 319 at W4DEX.  WA4LDU also heard WW8II's CW.  Propagation was so poor AB4AM's big signal was barely detectable at WA4LDU and  W4DEX and not heard at WA1AC.  KD4RLD was copying WA4LDU, WA1AC, and W4DEX but only W4DEX was able to copy him.  Everyone noticed fast deep QSB fades taking signal close to the noise level.

Friday, March 29, 2019

Propagation above 40°N appears to have been better than farther south.  A CW QSO was completed between KGØVL and WW8II at 443 miles which haven't happened recently.

KP2AE was on and did copy WA4PGI on CW but no QSO was made. WA4PGI was giving a CW RST to someone yet to be determined.  Showing up after KP2AE and WA4PGI had left the frequency, WA4LDU had a QSO with WA1AC.  Propagation between those two had QSB close to the noise level at times.  

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Another improvement in propagation was noticed today.  WW8II on CW was 519 at W4DEX with very little QSB on both transmissions made.  AB4AM was 57 SSB copy at W4DEX and a QSO was made.  KP2AE reported AB4AM as S9 copy.  WA4PGI averaged S5 copy at both W4DEX and KP2AE with some QSB close to the noise. Even though both KP2AE at 51 miles and W4NUS at 24 miles from W4DEX was S5 to S7 copy at W4DEX deep fades to near the noise was experienced. 

W3BQG was heard by both WW8II and WA4PGI but no QSO was made. 

The east/west 443 mile path between KGØVL and WW8II appears to have been weaker than the 510 mile north/south path from WW8II and W4DEX.  This is a change is what has been experienced recently.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

As expected, more like guessed, propagation was noticeably better today.   At W4DEX today WA4PGI on SSB was S5.  KP2AE was 7 with very little QSB.  WW8II on CW was detected by WA4PGI and W4DEX.  Both WA4PGI and WW8II had SSB QSOs with W3BQG.  KP2AE heard W4BQG for about a second.  The signal popped out of the noise like a meteor ping on VHF.  Brief copy like that has been reported several times over the past 15 months by several stations.  

KGØVL copied WW8II on CW.  However, WW8II did not respond to his call.  KGØVL nor WW8II did not detect a 2 minute CW transmission by W4DEX.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Propagation was slightly better today at less than 200 miles.  Signals still were not strong but much more stable than over the past week.  WA4PGI was good copy at KP2AE, KW4DE and W4DEX.  WA4LDU was good copy at KW4DE, KP2AE and W4DEX.  AB4AM was good copy at WA4LDU and KP2AE at less than 200 miles but barely detectable at W4DEX at 216 miles.  WB4EZ was heard at W4DEX and KW4DE but only Q2 copy at over 200 miles.  

AM4AM reported hearing dashes just prior to 1630z while WW8II was sending CW but at the same time W4DEX was also on CW in QSO with WA4PGI.

KGØVL reported hearing CW from WW8II just prior to 1630z and also somewhat weaker a bit later.  KGØVL did not hear CW from W4DEX on a transmission just after 1700z.

Monday, March 25, 2019

Poor propagation continues.  No CW heard from WW8II running 1400 watts at W4DEX over the 510 mile path.  KGØVL could detect WW8II's signal at 443 miles but had no copy.  AB4AM running high power on SSB was fair copy at KP2AE, 165 miles,  but was barely detected at W4DEX only on a peak at 216 miles.   KP2AE at 51 miles from W4DEX was way below normal at S2 with one fade into the noise.  WB4EZ was only Q2 copy at W4DEX.  This has been the longest period we've seen over the past 15 months that WB4EZ has been either difficult copy or no copy over the 202 mile distance.

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Only four stations on today.   No local reports with the closest being 202 miles between WB4EZ and W4DEX.  WB4EZ was Q5 only about half the time at W4DEX.  There have been only a few days over the past 15 months that the path has been that weak.  Also at no time did we find the path to be weak day after day as it recently has been.   

No signal was not detected between WW8II, KGØVL and W4DEX.

Saturday, March 23, 2019

And again propagation was poor today.  WW8II running 1400 watts CW averaged about 559 at W4DEX for many weeks until recently.  Today no signal was detected during two transmissions.   Also until recently KGØVL and WW8II had daily CW and SSB QSOs.  Today KGØVL did not detect the first CW transmission from WW8II but was able to hear it weak over the 443-mile distance between the two.   

AB4AM at 216 miles from W4DEX was Q5 S1 but no QSO was made.  AB4AM also did not hear CW from WW8II.

WA4PGI called W4DEX on CW and a 174 mile 519 QSO was completed.  AD4HG on SSB was Q3 copy at W4DEX.   

Friday, March 22, 2019

Just another interesting day on 1900 kHz!  The solar flux remains in the moderate range and propagation remains depressed.  Several stations reported higher than normal hash type noise.  Initially, it was thought to be due to solar noise but since not everyone experienced the same the noise likely was either due to dry winds or local noise.  

Noise at W4DEX was higher than normal and local signals were even weaker than the previous several days.  KW4DE at 16 miles is mostly groundwave so that path was still S9.  The next shortest path checked was between W4DEX and KP2AE.  Normally KP2AE is about S7 on the short 51 mile path. Today however with KP2AE running the normal 100 watts and with the increased noise at W4DEX it was mostly a one way QSO.  The signal from WA1AC at 73 miles from W4DEX was also considerable weaker than normal.

Someone on CW was heard by KW4DE and W4DEX but was never identified.  The station was likely WA4PGI who is normally good copy at both stations.

AB4AM was heard well by KP2AE and at times by KW4DE.  AB4AM was not heard by W4DEX or WA1AC.  AB4AM was successful as catching K3LQB for a solid 30 mile path QSO.  

WW8II on CW which is normally heard on the 510 mile path to W4DEX was not heard today.  However, KGØVL did have Q5 copy on WW8II's CW during one transmission.  WW8II did not hear KGØVL so no QSO on that 443 mile path today.  KGØVL did not detect any signal during a 2 minute CW transmission from W4DEX.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Continues minor solar X-ray flares today probably caused the poor propagation today at leas in the lower latitudes.  No signal was detected from AB4AM at W4DEX (216 miles) or KW4DE (230 miles).   However, KP2AE was able to copy his SSB S1at about 160 miles.  KP2AE was weak at both W4DEX and KW4DE and at times faded into the noise.  That's over a short 51 and 60 mile distance.

The east-west more northern latitude 443 mile path was between KGØVL and WW8II initially supported a good CW and SSB contact.  A later attempt wasn't successful.

CW from WW8II was so weak at W4DEX it is questionable if the signal was actually heard. No signal was heard both ways between KGØVL and W4DEX. 

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

A C class solar X-ray flare occurred earlier in the day.  This may have been the reason propagation was even worse today than the previous few days.  AB4AM on SSB was weak but Q5 S1 at W4DEX (216 miles) but much stronger at KP2AE (145 miles) hitting S5.  AB4AM could detect SSB from W4DEX but no signal was detected from KP2AE likely due to KP2AE running 100 watts vs 750 watts at W4DEX.

CW from WW8II was detectable at W4DEX but not copyable.  No signal was detected between KGØVL, WW8II and W4DEX.

WA4PGI was S3 on SSB at W4DEX (175 miles).  WB4EZ at 202 miles from W4DEX was heard but the signal was not useable.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Just as we thought propagation couldn't get any worse it did.  Although last year we did have a few days that conditions were worse than today.

Initially WW8II on CW was not detectable at W4DEX but a bit later a very weak signal was heard.  Even the shortest path of 51 miles was weaker than yesterday.  KP2AE was only S2 but very little QSB was noticed.  WA4PGI at 175 miles was Q5 about half the time with QSB swings.  WB4EZ at 202 miles was barely heard at W4DEX which has happen very few times over the past 15 months.  K4TEG initially was barely detectable at 139 miles but later was S1 at W4DEX.  K4KPT at 150 miles checked in last with a S2 signal at W4DEX.

No signal was detected both ways between KGØVL and W4DEX, 808 miles, with both running CW at about 700 watts.  Very different from the propagation on the same path from the middle of January through the first week in February when propagation supported solid SSB QSO's between the two stations.

Monday, March 18, 2019

Propagation today was very poor compared to what we have recently had.  The earth's geomagnetic field was quiet today but there was several small burst of solar x-ray flux hitting the ionosphere.   But we  have seen much greater x-ray flux days that did not seem to affect propagation.  

WW8II on CW today was initially barely detectable at W4DEX but later was heard at 419.  Still very much down from normal.   After several CW transmission by WW8II his signal was received by KGØVL weak but copyable. 

WW8II detected CW from W4DEX but there was no signal detected at KGØVL.

AB4AM on SSB was weak be Q5 copy at W4DEX (216 miles) and KP2AE but no QSO was made.  WB4EZ at 202 miles from W4DEX was barely detectable on SSB.  Even the shortest paths between KP2AE (51 miles) and W4NUS (24 miles) received at W4DEX was just a few S units above the noise.  On an average day both stations are near S9.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

With the K-index of 5 earlier in the day we found distant signals weak as expected. WW8II on CW was detectable during several transmissions at W4DEX but not copyable. Typically that 510 mile path with WW8II's big signal is much stronger.

The most distant contact we're aware of was 216 miles between AB4AM and W4DEX. The path wasn't that strong and the contact could not have been made without AB4AM's new BOG receive antenna. AB4AM also worked WA4LDU.

WB4EZ at 202 miles was a bit better than recently peaking S3 which is still way below the S6 signal we have seen on that path several times. WB4EZ could hear activity to his north but not good enough to copy an ID.

New on the log was K4KPT in Kingsport, TN. His 28 watt signal was good S2 copy at W4DEX. Also active today was K4DBK, N3EIO and KD4RLD. 

Space Weather Message Code: ALTK05
Serial Number: 1261
Issue Time: 2019 Mar 17 0248 UTC
ALERT: Geomagnetic K-index of 5
Threshold Reached: 2019 Mar 17 0245 UTC
Synoptic Period: 0000-0300 UTC

Saturday, March 16, 2019

We noticed very fast deep QSB fades today on the shortest distance between two stations of 16 miles as well as the most distance at 246 miles.  The solar wind speed was back up to around 450 km/sec.  So far not enough observations have been made to associate the solar wind speed with the variables in propagation we have experienced.  

Present today was AB4AM, KW4DE, WA4LDU, KP2AE, KD4RLD and W4DEX.  AB4AM on SSB was heard by everyone except during deep QSB fades.  WA4LDU and W4DEX was able to override AB4AM receive noise for a quick QSO.  At least one other station was heard but not good enough to identify the call.

Friday, March 15, 2019

The 160 meter daytime propagation test seems to have gained more interest lately.  Unfortunately though propagation wasn't very good today.  Stations that participated today were AB4AM, WW8II, WA4LDU, KGØVL, KP2AE, KD4LDD and AG5SP.  Two QSO were completed, AB4AM with WA4LDU and after several tries WW8II with KGØVL.   KD9LDD reported hearing CW which probably was from from WW8II at 243 miles or KGØVL at 215 miles. AG5SP in Texas is over 1000 miles from our closest regular participant.  Daytime 160M contacts have been reported at that distance but are rare.  We need more activity between those long paths to keep the interest up.  It takes a rare breed to be interested in attempting to catch one of those long distance daytime 160 meter openings.   

Thursday, March 14, 2019

There were many more two way contacts today but overall propagation seems to have been a bit down from yesterday.  WW8II worked W4DEX on CW at 510 miles, WA8DHQ on SSB at 109 miles and W1BKZ at 128.5 miles.  AB4AM on SSB worked WA4LDU, W4DEX and KP2AE.  

KGØLV was detectable on CW at W4DEX but to weak for a QSO.  KGØVL reported the same on a transmission from W4DEX.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Propagation was better today for a change.  Just before 1630 UT WW8II heard a CW test transmission by W4DEX.  WW8II initiated a QSO and a solid 559 510 mile contact was made.  Audio file of WW8II as heard at W4DEX:


Conditions between KGØVL and WW8II was also good.  Initially a 443 mile CW QSO was made.  Reports between the two were so good a mode change to SSB also netted a solid QSO.

Short range propagation was also better in the GA, NC, SC and VA area.  AB4AM on SSB was solid S3 at W4DEX and a QSO was made.  AB4AM also completed a SSB QSO with WA4LDU.  WA4PGI and WA4LDU was S5 at W4DEX.  WB4EZ at 202 miles was just slightly better at W4DEX today averaging S2, peaking S3.  The shortest path between KP2AE and W4DEX with is usually S7 peaked well over S9 on several transmissions.  

Solar X-ray flux was very log and the geomagnetic field was quite.   

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

The band conditions were much more stable today on the less than 200 mile paths.  Good signals averaging about S3 with very little QSB was observed between KW4DE, KP2AE, WA4LDU, WA4PGI and W4DEX.  The  over 200 mile path between WA4LDU and WA4PGI (275 miles) was poor.  

WW8II on CW was copied at about 529 most of the time by W4DEX and KW4DE but deep fades into the noise were noticed. 

The best conditions were between WW8II and KGØVL, 443 miles.  Initially a solid CW contact was made between them and later a Q5 SSB contact was made.  Click on link below to hear WW8II's CW as received by KGØVL.  Sounds just like a local signal!



Monday, March 11, 2019

Again local propagation out to a few hundred miles was good with the usual very noticeable QSB.  Reports between WA1AC, WA4LDU, KP2AE, W4NUS and W4DEX ranged from S5 to S9 during QSB cycles.  AB4AM at over 200 miles was good SSB copy at the above locations but local noise at his location prevented a two way QSO for all but WA4LDU.  WB4EZ at 202 miles from W4DEX was better than yesterday but still below what has been normal.

WW8II on CW at 510 miles initially was 419 at W4DEX but later barely detectable.  KGØVL copied WW8II on CW at over 400 miles but no two way QSO was made.  KGØVL did not detect CW from W4DEX today at 808 miles.  

At the close of the daily session K4TEG in TN checked in with a good S3 signal.  The distance to W4DEX is about 139 miles.  

So far most days that NOAA has issued a Space Weather Alert we have found propagation about the same as it was today. 

Space Weather Message Code: ALTEF3
Serial Number: 2922
Issue Time: 2019 Mar 11 1220 UTC
CONTINUED ALERT: Electron 2MeV Integral Flux exceeded 1000pfu
Continuation of Serial Number: 2921
Begin Time: 2019 Feb 28 1710 UTC
Yesterday Maximum 2MeV Flux: 2091 pfu

Sunday, March 10, 2019

In the GA/NC/VA area propagation was poor today.  AB4AM was barely detectable at W4DEX.  WA4PGI was S4 at best, AD4HG S3, WB4EZ S2 at W4DEX.  All dropped into the noise at times.  WA4PGI noticed another almost instant quick peak while W4DEX was transmitting.  Such peaks have been noticed on multiple paths over the last 14 months of daytime test.

WW8II on CW was 419 copy most of the time at W4DEX.  However KGØVL completed a 559 QSO with WW8II.  Click on the link below for a sample of  KGØVL's reception of WW8II:

WW8II received by KGØVL

KGØVL was barely able to detect a CW transmission by W4DEX.

Space Weather Message Code: ALTEF3
Serial Number: 2921
Issue Time: 2019 Mar 10 1358 UTC
CONTINUED ALERT: Electron 2MeV Integral Flux exceeded 1000pfu
Continuation of Serial Number: 2920
Begin Time: 2019 Feb 28 1710 UTC
Yesterday Maximum 2MeV Flux: 2559 pfu

Saturday, March 9, 2019

Today there was another small solar X-ray flare and the solar wind speed was up.  On today for the test was WA4LDU, WA4FTY both in SC, WW8II in Michigan and KGØVL in Iowa.  The distance between WA4LDU and WA4FTY is only 5.6 miles so propagation at that distance is most likely groundwave.  WA4LDU reported some detection of CW from WW8II a distance of 583 miles.  KGØVL reported partial copy of WW8II's CW transmission at 443 miles.