Sunday, 14 September 2014

Balloonfoxhunt 2014 @ PE4BAS home

My daughter and me were following the balloon today. Although there was not much to follow as we were at home and followed mostly via radio, facebook and livestream PI6ATV. The only thing I could hear at first was the beacon with S0-1 and a lot of QSB. After the burst suddenly the signal from the transponder went up from nil to S7 and I could hear a lot of stations. I did some attempts to transmit via the balloons transponder but the distance was to big for my simple setup. However, PE1BVQ Hans living much more south of me did have a lot of succes. I recorded some of his QSOs. Later on I made a contact to the 40m clubstation PI4RCG at the flight control center in Hilversum. My harmonic Anneli insisted to talk on the radio as well, I think she is a little too young to talk to other stations. But just to practise she did some CQ at a self chosen frequency on 20m, no response anyway. I think I have to think about kidsday participation though.
She already got her own radio as you can see in the video...

One last prediction...

Right now I'm following the ballon foxhunt here in the Netherlands. It's a bit too far from my QTH and I can barely hear the signals. Hopefully it get better when the ballon gets higher in the air. I did run a last balloon path prediction. Totally different compared to a couple of days ago.

Update, the final path that the balloon took...

Not bad, differences came from the altitude the balloon was going. It did go to a altitude of 28km.
That's something you can't predict!

Saturday, 13 September 2014

Revival of the 10m band?

I have been looking to the northern sky last evening and at 2 UTC in the morning. Looking at this website as other monitoring sites were out of service probabely due to overload by visitors, Monitoring 2m as well. But no signals and no aurora, at least not visible with the eye. However the polar light was there and people on Terschelling Island made some photos. A photographer from my village claims he made some photos but it is absolutely not shure if it would have been something else.

Because of his almost day by day blogging about WSPR on 10m I read Roger's G3XBM blog . I like 10m a lot but most of the time the band is closed when I have time for the hobby. I thought the CME would totally wipe HF but friday evening I had 2 QSOs on 10m JT65, LU8EX (-13dB, 11550km) and CX8AF (-18, 11550km as well!) both with 5W and the vertical. I would say that 10m propagation slowly is on the way up. So, I decided to leave WSPR running this saturday, hopefully for something special happening when aurora propagation would have come up. Unfortenately stupid Windows decided to update and restart the computer at night. So no WSPR back on line and no spots till morning when I discovered it. I left WSPR running over the day and was not disappointed I even got the 75the DXCC with my WSPR 1W signal as I was spotted by TJ3TS from Cameroon.

I think it is time to quickly rebuild the 10m HB9CV and exchange it for the W2000 VHF/UHF vertical again.