The next step in my moonbounce activities has been reached: 23cm!
Many years ago I got this beautiful 1.8m full-size dish and it was lying around uselessly. Hey, 1.8m diameter is a bit small for EME, but why not give it a try? 1296 MHz would be nice and at least the big guns should be heard. To make the long story short: After a few setbacks, measurements and optimizations, the time had finally come and on May 26, 2020, the first contact with UA3PTW was complete. Now, after a week there are 32 different stations in the log, 5 continents have been reached and even two nice QSO’s in CW. My expectations were more than exceeded and now it is time to optimize further details.
Actually, I hadn’t expected much when the moon rose on March 30, 2020 and I turned my 2m antenna towards it. The moonrise to the east is difficult from this location, mountains and also man made noise make it difficult to hear weak signals at low elevation.
But Faraday played along and suddenly Rod, ZL3NW (RE66ho), could be heard with his 4 x 12 Element Yagi antennas. What a surprise! Luckily he came back to me immediately because there wasn’t much time until his moonset. And so the QSO was in the log and with 18,390 km also a new ODX on 144 MHz for me.
After several tries at low moon and high degradation Alex, 5B0EME (KM64tv), was worked today on 2m via Moonbounce. Alex is working with 2 x 10 Element Hpol Yagis. Report received -29 dB, sent -26 dB. Cyprus is DXCC # 94 on 144 MHz.
During my trip across Western Australia this January – February 2020 I had the pleasure to meet some Ham-Radio friends I knew from Hf contacts and from the EME Group.
Stuart, VK6MK, and his wife Jennifer live in Australind, a beautiful small town south of Perth. I met Stuart several times on Hf and we spent some nice hours in his beautiful home. Thanks for your kind hospitality folks!
Alex, VK6KCC, is one of the 2m EME gang, living north of Perth. He is member of the NCRG, Northern Corridor Radio Group from Western Australia. This Group is located within Whiteman Park and is home of the Neil Penfold State Amateur Radio Centre (NPSARC) and antenna farm. VK6ANC, one of the club callsigns, is very active on the bands. VK6NC, the other callsign, now appears in most of the big contests. The Group is very well equipped and active from 1.8 MHz to 10 GHz. Thank you Alex for the nice discussions and explaining us your Clubstation!
After a longer absence Carsten HS0ZIL (OK16bq) showed up on 2m EME with a big signal. He runs 4 x 8 El. Yagi and was worked easily for a new DXCC # 93 on 2m on January 11. Hopefully a good start for 2020.
It was a little cold that did not let me sleep. When I took a look at LiveCQ in the middle of the night I saw VP8EME (GD18bh) just calling CQ on 2m EME. The station was switched on quickly and the antenna turned to the moon. After 5 minutes the QSO was in the book. Thanks Mario for DXCC # 91 on 2m!
Just three days later on December 13, Kari OH2BC showed up on 2m from Madeira Island (IM12mm) using the callsign CR3EME. He uses 2x 9 Element Yagi and was received here with -28 dB in the peak. Kari was fighten against the noise produced by thousands of Christmas Lights but luckily he fished out my signal. DXCC # 92 on 144 for me could be celebrated.
The beautiful Zanzibar Island in Tanzania (AF-032 / KI93rv) was the destinationof Alex K2BB, Pavel UU0JR, Serg RT5D, Sasha UT7UV and Oleg US7UX. Under the call sign 5H3UN they were active on the Hf-bands, also using 5H3EME for 6m and 2m Moonbounce. For 2m EME they had two 10 element cross-yagi antennas with elevation, a Javornik II 144-28 transverter with dual channel RX – LNA, Odyssey II SDR transceiver and finally a 1kW solid state amplifier. After along night waiting for a signal at 01:10 UT 5H3EME came out of the noise and after two calls the QSO was in the log – DXCC # 90 on 2m. The goal is approaching …
Next step on the way to the 2m DXCC was the QSO with A21EME in Botswana (KG25wk) this morning October 21, 2019 on 2m via EME. The Team – Lins PA3CMC, John ZS6JON, Chris PA2CHR, Paul ZS6NK, Andrew ZS6AVH, Bernie ZS4TX, Sam HB9COG and Dan HB9CRQ activated 6m up to 10 GHz. The signal peaked up to -21 dB on my single 14 Element Yagi.
Another one in the bag. Well known SSPA-designer Jim, W6PQL, was again active on 2m EME from Pico Island in the Azores (HM58rn). He used a pair of 2m20xp and one of his own designed SSPA’s. His signal was easily copied up to -23 dB here.
Back in August 2016 Lee, WW2DX and a Crew started to activate St. Paul Island (NA-094) on Hf and 2m EME as CY9C. At the second day of the DXpedition unfortunately gale force winds destroyed the antenna array and the 2m activity came to an abrup end.
Now, from July 31 to 08, 2019, CY9C is back on Hf and EME on 6m and 2m. Today I was lucky to work Lee on 2m EME for a new DXCC #87.