In pursuit of Es, TEP, F2-layer and everything else, GM4FVM/GM8JWG has been looking all round the spectrum.
|PSK Reporter showing 40MHz FT8 on 12 March 2023
Amongst other things I have been listening again on the "8 metre band" (not that there is really an 8 metre band in the UK, but anyway). It is VHF you know, my stomping ground.
My 40MHz listening record increased to 3956km today thanks hearing to 4X1TI in KM71. Yes, I really heard him blasting through the speakers on the IC-7100. That is also my second continent heard on 8m.
Is that Es in March? Hardly. Some of it is clearly TEP, but some not. Is that F-2 layer? I have no idea.
OD5ET is yet another country heard on 8m and I await hearing one of the Caribbean stations.
I have also been listening to the 28MHz band...
|PSK Reporter showing 28MHz stations heard at GM8JWG on 12 March 2023
I guess you will have to click on that to enlarge that almost worldwide if you want to see any detail.
GM8JWG? When I listen I often use my old callsign.
I looked those reports up on PSK reporter because I find the FT8 list on MSHV just plain bewildering. At times there were just so many stations listed.
|28MHz FT8 stations heard in 30 seconds at GM8JWG on 12 March 2023
I am so used to working with WSJT-X that I forgot to set the MSHV DFTol to roughly the same value as the RX receive filter. Once I got it set to 1000 +/- 1500hz I was able to decode even more on 28MHz!
(Now listening on 6 bands? How do you do it Jim?)
Here is clue to adding an extra band (or two?)
|USB RTL SDR dongle
At less than £40 from eBay this is hardly likely to outperform my other gear but it certainly works a treat. There was a bit of setting up to do as it needed the right driver to be installed but this is easily available along with the SDR# control software from Airspy. I added VB Cable software to connect the digital audio stream to the MSHV suite to download. I have used VB Cable for years now, since the days of my old Flex 1500 in fact, and it works very well indeed.
|Airspy SDR# control software for RTL SDR dongle.
OK, it might have been brighter if I have set up the RTL SDR for 40MHz where I cannot transmit, and used the IC-7100 for 28MHz where I can transmit, but I will sort that out another day.
So what am I up to? I am well known for following propagation up and down the bands. Usually that is Es on 6m, 4m and 2m, or tropo on 2m, 70cm and 23cm. Well now I am in search of F2-layer propagation from 10m to 8m to (maybe) 6m and maybe beyond that. I am allowed to dream you know.
There is F-layer propagation on 10m. There certainly appears to be on 8m. Has it reached 6m?
Well, you tell me.