11m DX conditions January 08′

Welcome to 2008 and the beginning of cycle 24. I hope all our members have had a good start to the new year, and make many contacts in the months to come.

“”On January 4, 2008, a reversed-polarity sunspot appeared—and this signals the start of Solar Cycle 24,” says David Hathaway of the Marshall Space Flight Center.

The sunspot that appeared on January 4th fits both these criteria. It was high latitude (30 degrees N) and magnetically reversed. NOAA named the spot AR10981, or “sunspot 981″ for short.

Sunspot 981 was small–only about as wide as Earth, which counts as small on the grand scale of the sun–and it has already faded away. But its three day appearance on Jan. 4-6 was enough to convince most solar physicists that Solar Cycle 24 is underway.”

Propagation this month was predictably slow, a short opening occurred on UKFM on the 4th where I had a couple of QSO’s into Norwich and surrounding area’s including a contact using only 4w from a Midland 38 with 26TM420 “Rikki” on ch25.

On the 5th some USB activity around 27.555 from divisions: 13,14,16,30,31,35 etc but by late afternoon the band had closed again.

On the 6th short openings to 14,30 divisions. On the 8th 14,1 divisions only. The 9th-11th: Divisions 1,14,30,161,26 all reported with much QSB and very short openings.

The 12th brought some stronger propagation, reports of 1,26,14,30,161. Also 26TM008 “Dave” managed to work 104 and 21 divisions, excellent contacts given the conditions.

Conditions improved again for the 13th and many divisions heard and worked inc: 1,30,26,108,31,329,29,104. The 14th was quieter with more UKFM activity from 26,13 and on SSB 14,47,21,3,4,306 divisions on RX.

On the 15th FM was alive on both 27/81 and CEPT block with signals from 26 division and also 13 division into 26 division. Some strong SSB activity followed in the evening with 26,13,14,15,30,35,54.16,19,1,20,21,161,29,329 reported heard and worked.

The 16th brought reports of 52 division into 26 division. Otherwise a little FM activity but generally very flat band with the exception of 108TM814 “Robin” bagging his first QSO for 08′ with 15DX015 “Marco”.

17th-20th was very quiet, Only 29,30,31,161 divisions being reported on RX.

On the 21st: 13,1,14,30,35,47,19,16,26 divisions coming in for a good couple of hours with fairly stable conditions allowing some great QSO’s.
The 22nd was much quieter 21,104,1 divisions around but very hard to maintain a QSO. The 23rd was similar and had divisions 1,26,27,30,137 heard and worked.

The 24th was more varied with conditions spreading throughout the day. Divisions included: 1,13,14,30,26,31,161,47,21,35,15.

Dead on the 25th but on the 26th our very own 26TM073 “Eddie” RX’d AUSTRALIA 43OT010 calling CQ with a QSY to 27.570.

27th and a lot of 1 div around, also 104,30,14,30,36,163,16,29,31 divisions heard and several of these also worked.

Also on the 27th 163TM088 “Franz” had an expedition up a local hill to work some awesome ground wave and also a couple DX contacts. (see pic below).

From the 27th to the 31st was again very poor with only 161,14,3 divisions on RX. Throughout the whole of the 31st only one station made it through to me here in 108 division, a nice QSO with 13PA001 “Bernard” – 5/8. Otherwise silence.

Franz (163TM088) Portable hill topping with his generator.
Franz portable hilltopping
Portable with the generator

Please contact me with your highlights or pics and be included in next months report.

73s & Good DX for February,