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Asunto:[dxcolombia] FW: Topband: Kerguelen 160m data collection project
Fecha:Jueves, 17 de Marzo, 2005  13:21:21 (-0000)
Autor:Jose M. Valdes R. YV5LIX <yv5lix>

Interesante proyecto de propagación en 160 metros que tendrá lugar durante 
la próxima DXPedición a Kerguelan. 
73 José YV5LIX 
-----Original Message----- 
From: Eric Scace K3NA 
Sent: Thursday, March 17, 2005 05:15 
To: Addresses suppressed 
Subject: Topband: Kerguelen 160m data collection project 
Hi everyone -- 
    As some of you know, a special data collection project to help study 
160m propagation was prepared for the 3Y0X trip. 
    The 160m propagation project team has now modified this tool for your 
use during the Kerguelen DXpedition. 
    Please read through the following material, register your station at the 
website, and submit reception reports during the Kerguelen 
160m operation. 
    Please help get the word out, so that an adequate number of reports are 
entered into the database. 
    Thanks for your assistance! 
    -- Eric K3NA 
    -- Brian N9ADG 
    -- Alex VE3NEA 
    -- Walt W5ALT 
1       3Y0X 160m Propagation Project 
This project intends to: 
·       Improve understanding of 160m DX propagation. 
·       Provide more information to DXers attempting to work major 
about current 160m conditions. 
Participants use a website ( to report, as frequently as 
desired, the strength of 160m signals and the best antenna for reception. 
The date/time of any claimed QSO may also be reported. 
The website stores these reports in a permanent database. Real-time maps and 
animated map sequences, updated automatically by the website, show graylines 
and all current reports. 
The database, together with the expedition's 160m log and audio archives, 
will be used for more detailed analysis of openings after the Dxpedition. We 
expect to present the results both in technical publications and in 
presentations at appropriate conferences and hamfests. 
2       Project background 
Rodrigues Island 3B9C 
During the Five Star DX Association’s Rodrigues Island 3B9C DXpedition in 
2004 March, Mike Devereaux G3SED, Don Field G3XTT and Eric Scace K3NA 
experienced many unusual 160m openings to North America. Some of these 
openings were recorded. After the expedition, Eric K3NA examined some of 
these North American openings in more detail. His analysis, first presented 
at the 160m dinner during the Dayton Hamvention in 2004 April, included 
animated sequences of maps showing the grayline (sunset and 
astronomical) and locations of stations worked on a minute-by-minute basis. 
Among the phenomenae illustrated were: 
·       Clusters of small geographic area (“hot spots’) within which many 
consecutive QSOs were made. 
·       Alignment of multiple hot spots in narrow ranges of great circle 
bearing from Rodrigues, sometimes with separations suggesting E-layer hops. 
·       Isolated contacts in locations unlikely to be served by conventional 
great circle routes, implying skewed propagation. 
·       Audio recordings indicative of strong ducting in the E-F trough. 
Anecdotal reports from North American 160m operators included descriptions 
of nights when relatively short periods of very strong signals occurred. 
These enhancements did not necessarily occur at the operator’s local sunset 
However, it was realized that many unusual propagation events may have gone 
unrecorded because (a) no stations in that location were attempting to work 
3B9C (especially later in the course of the month-long expedition); (b) no 
systematic effort was made by operators to log the strength of received 
signals from 3B9C. The lack of data also meant that intriguing hypotheses 
for unusual propagation could only remain speculative. 
Subsequent conversations between 160m operators at Dayton, HamCOM (Arlington 
TX) and W9DXCC (Chicago) during the summer of 2004 suggested that a better 
picture of 160m propagation to a major DXpedition could be developed if 
regular reception reports were collected. 
Peter 1st Island 3Y0X 
The planned 2005 DXpedition to Peter 1st Island included many experienced 
160m operators and a serious full-time effort on the band was expected. As 
one of the 3Y0X operators, Eric K3NA asked for assistance to create a 
website supporting a detailed study of 160m propagation during the 
expedition. The following key contributors stepped forward: 
·       Alex Shovkoplyas VE3NEA, author of the DXAtlas mapping software. 
developed specialized implementations used to generate the maps on the 
·       Brian Moran N9ADG, who created the website software and database. 
·       Walt Fair W5ALT, whose company ComPort Computing provides and 
the server. 
Although 3Y0X did not make it on the air, the website is ready to collect 
data on 160m operations for other DXpeditions.  The Kerguelen operation 
begins shortly (we hope!). 
3       How to participate 
Any 160m operator, including medium-wave SWL DXers, is encouraged to 
participate in the project. Sophisticated antennas are not required! The 
project contains two main parts: 
·       Web site for reporting reception of 3Y0X signals throughout the 
·       Request for audio recordings of 3Y0X signals. 
Let’s discuss the audio recordings first. 
3.1     Audio recordings of 3Y0X 
If possible, please record your reception of the expedition's 160m signals 
whenever the band is open!  We anticipate that some insights to 160 m 
propagation may be revealed by comparing simultaneous recordings made at 
various points around the world. 
After the end of the DXpedition, please mail a CD or DVD with your 
recordings to: 
    Eric Scace K3NA 
    13 Harvard St #3 
    Charlestown MA 02129 USA 
Please use either WAV or MPEG3 format on the CD/DVD. 
You do not need to submit audio recordings in order to participate in the 
web site reception report program. 
3.2     Website Registration 
First, register your participation on the website 
The registration web pages ask for information about you and your station: 
Bring up the home page, and click on "Kerguelen!" on the upper 
left.  On the next screen, click on "Click here to Register". 
·       A registration callsign and password. If you are a SWL operator with 
no callsign, enter your name or some other unique identifier in the callsign 
field. The use of a call/password logon is intended to help reduce erroneous 
data entry. 
Station location and contact information 
·       Your station’s latitude and longitude. Please provide a precise 
location so that your reports can be properly located on the maps. 
·       Your email address, so that we may contact you later if necessary to 
clarify any reports. 
Antenna information 
    The last part of station registration is the description of 160m 
antennas that you use for receiving or transceiving. Give each antenna a 
short name in the NAME field; this will be used to identify the antenna in 
    Your station may have just one antenna for 160m. That’s OK! Please enter 
a description of that antenna. 
    If your station has multiple antennas, or antennas with switachable 
patterns, please follow these guidelines when completing the antenna 
information form. 
·       For omnidirectional antennas such as a vertical or dipole , leave 
DIRECTIONAL checkbox empty. You should add a short technical description; 
e.g., “Gladiator vertical” or “dipole at 25 meters”. 
·       For antenna systems with switchable patterns, such as 4-square 
please enter each pattern as a separate antenna. For example, a 4-square 
with patterns of NE, SE, SW and NW would be described as four antennas: 
“NE 4-sq”, “SE 4-sq”, “SW 4-sq” and “NW 4-sq”. Use the heading fields to 
describe the range of azimuths over which, compared to the other patterns, 
you believe each pattern hears best. For example, enter a start heading for 
350° and end heading of 80° if you think the NE pattern of the 4-square 
hears better than the NW or SE patterns in this azimuth range. Remember to 
check the DIRECTIONAL and FIXED boxes. 
·       Beverage receiving antennas should be individually entered in a 
similar way to the 4-square example above. Describe the azimuth range over 
which you think each beverage hears best, compared to other similar antennas 
at your station. 
·       For rotatable antennas, such as a rotatable receiving loop with 
nulls or a 160m Yagi (!), check the DIRECTIONAL box but uncheck the FIXED 
box. When submitting a report with this antenna, you will be able to enter a 
heading for the report. 
    If you make a mistake, just use the DELETE button to remove the 
erroneous description and enter a new description. 
When finished, click BACK TO MAIN PAGE. You may update your antenna 
description at any time. 
3.3     Viewing maps & submitting reports 
Enter your callsign (or other user name) and password to enter the website’s 
reporting facility. 
You will see buttons below the map.  Make sure the left fields say "Reported 
station - FT2005_X" for the Kerguelen operation.  If it does not, click the 
button "Change station to FT2005_X". 
In the lower right corner you may choose a map projection.  You MUST click 
the "Change Map View" button to put your new choice into effect. 
The choices are: 
    US: shows most of North American. Reception reports during the last 10 
minutes are displayed on the map, along with the current gray line. 
The size of the circle indicates relative signal strength over local noise. 
The maps updates every minute. 
    US-A: a 10-minute animation, with reception reports added at the 
appropriate times and a moving gray line.  Reception reports persist for 
about 10 minutes on the animated maps.  You need some bandwidth to keep up 
with the updates (a new set of maps once per minute). 
    EU, JA, VKZL, World, and Asia:  Non-animated maps like the US map just 
described. The world map is centered on Kerguelen. 
    EU-A, JA-A, VKZL-A, World-A and Asia-A: Animated maps. 
More details on all the maps are described below. 
On the left side of the screen you may enter signal reports as often as you 
wish. For each report: 
·       Choose the antenna which currently provides the best signal. If you 
have a choice of directional antennas or patterns, we can use this 
information to detect skew path conditions. 
·       If you can not hear the DXpedition right now, that’s important 
information! Uncheck the box "Check if station audible" and click the REPORT 
·       If you can hear the DXpedition, then submit a signal strength 
Very important: Enter the signal strength as S-units above the current local 
noise level on the antenna you have selected for this report. For example, 
if the local noise level is S-4 right now, and the DX is S-6, you would 
·       Click the CHECK IF FIRST TIME HEARD box if you have been listening 
a while with no signals heard, and just now the DXpedition’s signal has 
become audible. 
·       Note: We plan to add a JUST WORKED HIM! check box for you to mark at 
the time you successfully complete a QSO. 
When you have submitted your report, a THANK YOU message will appear with a 
summary of the report. After a moment, the thank you message disappears and 
a new, empty report form appears.  You will see your report soon on the 
appropriate maps. 
Your recent reports, along with those from other stations are summarized in 
the bottom left corner. 
3.4     Explanation of map features 
Animated and non-animated maps 
The website provides two families of maps. Animated maps display a 10-minute 
sequence, ending at the current minute, which loops repeatedly on your 
screen. The animation requires loading a Java applet into your computer. The 
sequence updates automatically every few minutes. You may click the REFRESH 
button to update the sequence at any time. To magnify a region of the map, 
click the ZOOM button, place your mouse pointer at the center of the area to 
be zoomed, and left-click. 
The other family of maps display just a single map showing all the report in 
the previous GMT minute. About once a minute this map updates itself 
The world map shows an equi-distant azimuthal (great circle) chart centered 
on the DXpedition. The other choices provide close-ups of specific regions 
where we anticipate a higher density of reports. 
Every map includes a time-stamp in the upper left corner, indicating the GMT 
date and time when the map was created. The gray lines are correct for the 
indicated time. Signal reports may lag the indicated time by 1-2 minutes due 
to various delays in storing and processing reports. For example, your 
report submitted at 10:43:50z may first appear on a map generated at 
10:44:20z or perhaps 10:45:20z. 
Gray lines 
    Each map shows the sunlight and dark sectors of the earth. Within the 
dark sector, the twilight region is bounded by the point of sunrise/sunset 
on the surface of the earth on one side, and the point of astronomical 
sunrise/sunset on the other side. Astronomical sunrise/sunset is located 18° 
behind sunrise/sunset on the surface, and corresponds to the point where the 
sun no longer illuminates the atmosphere; i.e., all ionospheric layers are 
in darkness. 
    Each map displays signal reports as a dot or circle. Larger circles 
correspond to stronger signals, compared to local noise. 
The color of the dot has this meaning: 
·       Green dot: this report was made during the GMT minute indicated by 
time-stamp. Your report made at 0343z will appear green on a map with the 
0343z time-stamp. 
·       Blue dot: this report was made during the 9 minutes preceding the 
    Each map includes reports for the 10-minute period ending at the 
time-stamped moment. If a station submits multiple reports during the 
10-minute window, only the most recent report is displayed. 
    Note 1: We intend to add a “+” mark at locations which report that the 
DXpedition can not be heard. 
    Note 2: We intend to add a distinct color to indicate stations which 
just worked 3Y0X, or worked 3Y0X within the last 9-minutes. 
    Note 3: If time permits, we will use pie-shaped wedges to indicate the 
range of azimuths for the antenna used in the report. 
3.5  Bugs 
    Please report problems to Brian N9ADG via brianmo at yahoo dot com. 
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