Monday, May 2, 2011

Listening to QRSS signals on 30m

QRSS is basically morse that is sent very slowly. QRSS3, the most common type uses dots that are 3 seconds long and dashes that are 9 seconds long. By using very slow cw, you can reduce the bandwidth and when using a suitable programme on your PC, you can see signals on the screen that you cannot hear with your ear.

The programme that I downloaded was Spectran by I2PHD. All you have to do is to create a folder on your PC for it, download the programme into it, run the programme and put the microphone from your PC next to the loudspeaker of your HF radio.

Set the radio to the CW mode and tune to 10.14000 MHz, the 30m QRSS frequency.

In my own case, I set it to 10.14008 Mhz as my rig is a fraction off frequency. On the programme, select MODE....and then PRESET QRSS3. I adjusted the slider on the bottom to 600 Hz as that is my offset on CW.

If you are in Europe and it's daytime, you should see a signal straight away. The signals often use Frequency Shift Keying and you should see the frequency change by a few Hertz.

It's not a fast mode! You have to take your time to recognise the various call signs. As you can from the screenshots above, the received signals are in white while I added in some additional info in Red and Yellow.

The callsigns F6DHI and LA5GOA can be seen. I have no idea what power F6DHI is using but the info that I found for LA5GOA was "active since 13-2-2011. erp 5-15mW in JO29OI" which is pretty impressive as the receive antenna here is just a doublet 4 metres above ground level.

I also managed to see the signal of PA1SDB. He was using almost the same frequency as F6DHI, perhaps as little as 2-3 Hz higher in frequency. His signal can be seen above as the one hidden behind F6DHI's stronger signal. There was another one at the bottom of the screen that never got strong enough to ID.

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