Sunday, November 20, 2016

GB3RAL on 28 MHz via Meteor Scatter

On Friday the 18th of November, I had the rig turned to 28.2150 MHz, the frequency of the GB3RAL 10 metre beacon in the UK.

I was using Spectrum Lab on the PC with the microphone resting on top of the HF easy way to monitor a frequency while working away on something else. If there is anything there buried in the noise, it will usually show up on the screen.

I've listened to this back in 2008 and found it hard to get a positive ID. It seemed to be just a carrier without any CW.

This time around, I got 'AL' on cw within about 20 minutes so I knew I was hearing it. There were plenty of pings over the space of an hour and then at about 10:28 UTC, I got this fine 4 minute burst...

Right hand side shows the audio freq in Hz.

The tone was easy to hear at times as it transmitted "GB3RAL IO91IN". It certainly wasn't a huge signal...maybe 419 at best but clear all the same.

I'd imagine it would have been really easy to make a contact on a digital mode like JT65.

It was only afterwards that I noticed that the Leonid meteor shower peaks on the 18th of November so perhaps it was due to one of those.

On a positive note, it's good that the new 10 metre vertical seems to be working well.

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