Monday, June 14, 2021

18,970km Opening on 50 MHz between the Canary Islands and the east of Australia - 13th June 2021

13th June 2021: Over Back on the 2nd of June, there was a 16,200km opening on the 50 MHz band between the Canary Islands and the north of Australia. On the 13th of June, the opening was to the east coast of Australia, a distance of just under 19,000kms.

These are the FT8 report for VK4HJ from the PSK Reporter website...

Txmtr Rcvr Band Mode Distance Time (UTC)
EA8DBM VK4HJ 6m FT8 18971 km 06:31:14
VK4HJ EA8DBM 6m FT8 18971 km 06:25:59
9H1TX VK4HJ 6m FT8 15950 km 05:56:44
Z37CXY VK4HJ 6m FT8 15268 km 06:09:14
SV2JAO VK4HJ 6m FT8 15235 km 05:14:14
SV9CVY VK4HJ 6m FT8 15006 km 07:01:44
VK4HJ SV9CVY 6m FT8 15006 km 06:26:59

What's amazing about this is that the circumference of the Earth is about 40,000kms and this is almost half the circumference.

If this happened at the peak of the solar cycle then it might be understandable but we are just after the sunspot minimum. 

If it was multi-hop Sporadic-E then we have to believe that there were at least nine Sporadic-E clouds all lined up neatly in a row which I don't believe is feasible. I suspect that the TEP (Trans-Equatorial Propagation) region centred around the Geomagnetic Equator was partially involved.

Here are some of the DX spots from the cluster.

VK4MA 50313 EA8DBM 06:31 13 Jun 21 strong -4 Canary Islands
SV9CVY 50313 VK4HJ 06:43 13 Jun 21 still -12 cqing Australia
SV9CVY 50313 VK4HJ 06:28 13 Jun 21 539 ~ CQ DX VK4HJ QG63 Australia
EA8DBM-@ 50313.5 VK4HJ 06:28 13 Jun 21 FT8 -18dB Australia
9H1TX 50313.5 VK4HJ 06:10 13 Jun 21 JM75FU<ES>QG63 Australia 
SV9CVY 50313 VK4HJ 06:09 13 Jun 21 -2 working EU Australia
SV9CVY 50313 VK4HJ 05:58 13 Jun 21 ur best +1 amazing 73 tnx Australia

New Zealand: This is the first time this Summer that I've seen a signal from New Zealand reach Europe on 50 MHz...

This time, the distance was 17,170kms. Again, there is a path open to Japan, there's a path open to Europe.

PSK Reporter spots.
Txmtr Rcvr Band Mode Distance Time (UTC)
ZL1SG SV9CVY 6m FT8 17173 km 06:29:59
SV9CVY ZL1SG 6m FT8 17173 km 06:28:41

DX-Cluster spots
SV9CVY 50313 ZL1SG 06:30 13 Jun 21 2210 ~ CQ ZL1SG RF64 New Zealand
SV9CVY 50313 ZL1RQ 06:25 13 Jun 21 tnx 73 ur best -13 New Zealand
ZL1SG-@ 50313 SV9CVY 06:30 13 Jun 21 -18 TKS QSO Crete

As can be seen from the cluster spots, the FT8 signals at -13dB and -18dB were buried in the noise and a CW/SSB contact would not have been possible.

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