Saturday, April 30, 2022

50 MHz openings to South Africa start as the Sporadic-E season begins - 29th Apr 2022

On the 28th of April 2022, Chris SP4K in Poland reported that there was an opening on the 50 MHz to South Africa, a distance of almost 9000kms.

Chris writes... "The 2022 6m DX Season is officially open here in KO03. Short Es linked TEP to ZS resulted in two QSOs in the log - ZS6NJ and ZS6AF".

The Trans-Equatorial Propagation (TEP) season tends to peak around the equinox while the Sporadic-E season peaks during the Summer months.

Late April and early May can be a very good time for North-South paths as the two seasons overlap.

Explanation... For stations in Spain, Italy & Greece, they are far enough south to be able to to exploit 50 MHz TEP openings to the south of Africa. Stations further north are too far away for TEP but that changes when the Sporadic-E season starts and there is an opening to the south.

This allows northerly stations to now access the TEP zone further south. This can be seen in the map above. The usual Sporadic-E zone of signals in the 1000-2000km range are shown. For SP4K, there was an opening to the south by Greece and then onto the TEP zone over Africa.

This is the situation for all northerly stations in Europe or the USA and Canada. Late April and early May is the time to beam south and look for those openings to the southern hemisphere.

Log for SP4K...

 Txmtr Rcvr Band Mode Distance Time (UTC)
SP4K ZS6NJ 6m FT8 8909 km 16:35:42
SP4K ZS6OB 6m FT8 8880 km 16:36:14
ZS6AF SP4K 6m FT8 8867 km 16:39:28
SP4K ZS6WN 6m FT8 8678 km 16:39:14


Unknown said...

Recently got a transceiver that can work on the magic band, got a 5 element LFA yagi from Innovantennas. New territory for me but I was wondering: only FT8 on this band? That would be a dissapointment because digital modes isn't my cup of tea :-( 73' Chris, PA0TVI

PE4BAS, Bas said...

Chris, 99% of the DX on 50MHz these days will be found on FT8 and even FT4. No digital modes means no DX. Or at least a lot less DX. There will still be some on CW/SSB. Good luck on the magic band. I'll point my antenna south these days. 73, Bas