Saturday, January 15, 2011

Jan Mayen 2011 - JX7VPA

You can follow the status of planning on

Stan SQ8X is pleased to announce that today he has received an email from The Norwegian Post and Telecommunications Authority (NPT) granting ham radio license – and permission to transmit from Jan Mayen island.
JX7VPA will be a group callsign used during the DXpedition scheduled for July this year.
The timetable as follows:
  • July 2 – the team gathers in Reykjavik, Iceland.
  • July 4 – departing for Jan Mayen with a charter yacht, 2 days on the sea with a chance to sign as /mm.
  • July 6-14 – ON THE AIR.
  • July 14 – tearing the camp down, sailing back to Iceland.
  • July 16 – back in Iceland.
Due to polar summer season at Jan Mayen Island with broad daylight 24/7 the team will not operate on 160-80 meters – those bands will be totally dead at that time. DXpedition will focus on 30-6m and our main modes will be CW and RTTY/PSK, with some SSB if conditions will be good enough to operate as much as we wish to. The team will also check conditions on 40m band, but the band may also be not usable at that time of the year.
The team will have a professional TV crew onboard that will prepare a broadcast documentary about the project and the island. All details as updated operators’ list, QSL route, bandplan and such will be announced soon on a dedicated website (under construction).

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

2010 - ZS1D Piketberg Portable

Dec 17 - 20, 2010.

Our mountain top location for this trip is about 100 miles north of Cape Town.  1800ft elev.

The multi-band vertical is easy to setup and the station is on-air within minutes.  Antenna is based on a design from the ARRL handbook - multi-band design based on a bottom loaded design.

Scanning the 40m band results in a few local QSO's but nothing too exciting.  We easily establish contact with ZS stations about 1000 miles away.  During the afternoon, 20m opens up with some longer distance dx. 
We easily manage a few QSO's with Europe around 14h00Z.

Our Cabin under the clear Milky Way night sky.
During the late afternoon, 20m grayline allows an easy path to EU.  Soon after that the path switches to NA, with both 20m and 40m paths between 17h00Z - 20h00Z.

 706 with Vertical and the view from the shack

Roelof, ZS1XD taking a well-deserved break from all that dx...
 The field kitchen at the nearby camp site.
 View from the shack - looking east towards the reflection of sunset