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Re: [TenTec] New and Improved Terminology (NVIS origins)

To: "Discussion of Ten-Tec Equipment" <tentec@contesting.com>
Subject: Re: [TenTec] New and Improved Terminology (NVIS origins)
From: "CSM\(r\) Gary Huber" <glhuber@msn.com>
Reply-to: Discussion of Ten-Tec Equipment <tentec@contesting.com>
Date: Wed, 5 Jan 2011 17:37:21 -0600
List-post: <tentec@contesting.com">mailto:tentec@contesting.com>
I am NOT taking sides on this thread, but reporting my twenty five year 
experience with NVIS and vertical antennas at my location.

My conditions are a rural subdivision one acre lot, with several feet of 
glacial moraine black soil over water bearing clay at 3 to 5 feet. The NVIS 
antenna is an all-band doublet some 130 feet overall in a inverted VEE 
configuration, apex at 12' fed with 450 Ohm window line. The vertical is an 
old Butternut HV-2 (80-40) top loaded with four 12 foot wire umbrella to 
cord guys. The 160m base loading kit is usually in place. The vertical is 
mounted on a 12 foot mast which was was "water hose driven" 10 feet into the 
ground.  Twenty four radials are made from surplus telephone central office 
jumper wire (# 20 -# 22 ?), each approximately 65 feet in length, laid on 
top of close cut grass over the septic leach field. The feed line is direct 
burial RG-8 laid on the ground.

The NVIS performs as expected out to about 500 miles. The vertical has 
performed better than expected for DX, consistently getting through on 
gray-line, and breaking pile-ups. Local DXers returned from DX-peditions in 
report the signals from my vertical is usually stronger than those from 
stations in the region.

I do not use low dipoles other than the NVIS because of my focus on HF DX. 
I do have a sloper but find the vertical produces a stronger signal for DX. 
I have used a low wire Beverage style RX antenna with excellent results.

73 es DX,

Gary - AB9M

-----Original Message----- 
From: Steve Hunt
Sent: Wednesday, January 05, 2011 4:38 PM
To: Discussion of Ten-Tec Equipment
Subject: Re: [TenTec] New and Improved Terminology (NVIS origins)

There are two distinct and different issues here. Take a look at how the
ARRL Antenna Book tackles them quite separately.

1. Antenna efficiency: directly affected by the ground conductivity in
the Reactive Near Field. This is the parameter we are usually improving
by laying down a good ground radial system

2. Elevation angle pattern: determined by soil characteristics in the
Far Field where ground reflections are taking place. Do some simple
geometry and you'll see that at really low elevation angles - 5 degrees
say - the ground reflections from an 80m quarter-wave vertical will
extend out to at least 750ft from the base of the vertical. A typical
ground radial system will do nothing about the conductivity there.

You can check this using EZNECs ability to have two different ground
media. Set up Media 1 as salt water extending for about 50ft around the
vertical, and Media 2 as rocky soil beyond. Look at the elevation
patterns - they will be those which pertain to poor ground. Now
gradually extend Media 1 outwards until you get the elevation pattern to
match that over salt water - that will tell you how far out the
reflections are taking place and how extensive your radial system would
need to be.

Please note - I'm not saying a good ground system doesn't help. I'm
saying that the usual ground radial system predominantly affects antenna
efficiency and not elevation pattern.

Please also note that nothing I have said conflicts with the Exam
Question answers.

Steve G3TXQ

On 05/01/2011 21:44, Richards wrote:
> Er... ah...   No joke.   Do you doubt the proposition that a
> good ground plane lowers radiation take off angle?  If so,
> I would be curious as to your reasons.   (Seriously, and with
> no intention to flame or cause an argument, as I have
> made quite an investment in time and resources in vertical
> developing a reasonably decent vertical antenna system
> for my small, suburban back yard.   Any info would be
> greatly appreciated. )
> FYI ---
> ------ Extra Class Exam Questions of interest -----
> Question E9A12  - and the answer is that the efficiency
> of a quarter wave grounded vertical antenna can be improved by
> installing a good radial system.
> Question E9A13 - answer is - soil conductivity is the most important
> factor in determining ground losses for a ground-mounted vertical
> antenna operating in the 3-30 MHz range.
> Question E9C13 - answer is - When a vertically polarized antenna
> is mounted over seawater versus rocky ground, the far-field
> elevation pattern low-angle radiation increases.
> Question E9C17 - answer - The main effect of placing a vertical
> antenna over an imperfect ground is that it reduces low-angle
> radiation.
> Also, on the audio study guide, Gordo makes some stray comments
> about using 3 inch copper strap for radials on his roof, and
> mentions improving the ground field increases low angle
> radiation  - he goes on to say it does not increase signal strength,
> of course, but only that it increases the amount of signal that
> has low take off angle.
> This information is consistent with all that I have read on verticals
> in the ARRL Antenna Handbook, and I did LOTS of research before
> installing a large vertical monopole in the back yard.
> A huge ground pane does lower take off angle (as NEC modeling
> shows) and also improves antenna efficiency -- I stopped at 65 radials
> but I wish had installed even more just to be sure.    Also, my back yard
> soil is very conductive and remains moist even through the summer, so
> the soil, itself, helps me considerably.   Rob Sherwood and I exchanged
> some nice email at the time I was doing this homework, and I believe
> he lives over a more dry, rocky soil, and that is much harder to work
> over.   I also corresponded with the infamous  Rudy Severns N6LF
> and his findings are consistent with this conclusion.    NEC modeling
> produces consistent results.
> N'est ce pas?       Happy trails OM.
> ===============  JHR  ============================
> I had
> On 1/5/2011 1:01 PM, Steve Hunt wrote:
>> I presume the "wink" indicates that is a joke !
>> The only thing that would improve the elevation pattern would be
>> improved ground conditions in the Fresnel Zone where the ground
>> reflections are taking place. That would take some awfully long radials
>> - certainly well beyond my property boundary - and an awful lot of them
>> to achieve a copper density that would affect the conductivity so far 
>> out.
>> 73,
>> Steve G3TXQ
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