In thinking about the WRTC 2002, the Finns certainly
deserve our thanks for making the playing field as level as
it has ever been by using identical antennas at the same height
over flat terrain within a limited area of Finland. From what
I understand of prior WRTC's, the 2002 edition was a major advance.
However, I've heard of at least one instance of severe
antenna interaction and problems with local power line QRN. Noticing
how poorly some of the excellent teams did in the standings, I cannot
help but believe that there may have been more than one case of
antenna interaction problems at specific sites.
Here are a few thoughts for the 2004 sponsor assuming
someone steps up to the plate. First, repeat the Finns' excellent
idea of identical antennas over flat terrain at the same height within
a limited geographic area, but remove antenna interaction and local
line noise problems from the equation.
How to do this?
1. Locate 50 stations along a remote flat seacoast a set distance
from high tide levels every mile along a 50 mile stretch of isolated
beach. During the summertime, comfort should not be much of a
problem due to temperature. Tents, generators, porta-potties and
coolers could provide what most of us need to survive a 24 hour contest.
We do it all the time in Field Day don't we?
2. Use identical multiband verticals with identical radial systems.
These are simple, inexpensive, easy to erect, and should work very
well near salt water.
3. Use small <1KW generators like the VP8THU/VP8GEO team used...
possibly backed up by UPS in case a referee temporarily forgets to
Something like this should remove the variables of antenna
interaction and local power line noise, and I suspect there are
areas (like National Seashores in the US) that are not too far
removed from civilization for other necessary parts of the WRTC
(administrative meetings, awards dinners, etc.).
Something to think about while WRTC is fresh in our minds and
as clubs think about sponsoring the next WRTC in 2004.
73, Bill W4ZV