Topband: Fwd: Marconi Test and GB3SSS results here at VY2ZM 2 Nov 2006

by way of Bill Tippett <> K1ZM at
Fri Nov 3 18:41:37 EST 2006

Hi Joe and Rick

I read, with interest, the article on your upcoming Marconi test and, as luck
would have it, I happened to be here at VY2ZM as the GB3SSS beacon first came
on the air.

I heard it the first time two nights ago at 04z I think it was - solid copy
at 1960khz and so I decided to start "stalking it" - HI HI.

Today is Friday , 3 November and the A/K is a less than stellar 6 and 3. I am
listening on my 2 x 2 160M xmit array (not on a beverage) - with about 8DB of
forward gain towards 55 degrees true bearing.  My Rx is an FT1000D.

Nevetheless, despite the A/K being less than ideal,  I have some interesting
data to report which I trust you will find useful.  Here are the results of my
listening and transmitting tests of today:

1000z - on the hour exactly - on 1960khz copied GB3SSS  carrier and then ID
sequence and reduced carrier signals (all of them) followed by PSK 31.

1038z - QSO's Clive GM3POI on 1811khz RST 599 both ways

1432z - Heard GM3POI  579 calling me on sked on 1811 - Clive gave me 339 his

1555z - Heard GM3POI 569 calling me on sked on 1827.5 - he could not pull my
signals out of the noise his side

1615z - Heard GB3SSS beacon S7 - solid - first carrier - then CW ID, then
reduced power carriers, finishing with PSK31

1630z - Heard GB3SSS beacon sequence again S5

Please note, there are LONG SLOW QSB fades during the day on this path - and
it is FAR EASIER to traverse the distance involved when one is launching a
signal into the ether into darkness - (as GB3SSS and GM3POI are doing 
coming my
way here on VY2).  On the other hand, I am launching my transmit signals into
broad daylight, straight into the D layer - which acts like a giant SPONGE
attenuating my attempts to get back to GM3POI.  At least that's how I 
what I am seeing today.

Furthermore - the Eastern coast of VO1 is radically closer to the West coast
of G than I am here on Prince Edward Island - so I would have to assume that
with similar Rx capabilities, GB3SSS would be even more reliably received than
I am getting them here to the West. It must be a distance of at least 250
miles I would guess.

I am still monitoring 1960khz as I type this and the next ID will be at
1645z.  I have additional skeds on 1825 with GM3POI coming up at 
1700z and 1800z -
and I suspect Clive is going to start hearing me soon - maybe even at 17z
because I have worked into G as early as 18z on many occasions since 
setting up
shop here on PEI.  G3FPQ is routinely heard here at 18z calling CQ on an
otherwise vacant band, for example.

So, for what it is worth - I would have to say the Marconi MAY INDEED have
heard signals coming out of G at 12z-16z - especially if the A/K were better
than today's numbers.  Clive Whelan has told me that the aurora is 
intense today
- so that is certainly not helping us.  Being on the East coast of VO1 surely
would have increased Marconi's chances of hearing G as well.

So, I am willing to give the old man his due - I think he may well have
achieved this feat - on a day with a quiet sun - and in December which is alot
closer to the Winter solstice than today on 3 November!   Plus it was a solar
minima that year.....the mind wonders.

For sure, we can agree that the man was YEARS ahead of his time in his
thinking this through and by being in the exact spot at the exact 
right time in
order to attempt to bridge the Atlantic in 1901.  Bravo 

Well done.

PS - it is now 1645z and GB3SSS has just ID'd again - Solid copy RST 579/589.
I can only imagine how much louder they must sound in VO1!!


K1ZM at

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