Posts Tagged ‘DXpedition’
Here is video footage of the journey to Antarctic Bouvet Island, made by the 3Y0Z amateur ham radio team. This footage caught a few moments on the deck of M/V Betanzos.
As you can see in the last moments of this footage, the weather conditions contributed to the decision to abort the DXpedition, as it was far too dangerous to continue this expedition.
As reported by ARRL:
“Our captain has decided that it is in the best interest of safety and expediency to proceed directly to Capetown, South Africa, rather than Punta Arenas, Chile. We are now heading north to avoid the possibility of encountering ice. Currently, there is no ice in sight or on radar. In due time, we will head easterly toward Capetown. Our entire team is safe. Most are resting in their bunks and in good spirits. We will keep the amateur radio community and our families informed, as we continue our journey.”
In a huge disappointment for the DX community and the members of the 3Y0Z Bouvet Island team, the DXpedition’s leaders announced at 2000 UTC today (February 3) that a decision had been made to abort the DXpedition and head back to Chile.
“During the last 72 hours, we continued to experience the high winds, low clouds, fog and rough seas that have prevented helicopter operations since our arrival at Bouvet,” said an announcement on the 3Y0Z Bouvet Island website. “No improvement was predicted in the weather forecast for the next 4 days. Then, last night, an issue developed in one of the ship’s engines. This morning, the captain of the vessel declared it unsafe to continue with our project and aborted the DXpedition. We are now on our long voyage back to Punta Arenas. As you might imagine, the team is deeply disappointed, but safe. There is already talk about rescheduling the DXpedition.”
Bouvet Island currently is the third most-wanted DXCC entity, behind Kosovo and North Korea. The 3Y0Z DXpedition, comprised of top operators with considerable DXpedition experience, has been in the planning stages for 2 years and had attracted contributions from clubs and individuals around the world.
A dependency of Norway, Bouvet is a subantarctic island in the South Atlantic. The last Bouvet activation was 3Y0E, during a scientific expedition over the winter of 2007-2008.
Video Author: Nodir Tursun Zade, EY8MM
This copy is used BY PERMISSION from EY8MM, given in writing on 23 February 2018
|230KV lines out back|
|Happy to be back from the vet's|
maybe 2 or 3 "anonymous" postings a week. Now let me clarify what I mean my anonymous......these are advertisers trying to post a comment on my blog but the main idea is to plug their biz with a link! Blogger has been excellent with the ability to discern between the real deal anonymous comment and the...let me take advantage of your blog and plug my biz anonymous comment. Over the last month I have noticed a large increase of anonymous comments (the take advantage type) trying to use my blog. Not sure why this is.....my blog can't be all that popular? I really don't care if they "try" to post their fake comments but what I have noticed is they must be getting smarter in how they word the comment. Blogger is not recognizing it as spam but seeing it as a legit comment. These past couple of weeks I have had to go through my comment section of blogger and delete comment posts that are just plain spam! Has anyone else had this issue? Or do you have suggestions on how to deal with this?
|Mounted on bench|
So lets look at the nitty gritty of the antenna first off it's made by SteppIR who has a GREAT reputation and has been the choice of many DXpeditions. The 20m version extends to 9 feet and when folded up is only 26 inches. The 40m version is 18 feet and reduces to 30 inches. As far as I am concerned both sizes are very manageable for transporting. I am not gong to high light evey detail as there is a link on this post to the SteppIR CrankIR page with limited info but more to come!! This antenna is due to make its purchase date in the spring of this year. I did send an email to SteppIR with some questions about the antenna and Bart was very prompt to get back to me.
My Questions were........
1. I did not notice any radials are there any? (I asked this because for portable ops sometime radials can become a pain especially if you are in a park where the public is.)
Bart's answer was.....
The antenna will be designed to work with a single, elevated, tuned radial (included)
|The 40 to 2m retracted|
I would not advise this while driving but he did make the contact!!
I gave it a go and there was Chris loud and clear!! He was operating split and with my dual receivers in the K3 I was able to hear both sides of the adventure. It was great the band was not at all as busy as with 3B9SP so I gave him a go...and a go......and a go......until in the wink of an eye he was gone just replaced with static. Well that was my Thursday evening of ham radio. I will say I did have a blast and did miss getting on the radio.
My current assignment at Fort Leavenworth has me traveling quite a bit. My intent has been to bring a rig with me and have some casual QSOs while on the road. My success has been mixed. I would mostly attribute this to either a lack of planning on my part or being in a stuck in a hotel room with zero antenna opportunities.
One of the most inspiring ham radio blogs I ever ran across was the 100 Pound Dxpedition. I enjoyed how Scott, NE1RD, covered his adventures of conducting portable operations… documenting what worked and what did not. His last post on that paticular blog was back in 2007, but I still use the site as a reference. Scott’s praise for the Buddipole led me in using the Buddipole during my recent tour in Korea. Another tip from Scott I am going to try out is using a hardside golf bag case to transport my Buddipole to Hawaii.
Now for a rig… I think the Elecraft KX3 would be ideal for a Hawaii trip. With 10 watts output and an internal battery, I can’t think of better rig to take to the beach. But the wait time for the KX3 is still quite a while. I have both an Elecraft KX1 and a Yaesu FT-817ND. The KX1 would be great due to its small size and ease of use. But it is limited to only CW and I would like to do some PSK in addition to CW.
I pulled out my FT-817 and conducted an inventory:
- – West Mountain Radio RIGblaster Plug n Play connects directly to the DIN socket on the back of the rig.
– CAT cable that connects from the RIGblaster to the rig’s ACC socket which enables rig control.
– PowerPole 12v adapter.
– Palm Paddle.
– Elecraft T1 Auto-tuner.
– Nifty manual for the FT-817.
My FT-817 has quite a few of the optional bells and whistles from W4RT:
- – DSP module
– Kranker Knob – probably the most useful of any of the options
– One Board Filter (300 Hz)
– Speech compressor built into the MH-31 handmike
– Why all the options? The FT-817 was the center piece of my 2009 Field Day setup and I was attempting to get the most I could out of the pint-sized rig.
I also splurged on two recent upgrades:
- – Peg Leg tilt stand – I think this will be helpful as one of my significant dislikes of the FT-817 is the small display which is hard to see.
– Magnets for the Palm Paddle – this is critically important as the Palm Paddle by itself is not heavy enough. The magnets allow the Palm Paddles to firmly stick to the top of the FT-817.
For PSK, rig control, and logging I have my Dell Mini netbook. I had not used the netbook in a while, so I started it up to see how it was working. I initally purchased it back in 2009 baselined with Ubuntu and have kept Ubuntu installed on it since then. After booting it up. I updated the distribution to 10.04 LTS and installed fldigi. The RIGblaster easily interfaced with the netbook via a USB connection and the headphone/microphone jacks.
I configured fldigi to work with the RIGblaster to include rig control using Hamlib:
- – Audio: PortAudio using the netbook’s hardware soundcard for both Capture and Playback
– Rig: Hamlib; Device /dev/ttyUSB0; Baud rate 38400; Stopbits 2; PTT via Hamlib command checked
… clicked on the Initialize button and I was good to go.
Setting up the macros on flidigi is pretty straightforward with the default macros only needing slight tweaking for my personal preferemces.
Once I fired everything up all I had to do was switch to 14.070 MHz, switch the mode to DIG, and drop the input level a bit. With the narrow yellow PSK streams cascading down the waterfall, I picked one that was calling CQ and answered. Transmit worked and my home antenna provided a nice low SWR, no need for the tuner. My macros worked and the QSO was concluded successfully. All with 5 watts.
I plugged in the Palm Paddle, switched to 7.115 MHz, listened and heard nothing, then used the paddles to send QRL? a few times. SWR still looked decent. After a few CQ calls, I got an answer followed by a short QSO. Great – both PSK and CW were working FB.
Now the question is: do I want to bring my small Tokyo Hy-Power HL-100B amplifier that will raise the output to 100 watts? If I bring the amp, I will have to bring a power supply and a different tuner. I am thinking I need to be able to use two different configurations:
- (A) Beach and Buddipole: using the barefoot FT-817, running everything on batteries.
(B) Lanai Portable: used from the hotel room, with amp and assoicated power supply.
Now it is time to go through my Buddipole bags and figure out what I need to pack.
Looks like I will be there during the Hawaii QSO Party!
As for my kit from DIY electronic kits the USB 0-500mhz USB power meter kit has been soldered and is all together BUT is seems it has to be calibrated as the output of the rig is not even close to the readings I am getting with the kit. I have emailed the DIY electronics company over and over again but nothing.......seems that was 90.00 down the drain. I am going to keep it up and if I can I want to find a phone number I will then call them and demanding a refund!!! On an up beat note I posted a short time ago about a kit that I ordered and put together call the QRPometer. This kit is a great QRP watt meter and SWR meter but it only goes done to 500mW's..........now for most of you that is just fine but not here at VE3WDM!!! I like to operate now and then at QRPp levels. This means I need a meter that will give me good and reliable wattage readings from about 10mWs up to 100mWs. This was the reason for me ordering the USB 0-500mhz USB power meter it brags of getting down to the low mW levels..........IF YOU CAN GET IT TO WORK AND GET THE DAM TECH SUPPORT TO EMAIL YOU.........take a deep breath......ahhhmmmm.........ok Im back. Talking with the 4 state qrp group (those who produce the QRPometer) I am told the meter can have it's decimal place changed!!! This would give me the QRPp readings I need. This is a project that is now in the works and I will keep the blog readers posted as to it's progress.