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Aussie dx season update

Posted: 07 Jan 2016 11:16
by Tim Bucknall
Tony Mann posted this

"Hi folks,

There was some Es (at last) this afternoon that brought in Thai analog TV carriers

on 55.25 MHz into Perth. I noted several carriers between 55.24994 and 55.25006 MHz and one on 55.26045. This was 1550-1700 LT. No sign of TV carriers on 62.25 or 48.26 from Thailand. Also noted were low VHF signals on 33.00 fax, 33.374 radar (?, chinese?), 38.9 chinese meteor radar, plus rtty on 29.76, Later at 1840 the Israeli pulser was in well on 32.325.


Tony Mann"

Re: Aussie dx season update

Posted: 23 Jan 2016 13:18
by Tim Bucknall

The current 2015/2016 Es season perhaps could now be termed average, considering that Es season intensity and frequency appears to be on a gradual decline. This is compounded by reduced numbers of low VHF indicators. The southern hemisphere Es season is now largely the domain of garden variety 50 MHz amateur contacts in Australia and New Zealand. For instance, it is common to see multiple Es path lines on the site, but with minimal or no broadcast and utility signals. As Richard and Will have observed, the Sydney FM band is getting jammed out with local and semi-local signals. This leads to a lack of incentive when monitoring for DX. This is why I prefer rural DXpeditions these days to monitoring back at the house. Having a band 2 FM Yagi installed at home is no longer the priority it once was. One wonders how much worse the situation is in parts of the USA where IBOC prevents DX reception on adjacent channels to strong local signals, for example, a local 104.9 MHz signal with 104.7 MHz and 105.1 MHz adjacent channels also blocked. So for every local IBOC signal, potentially five 100 KHz slots are blocked for DX.

New Caledonia was unusually infrequent this season into Sydney. Even normally garden variety single-hop Es from QLD was hardly present. Es to Alice Springs was also rare at 50 MHz. Double-hop Es is only occasionally received from 50 MHz beacons. Band 2 FM via 2Es is only observed by DXers using daily diligent monitoring routines, and high-end gear in advantaged DX locations. Geoff at Numeralla is one example. I suggest that Geoff's new monitoring technique of having an Onkyo tuner scan certain FM channels for a large part of the day, is detecting transient 2Es openings that he would have missed in previous Es seasons. Hence I contend that 2Es at band 2 FM occurs every year somewhere in the southern hemisphere, but mostly goes undetected. Height gain (800 metres above seal level), and Korner 15.11 FM Yagi gain (~ 4 dB additional gain relative to the average FM DX installation), is generally required to detect 2 Es FM under the new propagation Es normal.

In addition to Es DX logs from Sydney DXers, reports from Perth, Brisbane, and Perth are also well down compared to years gone by.

One data-set proxy indication for Es season intensity and frequency is Richard Jary's DX alert group. This started in Dec, 2008 and received 129 alert postings. It peaked in Dec, 2009 with 217 postings. Jan, 2010 also peaked with 84 postings. Since then, it's been on a downtrend. Jan, 2014. Jan, 2015 was the lowest month with 35 reports. Of course Jan, 2016 hasn't finished yet. Dec, 2014 was the lowest month with only 19 postings. Since 2008, the 2014/2015 Es season was the poorest for both Richard's alert group, and ICDX, while 2013/2014 wasn't much better. The 2009/2010 Es season produce the most postings for both DX groups. Fortunately this was also the first Numeralla DXpedition, but our receiving equipment was less efficient.

The ICDX forum has been going since November, 1998 (started by Wenlock Burton). The number of postings indicate that 2001/2002, 2004/2005, 2006/2007, 2007/2008, 2008/2009, and 2009/2010 were the most productive Es seasons. 2007/2008 and 2009/2010 included the most reports since ICDX's inception. The 1998 to 2000 period data is not a reliable indication because many DXers were not using the Internet by then.

The 2009 and 2010 Es seasons were closer to what was experienced in the mid 1990s, yet still not quite as good. The Numeralla logs from the 2009 to 2011 featured Es openings up to 175.25 MHz. Also there were 144 MHz Es openings which are normally characteristic of a good Es season. 2011/2012 was also reasonable with Western Samoa FM via 2Es. But the last four years have been real Hausers for Es at Numeralla.



Re: Aussie dx season update

Posted: 23 Jan 2016 14:03
by John Faulkner, Skegness
Thanks for your posts Tim. Great info re the Anan 100D and phasing.

I really must speak up on this matter of an 'average Australian DX season".

The content of this forwarding, however, needs some careful scrutiny. It seems there a fairly substantial difference between the DX being reported by other Australian DXers, and that which Todd is reporting. Not wishing to set the cat among the pigeons, but Todd's opinion on the state of the Es season down under is very different to other opinions and reports I have been seeing. As I understand it, the antipodes have been enjoying a really great Es season, so please take Todd's comments with a pinch of salt.

Todd's opinions are his own He has a long-standing habit of taking command of any situation and insists that his opinions are right, whereas everybody else's are wrong. This is not helpful for our hobby.

Yes, this is just my opinion, and I hope other people join in with theirs, but the facts do not match up with Todd's ramblings.

Re: Aussie dx season update

Posted: 23 Jan 2016 16:49
by Tim Bucknall
well to be fair its a big continent so its possible others did better away from Sydney
he posted a link showing the post count on the yahoo group to back up his statement about a decline but it wouldn't paste here.

depends how you count
by Todds criteria we had a good season last year (endless Jordan Video on double hop) but I found it mostly unsatisfying until July/Aug/Sept when Mum was recovering from her heart surgery and I couldn't listen anyway but saw that others did well

each to his/her own,
take his findings onboard or don't , no skin off my nose :-)

he's been very helpful to me over a long period regarding stuff that no one in the UK can be bothered with , datawell buoys etc

Re: Aussie dx season update

Posted: 23 Jan 2016 21:22
by John Faulkner, Skegness
Common sense speaks ;)

Last year's Es season was my personal worst and best, depending on how you look at it, but it was a blink and you'll miss it season for most of us to begin with.

As Stuart might say, the clue is in the word "Sporadic". :)

Re: Aussie dx season update

Posted: 27 Jan 2016 11:54
by Tim Bucknall
From Tony Mann, good to see theres still TX's in Asia in case we get any multi-multi hop

"Hi folks,

Yes it's been a poor season over here. It probably wasn't helped by the burst of solar activity

around the solstice, which even produced a visible aurora from Perth. There has been a noticeable lack of Es to the north but it started to improve around 14-16 Jan, at least on low VHF.

The last time we had any Indonesian FM (2Es) was in Dec 2012, but the lack of 2Es to the east

was a bit unexpected. The chE3/A2 analog TV carriers are often good indicators for Indonesian FM.

However they haven't been noted much this season.

On 7 Jan I received seven chE3 TV carriers :

55.249916 (narrow)

55.249926 *

55.249929 *

55.249972 (narrow)

55.249991 * (wide, >2 Hz)

55.250014 *


Those marked with an asterisk were the prominent ones.

The listing for Thai TV shows there are still 7 chE3 txs on air, and I received 6 of them plus Cambodia. Surprsingly there was no sign of the two chE2s on 48.26, but this has happened before, so the propagation did not extend to the far north of Thailand. JG3LEB last received 48.26 on 13 Jan 2016, so 48.26 should have been on the air on 7 Jan.



Re: Aussie dx season update

Posted: 28 Jan 2016 11:42
by Tim Bucknall
Hi Folks,

During this season, the majority of my FM DX has been tropo, though there were a small number of scattered SpE openings. The longest SpE opening occurred on 13/12/2015, when various NSW north Coast stations were received.

Apart from that, the few SpE catches that have been received have been very short lived.

I noticed on the QSO/SWL Real Time Maps that much of the SpE reception that did occur, seemed to often miss Melbourne completely this season. reception was mostly centred further north and occasionally north west.

On the other hand, tropo here has almost been a daily occurrence, which at least allows some DX to come through.

Hopefully, conditions will improve in seasons to come.


Robert (Copeman)"