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RS-13 follow up...



Greeting to all,

This is a follow up to my RS-13 posting of Jan 26th.  I wanted to test
all three of today's passes  for more possible over the horizon
propagation but I fear that the best (Third pass of the day) was missed. 
The first pass was not much to report in that the beacon was not copyable
until the bird was almost at AOS and the beacon was lost at just -10
degrees.  It hadn't even reached Western Europe before it was totally
gone.  However the next pass was much more fruitful.  It was for me an
almost overhead pass.(80 degrees max.elevation)  The beacon peaked at an
S7 (With no pre-amp.) and continued very strong as LOS was reached.  I
began calling CW CQs as the bird reached Europe.  I kept checking the
beacon and it remained very strong and very little QSB.  When the bird
reached -20 degrees I still had no takers and I was fearful that I wasn't
getting into the bird.  (I'm using an FT-890 single transceiver on Mode
K,so no way monitor my own down link.)  I tuned up into the SSB portion
of  the bandpass and found SM7WSJ a beautiful Q5 S3 calling CQ.  I called
and we exchanged all the necessary info with great copy at both ends.  I
made sure he was actually working RS-13 and it wasn't a 15 m. simplex
QSO.  At the end of this contact the bird was at a
-30 degrees but the beacon was still quite readable.  One last CQ on CW
raised Dan, OK1DIG for our 2nd QSO in as many days.  It was quite
marginal and not as solid as yesterday but we did manage to exchange
greetings and signal reports.  At -40 degrees the bird was totally gone. 
I had a luncheon meeting and when I got home I managed to reach the shack
just as the third pass beacon was fading and gone.  I should have skipped
dessert.  The beacon was still Q5 at -45 degrees but totally gone at -50.
 Perhaps my days off next week will be as gratifying.  Probably not in
that the morning passes will be considerably earlier and the propagation
on both 15 and 10 will not be as optimum as these past two days have
been.  We shall see.

I hope you LEO sat. ops. find this interesting.  If anyone feels I'm
wasting bandwidth please just let me know and I'll go quietly QRT.

73 to all.  Frank, K0BLT
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