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Re: AO 27 and UO 14 congestion for field day

>X-From_: owner-AMSAT-BB@AMSAT.Org  Sun Jun 24 21:25:35 2001
>From: Margaret Leber <maggie@voicenet.com>
>Dunno. But I suspect the folks that were QRMing *us* on the FM LEOs were
>using a bit more than 50 watts. And a high-power station can't "give
>out" QSOs to stations 
>it can't hear, whatever it's EIRP might be; ours wasn't anything
>being genuinely portable as opposed to one of these parade-float trailer
>Our club's traditional FD location is on top of a wooded ridge in a
>state park. The ridge line runs due east and west, with trees many
>hundreds of years old (and thus quite tall) to either side; our view of
>the sky is therefore a slot oriented E-W. It's fantastic for HF. For
>satellites it is clearly suboptimal. :-) 
>With the trees in full leaf and drenched with rain, we copied satellites
>only with great difficulty except when we had clear line-of-sight, which
>lasted only for a very few minutes. We heard both AO-27 and UO-14
>clearly at these times but *never* were able to capture their
>transponders at all, although we copied many other stations jumping all
>over each other. 
>We *were* able to hear our downlink on FO-20 for a minute or two, but
>didn't manage to turn that into a contact; with some practice under
>field conditions (manually pointed Arrow antenna) we might have been
>able to make a contact--with the limited window I kind of doubt it.
>Perhaps ARRL FD credit on the FM LEOs should be given for just
>*recieving* another station; there are clearly many more stations
>attempting to operate than can possibly shoehorn into the available
>I think AO-40 may be the ultimate solution, though: a linear transponder
>with a long hang time. Next year's FD will be interesting.  

Maggie and all:

Well I think most of realize that the FM-Leo's aren't too usable for FD.
For "real" emergency comms I think they would have utility running under a
net control.  The obvious solution for FD is to use a different satellite.
If a suitable alternate was available, then FD contacts might be discounted
on the FM-Leos and only credit for demo's given.  Then there is no points
competition.  The idea of just listening then has merit.  Amsat is on the
right path with only one point per bird.  The linear sats are much more
suited to "normal?" FD operation.  

Next year AO-40 ought to be a winner.  Setting up a mode-LS station for FD
with small portable antennas should work out well.  Of course only to be
attempted by those who have worked out equipment bugs at home.  Maggie, you
will need to find a way thru the trees, though.  {I find that chain saws
work quite well} :-)

Although I didn't participate with my local club this year, one member,
Dale KL7XJ, set up his IC-811 with two M2 Eggbeaters and did well for the
club station AL7LE.  We had a nice chat during the FD picnic and I
suggested that he try RS-12 from home.  So look for him.  He is recently
retired and will have time to play on the sats.  {next I'll work on
introducing him to AO-40}

BTW did anyone hear the slow-scan running on UO-14 during FD...good grief!
PS:  I tried Digipan on HF for the first time during FD;  Next is to try
psk31 on satellite {RS-12, or FO-29?}.  I also downloaded Pskdsp; haven't
tried it yet.  Also have ao40rcv ready for when I cure my 2.4G Rx problems
{looking like a dead Drake}...more later this week.

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