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AO-51 ECHO worked for ZL (New Zealand) to VK (Australia) contacts

Hi all,

More happy news from New Zealand.

I'm pleased to say I was able to make contact via AO-51 from Wellington, New
Zealand, to other stations in Australia during the most recent pass at
midnight here local time or 1200z.

I directly worked both VK3FGN and ZL2TWS and clearly heard VK3TI and I think

John, ZL2TWS reports hearing an additional VK7 and another ZL1 station but I
don't have the details. John also worked at least one of the VK stations.

Thanks to the AO-51 team and all the supporters that made this new "toy"

Also as a point to note, the above contacts clearly prove that AO-51 is
useable in the Southern Hemisphere. With some of the early descriptions
about the Mary and Martha antennas and their orientation towards earth only
over the Northern Hemisphere, there had been talk that AO-51 was not going
to be useable in New Zealand.

Unlike my earlier report when I was only using a handheld to listen, this
time I took my Kenwood TS-2000 and car battery outside.

For receive setup, my wife Joanna, ZL2TJB, was holding a 9-element
broomstick yagi in her hand and aiming it into the sky and moving it to get
best signal. And for transmit, I was holding a 4-element 2m yagi, and aiming
it towards the same general area, with the radio set to 25 watts. 	

We had the radio on a small table with wheels out the front of the house by
the footpath (sidewalk) to get a clear view towards the west, and as it was
midnight local time it must have looked rather odd to the person that walked
past just as we were putting out the first call.

Are all hams mad?

Anyway, this was my first ever contact via sats so a really special event
for me, so forgive me for going on about it.

Goodnight. Its now 1:30 am here.


New Zealand
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