Amazing Propagation in WPX SSB

DD1MAT and TF3ZA operates SE0X in WPX SSB 2014

DD1MAT and TF3ZA operates SE0X in WPX SSB 2014

A multi operator effort with international operators have become a tradition at SE0X in WPX SSB. This year the team consisted of four nationalities, DD1MAT from Germany, SM0MDG and SM0MLZ from Sweden, TF1ZA from Iceland and W1UE from USA. The team set its target at beating the 2011 SM record in the Multi-Two category, a record set by a previous team effort from SE0X in 2011 (7S0X).

SE0X is a “small station” but with a great location. We have only a fraction of the aluminium compared to some of the local super stations. But at SE0X we have the benefit of being close to the sea, our antennas are surrounded by brackish water. Good propagation is also helpful, we need the stateside runs on higher bands to be able to build competitive scores. Our 5 element OP-DES mono-band Yagi really gets the job done in most situations, but when 10 meter opens big things really gets interesting and almost anything is possible.

This year we invited W1UE Dennis to participate in the team via remote. Dennis already had the necessary hardware, a K3/0 and a Remoterig interface which is the system SE0X uses for remote control of the station. After a little testing we decided the transatlantic connection was good enough, and we scheduled Dennis for several shifts on station one.

SE0X have been remotely controlled in contests for three years, but never done before with an operator physically outside SM. We wanted to see how the bigger latency and logistics with a mixed local and remote team would work out. Dennis logged 876 contacts from his home QTH in Marlborough, Massachusetts. N1MM’s ‘Talk’ feature and a Skype chat was used to communicate between Dennis and the operator on Radio 2 when needed. Dennis was also able to follow the contest by listening in to the other operators working their shifts on the remote controlled K3. Except for some intermittent dropouts, the transatlantic internet connection was reliable and the remote operation part of the contest very successful.

WPX this year will go into the SE0X history book. Propagation was great, higher bands where in excellent shape. 15 meter really dominated the log on Saturday while 10 meter took over and rocked on Sunday. 20 meter was the goto high band for NA runs overnight. Lower bands where not as good this time, probably because most operators where busy on higher bands even during dark hours.

The result of the team effort in WPX SSB 2014 is amazing!  The band breakdown shows that 15 meter was the strongest band overall with a large amount of North American and Asian DX. 10 meter was also very strong ranking number two in contacts but with a bigger share of DX than any other band.

WPX SSB 2014: Continents by Band

Our goal was to beat the 2011 record at 8.410.650. Not only did we beat the record, but we where able to almost double the score. With a claimed score of 16.297.886 points the team left SE0X early Monday morning with a broad smile on their faces.

Thanks to everyone in the log, we couldn’t have done it without you!