This long weekend, over at the Secret Nuclear Bunker I wanted to try some QRO operating on 144 MHz. Conditions on HF have been up and down, as the sun is very active right now. Using the 9e LFA on a 12m pump up mast and a low noise amplifier (LNA) and solid state linear amplifier for the weekend. I explored the conditions on 2m
The scam mast was used to provide elevations, and the LNA helped us to overcome the feeder loss. The LNA has a gain of 24dB with a noise figure of 0.4dB. The primary usage is for EME, but it was very effective in allowing me to pull signals from the noise on 144 MHz.
The amplifier was purchased from Linear Amp UK and would provide 1.2KW of power, allowing you to overcome feeder loss or operate at higher powers with the correct experimental permit.
It was happy to run 400w digital modes FT8 without any heating issues, thanks to its robust construction and high power handling capabilities.
The weather was fine, so we operated outdoors in a small portable tent. Without any enhanced propagation I was able to work 600 KM, although some SPe at times enhanced that range to 1300 KM.
My FT8 signal was spotted in Hungary and Italy
IZ8YBS at 1841 KM
IK7UXW at 1821 KM
It was also great to work many stations on 144 MHz, the QSO count was 74 in 11 DXCC, included
Belgium, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Gurnsey, Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Sweden and Wales