Thursday, March 29, 2018

Weekend Propagation Outlook: 19 meters

Propagation maps are looking bleak between Europe and North America. That said, actual results have been good between about 2200 and 0300+ (I'm not sure about the end time because I haven't seen loggings past this time).

I used the VOA propagation models at The images depicted here all come from that site. Feel free to go to the site and check propagation for your region. For transmission power and mode, I used 100 watts of SSB because that seems like a pretty standard baseline for North American pirates & for at least some of the European pirates who might want to be testing specifically to reach across continents.

For the first image, I used Harrisburg, PA, as the location because it's the closest one to my location and that way no one will feel like I'm giving away their location. Here is 100 watts into a dipole about 30 feet above the ground on 14.1 MHz (essentially the same for either 13900-13950 kHz or 15010-15090 kHz) at 1500 UTC.

As you can see, this time/frequency/power combination could put a very good signal into the West Coast and a decent one into many of the populated areas of Australia and possibly Japan.

Next is 2000 UTC using the same specs:

There's a possibility of South Africa, Spain, British Isles, Sri Lanka, Japan, and southeastern Europe. Of course, most of North America is solid, plus all of north Africa, Central America, Angola, Mexico, the Caribbean, Cuba, and the northern parts of South America, but I never see reports from these areas.

Turning to Europe on 14.1 MHz, I've chosen The Netherlands for my target country. Here's that frequency with the same 100 watts in SSB at 1400 UTC:

Not great for reaching North America, but it looks like a decent signal should be getting into New Zealand and Japan, possibly also into the Mountain Time Zone in North America. Moving the time out to 1600 UTC helps a lot for reception in the North American Southwest, but nowhere else:

From the Netherlands, at least, it looks like 13.9-15 MHz will provide some real opportunities to reach Australia and New Zealand, but only spotty chances to make it to North America.

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