Thursday, 8 March 2012

My 1st 6m EME QSO

I am extremely pleased with myself for just having completed my 1st ever EME QSO. The QSO was with Lance W7GJ during my moonset.

The QSO was not easy, since I had terrible wideband pulsing hash noise in the direction of the setting moon. Fortunately with the patience and experience of Lance the QSO was completed. I cannot describe the joy and disbelief when seeing the 1st successful decode of the calls and later the much needed “RO” reply. Signals were pretty much hidden in the noise and were neither visible on the waterfall nor audible at any stage.

This WSJT JT65 is just amazing. Decoded Lance at -27 dB

To think my little signal traveled all the way to the moon was reflected and was copied by someone else some 730,000 km round trip. Simply amazing…..

73, Pierre ZS6A


  1. Hi Pierre.

    Very well done!!! I envy you and can well imagine how you feel. I have also been wanting to try EME but just never get round to it :-(

    Anyway, one day LOL.

    Keep well.


  2. Thanks Glynn,

    I dragged myself out of bed at 4 am looked through the window and saw the full moon peeping through a thin layer of clouds, 20 degrees above the horizon in the west.

    My heart sank when I discovered that when I turned the beam on a heading of 280 deg’s that I had a similar pulsing QRM as the one I have been ranting on about for a while. The entire 6m band was affected and I could not find an interference free spot.

    I was very surprised when the calls appeared on the screen, because I could not see, let alone hear a signal. Well 40 minutes later I managed to complete the QSO.

    Not bad for a tiny pistol VHF station? Antenna - 6M5XHP at 7 metres AGL and 400 watts.

    73, Pierre ZS6A

  3. Well done Pierre, dunno how you manage to get out of bed at that time. As they say, "The early bird catches the worm".

    Geoff ZS6GRL

  4. A great accomplishment Pierre. And that with only a 5 elem beam.
    73, Bas

  5. Pretty amazing, Pierre - congrats!

  6. Wow Pierre,

    I have to agree with Geoff, LOL. 4:00 in the morning!!! I battle with 5:30 :-)

  7. I was always under the impression that EME, Satellites and Meteor Scatter (MS) was the domain of the serious amateurs and not within reach of average “Joe Ham” This is not true…..

    My EME QSO with Lance W6GJ clearly demonstrates that EME contacts are possible using a relatively simple VHF station. QSOs are possible with the “big guns” they have massive antenna arrays and they make up for the gain deficit of the smaller stations.

    I doubt it very much if I will ever get hooked on EME, but I am very pleased that I now have the “T-shirt” This is one of the more memorable moments in my 37 years of amateur radio.

    Getting up so early this morning and seeing the moonset was almost good enough reason, having a successful EME QSO was just the icing on the cake.