Monday, 15 August 2016

EME2016

This last few weeks have really all been about getting ready for EME2016, later this week.
The International moonbounce Conference is held biannually. The last one was in France and the previous one in Cambridge, UK. This year's Conference is being held near Venice.
As has become usual for me, I am offering a selection of my EME VLNA preamps, both kits and semi assembled  kits. It has been the preparation of these preamps that has been occupying my time. In addition to the VLNA preamps I have been building a number of PGA432 70cm preamps for evaluation by a number of other amateurs as well as taking one or two to EME2016 to be independently measured.
And.....the new Anglian3 transverter boards arrived last week and so I've been busy building up some of these for testing. I'm pleasd to say that they work as well as the Anglian 3 that they replace, and with some added features. Unfortunately I hve not had time to get Anglian 3 kits redy for EME2016, although I will have the first ones on show.
I've also been finishing off my presentation on failures in LNAs (too much RF - they don't like it up 'em)
The nub of the presentation is just how much abuse a HEMT LNA can take before it fails, and what happens along the way! I'm scheduld tobe the second talk. It will be nice to get mine out of the way early on, although as an ex-lecturer I don't mind standing up in front of such a bunch of established academics, enthusiasts and EME  experts.....much!
As well as all these preparations I have been trying out the new digital mode of QRA64. This is in alpha release for testing and will form part of the new release of WSJT-X. Possibly after EME2016. Joe Taylor, K1JT, and Nico Palermo are presenting at the Conference.
My testing has been with a well-known EME op, but on HF. Honestly!
QRA64 is a weak signal mode, well suited to EME, and usable at HF. It answers many of those critisisms of digital, aimed at how some of the computer processing has been considered 'cheating'. Troglodites..........
QRA64 and the new fast mode of MSK144 could quickly supplant some of the existing digital modes like JT65 and FSK441. We will see what happens over the next few years.

Sam



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