Thursday, September 29, 2016

New DX Record on 630 Meters

VE7SL's Marconi-T antenna for 630 meters
(From VE7SL webpage. For more info, visit his page at

Two hams in British Columbia, Canada, and Queensland, Australia, have completed the first ever VE-VK amateur contact on the 630-meter band, setting a new distance record for the band at the same time. The path of some 7000 miles was bridged on September 15 by Steve McDonald, VE7SL, and Roger Crofts, VK4YB, using the JT9 digital mode on 474.300 kHz. It took nearly an hour to complete the necessary information exchange, according to a report in the ARRL Letter.

VK4YB's 630-meter antennas. The one in red on the left
was used to make the contact with VE7SL. See VK4YB's page for more information and illustrations.
(Drawing from VK4YB's page)
It was also reported that VK4YB heard the WI2XBQ experimental beacon in California the day before his two-way contact with VE7SL. Hams in the U.S. do not yet have general access to the 630-meter band, although the FCC has proposed a band there at 472-479 kHz, as well as a VLF band at 135.7-137.8 kHz.