Why are you not on the moon?

.....By Tom, EI4DQ

I'm often asked by EME stations around the world if there are any more EI stations active on 144 MHz EME. My answer is NO. But there are several 144 MHz stations that I know of who are capable of being active and to name a few : - my own club station EI7M, EI6GF, EI5HN, EI5FK, EI4AEB, EI7FJ and EI9HW. Sorry if I missed anyone.

At times, I feel very alone making EME skeds on 14.345 MHz, so why not take up this very exciting and ultimate form of DX working? Remember, anyone can work DX on HF, but on VHF its a different story. Sure, you can work thirty plus countries in Europe on VHF via Sporadic-E, aurora, tropo ot meteor scatter but for the rest of the DXCC countries, we need to reflect our signals off some other medium ie. the moon
So, have I got you interested yet?

You may say "I need big power and big aerials". Sure, big power and big aerials = big signal reflected off the moon. Luckily for us, there are many big stations operating around the world who can work say a two yagi station with 100 watts +, I won't say with ease, but then nothing is easy!
Let me tell you of PA0JMV who runs 2 X 17 Element yagis and a PA with 2 X 4CX250B's, 500-600 watts (same PA that I use). He has worked over 300 stations on 144 MHz EME. He has achieved the Worked All Continents (WAC) and Worked ALL States (WAS) on 144 MHz!

How many EI VHF stations have 2 yagi aerial systems and 100 watts?
Need I say anymore?

So for any antenna system, you will have to follow the moon in both AZ (azimuth) and EL (elevation). Not a difficult job for a two yagi system. Real DX on 2 metres is now within your reach. Sure, there is some work involved in getting a station up and running with aerials, framework, PA, preamps, etc. but I never said that it was easy! If you are interested in working DX on VHF, why not consider the ultimate form of communication - EME!

Some amateurs say to me "Tom, it's cheating using a big repeater in the sky to work DX". My answer is "The moon is not a repeater. It's a natural reflecting medium, in a way no different from the E or F layers which reflect HF signals back to earth. The only difference is that the moon is moving relative to the earth and is a long way off ie. there is a signal delay of about 2.5 seconds.

Have I interested anyone?...even just one EI station? I hope so! I also need to work EI off the moon! Have a go and once you are bitten by the EME bug like me, I am sure you will be totally committed. My XYL and neighbours often say that I should be committed...try explaining to them why you keep pointing your aerials at the moon!! So, come on, take the cobwebs off those aerials and start firing some RF into space. If anyone needs any information, I will be happy to help.

Here are some of the stations that can work one and two yagi stations without too much problems : W5UN, VE7BQH, K5GW, HB9CRQ, SM5FRH, I2FAK, LA8YB, SM5BSZ, DL8DAT, KB8RQ, SM5MIX, K2GAL, W3ZD, VE3ONT, AF9Y, SM7BAC, K9MRI, SM2CEW, WB5LBT, K1MNS, N1BUG. There are many more in lots of DXCC countries. I hope that someday soon I will hea another EI signal being reflected off the moon instead of my own!

The following stations were worked during the past three months by EI4DQ on 144 MHz EME.

EI Firsts -
JX7DFA in IQ50OV (4 X 17 El, 1 KW) on sked.
SV1BTR in KM17VX (4 X 17 El, 1 KW) on sked.

New stations Worked :
W2CRS in DM78 (4 Yagi, 1.5 KW) Sked.
VE3ONT in FN05XW (46m dish). Random.
W0RWH in EM39 (6 X 16 El, 1.5 KW). Sked.
WA1JXN in DM27UB (4 X Yagi, 1.5 KW). Random.
K7CA in DM26JE (8 X Yagi, 2 KW). Random.
N6OC in CM98TM (4 X Yagi, 1.5 KW). Sked.
UT5ER in KN78ER (4 X 17 EL, 1KW). Sked.
I1KTC in JN45HK (4 X 17 EL, 1 KW). Sked.
SM5DCX in JO89OI (4 X 17 EL, 1.5 KW). Random.
SK7CA (4 X Yagi, 1 KW). Random.
OE5JFL in JN68 (6 X Yagi, 1.5 KW). Random.
DL2RSX in JO62SH (8 X 7 EL, 700 W). Sked.
S51WV (1.5 KW). Random.
EA3DXU in JN11BK (2 X Yagi, 1.5 KW). Sked.

The following run of the mill stuff was worked again : KB8RQ, VE7BQH, K5GW, SM2CW, HB9CRQ, WA3HMK, SM5FRH, DL8DAT, LA8YB, I2FAK, SM5MIX, W5UN, DL3BWW, S57TW, SM5BSZ, W4ZD, EA2LU, I2JUX.

This article was first printed in the March 1995 edition of the IRTS Newsletter. Tom, EI4DQ, is very active from IO51 square on 144 MHz. As of September 2000, Tom has worked 62 DXCC countries and 28 US States on 144 MHz.......de EI7GL

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