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High Frequency (3 MHz - 30MHz): 

A wide variety of propagation modes are useful on the HF bands. The lowest two bands in this range share many daytime characteristics with 160m. The transition between bands primarily useful at night or during the day appears around 10 MHz. Most long-distance contacts are made via F2 layer skip. Above 21 MHz, more exotic propagation, including TE, sporadic E, aurora and meteor scatter, begin to be practical.

3.5-4.0 MHz (80m)

The lowest HF band is similar to 160m in many respects. Daytime absorption is significant, but not quite as extreme as at 1.9 MHz. High-angle signals may penetrate to the E and F layers. Daytime communication range is typically limited to 400 km by ground-wave and skywave propagation. At night, signals are often propagated halfway around the world. As at 1.8 MHz, atmospheric noise is a nuisance, making winter the most attractive for the 80m DXer.

7.0-7.3 MHz (40m)

The popular 40m band has a clearly defined skip during the day. D-layer absorption is not as severe as on the lower band, so short-distance skip via E and F layers is possible. During the day, a typical station can cover a radius of approximately 800 km. Ground-wave propagation is not important. At night, reliable worldwide communication via F2 layer is common on the 40m band. Atmospheric noise is less troublesome than on 160m and 80m, and 40m DX signals are often of sufficient strength to override even high-level summer static. For there reasons, 40m is the lowest-frequency amateur band considered reliable for DX communication in all seasons. Even during the lowest point in the solar cycle, 40m may be open for worldwide DX throughout the night.

10.1-10.15 MHz (30m)

The 30m band is unique because it shares characteristics of both daytime and nighttimebands. D-layer absorption is not a significant factor. Communication up to 3000 km is typical during daytime. and this extends halfway aroung the world via all-darkness paths. The band is generally open via F2 on a 24-hour basis, but during a solar minimum, the MUF on some DX paths may drop below 10MHz at night. Under this conditions 30m adopts the characteristics of the daytime bands at 14 MHz and higher. The 30m band shows the least variation in conditions ober the 11-year  solar cycle, thus making it generally useful for long distance communication anytime.

14.0-14.35 MHz (20m)

The 20m band is traditionally regarded as the amateurs' primary long-haul DX favorite. Regardless of the 11-year solar cycle, 20m can be depended on for at least a few hours of worldwide F2 propagation during the day. During solar maximum periods, 20m will often stay open to distant locations throughout the night. Skip distance is usually appreciable and is always present to some degree. Daytime E-layer propagation may be detected along very short paths. Atmospheric noise is not a serious consideration, even in the summer. Because of its popularity, 20m tend to be very congested during daylight hours.


The contents of this Page (Ham Radio), may derived (in part or all) from many sources, including (but not limited to): The 2000 ARRL Handbook For Radio, QST Magazines, QRZ.Com, QSL.Net and many other reference sites.

If for any reason the contents violate rules or regulation, please E-mail me.