A very fascinating propagation mode is meteor scatter, MS, where the signals are bounced on the ionized trail of a meteor burning when entering the atmosphere of the earth. Every day thousands of small particles fall down to the earth from the outer space. Some of them will make the travel, but many of them will burn and leave a trail which can/will reflect the radio waves. During a number of occasions larger groups of meteors, showers, hit our planet and these can be predicted as they return at the same date every year. During the showers it is possible to make QSO's on the 28-432MHz amateur bands. On 6 meters the reflecting trails can be quite long allowing short CW and SSB QSO's. Digital modes like JT6M or MSK144 will, however, allow you to make use also of the very short reflections.
Ingemar has during his frequent car travels in the northern
parts of the Nordic region (SM, LA, OH, JW and TF) handed out
rare uninhabited squares to many lucky ops including myself.
Without the use of MS this would not have been possible.
In order to maximize the chances to complete a QSO a special traffic method has been developed. Please read it before trying your first MS QSO and you will find it very easy to succeed. If you are not sure on how to proceed check in on the ON4KST cluster and you will find a lot of helping hands.
On 6m 50.230 is the center of the JT6M activity and 50.280 for MSK144. Please follow my advice for the benefit of us all. Start by reading THIS!
If you call CQ you can select one of three methods:
- Select a free frequency away from 50.230/50.280 and announce on the cluster that you will use the selected frequency and which period you will transmit
- Call CQ on 50.230/50.280 using the following type of information "CQ SM7FJE 236/286". This means that I expect people to call me on 50.236/286, so that is where I will be listening. As soon as I hear a caller I will stop transmitting on 50.230/50.280! If the info received on 236/286 does not identify the caller I will transmit "QRZ SM7FJE" on 236/286 indicating that I know somebody is calling me. Then follow the standard traffic method. After a completed QSO call CQ on 236/286 to check if anyone want to tail end.
- At low activity call CQ on 50.230 or 50.280 depending on mode.
Avoid working a QSO on 50.230!
You will make QRM to many stations and expose yourself for the risk getting QRM from stations calling CQ.