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EME: Earth-Moon-Earth communication on 144 MHz

News 09-Jan-2014:

I have dismantled our 2m EME station and antennas during 2013 due to time
constraints for EME work and other antenna projects with higher priority (HF).

However, 2m EME was a real great experience in fighting and winning against
unexpected technical challenges and on the other hand get in touch with a real
nice and very helpful community of EME enthusiasts!

Thank you all for sharing your time and efforts with me!

Maybe I'll show up in EME communication soon again, God knows!

You are one great community of people!

Some hints for Newcomers to EME: please read this

My first EME CW QSO:

On 06-Dec-2009, I managed to run my first EME QSO in CW mode from our /p EME location at the farm.

The partner was LA8YB with a very loud signal. I had taken my MP3 player with me. The player has a
built-in microphone for voice recording. So, I just held the recorder with it's internal microphone towards the
loudspeaker of the transceiver and recorded LA8YB's EME signal from there.

When I was back home later that morning I looked up LA8YB's information in the web. Whow! What an antenna!
No wonder that I could hear him with such a strong signal!

Listen to his signal here (direct recording from the FT-847 speaker, background noise is from the final amplifier, sri):

LA8YB's EME signal  (ca. 420 kB)

Also heard SP7DCS in CW (audio file here, ca. 420 kB), but was not ready yet with the amplifier and therefore could
not call him.

Also heard
SV1BTR with a very good signal (audio file here, ca. 3.4 MB, sri for the voices in the background), whom
I tried to reach a little later than this recording was done. Unfortunately propagations had dropped-down by then and
we could not complete the QSO.

Update 21-Oct-2009:

Mid of October we managed to work South America for completing our first target of  achieving "Worked All Continents"
2m EME in JT65B mode of operation.

We will now focus more on the 2m EME CW mode of operation. That's going to be much more of a challenge, for sure!

eme antennadk3qn operating eme
lifting the antenna mast                                                     DK3QN working 2m EME in JT65B

After about 6 months of preparation, May 31st, 2009, became a very special date for me.
On that day I had my first QSO via EME using JT65B mode! The first station I contacted over the
moon was
RX1AS, Sergei in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Together with my friend Michael, DL2MHO,
in December 2008 we'd started  to learn everything
that was needed to become QRV in EME. So I spent numerous hours in the Internet googleing for
everything re. EME which could be supportive for us. And there is lots of good stuff you can read
and learn about EME!

As we could not install antennas and operate EME actively from our home locations, we ended
up in installing the whole system at the property of a "ham-friendly" farmer. This proved to be
a very positive opportunity and decision!

Our current EME system consists of the following building blocks:

TRX:                        Yaesu FT-847
Amplifier:                I0JXX MosFET power amplifier (visit "Amplifiers" page for more details)
Antennas:                4x I0JXX 8-Element horizontal Long-Yagis (2.1wl), stacked in an "H" config
Antenna combiner   Lambda/2 combiner/splitter by I0JXX
Pre-amplifier:          made by TGN, 0.25 db NF
Coax-relais:             dual coax relay made by EME
Antenna phase line Aircell-7
Antenna feed line    20m EcoFlex-15
Rotator                    SPID RAS hor/vert
PC                           2 PC, #1 is running JT65B and #2 (a Netbook) is running the Internet chatroom
                               at N0UK via UMTS (no cable Internet available in the shack)
Interface                 microHAM DigiKeyer USB, with integrated sound card and sequencer

Here is the Link to my local ham radio club website (in German) describing our EME activities.

First EME QSL cards arrived via direct mail:

jm1wbb qslje1tnlik1uwlvk4cdi

Today, Tuesday, 18-Aug-2009, we finally found the source of our occasional high SWR problems!

As the SWR went "sky-high" during our tests yesterday, we took the whole antenna system through a thorough
analysis process. As a findings result, the antenna combiner/splitter proved to be faulty! One of the antenna
"N" connector solder joints inside the combiner had been broken. This may have been the "final" stage of an
on-going process of "things (SWR) getting worse". So, in case you are experiencing similar situations: check
your combiner first!

After changing the combiner with a substitute (another brand), SWR turned out to be 1.16 consistently!

EME signal reception improved dramatically as well as TX reports.

... to be continued

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