Tropo in December 2013

This tropo was very long awaited. Actually, 2013 was not too generous for us in Poland… maybe except my receptions from Finland. This time distant stations were strong, very strong! I haven’t seen such high signal levels before. It started on 11th December morning with stereo signals from Steinkimmen. Maybe nothing special but when I left my home I realised that it was… raining.

I was busy that day, however I was able to check the conditions remotely. At noon, Steinkimmen and Dannenberg were already peaking up to 40dBf! That’s over 3 bars on the XDR-F1HD stock scale. I arrived to my QTH after 19 UTC. Tropospheric lift reached almost half of the German territory and partially Denmark. The following list of received stations contains only 450+ km locations.

  Freq Station Location Distance ERP kW RDS / signal 
  92.9h DR P3 DNK Holstebro 831 60.00  
* 90.0h NDR Kultur D Aurich 825 25.00  
* 101.8h Deutschlandfunk D Aurich 825 100.00  
  91.1h NDR 1 NDS D Steinkimmen 760 100.00 D381 NDR1_NDS
  94.4h NDR Kultur D Steinkimmen 760 100.00  
  99.8h NDR 2 D Steinkimmen 760 100.00 D382 _NDR_2__
  102.3h ffn (Oldenburg) D Steinkimmen 760 100.00 D388 __ffn___
  105.7h Antenne NDS D Steinkimmen 760 100.00 D889 ANTENNE_
* 91.6h N-JOY D Cuxhaven 752 10.00  
* 105.4h NDR 1 NDS D Cuxhaven 752 20.00  
  90.6h WDR 5 D Teutoburger Wald 749 100.00  
  93.2h WDR 2 D Teutoburger Wald 749 100.00 D392 WDR_2___ 34dBf
  100.5h WDR 4 D Teutoburger Wald 749 100.00 D394 WDR_4___
  105.5h WDR Eins Live D Teutoburger Wald 749 100.00 D391 _1LIVE__
  95.1h DR P1/P2 DNK Rangstrup 748 60.00 9201 DR_P2___
  97.2h DR P3 DNK Rangstrup 748 60.00 9203 DR_P3___
  99.9h DR P4 (Syd) DNK Rangstrup 748 60.00 9C02 DRP4_SYD
* 88.3h Nordwestradio D Bremen 738 100.00 33dBf
* 93.8h bremen eins D Bremen 738 100.00 D341 34dBf
* 96.7h Funkhaus Europa D Bremen 738 50.00  
  107.7h DKultur D Cuxhaven 737 20.00 27dBf
  96.3h NDR 2 D Heide 719 15.00  
  99.4h NDR Kultur D Heide 719 15.00 D383
* 100.4h delta radio D Heide 719 15.00  
  89.6h NDR 1 Welle Nord D Flensburg 718 25.00  
  93.2h NDR 2 D Flensburg 718 25.00 D382 _NDR_2__
  105.6h delta radio D Flensburg 717 20.00 D3E9 _delta__ 35dBf
  95.9h NDR 2 D Visselhövede 685 5.00  
  98.7h NDR Kultur D Hannover 680 15.00  
  89.0h DR P1/P2 DNK Sønder Højrup 678 60.00  
  92.6h DR P3 DNK Sønder Højrup 678 60.00 9203
  96.8h DR P4 (Fyn) DNK Sønder Højrup 678 60.00  
  100.5h Radio24syv DNK Sønder Højrup 678 60.00 9204 24syv___
  91.3h NDR 1 Welle Nord D Kiel 670 15.00  
  94.5h N-JOY D Kiel 670 15.00  
  98.3h NDR 2 D Kiel 670 15.00  
  100.6h ffn (Hamburg) D Rosengarten 668 20.00 D388 __ffn___ 39dBf
  103.2h NDR 1 NDS D Rosengarten 668 20.00  
* 105.1h Antenne NDS D Rosengarten 668 20.00 42dBf
  102.9h R.SH D Kaltenkirchen 661 20.00 D3E8 32dBf
  87.6h NDR 2 D Hamburg 654 80.00 D382 _NDR_2__
* 88.7h Deutschlandfunk D Hamburg 654 3.00  
  89.5h NDR 1 NDS D Hamburg 654 10.00  
  90.3h NDR 90,3 D Hamburg 654 80.00 D451 NDR_90,3
  99.2h NDR Kultur D Hamburg 654 80.00 D383 NDR_Kult 45dBf
  103.6h Radio Hamburg D Hamburg 654 80.00 D358 45dBf
  106.8h alster radio D Hamburg 649 32.00  
  89.9h NDR Kultur D Torfhaus 635 100.00 D383 NDR_Kult
  92.1h NDR 2 D Torfhaus 635 100.00  
  98.0h NDR 1 NDS D Torfhaus 635 100.00  
  102.4h Radio ffn D Torfhaus 635 100.00 D388 __ffn___ 43dBf
  103.5h Deutschlandfunk D Torfhaus 635 100.00  
  89.0h 89.0 RTL D Brocken 629 60.00 D0DB 89.0_RTL
  91.5h MDR JUMP D Brocken 629 100.00 D3C2 MDR_JUMP
  94.6h MDR Sachsen-Anhalt D Brocken 629 60.00  
  97.4h Deutschlandfunk D Brocken 629 100.00  
  101.4h Radio SAW D Brocken 629 100.00  
  107.8h MDR Figaro D Brocken 629 10.00  
  104.5h NDR 1 Welle Nord D Mölln 625 20.00  37dBf
  93.0h BFBS Radio 1 D Braunschweig 610 80.00 D390 35dBf
  90.7h NDR Info D Dannenberg 598 3.00  
  91.2h NDR 1 NDS D Dannenberg 598 25.00 D381 NDR1_NDS
  94.0h N-JOY D Dannenberg 598 1.00  
  96.4h NDR 2 D Dannenberg 598 25.00 D382
  102.7h ffn (Heide) D Dannenberg 598 25.00 D388 ffnHeide 41dBf
  106.1h Antenne NDS D Dannenberg 598 25.00 D389 ANTENNE_ 41dBf
  100.7h MDR Sputnik D Klötze 578 5.00 19dBf
  89.2h NDR Kultur D Schwerin 565 30.00 D383 NDR_Kult
  92.8h NDR 1 Radio MV D Schwerin 565 30.00 D371 NDR_1_MV
  95.3h DKultur D Schwerin 565 100.00 D220 DKULTUR_
  98.5h NDR 2 D Schwerin 565 100.00 D382 _NDR_2__
  99.5h N-JOY D Schwerin 565 2.00 D385 _N-JOY__ 30dBf
  101.3h Antenne MV D Schwerin 565 100.00 D378 _ANT_MV_
  105.3h NDR Info D Schwerin 565 100.00 D384 NDR_Info
  107.3h Ostseewelle D Schwerin 565 100.00 D379 _OSTSEE_
  102.2h Deutschlandfunk D Höhbeck 561 94.00 D210 __DLF___
  102.0h Deutschlandfunk D Magdeburg 554 20.00  
* 105.2h MDR Sputnik D Magdeburg 554 1.50  
  105.7h Radio Brocken D Magdeburg 554 15.00  
  89.4h MDR Figaro D Dequede 545 10.00 D3C3 _FIGARO_
  94.9h MDR Sachsen-Anhalt D Dequede 545 10.00  
  96.9h DKultur D Dequede 545 7.00 D220 DKULTUR_
  101.0h Radio Brocken D Dequede 545 60.00 D3D8
  91.7h RBB Kulturradio D Pritzwalk 512 10.00  
  99.9h RBB Radio Eins D Pritzwalk 512 10.00  
  103.1h RBB Fritz D Pritzwalk 512 60.00 D333
  106.6h Antenne Brandenburg D Pritzwalk 512 100.00 D831
  88.2h NDR Kultur D Marlow 509 100.00 D383 NDR_Kult
  91.0h NDR 1 Radio MV D Marlow 509 100.00 D371 NDR_1_MV
  93.5h NDR 2 D Marlow 509 30.00 D382 _NDR_2__
  96.7h DKultur D Marlow 509 30.00 D220 DKULTUR_
  100.8h Antenne MV D Marlow 509 100.00 D378 _ANT_MV_
  102.8h NDR Info D Marlow 509 100.00 D384 NDR_Info
  104.8h Ostseewelle D Marlow 509 100.00 D379 _OSTSEE_
  88.5h NDR 1 Radio MV D Röbel 497 10.00 D371
  107.0h NDR 2 D Röbel 497 60.00 D382 _NDR_2__
  88.1h MDR Sachsen-Anhalt D Wittenberg 495 30.00  
  89.3h Deutschlandfunk D Wittenberg 495 1.00  
  98.4h Radio SAW D Wittenberg 495 5.20  
  101.6h MDR JUMP D Wittenberg 495 55.00 D3C2 MDR_JUMP
  104.0h MDR Figaro D Wittenberg 495 100.00 D3C3 _FIGARO_
  99.3h RBB Radio Eins D Belzig 490 30.00  
  106.2h Antenne Brandenburg D Belzig 490 100.00  
  101.8h MDR 1 Sachsen D Oschatz 484 5.00  
  103.7h MDR JUMP D Oschatz 484 5.00  
  105.9h MDR Info D Oschatz 484 30.00  

By the way, I haven’t tracked the maximal signal levels of each station, so the dBf levels mentioned here may not be exactly the highest peaks of this tropo opening.

Next day morning, 12th December, tropo extended to the northern directions. Göteborg from Sweden arrived with RDS. Borlänge (900+km) was also here, but I think that the most interesting reception was from Denmark. I found few low-powers in vertical polarisation.

  Freq Station Location Distance ERP kW  
* 90.2v Radio Ballerup DNK Ballerup 596 1.00  
  97.2v Radio 100 DNK Glostrup 590 1.00  
* 105.4v The Voice DNK Gentofte 589 1.00  
  90.8h DR P1/P2 DNK København 588 60.00 9201 DR_P1___
  93.9h DR P3 DNK København 588 60.00  
  96.5h DR P4 (København) DNK København 588 60.00 9602 DRP4_KBH
  100.0v Pop FM DNK København 588 77.60 9206 _POP_FM_
  102.3h Radio24syv DNK København 588 60.00  
* 104.9v The Voice DNK Brøndby 588 2.00  
* 100.0h Ostseewelle D Wolgast 431 0.50  

There was also a second tropo path, quite directional. I think it was related to the reception from Oschatz in the night. Paths shortened to Löbau with very high signals, again up to 50dBf. Radio Lausitz was clearly audible over semi-local Radio Hit 107.6 (40km). I also received RDS on 103.0 Deutschlandradio Kultur for the first time. After a while, the lift moved more to the south and brought low powers from Czech Republic. One more thing should be noted. Kiss Morava 101.1 from Czech Republic was also audible in the opposite polarisation at opposite direction (Körner 19.3 pointing at north)… how!? After checking 2x 9-el in V it came out that this location, Frýdek-Místek, has beaten all records and reached 53dBf (1kW ERP 345km).

The tropospheric propagation was travelling from west to east. According to the Hepburn’s forecast maps we were expecting Finland to appear in the evening. Eventually only Turku was in, but other attractions were much more interesting. Estonia with RDS and Russia on OIRT, but again on wrong antenna – Körner 19.3. In the night tropo moved over Belarus and started to disappear…

12dec2013-21z 12dec2013-12utc 13dec2013-00utc 12dec2013-18z

  Freq Station Location Distance ERP kW  
  89.8h Yle Radio 1 FIN Turku 881 60.00  
* 92.6h YleX FIN Turku 881 60.00  
  98.2h Yle X3M FIN Turku 881 60.00  
  101.4h Yle Radio Vega
FIN Turku 881 60.00  
  103.9h Radio Nova FIN Turku 881 60.00  
  70.37h Yu-FM RUS Novosokolniki 782 17.00  
  83.75h 1TV RUS Novosokolniki 782 0.00  
* 70.01h Radio Rossii RUS Glubokoye 746 17.00  
  69.92h BR Kanal Kultura BLR Vitsebsk 741 4.00  
  70.67h BR 1 BLR Vitsebsk 741 4.00  
  71.48h Radio Vitsebsk BLR Vitsebsk 741 4.00  
  72.26h Radio Stolitsa BLR Vitsebsk 741 4.00  
  71.18h Radio Stolitsa BLR Mahilyow 719 4.00  
* 71.96h BR Kanal Kultura BLR Mahilyow 719 4.00  
* 72.74h BR 1 BLR Mahilyow 719 4.00  
* 96.4v BR Radio Mahilyow BLR Mahilyow 719 1.00  
* 100.9h Radius FM BLR Mahilyow 719 2.00  
* 106.8h LR 1 LVA Alūksne 708 3.50  
  71.81h Radio Stolitsa BLR Zhlobin 693 2.00  
  101.5h LR 2 LVA Valmiera 660 20.00 9222 __LR-2__
  104.0h LR 1 LVA Valmiera 660 20.00 9211 __LR-1__
  66.74h BR Kanal Kultura BLR Ushachy 653 4.00  
  68.30h Radio Vitsebsk BLR Ushachy 653 4.00  
  70.94h Radio Stolitsa BLR Ushachy 653 4.00  
  72.65h BR 1 BLR Ushachy 653 4.00  
  106.7h BR 1 BLR Ushachy 653 4.00  
  73.01h Radio Stolitsa BLR Babrujsk 648 4.00  
  100.7v LR 2 LVA Daugavpils 574 8.00  
  93.1v LR 5 Radio NABA LVA Rīga – Ulbroka 564 5.00  
  90.0h Spin FM LVA Rīga – Zaķusala 557 0.50  
  90.7h LR 1 LVA Rīga – Zaķusala 557 35.00 9211 __LR-1__
  91.5h LR 2 LVA Rīga – Zaķusala 557 35.00 9222 __LR-2__
  93.9h Radio Baltkom LVA Rīga – Āgenskalns 557 2.75 9390 BALTKOM_
  99.5h Europa Plus LVA Rīga – Āgenskalns 557 2.75 9950 EUROPA+_
  101.8h LKR LVA Rīga – Zaķusala 557 5.10 9786 __LKR___
  103.7h LR 3 Klasika LVA Rīga – Zaķusala 557 9.50  
  105.2h Radio SWH LVA Rīga – Zaķusala 557 13.00 9258 __SWH___
  105.7h Radio SWH Plus LVA Rīga – Zaķusala 557 3.70  
  107.2h Radio Skonto
LVA Rīga – Zaķusala 557 4.70 906B
  107.7h LR 4 Doma Laukums LVA Rīga – Zaķusala 557 6.60 9244 __LR-4__
* 70.97h BR Kanal Kultura BLR Kapyl 497 0.10  
* 73.22h Radio Stolitsa BLR Kapyl 497 0.10  
  67.97h BR 1 BLR Smarhoń 487 4.00  
  70.13h BR Kanal Kultura BLR Smarhoń 487 4.00  
* 100.7v BR Kanal Kultura BLR Stowbtsy 478 1.00  

sunshine… who did say ‘disappear’?! Well, when I woke up, 70.22 BR1 Salihorsk was still here, but very weak. I gave tropo another chance and I started checking the CCIR band. Something was wrong. When I was going to sleep, Körner was pointing Belarus. So how was it possible to receive Berliner Rundfunk on 91.4 with RDS and clear stereo signal in this opposite direction?

After rotating the antenna to west I understood everything – Berlin was extremely STRONG. 60dBf on 100kWatts!! I quickly took my another radio tuner, but this time for DAB reception. Scanning revealed 47 digital stations, including 3 MUXes from Germany. Of course the antenna was still Körner 19.3 (btw, CCIR, OIRT, DAB… what’s gonna be next?). Wittenberg was also strong and 100.5 WDR4 from Teutoburger Wald almost noise free. Reception on FM & DAB lasted for few hours and then tropo faded away, along with upcoming cold front with rain.

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