June 2016: D/SUI/AUT tropo ducting

The weather in first days of summer brought a widespread high pressure system that has settled down over Eastern and Central Europe. Very good tropospheric conditions were forecasted between Germany, Switzerland, Czech Republic and partially Poland. 

In the evening on June 23, I quickly checked the signals before sleep. There was nothing interesting on the 87.5-108 MHz band… except one low modulated station on 107.3. I have already received hr4 from Germany on this frequency twice before, but with weak signal levels. I was quite busy, so I kept the 107.3 tuned for any upcoming identification. In a moment I saw a PI code: D704. Well, that was odd, because I thought that hr4 carries a different PI code. And I was right, shortly I heard an ID – SWR4 verkehr! So, this time I got Raichberg @ 898 km on this frequency.

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XDR-GTK v1.0

I am pleased to announce that the long-awaited 1.0 version of XDR-GTK has just been released. As usually, XDR-I2C upgrade to the latest version (2016-04-20) is also required.


The main window contains new interference detectors: CCI (co-channel) and ACI (adjacent channel) which make the antenna pointing easier for the best signal to interference and noise ratio.

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December 2015: elevated SUI ducting

The beginning of December brought an unexpected tropospheric propagation. The weather was influenced by high pressure and it was rainy. In the evening on December 2nd, 2015 I noticed some distant signals. When I checked my tuner remotely, FM4 from Salzburg was already at stereo + RDS level. In just a hour I also heard Wendelstein, Hornisgrinde, Bregenz, Grünten, Säntis and the furthest location – Rigi @ 1015km, which I logged for the first time.

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November 2015: extreme autumnal tropo

The enhanced propagation conditions continued from late October to the beginning of November. All upcoming forecasts were very encouraging and I have experienced the most extreme tropospheric ducting propagations from Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Germany in terms of signal strength. Tropo was also very strong on microwave frequencies and I logged 300+km 5GHz WiFi networks, including Czech Republic again! Finally, I heard a very long awaited location – Kyiv, my new ODX from Ukraine!

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October 2015: UKR, FIN, HOL ducting

Another tropospheric ducting propagation this month developed on October 30 and 31 night. This time I didn’t expect anything special at all. I was busy all evening and I was about to sleep, however I saw the tropo forecasts. Both of them directed my attention to Ukraine, which is mostly unexplored country in terms of a radio reception for us – DXers in Poland. There are two main reasons. Firstly, propagation from east and south-east occurs the least frequently. Secondly, a majority of stations use low transmit power and poor broadcasting locations. 

nwe012 12

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October 2015: D, HRV, SVN ducting

I haven’t collected my thoughts yet, since the extreme tropo propagation from the United Kingdom in October and meanwhile a favourable weather brought the distant radio reception once again. I was travelling back home in a bus on October 23 and I was listening remotely to a radio at my QTH. Local conditions on the CCIR band were, saying the least, terrible. All nearby locations like Poznań or Wrocław/Ślęża were continuously fading down into noise.

Anyway, I’ve been notified about excellent conditions on the 144 MHz band that day, so I continued scanning. For the first time ever, a QSO was made between Spain and Poland via tropo at distance over 1900km. My location was a little too east of the ducting area, however I also found some unusual activity on the 87.5-108MHz band. At one point, I noticed that I’m listening to Ochsenkopf @ 621km instead of Zet Gold from Poznań on 99.4. The signal level was quite unstable, but it was definitely not an aircraft scatter. From time to time the signal was reaching RDS level on both 99.4 Bayern 3 and 90.7 Bayern 1, with a new local PS Bayern1N instead of previously used BR_1_FRA.

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