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1
This is an oddity on shortwave that I don't think I have seen before.  If it is common then somehow or another I have missed it.

About 0420 UTC, 03 April, 2020, I noticed what appeared to be a DSB transmission on 9024 kHz.  DSB is not a commonly used mode these days, so I looked a bit closer.

The signal did appear to be DSB, it also appeared to be a repeating audio loop.  About every 21.6 seconds (start to start) the loop repeated, with about 1.6 seconds pause between audio segments.  The audio was not understandable, either it was distorted, processed in some way, or encrypted.  Longer observation showed that every 11th repeated segment included a longer pause, about 3.1 seconds.  This made a repeating cycle of 11 segments about every 239.6 seconds.

Every segment transmitted appeared identical.  Just the same 21.6 second segment (time includes the audio pause) over and over, with every 11th including an increased length pause.

I have uploaded a video of this signal to my YouTube channel.  If you watch the video I include spectrograms of the audio loops, and visual comparisons of multiple examples.  I also demodulate the signal using multiple modes, USB, LSB, AM, and NFM, to show the sound in each mode.  And the last minute or so of the video is the signal demodulated with LSB in the left audio channel and USB in the right audio channel, for comparison.

Video here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=axqgrSzFzG8

T!

2
The South Korean numbers station V24 has a fairly regular schedule.  However, it does change habits over time, adding and subtracting time slots periodically.  This month V24 has been more active than in many months past.  In fact, this month they reactivated a frequency and time slot that they had not used since May 2018.  So far this month they have hit every scheduled time slot except for the 1600 UTC 5900 kHz slots, which are traditionally less reliable.  It has been over a year since the last time the station was this active.

March 18 at 1400 UTC V24 was heard on 5150 kHz.  It used the same intro music and callup that was last heard on that frequency in May of 2018.  So for whatever reason they stopped using it (this frequency and time) for a while, and have now started again.


My recording of March 21 is better quality than the first recording I made on March 18th, so I have uploaded the later date to my YouTube channel.  The transmission was the same for March 18 and 21, and will be the same in two days for March 25.  It is normal for this station to send identical messages three times a month.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D4NeBnIsvus


T!

3
For at least 9+ years a type of transmission that I have called the Pips Network in my log has been periodically operation on multiple frequencies. There have been many loggings of this signal on the HFU forums, particularly in the Mystery, Utilities, and Other forums. Sometimes they are seen daily, sometimes it is months between being reported. I know there is more than one source involved, and I strongly suspect not all transmissions seen are related. There is one main network for sure, the one originally seen and for which the "Pips Network" name was coined, and possibly a couple other unrelated networks. However, they all have roughly similar habits, so they get logged under the same name in my log. What they are for is in question, I suspect that they (at least the original ones seen) may be some kind of ionospheric test or measurement signal, but that is a guess on my part.



The habits observed are typically that a dash or dot, sometimes long and sometimes short, is sent on multiple frequencies, from as few as 2 to up to 60+ frequencies. The pulses are not coincident in time, each pulse is sent on a frequency and the source then cycles to the next frequency on the list. Always to the next closest freq on the list. So the pulses/dashes cycle either up or down in frequency.



Often the pulse width and pulse interval are related, and sometimes that relationship defines how many frequencies can be used. For example a one second pulse might be sent with an interval of 15 seconds, or a 0.125 second pulse might be sent with an interval of 6 seconds. In the first case this would allow for up to 15 frequencies to be hit in sequence, in the second case it might allow for up to 48 frequencies to be used.



A slightly different version of this class of signals (in my logs, anyway) is one that uses few frequencies in relationship to the interval. In other words, it has time to do many frequencies but only does a few, but the other habits remain roughly the same. I am less convinced these are ionospheric tools, but it is still a good possibility.



One specific subset of this version includes a long pulse (over 2 seconds, 2.7 and 2.9 are common) and a very long interval (27 seconds seems to be common) on only a very few frequencies, and sometimes including a short burst of some kind of modulation at the beginning of each pulse.  I have called these signals Long Dashes in my logs.



For the past few days I have been following and recording this later subset. I typically see four frequencies in use, there may be more but if so they are not making it to my location. The signals are heard here in California and at the same time on remotes in Europe. A video of the other days signals here, at the time of this video I was aware of only 3 frequencies in operation, I now know it is normally 4+:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=elESMkHAwAw


They may sit on one set of frequencies for hours at a time, or they may change sets every few minutes.  The signal may be off air for hours at a time, or may run for hours on end.  One frequency seems to be normally near 12500 kHz, one near 11950 kHz, one near 9980 kHz, and one near either 6500 or 6700 kHz.  These freqs are loose, and I often find the signal +/- 100 kHz from those.  I hear the signals best in the mornings, and this may indicate Asian or Pacific origins.

T!

4
Shortwave Pirate / UNID 6932 USB 0150 UTC 22 February 2020
« on: February 22, 2020, 0156 UTC »
So far unided station on 6932 USB, started with some male voice speaking, was too weak to make most of it out.  At about 0154 UTC went to music, got that fair to usable.  About S5 into the Mojave Desert of California tonight.

(edit) 0158z SSTV was Carpe Noctem, Seize the Night.  Might this be the name of the station?

(edit)  0218z deep and long fade, down to S3 or less here, I can tell it is still there, but weak.

T!

5
The Russian Buzzer, ENIGMA ID S28, on 4625 kHz, is currently in one of its extended breakdowns.  They periodically happen and can cause a splash within certain communities when they do, certain doom porners really run with it.  Since at least 0130 UTC this morning, 17 February, 2020, and as of the time of this posting, 1430 UTC, the Buzzer has not been sending its normal periodic buzzes, instead it has had a deep transmitter hum.  Several times in that period the normal, or a relatively normal, interrupted buzz has returned for short periods, always to give way to the transmitter hum. 

At about 1240 UTC I tuned to the signal to see if it was still malfunctioning.  I happened to have caught one of the S28 messages the Buzzer periodically transmits.  After the message it returned to the same broken transmitter hum.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hmIYiQVjagU

T!

6
Shortwave Pirate / Ball Smacker Radio 6950 AM 0147 UTC 08 Feb 2020
« on: February 08, 2020, 0151 UTC »
So far unided station, or I have not heard one, on 6950 AM.  Playing at least a portion of the song Wildfire, sounds to be a repeating bar from that song.

Heard starting about 01473 UTC, on 6950 AM, Feb 08, 2020.  About S5 into the Mojave Desert tonight so far.

I assume this is the interval signal for the upcoming Ball Smacker Radio transmission, if so I will change the title on first ID.

Music change at 0200 UTC into 80's rock.

T!

7
Shortwave Pirate / Damn Skippy 6950 USB 0110 UTC 2 February 2020
« on: February 02, 2020, 0113 UTC »
So far unided station on 6950 kHz USB.  Noticed about 0110 UTC, February 2, 2020.

S6 or so into the Mojave Desert of California.

(edit)  Change of pace 0126 UTC, a bit harder cider as it were, a bit more Punch.

T!

8
Shortwave Pirate / Zeke's Attic 4103 LSB 0045 UTC 2 February 2020
« on: February 02, 2020, 0049 UTC »
So far UNIDed station playing music on 4103 kHz LSB, I noticed about 0044 UTC on 2 February 2020.  Right where a person looking for the Windy Beacon would be sure to notice it.

(edit)  0051z Zeke heard.

T!

9
Was insomniac this morning, so had a chance to radio at hours I normally don't ;)

And I ran into what appears to be the sequencing frequency Pips Network that has been reported on these forums in the past.  In this case it seemed to be a 0.25 second long pulse every 7.5 seconds (the most common seen is a shorter pulse, often about 0.125 seconds every 6 seconds).  A possible anomaly with this set of transmissions is that the pulses looked like they may have been doubled, I mean two back to back pulses on each freq.  Among several possibilities this could be a phase shift in the middle of the pulse (BPSK for some reason) or it could be two transmissions on each freq.

As is indicative of this network the pulses sequence through frequencies, low to high.  However, another anomaly, in this case each frequency seemed to be pair, in time, with one other freq.  I don't think I have ever seen this before.  For sure in the past there were two networks working together, synchronized in time and sometimes overlapping on one or more frequency, but never, that I remember, with paired (coincident in time) frequencies.

What I mean is that in the following list of freqs 2000 and 2275 kHz were transmitting at the same time, and then the signal sequenced up to the next higher pair, 2575 and 2800 kHz at the same time.  And then up to the next pair, etc.  Typically in the past it would have been more along the lines of sequencing 2000, then 2275, then 2575, then 2800, etc.

Freqs observed:

2000
2275
2575
2800
3150
3550
4200
4525
4800
5400
5775
6375
6700
7050
7450
7725
7950
8275
8575
8700
9375
9600 ?
9950 ?
10250 ?

The last freqs (with the ? marks) may have shown up just before the signal ended, I have not had time to confirm they are related in time but they looked like they possibly were.  I have not had time to go through my recordings and see if I can locate other frequencies I might have missed.  I suspect there were more frequencies in use at the high end, however propagation above 8000 kHz dropped of very quickly.

Eventually I will go through the recordings and confirm the timing of all freqs, probably locating one or two more I missed under other signals in the process.  I want to see if the pairing of freqs holds up across the entire working set.

T!

10
HF Beacons / Beacon HI 4094.0, 1400 UTC, 26 Jan 2020
« on: January 26, 2020, 1427 UTC »
Beacon sending HI about every 9.6 seconds, 4094.0 kHz, 1400 UTC, 26 January, 2020.

This beacon has been on this freq a couple of days, not sure when I first noticed it.  For sure it was not there (at least not heard here) last Saturday as I have recordings of this chunk of spectrum from that night.  However last night I realized I did not have it in the log, and a little further research seemed to indicate it was a new beacon.  Possibly just a beacon that has changed freq, since there was a previous HI on 8009 kHz and other freqs in the past.

The freq is pretty tight, but does change a bit.  In the last 24 hours or so I have seen it anywhere from 4093.95 to 4094.06 kHz

T!

11
Testing 1 2 3 can anybody hear me @0100 UTC on 6935 kHz, USB.  Good signal into the Mojave Desert tonight.

Wolverine Radio ID just before music starts @0102z.

Wolverine announced move to 4065 kHz at 0104z.

"Testing 1 2 3 can anybody hear me" on 4065 kHz USB @0106 UTC.  6935 kHz was a little bit better for me, but 4065 is decent also.


T!

12
Latin American Pirate / AD149 Radio ? 6934.9 AM 0050 UTC 29 Dec 2019
« on: December 29, 2019, 0059 UTC »
A so far UNIDed station has been up and down a few time, with a few songs, on 6934.9 kHz AM since maybe 0040 UTC.  Signal has been weak, but I have heard music.  At 0054 clearly heard Kiss's "I was made for loving you".

T!

13
Shortwave Pirate / Station 10-100 6953 USB 2310 UTC 24 December 2019
« on: December 24, 2019, 2318 UTC »
So far UNIDed station on 6953 USB.  Started with Walk this Way, then into a 10-100 SSTV transmission.  Nice and strong into the desert tonight.

Getting hammered by OTHR right now though.

IDed as 10-100 @2320 UTC.

Hard fade, from excellent copy to almost unhearable, about 2325z.

Here is the SSTV that went at 2313z or so.


T!

14
Spy Numbers / V24 error transmission, 11 October, 2019, 4925 kHz
« on: December 16, 2019, 1635 UTC »
South Korean numbers station V24 is one of the last numbers stations that uses a very traditional format of a musical introduction to every transmission.  While this used to be a common practice, today only a few stations still do this.

For those not familiar with V24, for V24 a given song is used on a given frequency, each frequency, and time slot, has a unique song associated with it.  Each message, and song, is repeated 3 times a month, on 3 different days.  The next month the same song will be used in that given time / frequency slot, but the message will be new.

In October the operator apparently made a mistake and selected the wrong recording.  11 October, on 4925 kHz, should have been the first of 3 days using Dvoracs Slovic Dances, Opus 72, No 2, as its intro song.  Instead, they played "Me Gustas Tu" which had been used on the 3rd, 5th, and 7th of the month on 5290 kHz.  In fact, the whole transmission, both the music and the coded message, was a repeat of the earlier in the month transmissions.

Here is that transmission:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hHP1cjIOV5g

T!

15
Spy Numbers / V07 for Dec 2019
« on: December 01, 2019, 1356 UTC »
It appears that V07 has been stable in frequency (no new freqs or times) for the last couple of months, possibly they are finished with their schedule changes.

So, V07 logs as received at my location Dec 01, 2019.

V07

11594 kHz  0100z  01/12/19  [571  571  571  1  203  52 . . . . 000  000]  Off 1308z  S8  Token  SUN
10794 kHz  0120z  01/12/19  [571  571  571  1  203  52 . . . . 000  000]  Off 1328z  S9  Token  SUN
10194 kHz  0140z  01/12/19  [571  571  571  1  203  52 . . . . 000  000]  Off 1348z  S9+10  Token  SUN

T!

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