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331
HF Beacons / Ditter network, multiple frequencies, June 14, 2013
« on: June 14, 2013, 2002 UTC »
All,

It looks like one of the past mystery ditter networks is active again.

Starting at about 1710 UTC I noticed a ditter on 15550 kHz that looked familiar.  The pulses were about 124 msec long and the pulse spacing was 6.0 seconds.  This pulse width and spacing is twice what one of the past ditter networks used, so the search was on.

I found ditters on 10050, 10575, 13250, 13325, 13875, 14400, 15100, 15550, 15625, 16000, 16725, 17475, 17975, 18050, 18625, and 19300 kHz.  They all appear to be between 20 and 38 Hz low in frequency.

The dits do not look simultaneous, but rather they appear sequenced, from low freq to high freq, so that it pulses one freq and then moves up to the next one.  From holes in the timing I am probably missing a few frequencies, I will look closer at the wideband recordings later and see if I can find them.

At this time (2000 UTC) the pulses all appear to still be up, but if past history is an indicator they will not stay up long, I am suprised they have been up this long.

T!

(edit)  Off air 2145 UTC.  Other frequencies found before the signal went off were 11025, 11150, 11225, 11300, 12025, and 13350 kHz.  Based on the signal strength and timing of the 13325 and 13350 kHz signals there might have been more than one network active with those two freqs being in seperate networks.

332
At 1150 UTC this morning (05/13/2013) I noticed a dasher network was active on multiple frequencies, 6551.7, 7801.7, 8056.7, 9963.7, 11276.7, and 12081.7 kHz.  Not 100% confirmed yet but it looked like all freqs were in sync, pulses coincident.  Pulses were about 105 msec long and occurred every 633 msec (just under 95 pulses / sec).

At this time (1305 UTC) all signals are still on the air, but the lower freqs are just about completely faded away and started fading as soon as the sun started getting close to up.  ChrisSmol was unable to receive any of the pulses when I gave him a heads up.  Both of these indicate a possible source west of me.  This is supported by my beam bearings on the upper freqs, around 300 deg true although I never got a real good, solid, bearing line.

T!

333
Shortwave Broadcast / Firedrake changing habits or reduced use?
« on: April 21, 2013, 1446 UTC »
Hello all,

Over the last couple of days I have noticed that many time slots and frequencies that are normally the Firedrake Jammer have switched audio to CNR 1.  For example, at 1340 UTC today (April 21, 2013) the frequencies of 14700, 15115, 16160, and 16920 all had CNR 1 audio on them, but normally they have Firedrake in this time slot.

Not only is the CNR 1 audio being used on these frequencies instead of Firedrake, but the way they came online to cover the stations they were jamming is the same way Firedrake does it.

For those not familiar, Firedrake has 2 basic modes of operation, “on at the top of the hour” and “on later”.  In the “on at the top of the hour” mode Firedrake typically comes on like any other SW station at the top of the hour or slightly before.  In the “on later” mode Firedrake comes on sometime after the station to be jammed starts, typically Firedrake audio starts anything from 5 to 40 minutes after the hour, with about 10 to 20 minutes after the top of the hour being average.

For the last few days I have seen the CNR 1 audio start displaying the “on later” habits of Firedrake and on frequencies that Firedrake has normally hit.  In the last 12 hours I have found NO Firedrakes active, and normally I find them at will.

In the 1400 UTC time slot only two CNR 1 audio jammers appear to be active at this time (1445 UTC), on 12230 and 12370 kHz, both regular Firedrake targets.  All other outlets of Sound of Hope and other regular Firedrake targets are in the clear and have been for the entire hour.

Could the Chinese, in response to the recently publicized jamming articles and complaints, have reduced usage of Firedrake?  I suppose they could be having technical issues.

T!

334
Howdy all,

Not really sure what forum section this should go in, I am going to throw it in Shortwave Broadcast, although it is probably unintentional.

Several times over the past week or more I have noticed a narrow band FM signal around the 8200 kHz area.  It has been on several different frequencies, 8006.3 kHz, 8202.9 kHz, 8206.3 kHz, 8263.1 kHz, and 8301 kHz.  It generally is around S4 or S5 here, and the strongest I have seen it is S7.  It has not been on 24 hours a day, but it has been on for hours at a time and both day and night.  In the late evening it seems to drop out for me, but still be on the air, I suspect the freq is going long and the signal is going over me.  There is fading on the signal at all times, it is up and down as one would expect.

Right now (April 07, 2013, 1545 UTC) the signal is on 8202.9 kHz, NFM.

When and how it changes freqs is unpredictable, but most of the time it seems to shift around the top or bottom of the hour.

For several days it was retransmitting XM Sirius sat radio channel “80’s on 8”, but today it is transmitting “90’s on 9”.  Just the straight audio from Sirius XM, no added signals.

So, my first thought is a spur from something local.  However searching from 10 kHz to 4 GHz there is nothing local playing this audio.  OK, so a spur from something not local, so on the remotes I go to see where this signal is making it to.  The remote in San Diego, CA, has the signal slightly less strong than I have it.  A remote in WA has it weak but detectable.  A remote in CO has it about half as strong as I do.  A remote in MN has it detectable, but just above the noise floor.  I cannot detect it on any remote east of there.

So, whatever it is it is not a small spur.  There has to be at least a little power behind it.  It is not local to me, although it is probably regional to me, say maybe in the southern California / Nevada / Arizona area.

Anyone else getting this signal?  I would sure like to figure out the source, or at least the source area.

T!

335
The odd station I reported here: http://www.hfunderground.com/board/index.php/topic,10744.0.html appears to be back.

At 0031 tonight (April 05, 2013) it came up on 8006.2 kHz in NFM.  It appears it was up on 8206.3 kHz before that.

Several times it has IDed as “80’s on 8” and “XM Sirius Radio”.  It appears to be a spur form something rebroadcasting XM Sirius satellite radio.  However the spur has some pretty good power behind it, I can hear it on remotes in CO, WA, San Diego CA, and very weak in MN.  Here at the house I have it about S5 or a little better.

T!

336
Starting about 0250 UTC on April 02, 2013.  6925.6 kHz, AM, ID sounds like WMMR, gave a PO box for QSL.  Decent signal into the Mojave Desert, California, USA, running about S9 or a little better, audio is a little low but nicely clear.

T!

337
Not 100% sure this belongs here, but maybe.  It is definately what I would call a Pirate, maybe just not on purpose.

Starting at about 0133 a signal came up on 8265 kHz, drifted up to about 8300 kHz, and then down to 8206.35, in about 2 minutes total.  Settled on 8206.35 kHz form then on.  It is in NFM.

Playing music, a mix from Rock to Hip Hop.  No ID clearly heard but did hear what might have been an XM Sat radio announcement.  Remotes in WA state and Denver CO have the signal, as well as me receiving it here in the Mojave Desert of California.

Starting to fade here now at 0240 UTC.  Still there just fading out.

T!

338
Spy Numbers / V07, 14374 kHz, USB, March 24, 2013, 0157 UTC
« on: March 25, 2013, 0112 UTC »
I have not mentioned this station in a while, so thought I would throw it in here, since someone in the #wunclub chat reminded me it was on ;)

This is the Spanish language, but Russian sourced, numbers station that carries the Enigma designator V07.

There are apparently 2 outlets for this station.  One that appears to target Europe and one that might target the Pacific or US.  This is the later of those two.  The one heard in Europe is generally in AM mode and on a different schedule.  The one I hear well in California is in USB.  This station has been on the same schedule for the last 2+ years.

The bearing from me to this station is about 330 degrees true, suggesting Kamchatka as a possible source.  Naturally there are other possible sources along that bearing, but since this is known to be Russian in origin I am trying to tie it to something Russian along that bearing.  There are several Russian bases on the Kamchatka peninsula, including Petropavlovsk.

The station transmits one day a week, on Sunday morning.  Start times range from 0100 to 0700, depending on time of year.  It normally transmits three times in one hour (all the same message), when there is a message.  Start times are XX00, XX20, and XX40.  When it is a null message, no traffic, it only sends two times, at XX00 and XX20.

The most complete schedule I have for this station is here:
http://token_radio.home.mchsi.com/V07_latest_sched.JPG

Looking at that schedule the transmissions should have been at 0100 UTC on 18074 kHz, 0120 UTC on 15874 kHz, and at 0140 UTC on 14374 kHz.  If a null message it should have been sent at 0100 and 0120 UTC only.  However, that is not what happened.

The first time that I have seen, in several years of periodically catching this station, the message was so long that it went over the 20 minute possible window.  This pushed out the start time of the second and third message.  The first started on time, at about 0100 UTC.  The second started at about 0128 UTC, and the third started at about 0157 UTC.

This video is of the third and last message, sent on March 24, 2013, at 0157 UTC, on 14374 kHz, USB:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y3gWJLA73V8

T!

339
KMUD on 6930 USB, 03/09/2013, started about 0225 UTC.

Several IDs sent at various times, both voice and CW.  Voice was sent "Kilo Mike Uniform Delta" and "K - mud".  Announced "an eclectic mix of music for the discriminating shortwave listener".  Very nice signal, but that is to be expected since their announced location and mine are about the same.

Nice!

T!

340
US Navy units have been setting up Gator (Link 11) on 5717 kHz.  They have been on the freq for a while.  This also happens to be a SAR freq for Canadian Halifax Mil.  Several times Trenton Mil has tried to contact the US Navy units and have them move off frequency.  So far either the US Navy units have not heard Halifax or they are ignoring them.

This video is one of the times Halifax tried to get the stations to QSY.  The video is about 3 minutes long and the warning from Trenton is at about 01:30 into the video.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iLXZNL2KjLE

T!

(edit) changed Trenton to Halifax.  I have recordings of both Halifax and Trenton trying to move the comms, but I described Trenton and uploaded Halifax...DOH!

341
Hello all,

For the past 5+ hours the 25 meter band has been hit by broadband noise.  This noise is very similar to what might be seen from an PRN or similar radar, but I have not seen such an application in HF before.  I have no idea if this signal is unintentional or if it is intentional, I suspect intentional.  What its purpose is again I do not know.

The signal is very wide, covering roughly 11250 to 11900 kHz, with it speak around 11610 kHz.  It is not a local signal to me, it was first reported on the east coast at around 2150 UTC and at that time I could not detect it at all.  As the evening progressed the signal started coming out of the noise for me.  Around 0100 UTC it was strong enough to wipe out many broadcast stations in that band.  At this time (0320 UTC) it is starting to fade, but still has significant strength.

The signal appears strongest on east coast (USA) remotes but can be detected on European remotes also.

At least twice the signal has paused for a short time, on the order of one or two seconds, once at 0023 UTC and once at 0303 UTC.  I have no idea if it did this other times or not, I was not watching it the whole time, those are just the ones I noticed.  During the pause the absence of signal makes the total width covered very obvious.

0023 UTC pause:


0303 UTC pause:


Hopefully it goes away soon, and does not become a regular fixture.

T!

342
HF Beacons / Kelsie back on air, 4096.6 kHz, 08 Jan, 2013
« on: January 08, 2013, 0056 UTC »
It appears Kelsie is back on the air.  This beacon on 4096.6 has been off air for a time, but I am receiving it locally here at 0055 UTC, Jan 08, 2013.

T!

343
KPZL is up again on 6933 kHz CW, like it has been for the last week or so.  Same message is bieng sent.  It was up when I turned the radio on at 2350 UTC, Dec 31, 2012.


I don't see where anyone has posted a transcription of the CW, so will throw one out here:

KPZL KPZL PUZZLE RADIO PUZZLE THIS STEGANOGRAPHIA
SGDWT THVMP CQRWC GLAKS VNBRG
EPPOC JLMML DFMYO VUELL UBWFL
RTFTU SWZOW VKDVR TUUIK HHSTU
HAPPY NEW YEAR KPZL PUZZLE RADIO

And repeat.

T!

(edit)  At 0031 the CW went unstable, drifting in freq.  Not sure but this looks intentional to me, too cyclic to be a broken transmitter...I think ;)

344
Spy Numbers / Possible V22 numbers station, 19260 kHz, USB
« on: December 25, 2012, 1746 UTC »
Hello all, and Seasons Greetings,

Heard what is very possibly the V22 Chinese numbers station (might also be V25 I suppose) on 19260 kHz, USB, Dec 25, 2012, at 0211 and 0235 UTC.  nickcarr heard it first and called it out in the #wunclub chat.  I could only hear it via a remote located in Japan, there was no sign of it here locally.

Both V22 and V25 (and V16) are numbers stations using a YL (female) voice, in Chinese, repeating numbers or a message (depending on if it is a null or a real message).

The 0211 UTC transmission appears to have been a repeat of one that started right after 0200 UTC.  I heard part of the 0200 UTC transmission but my recording of that one did not come out, too many knobs and I had the wrong record volume turned up.  When the signal came back up at 0210 I did get a recording of it.  It sounds essentially identical to the V22 example on the Numbers and Oddities web site.  This appears to be a null message.

At 0235 UTC I heard another transmission on the same frequency.  It apparently started before I heard it (possibly about 0230z) and I missed the callup, my recording starts in the message.  The format was 4F R2 (4 figure groups, each repeated twice).  This sounds to me like V25.

Recordings here:
http://erick_cartman.home.mchsi.com/Poss_V22_19260_U_12252012_0210_rem.mp3
http://erick_cartman.home.mchsi.com/Poss_V22_19260_U_12252012_0235_rem.mp3

I will be changing the recording locations later, will be moving them to YouTube as that is where I am keeping most of my recordings for public access over the long haul.  More people seem to have access to that than some of the other options.  When I get the video made I will add it to this post.

As I said, the 0211 UTC message sounded like the V22 example on Numbers and Oddities.  But, in my opinion, the 0235 UTC sounded like the description of V25 in the ECL.  I have to wonder if they are not the same station, or at least similar.

T!

345
Moring all,

While listening for other things this morning I decided to take a trip around the beacons to see what was up.  The following list is sorted by frequency order, and is not the order in which I received them.  Freqs are rounded off to nearest 0.1 kHz as several of these drift a bit.

Dec 22, 2012

1447 UTC, 2008.4 kHz, S5, dasher sends about 17 dashes/min, each 1 sec long, cycles on and off
1432 UTC, 2018.3 kHz, S4, dasher sends about 48 dashes / min, each 0.22 sec long, cycles on and off
1424 UTC, 2097.3 kHz, S7, "A" beacon
1407 UTC, 4079.6 kHz, S4, "TMP" beacon, sending TMP 27 right now
1409 UTC, 4086.7 kHz, S3, dasher sends about 8.7 dashes / min, each about 1.7 sec long
1415 UTC, 4094.5 kHz, S4, "X" beacon, about 6.8 sec between letters
1420 UTC, 4096.3 kHz, S4, "Hexie" dasher, 1.1 sec dashes each 2.2 seconds, or 27.4 dash / min
1615 UTC, 4097.2 kHz, S6, "Inyo Whooper" dasher, 0.5 sec dash every 1.1 sec, or about 54.5 dash / min
1418 UTC, 4102.3 kHz, S3, Windy, "W" beacon, lots of dits this morning, but then the wind is up here ;)
1622 UTC, 5205.3 kHz, S4, "Sally" beacon, sends 0.16 sec dits about every 0.48 sec, or about 125 dits / min
1658 UTC, 6626.7 kHz, S4, "Rocky" ditter, narrow dits about 0.26 sec apart, or about 230 dits / min
1438 UTC, 6668.0 kHz, S2, "L" beacon, about 9.3 secs apart, or 6.5 times / min, hearing extra leading dit
1630 UTC, 7998.9 kHz, S2, Ditter, dits about 0.15 secs long, about every 0.6 secs, or about 100 dits / min
1648 UTC, 8193.7 kHz, S3, "MarinDit" ditter, dits are about 0.165 sec long and about every 0.97 sec, or about 62 dits / min
1636 UTC, 8497.4 kHz, S2, fgast ditter, dits are about 0.14 sec long, and about 0.6 sec apart, or about 100 dits / min

THats all for this morning, maybe tonight I will see if I can dig out a few more.

T!

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