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Messages - Strange Beacons

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Equipment / Re: What are you using for SWLing?
« on: May 18, 2020, 2235 UTC »
I mainly use my KiwiSDR with W6LVP mag loop, or my ICOM 7300 with Alpha Loop (I live in a condo, hence the reason for my reliance on magnetic loop antennas. Fortunately, my experience with them has been very positive). Finally, I occasionally hit the road with my Tecsun PL-660 and separate factory long-wire antenna.

I've really gotten more into SWLing since I moved from Seattle, Washington to Southwest Florida. The propagation in my current area is vastly superior to what I formally had in mountainous Washington.  8)

Both the beacons you reference are mentioned in this Wikipedia entry, and are referred to as cluster beacons -


Nice research, thanks. I figured that both of them had likely been around for awhile, but since I don't really follow letter beacons as much as I do other signals, I wasn't sure.

I found two Morse code beacons within a few kilohertz of each other. A "D" beacon at 13527.50 kHz and an "S" beacon at 13528 kHz. Recorded May 15, 2020 at 1437 UTC via the UTwente WebSDR. I know very little about letter beacons. Are these two well-known?

For Sale / Wanted / Barter / Re: WTB: KiwiSDR
« on: May 10, 2020, 1009 UTC »
They can be purchased either way.

From the Seeed web site...
The KiwiSDR is a custom circuit board (cape) you connect to the BeagleBone Green  or  BeagleBone Black computer. You simply add an antenna, power supply and network connection. The KiwiSDR is available in two versions: the cape alone and a more complete version including BBG, enclosure and GPS antenna. Both versions include software supplied on a micro-SD card.

Yes, that is what I thought. I purchased the version with Beaglebone Green and GPS and added a W6LVP mag loop. I've been very happy with it.

For Sale / Wanted / Barter / Re: WTB: KiwiSDR
« on: May 10, 2020, 0309 UTC »
Probably a long shot, but looking to buy a KiwiSDR with the Beaglebone board.

I'm a KiwiSDR owner. I thought that all KiwiSDRs came bundled with Beaglebone.

SDR - Software Defined Radio / Re: Kiwi SDRs
« on: May 04, 2020, 2253 UTC »
Why is it these SDRs have time limits. Some cease to be active after so long.

While I no longer have any time limits set on my Kiwi, I once had to put them in place due to the large number of people who were camping out on local AM stations listening to football games. Now, I'm not saying that is a bad thing. But I want to run my radio primarily as a service to shortwave listeners and they don't tend to sit on a frequency for three or four hours at a time. Given the fact that most Kiwis only allow a maximum of four users at a time, I wanted to make sure that slots were available for them.

I will move that thread soon to Other.

Thanks. I wasn't exactly sure how to categorize this one.

Radio pirate transmitting siren sounds on 3460 kHz in LSB mode.

This transmission has appeared on this same frequency for the past few days, as I've seen recordings of the signal posted all over Reddit , YouTube, and Twitter. General word is that this is a French pirate, hence the reason why I chose a KiwiSDR located in Massignac, France. Shortly after I ended the recording, I heard snippets of music, sound files, and movie clips, all in the French language.

Nice work figuring this signal out, everyone.

It is this kind of research and dedication that keeps me in love with this forum. 🥰

Other / Re: UNID 6657 USB 11:04 UTC 2020/04/10 (AUDIO ATTACHED)
« on: April 10, 2020, 1135 UTC »
Wow, that is one really odd signal! Nice catch and thanks for posting a sound recording.

P.S. What was the approximate location of the receiver that you used to find this signal?

Utility / Re: WWV announcement of military exercise?
« on: April 10, 2020, 1130 UTC »
The US Department of Defense (DOD) plans to start making use of a provisional time slot on WWV and WWVH to announce upcoming HF military communication exercises and how the Amateur Radio community can become involved in them. The announcements will occur at 10 minutes past on WWV and at 50 minutes past on WWVH. WWV and WWVH transmit on 2.5, 5, 10, 15, and 20 MHz.

Department of Defense to Transmit Interoperability Exercise Info via WWV/WWVH


Thanks for the information. Sounds like something interesting to try to catch and record.

As for when this will commence, this is from the linked article above: The initial announcements are set for the period April 20 – May 3, which coincides with the “Vital Connection” interoperability exercise to be held in Wisconsin. Future time slots will coincide with the Vital Connection exercise Ohio in June; DOD COMEX 19-3 in August, and the DOD COMEX 19-4 in October. Following the proof of concept this year, DOD anticipates making use of the WWV/WWVH broadcast time slot full time, year-round.

Utility / Re: WWV announcement of military exercise?
« on: April 10, 2020, 0935 UTC »
Has anyone else caught this announcement?

What announcement? What did you hear? At what frequency? (Your subject heading hints at some kind of military exercise announcement on WWV, but you don't provide any additional details).

Very strange indeed, and what could possibly be the purpose of such a transmission? I shared this one via my Twitter feed in the hope that one of my followers might have a clue as to what language is being spoken.

thanks for tweeting that out. the other reason i listened to your kiwiSDR was to hear what was possible to pick up from Seattle. how does your new listening environment compare to Seattle?

The propagation here is absolutely amazing. I am able to pick up so many more signals than what I could with the same setup as I had in Seattle (lots more amateur radio operator traffic, plus signals out of the Caribbean and even Europe).

thanks @StrangeBeacons. btw i used to listen to your SDR before and right after i bought my first because you had a magnetic loop antenna and i was looking getting one.

Cool. I swear by magnetic loops, especially because I live where outside antennas are forbidden. The W6LVP mag loop works well with my KiwiSDR (which has migrated from Seattle to Naples, Florida now).

Again, your latest recording is awesome. I tweeted out a link to it on my Twitter feed and it has been getting a lot of likes.  :D

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