VP8PJ Updates

VP8PJ QSL Policy is on this link. $5 by OQRS or Direct.
Please read the QSL Policy it is there to assist you get the QSL safely.
STRICTLY NO EMAILS! NOT IN LOG form on OQRS ONLY!

Please note the team DO NOT have sufficient satellite signal to upload logs from the island.

March 7th 18:00z: VP8PJ Log uploaded to OQRS, LoTW will be uploaded daily from Direct QSL requests and from the Donor database. ALL Busted calls and NIL’s must be processed through the “NOT IN LOG” form on OQRS. NO emails will be answered. Please use the form.

March 6th 18 :00z:
Most of the equipment has now been transferred from the island to the Braveheart, with only a few items left to ferry over. 

Many team members are already on the Braveheart, the remaining team will be aboard within the next two hours.  It has been raining most of the day with cold gusty winds. We are all very tired! Everyone will sleep well aboard the Braveheart tonight.  VP8PJ Team
March 6th 01:00z: VP8PJ is now QRT! The pileups were enthusiastic, fun, & at times never ending. We appreciate all of you that participated!
The weather forecast for tomorrow is that of wind and rain. It will make our chore of tearing down the camp wet and very slow. We look forward to our return trip home.  

73! VP8PJ Team

March 5th 11:00z: We are pleased to report that we are nearing 70,000 QSOs in the log. 
Our plan is to remain active on the bands throughout the day. We anticipate ending radio operations and going QRT at or near 23:59 UTC.
Our attention overnight and tomorrow will be devoted to the large chore of packing the gear and then dismantling the camp.
As stated previously, we will attempt an upload of the log once aboard the Braveheart as we prepare for departure from Signy Island.  VP8PJ Team
We will soon begin the process of staging equipment and supplies on the beach for transfer to the Braveheart.
A number of antennas are being removed as we evaluate our “on air” activities for the remaining hours on the island.
Slowly, throughout the day, we will take operating positions off-line as we prepare to end our radio operations later tonight.
We cannot thank the crew of the Braveheart enough for their hard work and assistance throughout this entire DX-pedition. VP8PJ Team

March 4th 14:00z:
After consultation with the Braveheart skipper this morning, we will now leave Signy Island on Saturday March 7th. Improving weather and sea conditions are more favourable for a later departure. We will extend our on air operations by another full day. We will now operate through most of Thursday March 5th. Please disregard the earlier notice on the end of operations being later today.. VP8PJ Team

March 3rd  16:00z 80m antenna repaired earlier today. As the day progresses we will be on all open HF bands. Special emphasis tonight on 40m, 80m, and 160m, using both CW and FT-8 modes. Weather depending, Wednesday March 4th will be the last full day of operations.
Shutdown time to be announced. We plan to use most of the day Thursday to completely tear down the operating positions and the camp.

March 2nd  16:30z Quickly approaching 58,000 total Qs in the log. The team is outside in the blowing snow and wind repairing the 80m vertical for use tonight. VP8PJ Team

March 2nd  10:00z  Major winds swept through again overnight. The 40 meter 4-square is now a single vertical. Other verticals damaged again as well, but quickly repaired. Standing at 55,000+ total Qs. Depending on weather & sea conditions, we anticipate the following schedule:
– Radio operations through March 4th
– Teardown remaining equipment / camp on March 5th
– Depart Signy Island on March 6th VP8PJ Team

March 1st 17:30z The VP8PJ team remains in good spirits. We’re continuing to make ourselves available on the bands.
Heavy winds returned last night and today. Several of the verticals have been damaged, the team is out repairing them now.
Approaching 51,000 total QSOs in the log.
Next log update possibly in the next 24 hours. VP8PJ Team

Storm Jorge Damage to Faroe Islands

OY1OF, Olavur Frederiksen emailed in to report that Storm Jorge caused extensive damage in the Faroe Islands over the weekend, in particular to the Club Station Foroyskir Radioamatorar. (FRA) “We lost the 17m, 20m, and 40m GP, so not many antennas left, while the road to the club house is closed”.
We would like to wish our friends in the Faroe Islands our best wishes for a speedy clean up and repair to the Club Station. Thank you to Olavur for the photographs.

South Orkney Islands Log Search Links & QSL Updates

VP8PJ team will be operational as ZL1NA/MM from the Braveheart. QSL will be available after the team return home.
VP8PJ wil be QRV until approximately March 5th.
ZL1NA/MM OQRS

VP8PJ OQRS 

Update March 1st 01:00z: Pre DXpedition donor Excel file, updated. Uploaded to OQRS, exported ADIF for donors and uploaded to LoTW. This will also be uploaded to LoTW after each log upload.

Update February 29th 12:00z:
We have all your comments to the pilots and a summary of the groups.io reflector.
After a storm blew through we’re currently experiencing the weather conditions we expected. The antennas are staying up, with only some challenges with the larger verticals.  The WeatherPort buildings have performed as expected, even with occasional wind gusts that we estimate at 75 – 80 kph, or higher. We have reports of missing FT8 QSOs, we can not fix that on the island, Tim M0URX will handle the missing contacts once he has all the FT8 files.

Schedule:

We must depart the island by the afternoon of Thursday, March 6th.
Depending on the weather, we expect to begin tearing down the camp on Weds, March 4th.
We estimate (with reasonable weather) March 4 – 5 for the tear down, load the ship and be ready to sail on Thursday.
Estimated time at sea is 5 full days, and arrive at the entrance to the harbor on the evening of March 11th.
We will unload the ship on March 13 and turn to equipment over to our Customs Broker.
Braveheart will leave Punta Arenas on March 15th. 73, VP8PJ Team”

Update February 28th 18:00z: Log uploaded Last QSO in the log: 28 Feb 2020 12:24 UTC
Update February 27th 18:00z:
Unable to go back to boat today, snow storm and very cold wind. Maybe tomorrow for log upload.
That message was received using Garmin inReach. The team can only send logs from the Braveheart as the terrain on the island blocks the path to the satellite.

Update February 27th 
RR73, but not in log? KNOWN ISSUE  FOLLOW OUR ADVICE
This is a historic problem for DXpeditions. 10% of ALL FT8 Qs will be dropped and cannot be entered into the log until AFTER the DXpedition. 
This is a KNOWN PROBLEM.
Please follow the instruction on OQRS which is very clear!
Not in Log/Busted Call check request on-line function will be available shortly after the DXpedition.
Do not send log check request email!
If you are not in log, work again or wait until this function will be enabled.
The ops are already aware of this FT8 dropping QSO issue and it has been an issue for the last 3 years. Please be patient and follow the advice above. Make a security QSO if you can.

Update February 25th 21:00z Log uploaded:
 In a message from the Braveheart, K5GS Gene reports. “We are having spotty success getting an adequate signal from the satellite, even from the ship. We’ve been in contact with the service provider and we all agree that the problem is the terrain and the satellite’s low angle in the sky. 

That said, we’re here to work DX and will deal with the usual challenges all DX-peditions to the Southern Ocean tend to experience. One of the ship’s crew asked “they make a contact on the radio and need to Internet to confirm they made the contact?”. Interesting observation from a fellow that knows little about ham radio.

We ask that people do not send us or the pilots e-mails asking about logs, if we can get uploads done, we will. If not you’ll have to do your best to get a contact. This is an experienced DX-pedition and Contest team, if you hear them repeat your call you’re in the log.

The pileups have been what we expected, always energetic, sometimes chaotic but no surprises. The team is working under very cold and windy weather conditions, with snow at night. Doing any work outside is challenging anytime and can not be done at night.”

Update February 23rd 14:00z “We are unable to find a solid satellite connection on the island. We are waiting to change to a different satellite, but it’s not clear there will be any difference. We know it is not a hardware problem because we have 3 satellite terminals of this model and one of another model. If we can not find a solid connection we will try to upload logs from the ship every day, and even that path to the satellite is very poor. They are are continuing to install additional antennas today.  It’s cold and difficult to use hand tools in the wind.”

Read More

5Z4/G3AB Logs

I received the 5Z4/G3AB log update for the most recent FT8 QSOs. Andy was not able to send me the CW log at the same time. So if you have made a CW QSO since January 18th please stand by until we have been able to upload the full log. We are aware and there is no need to fill in missing call form at this time. Thank you.
Due to Andy’s workload the log updates will be sporadic so please be patient.

South Orkneys 2020 DX-pedition VP8PJ (AN-008)

For Immediate Release  Press Release #11 Feb. 2, 2020
We’re on autopilot, next stop Punta Arenas, Chile.

The project is on schedule
Team members will begin arriving in Punta Arenas on February 9th, Braveheart is scheduled to arrive on February 13th, we load the ship on Feb 14th and depart on Feb 15th for Signy Island. Nigel Jolly will have already arrived by air to arrange for refueling and resupplying Braveheart.

Logging – Log Search
We will use N1MM+ for logging and WSJT-X Version 2.1.2 for FT8  

Assuming a stable satellite connection, QSOs will be uploaded to the log server in near real-time, you can monitor logging activity at:
https://www.m0urx.com/oqrs/logsearch.php?dxcallsign=VP8PJ
 We do not upload by band, by mode or by operating position.

OQRS will be available within 10 days after we leave the island. We need time to validate the logs.

QSL Manager, Tim M0URX, will work on Busted Calls and Not in Log issues after the log is validated. Please use the form on Tim’s OQRS site, do not send e-mails. Read More

Welcome to my Blog

For those of you that have not visited my website before, welcome, here you will find everything you need to know about United Radio QSL Bureau, all the services that we offer to both DX’pedition teams and to DX’ers. You can request all your Direct or Bureau QSL cards on our Bespoke OQRS Service which continues to evolve with new innovation, the development team working to add new features that enhance your DX’ing and QSL experience. With more call signs using the Band Activity Module so you can get live log updates from the DX. 
Our “Not in Log” form on the QSL request page provides you the tools to link straight in to my work queue without the need for sending emails. In fact there should be little need for you to email me, we have designed this website and Bespoke OQRS to give you all the information you need to get the answers you are looking for. 
On my Blog you will find all the answers to the latest news from my QSL work, if you want to know when QSL cards will be posted, view new QSL designs together with all other United Radio QSL Bureau news will all be on my Blog. All i ask is that you look here for your answers before sending me an email. 

South Orkney Shipment Update

After a stop at the Panama Canal for transfer to a different ship, our sea container arrived in Coronel, Chile on December 25th. It was then placed on a coastal barge, arriving Punta Arenas on January 13th. The equipment is now in secure storage at a local warehouse.

There will be a Press Release shortly before the team members leave home to meet the Braveheart at Punta Arenas.

TX7T & H40TT QSL Update

TX7T & H40TT QSL cards arrived from the printer. Mailing scheduled for Monday 27th January. You still have time to get your QSL in the mailing. OQRS open.

South Orkney Islands DX-pedition VP8PJ (AN-008) Press Release #10

Permits: Landing and camping at South Orkney requires permission from several government agencies. This multi step process takes months to complete. We recently received our final approval, the “Antarctic Conservation Act Permit” from the National Science Foundation. Other agencies in the process were: the US Department of State and the Environmental Protection Agency. We appreciate the cooperation and assistance we received from these agencies to complete and submit the detailed applications and other required documentation.

New Corporate Sponsor: Joining the list of corporate sponsors is The DX Store, a supplier of quality products for the amateur radio market.

Equipment Status: After 8 weeks our sea container arrived in Punta Arenas, Chile on January 13, 2020. Read More