VK5KK's PHOTO ALBUM, Page One!
VK5KK's South Australian end of VK3XPD's & VK5KK's recent VK8 record breaking DX pedition, 5 & 10 Ghz dishes in view. Note the case up the tower ... that is the 2M link, the beam had to go up 30 feet to copy VK3XPD/8 under poor conditions ... ofcourse the coax feeding the beam is only 10ft long!! The site was approximately 160km south of the VK5/VK8 border on Welbourne Hill station. The tower and box/solar panel are for a UHF CB repeater! New VK8 records were set on 432, 1296, 2403, 3456, 5760, 10368 & 24150 MHz!!!
The VK8 End of the first VK5 to VK8 24 Ghz QSO, approximately 1.5km's north of the border ... that is the Stuart highway in the background.
The operating position. Transverters for 1/2/3 GHz are up on the top right shelf, the rest of the microwave gear sits behind the bench. Mostly old gear on the lower frequencies. The Drake twins currently are being used to drive a 2M transverter/ 8874 Amp! The 50 MHz 8875 Amp (built in 1978) is on the bottom left. The rest of the shack is too much of a mess to show you....
The view from 270 degrees(VK6) to about 290 degrees from the backyard. The Tower in the middle is the SA VHF Group's clubrooms ( 45 Metres high!), about 5km away.
The VK5KK QTH is about 180 metres ASL, with a good take-off to Albany in VK6. The sea is about 20km's away, I was trying to photograph a typical morning duct ... thats the blurred form about a third down from the top. The duct was at about 100 metres ASL.
The home QTH is only about 400metres away from where signals to/from VK6KZ were copied at 1923km's, 10,368.106 MHz on 30/12/94 ... 12km's further than the current World record.
But as Murphy has it, no contact eventuated .... signals had dropped in the 30 minutes that it took 6KZ complete the contact with 5NY, although not totally disappearing for another 150 minutes. With 50 Watts, on 10 GHz, into a 750mm dish from the home QTH, the next opening will be slightly different!
The shot above was taken about half way through the 1994 World Record attempt on 10 Ghz to VK6KZ over 1923KM's. Note the specially rigged up "all terrian" Type 1 VW complete with roll cage, offroad suspension and twin carbed 1700cc VW Type 3 power plant. This 1959 classic even has 12 Volts electrics!!! Actually it was retired from competitive fox hunting .. leaked too much water through the floor to float......
After many portable trips it was decided to do things a little better. The VW was retired!!! This totally waterproof and hopefully almost drop proof Portable "Box". The box includes IC202 for 144MHz IF transverters, IC402 for 432 MHz transverters & TR9130 for 2M talkback. Also included is a reserve 17 Ah battery, Full DC distribution and panel meter. A second box contains the larger main battery, plus all lower microwave transverters. The box normally sits in the boot of the car but is light enough to be carried to the top of a hill. This box was first used for the VK8 DX-pedition ... all bands from 144 MHz to 10 GHz Narrowband plus 24 GHz wideband!
Inside of my Second 10 Ghz (portable) transverter, built using a DB6NT 5mW exciter (top part of the brass box). The 5mW 10 GHz Tx signal is attenuated by a 15 db attenuator before being fed to a Qualcom PA (just visable in the top of the photo). The Local Oscillator multiplier in the lower part of the Brass box multiplies the 106.500 MHz Oscillator feed to 2556 MHz. The Antenna C/O SMA relay is just visable on the Right.
This is the view from the opposite side .. no the photo isn't upside down, just the 106.500 MHz oscillator! The 106.500 MHz oscillator has active temperature compensation using an LM35 temp sensor and an active "network" table to drive a varicap. System achieves about 0.1ppm stability over usual operating temperatures. The 1 Watt Qualcom PA is at the top of the box. The original Qualcomm metalwork has been replaced by a more convenient plate/cover. The SMA relay and coax to waveguide transition can be seen on the left. The waveguide passes through the 600mm(24") dish hub and illuminates the dish through a standard waveguide to dipole feed.
The entire transverter enclosure is only 150mm(6")H x 225mm(9")L x 75mm(3")W. Transverter number one has been retired to VK5AKM's home station, permanently mounted at 13Metres(42') AGL, suitably waterproofed ofcourse!
My favourite (?) pastime ...... tuning up yet another Qualcomm PA for 10 GHz!!!
Portable Operation at Mt William, Victoria.
VK5KK portable Mt William with 3/5/10/24 GHz in 1996, while the weather was still good. 1 hour later ........
Here we are packing up after a 50 knot breeze and sleet hit Mt William (3,900 feet). A lovely Spring day went to 4 degrees C in 20 minutes! Still managed to Work Trevor VK5NC at 200km's on 3/5 & 10 GHz down from the peak in all this murk!
VK5VF Microwave Beacons
VK5KK installing the 1296, 2403 & 10368 MHz Beacons at VK5VF, in 1994
This series of photo's shows the VK5VF Microwave Beacon installation at Mt Lofty. The First photo was taken when the original 1296 & 2304 MHz beacon were replaced in 1994 with the new exciter PA system. The Panel at the top left shows the three exciters for 1296, 2403 & 10368 MHz. The 3456 MHz exciter has since been put in the blank space. The 3456 Exciter is also to be used to drive the 5760 MHz masthead system to be installed this Spring!
The Electronics in the back of the cabinet are the 1296 & 2403 MHz PA's and control gear. PA's for 3 & 10 GHz are masthead mounted.
More pictures after the next visit!
Page Two Coming Soon!!!