[amsat-bb] ND9M/MM Op Sked: 13 March and Rare Grid DM02
Clary, James T, Civilian
James.T.Clary.civ at MSC.NAVY.MIL
Fri Mar 11 21:54:35 PST 2011
We're wrapping up our assignment in the San Diego area. Thankfully, the
tsunami that resulted from the earthquake in Japan was pretty much a
non-event for us, but it was interesting to witness all the different
types of alerts (government, military, and civil) that went out in the
We are scheduled to depart our local anchorage this coming Sunday, 13
March, at 1500Z and head for the Panama Canal. We're due to arrive there
and transit the Canal on the 23rd and then finish up the trip at
Jacksonville on the 29th.
I asked the ship's captain to detour the ship a few miles once we get
underway so that we would sail southbound through DM02, and he agreed to
the request. This is one of the rarest grids to get for those trying to
work all 488 grids in the Continental USA. San Clemente Island is
located partially in DM02, but the island is controlled by the Navy,
which only allows military personnel and contractors to come to the
island. Also, quite a bit of the grid square is covered by areas used
for testing things that go boom.
(The ARRL offers the "Fred Fish Memorial Award" for working all 488 grid
squares on 6 meters only. There's currently no award for working all 488
grids by satellite, but efforts are being made to get one going.)
That's the good part of the detour. The bad part is that the four hours
or so that we'll be in DM02, there will be only two satellite passes
available to work the grid. One is AO27 which will favor the eastern
states and provinces but will only be 6 degrees for me. Since I set up
my gear on the ship's flight deck which is a bit more than 100 feet
above the water line, I can usually hear AO27 throughout its entire
7-minute window when it's available to me even at low satellite
elevations like this pass will be.
The other pass that I'll be on from DM02 will be either VO52 starting at
13/1712Z or the second AO27 pass that turns on at about 13/2111Z.
Neither of those two passes hits the eastern areas.
We'll cross into DM01 after that and turn southeast to follow the Baja
coastline toward DM11 and DM10 and on down towards Panama.
Our general direction of travel will be southeast which will typically
take us through three different grids each day and probably a fourth and
sometimes a fifth. I'll be on from as many grids as I can, including in
the middle of the night when it's necessary.
Here is the planned sked:
VO52 - 13/1712Z - DM13 or DM03 or DM02
AO27 - 13/1930Z - Approx turn on time - DM02
AO27 - 13/2111Z - Approx turn on time - either DM02 or DM01
AO7 - 14/0040Z - if in Mode B - DM01 or DM11
VO52 - 14/0229Z - Probably DM00 or DM10
AO7 - 14/0236Z - if in Mode B - Probably DM00 or DM10
FO29 - 14/0938Z - Looks like DL09 or DL19
AO7 - 14/1440Z - DL18 ?
Will try to hit these:
AO27 - 13/2251Z - Approx turn on time - DM01 or DM11
AO51 - 13/2314Z - DM01 or DM11
FO29 - 13/2331Z - DM01 or DM11
VO52 - 14/0402Z
My work sked is from 0800-1700 ship's time every day, including
weekends. Starting Sunday when Daylight Savings Time begins, those hours
translate to 1500-0200Z. Other than my lunch period which is very
flexible, I'll hit passes during my work hours if possible. As we
approached the States last month, I was able to get in quite a few
passes during that time frame; hopefully I'll be as lucky as we head
towards the East Coast.
Jim, ND9M / VQ9JC
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