This monster 3.7 metre diameter dish was used to make VK2ALU's historic 10GHz EME contact with G3WDG on the 18th August 1996. The contact was the culmination of a number of one-way tests between the two stations. The contact took 25 minutes of a 50 minute common "window" to complete. Reports of M/O were exchanged over the 17,000km terrestrial path.
The 10GHz output power at VK2ALU was approximately 20 watts. The receiver noise figure is around 1.5dB.
Lyle Patison, VK2ALU lives in Wollongong, New South Wales. He is retired, over 70 years of age and is a very active microwaver, both operating and constructing. All his gear has been made by him from "scratch" as there is not a high level of microwave interest in the country.
Three years ago, using a 1.75m dish, he made the first Australia to USA 10GHz EME contact when he worked Jim Vogler, WA7CJO.
The photograph above shows the 3.7M dish mounted on a home constructed trailer. The whole assembly is normally stored by the side of the house and has to be towed out on to the driveway for EME tests. The "window" to the UK is the dip in the skyline on the left side of the picture.
The 10GHz transverter and TWT amplifier, together with all associated change-over switching , is mounted in the large metal, waterproof box on the back of the dish. The operating position is inside the basement garage where the low frequency end (144MHz) of the system and a dish control unit are manned by Lyle and a second operator. several other local amateurs help with the setting up of the dish. 3 coax lines and 60 control cables connect the operating desk with the dish!
Lyle has developed an automatic tracking system to keep the dish aimed at the Moon (with 0.2 degrees). Details of this were published in the October 1996 issue of the RSGB Microwave Newsletter.
VK2ALU can be reached by e-mail at:
He would be please to hear from others interested in 10GHz EME
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