First full power day on QO-100

The male to male SMA connector that Neil, G7UFO kindly posted to me arrived late this afternoon and I wasted no time getting it connected between the 2.4Ghz up-converter and the 12w amplifier.

Male to Male SMA connector for QO-100 Ground Station
Male to Male SMA connector for QO-100 Ground Station

Initially when I powered up the 12v to 28v converter board the output voltage was only showing 22v and so I had to adjust the onboard variable resistor to get the voltage closer to the recommended 28v for the amplifier. I decided to run the amplifier at 27v so that it wasn’t being pushed to it’s full and so readjusted the voltage converter back down to 27v. This seems to work very well with the amplifier not getting very warm at all during use.

M0AWS QO-100 2.4Ghz Uplink Hardware.
M0AWS QO-100 2.4Ghz Uplink Hardware.

Getting on air I was really impressed at how strong my signal was on the 10Ghz downlink. With my own signal peaking 5/9+10dB I was very happy with the performance of the ground station.

I made a few contacts very quickly with the first being OH5LK, Jussi from Helsinki Finland. Jussi was actually the first station I worked on CW too when I was running just 200mW, it was great to have him for both of my first contacts on QO-100.

I then went on to work a few stations from Wales, Germany, Poland and Belgium but, the one that I was totally shocked to get on my first real day of QO-100 operations was ZD7GWM, Garry (HuggyBear) on St. Helena Island, South Atlantic Ocean. This is an Island that I have never had a contact with before on any band and so I was extremely happy to get a new first especially on my first QO-100 day.

Garry and I chatted for some 25 minutes covering many topics, it was great to have an armchair copy over such a distance, something that would be impossible on the HF bands. What a great way to start my QO-100 satellite career!

One of the things I really like about the operators on QO-100 is that they have time to stop and chat, this is so refreshing and a rarity today. I’m really going to enjoy this satellite.

You can see all the details of my QO-100 contacts in my Online Satellite log.

More soon …