I’m in Keystone, Colorado at about 9,300′ (2,835 M) above sea level; mornings are crisp and chilly (38F/3C), but that doesn’t stop me from putting on a jacket, heading to the balcony and listening to Radio Australia on 9,580 kHz. Despite flaky solar conditions (flaky, frankly, is an understatement) I managed to snag RA Wednesday morning (13:58 UTC) on my Sony ICF-SW7600GR. There was a little fading, and a little local noise, but overall signal quality was quite good.
This recording starts a couple of minutes before the top of the hour; you’ll hear the TOTH news brief and then triple j—a brilliant show dedicated to new Australian music.
If you haven’t already guessed it: yes, the mystery broadcast site I posted on Thursday was WWV/WWVB in Fort Collins, Colorado. Well done, responders! Specifically, the photo shows the southern antennas of WWVB as I departed the site on Thursday, August 28, 2014; for those of you who got that detail, extra credit–!
I’d like to thank the staff at WWV/WWVB for allowing me to visit the site for the better part of the day. WWV is not officially open to tours, so this was a particular honor for me. And this was an especially fun pilgrimage, as WWV was most likely the first shortwave broadcast I ever heard: as I’ve previously noted, when I was a kid my father used to set his watch to WWV every Sunday morning. Now I’ve seen firsthand where that famous tock, tock (and accompanying characteristic tones) originate.
When I return home from my extended travels, I’ll sort through the photos I took at WWV and WWVB, and post them here on the SWLing Post.
In the meantime, I have a few recordings to share with those who are interested in this mecca of chronology. Before leaving WWV, I pulled out my Tecsun PL-380 and my Zoom H2N digital recorder, and recorded all the WWV broadcast frequencies. I captured their 2.5, 5, 10, 15, 20 and even their recently reactivated 25 MHz signals.
I made these recordings in the conference room at WWVB broadcast house. As you can imagine, it was simply not at all necessary to extend the telescopic antenna. In fact, the signal was so strong, you’ll hear a slight amount of distortion in the voice audio.
Below, you can listen to the recordings of each frequency via the embedded player (click on the title to download the audio). Enjoy!
Up to this point, I used the Tecsun PL-380, but quickly realized that the ‘380 wouldn’t tune to 25 MHz. A quick look at the back of the radio revealed that the ‘380 only tunes up to 21.950 MHz (!). Believe it or not, I’d never noticed this limitation of the PL-380, likely since I rarely tune above 21 MHz for broadcast listening. Learn something new every day…But I couldn’t fail to complete my recordings.
So what did I do? I turned to Matthew Deutch, Chief Engineer at WWV and WWVB, who kindly allowed me to use their Sangean ATS-505 to make the final recording:
Perhaps you can help SWLing Post reader, John Cooper:
I have a mystery I am trying to solve. Apparently there are 2 VOLMET stations with the same call sign of “New York Radio.” The address I am looking for is from WSY70- New York Radio. The address I was given is a different station that uses New York Radio as a station identifier, and is located in Bohemia, NY. It is a AIRINC Com Center station with the call sign KEA5.
WSY 70 is a New York FAA Flight Service Station. I have searched all over to no avail for an address. The frequency is 6,604 kHz USB.
The station manager from the other NY radio KEA5 said the transmitter site was located in Barnaget, NJ; remember that the Bohemia, NY address is a different station, not WSY70.
Hopefully someone out there can be of assistance. Thanks in advance for any assistance.
In 1952, amidst the Cold War, a 338-foot Coast Guard Cutter was transformed into the mobile broadcasting base of the Voice of America. Its mission for more than a decade: send information beyond the Iron Curtain to counter Soviet propaganda in more than a dozen native languages. Daniela Schrier reports from an exhibit honoring the veterans and broadcasters who served aboard the ship in the waters off of Rhodes, Greece.