New UK 76 GHz Distance Record Set
Radio amateurs in the United Kingdom have set a new 76 GHz distance record of 102 kilometers (approximately 63.24 miles). The September 14 contact between the team of Chris Towns, G8BKE, and John Hazell, G8ACE, at Batcombe Hill, Dorset (IO80rt59) and Ian Lamb, GW8KQW, in Eglwysilan Mountain, Gwent (IO81io36). This is also believed to be the first 76 GHz contact between England and Wales.
The participating hams used full-duplex narrow-band FM between GW8KQW and G8ACE and one-way FM between G8BKE and G8KQW. Signals on 76GHz were exchanged for more than two hours with a very gradual increase in average signal strength after some initial fading. The participants said it has been very difficult to improve on the previous record distances primarily due to the curvature of Earth; if the path is not line of sight, then it won’t work.
Towns jointly held the original UK distance record on 76 GHz of 79 kilometers (approximately 49 miles) for 11 years. A new world distance record on E band of 252.49 kilometers (approximately 156 miles) was set earlier this summer in the US by Robert Johnson, KF6KVG (CM97di), and Goran Popovic, AD6IW (DM06ms), in Kings Canyon National Park.