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AO-7 World Distance Record QSOs Between OM3BD in Slovakia (JN88mf) and AC0RA in Iowa (EN31vx and EN41ad)

July 2 and 4, 2012

Wyatt AC0RA and I (Bill OM3BD) have twice broken the record for the longest distance QSO via the AO-7 satellite. First, on July 2, 2012, our 7849km QSO surpassed the prior 7843km record set by PY5LF and K3SZH in 2010. Then, just two days later on the 4th of July, we broke our own record with a 7903.55km QSO.

Wyatt did all the hard work by waking up at 3am, driving to hills an hour away from his home, setting up his station, and working me before sunrise. It appears that an even longer distance is attainable. It has been reported that AO-7 has a "theoretical maximum range" of 7907km, but in light of our 30 second QSO on July 4, I would guess that at least 7950km is doable, at least with some height, luck, and fast talking. Even 8000km seems possible.

My working conditions are an FT847, 2 x 10 element yagi on 2m with SP2000 preamp, and an 8 element yagi for 70cm. Wyatt also used an FT-847, along with a 7 element yagi on 2 meters and a 12 element yagi on 70cm (no preamp).

Wyatt: Alpha Charlie Zero Romeo Alpha, AC0 Romeo Alpha calling OM3BD, 55 Echo November 41. QSL?
Bill: AC0RA, QSL. 55, JN88. Over.
Wyatt: OK, QSL QSL. Looks like we broke 7900 kilometers. 73 73.
Bill: 73, Wyatt, congratulations on the new record.
Wyatt: Thanks for the contact, Bill. 73.

Bill's recording of the July 4 world record QSO

Wyatt's recording of the July 4 world record QSO

Wyatt's recording of the July 2 world record QSO

Bill's recording of the July 2 world record QSO

My antennas and shack:

Wyatt's July 2 GPS and pre-dawn photo:

Wyatt's July 4 GPS (wrong date on display):

Wyatt's portable setup, in daylight:

Wyatt at a hamfest.

See also Wyatt's web page.

For more info about AO-7 and other amateur satellites, see the AMSAT website.

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