ETO Dual Mode Exercise – Oct 7, 2021 – Recap

ETO Dual Mode Exercise – Oct 7, 2021 – Recap

We had a total of 220 messages sent P2P successfully to 16 operating Target Stations. 

Messages were originated by 121 unique Field Stations (including some Target Stations that also sent messages to other Target Stations).  Some Field Stations sent to more than one Target Station, as a test of propagation.

Comments and recommendations received include:

1)      Having 15 assigned frequencies eliminated pile-ups

2)      Many callers were NOT at 500 Hz, and their calls were rejected by the system

3)      500 Hz bandwidth eliminated most interference whether from QRN or QRM

4)      Much improved over prior tests; kudos to the entire team

5)      Propagation was good, but messages failed because P2P format was not set properly

We are posting links to two spreadsheets of results as well as a P2P map.  Links will be on our website:

In addition, the spreadsheets are also included with this bulletin.

What have we learned for next time?

1)      The frequencies are good, for the most part.  While we are somewhat into the CW/Data (rather than just ‘Data’) portion of the bands, there is a good reason for that.  Mainly, we do NOT want to be interfering with Winlink RMS stations that operate on a 24/7 basis on those ‘data’ frequencies.  We don’t want to interfere with anybody, but there is only so much spectrum and the tiny bite we take is short-lived.  If you encounter compelling reasons that we should do otherwise, please relay that to the team.

2)      Both Field and Target stations need to pay closer attention to the Instructions.  In addition to the very common error of not setting P2P mode within the message window, many Field Stations were not operating in Vara HF P2P 500 Hz mode.  This was covered in BOLD print on the Field Station instruction sheet.  Yet estimates are that at least a third of the participating stations failed that basic step.  As a result, their calls were not accepted by the Target Stations.

3)      Target Stations also had some issues, mainly in the reporting phase.  Several sent in XML, CSV and/or PDF files based on previous exercises.

The bottom line for all of us is that the exercise was a success.  It showed us what works and what doesn’t work, where we need more training and where we seem to be OK.

You can expect to see some video training material available in the near future, and more P2P operation coming up soon!

Thanks to all for your participation in both the Standard Winlink Mode, and the P2P Mode!

~ The ETO Team