• [NEWS UPDATE] – FT4GL to QRT early on Tuesday (June 18th). Thanks to NA East coast pilot, Peter W2IRT who informs the following (via F8FKI).

Marek received the order to leave the island on June 18th @ 0300UTC. More info later on FT4GL blog. Today (June 16th) was his last day operating SSB, and there will now be only one station on the air until the 18th.

Thanks to all those who sent us messages of encouragement for this ATNO day, which enabled some to have at least one QSO with FT4GL. The operation was carried out in SSB and FT8, so propagation was not as good as we had hoped. Marek will continue to operate on SSB until 19:00 UTC, after which he will make another attempt on 80m FT8 as announced and in parallel with RTTY, before taking his usual break. Stay tuned..

https://www.mapsland.com/

Marek was on 80m FT8 last night as planned, but unfortunately a pirate appeared shortly afterwards, as many of you noticed. The 10m FT8 also seems to be open today, and he’s taking advantage of the opportunity to make a number of contacts, notably with Asia. Marek continues to monitor 6m every day, and our pilots continue to be harassed to find out whether he is really listening to this band. We can assure you that he is, and we ask you once again to stop harassing pilots for the 6m band. Some NA regions are still finding it difficult to contact FT4GL, and we’ll be making an effort to do so on 17 and 30m at the most favourable times. Tonight there will be a new attempt on 80m, sorry if there are still pirates – this is beyond our control. The team would like to apologize for the delay in uploading the logs, thank you for your patience. We remind you that tomorrow, June 14, is the first ATNO day…please respect the instructions that have been previously transmitted.

As you know, Marek is active in his free time which means during the day but also in the evening, and has been for two nights in particular. There is no hotel with on-site home service; the rooms are not numerous and you have to share them with other occupants. Marek installed an outdoor station so as not to disturb his colleague in his sleep who occupies the usual room. In order to give the chance to NA who have an opening at night in the direction of Glorieuse, he takes his sleep capital for YOUR PLEASURE, before starting a day of work.

Marek also made good contacts in SSB over 10m despite the disruptions, and was able to make people happy in Asia and Oceania, even though the spread was not at its best. He has already been present two nights on 80m in FT8 and will try to concentrate traffic on 80m for 2 or 3 additional nights. The conditions are not the best in this season and we also have to deal with TAAF restrictions; the antennas must not exceed 8m high, the installation required an inverted L layout, and these rules with the French authorities are non-negotiable. Thank you for your understanding. Good luck to everyone and hope to see you in the FT4GL log.

Marek has just communicated the two days he wishes to dedicate to ATNO. It is for people who HAVE NEVER CONTACTED FT4GL — on Friday, June 14 and Sunday, June 16 from 11 a.m. UTC.. Thanks to the stations who already made the QSO to play the game and give the LITTLE PISTOLs a chance. If this turns into a nightmare, blame the troublemakers and not Marek who wants to give everyone a chance. 

After consultation, and given the number of requests for ATNOs, the team and Marek have decided to give LITTLE PISTOLs and more modestly equipped stations the chance to contact the Glorieuses at least once. Two days of activity will be scheduled, to be announced at a later date. The operation will be carried out in SSB, so we’re asking the international community to play along and give this unique opportunity to those who aren’t yet in the log. We’re counting on you to share as much information as possible, so that the community is informed and the operation can be a success.

Marek’s trafficking continues, through his profession he has acquired strong experience in physical endurance for many years, his abilities are above the majority of humans, like a high-level athlete. This allows him to be active to the maximum of his physical capacities since the start of his activity by sleeping very little each day in the radio station, which is also his workplace, hence a constant presence due to his professional responsibilities at Glorioso.

Since yesterday and as planned, Marek has slowed down his activity in order to recover his strength, to be at maximum capacity again during the last week of traffic. This will result in longer outages each day; night and day.

The 6m traffic finally paid off, yesterday 139 QSOs validated, for the low bands the efforts continue without giving satisfactory results. Concerning the other bands an effort will be made on 40m and 17m in the NA direction, for Europe no difficulties major on all bands, the same for Asia except the 40 and 30m bands.

Following various questions received concerning the fact that FT4GL would use the remote, we confirm that there is no operator who controls the station remotely, for the simple reason that Starlink does not work on the island and that the only means of communication in Glorieuse is Marek’s professional satellite telephone and cannot be used for amateur radio activity. Furthermore, if we had wanted to do remote with an available Starlink connection, we would have announced it and members of the support team would have used this means to do CW that Marek does not know, to satisfy the international community in this mode.

After a little over a week of traffic, here is an update on the situation. As of today, more than 34,000 QSOs in the log with 32% unique and there is a little more than two weeks of traffic remaining. As a reminder to a certain number of DXers, Marek is at Glorieuses for his job, and it is his priority before any radio activity, which requires QRX. This is his first experience and he is doing his best, because let’s not forget that he could have simply not activated Glorieuses for the community…

Concerning the FT8, its traffic is done only with WSJT, following feedback indicating a problem with validating contacts with the RR73, despite resets of PCs, software, settings… and numerous regular power outages also at origin of some of the problems. Still on the subject of FT8, unfortunately there are pirates who install themselves on the same Marek frequencies and send frames in the wrong period, and we cannot do anything about this behavior.

The 80m antenna is installed, the tests have yielded nothing so far. For the 6m despite the five elements this is identical, the ACOM 1000 amplifier planned in particular for the 6m suffered damage during a power outage, however Marek will continue his efforts on these two bands for which there is a strong demand .

Marek will strive to do more SSBs with windows for the “Little Pistol’s” which we ask you to respect in order to give everyone the chance to do at least one QSO with FT4GL, note that the SSB is not possible at night because the radio station is where other people sleep.

Communications with the island are difficult and we do not always have information in real time.

Thank you DXer’s for stopping sending emails to pilots to know when Marek is going to be on what frequency or mode and at what time.

For query requests on QSOs, please send them to f8crs@protonmail.com or f4ftv@orange.fr and wait for the day’s log of the QSO concerned to be downloaded before sending an email.

It’s been four days since Marek started his activity. Upon his arrival, the location planned for the station had to be changed due to a problem with the building’s air conditioning making it impossible to operate there. Another more cramped air-conditioned room was found, modifying the initial antenna installation plan with difficulties in optimizing the choice of locations in view of the structures present.

Today, Marek was able to complete the installation of the second Hexbeam, so for the moment there are two Hexbeams, a vertical from 40 to 10m, a vertical 30m, and the 5 element beam 6m; remaining the verticals 160 /80m to be assembled soon.

Two stations are active as planned, some electrical problems have been reported with the inverters, resulting in some temporary outages, as well as interference linked to equipment external to our installations, which is being resolved and a problem with an amplifier.

For the logs, they are posted online every day, either the morning or evening following the previous day’s traffic. For all requests, contact f8crs@protonmail.com who is responsible for checking and possibly validating the requests. As of May 26, more than 16,000 QSOs, the dupe rate is decreasing. You can consult the log at the following link.

His activity is intensive, which he carries out in spartan conditions at the station, which is also his workplace and place to sleep with very little sleep.

We receive various requests for low bands, 6m, RTTY…. We ask the community to be patient, the operation has just started, it will last three weeks, as a reminder Marek is alone and cannot respond to all requests, the priority is immediately to ATNO, the time to resolve our last technical problems.

Our pilots are starting to give us feedback in order to direct traffic more precisely to satisfy the greatest number of OMs.

  • [MAY 24] – A news update recently appeared on the FT4GL blog – translated below:

Early this morning, Marek started installing the stations, then setting up one of the two Hexbeams and the vertical from 40 to 10m in order to be on the air as quickly as possible. Traffic started on 15m FT8 with F8FKI (Chief Pilot) as the first QSO, and the signals on this band are satisfactory towards all continents, then 20m in SSB, where we notice indiscipline and impoliteness of some. Tomorrow (May 25) he will continue the installation of the second Hexbeam despite a temperature of more than 30° degrees in the shade. The first log which already contains 3500 QSOs will be put online quickly by F8CRS.

FT4GL LOGBOOK

Marek, FT4GL – source: https://ft4gl.blogspot.com/

  • [MAY 24 @ 2000Z ] – Couple of audio recordings of the FT4GL 20SSB signal. First one by Oscar, EA1DR for DX-World. Second by DX-World for their audio.com library collection.

  • [QRV @ 1045Z] –  FT4GL started activity (on 15m FT8) slightly earlier than previously announced. Good luck in the chase!
  • [MAY 24 @ 0645Z] – Pilot station Manu, F8FKI recently published these pictures on his Facebook page (direct from Marek FH4VVK on Glorioso) showing set up on the island. FT4GL should be QRV approx. 1200-1300Z, says Manu.

  • [MAY 23] – From the official FT4GL blog – translated.

End of this morning, Marek took off from Mayotte towards the Grande Glorieuse and confirmed his arrival around 4:00 p.m. local time. Tomorrow morning it begins as planned, the installation of the three stations and part of the antennas, the start of traffic (QSOs) will take place at the end of the afternoon. The Pilots are ready, please go through them if necessary at the following link. As with any operation of this type, we ask operators to be respectful of the instructions and comments made on various networks as a mark of respect for all the work carried out by the entire team over many months, thank you.

  • [MAY 17]

The final preparations are complete, and today the support team consisting of F5RQQ and F5TVL helped Marek FH4VVK prepare the packing for the airlift to Glorieuses, which will take place on Friday May 24, barring any last-minute events.

  • [MAY 16]

Since arriving in Mayotte on Tuesday morning, F5RQQ and F5TVL have wasted no time in making the final technical preparations with Marek FH4VVK, who, far from France, was unable to learn about the particularities of antenna mounting, for example. The first day was devoted to finalizing the software, RTTY / FT8 macros…the complete implementation of a station and testing all the materials received (filters, amplifiers…) in order to detect any possible failure, and the afternoon was dedicated to the assembly of the vertical which will be used from 40 to 10m.

  • [MAY 12]

Today, F5RQQ and F5TVL finalized their suitcases with the last of the equipment that could not be sent in mid-April. Tomorrow they will fly overnight to Paris, heading for Mayotte, where Marek FH4VVK is expecting them for a week.

  • [MAY 10]

On Monday, May 13th, F5RQQ and F5TVL will travel to Mayotte for a week to help Marek, who is very busy with his professional activities. As for the QSLs, as announced OQRS will be available, please consult the dedicated page. Manu F8FKI, our chief pilot, has been freed from his job to be available 100% of the time, from the start of the operation until June 3, in order to better assist and direct the traffic according to feedback from the other pilots.

FT4GL BLOG

  • [MAY 6] –

Here’s the bandplan for upcoming FT4GL DXpedition. Note: No CW. 

In the event of frequency restrictions, particularly for Asia, please contact Pilot F8FKI who will transmit the message to Marek and the FT4GL team. You can also send a cluster spot, but be aware that it will not be seen live by Marek because he has a very limited internet connection. The pilots will be responsible for transmitting the information to the operator as quickly as possible.

Click above to visit FT4GL blog

  • [MAY 5] – 

In the latest weekly DX-World bulletin, we incorrectly stated FT4GL will not be active on 6m. This is not the case and we’re happy to correct in the next edition of the bulletin, just like it’s correctly mentioned below on March 30th. It certainly looks like operator Marek is going to be in great demand with all the bands mentioned – let’s hope he and his support team can please the waiting DXers! Just under 3 weeks to go ! Good luck ! 

  • [APRIL 24] – Translated / pictures from official blog:

The two pallets of equipment arrived in Mayotte on April 23. Still need to receive the band filters which will be supplied by F5CYS, DX ENGINEERING and RA6LBS – will have them at the end of the month. The departure of F5RQQ and F5TVL to Mayotte to help Marek FH4VVK / FT4GL has been brought forward by a day (May 13).  There will be OQRS and this will be clarified shortly.

  • [APRIL 18] – Translated / pictures from official blog:

All the material deposited and grouped at PROSIC (see below) by F5RQQ and F4FTV on Saturday, April 13 was taken care of by our carrier DHL yesterday. The two packages will be sent by plane in a few days to Mayotte, which Marek FH4VVK (FT4GL) will receive.

  • [APRIL 14] – Translated / pictures from official blog:

On March 15, 2024 we officially announced the FT4GL operation after receiving the license from TAAF, despite a first refusal in 2023. In less than a month, the team in charge of supporting Marek FH4VVK, succeeded in its objective of mobilizing international aid, by individual, associative and professional sponsors, in order to acquire the equipment, test it, organize the logistics..a lot of work in addition to our jobs, stress, questions, joy… but we have arrived at this new stage. Yesterday, Jean-Marc F5RQQ and Fabrice F4FTV went to our main sponsor PROSIC – F5HPE, who supports this operation with dedication. Their trip consisted of bringing the rest of the equipment, part of which was already at PROSIC, in order to crate 90% of all the stations. The material will be sent tomorrow by plane to Mayotte, which Marek FH4VVK will receive in the coming days. F5RQQ and F5TVL will go to FHN in a month to help Marek finalize certain technical points and give the last organizational instructions before his flight to Glorieuse. Thanks to everyone who trusted us and helped us so far, the work is not finished.

  • [APRIL 11]

This week F5TVL and F5RQQ created and tested the 160 and 80m low band vertical antennas, a great day of work to cut the many radiaLs of the two antennas which will be installed in an inverted L. [source

  • [APRIL 8]

Last weekend F5RQQ, F4FTV, F5TVL as well as other members of F4KLW; F4FHV and F4IPL came together to prepare and adjust the vertical antenna planned covering 40 to 10m. This week the 160 and 80m vertical antennas will also be tested and at the end of the week the majority of the equipment will be sent to our carrier. [source

  • [APRIL 2] 

The team received the validation certificate for LoTW yesterday. Blog link below:

  • [MARCH 30]

Good news for 6m / 50Mhz fans: FT4GL will also now be QRV on the Magic Band, propagation permitting.

  • [MARCH 19]

Official FT4GL blog is now available. Click on the banner below. 

  • [MARCH 15] –

We are pleased to announce to the international community, with the agreement of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands, an upcoming amateur radio activity will take place from May 24 to June 19, 2024 on the island of Grande Glorieuse – callsign FT4GL.

This operation, planned for more than a year with a lot of effort, has finally been rewarded. It will be atypical and difficult because the Glorieuses are ranked 7th in the DXCC Most Wanted List, and the amateur radio traffic will be carried out exclusively by a single radio amateur, Marek FH4VVK in parallel with his professional duties. We will inform you regularly about the progress of preparations. 

  • [JUNE 7, 2023]

Mark, FH4VVK will be active from Grande Glorieuse, Glorioso Islands as FT4GL later this year.  Support team: F5IRO, F8CRS, F5RQQ. QSL via F4FTV. Check QRZ.com for further updates. A website will be available once dates are firmed up.