Association des Radio Amateurs de Nouvelle Caledonie (ARANC), the amateur radio society of New Caledonia, is pleased to report that the TXØDX Chesterfield Islands DXpedition is in its final stages of preparation, as some of the operators are already gathering in Noumea.
A last-minute operator change occurred since Tim, N4GN was not able arrange his business commitments to match the expedition schedule. Tim's slot has now been filled by Trey Garlough, N5KO who will join TXØDX as a member of the CW team. Trey is a high-caliber CW operator, claiming the new CQWW CW all-band record in 1999. He is also no stranger to lonely islands!
The final operator roster now consists of FK8GM, FK8HC, JA1BK, N5KO, N7NG, OH1RY, OH2BC, OH2BH and OH2RF. N4GN will continue to support TXØDX as web master and a member of the pilot team.
The following transmit frequencies will be used by TXØDX:CW: 1834.5, 3504, 7004, 10104, 14024, 21024, 24894, 28024 and 50115 kHz
During the WPX SSB Contest (0000 UTC 25 March through 2359 UTC 26 March), the transmit frequency 21445 kHz will be used.
Four Yaesu FT1000MP HF stations and a dedicated 6-meter station (Yaesu FT655) will be used. Two stations--15 SSB and 15 CW--will be activated on a nearly continuous basis to provide everyone a reasonable access to their first QSO. Other bands will be activated to capture complimentary openings to various parts of the world. Since TXØDX is potentially a new DXCC entity, the goal of maximizing the number of individual DXers logged will guide the operating strategy.
DXers should keep watching the frequencies 14195 and 21295 kHz, starting 16 March to obtain the latest progress reports. TX8CI/MM will be activated en route to the Chesterfields. Remember that this DXpedition is highly dependent on the weather situation since it is taking place during the typhoon season.
The DX community may also follow the DXpedition's progress through the TXØDX web site (http://www.n4gn.com/tx0dx/). This site will be updated regularly as the operation proceeds. Recent additions include the biographies of the team members, details regarding the operating site layouts at TXØDX, and a propagation tool to assist in identifying the most likely band openings to TXØDX from a variety of locations around the world. The TXØDX team is very thankful to W6/G4VPM, K7WX and K9LA who made this propagation tool available.
While TX8CI will be used during the early phase of the operation, the TXØDX call sign is expected to be activated at 0000 UTC on 23 March, when the IARU has agreed to release their position statement regarding the ARANC membership status, directly linked to the Chesterfields' DXCC status.
The team at TX8CI/TXØDX would like to wish everyone success in contacting the first new DXCC entity of the new millennium.