End of the World Station contacts OSCAR Satellite

The N0D team had a very successful operation celebrating the Mayan Calendar End of the World which some expected would occur on 21 December 2012.

In celebration, experienced satellite operators Allen Mattis, N5AFV, and Andy MacAllister, W5ACM, operated special event station N0D on the available satellite passes from December 15th, 2012, through December 22nd, 2012.

A total of 142 satellite contacts were made, and 29 US states, Canada, Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico and Brazil were worked. A total of 53 contacts were made on FM satellite SO-50. On the linear satellites AO-07, FO-29 and VO-52 a total of 89 contacts were made using both SSB and CW. It was especially nice to work Paulo, PV8DX, and Hector, CO6CBF, with CW.

A contact was also made with Mexican special event station 4A0MAYA also celebrating the Mayan Calendar event. The N0D team thanks the OSCAR satellite community for their patience and understanding during occasional periods of congestion on the satellites related to the N0D operation.

As part of the special event, the South Texas Balloon Launch Team launched the Doomsday Balloon, BLT-32 'To the End of the World and Float', to prepare the world for its demise! The launch occurred at 2310 UTC on Saturday Dec 15th from Covey Trails Airport in Fulshear, Texas.

BLT-32 was designed as a 'floater' with hopes that it would reach Europe. The balloon floated eastward for 450 miles and burst at an elevation of approximately 106,000 feet when the rising sun on the morning of Dec 16 th warmed the balloon causing the helium to expand. The balloon came down approximately 15 miles NNW of Pascagoula, MS and efforts have been successful to recover the instrument package.

N0D was also very active on the HF bands throughout the event and over 2,500 amateur radio contacts were made. All 50 US States and 54 DXCC countries were worked on the HF bands. N0D QSLs are available via KK5W (SASE required).