Off Island Support – A35JT Pilot Team
To assist the A35JT expedition team get quickly dialled in to what bands are open from when for Tonga, we have enlisted the help of various pilot stations around the globe. The role of the pilot stations are to gather SWL reports as to when stations in their area are hearing the DXpedition. SWL reports containing the date, time, band and mode are then compiled and forwarded to the team on the island, so they will know when they are being heard and adjust their operating schedule for various continents to target them at the right time.
NOTE: pilots do not take NIL complaints, requests for certain bands or modes (wish list), etc. They do NOT have access to the logs.
These will be considered only after the expedition by our QSL manager via the OQRS Busted Call Request function.
To contact the pilot in your region, click on the photo below!
Europe/Africa & Chief Pilot: Bjorn Dettmaring ON9CFG
Bjorn has kindly agreed to be our European Pilot station and also act as our Chief Pilot for the expedition. With a long experience of piloting we welcome Bjorns experience and help in trying to bring Tonga to the world, and especially Europe where it is high on the clublog most wanted list!
We are also asking African stations to also direct their feedback via Bjorn (from a time zone perspective at least).
North America: Steve Hass N2AJ
Steve also has a wealth of piloting experience, and being located himself on the east coast of North America will be well placed to help identify openings for us to exploit to that part of the world.
South America: Ricardo Rodrigues PY2PT
At late notice Ricardo PY2PT has stepped in to act as our South American Pilot. Cesar PY2YP had to withdraw for medical reasons (we wish you luck Cesar – get well soon). I know from past experience that South America can be a little overlooked due to operator numbers, however your QSOs are just as valuable. We hope that Ricardo with your help can find us the best times and bands to call CQ South America!
Japan: Joe Aoki JJ3PRT
We want to provide a Japanese speaking conduit for information flow to the team and are currently canvassing for a pilot station in Japan. While we realize Japan is relatively easy to work from Tonga, Joe and his team will help with inquiries and information sharing about our expedition, and our directed calling strategy in particular. When we are calling for EU, we will try and have another station running at the same time on an adjacent band available to work Japan. In that way we hope we can keep both communities in contact with Tonga.
VK / Oceania: Chris Levingston VK5SA
Chris VK5SA is joining the team to handle enquiries from VK and South Pacific nations. We hope to have a sked with Chris on air as well in case our internet connectivity fails on the island.
Youth and ATNO Pilot: Jim Danielson AC9EZ
Jim is an up and coming DXer who will be joining our pilot team to help bring a focus on finding out when the beginners and little stations are hearing us best so we can hand out the ATNOs! (All Time New Ones). This is Jim’s first time being an expedition pilot so please give him lots of support!