A Beverage antenna is a long horizontal wire antenna pointed in the direction of the signals that are intended to be received. Patented in 1921, it was used for transatlantic reception of radiotelegraphy signals with antennas of up to 9 miles long. Of course not everyone has 9 miles worth of real estate (or for that matter 9 miles worth of wire), but there are contemporary receive antennas of the Beverage design used to good effect on KiwiSDR receivers.
Bob NH6XO has a 220 foot long Beverage antenna on his KiwiSDR in Hawaii. He writes on QRZ:
The Beverage antenna is made of about 220 feet of insulated #12 solid copper installed an “average” height of 6 feet. The Beverage antenna orientation is approximately 190 degrees true. For what it is worth, the Koolau Mountain Range blocks most signals from the West. As my interest is North America and Europe, leaving the antenna unterminated allows it to work well to the North and East.
W3HFU has several KiwiSDR systems set up, including one with a 500 foot Beverage antenna pointed towards Europe from his location in Maryland.
I live in a low noise rural area, and have lots of antennas :)
The "Pembleton Farm" KiwiSDR, located north of Ann Arbor, MI in Northfield Township, has a 230 meter / 750 foot Beverage antenna, pointed to the north. This is the closest SDR to my location, and it routinely gives me better reception results than any antenna I've been able to put up at home.
I haven't found an easy way to search the KiwiSDR database by antenna type, and if the operator doesn't include the antenna in the description it can be catch as catch can. One that I haven't tried yet but that looks promising is the VE6WZ Beverage array in Alberta - it promises 15 wires covering 9 directions from the Canadian prairie. Lots more details of construction and design on the VE6WZ QRZ page, almost 4 km of wire all told!
Why do these Beverage antennas work so well? It's a good design for long distance directional reception, and has been known for that for a very long time (100+ years). These antennas tend to get installed in low noise rural environments because where else can you get enough real estate to put them in? And perhaps most important, if you see a 500 foot antenna in active use you know that someone has made an investment in the hobby, and you really can't count on that for every KiwiSDR out there on the net.
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