-> Madeira

DX and Radio on Madeira

In July/August 2003 I spent 2 weeks on Madeira Island in the Atlantic. Madeira belongs to Portugal, and is situated 1000 km southwest of the Portuguese mainland and 700 km northwest of Morocco. The neighbouring island Porto Santo is 100 km away. It's an interesiting site for FM-DX.

Madeira FM stations

Portuguese RDP is available with Antena 1 (information, pop and national music), Antena 2(classical music) and Antena 3 (rock and pop). There are several transmitters all over Madeira and Porto Santo as listed in the WRTH. Antena 2 doesn't cover the southwest, but there seems to be a new tx on Porto Santo on 103.3. They all have RDS and are stereo, transmitters seem to use mixed polarisation. I observed some local programmes on Antena 1 and 3. The national Portuguese networks Radio Renascenca and Radio Comercial are not available on Madeira.

Local Radio

Even some small villages have their own stations. I've identified the following stations by myself, except (*) means that I took the names from other sources. I only list stations that I could actually hear unless indicated. In brackets RDS, the other stations don't have RDS. M Radio on FM 96 / AM 1485 is probably inactive.
88.8 Radio Jornal da Madeira, Funchal (RJM-88.8)
89.2 Radio Sao Vicente
89.6 Radio Zarco, Machico *
91.6 Radio Praia (R. PRAIA, Porto Santo
92.0 PEF, Funchal (PEF_FM__)
92.5 Radio Santana *
96.1 Radio Palmeira, Santa Cruz *
98.4 Radio Brava, Ribeira Brava *
98.8 Radio Calheta (RCALHETA)
99.2 Radio Sao Vicente
100.0 TSF Radio Noticias, Funchal
101.0 Radio Popular, Camara de Lobos
102.7 Radio Calheta (RCALHETA)
102.9 Radio Porto Moniz
103.7 Radio Sol, Ponta do Sol (not received)
104.3 Radio Calheta (RCALHETA)
105.8 Radio Santana *
106.8 Radio Clube, Funchal (R.CLUBE)
107.1 Radio Calheta (RCALHETA)

Medium Wave

RDP Antena 1 is active on AM 531 / 603 / 1125 / 1332. PEF uses AM 1530 / 1017 as mentioned in the WRTH.

DX on FM

Long-distance-FM-receiption is constantly possible on Madeira, so what is normal, what DX? All along the south coast you can steadily pick up many stations from the Canaries, 700 km away! If you're on sea level, there are only a few, depending on how strong the tropo is. Some 100 meters above there is constant reception of about 50 stations! Many houses still have VHF-Band-I on their rooftops beaming to the Izana E3 transmitter on Tenerife, though satellite TV now also offers Spanish TV. On the North-east-coast I could pick up "RADIO 2M" (RDS) from Morocco, as well as a French station on 97.5 which was probably Medi 1 from Rabat (1000 km). The signal was constant so I'm sure it was tropo. If you go up to the 1600 m high high plain of Paul da Serra, you can receive steady signals from the Portuguese and Spanish mainland, more than 1000 km away. Some logs:
90.8 Radio Comercial, Lousa 44 kW (COMRCIAL)
92.8 Canal Sur, Jerez S.Cristobal? 80kW
98.6 Radio Renascenca, Monchique Foia 28 kW (___RR___)
103.8 Radio Renascenca, Faro S.Miguel 10 kW(___RR___)
106.3 RNE 5, Jerez 30 kW (RNE_5___)
106.8 RFM, Montejunto 16 kW(__RFM___)
107.4 TSF, Lousa (_T_S_F__)
For all this I used a no-name RDS-car-radio thet proofed to work quite well.

Medium Wave DX

In the late night you can hear some South American stations. But with the Grundig Yacht Boy 400 and the built-in antenna signals were only very weak. Though you're closer to South America, you'd still need a long wire and a better communications receiver to do overseas DX. MW and LW is full of Spanish, French, Morocco and Algerian stations, powerful English and Irish transmitters are weaker and the rest of Europe and Africa doesn't show up. I could neither pick up the Azores though I tried more than once.

Short Wave

The tropical band doens't make much difference to central Europe. During daytime the LUF moves far up. 49m was empty then, the only signal on 41m was Mauretania on 7245.
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