The High-frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) will be conducting a research campaign from Oct. 19 to Oct. 28, with transmissions taking place between 1400-0600 UTC (see table below for details). Actual transmit days and times are highly variable based on real-time ionospheric conditions. All information is subject to change. This campaign will be the most scientifically diverse ever conducted at HAARP; some particularly notable experiments include a first-of-its-kind attempt to bounce a signal off of Jupiter, investigation into possible causes of the airglow phenomenon known as STEVE (Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement), and testing the feasibility of using radio transmissions to measure the interiors of near-Earth asteroids. Experiments benefiting from amateur radio support or having citizen science applications are described in the HAARP Letter to the Amateur Radio Community, along with known frequency information. An official HAARP press release is available from the University of Alaska Geophysical Institute.
A new study by Sam Lo et al. from the Centre for Space at the University of Bath entitled "A Systematic Study of 7 MHz Greyline Propagation Using Amateur Radio Beacon Signals" was just published in the peer-reviewed journal Atmosphere.Abstract: This paper investigates 7 MHz ionospheric radio wave propagation between pairs of distant countries that simultaneously lie on the terminator. This is known as greyline propagation. Observations of amateur radio beacon transmitters recorded in the Weak Signal Propagation Reporter (WSPR) database are used to investigate the times of day that beacon signals were observed during the year 2017. The WSPR beacon network consists of thousands of automated beacon transmitters and observers distributed over the globe. The WSPR database is a very useful resource for radio science as it offers the date and time at which a propagation path was available between two radio stations, as well as their precise locations. This paper provides the first systematic study of grey-line propagation between New Zealand/Eastern Australia and UK/Europe. The study shows that communications were predominantly made from the United Kingdom (UK) to New Zealand at around both sunset and sunrise times, whereas from New Zealand to the UK, communication links occurred mainly during UK sunrise hours. The lack of observations at the UK sunset time was particularly evident during the UK summer. The same pattern was found in the observations of propagation from Eastern Australia to UK, and from New Zealand and Eastern Australia to Italy and the surrounding regions in Europe. The observed asymmetry in reception pattern could possibly be due to the increase in electromagnetic noise across Europe in the summer afternoon/evening from thunderstorms. URL: https://www.mdpi.com/2073-4433/13/8/1340
Dr. Frank Howell K4FMH will present a seminar based on his two-part article in the July & August 2022 issues of the Radio Society of Great Britain’s RadCom journal, written with Dr. Scott McIntosh of NCAR in Colorado, titled, “On the Cusp of a Scientific Revolution?” The seminar includes the latest theory construction and model estimation. The seminar will be held on September 1, 2022 at 4 PM Eastern (2000z) during the weekly Solar Eclipse QSO Party Zoom Telecon. Frank is Professor Emeritus at Mississippi State University, Affiliated Faculty at Emory University, and a scientific member of HamSCI.
The Solar Eclipse QSO Party (SEQP) is coming back! Two solar eclipses will be traversing the continental United States over the next two years: an annular solar eclipse on October 14, 2023 and a total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024. These eclipses are going to be the last solar eclipse traversing the continental United States until 2044, and therefore this is our chance to both have some fun on the radio and study these amazing events! During a solar eclipse, the shadow of the moon creates temporary night-like conditions on Earth. This causes the ionosphere to weaken and the atmosphere to cool, therefore causing changes in ionospheric radio propagation. On August 21, 2017, HamSCI coordinated the first Solar Eclipse QSO Party, a ham radio contest-like event that produced data used to study the impact of the eclipse on the ionosphere. HamSCI is planning on have two more SEQPs, one for each of the upcoming solar eclipses. If you would like to help plan for these exciting events and be part of the science team, join us every week on Thursdays at 4 PM Eastern starting September 1, 2022 on our Zoom telecon.
The HamSCI teams at the University of Scranton W3USR and Case Western Reserve University W8EDU were recently awarded a 3-year collaborative National Science Foundation grant to study impacts of the 2023 and 2024 Solar Eclipses on the ionosphere, as well as ionospheric variability that occurs during every day dawn and dusk. The project will be led by Nathaniel Frissell, W2NAF at Scranton and David Kazdan AD8Y, John Gibbons N8OBJ, Rachel Boedicker AC8XY, and Christian Zorman at Case Western. Kristina Collins KD8OXT, Bill Engelke AB4EJ, Steve Cerwin WA5FRF, Phil Erickson W1PJE, Mary Lou West KC2NMC, Bob Gerzoff WK2Y, Rachel Frissell W2RUF, and the entire HamSCI Grape Personal Space Weather Station team played a significant role in winning this grant. NSF funding will provide for about thirty Personal Space Weather Station Grape receivers to be deployed throughout North America. Their locations will be optimized to study the ionospheric impacts simultaneously received from WWV (Fort Collins, CO) on 5 and 10 MHz and CHU (Ottawa, Canada) on 3.33, 7.85, or 14.67 MHz. The HamSCI amateur radio community will be able purchase and field additional stations. All stations will run continuously from deployment through at least the end of the project, and will capture the 2023 and 2024 eclipses. If you would like to participate, please join our Google Group and weekly Grape telecons!
As Solar Cycle 25 begins, amateur radio operators look forward to the return of the exciting propagation conditions associated with solar maximum. The classic paradigm for solar cycle prediction is based on an 11-year sinusoidal pattern of sunspot numbers, with an official NASA-NOAA "consensus" prediction coming from a panel of experts evaluating an ensemble of different types of models. However, the underlying solar cycle mechanism is still not well understood and this consensus prediction can fall short. Scott McIntosh at the U.S. National Center of Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and his team have recently published a new method for predicting the time and amplitude of solar maximum, based on changes in the observed magnetic polarity in different regions of the sun. This new method predicts a stronger Solar Cycle 25 than the NASA-NOAA "consensus" prediction. HamSCI member Frank Howell K4FMH teams up with Dr. McIntosh to review this new methodology and its potential impacts on how we think about solar cycle predictions in a two-part article series currently featured on the cover of RSGB's RadCom magazine. More information can also be found at Frank's blog.