Personal Space Weather Station

 

The Personal Space Weather Station project ultimately aims to create a small, multi-instrument system that can make ground-based measurements of the space environment.  The observations from this project will not only be useful to the owner of the system, but also aggregated into a central database for space science and space weather research purporses. Initial work focuses on the development of a scientific-grade high frequency (HF) radio receiver, as well as the necessary software and network infrastructure. This project is led by the The University of Scranton, in collaboration with the Tucson Amateur Packet Radio, Inc. (TAPR)Case Western Reserve University / Case Amateur Radio Club W8EDU, the University of Alabama, the New Jersey Institute of Technology Center for Solar Terrestrial Research (NJIT-CSTR), and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Haystack Observatory.

PSWS Components

The Personal Space Weather Station is a modular system, with each module being developed by a different team. Visit the links below to learn about the different parts of the PSWS.

Research Questions

The PSWS project is motivated by questions both from the amateur radio and science communities.

Science Questions

  • How does the ionosphere respond to inputs from space and from the neutral atmosphere?
  • How does the ionosphere couple with the neutral atmosphere and with space?
  • What are the sources of medium and large scale traveling ionospheric disturbances?
  • What are the causes of Sporadic E?

Amateur Radio Questions

  • How do disturbances such as solar flares, geomagnetic storms, and traveling ionospheric disturbances affect radio wave propagation?
  • How does ionospheric science help amateur radio operators improve communications?
  • How can I make measurements in my own backyard that will help improve my amateur radio operations?

Get Involved

We are always looking for new people to get involved! Projects include system design and testing, data acquistion, and data analysis. Visit our Get Involved page to learn how to join the HamSCI Community.

PSWS Resource Links

Please visit the Space Weather Station Working Page for a variety of links and resources related to the HamSCI PSWS Project.

Acknowledgments

We gratefully thank the many volunteers who make this project run, as well as the support of National Science Foundation Grants AGS-2002278, AGS-1932997, and AGS-1932972.

 

A call for abstracts is now open for the 2022 HamSCI Workshop, which will be hybrid in-person and virtual March 18-19, 2022 at The U.S. Space and Rocket Center Educators Training Facility in Huntsville, Alabama. Abstracts are due February 1, 2022. The primary objective of the HamSCI workshop is to bring together the amateur radio community and professional scientists. This year's theme is The Weather Connection, with invited speakers Dr. Tamitha Skov WX6SWW and Mr. Jim Bacon G3YLA presenting tutorials on the impacts of both space and terrestrial weather on the ionosphere, and a keynote presentation by Dr. Chen-Pang Yeang on Ham Radio and the Discovery of the Ionosphere. We welcome abstract submissions related to development of the Personal Space Weather Station, ionospheric science, atmospheric science, radio science, space weather, radio astronomy, and any science topic that can be related to space science and/or the amateur radio hobby.

In early 2022, there’s an opportunity for on-the-air camaraderie and friendly competition among HamSCI amateur radio operators:  HamSCI team entries in the January 2022 running of the North American QSO Party, SSB, better known by its acronym, NAQP. As the name of the contest implies, the focus is on North America, though DX stations are welcome to call in and make contacts. We propose having HamSCI team names such as HamSCI Grapes, HamSCI Tangerines, HamSCI Eclipse Watchers, and HamSCI SuperDARNs. Mark your calendars for Saturday, January 22, 2022, 1800z - 0600z, for some SSB, on-the-air, work-your-fellow-HamSCI-members kind of fun! Gary Mikitin, AF8A, has volunteered to organize and register the teams.  If you would like to participate, please contact him via <gmikitinaf8a> <at> gmail <dot> com.  Gary can answer any questions you might have about operating in the NAQP.

Our sense of sound can be a powerful tool in exploring and analysing data collected from satellites. But what is the best way to make this data audible? Space science researchers at Imperial College London are asking for input from communities with relevant expertise (including Audio, Citizen Science, Music, Public Engagement, and Science Communication) to help us choose the best method of making Ultra-Low Frequency waves around the Earth audible. Fill out our quick survey telling us which you think sounds best. It shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes. Your valuable feedback and recommendations will help space scientists around the world to improve science communication, public engagement, and citizen science.

If you would like further information please contact Dr Martin Archer, Stephen Hawking Fellow in Space Physics at Imperial College London via m.archer10@imperial.ac.uk. Thank you for your help!