My mood has not been so bright lately. The weather has dipped into late Autumn which never makes me feel good. Tropo has pretty well gone and there is a long wait for a good meteor scatter opening. I have been busy with work, yes WORK. Not that work is a total loss as I am sitting beside the radios and the receivers are running. Plus listening to the cricket as well of course.
Also darkening my psychology is that I am soon going to need surgery. My gut has gone out of resonance and needs less capacitance and more resistance. For now it just displays all the non-resonant behaviour we might expect, such as howling harmonic spikes and red hot output stages.
At least after the operation my weight might be less of a problem. They will be taking a bit out, which should help reduce my Body Mass Index.
Pressing on, I managed to work somebody on aurora, and on 2m, and even on CW! On 12 October I worked SM6BFE at 55a, done at a good pace for CW in such conditions. As usual I ignore anyone going to fast, which is most of them.
Also as usual I ignore the "predictions" for Sporadic E made based on the weather, preferring to look to the geomagnetic situation. This is because the predictions based on the weather don't work for me, while ones made on the basis of geomagnetic conditions sometimes do.
The aurora was predicted by the usual means three days earlier and here was the report on Solarham.
|Solarham's report on 12 October 2021 |
Working one station was all I could do as I had to go to the hospital for a scan. But one aurora contact so far this year is one more than last year. At last the new sunspot cycle may be getting going, if slowly.
Solarham was back at it on 16 October saying things would hot up on 18 October and suggested this would last for several days.
|Solarham's warning 16 October 2021.|
Some Sporadic E results started coming in on 6m on 17 October and they carried on until 20 October. I did not hear any auroral propagation, but I was happy enough with Es. As is often the case at this time of year the best results were clustered around 12:00. Whilst I have no evidence for this, it seems to me that it takes both peak sun angle plus peak geomagnetic activity to allow some sporadic E. The usual summer double peak of Es does not seem to happen in Autumn and Winter.
|50MHz contacts at GM4FVM 17 to 20 October 2021|
What resulted was 64 Es QSOs on 6m in October. Why do so many operators not look for Es during the Winter? I did and worked 19 countries with a 2137km ODX. Whatever the points made by those who look to winds in the atmosphere to explain all this, geomagnetic observations predicted it rather well.
We cannot expect these things to occur exactly as planned. There is too much variability in the unstable Earth/Sun magnetic relationship to make it simple. Quite often there appear to be likely events at three days range which turn out to be non-existent on the expected day. There is a lot of space between me and the Sun. It is difficult to predict how launching a pulse of ionised particles fired off a rotating Sun will reach into space as their angle and velocity will affect whether or not they arrive here.
So, will this come to anything?
|Solarham warning 29 October 2021.|
I will be listening on 6m, 4m and 2m just in case of aurora or Es or even "Auroral Es" - three different possibilities on three different bands.
Or perhaps I will hear nothing.
This is why I like VHF, you just never know.