RSGB Convention

RSGB Colour LogoThe early booking discount for the RSGB Convention has been extended until August 31.

The Convention takes place in Milton Keynes, October 9-11, and there is an impressive line up of speakers planned, including:

• Ionosondes by Dr Ruth Bamford
• Regular 3000km+ contacts on 144MHz meteor scatter and tropo by John Regnault, G4SWX
• Reduced bandwidth digital TV by Noel Matthews, G8GTZ
• What makes the pings go ping? A deeper understanding of meteor scatter by John Worsnop, G4BAO
• The Raspberry Pi in your shack by Mike Richards, G4WNC
• Modelling and building Yagis for lower noise by Justin Johnson, G0KSC
• How do we get more activity on VHF/UHF? by John Regnault, G4SWX and Richard Staples, G4HGI
• Some reflections on aircraft scatter by John Quarmby, G3XDY
• Datamodes made easy by Mike Richards, G4WNC
• An update on LNBs for 10 GHz reception by Bryan Harber, G8DKK
• YOTA Wales and Italy by Mike Jones, 2E0MLJ and the RSGB Youth Committee

The after-dinner speaker on Saturday evening will be Howard Long, G6LVB. Howard is probably most well-known within the amateur world as the designer of the FUNcube Dongle SDR and his work with AMSAT-UK.

Further information on the Convention is at http://rsgb.org/main/about-us/rsgb-convention/

SUWS WebSDR supports Meteor Scatter enthusiasts

Meteor pings received on SUWS WebSDR

Meteor pings received on SUWS WebSDR

The SUWS WebSDR, a popular resource for the Amateur Satellite and 434 MHz High Altitude Balloon communities, has recently been upgraded to support VLF and 49.990 MHz for Meteor Scatter observations.

The SUWS team hope that these new bands will further enhance the capabilities of the WEB SDR, which already covers a large proportion of the 2m, 70cm and 3cm Amateur bands.

The bands were added in order to try and replicate some of the work already undertaken by Dr David Morgan 2W0CXV and to make the SDR available as an on-line resource for others who are interested in observing such phenomena.

https://amsat-uk.org/2015/06/09/the-generation-of-vlf-emissions-by-meteors/

Antenna's at SUWS WebSDR site in Farnham

Antenna’s at SUWS WebSDR site in Farnham

Performance on the VLF bands is now quite good, but it still suffers slightly from some electrical noise from other equipment in the site and Sferic noise (Lightning discharges) from about 4 kHz upwards.

50 MHz is currently operating on a temporary antenna, but it is possible to hear the local beacons and repeaters, plus more distant Amateur stations during Sporadic E openings. So it is a good indicator of band conditions, but is probably not quite sensitive enough at the moment to allow detection of some of the weaker meteor pings emanating from the BRAMS CW radar on 49.97 MHz and IEPR CW radar on 49.99 MHz

However 143 MHz is working well and Pings from Graves on 143.05 MHz can be heard quite frequently.

Here is an example of how the WEB SDR can be used to detect meteors.

It is possible by looping a PC sound card input and output whilst running a web browser, to use Spectrum Lab to display a waterfall of the audio from the PC. Then by opening multiple instances of the WEB SDR in the browser, selecting USB and setting each SDR instance to a slightly different centre frequency and adjusting the filter pass-bands. It is possible to concurrently capture plots from VLF signals, IEPR, BRAMS and GRAVES and display them side by side on one screen (see attached). Because the same PC, Browser and internet connection is being used for all the signals, the plots should be almost time synchronous.

The SUWS team hope that these new enhancements will be enjoyed by their users, and expect that further improvements will continue to be made over the coming months.

Use the SUWS WebSDR at http://websdr.suws.org.uk/

Radio Astronomy Group Meteor Scatter Workshop takes place in Northampton on October 31
https://amsat-uk.org/2015/08/11/rag-meteor-scatter-workshop/

Getting started in Amateur Radio Meteor Scatter (MS)
http://www.geekshed.co.uk/getting-started-in-meteor-scatter-ms/

AMSAT-UK https://amsat-uk.org/
Twitter https://twitter.com/AmsatUK
Facebook https://facebook.com/AmsatUK
YouTube https://youtube.com/AmsatUK

AMSAT-UK publishes a newsletter, OSCAR News, which is full of Amateur Satellite information. A sample issue of OSCAR News can be downloaded here.
Join AMSAT-UK via the online shop at http://shop.amsat.org.uk/

What is Amateur Radio ? http://www.essexham.co.uk/what-is-amateur-radio

Radio Astronomy Group Meteor Scatter Workshop

BAA-RAG LogoA BAA RAG Workshop on Meteor Scatter is planned for  Saturday, October 31 in Northampton, the keynote speaker will be Jean-Louis Rault F6AGR.

Paul Hyde G4CSD writes:

Please note that we are going to hold a one-day workshop on Meteor Scatter at Northampton Natural History Society on October 31.  This will be a joint meeting with the BAA Meteor Section.  As always the event will be open to non-BAA members.

The objectives of the day will be to show what is possible through meteor scatter, to help beginners set up a meteor observing system, and to help existing observers develop their activities.  I very much hope that we can come out of the day with the basis of a collaborative observing project that will complement optical and video work.

The keynote speaker will be Jean-Louis Rault F6AGR who is President of the Radioastronomy Commission of the Société Astronomique de France and the International Meteor Organisation Radio Commission Officer. He will talk on the meteor science domains in which radio is offering valuable data, what can be done using amateur-level equipment, and the scope for pro-am collaborations using the French FRIPON programme (see www.fripon.org) as an example.

This will be supported with presentations from other speakers, of which I have several offers at present, but please don’t hesitate to mail me with another!

Paul Hyde G4CSD
Coordinator, BAA RAG
g4csd<at>yahoo.co.uk

Radio Astronomy Group
https://twitter.com/BAARAG
https://groups.yahoo.com/group/BAA-RAG
http://www.britastro.org/radio/

GB1DS – Amateur Satellites and Meteor Scatter

Meteor Scatter Propagation - SNOTEL

Meteor Scatter Propagation – SNOTEL

Run by the Brecon & Radnor Amateur Radio Society, GB1DS will operate on most bands and satellites on the weekend of August 15-16, coinciding with the annual Perseids meteor shower which will make for an incredible operation.

In co-operation with the Brecon Beacons National Park, the station aims to promote the incredible beauty of the Beacons and surrounding areas during such a special time. One of only five Dark-Sky reserves in the world and the only one in Wales.

More information about the Brecon Beacons and its Dark-Sky reserve can be found at http://www.breconbeacons.org/stargazing

Information on the station can be found at http://qrz.com/db/gb1ds

The Essex-based Loughton & Epping Forest Amateur Radio Society (LEFARS) recently tried Meteor Scatter, see http://lefars.org.uk/WPblog/2015/08/10/meteor-scatter/

Getting started in Meteor Scatter (MS) http://www.geekshed.co.uk/getting-started-in-meteor-scatter-ms/

Free WSJT software http://physics.princeton.edu/pulsar/k1jt/

Meteor Scatter Information
http://www.mmmonvhf.de/ms.php
http://rsgb.org/main/technical/propagation/meteor-scatter/

Radio Astronomy Group Meteor Scatter Workshop Oct 31 with Jean-Louis Rault F6AGR
https://amsat-uk.org/2015/08/11/rag-meteor-scatter-workshop/