10 February 11


When I was cycling to work through campus this morning past the grassy landscaped hillocks just east of one of the engineering buildings, I saw a small refractor telescope pointing southeast set up on a tripod on the grass with a person hovering nearby. I realized that it was being aimed at the sun, which means only one thing: there are sunspots to look at! Any radio geek knows the significance of that: lots of sunspots means higher levels of ionization in the upper atmosphere which means better conditions for shortwave communications. Indeed, when I got into the office and looked at the little Firefox add-on in the lower right corner of the browser, it said that the solar flux index was up to 91, not very high in historical terms, but definitely a sign that the laggardly Solar Cycle 24 now is getting off the ground. Look for good radio DXing possibilities in the days and months ahead.

Posted by at 07:58 PM in Astronomy | Link |
  1. :-)

    dale    10. February 2011, 21:07    Link

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