ARRL highlights a post by The Space Weather Woman, Dr. Tamitha Skov, that notes the role amateur radio technology could play in over-the-horizon radio communications on Mars
I am still smiling at the huge response I got to a post I put up on Twitter this week. A newbie to our Space Weather community dared to talk about Amateur Radio as if it were an outdated hobby– whoops, bad idea. I gently educated him.
In doing so, I roused many radio amateurs and emergency communicators, who added their own comments and talked about their own personal experiences in the field. It was very gratifying.
What I hadn’t expected, however, was the strong interest in the concept that amateur radio will be critical to establishing over-the-horizon radio communications on planets like Mars in the near future.
This idea brings me back to how we managed to communicate over long distances many decades before we had satellites, internet or cellular networks. In terms of wireless communications on Earth, we were very much in the same place back in the early 1900s that we find ourselves in now when we think about colonizing Mars.
Yet few people realize that despite all our advanced technology, we can’t bring a cell phone to Mars. We will need to fall back on our ‘old ways’ of doing things when it comes to communicating on other planets. Isn’t it funny how ‘old’ things become ‘new’ again?
The Martello Tower group will once again be running a special event station GB5RC from the Radio Caroline ship the MV Ross Revenge over a long weekend 3rd to 5th August.
This weekend we have arranged 6 trips out to visit the ship for a tour of the ship including studios, transmitter room etc. There will be 3 trips on both the Saturday and same on the Sunday and each trip can carry up to 11 visitors.
Each trip is for the whole 11 people and cost is £275 so if you fill the boat it’s just £25 per person. Sailing times are 1.30pm 4pm and 6.30pm and each trip is around 2.5 hours round trip and will be from Mersey island in Essex.
Bookings will need to be paid in full. Please note we are not taking individual bookings for spaces on trips only bookings of £275 per trip. This is on a first come paid bookings only.
LED Bulb RF Pollution – Elektor Magazine investigates
DARC, the German national amateur radio society, are requesting amateurs to send LED bulbs which pollute the RF spectrum to the magazine Elektor for investigation
A Google English translation reads:
Elektor-Verlag GmbH calls all readers and especially all radio amateurs to send non-compliant LED bulbs including power supplies. Elektor wants to investigate this EMC-technical and then forward it to the competent market surveillance of the BNetzA.
The reason for the action: As a result of a press release of the DARC in September 2017 on the significantly increasing interference of radio communications, other radio services and the DAB reception by non-EMC compliant LED bulbs Elektor had investigated such lamps (as well as LED strips). The result showed a progressive electromagnetic pollution.
The Federal Network Agency as competent authority for market surveillance in accordance with the EMVG has welcomed the call for the submission of suspicious copies. In addition, the Federal Agency would like to be informed if disturbing lamps attract attention. She then wants to investigate this situation and take the products out of the market, if they are still offered.
Please send suspicious copies
Please enclose a note with the words “EMC LED lamp” so that everything runs correctly in the inbox. You can also announce your submission via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject “EMC-LED-Lamp”. Elektor Verlag GmbH then checks the lamp, publishes an update if necessary and informs the Federal Network Agency.
I get just as excited as my kids when I receive any communications from the International Space Station. This past week, we fit an ARISS contact fit into our hectic schedule during lunch break. I gave both of my kids a handheld radio and we all listened together as the ISS passed overhead.
Right on schedule, we heard NA1SS, but it sounded like they were struggling to make contact with KD2IFR at the Central Islip Union Free School District in Central Islip, NY.
I made a short video about one minute into the scheduled contact. I believe both parties were forced to move to their backup channel because we never heard an exchange–only NA1SS calling KD2IFR:
Thanks for posting that video, Mark. By the way, I love your FT-817ND setup!
In fact, the King’s High School ARISS contact snagged some excellent publicity via the BBC. Here’s an article via the Southgate ARC:
King’s High School ARISS contact on BBC TV
On April 19 student Eleanor Griffin led the live question and answer session between King’s High School (GB4KHS) and astronaut Ricky Arnold KE5DAU on the International Space Station (OR4ISS)
King’s High School strongly encourage their girls to develop their interests both inside and outside the classroom. This culture of empowerment led one of their girls to apply to ARISS Europe (Amateur Radio on the International Space Station) for a highly prestigious link-up to the International Space Station.
Nicola Beckford reporting on the contact for the BBC – credit KHS
When Eleanor Griffin was selected to hold a space conversation with an astronaut, she was inspired to set up the Warwick Mars Project, for students across the Warwick Independent Schools Foundation, to further interest in Space Science. Eleanor says: “The moon landings belong to the generation of our grandparents, and the International Space Station to our parents. What will happen in our generation? Will Mankind travel to another planet?”
When asked what the incredible experience of the ISS contact had taught her Eleanor replied “Just do it! No one is going to stop you, if you just go and pursue your dreams, you really can do anything.”
The ESA just discovered a second magnetic field surrounding our planet
A trio of satellites studying our planet’s magnetic field have shown details of the steady swell of a magnetic field produced by the ocean’s tides.
Four years of data collected by the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Swarm mission have contributed to the mapping of this ‘other’ magnetic field, one that could help us build better models around global warming.
Physicist Nils Olsen from the Technical University of Denmark presented the surprising results at this year’s European Geosciences Union meeting in Vienna, explaining how his team of researchers managed to detail such a faint signature.
“It’s a really tiny magnetic field,” Olsen told BBC correspondent Jonathan Amos. “It’s about 2 – 2.5 nanotesla at satellite altitude, which is about 20,000 times weaker than Earth’s global magnetic field.”
On a fundamental level, both fields are the result of a dynamo effect produced by charged particles being sloshed around in a fluid.
The stronger magnetic field that tugs on our compass needle forms from the steady movement of molten rock deep under our feet.
This field also leaves its signature in the alignment of particles embedded in Earth’s crust, a pattern that has also been analysed in detail by Swarm