The K7RA Solar Update
Solar activity eased off over the past week, with average daily sunspot numbers declining nearly 30 points from 161.6 to 131.7, and average daily solar flux down over 12 points from 158.3 to 146. Geomagnetic indicators were quiet. Still, activity remains strong. The last three days of the reporting week (November 4-6) had increasingly stronger sunspot numbers, all higher than the week’s average. The same is true for solar flux values, each of the past few days with numbers higher than the average for the week.
Recently we noted a near-term peak in solar flux at 155 predicted for November 22-25, but now that peak has moved, and values predicted for those dates are 135-140.
A new short term peak is predicted for the next few days, at 150 on November 8, 155 on November 9, 160 on November 10, 155 on November 11-12, 150 on November 13, 140 on November 14-15, 135 on November 16, 130 on November 17-20, 135 on November 21-22, 140 on November 23-28, 145 on November 29 through December 1, 140 on December 2, and 135 on December 3-6.
Predicted planetary A index is 8 on November 8, 5 on November 9-10, 10 on November 11, 12 on November 12, 8 on November 13, 5 on November 14 through December 2, 8 on December 3-4, 5 on December 5-6 and then 8, 10, 8 and 8 on December 7-10.
F.K. Janda, OK1HH, believes we should see mostly quiet geomagnetic conditions on November 8, quiet to unsettled November 9, mostly quiet November 10, active to disturbed November 11, quiet to active November 12, quiet to unsettled November 13, mostly quiet November 14, quiet November 15-18, mostly quiet November 19, quiet November 20-25, mostly quiet November 26, quiet to unsettled November 27, quiet to active November 28-29, quiet November 30, active to disturbed December 1, quiet to unsettled December 2, and quiet December 3-4.
A week ago NASA put out a revised solar cycle prediction. You can read it at http://solarscience.msfc.nasa.gov/predict.shtml. The only difference was that the smoothed sunspot number maximum predicted for this cycle is 65 and in summer 2013. The change is just one point – last month they thought it would be 66 in fall 2013.
Why the prediction for last summer? Because it is a smoothed sunspot number, and that is a value taken from an average over one year. We won’t know the actual number until six months after the fact.
We heard from Bob Foster, N9BGC, again this week. On November 1 he wrote, “Last weekend was the hottest propagation I have heard on 10 meters and 15 meters in my 43 years as a ham. Signals were 5-9 from Kazakhstan to Japan. Hungary was 59 in the evening on 40 meters. Mine is a very modest station: A semi-vintage Kenwood 520SE running barefoot into a ground mounted Gap vertical antenna.”
Jon Jones, N0JK, of Lawrence, Kansas (EM28) reports that on October 31 he heard the VY0SNB beacon on 6 meters on 50.048 MHz at 1620 UTC. This beacon is located in Nunavut, between the northern tip of Quebec and Greenland. Jon says it was probably double-hop E-skip.
Jon also reported (in a message titled “10 Meters Hot”) that back on October 22 he worked G1HPD on 10 meter SSB at 1810 UTC. He wrote, “We have recently moved - so I don't have any HF antennas up yet. I noted spots that 10 was hot to Europe, so I put a stock CB mag. mount whip on the Weber "Genesis" BBQ grill out on the patio. Used a MFJ tuner and 10 watts. G1HPD was hitting 20 over S-9 and gave me a "5x5" report. For good measure I also worked KG4WV Gitmo (Guantanamo Bay, Cuba) with 59 reports.”
For more information concerning radio propagation, see the ARRL Technical Information Service at http://arrl.org/propagation-of-rf-signals. For an explanation of the numbers used in this bulletin, see http://arrl.org/the-sun-the-earth-the-ionosphere. An archive of past propagation bulletins is at http://arrl.org/w1aw-bulletins-archive-propagation. More good information and tutorials on propagation are at http://k9la.us/.
Monthly propagation charts between four USA regions and twelve overseas locations are at http://arrl.org/propagation.
Instructions for starting or ending email distribution of ARRL bulletins are at http://arrl.org/bulletins.
Sunspot numbers for October 31 through November 6 were 128, 95, 123, 143, 151, 134, and 148, with a mean of 131.7. 10.7 cm flux was 142.6, 145, 141.6, 143.5, 147.3, 148.5, and 153.5, with a mean of 146. Estimated planetary A indices were 6, 5, 3, 6, 5, 5, and 4, with a mean of 4.9. Estimated mid-latitude A indices were 6, 4, 3, 7, 4, 4, and 3, with a mean of 4.4.