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ARRL Propagation Bulletin ARLP009 (2015)

ARLP009 Propagation de K7RA

QST de W1AW  
Propagation Forecast Bulletin 9  ARLP009
From Tad Cook, K7RA
Seattle, WA  February 27, 2015
To all radio amateurs 

ARLP009 Propagation de K7RA

Average daily sunspot numbers over the past week were about the same
(59) as last week (54.6), and average daily solar flux declined,
from 121.4 to 116.3.
Average daily planetary A index increased from 9 to 11.3, and
average daily mid-latitude A index also was higher, from 7 to 9.3.
These numbers compare the seven day period from February 19 to 25
with the previous seven days.
The latest NOAA/USAF solar flux forecast shows solar flux at 110 on
February 27 through March 1, 105 on March 2 to 4, then 115 and 130
on March 5 and 6, 135 on March 7 to 9, 130 on March 10, 125 on March
11 and 12, 120 on March 13 to 17, and 115 on March 18 to 23. Solar
flux then reaches a peak of 135 on April 3 to 5 before declining
Predicted planetary A index is 8, 20, 22 and 15 on February 27
through March 2, 8 on March 3 to 6, 10 on March 7 and 8, 5 on March
9 to 13, then 10 and 5 on March 14 and 15, 15 on March 16 and 17, 8
on March 18, 5 on March 19 to 21, 10 on March 2 and 8 on March 23 to
Petr Kolman, OK1MGW believes geomagnetic conditions will be quiet to
unsettled February 27, active to disturbed February 28, disturbed on
March 1, active to disturbed March 2, quiet to unsettled March 3 and
4, mostly quiet March 5, quiet on March 6, mostly quiet March 7,
quiet to active March 8, quiet to unsettled March 9, quiet to active
March 10, quiet on March 11 to 13, mostly quiet March 14, quiet to
unsettled March 15, quiet to active March 16 to 18, mostly quiet
March 19 and 20, quiet to unsettled March 21, quiet to active March
22, active to disturbed March 23, quiet to unsettled March 24, and
mostly quiet March 25.
Petr believes increases in solar wind are mostly unpredictable, but
some peaks are expected around February 28, March 1, 8, 16 and 17,
and 22 and 23.
At 0513 UTC on February 27 the Australian Space Forecast Centre
issued a revised geomagnetic disturbance warning. An earlier warning
said the predicted disturbance was due to a coronal mass ejection,
but the cause was revised to a strong solar wind stream. They
believe geomagnetic activity may rise to minor storm levels on
February 28 and March 1.
Tom Frenaye, K1KI sent a couple of links referencing the Reverse
Beacon Network as crowdsourcing for detecting solar disturbances to
the ionosphere.
Max White, M0VNG forward an article about the sun from
Buzz Kutcher, K3GWK in Jenkinsburg, Georgia (EM73xh) on February 15
at 1836 UTC worked S01WS in Western Sahara on 10 meters FM. This was
his first contact on 10 FM, and it was full quieting, sounding the
same as when he works his close neighbor on FM simplex.
Shel Darack, WA2UBK of Livingston, New Jersey wrote:
"Band conditions were very good for me using 100W into a sloping
dipole on 40m Saturday night and tri-band antenna on 10 and 15
during Sunday for the ARRL CW DX Contest.
During the last hour of the contest, JA's were strong and easy to
work on 15 meters using 100W and a small tri-band antenna at my New
Jersey QTH.
Later, after the contest and well past sunset I noticed SSB signals
that I could not quite tune in for clarity and thought maybe it was
I discovered I was hearing one side of a JA QSO in Japanese. With my
antenna pointed nearly north toward Japan, I continued to listen for
a while and soon a W0 came on exactly on frequency asking if the
frequency was in use. He asked again and after no response called
CQ. A W7 replied. The W0 commented that there was no activity on the
band. I could hear both US stations and the JA. After a while
propagation to the US stations faded out but I could hear the JA by
then working a pile up of US stations."
Jeff Hartley, N8II of Shepherdstown, West Virginia (FM19cj) wrote,
"The solar flux has dropped into the danger zone for good 10 meter
conditions to EU. During the ARRL CW DX contest it was just below
120 and the band was slow to open to EU on Saturday. I checked 10 at
1330Z and of the 4 EU I worked then, only an IT9 was louder direct
path, the rest were peaking around 140 degrees over eastern SA. I
returned to find a mix of weak and strong direct path EU at 1452Z
almost 3 hours past my sunrise, but the band never really opened to
the Baltic states and Scandinavia.
Most of my QSO's were more southerly central and western EU and the
run ran dry at 1727Z, so I went back to 15. Both days prop to the
Caribbean seemed marginal along with very northern SA, farther south
was OK. The majority of JA's were worked right at the start Friday
evening with the big guns having S 7-9 signals. I found DU3 who is
exactly the same heading as JA and RT0F also same heading of 330.
KH6 was pretty loud then and for both afternoons into evening along
with ZL, but no VK's were heard. Sunday into EU at 1322Z was much
like a high SFI opening with good signals even from Russia and
Scandinavia. I was called by Saudi Arabia, UN7, and two VU's all
having strong signals. I ended up with 845 QSO's in 78 countries.
Fifteen meters was the best overall band for me with 933 QSO's in
100 countries. One of the PVRC skilled ops, K3RV, locally made over
1900 QSO's in over 120 countries. Both days conditions were
excellent to East Asia with many loud JA's and EU, and also good
openings also into central Asia. In the first hour a JW called me
and I logged big gun stations from OH and SM as well, not bad for
2-3 AM at their QTH. There must have been some auroral sporadic E.
Also logged were Hong Kong, China, and several loud Hawaiians.
Signals from EU were quite loud by 1153Z Saturday and the big guns
from about HA westward were in both days past 2130Z when the
majority of EU ops were on 20 by 2000Z. EU signals were the loudest
of any band from all over on 15 and AF was loud until 2200Z.
Propagation on 20 was good to everywhere at some time of the
contest. At 0100Z about half of EU was pretty loud from DL, OK, and
HA farther south and west and all of northern EU. AF was loud (D4,
CN, EA8, EA9, CR3, Z8 Southern Sudan and ZR9 South Africa) as well
as everyone to the south, all of Siberia, and KH6 as well. It was a
lot of DX fun and rotator workout. EU was loud either side of my
sunrise and again from about 1830-2130Z. On Sunday through a drone
of EU callers, I heard JA's, BG2 and E20 (Thailand) louder than EU
and also was called by RI1ANZ from Antarctica long path. The morning
20M Antarctica LP is open frequently, but not utilized that often.
Clearing 7 inches of snow that fell Saturday cost me quite a few EU
QSO's Sunday afternoon.
40 was about as good as it gets with strong EU signals from central
and south EU throughout the evening, although not as strong around
sunset. I logged a few Asians including 7Z in Saudi Arabia, a few
AF, and DP1POL in Antarctica. JA's were weak to me, but my antenna
is only a sloping dipole to JA, logged about 4 along with ZL.
80 was in decent shape to EU especially to UR and UA6 with many of
them logged. OH0 and two JA's were logged as well as loud sunrise
KH6. I had a nice run of about 80 mostly EU stations the first night
around 0400Z. I found KL7 around sunrise Sunday and we moved down to
160 successfully also! I finished with 156 QSO's in 39 countries in
limited time there.
My 160 meter score was probably my best ever in ARRL DX with 41
QSO's in 30 countries largely thanks to finding very good EU
conditions at 0300Z the first night. I worked as far east as RW7 and
UR and did get a few EU to answer CQ's. There was no EU sunrise peak
here like they were getting in New England; signals were much weaker
than 0300Z. The second night was poor to EU, but I did manage 2
brand new 160 countries, TI9 and LU. The LU8 had a very good signal,
but could barely copy me through his summer QRN. I also logged
KD2BD, John Magliacane of Sea Girt, New Jersey emailed a blast from
the past, some old email (from me), ARRL bulletins, and various
posts from the late 1980s and early 1990s on Usenet and the amateur
packet radio network, which he recovered from archives on an old
hard drive.
I hope to post some newly recovered ARRL Propagation Bulletins from
1990-1991 at . If
you find any old archives such as this, please contact me at .
For more information concerning radio propagation, see the ARRL
Technical Information Service at For an explanation of the
numbers used in this bulletin, see An archive of past
propagation bulletins is at More good
information and tutorials on propagation are at
Monthly propagation charts between four USA regions and twelve
overseas locations are at
Instructions for starting or ending email distribution of ARRL
bulletins are at
Sunspot numbers for February 19 through 25 were 86, 53, 54, 49, 44,
63, and 64, with a mean of 59. 10.7 cm flux was 118.7, 119.7, 116.1,
117.5, 116.8, 114.4, and 111, with a mean of 116.3.  Estimated
planetary A indices were 8, 6, 7, 7, 17, 25, and 9, with a mean of
11.3. Estimated mid- latitude A indices were 5, 4, 8, 6, 14, 21, and
7, with a mean of 9.3.