Sunday, 4 January 2009

I have frequently lamented to poor HF band conditions on here, and now the 2008 solar report is out. This shows that in 2008 there were 266 days with NO sunspots (source: and NASA). This has not happened since 1913, which had 311 spotless days.

The good news is that cycle 24 now appears to be established and we should see improving conditions over the next few years. That said, I just really struggled to work EA7ES on 20m CW. We had very deep QSB so he was fading from S5 to 'no copy' for several minutes at a time - thanks for persisting Manol. Apparently this was due to a minor disturbance on the sun, which will wipe out and feeble ionisation that we do have.

I have never done much on 80m as I only have a small garden and so short antennas, but I have been trying this band late in the evenings during the long winter nights. I have not yet worked any spectacular DX, but I have had some very satisfying European contacts.


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