Check out the ACE-HF propagation software - the latest is version 2.05. ACE-HF is propagation forecasting and modeling for Amateur Radio as well as for Shortwave radio Listening and general HF operation. This software is even used by the military and other clients around the world. This software is developed and maintained by the same engineers that keep VOACAP up-to-date. As a result, this software is the most accurate user interface integrated with VOACAP. CHECK IT OUT, TODAY. This software is the most accurate modeling software available, and is endorsed by NW7US. Read the details to find out why.
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Map, Above: Conditions in the D region of the ionosphere have a dramatic effect on high frequency (HF) communications and low frequency (LF) navigation systems. The global D Region Absorption Predictions (D-RAP) depicts the D region at high latitudes where it is driven by particles as well as low latitudes, where photons cause the prompt changes.
Note: At times, images may appear broken or missing, when SDO is working on the AIA/HMI instruments.
Planetary A-index (Ap): 7
| Planetary K-index (Kp): 0
Solar Wind: 313 km/s at 11.0 protons/cm3, Bz is -1.0 nT
(Sep 25, 2022 at 2347 UT)
X-ray Solar Flares:
6h hi [C5.9][0701Z 09/25] 24h hi [C5.9][0701Z 09/25]
What is the difference between the CB and Amateur Radio Services, in the USA? Here are some thoughts on the portrayal of the Amateur Radio Service by the Hit TV Series, NCIS, and a clarification of the difference between CB radio and ham radio.
(Skip to timecode 1:33 to bypass the introductory chat and talk about the headset microphone.)
Here is a video introduction to shortwave / HF amateur radio -- what is it that we amateur radio oprators listen to? If you have not yet been introduced to this world, this is a very basic introduction.
If you are using software utilities such as Ace-HF, that require a "smoothed" sunspot number
(Referred to as the SSN), or, the smoothed 10.7-cm Radio Flux Index,
use the following predicted values in this following table:
Predicted SMOOTHED Sunspot Number And Radio Flux Values
With Expected Ranges
At 0805 UTC, on 9 August 2011, a strong magnitude X6.9 X-ray flare -- the strongest yet in this current solar cycle (Cycle 24) -- erupted on the northwestern solar limb. Here is a HD Movie of the event:
Videos of Interest - Space Weather, Solar Dynamics Observatory, STEREO, and more... from the NW7US YouTube Channel. (Click on the small image to launch the video...)
Video: Voyager Finds Magnetic Foam at Solar Systems Edge
Video: Zoom View of Prominence Eruption and X-Ray Flare - M2.5 Magnitude - June 7 2011
Video: X-Ray Flare, Coronal Mass Ejection, Proton Storm - M2.5 Magnitude - June 7 2011 (Close-up of the video, above)
Video: Stunning Close-up View of M3 X-Ray Flare 24 February 2011
Video: On How NCIS TV Show Maligned Amateur Radio Service (Full UHD Version)
What's the difference between CB and amateur (ham) radio?
Video: June 2011 20-meter (14-Mhz) JT65A Coverage Map of NW7US Radio Signal
The NW7US Current Sunspot and Geophysical Activity Report
The observations, prognastications, and comments by NW7US
NW7US is Tomas David Hood, Propagation and Space Weather Columnist
for CQ Communications
More about Background X-rays
The hard X-ray energy present from the wavelengths of 1 to 8 Angstroms provide the most effective ionizing energy throughout all of the ionospheric layers in our atmosphere. The GEOS satellites measure these wavelengths and the resulting measurements are reported as the "background X-ray level" throughout the day. A daily average is reported, as well.
Just like X-ray flares, the background hard X-ray level is measured in watts per square meter (W/m2), reported using the categories, A, B, C, M, and X. These letters are multipliers; each class has a peak flux ten times greater than the preceding one. Within a class there is a linear scale from 1 to 9.
If one records the daily background X-ray levels for the course of a sunspot cycle, one would discover that the background X-ray levels remained at the A class level during the sunspot cycle minumum. During the rise and fall of a solar cycle, the background X-ray energy levels remained mostly in the B range. During peak solar cycle periods, the background energy reached the C and sometimes even M levels.
Armed with this information, can we discover any clues as to the current status of Sunspot Cycle 24? Below is a graph plotting the background hard X-ray energy reported by the GEOS satellites since the end of Sunspot Cycle 22. Clearly, we see a noticeable rise in Cycle 24 activity. We're seeing the energy mostly in the B level more often, supporting the view that Cycle 24 is alive and moving along toward an eventual sunspot cycle peak in several years.
Overall, the monthly average background 'hard' X-ray level is rising (as seen by the following plot), showing a change from deep solar cycle minimum. We are certainly in the rising phase of Sunspot Cycle 24. While it has been a slow up-tick over the last eighteen months, I expect to see a more rapid rise during mid to late 2011.
Highlights of Solar and Geomagnetic Activity
Covering the period: 12 - 18 September 2022
Solar activity reached high levels this week, with six M-class flares observed during the period. Region 3098 (N18, L=053, class/area Ehc/860 on 14 Sep) produced the largest event, an M7.9 flare at 16/0949 UTC. This was followed at 16/1559 UTC by an M6.2/Sn flare from the same region. The remaining M flares, all associated with Region 3098, ranged from M1.1 to M2.6. Of the 11 regions numbered, Region 3098 was the largest, most magnetically complex, and most productive. It was responsible for 39 C-class flares in addition to the M-flares described above. Throughout the week there were several CMEs but none were Earth-directed.
No proton events meeting alert criteria were observed at geosynchronous orbit, although the 10 MeV proton flux was slightly elevated above background levels, mostly likely in response to an event on the far side of the sun.
The greater than 2 MeV electron flux at geosynchronous orbit was elevated at the beginning of the week but subsquently fell below the 1000 pfu threshold after the arrival of a transient feature on the 14th described below. It remained at normal-moderate levels for the remainder of the week.
Geomagnetic field activity ranged from quiet to active levels. The active conditions were observed on the synoptic periods straddling 14-15 Sept and associated with influences from an unattributed transient feature. The disturbed conditions were preceded by a 30 nT sudden impulse observed at 2315 UTC (Boulder Magnetometer) on September 14th. An extended quiet period followed until 18 September when conditions rose to unsettled levels in response to coronal hole high speed stream influences. Solar wind speed in this coronal hole reached the mid 500 km/s range.
Monthly and smoothed sunspot number - The monthly mean sunspot number (blue) and 13-month smoothed monthly sunspot number (red) for the last five cycles. You can see that this current cycle, Cycle 24, is a weak cycle, compared to the last few.
(Click to see actual size)
Daily and monthly sunspot number (last 13 years)
Daily sunspot number (yellow), monthly mean sunspot number (blue), smoothed monthly sunspot number (red) for the last 13 years and 12-month ahead predictions of the monthly smoothed sunspot number:
SC (red dots) : prediction method based on an interpolation of Waldmeier's standard curves; It is only based on the sunspot number series.
CM (red dashes) : method (from K. Denkmayr and P. Cugnon) combining a regression technique applied to the sunspot number series with the aa geomagnetic index used as a precursor (improved predictions during the minimum phase between solar cycles).
(Click to see actual size)
What is 'Space Weather'? Click on these two information slides to view them in full size:
Solar Flares: C-class flares expected, (probability >=50%) Geo-Disturbance: Active conditions expected (A>=20 or K=4) Solar Proton Event: Quiet
Comment from the SIDC (RWC Belgium): Solar flaring activity was low. Several C-class flares were released both by Catania group 47 (NOAA active region 3107) and by Catania group 48 (NOAA active region 3110). The strongest class reached was C7.2 and both of the regions released a flare of this class. The one from Catania group 47 (NOAA active region 3107) peaked at 16:07UTC. The one from Catania group 48 (NOAA active region 3110) peaked at 17:19UTC. Both these regions remain the main actors with the other regions on disc stable or simplifying. Catania group 48 (NOAA active region 3110) grew but seemed to consolidate and stabilize towards the end of the period. Catania group 47 (NOAA active region 3107) remains the most complex with mixed polarity field in the intermediate areas. C level flaring is expected with a very significant chance for another M flare particularly from Catania group 47 (NOAA active region 3107).
Three Day Forecast of Solar and Geomagnetic Activity
(as of 2200Z on 07 Dec 2014)
Solar activity is expected to be low with a chance for M-class flares on days one, two, and three (08 Dec, 09 Dec, 10 Dec).
The geomagnetic field is expected to be at quiet to minor storm levels on day one (08 Dec), quiet to active levels on day two (09 Dec) and quiet levels on day three (10 Dec).
Forecast of Solar and Geomagnetic Activity
19 September - 15 October 2022
Solar activity is expected to be low with a chance for M-class (R1-R2, Minor-Moderate) flares on 19 Sep - 02 Oct as old Region 3089 (S22, L=194) returns. This region was previously responsible for 5 M-class events and continues to be active based on imagery of the SE limb. Region 3098 is expected to return around 29 September, bringing the potential for a continued chance of M-class flare activity through the end of the period.
No proton events are expected at geosynchronous orbit.
The greater than 2 MeV electron flux at geosynchronous orbit is expected to reach high levels on 20-23 September and 01-11 October in response to CH HSS influences.
Geomagnetic field activity is likely to reach minor (G1) storm levels on the 22-23 Sep with the arrival of a HSS associated with a positive polarity coronal hole. Another positive polarity coronal hole and HSS are expected to bring minor (G1) to moderate (G2) storm conditions on 30 Sep - 03 Oct.
Data and images courtesy of IPS Australia, NOAA, NASA, SWPC, SIDC
Layout, analysis, commentary, and certain forecasts and content is Copyright, 2021, Tomas David Hood (NW7US), all rights reserved.
No part, except for the space weather 'banners', may be copied without express permission.