Topics and links of the broadcast 5-09-2021 11:00 am (CEST)
Do it yourself silicone
It is becoming clear to more and more people that a large part of our western European economy has become dependent on silicon chips. Disruptions in delivery have left many industries struggling with delivery times, increased prices and extreme shipping costs.
Perhaps now is the time to resume chip production in Western Europe. More people seem to have thought that. That's why I want to draw your attention to the next video channel of a do it yourself inventor, who makes chips at home in his garage.
Mini SSB receiver ATS-25 (LW/MW/SW/FM)
It's small SSB/AM/FM open source receiver with wide band coverage - LW/MW/SW/FM. Touchscreen and simple menu makes this radio easy to use. It can be bought through banggood.
The software was written by PE0MGB and PU2CLR on a ESP32. The sketch will download a SSB patch to your SI4735 device (patch_init.h). It will take about 8KB of the Arduino memory.
If needed the software can easely be adapted to your own needs altho over 120 functions are already implemented with 30 examples how to code it. Very nice!
SI447xx Programming Guide
Youtube introduction and explanation: here
It has 2000 mAh internal Li-ion battery. Best 73! ;)
RSGB news (reported by PC5D)
The RSGB is delighted to announce that Professor Cathryn Mitchell, M0IBG has agreed to be the keynote speaker at the Online Convention on the 9th of October. Her talk, Radio technology and space science – a perfect partnership, will explore the connections between radio and space and will look at the many ways that everyone can get involved. Cathryn is the Academic Director of the University of Bath Doctoral College and recipient of the 2019 Edward Appleton Medal. She was recently inducted into the CQ Hall of Fame. You can read more about the talk, and all the others in the two streams, at rsgb.org/convention. Whether you’re new to amateur radio or have been enjoying it for years, do put the 9th of October in your diary.
The IARU Region 1 Political Relations Committee, PRC, has responded to two recent European Commission consultations to promote the amateur radio viewpoint. In the case of the consultation on ‘Designing mobile phones and tablets to be sustainable – ecodesign’ the PRC responded with a written submission. It is expected to set a precedent for all wireless equipment needing to be 'greener' in due course. In the second instance, the consultation on the Delegated Act under the Radio Equipment Directive on the subject of ‘Internet-connected radio equipment and wearable radio equipment’, the IARU response was one of 26 received by the Commission. The Delegated Act aims at strengthening the security of internet-connected devices, most of which are expected to be part of the Internet of Things, and of wearable radio equipment. However, the IARU has concerns as to how the Act will be implemented and how it might affect amateur radio.
On Monday 6 September the RSGB starts its autumn Tonight @ 8 webinar series. Gavin Nesbitt, MM1BXF will give an introduction to meteor scatter communications. These free webinars are livestreamed on the RSGB YouTube channel and you can ask questions during the presentations via live chat. For more information about this and other webinars in the series go to rsgb.org/webinars
Roger Castle-Smith, G3IOT is presenting an IET webinar at 7pm on the 8th of September. It is about the Broadcast Group of the Diplomatic Wireless Service that had its origins in the Political Warfare Executive at the beginning of World War Two. This illustrated talk will look at the transmission of black propaganda and associated activities during WWII. There will be many pictures and descriptions of the equipment and aerials used at these stations. Also covered will be an introduction to the progress of amplitude modulation techniques that enabled transmitters to become more compact. This lecture will last for two hours, with a 10 minute break at around halfway. To sign up for the event, which is open to anybody not just IET members, go to events.theiet.org. Scroll down to 08 Sep and click on the one that mentions Aspidistra, then follow the registration instructions.
Propagation (reported by PC5D)
Last weekend there were 2 Coronal Mass Ejections (CME). The first was accompanied by an M4 X-ray flame, or R1-Minor radio blackout. The second CME was accompanied by a prominence eruption. Meanwhile, the Earth's magnetic field seems reasonably calm again. The activity on the sun last weekend has lasted a little longer. The solar flux index therefore remained higher at 84 on Saturday, September 4. NOAA also issued a G1, or Minor, and G2, or Moderate, geomagnetic storm warning for Sept. 1 and 2, just days after two CMEs occurred on Aug. 28. There are signs that HF propagation is improving as we move into the fall conditions. Antoine, 3D2AG and Dominik, 3D2USU in Fiji were both logged at 17 meters this week and ZS1OIN in South Africa was recorded at 15 meters. Chris, G3SJJ reports that he works Chile at 15 and 20 meters, along with Uruguay, Peru and Puerto Rico at 20 meters.
The equinoxes are typically very good for north-south trails so we can expect conditions to improve as the month progresses. Propquest shows that the maximum usable frequency over a 3,000km path generally struggles to reach 18MHz during the day. At night, the MUF drops to approximately 10 MHz.
Next week, NOAA expects the SFI to drop about 80, due to a lack of serious sunspot activity. It also predicts a maximum Kp index of two or 3. The proximity of a high pressure area has resulted in some nice tropo conditions last week, especially over the sea. At 2m, 25W and an indoor HB9CV could be used from South Limburg stations from Wales, Scotland and Denmark. Best DX for PC5D was 1007km to GM3POI in IO88. Before DK5WO, the Faroe Islands was best DX at 70cm. In the coming days, conditions will ease somewhat, but the temperature differences between day and night can still allow for some nice QSOs.
Sporadic E's main season is almost over and, although there may still be occasional outliers in September. For those wishing to check the beacons on VHF/UHF, www.beaconspot.uk provides a real time, updated list. Random meteor activity is still high and there is another small meteor shower this week. The September Epsilon Perseids have a low Zenithal Hourly Rate of five. It is active from September 5 to 21, with a maximum on the 9th at 1100UTC.