October 2015: extreme tropo from UK in Poland

This year, the weather at the beginning of October was extraordinary. A massive high pressure system has established itself over the greater part of Europe. It was very warm and the sky was totally clear. I was pretty sure that something special will happen… now or never! All propagation forecasts were very promising at first. However, the ducting area was reduced after each update, at least for Poland. Nevertheless, tropo results were excellent – BBC reception lasted for three days!!

f5len_01_21UTC nwe_01_21UTC d_20151001_h21_euro_en

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Aurora FM-DX 20.12.2015

Another auroral propagation appeared on December 20. I don’t really remember, but it was probably third or even fourth big show of such nature this year. Aurora happens usually during the months around the equinoxes, so nice to observe it in late December. In the afternoon I noticed some distorted stations fading in and out. Stronger signals flooded entire CCIR band around 16 UTC. I quickly identified SR P1 on 89,4 with their “bell” jingle and many other frequencies of P1. Norway was also here with 88.7 NRK P1 (//web). The signal levels have increased even more, so I decided to grab a camera and try to take a photo.


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Autumn 2015: Extreme tropo duct 5 GHz Wi-Fi 300+ km

POL Ten artykuł jest także dostępny w języku polskim. / This article is also available in Polish language.

An extremely strong propagation occurred on October 27 and 28, which made possible detection of 5 GHz Wi-Fi network signals near Płock, Poland at distances of over 300 km, including… Czech Republic.

In last days, thanks to a high pressure system over the central Europe, very interesting propagation conditions occurred on the radio bands. The weather settled down on October 26 and 27 and brought a windless night. The morning, in line with my predictions and tropo forecasts, brought a very strong propagation from southern Poland on the VHF-FM band. The enhanced conditions were still remaining throughout the day, however significantly weaker than in the morning. 

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Russian Sporadic-E (8.07.2015)

On 8th July I observed a fair Sporadic-E opening from Russia. Both OIRT and CCIR band was full of strong signals. I got almost all stations from the capital of Russia – Moscow. The MUF reached over 108MHz.

I took my RTL-SDR dongle to check the OIRT spectrum and I recorded some I/Q samples of top hour IDs at 2.4 MHz bandwidth. Interesting view – look at the latency and deviation. Each Radio Rossii TX has different settings.

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Sporadic-E signal levels

The Sporadic-E is the strongest available propagation mode. An ionized “cloud” acts like a metal reflector, that allows signal to skip over a huge distance. It is possible to receive many stations with just a small portable radio and a telescopic antenna. With better equipment, when the frequency is clear, it is also possible to receive stations that transmit at extremely low power, like 50W, with full RDS and stereo! So, the signal level must be really strong, but how strong?

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