Jumping Heliophysics Batman……..

M class solar flare letting go
It's Saturday afternoon  around 3:15 local time and 19:15 UTC I just finished turning the Elecraft k3 on for the 3rd time today and nothing!! I looked over at my LDG antenna switch to see if I was on the dummy load but no the attic antenna was connected. I turned on my Elecraft P3 and it was almost flat lined hardly any signals to be found. I try not to use propagation alone to judge the bands as in the past propagation conditions have not been good but I had made some great contacts. Well it was time to head off to Solarham.net to have a look. Things started to come together as I looked at the solar data, solar flux is up and sunspots are as well ...that's good but look at the solar wind speed 689.5 also the K index is up around 4 which is not great but could be worse. the Bz has come up to +2.0. This morning when I checked the
Bz was way in the negative which is not good. The rise in solar wind and K index numbers pointed to a solar flare. The sun sure has been very busy on June 28th M2.4 class flare, June 29th M2.2 flare and now today two flares M1.0 and M1.6 class.
So in a nut shell things are very busy in space in such a way that radio is affected here on earth!! I have been using a less power as possible mind set here at VE3WDM to see how many miles per watt I can get. It seems I may have to chance the game up a little....see  how many contacts I can make compared to the size of solar storm that is affecting us.
 In closing let me know how this conditions are affecting you in your ham location. Oh and a side note to all those who live in the high latitude parts of the world.....enjoy the Auroras this evening.

Mike Weir, VE9KK, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from New Brunswick, Canada. Contact him at [email protected].

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