Saturday, March 19, 2011

Big Eruption on the Sun 3/19/11

ICONIC ERUPTION: A huge filament of magnetism and hot plasma blasted off the sun's southwestern limb on March 19th around 1200 UT. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded the action.
The eruption was not Earth-directed, but it did attract plenty of attention on our planet. Many amateur astronomers in Europe witnessed the blast and said it was the biggest one they'd ever seen. This event continues the recent trend of increasing solar activity, and shows anew that Solar Cycle 24 is gaining steam after a long period of relative quiet.

Super Moon; What's So Super?

Very cool e-mail I just got.

"On Saturday night, the moon will arrive at perigee at 19:09 UT (3:09 p.m. Eastern Time). Its distance from the Earth at that moment will be 221,565 miles. But just over three years ago, on Dec. 12, 2008, which was also the night of a full moon, the moon reached perigee at 21:39 UT (4:39 p.m. Eastern Time) at a distance of 221,559 miles, about 6 miles closer than Saturday night's perigee distance."
"Chester points out that on Dec. 12, 2008, the moon reached fullness at 16:37 UT, while perigee was at 21:39. That's a difference of just over five hours. So when the moon turned full that night, it was still five hours away from reaching its closest point to Earth; its distance at the moment it turned full was 221,587 miles.
In contrast, today's full moon occurs at 18:10 UT, while perigee occurs at 19:09; the difference being less than an hour. So today, when the moon officially turns full, its distance from Earth will be 221,566 miles.
So even though the moon actually came a little closer to Earth in December 2008, if we compare distances when the moon officially turns full, today's full moon wins out by a scant 21 miles. "

This Weekends Contest.

10-10 Int. Mobile Contest Mar 19
BARTG HF RTTY Contest Mar 19-21
Feld Hell Sprint Mar 19
Russian DX Contest Mar 19-20
Oklahoma QSO Party Mar 19-20
AGCW VHF/UHF Contest Mar 19
Virginia QSO Party Mar 19-21
North Dakota QSO Party Mar 19-20
UBA Spring Contest, 6m Mar 20
Run for the Bacon QRP Contest Mar 21
Bucharest Contest Mar 21

Full Calendar; click here

Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant; UPDATE 3/19/11

I am encouraging everyone to avoid the media reports in regards to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
I truly feel that the media is placing fear into those who do not understand what is going on.
I recommend the following sites.

IAEA; International Atomic Energy Agency
Click here
Japanese Earthquake Update (19 March 2011 12:00 UTC)

Contamination in Food Products around FukushimaJapanese Earthquake Update (19 March 2011 12:00 UTC)

Click here

NEI; Nuclear Energy Institute
click here

My Stamp Collecting Blog

Counter Added January 1, 2011

free counters


The A index [ LOW is GOOD ]

  • 1 to 6 is BEST
  • 7 to 9 is OK
  • 11 or more is BAD

Represents the overall geomagnetic condition of the ionosphere ("Ap" if averaged from the Kp-Index) (an average of the eight 3-hour K-Indices) ('A' referring to amplitude) over a given 24 hour period, ranging (linearly) typically from 1-100 but theoretically up to 400.

A lower A-Index generally suggests better propagation on the 10, 12, 15, 17, & 20 Meter Bands; a low & steady Ap-Index generally suggest good propagation on the 30, 40, 60, 80, & 160 Meter Bands.

SFI index [ HIGH is GOOD ]

  • 70 NOT GOOD
  • 80 GOOD
  • 90 BETTER
  • 100+ BEST

The measure of total radio emissions from the sun at 10.7cm (2800 MHz), on a scale of 60 (no sunspots) to 300, generally corresponding to the sunspot level, but being too low in energy to cause ionization, not related to the ionization level of the Ionosphere.

Higher Solar Flux generally suggests better propagation on the 10, 12, 15, 17, & 20 Meter Bands; Solar Flux rarely affects the 30, 40, 60, 80, & 160 Meter Bands.

K index [ LOW is GOOD ]

  • 0 or 1 is BEST
  • 2 is OK
  • 3 or more is BAD
  • 5 is VERY VERY BAD

The overall geomagnetic condition of the ionosphere ("Kp" if averaged over the planet) over the past 3 hours, measured by 13 magnetometers between 46 & 63 degrees of latitude, and ranging quasi-logarithmically from 0-9. Designed to detect solar particle radiation by its magnetic effect. A higher K-index generally means worse HF conditions.

A lower K-Index generally suggests better propagation on the 10, 12, 15, 17, & 20 Meter Bands; a low & steady Kp-Index generally suggest good propagation on the 30, 40, 60, 80, & 160 Meter Bands.

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