Sudden Ionospheric Disturbances (SIDs) and Personal Space Weather Stations

TitleSudden Ionospheric Disturbances (SIDs) and Personal Space Weather Stations
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsGrace, ES, Lemaster, G
Conference NameHamvention HamSCI Forum
Date Published05/2019
PublisherDayton Amateur Radio Association
Conference LocationXenia, OH

This presentation will deal with Sudden Ionospheric Disturbances (SIDs), what they are, what their effects are, how they can be observed easily at home, and observations combined with others to form a more complete view of the ionosphere. SIDs are disturbances on the Sun but can be observed through monitoring VLF transmitters and noticing the change in propagation. Since the transmitters are usually at 30 kHz and less, they are easily observed using just an antenna, amplifier and a computer sound card with appropriate software. There is a worldwide network of collection sites which feeds data to Stanford University. The equipment is easy to build but can also be procured from the Society of Amateur Radio Astronomers (SARA). Different types of equipment will be discussed and shown, including home built and the SARA kit. The antennas used are mainly simple multi-tun loop antennas. Images of different antennas will be shown and it is planned to show an actual antenna. Data collected from SID systems will be displayed and discussed. The presentation will include how people can get involved with SID monitoring and feeding the collective database at Stanford University.