First HamSCI Eclipse Results at TAPR ARRL DCC

First HamSCI Eclipse Results at TAPR ARRL DCC

Tuesday, September 19, 2017 - 13:02

Photo: NJIT research professor Nathaniel Frissell W2NAF and NJIT students Josh Vega WB2JSV, Spencer Gunning K2AEM, Josh Katz KD2JAO with TAPR President Steve Bible N7HPR at the 36th Annual ARRL and TAPR Digital Communications Conference in St. Louis, MO.

Members of HamSCI presented at the 36th Annual ARRL and TAPR Digital Communications Conference September 15-17, 2017 in St. Louis, Missouri. The TAPR/ARRL DCC is an annual conference that attracts technically-minded amateur radio operators who specialize in building and designing hardware and software to support digital communications and radio.

In a presentation entitled HamSCI and the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse HamSCI members Nathaniel Frissell W2NAF, Bill Engelke AB4EJ, Josh Katz KD2JAO, Spencer Gunning K2AEM, and Josh Vega WB2JSV showed initial results of the Solar Eclipse QSO Party and other HamSCI eclipse experiments. This presentation shows the number of 14 MHz RBN spots decreased while the number of 1.8 MHz and 3.5 MHz spots increased during totality, suggestive of a decrease in both maximum usable frequency and D-layer absorption during the eclipse. John Ackermann N8UR described his work in making wideband recordings during the eclipse in a presentation entitled How to Fill a Terabyte Disk: Using Software Defined Radios in the HamSCI Solar Eclipse Experiment. These preliminary results in both presentations suggests that the eclipse did have a significant effect on HF propagation.

In addition to the conference presentation, three NJIT HamSCI papers were also published in the conference proceedings. HamSCI and the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse by Nathaniel Frissell W2NAF et al. details the procedures for the HamSCI eclipse experiments. The H.A.R.C. Database and Visualization Utilities by Joshua Katz KD2JAO et al. describes a database for unifying RBN, PSKReporter, WSPRNet, and other amateur radio propagation data into one place for research purposes. Developing a Solar Eclipse Simulation for Greater Good by Joshua Vega WB2JSV describes how to simulate the SEQP using the PHaRLAP raytracing toolkit and SAMI3 model of the eclipsed ionosphere.

Finally, HamSCI team members announced the upcoming HamSCI Workshop that will be held at the New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark, NJ February 23-24, 2018. This workshop will be open to public and focus on ham radio eclipse data analysis and the development of a personal space weather station. Details for workshop registration will be given at a later date.

The NJIT HamSCI team thanks TAPR and TAPR member David Bern W2LNX for supporting student attendance at the workshop.