Thursday, December 14, 2006

Severe Storm In Progress

The expected major geomagnetic event has arrived. The current planetary K index is 8. (9 is as high as it can go.)

WWV was so distorted on 10 MHz that it was barely understandable. Converting the file to a stereo MP3 showed phase distortion so severe that the sound would literally jump back and forth between speakers. A somewhat less dizzying mono MP3 is at the column's web site.

5 MHz was at least intelligible, but the flutter was so severe as to change the audio tone frequency randomly plus/minus several hertz at a rapid rate.

Similar flutter is appearing on 31 meter broadcast stations, even from Cuba.

This is a good night to go out and look for aurora. Current auroral oval plots show a southern limit well into the United States, and this is expected to improve over the next few hours.

Active region 930 produced another X class flare around 14/2210 December UTC. It is not known whether a radio fadeout occurred in the Western Hemisphere.