New UK station?
#1
Hi,

Been aware of Blitzorgtung for years and have harbored the idea of running a station more or less since I started the online weather station in 1999: http://www.howhill.com/weather.

Trouble is I always seemed to hit the transition period between systems, when the old was out of stock and the new not quite ready. Looks like I've got the timing right this time.   Shy

Yellow blob on the attached map, borrowed from www.lightningmaps.org, [url=http://www.lightningmaps.org/realtime][/url]is about where the station would be. Looks like it would nicely fill a gap and improve coverage of the east side of northern England. The location is at 1400' and fairly exposed, so I'd expect it to have quite a range.

Does this make the station "very special" and give a priority in the next batch of boards?  Well you never know...

   

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Cheers
Dave.
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#2
(Waves from a bit further South in Warrington)

Who knows? You could try grovelling nicely to Egon!

Looks like a good spot. I have a Blue on order, was thinking of trying to move my Red to a family member in North Yorkshire at some point. How close to Anthorn 60kHz tx would you be? I don't get much of that but I seem to get a lot of Inskip 81kHz.

Andrew
Stations: 1075, 1472
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#3
(2016-06-09, 22:17)Andrew.Instone-Cowie Wrote: (Waves from a bit further South in Warrington)

Who knows? You could try grovelling nicely to Egon!

Looks like a good spot. I have a Blue on order, was thinking of trying to move my Red to a family member in North Yorkshire at some point. How close to Anthorn 60kHz tx would you be? I don't get much of that but I seem to get a lot of Inskip 81kHz.

Andrew

Need to fully digest the Order List but with access to the likes of Farnell, CPC, RS, Rapid etc I will probably only need the board which may make Egon's life a little easier.

Ooo, hadn't made the connection between the quoted 3 to 30 kHz and Anthorn on 60 kHz and about 40 miles away.

What might be more of a problem is Skelton at about 25 miles and on 22.1 kHz.

I shouldn't think there is any VLF from the air traffic radar station on Great Dunn Fell (10 miles). We do get *VERY* strong VOLMET and air traffic control from there but that's all way up around 120,000 kHz.

Looks like it might be a little harder than a quick build and play to get a half decent setup. Perhaps I ought to build a loop and see what sort of signals I get. Thanks for the heads up!

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Cheers
Dave.
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#4
It's not the end of the world, with the directional H field antennas you can minimise impact on one channel at the expense of the other. I still get good gains at 90deg from the line to Inskip, lower gains on the other channel. For E field I'm looking to play with the new filter options in Blue.

I suspect the radiated power of Anthorn MSF will be much lower than Inskip, but I can't find a quoted power for the latter, unsurprisingly!
Stations: 1075, 1472
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#5
Reading around and what the power levels used to be I wouldn't be surprised to find that they don't run huge amounts power these days, better electronics, more stations around the world, maybe up to 30 kW. MSF is around 17 kW erp and covers the UK and a fair chunk of Europe.

The "in band" Skelton GQD 22.1 kHz that I'm worried about and I've just found a reference(*) to Anthorn GBZ 19.58 kHz (and other references to 19.6 kHz). The bearings to each transmitter are within 15 degrees of each other but due east so won't do any favors for the west, which is a direction we want. Still the north/south should be OK.

(*) http://sidstation.loudet.org/stations-list-en.xhtml A Sudden Ionospheric Disturbances monitoring station. Which also has a design for a loop behind a large framed picture. Has anyone tried two such loops at the corner of two adjacent walls? All the loop designs here are coincident but if I've got the maths right microsecond timing is +/- 300 m. So would a separation of the two loops by a couple of meters actually matter?

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Cheers
Dave.
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#6
Greetings from just down the road, near Shap.

I was full of enthusiasm for this about nine months ago but became rather disillusioned, having just missed the Red era followed by the long delay on Blue. I registered my interest in Blue but never heard another thing. By chance I came back here today after a few months away to find that Blue is now out there but no-one told me!

Anyway, in the early enthusiastic days, I researched VLF transmitters around here and did some tests. Perhaps not surprisingly, Skelton, at about 12 miles away was very strong on my home brew loop. Anthorn, around 40 miles away was much weaker. You can see the discussion on this here. The view then was that a station in Cumbria would be useful and I suspect that will still be the case. Other things are taking up my hobby time now, so if you decide to fill that gap I shall be quite content.

Regards,

John.
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#7
(2016-06-23, 22:19)G3WGV Wrote: Greetings from just down the road, near Shap.

We can hear the distant "crump" from the ranges under this right conditions.

(2016-06-23, 22:19)G3WGV Wrote: I was full of enthusiasm for this about nine months ago but became rather disillusioned, having just missed the Red era followed by the long delay on Blue.

I've known about it for years, possibly pre Red. Like you I keep missing the seemingly narrow windows of kit availability.

(2016-06-23, 22:19)G3WGV Wrote: You can see the discussion on this here. The view then was that a station in Cumbria would be useful and I suspect that will still be the case.

Interesting, the gap is still there. I've yet to build a loop and play. I guess the base-band amp is nothing too special. This may be "RF" but it's only just out of audio frequency range... Have you any handy links to something to sit between a loop and scope, I suppose it needs to have some form of loop tuning or band pass filter to be useful.

(2016-06-23, 22:19)G3WGV Wrote: Other things are taking up my hobby time now, so if you decide to fill that gap I shall be quite content.

The more the merrier though. My Management will probably take a dim view as I ought to be doing other things as well but she'd still think it a bit "worthless" even if it didn't greatly impinge on the other things.

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Cheers
Dave.
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#8
For my tests I just used a loop antenna connected to a homebrew low noise baseband amplifier, fed to a 'scope. As you might expect, the loop had good sharp nulls, so it was fairly easy to tame Skelton. That then brought Anthorn "on-beam" but at nowhere near the same level.

I mused about notch filters, etc. but concluded that they probably wouldn't work. Anything that looks like a tuned circuit at the front end is likely to cause timing/phasing issues or mess up the pulse signature of the lightning strikes. At the end of the day we are only dealing with tens of kHz so although RF engineering rules still apply, more or less, what we are really dealing with is a form of baseband.

I ought to do a bit more experimenting but as I say, the moment passed and other things are taking up my hobby time now. Maybe next year...?

John.
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