PSE, see also IK2HTY/3
The passion for radio was born in me in the very early '70s, when i began my teenage: in those days, my parents gave me an electronic circuits assembling kit for Christmas. Within the several circuits to realize, there was a simple MW receiver. Since first time I built that circuit (and found it worked!), I've been fascinated by the "miracle" of carrying voice and sound to long distances by mean of something that I wasn't able to explain (but not much later I'd find out...).
Because of this experience, I decided to attend a technical high school, where I met the "misteries" of the electromagnetic waves, and finally I got a diploma in telecommunications. In those times I got my first equipment, a CB transceiver, so I started talking on radio, on the 11m band, and discovered many people having the same passion (but many other people that, today, would switch from CB to FB).
After the school, I got my first ham authorization, the so called "Special License" (afterward "Class B" license), that allowed to operate on VHF and above bands, with a maximum power of 10 W. Immediately, I got a small VHF FM equipment, just to operate on the VHF repeaters, but after few time I could get an Yaesu FT-290R, which I still use on VHF.
However my dream was to operate on the HF, but in Italy, in the early '80s, the HF needed the knowledge of CW.
So I started to learn telegraphy, and after few time I passed the telegraphy exam, and I upgraded to the so called "Ordinary License" (afterward "Class A" license).
Yes, I was able to operate on HF, so a friend sold me an old Heathkit HW-101, that I used for a while.
A quite long QRT period followed those events: work commitments and family responsibilities kept me away from radio. But my children are now grown up, and, after some jobs in the IT field, now I'm working in the telecommunications field, in a small italian company producing DMR VHF/UHF repeaters and synchronous (simulcast) radio networks. I could then re-familiarize with the constant-envelope modulation, the I/Q signal paths, and other "trifles" of this kind.
But, mostly, I could resume the radio amateur activity! Some years ago I bought an used Icom IC-725, and I started again to operate on the HF (SSB and digi modes, while waiting to re-learn CW).
My interests are now directed to radio tecnique, antennas, propagation, DX, and (why not?) awards hunting. I'm still not able to deal with a contest, maybe tomorrow ;), but if I reply to a "CQ Contest" I will surely send my report to allow the matching of the QSO, even for a single QSO.
Thank you for your patience and all the best to you and your family.
The final courtesy of a QSO is a QSL card
I like exchanging QSL cards after a QSO very much. I think it's a very nice way to complete a contact (sometimes short) I had with you.
So, I surely will send you my card after a contact, following the directions found on your page on qrz.com or told to me during the contact.
Altough I like paper QSLs (that I keep with care!), I recognize that the electronic confirmations (may them be called "virtual" QSLs?) take an infinitely shorter time to be exchanged than paper QSLs via bureau.
So, I gladly send and accept electronic confirmations via LoTW and/or eQSL (AG), but in addition, even if it takes long time, I would like to have your paper QSL via BUREAU.
DIRECT mode is a quite "hot" topic: in the time, I often (not always, fortunately) sent cards directly, including postage like IRC or green stamps as requested, without having any reply and without having any answer to my reminder mails; in addition, I'm afraid that in some countries the envelopes containing QSL could be stolen by postal workers. So I consider the DIRECT exchange as a very last resort, just if you are not reachable in other ways (and perhaps one day I will compile a blacklist...).
Anyway, if you want to send me your card directly (in the hope of receiving it...), I willingly accept it and will surely reply; don't include postage: a SAE is enough to be replied via DIRECT.
Many thanks from the bottom of my heart to my loved wife Rita, who supports my passion with an infinite patience.
Many thanks to the friends of ARI Section of Busto Arsizio IQ2VA
for the wonderful BBLogger logging software.
"It is not the class of license the Amateur holds but the class of the Amateur that holds the license" (DL1KSR)
Solar A and K Indices
The Earth's magnetic field is continuously monitored by a network of magnetometers. These readings are converted into the values of the A and K indices.
The K index is calculated every three hours (eight times a day). The values are quadi-logarithmic and range from 0 to 9, where 0 means inactive Sun, and 9 is a condition of extremely intense solar storm:
- K = 0: Inactive Sun
- K = 1: Very quiet
- K = 2: Quiet
- K = 3: Unstable
- K = 4: Active Sun
- K = 5: Minor solar storm
- K = 6: Major solar storm
- K = 7: Intense solar storm
- K = 8: Very intense solar storm
- K = 9: Extremely intense solar storm
The A index is rather linear, and is calculated on the basis of the previous measured eight K indices. The values range from 0 (quiet Sun) to 400 (intense solar storm):
- A = 0 to 7: Quiet
- A = 8 to 15: Unstable
- A = 16 to 29 Active Sun
- A = 30 to 49: Minor solar storm
- A = 50 to 99: Major solar storm
- A = 100 to 400: Intense solar storm
Generally the best propagation conditions are when the A index is up to 15 and the K index K is up to 3.
Besides causing auroral activity, conditions of high geomagnetic field may interfere with the electrons in the ionosphere, reducing the Maximum Usable Frequency (MUF).
(courtesy of W0OOG)