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My attempts at SID monitoring have been languishing for a while due to radio problems, though I have been getting to grips with Arduino and even had a go at building my own. In order to move things along I went to the UKRAA stand at Astrofest and bought the VLF radio kit, their signal generator and the 15V power supply. Last weekend I soldered the board. It wasn’t too difficult following their instructions which are pretty clear. The only fiddly bit was soldering on an SMD capacitor but they also give you a through-hole one as well. Initial tests suggest it is working but I will have a better idea when it is all connected. This weekend I have been working on the housing and hopefully tomorrow get the leads soldered. From left to right will be led power, 15V in, 15V out, antenna in, then analogue -ve and +ve (can be 5V or 2.5V). I am building it as-is, so the first iteration will have the radio running off mains power and in turn the radio will power the Arduino. That seems a bit backwards but I would just like to get logging data. For the time being it will write to an SD card, but the Arduino MKR 1010 looks rather good and comes with WiFi and encryption. That though, is a long way off..! Anyway, this shows progress so far.
Hi, A while back I bought a copy of 'The radio sky and how to observe it' and finally got round to building the aerial for detecting SIDs. I have had it running this afternoon and have been logging the results. I think it is all working but one thing I have noticed is that the signal to noise ratio (vertical axis) is pretty poor. Does anyone have an idea about the point at which the ratio becomes too low to yield meaningful results? Thanks, Dave
Following on from discussion in an earlier thread I thought I would post the rest of my May SID observations which were made using my portable loop antenna rig. May was a quiet month, as shown by the following plot of solar flare classes (data from GOES-15). There were no high energy C class flares above C3.3 and no M or X class flares at all. My small portable loop is 60x60 cm and will struggle to detect anything less than C5.1 class flares (it is too noisy) , though M and X classes can be seen, so as a result the plots below do not show any obvious flare activity. In fact YTD we have had I think only one M class flare. This coming month I may try and get my larger loop working again, but then I did say that last month too!