Science Update 8-1-16

Plishner Radio SuperSID Results – July 2016

  • Here is my analysis of the SuperSID Data: DSES SuperSID Results July 2016
  • There were a number of C1+ flares last month.
  • There was an M1.9 flare on July 24.
  • The system is barely detecting C flares and rarely detects B flares.
  • I plan on taking to Plishner – this should increase sensitivity.

Plishner Radio Jove Results – July 2016

    • Here is my analysis of the Radio Jove data for July 2016 from the Plishner site: DSES Plishner Radio Jove Results July 2016
    • There was a significant improvement in detection results this month. This corresponds to the new antenna cabling.


Dr. Rich Russel

Science Update 6-3-16

The Radio Jove system picked up lightning strikes very clearly on 20.1 MHz during the storm that passed through Colorado Springs on 29 May 2016, as evidenced by Figure 1. The second jpeg, Figure 2, is zoomed-in showing what lighting looks like on the strip chart.

As you can see, it is important to recognize if your radio telescope is detecting Jupiter or lightning.

Figure 1. Radio Jove data record of 5-29-16

Figure 2. Detail of Lighting data 5-29-16

Dr. Rich Russel

Science Update 5-1-16

Radio JOVE Observations at the Plishner Radio Astronomy Observatory
Observational Period: February to April 2016
Analysis: Dr. Richard Russel

Radio Jove Configuration:

  • 20.1 MHz Receiver
  • Dual Dipole at 15 ft. oriented East-West with a 90 degree phase delay on South Dipole
    1. South dipole feed line was eaten through.
    2. North dipole feed line was damaged but intact – may have some degradation.
  • Radio Skypipe software with an audio feed from receiver
  • Latitude: 38: 45:28N Longitude: 103:16:50W
  • Power was lost around 6 April – due to primary DC-AC inverter failing
  • Note that the Sun has a dominant signature (Sunrise and Sunset times are documented)
  • Very few Jupiter related signatures were noted for this time period. This was probably related to the damaged antenna.

Recommended Follow Up Actions:

  • Compare Solar activity with Radio Jove activity. There appeared to have been enough gain on the antenna to get a good solar signature.

Science Update 5-1-16

Results of the Radio Jove telescope at using the Plishner receiver from February to April 2016.

1) The damaged (eaten) antenna appears to have limited the Jupiter observations, however there is significant solar data.
2) The Data ends on 6 April due to the DC-AC inverter failure at the site.
3) We rebuilt the antenna on the 23 April trip. We will reinstall the receiver and the laptop on the next trip when we get the new inverter.
4) The data for all telescopes is being stored if anyone would like to use it.

I am currently analyzing the Meteor Scatter data from the Lyrid Meteor shower. Thanks to Ed Corn for setting up his system for meteor scatter.


Science Update 4-6-16

Meteor Scatter Observations

Meteor showers happen when Earth’s orbit crosses the orbit of a comet or asteroid. The bits of dust and material remain after the comet or asteroid passes and the resultant meteor shower is a result of these particles entering Earth’s atmosphere.

The meteor leaves an ionized trail of material in the atmosphere that is highly reflective to a radio signal. An available ground based radio signal is the analog video television channel signal at 55.25 MHZ. The U.S. no longer broadcasts this frequency since the country went to digital television. However, it appears that there are a few signals being broadcast from Canada and Mexico.

Station setup:

  • Receiver at 55.25 MHZ
  • Antenna ( dipole or yagi at this frequency)
  • Computer (Windows operating system with microphone or other audi input)
  • Software – Radio Skypipe
  • Audio jumper from radio audio out to computer microphone in


  • The atmosphere normally does not reflect the 55.25MHz signal. When the meteor enters the atmosphere, the signal does reflect off the ionization trail and is reflected back toward the ground. The signal sounds like a bell tone when received.
  • Using the Radio Skypipe software, the signal spikes in amplitude and then reduces in a “shark Fin” geometry. This is caused by the meteor ionization trail degrading and therefore the reflected signal reduces gradually. SU06-06-16_1

Skypipe will also allow the operator to count the number of meteors during a period of time. The below chart shows the results from last years Leonid meteor shower.


Future observations:

Shower Approximate Date Parent Object
Quadrantids January 3-4 Asteroid 2003 EH1
Lyrids April 21-22 Comet Thatcher
Eta Aquariids May 5-6 Comet Halley
Perseids August 12-13 Comet Swift-Tuttle
Draconids October 8-9 Comet Giacobini-Zinner
Orionids October 21-22 Comet Halley
Taurids November 5-6 Comet Encke
Leonids November 17-18 Comet Tempel-Tuttle
Geominids December 13-14 Asteroid Phaethon
Ursids December 22-23 Comet Tuttle

Contact Dr. Rich Russel for more information on setting up your meteor scatter radio telescope.

Science Update 3-23-16

Plishner Radio Jupiter Astronomy Observations

The first long term observations at Plishner are based on the radio Jupiter system. The system utilizes a 20 Mhz dual dipole interferometer phased at 90 degrees toward the south. This enables the antenna system to improve gain toward the ecliptic in which Jupiter transits.

The radio telescope system is installed on a laptop at Plishner and remotely accessed via the internet. Below is the output of the system. It includes real-time monitoring of the 20 Mhz signal and the battery voltage of the battery system.

Plishner Radio Astronomy Jupiter System
Plishner Radio Astronomy Jupiter System

All data is archived and is available to DSES members for use in research.

Contact Dr. Rich Russel for more information on accessing the collected data.