SB PROP @ ARL $ARLP012
ARLP012 Propagation de K7RA
QST de W1AW
Propagation Forecast Bulletin 12 ARLP012
From Tad Cook, K7RA
Seattle, WA March 25, 2022
To all radio amateurs
SB PROP ARL ARLP012
ARLP012 Propagation de K7RA
Solar and geomagnetic activity were much quieter over the reporting
week, March 17-23.
Average daily sunspot number declined by more than half, from 74.6
to 33.4, and average daily solar flux over 19 points from 119 to
On Wednesday March 23, Spaceweather.com reported a large emerging
sunspot crossing our Sun's eastern limb.
Predicted solar flux is 112 on March 25-27, 110 on March 28 to April
1, 115 on April 2-5, 125 on April 6-9, 115 and 110 on April 10-11,
105 on April 12-13, 100 on April 14, 95 on April 15-16, 100 on April
17-18, 101 on April 19, 102 on April 20-22, 100 on April 23-24, and
110 on April 25-26, then 115 and 120 on April 27-28, and 115 on
April 29 through May 2.
Predicted planetary A index is 10, 12, 10 and 8 on March 25-28, 5 on
March 29 through April 1, 15 and 8 on April 2-3, then 5 again on
April 4-17, then 8, 10 and 8 on April 18-20, and 5 on April 21-26,
then 10, 20, 12 and 8 on April 27-30.
"Solar activity went through a quasi-periodic twenty-seven-day low
around March 20. Then it started to rise slightly. Sunspots are now
observed only in the eastern half of the solar disk, in addition,
the solar observation mission STEREO-A (Solar Terrestrial Relations
Observatory) observes further activity beyond the eastern limb of
the solar disk. Therefore, the total solar activity will increase
until the end of the month.
"Shortwave propagation conditions were above average until March 21.
Then the subsequent decrease in solar activity together with a
slight increase in geomagnetic activity caused their slight
"We will see improvements in the coming days. This development will
end in a recurrent disturbance around April 1. Expected storm could,
at best, begin with a positive phase of development with further
improvement and growth of the MUF."
W4NPN in Chapel Hill, North Carolina reported he heard my K7RA/B
beacon very weakly at 1949 UTC on 28.2833 MHz. Previously I had
checked 10 meter FT8 coverage and saw nothing on the
pskreporter.info map. But around the time of his report, I saw very
narrow coverage via FT8 only around North Carolina, nowhere else in
Grand Minimum on a nearby star? See https://bit.ly/37TFKwB
Jon Jones, N0JK reported on March 22:
"6 Meters opened between the east coast and northern Brazil March
"I believe this is the first 6M F2 opening of Solar Cycle 25 for
continental USA. It was between southeast states and northern South
America, Brazil, PV8DX:
"PV8DX 22/03/21 1850 UTC 50110.0 59+ 73 QSY 105 KW4BY
PV8DX 22/03/21 1848 UTC 50110.0 WW3A
PV8DX 22/03/21 1843 UTC 50110.0 N4IS
PV8DX 22/03/21 1840 UTC 50110.0 here now loud! KD4ESV
"This opening had all the hallmarks of F2. Distance one F2 hop, time
of day right for F2, right season (March) and extremely loud
signals. No Es were reported. The opening lasted about an hour and
reached north to WW1L and west to KA9FOX in Wisconsin. Most of the
contacts were in the southeast states. Solar Flux was 95, K index
"On March 19, I had HC1MD/2 in on 50.313 MHz FT8 around 2045 UTC.
Very, very weak with decodes of -24 dB. I wonder if this was F2
forward scatter (above the MUF) propagation?"
Dan, K1TO, in EL87, noted he had HC (Ecuador) stations in loud on 6
Meters March 19 and 20. So, March 19 may be the first day of 6 Meter
F2 from the continental USA:
"HCs very loud on 3/20 = Equinox. +30 dB (on FT8) 1839-1918Z HC:
1MD/2 2AO 2DR 2FG 5VF.
"HCs also +30 the day before on 3/19 1904-2013z. HC1MD/2 2AO 2DR.
HC2PY only peaked +25.
"These reports are consistent to me for direct single hop F2 on 50
MHz from Florida to Ecuador. So, March 19 was the first for Solar
WB8VLC in Salem, Oregon has been having fun on 10 meter FM, using a
4 element OWA Yagi at 30 feet. He reports:
"January through March have been pretty much worldwide DX on 10
meters here in Oregon with NUMEROUS Europe, Africa, South America,
South Pacific, and Asia stations worked on 10 meter CW and SSB from
January 2022 to March 20th.
"The purpose of this update is to spread some info on 10 meter FM
activity which has been as good or better than SSB/CW activity.
"Since early January ZL2OK in New Zealand has been worked twice on
29.6 FM in January and February 2022.
"Most days there are several South American, Caribbean, and numerous
US and Canadian hams worked on 29.6 FM while in the evening hours it
is all Asia with Japan and South Korea worked on FM simplex, not on
the regular 29.6 FM frequency but on the Asia chit-chat channels
around 29.3 MHz.
"Asia hams are frequently active 2200-0200 UTC between 29.20 and
29.40 FM mode with 29.3 being the FM DX Asia calling channel.
"Here is a just a sample of this past week and a half mostly 10 FM
DX with one 12 meter CW to China listed.
"Sunday March 21-2022 between 0000-0200 UTC
"29.300 FM HL2IKT KOREA 59 SIGS BOTH WAYS
29.280 FM HL2IKT KOREA 59
"I CAUGHT HL2IKT ON BOTH 29.28 AND .29.30 FM CALLING CQ EACH TIME
with 59 sigs.
"29.300 FM JR1NVJ JAPAN 55 BOTH WAYS
29.300 FM JP1DMR JAPAN 55 BOTH WAYS
24.893 CW BA5AD CHINA 599 BOTH WAYS VERY LOUD.
"12 METERS HAS BEEN PHENOMENAL WORLDWIDE with great SSB/CW DX and
there is even some stateside 12 meter FM users which I will post
info on later.
"Back to 10 FM, the South Koreans hang out on 29.28MHz FM but they
also listen for DX on 29.300 FM then they move down to 29.280 for
"MARCH 20 2022 between 00:00 UTC and 01:30 UTC
FREQ MODE CALL WORKED
29.300 FM JM7SKE JAPAN 59 BOTH WAYS
29.300 FM JE4NAN JAPAN 59 BOTH WAYS
29.300 FM JH1SCD JAPAN 59 BOTH WAYS
"On March 19th I was informed by a JA ham on 29.6 FM that Asia uses
29.2 to 29.4 simplex, so I started listening/calling on 29.3 MHz FM
around March 20th and I was rewarded with Asia DX.
"MARCH 15 2022 1900 UTC
29.600 FM PT2ZXR BRAZIL 59+
"MARCH 13 2022 1800 UTC
29.600 FM XE2LVM MEXICO 59+
"MARCH 11 to 12 2022 between 1900 to 2200 UTC
29.600 FM WH6LU HAWAII 59
29.600 FM PY2AD BRAZIL 59+
29.600 FM NP3V PUERTO RICO
29.600 FM 9Z4FE TRINIDAD
29.600 FM KH7CN HAWAII"
WA2AMW (I think the mode was FT8) in Princeton, New Jersey wrote on
"I just worked VP8NO, Falkland Islands, on 6 meters. I happened to
see his call on my other monitor and switched from 10 meters. The
thing that surprised me was the signal strengths: I sent him a +17
dB report and he sent me a +6 dB report. ON SIX METERS! That's an
over 5600 mile surface path. Now, a couple of minutes later, he's
not there anymore. Either he went QRT or the band did."
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For more information concerning shortwave radio propagation, see
http://www.arrl.org/propagation and the ARRL Technical Information
Service web page at, http://arrl.org/propagation-of-rf-signals. For
an explanation of numbers used in this bulletin, see
An archive of past propagation bulletins is at
http://arrl.org/w1aw-bulletins-archive-propagation. More good
information and tutorials on propagation are at http://k9la.us/.
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bulletins are at http://arrl.org/bulletins .
Sunspot numbers for March 17 through 23, 2022 were 53, 27, 29, 39,
30, 29, and 27, with a mean of 33.4.6. 10.7 cm flux was 102.8, 97.8,
94, 95, 98, 106, and 106, with a mean of 99.9. Estimated planetary A
indices were 6, 4, 5, 9, 4, 9, and 7, with a mean of 6.3. Middle
latitude A index was 6, 3, 6, 11, 4, 7, and 6, with a mean of 6.1.