Yes, sunspot activity remains at ZERO, with no spots having been observed since November 18!
What a disgrace, and users of HF services are getting exasperated at the narrowing frequency window for securing reliable long distance transmission over darkness, or semi-darkness paths.
But let not that worry us unduly, as our monitoring moves to frequency bands which are available!
Here, in Melbourne, the Garden City, there continues to be a very good daytime propagation window open on 6, 7, and 9 MHz from around early to mid-afternoon, from 0300 to about 0500, for
EUROPE/MIDDLE EAST/AFRICA longpath and AMERICAS shortpath
ASIA shortpath propagation remains well and good, between 0300 and 0500 on 7 and 9 MHz.
Higher up, there is intense activity on 11, 13, 15, and 17 MHz in the same time period, which I will not describe in this report.
On Wednesday December 10 I went out to the Doongalla Forest, in the Dandenong Ranges National Park, about 30 mins drive time from here. The Stables Picnic Ground is always excellent for studying propagation, and this day was no exception.
There is very little power line noise, as the nearest overhead transmission lines are about 2 km away, at the Park entrance.
This is a beautiful spot, next to the site of the former Homestead, with many shady trees and flower gardens.
Good walking tracks radiate from the picnic ground, most following old pony trails.
This is a summary of spectrum occupancy, using the Eton E5 with a random wire about 2 m high, 0330-0500!
TIME WINDOW 0300-0400:
6020 ALBANIA CRI Cerrick Mandarin
6055 SPAIN REE Spanish
7125 MOLDOVA VOR Kishinov Russian
7150 RUSSIA VOR Krasnoyarsk Russian
9475 TAJIKSTAN VOR Dushanbe Russian
9500 CHINA CNR1
9505 IRAN VOIRI *0330 Arabic
9540 SAO TOME VOA *0330 African langs
9595 JAPAN R, Nikkei Japanese
9635 ROMANIA RRI Spanish
9665 N. KOREA KCBS
9685 CHINA CNR5
9730 MYANMAR Yangon
9760 JAPAN R. Nikkei Japanese
9760 SRI LANKA RL Iranawela *0300 Tajik
9790 CUBA CRI Havana English
9810 CHINA CNR1
9825 FRANCE NKH Issoudin Arabic
9835 INDIA AIR
9865 IRAN VOIRI Turkish
9870 INDIA AIR national
9875 IRAN VOIRI Dari
9895 IRAN VOIRI Arabic
TIME WINDOW 0400-0500:
5960 CANADA NHK Sackville Japanese
5975 N. ANTILLES RN Bonaire Dutch
9515 ROMANIA RRI English
9755 RWANDA DW Kigali Arabic
9780 YEMEN R. Sanaa
9820 IRAN VOIRI *0430 Hebrew
9840 RUSSIA VOR Petropavlovsk English
9850 VIETNAM VOV domestic
The data show that despite low sunspot activity, propagation over great distances is excellent, provided that the appropriate frequency band is chosen for research for any given time period.
Regards from Melbourne!