Once again last week's puzzle photo was a resounding success with congratulations and going to John, Anon, Wilma, Adrian and Glo for identifying the ice crystals formed during an early morning frost on my garden.
On to this week's puzzle picture of a shocking find at the edge of a local field.
Just for fun. No prizes.
The effects of the CME mentioned on Saturday were later than forecast and not as extensive as had been hoped for. I understand the Aurora could be seen over the north of the American continent last night and the effect was strong enough to compress the Earth's magnetic field for a while.
This morning Sunspot 1402 erupted producing a long duration M9-class Solar flare (the most powerful kind). It is expected to give a strong glancing blow to the Earth's magnetic field on Jan 24/25.
Further information HERE on the SpaceWeather site.
I have never seen an Aurora but live in hopes, especially as we approach the peak of the 11yr cycle of Sunspot activity. One thing I have managed in the past when I was an active amateur radio enthusiast was to bounce radio signals off the charged particles during an aurora. It does strange things to radio signals and the person you are talking to sounds like they have a severe case of laryngitis as only the breathy part of the sound is left and all tone is missing. To contact someone to my East, say Holland or Germany, we both have to point our aerials towards the North to use the Aurora but if we try to communicate directly the chances are the signals that way are too weak to be detected.
My aerial setup as it was then:
Main mast bottom to top; 6m beam, 2m beam, 70cm beam and 2 times 23cm beams.
Small mast: 4m beam.
Occasionally I used to put up a set of aerials for working through amateur satellites. Great fun trying to keep a beam pointing at a satellite as it dashes across the sky above and working a transmitter at the same time.
Boby is active and eating well now we seem to have his medication sorted out. The main battle is getting all the pills down him though his usual liking for jam tarts helps as the tablets hide nicely in the jam! Another is keeping up with him when we set out for a walk.
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