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These pages and experiments
are sponsored by
The Radiocommunications Agency

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Choosing your radio station

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Choosing the radio station to listen out for is an important first step. An ideal radio station should have each of the following characteristics.
  1. It should be far enough from your position that, in the days leading up to the eclipse, it can only be heard at night, with the signal fading out during the day.

  2. It is important to identify the station and therefore where the broadcasts are being made from. If possible, the station should be broadcasting in English (this will not be possible for the 1999 eclipse, but we have a much better idea of where each station is in Europe).

  3. Try to choose a frequency where there are as few different stations as possible.

  4. If possible, don't choose a station that is swamped by a very strong local radio signal during the day.

Once you have identified the radio station you intend to listen out for, the next step is to find out how sensitive your radio is, by calibrating the signal. This is done by measuring the time at which the signal is first heard at dusk, and the last time it is heard at dawn. This is where the timer comes in very handy, as it will save you having to get up too early, or go to bed too late.

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Radio Experiment | Atmospheric Science | What you can do | Ionosondes | Eclipse
31/07/98 Chris Davis