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Saturday, August 13, 2011

What's the frequency, Kenneth???

Off and on I've been trying to find a way to listen to the meteor showers that frequently hit the Earth. The idea is that as a meteor hits the ionosphere, it scatters said ions and radio frequency signals that normally would just radiate into space are instead reflected back towards earth. Hams frequently use this method when making contacts via meteor scatter

There are web sites set up for people to listen to the NAVSPASUR (Air Force Space Surveillance System) transmitters on 216 MHz. I've not been able to hear the transmitters even though I live close to the facility in Alabama.

I've tried to listen to the meteors using a "poor man's" method of listening to TV signals from stations in other cities like Chattanooga and Bristol, TN. That idea went out the window when the FCC kicked TV stations off the analog frequencies in 2009. I've tried listening to FM radio stations using this method, but the dilemma I have is that, with Knoxville being such a big radio market, practically every available frequency from 88-108 MHz is taken locally.

So now I'm left trying to find any good radio frequency that would work for me to listen to meteors "pinging" the atmosphere. It needs to be outside the Knoxville area, constantly transmitting, and with a high enough power to be heard distinctly when the meteors pass overhead.

If anyone can assist with this quagmire, I'd be most appreciative.

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