UKRAA is pleased to announce that we have a stock of 6m band Moxon antennas suitable for meteor detection. It can be used with the new 50MHz beacon being developed for deployment in the UK midlands which should be receivable over most of the UK. It is also suitable for use with the BRAMS meteor beacon in Belgium.
A presentation was given on the planned UK meteor transmitter at the BAA RAG online conference held on 16th October 2021. Details are on the BAA website.
The design with Moxon elements gives a very short boom length, an excellent front/back ratio of more than 30 dB and a large bandwidth. Another benefit is the 50Ω design, which avoids the use of a lossy balun as transforming element, the feed line being connected direct to the antenna.
The small weight of only 3 kg makes this antenna also suitable for other activities such as DX-peditions.
UKRAA is pleased to announce that the first batch of our new cosmic ray muon detectors will soon be available for sale on our website. We launched the detector at the Practical Astronomy Show in Kettering on Saturday where it generated a lot of interest.
We will be introducing three versions of the detector plus an enclosure:
- A kit for self-assembly. This involves the soldering of small surface mounted devices (SMD). £129
- A part assembled kit. All the SMD components are assembled leaving the larger components to be soldered and assembled. £139
- A finished device. This will be tested and working with the operating software loaded. £164
- An extruded aluminium enclosure suitable for a single device. £23
The kits include all the components including a polished drilled and tapped 5cm x 5cm x 1cm scintillator block. This block is BC-412 grade scintillator material which is optically matched to a large 6mm X 6mm silicon photo multiplier (SiPM) chip. This gives a 25cm3 collecting volume. Using a solid-state detector eliminates the high voltage needed for vacuum tube GM detectors and also gives six times the detection volume.
As supplied the detector will detect β, ϒ, and cosmic muons. To eliminate the random β and ϒ two detectors are required working in coincidence mode. Muon events are output as a CSV file on a micro-SD card or can be connected to a PC via USB.
A discount of 7.5% will be applied to purchases of two or more detectors.
For ongoing support there is a forum - https://groups.io/g/muondetector/messages where discussion, questions and ideas can be shared.
The UK Radio Astronomy Association was established in 2008 as a registered charity (registration no 1123866) by the British Astronomical Association’s Radio Astronomy Group (RAG). UKRAA’s objectives are to promote the science of radio astronomy and all branches of radio astronomical research.
UKRAA is a not for profit business. Any surplus income funds the development of new products and our outreach activities. To keep our prices low UKRAA relies on the contributions of volunteers. We need more volunteers who can contribute in these areas of expertise:
- Precision wood working to make up antenna kits and assembled antennas.
- Machining and mechanical assembly to make up the enclosures.
- Electronic assembly both through-hole and surface mount components.
- Software development.
- Digital and analogue circuit design and PCB layout experience.
- IT and Website support.
- Writers for articles and manuals Stock control, book keeping and customer service.
Both are available to down load below.
Introduction to Radio Astronomy
The first article covers the use of the UKRAA Magnetometer and
encourages amateur astronomers to have a go and observe the earths
magnetism. John Cook (Director BAA Radio Astronomy Section) and Andrew
Thomas (UKRAA Trustee) describe the operation of the magnetometer
sensor and consider the practicalities of making observations. This
article was first published in Radio Astronomy the Journal of the
Society of Amateur Radio Astronomers (SARA) Journal, Nov-Dec 2020, pp.
The second article is an introduction to radio astronomy for a general
readership. It was published in the February edition Radio User Magazine
and aims to interest the reader in radio astronomy and give guidance to
some introductory projects.
The editors of both magazines are keen to receive articles for
publication and can be contacted through their websites
Society of Amateur Radio Astronomers (SARA) www.radio-astronomy.org
Radio Enthusiast www.radioenthusiast.co.uk