signal identification

explorations in shortwave

Click a category on the right to view my encounters with each type of transmission, including unidentified transmissions.

what is this?

Did you know that if you are viewing this webpage, you are likely spewing electromagnetic waves all over your room? Radio technology builds the backbone of practically every wireless communication in the world, and it just so happens that listening to the spectrum can be a lot of fun.

Radio in general, but especially shortwave radio, is a different experience than browsing the internet because, for the most part, you don't get to choose what you hear- everyone with a radio and properly sized antenna works with the same space. On top of that, the atmosphere, sun, and earth actively affect radio transmissions.
Listening to the air can feel like visiting a living, breathing place- it's hard to describe until you've tried it! If you don't want to invest in a radio, all you need is a web browser.

current solarterrestrial data- refresh to update

how to listen

The website provides an active, live-updating list of operating software-defined radios that you can tune and listen to. You can listen to typical stations on earth (with their hardware defined in the "antenna" column) and even satellites in geostationary orbit. You can't make your own transmissions without a license without your own radio, and to decode data transmissions, you'll need to record the audio and import it into software like fldigi, but it's a great place to start!

about these pages

Each page represents a signal I've heard. It will feature a summary of the signal itself, links to information, and interesting individual reports of signals at the bottom- almost like a radio diary!

my hardware

My hardware is a Kenwood TS-140S connected to a random wire antenna. (Just a long piece of wire on the floor soldered to a connector.)