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    Effect of weather/atmospheric conditions on OTA TV?


    This is a discussion on Effect of weather/atmospheric conditions on OTA TV? within the DTV | HDTV Reception and Antenna Discussion forums, part of the Over-the-Air (Antenna TV) category.

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    1. #1
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      I was wondering what I can expect from a well designed OTA TV system during different weather conditions? The Dish we have now basically works fine except in really driving rains (and I mean coming down in sheets-normal rainfall doesn't phase it), and of course when it gets covered with snow. What kinds of weather and/or atmospheric conditions can affect TV transmissions? Are sunspots, solar flares, and other atmospheric conditions typically a factor? I had a neighbor growing up who was a CB enthusiast who had a 60' tower in his backyard, etc... I remember him talking about something called "the skip" that happened either during a certain time of year (or during certain kinds of weather-I don't really remember), but basically whatever this condition was it allowed the waves to bounce of certain parts of the atmosphere, allowing them to travel much much farther than usual. Is anyone familiar with this phenomenon and does it apply to television waves?

    2. #2
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      Again, I'm providing an a slightly uneducated, but logical answer which you probably already know

      but, wind can affect receiving over-the-air depending on how much flex and movement your outdoor antennas have. As for other conditions, I'm sure snow does too, but I'll let others comment on that.

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      Badfish,

      Television signals can travel well beyond their normal range of coverage when atmospheric conditions allow. Here are several links to websites that explain how RF signals propegate including the "skip" phenomonon known as Tropospheric Ducting. You may have noticed signals marked as 'Tropo' on your TVFOOL report and these tutorials will help explain. Great question.

      Jim

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      VHF Signal Propagation

      Tropospheric propagation - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

      Tropospheric Ducting Forecast for VHF & UHF Radio & TV
      Trickster likes this.

    4. #4
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      Quote Originally Posted by Aaron62 View Post
      ... wind can affect receiving over-the-air depending on how much flex and movement your outdoor antennas have. As for other conditions, I'm sure snow does too, but I'll let others comment on that.
      At some locations, wind is definately an issue because it moves tree branches that are in the path of the RF signal. If they are wet from rain, they tend to absorb and/or reflect RF even more. Others including myself have no issues with wind at all.

      I receive a station 75 miles away and if there is a major rain cell between them and me the signal has been known to drop out during the event, however, the same channel blasted thru here perfectly last night during our (continuing) 9" snowfall.

      Another signal behavior issue can be seen around sundown when the earth stops absorbing heat from the sun and then releases its acquired heat. I think of it as something like viewing a Desert Oasis from a distance where temperature changes 'bend' light waves.

      Jim
      Last edited by Fringe Reception; 01-19-2012 at 02:42 PM.
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    5. #5
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      its crazy because i am 70 miles from memphis,tn and i cannot get memphis during the day. after 10 pm every night almost all memphis stations start coming in and stay in all night.

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      Weather definitely affects reception, and is more pronounced beyond about 50 miles or so.

      However "the skip" on CB what your friend is talking about isn't going to happen on TV reception. CB "skip" is F2 ionospheric propagation, or Es (sporadic E) which happens during the summer and sometimes during the winter solstice. Barring an extreme solar event (and I do mean extreme), you are not going to have that kind of "skip" on VHF/UHF TV bands.

      As Jim mentioned, there is tropospheric "ducting" where temperature inversion causes distant signals to be "piped" through the troposphere.

      Negative effects of weather? Rain and snow attenuate signals. Ice buildup on your antenna can change its impedance temporarily and cause you to lose signal. You will have some measure of "rain fade" beyond 50 miles or so but a high gain antenna can compensate for it.
      Ryan, N2RJ

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      I remember growing up, I dreaded heavy rains and winds. It always messed up the picture. Actually, even with cable, some channels seem to react more to bad weather than others.

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      Quote Originally Posted by 90chevy View Post
      its crazy because i am 70 miles from memphis,tn and i cannot get memphis during the day. after 10 pm every night almost all memphis stations start coming in and stay in all night.
      90Chevy I too live about 70 miles from Memphis and get exactly the same effect..... now I'm not an expert or anything here, the rest of the guys on here will have to chirp in and correct me if I'm wrong.....but I'm a recent converted to OTA and JUST bought a new Deep Fringe AntennaCraft MAINLY to pick up MEMPHIS and originally it wasn't any better TILL....I turn the damn thing BACKWARDS.....BOOM...a little tweaking I picked up all my regular locals....AND 13, 24 and 30 outta Memphis perfectly....don't ask me WHY this works...all I know is I went with it....3 (CBS/ANTENNA) 5 (NBC, BOUNCE, THIS) and 50 (ION, QUBO, IONLITE) are still registering but are gonna need a pre amp to boost on in....but they ARE there....u should consider that...it's working for me...and most of these stations are 70 plus miles from here.....

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      Quote Originally Posted by 90chevy View Post
      its crazy because i am 70 miles from memphis,tn and i cannot get memphis during the day. after 10 pm every night almost all memphis stations start coming in and stay in all night.
      That sounds like enhancement. The ground loses its heat (radiates it) and the air near the ground cools. The higher air warms up and the signals reflect off of it. When the sun comes up, the ground warms up again and the inversion is gone and so are your signals.
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      Ryan, N2RJ

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    10. #10
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      Quote Originally Posted by Dan Wilson View Post
      90Chevy I too live about 70 miles from Memphis and get exactly the same effect..... now I'm not an expert or anything here, the rest of the guys on here will have to chirp in and correct me if I'm wrong.....but I'm a recent converted to OTA and JUST bought a new Deep Fringe AntennaCraft MAINLY to pick up MEMPHIS and originally it wasn't any better TILL....I turn the damn thing BACKWARDS.....BOOM...a little tweaking I picked up all my regular locals....AND 13, 24 and 30 outta Memphis perfectly....don't ask me WHY this works...all I know is I went with it....3 (CBS/ANTENNA) 5 (NBC, BOUNCE, THIS) and 50 (ION, QUBO, IONLITE) are still registering but are gonna need a pre amp to boost on in....but they ARE there....u should consider that...it's working for me...and most of these stations are 70 plus miles from here.....
      i'll have to give it a shot

    11. #11
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      Quote Originally Posted by Dan Wilson View Post
      90Chevy I too live about 70 miles from Memphis and get exactly the same effect..... now I'm not an expert or anything here, the rest of the guys on here will have to chirp in and correct me if I'm wrong.....but I'm a recent converted to OTA and JUST bought a new Deep Fringe AntennaCraft MAINLY to pick up MEMPHIS and originally it wasn't any better TILL....I turn the damn thing BACKWARDS.....BOOM...a little tweaking I picked up all my regular locals....AND 13, 24 and 30 outta Memphis perfectly....don't ask me WHY this works...all I know is I went with it....3 (CBS/ANTENNA) 5 (NBC, BOUNCE, THIS) and 50 (ION, QUBO, IONLITE) are still registering but are gonna need a pre amp to boost on in....but they ARE there....u should consider that...it's working for me...and most of these stations are 70 plus miles from here.....
      This sounds so crazy to me, that I'm wondering... Are you sure it's backward???

    12. #12
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      That never happened to me, backwards the high temperature cause signal distortion if uses a conventional antenna, also multipath even in walls causes signals fluctuations,


      Best regards
      Francisco
      [ QUOTE=n2rj;91108]That sounds like enhancement. The ground loses its heat (radiates it) and the air near the ground cools. The higher air warms up and the signals reflect off of it. When the sun comes up, the ground warms up again and the inversion is gone and so are your signals.[/QUOTE]



      Sent from my LG-P500h using Tapatalk

    13. #13
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      well assuming the idea that the largest element is the one that is supposedly pointed normally TOWARD the direction your trying to pick up ...then YES...I've got it TURNED backwards and this is how I'm receiving my pretty signals.....I've included a link to the Spec PFD.... http://www.antennacraft.net/pdfs/CCS1843.pdf now am I wrong in this....the little end is the BACK?.....if it is....THAT"S the end turned toward Memphis but it's also in the right postion to pick up Jackson stations............ so ya'll the experts yall tell me??????
      ;

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      The small end is the front, and should be pointed towards your desired stations.

      There is also usually an area of decent reception from the BACK of a lot of antennas... this is how I get all my channels on one antenna. I have one set of transmitters 30 miles directly north, and another 10 miles directly south. I point the antenna north, and catch the closer (and stronger) signals off the back side. My meter on the TV shows both sets of signals at about the same signal strength.

    15. #15
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      Quote Originally Posted by MrPogi View Post
      The small end is the front, and should be pointed towards your desired stations.

      There is also usually an area of decent reception from the BACK of a lot of antennas... this is how I get all my channels on one antenna. I have one set of transmitters 30 miles directly north, and another 10 miles directly south. I point the antenna north, and catch the closer (and stronger) signals off the back side. My meter on the TV shows both sets of signals at about the same signal strength.
      but how are signals 70 miles away being picked up off the back?

     

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