The Reverse Beacon Network is a revolutionary new idea. Instead of beacons actively transmitting signals, the RBN is a network of stations listening to the bands and reporting what stations they hear, when and how well.
So why should you care? Well, to begin with, you can see band openings in near-real time on an animated map. You can call a quick CQ, and see which reverse beacons hear you, and how strong you are.
But the real breakthrough is in the database of past “spots”. You can instantly find out what stations, from a given country or zone, have been heard, at what times and on what frequencies. You can see when you’ve been spotted, who spotted you, and how loud you were.
“But wait,” as they say on the TV ads, “there’s more!” Now, for the first time, you can compare your signal with those of your friends and competitors, in near real time or historically. If you wonder how your signal stacked up during last weekend’s contests, the Signal Comparison Tool will give you real, quantitative data. Tell it what stations you want to compare, based on signals heard by a given reverse beacon on a certain band at a certain time, and there you’ll have it. Of course, whether you like what you see is up to you.
So press the “Operating Aids” button, explore this site, power up your rig, and give it a try.