I live 6 nautical miles southeast of Toronto's Buttonville Airport (YKZ). It's a GA airport with 2 runways and I live directly under the approach path for runway 33. Even though I'm not that far away from the airport, I can't normally receive the transmisions from the control tower. I've owned an airband receiver for over a year and have never been able to hear the controllers in the tower at buttonville airport, however, for the past 2 to 3 weeks I have been able to hear the controller in the tower. Sometimes his signal is weak, but it's mostly good & clear.
The only thing that's changed over the past 3 weeks is the weather. Toronto has been experiencing a very cold mass of Arctic air for several weeks now, which has brought with it daytime temperature highs of only -15 degrees Celcius.
This morning at 10 am the temp in Toronto was -22 degrees Celcius with a windchill factor of -32 C!!! (it's was just a tad cold outside. Toronto is currently under an extreme cold weather alert), and I could hear the controller at Buttonville Airport as clear as could be.
So I'm wondering ....... can air temperature affect radio signals? Does the colder, thus denser air allow radio signals to travel farther?
Part of my mind is telling me that the answer is NO. Perhaps the transmissions from the control tower have been improved and now they have a stronger signal, but, part of my mind keeps wondering about the weather because of the coincidence between the temperature and being able to hear Buttonvilles's control tower.
Any thoughts about this would be great.