WIANEWS - MARCH 3 - VK NATIONAL NEWS
THE BEST NEWS YOU'LL GET ALL WEEK
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WIANEWS WEEK COMMENCING MARCH 3 2013.
OVER THE HORIZON RADAR HEARD ON 10 METERS
2013 RSGB COMMONWEALTH CW CONTEST 9 -10 March
MAR 15-17 VK JOHN MOYLE FIELD DAY WEEKEND
THESE STORIES AND MORE IN THIS EDITION OF NEWS FROM THE WIRELESS INSTITUTE
OF AUSTRALIA FOR WEEK COMMENCING MAR 03 2013.
Digital TV for all of Australia
It will be a very busy time this year when only digital television becomes
available throughout all of Australia, as it continues to turn off old
analogue TV transmitters.
Adelaide, Tasmania and Perth will switch-over during April, then Brisbane
in May and Darwin this July. Leaving the most populated areas to last, Sydney
is on December 3, and December 10 when Melbourne is due.
An exception is the Melbourne and Geelong Community Broadcaster C31 that
went digital-only in March last year on Channel 44, after getting Federal
Many regional areas, starting with Mildura in Victoria's Sunraysia district
in June 2010, have switched progressively which means only reception is available
using a digital TV or set-top box.
Digital TV gives a better picture and sound quality, and greater choice.
Many commercial and national outlets have two or more channels which run
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
HAMS ACROSS AUSTRALIA.
ACMA have now formally issued VI 100 ACT to the CRARC for the month of
The year 2013 is Canberra's centenary year and the month of March marks
100 years since Lady Lyne (pronounced Line) named Canberra at Capital Hill,
the site of Parliament House.
The Canberra Region Amateur Radio Club has been granted a special event
callsign vi 100 ACT in recognition of this event.
(Submitted by Andrew Vk1DA on behalf of the Canberra club)
web service:- http://www.arnsw.org.au/html/news_vk2wi.htm
VKG Roundup http://www.police.nsw.gov.au/news
Amateur Radio NSW will commence its upgrade course tomorrow night
the 4 th March at the VK2WI site. It will be held each Monday evening
until about the end of the year except on public holidays.
web service:- http://www.amateurradio.com.au/news/
Standard Bridging Course by Amateur Radio Victoria
Enrolments are now open for the Standard Licence theory course that starts
soon on Wednesday nights at Ashburton. It and ends with a revision Saturday
and assessments on Sunday.
To enrol you must already have a Foundation Licence as the quality instructor,
Kevin Luxford VK3DAP / ZL2DAP, covers the additional knowledge of the Standard
The class over a number of years has had a very high pass rate on the 50-question
For further detail contact the Education Team Leader, Barry Robinson VK3PV
firstname.lastname@example.org or 0428 516 001 or see the Amateur Radio Victoria
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
Only half a dozen trading tables remain for this years big friendly hamfest
the EMDRC White Elephant Sale on Sunday the 24th of March at the Great Ryrie
Primary School Great Ryrie Street Heathmont. If you are a commencial trader
and are yet to book your table then you better get in quick for one of these
last remaining tables.
For table bookings contact Max VK3WT today on 03 90059251 or email him at
Last year one trader had three tables of AV gear from a commercial AV hire
company, there was enormous interest from the ATV community in his tables
with pro cameras, video switchers line amplifiers and the suchlike. That same
trader has booked again and tells us he will be bringing more ex commmercial
hire AV gear. For full details check out the clubs website www.emdrc.com.au
VK4 - QNEWS
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TARC does the JMFD 2013
theTARCinc will be participating in the John Moyle Field Day weekend from
Friday afternoon 15th to Sunday afternoon 17th March 2013 at the
Girl Guides Association of Queensland Baden Powell Campsite and Training
Centre, Toolakea Beach Road, Bluewater.
(newsreader help - Toolakea pronounced Too - la - key - a :-) )
Portable operation is the go so make sure you bring plenty of batteries
and whisper quiet generators if you can.
Martin VK6ZMS says that this years Hills Amateur Radio Group HARGfest
WILL TAKE PLACE AT 1PM May 11.
Running until 5pm the annual HARG swap meet's, entry fee is $5.
The venue is the HARG club rooms 5 Sanderson Rd Lesmurdie.
INTERNATIONAL NEWS With thanks to IARU, RSGB, SARL, Southgate AR Club, ARRL,
Amateur Radio Newsline, NZART, ARVictoria and the WW sources of the WIA.
Successful launch for Amateur Radio STRaND-1 Smartphone Satellite
The first UK CubeSat, STRaND-1, was launched last Monday, February 25.
Deployment from the launch vehicle into a 785 km orbit took place about
20 minutes later.
Signals from STRaND-1 were received by Nader Omer ST2NH in Sudan at 1555 UT
and by the Surrey Space Centre during Monday evening.
The innovative STRaND-1 CubeSat will demonstrate the feasibility of using
cheap smartphone electronics to control a spacecraft.
STRaND-1 carries an amateur radio AX.25 packet radio downlink on 437.568 MHz
using 9k6 bps FSK modulated data HDLC frame, NRZI encoding.
Malaysia Airlines installs HF to extend services into India
Malaysia Airline's current VHF and satellite communications could not provide
coverage to its routes to India, so the airline decided to install a
serviceable HF system that would provide suitable voice communications.
The airline's operations dispatch centre operated with VHF
communications (coverage is only available up to 200 nautical miles off
Kuala Lumpur) and satellite communications (SATCOM) which were not
available in the B737-800 aircraft fleet they planned to use for these
As a result, it was necessary for the operations dispatch centre to have
a serviceable HF system for voice communications when the aircraft are
flying over the Gulf of Bengal en route to the Indian airports.
Barrett 2075 1KW HF systems were selected for this project as thes system has
been developed and installed in airports throughout the world.
RSGB Beta website Try to Break It evening
The RSGB invited members to hack and break their new beta website
during a 1 hoour window last Wednesday. A great idea to try and absolutely
prove the reliability of a system.
AMERICAN RED CROSS PHASE OUT EMERGENCY COMMUNICATION RESPONSE VEHICLES
The American Red Cross has made the decision to phase out and
decommission its Emergency Communication Response Vehicles (ECRVs) due
to changes in technology, as well as a new satellite system and other
factors regarding the vehicle fleet. "Retrofitting the decade-old
vehicles with new equipment is not a good use of donated funds, as the
long-term strategy is to move to more portable systems," American Red
Cross Disaster Services Technology Manager Keith Robertory, KG4UIR,
told the ARRL. "This is consistent with the trends in the telecom and
The American Red Cross will be removing the Amateur Radios from the
ECRVs as part of the decommissioning process. These radios will either
become part of the deployable inventory or provided to the local
American Red Cross chapter to build local capacity.
AMATEUR-CREATED "VARICODE" ADOPTED AS ITU RECOMMENDATION
The Director of the Radiocommunication Bureau of the International
Telecommunication Union announced the simultaneous adoption and approval by
correspondence of a new Recommendation entitled Telegraphic Alphabet for
Data Communication by Phase Shift Keying at 31 Baud in the Amateur and
The alphabet -- commonly called "Varicode" because the more frequently used
characters (in the English language) occupy fewer bits was developed by
Peter Martinez, G3PLX, in the 1990s.
In ITU parlance, it now becomes Recommendation ITU-R M.2034.
Central Scotland Mini Ham Radio Convention
If you are planning holidaying in "Bonnie Scotland" in June, then "listen up."
The Central Scotland Ham Radio Conventions committee has
announced that the 2013 Central Scotland Mini Ham Radio
Convention will take place on Saturday 8th June at the
Crofthead Farm Community Education Centre, Templar Rise,
Further details are available at uk.groups.yahoo.com/group/cshrc
NEWS FROM ARNEWSLINE USA
OVER THE HORIZON RADAR HEARD ON 10 METERS
The IARU Region 1 Monitoring Service reports on a
mysterious Over The Horizon radar causing
interference in the 28 MHz amateur radio
band. The mysterious signal disturbs the 28 to
29 MHz segment of 10 meters often with signals
are 60 kHz wide, and jumping in bursts.
The location of the transmitter appears to be
someplace in the Middle East but so far getting
precise bearings have proven to be difficult.
The entire report covering this situation and
other intruders to our ham bands can be
downloaded free of charge at tinyurl.com/iarums-jan2013
COURT RULES RFID NOT MARK OF THE BEAST
A very interesting court case that pitted a
students religious beliefs versus communications
technology has been decided.
Skeeter Nash, N5ASH, is near Houston with more:
A Texas student who refused to wear a radio tag
that tracked her movements on campus has lost a
federal court appeal against her school's ID policy.
According to news reports, the 15 year old
declined to wear the RFID badge on religious
grounds, saying it was the "mark of the
beast." After she stopped wearing it she was
suspended and went to court where she won a
temporary injunction to continue her studies at
the school without the RF tag.
Now a federal court ruling has overturned the
lower court. It says that if she is to stay at
the particular school, she would be required to
wear the badge. Otherwise, she would have to transfer to a new school.
The radio tags are used to track attendance,
which in turn helps secure school funding.
Im Skeeter Nash, N5ASH.
More is on-line at tinyurl.com/student-rfid
DEAD RISE AS HACKERS TARGET EAS NATIONWIDE
Inside Radio reports that the FCC, FBI and several state and local law
enforcement agencies are investigating what now
appears to have been a widespread hack attack on
the United States Emergency Alert or EAS
System. One that claimed that the dead were
rising from their graves.
Amateur Radio Newslines Steffan Kinford, N8WB, has the details:
The full extent of the phony zombie EAS attack
isn't yet clear, but several stations recently
aired a bogus EAS message about zombies attacking
people and warning the public to stay clear of them.
Engineers say the hackers apparently had a solid
knowledge of exactly how the EAS operates and how
to breach it. One of these is Bonneville
director of engineering John Dehnel. He says the
company's Salt Lake City stations were among the
targets. While the fake message never made it
to KSL 1160 AM which is the primary message
distribution or LP1 station for the area or its
sister station KSL-TV, the bizarre communication
was broadcast on the cluster's three secondary or HD2 stations.
Dehnel believes the culprit was EAS activation
boxes that were left set to factory-installed
default passwords to accommodate tech support
crews. His guess is that before the attack you
would likely have found most everyone still had
the default password on it. The FCC has since
issued a warning notice to broadcasters and other
EAS decoder users for them to immediately change
the passwords to ones that are propriety and secure.
The Bonneville HD2 stations reportedly fowarded
the bogus EAS messages about one hour before a
Great Falls, Montana television station that
actually was the one that made the news headlines
for airing the phony message. Several other
stations also aired a fake EAS message, including
TV stations in Albuquerque and Marquette,
Michigan. It's possible other stations also
broadcast the alert but if there were any they
are not known as this newscast is being prepared.
For the Amateur Radio Newsline, Im Stephan, Kinford, N8WB, in Wadsworth, Ohio.
You can read more on this very strange story at
WIA BOARD TALK
President Phil Wait VK2ASD email@example.com
Vice President Chris Platt VK5CP firstname.lastname@example.org
Secretary David Williams VK3RU email@example.com
Treasurer John Longayroux VK3PZ firstname.lastname@example.org
Expressions of Interest -3 March 2013, 0'37"
Have you prepared for the last weekend in May; the 2013 WIA AGM and
If you've built a new gadget, written some software, engaged in research,
or achieved something, we'd like to hear from you. Tell us about your
successes and your failures. Register your topic now and use the opportunity
to connect with other Amateurs who share your passion and excitement.
The 2013 WIA AGM and Conference, it's all about Engaging, Learning,
Appreciating, Socializing and Discovering.
You'll find all the information online at the VK6 conference site,
OPERATIONAL NEWS - DATELINE 2013
2013 RSGB COMMONWEALTH CW CONTEST 9 -10 March
The Commonwealth Contest or BERU as it was known, is the longest running
DX Contest in Amateur Radio and promotes contacts between stations in the
Commonwealth and Mandated Territories. A more relaxed contest environment
gives the opportunity to work some choice DX.
Full rules, history, and details of planned DX can be found on Web Site: -
MAR 15-17 VK JOHN MOYLE FIELD DAY WEEKEND
WW International Museums Weekends June 15/16 and 22/23
Now Ed VK2JI
Several people have thanked me for organising the Mini Contest University at
I would like to give my personal thanks to all 22 attendees and the
presenters who literally fought their way through some of the worst storm
weather I have seen.
Everyone who was registered attended.
I was also impressed how the attendees with more experience in contesting
were happy to join in and explain items in more detail to those new to
contesting. The events aim was exactly this, to give an insight to newcomers.
This was the first time such an event has been held in Australia and the
feedback I have received is positive. That's not to say that we can't improve
next year and a large number of the attendees have filled in and handed to me
the questionnaire from their attendee pack. I will be going through the
suggestions listed and see if I can incorporate them in a bigger and better
"Wyong Weekend" next year.
Now, if I could only find some way to fix the weather .......
Thanks again to all who attended to make this such a successful event.
73 this is Ed, VK2JI on behalf of the Central Coast Amateur Radio Club.
SPECIAL EVENT STATIONS, DX and BEACON AND NET ADVICE
As we tweeted last week the VK0RTM 6m beacon is now on air
Craig Hayhow who is signing VK0JJJ from Mawson, has the 6m beacon VK0RTM
on 50.300 MHz.
The 6m propagation beacon runs 50w.
While at Mawson Station, MacRobertson Land, Antarctica for about 12 months,
he plans to be active on bands from 80m to 6m with priority given to
On 6m he will be on 400 watts and VK3ZAZ is QSL manager.
The main listening frequency is 50.110 MHz.
For the HF bands on SSB phone and digital modes he uses a terminated
sloping triangle antenna, on 6m its a 5 element yagi and for 2m and 70cm
satellites an Arrow antenna.
(sourced to Jim Linton VK3PC via southgate arnews)
Important information regarding Digital DXCC applications
The DXCC Blog reports: "Before proceeding with an Online DXCC application
you 'must', first, have Mozilla Firefox installed on your computer.
Online DXCC is not compatible with Internet Explorer.
For the complete announcement, go the DXCC Blog page.
No-Name Group Net
Gavin VK7VTX contacted the VK7 Regional News editor to remind him of the
NoName Group net that is held on 3.59400MHz from 6-7:30am VK7 Time each
The NoName Group has been going for 10-15years and no one could come up
with a suitable name so the "NoName" group stuck...HIHI
A couple of weeks ago they had Khvicha 4L1HD from Georgia in Europe call
in with a good signal via the gray line.
8N119T - celebrating the 65th anniversary of the Tokyo Fire Department
(119 is the emergency fire/ambulance number in Japan)
23 Dec to 25 Mar active on all HF bands and modes.
F6ITD will be on the air stroke FG from Guadeloupe and two islands
until March 25th. He will be using SSB and the Digital modes during his stay.
Logs will be uploaded to both ClubLog and Logbook of the World.
QSL via his home call either direct or via the bureau.
8J6HAM - celebrating the 12th West Japan Ham Fair on AS-077 Kyushu
10 Dec to 3 Mar
Hello I'm Bob VK3SX the WIA Federal Awards manager with some excellent news.
Our first class Awards have now been brought into the Digital age making them
the very best in the world.
With much excellent work by Marc VK3OHM and the entire Awards committee . The
MMode DXCC/ MB DXCC /Grid Square and the VHF/UHF Century Awards have never
been easier to obtain.
Users who have embraced the Electronic logging can now upload their
ADIF 2 / 3 log files to the new spread sheets , taking minutes instead of
hours to complete.
Importantly we now accept LOTW confirmations ( subject to criteria ) and
Authenticity Guaranteed EQsl only confirmations subject to the rules.
Traditional Paper qsl's are still accepted for the old school amateurs.
All the information and down loads are on the Awards Web pages along with the
important Rule changes, I will bring you more information in the following
73 Bob VK3SX
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- ATV (Every pixel tells a story) - Video
When All Else Fails - Ham Radio - San Francisco 1989
Phil Brunson AA 0 PB has made available a video he produced in 2003 about
the 1989 San Francisco Earthquake
The YouTube description reads:
"In 2003 I was given a school project about effective communications. This is
the video I did.
It demonstrates some of the reasons why we as hams get involved during times
Watch When All Else Fails - Ham Radio - 1989 San Francisco Earthquake
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- FINAL FRONTIER
77.5 GHz ham radio moon bounce echo achieved
Last Sunday, February 17, Sergei RW 3 BP tried his first amateur radio
Earth-Moon-Earth echo test on 77.5 GHz
He posted this report on the Moon-Net reflector:
"The weather was good for the test. No clouds, temperature -7C, humidity 85%.
Transmitted signal was simple "E" - 25% on and 75% off with 0.7s period.
Three periods to transmit and five periods pause to switch TX/RX and to
Echo signal was -20...-22 dB under noise in ref to 3 kHz BW."
To detect echo signal he used the M.W.C.W. program.
Read the 77.5 GHz EME thread on Moon-Net at
AMATEUR SATELLITE ALLOCATIONS ON THE R-1 AGENDA AT VIENNA
The IARU Region 1 2013 Interim Meeting slated for
Vienna, Austria in April will be discussing two
proposals of importance to Amateur-Satellite
Service and weak signal users.
One that's not very controversial is an amendment to the 28 MHz
Bandplan to remove of the downlink only
restriction in the 29.300 to 29.510 MHz satellite
segment. But the other has raised some eyebrows.
This one proposes the introduction of a new satellite downlink band
for CW and SSB transponders at 144.000 to 144.035 MHz.
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- IOTA
AF-109. (New IOTA)
Members of the Egyptian Radio Amateur Society for Development (ERASD) plan
to be active as SU8N from Geziret Disuqi (aka Nelson's Island), an island in
the Nile Delta and Sinai Region Group, during May 3-10th.
"Nelson's Island" is approximately 20 kilometers east of the Egyptian port
of Alexandria, four kilometers north of Cape Aboukir.
Nelson's Island is approximately 350 meters by 150 meters.
Activity will be on most HF bands.
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- RADIO AMATEUR OLD-TIMERS
Now Clive VK6CSW.
Tomorrow is the first Monday of the month and that means it's time for the
Radio Amateurs Old Timers Club of Australia's March bulletin to go to air.
Tomorrow's feature is the story of how Maskelynne, well known Magican ,
used QRM from his spark transmitter to upset a lecture on Marconi's
syntony system being given by Professor Ambrose Fleming back in 1903.
The principal HF transmission is on 20 metres on 14.150 MHz USB.
At 0100 UTC the transmission is beamed north from Melbourne for
Eastern states listeners and at 0200 UTC the transmission is beamed
westward for VK6 listeners.
Also at 0200 UTC Barry VK6WF will be transmitting on 40 metres on 7050 kHz
LSB for WA country listeners beyond our linked repeater system coverage.
South Australian listeners may well be able to copy this transmission, too.
Numerous other local relays occur throughout the day on various HF and VHF
frequencies. To find the times and frequencies for your area please visit
the RAOTC website at www.raotc.org.au
Everyone, RAOTC members and non-members alike, is invited to listen to this
interesting half-hour of Old Timer news, information and stories, and of
course, call backs afterwards from all listeners are very welcome.
So once again, the RAOTC monthly bulletin can be heard tomorrow, Monday
73, Clive VK6CSW.
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- RESCUE RADIO
IARU REGION 3
Emergency Centre of Activity (CoA) frequencies
3.600, 7.110, 14.300, 18.160 and 21.360 MHz
Saturday March 16th 2013
Rally Bonnie Doon
Contact: Peter Weeks VK3YZP
phone: 03 5772 1454
Saturday April 6th 2013
Woods point area
Contact: Dirk Versluys VK3FPAJ
phone: 03 9879 8384
What use is an f-call?
In the Amateur Radio Licensing regime before the current one where we have a
Foundation License, a Standard License and an Advanced one, there was a
requirement to know Morse Code before you could obtain some Amateur Licenses.
I don't have the exact details, but suffice to say that Morse Code is no
longer a licensing requirement to be able to enjoy Amateur Radio.
You'll note that I said that it's no longer a Licencing Requirement, but that
doesn't mean that your use of Amateur Radio and your participation within the
community wouldn't benefit from knowing the dits and dahs that make up
letters, combined making words or codes.
For example, when you key a local repeater, not for all, but the majority of
them, you'll hear a series of beeps. If you spoke morse, you'd be able to
discern what call-sign is being transmitted and you'd know what repeater you
were keying up.
Across the globe is a network, in-fact multiple networks, of beacons which
transmit a series of beeps at different power on a particular frequency. So,
for example one network, a beacon in Venezuela transmits its call-sign,
followed by a beep at 100 Watts, then a beep at 10 Watt and finally a beep
at 1 Watt. Then in the next 10 second block, the next station at the United
Nations does it, followed by one in Canada, the United States, Hawaii,
New Zealand, and so on, until a whole range of beacons have beeped around the
Why should you care? Three Words, Propagation, Propagation, Propagation.
If you can hear a beacon with a known power level, then there is an excellent
chance that you can transmit with similar power to a station in the same area
as the beacon that you heard. Of course in our technology dense world, there
are iPhone and Android apps that will tell you what beacon is transmitting
right now, but if you knew morse, all you'd need to do is tune your radio to
the appropriate frequency and listen for the call-sign.
Ho-hum you might say. Of course, but you don't need to wait for a beacon. You
could tune to a CW calling frequency and see what stations you might hear.
You'd get a higher density of propagation information and you might get a
QSO out of the experience.
So, even though you no longer need to know about dits and dahs to get your
license, doesn't mean that the skill is obsolete.
My morse is up to 8 letters and with those letters I can already say
262 words. It's not much, but it's more than it was last week. dit dit dit
dit dit dit, dit dit dit dit dit dit
I'm Onno VK6FLAB
SOCIAL SCENE 2013
MAR 10 VK3 SPARC joins in The 2013 Rosebud KiteFest
MAR 15-17 VK JOHN MOYLE FIELD DAY WEEKEND
MAR 24 VK3 EMDRC White Elephant Sale: Great Ryrie Primary School
MAR 24 VK7 "Meet the Voice" barbecue at Ross.
APR 18 WW IARU World Amateur Radio day
MAY 3- 5 VK4 Clairview AR Weekend details 04 296 32815
May 11 VK6 Hills Amateur Radio Group - HARGfest - 1pm.
MAY 24-26 VK6 WIA AGM AND CONFERENCE IN PERTH
JUL 20 VK3 Gippsland Gate Radio & Electronics Club Hamfest
AUG 11 VK2 SARCFEST 414 Richmond Hill Rd near Lismore
AUG 17-18 WW ILLW
Oct 3- 7 VK4 North Queensland Amateur Radio Convention Charters Towers
NOV 2 VK4 Gold Coast ARS HamFest at Albert Waterways Hall.
NOV 3 VK5 HamFest Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Society Goodwood.
NOV 15-17 VK3 Victorian National Parks Weekend
Nov 24 VK3 Southern Peninsula Amateur Radio Club: Rosebud RadioFest
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