WIANEWS - JANUARY 19 - VK NATIONAL NEWS
THE BEST NEWS YOU'LL GET ALL WEEK
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WIANEWS WEEK COMMENCING JAN 19 2014.
WIA receives replies from ACMA to WIA questions on the High Power Trial
THESE STORIES AND MORE IN THIS EDITION OF NEWS FROM THE WIRELESS INSTITUTE
OF AUSTRALIA FOR WEEK COMMENCING JAN 19 2014.
OUR 19TH YEAR OF NON STOP NEWS
FOLLOW THAT CAB
Up to 20 Sydney cabs are being fitted with collision avoidance scanners to
alert drivers to potential crashes.
In a first for Australian taxis, the Mobileye technology will be trialled in
Legion cabs from mid-January to the end of March.
NSW Taxi Council CEO, Roy Wakelin-King, said it was hoped that the technology
would significantly improve safety for cab drivers, passengers, other
motorists and pedestrians.
He said that after the trial the council would consult the NSW government
about any future use of the technology in taxis.
Mobileye is an Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) which constantly scans
the road in front of a car and "thinks" seconds ahead of a driver.
It uses the latest in artificial vision technology together with algorithms
to monitor the distance to moving and stationary vehicles, bikes, pedestrians,
or to determine whether the vehicle is crossing traffic lanes without
It then alerts the driver to possible danger with a visual and audible warning
giving them extra time to react.
LINUX DOWN UNDER
linux.conf.au is widely regarded by delegates as one of the best community
run Linux conferences worldwide. Linux.conf.au ran from 6-10 January 2014
in VK6, where open source geeks from across the globe gathered to meet
their fellow technologists, share the latest ideas and innovations, and spend
the week discussing and collaborating on open source projects.
The conference is well known for the speakers and delegates depth of talent,
and its focus on technical Linux content.
Running in parallel was an open radio mini conference with presentations on
video, from the likes of Bdale Garbee, KB0G on Digital Radio Hardware for
Amateur Rockets and Digital Radio Modulation and Coding for Amateur Rockets
presented by Keith Packard KD7SQG
(Manhattan events pressor)
WA FIRES - Bob VK6POP reports:-
Last Sunday, after a scorching hot Saturday, we woke up after an overnight
temperature of 29 degrees. We were facing a similar temperature to yesterday,
over 40 degrees. It was already hot at breakfast time, and the wind was
blowing from the West. The fire risk rating was catastrophic.
At about 11 am, it is alleged a wooden power pole in Parkerville broke and
fell over, causing sparks that ignited a fire in surrounding grass. The fire
spread rapidly and became uncontrollable. Parkerville is about 35 kilometres
East of Perth CBD, in the hills.
I live about 3 kilometres North of the fire ground, however at the time I was
in another place a similar distance the other side.
We were talking about some important stuff, as you do, when someone's wife
rushed in saying they had received an act now and defend, or leave immediately
notification on the mobile phone.
This was the signal for us all to go home. Once outside, we could see the
smoke, and it was between where I was and my home. I phoned my wife; she was
OK, and the fire was in the distance.
The way home takes me through Stoneville, and there were emergency responders
everywhere, and the thick smoke smelled not of burning trees, but of burning
plastics and other household materials. My heart sank, as I knew that it was
the smell of houses burning. I couldnt get home fast enough.
My place, to the north of the fire, was safe, as the fire was running along
the Jane Brook Valley, which runs east-west, and was pushed along by a
westerly wind that turned to south westerly.
The reports said that the flames were reaching 30 metres in height, and
burning embers were dropping up to two kilometres ahead of the fire. It was
impossible for the fieries to fight the fire at the front. For the rest of
the day I could hear the rumble of helicopters dropping water on the fire. It
was like being near a war zone. I guess we were.
The outcome, as you may have seen on the media, was 55 houses destroyed.
The emergency management agency's computer modelling was predicting
destruction of up to 240 houses.
Luckily the South-westerly breeze stopped and a light Easterly came in.
There was no Amateur Radio involvement in the response. The combat agencies
have their own effective communications systems.
Although landlines went out, the mobile network was intact although busy.
I knew there were Amateurs living in that area, so using the ACMA database I
looked up Amateurs whose address was in the fire ground, and made enquiries
as to their situation.
This was a difficult task as phones and power were off. There are two whose
status in regards to their house that I'm still unsure of, and who I don't
know personally, however all people in the area are accounted for.
A few amateurs were monitoring the air traffic on the radio listening to the
directions given to the water bombing aircraft. They heard deliberate
interference from someone using a radio.
A lot of people evacuated to safety on Sunday Today, Wednesday, after 6pm,
residents were allowed to return to their houses, or what was left of them.
Many homes, even though intact, are without power.
I had occasion to visit the incident control centre today, and saw the
mobile communications unit in action. I know that there are a couple of
Amateurs involved with its operation, so I think I'll make that the subject
of another report.
WIA BOARD TALK
President Phil Wait VK2ASD firstname.lastname@example.org
Vice President Chris Platt VK5CP email@example.com
Secretary David Williams VK3RU firstname.lastname@example.org
Treasurer John Longayroux VK3PZ email@example.com
ACMA replies to WIA questions on the High Power Trial
Following the ACMA's advice to the WIA in August 2013 that it would not make
regulatory arrangements for Advanced Licensees to run up to 1 kW, the WIA
Board discussed the issues raised and decided on providing a strong response
and to ask six questions.
Roger Harrison VK2ZRH joins us this week with some insight and we encorage
you to visit and read WIA Front Page News, where it is January's top story
( wia.org.au )
HAMS ACROSS AUSTRALIA.
web service:- http://www.arnsw.org.au/html/news_vk2wi.htm
The first Trash and Treasure will be at the VK2WI site on Sunday morning,
the 26th January.
web service:- http://www.amateurradio.com.au/news/
The Homebrew Construction Group
This growing Victorian group will soon hold its next and first meeting for
2014. All are welcome to attend.
The highlight of the meeting will be a talk by Les Davey on the topic of
satellite link budgeting.
As a professional in the field he will tailor the talk to those aspects that
apply to Amateur Radio, along with some anecdotes from his working life.
This should prove to be an interesting introduction to those who have perhaps
not considered satellite operation in the past.
The Homebrew Construction Group meets on Saturday, February the 1st at 2pm.
The venue will be the Amateur Radio Victoria Rooms at 40g Victory Boulevard
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
New antennas for the VK3RTV digitised TV repeater
The Melbourne and Geelong television repeater on Mt Dandenong has had recent
changes to its antennas which should see improvements in some locations.
Peter Cossins VK3BFG has announced that VK3RTV has a new transmit antenna and also
a spot antenna on 23 centimetres for the south-east of its coverage area.
In addition a new 23 centimetre receive antenna has been fitted for VK3RTV1 - which is
not as good as the old one it replaces, but is likely to have a better beamwidth.
Reports on the received signal strengths are most welcome. Investigations
are continuing on the design and use of an inter-digital filter for the repeater.
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
The VK4KG RAAF Memorial Station needs your help. Wayne VK4WDM is intending to
do some travelling and would like to hear from a local ham with an advanced
or standard licence who would like to take over from him as the trustee
of the RAAF Museum station VK4KG.
There is a dedicated room set up permanently and works during museum opening
hours IF a qualified operator is available.
The equipment currently consists of an FT201 and a multi-band vertical, a
2m transceiver, and several other working receivers.
Please contact Wayne either on telephone 07-47286876 or email
EDUCATION YOUTH AND ADVANCEMENT OF AMATEUR RADIO
Foundation Licence training in Melbourne
A quality Foundation Licence class, written and practical assessments will
be held in February at centrally located Ashburton in eastern Melbourne.
Experienced trainers take prospective candidates through all they need to
know for the entry level licence. Each session usually attracts a mixed gender
and age demographic.
Safety and interference avoidance will be taught. The instructor using commercially
made equipment also demonstrates how to put together a station and operate
it without causing interference others.
Candidates also learn how Amateur Radio fits in with other uses of the spectrum,
the licence conditions, technical basics of electricity and electronics,
transmitters, receivers, feed lines, connectors, antennas and propagation.
The basic theory and radio practice book, Foundation Licence Manual, is available
via mail order from Amateur Radio Victoria for $26.
The next session at 40g Victory Boulevard, Ashburton is on February the 15th
and 16th. To enrol contact Barry Robinson VK3PV firstname.lastname@example.org
or 0428 516 001.
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
What use is an F-call?
This week I learnt a valuable lesson. As you might have heard, I've been
working on a magnetic loop antenna. It's been taking a while, much longer
than I ever planned. At the moment I'm waiting on some testing tools,
some spare time and an idea on how to best mount this contraption inside my
roof space so I can make contacts without drilling any holes in the house
where I live.
I've been off-air for some 8 months or so. When I say, off-air, I mean, I've
not been on HF for that long. Sure, I host a weekly net on 2m and I speak to
stations around the globe, satisfying as the experience is, it's not HF.
There's a lot of technology to make that net happen and one of the big draw
cards for me to Amateur Radio, is the lack of technology needed for a QSO.
I can speak to anyone I want within seconds on my computer, but it requires
that a whole lot of infrastructure is working for that to happen. Computers,
routers and switches, numerous networks, cables, satellite links, microwave
links, electric power along the way and compatible software at both ends.
For a HF connection I need exactly two bits of gear, my radio and theirs.
That's what primarily attracts me to Amateur Radio.
So, back to what I learnt.
Being on air with a crappy antenna is better than not being on-air with a
So, right now, along my office is a little wire running that is somewhat
tuned for 10m and I'm back on air. It's not fancy, but it's cheap. It works,
sort of, and I can hear stations calling. I've made my first couple of
contacts, local ones, but contacts none the less.
All I can say is, boy am I glad to be back on air.
What about you? Waiting for the perfect solution - wait no longer, get on air,
get started today.
I'm Onno VK6FLAB
OPERATIONAL NEWS - DATELINE 2014
WIA John Moyle Field Day weekend March 15-16
WIA VK Harry Angel Memorial Sprint May 3
10-10 INTERNATIONAL SUMMER CONTEST Aug 2 - 3
WIA REMEMBRANCE DAY (THE RD) CONTEST Aug 16 - 17
Manly-Warringah Radio Society's Flagpole contest September.
Amateur Radios International Air-ambulance Week, 9 days from Sep 28.
AMSAT SKN Best Fist Nominations Due
Thanks to all who participated in AMSAT's Straight Key Night on OSCAR 2014.
If you have not already done so, please take a moment to nominate someone
you worked for Best Fist. Your nominee need not have the best fist of those
you heard, just of those you worked.
Send your nomination to email@example.com
A list of those nominated will be published in early February.
SPECIAL EVENT STATIONS, DX, BEACON REPEATER AND NET ADVICE
NEW CALEDONIA IN LATE FEBRUARY
FK/K1HP between February 18th and the 26th.
Operations will be on all the HF bands plus 6 meters, using CW, SSB and RTTY.
QSL via his home callsign which is JE2EHP either direct or electronically
via ClubLog or Logbook of the World.
German special event station DR 175 LDE
DR 175 LDE celebrates the opening of the railway between Leipzig and Dresden
(120km) in 1839.
The inaugural journey was made by the English engine Comet, closely followed
by the German Saxonia, of which a working replica was built in 1989.
DR 175 LDE, DK 0 EFA and DL 0 EFD have been assigned the special DOK 175 LDE
for April 2014.
QSLs via bureau.
Joe, W5FJG, has been assigned to the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station
and will be operating from KC4AAA, the amateur radio station there.
He will operate SSB only on weekdays and some weekends, through the winter
season until November 2014.
Almost all activity is currently on 20 metres on or near 14,243kHz.
QSL to Larry Skilton, K1IED.
Understanding HF propagation reports
Richard VE2XIP has written an article about interpreting HF propagation
reports, far too involved for the audio bulletin so we suggest you follow
the link on our text edition, best found at wia.org.au
Read it at
VK Club Bulletins http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aarnie/
VK2 CCARC news ccarc.org.au/wp/2012/09/ccarc-news-12-31/
NORTH WEST CLUB NEWS FROM VK7
Spectrum Pages Updated
The Spectrum Tasmania Web Site has been updated to reflect current information
about the nightly video and audio broadcasts / podcasts and Sunday Morning
WIA News Broadcasts.
Additional information on the WIA broadcasts has been loaded within the last
All broadcasts can be downloaded or played using "on demand" audio streaming.
Information on each broadcast can be accessed including links for "on demand"
audio streaming, downloads and copies of the broadcasts advice emails.
Interested persons are invited to take a look at the website that can be
found at the link on the email edition of this broadcast.
(Tony VK7AX - President NWT-ATVG)
And still looking at Media, in VK5 2 broadcasters of this the WIA News seem
to have dropped from our radar and we'd dearly love to know if news is
still going out on 146.700 Port Pirie VK5RMN which used to be handled by
VK5dmc. The other station was on 146.925 in the Riverland, VK5RLD, this at
8pm Sunday nights by VK5TRM.
Drop us a line if you can to firstname.lastname@example.org
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- QRP and WEAK SIGNAL COMMUNICATION
Peter Parker VK3YE has issued advance warning of a QRP gathering planned for
the afternoon of Sat Feb 8 2014 at Chelsea beach from 3pm.
This is an informal gathering.
If you can, please bring one item of portable, homebrew or interesting radio
or electronic gear (or antenna), with show and tell from 3:30pm.
And maybe circuits to hand out if relevant.
Victory Park, Camp St, Chelsea.
Playground for children.
Free parking nearby around supermarket.
CAUTION: TICKETED PARKING IN SOME AREAS - READ THE SIGNS AND AVOID A FINE!
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- RADIO AMATEUR YOUNG TIMERS
A Youth Net meets Saturdays at 0100 UTC on IRLP Reflector #2.
Young Hams Net 3.590 - 7:30pm Victorian time.
The Youth in Amateur Radio Podcast team would like to thank those
supporting their podcasts. To have better communications with the young,
they have decided to make an email list to keep the listeners up to date on
all things YARP, from Podcast Releases to just updates on what YARP is
working on from time to time.
If you decided to join the email list, your email will be held confidently by
the Youth in Amateur Radio Podcast team and will not be shared with anyone
To join, follow these steps below
Send an email to YARPhams@gmail.com
Subject: YARP Email List
Body: Your name, callsign, and email
INTERNATIONAL NEWS With thanks to IARU, RSGB, SARL, Southgate AR Club, ARRL,
Amateur Radio Newsline, NZART and the WW sources of the WIA.
Norway to adopt e-forms for licenses
The Norwegian Postal and Telecommunications regulator (NPT) has published a
thirteen-page document on its frequency management plans for 2014
They aim to bring in electronic application forms for licenses for private
mobile radio systems (PMR), broadcasting and amateur radio.
Frequency Management Plan
NPT News in Google English
Astronomy.FM was founded in 2009 by a group of like-minded professional and
amateur astronomers as an outreach organization.
AFM Radio was launched shortly thereafter and is currently the group's primary
outreach medium. AFM Radio is the only 24-hour internet radio station in the
known Universe dedicated to astronomy and other sciences.
The fundamental mission of the organization is to educate and inspire the
listening audience through original AFM Radio programming, live event
coverage, and selected syndicated content.
They currently broadcast to approximately 20,000 unique English-speaking
listeners, in 85 countries, every month.
See more at:
120th ANNIVERSARY OF ST. MAXIMILIAN KOLBE SP3RN
January 8th was the 120th birthday of Saint Maximilian Kolbe, SP3RN, who is
the Catholic Churches Patron Saint of amateur radio operators.
Mark Abramowicz, NT3V, has the story of this truly amazing man:
Father Maximilian Kolbe became fascinated by the
mass media in the 1920s and 1930s. He
established printing plants in Poland and Japan
for his Franciscan Order publications distributed
in the tens of thousands to the faithful.
When he was on a mission to Japan, China and
India he became acquainted with both broadcasting and amateur radio.
Upon his return to in Poland in the 1930s, he
applied for a broadcasting license. At that
time, radio was considered to be a strategic
medium and only the Polish Radio and a military
radio station were permitted to broadcast.
But in 1938, Father Kolbe was granted permission
to do test transmissions close to the 40 meter
amateur radio band. He chose the SP3RN callsign
for his on the air experiments.
On August 14, 1941, Father Kolbe was murdered in
the German Nazi Auschwitz Concentration Camp
after he had volunteered to take the place of
another prisoner who was randomly selected by
camp guards for a group to die by starvation
because another inmate had escaped.
Father Kolbe was Beatified by Pope Paul VI on
October 17, 1971 and Canonized as St. Maximilian
Kolbe, Apostle of Consecration to Mary and
declared Martyr of Charity by Pope John Paul II on October 10, 1982.
In addition to being embraced by amateur radio,
Saint Maximillian Kolbe is also recognized as the
patron of journalists and political prisoners.
His feast day is observed by the Roman Catholic Church on August 14.
For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Mark Abramowicz, NT3V, in Philadelphia.
A more in-depth look at the life of Saint
Maximilian Kolbe can be found at tinyurl.com/sp3rn. (SP9JPA, NT3V)
SHARKS THAT TWEET
Sharks in Western Australia are now tweeting out where they are. Well in a
way. Here's Jim Meachen, ZL2BHF, is down-under with the rest of the story:
Australian government researchers have radio
tagged 338 sharks with transmitters that monitor
where the animals are. When a tagged shark is
about half a mile away from a beach, it triggers
an alert, which tweets out a message on the Surf
Life Saving Western Australia Twitter feed. The
tweet notes the shark's size, breed and approximate location.
Researchers so far have tagged great whites,
whaler sharks and tiger sharks. These tags will
also be monitored by scientists studying sharks in their natural habitat.
Since 2011, Australia has had more fatal shark
attacks than any other country. There have been
six over the past two years with the most recent last November.
For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Jim Meachen,
ZL2BHF, in Nelson, New Zealand.
Chris Peck is the operations manager of Surf Life
Saving of Western Australia. He says that the
tagging system alerts beachgoers far quicker than
traditional warnings but that it's not 100
per cent fool proof. More is on the web at tinyurl.com/tweeting-vk-sharks
YASME FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES SUPPORTING GRANTS
The Board of Directors of The YASME Foundation
has announced several grants to help pay expenses
involved in providing services to the ham radio
community. Among these is funding to assist in
defraying the expenses of the World Radio Team
Championship to be held this coming July in the
Boston Massachusetts area. Another goes to the
Reverse Beacon Network to purchase a receiver and
the necessary accessories to upgrade the node
presently operational in Bangalore.
Other grants go to the CW Ops CW Academy to
assist in defraying the expenses of providing
on-line CW training courses. Also one will be
made to the ARRL Second Century Fund to support
the goals of the ARRL's Second Century Campaign.
The YASME Foundation makes supporting grants to
individuals and organizations providing or
creating useful services for the amateur radio
community. YASME supports these programs in
order to further the development of amateur radio
around the world.
FUNCUBE CONTROLLERS SAY BIRD WORKING WELL
The FUNcube-1 or AO-73 ham radio satellite has
been on-orbit for more than six weeks and
controllers say that all is nominal with the new bird.
The FUNcube team also reports that there is now a
way to view the latest AO-73 High Resolution Data
that has been uploaded to the FUNcube Data
Warehouse. A link can be found in the Navigation
Bar on the warehouse. Clicking on this link will
make the Hi-Resolution data available to download as .csv files.
You can download the Dashboard App Telemetry
Decoder at tinyurl.com/funcube-telemetry-dashboard
The telemetry downlink frequency is 145.935 MHz in BPSK format.
FUNcube also carries a CW and SSB inverting transponder.
The uplink pass band is from 435.150 to 435.130 MHz LSB, with a downlink from
145.950 to 145.970 MHz on USB.
SOCIAL SCENE 2014
Jan 24-27 VK4 TARC Australia Day Long Weekend Family Radio Camp
at Girl Guides Campsite Bluewater. (email@example.com)
Feb 01 VK4 Redcliffe Radio Club "Car Boot Sale" 9 am.
( firstname.lastname@example.org )
Feb 23 VK2 Wyong Field Day and it is on come rain hail or shine.
As announced earlier the CCARC will be running a full day foundation class licence training course on Saturday the 22nd.
of February - the day before the Field day. I now have more details - having registered (contact details are on the ccarc
web site for this) please arrive at the seminar room in the race club building at the Wyong Race Course by 9:45am for a 10:00am
start. There will be a facilities usage fee of just $10 which is payable, in cash, on the day.
The assessments will also take place from 10am on the field day - these will be performed in the stewards room on the ground
floor and again you need to be there by 9:45am. As always WIA and ACMA charges apply to the assessments.
For full details about registering for either the course or an assessment, or both, as well as all information about the
field day, please go to the club website at CCARC dot ORG dot AU.
The list of exhibitors who have confirmed is growing and now includes ALARA, Hornsby & District ARC, The Australian Radio DX
Club, Kurrajong Radio Museum, Marine Rescue, SOTA-VK2, West Lakes ARC, the WIA QSL bureau and WICEN New South Wales. We are
awaiting final confirmation from some commercial traders and will endeavour to bring you that list next week. In fact we are
still receiving new requests and endeavouring to fit them in.
What about entertainment? While we all know the Field Day itself is very entertaining for us, what about your partner or
family members that you may be bringing with you to the Central Coast? There is lots to do on the coast and if someone
has a yearning for old fashioned Rock & Roll - you can't go past Jimmy Barnes, the classic Aussie rocker - he has a show
at the Bateau Bay Hotel on Saturday the 22nd. of February sponsored by the local 2GO radio station. Get in quick for tickets.
For the URL to reserve your tickets please refer to the Wyong Field Day page on the club website at CCARC dot ORG dot AU,
this is also where you will find a link to the official events page for the central coast.
Whether it's seeking that bargain from the flea market, grabbing that discounted new item from the traders stands,
educating yourself at the seminars and exhibitors stalls or even taking that licence upgrade assessment. The place
to be on February twenty three is undoubtedly - The CCARC Field Day at Wyong!
73 'til next week, this is Ed VK2JI, Publicity Officer of the Central Coast Amateur Radio Club.
Apr 13-15 VK PR4AmateurRadio Expo.
Apr 18 WW Amateur Radio Day: Your Gateway to Wireless Communications.
Apr 25 vk3 ANZAC Day event Ballarat Showgrounds email@example.com
May 2- 4 VK4 Clairview Gathering Clive VK4ACC 0429 632 815
Nov 2 VK5 HamFest Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Society
Nov 30 VK3 SPARC HamFest at Rosebud (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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