WIANEWS - FEBRUARY 2 - VK NATIONAL NEWS
THE BEST NEWS YOU'LL GET ALL WEEK
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WIANEWS WEEK COMMENCING FEB 02 2014.
OUR 19TH YEAR OF NON STOP NEWS
WIA CONFERENCE MAY 16-18 IN VK4
WIA 100 YEARS ANZAC CELEBRATION
THESE STORIES AND MORE IN THIS EDITION OF NEWS FROM THE WIRELESS INSTITUTE
OF AUSTRALIA FOR WEEK COMMENCING FEB 2 2014.
G'day from the Atherton Tablelands this is Dale VK4DMC for the
Tablelands Radio and Electronics Club, TREC, in Far North Queensland.
The wet season has finally arrived here in the north however TREC is hoping
for good weather on the 7th and 8th of February when we will be operating
from Mareeba (grid locator QH22) using the call sign VK4XQA commemorating
100 years of amateur radio operations in Queensland.
The station will be set up at the Mareeba Heritage Centre about 10 metres
from the original XQA spark gap transceiver that Marcus Brims used exactly
one hundred years ago.
Frequencies to listen out on will be 28.488, 21.188, 14.188, 7.188, and
3.588 +/- QRM.
Full details of the XQA award are available on the TREC website
and also at www.qrz.com/db/VK4XQA
Well that's your lot for this week.
Once again don't forget to visit the TREC website at www.treclub.org.au for
club information and news.
This has been Dale VK4DMC and you are listening to the WIA news.
The Annual Eastern and Mountain Districts Radio Club White Elephant Sale and
HamFest is once again fast approaching.
With a mix of commercial traders and private tables, full of new toy's or
that hard to find special component or used bargain; the event has something
The famous barbecue will once again be cooking up a storm out the front with
bacon and egg rolls, snags and of course - lots of onions. Tea. Coffee and
drinks are also available.
The event starts at 10am Sunday 23rd March at the Great Ryrie Primary School,
46 Great Ryrie Street, Heathmont. Just down the road from Ringwood.
Have a Look at the clubs website emdrc.com.au and Contact the club to book
your table and for more information.
email the club email@example.com or leave a message on 03 9005 9251.
(EMDRC... Vk3bq Andrew Scott)
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
To the Secretary of affiliated Australian Amateur Radio Clubs
In late December you would have received a request from Ted VK2ARA (the
Radio Clubs Coordinator) asking all radio clubs to advise which Federal
Electorate their club was located in.
The request for this specific information was to help us determine
whether an active radio club exists in each of Australia's 150 Federal
electorates. A radio club activity was in the early stages of planning
that hoped to coordinate establishing a transmitting station (both HF
and VHF) in the grounds and club rooms of the local RSL sub branch.
Another activity proposed as part of the Gallipoli Centenary
Commemorative event was a display of suitable communication and
ancillary equipment over as wide a range of history as possible.
Although the number of RSL sub branches spoken to at this stage was
small, their response had been positive as the clubs could see the
opportunity for creating publicity for their club and their organization
within the local community and also the possibility of fund raising.
However at this stage, planning for this proposed activity has been put
on hold - we have learnt that the WIA is also planning an activity for
affiliated radio clubs utilizing a special event call sign to be offered
to those clubs. This is the only information we have at this stage but
hopefully further details will become available soon.
If you have already provided your Federal electorate information, thank
you for your prompt response. However this information is now not
required until the full details on the WIA's planned radio club activity
becomes available and we are then able to determine if our activity will
need further planning.
Andy VK4KCS Alex VK4TE
WIA AGM : Trent Sampson - VK4TS
We are pleased to announce preliminary details for the WIA 2014 Annual
Conference being held on the Sunshine Coast. The host club is the
Sunshine Coast Amateur Radio Club, led by Richard VK4RY and Trent VK4TS.
Members who register for the event will be able to participate in a range of
fascinating and memorable activities. The Sunshine Coast is where you will
experience a laid-back lifestyle centred around pristine beaches, freshwater
rivers and lakes, subtropical forests and warm sunshine.
The weekend program will commence on Friday evening at the Alexandra Heads
Surf Life Saving Club and there will be several breakout options for
like-minded amateurs to get together. On Saturday morning the WIA Annual
General Meeting followed by the Open Forum will be held in the Shed at
Aussie World, with lunch provided for all registered attendees. There will
be a range of technical presentations on the Saturday afternoon. For partners,
an alternate tour will be run on Saturday.
On Saturday evening, the Annual Dinner will be held in the Shed at Aussie
World. Sunday will feature a visit to the Sunshine Coast base of the
RACQ Rescue Helicopter and various rescue venues on the Mooloolaba Spit
culminating in a visit to Underwater World.
For those not travelling back to their home QTH on Sunday afternoon and who
will be staying on Sunday evening, then the host club the Sunshine Coast
Amateur Radio Club would like to invite you to a relaxing evening BBQ at
SCARC HQ. This cost for the Sunday evening BBQ will $10 per person, drinks
will be BYO.
For travel details and accommodation options, browse the Sunshine Coast
information site via this Link There is no accommodation available in the
immediate vicinity of the main venue, so you are free to make arrangements
as you see fit.
We anticipate having more details available soon, so watch for updates and
for the online registration form on the WIA website and in future issues of
Amateur Radio Magazine.
What use is an F-call?
A little while ago I had a conversation about the difference between Amateur
Radio and CB radio. This distinction is obvious to most Amateurs, but much
less so to the rest of the community.
On the face of it, there are people with radios that you can talk into and
someone else can hear it. There are different frequencies involved and
antennas come into play. Pretty much the same thing.
There is one fundamental difference between Amateur Radio and CB radio. This
basic difference is simple to explain, but the implications are that the two
are different animals.
Here it is:
The fundamental difference is that in Amateur Radio, it's the person that is
licensed, in CB radio, it's the radio itself, a so-called type approval.
So, to legally participate in CB radio, you need to purchase a licensed radio.
To legally participate in Amateur Radio, you need to obtain a personal amateur
There are many other subtle differences and implications. A typical approved
CB radio has a specific set of pre-defined channels and power.
In Amateur Radio, the power and frequencies you're allowed to use are
determined by your license.
There's much more than I can cover in a minute and a half, but that's the
I'm Onno VK6FLAB
INTERNATIONAL NEWS With thanks to IARU, RSGB, SARL, Southgate AR Club, ARRL,
Amateur Radio Newsline, NZART and the WW sources of the WIA.
Bitcoin transmitted over radio waves
On The Morning Edition show, CBC Kitchener-Waterloo was able to successfully
transmit a Bitcoin over radio waves
This makes what is believed to be the first known transmission of the digital
currency by a public radio station.
A series of beeps were played over the air, and listeners were asked to use
an app known as chirp.io to decipher a code produced by the sound.
Chris Skory of Rockland County, New York was the winning recipient, and
unlocked a 0.05 Bitcoin worth about $40.
Read the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation story at
Practical Wireless VHF columnist Tim Kirby G4VXE is one of the radio amateurs
who've experimented with chirp.io, see
Canadian regulator, Industry Canada (IC) have released a decision to allow
amateur radio operators to use the 5332 kHz, 5348 kHz, 5358.5 kHz, 5373 kHz
and 5405 kHz frequencies on a no-interference, no-protection basis,
2.8 kHz bandwidth, same modes as U.S., 100W PEP maximum power.
These are the same channels, modes and criteria as those available to
US operators on 5 MHz and are as the result of an official IC consultation
held earlier in Summer 2012
Prior to this, Canadian amateurs have had access to these frequencies since
2012, provided they applied to IC for a special interim 5 MHz/60m
developmental licence, utilising a VX9 series callsign.
The Industry Canada 5 MHz Decision document can be found at
The Portuguese regulator ANACOM has granted radio amateurs the temporary use
of the band 1850-2000 kHz
The Radio Society of Great Britain has published new band plans for all
United Kingdom amateur allocations from 136 kHz to 250 GHz. Copies of
the band plan pages can be freely downloaded from the Operating section
RSGB membership is not required to access these files.
All UK radio amateurs are required to revalidate their licence at least every
five years. Although amateur radio licences are now classed as 'lifetime' in
the UK, revalidation is compulsory. Ofcom have advised that any licences that
remain invalidated by a yet to be agreed date will be considered as lapsed.
After this time, licences will need to be renewed and a fee of 20 will be
Cyber-security: Small satellite dish systems called ripe for hacking
Thousands of small satellite dish-based computer systems that
transmit often-sensitive data from far flung locations worldwide -
oil rigs, ships at sea, banks, and even power grid substations - are
at high risk of being hacked, including many in the United States, a
new cyber-security report has found.
Read the full Christian Science Monitor article at:
KAY CRAGIE, N3KN, RE-ELECTED AS ARRL PRESIDENT
Congratulations to ARRL President Kay Craigie, N3KN, on her election
to a third two year term in that leadership position. N3KN is the League's
15th president,. She lives in Virginia, and has been in office since 2010.
IARU Region 1 General Conference
The website for the 2014 IARU Region 1 General Conference is now available
The IARU region 1 triennial General Conference, hosted by the Bulgarian
Member Society (BFRA), will take place 21-26 September in Albena.
At General Conferences IARU Region 1 takes major decisions on the future of
amateur radio and determines the way ahead on administrative, operational,
technical and financial matters.
The conference will also elect the Executive Committee, Working Group Chairs
See the website at
TWO ALLEGED COPPER THIEVES CAUGHT IN CONNECTICUT
Police have apprehended a pair of individuals
whom they allege stole copper from multiple
transmitter sites in the Connecticut Valley.
According to the Society of Broadcast Engineers
Chapter 14 newsletter, the unidentified pair
apparently had a list of Connecticut transmitter
sites in their vehicle. It says that the
suspects would scout out potential sites to hit
on holidays. They were caught on video on
Christmas Eve while purportedly doing
reconnaissance at two transmitter sites in the state.
RECORD ATTENDANCE AT CES 2014
The Consumer Electronics Association, which
sponsors the Las Vegas based Consumer Electronics
Show says that year's CES hosted 3,200 exhibitors
and covered a record two million net square feet
of exhibit space. Also there were about 150,000
attendees of which some 35,000 or 23 percent were
from outside of the United States.
As to the technology shown, in general, the 2014
event featured devices that seamlessly marry
technology and lifestyle in ways mainstream
consumers can appreciate. Major trends this year
at this year's show included wearable devices and 4K smart televisions.
As to what would be of interest to ham radio
operators, shortwave listeners and other
electronics hobbyists? Gordon West, WB6NOA was
there and covered this in episode 130 of the TWiT
TV program Ham Nation. You can see and hear it
on the web at twit.tv/HN
APPLIANCES BECOME SPAMBOTS
Possibly the first proven cyber-attack to originate from connected
smart appliances has taken place.
This according to the e-mail security company Proofpoint which says
that the scam involved some 750,000 e-mails from more than 100,000
appliances that had been commandeered by so called thingbots.
These are robotic programs that can be remotely installed on digital devices.
Proofpoint noted that connected appliances
typically aren't protected by anti-spam or
anti-virus software. Nor are they routinely
monitored for security breaches. As such they
didn't require sophisticated hacks but the mere
use of default passwords was enough to make them vulnerable.
A complete description of this latest in robot
based hacking can be found at the Proofpoint website.
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- FINAL FRONTIER
James Miller G3RUH reports reception of the Rosetta spacecraft signal at a
distance of 805 million km from Earth using the 20 metre dish at the Bochum
amateur radio facility
On the AMSAT Bulletin Board (AMSAT-BB) James Miller G3RUH writes:
Just a quick note about Rosetta X-band. I checked it this morning from Bochum.
2014 Jan 21 [Tue] 0934 utc
R 805 Million km
CNR 25.5 dB(Hz)
QRG 8421.786900 MHz at the spacecraft
Rosetta is about 14 dB weaker than Stereo A/B.
The system at Bochum has a G/T approx. 40 dB(1/K).
Bertrand Pinel F5PL, located near Castelnaudary, France, 65km from
Toulouse, successfully tracked Rosetta on January 21, 2014 at 10:00
UT, using a 3.5m dish antenna,
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- INTERNET --- THE HAMS DOMAIN
uLog - Simple Ham Radio Logger
A new, free logging application uLog, written by Chelmsford UK radio amateur
Charlie M0PZT, offers a fast and no-fuss way to log contacts
uLog has been designed as an easy-to-use logbook application that offers just
the basic fields for QSO entry.
There are no fancy gimmicks, just quick and easy input of QSOs whether you're
in the Shack or somewhere /P with the laptop.
uLog was unveiled at the recent CARS Amateur Radio Skills Workshop.
Its 'flexi-input' was of particular interest, as you can type the QSO details
into a single box, and the software intelligently works out in which fields
to put the information.
Find out more about uLog and download a copy at
Listen Before Transmit software
It can be annoying when someone transmits over the top of an existing contact,
now Steve N2CKH has developed this nifty lil software that may make this a
thing of the past
Listen Before Transmit (LBT) involves software automatically checking the
entire passband before transmitting to ensure the channel is clear of any
SSB, CW or Digital signals. If any signals are present the transmission can be
inhibited and the operator informed.
The software Steve N2CKH has developed appears to be very effective, in his
testing, it has so far successfully detected all human generated signals in
the passband that can be heard by ear or seen in a waterfall display.
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
CANADIAN NEWSPAPER SAYS HAM RADIO PERFECT FOR EMCOMM
Camrose has run an article describing how amateur radios unique communications
expertise can make all the difference in times of emergency.
The article quotes Rose City Amateur Radio Club vice-president Gary Horne
VE6GD. He says that one of the things hams do is keep an emergency radio in
the county office so if they are called on for emergency communications that
they have a base station already set up. He also notes that the city also
has ham operators names should they need any help.
You can read the entire story on-line at
SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- STAMP COLLECTING AMATEURS
As of January 26th, the United States Postal Service started selling a
'FOREVER STAMP', a first class, one-price, global postage stamp!
The new international stamp can be used to send a letter to any country
in the world affiliated with the U.N. postal agreements and rules.
The price? $1.15 per stamp.
(sourced to opdx via SouthGate)
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- RADIO AMATEUR OLD-TIMERS
Hallo Everyone, this is Clive VK6CSW.
The Radio Amateurs Old Timers Club of Australia is back.
Our first News and Information bulletin for 2014 will be on air tomorrow,
Monday Feb 3rd.
The main HF transmissions will take place on 20 metres. At 0100 UTC there
will be a transmission from Melbourne on 14.150MHz USB, beamed N for
Eastern states listeners, while at 0200 UTC it will be beamed westward
for WA listeners, again on 14.150 MHz
Also at 0200 UTC, Chris VK6JI will be transmitting from Perth on 40 metres
on 7060 kHz LSB, this being intended for WA country listeners but which may
well be heard in SA too.
Throughout the day other local transmissions take place on various HF, VHF
and UHF frequencies, To find a local time and frequency for your area please
visit the RAOTC website at www.raotc.org.au
Tomorrow's feature story explains how, decades before Morse code, Napoleon
was able to convey messages throughout France and as far afield as Austria
in a remarkably short time.
Everyone, RAOTC members and non-members alike, is cordially invited to listen
to the RAOTC bulletin and to join in the call-backs afterwards.
Once again, the first RAOTC bulletin for this year can be heard tomorrow,
Monday Feb 3rd.
73 from Clive VK6CSW.
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.
SPECIAL EVENT STATIONS, DX, BEACON REPEATER AND NET ADVICE
Dr Gerard Bulger, VK4BGL dropped us a line through the week to offer us all
a very special QSO.
"About 8th February the ship I am on will cross the equator at Greenwich
Meridian. The ship's QTH will be 0 deg 0 deg.
He will attempt to offer "Royal Diamond Shellbacks" QSOs at that time.
If you have never crossed the equator on a ship you are a pollywog and have
to pay service to King Neptune the first time you do it by way of on-board
humiliation (getting covered in what they threw out in the kitchen, kissing
a fish or other inventions). Very Pom/Oz behaviour.
Then you are a shellback.
Royal Diamond Shellback is very rare awarded you cross at 0 0 and you are a
Golden Shellback if you cross at the other side in the pacific at the
international date line.
Not sure if QSOs have has been held at the position on the globe before.
The ship can be tracked by looking it up on Vessel Finder web sites"
The ship is Titanium Explorer
Royal Diamond Shellback QSOs (Crossing at 0deg and 0 degs) on board the
Titanium Explorer time expectations are now the 9th Feb at 0700 the
exact time, but dealing with King Neptune takes 24 hours, so I think the
honour awarded (I will have to make a special QSL card up...after the trip
will be for QSOs) for calls over 24 hour period.
I will announce DXcluster via DXsummit and on twitter nearer the time."
http://bulger.co.uk/radio has more links on what this is about.
RI 1 ANR from Novo Runway until March 2014.
Activity is on the HF bands with a focus on the low bands.
QSL via RK 1 PWA.
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.
Russian special event R 0000 O
R (4 zero's) and letter O symbolising the Olympic rings is on the air in the
context of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games and 2014 Paralympic Games.
QRV until March 31 in 2014.
QSL via UA1OJL, LoTW, eQSL.
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.
Westlake's celebrate their 50th birthday.
In recognition they have been granted the special call sign, VI 2 ATZ 50,
which they will be using during April.
(sourced to vk2wi news)
International Marconi Day is listed as April 26. Hornsby And District Amateur
Radio Club (HADARC) will operate VK 2 IMD on that day.
SOCIAL SCENE 2014
It's JUST THREE WEEKS to go until the largest Amateur Radio event in the
The Central Coast Amateur Radio Club Field day at Wyong!
This year looks like it's going to be bigger and better than ever and remember
it's on Hail, Rain or Shine. We've ordered sunshine but you know how
unreliable the weather guys can be at times, so we'll be prepared for
If you haven't been to Wyong for a few years, this year is the time to make
the trip, if you come every year, we'll be very happy to welcome you back.
Again this year, it'll be a "Wyong Week-end" with a foundation licence
training course on the Saturday and then all the usual attractions on the
Sunday - Commercial Traders, Exhibitors, Seminars and my favourite, the
For full details about the field day, please go to the club website at
CCARC.ORG.AU and click on the Field Day graphic on the main page.
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.
Mar 23 VK3 EMDRC White Elephant Sale 10am ( 03 9005 9251 )
Mar 28-30 VK4 Bunya Mts&District AmCom camp Somerset Dam (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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 ( 0429 632 815 )
May 16-18 VK4 WIA Conference presented by SCARC ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
Nov 2 VK5 HamFest Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Society
Nov 30 VK3 SPARC HamFest at Rosebud ( email@example.com )
NEW WIA NEWS BROADCAST FEEDBACK
I listened with interest to the report of the restoration of the Great
Melbourne Telescope which was the second item on this morning's broadcast.
What you probably did not know was that Jim Pollock, the person quoted as
referring to it as a nine-tonne Meccano set is in fact me, VK3OX.
We have been working on the restoration since 2009 and probably have
another three years to go. The restoration has been a long haul so far
and what we are aiming for is not just a static exhibit but a fully-working
telescope. As I often say, "Something to be looked AT during the day and
looked THROUGH by the general public, when it gets dark.
Also, working on the project (and nominally in charge) is Steve, VK3YJQ.
The Great Melbourne Telescope, to give you an idea of the size of this
Victorian monster is about 30 ft. long, almost 5 ft. in diameter.
What has made the restoration more difficult is that we have no engineering
drawings of the bits and pieces as these were lost in the bushfires of 1952
at Mt Stromlo.
The Astronomical Society of Victoria is gearing up to become more active
in radio astronomy and moon bounce work and to that end have acquired a 28ft
(8.5 metre) diameter dish which will be on an alt-azimuth mount so it can
point to any part of the sky and be able to track objects as the Earth rotates.
It will also be able to point right down to the horizon.
Clint, VK2CSJ, runs the Radio Astronomy group. He runs a net at 22.00 local
time on 3.543 kHz most Friday nights using the ASV's call sign VK3EKH.
Everyone is welcome to join in.
Regards es 73
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