WIANEWS - MAY 18 - VK NATIONAL NEWS
THE BEST NEWS YOU'LL GET ALL WEEK
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WIANEWS WEEK COMMENCING MAY 18 2014.
HEADING TOWARDS OUR 20TH YEAR OF NON STOP NEWS
THESE STORIES AND MORE IN THIS EDITION OF NEWS FROM THE WIRELESS INSTITUTE
OF AUSTRALIA FOR WEEK COMMENCING MAY 18 2014.
WIA PR4AmateurRadio Expo, a successful activity.
WIA Standards, Compliance, Interference and EMR report
WIA Survey some results
TRENDING ON VK1WIA TWITTER ACCOUNT
WIA Broadcast for this WIA YEAR
Total readers and listeners 126,548
RF checkins 43,360
This is 33 higher than last year and best result ever.
Thank YOU for taking the time to read and listen to VK1WIA National News.
WHERE THIS NEWS IS HAPPENING NOW!
Would listeners to VK2WI news please note that renovations are about to be
carried out on the VK2WI building which will require the close down of all
The morning transmission - today the 18 th May - will be the last for a couple
of weeks. There is no evening transmission tonight and unlikely to be any on
the following Sunday the 25 th.
It is hoped to resume the service on the 1 st June.
During the close down the VK2RWI repeaters, VK2RSY beacons and the
VK2WI 3699 morse will also be off air.
Thanks 73 - Tim VK2ZTM
(text editions only)
AWA business sold to Cabrini Health
The ICT business and assets of Australian technology service company, AWA
(Amalgamated Wireless Australasia), has been sold to Cabrini Health Limited,
following the administration of the iconic 105-year-old technology company
on 26 February.
Cabrini, a not-for-profit Catholic healthcare provider, has been involved in
technology services since the late 1990s with the acquisition of Chemtronics
Biomedical Engineering and now provides technology services for a host of
big name customers.
AWA started off as a radio manufacturer and radio broadcaster, but has more
recently been delivering technology services to major enterprises and
governments including, Flight Centre, Hewlett Packard, Dimension Data, and
the Department of Defence.
Cabrini also said it would preserve and continue to trade under the AWA name
"We are committed to continuing to maintain the AWA brand and reputation
as a specialist in information technology services," said Dr Michael Walsh,
chief executive of Cabrini.
Telstra has begun trialling the use of mobiles on planes, including the
ability to deliver a broadband signal to aircraft that allows phone users
to use 4G to browse the web, send and receive emails, make video calls,
watch movies and download music and photos.
The testing of the network on mock flights between Melbourne and Sydney has
so far delivered fast speeds of up to 15 megabits per second.
Special antennas have been erected on four phone towers between the two
capitals to deliver broadband signals to passengers en route.
Trials were conducted on a twin-propeller aircraft and a Cessna mustang jet
that flew at the height of a commercial flight at 30,000 feet.
Testing has not yet extended to include sending and receiving text messages
and making phone calls.
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
PR4AmateurRadio Expo - a successful activity
The Expo held in April harnessed WIA affiliates to showcase modern Amateur
Radio and engage the community. Well done to those who took part.
It had a publicity campaign with almost weekly VK1WIA items tied to PR
education, website news, Amateur Radio coverage, club-emails, and a survey
The aims were achieved. These were to mount a display station, attract and
interact with the public, seek media coverage, lift the profile of PR among
all radio amateurs, and involve the busy WIA Board of Directors.
About a dozen stations were dotted around VK2, VK3, VK4 and VK5. Some were
in parks, at electronics or hardware stores, and in other public places.
Each had display posters and the popular WIA 'Calling CQ' brochure. New
interest was found particular with the Foundation Licence, and the likely
revival of lapsed radio amateurs to a modern Amateur Radio.
New Ham Radio PR videos
One of the most common questions asked about our hobby is 'What is amateur
radio?' This could come from a friend or family member trying to work out
what the aerial farm in the garden is all about, or passers-by at the various ham radio field events that take place across the country
To try to help answer the question, and to help bring new people into the
hobby, Essex Ham in the UK produced a "What is Amateur Radio" video last year.
This seven minute feature was distributed online, played at club nights
used at a couple of public-speaking events in the area, and distributed
on DVD to interested parties.
A second version was prepared last year, focusing more on the Foundation
syllabus, to help people interested in starting their amateur radio journey.
In response to some very positive feedback on these videos, Essex Ham have
produced a couple of new ones. These focus more on the social and interactive
side of the hobby, and less on the learning / courses. They are also shorter.
The original 7 minute version is joined by new 4 minute and 2 minute versions.
These would be excellant to use at Maker fairs and particularly in the
ROAR stand at the June Rotary International World Conference being held in
(Listen out for VI2R)
The Essex Ham videos are available at
Guarding against manufactured interference sources
A problem for Amateur Radio in the urban and domestic environments is
household devices that contain electronic control systems which can
contribute to the 'electronic smog' and the ever the increasing noise floor.
Gilbert Hughes VK1GH and Rob Milliken VK1KRM, in their annual Standards
Compliance, Interference and EMR report, has a vigilant watch on the
commercial products that can impact on high frequencies and beyond.
This WIA committee can test devices to assess their compliance with the
relevant applicable Standard, with sufficient accuracy to determine whether
it's compliant, borderline or not.
All radio amateurs are encouraged to have devices tested for compliance,
naturally with priority given to mass market consumer devices with a known
potential for interference.
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
HAMS ACROSS AUSTRALIA.
web service:- http://www.amateurradio.com.au/news/
VK3 Home Brewers Group meeting
The recent meeting of the Homebrew Construction Group amply demonstrated
the value of test equipment pooling.
With a theme of 'tuning and testing', group members were able to calibrate
homebrew instruments, align filters, examine the spectrum of transmitters
and gain some operational advice.
Few of those present would have had the resources to achieve all those outcomes
in their individual home workshops.
Also on display, in the 'show and tell' segment were many projects, either
completed or well advanced, demonstrating the diverse range of interests
with the group.
All are welcome. The Homebrew Constructor group e-newsletter will be sent
before the next meeting, on Saturday, June the 7th at 2pm. The venue is the
Amateur Radio Victoria rooms at 40g Victory Boulevard, Ashburton.
Inquiries and comments can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
VK4 - QNEWS
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Mikes Morse Mania Display
The TARC Weekly News Letter has asked the question "Do you really appreciate
really well preserved radio equipment?"
Mike/VK4MIK certainly does and currently has one of the most extensive
collections of morse keys and heritage equipment in the country. He regularly
arranges public displays of his collection.
The next "Mikes Morse Mania" display will be happening at the Cardwell
Telegraph Museum Friday 30 and Saturday 31st May, and with such an extensive
special display Museum volunteers will be extending the opening hours to let
as many people as possible view 60 plus exquisitely restored morse keys and
other heritage radio gear.
If you are passing through Cardwell on May 30 or 31 do drop in and see the
display and say 'gday' to Mike and the Museum volunteers.
EDUCATION YOUTH AND ADVANCEMENT OF AMATEUR RADIO
What use is an F-call?
In the past I've talked about the difference between the various types of
Amateur License in Australia. The three main types in use today in order of
increasing privilege are Foundation, Standard and Advanced.
The Foundation License, referred to as an F-call, since the first letter after
the state number is the letter F followed by three letters, is the beginners
license. It allows you to use up to 10 Watts, use some bands and basically
dis-allows any digital modes - other than hand-keyed Morse. Other restrictions
are that you can only use commercially available radios and you can only home
brew stuff outside the radio, power supplies, antennas, SWR meters, etc.
The Standard License, considered a step-up from Foundation, allows for
100 Watts, more bands and all digital modes. As a Standard Licensee you can
supervise another operator, run your radio under computer control and home
The Advanced License, the so-called Pinnacle of Amateur Radio Licensing in
Australia, is identical to the Standard License in many ways. You get access
to 400 Watts, can apply for a kilowatt license, use all Amateur Bands and
apply for power to do Earth Moon Earth bounces.
The education part of the Advanced License is more onerous, some say
considerably more so, than that of a Standard Call, but I'm not at the point
where I can comment from personal experience about this.
There is a natural progression from Foundation to Standard to Advanced, but
the breakdown of Amateur Licences in Australia seems to indicate that
Foundation Licensees appear to be skipping the Standard Licence in favour
of the Advanced one.
I don't have historical data to comment either way, but time will no doubt
Why do you hold the License that you do?
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.
Last weekend Radio amateurs across Europe were asked to help find geese!
The 'Puy du Fou' is one of the most beautiful parks in the world and
Radioamateurs-France was contacted because the parks birds have gone missing.
The birds (geese) are equipped with beacons on the 155 MHz VHF band.
The Hams were asked to try to track them down.
Country's asked to listen included France, England, Netherlands, Germany,
Belgium, Switzerland, and Luxembourg.
One wonders if our very own AM Radio Transmitters could be the cause for these
birds "winging it."
Over the channel in the UK it seems the popularity of stations such as
"Radio 5 Live" could be causing migratory birds to lose their way, scientists
Researchers have found that robins' in-built compass is disturbed by
electromagnetic "noise" emitted by AM radio transmitters. Migratory birds
can sense the Earth's magnetic field and use it as an in-built compass to help
them fly in the right direction.
Read the full Telegraph article at:
HAM RADIO IN DR. WHO THEME MUSIC ARTICLE
Amateur radio got a very brief mention in an article on
making music for the British Doctor Who series from
broadcast test equipment at the Radiophonic Workshop. The
story in the United Kingdom newspaper the Register
titled "Delia and the Doctor: How to cook up a tune for a
Time Lord." Among other things it describes the BBC's
Wobulator which was basically a Beat Frequency Oscillator
used by hams to receive CW and SSB and how it was used in
the creation of the tune.
GB2RS podcast recordings, read by Jeremy, G4NJH, are available from iTunes
and The Lounge, the same sources as this VK1WIA broadcast allowing the news
to be heard on mobile devices and internet radios.
The broadcast can also be heard by going to gb2rs.podbean.com with any
browser from a PC or mobile device.
The RSGB in thanking Jeremy for his ongoing service to their Society reminds
all world-wide that the archive in iTunes and on the website contains all
editions from the last two years.
Intruder Watch Latest
The latest issue of the IARU R1 Monitoring System
newsletter reports on action by the Ofcom Baldock
Monitoring Station against an intruder in the 10MHz band.
They report that Peter Jost, HB9CET, found illegal fishery
traffic on 10,123kHz USB daily. RSGB Intruder Watch Co-
ordinator Chris Cummings, G4BOH, asked Baldock for
assistance and, as a result, the British Coast Guard
contacted the offenders to tell them that their phone
traffic was illegal. A few days later the frequency was clean.
KILLER OF 8 INCLUDING A HAM RADIO OPERATOR PLEADS GUILTY
The Southern California man who killed 8 people including a
ham radio operator sitting in his truck has pleaded guilty
to all charges. Amateur Radio Newsline's Joe Moell, K0OV, has the details:
David Caouette N6DAC, was a star high-school athlete who
turned down college scholarships and NFL scouts so he could
join the Navy and serve in Vietnam.
He became a father of three who loved offroading in his Land Rover.
David was age 64 on October 12, 2011 when he was shot down in cold blood
outside Salon Meritage in Seal Beach, California. He was
the last of the eight persons killed by 44-year-old Scott
Dekraai, a man enraged by a custody dispute with his wife,
who was the first of the victims. Dekraai, who was heavily
armed and wearing a bulletproof vest, says he shot N6DAC
because he thought he was an off-duty or undercover officer.
Dekraai still faces eight life sentences without the
possibility of parole if the judge rules out the death
(K0OV from published news reports)
CANADIAN HAMS GRANTED ACCESS TO 472 TO 479 KHZ
Hams in Canada will soon have access to the 472 to 479
Kilohertz band. This with the release of the new Canadian
Table of Frequency Allocations by telecommunications
regulator Industry Canada.
Radio Amateurs of Canada says that its Zero to Thirty
Megahertz Band Planning Committee will be proposing a
suitable band plan to enable best use of this new very
narrow band. Canadian hams with comments and suggestions
can send them to the committee via e-mail to email@example.com
Canadian amateur operators have recently secured two new
segments of spectrum thanks to the hard work of their
national society. The 60 meter band channels were made
official a few month ago as well.
2 INDUCTED INTO ASTRONAUT HALL OF FAME
The accomplishments of two astronauts who helped inspire
another generation of space explorers have been honored
for their achievements on-orbit.
Shannon Lucid and Jerry Ross, the former N5SCW, of the space
shuttle era were inducted into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of
Fame during a ceremony at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.
Shannon Lucid flew aboard the Atlantis three times and is
the only American woman to serve aboard the Russian Mir
space station from where she operated the R0MIR radio gear.
Jerry Ross was the first person to complete seven space
shuttle missions. Five of those were aboard Atlantis. He
spent more than 1,393 hours in space and 58 hours, 18
minutes on nine spacewalks.
During the ceremony, each told of the challenges, triumphs
and lighter moments of their careers in space to an audience
assembled underneath shuttle Atlantis.
(Published News Reports)
SPIN WAVES INCREASE SOLID STATE EFFICIENCY
Something new called Spin waves could make electronics one
thousand times more efficient than current machines. This
by using magnetic materials to control the passage of
electrons through transistor switches.
Here's Amateur Radio Newsline's Heather Embee, KB3TZD:
As computers become more advanced, the silicon chips that
house the infinitely small switches that make up logic gates
used to perform computing functions get smaller and smaller.
As the chips and switches get smaller and more are squeezed
closer together however, it gets harder to keep the
electrons flowing where they need to without jumping to
Now researchers at UCLA found that by introducing
multiferroic magnetic materials they created a switch that
could be turned on or off simply by applying alternating
voltage. This creates an oscillating electric field within
a piezoelectric material which generates spin waves that
induced along a nickel film. These steps cause power to
move through the material in a wave that matches the
oscillation frequency of the electromagnetic field called a spin wave bus.
The difference between using spin waves to carry electrons
and letting them flow naturally is similar to the difference
between a river and wave. By powering future devices by
varying the amount of voltage used, less power is used over-
all by virtue of the low voltage part of the wave. At the
same time the leaking transistor problem is solved,
eliminating wasted power and allowing for the potential that
spin waves could make electronics one thousand times more
efficient in the future.
For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Heather Embee, KB3TZD,
You can find a link to the complete and in-depth report on
this subject is at
Backround information on Spin Waves
June launch for FUNcube 2
The FUNcube team have received confirmation that UKube-1, which is hosting
the FUNcube-2 payload, remains scheduled for a Soyuz launch on 19th June.
The team believes that, immediately after deployment and activation, UKube-1
will commence transmitting a CW beacon and that this will be later followed by
an AX25, 1200 BPSK beacon.
Both beacons will be on 145.840MHz.
The FUNcube-2 payload, with its telemetry downlink for educational outreach,
is expected to be tested later.
YOTA-UK event planned
The RSGB is organising a get-together for its young Members.
The event will take place on the weekend of 19th and 20th July in
Wolverhampton and will link up with the Youngsters on the Air event
in Finland. The Society is therefore calling this YOTA UK.
The plan is to have a 'mini-convention' on the Saturday
with activities linked to SOTA aerial building, satellite
operating, receiver building, intermediate practical work,
a special event station and a barbecue. We also have a
Direction Finding event planned for the Sunday and a
further opportunity to operate the special event station.
The Society would like to see as many young Members in
attendance as possible and hope to make YOTA UK an annual
event. Full details of the programme are still being worked
on but if anyone would like further info, please contact
Steve Hartley, G0FUW, via e-mail
WEIRD AND WONDERFUL
SPACE FOR "SPACE" IN THE SHACK?
For those looking for a conversation piece for the ham shack, there's an
Apollo-era mission control console from the Johnson Space Center in Houston
up for auction. This two-terminal console was later modified for use during
Space Shuttle missions.
So, if you've been building an Apollo Lunar Module out of scrap parts in your
backyard, then you're in luck, RR Auctions is putting hundreds of items up
for bid as part of an auction of air and space memorabilia.
The sale catalog includes letters from the Wright brothers, bits of a Wright
flier, a fragment of the Hindenburg, assorted technical gear, photos,
autographs, postcards, manuals, models, coins, medallions, maps,charts, and
The auction house says the Space and Aviation Auction includes a wide array
of aerospace collectibles and memorabilia, some of which have never been put
on public sale before.
The Space and Aviation Auction auction takes place online and in Boston,
till May 22.
Amongst a number of standout items is the joystick from the Apollo 15 Lunar
Module, which goes on the block with a starting bid of US$10,000.
OPERATIONAL NEWS - DATELINE 2014
SGARS 80 METRE TROPHY CONTEST July 26
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.
Tablelands Radio Group will again hold AM and CW on ANZAC Day 25 April 2015
SPECIAL EVENT STATIONS, DX, BEACON REPEATER AND NET ADVICE
Two special event stations with new prefixes will be operational from
Israel during the visit of Pope Francis. Look for the callsigns
4 X 266 POPE and
4 Z 266 POPE from 20 - 27 May.
QSL Manger for both calls is 4Z1TL.
(irts text edition only)
The Rotary International Convention will be Sydney Australia, on June the
1st to the 4th and in the House Of Friendship and special operators of site
will use a special event callsign VI2R.
Registrations commence May 30 and RI President Ron Burton and Rotary members
from around the world will be raising money for polio eradication while
attempting to break a world record for largest group of climbers on the
Sydney Harbour Bridge at one time on the 31st May.
Rotarians on Amateur Radio are expected to begin using VI2R from May 31 as
they invite fellow Rotarians visiting Sydney who also have a licence to get
(Sourced to VK2WI VK4BB and Jim Linton VK3PC)
Victoria's annual Bogong High Plains Winter mini-expedition will occur from
31 July to 4 August this year. The team will include VK3GT, VK3FMAW and VK3SN
who will operate from 160m to 70cm and everything in between using solar
powered QRP gear.
Each day we will ski across snowy plains situated 1700m above sea level and
set up camp by evening for radio operation. Listen out for us, especially on
40m during the late afternoon and 80m each evening. Local VHF & UHF repeaters
will be utilised while we traverse back-country mobile.
Here's now hoping for decent snow!
The Mt Gambier Convention in South Australia has a special event callsign
VI 50 CONV is to be on air throughout the month.
The convention is over the Queens Birthday Weekend with Australian Fox Hunting
Championships on June the 7 and 8 and Sniffer Hunt at 11am on the Saturday.
The Scout Hall in Margaret Street, Mount Gambier is the event venue, with
foxhunts, stalls, a homebrew competition and catering.
(sourced to vk3pc)
NEW THAI CLUB STATION ON THE AIR
E 2 1EIC has told the Ohio-Penn DX Newsletter that he received a new Thailand
club callsign of E20AX that will be hosted by his station. This new call will
be used for training new hams, for contest operations and by guest operators.
SOUTH COOK ISLANDS
4 members of the Yamato Amateur Radio Club will be on Rarotonga in the South
Cook Islands, May 22nd to the 31st. Activity will be on all High Frequency
bands using CW, SSB and RTTY.
QSL via each operator's home callsign via the bureau.
VK Club Bulletins http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aarnie/
VK2 CCARC news ccarc.org.au/wp/2012/09/ccarc-news-12-31/
The 5Mhz Newsletter
The latest - Spring 2014 - edition of The 5 MHz Newsletter is now available
for free download in pdf format
This 10th edition features new allocations, WRC 2015 preparation news from
the US, a US amateur - government ALE interoperability exercise, a
'ground' antenna for 5 MHz, UK Cold War communications using 5 MHz and various
updates on 5 MHz activity in a number of countries.
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- FINAL FRONTIER
434 MHz balloons have a role in education
The UK Department for Education has selected the Horizon balloon project to
feature in the department's #yourlife campaign to promote Maths and Science
Pupils at Queen Mary's Grammar School, Walsall built the Gagarin payload
which transmitted FSK RTTY telemetry data on 434.075 MHz.
The students launched it on a high altitude weather balloon which reached an
altitude of 35,118 metres before bursting. The Gagarin payload returned safely
to Earth by parachute and the students were able to retrieve the stunning
still images and video taken in near-space.
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.
Youngsters On The Air, YOTA http://www.ham-yota.eu/
Young hams seem to be missing these days
The latest Wireless Institute of Australia (WIA) figures tend to indicate
that Amateur Radio is currently not overly attractive to young people, despite
the Foundation Licence showing some promise in earlier years.
This entry level has been a welcome stepping-stone into the hobby with a
healthy upgrading to a higher licence, or for some, having had a taste of
the hobby then deciding it's not for them.
The WIA annual figures show it has only 27 student members, and those aged
10 to 29 account for 3% of all members.
Since 2009, when about 750 Foundation Licences assessment were held, there
had been a steady decline with 414 new Foundation Licences issued in 2013.
With the passage of 10 years the question is being asked whether the Foundation
Licence has the right mix of privileges and its relativity to the Standard
and Advanced Licences.
The WIA plans to celebrate the first decade of the Foundation Licence in
The Foundation Licence remains popular with 2,300 on issue or slightly more
than the Standard or middle-level licence, with nearly 10,000 Advanced Licences.
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
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
Getting ready for natural and man-made disasters
The Malaysian Amateur Radio Transmitters' Society (MARTS0 on Saturday May
10, held an 'Emcomm GoBox' contest to show how to pack the minimum essential
equipment needed to enable a light-weight, rugged, yet portable emergency
MARTS wanted local radio amateurs in West Malaysia to produce a complete,
compact station, to provide the communications support, if requested by the
There was a talk by Johnny Tan 9M8DB on the use of the IARU message form
by radio amateurs, as a means to better emergency message handling, especially
during large scale disaster events with volunteers from other regions and
The judges used a school ground at Kuala Lumpur were Deen Attan 9M2DA and
Johnny Tan 9M8DB, both being very impressed with the level of interest and
cooperation. In all 12 teams entered with categories covering HF and UHF,
and VHF only.
All were required to demonstrate the ease of setting up a station. This setup
was timed with points given in addition to those for the design and communication
Each Emcomm GoBox was judged on its merits. Johnny 9M8DB said all entrants
are congratulated on their ability to come up with solutions.
While some had a different approach, it was a good learning experience by
the entrants and the observing public who saw the volunteer skills and time
available from radio amateurs in times of emergency.
(Jim Linton VK3PC, Chairman IARU Region 3 Disaster Communications Committee)
SOCIAL SCENE 2014
May 16-18 VK4 WIA Conference presented by SCARC ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
Jun 7- 9 VK2 Oxley Region Amateur Radio Club field day Port Macquarie
Jun 7- 9 VK5 South East Radio Groups' (SERG) 50th annual Convention and
Australian Foxhunting Championship.
Nov 2 VK5 HamFest Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Society
Nov 15 VK7 Hamfest (Venue to be advised)
Nov 30 VK3 SPARC HamFest at Rosebud ( email@example.com )
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