SEP 10 2017 - VK NATIONAL NEWS BROADCAST ON VK1WIA
THE BEST NEWS YOU'LL GET ALL WEEK
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NATIONAL NEWS FOR WEEK COMMENCING SEPTEMBER 10 2017.
IN OUR 22nd YEAR OF NON STOP NEWS
WIA survey wants your views. -
WIA has important input. -
DISCUSSION POINT, Hamming Blind by VK5LDR.
THESE STORIES AND MORE IN THIS EDITION OF NEWS FROM THE WIRELESS INSTITUTE
OF AUSTRALIA 2017 AND FOR WEEK OF SEP 10
Powerful Hurricane Irma due in the USA
Following devastating Harvey that hit Texas and Louisiana comes news of
Hurricane Irma that has tracked through the Caribbean and reached Category 5.
Preparations have been made for the weather system that is likely hit
South Florida with catastrophic winds and floods.
The National Hurricane Centre earlier issued warnings for the US Virgin Islands,
Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic. IARU Region 2 Emergency Coordinator
Cesar Pio Santos HR2P says a number of emergency frequencies including the
Hurricane Watch Net are on 80m, 40m, and 20m.
The National Hurricane Centre reported Hurricane Irma has winds up to 295 km/h.
Describing Irma as possibly the most powerful Atlantic Ocean hurricane, greater
than last month's Hurricane Harvey, and even possibly surpassing Hurricane
Katrina of 2005.
Meanwhile, parts of India, Bangladash, Mymamar and Nepal are flooded by heavy
monsoonal rains, with radio amateurs known to have been providing emergency
(Jim Linton VK3PC Chairman IARU Region 3 Disaster Communications Committee)
VK5RWN DSTAR Repeater Damaged - Repairs Pending
In the wild weather over the past few weeks the VK5RWN repeater system has
sustained some structural damage. The original tower section is currently
bent at a rather alarming angle and will require replacement.
In the past few days a repair crew up there has had to shore up the tower section and made temporary repairs until a more permanent solution can be found.
There is still internet connectivity to the site and the D-Star repeater is
still operational for the time being. Users may find that the coverage of
the repeater is somewhat disturbed however.
In the coming weeks the antenna system will need to be upgraded, so there will
most likely be a prolonged period where the system will be off air while
repairs are being made.
LARGER STATIONS LOSE THEIR LICENCE
No not Ham stations but 2 of 150 renewal applications received in the last
financial year for Community Stations were declined by the ACMA:
2VTR in the Windsor area of New South Wales; and
4MIG in Mount Isa, Queensland
'A decision not to renew a licence is not made lightly,' Richard Bean said.
'Where a licensee is struggling to provide the service or to comply with the
rules, the ACMA first works to assist the licensee to improve. These are,
after all, not-for-profit, volunteer-run services.
However, where compliance problems persist over a prolonged period, the
ACMA will act to make licences available to others.'
The 2VTR licence, held by Hawkesbury Radio Communications Cooperative Society
Ltd, was not renewed following 2VTR's continued non-compliance with the
community participation licence condition.
The ACMA also declined to renew the 4MIG licence, held by Mount Isa Christian
Broadcasters Association Inc. 4MIG was unable to muster the resources to meet
the needs of the community in its licence area.
These licences expire at the end of their current terms:
Tomorrow, 11 September 2017 in the case of 4MIG and 3 October 2017 for 2VTR.
WIA survey wants your views
In a part of the ongoing consultation process the Wireless Institute of
Australia wants to measure the views of those in Amateur Radio.
No, you don't have to be a WIA member, or even give your identity.
The WIA asks a series of simple questions and the answers will be automatically
handled by software to come up with the results.
Questions are about how long you have you been in Amateur Radio, what sparked
your interest, awareness of WIA services, Amateur Radio magazine contents,
volunteering and social media use.
It's all about learning of your activity, motivation, and make-up, as the
institute sets its path for the future.
Please take a moment to complete the WIA survey found on WIA website
www.wia.org.au to and encourage others to also share their opinions.
WIA is having important input
Like most industry bodies and stakeholders in communications, the Wireless
Institute of Australia (WIA), representing Amateur Radio, is lodging a number
of submissions to put its views and perspective.
A strong submission has been made on the draft radiocommunications legislation,
the future plans for use of 3.6 GHz or 9 cm band, and is about to finalise the
WIA input to the ACMA review of Interference Management.
Also the WIA is preparing a formal submission for the expected ACMA review of
the Licence Conditions Determinations or LCD. That may be late this year.
This will be based on the three-phased consultation it had conducted this year
with the Amateur Radio community and stakeholders.
The ACMA is an evidence-based organisation and looks at each submission it
receives in response to its public consultation.
Check about these and many more matters in the Current WIA Hot Issues page of
the WIA website www.wia.org.au
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
Hamming Blind by VK5LDR
Can you use your handheld, mobile or base station amateur radio without looking
at the display?
This is the challenge faced by numerous hams around the world.
Joseph Stephen VK5LDR is one such ham. A totally blind software engineer,
married for 21 years, a father of 9, and author of several books, Joseph has
been working in the area of assistive technology for more than 30 years. His
main job for the past 20 has been developing screen reading software to enable
blind folk around the world to use a standard pc for study, work and recreation.
Joseph began his interest in communications back in the 80s on the 27 MHz CB
band. He then moved to the UHF CB band. He gained his foundation Amateur
license in 2015 and his standard license in 2016.
He has set himself up as a contact, advocate and assistant to other blind hams
around Australia, providing services such as advice, training in the use of,
and programming of radios.
He has been in contact with several manufacturers over the years to request
more consideration of accessibility in future designs. Many companies have
introduced half-baked solutions over the years, and most blind hams have had to
put up with little to moderate accessibility.
Most hams grow old, and many lose their vision. Would you like to give up your
radio when that happens? Now is the time to be aware of just how an
inaccessible radio will affect most hams at some point in their life, that may
Awareness and advocacy is thus a critical thing for all hams to be thinking
about before it is too late. Just because a radio talks, doesn't mean you can
program it without sighted assistance. Many Chinese radios speak the channel
number and even some menu items, but do not speak the frequency, mode, or menu
On the other hand, just because a radio doesn't talk, doesn't mean a blind
person can't use it completely independently, including programming it. Some
Kenwood handhelds use distinct beeps when toggling settings on or off, or the
first in a series of menu items or at channel 0.
Some radios like the Icom IC-T90A, do not speak, nor have distinct beeps, but
provide the current frequency by way of CW at the press of a button. Some base
stations can speak limited information if an optional voice chip is installed.
The most accessible handheld radio to-date is the Kenwood TH-D74, which has
full speech feedback, but is unavailable in Australia due to needless
Ultimately, a blind person must be able to get the radio into a known and
predictable state through a series of key presses, and remembering the number
and order of menu items and available options. If there is inadequate speech
feedback, if all key presses issue the same tone, or if menu options dynamically
change and thus one can't predictably know where they are in the menu system,
radios are a complete frustration for a blind operator, let alone tuning an
antenna using an SWR meter, or testing a battery with a multimeter which
doesn't beep or speak. Even in this area, 25 years ago, one could pick up a
talking multimeter from Tandy for around $50. Today, blind hams have no current
options. In fact, some companies laugh at the possibility of a blind person
using a multimeter.
Many assume they can't be educated enough not to kill themselves.
We need to change this perception.
Many hams will one day lose their vision.
If you want to remain in the hobby, start demanding accessibility now, so that
by the time you need it, you will be able to use your rig without your eyes.
INTERNATIONAL NEWS With thanks to IARU, RSGB, SARL, Southgate AR Club, ARRL,
Amateur Radio Newsline, NZART, WIA Local News Service VK7, VK3PC and the WW
sources of the WIA.
IARU Region 3 Directors Meeting
Directors of the IARU region that covers the Asia-Pacific met at the JARL
Headquarters in Tokyo on 4-5 September to discuss a range of matters and review
They were Professor Rhee HL1AQQ, Peter VK3MV, Don ZL2TLL, Wisnu YB0AZ,
Shizuo JE1MUI, and Chairman Gopal VU2GMN, with Secretary Ken Yamamoto JA1CJP,
joined by Tim Ellam VE6SH the IARU President.
In a news release the meeting reviewed next year's 17th IARU Region 3
Conference to be attended by Member Societies in Seoul Korea.
The Directors decided that in keeping with the focus of promoting Amateur Radio
to young persons, the theme for the Conference would be "Engaging Youth for the
future of Amateur Radio".
The ITU World Radiocommunications Conference or WRC-19 agenda matters of
interest to the amateur service and amateur satellite service were discussed.
Already IARU Region 3 Directors Shizuo JE1MUI and Wisnu YB0AZ had been at the
Asia Pacific Preparatory meeting in Bali, Indonesia in July, and made
presentations on behalf of IARU.
Reactivation of Amateur Radio in Fiji and the other Pacific islands is still of
interest with a potential development soon.
The reformatting of Region 3 Band Plans has been done, and after comments from
Member Societies and the other IARU Regions, the final Band Plan document will
be put for adoption at the Region 3 Conference around September 2018.
RADIO HAM FOUND DEAD.
Police found radio amateur Arthur Earle Plimley ZL1TAG, 76, dead in his
Parawai Road house on Wednesday after a CB radio friend, Peter Hansen of
Te Atatu, raised the alarm
Hansen said he became worried when his friend failed to keep appointments with
friends on the airwaves.
"Earle was a well-known voice on the airways. His [CB] call sign was Thames104,
and we spoke every morning religiously from 6am," he said.
Hansen said Plimley was a clever man who had been issued his ham radio licence
when he was only 15 or 16.
Read the full story at
Valve Workshop at Computing Museum
If you will find yourself in 'the Mother' country in October listen up.
A Valve Workshop will be held on the 14th of October at The National Museum of
Computing, Bletchley Park.
If you have a basic knowledge of electronics and can read an
electronic circuit diagram then they will show you how electronics
started for its first 50 years. Find out about valve history, how
to handle and test valves and how valves are used in amplifiers,
radios and computers.
Full details, including those on a project for purchase can be found at
Mainstream media has told the story of an M6 amateur in the Bristol area
taking an emergency contact, which helped rescue a young girl having a seizure
in a remote part of Exmoor.
A fuller report is on both the BBC website
or you can see the original Bristol Evening Post article at
Who and Where are our broadcast stations?
HAM RADIO OPERATIONAL NEWS - IT'S A CONTACT SPORT
Enigma Reloaded 2017
This international event for radio amateurs seeks to promote the history of the
Enigma cipher machine and its crucial role in the outcome of World War II.
It will be run by the Italian Amateur Radio Association ARI, the Technical
Naval Museum, a Cultural Association called 'Rover Joe', and the Marine Italian
Amateur Radio Association.
Enigma Reloaded 2017 is on September 22-30, with all details and rules on the
website in the text edition of this broadcast.
All major Australian contests, rules and results, are on the
Contest Section of the WIA website.
IARU High Speed Telegraphy world championships are 8th to 12th September.
October CQ WW DX / SSB CONTEST (always Octobers Last full weekend)
November CQ WW DX / CW CONTEST (always Novembers Last full weekend)
The SSB weekend is October 29-30. The CW weekend is November 26-27.
Running ALL year 'til Dec 31 Victorian Local Government Award 2017 Challenge
John Moyle Memorial Field Day will be held over the weekend of the 17th-18th
March 2018 and will run from UTC 0100 on the Saturday until 0059 on the Sunday.
IARU HF Championship event on 15 and 16 July.
The 21st International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend is on
August 18 to 19, 2018
The RAOTC Annual on-air QSO party runs from 06-08 UTC on Saturday Sept 16th.
All licensed Australian Amateurs are invited to participate in the annual
Radio Amateurs Old Timers Club of Australia's annual QSO PARTY to be held
next Saturday, September 16th.
The event may be treated as a friendly contest or simply enjoyed as a basic
contact occasion. If you use a radio that's 25 years or more old, you get
double points, but state of the art rigs are just as welcome.
Brief details are as follows:
Saturday, 16th September, 2017
0600 - 0800 UTC
4 - 6 pm Eastern, 3:30 pm - 5:30 pm Central, and 2 - 4 pm Western Time
40 and 20 metres.
CW, AM and SSB.
CW 7020 kHz
SSB 7080 - 7110 kHz
AM 7125 kHz
CW 14040 kHz
SSB 14160 - 14200 kHz
AM 14150 kHz
However, If you intend to join the party, and we certainly hope you will,
full details of how to participate, logs and where to send them, and
certificates to be awarded can be found on the RAOTC website at
Once again, the RAOTC annual on-air QSO party runs next Saturday from
06 to 08 UTC.
73, Clive VK6CSW
Alex IW5ELA will be visiting Botswana from 7th - 15th September.
While his main purpose in being there is to spot the wild life
he hopes to be able to set up his radio equipment in the various
lodges where he will overnight.
Operation will be mainly CW and QSLs will be sent automatically
via the bureau.
The iconic 'Route 66' is commemorated each year by a 'Route 66 on the Air'
Event. This year it runs from 9th - 17th September. Look for callsigns with
W6 followed by one letter e.g. W6A, W6B etc.
Full details can be found on www.w6jbt.org.
Tony, KQ2I will be on the air from Vanuatu, OC-035 using the callsign YJ0AT
until the 13th of September. Tony is a CW-only operator and QSLs go via NR6M.
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- ARDF
WIA ARDF COORDINATOR VK3WWW Jack email@example.com
WIA Team compete in overseas ARDF events
Amateur Radio Direction Finding (ARDF) competitions in the USA, and at the
IARU Region 3 championship in Mongolia - saw the WIA Team win a swag of medals.
Ewen VK3OW, Jenelle VK3FJTE and Jack VK3WWW were at the Harrison Ohio event
in July, which was coupled with the IARU Region 2 ARDF Championships.
Fierce competition saw them win medals. Then they broke up, most back to
Australia for a rest, and another caught up with a stateside relative.
Next was the 11th IARU Region 3 Championships hosted by the Mongolian Radio
The original three were joined by Peter VK3ADY and Kristian VK3FDAC.
The WIA Team of five scored well in the medal tally. Congratulations to all.
IARU ARDF events need WIA membership, but the competing expense is borne by the
A full story has been written for a future Amateur Radio magazine by
Jack Bramham VK3WWW, the WIA ARDF Coordinator.
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- ATV (Every pixel tells a story) - Video
A Ham duo up Townsville way have a set of licence calls they must be
dying to use if ATV was available to them.
Foundation Calls belonging to Paul and Katrina are VK4FOTO and VK4FILM
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- FINAL FRONTIER
ISS Cross-band repeater
The cross-band voice repeater aboard the International Space Station has been
set up by the Russian team to help get telemetry from their satellites.
Although some amateurs report communicating via the repeater,
ARISS would like to remind amateurs that it has not officially
been activated for amateur contacts. When the ARISS voice repeater
is active and authorised for general amateur voice contacts the
uplink frequency is 437.800MHz FM, downlinking on 145.800MHz FM downlink.
TOMSK TPU-120 (RS04S) 437.025 MHz FM voice announcements
Tanusha-SWSU-1 (RS-6S) 437.050 MHz AX25 9K6 bps, FM voice announcements
Tanusha-SWSU-2 (RS-7S) 437.050 MHz AX25 9K6 bps, FM voice announcements
The Russian team set up the ISS repeater as a cross band relay between
437.050 MHz and 145.800 MHz at the last minute because they were concerned
about getting telemetry from their satellites, which might be spinning
more than they had expected. They are hoping the nearby receiver on ISS
can capture and retransmit telemetry that is not being picked up on the ground.
USING THE RADIO AS A VOICE REPEATER FOR GENERAL CONTACTS DOES INTERFERE WITH THE
INTENDED MISSION OF SUPPORTING RELAY OF TELEMETRY FROM THE TANUSHA SATELLITES.
Meanwhile, if you would like to try receiving the Tanusha telemetry, technical
details are on the Southwest State University Space Activity page
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- INTERNET --- THE HAMS DOMAIN
TOP-LEVEL DOMAIN NAME ".RADIO" NOW AVAILABLE
The top-level domain (TLD) name ".radio" is now available to the radio industry
and amateur radio enthusiasts and is reserved for individuals and companies with
active interest in the radio sector. The .radio TLD can be used for web and
e-mail addresses and will be managed by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU)
with support from other world broadcasting unions. Visit the .radio domains
registration site at www.register.radio/ to request a .radio domain.
Individuals or entities that will be accepted for the use of a .radio domain are
radio broadcasting stations, Unions of Broadcasters, Internet radios, Radio
Amateurs, Radio professionals (journalists, radio hosts, DJs, etc.),
Radio-related companies selling radio goods and services and radio products and
One or more .radio domain name(s) can be requested during the launch period,
which ends on 31 October 2017. The cost for individual radio amateurs is about
$30, including tax. For more information, visit www.nic.radio.
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- IOTA
New website coming for IOTA
The new Islands on the Air programme website is planned to launch officially
this month (September), when the current RSGB-sponsored website will be taken
According to IOTA IT Manager Johan Willemsen, PA3EXX, the new website is
presently undergoing fine tuning.
Software developers should be aware that the change to a new website may affect
any application using data from the current site, rsgbiota.org
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- ILLW
A comprehensive lighthouse activation report
A number of very good reports on the 2017 International Lighthouse and
Lightship Weekend in August have been received and are now posted on the
One is on the Cape Rachado light 9 M 4 LHN in Malaysia that event organisers
have praised as being most comprehensive, well written and an illustrated
overview of a lighthouse event.
From the report by Jayakanthan 9 W 2 BUG, a reader can visualise not only
putting Cape Rachado light on air, but also involving many young people to show
what Amateur Radio has to offer.
The International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend has changed the way people
view lighthouses with some being repaired and upgraded, instead of going
There are reports also from Australia, England, Germany, Holland, Malta,
Sri Lanka, and Trinidad & Tobago so far, and more to come.
The 21st International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend is on
August 18 to 19, 2018, with some 50 registrations already.
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- RADIO SCOUTING
Next week we will hear from Brett Nicholas VK2BNN recently appointed
Scouts Australia National co-ordinator for Jamboree On The Air along with
Lorraine O'Hare VK2FICQ, Girl Guides Australia National JOTA-JOTI Co-ordinator.
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
Finland Emergency Communications Exercise
IARU Region 1 Emergency Communications Co-Ordinator Greg Mossop G 0 DUB reports
100 radio amateurs participated in an emergency communications exercise in
A National voluntary rescue service (Vapepa) exercise was held last weekend
( 25-27 Aug ), with the most activity taking place on Saturday. Radio amateurs
served in local/regional exercises providing VHF Emergency communications on
6m, 2m, DMR etc.
Digimodes are however were preferred.
Their Radio Amateurs also provided a Nationwide HF network on 60m and 80m
using the Winlink system. That activity is focused on four local Winlink
access points between 3580 - 3605 kHz.
In total the exercise had an estimated 1000 participants with
100 Radio Amateurs assisting.
BROOKVALE HORSE ENDURANCE RIDE
Last weekend WICEN provided communications support for the Brookvale horse
endurance ride held in the Brindabella ranges, outside our National Capital.
Phil VK1PL manned HQ and organised the event which as usual went well!
Two portable WICEN repeaters, located at PIG Hill, were deployed to cover the
courses on the Saturday and Sunday.
Ten CRARC members volunteered for the event including Erica VK1FRIC who only
obtained her licence a couple of weeks ago and Stephen (EX VK2KSO).
It was pleasing to see that Erica VK1FRIC did an excellent job as a newbie
operator and that Steve has taken the opportunity to play radio again.
A big THANK YOU to all who assisted.
GET YOUR HAM LICENCE
Visit the WIA website, wia.org.au
To find A Club And Course Near You
To make a general enquiry
Next scheduled Foundation course is being held this weekend 9/10th of September.
email firstname.lastname@example.org for the NEXT course details.
AMATEUR RADIO NEW SOUTH WALES:-
ARNSW 63 Quarry Rd Dural, email for details on email@example.com
Bookings can be made by phoning the office on 02 9651 1490
and leaving contact details.
AMATEUR RADIO VICTORIA CONTACT:-
Amateur Radio Victoria 40G Victory Boulevard, Ashburton,
firstname.lastname@example.org or phone Barry on 0428 516 001.
SOCIAL SCENE 2017
Sep 9 VK4 SunFest held at the Woombye School of Arts building 09:00.(vk4vp)
Sep 9-10 VK4 ALARAMEET Cairns. Listen for VI4ALARA from July (vk4swe vk3pc)
Sep 10 VK3 Shepparton HamFest St Augustine's Hall, Orr St. (vk3fnqs)
Sep29-Oct2 VK4 Cardwell Gathering (tarc)
Oct 29 VK3 Yarra Valley Amateur Radio Group HAMFEST 10:00am at the
Gary Cooper Pavilion, Yarra Glen.
Nov 5 VK3 BARG Hamvention greyhound racing track, Ballarat. (wia events)
Nov 12 VK5 Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Society HamFest 8am (vk5kc)
Nov 12 VK3 Rosebud's annual celebration of all things Amateur Radio (wia)
Feb 25 VK2 Wyong Field Day (VK2AOR)
March 25 VK3 EMDRC HamFest - Great Ryrie Primary School, Heathmont. (VK3BQ)
May 4 -7 VK4 Clairview Gathering ( between Rockhampton and Mackay ) (TARC)
Submitting news items
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National News compiled by VK4BB on behalf of the National WIA.