FEBRUARY 19 2017 - VK NATIONAL NEWS BROADCAST ON VK1WIA
THE BEST NEWS YOU'LL GET ALL WEEK
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NATIONAL NEWS FOR WEEK COMMENCING FEBRUARY 19 2017.
IN OUR 22nd YEAR OF NON STOP NEWS
WIA BOARD TALK, many 'new keys' standing for the WIA board.
WIA FACT SHEETS, Wireless Institute of Australia's 2015 financial report.
WIA MEDIA SALES, salesmen and women required, apply within.
WIA CONSULTATION POLICY, the 'Have Your Say' facility.
WIA AGM, Grant VK5GR on behalf of the VK5 organising committee joins us.
WIA's Roger Harrison VK2ZRH with a few words about signal strengths, mirrors
in the sky and Foundation operators accused of running high power.
THESE STORIES AND MORE IN THIS EDITION OF NEWS FROM THE WIRELESS INSTITUTE
OF AUSTRALIA 2017 AND FOR WEEK OF FEB 19
ACMA reverses decision on CB wireless sets
The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has reversed its
decision to make 40 channel UHF CB radios illegal from June 2017
ABC Radio say: It is estimated there are thousands of UHF, or citizens band
radios on farms and in trucks, caravans and businesses throughout Australia.
Upgrading to 80 channel radios was going to cost some businesses tens of
thousands of dollars.
The manager of spectrum licencing policy at ACMA, Dominic Byrne, said the
two systems are working well alongside each other so the authority had
decided to remove the requirement to upgrade to 80 channel UHF sets.
"These changes were introduced to manage congestion and interference in the
CB radio channels," he said.
Truck drivers around the country were taken by surprise by the original
decision to make the 40 channel radios illegal, according to Rod Hannifey
from Dubbo in NSW.
Read the full ABC story at
On May 27, 2011 the channel spacing on 476/477 MHz CB was reduced from
25 kHz to 12.5 kHz
Darwin residents had no warning of the bombing raids
When the strategically placed Darwin was hit by enemy bombers 75 years ago,
two radio warning messages were dismissed resulting in a real element of
The Darwin Amateur Radio Club using the commemorative callsign VI 8 BOD is
part of the 75th anniversary of the infamous and deadly raids.
One message was received by the Darwin Coastal Radio Station V I D and passed
to the Area Combined Headquarters at the RAAF airfield. A Catholic Priest at
the Bathurst Island Mission radioed a sighting also; then the enemy
fighters strafed the area north of Darwin damaging some buildings and
destroying a Douglas C-53 aircraft on the ground.
However authorities believed the flight was the United States Airforce
returning to Darwin after aborting a mission to the Dutch East Indies.
The residents had no prior warning of what was about to engulf Darwin, the
losses and deaths.
VI 8 BOD is at the old Qantas hangar in Parap, with home of Darwin's first
airport. The event starts this weekend with plenty of activity.
Call VI 8 B O D on 20 metres, CW or Phone, with the first 50 callers to get
a free QSL card.
For the following month VI 8 BOD will be at various locations.
Full details and QSL information can be found at qrz.com
(Earlier report: http://wia.org.au/newsevents/news/2017/20170212-1/index.php)
( Jim Linton VK3PC )
HIGH PRAISE ON THE HIGH SEAS
VI4SEA gets high praise from the Navy
Building on the success of three commemorative callsigns used by a team of
enthusiastic radio amateurs to raise awareness of the Royal Australian Navy
role in WWI, comes formal recognition of the Amateur Radio involvement.
The Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett, in a letter this week, has
commented particularly on the VI4SEA commemoration on the Centenary of the
Battle between HMAS Sydney, and the German SMS Emden, off Cocos Keeling Island
in the Indian Ocean.
In his letter addressed to Michael Charteris VK4QS the VI4SEA Team Leader,
he said: "I commend you for your efforts in promoting awareness and
remembrance of the RAN's first single-ship action at sea.
"The engagement between HMAS Sydney (I) and SMS Emden on 9 November 1914
represents an important milestone in our naval history, and I am encouraged
by contributions such as yours to promoting our military heritage."
Vice Admiral Tim Barrett was also aware of the team's operation of VI4AE2
for the Australian submarine at the Dardanelles, and VI4ANZAC for the
Royal Australian Naval Bridging Team - both in the ANZAC Centenary.
The team of six lead by Mike VK4QS were Alan VK4SN, Bob VK4RJ, Peter VK4QC,
Mike VK4MIK and Doc VK5BUG.
The WIA acknowledges the behind the scenes and on air work, as reported in
our monthly journal Amateur Radio magazine, carried on this VK1WIA broadcast,
and documented with illustrations under the three callsigns on the website
(Jim Linton VK3PC)
Trevor Quick VK5ATQ has made us aware of a "Tree mendous" activity which
originated at the Tee Tree Library so it's to VK5 and Les VK5KLD with this
great "over coffee" plan brought to fruition by the members of the
North East Radio Club !
"Over coffee Peter VK5PX suggested the Club organise a thankyou event
at the Library to provide a Radio Show Case Day for children
from 9 to 90 to experience the various aspects of Amateur Radio.
When we raised the idea with the Library staff they seemed a little perplexed
as to what it may involve. I do not like using "buzz words" but as soon as
STEM was mentioned the light went on and I think this provided a path for the
staff to elevate the idea to their management.
The topics would be: -
An HF radio station in the adjoining park, a digital radio via EchoLink,
VHF/UHF radios, Construction by soldering a selection of kits from Jaycar,
Morse code with two units to play battleships, and another table with just a
couple of keys and oscillators for the first timers to simply make the audio
sounds of words.
Another popular topic was Fox Hunting. This did raise the question from
several visitors "Are you really hunting foxes"? Peter VK5PX purchased some
receivers from VK3YNG. Great units and they worked very well. The construction
of the Yagis resulted in the destruction of perfectly good tape measures.
Fitting some insulating tape to the ends made them a little safer but still
scary with young children and their siblings nearby. A short piece of fibre
glass rod was fitted as a centre insulator to hold the two sections of the
driven element, the shorting stub, and connect the Coax to the receiver itself.
Yes too involved and time consuming. If you have a better way please send me
At least they all worked and the hounds had a great time.
The first Fox was "Anstey the Echidna" fitted into the back canopy window
of my Ute where it could be seen, but not obvious. The Ute was parked about
40 metres from the muster point so the first hunt was easy and in view of the
controllers. After much searching through the garden and some guidance as to
the operation of the receivers they found another two hidden transmitters, and
then Colin VK5ACE put a transmitter in his pocket and went for a walk. The
faster hounds soon followed and changed direction as Colin changed his path.
Much fun was had and with three separate groups over three hours. We were all
The Construction and soldering was kept to 8 students at a time Phil VK5SRP,
Eric VK5BT, and Rod VK5ZRK showed how to complete the kit within an hour.
All were happy and had working devices to take home and prove their
Morse code. The most popular was the simple table with the key and oscillator.
Royce VK5FRWF showed a happy smiling face and welcomed new operators who
settled in very quickly.
Les VK5KLD made a number of contacts on HF radio in the park. Les was
inundated with Fox hunters at times.
Digital Radio was demonstrated by Charlie VK5KDK who used various modes
including echo link, JT65, HF and 6 Metre voice contacts. Charlie ran the
internet via a remote link to his home station which generated a lot of
The Fox Hunt muster point was set up on a table in the library entrance to
capture everyone passing by. Wives of operators made the table approachable
to all and they had a great time chatting to everyone including making fun
of us "grey tops". The muster point also directed people to the other radio
events in the library so it became the information booth as well.
Stuart VK5STU took photos for the Web site.
The day was quite successful and we hope we have shown a possible career path
for school children, and enticed a few to become Amateurs.
Thanks to all who helped on the day.
The library indicated they will invite us back in the next school holidays.
How do we upgrade and improve for the next one?"
( Trevor Quick VK5ATQ )
Well, it's only a week away now, "the big one", the CCARC Fieldday at Wyong.
Everything is coming together for another great field day. Put it in your
calendar now - next Sunday the 26th. of February from 8:30am. Just $10 entry
and those under 17 years of age have free admission. Don't forget, flea market
spots are free this year, so expect a lot of sellers.
The main raffle prizes are impressive. We have two of the latest transceivers
from ICOM, the ID-51A handheld and the ID-5100 mobile, both operate on D-STAR
and FM on 2m and 70cm - certainly worth buying a few tickets at only $3 each
to increase your chance to win one of these rigs.
For those wishing to understand the very latest trend in digital voice we will
have BrandMeister and MMDVM Host systems on demonstration at the Field Day.
Ian VK2HK, will have a Yaesu DR-1X repeater working on the BrandMeister DMR
Network along with a SharkRF Openspot unit, DVMega and DV4Mini operational.
This demonstration can be found on the second floor of the main building next
to the Amateur TV display.
As we are running two streams of lectures this year please make sure to plan
to attend those of interest to you and be there in time as there are so many
lectures, they must all start at their scheduled times, no delays. The list
of lectures and their times can be found in the show notes of this broadcast
and on the field day website.
Did you know about the facility for group meet-ups in the tea and coffee area
on the second floor - let the field day organisers know before the field day
so that announcements can be made over the public address system to gather
your group together at the appropriate time.
There's a lot of organisation that goes into the Wyong Field Day each year and
the CCARC expect this, in the clubs 60th. year to be one of the best yet.
Come and make new mates and meet old ones at the Wyong Field Day next Sunday
the 26th. of February from 8:30am.
Full up-to-date details can be found in the
show notes on the WIA website and at FIELDDAY dot ORG dot AU, that's Fieldday
as all one word. dot O-R-G dot A-U.
For the Central Coast ARC this has been Ed
DD5LP / VK2JI.
The following to be included in the text edition but not to be read "on-air".
Field Day details:
Name: CCARC Field Day 2017 at Wyong.
Date/Time: Sunday 26th. February 2017 from 8:30 am.
Location: Wyong Racecourse, NSW, Australia.
Car Park address: Rose Street, Wyong, NSW 2259.
Admission: $10 - Under 17 year olds, free entry (proof of age may be requested).
Field day raffle
Buy a ticket for your chance to win a new Icom ID
51A handheld or ID-5100 mobile transceiver. Purchase your tickets at
the raffle desk near the Administration office.
Wyong Field Day - Traders
Phaser FVP Drones & computers
Radio Supply Pty Limited
Wyong Field Day - Exhibitors
Hornsby and District Amateur Radio Club
Historical Radio Society of Australia
Kurrajong Radio Museum
VK2 QSL card manager & Westlakes Amateur Radio Club Inc.
Radio 5-0-plus 93.3 FM will be doing a live broadcast from the field day. Check
them out at http://www.fiveoplus.com.au/
Live demonstrations -
A drone race course will be built and First Person View drone races will happen throughout the day. After you visit the Drone races you may wish to attend the Drone racing lecture.
Amateur Television (2nd floor of the members club building above the main seminar room)
DMR Brandmeister and MMDVM systems (2nd. Floor next to the ATV stand).
Ian VK2HK, will have on display a Yaesu DR-1X repeater that is on the BrandMeister DMR Network. This repeater is using the MMDVMHost software written by Jonathan Naylor G4KLX. Ian will also have operational a SharkRF Openspot unit, a DVMega and DV4Mini. Ian is the sysop for the BrandMeister DMR Network repeaters of VK2RAG and VK2RHK. If you have any questions, please call in he may be able to answer them.
Wyong Field Day Lectures
The main lecture stream takes place in the seminar room located on level 1 of the main building. Each lecture starts promptly at the nominated starting time.
0915-1000 Brian Clarke VK2GCE
Title: Home AV system design and installation.
Description: Brian will be using waveguide techniques He has previously used these techniques to design and install professional recording studio's for Pink Floyd.
1015-1100 Bernd Langer VK2IA
Title: The upcoming World Radio Championships (WRTC) in Germany 2018.
Description: WRTC is regarded amongst contesters as the Olympics of contesting and the next event will happen in less than 2 years. Bernd has participated as referee and competitor in past events. Boston 2014, Moscow 2011,Slovenia 2000 and San Fransisco1996. The presentation will include some history and then focus on WRTC 2018. Bernd is responsible for helping with Fund raising and he will set up a stall where you can talk further and maybe contribute. You might even like to join in the action. Come along and get the good oil first hand.
1115-1200 Roger Harrison VK2ZRH
Title: The VHF-UHF-Microwave and Weak Signal Group Annual get-together.
Description: Short presentation of topical subjects with discussions.
1215-1300 Peter Young VK3MV
Title: The International Governance of Amateur Radio and the role of the IARU
Description: Peter has delivered this lecture in Hong Kong ,Tokyo and a number of clubs in Melbourne.
1315-1400 Reece Evans
Title: Racing Drones using First Person View ( FPV)
Description: Lecture will outline the operation of drones, construction , costs and rules also explanation of the control and FPV using goggles and laptop computers. Reece and his team will set up a drone race course and 4 or 5 members of the group conduct drone races throughout the day. They will also have a stall selling very small to larger drones and associated components.
1400-1445 Karl Humphreys
Title: JOTA 2017 coordinators meeting.
Description: A short session to finalise planning elements ensuring the smooth operation of the on-the-air activities between the many NSW amateur radio clubs participating in this year's Scouts Jamboree of the Air (JOTA).
TOPICS-in-a-NUTSHELL Lecture Series.
Topics-in-a-Nutshell sessions are in the Bistro area across from the Seminar
room on the first floor of the main building.
0900-1000 David Rowe VK5DGR
Title: FreeDV (Digital Voice mode).
FreeDV is a growing set of digital voice modes for HF and VHF radio, based on
the Codec 2 vocoder and PSK/FSK modems. FreeDV is open source software, and
can be run using a laptop and sound cards, or integrated into SDR hardware. In
this talk David will introduce the latest HF and VHF FreeDV modes, explain
their advantages over closed source software for Digital Voice over Amateur
Radio, and talk about how to get started.
1000-1100 Ray Robinson VK2NO
Title: Command Set Blind Instrument Landing
Description: Ray will bring along his one and only version of the British
Command Set Receiver modified by the US air force to give them a simple yet
effective instrument landing system. As the story goes their missions were
severely curtailed because they would not fly if the ceiling on the day was
below or around 500 feet. For any who know England that was probably most days.
Come along and hear Ray's very authoritative account of the events.
1100-1130 Bob Mutton VK2ZRM
Title: A brief introduction to single board
computers - focusing on Raspberry Pi.
Description: Here is a hands on approach
to getting started with single board computers. If you ever thought I would
like to give it a try, don't miss this one.
1130-1200 Geoff Van der Wagen VK2AVR
Title: WebSDR how it works, sponsored by
Manly Waringah Radio Society.
Description: Geoff will touch on how SDR works
and Briefly focus on what WebSDR lets you do.
1200-1230 Steve Stebbing VK2AAV
Title: eBay modules for experimentation
Description: There is a plethora of little PCB mounted electronic-circuit
modules available on eBay often available for only a dollar or two. The talk
will include a short survey of what's available, have a look at a few select
ones and will focus on how these modules can be used in home-brew projects to
save time, money and often SMD soldering of tiny packages.
1230-1300 - Senior HF Radio Scientist Dr Vickal Kumar (Australian Government
)Title/description: HF related Services offered by the Australian Government
also in attendance will be Dr Murrary Parkinson from the BOM Space Weather
1300-1400 Kevin Jardine VK2KVJ
Title: Home brew Modular Spectrum Analyser/
Vector Network Analyser (MSA/VNA)
Description: Details the construction of a
modular home brew Spectrum Analyser/Vector Network Analyser and Tracking
generator together with its associated Test fixtures (reflectometer,
splitter, series fixture) that allow it to perform amplitude and phase
measurements between 50kHz and 3.2 GHz. It can measure return loss, insertion
loss, RLC component parameters, cable characteristics, crystal parameters etc.
It includes internal batteries to facilitate portable measurements and is
controlled by a laptop computer. Demonstration of the equipment used and it's
1400-1430 Bob Hudson VK2AOR
Title: AMSAT-VK Working the LEO Satellites
Description: Satellites and how to set up a hand held radio & antenna system.
How to join AMSAT-VK and the IRLP/EchoLink conference server where the group
talks are available worldwide.
Australian Amateur licence assessments
Licence assessments for all Australian licence grades are available.
examinations are held in the examination centre in the jockey room (entrance
from the racecourse side, ground level) from 1:00pm. Bookings are essential.
Email vk2mp at wia.org.au for all bookings and enquiries.
ARRL U.S. Licence examinations
Get your U.S. amateur radio licence organised at the field day. Exams are
available from 9am at the exam centre. For all enquiries and bookings please
email vk2yjs at gmail dot com.
Foundation licence education (25th. February)
This training course, presented in the convenient one day format, prepares
you for the Foundation licence assessments (which you can take on the field
day). It is conducted at the Central Coast Amateur Radio Club's clubhouse, in
the training room on Saturday 25 February commencing at 9am. Bookings are
essential. Please email vk2mp at wia.org.au for all bookings and enquiries.
Field Day website: FIELDDAY.ORG.AU
Club website: CCARC.ORG.AU
WIA BOARD TALK
Tt is with great sadness that we record the passing of Brenda Edmonds VK3KT.
She died on Sunday February 12, aged 86.
The death of Brenda Edmonds VK3KT LMWIA is a sad loss to the WIA and Amateur
Radio generally. Our thoughts and prayers go to her family, friends and
Read the WIA item on:-
As you already know many 'new keys' are standing for the WIA board this year
and one, VK7TW Justin after being contacted by a number of people is using
his blog pages to put more information out about his experience, skills, and
the things he feels passionate about in relation to the WIA.
Ahead of the new board is the primary issue to get WIA members to vote
given poor voter response in previous ballots (<30%).
Given each candidate only has 250 words on the ballot paper to express their
experience, skills and platform on which they are standing - there needs to be
other avenues used to get greater information out about the candidates.
To that end is why VK7TW is using my blog pages to put more information out
about his background.
Now also helping get the word out about all candidates is Trent VK4TS who has
started a public Facebook page where he has pinned to the top of the page a
list the all candidates websites as they become available.
Trent is moderating this page brilliantly, and it's good to read all about
the candidates who in the main are posting without the emotion one has seen
all too often on social media.. Well done Trent.
At time of going to air we have bios on 8 of the 13 candidates
Now we just need WIA members to vote for seven!!!
The names of candidates seeking election to the Board of Directors of
the Wireless Institute of Australia for the 2017 postal ballot is as below:
John Marshall, 2017 Postal Ballot Returning Officer reminds us on the wia.org.au
page that it is important that you follow the directions on the ballot paper.
Cross out the names of the candidates you do not vote for, leaving up to seven
names not crossed out. Follow the instructions for placing the ballot paper
into its proper envelope, and then the instructions for the outer envelope.
Your postal ballot paper must be returned to the National office
on or before close of business on 27 March 2017.
Please check the FaceBook page for uptodate bios.
Keep a good eye out not only on FaceBook but the net in general as I am
sure all the candidates will be updating their bio material often.
(vk7tw vk4ts vk4bb)
From the WIA Fact Sheets
The Wireless Institute of Australia's 2015 financial report has now twice
been found to be correct, but this has come at a cost to the WIA members.
At the last AGM on Norfolk Island, questions were asked about the accuracy of
the WIA's 2015 financial report which showed a total loss for the year of
$12,680 but a much larger decline in the cash position.
The meetings Chair explained that the Board had confidence that the overall
financial was correct. The Chair also explained that the turnover of
Treasurers had caused difficulties, and it was likely some data entry errors
had put some expense items to incorrect accounts, but that any errors were
minor and did not affect the financial bottom line.
The financial report was discussed and accepted by majority vote of the
meeting. Nevertheless, questions continued to be asked on social media and
elsewhere - these needed to be researched and answered.
Moving ahead in November 2016, the Treasurers informed the Board, amongst
other things, that the 2015 financial report was incorrect, and "not worth
the paper it was printed on".
The 2015 report was investigated again, and the result vindicated the
Board's confidence in the 2015 accounts.
The full facts are in the WIA FACT SHEET - Accounts for 2015 - that is on the
WIA website. www.wia.org.au
Amateur Radio Media Sales
The Wireless Institute of Australia is seeking a passionate, motivated and
energetic volunteer to assist with the sales and management of advertising
space in the WIA journal Amateur Radio magazine.
The ideal candidate would be a marketing manager or salesperson with at least
five years in print and media sales.
All applicants should have read and agreed with the draft WIA Volunteer
More details are on the WIA website and in the March edition on Amateur Radio
magazine. To apply please send your resume via email by the closing date of
WIA Consultation Policy includes the 'Have Your Say' facility
Various means have always been available for WIA members and others to send
comments and feedback to Institute.
Now the WIA has introduced an online - 'Have Your Say' facility.
This is a consultation trend deployed by government agencies at national,
state and local levels, as well as unions, professional societies and other
Now all WIA members, and the Amateur Radio community generally, have the
opportunity to provide views and comments to the WIA on identified matters
or issues of interest or importance.
The WIA now encourages comment on specific consultation issues via a
'Have your Say' facility online channel, with secondary channels being email,
fax and post.
Currently consultation is sought on the draft Volunteer Charter, and more
input has been made to it by introducing the 'Have Your Say' facility.
The WIA Consultation Policy can be read on the WIA website.
Good morning, this is Grant VK5GR, on behalf of the VK5 organising committee
for the WIA Annual General Meeting Convention.
The convention is getting closer and all of the support event preparations
are well advanced to ensure you have a fantastic weekend in Hahndorf, nestled
in the Adelaide Hills.
Apart from the annual general meeting and open forum on Saturday morning which
the board will no doubt discuss elsewhere, many activities are planned to make
your stay an enjoyable one.
Over the coming weeks, we will bring you news and information about the
program, as well as the partners program running in parallel on the Saturday.
This week, here is an overview of what's planned.
Starting from Friday evening, there will be an introductory dinner at the
Haus Cafe where participants will also be able to register for the weekend.
The program then continues Saturday afternoon with the radio clubs of
South Australia inviting you to take a journey of discovery, into the
future of the Amateur Service in Australia. We will showcase the Amateur
Service in a new light, giving you an introduction to a range of advanced
modes, fresh activities, new technologies and will leave you with a new and
positive perspective on what Amateur Radio is and can be.
The show itself will cover everything from digital ATV to HF Magnetic
Antennas, from Microwaves to operating portable in the various parks programs.
Experimental modes such as HF digital voice, high altitude ballooning and how
these can be incorporated into schools and other promotional activities for
the Amateur Service will also be presented. A new publication on low band HF
and MF communications will also be launched, something highly relevant to
everyone interested in HF activities as we head into the solar minimum.
The event then continues on into Saturday evening at the conference dinner.
Our keynote speaker is Craig Edwards, VK5CE, a very active activator in the
Islands on the Air program who will tell some of the tales of his journeys
as well as provide an insight into what it takes to become an IOTA activator.
For the parks activators there will also be a launch on Saturday evening of
a new iPhone application geared to supporting parks activators in the field.
The event then continues into Sunday. The morning sees a tour of the National
Motor Museum in Birdwood on offer, while the afternoon will provide an
opportunity for a hands on look at the various technologies and activities
that were discussed during the Saturday showcase. Sunday afternoon's
activities are being held down at Hahndorf Oval. Live demonstrations of
10GHz EME, microwave activity, radio direction finding, high altitude balloon
tracking (including a launch from nearby Mt Barker oval), HF digital modes,
HF magnetic loop antennas and HF FreeDV digital voice operation will all be
available for people to come and try.
Sunday evening will then wrap up with a BBQ held at the Hahndorf Oval
sponsored by the Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Society
All in all, a jam packed weekend of Amateur Radio!
We hope to see you all here in South Australia for the AGM weekend, May 19th,
20th and 21st. Further details are available on the WIA Website! Register now
to secure your place!
That's all from me this week.
Next week, I will introduce the partners program, and start to give you more
of an insight into the Amateur Radio showcase program being planned for this
This has been Grant, VK5GR for the WIA AGM Convention organising committee.
INTERNATIONAL NEWS With thanks to IARU, RSGB, SARL, Southgate AR Club, ARRL,
Amateur Radio Newsline, NZART, WIA Local News Services, VK3PC and the WW
sources of the WIA.
IT'S A PUZZLEMENT
When IS World Radio Day?
World Radio Day is about celebrating radio, why we love it and why we need
it today more than ever. A day to remember the unique power of radio to touch
lives and bring people together across every corner of the globe.
It was proclaimed in 2011 by UNESCO's 36th General Conference after originally
proposed by the Kingdom of Spain.
So what is this April 18 event we celebrate each year ?
WORLD AMATEUR RADIO DAY
Every April 18, radio amateurs worldwide take to the airwaves in celebration
of World Amateur Radio Day. It was on that day in 1925 that the International
Amateur Radio Union was formed in Paris.
Amateur Radio was "in grave danger of being pushed aside," the IARU's history
has noted. Amateur Radio pioneers met in Paris in 1925 and created the IARU
to support Amateur Radio worldwide.
Just two years later, at the International Radiotelegraph Conference,
Amateur Radio gained the allocations still recognized today 160, 80, 40, 20,
and 10 meters. Since its founding, the IARU has worked tirelessly to defend
and expand the frequency allocations for Amateur Radio, Thanks to the support
of enlightened administrations SUCH AS YOUR VERY OWN WIA, in every part of the
From the 25 countries that formed the IARU in 1925, the IARU has grown to
include 160 member-societies in three regions.
IARU Region 1 includes Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and Northern Asia.
Region 2 covers the Americas
Region 3 is comprised of Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific island nations,
and most of Asia.
The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has recognized the IARU as
representing the interests of Amateur Radio.
Today, Amateur Radio is more popular than ever, with over 3,000,000 licensed
Science Daily reports Terahertz wireless could make space borne satellite links
as fast as fiber-optic links
Hiroshima University, National Institute of Information and Communications
Technology, and Panasonic Corporation announced the development of a terahertz
transmitter capable of transmitting digital data at a rate exceeding 100
gigabits per second over a single channel using the 300-GHz band.
The THz band is a new and vast frequency resource expected to be used for
future ultrahigh-speed wireless communications. Last year, the group
demonstrated that the speed of a wireless link in the 300-GHz band could be
greatly enhanced by using quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM).
This year, they showed six times higher per-channel data rate, exceeding
100 gigabits per second for the first time as an integrated-circuit-based
At this data rate, the whole content on a DVD can be transferred in a
fraction of a second.
Read the full story at
Oh and if you are even reotely interested in the higher bands, Peter VK3PF
reminds all that GippsTech 2017 will be held July One in VK3 at Churchill.
This is the annual VHF/UHF & microwave technical conference.
IARUMS: 'Mysterious foghorn' in Ham Radio bands
The IARU-R1 Monitoring System newsletter reports a mysterious foghorn
(Chinese OTH burst radar) is operating in amateur radio bands
They say: We observed the mysterious foghorn on 7, 10 and 14 MHz. This is a
Chinese OTH radar, which is often jumping, and sounding like a foghorn.
Parameters: FMOP and 66.66 sps bursts.
Here in Region III our IARUMS Coordinator is Peter Young VK3MV
VK IARUMS reflector email to subscribe firstname.lastname@example.org
SUBMITTING a report? go to
Currently the lowest level US license is the Technician which regarded as
equivalent to our VK Foundation.
Now comes word of maybe a new entry level license for USA?
The ARRL say: "An Entry Level License Committee was established by the
ARRL Board of Directors and appointed in September 2016.
As part of its ongoing work, the committee is gathering
member input and will make recommendations to the Board
for possible rules changes to submit to the FCC.
The result could mean changes to the Technician license, but it could also be
an additional, but simpler, license with privileges that would give a newcomer
a taste of most facets of ham radio from HF to VHF and UHF.
Here in VK, if you are interested in a 6 week course towards your Foundation
Licence, the Southern Peninsula Amateur Radio Club will be conducting, at the
SPARC Clubrooms Wednesday nights over 6 weeks such a course.
This will enable participants who have little or no knowledge of Amateur
Radio to cover the required syllabus and to be assessed by the Club assessors.
15-3-17 to 19-4-17 once weekly over 6 weeks from 7pm till 9pm.
Contact VK3MK. ( email@example.com )
HAM RADIO OPERATIONAL NEWS - IT'S A CONTACT SPORT
All major Australian contests, rules and results, are on the
Contest Section of the WIA website.
Jan 1 - Dec 31 The Victorian Local Government Award 2017 Challenge
RSGB 80th Commonwealth Contest 11 and 12 March for 24 hours FROM 10.00 GMT.
Ham Radio On The Ferries 12th of March
WIA's John Moyle Memorial Field Day 18th-19th March 2017
WIA's Harry Angel Memorial 80 meter sprint Saturday May 6 10:00 -11:46 UTC
May 13-15 Mills On The Air
VK SHIRES June 10 and 11.
Trans-Tasman Low-Band Contest 160/80/40 Saturday night July 15 and Start Time
is 08:00 UTC and finish time is 14:00 UTC
10-10 INTERNATIONAL SUMMER CONTEST Aug 5 - 6
WIA's Flagship contest the Remembrance Day Contest 12th & 13th August
Aug 19-20 ILLW the 3rd full weekend in August since 1998
Aug 26 ALARA Contest Start Time 1600 this is a 24 hour Contest for YL's
IARU High Speed Telegraphy world championships are 8th to 12th September.
October CQ WW DX / SSB CONTEST (always Octobers Last full weekend)
Running ALL year 'til Dec 31 Victorian Local Government Award 2017 Challenge
A DXING WE GO:-
Several U.S. operators travelled to Guantanamo Bay and are on air until
24th February. Look for the KG4 callsigns, KG4 WV, AW, DY and KG4ZK.
Pista HA 5 AO is in Lesotho until February 26th as a volunteer at orphanages
using the call sign 7 P 8 EUDXF to celebrate 30 years of the European DX
Foundation. He is on the air in his spare time.
QSL via home call HA 5 AO.
A group of Indonesian operators will be active as YE 0 S from Sebira Island,
north of the Jakarta City, between March 20-27th.
The Sebira Island is the outer-most island of Jakarta Special Capital City
District of the Republic of Indonesia.
Activity will be on 160-6 meters using CW, SSB and the Digital modes.
An Online QSL Request Service (OQRS) will be used for this DXpedition.
VI 50 ER
To mark the 50th year milestone of the EMDRC club during February and March
It also helps serve as a reminder of the EMDRC HamFest Sunday 26th March
at the Great Ryrie primary school in Heathmont.
(sourced to VK3BQ)
The VHF/UHF DX Book, 2017 Replica Edition - is now available for free download
'The VHF/UHF DX Book' was written in the early to mid-1990s by a team of
experienced VHF/UHF DXers and equipment developers, in an effort to pass
on our knowledge and stimulate further developments.
But eventually the book went out of print, and information of lasting value
became trapped on the printed pages.
To keep that information alive for future generations of VHF/UHF DXers, a
digital replica of the Second Printing (1995) has now been released as a
As with all older books, the challenge for the reader is to separate the
parts that are of lasting value from other parts that have become dated.
But even the outdated parts remain an accurate snapshot of VHF/UHF DXing
in its heyday.
THE QNEWS WORK BENCH - the nuts and volts report - Measure Twice cut Once.
SDR or Software Defined Radio
As an amateur who had spent many years away from the hobby VK6FR Richard was
surprised to discover things had changed a bit since the last time he had the
There was this new-fangled thing. "Software Defined Radio".
What is it he thought?
As a retired electronics engineer VK6FR did some research and got to
understand the basic principles but when looking at the price of a new
commercial system it was relegated to the "too expensive basket"
After a chance QSO in 2015 with Ron W4MMP he looked him up on QRZ and much
to VK6FR's surprise he was operating a small 1 watt SDR rig.
As it turned out the rig he was operating was no longer available but the
design was open source for both the schematic and the firmware source code.
After a bit more correspondence the guys decided to resurrect the design
so they did a layout, ordered some PCB's from china and the Omnia Basic
was born. A 1 watt SDR transceiver for just over $100.
Having become familiar with the hardware in the basic SDR VK6FR could see some
areas for improvement. They wanted 5 watts out instead of 1, all band from
160-10M and a general coverage receiver. Separate band pass filters for RX and
TX, a good high quality low pass filters for the output as well as a RF
pre amp were all on the wish list.
Taking the new ideas VK6FR laid out a new PCB that did exactly what Richard
wanted from an SDR rig. Ron made the necessary changes to the firmware and
so the Omnia Proficio was born.
5 Watts out on all bands and an RX sensitivity of better than 1 uv on
all bands above 160M . In fact CW signals could be heard at -120dbm on
the higher bands.
Ron is now making kits with all the surface mount parts added so all the
constructor has to do is solder on a few parts and wind 4 toroids.
If you are interested in more info please contact VK6FR on
This is Roger Harrison VK2ZRH with a few words about signal strengths,
mirrors in the sky and Foundation operators accused of running more power
As I was listening around 40 metres the other week, I heard an Advanced
licensee complain about Foundation operators apparently running more power
than allowed because - quote - some of them are SO STRONG that they've
gotta be running more power than ten watts - end quote.
Well, there ARE other explanations for what's happening when you hear a very
LOUD signal from a Foundation operator located 1000 to 1500 kilometres away
in another state, for example.
After all the years I've been on the air, and the knowledge I've gained about
ionospheric propagation, I too, still marvel at how that happens.
Sometimes, the signal strength defies adequate description, especially when
the S-meter slams against the right hand stop !
The behaviour of the ionosphere often seems puzzling, often ranging through
to perverse !
As many listeners are aware, during the Summer months, from late October
through to early March, the phenomena of sporadic E makes its presence felt.
Also through Winter, during a few weeks either side of the Winter solstice.
But, wait a minute ! Isn't sporadic E just something that affects the VHF
bands - six and two metres ?
Long story short - no. It also supports propagation across the HF bands.
Sporadic E ionisation consists of a thin, dense horizontal "clouds" of ions
that are between one kilometre and five kilometres thick. These clouds form
at heights between about 90 kilometres and 130 km - that's the E region.
The ions attract a swarm of free electrons that do the work of reflecting your
These clouds are created by wind shears. That is, winds blowing in opposite
directions. When one wind blows east and the other above it blows west, they
push long-lived metallic ions into the "quiet" space between the winds, thus
forming those thin clouds.
The long-lived metallic ions are formed from the ablation of meteors. It is
estimated that some 100 to 200 tonnes of tiny meteors, like grains of sand,
fall on the Earth's atmosphere every day. So there's always a haze of meteor
dust and metallic ions drifting around up there.
So, when sporadic E forms we have a thin, pretty much totally reflecting cloud
layer in the ionosphere. Ionospheric scientists refer to RF propagation via
sporadic E as specular reflection. That means - like a mirror. There's little
or no loss.
The signal attenuation over the path is largely that of it spreading out.
On 40 metres, during daytime, there will be some attenuation by the signal
passing through the D region and suffering some absorption. At night,
that absorption disappears. Sporadic E occurs at night as well as through
the day. But that's another whole story on its own !
Over a path of 1000 kilometres up to 1500 or 2000 kilometres, if the path was
direct, unobstructed by the Earth's curvature, a ten watt transmitter will be
received as a very strong signal.
But - it can get even stronger ! This comes about through the phenomenon of
It's a curious thing, but the sporadic E cloud can act much like a shaving
mirror and focus signal raypaths into a small area where they come to ground
at the skip distance. This focusing AMPLIFIES the signal strength.
Say what ?! Yep - the ionosphere can provide GAIN. Hence, those mighty loud
signals you hear at times.
The corollary to that is that the area on the ground where the signal can be
heard may be quite small, maybe only hundreds of metres to a kilometre or so
across. You can hear someone in your neck of the woods working a DX station,
but can't hear the DX yourself.
Of course, the sporadic E cloud can also de-focus the signal raypaths and
cause the signal at the skip distance to become quite weak. QSB rules when
it comes to sporadic E propagation.
I know some of you will be wondering if this also happens over shorter
distances. On the HF bands, the answer is yes !
Specular reflection and raypath focusing can be observed on paths of only
200 to 500 km on the HF bands.
So. Next time you hear a Foundation station whose signal pins your S-meter,
don't immediately jump to the conclusion that the operator is "cheating" and
running more power than their licence allows.
This has been Roger Harrison VK2ZRH for VK1WIA News.
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- DIGITAL
Thor is a new mode and is very closely related to DominoEx.
It is an extremely robust mode and is well suited to HF weak signal conditions.
A single carrier of constant amplitude is stepped between 18 tone frequencies
in a constant phase manner. This means that no unwanted sidebands are produced
and it does not require the same kind of linearity requirements as some modes
(PSK in particular).
The tones change according to an offset algorithm which ensures that no
sequential tones are the same or adjacent in frequency, considerably enhancing
the inter-symbol interference resistance to multi-path and Doppler effects.
Thor, like other similar modes has a variety of speeds and tones to choose
from, dependent on band conditions and signal levels. The modes are
Thor 4, 5, 8, 11, 16 and 22. Speeds vary from the equivalent of 14wpm right up
to 78 wpm for Thor 22. and bandwidths vary from 173Hz up to 524Hz.
The information above has been taken from:
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- FEMALES IN RADIO
ALARA - AUSTRALIAN LADIES AR ASSOCIATION
Net is held each Mondays on 3.570 MHz, commencing at 1030 UTC.
(1000utc during daylight saving)
The ALARA contest is held on the last full weekend in August and the current
rules can be found on the ALARA website
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- FINAL FRONTIER
AMSAT are reporting on a new distance record for ISS packet QSO
Congratulations to Mark Pisani, KK6OTJ, and Jerry Rogers, W8LR, for their
February 1 APRS message packet QSO during an ISS pass.
The distance was 3,089 km, establishing a new distance record for the ISS
SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- SUMMITS ON THE AIR
Mike 2 E 0 YYY, Andrew VK 1 AD and Ed DD 5 LP are planning another long path
propagation SOTA Summit to Summit event for Saturday 11 March starting at
Activity will be SSB or CW on 20 metres and going by the last action in
October 2016, over 30 summits are expected to be active concurrently over
Europe, Australia, New Zealand and possibly Japan.
Check reflector.sota.org.uk for details.
SOTA activators in VK and ZL are invited to join in with this EU SOTA
activators for a chance to work Summit to Summit (S2S) QSOs long path
between 06:30 and 08:30 UTC Saturday 11 March.
(dd5lp and vk1da)
SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS - VHF AND ABOVE (The Plumbers Delight)
Peter VK3PF reminds all that GippsTech 2017 will be held at a slightly earlier
date than normal, July One.
This is the annual VHF/UHF & microwave technical conference held in Churchill.
SOCIAL SCENE 2017
Feb 19th VK3 HAMFEST Western and Northern District Amateur Radio Club 10am
Werribee Masonic centre 223 Watton St, Werribee.
Feb 26th Central Coast Field Day, WYONG enter at 8:30am (vk2dls)
March 19 VK7 "Meet the Voice" barbecue 11:30am at Ross (vk7cl)
March 26 VK3 EMDRC HamFest, Great Ryrie Primary School, Heathmont (VK3BQ)
Ap 28-May 1 VK4 Clairview Gathering between Rockhampton and Mackay (TARC)
May 19 VK WIA AGM Hahndorf some 25km from Adelaide (vk5kc)
Jun 2-4 VK4 Theresa Creek Camp-out-day (CHARC) (tarc)
Theresa Creek Dam is located 22 km southwest of Clermont
in Central Queensland, with bitumen access all the way
to the boat ramp plus 2 boat ramps to choose from.
If you are able to get along for a great weekend, let Helen
VK4FHEL know by email firstname.lastname@example.org
CHARC Facebook Page
June 10-11 VK5 SERG Annual Convention / VK Foxhunting Champs. (vk5dj)
July 1 VK3 GippsTech 2017 technical conference in Churchill. (wia events)
Sep 9-10 ALARAMEET 2017 in Cairns (vk4swe)
Nov 12 VK5 Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Society HamFest 8am (vk5kc)
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