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2007 Magazines

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Amateur Radio January 2007


Here we are at the start of a new year. I trust that you all enjoyed the festive season. Personally, all went well. I spent several days engaged in family activities, which tends to happen at that time of the year. The down side – the radio gear was predominantly in the OFF state and it appears that I missed lots of Es propagation events on the six and two metre bands! I am sure that David Smith VK3HZ and his team will have coverage in the VHF/UHF column. I was lucky enough to come home early from work one day last week to find that two metres was open to VK4, resulting in seven contacts. Now that the “silly season” is behind us, we need to think of other activities and tasks.


Early January saw significant exposure of amateur radio to an almost captive audience of over 10,000 young Australians. For almost 2 weeks, amateur radio was one of the on-site activities at the Australian Jamboree 2007 held at Elmore. See our cover story, which outlines the VI3JAM station and reports on the ARISS contact with the International Space Station. The ARISS contact sounded great, even though I could only hear the signal from the ISS whilst monitoring the downlink frequency from Churchill. Two neighbours that I invited into the radio shack to listen certainly found it fascinating.

Weather and its consequences

Much of Australia has been experiencing low rainfall for an extended period – at least six years here in the Latrobe Valley in south-eastern Victoria. As a consequence, much of the country is very dry. Combine that fact with high wind days, some thunderstorms and the undesirable activities from some people with anti-social attitudes and the inevitable occurs – bush fires. Here in Gippsland, the fires started in early December. They are still burning as I write this report, in the middle of January. Fortunately, most of the fires have been in the “bush”, with little impact on private property. Some houses were lost and one person died after falling from a trailer whilst in motion. There have been fires in other areas as well – I trust that few individuals have been impacted directly. Here, we have had many days with the air filled with smoke, making life uncomfortable and physical activity outside inadvisable, due to the high concentration of smoke particles.

Throughout much of the period, WICEN in Victoria has been on “standby”, although mainly unofficially. There have been official periods of standby status and activations. A dedicated band from RECOM – a group of trained amateurs who are also members of Red Cross - have been active in maintaining the flow of information regarding the movement of displaced people and providing back up communications to the Red Cross Emergency Relief Headquarters.”

Official WICEN members are usually in a good state of readiness, can you say the same? If a major event occurs, the normal communications channels rapidly become stressed by the increased usage. This will often result in an activation of WICEN. With very large events, additional volunteers may be required. Are you prepared? One way of checking your preparedness is to participate in one of the Field Day contests. As I write, the Summer VHF/UHF Field Day is less than a day away. By the time you read this comment, it will be well gone and the logs submitted. Your next chance will be the John Moyle Memorial Field Day Contest. The rules are listed elsewhere in this issue and are also available on the WIA website. With both six hour and 24 hour sections, you do not need to commit the entire weekend. Please participate, even if only as a home station. Remember to send in your log – give Denis VK3ZUX/VK4AIG some more work as Contest Manager!

As has been the practice for several years, the January and February issues have been combined. We will be back to our regular monthly schedule from the next issue.

With lots of content and the Annual Index, I must apologise for not including the VK7 and Moonta ARC news items. These should appear next month, when more space should be available.


Peter VK3KAI

Table Of Contents


Page 11 - 21st Australian Scout Jamboree Robert Broomhead VK3KRB
Page 26 - Amateur Radio 2006 Index


Page 5 - The magical (noise cancelling) properties of Delta Loops Felix Scerri VK4FUQ
Page 6 - A 50 ohm, 200 W dummy load/power meter Drew Diamond VK3XU

21st Australian Scout Jamboree

Author: Robert Broomhead VK3KRB

Robert outlines some of the fun that the youth members of the Scout movement had at Elmore in January, focussing on the amateur radio activities that were available on site.

This article is available for download - see below.

VK3JAM contacts the ISS

Author: Robert Broomhead VK3KRB

A major highlight for both the Scouts and the radio operators providing the amateur radio activities at the 21st Australian Scout Jamboree was a live contact with the International Space Station, via the ARISS program.

This article is available for download - see below.

A 50 ohm, 200 W dummy load/power meter

Author: Drew Diamond VK3XU

Drew Diamond VK3XU describes in detail how to build a 200 W 50 ohm load.

Advertisers Index

  Australian Enterprise Industrial (One Man Tower)
  Andrews Communications Systems
  ATN Antennas
  G & C Communications
  Hamak Electrical Industries (RM Products Italy)
  Jackson Brothers (Components)
  Jenlex - filters
  KVK Antennas
  Newtek Electronics (Amidon Ferromagnetic Cores)
  TET-Emtron antennas
  TTS Systems Communications Equipment
  Vertex Standard - Yaesu


Files For Download

21st Australian Scout Jamboree
AR Feb 2007 AJ2007.pdf

VK3JAM contacts the ISS
AR Feb 2007 AJ2007 ARISS.pdf

AMSAT column - annual list of active amateur satellites
AR Feb 07 AMSAT.pdf

Page Last Updated: Sunday 3 February 2008 at 12:23 hours


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