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emergency communications - where are we now ?


icom ic-706Mkiig transceiver definately ceased production.


irc's - important information


vk3rtv digital amateur television update



For the second week in a row, video footage of the weekly WIA National News
presented by Bryan VK3HXR and Robert VK3DN is available for download.

The news broadcast was simultaneously audio recorded and video'd at the
home of Jack VK3WWW. The video footage is suitable and recommended for
rebroadcast via Amateur Television Repeaters.

Our appreciation goes to Jack VK3WWW for his time filming the broadcast
and preparing the Video footage for distribution and in particular
Bryan and Robert for compiling the past 2 weeks newscasts and to Tony VK7AX
and members of the NWTATVG the previous week whilst your's truly VK4BB
has had 3 weeks vacation.

VK8 have a new QSL Manager - Craig Edwards VK8PDX.
VK8PDX's details are now updated on the WIA website

Emergency Communications - Where Are We Now ?

Over the last year or so the WIA has been taking a close look at the role
of Amateur Radio in emergency communications, and in particular how the WIA
can support both individual radio amateurs, and WICEN groups, who provide
communications support to community and emergency services.

At the WIA's last Annual General Meeting it was announced that the WIA had
requested it's RTO to identify suitable nationally recognised competencies
for radio amateurs providing emergency communications.

We believe a training package based on nationally recognised competencies
would offer a number of important benefits.

Firstly, it would provide a starting point for persons wishing to get
involved in emergency service operations

Secondly, competencies are increasingly being required by emergency service
organisations for admission to their communications sites, and radio
amateurs may even be prevented from donating their skills and expertise in
the future if they don't have the required competencies.

Thirdly, gaining competencies in emergency communications will increase the
preparedness of the general amateur radio community, should a radio amateur
find themselves as the first-line of communications in an emergency.

And lastly, by providing a valuable community service Amateur Radio can
further justify its use valuable frequency spectrum.

So, where are we now.

Our RTO, Trainsafe Australia, has developed a training package with two
levels of competency. Level 1 is a Certificate 2 in Public Safety consisting
of 6 core units plus one elective, and is open to all radio amateurs and
other emergency service personnel.

Level 2 is a Certificate 3 in public safety consisting of 12 units, open to
all Standard and Advanced level radio amateurs.

In addition to the training package, the WIA will offer WIA accreditation
for Emergency Communications Operators who meet some extra criteria such as
age, health, hearing and mobility, and WIA membership.

We are very keen to introduce this training package as quickly as possible,
and to that end our RTO will shortly be conducting a trial training event
to refine the program. A Train the Trainers weekend will be conducted in
early 2010.

For more detailed information on the WIA's Emergency Communications training
package, please go to the WIA's website at

You may also remember that in the July 2009 issue of "Amateur Radio" we
discussed the WIAs role in relation to WICEN, and we called for submissions
expressing a view on the matter. We received a very small number of
submissions, but those we did receive were very helpful and are much
We have also, since that date, discussed the issue at meetings of clubs in
South Australia, and Queensland and with WICEN groups in Victoria and
This is very much a 'work in progress' for the WIA and has raised many
issues. Selected comments from the submissions, and a summary of progress
so far can be viewed on our website, again at

So, work continues apace. First you will see the WIAs new Emergency
Communications Training Package and also throughout next year you will see
the WIA continuing to develop its role in supporting the various WICEN

This is Phil Wait VK2DKN, for the WIA.

This snippet picked up on the Southgate AR Clubs news page posted by
Amateur Radio Victoria says that the Icom IC-706MkIIG transceiver will
definately cease production.

Despite deniers in the USA, it has been confirmed that Wednesday 9 December
was the last day that the ICOM plant in Wakayama Japan produced the
IC-706MKIIG transceiver.

ICOM Australia said it has checked with Japan and been reassured that the
earlier advice received that the popular transceiver has been discontinued is

All WIA Members should have received their copies of the December/January
edition of AR.

There on page 39 are the abridged results for the 2009 RD Contest.

Due to the lead time with all magazines there a couple of errors what arose
in the final scoring, owing to a data entry input (By Me of course),
fortunately only 1 station is affected and it resulted in VK5HZ being
relegated from 1st to 2nd place in the in the VHF/Multi Op/phone, section.

Then in the VHF/Single Op/Phone section VK6KHZ relegated to 4th place down
from 3rd.

I do apologise to all concerned and I have rewritten the software that caused
these errors.

Replacement Certificates have been sent out to those affected.

The full listings are available on the WIA website.

Peter VK4OD

Just a reminder that news doesn't sleep and this WIA National News WILL
continue to be produced each and every week over the Festive Season.

Some re-broadcasters may take time off so if it the news does NOT appear
on your favourite spot on the dial have a scan around or pick up the
mp3 audio from


vk1 local news email and ask for subscription.


The VHF (IRLP) and UHF repeaters have been removed from Mt Majura.

The committee earlier in the year made the decision that the lease would
not be renewed when it came up for renewal.

It is the clubs intention to reinstall the repeaters on Isaac's Ridge in
central Canberra.


The WICEN team has been very busy over the last couple of months
providing safety communications for a horse endurance ride, Fitz's
Bicycle Challenge and two Motor rally events.

The next event will be the Carriage Driving Championships.

Equestrian Australia will be conducting an International event at
"Witwood" (EA the peak equestrian body governing equestrian Pursuits in

WICEN has been asked to fill the vital role of safety communications and
timings that we normally fill on the marathon day Sunday 17 January 2010.

This event is a qualifier for the World Single Horse Championships to be
held in Italy later next year.

Equestrian Australia have arranged for several international Judges to
judge at the event.

All communications will be on 2M simplex, if you would like to assist
contact the Canberra Region Amateur Radio Club Committee.

web service:-
VKG Roundup


Advice has been received from the Commonwealth Govt. that SARC has received
a grant under the Volunteer Grants 2009 scheme.
The amount and details are yet to be received by mail.
It's good to know that the Commonwealth Govt. recognise the value of
Amateur Radio to the community and emergency communications.

web service local news:-
local news email
VKR Roundup


Here's some good news for Hams in the Brisbane area where this newscast has
not heard of any WICEN activity in the district in many many a year.

Summerland Club in VK2 are reporting that Brisbane WICEN Group is seeking
operators to assist this Rally event July - August next year.

If interested contact Gary Bonnor, VK4ZGB,

Sunday 17 of January sees the Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Club Picnic
being held at Bridgewater Lions' Park.

This is a Luncheon but bring a salad or dessert to share, along with
drinks, chair, etc.

Meat and bread provided.

RSVP for numbers to Barry 8339 5683 or


Radio keeps mine assets on track

Black Box Control and RF Innovations have developed a system allowing
vehicle tracking and telemetry in remote areas. The result is suitable for
asset monitoring and tracking within pockets of interest or in areas with
limited telecommunications coverage.

The system has been installed on 16 haul trucks at the Koolyanobbing
iron ore mine site in Western Australia. Each truck has a Black Box
in-vehicle recorder monitoring unit and an RF Innovations radio modem
on board.

The recorder provides the source data required to understand its location
(via GPS), processes the telemetry data and manages the communications link.
The VHF Crescendo data radios are being used for the communications link
back to its central location.

The software allows the data from the central site to be examined from
anywhere in the world through an internet connection.

Features such as automatic recovery requests and forward error correction
ensure total data reliability and make the radios suitable for use in
RF-noisy environments such as a mine site.

(vk7wi news)

David Burton has been assigned to Willis Island for 6 months and will
activating HF bands and 6 meters using a 2 element quad. QSL via VK4DMC.


Do you know someone who's been itching get into the hobby of Amateur
Radio, but hasn't been able to find the time ?
Well the good news is that help is on the way !

For the second year in a row, Melbourne's Eastern and Mountain District
Radio Club is running it's special Christmas Foundation training course
held during the holiday break in the newly renovated EMDRC clubrooms in
Melbournes Eastern Suburbs. Easily accessible and just a few minutes
walk from public transport, this one day course is intended for those
who would like to take advantage of those spare days between Christmas
and New Year. It is being held on Tuesday the 29th of December with
assessments conducted the following morning or at any other mutually
convenient time.

So if you, or someone you know, would like to get into this wonderful
hobby and on the air, then contact Robert Broomhead VK3DN by email or by phoning 0403 066 686.

INTERNATIONAL NEWS With thanks to RSGB, Southgate AR Club, the ARRL,
Amateur Radio Newsline, NZART and the WW sources of the WIA.

Belgian amateurs allowed 69.95MHz

Belgian full licence amateurs are now allowed to operate on 69.950MHz
on a secondary basis with 10 watts EIRP and a maximum bandwidth of 10kHz.

IARU Committee paper available to view

The Interim Meeting of the IARU Region 1 HF Committee and the VHF,
UHF and Microwave Committee will take place over the period 19th to
21st February 2010 in Vienna, Austria.

The IARU Region 1 website now has the full set of both HF and VHF
stroke microwave papers for the meeting from the various National
Societies including the RSGB. Check out for details.

Date set for start of National Amateur Radio Centre construction

The RSGB General Manager Peter, G0TWW, has announced the start date for
building work at the new National Amateur Radio Centre.

The work will commence at Bletchley Park on 11 January 2010.

Subject to favourable progress, the work is expected to finish in June 2010.

IRCs - important information

Please be aware that the batch of IRCs that have been used for the last
few years will no longer be valid at the post office.

31st December 2009 is the dead line for the current style but it's best to
stop using them ASAP to allow transit time.

The new one has the expiry date of 31st December 2013, just above the
'UPU' logo at your right hand side.


100 years since Braun and Marconi's Nobel Prize

On 10th December 1909 both Braun and Marconi were given the Nobel
Prize for physics for their efforts in wireless communication.

Long wave transmitter DDH47 of National Weather Service at Pinneberg
in Germany will conduct a special broadcast from 9th December, 23.00
UTC until 10th December 01.00 UTC on 147.3kHz using 20kW.

Special slow Morse code transmissions will take place at the former
silence periods of the maritime radio service, 15 to 18 past each
hour and 45 to 48 minutes past each hour. Using QRS3, which is one
dot in 3 seconds, the names of famous wireless pioneers will be
transmitted. Reception reports from distant places are welcome.

Amateurs may contact DL0PFB on the HF amateur bands. For further
information, check out their website at

Santa Claus amateur radio station

Once again Santa's own amateur radio station OH9SCL will be active
from Santa Claus Land in the Arctic Circle, during the month of December.

Activity will be on 160 through to 10m using CW, SSB and the digital
modes. Among Santa's helpers will be operators Raimo, OH3BHL, Erkki,
OH9KL, Kimmo, OH9MDV, Juha, OH9MM and Aaro, OH9RJ. The QSL address is
on under OH9SCL. A special Santa Claus Land award is available.




Made in Australia may be the label on the next piece of ham gear you
buy. This as a company down-under called Genesis Radio announces that it
will be producing a new multi-band low power Software Defined Radio
transceiver kit to be available world-wide.

The Genesis G59 transceiver will cover the amateur bands from 1.8 to 54 MHz
and produce up to 10 watts output when coupled with the GPA10 amplifier. A
version with extended band coverage, the G59D that covers the increasingly
popular pan-European 70 MHz band should be available sometime next year as

More information on this new Australian ham radio transceiver kit available

In D-X word that Willis Island is back on the air. David Burton reports
that he has been assigned to the Bureau of Meteorology station on Willis
for the next 6 months and will be operating with the call-sign VK9WBM. His
station consists of a Icom IC-718 and an Alinco DX70. He will be activating
the HF bands and 6 meters using a 2 element quad. QSL via VK4DMC.


Active is 'TC2IYK' during the weekend of 12-13 December 2009
from Istanbul Sailing Club for the International Naval Contest 2009.

During the contest, operation will be on SSB part of the HF bands but
expect BPSK31 activity also. The station will be on APRS as well.

There will be a special QSL card for the contest...

QSL cards can be sent via The TA bureau.

Please check for qsl info.

Before and during the contest check for information.



AMSAT is inviting hams worldwide to participate in Straight Key Night on
OSCAR 2010. Taking part in this event is both fun and quite easy. Just
operate CW through any OSCAR satellite between 0000 and 2400 UTC
on January 1st 2010, using a straight hand key. There are no other rules,
no scoring and no need to send in a log.

In keeping with the friendly nature of this event, all participants are
encouraged to nominate someone they worked for "Best Fist" of those you
worked. Please send your nomination to A list of those
nominated will appear in the Amsat News Service and will also be published
in the AMSAT Journal.

Saturday, 27th February 2010 and Sunday 28th February 2010
Saturday 1500 NZDT until 2400 NZDT and
Sunday 0600 NZDT until 1500 NZDT

Updated Contest Rules and Other Operating Information will be available from
the NZART Website.

13 & 14 March 2010
1000 UTC (Sat.) until 1000 UTC (Sun.)
All Bands
CW Only

Considered to be one of the more gentlemanly contests that has been in
existence since the mid-1930's. Apart from the individual performances there
is a Team event, based on individual nation's participation.

No word in from our contest director of any WIA involvement next year.

March 21-22 John Moyle Field Day
Denis Johnstone reminds National WIA listeners and readers
the National Field day for all bands HF, VHF, UHF, and above emphasising
portable operation is only a few months away!

hf nets ON the net,

GB 40 WAB 40th anniversary of the WAB Till Dec 31

OZ 1658 ROS 350th anniversary of the Treaty of Roskilde Till Dec 31

VARIOUS SM STATIONS USING 1658 (Treaty of Roskilde) Till Dec 31

VP 9 400 /home call 400th Anniversary of Bermuda Till Dec 31

VR 2009 EAG The 5th East Asian Games Hong Kong Till Dec 31

YL 90 AIR 90yrs of Latvian Air Force Till Dec 31

VK8 have a new QSL Manager - Craig Edwards VK8PDX.
VK8PDX's details are now updated on the WIA website

EA1BT will be active from Martinique Island between 8th and 15th
December as TO1BT. He will be active on HF bands. QSL via home call.

Lee, DS4NMJ will be active from the Korean Antarctic base King Se-
Jong on King George Island, South Shetland Islands, which is IOTA
reference AN-010, until 31st January 2011 as DT8A. He will be active
on all bands mainly CW but also some SSB and RTTY.

Mark, AA1AC, will sign VP9/HC from Bermuda until 12th December. He
will be active on the HF bands. QSL via HC direct or bureau.

XE3RR, XE3PP, XE2WK and XE3N will be active from Isla El Cerrito,
which is IOTA reference NA-153, between 10th and 14th December as XF3RR.

30,000+ hams have entered more than 250 million QSOs into Logbook of The
World (LoTW), the ARRL's online logging program.

At this time last year, 23,000 hams had made just more than 192 million
QSOs, marking an upswing in both users and QSOs of about 24 percent.

WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- ATV (Every pixel tells a story) - Video

King Bhumibol Adulyadej HS1A video

The King of Thailand, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, HS1A, is 82
and a video showing him with Amateur and other radio communications has
been added to YouTube.

Also on YouTube are historic videos showing the TV coverage of Amateur Radio
operations during Hurricane Diana a quarter of a century ago in the USA.
The videos were recorded on 11th September 1984.

VK3RTV digital amateur television update

The digitisation of the Melbourne amateur television repeater VK3RTV is
continuing to attract international attention with the latest being an
article in the Techtalk Bulletin of the Orange County Radio Club near Los

That article also reports that there is only one amateur digital TV
repeater in the United States.

European and USA Ham TV enthusiasts have been keen to learn more about
VK3RTV and that has kept the repeater custodian Peter Cossins VK3BFG busy
responding to emails.

The concept of VK3RTV having both analogue and digital inputs is lauded by
correspondents overseas as a way of migration to digital that does not
exclude those with analogue transmitters.

Peter VK3BFG has submitted an illustrated technical article for
publication in the WIA journal, Amateur Radio magazine.

The arrival of Digital Amateur Television has stimulated interest in the
Greater Melbourne and Geelong areas. There are 17 known stations with
transmit capability and many more with digital set-top boxes and the like
enabling them to tune.

While transmissions on 446.5 MHz can occur at any time they are more
likely after 7pm. Transmission material varies from such programs as the
popular 'Amateur Logic' series to home movies.

Jack Braham VK3WWW particularly has a range of tapes depicting amateur
activities. Another program source is NASA tapes which cover much of the
technicalities associated with various space missions that are interesting
and educational.

Peter VK3BFG has just received a DVD from the US with a comprehensive
presentation on the dangers associated with high RF fields.

The recent ARISS contact at the Sherbrook Community College went to air,
and two video editions of the VK1WIA broadcast have also been shown on

The VK3RTV digital project is funded by Amateur Radio Victoria, plus a
$1,000 contribution from the WIA Club Grants Program and volunteer

I'm Barry Robinson VK3PV and you're listening to VK1WIA.


Google has launched real-time search to give users access to up to the
second information.

The search giant said it will draw real-time data from over a billion pages
on the web.

The new feature will also include updates from Twitter and the social
networks of MySpace and Facebook.

"Information is being created at a pace I have never seen before and in this
environment, seconds matter," said Google fellow Amit Singhal.

At an event staged at the Computer History Museum in California, the search
giant said this was the first time ever that any search engine has
integrated the real-time web into its results page.

The search giant also unveiled Google Goggles a new visual search feature
that lets consumers use a picture instead of keywords as the search query.

The tool compares the image users have taken with Google's database to
return relevant information.

Read more of this from BBC News



3.600, 7.110, 14.300, 18.160 and 21.360 MHz

CCARC starts the Horses at a Gallop

WICEN Tasmania (South) was joined by the Cradle Coast ARC to provide
communications and checkpoints for the 2009 Tasmanian Equine Endurance
Championship rides held at Sassafras. This was CCARC's introduction to
endurance riding. They were certainly thrown in at the deep end, literally.

Though the rides are intended to test the endurance of horses and riders,
communications personnel were also under pressure and almost under water!
The 160 km ride started at midnight on Friday night and the 93 km ride at
05:00. A mid-day Friday rendezvous at the site led to the Base set up,
then locating the checkpoints and systems testing. In theory, that gave a
few hours to catch a nap before the start of operations, but the mosquitoes
had other ideas, so napping was minimal. Just to make it interesting, the
mother of all storms hit during the night with heavy downpours, thunder and
lightning. At one stage, the Base operators had two radios at full audio
and still couldn't hear the messages coming in. Base was set up in a new
portable car port which stood up well to the test. Unfortunately, the
Base location was allocated, rather than selected, at the bottom of a slope
next to a creek. The water found a course through the tent. Even a local
frog decided the Base tent was good place to be. Fortunately, all the
240 volt stuff was at the high side and stayed dry. Rearranging the floor
sheet edges and a half hour of mopping had things above the water level

WICEN (South) passes its thanks to the CCARC guys and a gal who did a
wonderful job. Hopefully they will now be able to look after rides
in their neck of the woods in the future.

(Roger VK7ARN, Secretary WICEN Tasmania (South))


50th anniversary of 1st UK 10 GHz contact

January sees the 50th anniversary of the first UK two-way contact on the
10GHz band by G3BAK and G3LZ.

After WWII there were a few UK amateurs taking an interest in microwaves.
Two of them, began experimenting in 1949 and, in January 1950, were rewarded
with the first UK two-way contact on the 10GHz band.

Des eventually migrated to Australia where he carried on his microwave
activities, mainly on the 5.6GHz band, until his death in 2005.
He was VK2AHC at first, but then relocated to South Australia as VK5ZO.

His 10GHz equipment for that 1950 contact with G3LZ consisted of a mains
powered klystron transmitter/receiver and the path was just a "few miles"
(actually about 1.75 miles) across the Manchester Ship Canal in North West

Of just as much interest was his use of 70cm for talkback. At that time even
the 432MHz band was for radio pioneers!



JAN 4 - 14 VK2
AUSTRALIAN SCOUT JAMBOREE Cataract Scout Park south of Sydney.

JAN 24 VK2
Mid North Coast Amateur Radio Group's Radio Expo 2010 8.30am St Johns Church
Hall, Mc Lean Street Coffs Harbour.

JAN 30 VK4
Bunya Mts & Dist AmCom host "HAM AND WINE FEST 2010" at Maclagan.

WIA 100 Centre Victoria RadioFest No. 3.

Hills Amateur Radio Group Swap Meet 2pm Sanderson and Brady Rds Lesmurdie.

Wyong Field Day, Wyong Race Course.

Midland Amateur Radio Club's Radio, Electronic & Astronomy Expo.
Venue to be advised.

Oxley Region Amateur Radio Club's 35th Annual Field Day.

GGREC Hamfest Start Time : 10:00

Oct 29 - 31
VK1OOWIA Westlakes ARC during our WIA centenary celebrations.

2010 Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Society Hamfest Rosa St Goodwood


15TH IARU REGION 3 CONFERENCE hosted by V.A.R.C. in Ho-Chi-Minh City, Vietnam.

JAN 23-FEB 17 YEAR 2012
World Radio Conference WRC-11 Geneva 23rd January TO 17th February 2012

MAY 4-7 2012 VK5
YL International 2012 Australia (


WIANews - we've reported...YOU decide.

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the actual broadcast date, e-mail

Call-backs follow the RF editions, but also for text readers you may
lodge a quick reply to let us know you read it, who knows, you might
even get a "cheerio call".

Thanks to to our dedicated band of broadcast volunteers who utilize
their time and equipment in bringing you this weekly broadcast.

The purpose of "WIANews" is to rapidly provide news of interest to
active amateurs residing in Australia and the globe.

We strongly encourage membership in the Wireless Institute of Australia
and participation in the activities of local clubs.

Opinions expressed in "WIANews" are those of the writers who submit
material and do not necessarily reflect those of the rebroadcasters,
nor the National WIA, but are broadcast in the spirit in which they were

Material may be reproduced in whole or in part, in any form, a credit to
WIANews wouldn't go astray...

Compiled by VK4BB on behalf of the National WIA.

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