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VK1WIA Is Off To Mars

VK4XJJ JEFF commences second transcontinental walk

VK3AUD Sarah Thompson, Secretary of the WIA on Darwin AGM

VK2ASD WIA Vice President Phil Wait on RAVEN



VK1WIA Is Off To Mars, The Red Planet and you can come along for the ride!

Yes now YOU can send your call sign to Mars

NASA are collecting names to be put on a microchip that'll be onboard
the Mars Science Laboratory rover heading to Mars Later this year. Some
Radio Amateurs have been adding their call sign to last name field. As
well as having your call sign travelling around the Martian surface you
also get a electronic commemorative certificate to print out on your
home computer.

The rover has an unusual connection with radio, as we reported earlier in
WIA National News it has special Morse Code indentations on its wheels
that will spell out the initials JPL in Morse as it travels around Mars.

JPL stands for Jet Propulsion Laboratory, builders of the rover.

Put your name/call sign on Mars at

(sourced from Southgate news)

Closer, here on the Blue Planet, last week, Sunday the 24th of April,
Jeff Johnson VK4XJJ commenced his second transcontinental walk, this time
from east to west.

He commenced on the east coast at Byron Bay and after 167 days he plans to
reach the west coast at Steel Point in Western Australia.

He will be walking just below the VK2 / VK4 border, passing through Lismore,
Tenterfield, Walgett, Bourke and going out of VK2 into VK5 at Camerons Corner.

On his walk Jeff is seeking funds for NETS with the goal of raising
$80,000 towards a NETS ambulance.

The Walcha Radio Group has written to all Amateurs in the New England and
North West area asking them to donate to Jeff's Walk as he passes through
their region.

Brian Kelly VK2WBK is taking the donations.

Brian at P.O Box 223 TAMWORTH 2340.

0418 659 043

Jeff's web site lists sked times in the late afternoon when he will be on
40 metres - 7045 kHz at 1730 hours -then 1830 hours on 80 metres 3612 kHz.

Beware bogus requests for help

The RSGB is advising its members to be on the look-out for bogus emails
purporting to be from other radio amateurs and asking for help.

They say: We have been made aware of a scam that is currently being
operated via email to obtain money from unsuspecting radio amateurs.

An email, purporting to be from a well known amateur and signed with that
amateur's first name, explains that they have been mugged in some
foreign city, losing passport and money. Needless to say, it requests
financial support to get the amateur out of difficulties.

Several different prominent callsigns have been used by the scammers.

Obviously the rule here is to ignore such requests.

(sourced from Southgate news)

A great for amateur radio and public relations

From the Salamanca Lawns, Hobart, through to the displays at the Rapid
Creek Business Village Sunday markets Darwin, down to Stirk Park,
Kalamunda Western Australia, the flag was flown for amateur radio.

Sunday the 17th of April was indeed a very successful public relations day
with 30-odd registered to participate in every state and the Northern

About half of those registered gave a summary of what they did on the day
and were quickly posted in the WIA website for all to see.

From the reports received people exposed to amateur radio for the first
time, shown what it has to offer them, and it was a worthwhile exercise in
terms of encouraging more licensees.

The displays ranged from the basic to the more elaborate. Always remaining
as professional in their style and the nature of what people needed to know.

Clubs and groups are now thinking about the benefits including media
exposure and recruits into amateur radio and even more will register next year.

Many agreed that lessons had been learnt and they have the opportunity to
share them by making a formal entry that requires some photographic and
log proof. The entries need to reach the WIA National Office by the 13th of May.

(Jim Linton VK3PC)

President Michael Owen VK3KI
Vice President Phil Wait VK2ASD
Secretary Sarah Thompson VK3AUD
Treasurer John Longayroux VK3PZ


WIA Emergency Communications

Several weeks ago I discussed the WIA's emergency communications training
system, and how the $10,000 in seed funding allocated by the WIA Board
last year has now resulted in over 100 people being awarded nationally
recognised qualifications in emergency communications.

I would now like to tell you about the next step.

The emergency communications scheme was always intended to be a two-part process
- training and accreditation. All voting-WIA members who have completed the
training course and who have been assessed as competent will be able to apply
for WIA accreditation as an emergency communications operator.

Accreditation will not be automatic, and only those people who meet certain
criteria for availability, health and mobility will be accredited. This is
necessary to ensure we provide an effective and useful resource to emergency
services, and we don't want to put members at undue risk.

The WIA intends to promote the emergency communications program to emergency
services and non-government organisations and is currently considering how that
can best be done.

Also the new emergency communications system needs a name, and the name adopted
so far is RAVEN - Radio Amateur Volunteer Emergency Network.

It is considered important that the term Radio Amateur is included in the name,
and we wanted to avoid any confusion with WICEN.

In a few weeks I'll tell you how things are progressing and maybe tell you about
some more initiatives in emergency communications from the WIA.

This is Phil Wait, VK2ASD, for the WIA.


This is Sarah Thompson VK3AUD, Secretary of the WIA

As you know, the WIA Annual Conference is being held over the weekend of
27 to 29th of May at the Mirambeena Resort in Darwin.

Recently I outlined the full programme of events to be held over the weekend.
If you missed it, you can catch up at the WIA website, by clicking
on the front page photograph of the Darwin sunset.

Today I want to focus on one of the Sunday activities - our trip to
Litchfield National Park. The information I'm presenting is from the
"The Essential Top End Holiday Guide' - a publication each delegate will
receive upon registration.

Named after Frederick Henry Litchfield, a member of the first European
expedition to visit the area, Litchfield was the centre for tin and copper
mining for 75 years until 1955. It then fell under pastoral lease until it
was designated a National Park in 1986.

We will view the spectacular double waterfall set amid the monsoon forest at
Florence Falls. Taking the 160 steps down to the plunge pool is optional!

We will visit the magnetic termite mounds. Thousands of two-metre high mounds
reveal the architectural feats of these intriguing insects that build their
mounds aligned north and south to minimise exposure to the sun and maximise
temperature control.

Finally, we will have our BBQ lunch at the Wangi Falls - one of the Park's
best swimming and picnicking spots.

Once again I urge you to please go to the WIA website now and register for
this fantastic weekend. Accommodation can be booked at the special rates
negotiated by the WIA by calling the Travelodge Mirambeena on 08 8946 0111
and speaking to Aleishia Good or Belinda Anthony, quoting the reference
"WIA Conference"

This has been Sarah VK3AUD, on behalf of the WIA.



CRARC will be again conducting a bi-monthly Foundation Course this month,
Saturday 14th May and Sunday 15th May.

CRARC will also be conducting Assessments and Licence Upgrade Assessments
on Sunday 15.

CRARC would like to have all monies in, now! - unless otherwise arranged.

See their web page for more details and application forms:

web service:-
VKG Roundup

Next Trash & Treasure.

The next Trash & Treasure event at VK2WI will be Sunday May 29th. This is
also the next opportunity to have an exam assessment at Dural

web service:-
VKC Roundup http://www.police

The Moorabbin and District Amateur Radio club is pleased to announce, this
year's Hamfest will be held in the usual location, at the Brentwood Secondary
College, Watsons Rd, Glen Waverley on Saturday 7th May - doors opening at 10am.

The Moorabbin Radio Club's annual Hamfest is proud to be Victoria's biggest
and this year will be no exception with displays and sales of new or preloved
equipment. A must come must see event for anyone interested in Radio
Communications and electronics.

Major door prizes, free tea and coffee, light refreshments and a sausage sizzle
will also be on offer.

Trader table bookings and general enquires can be made by emailing Graeme Lewis

or by phoning mobile 0418 171601.

Must see, must come event!!

web service local audio news:-
local news email
VKR Roundup

Clairview Gathering Weekend over for another year

As the news goes to air this morning Radio Amateurs in Central Queensland
are winding up yet another successful Clairview Gathering.

Some of the keener hams arrived at the Clairview Beach Holiday Village
- about 30 minutes south of Sarina on the Bruce Highway -
on Friday to quickly set up camp and get involved with one of the many
synergistic activities (a favourite drink, a yarn or two and some
serious loafing).

More arrived on Saturday and numbers swelled for the famous Saturday Night
Mega-Auction which again raised much needed funds for the Mackay and RADAR

Some hams are leaving this morning listening into the News by various means
whilst some lucky bods are going to enjoy another relaxing day and night
at Clairview by the Sea.

Thanks to everyone who rolled up to make the Gathering an enjoyable one!


Welcome to QNews from VK4WIA. I'm Geoff Emery, VK4ZPP, and I've been thinking.

From time to time people raise their concerns over their perceptions of what the
radio club or the WIA has or has not done. This is a fair point of discussion
amongst amateurs and all organisations try to foster active involvement in

If we see that our metering is indicating a problem with our antenna, do we act
to solve the problem or ignore it and just complain and complain and complain?

Some of these well meaning amateurs seem to take the latter path and never join
their local affiliated club or pay the subscription and become an Institute
member. Without doing something positive to get the message across, they are
just baying at the moon.

From our clubs, input can go to the state Advisory Committee or direct to the
Institute. As a member, we get Amateur Radio magazine delivered and anyone can
listen to WIA News.

If you believe what you say, please get it into the system to benefit all
VK amateurs.

I'm Geoff Emery and that's what I about you?


Redcliffe and District Radio Club

I'm Ray, VK4CF with news from Redcliffe & Districts Radio club.

SILENT KEY - Roberto Benetti VK2ZEB

Last week the club was told of the passing of Rob Benetti, VK2ZEB. Rob died
last Thursday night after a debilitating illness and two falls. These together
caused him deteriorating health to which he finally succumbed. Rob was 72 years
old and a long time member of Summerland Amateur Radio Club and a good friend
of the Redcliffe club.

For many years he had a radio and TV repair business in Lismore. Rob's funeral,
was held last Thursday at the Parkview Funeral Home, Goonellabah, with a large
number of amateurs from NSW and several members of the Redcliffe club including
John, VK4WX and Scott, VK4FLAE. All the members of the Redcliffe club express
our sorrow and condolences to Elizabeth and all Rob's family and friends.

Last Wednesday, the usual club members had a good clean up of the surplus gear
area and disposed of items which were of no use to anyone. However they still
left some good "STUFF" behind and this can be collected from the club next
Monday Night. Come along & help yourself to some of this preloved equipment
that is now looking for a new home!

Club Secretary, Peter, VK4TAA has called for volunteers for the Bunnings BBQ
fundraiser to be held on Saturday 11 June 2011, at the Bunnings store at

This fundraiser will require a lot of workers to man the Stall and as
Bunning's have asked that the Sausages sizzle is operational (selling products)
from 8am - 4pm as a minimum, with setup recommended at 7.30am. The stall will
require 4 people on manning the kiosk at any point in time so if you can spare
some 2 hours or so please contact Peter as soon as possible.

So now it's 73 from Ray, VK4CF from the Redcliffe club.

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

Radio Spectrum for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games

As expected, the RSGB has been approached by Ofcom to help determine
sections of the 70cm amateur band that could be released for a limited
period around the London 2012 Games next year.

As a secondary user of the band, we as radio amateurs have no specific
rights to any of those frequencies. Rather than just imposing changes,
Ofcom has approached the Society in the spirit of cooperation to work
together to solve the problem. The RSGB intends to work constructively
on this matter to reach agreement with Ofcom on the segments that can be
released on a temporary basis.

Ofcom has given clear and unambiguous assurance that the segments used
will be returned once the London 2012 Games are over.

The RSGB is looking closely at how the spectrum is used in the designated
geographical areas in and around London, Weymouth and South Essex in
order to minimise the impact. We will be responding to Ofcom shortly.

The RSGB's response is being coordinated within the RSGB Spectrum Forum
by Murray Niman, G6JYB.

Radio Amateur's 50th Wedding Anniversary

The Derby Telegraph newspaper reports that Radio Amateur Michael Brundle
G6EBL and his wife Sheila will celebrate their 50th Wedding anniversary
on the day that Prince William and Kate Middleton are to be wed.

Ah but did they apply to OFCOM for THEIR special callsign as in "GR"
for Kate and William !

Read the Derby Telegraph story at

Amateur Radio suffers setback in surveillance robot battle

A robot used to covertly transmit live video during military operations
in Iraq and Afghanistan was approved by the Federal Communications
Commission (FCC) for use by local and state fire-fighters and police,
ending a legal battle between amateur radio operators and law enforcement
over the device.

Called the Recon Scout Throwbot, the robot transmits over the 430-448 MHz
portion of the 420-450 MHz frequency band, which is primarily used by
the federal radiolocation service. The spectrum is also utilized by
amateur radio enthusiasts. The latter group, spearheaded by the American
Radio Relay League (ARRL), opposed a waiver request filed with the FCC by
Recon Scout maker ReconRobotics Inc. to use the band.

The FCC approval does come with some limitations, however. The robot can
only be used by state and local police and fire-fighters on the specific
band. Operators must also first use the Recon Scout on 436-442 MHz bands.
If those frequencies are inaccessible, then the 430-436 MHz and
442-448 MHz bands where interference is more likely can be accessed.

Use of the device is also limited to emergencies involving threats to the
safety of life and training purposes. In addition, the Recon Scout is
restricted from use near various radar installations and Air Force bases,
and the amount of units that can be sold is limited to 2,000 the first
year and 8,000 the second year. After that period of time, future sales
will be re-evaluated, according to the FCC.

For those not aware, ReconRobotics bills itself as a world
leader in tactical robotic systems. It claims that more
than 1,200 of the company's robots have been deployed world-
wide by the U.S. military and international friendly forces,
federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, bomb
squads and fire rescue teams. More about the company is on-
line at


Amateur radio relief operations are continuing to help with
disaster recovery area struck by the worst earthquake in
Japan in 140 years. We have more in this report from
Amateur Radio Newsline's Norm Seeley, KI7UP:

Ken Yamamoto, JA1CJP, is the International Amateur Radio
Union Region 3 Secretary. He reports that there are several
stations on 7.030 and 7.043 MHz who are handling medium
distance information exchanges, but the majority of ham
radio operations appear to be on the VHF and UHF bands.

As previously reported here on Newsline, JA1RL the
headquarters station of the Japan Amateur Radio League in
Tokyo, became a disaster communication centre in the days
immediately following the giant killer quake. Yamamoto is
quoted as saying that some 250 transceivers holding Japan
Amateur Radio League licenses are being used for
communications between various refugee camps and local
government offices. He says that two sets of 430 MHz
repeaters have been delivered to the disaster area. They
are operational and being used to augment the existing
repeater coverage and provide easier communications between
those using the hand-held transceivers.

JA1CJP says that some towns are so heavily disrupted that
the local government offices are also serving as refugee
centres and the residents are staying in multiple locations.
In such cases, amateur radio can contribute quite a lot in
maintaining the ties between the local government and
displaced residents.

The earthquake, now graded at nine on the Richter scale, and
followed by a tsunami hit north-eastern Japan on March 11th.
It has so far been blamed for over 13000 deaths and the
destruction one of Japan's major nuclear power facilities.
That plant near Fukushima is still the site of an intense
campaign to bring several damaged reactors back under
control and stop the leakage of radio active waste water
into the ocean.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Norm Seeley, KI7UP,
watching the situation from Scottsdale, Arizona.


It's expected that the ongoing emergency communications
being provided by amateur radio will continue for a
considerable time to come. A presentation on the Japanese
earthquake triple disaster and the role played in relief
efforts by radio amateurs will be made at the 2011 Global
Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Conference. It's
slated for in Sun City, South Africa, in August.




Harvard researchers are looking to replace the fireman's hose with a hand-held
wand that shoots beams of electricity.

The idea that electricity can control a fire first came about 200 years ago.
It was observed that electricity could twist, bend and even kill a flame.

Scientists believe electric currents make particles of soot within a flame
move, which produces a flow of gas that weakens the flame and can cause it
to die out. But in previous studies, chemists used direct current instead of
alternating current to generate electric fields.

Now Harvard researchers have created an electric wand that puts these ideas
to the test, but utilizes AC voltage instead.

The wand was connected to a 600-watt power source, and when shot at flames
as high as 18 inches tall, the electric field produced a flow of charged
particles that put the fire out completely, and almost instantly.

While the research is still in its early stages, it's noted that this
technology has already shown greater benefit over water because it causes
less damage to people's property. In addition, the wand allows fire-fighters
to work from safer distances, and can even manipulate the flame to bend so
they can enter burning buildings.


Apr 30 WW Marconi Day 2011

Apr 30 ZL/VK 2011 VK/ZL RTTY SPRINT 40 metres



ARRL DXCC Manager Bill Moore, NC1L, reports that two
operations on Tristan Da Cunha and Gough have been approved
for DXCC credit. The two are the 2010 ZD9AH operation and
the 2010 through 2011 ZD9T operation.

According to Moore, if you had these operations rejected in
a recent application, please send an e-mail to the ARRL DXCC
Desk. He also says that due to heavy e-mail volume, you may
not receive a reply, however updates will be posted in
Logbook of The World accounts as well as online on the daily

GB0BON June 19th to celebrate the 366th anniversary of the Battle of Naseby,
the decisive battle of the English civil war June 1645 in the small hamlet
of Naseby in Leicestershire.

(Welland Valley Amateur Radio Society)


The year 2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the launch of the Islands
On The Air (IOTA) Programme by British SWL Geoff Watts, BRS-3129.

As a build-up to celebrations on this occasion, the RSGB IOTA Manager
and Committee have announced an exciting activity period in which all
licensed amateurs world-wide are invited to participate.

For a two-year period, 2012 and 2013, IOTA chasers will be encouraged to
contact as many different IOTA groups as possible, and IOTA activators
to play their part by operating from as many groups as possible, with
special emphasis on the less-frequently activated ones.

The complete rules of the IOTA 50th Anniversary Marathon will appear in
the forthcoming 'RSGB IOTA Directory' to be released at Dayton. They can
also be seen on G3KMA's website

(Roger Balister, G3KMA sourced from Southgate news)


Region III IARUMS Coordinator Peter Young VK3MV

VK IARUMS reflector email to subscribe

Friday 0730 UTC 7.065.5 with VK4CEU David.

Amateur exclusive frequencies where any non-amateur signal is definitely an

Amateur HF Spectrum world wide
7.050 to 7.100
14.000 to 14.250
14.250 to 14.350 No broadcasters
21.000 to 21.450
24.890 to 24.990
28.000 to 29.700


The IARU Region 1 Intruder Watch newsletter reports that
Brazilian CB-like or so called Freeband stations using full
carrier AM is now often audible between 28.000 and 28.305
MHz. Most of these stations are being heard in the evening
hours. The report says that the Brazilian
telecommunications regulator Anatal seems to have no
interest in this problem or in keeping these stations from
operating in the 10 meter Amateur Service band.


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


Tom Medlin, W5KUB, says that he will one again be streaming
live audio and video from the Dayton Hamvention. According
to Tom, this will be the 9th year that he will be netcasting
live on beginning with his 550 mile ride from
his home in Memphis, Tennessee, right to the Hamvention site
at the Hara Arena in Dayton.

During this years netcast, Tom will also be giving away
over $5000 in prizes to give lucky viewers. Some of the
prize donors include Heil Sound, Kenwood, Yaesu, MFJ,
Kantronics, LDG and the ARRL. That alone is something that
you won't want to miss.

So if you cannot make it to Hamvention 2011, you can attend
vicariously from May 18th to the 22nd thanks to Tom Medlin,
W5KUB, and his crew at


Australian Optical DX Group


An optical distance record claimed in the U-K may not be a record after all.

Amateur Radio Newsline's Frank Haas KB4T, says they have received numerous
e-mails that say the accomplishment in the UK falls far short of other
claimed distances set elsewhere around the globe. In fact, the number of
such claims far outweighs the space we have available to report them all.

But as pointed out by one of their listeners, the 90 kilometre distance
claimed in the UK is only about 56 miles and there are a number of
well-documented communications over longer distances. This includes one as
early as 1962 in southern California.

The bottom line: If hams are going to lay claim to optical distance records,
then what is needed is an organization respected and accepted by all of the
worlds ham radio community to corroborate any claims made, and to declare who
has set a valid record and who has not.

(ARNewsline from listener input)

Emergency Centre of Activity (CoA) frequencies
3.600, 7.110, 14.300, 18.160 and 21.360 MHz

RESCUE RADIO THE MOVIE... well a 1959 movie called "Every Single Minute."

This is an historic amateur radio movie about AR and emergency
communications, and is available on YouTube.

In 1955, The Phil-Mont Mobile Radio Club, an association of mobile
amateur radio operators in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area in the US
provided emergency communications during the devastating flooding along
the Delaware River and in the Pocono Mountains following Hurricane Diane,
the sixth costliest U.S. hurricane of the 20th century.

In 1959, the club produced this short film to explain amateur radio, and
especially mobile communications as practiced by the club.

The main film begins after a three minute interview with Jim Spencer,
W3BBB, produced by a local cable channel many years later (Jim was a very
young man W3QQH in the original film, and is now SK.


GAREC 2011

The International Amateur Radio Union - Region 1 website reports that
the Global Amateur Radio Emergency Conference (GAREC) 2011 will be held
in conjunction with the IARU Region 1 General Conference in Sun City,
South Africa from 15th to 19th August.

As GAREC has to slot in between the main IARU meetings it is possible
for IARU delegates to attend GAREC.

Registration for GAREC is now open for emergency communicators and more
details are available at

The draft agenda for the conference should be posted to that website

Information from earlier conferences is available at




Apr30-May1 VK4 Clairview Gathering contact Clive VK4ACC of RADAR Club
04 2963 2815.

May 7 VK3 Moorabbin and District Amateur Radio club Hamfest
Brentwood Secondary College, Glen Waverley

May 7 VK4 Brisbane Amateur Radio Club's BARCfest, Mt. Gravatt Show
grounds, 1600 Logan Road, Upper Mt. Gravatt 9:30AM

May 27-29 WIA AGM Weekend in Darwin

Jun 10 - 12 VK4 Far North and North Queensland Amateur Radio Gathering at
King Reef Resort Kurrimine Beach.

Jun 11 - 12 VK2 Oxley Region Amateur Radio Club annual Field Day

Jul 16 VK3 Gippsland Gate Radio & Electronics Club Hamfest
Cranbourne Community Hall 10am ( )

Jul 16 VK4 Maryborough Electronics and Radio Group "Wide Bay Hamfest"
West Scout Hall, Ariadne St, Maryborough 8:30am.

Jul 31 VK2/3 Riverina Field Day 10am at Lavington Scout Group Hall.

Aug 7 VK2 Lismore region - SARCFEST

Sep 11 VK3 SADARC Comms Day at St Augustine's Hall Shepparton 10am.

Sep 16-18 VK4 NQ Amateur Radio Convention Date Set Townsville

Sep 23-28 R3 Region 3 ARDF Championship Bendigo VK3

Sep 30-Oct 2 VK4 Central Highlands Amateur Radio Club AGM at Camp Fairbairn
CONTACT Secretary Gordon, (

Nov 20 vk5 Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Society Hamfest
Goodwood Community Centre, Rosa St Goodwood at 0930.
Visit for contact details


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 3-18 2012 VK5
YL International 2012 Australia (


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


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Thanks to to our dedicated band of broadcast volunteers who utilize
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The purpose of "WIANews" is to rapidly provide news of interest to
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We strongly encourage membership in the Wireless Institute of Australia
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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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