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VK5ZEA is one of 15 lucky winners in this years ICOM D-STAR QSO Party

Just the one lucky winner from VK, who will receive an ID-31E UHF Digital D-STAR

Plans are underway to organise many more D-STAR contests and QSO Parties in the
future and anticipate many similar events around the globe.

In-house BPL product is withdrawn

As the interference prone technology BPL has enough problems comes news that
NETGEAR has withdrawn from sale its product, on safety grounds.

The Powerline AV+ Ethernet adaptor with pass-through power socket for additional
devices, rated as 240 volts, has been removed from Australian sale.

It was the Model No. XAV2501 and the adaptor coloured white and is supplied
as part of kit XAVB2504, which also contains an adaptor.

NETGEAR warns that the 240V AC will be present on the Earth terminal of the
pass-through socket outlet, and the Active terminal will be grounded to Earth.
This may present the danger of an electrical shock.

Affected products were sold nationally through Optus between June and November
this year.

NETGEAR is investigating whether any products sold through other retailers
may be affected. It was been marketed it as a solution to home networking.

For more information visit

(Jim Linton VK3PC)

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

This is Mal VK3FDSL

In February 2012 the Board of the WIA will meet in Melbourne. One of the many
agenda items is the consideration of submissions for the venue for the 2013
Annual Conference.

Clubs are encouraged to make suggestions as to venues and to indicate their
willingness to support an Annual Conference. More details of what is required
can be found in the column written by WIA President Michael Owen in the July 2011
edition of Amateur Radio. A standard template addressing relevant considerations
can be obtained by emailing me at


web service:-
Police Roundup

The major commercial traders have given it their endorsement. Second-hand sellers
like the event too because it is strategic location and low cost.

A warm invitation is also extended to all clubs and groups to be part of the
popular Club Corner Precinct.

For more information do check out the home page of the Amateur Radio Victoria

The Centre Victoria RadioFest, Kyneton Racecourse on Sunday the 12th of February.

Points are contact are:
Commercial Traders Liaison, Barry Robinson VK3PV 0428 516 001
Second hand tables are space, Ross Pittard VK3CE 0408 533 107
Club Corner Precinct, Tony Hambling VK3VTH 0423 635 152

(Bruce Lees VK3FFF)

French Island on air next weekend

Three members of the Scout Radio & Electronics Service Unit using the scout
callsign VK3SAT for the Keith Roget Memorial National Parks Award, wants
to make as many contacts as possible from French Island OC-136 the IOTA group.

Peter Fraser VK3ZPF, Matt Gledhill VK2ADF and Kevin Bedford VK3KAB will be
battery powered from the Fairhaven camping ground on January the 7th and
8th on the 80m, 40m, 20m, 15m and 10m bands, QRV Saturday afternoon and evening
and Sunday morning.

The team will carry most of the gear in backpacks and will be joined by three or
four others who will be kayaking across from Stony Point.

With additional batteries coming across by kayak VK3SAT hopes to make many contacts.

More details about the Keith Roget Memorial National Parks award can be found on
the Amateur Radio Victoria web site

Listen for VK3SAT and be part of the action next weekend.

Send your stories for news. SCRIPT to
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get local audio news
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Welcome to QNEWS from VK4WIA. I'm Geoff Emery, VK4ZPP, and I've been thinking.....

The party season has fallen over the land and the retailers are encouraging us to
share our plastic for their merchandise. For us in the hobby sector there are the
thoughts of present giving and completing the station spring clean.

Checking out the good value offered by the WIA Bookshop - see the adds
in December "Amateur Radio" magazine and on line at Maybe to
those of us in clubs we could make a simple project to help our local amateurs.
For many reasons some individuals can't properly do the tasks of maintenance.
Some willing seasonal muscle and friendship could ensure that antennas and
stations are safe and working properly with a small band of helpers.
Give an amateur a hug time!

On another matter, the matter of our Sunday News broadcasts, I would like to
offer my deep appreciation to all who make it possible. The correspondents, the
rebroadcasters and clubs who keep the Queensland news coming. Especially I thank
our inveterate News Editor, Graham, VK4BB who with his support crew spend many
volunteer hours on making it happen. Home life and work manage to allow our
broadcast team to follow the Amateurs code, somehow keeping life in balance.

Many thanks to you all and to our listeners - may you enjoy the best festive
season offerings and all the New Year can offer.

Just one final thought.....if your club news is good enough for your website then
it is good enough for QNEWS.

For QNEWS, I'm Geoff VK4ZPP and that's what I about you?

TOWNSVILLE does Australia Day

Get out your corked hats and throwing thongs - TARC will be out in the field for
Australia Day (provided the venue does not get too aquatic) at the famous
Loam Island ARDF Grounds and Shelter from 11-30am Thursday January 26th.

BYO everything and engage in aussie fun and mirth - and even do some radio
things too ! Bring the family, bring the lagerphone, bring the esky but don't
bring the mozzies !

vk7 local news, email

Annual General Meeting

The annual general meeting for NTARC will take place on 8 February 2012 at the
Skills Institute Alanvale, commencing at 7:30pm. As usual AGM will be followed
by a general meeting.

All office holder and committee positions fall vacant at the AGM.

Therefore nominations for President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer and
Committee member are sought.

Members are reminded that they will need to have paid their 2012 subscription
before being able to vote at the Annual General meeting.


What use is an f-call?

Recently I participated in my first amateur radio contest. In short, it was a

One thing I noticed was that several amateurs I speak to on-air regularly
were not there and I'd heard a few people say that "Contesting is not my thing".
I respect that, but I'm also a little disappointed by it because it was a lot of

I started thinking about it a little and wondered what else might be occurring
that could account for some of this. I'm sure that part of it is that you might
not actually have ever participated in a contest and it might be that you have no
idea how it works, so you feel left out before you begin.

Let me give you a
fly-over view of a contest, not a specific one, just the notion of what's
happening on air.

The idea is that you count and log your contacts. Every time you make a new
contact, you log the time and date, frequency and mode and of course the
call-sign of the station you contacted. You also give the other station a unique
number and they give you one in return. The number is the count of contacts
you've done at that time. You log the number with each contact.

For example, and I'm stressing here that this is just an example. If I go on air
and say: CQ Contest, CQ Contest, vk6flab listening. I'll get back a call,
vk6bdo. I'll say, vk6bdo, this is vk6flab with 012 for you. The response will
come back: vk6flab, vk6bdo, QSL 012, I give you 413. I'll say QSL 413, Happy
Hunting, vk6flab listening.

What I've just done is sent 012 to vk6bdo and they've sent 413 back to me.
My next number will be 013 and theirs will be 414.

That's it.

I should note that contests have rules that are published prior to the event,
such as how points are allocated, whom you're allowed to talk to in which mode
on what frequency, etc. Each contest is different, all dependent on why the
contest is being held.

Now I've said that this is an example. You'll note that
there are some extra words in the interaction. I say for example, "Happy Hunting"
That's completely superfluous. If you're a die-hard contester, you'll probably be
horrified. My take on it is that to become a die-hard, you need to start
somewhere and you need to realise that there are humans on the end of each

One of the things I took away from my contest participation is a sense of
community. I spoke with 70 different stations within 24 hours. Some contacts were
strictly business, others were more involved. I got compliments for hitting my
first 10 contacts, my first 50, etc. There was an ongoing camaraderie that
encouraged people to participate. I spoke with stations towards the end of the
contest who had just made 4 contacts, and I was one of them. I felt humbled by
their participation. Of course there were stations with over 600 contacts, and
talking to them was a different kind of thrill.

While I completely understand that "Contesting is not your thing", I'd encourage
you to participate and have a go, you might be surprised.

I'm Onno, vk6flab.

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


The Len Wells Amateur Radio Spirit trophy for 2011 was presented to Tom Cooper,
ZS1PS, at the False Bay Radio Electronics and Computer Club end of year function
on Saturday 10th December. Tom has been a dedicated worker for his club for many
years and is a committee member and the Editor of their Newsletter DIALOG. In
spite of being a big C survivor, he spent many week-ends building up their club
house. Tom, 80 years of age, has 60 years of unbroken membership of the SARL.

That's true Amateur Radio Spirit! Congratulations Tom, may you still enjoy
amateur radio for many years to come.


Raspberry Pi moves towards production

30 years after the BBC Microcomputer, a new UK-developed low price home
computer, the 16 ($25) Raspberry Pi, is about to go into production.

Its processing capability coupled with low price may appeal to radio amateurs.

The Pi is produced by the Raspberry Pi Foundation, a UK registered charity
which exists to promote the study of computer science and related topics,
especially at school level, and to put the fun back into learning computing.

The Cambridgeshire developed Pi uses a 700 MHz ARM11 chip similar to that found
in mobile phones and is intended to run a version of the Linux open source
operating system.

The idea for Raspberry Pi came from video game veteran David Braben who was
searching for a way to inspire young people to start a career in technology.
He got his start in games thanks to the BBC Micro on which he, and school friend
Ian Bell, created pioneering computer game Elite.

Read the full BBC story at

Marconi ruins surface in Wellfleet

The ocean has revealed a big piece of Cape Cod history in Wellfleet: ruins of the
Marconi station which sent the first transatlantic wireless message from the USA
to the UK.

January 18, 1903, President Theodore Roosevelt's message to King Edward VII was
tapped out in Morse code from South Wellfleet to the station at Poldhu in
Cornwall. It was to be the first wireless telegram between America and the
United Kingdom. The message read:

His Majesty, Edward VII. London, Eng.

In taking advantage of the wonderful triumph of scientific research and ingenuity
which has been achieved in perfecting a system of wireless telegraphy, I extend
on behalf of the American People most cordial greetings and good wishes to you
and to all the people of the British Empire.


Wellfleet, Mass., Jan. 19, 1903




An amateur radio balloon carrying APRS that left the United States mainland
and headed across the Atlantic Ocean toward the European continent made it.

Ron Meadows, K6RPT, of the California Near Space Project launched four
high-altitude balloons at 0000 UTC on Monday, December 12th. The balloons were
expected to come down somewhere in the midwest U-S but one identifying on
APRS as K6RPT-11 decided to take a cruise on the jet stream.

After departing US soil over New Jersey at an altitude of 110,000 ft it crossed
the Atlantic Ocean overnight, Hams in Southern Europe were asked to tune their
gear to 144.390 which is the APRS channel used in the United States. They were
then requested to assist in tracking K6RPT-11 on its pass over Europe.

The question at the time was where would it land. The answer came early in the
morning of December 14th. At the time the balloon was out over the Alboran Sea
in the Mediterranean when APRS tracking showed it suddenly descending. The last
report via EB6AOK showed it at 14,558 feet and traveling at 35 miles an hour.
At that point its assumed to have fallen into the sea but not before traveling
over 7,000 statute miles at well over 100,000 feet. Possibly a new record for an
APRS equipped ham radio long distance balloon flight.

On this point we will have to wait and see.


France appears to be on the verge of modernizing its amateur service rules.
Newsline's Cheryl Lasek, K9BIK, is here with what's known so far:

French telecommunications regulator ARCEP looks
as if it is ready to permit French radio amateurs
to use modern means of communication such as
D-STAR. On December 14th several French ham radio
groups received a draft amendment from ARCEP
regarding new laws to govern that nations amateur
and amateur satellite services.

If approved, these new rules will replace the
Decision No. 2010-0537, which currently governs
French amateur radio operations. The new rules
appear to liberalize modes and interconnect
options for ham radio in the digital age.

According to the latest word that we have, the
rules change proposals will be available for a
public discussion on the ARCEP website and those
of participating amateur radio associations.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Cheryl Lasek, K9BIK, in Zion, Illinois.

A careful study of text is already underway by a
working group of French radio amateurs to
formulate a joint response by January 20.


The Federal Communications Commission has taken
what it terms as a major step toward eliminating
one of the most persistent problems of the
television age. That being those overly loud
commercials that the public seems to hate.

On Wednesday, December 14th 2011 the Commission
adopted a Report and Order that implements the
2010 Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation or CALM Act.
That's the statute in which Congress
gave the Commission, for the first time,
authority to address the problem of excessive commercial loudness.

The rules as adopted require that commercials
have the same average volume as the programs they
accompany. The rules also establish simple,
practical ways for stations and multi-channel
video programming distributors to demonstrate
their compliance with the new regulations.

The CALM Act rules will become effective one year
after the date of their adoption, or 13 December,
2012. This gives those broadcasters falling under
the regulation until that date to be in full
compliance. Equally important, it provides ample
time for programmers and networks to provide
their distributors with certifications stating
the commercials that accompany their programming
are fully compliant with these new rules.

While consumer complaints about loud commercials
have diminished since 2009, the FCC expects that
these new rules will reduce loudness complaints
even further.


And if you are a ham interested in audio
processing technology, then you are likely
familiar with the name Bob Orban. His work has
made his company a world leader in broadcast
audio processing technology some of which has
been adapted into the ham radio community. In
fact, it's hard to find any radio station or
other broadcast outlet where one of his famed
Optimod processors is not installed.

Now you can get a chance to learn a bit about the
technology that Bob Orban created by watching two
recent video podcasts on Leo LaPorte's TWIT dot
TV internet network. On December 14th Bob Orban
appeared on the shows Triangulation and This Week
in Radio Tech. Both are now available for
download or on-line viewing. Take your web
browser to twit dot tv and use the websites
search facility with the name Bob Orban to locate
them. If great sounding audio is your thing, then
this will be two hours well spent.



January 1-31 VK Ross Hull Memorial VHF UHF Contest

January 14-15 VK Summer VHF-UHF Field Day


May 5 VK/trans Tasman Contest 80 metres SSB

June 9-10 VK Shires Contest.

June 25 VK/trans Tasman Contest 160 metres SSB

July First full weekend NZART Memorial Contest

August 11-12 VK Remembrance Day Contest

August 18-19 WW International Lighthouse Lightship Weekend.

SKN on OSCAR 2012 in memory of W1JSM

You are cordially invited to participate in Straight Key Night on OSCAR 2012,
conducted by AMSAT for all radio amateurs throughout the world.

This year's event is dedicated to the memory of Don Brown, W1JSM, who passed away
in 2011, aged 90. Don was a long-time, enthusiastic VHF/UHF and satellite operator
and one of our most frequent Best Fist winners.

As always, SKN on OSCAR is simple and informal.

Just operate CW through one or more satellites on 1 January 2012
(0000 to 2400 UTC), using a straight hand key.

There is no need to send in a log, but all participants are encouraged to
nominate someone they worked for Best Fist. Your nominee need not have the best
fist of anyone you heard, only of those you worked.

Send your nomination to


RSGB Commonwealth Century Club Jubilee Award 2012

2012 is the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and mindful that the Queen is the head of
the Commonwealth of Nations we are pleased to announce a new operating award
for 2012.

To qualify for an attractive certificate all you need to do is to work as many
different countries and call areas on the Commonwealth Century Club list
during 2012.

Certificates will be awarded for working 60 and 100 different call areas.

Use any mode or bands you like and QSL cards are not required.

Score sheets and full details can be downloaded from


VK7 Sewing Circle Net Meet the Voice BBQ and Auction

The Sewing Circle Net "Meet the Voice BBQ" is set for Sunday 18 March, at Ross.
Put the date in your calendar now and organise a day out in Ross. Make sure you
bring the family.

This year will see the addition of an auction of quality equipment. As in
previous years, all funds raised at the BBQ event will go towards repeater

The Sewing Circle Net is looking for suitable items that you are able to donate
for the auction. As an indication of what type of equipment can be donated, they
have as the first donation a fast, modern HP computer system, complete with LCD
monitor, that has been refurbished for use as a ham shack computer. It comes
loaded with XP pro operating system and lots of software. This includes many ham
radio software programs, along with a ham library of over 400 books, including
current handbooks, antenna handbooks and books on almost any ham related subject
that you could imagine.

The "Circle" encourage you to make a big effort and consider what equipment you
have that you no longer use, and donate it to the auction. Remember, every
dollar raised goes towards repeater maintenance around Tasmania.

(From Vince VK7VH and all the crew on the Sewing Circle Net)


On the air, hams in Kazakhstan are celebrating
their country's 20th anniversary with the use of
special callsigns as well as issuing a
certificate to commemorate the event. The 48
special callsigns along with QSL routing and
commemorative certificate information is listed at

Kazakhstan is best known in ham radio circles as the home of the
Cosmodrome from where a number of ham radio satellites and crews
to the International Space Station have been launched.

KH0UY and KH0K will be operational from Saipan in
the Northern Mariana Islands between January 7th
to the 10th. Their activity will be on 80
through 6 meters, plus the satellites. QSL via
their home callsigns of JO3FRH and JE4SMQ, either direct or by the bureau.

1941, The first of four ships being built for the Australian Navy slides down
the slipway of BHP's newly constructed Whyalla Shipyard.

HMAS Whyalla was commissioned for duty on January 8, 1942. She carried out escort
duty on Australia's east coast and later took part in operations in the
New Guinea theatre before being attached to the British Pacific fleet as a unit
of the 21st minesweeping flotilla.

HMAS WHYALLA was decommissioned in 1947 and sold to the Victorian government for
whom she would be employed as a lighthouse maintenance vessel until 1984.

Hearing that the ship was to be sold as scrap, she was purchased by the Whyalla
City Council and brought back to Whyalla. In 1987 she was moved back up the same
slipway from which she was launched 46 years earlier and relocated to become the
centrepiece of the city's maritime museum.

On the weekend of January 7 and 8, 2012 the South Australian branch of the
Naval Association of Australia will commemorate the 70th anniversary of the
ship's commissioning and the Whyalla Amateur Radio Club will take part in the
special celebration by operating from the ship using the special event callsign

The station will be on air from around 2300 UTC on Saturday January 7 and is
especially keen to make contact with present or former naval members. Operating
frequencies and modes will be posted on the VKHAM website closer to the event.

Special QSL certificates will be sent to all stations who make contact.

So mark the date January 7 on your calendar.

This has been Alex VK5ALX on behalf of the Whyalla Amateur Radio Club.


Region III IARUMS Coordinator Peter Young VK3MV

VK IARUMS reflector email to subscribe

Region 1 medal for DJ9KR

By decision of the IARU Region 1 Executive Committee Ulrich Bihlmayer, DJ9KR
is awarded the IARU Region 1 medal for his long-time outstanding work in the
IARU Monitoring Service.

DJ9KR joined IARU MS in 1975, is the present co-ordinator of DARC-MS and serves
as vice-chairman of the Region 1 IARU MS Working Group.

His dedication is an example for us all.

The presentation of the medal will take place at Ham Radio 2012 in

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

Norwegian Storms - Radio Hams on Standby

The emergency communications group of NRRL are on standby (Dec.27) because of
storms that hit the south of the country.

A communications network was established on 3720 MHz (+/- QRM) every three hours
between 0900-2400 Norwegian Time (GMT+1).

No formal request to assist has yet been received from the authorities but the
standby net is being run as a precaution.

'Dagmar', believed to be the third-largest storm recorded in Norway for 50 years,
hit the country, Sunday last with wind speeds as high as 125 mph (201 kmh).

Norway storms isolate thousands



Recently Michael Owen VK3KI our Wireless Institute of Australia President
advised on the weekly broadcast of how the plans were progressing with Region 3
and the latest support for a low-frequency ham radio allocation.

Well, now, RF generated by Stefan Schaefer, DK7FC, of Heidelberg, Germany has
been seen on 136.172 kHz at the remotely operated station of Laurence Howell,
KL7UK near Wasilla, Alaska.

Howell also holds the UK call sign G4DMA.

He used Spectrum lab software to decode Schaefer's transmission. Using this
system, a full callsign using dual frequency 30 second per dot CW was seen.

This is believed to be a first for this type of transpolar path as it has to
cross the Auroral zone twice. Conditions have to be very stable with low
geomagnetic and Proton levels, and the path only appears to be open in their
deepest part of the winter.

KL7UK who is part of the WE2XPO low frequency experimental license group is
using a 2 turn directional K9AY array and a remotely tuned Icom R75 receiver
controlled from his residence in Oklahoma.

DK7FC in Germany had an Effective Radiated Power of only a few Watts.


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 Geneva 23rd January TO 17th February 2012

FEB 4 VK4 Bunya Mts & District AmCom Inc. Ham & Wine Fest 2012.

FEB 12 VK3 CentreVictoria Hamfest, Kyneton Racecourse


MAR 18 VK7 Sewing Circle Nets "Meet the Voice BBQ" at Ross.

APR 14-15 VK WIA National Field Day.

MAY 3-18 VK5 YL International 2012 Australia (

MAY 5- 6 VK4 RADAR and MARC Clairview Gathering

MAY 25-27 VK3 WIA Annual Conference Mildura

JUN 8-11 VK4 FNNQARG! QLD Cassowary Coast

JULY 14 VK4 Wide Bay Hamfest. West Maryborough Scout Hall



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to submit audio read "how to submit items" in the weekly news page on

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broadcast in the very next edition of WIA National News.



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

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