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A great big welcome to all the people flying in to our WIA AGM on the
Gold Coast, this weekend, here is some 'inflight reading.'



After years of talk, probably back to the late 70's, & months of hard work
recently, Katherine in the NT finally has its Fusion 2M Repeater, VK8RKT on
the air. Switched on during Thursday at about 1430 hrs CST on the 10th May
2018 at the Power & Water site, known colloquially as "Tank Hill" about
5 Km's east of town, it immediately gained attention as far away as Darwin!!

Some beautiful tropospheric ducting (280Km away) had at least one amateur
hearing it direct in Darwin. Conditions were perfect at this time of year
for the effect.

Repeater owner, Mike VK8MA, has been working on this for a couple of years
and after all the bureaucracy has been dealt with, it is operational. Mike
says "I have had incredible support from our local guys, Neil VK8NH, Gavin
VK8GT, and even Steve (ex VK8SJ, now VK2YLD) and special thanks to Spud,
VK8ZWM up in Darwin who gained the support of 8KRT the local Katherine
Community FM station in gaining us access to their tower and a home for the

"We hope this is the gateway for young people to gain an interest in Amateur
Radio in Katherine and with the repeater's connectivity to IRLP and
Echo/IRLP, locals, tourists, and even visiting military of both Australia
and the USA will all be welcome to use the facility".

Initial tests are proving there should be very wide coverage out of Katherine
on VHF which has been missing. For those planning a trip or just even
interested, these are the specs for VK8RKT.

Located at Tank Hill, about 5Km east of Katherine.

Antenna elevation about 200m ASL or 90m (approx.) above surrounding terrain.

Repeater type and mode: Yaesu C4FM currently set for C4FM/analogue input
(auto), analogue out only at this stage.

Output 146.750 MHz, input 146.150 MHz CTCSS 91.5 Hz

Time-out is off, but will be introduced if any problems.

Contact: Mike Alsop, VK8MA. Email

Again special thanks to all the local Katherine people, hams & non hams for
your support to make this happen!! Any signal reports from anywhere will be



Hello, I'm Geoff Emery, VK4ZPP, and I've been thinking.

A great big welcome to all the people enjoying the WIA AGM on the
Gold Coast, this weekend.

It seems right to use this occasion to think about how we keep our various
bodies running effectively. The WIA has had it's annual election of directors
and the newly revamped Board takes over the administration of the body.
In our clubs, a similar process occurs and for most of us the change of faces
just means that the same roles continue. For the new people taking office
there can be a considerable learning curve as they get acquainted with the
special tasks that are involved.

Now it is usually a good thing to get new blood into the front table group as
that allows people to learn up on the various jobs, if they have never done
this sort of thing before. However, in the corporate world, the benefits of
keeping a corporate memory is stressed. That is people who understand the
history and the culture that underpins the body is kept alive by experienced
staff and officers. If a body goes through a major spill of office bearers, it
may refresh the organisation or it may totally knock it off balance as the new
people try and understand where things came from, how they are and where
they expect to head.

We can see from the reports of the WIA directors that there has been an immense
amount of learning over the past year. There has been an intense effort to
progress all the matters that the Institute is charged with doing. Here is a very
important issue that we have to come to grips with, that of office bearers having
lives outside the organisation. The amount of time available is the same for
all of us and the needs of keeping a roof over our heads and putting food on the
table is also a common need. In some of the hours left, volunteers give to the
community in many ways but if the workload causes them to burn out, they
must retire and we all miss out.

What we all should do is think about what needs to be done and what we can do
to assist. Before we raise our voices or rush to the keyboard, we should ask what
seems to be the problem and what can we do to make it better. As soon as it
becomes an us and them situation, we have opened the door to helping our club
hit bottom but when it is about us together we create the opportunity for our club
to reach new heights.

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


INTERNATIONAL NEWS With thanks to IARU, RSGB, SARL, Southgate AR Club,
ARRL, Amateur Radio Newsline, NZART and the World Wide sources of the WIA
and local news services with VK7FTAS.

Electric blanket is said to have allegedly sparked fire which killed radio

New Zealand radio amateur Arthur Earle Plimley ZL 1 TAG was killed by
a 40-year-old electric blanket which appeared to have had been modified to
allow the voltage to be increased

The National newspaper reports the details of the radio amateur's death were
heard at an inquest before Coroner Gordon Matenga on Friday, May 11, 2018.

Around 8.30 on the August 30, 2017 two police officers were called to the
Plimley's home in the Thames township. They arrived to find Plimley slumped
face down in a chair.? In a statement Sergeant John Taaka said there was clear
evidence of a fire in Plimley's room.

An examination later showed the fire started due to a fault in an electric
blanket on the bed, which was "in excess of 40 years old", Coroner Gordon
Matenga said.

Read the full story at

Chang'e-4: Yuanwang 6 tracking vessel prepares for Moon relay satellite

The Yuanwang 6 space tracking vessel has left port in preparation to support
the launch of the relay satellite required for China's ambitious
Chang'e-4 lunar far side landing.

The communications relay satellite is scheduled to launch on May 21 or later
via a Long March 4C rocket, heading for an orbit beyond the Moon.

Yuanwang 6 will track the spacecraft after launch from southwest China as it
heads into orbit, observing its trajectory and providing survey and control

This relay satellite is a precursor to the Chang'e-4 lander and rover mission,
which will attempt the first-ever soft-landing on the far side of the Moon in
late 2018.

DR @ F respond to DGE consultation

The French amateur radio society DR @ F has published its response to the
Directorate General for Enterprise consultation on interconnection, in their
response they request that French Class 3 ( that is F 0 ) license holders are
given access to digital modes and should also be permitted the bands
28.0-29.7 and 430-440 MHz

Read the DR@F response in Google English at

Swedish radio ham visits Pentagon

Radio amateur Peter Hultqvist SM 4 HCF is also Sweden's Defence Minister and
it was in that capacity that he visited the Pentagon on Monday, May 7

The ARRL report he visited Washington, DC, on the invitation of US Secretary
of Defence James Mattis. A radio amateur since 1975, Peter had previously
served as chairman of the Defence Committee in Sweden's parliament before
become Minister of Defence in 2014.

Professionally, he is a journalist and reporter.

Low-latency shortwave link for trading?

Writing on Hackaday Jenny List G7CKF highlights a recent blog post by
Bob Van Valzah KE9YQ speculating on use of shortwave to link
Chicago Mercantile Exchange with the London financial centre

Bob describes how he came across a mast in West Chicago carrying a microwave
link AND shortwave beams along with SDR equipment produced by Ettus Research
that was founded by radio amateur Matt Ettus N2MJI.

Theoretically shortwaves could provide low latency, but low data rate,
links to transfer financial data for use in high-frequency trading.

Hackaday post

Bob Van Valzah KE9YQ post

Annual Dayton K 9 PG Hooters Party for Contesters.

Paul, K9PG, tells how for those contesters at the Hamvention a treat was in

Thursday, May 17th, 5pm Hooters Bar had discounted pitchers of beer and

Seems the tradition is that Hams had to show up wearing their brightest &
most outrageous Hawaiian shirt! Bonuses for furry pimp hats and neon sport
coats and stylish ties were in the offing! The notorious & illustrious pink
jacket was to be awarded to the 'lid' with the brightest and most obnoxious
get-up, provided last year's winner AJ9C shows up with it.

After Hamventions 'Contest University' many many are said to have made the
pileup at Hooters.

And still in the "Party Mode" RAISING A TOAST TO PUBS & CLUBS ON THE AIR

For members of the South Cheshire Amateur Radio Society G6TW Saturday May 12
will not be easily forgotten. You might even say that some of the hams
raised a little toast to the day. Jeremy Boot G4NJH tells us why:

JEREMY: What comes after National Parks on the Air, Mills on the Air,
Railways on the Air, Summits on the Air and even Walmart Parking Lots on
the Air? Try Pubs & Clubs on the Air - PACOTA - which launched for the
first time this year with enthusiasm through the efforts of the South
Cheshire Amateur Radio Society here in the UK.

Confirmed stations with special-event call signs included GB0TGI at
Tuckers Grave Inn in Faulkland, Somerset; GB2ROY at the Royalty, York
Gate, Guiseley, Leeds; and GB4TRO The Royal Oak, Harriseahead,

A good deal of planning and preparation went into the launch according
to the event's official web pages, which are part of the South Cheshire
society's website at (

The event organiser, Chris Wiseman G0RDK, writes on the website that the
goal of the first-time event is to show members of the public the kind
of fun to be had by going on the air - and perhaps convince them to get
licensed and join us.

Of course, there's also the hope of making an intoxicating number of
radio contacts - but that's only kind of intoxication organisers had in

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Jeremy Boot G4NJH.



All major Australian contests, rules and results, are on the
Contest Section of the WIA website.

June 17 - IARU R3 - 2018 QRP Day Region 3

July 14-15 - WW IARU HF Championship

August 11-12 - VK - Remembrance Day Contest
August 18-19 - WW - Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend

October 6 - WW - Oceania DX contest

CQ WW CW contest logs to be re-scored

A change in the scoring system for handling duplicate contacts in
the CW weekend of the 2017 CQ World Wide DX Contest has resulted
in inconsistency with the standards by which logs submitted for
the SSB weekend of the same contest were scored.

After considerable discussion and debate among members of the CQ
WW Contest Committee and consultation with CQ management, it was
decided to restore the original scoring methodology and to re-
score all CW logs for the 2017 CQ WW DX contest.

Updated scores will be published online on the CQ website and on
the CQ World Wide DX Contest website, but the re-scoring is not
expected to result in any changes to the order of finish.

Following a long time request from the Norwegian contest community, the
Norwegian Communication Authority (NCA) recently permitted the use of
2 by 1 contest call signs for individual radio amateurs.

With few exceptions Norwegian 2x1 call signs have been reserved for club
stations, which have also been permitted to use the LN prefix in contests.

The new call signs will use the LC prefix and one letter suffixes.

The 2 by 1 call signs are available for all radio amateurs with a Norwegian
call sign. They are issued for contest use only and must be renewed every
five years.


Canary Islands Day

Members of the Unin de Radioaficionados Espaoles club [ EA 8 URL ] are on
air with a special call sign, EG 8 CID, between May 10-30th to celebrate
"Canary Islands Day".

Operations will be on all bands and modes.

QSL via LoTW or via EA 8 URL.


So you thought the Commonwealth games were over?

Well yes, they ended on the 15th of April but in Australia the game of radio
goes on and on - at least through the 31st of May. So there's still
plenty of time to contact special event station VI4GAMES, the call sign
the ACMA has assigned to the Gold Coast Amateur Radio Society.

You can be as victorious as the athletes from Australia were, among the more
than 6,600 athletes representing 71 nations.

You don't even need to get on 'Speedo's or 'Lycra' or do any powerlifting.

Ultimately, successful contacts will win the best trophy of all:
a commemorative QSL card.

Otherwise, you'll have to wait another four years, when the games are held
again -- this time in Birmingham, England.


A group of operators including Doug/W6HB, Bruce/AD7MM and Marilyn/KI7DLK
will be active as E51DLD, E51BAS and E51MAS respectively - with other
team members - from Rarotonga Island until the 25th of May. You may also
hear Jim/E51JD and Bob/E51BQ. These operations will be holiday style on
various HF bands and in various modes. Two of the stations will operate
with 100 watts and wire antennas. QSL via their home callsigns.

Be listening for Walter HB9XBG operating as FO/HB9XBG from Bora Bora
Island in French Polynesia between June 7-17th. Activity will be on 20
meters SSB. QSL via his home call sign.

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

Hamvention 2018 Marathon webcast

Hamvention will be webcasting over 48 Hours of live video from Hamvention.

They will also have many special guests plus prizes for viewers all day on
the 3 days, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Astronaut Douglas Wheelock, joins
again for the 5th year as a co-host.

They'll be in the chat room on while streaming so you can talk
with them. In addition they will be running a remote shack in the truck
allowing work on HF during our trip.


(sourced to SouthGate)


NASA is sending a helicopter to Mars.

The Mars Helicopter, a small, autonomous rotorcraft, will travel with the
agency's Mars 2020 rover mission, currently scheduled to launch in July 2020,
to demonstrate the viability and potential of heavier-than-air vehicles on
the Red Planet.

"NASA has a proud history of firsts," said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine.

"The idea of a helicopter flying the skies of another planet is thrilling.
The Mars Helicopter holds much promise for our future science, discovery, and
exploration missions to Mars."

U.S. Rep. John Culberson of Texas echoed Bridenstine's appreciation of the
impact of American firsts on the future of exploration and discovery.
"It's fitting that the United States of America is the first nation in
history to fly the first heavier-than-air craft on another world," Culberson
said. "This exciting and visionary achievement will inspire young people all
over the United States to become scientists and engineers, paving the way for
even greater discoveries in the future."

A Youth Net meets Saturdays at 0100 UTC on IRLP Reflector #2.
Young Hams Net 3.590 - 7:30pm Victorian time.

CQScotland free electronic kits will be providing free electronic kits for
accompanied school-age children attending the Scottish Electronics
and Radio Convention.

It takes place at the Braehead Arena, Glasgow, on 20th May. A
dedicated construction area will be set up, and help will be on
hand so children should leave with a fully working project.
Alternatively, it may be built at home with a parent.

The kits and construction session is sponsored by the RSGB and
Antex Electronics Ltd.


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

If you'll be in the Townsville region July, listen up!

It's the Magnetic Island to Townsville Swim.

A great day out on the water playing with radios to the sound of Migaloo
and a hundred plus marathon swimmers thrashing across Cleveland Bay.

Main comms on VHF, with some UHF comms with clubbies and aircraft.

It is also highly recommended that operators attend the Swim Briefing
to meet the competitors, organisers and skippers.

Sat 28 July - Maggie Island to Townsville Swim Briefing Session from 1pm
Sun 29 July - Maggie Island to Townsville Swim from 7am Strand Park


SOTA-LINK is an experimental back-channel to support Summits on the Air
activations, and facilitate group chats between SOTA enthusiasts all over
the world.

The project uses WIRES-X room 44050, which is connected to the Macclesfield
System Fusion gateway MB6SO (144.8375MHz).

This is linked to the Brandmeister DMR server TG973, thus allowing access via

It is hoped to be able to allow connection using other digital voice modes in
the future.

The project is in its early stages of development, but has already seen C4FM
and DMR users connecting in and facilitating SOTA QSOs.

Note that QSOs for the SOTA awards must be direct and not supported through
repeater networks and gateways, so communications via SOTA-LINK themselves
would not count.



ARRL asks FCC to protect ham radio millimeter-wave bands

ARRL has asked the FCC to avoid authorizing developmental technologies in
two Amateur Radio bands above 95 GHz that some radio amateurs may not be
unaware of.

The ARRL commented on May 2 in response to a Notice of Proposed Rule Making
and Order released in February.

The so-called "Spectrum Horizons" proceeding seeks to make the bands above
95 GHz "more readily accessible for new innovative services and technologies."

ARRL said it would oppose "any proposal to permit unlicensed devices or
largely unregulated experimental operations" in the two primary Amateur Radio
allocations in the range of spectrum the FCC is considering. "It is critical
to preserve for Amateur Radio experimentation the current relatively quiet
noise floor, and the positive RF environment that now exists in those two
relatively small band segments," ARRL told the FCC.

Read the ARRL story at

Social Scene 2018

May 18 - 20 - VK WIA Radio & Electronics Convention & AGM Gold Coast

June 2 - VK4 Redcliffe and Districts Radio Club's REDFEST 8.30AM (VK4TFN)
June 9 & 10 - VK5 2018 South East Radio Group's Convention and
Australian Fox Hunting Championship - Mt Gambier
June 9 & 10 -VK2 Oxley Region ARC Field Weekend - Oxley Radio ARC

July 7 & 8 - VK3 GippsTech 2018 The 21st annual Gippsland Technical

August 4 VK3 Gippsland Gate Radio & Electronics Club HamFest (vk3bft)

Nov 11 VK5 - Adelaide Hills Amateur Radio Society HamFest
Nov 17 VK7 - VK7Hamfest Miena Community Centre (vk7wi)


WIA Secretary Peter Clee, VK8ZZ writes,

I draw your attention to the following news item on the WIA web site

The Board of the Wireless Institute of Australia has
received a request from four members of the institute
to consider expulsion proceedings against one or more
members in terms of clause 5.7 of the WIA Constitution

The Board held a special meeting on Wednesday 16th May
2018 at which time the request was considered.

That Board meeting has been adjourned in order that the
Board may consider additional information.

It should be noted that should a member be expelled by
board resolution; that under section 5.8 of the WIA constitution,
they have an absolute right of appeal.

Authorised by
Peter Clee
WIA Secretary

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