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WIA Position on outcomes of the Approach to Market for Examination



WIA Position on outcomes of the Approach to Market for Examination

In a letter from the President of the WIA on behalf of the WIA board
a detailed look at the pricing of the new examinations is analysed.

As a result of the negotiations between the AMC bid team and
ACMA procurement we see it has resulted in the "headline" entry
price to the hobby of Amateur Radio rising:

$75 to $115 (Foundation Assessment, Practical Assessment
& Callsign Recommendation) for adults - an increase of over 140%,
(WIA's proposal was $49)

$40 to $115 (Foundation Assessment, Practical Assessment
& Callsign Recommendation) for youth - an astonishing 285% increase.
(WIA's proposal was $27)

The WIA board and the Education Group is horrified by the existential
risk that this creates for the hobby of Amateur Radio, especially
given the widespread community support (at both a local and
international level) for attracting younger participants to the

The only rational conclusion the WIA can draw is that the AMC,
parties to the AMC bid and those involved in the ACMA procurement
process have weighted political, commercial and personal factors
ahead of their customers', the community and the hobby of
Amateur Radio.

The WIA, as the only Amateur Radio organisation that is demonstrably
committed to furthering the hobby, remains committed to resolving
this situation for the benefit of members and the community they

Full 'unabridged' story on this link:-


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

"What do you do to mend a broken heart?" might be a good song title
but not usually associated with amateur radio but i couldn't find a
simple reference for a DXer's lament when the sunspot number is zero.

If you hadn't heard, we have just been through a week with no
sunspots and when I think back to previous nulls in the cycle there
used to be something like the lamentations of the Old Testament
prophet, Job.

These days, if you have a Standard grade or Advanced licence, a few
milliwatts can see your signals being received and reported from
amazingly distant places. Yes there are those who decry the fact the
signals are digital and depend on some really cute computer
processing but really, amateur radio is about experimentation and
advancement of the technology of radio communications. The same sorts
of complaints were levelled at using internet linking or wormholes
for packet radio linking some two decades ago. The complaints remain
the same as the processes advance, it seems.

Of course, one of the other activities is rag chewing and much of
this is conveniently conducted online, these days. With the debacle
that the ACMA has created in the change of service provider for exams
many a mind has been focussed on issues relative to the improvement
of the service delivery and regulation of our hobby. Naturally, with
the delays and the drip feeding of information and costings,
discussions are turning to alternatives and I have spoken of this

Recently it seems that some of the polarised rancour has left the
discussions and people with good will are discussing ideas rather
than debating ideas of polarised and binary disinformation. Surely
this bodes well for the growth and advancement of this exciting and
stimulating pursuit?

Certainly, in any situation there can be a place for the eccentric,
the left field idea, the devil's advocate to break the narrow focus,
the mental set and get people to think, as they say, outside the box.

Here's hoping that some of this down time provides some solutions
which we can take into the future and that the stimulation of
respectful discussion launches a new era for VK-land amateur radio.

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


INTERNATIONAL NEWS With thanks to IARU, RSGB, SARL, Southgate AR Club,
the WIA.


Auction of AM & FM sound broadcasting spectrum licences

One AM and four FM sound broadcasting spectrum licences will be
auctioned with the licences sold on the Trade Me website.

The auction starts on 3 April and will run for seven days until
10 April.

The term of the licences are valid until 2 April 2031 provided the
successful party meets the implementation criteria.


V 84 SAA DXpedition was Front-Page News in Brunei

The DXpedition February 6 - 18 received a great deal of positive
attention in Brunei -- a tiny nation surrounded by Malaysia on the
South China Sea. The arrival of the DXpedition team not only merited
coverage on the local evening newscast, but a front-page newspaper

According to the article, the DXpedition aimed "to increase
cooperation among Amateur Radio operators besides instilling
the spirit of teamwork and fostering close ties. The expedition
also serves to help promote the country's uniqueness and natural
heritage through Amateur Radio."

"We were a large international team, and we were blessed with
fantastic local support from Tamat Lampoh, V 8 5TL, and the local
Brunei Darussalem Amateur Radio Association," V84SAA team member
Jeff Briggs, K1ZM/VY2ZM told ARRL. "They were wonderful hosts."


55th Anniversary of RAST

The Radio Amateur Society of Thailand (RAST) celebrated its
55th Anniversary March 2, 2019 with a day-long event attended
by almost 500 members and guests

The gathering at the resort in Pathum Thani Province just to the
north of Bangkok included a total of 55 (YES fifty five)
radio transceivers among the prizes that were won.

An amateur radio station with HF antennas had been set up on a
field at the resort and the station operated using the callsign

Read the full RAST report at


Don Beattie G3BJ has submitted a paper on the threat posed by
Wireless Power Transmission (WPT) for discussion at the
IARU Region 1 Interim Meeting in Vienna, April 27-28

The paper warns: "Given the planned density of WPT-Electric Vehicle
systems, there will be a widespread and serious impact on
radio communications operating in the vicinity should spurious
emissions, measured at 10m be at the limits set in
ITU-R SM329-12)."

Download VIE19 C7-005 Wireless Power Transmission - an Overview


On March 2-3, radio amateurs promoted our hobby at 'MakeMunich',
a major trade fair for the Makers and Do-It-Yourself scene in the
Bavarian state capital

At the 5th event of this kind, more than 10,000 technology-savvy,
environmentally conscious, creative and innovation-minded visitors
from all over Germany and neighbouring countries in addition to
150 exhibitors were in attendance.

Still in Munich

70th Anniversary of FM in Europe

According to an article in German publication Reflexion,
wireless marked 70 years of the first FM transmitter to go into
service and on air in Europe.

The transmitter to which this accolade belongs is in Munich.

Mnchen Freimann officially started service on the afternoon of
28 February 1949 just ahead of a VHF FM transmitter in Hamburg
which came on air the following day.


"RF Seismograph" May Be Real Seismograph

Alex Schwarz, VE 7 DXW, in British Columbia, Canada, is exploring
the possibility that "RF signatures" detected by the RF Seismograph
propagation tool could also be indicating earthquakes, and may even
be able to predict them shortly before they occur.

A real-time HF propagation-monitoring tool developed by Schwarz and
the MDSR team, the RF Seismograph shows both band noise and activity
or band activity alone on six HF bands. It's a project of the
North Shore Amateur Radio Club.

A month without sunspots

The sun has just passed an entire calendar month with no sunspots.

The last time this happened, in August 2008, the sun was in the
nadir of a century-class Solar Minimum.

The current stretch of blank suns shows that Solar Minimum has
returned, and it could be as deep as the last one.

Visit for more information and current sunspot



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


Commonwealth Contest this weekend, 9-10 March

The Commonwealth Contest, RSGB's longest-running contest, takes
place for 24 hours 9th and 10th.

Sydney's Amateur Radio Ferry Contest - THIS Sunday March 10 (VK2GZ)

This is the Fourth annual Sydney Amateur Radio Ferry Contest
on Sydney Harbour from 10:00 to 16:00 local time.

This is a special year for the Waverley Club in which they celebrate
their centenary.

Participants will be able to work their special event callsign!
(BUT in the press release we got that call sign must have been written
in 'invisible ink'.. so keep your ears open!)

This unique contest aims to gather hams to Sydney Harbour and
invite them to make VHF/UHF contacts from any of the system's
ferries and wharves.

Operation is restricted to hand-held radios (any mode) and can
include repeater, simplex or even an "eyeball" contact.

The event is being run by the Waverley Amateur Radio Society (VK2BV)
who will be running a club station at Rose Bay Ferry Wharf for the
duration of the contest.

(sourced to crarc news)

St Patrick Award

Stations taking part in the St Patrick Award will be on the air
from noon on the 16th of March to noon on the 18th of March.

This year a new Digital Award has been added, covering such modes
as FT8, DMR, D-Star, JT656 and EchoLink etc. To claim it you must
have made 20 contacts with a registered St Patricks Day Station.

For more information go to

W.I.A. John Moyle Memorial Field Day 16-17 March 2019 (vk4ae)

CQ World Wide WPX SSB Contest over the March 30 - 31 weekend.

20th Harry Angel Memorial Sprint May 4

Trans-Tasman Low-Band Contest July 20

VK Remembrance Day Contest is August 17-18


Doug VK4ADC sent us a reminder that according to the VKLogger Forum
under the topic "Chat and Logger display / END OF LIFE" dated
16th December 2018, there are only a few weeks left before the
stated cessation date of 25th March 2019.

VKLogger Forum itself is continuing after that date.

Development of replacement Chat and Spotting code is reported to be
in process but may, or may not, be ready by the 25th March.

Generic chatrooms for general discussion, plus VHF and above,
have been created as an add-on to the Australian Ham Radio Discussion
Forum on the AHRDF.NET web site as an alternative chat facility.

These chatrooms do not have the Spots function of VKLogger but
can be used by amateurs for coordination and general discussion.

Registration for the Chat facility is quick and easy and access
is via your browser at

That web address again is A H R D F dot NET slash CHAT while the
related Forum is at A H R D F dot NET

Amateur radio operators worldwide are invited to join and use either


But first, --- , those interested in DXing and Contesting will be
interested to hear that the official documentary film about how
W.R.T.C.2018 came about has been released.

It gives an insight into the organisation and management work and of
course coverage of the actual event along with opening and closing
ceremonies and can now be watched at the link in this week's text
edition of news from your WIA.


Kazu, will be on the air as MJ 0 CFW from Jersey between the 15th
and 17th of March and especially during the Russian DX Contest on
the 16th and 17th of March.

In that contest, listen for him using the call sign MJ 5 Z.

QSL via M 0 CFW

Andre ON7YK is active from his station in Gambia using the callsign
C 5 YK. He will be there until early March 2019.
QSL to his home call ON7YK

Active is 3 W 9 JF from the island of Phu Quoc, (said Foo Kwok)
AS-128, to the 6th of March. Mainly on 80, 40, 20 and 17m bands.
QSL via eQSL or direct to EA 5 GL.


Roland F 8 EN is back in Gabon until mid-March.
He is using his TR8CR callsign on 40 - 17m on CW and SSB.
QSL manager is F6AJA.


Members of Radio Club F 6 KMB will be active as TM 6 C until 24
of March during the traditional Dunkirk Carnival.
QSL via F 6 KMB.



Willy, ON 4 AVT, is on the air as 6 W 7/ON4AVT from Senegal,
till March 30th, operating on 40/20/10 meters using CW, SSB, PSK31
and PSK63.

He is possibly on 60 meters as well.

QSL via his home callsign, ON4AVT



ZW 85 LABRE celebrates 85th anniversary of the League of Brazilian
Amateur Radio Transmitters.

LABRE, has obtained the special event callsign ZW85LABRE which is
valid until March 31, 2019

The Liga de Amadores Brasileiros de Rdio Emisso (LABRE) was
founded February 2, 1934.


Erich, HB9FIH is QRV as EA8/HB9FIH from El Hierro, IOTA AF-004,
until the end of March. Activity is on the HF bands using:-
CW, SSB, and various digital modes.


HS 55 RAST is active until the 31st of March in celebration of the
55th anniversary of the Radio Amateur Society of Thailand.
QSL via H S5 NMF.


Peter, DC 0 KK is QRV as 4 S 7 KKG from Moragalla, IOTA AS-003, until
April 1, 2019. Activity is on the HF bands using mainly CW and various
digital modes.

In South Sudan, Diya, YI 1 DZ, is active for the next six months as
Z 8 1D. He will be on 80 through 10 meters using SSB and some
Digital modes. QSL via OM 3 JW. He will also use ClubLog and LoTW.

DF13, German special event

Look for special event stations with Prefix's DF13 to be active
until June 30th, 2019.

This to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the maiden flight of the
Junkers F-13, The first all-metal built airplane, was introduced
to civil aviation and is the mother of all commercial aircraft.

All QSOs will be automatically confirmed after July 15th, 2019, with
a QSL card via Bureau. If you do not need a QSL card, let them know.

Send direct QSLs via DM2TO -- shipping starting after August 1st,

For more details and info on awards, see

Panama special event
Look for special event callsign H 31 A to be active until August 15
to commemorate 500th anniversary of the foundation of Panama City.

Activity will be on most HF bands using SSB and the Digital modes
(RTTY, PSK31 and FT8).

QSL manager is HP 1 AVS


Anniversary of the Federal Republic of Germany

Look for special event stations DM 70 GER and DL 70 BRD now active
until December 31st, 2019 to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the
Federal Republic of Germany which was established on May 23rd, 1949.
Operations will be on CW and SSB.


Celebrating its 50th anniversary, Sweden's National Society for
the Active Visually Impaired is active as SF 50 CG throughout 2019.
QSL via SM 0 BYD.


Special call EI 19 RE active for 2019

The special call sign EI 19 RE will be active for the duration of
2019 to commemorate the establishment of the first Irish parliament.
It first met in January of 1919 following a landslide victory for
Irish nationalists in December 1918.


Scouting's Gilwell Park is being honoured through 2019 with GB 100 GP.


In the World of DX, amateurs in Turkey are using the special call
sign TC 10 GITRAD to mark the 10th anniversary of the radio group

They are on the air all year through the 31st of December.

No cards are required. However, if you need a paper QSL card please
mail yours directly to TA 7 AZC and include a stamped self-addressed
envelope and money for postage.




Tony 4 Radio Direction Finding Fun happening in Townsville

If you are in the vicinity of the Townsville Region on Saturday
June 22nd from 1pm and want to get involved in a Foxhunt, or
radio socialise in a nice part of Townsville then Tony VK 4 TJS
wants to hear from you.

You have until Thursday 20th June to get your attendance numbers
in for the Foxhunt.

There will be activities for all family members to participate in
during the Foxhunt and things will end up with some in flight
catering. To cater for the event Tony needs to know your attendance
numbers and you need to quiz Tony further regarding details about
the Foxhunt.

Who do you have to call?

Tony VK4TJS of course, on 47677137



Krystyna 2 E 0 KSH BYLARA Publicity Officer says they have just
produced its first all colour 'Bulletin', coming out each month
throughout its 40th Ruby Anniversary Year and beyond...



Virginia CubeSat Constellation Moves Forward

A project built by a team of University of Virginia engineering
students took step toward outer space this week when they and student
colleagues from Old Dominion University and Virginia Tech delivered
three CubeSats to NanoRacks, an aerospace company in Houston.

NanoRocks will integrate the CubeSats into a deployer aboard a rocket
set for launch next month to the International Space Station.

The satellites are part of the Virginia CubeSat Constellation mission,
a collaborative project of the Virginia Space Grant Consortium and its
four member universities (which also includes Hampton University). The
three nano-satellites, each carrying a UHF packet repeater for amateur
use, were developed by engineering students to obtain measurements of
the properties of the Earth's atmosphere to quantify atmospheric den-

Full article available at:



Fishnet Beacons Shout Out

Nick VK2DX has just posted to the 600m group a reminder about the
fishnet beacons down low between 1,700 KHz and 2,900 KHz. These are
devices that fishermen leave floating near their nets to enable them
to locate and retrieve their nets.

The call has gone out for reports about these devices off the coasts
of Australia and New Zealand.

He is looking for reports for a night or two listening for these
beacons. The fishnet page has the frequencies and identifiers.
An SDR receiver makes this task super easy.


Use of 1850-1900 KHz in Iceland

The Icelandic national society, IRA, reports authorization has been
received to use 1850-1900 kHz in international radio amateur
competitions during 2019

A Google translation of the IRA post reads:

RA received confirmation from the Post and Telecom Administration
February 22, 2019, on authorization to use the frequency range
1850 - 1900 kHz for participation in international radio amateur
competitions during the calendar year 2019.

The authorization is granted with full approval of the Maritime
Traffic Service, which is authorized to use several frequencies
in this frequency range. The same requirements apply to this use
as apply to the frequency range 1810-1850 kHz in a regulation,
but the increased conditions for the Post and Telecom Administration
are as follows:

(a) The authorization is only granted during
the period specified by international radio
amateurs competitions;

(b) G licensees are authorized to use full power, 1kW.
N licensees enjoy the same frequency rights, but power
limit is at most 10W.



2.5 milliwatt OPERA signal via Es'hail-2

Markus, DF 6 N M successfully used the digital mode OPERA to send a
2.5 milliwatt signal through the 2.4 to 10 GHz amateur radio
transponder on the Es'hail-2 / QO-100 geostationary satellite

According to Graham G0NBD writing about the contact on
Digital Radio Groupsio.

DF 6 N M Markus started using 250 milliwatts of OPERA on 2.4 GHz
into a 60 cm dish pointing at Es'hail-2. The downlink signal was
received via the AMSAT-UK and BATC 10 GHz WebSDR at Goonhilly in
Cornwall by Peter Knol PA 1 SDB.

Markus then reduced power to just 2.5 milliwatts and the signal was
still receivable.



History has been made on an Argentinian summit and courtesy of
Amateur Radio Newsline Durrant DD5LP has been following that story.

The highest peak in the SOTA - Summits on the Air - awards scheme,
at the current time, is Aconcagua at 6,962m ASL, which has reference
LUM/PH-001, in the relatively new Argentina (Mendoza) SOTA

This summit was activated for the first time ever on the 16th of
February 2019 by Tom Rudzinski SQ9FVE, operating as LU/SQ9FVE.
Tom is an experienced and skilled mountaineer, as required for such
an undertaking. He planned the expedition carefully including all
necessary support.

The climb to the summit began 13 days before the actual activation
and included several stage camps and acclimatisation strategies.
The actual activation comprised five QSOs on 2 metre FM, all with
Argentinian chasers located around 90km away.

In his post on the SOTA reflector Tom thanks all of his helpers
especially the local Argentinian Hams.

(Ed Durrant DD5LP via ARNewsLine)



Bakelite Patent Awarded 100 Years Ago

Radio amateurs of a certain age are more familiar than most
newcomers with the trade name Bakelite, which derives its name
from its inventor Leo Baekeland, who developed
Bakelite phenolic resin, the first thermosetting plastic, in 1907.

His process patent for making insoluble products of phenol and
formaldehyde -- the components of Bakelite -- was filed that year,
and Baekeland was awarded a patent a century ago come this December.

Bakelite found a place in numerous technologies, including early
ham gear and radios, widely employed as an insulating material.

Once a Bakelite product is formed, it will not change shape or melt
under heat. In compression moulding, the resin is generally combined
with fillers such as wood or asbestos before it's pressed into the
ultimate product shape.

Valve or 'tube' sockets often were constructed using Bakelite.

Ahh... that unmistakeable smell of 'burning Bakelite' when you held
the 'scope soldering iron' on a socket lug 'too long.'


2019 Social Scene

VK7 - Meet the Voice event at Ross March 23-24 (vk7news)

VK4 - Redfest 2019 April 13 (vk4tfn)

Greetings from the Redcliffe and Districts
Radio Club, here in South East Queensland.

Robert Thomson VK4TFN here.

Announcing an important update to REDFEST 2019, to be held at The St. Michael's
College, on the Bribie Island Road, on Saturday 13th April.

The date for booking tables has been brought forward.
Vendors can book theirs tables starting now.
For table bookings email:

Don't forget the raffle, we'll sell tickets at the gate on the day.
At 10:30AM we'll draw the raffle, for a
UHF Digital Mobile Radio transceiver.
TYT model MD-380 value $130.00

Of course: To win it, you must be in it.
And to be in it, you must be at REDFEST 2019
on Saturday the13th April.

For more details please go to:
tripple "w" dot redcliffe radio club dot org dot au
You can also find us on Facebook.

Bye and 73

VK6 - HARGfest April 14 (vk6zms)

VK5 - BRL Radio Group Annual Gathering, Overland Corner, S.A
April 6 (vk5la)

VK3 - Moorabbin & District Radio Club HamFest 2019 Saturday 11th May.

2019 WIA Annual Conference Sydney weekend 24-26 of May. (wia)

VK5 - South East Radio Group 2019 Annual Convention and Australian
Fox Hunting Championships 8-9 June (vk5hcf)

VK3 - GippsTech 2019 13'14 July (vk3pf)

VK3 - Yarra Valley Amateur Group HamFest, 13th October (vk3cnw)

VK3 - Ballarat Amateur Radio Group, BARG Hamvention Oct 27 (vk3kqt)

2020 Social Scene

ALARAMEET 2020 Bendigo (vk5yl)

October 2020 in Bendigo Victoria.

Heidi VK3FHID and Jenny VK3WQ are leading the team who are planning
an eventful weekend. This team is meeting regularly and are looking
forward to seeing you in Bendigo.

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