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2022 DECEMBER 25 VK NATIONAL NEWS BROADCAST ON VK1WIA
THE BEST NEWS YOU'LL GET ALL WEEK
THIS LINK IS A VIDEO VERSION OF NEWS COMPILED BY VK5BD BEVAN
NATIONAL NEWS FOR WEEK COMMENCING DECEMBER 25 2022
IN OUR 27th YEAR OF NON STOP NEWS
A HAPPY CHRISTMAS DAY FROM VK1WIA, the WIA and ALARA
I'm Michelle VK2AYL President of ALARA and joining me on Christmas
Day is Shirley VK5YL who will be covering the International Desk
Marija VK5MAZ with the operational news covering contests
and a look through the "DX Window"
Linda VK7QP will handle special Interest Group news
and let's welcome from the States and ARNewsLine Sal Embee KB 3 TZD.
But joining us now WIA Immediate Past President Greg Kelly VK2GPK.
Welcome everyone to an entirely ALARA produced edition of the
WIA News Broadcast. ALARA being the Australian Ladies Amateur Radio
Association, formed in 1975 with a mission to encourage womens
interest and active participation in amateur radio.
After another lap around the sun, we approach the end of another year.
This year has been another of natural disasters affecting us here in
the land of drought and flooding rains, this time with catastrophic
flooding in the eastern states that are still impacting so many.
These events do, however, highlight the great community spirit as
volunteers rally to help those in need.
Overseas, an illegal war demonstrates both the best and worst of
This year the ACMA (Australian Communication and Media Authority)
continued their march to Class Licences, with the release of another
consultation seeking feedback on their intent to move the Amateur
Service to a class licence, apparently based on a mantra of being
concerned only with the what not the how. The consultation also
sought feedback on the basis for a higher power operation, although
I should note these two topics are quite unrelated apart being
included in the same consultation. The WIA formed a working group to
address the issues in this consultation which was due at the end of
November. The WIA has a firm position on a move to a class licence
of no disadvantage. I must congratulate the consultation working
group, led by Peter Young, for a professional and comprehensive
response that they have formulated which has now been submitted.
The response addresses all of the identified gaps and disadvantages
in moving to a class licence. However, the elimination of an
individual government issued licence poses non-trivial challenges to
offset - which have been raised by the working group in the WIA
response. Whilst elimination of individual licences is intrinsic to
moving to a class licence, it has many consequences that are not
easily avoided and likely workarounds are far from perfect. Some of
these are reciprocal licence impacts for Australian Amateurs; state
based legislation that refers specifically to the possession of a
licence (such as the 10 metre antenna provisions); issues with
police stopping and querying mobile amateurs either in vehicles or in
parks, etc.; transiting customs internationally when in possession
of transmitting equipment. We have a culture of licensing in
Australia, a plumber, mechanic or electrician needs to be licensed
not just qualified. That license and its veracity is on a public
government register as are Amateur Licences today.
In discussions with fellow amateurs, there is some confusion as to
what moving to a class licence entails. It is not, as many
oversimplify, a free licence it is in fact NO LICENCE. Nor is it
a pre-requisite to higher power options. Fundamentally, the
USE CASE for a class licence for the Amateur Service is a poor fit,
especially given we have a perfectly serviceable Non-assigned
Apparatus Licence. Akin to putting a square peg in a round hole!
Quoting directly from an ACMA published document Our approach to
radiocommunications licensing and allocation Implementing the
Radiocommunications Legislation Amendment (Reform and Modernisation)
Act 2020 Commonwealth of Australia (Australian Communications and
Media Authority) 2021.
It states When class licensing is appropriate -
Class licences provide for shared use of the spectrum, with minimal
to no licensing hurdles and no associated regulatory fees for users.
In other countries this kind of licence is sometimes referred to as
unlicensed use or a general authorisation.
Class licensing is useful in authorising the use of spectrum by
unaware users (end- users who are not necessarily mindful of their
use of the spectrum) and ubiquitous devices and technologies
(for example, Wi-Fi), as the general authorisation provided means
that users do not need to acquire individual licences to operate a
Coexistence between devices authorised under a class licence is
generally based on the device characteristics and is managed in the
class licence conditions. Although a device operated under a class
licence is generally not expected to suffer interference, we
generally have a no protection policy regarding class licensing.
It is uncommon for us (ed: the ACMA) to clear established users from
class-licensed spectrum. However, we have previously varied class
licences to reflect changes in the environment or developments in
technology by providing additional uses or varied operating
Finally, it must be understood that moving to Class Licence is a
really big deal the biggest change in many decades. And if we,
that is both the Amateur Service and the ACMA, get it wrong it will
be difficult if not almost impossible to rectify. And as I mentioned
early there is much confusion about the real-world impacts, so your
help in making this a topic of discussion at your local club or on
the air would be appreciated.
So enough from me, I wish you all a very Merry Christmas,
Seasons Greetings, Happy Holidays and a great new year. And thanks
again to ALARA for this broadcast maybe this could become a
regular feature? What do you think?
This Greg, VK2GPK.
Welcome to the Christmas Day edition of WIA National News
Presented by ALARA. Now Shirley VK5YL with
INTERNATIONAL NEWS With thanks to IARU, RSGB, RAC,
ARRL, NZART, eHam, AMATEUR RADIO NEWSLINE,
and the World Wide sources of the WIA.
We commence with news from REGION THREE, our own region.
HAMS HELP RETURN LOST 5-YEAR-OLD TO FAMILY
A children's game of hide-and-seek at a railway station went very
wrong in August of 2020, when a 5-year-old girl chose an unfortunate
spot to hide from her three brothers: a train that pulled out of the
station shortly afterwards.
She was eventually able to disembark farther down the line at the
Kolkata Railway Station but because she spoke only Hindi and not
Bengali, she could only explain her situation with her tears when
police found her crying at the station.
According to a report in the Millennium Post, a year passed in which
the girl was sent by an NGO to a children's care home and enrolled in
school. She gained fluency in Bengali and soon became an honours
student in her class. Unable to track down her parents all this time,
the administrators of the private home notified the West Bengal
Radio Club of the girl's predicament, according to Ambarish Nag Biswas,
VU2JFA. Club members utilised their network of contacts and were able
to trace her family to a bordering state in eastern India.
Photographs shared with the family on the WhatsApp mobile platform
confirmed that this was indeed their missing daughter.
The little girl went home on Saturday, December 10th.
In the US recently, hams teamed up for a radio activation that turned
out to be a living museum and a tribute to history.
Visitors to the Vintage Radio and Communications Museum of
Connecticut were part of a celebration of history taking place, they
watched and heard as Bob Allison, WB 1 GCM, got on the air using a
repurposed Gates BC-1-T commercial transmitter using the callsign
W1VCM/1BCG for AM operation on 75 meters.
Bob was marking the 101st anniversary of amateur station 1BCG's
contact with Scotland during the ARRL Transatlantic Test of 1921.
Bob, president of the museum's amateur radio club, told our good
friends at Amateur Radio NewsLine:
"December 11 is a great day to celebrate Amateur Radio, as the day
marks the many technological successes of the era: CW's efficiency
and effectiveness over spark, the use of a superheterodyne radio
receiver, and the directional Beverage Antenna."
This year, more modern equipment joined the refurbished Gates
transmitter during Bob's three-hour activation, which also included
time spent on 40M and 2M sideband.
Before he left for the day, Bob made sure he logged one more
important contact: Bob talked to the museum visitors who'd been
observing him on the radio to share in the triumph of more than a
The Question Pool Committee of the National Conference of Volunteer
Examiner Coordinators has released updated questions for the US
General Class license exam.
Quite a few VK hams do sit the US exams from here at home in
Australia thanks to the VEA ( Volunteer Examiners Australia )
According to the ARRL, the new pool contains 432 questions to use in
formulating the Element 3 exam for test sessions held between
July 1, 2023 and June 30, 2027.
The new pool has 22 fewer questions than the current one,
representing 73 questions being dropped and 51 new ones being added.
The ARRL says the level of difficulty of questions is more balanced,
and the techniques and practices addressed have been updated.
Colonel Jerry Wellman, W7SAR Receives Top Honours
W7SAR served as the Utah Wing Civil Air Patrol commander from
2009 to 13, served as the emergency services training officer
for the Salt Lake Senior Squadron, and currently serves as the
Phoenix Cadet Squadron's assistant officer for communication
and for education and training.
At the award ceremony, Colonel Wellman was cited for being
"active in enhancing his own emergency management professional
development, while relentlessly contributing to his community."
He taught emergency management communications classes in Arizona,
Utah, and Colorado, and chaired the Kearns, Utah, Metro Township
Emergency Planning Commission.
Wellman was licensed in 1972 and holds an Amateur Extra-class
license. He is an ARRL Life Member and a Life Member of REACT
Welcome to the Christmas Day edition of WIA National News Presented
by ALARA. Now Marija VK5MAZ with HAM RADIO OPERATIONAL NEWS
CONTEST WISE:- 2023
1 - 31 January Ross Hull Memorial VHF/UHF DX Contest ( Marathon )
The contest was established in 1950 to honour the memory of
the late Ross A. Hull and his pioneering achievements in the
study of tropospheric propagation and the development of new
equipment techniques for the higher bands.
Entrants may operate on every contest day, but the final score
is based on the best seven days nominated by the entrant.
For amateurs with limited operating time, there is also a
"Best 2 Days" section.
LOGS DUE IN 14th FEBRUARY
14 - 15 January Summer VHF-UHF Field Day.
0100 UTC Saturday to 0059 UTC Sunday BUT in VK6 add 3 hours
onto start and end times.
26th of January Australia Day Contest
This contest is to encourage Amateur Radio Activity around the world
and is designed to encourage friendly participation and help improve
the operating skills of participants.
Amateurs in VK will endeavour to contact other amateurs around the
world. VK operators can use the AX prefix as they celebrate Australia
Scoring is distance based, calculated using 4-character grid squares.
Contest is held on the Australia Day Public Holiday, 26 January.
Contest Manager is Alan Shannon VK4SN
MAY 20-21 Don Edwards Memorial Slow Morse Contest ( sgars.org
August 26 - 27 A.L.A.R.A. CONTEST
Contest is always on the last FULL weekend of August.
All licensed operators throughout the world are invited to
participate. Scout and Girl Guide groups are encouraged to
participate using their Club's equipment and callsign.
YLs work everyone; OMs work YLs only.
Combined phone and CW run over 24 hours:
Saturday 0600 hours UTC till Sunday 0559 hours UTC
All HF Bands except 160m & WARC Bands.
ECHOLINK will also be accepted.
BOUVET ISLAND HAMS LAUNCH PROPAGATION POLL
Few of us need reminders that the Bouvet Island DXpeditioners who'll
be activating 3 Y J from the remote island are setting sail in
less than a month.
The 22-day on-air operation will be trying to log more than 200,000
With Bouvet in the number two spot on the DXCC Most Wanted List, this
is not an impossible goal. While others have activated Bouvet over
the years, none have approached logging that many QSOs.
The team is committed to making contacts.
If you visit the DXpedition website, 3YJ.no you will find a
propagation poll under the tab labelled "Latest News." This will
enable interested DXpedition chasers to provide the team with details
about their station setup, including power and antenna, so that the
operators can approximate propagation to a certain region based on
the stations calling them from there.
During this month the Fisher's Ghost Amateur Radio Club in VK2 are
celebrating its 40th anniversary with special event callsign VI 2 FG 40.
Activity will be mainly on 40m SSB.
More information can be found on the QRZ page for VI 2 FG 40.
Be listening for Earl, WA 3 DX operating from Senegal until January
20th, mainly using FT8.
He will use his home call with a prefix.
In Dakar, he will use the prefix 6W1;
in Mbao, he will use 6W7
on Kaolack and Saloum Islands (IOTA number AF-045), his prefix will
Send QSL direct to WA3DX or via LoTW.
Listen for the callsign TN 8 K from the Republic of Congo, activated
by the C-D-X-P Group.
The team from the Czech Republic expects to operate between Jan 7 and
19 on the HF bands from 160m to 6m using CW, SSB, RTTY , FT8, FT4
They will also make use of the QO-100 satellite.
QSL via OK6DJ, OQRS or LOTW.
Welcome to the Christmas Day edition of WIA National News
Presented by ALARA. Joining us again their President
Michelle VK2AYL with Wireless Weather and Media Watch
>From January 2023, Amateur Radio NSW will be making some changes to
VK2WI News frequencies starting with 6 metre and 80 metre
The 6 metre news bulletins will move to the VK2RWI repeater 53.85MHz,
and 80 metre transmissions will move up to 3695kHz.
The Propagation Horoscope
Solar Cycle 25 is expected to peak around July 2025, about 32 months
from now. Looking at current numbers and predictions, it's worth taking
into account reports from Solar Cycle 19, around 1958, when intense
solar radiation produced long lasting, worldwide openings on 10m.
Solar Cycle 19 had by far the highest sunspot number on record.
HF propagation improves at higher frequencies when X-rays from the Sun
are more intense, and this is tied to the sunspot numbers, together
with the Sun's radiation, measured at 28 GHz. This radiation charges
the ionosphere, increasing density.
The Australian Space Weather Forecast Centre currently predicts that a
large mid-latitude coronal hole, helped by some glancing interaction
of recent CMEs, will cause geomagnetic disturbance. It's too early to
predict if the expected G1 storm will put a temporary halt to the
excellent propagation conditions of late, VK/ZL, Asia and Africa
can be heard on all bands in most of Europe at the moment.
(Sourced to IRTS)
WORLD WIDE SPECIAL INTEREST GROUP NEWS - AND - SUMMITS ON THE AIR,
WORLD WIDE FLORA, FAUNA PROGRAM, PARKS ON THE AIR and other
ADVENTURE GROUPS on CHRISTMAS DAY our presenter from ALARA is
ROMANIAN EVENT MARKS HIKING TRAIL'S INAUGURAL YEAR
>From now through the first half of the new year, amateurs in Romania
will be celebrating that nation's newest natural resource: a hiking
trail. No doubt plenty of opportunity to activate summits, parks
what have you.
The journey of discovery that comes with hiking along Romania's
"Via Transilvanica" is an adventure for hikers cyclists and horseback
riders. It's a 1,400-km trail which had taken four years of
The journey which marks the trail's inauguration is also one for
amateur radio operators. Radio Club YO 6 KGS is activating special
event station YR 1400 VT on the HF bands from now 'til the 30th of
June 2023. It's a celebration of the long-distance trail that
Romania sees as its counterpart to the El Camio de Santiago in
Western Europe. While hikers hope to gain insights into their own
lives in a natural setting, amateur radio operators and shortwave
listeners around the world can work towards diplomas at different
levels according to the number of contacts with other operators, many
of whom will be young amateurs and members of the YO 6 KGS
School Radio Club.
Listen for their call sign on SSB and CW.
CW speeds will not exceed 14 wpm.
For details about the rules and awards visit the QRZ.COM
and wherever you are, enjoy the journey.
>From Romania to France and celebrating the 15th anniversary of
Summits On The Air France, special callsign TM 15 SOTA is active
until Friday the 30th of December UTC .
QSL via eQSL.
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS - FINAL FRONTIER
AMSAT-VK Secretary - secr...@amsat-vk.org
On December 9th, the CAS-5A satellite was launched on a vehicle from
the Chinese sea launch platform in the Yellow Sea.
The Chinese Amateur Satellite Group CAMSAT build is an unusual
satellite in that it has transponders with a down-link in the
70cm band and up-links on the 2m VHF and the 15m HF band.
The novel HF to UHF linear transponder listens between 21.4275 MHz
and 21.4425 MHz, and that slice of HF spectrum is retransmitted
between 435.4975 MHz and 435.5125 MHz.
A CW Beacon transmits 22 wpm on 435.570 MHz.
At moderate power levels, an HF transmitter and a 21 MHz dipole,
combined with an outdoor low-gain UHF antenna should be sufficient
to work OSCAR-118.
(sourced to IRTS)
FalconSat-3 is being made available for use for 24 hour periods
FalconSAT-3 was built in 2005 and 6 by cadets and faculty in the
Space Systems Research Centre at the US Air Force Academy in
Colorado Springs and launched 2007.
The satellite is decaying, and near re-entry so
use it while you can!
Downlink is 435.103 MHz, uplink is at 145.840 MHz.
The ARS VHF receiver is very sensitive. Modulation is 9600 bps GMSK
for the uplink and downlink. The broadcast callsign is PFS3-11 and
BBS callsign is PFS3-12, Unproto APRS via PFS3-1.
Again we direct all listeners to become readers to get all details
of all stories brought to you each week in WIA National News.
Best read at wia.org.au
(ANS - AMSAT)
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- IOTA
A team will be on the air from Lampedusa Island, IOTA number AF-019
as IG9/S59A from January 23rd to the 31st.
The operation will focus on the CQWW 160 metre CW contest during the
last full weekend of January.
Outside of the contest, be listening on all bands and all modes for
the prefix IG9 (Eye G Nine) before home calls.
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- RESCUE RADIO
IARU REGION 3
Emergency Centre of Activity (CoA) frequencies
3.600, 7.110, 14.300, 18.160 and 21.360 MHz
Region 1 3760 7110 14300 18160 21360 kHz
Region 2 3750 3985 7060 7240 7275 14300 18160 21360kHz
DMR RADIO AIDS RESCUERS SEARCHING FOR LOST HIKER
The lifesaving capabilities of DMR proved useful to a hiker in
New Hampshire recently. Sel Embee KB3TZD from our sister service in
the USA has that story.
SEL: A relaxing day with his dog turned into a dangerous trek for a
ham who was hiking the trails of central New Hampshire. He had
become lost -- and the coming sunset and forecast of snow put him in
even greater danger, especially after the battery in his cell phone
died. He had been carrying his DMR HT, however, and placed a call for
help on the state-wide talkgroup using a local repeater.
Bill Barber, NE 1 B, heard the call and was able to contact the man's
wife. She notified police who joined firefighters in starting a
search. Bill also contacted Rick Zach, K 1-RJZ, who knows the area's
trails. Rick stayed in touch with the lost amateur on the state-wide
talk group while communicating with the search team.
At one point, the amateur unintentionally changed channels on his HT
but another amateur, K 1-MIZ, noticed this and was able to restore
communications. The ham found his way to a road and was picked up by
Skip's story did not identify the ham but wrote that thanks to the
three amateurs who heard his call on DMR "the wayward ham is going
to be able to enjoy another Christmas holiday with his family."
This is Sel Embee, KB 3TZD.
WW SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS --- YOTA
(Youngsters On The Air)
When you are an amateur radio operator, it's easy to make someone
else happy. That's what a retiree in Oregon and a youngster in
Wisconsin both recently discovered.
A late November day found Chris Billings, WA7RAR, activating a local
park near his Oregon home. It was Thanksgiving Day and in a fitting
mood for the US holiday, Chris was grateful to find 10 meters open.
He decided to call CQ on that small portion of the band where
Technician class operators can legally operate SSB on HF, hoping to
give newcomers a chance to work him.
A young voice emerged from the pileup:
It was Bennett Bachman, KD9WCG, age 10.
Chris learned that this was an especially happy moment for the new
ham. This was only his second QSO on 10 meters.
Chris mailed Bennett a QSL card along with a note that he wasn't
expecting Bennett to respond, especially if he had no QSL cards of
his own yet.
On December 8th, it was Chris' turn to have a happy moment: something
from Bennett arrived - a handmade QSL card. Bennett designed the
cards himself, sending one to Chris and the other to his first 10m
contact, Gordon West, WB6NOA.
His first contact was a joyful moment too because Bennett had
studied for his license using Gordon's Technician guide.
Bennett is now trying to start a ham radio club at school and is
studying for his General class license so he can be less dependent
on 10m band openings.
Chris, however, is glad Bennett found him on that 10m opening on
Thanksgiving Day. Posting on Facebook, he publicly thanked Bennett
for the handcrafted card, adding
"I love to find cards in my mailbox and this is certainly one of the
Social Scene 2023
VK2 - Central Coast Amateur Radio Club will NOT run "Mayham" in 2023;
the event group are refocusing and re-aligning the direction of
the event, and hope to return it in 2024. (vk2wi)
VK3 - BARG HamFest 5th of February BARG clubrooms
VK - ALARAMeet2023 4/5 November in HOBART (lut...@bigpond.com
WIA News rebroadcasters often give Short Wave Listeners a
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