CCARC NEWS 13-15
THE PERIODIC NEWSLETTER OF THE CENTRAL COAST AMATEUR RADIO CLUB
ISSUE No 13-15 21st. April 2013
In this Issue:
- CCARC activation in WIA National Field Day.
- SOTA – A new Amateur Radio activity in Australia.
- Will you call sign be AXed on Thursday?
- Broke & fixed.
1. CCARC activation in WIA National Field Day.
As planned last Sunday (April 14th.) saw some CCARC members active in public areas advertising our hobby.
The stations were located at Gosford Waterfront and the Lions Club Park at Woy Woy.
Thanks to Doug VK2MDC, Jim VK2LC, Glenn VL2GEM, Ian VK2HK, Rod VK2LAX and Bob VK2PEP for their support of these sites. Here is a gallery of photos taken
at Gosford waterfront
and at the Lions Park in Woy Woy.
2. SOTA – A new Amateur Radio activity in Australia
Portable operation either in contests, in emergency communications or simply for the fun of it, has always been part of the AR hobby. Combining bush walking or even climbing with portable operation has now been recognised in a more formalised way in the form of the “Summits on the AIR” awards program or SOTA for short. As you may realise from it’s “On the Air” title, this is another RSGB, UK created activity along with the more famous Islands on the Air and several other (e.g. churches, stately homes, railways and even canal boats on the air).
This is an international activity with Australia being one of the latest countries to join. Well I say countries but actually currently only VK1,3 &5 are part of the organisation. The problem is that before a state can become part of SOTA all summits (peaks) in that state need to be classified and approved, so that only “real” summits get included and points allocated depending upon their height. Each state has been split up into regions, to make it easier to get all summits classified quicker by having more people performing the work concurrently. The work is all computer / mapping based, each summit does not need to be visited to be classified. In the case of VK2 work has started but there is still a lot of work to be done before the submission can be made for approval for VK2 summits to be included as point scoring peaks. Work is mostly being done by existing activators and chasers in VK3, VK1 and even VK5, so I and Rod VK2LAX have volunteered our services to help push the work along a little quicker. If other club members are interested in helping please contact Rod or myself.
Even before VK2 is classified and accepted, it is possible to take part in SOTA as a “chaser” – that is someone working from home who talks with one of the stations on a classified summit. I have worked stations on Summits in VK1 and heard but not yet worked some in VK3 & VK5.
The people who struggle through bushland carrying batteries, rigs and antennas to these peaks are called “activators” and their efforts count to different awards that the chasers. Where an activator on one summit works another activator on another summit, more points are awarded.
This is a fun facet of the hobby, which gets the more fit members of the hobby out in the fresh air and hopefully sunshine, combining exercise and the AR hobby. Equipment used is necessarily lightweight and relatively low power and both HF and VHF/UHF equipment is used.
For more general details about SOTA, check out the SOTA website at: http://www.sota.org.uk/
If you want to see who is planning to be active in the coming days (or are currently active) check out SOTA Watch at: http://www.sotawatch.org/alerts.php
3. Will you call sign be AXed on Thursday?
As we all know, Thursday is ANZAC day. One of the days in the year, along with Australia day and World Telecommunications Day, when the VK prefix can be replaced with the AX prefix. So VK2JI could become AX2JI – it’s like all Australian radio amateurs having a special event call sign for a day. Often on the HF bands foreign stations will come back to an AX call sign when they might not bother with a VK one.
So – on Thursday will your call sign be “AX ed” ?
4. Broke & fixed.
No items for Broke & Fixed this week – all CCARC infrastructure is operational.
This new section will list items from previous CCARC NEWS that are still current and may need your input:
- CCARC-NEWS 13-11 Club Raffle – Digital TV set.
- CCARC-NEWS 13-10 New club member sales page open for business.
Anyone reading this on the website who is not yet a member of the CCARC, please consider joining by emailing ccarc @ ccarc.org.au for full details. We currently have no joining fee and the annual membership fee is A$30.00.
For what’s coming up in the next few months at the CCARC, please check the club calendar, accessible from the header on any page on the website.