UBSEDS24 Balloon with SSDV Successfully Launched

UBSED24 flight path May 8, 2017

UBSED24 flight path May 8, 2017

Richard Meadows M0SBU reports there will be a second attempt to launch the Raspberry Pi Zero equipped 434 MHz balloon UBSEDS24 early Monday morning.

Update: At 1700 GMT May 8 the team reported “Our Raspberry Pi Zero balloon #UBSEDS24 is over France”.

On the UKHAS Google Group Richard writes:

There’s going to be another attempt to launch this flight from Bristol this Monday, May 8 between 0500 and 0530 BST [0400-0430 GMT]. This is weather permitting, but the forecast looks okay at the moment.

This launch is using a 1.9m envelope and longer payload train, and so there’s a NOTAM in place. This tracker has a Raspberry Pi Zero V1.3 attached, which transmits images when solar power is available. It’s a different design to our launch last August; in this case the tracker will continue to operate even if the pi fails. For the curious the ‘pi status’ telemetry values are: 0 = off, 1 = on, 2 = PITS started, 3 = SSDV started).

SSDV picture taken by from UBSEDS24 on May 8, 2017

SSDV picture taken by from UBSEDS24 on May 8, 2017

There will hopefully be a cutdown mounted between the balloon and the tracker. We’ll be testing the 434 MHz uplink to this whilst it’s still in range of Bristol; if it returns over the UK at a convenient time and place we will attempt to trigger the cutdown.

The tracker has several transmissions:

– 434.635 MHz USB Telemetry – Contestia 16/1000 with pips and RSID, transmitting telemetry. Once per minute below 8km altitude and every two minutes otherwise.

– 434.637.5 MHz SSDV – Two modes:
(1) While balloon over UK and English channel GMSK at 12 ksymbol/s. 4×4 interleaved, R=1/2 convolutional K=5, HDLC framing, whitened etc. as per the AX5043 manual. Concatenated with RS(255,223) to mop up some burst errors.
(2) Outside UK 300 baud RTTY, 850 Hz shift, 8N2.

If you are listening to the RTTY, remember to turn off the ‘RxID’ button on the top right of dl-fldigi.

Rather than the usual JPEG SSDV, this is transmitting Better Portable Graphics (BPG) images. This is experimental, and ssdv.habhub.org doesn’t support it just yet. Hence receivers should upload to http://ssdv.bristol-seds.co.uk instead, please read the instructions on this site. You’ll need dl-fldigi release 3.2, as explained on the site. James Coxon M6JCX has made the dl-fldigi release available at: https://github.com/jamescoxon/dl-fldigi/releases/tag/3.2

The flight is expected to head south towards France. Many thanks to everyone who attempts to track this.

Track the balloon online at https://tracker.habhub.org/

Listen to the balloon online with the SUWS WebSDR link at https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/balloons/

UBSEDS https://twitter.com/bristolseds
http://www.bristol-seds.co.uk/hab/flight/2017/05/08/ubseds24.html

Richard M0SBU who is involved in the UBSEDS project took the amateur radio training courses run by the Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society (CARS) at Danbury in Essex. Further information on the courses is available from the CARS Training Coordinator, Christopher G0IPU
Tel: 07908-107951
Email: training2017 at g0mwt.org.uk
Web: http://g0mwt.org.uk/training

What is Amateur Radio? http://www.essexham.co.uk/what-is-amateur-radio

Find an amateur radio training course near you https://thersgb.org/services/coursefinder/

Argentine balloon to fly to South Africa and beyond

Picoglobo Amateur Radio WSPR Balloon

Picoglobo Amateur Radio WSPR Balloon

On Saturday, April 8 at 08:00 GMT, weather permitting, Amsat Argentina plans to launch the amateur radio HF WSPR Leila PicoBalloon from the East Argentina coast.

This 24 gram PicoBalloon, with micro Atmel328, of long duration (circumnavigator) would flight around 13,500 meters height, possibly heading to South Africa and beyond.

Its tracker is powered by solar panels and a small supercapacitor, only emits during its day.

It will transmit every 10 minutes its WSPR 25mW beacon in 20m, dial in 14095.6 kHz USB, now active as test from Castelar, Buenos Aires.

The WSPR mode of K1JT is used to send and receive weak signals. It can receive up to 28dB below noise.

The 1st 2-minute broadcast transmits LU7AA, Locator and power in dBm, 2nd, height, temperature and voltage.

WSPR can be downloaded from http://amsat.org.ar/wspr.exe or http://physics.princeton.edu/pulsar/K1JT/WSPR2_r1714.EXE

To operate connect PC audio output and input to the transceiver, it can also be coupled acoustically.

If running WSPR mark UPLOAD SPOTS, your reception reports via Internet will be uploaded  in wsprnet.

Each report uploaded to http://wsprnet.org/ will allow to see where is the picoballoon, heading, height, voltages, temp, and so on.

It is important to have the largest number of receiving stations, which will help track Leila.

There is a Spanish presentation available at http://amsat.org.ar/wspr.ppt

You could track Leila and see your own reports at: http://lu7aa.org/wspr.asp and / or http://aprs.fi?call=lu7aa-15

Thank you for being part of this experience and if possible disseminate this information.

73, LU7AA, Amsat Argentina
http://amsat.org.ar/
https://facebook.com/Amsat.LU

Bristol 434 MHz balloon launch

UBSEDS18 Solar Powered BalloonWeather permitting there will be a 434 MHz pico balloon launched from Bristol on Tuesday, February 28 at 0830 GMT.

Richard Meadows M0SBU from University of Bristol Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (UBSEDS) writes:

This launch is using a 1.5m envelope and the attempted float altitude will be about 12 km.

The payload is a new tracker design that uses an AX5043 radio. It will be transmitting pips, RSID and Contestia 16/1000 on 434.635 MHz USB, once every two minutes. Callsign “UBSEDS23”.

Between the Contestia transmissions the AX5043 radio will also be used to transmit GMSK at 24 ksymbol/s, centered on 434.637.5 MHz. It’s 4×4 interleaved, R=1/2 convolutional K=5, HDLC framing, whitened etc. as per the AX5043 manual.

This is concatenated with RS(255,223) to mop up some burst errors. IQ recordings of this might be useful so that the data can be extracted once a software decoder exists. Callsign “UBSEDS23G”.

Track the balloon online at https://tracker.habhub.org/

UBSEDS http://www.bristol-seds.co.uk/

Useful High Altitude Balloon links https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/balloons/

Richard M0SBU who is involved in the UBSEDS project took the amateur radio training courses run by the Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society (CARS) at Danbury in Essex. Further information on the courses is available from the CARS Training Coordinator, Christopher G0IPU
Tel: 07908-107951
Email: training2017 at g0mwt.org.uk
Web: http://g0mwt.org.uk/training

What is Amateur Radio? http://www.essexham.co.uk/what-is-amateur-radio

Find an amateur radio training course near you https://thersgb.org/services/coursefinder/

UBSEDS15 balloon launches from Bristol Saturday

UBSEDS balloon envelope

UBSEDS balloon envelope

In March the 434 MHz and APRS balloon UBSEDS14 flew around the northern hemisphere. On Saturday, April 30 a new balloon UBSEDS15 will be launched by the University of Bristol Students for the Exploration and Development of Space. The signal from the balloon may have a range of 400 km so should be receivable across the southern UK.

Richard Meadows M0SBU writes:

Another pico launch from Bristol this Saturday, April 30. The launch will be at 0900 ISH. As before the payload is transmitting on 434.600 MHz USB, with an output power of about +6dBm. Each transmission of Contestia 16/1000 will be preceded by 10 seconds of pips and RSID.

This payload uses solar panels to generate power. Hopefully the transmission rate will be once per minute during the day, and once every two minutes at night (if the payload operates at night). It’s also capable of transmitting APRS packets, but will only do so outside countries where the amateur license is not permitted airborne (like the UK).

It will probably head south quite quickly after launch, so trackers on the south coast are particularly appreciated. More details will appear on the website http://www.bristol-seds.co.uk/flights.html

UBSEDS14 tracker payload

UBSEDS tracker payload

Despite the weight constraints the team have managed to employ sophisticated Geofencing technology to prevent the balloon transmitting when over certain countries and also to select different APRS frequencies depending on the territory being overflown.

UBSEDS on Twitter https://twitter.com/bristolseds

Online real-time tracking of balloons http://tracker.habhub.org/

Useful High Altitude Balloon Links https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/balloons/

UBSEDS15 Solar Powered Balloon http://www.bristol-seds.co.uk/hab/flight/2016/04/30/ubseds15.html

UBSEDS14 around the world balloon http://www.bristol-seds.co.uk/hab/flight/2016/03/07/ubseds14.html

One of the students involved in the project is Richard Meadows M0SBU. He took the amateur radio courses run by the Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society (CARS) at Danbury in Essex. Further information on the courses is available from the CARS Training Manager
Email: training2016 at g0mwt.org.uk
Web: http://g0mwt.org.uk/training

What is Amateur Radio? http://www.essexham.co.uk/what-is-amateur-radio

Find an amateur radio training course near you https://thersgb.org/services/coursefinder/

A free booklet is available aimed at introducing newcomers to the hobby that can also be used as a handy reference while getting started, see
http://rsgb.org/main/get-started-in-amateur-radio/alex-discovers-amateur-radio-2/

UK student balloon crosses Pacific

UBSEDS14 balloon track as at 19:02 GMT March 17, 2016

UBSEDS14 balloon track as at 19:02 GMT March 17, 2016

On Thursday, March 17 the UBSEDS14 balloon, launched by University of Bristol students, had successfully crossed the Pacific and was above Arizona, having traveled over 24,500 km since launch.

The University of Bristol Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (UBSEDS) launched their balloon on Monday, March 8. Powered by a single AA Lithium Energiser Battery (LR91) the balloon has been transmitting about 5dBm of Contestia 16/1000 on 434.600 MHz USB at 4 minute intervals as well as APRS during its flight at an altitude of about 11,000m.

The balloon has a diameter of 1.5m and the payload weighs just 21.3 grams. Despite the weight constraints the team have managed to employ sophisticated Geofencing technology to prevent the balloon transmitting when over certain countries and also to select different APRS frequencies depending on the territory being overflown.

UBSEDS14 information is available at
http://www.bristol-seds.co.uk/hab/flight/2016/03/07/ubseds14.html

UBSEDS14 balloon launch
http://www.southgatearc.org/news/2016/march/ubseds14_balloon_launches_today.htm

Useful High Altitude Balloon Links https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/balloons/

One of the students involved in the project is Richard Meadows M0SBU. He took the amateur radio courses run by the Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society (CARS) at Danbury in Essex. Further information on the courses is available from the CARS Training Manager
Email: training2016 at g0mwt.org.uk
Web: http://g0mwt.org.uk/training

What is Amateur Radio? http://www.essexham.co.uk/what-is-amateur-radio

Find an amateur radio training course near you https://thersgb.org/services/coursefinder/

A free booklet is available aimed at introducing newcomers to the hobby that can also be used as a handy reference while getting started, see
http://rsgb.org/main/get-started-in-amateur-radio/alex-discovers-amateur-radio-2/

UBSEDS14 balloon flying across Pacific

UBSEDS14 balloon flight track as at March 14, 2016

UBSEDS14 balloon flight track as at March 14, 2016

On Monday, March 14 the UBSEDS14 balloon, launched by University of Bristol students, passed over Japan and out towards the Pacific, having traveled over 15,497 km since launch.

The University of Bristol Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (UBSEDS) launched their balloon on Monday, March 8. Powered by a single AA Lithium Energiser Battery (LR91) the balloon has been transmitting about 5dBm of Contestia 16/1000 on 434.600 MHz USB at 4 minute intervals as well as APRS during its flight at an altitude of about 11,000m.

The balloon has a diameter of 1.5m and the payload weighs just 21.3 grams. Despite the weight constraints the team have managed to employ sophisticated Geofencing technology to prevent the balloon transmitting when over certain countries and also to select different APRS frequencies depending on the territory being overflown.

UBSEDS14 information is available at
http://www.bristol-seds.co.uk/hab/flight/2016/03/07/ubseds14.html

UBSEDS14 balloon launch
http://www.southgatearc.org/news/2016/march/ubseds14_balloon_launches_today.htm

Useful High Altitude Balloon Links https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/balloons/

One of the students involved in the project is Richard Meadows M0SBU. He took the amateur radio courses run by the Chelmsford Amateur Radio Society (CARS) at Danbury in Essex. Further information on the courses is available from the CARS Training Manager
Email: training2016 at g0mwt.org.uk
Web: http://g0mwt.org.uk/training

What is Amateur Radio? http://www.essexham.co.uk/what-is-amateur-radio

Find an amateur radio training course near you https://thersgb.org/services/coursefinder/

A free booklet is available aimed at introducing newcomers to the hobby that can also be used as a handy reference while getting started, see
http://rsgb.org/main/get-started-in-amateur-radio/alex-discovers-amateur-radio-2/