[aprssig] Balloon Launch Check-list.... jet stream floater coming to eastern US soon.

K. Mark Caviezel kmcaviezel at yahoo.com
Mon Sep 26 14:52:08 CDT 2005

Great list of suggestions. 
In general I follow them for my "ES-OS" launches, and
choose to ignore the negative QRM email I get from
some hams ascerting that an airborne beacon on 144.39
will cripple the entire APRS network. 
I used to fly WIDE, now I'll fly WIDE2-1 under new
paradigm. Normally for high altitude flights, I get a
good copy and decode of the direct beacon, the single
digi hop may be useful if I am nulled directly under
the balloon.   

I've flown the same NG0X-11 beacon (text includes
'Balloon') in my hot air balloon for over a dozen
flights..... haven't yet had any hams show up to help
share the post-flight champagne, yet. 

High altitude balloon hams in the western US are
plotting a multi-day, ballast dropping jet stream
floater, less than 12 lbs and flying exempt under the
auspices of FAA part 101... hopefully it will be
showing up on the east coast of the US in November. 
Flight rules are simple- in normal flight, never
exceed 200 foot per minute descent, dump some ballast
if under 30k feet (except during initial climb), and
cut the 2nd balloon away when the Atlantic Ocean is
near.  The flight will be on two identical home built
zero pressure floating balloons, flight termination
achieved by cutting away one balloon, initiating a
gentle buoyancy dominated descent, which has a few
a).  avoids destructive 'post burst chaos' which is
more violent than most people imagine it will be
b).  the landed payload will have a balloon tethered
over it, making recovery all the easier
c).  one leg of the wire dipole for the HF band
hopping PSK-31 position beacon will be elevated,
probably giving much better radiation than just
landing it all on the ground. 

We'll put a flight announcement out here on this list
when the mission is launched. 


- KMC ng0x Denver 


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