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[aprssig] N1VG-11 Balloon Flight APRS Maps Now On My Website

scott at opentrac.org scott at opentrac.org
Fri Nov 17 17:09:39 UTC 2006


Thanks for the support, guys.  I'm still working on the writeup at
http://n1vg.net/balloon and I'll add to it more over the weekend.

The payload worked almost perfectly.  The cameras took hundreds of pictures
each, and the new ascent rate code I wrote for the T2 worked well.  The max
altitude message suffered from a logic glitch that kept it from retaining
the max altitude properly, but it at least detected when it was falling.

The ground station didn't work out so well.  My laptop had some kind of
thermal problem, I think.  Despite being pretty cold out there, it was
acting like it was overheating - running really slow (with a low CPU load)
and running the fan on full constantly.  Also, Xastir wasn't talking
properly to the KPC-3 I planned to use for the primary tracking and command
link, and I finally abandoned the whole setup.  I think the stupid
USB/serial adapter was the source of some of my problems, but I haven't had
a chance to check it out at home yet.

Anyway, the primary tracking system wound up being an Alinco DR-135T with a
prototype T2-135 board, connected to a Garmin GPSmap 60CS.  I'll post a
screenshot when I get a chance, but aside from an altitude display glitch
above 65,000 feet (not sure if it's mine or Garmin's bug yet) it worked
great.  I set it to navigate mode, and had a distance and heading to the
balloon's current position.  The waypoint detail screen gave me altitude
(most of the time), course and speed, ascent/descent rate, board
temperature, and battery voltage.

I had my D7A (until the batteries died) for sending commands, though I
didn't really send it anything except a few checkout commands immediately
after launch and a couple more after recovery.  It does look like the board
must have reset on impact, though - the counters showed only a few packets
received.  I was hoping for a count of what it had heard in flight, and if
it had digi'd any packets.

The setup kept the clutter down anyway.  I had the 135 tucked under the
front seat of the rented Durango, connected to power, a 1/4 wave magmount,
and the 60CS.  A laptop with Xastir would have been nice, but the T2
solution worked remarkably well.

Scott
N1VG

> -----Original Message-----
> From: aprssig-bounces at lists.tapr.org 
> [mailto:aprssig-bounces at lists.tapr.org] On Behalf Of Gregg Wonderly
> Sent: Tuesday, November 14, 2006 9:05 PM
> To: TAPR APRS Mailing List
> Subject: Re: [aprssig] N1VG-11 Balloon Flight APRS Maps Now 
> On My Website
> 
> Stephen H. Smith wrote:
> > Maps of the N1VG-11 balloon flight on Sunday November 12, 
> generated by 
> > UIview combined with UI-HeightTrack, are now posted on my 
> website at: 
> >   http://wa8lmf.net/N1VG_Balloon 
> > 
> > This includes both an altitude-color-coded track of the 
> entire flight, 
> > and enlarged details of parts of the flight , along with an 
> elevation 
> > vs  time graph of the entire flight.
> 
> I've placed google earth screen shots from aprskml plots on the 
> http://aprskml.dev.java.net page for three different flights 
> this past weekend.
> 
> Gregg Wonderly
> W5GGW
> 
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> 







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