Date   
Re: Transmitter update

Josh Jensen
 

Jared,

I was just thinking. If you want to give your payload an airborne test before you launch it, we could take it up suspended from my hexacopter. I made some good progress today, and could possibly take it on its first flight soon. 

Now I just need to work on some ham payloads. Probably my first will be a camera and transmitter, then a small digi to pick up APRS beacons from lost payloads, or relaying Bear 100 runner data.

Josh

On Jun 9, 2017 5:25 PM, "Jared Smith" <jared@...> wrote:
Tyler -

It's a single defined frequency per band - so no need to change based on regions like you have to with APRS or other VHF/UHF modes.

I do, however, have to add some logic so it won't transmit over certain countries where airborne transmissions are illegal. I'm not sure yet whether to do this geofencing based on lat/lon or grid square.

Mine will do 20 meters WSPR only. So it can be locked on the defined 20 meter frequency with a tuned dipole. The signal generator makes the slight changes in tones (4 of them total) to encode the almost 2-minute long WSPR transmission.

Some balloons are using 20 and 30 meter WSPR, but this makes the antenna configuration a bit more complex. And some are also using APRS with a separate transmitter. I may add APRS depending on what the weight comes to.

Jared


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:41 PM, Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
 I should say as it circles the earth. 


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:40 PM Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
So does it need to change  frequencies like a VHF or UHF  beacon. Or does HF work on a single frequency ?

Tyler
On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 9:17 AM Kevin Reeve <kevin.reeve@...> wrote:
And I think the whole Wisper thing is cool because it is on a worldwide recognized freq, and has a great chance of being heard even when across the ocean.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Main <kevin.reeve@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Friday, June 9, 2017 at 9:09 AM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I think your selling yourself short on the programming skills. If you have that much working as of last night, you have made great progress and accomplished much, especially converting lat and long to grid square.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Jared Smith <jared@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Thursday, June 8, 2017 at 11:29 PM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I have a basic prototype up and running with the WSPR transmitter. A photo is attached.

It puts out only 10 milliwatts (much less than that by the time it gets to my antenna) and was heard in several places across the US tonight on 20 meter band well after sunset. I track reception reports using WSPRnet.org. A screen shot of those hearing me is attached.

The furthest was W0PAS in Eastern Ohio. That comes out to 155,590 miles per watt!!! Not bad for a radio the size of a matchbook.

Thanks Gary for helping me test it out.

The GPS receivers came today, so that's my next project. I've learned my programming skills leave a lot to be desired! I programmed up the telemetry module yesterday. It converts NMEA lat/lon to grid square, and encodes the altitude and temperature into the telemetry format.

Jared

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile


Re: Transmitter update

Jared Smith
 

Josh -

That would be cool! And I want to check out the drone anyway. I will need to do some testing to see how the antenna is going to work. It's VERY thin (like hair thin), 36 gauge magnet wire and I need to make sure it's not going to coil back onto itself - especially in turbulent conditions. The antenna's almost 35' long with the payload attached in the middle.

I now have all of the individual components working (except the solar stuff), so am now working on programming them all together. There are some interesting complexities in getting the sequencing and timing all right - and ensuring it's entirely autonomous. I'm planning on lots of testing, and an airborne test from your drone would be wonderful. I'm probably several weeks out from being to that point. 

We'll want to consider whether I should do a transmission test while hanging from your drone. I suspect not - I think the RF will likely interfere with your flight system.

Thanks,

Jared


On Sat, Jun 10, 2017 at 11:06 PM, Josh Jensen <kd7wrc@...> wrote:
Jared,

I was just thinking. If you want to give your payload an airborne test before you launch it, we could take it up suspended from my hexacopter. I made some good progress today, and could possibly take it on its first flight soon. 

Now I just need to work on some ham payloads. Probably my first will be a camera and transmitter, then a small digi to pick up APRS beacons from lost payloads, or relaying Bear 100 runner data.

Josh

On Jun 9, 2017 5:25 PM, "Jared Smith" <jared@...> wrote:
Tyler -

It's a single defined frequency per band - so no need to change based on regions like you have to with APRS or other VHF/UHF modes.

I do, however, have to add some logic so it won't transmit over certain countries where airborne transmissions are illegal. I'm not sure yet whether to do this geofencing based on lat/lon or grid square.

Mine will do 20 meters WSPR only. So it can be locked on the defined 20 meter frequency with a tuned dipole. The signal generator makes the slight changes in tones (4 of them total) to encode the almost 2-minute long WSPR transmission.

Some balloons are using 20 and 30 meter WSPR, but this makes the antenna configuration a bit more complex. And some are also using APRS with a separate transmitter. I may add APRS depending on what the weight comes to.

Jared


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:41 PM, Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
 I should say as it circles the earth. 


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:40 PM Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
So does it need to change  frequencies like a VHF or UHF  beacon. Or does HF work on a single frequency ?

Tyler
On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 9:17 AM Kevin Reeve <kevin.reeve@...> wrote:
And I think the whole Wisper thing is cool because it is on a worldwide recognized freq, and has a great chance of being heard even when across the ocean.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Main <kevin.reeve@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Friday, June 9, 2017 at 9:09 AM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I think your selling yourself short on the programming skills. If you have that much working as of last night, you have made great progress and accomplished much, especially converting lat and long to grid square.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Jared Smith <jared@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Thursday, June 8, 2017 at 11:29 PM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I have a basic prototype up and running with the WSPR transmitter. A photo is attached.

It puts out only 10 milliwatts (much less than that by the time it gets to my antenna) and was heard in several places across the US tonight on 20 meter band well after sunset. I track reception reports using WSPRnet.org. A screen shot of those hearing me is attached.

The furthest was W0PAS in Eastern Ohio. That comes out to 155,590 miles per watt!!! Not bad for a radio the size of a matchbook.

Thanks Gary for helping me test it out.

The GPS receivers came today, so that's my next project. I've learned my programming skills leave a lot to be desired! I programmed up the telemetry module yesterday. It converts NMEA lat/lon to grid square, and encodes the altitude and temperature into the telemetry format.

Jared

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile



Re: Transmitter update

Josh Jensen
 

Jared,

I don't think you transmitting will be any problem at all. I think my biggest concern would be the GPS reception, but I don't think it interferes with your GPS, so it should be fine with mine. By the time my drone is finished, I'll have more, higher power transmitters on it directly. I would think it wouldn't even notice yours. 

If you're still concerned about interference, I can work in an autonomous flight plan, and have it take off, and fly up to altitude on its own. Have it hover at altitudes for a while, then come down and hover at 20 feet off the ground while you power down your stuff, then I take manual control for final landing. I'll need to see what I have for battery life. 

Josh

On Jun 10, 2017 11:49 PM, "Jared Smith" <jared@...> wrote:
Josh -

That would be cool! And I want to check out the drone anyway. I will need to do some testing to see how the antenna is going to work. It's VERY thin (like hair thin), 36 gauge magnet wire and I need to make sure it's not going to coil back onto itself - especially in turbulent conditions. The antenna's almost 35' long with the payload attached in the middle.

I now have all of the individual components working (except the solar stuff), so am now working on programming them all together. There are some interesting complexities in getting the sequencing and timing all right - and ensuring it's entirely autonomous. I'm planning on lots of testing, and an airborne test from your drone would be wonderful. I'm probably several weeks out from being to that point. 

We'll want to consider whether I should do a transmission test while hanging from your drone. I suspect not - I think the RF will likely interfere with your flight system.

Thanks,

Jared


On Sat, Jun 10, 2017 at 11:06 PM, Josh Jensen <kd7wrc@...> wrote:
Jared,

I was just thinking. If you want to give your payload an airborne test before you launch it, we could take it up suspended from my hexacopter. I made some good progress today, and could possibly take it on its first flight soon. 

Now I just need to work on some ham payloads. Probably my first will be a camera and transmitter, then a small digi to pick up APRS beacons from lost payloads, or relaying Bear 100 runner data.

Josh

On Jun 9, 2017 5:25 PM, "Jared Smith" <jared@...> wrote:
Tyler -

It's a single defined frequency per band - so no need to change based on regions like you have to with APRS or other VHF/UHF modes.

I do, however, have to add some logic so it won't transmit over certain countries where airborne transmissions are illegal. I'm not sure yet whether to do this geofencing based on lat/lon or grid square.

Mine will do 20 meters WSPR only. So it can be locked on the defined 20 meter frequency with a tuned dipole. The signal generator makes the slight changes in tones (4 of them total) to encode the almost 2-minute long WSPR transmission.

Some balloons are using 20 and 30 meter WSPR, but this makes the antenna configuration a bit more complex. And some are also using APRS with a separate transmitter. I may add APRS depending on what the weight comes to.

Jared


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:41 PM, Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
 I should say as it circles the earth. 


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:40 PM Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
So does it need to change  frequencies like a VHF or UHF  beacon. Or does HF work on a single frequency ?

Tyler
On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 9:17 AM Kevin Reeve <kevin.reeve@...> wrote:
And I think the whole Wisper thing is cool because it is on a worldwide recognized freq, and has a great chance of being heard even when across the ocean.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Main <kevin.reeve@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Friday, June 9, 2017 at 9:09 AM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I think your selling yourself short on the programming skills. If you have that much working as of last night, you have made great progress and accomplished much, especially converting lat and long to grid square.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Jared Smith <jared@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Thursday, June 8, 2017 at 11:29 PM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I have a basic prototype up and running with the WSPR transmitter. A photo is attached.

It puts out only 10 milliwatts (much less than that by the time it gets to my antenna) and was heard in several places across the US tonight on 20 meter band well after sunset. I track reception reports using WSPRnet.org. A screen shot of those hearing me is attached.

The furthest was W0PAS in Eastern Ohio. That comes out to 155,590 miles per watt!!! Not bad for a radio the size of a matchbook.

Thanks Gary for helping me test it out.

The GPS receivers came today, so that's my next project. I've learned my programming skills leave a lot to be desired! I programmed up the telemetry module yesterday. It converts NMEA lat/lon to grid square, and encodes the altitude and temperature into the telemetry format.

Jared

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile



Re: Transmitter update

Kevin Reeve
 

We can also work towards flying it on a HAB of the GAS team.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Josh Jensen <kd7wrc@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Sunday, June 11, 2017 at 9:34 AM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

Jared,

I don't think you transmitting will be any problem at all. I think my biggest concern would be the GPS reception, but I don't think it interferes with your GPS, so it should be fine with mine. By the time my drone is finished, I'll have more, higher power transmitters on it directly. I would think it wouldn't even notice yours. 

If you're still concerned about interference, I can work in an autonomous flight plan, and have it take off, and fly up to altitude on its own. Have it hover at altitudes for a while, then come down and hover at 20 feet off the ground while you power down your stuff, then I take manual control for final landing. I'll need to see what I have for battery life. 

Josh

On Jun 10, 2017 11:49 PM, "Jared Smith" <jared@...> wrote:
Josh -

That would be cool! And I want to check out the drone anyway. I will need to do some testing to see how the antenna is going to work. It's VERY thin (like hair thin), 36 gauge magnet wire and I need to make sure it's not going to coil back onto itself - especially in turbulent conditions. The antenna's almost 35' long with the payload attached in the middle.

I now have all of the individual components working (except the solar stuff), so am now working on programming them all together. There are some interesting complexities in getting the sequencing and timing all right - and ensuring it's entirely autonomous. I'm planning on lots of testing, and an airborne test from your drone would be wonderful. I'm probably several weeks out from being to that point. 

We'll want to consider whether I should do a transmission test while hanging from your drone. I suspect not - I think the RF will likely interfere with your flight system.

Thanks,

Jared


On Sat, Jun 10, 2017 at 11:06 PM, Josh Jensen <kd7wrc@...> wrote:
Jared,

I was just thinking. If you want to give your payload an airborne test before you launch it, we could take it up suspended from my hexacopter. I made some good progress today, and could possibly take it on its first flight soon. 

Now I just need to work on some ham payloads. Probably my first will be a camera and transmitter, then a small digi to pick up APRS beacons from lost payloads, or relaying Bear 100 runner data.

Josh

On Jun 9, 2017 5:25 PM, "Jared Smith" <jared@...> wrote:
Tyler -

It's a single defined frequency per band - so no need to change based on regions like you have to with APRS or other VHF/UHF modes.

I do, however, have to add some logic so it won't transmit over certain countries where airborne transmissions are illegal. I'm not sure yet whether to do this geofencing based on lat/lon or grid square.

Mine will do 20 meters WSPR only. So it can be locked on the defined 20 meter frequency with a tuned dipole. The signal generator makes the slight changes in tones (4 of them total) to encode the almost 2-minute long WSPR transmission.

Some balloons are using 20 and 30 meter WSPR, but this makes the antenna configuration a bit more complex. And some are also using APRS with a separate transmitter. I may add APRS depending on what the weight comes to.

Jared


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:41 PM, Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
 I should say as it circles the earth. 


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:40 PM Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
So does it need to change  frequencies like a VHF or UHF  beacon. Or does HF work on a single frequency ?

Tyler
On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 9:17 AM Kevin Reeve <kevin.reeve@...> wrote:
And I think the whole Wisper thing is cool because it is on a worldwide recognized freq, and has a great chance of being heard even when across the ocean.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Main <kevin.reeve@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Friday, June 9, 2017 at 9:09 AM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I think your selling yourself short on the programming skills. If you have that much working as of last night, you have made great progress and accomplished much, especially converting lat and long to grid square.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Jared Smith <jared@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Thursday, June 8, 2017 at 11:29 PM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I have a basic prototype up and running with the WSPR transmitter. A photo is attached.

It puts out only 10 milliwatts (much less than that by the time it gets to my antenna) and was heard in several places across the US tonight on 20 meter band well after sunset. I track reception reports using WSPRnet.org. A screen shot of those hearing me is attached.

The furthest was W0PAS in Eastern Ohio. That comes out to 155,590 miles per watt!!! Not bad for a radio the size of a matchbook.

Thanks Gary for helping me test it out.

The GPS receivers came today, so that's my next project. I've learned my programming skills leave a lot to be desired! I programmed up the telemetry module yesterday. It converts NMEA lat/lon to grid square, and encodes the altitude and temperature into the telemetry format.

Jared

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile



Re: Transmitter update

Stanley James Wellard
 

Jared,
How do you arrange the 35' magnetic wire for transmission?
Stan

Sent from my iPhone

On Jun 10, 2017, at 11:49 PM, Jared Smith <jared@...> wrote:

Josh -

That would be cool! And I want to check out the drone anyway. I will need to do some testing to see how the antenna is going to work. It's VERY thin (like hair thin), 36 gauge magnet wire and I need to make sure it's not going to coil back onto itself - especially in turbulent conditions. The antenna's almost 35' long with the payload attached in the middle.

I now have all of the individual components working (except the solar stuff), so am now working on programming them all together. There are some interesting complexities in getting the sequencing and timing all right - and ensuring it's entirely autonomous. I'm planning on lots of testing, and an airborne test from your drone would be wonderful. I'm probably several weeks out from being to that point. 

We'll want to consider whether I should do a transmission test while hanging from your drone. I suspect not - I think the RF will likely interfere with your flight system.

Thanks,

Jared


On Sat, Jun 10, 2017 at 11:06 PM, Josh Jensen <kd7wrc@...> wrote:
Jared,

I was just thinking. If you want to give your payload an airborne test before you launch it, we could take it up suspended from my hexacopter. I made some good progress today, and could possibly take it on its first flight soon. 

Now I just need to work on some ham payloads. Probably my first will be a camera and transmitter, then a small digi to pick up APRS beacons from lost payloads, or relaying Bear 100 runner data.

Josh

On Jun 9, 2017 5:25 PM, "Jared Smith" <jared@...> wrote:
Tyler -

It's a single defined frequency per band - so no need to change based on regions like you have to with APRS or other VHF/UHF modes.

I do, however, have to add some logic so it won't transmit over certain countries where airborne transmissions are illegal. I'm not sure yet whether to do this geofencing based on lat/lon or grid square.

Mine will do 20 meters WSPR only. So it can be locked on the defined 20 meter frequency with a tuned dipole. The signal generator makes the slight changes in tones (4 of them total) to encode the almost 2-minute long WSPR transmission.

Some balloons are using 20 and 30 meter WSPR, but this makes the antenna configuration a bit more complex. And some are also using APRS with a separate transmitter. I may add APRS depending on what the weight comes to.

Jared


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:41 PM, Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
 I should say as it circles the earth. 


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:40 PM Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
So does it need to change  frequencies like a VHF or UHF  beacon. Or does HF work on a single frequency ?

Tyler
On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 9:17 AM Kevin Reeve <kevin.reeve@...> wrote:
And I think the whole Wisper thing is cool because it is on a worldwide recognized freq, and has a great chance of being heard even when across the ocean.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Main <kevin.reeve@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Friday, June 9, 2017 at 9:09 AM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I think your selling yourself short on the programming skills. If you have that much working as of last night, you have made great progress and accomplished much, especially converting lat and long to grid square.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Jared Smith <jared@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Thursday, June 8, 2017 at 11:29 PM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I have a basic prototype up and running with the WSPR transmitter. A photo is attached.

It puts out only 10 milliwatts (much less than that by the time it gets to my antenna) and was heard in several places across the US tonight on 20 meter band well after sunset. I track reception reports using WSPRnet.org. A screen shot of those hearing me is attached.

The furthest was W0PAS in Eastern Ohio. That comes out to 155,590 miles per watt!!! Not bad for a radio the size of a matchbook.

Thanks Gary for helping me test it out.

The GPS receivers came today, so that's my next project. I've learned my programming skills leave a lot to be desired! I programmed up the telemetry module yesterday. It converts NMEA lat/lon to grid square, and encodes the altitude and temperature into the telemetry format.

Jared

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile



My hexacopter for HAB support

Josh Jensen
 

Here are some pictures, and a video of the hexacopter I'm building.  Yesterday (Saturday, June 10) I finally powered up the entire craft.  The ESC's were giving me an error, that's what the beeping and the yellow lights are in the video.

There's a picture of it sitting on the living room floor, waiting for it's first flight.  Also, a picture of it hovering in the back yard.  

I'm hoping to be able to use it as an airbourne digipeater to help try and pick up beacons from wayward balloons that can't quite reach the land based digis.  There is also talk of using it for some altitude payload tests.  I would love any other thoughts on how it can be used.

I'll try and get some more pictures of it in the air as soon as my battery finishes charging.

Josh

Re: Transmitter update

Jared Smith
 

To first address Josh's comment, the GPS reception and HF transmissions won't be simultaneous, so cross-interference won't be an issue onboard. I'll first collect the GPS data (warm start takes a few seconds to get a fix and cold start is at most a couple minutes), then go through a 6 minute transmission cycle, then repeat every 10 minutes.

Stan, I'll have a very thin fishing line tether from the balloon down to the payload/transmitter. The top half of the 20 meter dipole antenna (around 105") will be intermingled with this fishing line from the payload almost up to the balloon. I'll probably use super glue or nail polish to attach it to the fishing line every couple feet to keep it taught and upright. The bottom half of the dipole antenna will dangle down freely from the payload/transmitter. At least that's the plan.

Jared




On Sun, Jun 11, 2017 at 8:35 PM, Stanley James Wellard <stanwellard@...> wrote:
Jared,
How do you arrange the 35' magnetic wire for transmission?
Stan

Sent from my iPhone

On Jun 10, 2017, at 11:49 PM, Jared Smith <jared@...> wrote:

Josh -

That would be cool! And I want to check out the drone anyway. I will need to do some testing to see how the antenna is going to work. It's VERY thin (like hair thin), 36 gauge magnet wire and I need to make sure it's not going to coil back onto itself - especially in turbulent conditions. The antenna's almost 35' long with the payload attached in the middle.

I now have all of the individual components working (except the solar stuff), so am now working on programming them all together. There are some interesting complexities in getting the sequencing and timing all right - and ensuring it's entirely autonomous. I'm planning on lots of testing, and an airborne test from your drone would be wonderful. I'm probably several weeks out from being to that point. 

We'll want to consider whether I should do a transmission test while hanging from your drone. I suspect not - I think the RF will likely interfere with your flight system.

Thanks,

Jared


On Sat, Jun 10, 2017 at 11:06 PM, Josh Jensen <kd7wrc@...> wrote:
Jared,

I was just thinking. If you want to give your payload an airborne test before you launch it, we could take it up suspended from my hexacopter. I made some good progress today, and could possibly take it on its first flight soon. 

Now I just need to work on some ham payloads. Probably my first will be a camera and transmitter, then a small digi to pick up APRS beacons from lost payloads, or relaying Bear 100 runner data.

Josh

On Jun 9, 2017 5:25 PM, "Jared Smith" <jared@...> wrote:
Tyler -

It's a single defined frequency per band - so no need to change based on regions like you have to with APRS or other VHF/UHF modes.

I do, however, have to add some logic so it won't transmit over certain countries where airborne transmissions are illegal. I'm not sure yet whether to do this geofencing based on lat/lon or grid square.

Mine will do 20 meters WSPR only. So it can be locked on the defined 20 meter frequency with a tuned dipole. The signal generator makes the slight changes in tones (4 of them total) to encode the almost 2-minute long WSPR transmission.

Some balloons are using 20 and 30 meter WSPR, but this makes the antenna configuration a bit more complex. And some are also using APRS with a separate transmitter. I may add APRS depending on what the weight comes to.

Jared


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:41 PM, Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
 I should say as it circles the earth. 


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:40 PM Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
So does it need to change  frequencies like a VHF or UHF  beacon. Or does HF work on a single frequency ?

Tyler
On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 9:17 AM Kevin Reeve <kevin.reeve@...> wrote:
And I think the whole Wisper thing is cool because it is on a worldwide recognized freq, and has a great chance of being heard even when across the ocean.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Main <kevin.reeve@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Friday, June 9, 2017 at 9:09 AM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I think your selling yourself short on the programming skills. If you have that much working as of last night, you have made great progress and accomplished much, especially converting lat and long to grid square.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Jared Smith <jared@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Thursday, June 8, 2017 at 11:29 PM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I have a basic prototype up and running with the WSPR transmitter. A photo is attached.

It puts out only 10 milliwatts (much less than that by the time it gets to my antenna) and was heard in several places across the US tonight on 20 meter band well after sunset. I track reception reports using WSPRnet.org. A screen shot of those hearing me is attached.

The furthest was W0PAS in Eastern Ohio. That comes out to 155,590 miles per watt!!! Not bad for a radio the size of a matchbook.

Thanks Gary for helping me test it out.

The GPS receivers came today, so that's my next project. I've learned my programming skills leave a lot to be desired! I programmed up the telemetry module yesterday. It converts NMEA lat/lon to grid square, and encodes the altitude and temperature into the telemetry format.

Jared

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile




Interesting web site

Tyler Griffiths
 

Found this web site today.
May be of interest to some...

http://www.overlookhorizon.com/

Tyler

Re: No GAS team HAB flight tomorrow

Jared Smith
 

Is the GAS team planning a launch for tomorrow?

Jared

On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 4:23 PM, Kevin Reeve <kevin.reeve@...> wrote:
USU GAS team is not flying tomorrow.

Lauch site would be 2.5 hours away they tell me. They are hoping for better patterns next Sat.  

Kevin



GAS team balloon stuff

Jared Smith
 

Congrats on another successful launch and recovery! Max recorded altitude was 113451'. Max speed was 102.5MPH. It landed on the far side of the only meadow in the area (photos attached, also the APRS data dump). There was a notable part of the balloon that remained intact on the tether. This likely increased the descent rate a bit.

I'd suggest that the GAS team send Jake Peterson a thank you or gift card or something for taking much of his day to give us access and drive us in on his Polaris Ranger. He got us within .25 miles of it. Recovery would have been very difficult or impossible without his assistance.

As a cool bonus, I found a National Weather Service balloon payload (the model was LMS6 Radiosonde) within a few hundred yards of our payload (photo attached). It was launched last June. It's pretty wild to find two balloon payloads so close to each other! It came with a mailer and I've mailed it back for re-use.

The ascent rate was rather low. When I saw it was around 4.5m/s, I ran another prediction. The balloon followed this pretty closely and landed within 2 miles of the predicted landing spot. With the exception of last launch, our predictions are generally close if we get ascent rate correct.

There were VERY anomalous altitude readings on late descent. Here are the last APRS readings:
10:03:38 - 13953' - 62MPH - Just North of Paradise
10:04:58 - 9097' - 50MPH
10:06:19 - 3418' - 47MPH - At foothills. This is 2000' under ground!
10:07:38 - 7513' - 55MPH - Just above ground.
??? - 5974' - I got this beacon direct. This is also under ground.
10:10:19 - 10541' - 54MPH - 3000' above ground
10:11:40 - 8786' - 17MPH - 1000' above ground
10:13:48 - 6672' - 0MPH - 1000' below ground
10:17:49 - 7590' - 0MPH - 60' below ground

We then started getting beacons at the landing location/altitude which is ~7650'.

I have no idea what to make of any of this. These are big altitude errors - many thousands of feet. I see no scenario where an updraft would lift the payload like that. And this wouldn't explain the under ground readings. Any ideas? Was there another GPS logging data onboard?

Jared


Re: GAS team balloon stuff

ag1t@...
 

I have only usually seen stuff like this when a GPS is used in the middle of town.  It is usually due to multi-path of the GPS signals which messes up the timing of the signal received by the GPS.  Then you get a bad reading from the GPS.
 
I have seen it on rare occasions in heavy green vegetation, but usually not above the tree line.  I wonder if the new green spring growth gave us a little multi-path?
 
Cool data Jared.  Glad to see Jake is still floating around.  Have not seen him in a while.  Just his wife Shelley.
 
Thanks for the pics.  Sorry I couldn't chase with you all today.  Getting a scout trailer ready for scout camp and a bad back make for a sore day.
 
  Gary

Re: GAS team balloon stuff

Tyler Griffiths
 

Great job guys!
Glad I could be of assistance even though I was not there.  

Tyler


On Sat, Jun 17, 2017 at 4:34 PM <ag1t@...> wrote:
I have only usually seen stuff like this when a GPS is used in the middle of town.  It is usually due to multi-path of the GPS signals which messes up the timing of the signal received by the GPS.  Then you get a bad reading from the GPS.
 
I have seen it on rare occasions in heavy green vegetation, but usually not above the tree line.  I wonder if the new green spring growth gave us a little multi-path?
 
Cool data Jared.  Glad to see Jake is still floating around.  Have not seen him in a while.  Just his wife Shelley.
 
Thanks for the pics.  Sorry I couldn't chase with you all today.  Getting a scout trailer ready for scout camp and a bad back make for a sore day.
 
  Gary

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile

Re: GAS team balloon stuff

Kevin Reeve
 

The GPS sits vertical thin side up/down so the GPS antenna is point towards the horizon and not up.  There could be some reflection causing the issue.

However in my years of using GPS since the 1990’s altitude has always been a weird one. In the early days the military injected errors into the altitude stream to prevent it from being 100% accurate.

Not sure if they do it anymore.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Jared Smith <jared@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Saturday, June 17, 2017 at 3:54 PM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: [BARC-HAB] GAS team balloon stuff

Congrats on another successful launch and recovery! Max recorded altitude was 113451'. Max speed was 102.5MPH. It landed on the far side of the only meadow in the area (photos attached, also the APRS data dump). There was a notable part of the balloon that remained intact on the tether. This likely increased the descent rate a bit.

I'd suggest that the GAS team send Jake Peterson a thank you or gift card or something for taking much of his day to give us access and drive us in on his Polaris Ranger. He got us within .25 miles of it. Recovery would have been very difficult or impossible without his assistance.

As a cool bonus, I found a National Weather Service balloon payload (the model was LMS6 Radiosonde) within a few hundred yards of our payload (photo attached). It was launched last June. It's pretty wild to find two balloon payloads so close to each other! It came with a mailer and I've mailed it back for re-use.

The ascent rate was rather low. When I saw it was around 4.5m/s, I ran another prediction. The balloon followed this pretty closely and landed within 2 miles of the predicted landing spot. With the exception of last launch, our predictions are generally close if we get ascent rate correct.

There were VERY anomalous altitude readings on late descent. Here are the last APRS readings:
10:03:38 - 13953' - 62MPH - Just North of Paradise
10:04:58 - 9097' - 50MPH
10:06:19 - 3418' - 47MPH - At foothills. This is 2000' under ground!
10:07:38 - 7513' - 55MPH - Just above ground.
??? - 5974' - I got this beacon direct. This is also under ground.
10:10:19 - 10541' - 54MPH - 3000' above ground
10:11:40 - 8786' - 17MPH - 1000' above ground
10:13:48 - 6672' - 0MPH - 1000' below ground
10:17:49 - 7590' - 0MPH - 60' below ground

We then started getting beacons at the landing location/altitude which is ~7650'.

I have no idea what to make of any of this. These are big altitude errors - many thousands of feet. I see no scenario where an updraft would lift the payload like that. And this wouldn't explain the under ground readings. Any ideas? Was there another GPS logging data onboard?

Jared


Re: GAS team balloon stuff

ag1t@...
 

Before 2000, the government degraded the signal (called Selective Availability).  Bill Clinton removed the limitation via Executive Order in 2000.

Most good GPS devices can be accurate within a meter now both vertically and horizontally.    

http://www.gps.gov/systems/gps/performance/accuracy/

Gary

Re: GAS team balloon stuff

Jared Smith
 

I thought that the uneven terrain and fast approach velocity (around 60 MPH) caused signal interference that caused the inaccuracies, but that doesn't align with the data.

Attached is a Google Earth view of the reported descent. You can see that it's rather linear from the near the top of the descent (by the way, it fell at 175 miles per hour after burst!) to where it should have hit the ground NE of Paradise. The problem is that the descent should have slowed as it got into thicker air and approached the ground.

Attached is a chart that compares altitude over time for the May 20 vs. June 17 flights. May 20 is normal, but today's flight increased its descent rate below around 15000 meters. Unless there's some other factor in play, this simply isn't possible. The red line indicates what I think was the actual altitude.

This suggests that the GPS was reporting inaccurate altitude for probably the last 15-20 minutes of flight - for every single position update until well after it was on the ground. I don't think that signal disruption could have caused that. I think this suggests a programming or internal issue, perhaps due to the cold temperatures.

I'd be happy to hear any other theories.

Jared
 

On Sat, Jun 17, 2017 at 8:38 PM, <ag1t@...> wrote:
Before 2000, the government degraded the signal (called Selective Availability).  Bill Clinton removed the limitation via Executive Order in 2000.

Most good GPS devices can be accurate within a meter now both vertically and horizontally.    

http://www.gps.gov/systems/gps/performance/accuracy/

Gary


Re: GAS team balloon stuff

Kevin Reeve
 

Good thoughts Jared.

We do know the GPS is the one that has flown as part of the Byonics MT1000 on all flights we have done.
We should check to see if it has come loose in the MT1000.

Another thought is the payload/tracking box is spinning rapidly and thus causing issues with receiving accurate GPS signals. The doppler effect per se.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Jared Smith <jared@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Saturday, June 17, 2017 at 10:30 PM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BARC-HAB] GAS team balloon stuff

I thought that the uneven terrain and fast approach velocity (around 60 MPH) caused signal interference that caused the inaccuracies, but that doesn't align with the data.

Attached is a Google Earth view of the reported descent. You can see that it's rather linear from the near the top of the descent (by the way, it fell at 175 miles per hour after burst!) to where it should have hit the ground NE of Paradise. The problem is that the descent should have slowed as it got into thicker air and approached the ground.

Attached is a chart that compares altitude over time for the May 20 vs. June 17 flights. May 20 is normal, but today's flight increased its descent rate below around 15000 meters. Unless there's some other factor in play, this simply isn't possible. The red line indicates what I think was the actual altitude.

This suggests that the GPS was reporting inaccurate altitude for probably the last 15-20 minutes of flight - for every single position update until well after it was on the ground. I don't think that signal disruption could have caused that. I think this suggests a programming or internal issue, perhaps due to the cold temperatures.

I'd be happy to hear any other theories.

Jared
 

On Sat, Jun 17, 2017 at 8:38 PM, <ag1t@...> wrote:
Before 2000, the government degraded the signal (called Selective Availability).  Bill Clinton removed the limitation via Executive Order in 2000.

Most good GPS devices can be accurate within a meter now both vertically and horizontally.    

http://www.gps.gov/systems/gps/performance/accuracy/

Gary


Re: Transmitter update

Jared Smith
 

I now have the payload programmed. I have much testing to do and need to try to optimize the memory a bit (I'm at 70% dynamic memory), but it seems to be working correctly.

Here's an overview of what happens after adequate power is on-board:
  1. Program initiates and makes connection to clock generator and GPS
  2. GPS is programmed (high power mode, high altitude mode, correct NMEA sentences defined, etc.)
  3. Wait for GPS fix (around 3 minutes cold start, a few seconds warm start).
  4. Upon GPS fix, set Arduino clock to GPS time. Turn on LED (indicates GPS fix).
  5. Get lat/lon/altitude. Encode telemetry and temperature. All are stored to variables.
  6. GPS is set to low power mode.
  7. If minute is :00, :10, :20, etc., initiate standard transmission. LED flashes during transmissions.
  8. If :04, :14, :24, etc., initiate telemetry transmission. Then loop back to #1.
I wired up the solar array today and will check voltage tomorrow (a nice sunny day!).

I then need to figure out how to get all of this together in a way that it will hang from a tether with the solar panels pointing up, while also being VERY lightweight. I'd be happy to hear ideas.

One thing I'm not sure of is orientation of the GPS antenna. It's a very short antenna. I'm not sure if it should optimally point up or horizontally. Anyone know?

Gary, do you have your components? Let me know if you'd like to coordinate to get stuff from me. And I can send you Arduino sketches any time.

Thanks,

Jared



Re: GAS team balloon stuff

Tyler Griffiths
 

That was my thought too. Spinning. 

Tyler 


On Sat, Jun 17, 2017 at 10:51 PM Kevin Reeve <kevin.reeve@...> wrote:
Good thoughts Jared.

We do know the GPS is the one that has flown as part of the Byonics MT1000 on all flights we have done.
We should check to see if it has come loose in the MT1000.

Another thought is the payload/tracking box is spinning rapidly and thus causing issues with receiving accurate GPS signals. The doppler effect per se.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Jared Smith <jared@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Saturday, June 17, 2017 at 10:30 PM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BARC-HAB] GAS team balloon stuff

I thought that the uneven terrain and fast approach velocity (around 60 MPH) caused signal interference that caused the inaccuracies, but that doesn't align with the data.

Attached is a Google Earth view of the reported descent. You can see that it's rather linear from the near the top of the descent (by the way, it fell at 175 miles per hour after burst!) to where it should have hit the ground NE of Paradise. The problem is that the descent should have slowed as it got into thicker air and approached the ground.

Attached is a chart that compares altitude over time for the May 20 vs. June 17 flights. May 20 is normal, but today's flight increased its descent rate below around 15000 meters. Unless there's some other factor in play, this simply isn't possible. The red line indicates what I think was the actual altitude.

This suggests that the GPS was reporting inaccurate altitude for probably the last 15-20 minutes of flight - for every single position update until well after it was on the ground. I don't think that signal disruption could have caused that. I think this suggests a programming or internal issue, perhaps due to the cold temperatures.

I'd be happy to hear any other theories.

Jared
 

On Sat, Jun 17, 2017 at 8:38 PM, <ag1t@...> wrote:
Before 2000, the government degraded the signal (called Selective Availability).  Bill Clinton removed the limitation via Executive Order in 2000.

Most good GPS devices can be accurate within a meter now both vertically and horizontally.    

http://www.gps.gov/systems/gps/performance/accuracy/

Gary


--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile

Re: Transmitter update

Kevin Reeve
 

Josh,

If you need one of these byonics T3 minis for building your digi let me know.
Kevin


From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Josh Jensen <kd7wrc@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Saturday, June 10, 2017 at 11:06 PM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

Jared,

I was just thinking. If you want to give your payload an airborne test before you launch it, we could take it up suspended from my hexacopter. I made some good progress today, and could possibly take it on its first flight soon. 

Now I just need to work on some ham payloads. Probably my first will be a camera and transmitter, then a small digi to pick up APRS beacons from lost payloads, or relaying Bear 100 runner data.

Josh

On Jun 9, 2017 5:25 PM, "Jared Smith" <jared@...> wrote:
Tyler -

It's a single defined frequency per band - so no need to change based on regions like you have to with APRS or other VHF/UHF modes.

I do, however, have to add some logic so it won't transmit over certain countries where airborne transmissions are illegal. I'm not sure yet whether to do this geofencing based on lat/lon or grid square.

Mine will do 20 meters WSPR only. So it can be locked on the defined 20 meter frequency with a tuned dipole. The signal generator makes the slight changes in tones (4 of them total) to encode the almost 2-minute long WSPR transmission.

Some balloons are using 20 and 30 meter WSPR, but this makes the antenna configuration a bit more complex. And some are also using APRS with a separate transmitter. I may add APRS depending on what the weight comes to.

Jared


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:41 PM, Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
 I should say as it circles the earth. 


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 3:40 PM Tyler Griffiths <tyler.griffiths@...> wrote:
So does it need to change  frequencies like a VHF or UHF  beacon. Or does HF work on a single frequency ?

Tyler
On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 9:17 AM Kevin Reeve <kevin.reeve@...> wrote:
And I think the whole Wisper thing is cool because it is on a worldwide recognized freq, and has a great chance of being heard even when across the ocean.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Main <kevin.reeve@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Friday, June 9, 2017 at 9:09 AM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I think your selling yourself short on the programming skills. If you have that much working as of last night, you have made great progress and accomplished much, especially converting lat and long to grid square.

Kevin



From: <BARC-HAB@groups.io> on behalf of Jared Smith <jared@...>
Reply-To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Date: Thursday, June 8, 2017 at 11:29 PM
To: "BARC-HAB@groups.io" <BARC-HAB@groups.io>
Subject: [BARC-HAB] Transmitter update

I have a basic prototype up and running with the WSPR transmitter. A photo is attached.

It puts out only 10 milliwatts (much less than that by the time it gets to my antenna) and was heard in several places across the US tonight on 20 meter band well after sunset. I track reception reports using WSPRnet.org. A screen shot of those hearing me is attached.

The furthest was W0PAS in Eastern Ohio. That comes out to 155,590 miles per watt!!! Not bad for a radio the size of a matchbook.

Thanks Gary for helping me test it out.

The GPS receivers came today, so that's my next project. I've learned my programming skills leave a lot to be desired! I programmed up the telemetry module yesterday. It converts NMEA lat/lon to grid square, and encodes the altitude and temperature into the telemetry format.

Jared

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile

--
Tyler, Sent from Gmail Mobile


PCB designer? Weight issues.

Jared Smith
 

Does anyone have experience with PCB design?
My balloon payload finalized, I'm now at around 20 grams or so. This is 5 grams heavier than I want for optimal altitude. I can lose unnecessary resistors, etc., but this might gain me at most 1 gram.

My heaviest component by far is the Si5351A breakout board at 5.3 grams - https://www.etherkit.com/rf-modules/si5351a-breakout-board.html You'll notice that it's on a thick PCB, it has 3 outputs (I only need 1), and it has 5v to 3.3v conversion on-board (I'm strictly 3.3v). 

It should be 3.3v and one output only, with header and edge mount SMA pads. On a thin PCB, with 3.3v only and one output (header and edge-mount SMA pads), I think this could come in at 1 gram or less. I think this would be a very popular board that you could make some $$$ off of.

Is there anyone here or do you know anyone that would be interested in this. I'd fund the prototype boards, but need someone smarter than me to do the design. I have the full PCB design files and schematic for 3 different 5v/3.3v boards that would get you most of the way there.

Another possibility to lose weight is to most of my solar cells and add a solar upconverter/charger. It takes 9 panels to make 5 volts. They're very light weight (I think 4.5 grams for the full array - plus I need some infrastructure to keep them in place), but with a