Re: NASA Breaks a Balloon Altitude Record

Mark Conner N9XTN

Hank, nice job on going the next step with the math which I didn't do.

73 de Mark N9XTN

On Thu, Sep 13, 2018 at 10:51 PM Hank Riley via Groups.Io <n1ltv=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
The usage of helium for the typical amateur balloon refers to ground level conditions, similar to Standard Temperature and Pressure which is 20 Celsius and 1013 millibars pressure.

The 60 million cubic feet of the NASA "Big 60" balloon refers to the fully inflated envelope at its peak (equilibrium) altitude of 159,000 feet.  The pressure there is under a millibar, so the gas is expanded over a thousand times in volume over what it was on the surface.  The standard atmosphere specifies a mild temperature very near STP, but during the day there must be significant heating to the envelope.  I'll just deal with the pressure difference which dominates.

So whittle those 240,000 amateur balloons down to more like 240 as a result of dividing by 1000.  And now the low volume, retail customer cost estimate is \$600,000 instead of \$60 million.

Sanity/error check on the 240,000 balloon answer:

Mark was using as typical a 1200 gram balloon and 250 cubic feet.  For helium

The NASA instrument payload was 200 kilograms = 441 pounds.

8 x 240,000 = 1,920,000 pounds of payload lift = 960 tons lift!  Impossible.

The specific solution is as follows neglecting extra balloon gas heating beyond ambient and giving STP gas volume:

At 159,000 feet, it's .992 millibar and 271 Kelvin.  STP is 1013 millibars and 273 Kelvin.

60 * 10**6 * .992 / 1013 * 273 / 271 = .059 * 10**6 = 59,000 cubic feet  (for the on-the-ground volume of helium for the Big 60)

Hank
_______________________________________________________

Well, if you figure ~250 cu ft for a typical 1200g balloon, around 240,000.  That's a lot of ARHAB flights!

If they were paying commercial rates for their helium (which I think is approaching \$1/cu ft again), that'd be \$60M for their lifting gas for that mission.  Somehow I doubt they're paying that much.

Re: NASA Breaks a Balloon Altitude Record

Joe WB9SBD

Don't forget the weight of that Giant Balloon!
My "LITTLE" 300,000 Cubic Footer

weighs 31 pounds

Joe WB9SBD

The Original Rolling Ball Clock
Idle Tyme
Idle-Tyme.com
http://www.idle-tyme.com

On 9/13/2018 10:51 PM, Hank Riley via Groups.Io wrote:
The usage of helium for the typical amateur balloon refers to ground level conditions, similar to Standard Temperature and Pressure which is 20 Celsius and 1013 millibars pressure.

The 60 million cubic feet of the NASA "Big 60" balloon refers to the fully inflated envelope at its peak (equilibrium) altitude of 159,000 feet.  The pressure there is under a millibar, so the gas is expanded over a thousand times in volume over what it was on the surface.  The standard atmosphere specifies a mild temperature very near STP, but during the day there must be significant heating to the envelope.  I'll just deal with the pressure difference which dominates.

So whittle those 240,000 amateur balloons down to more like 240 as a result of dividing by 1000.  And now the low volume, retail customer cost estimate is \$600,000 instead of \$60 million.

Sanity/error check on the 240,000 balloon answer:

Mark was using as typical a 1200 gram balloon and 250 cubic feet.  For helium

The NASA instrument payload was 200 kilograms = 441 pounds.

8 x 240,000 = 1,920,000 pounds of payload lift = 960 tons lift!  Impossible.

The specific solution is as follows neglecting extra balloon gas heating beyond ambient and giving STP gas volume:

At 159,000 feet, it's .992 millibar and 271 Kelvin.  STP is 1013 millibars and 273 Kelvin.

60 * 10**6 * .992 / 1013 * 273 / 271 = .059 * 10**6 = 59,000 cubic feet  (for the on-the-ground volume of helium for the Big 60)

Hank
_______________________________________________________

Well, if you figure ~250 cu ft for a typical 1200g balloon, around 240,000.  That's a lot of ARHAB flights!

If they were paying commercial rates for their helium (which I think is approaching \$1/cu ft again), that'd be \$60M for their lifting gas for that mission.  Somehow I doubt they're paying that much.

Floater Balloon - VA5BNC-15

Bruce Coates

Hi

Sorry for the short notice but things have been a bit hectic.

On Sunday morning, September 30 I launched my first floater, VA5BNC-15 from Saskatoon, (52.1N, 106.6W).  It survived the first night and has made it all the way from Saskatoon to somewhere off the east coast of Newfoundland.  If I'm very lucky, will make it across the pond in the next 48 hours.  It should switch to 144.800 in the mid-atlantic, but if there are any European stations that can listen on 144.390, that would be appreciated.  During the day, it beacons once per minute at 13 seconds after the minute and at night, it's on a roughly 15 minute cycle.

https://aprs.fi/#!call=a%2FVA5BNC-15&timerange=86400&tail=86400

Please pass this on to anyone who many be interested.

73, Bruce - VE5BNC

2019 GPSL Save the Date!

Mike, n0mpm

GPSL will be in Pella, IA,, June 13, 14 and 15.  Genelle is planning to recreate our Wednesday evening picnic at our house for those that come in on Wednesday afternoon.   We are busy planning an interesting day of tours on the 13th.
It’s not too soon to consider giving a presentation.
Watch for additional information after the New Year..
Mike. n0mpm
Pella Explores Near Space (PENS)

Re: 2019 GPSL Save the Date!

Mark Conner N9XTN

Mike,

Looking forward to it!  We really enjoyed our time in Pella at your last GPSL.

73 de Mark N9XTN

On Sat, Oct 6, 2018 at 10:48 AM Mike, n0mpm <morgamp52@...> wrote:
GPSL will be in Pella, IA,, June 13, 14 and 15.  Genelle is planning to recreate our Wednesday evening picnic at our house for those that come in on Wednesday afternoon.   We are busy planning an interesting day of tours on the 13th.
It’s not too soon to consider giving a presentation.
Watch for additional information after the New Year..
Mike. n0mpm
Pella Explores Near Space (PENS)

Re: 2019 GPSL Save the Date!

L. Paul Verhage KD4STH

Here here! It was a great event in 2013.

On Sat, Oct 6, 2018, 10:14 AM Mark Conner N9XTN <mconner1@...> wrote:
Mike,

Looking forward to it!  We really enjoyed our time in Pella at your last GPSL.

73 de Mark N9XTN

On Sat, Oct 6, 2018 at 10:48 AM Mike, n0mpm <morgamp52@...> wrote:
GPSL will be in Pella, IA,, June 13, 14 and 15.  Genelle is planning to recreate our Wednesday evening picnic at our house for those that come in on Wednesday afternoon.   We are busy planning an interesting day of tours on the 13th.
It’s not too soon to consider giving a presentation.
Watch for additional information after the New Year..
Mike. n0mpm
Pella Explores Near Space (PENS)

Stargazing Almanac

L. Paul Verhage KD4STH

I'm experimenting with a free monthly astronomy newsletter. If you're interested, you can subscribe at, https://stargazingalmanac.substack.com/

Mark Conner N9XTN

Crossposting this from the APRSSIG, since there are so many aprs.fi users here.

73 de Mark N9XTN

Date: Tue, 16 Oct 2018 09:32:36 +0300 (EEST)
From: Heikki Hannikainen <hessu@...>
update
Message-ID: <alpine.DEB.2.20.1810160919570.6015@...>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"; Format="flowed"

Hi,

Here's the current status of aprs.fi, Google Maps API pricing, and
Leaflet/OSM mapping.

As most of you already know, Google bumped up the pricing of the Maps API
significantly this summer, so that aprs.fi would have paid about
4000-5000? (4500-5700 USD) per month to use the fine maps, and assorted
services (superb address search, and a few other goodies). Understandably,
that'd be more than I could pay, and a difficult amount to come up as
donations or subscription fees, every month.

As a contingency plan I made a port of aprs.fi using Leaflet for mapping.
Leaflet can load map tiles from tile servers (or services) which generate
PNG map images from, for example, OSM data. A few individuals and
companies reached out to me and offered to provide access to their tile
servers for PNG OSM maps, either for free, or for a discount. This version
is still running on https://beta.aprs.fi/.  It uses Geonames for address
search, which is not that great. Google can actually do proper searching
of street addresses in Finland (or Japan, in Japanese), for example, while
Geonames will only find cities and towns. OSM maps are better than Google
maps in some places in the world, and less good in others.

At the same time I exchanged several emails and some phone calls with
Google's representatives in the sales support, and eventually in the Maps
API team, and explained the situation. The advertisement income for a site
like this is simply nowhere near the Maps API fees; it's on a different
decade, and there are other costs to cover, too.

Google has some programs for nonprofits, crisis response organisations,
news media and startups, but I'm not eligible for any of those options, as
I'm not a registered nonprofit organisation or a growth-mode startup with
venture capital; I'm a one-man-and-a-cat sized private limited company,
which doesn't make practical profit from the web site though. It's just
easier to do the finances and taxes this way, and it helps me do some odd
consulting jobs sometimes. It's a hobby.

Crisis responder organisations (Red Cross, local ARES teams, etc) use
aprs.fi from time to time in some form, but they're only eligible for free
Maps API for up to two months at a time.

In the end, the good folks at Google Maps figured they still would like to
support aprs.fi. They configured additional monthly credits for my billing
account, so that I won't be charged for the time being, and indicated that
a more permanent process/solution would be figured out later.

search and street view is pretty good, I plan to keep using it as the
primary solution for the time being.

The Leaflet variant does work, and I plan to keep it available, perhaps at
a more permanent address than the current 'beta'. It's also useful for
running separate service instances for different purposes than APRS.

- Hessu, OH7LZB, AF5QT

Rasberry Pi and High Altitude Balloons

Jason Unwin

Our Civil Air Patrol Squadron got some Raspberry Pi kits for STEM activities. We might have a couple left over when we are done. I am wondering if there are any kits or additional "sensors" we can add to the basic Raspberry Pi for a HAB flight. Specifically something to help track the payloads and possibly a way to log air temperature, density, humidity, or maybe even cosmic radiation. Any thoughts and links to ideas is greatly appreciated.

Jason Unwin
KF5UEF

Re: Rasberry Pi and High Altitude Balloons

L. Paul Verhage KD4STH

My last three articles in Nuts and Volts cover this topic. I have notes and code in each article.

On Mon, Oct 29, 2018, 4:31 PM Jason Unwin via Groups.Io <generalripper_1999=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
Our Civil Air Patrol Squadron got some Raspberry Pi kits for STEM activities. We might have a couple left over when we are done. I am wondering if there are any kits or additional "sensors" we can add to the basic Raspberry Pi for a HAB flight. Specifically something to help track the payloads and possibly a way to log air temperature, density, humidity, or maybe even cosmic radiation. Any thoughts and links to ideas is greatly appreciated.

Jason Unwin
KF5UEF

The Stargazing Almanac

L. Paul Verhage KD4STH

For anyone interested in my stargazing newsletter, I just posted December's. It's at, https://stargazingalmanac.substack.com/

Selection of Frequencies and repeaters.

Jason Unwin

I am going to start putting repeaters into my new Yaesu FT2D. I have a few questions:

1. How do you select the repeaters to use for your launches?

2. How do you decide on the frequencies to use for the launch?

Again, I'm trying to get something going here in Oklahoma.

Jason Unwin

KF5UEF

Long duration high altitude balloons

Mark Conner N9XTN

Texas Groups?

L. Paul Verhage KD4STH

I'm looking for someone near Houston that can launch a weather balloon for a student. Thanks

HAB video from Chile

Mark Conner N9XTN

Zack Clobes W0ZC

I'm not sure if anyone is using my KML Konverter tool, but I recently updated it to include telemetry data in the spreadsheet output file.  Any arbitrary data sets within the comments section of the APRS packet will be broken out and listed in the download.  See the announcement for more information.

Zack Clobes, W0ZC
Project: Traveler
www.projecttraveler.org

Project: Traveler is a research project of Custom Digital Services, LLC.

Re: Updates to KML Log Konverter

Carlton Corbitt

Hi Zach,

Thanks for posting, i had been planning on using some time this winter to get together some videos on past flights.
I didn't konw of Konverter, but i'll give the tool a try,  it should help me speed up the process some.

Carlton
KI4NHK

Cold air

Joe WB9SBD

With the super cold temps we have had here the past two days It was 30 below this morning. 60+ below wind chill.

But anyway the 30 below got me to wonder what the temps aloft were like and was amazed, at the lower levels it actually gets warmer as you go up. Interesting!

Joe WB9SBD

--

The Original Rolling Ball Clock
Idle Tyme
Idle-Tyme.com
http://www.idle-tyme.com
--

The Original Rolling Ball Clock
Idle Tyme
Idle-Tyme.com
http://www.idle-tyme.com

Bill you missed out on a business opportunity

Zack Clobes W0ZC

Re: Bill you missed out on a business opportunity

Bill Brown

As often is the case, the pioneers in technology are too far in advance of demand. All I see here is a small rocket launched from a not-very-high hot air balloon. I do wish them success and hopefully they have worked out the math for the optimum liftoff altitude and rocket thrust (and weight) necessary to achieve orbit. There have been dozens of Rockoon startups with fancy CGI graphics, a nicely edited video and great background music who then disappear when they find funding is hard to raise. A hot-air-balloon (or high-altitude zero pressure balloon) would have to be capable of lifting thousands of pounds of rocket to place a small toaster-size payload into LEO orbit and would have to be above 70,000 feet to make it worthwhile. A rockoon is indeed a great first stage replacement. The rocket can be about 25 percent of the weight of an equivalent ground-based launch plus the rocket motor nozzle is more efficient in a near vacuum BUT it is also much harder to ignite in a near vacuum and -60 deg temperatures. We did work out how to do that using a series of weather balloon flights. A small rocket can make it into Space itself but it would come right back down again. Very useful for microgravity and sounding rocket experiments. Plus it gives you the flexibility of moving your launchsite around on a boat which we proved out 20 years ago since you can cancel out the surface winds completely by steering the boat along with the wind (up to the speed limitation of the boat). James Van Allen sent some of his rockoons thousands of miles into Space but didn't achieve orbital velocity and he also did most of his flights from the decks of Navy ships. That's where you need a much heavier rocket to achieve orbit, even with a Rockoon.

They seem to imply that they will be using a hot air balloon at 58,000 feet to launch their rockoon. While I was at the NearSpace Conference in Poland I had to pleasure to hear a talk about a fellow who took a hot-air balloon to 32,000 feet and beyond. It took an enormous redesign of their propane burners to work at that altitude and even after all their design efforts they still failed to keep burning after they got close to their altitude goal. I did find a story about a balloon pilot in India who made it to 69850 feet but the hot air balloon envelope was enormous and likely not capable of lifting thousands of pounds of rocket in addition.

The available launchsites for a Rockoon are very limited. Basically Black Rock Desert in Nevada, Spaceport America in New Mexico, some of the larger military bases and even a possibility in Sheboygan WI across Lake Michigan. However you cannot go past the range limits which is a real problem for a high altitude balloon and even worse you would have to prove that your rocket will land within the range after going into Space and back if it fails to achieve orbit. We solved that problem by heading out to sea on a large oil supply boat and had to be 200 miles from the coastline to launch the rocket. And yes we had FAA permission and also had to coordinate with the Coast Guard, the Navy and the Air Force. It actually took longer to get permission from all of these agencies than it did to design and build the Rockoon system. We flew a 400 pound rocket from a 500,000 cubic foot Raven zero-pressure balloon....it took 33 tanks of helium.

So it boils down to whether a hot air balloon of that magnitude and flight logistics combined with the range limitations is a cost effective way to launch small satellites with a 25 percent lighter-weight rocket than a ground-based rocket.

- Bill WB8ELK

-----Original Message-----
From: Zack Clobes W0ZC <zclobes@...>
To: GPSL <GPSL@groups.io>
Sent: Wed, Feb 13, 2019 6:02 pm
Subject: [GPSL] Bill you missed out on a business opportunity