NWS Sonde Chase and Recovery


Clif Brown
 

Decided to try my hand at chasing and recovering a NWS balloon. This one was was launched at 7AM from Peachtree City, GA and landed in East Cobb (NW Metro ATL). The homeowner was very friendly and grateful to have someone get the orange parachute out of his pine tree.

I used sondehub.org prediction to get me to the general area and then tracked using an SDR-RTL/HDSDR/SondeMonitor with a 2M whip antenna (mag mount).

GPS was dead on.  The payload was in a pine tree in a residential neighborhood.

Recovery was easier than any of my three HAB launches.

This WxSonde chasing could be addictive.  Most of the fun of HAB at a fraction of the cost.

Cliff
KW4CL


Joe WB9SBD
 

I wonder what size balloons they use now days since the payload is sooo tiny now.

Joe WB9SBD

On 9/11/2022 10:59 AM, Clif Brown wrote:

Decided to try my hand at chasing and recovering a NWS balloon. This one was was launched at 7AM from Peachtree City, GA and landed in East Cobb (NW Metro ATL). The homeowner was very friendly and grateful to have someone get the orange parachute out of his pine tree. I used sondehub.org prediction to get me to the general area and then tracked using an SDR-RTL/HDSDR/SondeMonitor with a 2M whip antenna (mag mount).

GPS was dead on.  The payload was in a pine tree in a residential neighborhood.

Recovery was easier than any of my three HAB launches.

This WxSonde chasing could be addictive.  Most of the fun of HAB at a fraction of the cost.

Cliff
KW4CL


k6sts
 

Congrats Cliff, looks like a RS-41.  And yes it is addictive. 
Have fun, 
Cheers, 
Doug k6sts.  Living in Florida 


On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 11:59 AM, Clif Brown
<cliff.brown@...> wrote:
Decided to try my hand at chasing and recovering a NWS balloon. This one was was launched at 7AM from Peachtree City, GA and landed in East Cobb (NW Metro ATL). The homeowner was very friendly and grateful to have someone get the orange parachute out of his pine tree.

I used sondehub.org prediction to get me to the general area and then tracked using an SDR-RTL/HDSDR/SondeMonitor with a 2M whip antenna (mag mount).

GPS was dead on.  The payload was in a pine tree in a residential neighborhood.

Recovery was easier than any of my three HAB launches.

This WxSonde chasing could be addictive.  Most of the fun of HAB at a fraction of the cost.

Cliff
KW4CL


James Ewen VE6SRV
 

Anyone have a link for the SondeMonitor? I saw a little Arduino based unit for the first time a few weeks ago. 

Are there multiple versions, or is there just one that has been developed?



On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 10:20 k6sts via groups.io <k6sts=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
Congrats Cliff, looks like a RS-41.  And yes it is addictive. 
Have fun, 
Cheers, 
Doug k6sts.  Living in Florida 


On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 11:59 AM, Clif Brown
Decided to try my hand at chasing and recovering a NWS balloon. This one was was launched at 7AM from Peachtree City, GA and landed in East Cobb (NW Metro ATL). The homeowner was very friendly and grateful to have someone get the orange parachute out of his pine tree.

I used sondehub.org prediction to get me to the general area and then tracked using an SDR-RTL/HDSDR/SondeMonitor with a 2M whip antenna (mag mount).

GPS was dead on.  The payload was in a pine tree in a residential neighborhood.

Recovery was easier than any of my three HAB launches.

This WxSonde chasing could be addictive.  Most of the fun of HAB at a fraction of the cost.

Cliff
KW4CL

--
James
VE6SRV


Clif Brown
 

https://www.coaa.co.uk/sondemonitor.htm

It's a trial for 21 days, after which they want payment.

Using it in trial mode worked well.


Clif Brown
 

It's a DFM-17


Hank Riley
 


Graw is a German company which recently won a NOAA/NWS contract to supply sondes to more than half of the US upper air network of 71 stations.  The rest will be from Vaisala it looks like.  The Lockheed Martin sondes, made in the US and formerly widely used by the NWS, seem to be left out in the cold now with just a few NWS stations still using the LMS-6. They're also used by the Vandenberg and Cape Canaveral Space Force installations.



Mark Conner N9XTN
 

If you have a Raspberry Pi 3 or 4 available, radiosonde_auto_rx works very well with most SDRs.


I've found that antennas capable of working the 70cm ham band will work fine for receiving the 403 MHz sondes.  I have a short dual-band mobile mounted at 25 ft AGL and can receive DFM-17 sondes at over 500 km distance.  Much easier than the 1680 MHz band sondes.

73 de Mark N9XTN





On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 11:23 AM James Ewen VE6SRV <ve6srv@...> wrote:
Anyone have a link for the SondeMonitor? I saw a little Arduino based unit for the first time a few weeks ago. 

Are there multiple versions, or is there just one that has been developed?



On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 10:20 k6sts via groups.io <k6sts=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
Congrats Cliff, looks like a RS-41.  And yes it is addictive. 
Have fun, 
Cheers, 
Doug k6sts.  Living in Florida 


On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 11:59 AM, Clif Brown
Decided to try my hand at chasing and recovering a NWS balloon. This one was was launched at 7AM from Peachtree City, GA and landed in East Cobb (NW Metro ATL). The homeowner was very friendly and grateful to have someone get the orange parachute out of his pine tree.

I used sondehub.org prediction to get me to the general area and then tracked using an SDR-RTL/HDSDR/SondeMonitor with a 2M whip antenna (mag mount).

GPS was dead on.  The payload was in a pine tree in a residential neighborhood.

Recovery was easier than any of my three HAB launches.

This WxSonde chasing could be addictive.  Most of the fun of HAB at a fraction of the cost.

Cliff
KW4CL

--
James
VE6SRV


Hank Riley
 

Cliff,

Thanks for the real nice recovery pictures.  Great human interest value.

Hank


Garrett, Mark
 

I recovered a Graw back in June (the last time a sonde came within my chase zone).  Hope to get a few more of those this fall.  Just using a UHF receiver to DF them down but looking intently at the Sondemonitor software.  Any USB SDR receivers with built in GPS out there using the mapping software data output for distance and bearing on display maps?  

On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 11:36 AM Clif Brown <cliff.brown@...> wrote:
It's a DFM-17
_._,_._,_



--
Mark Garrett
KA9SZX



k6sts
 

Sorry Cliff, I see now it's a Graw.  I recovered 50 + lms6, 1680's while in ND.
Cheers, 
Doug  k6sts 


On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 12:20 PM, Doug Niessen
<k6sts@...> wrote:
Congrats Cliff, looks like a RS-41.  And yes it is addictive. 
Have fun, 
Cheers, 
Doug k6sts.  Living in Florida 


On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 11:59 AM, Clif Brown
<cliff.brown@...> wrote:
Decided to try my hand at chasing and recovering a NWS balloon. This one was was launched at 7AM from Peachtree City, GA and landed in East Cobb (NW Metro ATL). The homeowner was very friendly and grateful to have someone get the orange parachute out of his pine tree.

I used sondehub.org prediction to get me to the general area and then tracked using an SDR-RTL/HDSDR/SondeMonitor with a 2M whip antenna (mag mount).

GPS was dead on.  The payload was in a pine tree in a residential neighborhood.

Recovery was easier than any of my three HAB launches.

This WxSonde chasing could be addictive.  Most of the fun of HAB at a fraction of the cost.

Cliff
KW4CL


James Ewen VE6SRV
 

That’s what popped up for me when googling, but what I saw was a little arduino unit that fit in the palm of your hand. 

It was self contained, from antenna to LCD display. 

I’ll have to snoop the net to see if I can find the unit that he was using. 

On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 10:32 Clif Brown <cliff.brown@...> wrote:
https://www.coaa.co.uk/sondemonitor.htm

It's a trial for 21 days, after which they want payment.

Using it in trial mode worked well.

--
James
VE6SRV


Mark Jessop
 

You are thinking of a TTGO, not an Arduino.

Refer here for information on the firmware that would have been running on it: https://github.com/dl9rdz/rdz_ttgo_sonde

73
Mark VK5QI

On Mon, Sep 12, 2022 at 8:58 AM James Ewen VE6SRV <ve6srv@...> wrote:
That’s what popped up for me when googling, but what I saw was a little arduino unit that fit in the palm of your hand. 

It was self contained, from antenna to LCD display. 

I’ll have to snoop the net to see if I can find the unit that he was using. 

On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 10:32 Clif Brown <cliff.brown@...> wrote:
https://www.coaa.co.uk/sondemonitor.htm

It's a trial for 21 days, after which they want payment.

Using it in trial mode worked well.

--
James
VE6SRV


James Ewen VE6SRV
 

That looks like it might have been the one. 

I was busy setting up and launching a balloon when I saw the device. Didn’t get a good look at it. 

I could have spent a long time trying to find it as an arduino device. 

Thanks!

On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 21:30 Mark Jessop <vk5qi@...> wrote:
You are thinking of a TTGO, not an Arduino.

Refer here for information on the firmware that would have been running on it: https://github.com/dl9rdz/rdz_ttgo_sonde

73
Mark VK5QI

On Mon, Sep 12, 2022 at 8:58 AM James Ewen VE6SRV <ve6srv@...> wrote:
That’s what popped up for me when googling, but what I saw was a little arduino unit that fit in the palm of your hand. 

It was self contained, from antenna to LCD display. 

I’ll have to snoop the net to see if I can find the unit that he was using. 

On Sun, Sep 11, 2022 at 10:32 Clif Brown <cliff.brown@...> wrote:
https://www.coaa.co.uk/sondemonitor.htm

It's a trial for 21 days, after which they want payment.

Using it in trial mode worked well.

--
James
VE6SRV

--
James
VE6SRV