highaltitude.log.20060313

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[00:25] <Professor> snooganz
[00:41] <Professor> http://www.x-division.com/wiki/index.php/HAARP
[00:45] <icez> how large is the balloon
[00:45] <icez> ?
[00:50] <Professor> 1500 gram
[00:50] <Professor> eh, 150 cubic feet or so
[00:51] <Professor> it'll expand to about 10 meters / 33 feet
[00:54] <icez> woah
[00:54] <Professor> that's at 100k feet mind you
[00:54] <Professor> on the ground they're about 2 meters
[00:55] <icez> they expand because of the lesser pressure in higher altitude right?
[00:55] <Professor> yah
[00:55] Action: icez 's not the best when it comes to balloons:/
[01:01] <Professor> I picked up some old army surplus balloons but decided not to use them
[01:01] <Professor> too old
[01:02] <Professor> (23 years I think)
[01:02] <Professor> I bought a brand new Kaymon KCI 1500
[01:02] <Professor> pre sensitized boards is sooooo easy
[01:02] <Professor> oops
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[04:50] <Professor> w0rd
[04:50] <icez> 3xc3l
[04:50] <Professor> http://www.x-division.com/wiki/index.php/HAARP
[04:50] <Professor> wh00t. my realtime tracking is now working
[04:51] <Professor> updates automatically as I drive around with the radio set
[04:51] <icez> cool
[04:51] <icez> where are you located Professor ?
[04:51] <Professor> a couple of my buddies watched me drive home a little while ago
[04:51] <Professor> los alamos, new mexico
[04:51] <Professor> er http://www.x-division.com/haarp/
[04:51] <Professor> right there
[04:52] <Professor> car is parked in front of the house :)
[04:52] <icez> ok:)
[04:52] <Professor> my position updates roughly 1x a minute
[04:52] <Professor> so if I make a turn half way between updates you see the diagonal
[04:53] <Professor> or if I turn it on after I drive away from where I last sent out a data burst, you see a long line :)
[04:54] <icez> are you using gumstixs too?
[04:55] <Professor> not for this, but my intention is to use one for control of a camera or two, and burning through the string when I reach altitude
[04:55] <Professor> http://www.x-division.com/gallery/LATS/IMG_2000_001
[04:55] <Professor> that's the gps I'm using
[04:57] <icez> i'm thinking about putting a GPS on a rocket to get the altitude
[04:57] <Professor> unfortunately I destroyed the little aprs encoder that plugs into that board
[04:57] <Professor> oh
[04:57] <Professor> well, I designed an altimeter for rocketry and the new model has a serial port for gps
[04:57] <Professor> the problem with that is gps altitude is anything but accurate and stable
[04:58] <Professor> for something like rocketry you can get WAY better performance from a pressure sensor
[04:58] <Professor> for a high altitude balloon, there is little choice but to use a gps
[04:58] <Professor> I only added a serial port to get more customers ;) easy to add "feature"
[04:59] <icez> oh
[04:59] <icez> pressure sensor, any recommendations?
[04:59] <Professor> motorola mpxa4115
[04:59] <Professor> er, freescale (motorola split off a new division for their semiconductor stuff)
[05:00] <Professor> http://www.x-division.com/gallery/electronics/DCP_0560
[05:00] <Professor> that's an early prototype for my altimeter with one of the sensors on it
[05:01] <Professor> http://www.x-division.com/gallery/electronics/DCP_0565 with a ruler for scale
[05:02] <icez> i guess i need to start learning electronics:)
[05:03] <Professor> hehe
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[11:40] Topic changed on #highaltitude by !irc.freenode.net: Welcome to #highaltitude - discuss anything to do with high altitude projects (balloons, gliders, etc) e.g. http://www.srcf.ucam.org/~jac208/pegasus/ or http://glider.phatmonkey.org.uk/wiki/ | Pegasus II lost 04/03/06
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[15:51] <Professor> g'mornin
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[19:44] <jcoxon> ooooo Professors project looks really good
[19:44] #highaltitude: mode change '+o jcoxon' by ChanServ!ChanServ@services.
[19:45] Topic changed on #highaltitude by jcoxon!n=jcoxon@jac208.caths.cam.ac.uk: Welcome to #highaltitude - discuss anything to do with high altitude projects (balloons, gliders, etc) e.g. http://www.srcf.ucam.org/~jac208/pegasus/ , http://glider.phatmonkey.org.uk/wiki/ or http://www.x-division.com/wiki/index.php/HAARP
[21:08] <phatmonkey> jcoxon: I might go back to basics
[21:08] <phatmonkey> make a big version of, what's his name's glider
[21:08] <phatmonkey> synco
[21:08] <phatmonkey> then keep it cheap
[21:09] <phatmonkey> so it's not the end of the world if we lose it
[21:10] <jcoxon> hey phatmonkey
[21:10] <jcoxon> hmmmm
[21:11] <phatmonkey> you know, something that'll fly on its own
[21:11] <jcoxon> yeah
[21:11] <phatmonkey> without any elevator input
[21:11] <jcoxon> right
[21:11] <phatmonkey> all I have to do
[21:11] <phatmonkey> is left and right
[21:11] <jcoxon> and then let it descend naturally
[21:11] <phatmonkey> then we can just use a really cheap gps, the slug, a little serial servo controller
[21:12] <phatmonkey> and a reaally simple autopilot algorithm
[21:12] <jcoxon> yeah
[21:12] <jcoxon> a sort of negative feedback system
[21:12] <jcoxon> to constantly correct its direction?
[21:12] <phatmonkey> then if we lose it, we just cut out another glider from sheet foam or whatever, buy the equipment
[21:12] <phatmonkey> and we can get together another within a matter of hours
[21:12] <phatmonkey> yeah
[21:12] <jcoxon> apparently slugs are 30 pounds in staples
[21:12] <phatmonkey> well, more specifically, a waypoint system
[21:12] <jcoxon> someone emailed me
[21:12] <phatmonkey> sweet!
[21:13] <phatmonkey> internet? link me
[21:13] <jcoxon> not sure
[21:13] <jcoxon> someone emailed me
[21:13] <phatmonkey> I might buy them up
[21:13] <phatmonkey> lol
[21:13] <jcoxon> after i lost peg II
[21:13] <phatmonkey> yeah
[21:13] <jcoxon> incidently i've updated my peg III plan
[21:13] <phatmonkey> you got a free gumstix though didn't you?
[21:13] <phatmonkey> ooh
[21:13] <jcoxon> http://www.srcf.ucam.org/~jac208/pegasus/pegasus3.html
[21:13] <jcoxon> yeah they are sending me one right now
[21:14] <phatmonkey> neat
[21:14] <jcoxon> think i might also launch a wireless router
[21:14] <jcoxon> see if we can boast 802.11b
[21:14] <phatmonkey> I will make the glider rather large (5 feet wingspan?)
[21:14] <jcoxon> it'll be a second payload
[21:14] <phatmonkey> and make it really simple
[21:14] <phatmonkey> just sheet depron foam if that works nicely
[21:14] <phatmonkey> so we can just cut out another one
[21:14] <phatmonkey> lol
[21:14] <jcoxon> i'm feeling these days that simple is better
[21:14] <phatmonkey> yeah
[21:15] <phatmonkey> especially without amateur radio communication
[21:15] <phatmonkey> I'll put a phone or my gsm terminal on it
[21:15] <jcoxon> :-D
[21:15] <phatmonkey> so if the worst happens, and it doesn't fly back to us
[21:15] <phatmonkey> we still have a chance of finding it
[21:15] <jcoxon> yeah
[21:15] <phatmonkey> or maybe I should experiment with 802.11b, so we can at least have a chance of staying in touch
[21:16] <jcoxon> if i was you get a launch done :-D
[21:16] <phatmonkey> yeah
[21:16] <jcoxon> once you've got a basic system you can then start experimenting
[21:16] <phatmonkey> I would love to get at least /something/ up
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[21:16] <phatmonkey> yeah
[21:16] <phatmonkey> hi hi freddie
[21:16] <EvilGuru> hiho
[21:16] <phatmonkey> I don't trust an uncontrolled payload with just gsm though
[21:17] <jcoxon> :-D
[21:17] <phatmonkey> so I want to do at least a simple glider
[21:17] <jcoxon> its worked once for me
[21:17] <phatmonkey> anyway
[21:17] <phatmonkey> freddie, new ideas
[21:17] <EvilGuru> ok
[21:17] <phatmonkey> we get a /really/ simple glider done
[21:17] <phatmonkey> I mean, really simple
[21:17] <phatmonkey> just cut it out of sheet depron foam (so it takes 5 minutes to make another!)
[21:17] <phatmonkey> trim it so it glides nicely without elevator input
[21:18] <phatmonkey> so the autopilot only has to cope with left/right control
[21:18] <jcoxon> going to use a cut down?
[21:18] <EvilGuru> interesting
[21:18] <phatmonkey> then, we just use standard equipment as much as possible (just hook up the various bits of equipment to their own lithium batteries to start with)
[21:19] <phatmonkey> jcoxon: yeah, probably a cut down, just in case
[21:19] <phatmonkey> not much complication!
[21:19] <phatmonkey> cheap gps
[21:19] <phatmonkey> little pencam
[21:19] <phatmonkey> cheap ebay balloon
[21:19] <phatmonkey> cheap nokia phone
[21:19] <phatmonkey> sorted
[21:19] <phatmonkey> and a little serial servo controller for left/right and cut down
[21:20] <EvilGuru> how do we deal with the ham radio problems?
[21:20] <phatmonkey> cheap gps... ?30, nslu2 ?30 (in staples!), nokia phone, ?10, pencam ?15
[21:20] <phatmonkey> we don't have it silly ;)
[21:20] <phatmonkey> we just hope it flies back to us
[21:20] <phatmonkey> testing, testing, testing, testing and more testing
[21:21] <EvilGuru> hmm, just what I had expected
[21:21] <jcoxon> i reckon thats a goodplan
[21:21] <phatmonkey> that's a matter of ?80 for the entire thing
[21:21] <EvilGuru> it could work, testing would need to be extreme
[21:21] <phatmonkey> and simple as hell
[21:21] <phatmonkey> so it's not the end of the world if it doesn't come back!
[21:22] <phatmonkey> we could stick on a little usb 802.11b adaptor with a big arse antenna
[21:22] <phatmonkey> so we at least have some chance of tracking it
[21:22] <jcoxon> http://www.usbwifi.orcon.net.nz/
[21:22] <phatmonkey> yeah
[21:22] <jcoxon> hehe its an amazing site
[21:22] <phatmonkey> what do you think freddie?
[21:23] <phatmonkey> get your serial servo controller done, and we can get the hardware together and working
[21:23] <phatmonkey> we can use a servo to trigger the camera
[21:23] <phatmonkey> simple
[21:23] <EvilGuru> ok
[21:23] <EvilGuru> want a smaller servo controller?
[21:23] <phatmonkey> I'll query the gphoto mailing list about deleting photos on the camera, which doesn't seem tobe possible
[21:23] <phatmonkey> nah
[21:24] <phatmonkey> it's not expensive or hard to make is it?
[21:24] <EvilGuru> not at all
[21:24] <phatmonkey> fine
[21:24] <EvilGuru> but one for 8 servos
[21:24] <phatmonkey> the glider will be quite large
[21:24] <phatmonkey> we're not tlaking going small
[21:24] <phatmonkey> we can strengthen the sheet foam to make it nice and large
[21:24] <EvilGuru> I like your plan
[21:25] <phatmonkey> and this will be very cheap
[21:25] <phatmonkey> we could make a cluster of these things
[21:25] <phatmonkey> that could fly in formation
[21:25] <phatmonkey> hehehe
[21:25] <phatmonkey> ok, too complicated
[21:26] <EvilGuru> lol
[21:26] <phatmonkey> can I be bothered to do biology coursework?
[21:26] <phatmonkey> naw, I'll blog about this
[21:26] <EvilGuru> the nslu2 takes a fair amount of power
[21:26] <phatmonkey> yeah
[21:26] <EvilGuru> 2A on 5V
[21:26] <phatmonkey> just use a few lithium cells
[21:29] <phatmonkey> I like I like I like
[21:29] <phatmonkey> jcoxon: might be interesting in my diy server rack
[21:30] <phatmonkey> http://www.flickr.com/photos/phatmonkey/110582771/in/set-72057594079219405/
[21:30] <phatmonkey> :D
[21:30] <phatmonkey> *interested
[21:31] <jcoxon> i thinking of something like this to track peg III
[21:31] <jcoxon> http://www.usbwifi.orcon.net.nz/beachumb.jpg
[21:31] <phatmonkey> yeah
[21:31] <phatmonkey> not very practical with a glider
[21:32] <jcoxon> wow is that yours?
[21:32] <phatmonkey> yeah, in a shed!
[21:32] <phatmonkey> what we could do, is have a large omnidirectional antenna on the glider
[21:32] <phatmonkey> then use a large directional one like that umbrella on the ground
[21:33] <jcoxon> umbrella dish would be good to follow the balloon as it ascends especially while in the line of sight
[21:33] <phatmonkey> yes
[21:34] <phatmonkey> maybe attached to a telescope or a pair of binoculars
[21:34] <phatmonkey> and somebody could sit there tracking it
[21:35] <jcoxon> interesting to see how long connection could be maintained
[21:35] <phatmonkey> yeah
[21:35] <jcoxon> my friend dave suggest launch at night and stick a light on it
[21:35] <phatmonkey> we could experiment with it from high hills somewhere
[21:35] <phatmonkey> a guy I work with, will
[21:35] <phatmonkey> he siggested using lasers
[21:35] <phatmonkey> to transfer data
[21:36] <phatmonkey> not sure about lining them up though...
[21:36] <phatmonkey> lol
[21:36] <phatmonkey> http://www.bargainhutz.com/store/product.php?productid=78
[21:36] <phatmonkey> cheap but out of stock :(
[21:36] <phatmonkey> http://www.staples.co.uk/ENG/Catalog/cat_results.asp?txtSearch=nslu2
[21:37] <jcoxon> http://mail-index.netbsd.org/regional-london/2006/03/11/0000.html
[21:39] <jcoxon> think we might have missed it
[21:40] <phatmonkey> :(
[21:41] <phatmonkey> oh well
[21:41] <phatmonkey> these new ideas might work
[21:42] <phatmonkey> I was starting to get a bit discouraged by stuff being complicated and hard to do
[21:42] <phatmonkey> ... and illegal
[21:42] <phatmonkey> I couldn't really see the end in sight
[21:42] <phatmonkey> this new one will be really quick to make
[21:42] <phatmonkey> might take a while to perfect though
[21:43] <jcoxon> need to take the risk eventually and launch
[21:45] <phatmonkey> yeah
[21:45] <phatmonkey> it would be good to get something actually done
[21:45] <phatmonkey> but I still don't trust an uncontrolled payload just with gsm contact
[21:45] <phatmonkey> glider that will fly back, fine
[21:47] <phatmonkey> EvilGuru: you don't have an old digital camera that you are willing to sacrifice would you?
[21:47] <phatmonkey> I have to admit, the pencams are a tad crummy
[21:47] <phatmonkey> good for the first flights I guess
[21:50] <jcoxon> true
[21:50] <jcoxon> right i'll be back later
[21:50] <jcoxon> cya all
[21:50] <phatmonkey> bye
[21:55] <EvilGuru> hmm old digi-cam
[21:55] <EvilGuru> I will check
[21:58] <icez> pencams hihi
[21:58] <icez> the crappiest camera i have ever seen
[21:58] <icez> :/
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[00:00] --- Tue Mar 14 2006