highaltitude.log.20090329

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[00:51] <Laurenceb> I wish sparkfun had the ublox5 in stock :-/
[00:56] <shellevil> http://sound.westhost.com/fake/counterfeit-p3.htm#bu505
[00:56] <shellevil> something to think of
[00:59] <Laurenceb> hopefully if you buy from farnell or somewhere your ok
[02:00] <shellevil> yeah
[02:00] <Laurenceb> they buy from farnell and rs for space rated hardware for example
[02:01] <Laurenceb> other stuff direct from the manufacturer - I'd imagine its only if you go through weird chinese resellers that you'll have issues
[02:19] <Laurenceb> I've had to replace the cutdown :-/
[02:19] <Laurenceb> looks like the resistor overheated, some of the coating is torn off and you can see the graphite
[02:20] <Laurenceb> looks like the plastic stuck to it and tore it off
[02:23] <Laurenceb> running these cutdowns on 8.4v lipos is probably more power than optimal
[02:24] <Laurenceb> at 6v they heat up nicely and melt the plastic strip with no damage
[02:26] <shellevil> more resistance
[02:29] <Laurenceb> yeah 15 ohm might be better
[02:29] <Laurenceb> or a 0.25 watt resistor
[02:34] <Laurenceb> I'd run it a few times on the ground for up to 15 seconds or so, so that probably damaged the coating
[02:34] <Laurenceb> we need kapton coated resistors
[02:35] <shellevil> I've got some ceramic coated ones
[02:35] <shellevil> rated for 350c surface temp
[02:35] <shellevil> work well in tests
[02:35] <Laurenceb> low power?
[02:36] <shellevil> IIRC I used 3W, and it worked very well
[02:36] <Laurenceb> really need <0.5 watt for it to be easy to power
[02:36] <Laurenceb> <1A is pretty easy to supply
[02:36] <Laurenceb> but once you get to much more current it gets tricky
[02:37] <Laurenceb> I'm running at 30 times the rated power
[02:37] <shellevil> 3W@8V IIRC
[02:37] <shellevil> this was just the nominal 'pulse' power
[02:37] <Laurenceb> right
[02:37] <Laurenceb> what voltage were you using?
[02:38] <Laurenceb> in my experience you need between 20 and 100 times rated power to make a good cutdown. If you start to get up to around 1000 times the explosion doesnt damage the cutdown enough
[02:39] <Laurenceb> around 200 times rated power you can get the resistor glowing white hot for several minutes
[02:40] <Laurenceb> until the graphite ablates I guess
[02:40] <shellevil> The resistor got to about its nominal pulse surface temp, which is about 350C, and the mylar tape very rapidly melted/vaporised
[02:41] <Laurenceb> I've even got them glowing blue
[02:41] <Laurenceb> ok... this was at 8V ?
[02:41] <shellevil> yes
[02:41] <Laurenceb> what current?
[02:41] <shellevil> I think it was a 15R part
[02:42] <shellevil> about half an amp
[02:42] <Laurenceb> hey nice, whats the size?
[02:42] <shellevil> Forgotten the link - dig it up tomorrow if I can.
[02:42] <Laurenceb> ok
[02:42] <Laurenceb> this sounds good, I've using 10R at 2*lipo
[02:42] <Laurenceb> so 7 to 8.4V
[02:43] <Laurenceb> it fits across an M4 hole
[02:43] <Laurenceb> epoxied at either side, with plastic line looped round
[02:56] <Laurenceb> shellevil: you have some of these resistors?
[03:04] <shellevil> somewheree
[03:09] <Laurenceb> http://www.theonion.com/content/files/images/Scientist-Ask-Jump.jpg
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[03:26] <Laurenceb> http://sound.westhost.com/articles/cfl-resistor.jpg
[03:26] <natrium42> now that's hot
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[06:51] <trialex> Hi. Just lurking at the moment... have been inspired by the recent increase in amateur high altitude balloon projects, so have started prototyping my own. So far I've done some basic GPS logging and starting triggering a camera. Immeadiate plans are to design a basic control system board, based on a AtMega168, taking GPS readings, logging to an SD card and triggering a camera. Mount this package to my kite to do some basic proof of
[07:02] <icez> sounds neat
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[08:30] <Laurenceb> hello
[08:31] <icez> hi
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[10:13] <edmoore> morning all
[10:13] <edmoore> we've lost an hour
[10:13] <edmoore> poo
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[11:27] <SpeedEvil> Indeed.
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[14:16] <shellevil> Odd. Insurance policy 'DO:' Inform the police, make a sketch of the accident. 'DO NOT:' Take photos or videos with a camera or cameraphone'
[14:17] <edmoore> why??
[14:17] <shellevil> I have absolutely no idea.
[14:18] <shellevil> I'm getting my license soon, and have no insurance, so was investigating temporary - daily - insurance for provisional licensed driver. Not bad, only 9 quid a day.
[14:18] <edmoore> sure
[14:19] <edmoore> thugh still a bit scry compared to comp
[14:19] <shellevil> After finding out I've probably done 3000 miles uninsured - as I've been listed a a full, not provisional driver on my mums insurance.
[14:19] <shellevil> (and yes, all supervised)
[14:19] <shellevil> oops.
[14:19] <shellevil> that is actually comp
[14:19] <edmoore> annual comp, even
[14:20] <edmoore> mine is now a lot less scary
[14:20] <edmoore> life gets easier after 21
[14:20] <shellevil> Initial quotes look like around 400/year - immediately after my test - or 200/year - if I can get credit for previous driving history - which looks like a maybe.
[14:21] <shellevil> Been driving my mum around for ages - as she's had difficulty driving, but I've not had my own car, so haven't bothered getting test, which was silly.
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[14:23] <shellevil> Need it for doing openstreetview :)
[14:24] <shellevil> Hmm. I suppose one 'easy' way of removing faces would be to simply take the same area twice and find the non-moving bits.
[14:27] <shellevil> That raises either the issues of accurately GPS synchronising the pics so they're taken at exactly the same point, or 3D modelling though.
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[15:16] <edmoore> does anyone have an arduino lying around?
[15:17] <sbasuita> edmoore, should ask DanielRichman
[15:17] <DanielRichman> edmoore, got one next to me; why?
[15:18] <edmoore> I'm looking for a spare one, ideally
[15:18] <edmoore> 2nd hand
[15:18] <DanielRichman> edmoore, ah, sorry - unfortunatly we intend to use this one soon
[15:18] <edmoore> not to worry
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[15:25] <jcoxon> WB8ELK is launching quite soon
[15:25] <jcoxon> http://www.batc.tv
[15:25] <jcoxon> live events
[15:25] <jcoxon> nothing yet though on the streaming
[15:30] <edmoore> jcoxon: how soon?
[15:31] <jcoxon> ummm should be about now
[15:32] <jcoxon> edmoore, its the boat race - you should be watching ITV
[15:32] <edmoore> I don't watch it
[15:32] <edmoore> it's contentious in our household
[15:33] <jcoxon> :-)
[15:33] <jcoxon> luckly in my flat we are all Cambridge
[15:34] <edmoore> you're partically on top of it - why are you watching it on tv?
[15:34] <jcoxon> been revising
[15:34] <jcoxon> exams tomorrow
[15:34] <edmoore> fair enough
[15:35] <SpeedEvil> good luck
[15:37] <edmoore> as a random asside jcoxon, a half-thought-out feature for the DL client might be a text file which just contains the azimuth+elevation info of the balloon relative to the listening station
[15:38] <jcoxon> for future aiming antenna?
[15:38] <edmoore> exactly
[15:38] <RocketBoy> I always root for the local team or the underdogs - so thats cambridge on both counts
[15:38] <edmoore> :p
[15:38] <jcoxon> edmoore, yeah i'll look into implementing it
[15:39] <edmoore> so if one specifical pointer looses it, and can't re-aquire because of the directionality of the antennas, the DL can tell it where to point based off all the other stations
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[15:39] <edmoore> we'll have ours up and running in the next few weeks
[15:39] <edmoore> i think they're taking the mast down in about 3 weeks, so we'll put it on then
[15:39] <edmoore> hopefully it'll be a useful addition to the DL
[15:43] <shellevil> umm. HF - is it likely anyones going to have an antenna that directional?
[15:43] <shellevil> esp steerable.
[15:44] <shellevil> but not a bad plan - esp for uhf I spose.
[15:46] <edmoore> not hf
[15:47] <shellevil> oh
[15:47] <edmoore> this is for the uhf stuff
[15:47] <shellevil> Oh - and I suppose tuning complicates pointing
[15:47] <shellevil> if you're not sure you're tuned
[15:47] <edmoore> yep
[15:47] <shellevil> not really thought about it
[15:47] <edmoore> its just easier to loose it basically
[15:47] <shellevil> or the transmitter's tuned
[15:48] <edmoore> though with the radios outputting 10khz, it's fairly manageable now
[15:48] <edmoore> can normally spot it on the waterfall before too long
[15:48] <shellevil> 10khz ssb output you mean?
[15:48] <edmoore> yeah
[15:49] <edmoore> 10khz of audio bandwidth going o the soundcard
[15:49] <edmoore> (10ish anyway)
[15:49] <shellevil> that'll help - vs 3ish
[15:50] Action: shellevil wishes he had exams tomorrow.
[15:50] <RocketBoy> 10khz SSB is that a special?
[15:50] <shellevil> Something a whole lot less fun to do.
[15:50] <shellevil> RocketBoy: just makes tuning a bit easier
[15:51] <edmoore> not transmitting, just decoding.
[15:57] <RocketBoy> :-(
[15:57] <jcoxon> indeed
[15:57] <jcoxon> another loss
[16:01] <jcoxon> pretty standard these days
[16:02] <jcoxon> RocketBoy, you know the recent ZP balloon flight that occured last weekend - out of interest they were using an adapted rockmite 30m transmitter
[16:04] <jcoxon> ooo stream has started
[16:08] <SpeedEvil> stream?
[16:08] <jcoxon> http://www.batc.tv/ch_live.php
[16:08] <jcoxon> balloon launch in the US
[16:08] <SpeedEvil> ah
[16:09] <SpeedEvil> id?
[16:10] <jcoxon> WB8ELK
[16:13] <SpeedEvil> for others. go to www.batc.tv - and click 'live events
[16:14] Action: SpeedEvil ponders typing 'shoe on head'.
[16:16] <jcoxon> wish they had a better chat system
[16:16] <jcoxon> its painful to use
[16:18] <SpeedEvil> on any particular grounds?
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[16:20] <RocketBoy> beats standing around in a cold field
[16:21] <jcoxon> yeah i want a building
[16:23] <RocketBoy> I have been thinking about a big tent - but its probably going to be more pain than its worth
[16:24] <jcoxon> we just need to launch more in summer :-)
[16:24] <SpeedEvil> 8 sheets of kingspan - job done.
[16:36] <jcoxon> you've got to love aprs
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[16:38] <RocketBoy> where tis?
[16:39] <jcoxon> http://aprs.fi KG4WSV-12
[16:39] <jcoxon> in Huntville USA
[16:40] <SpeedEvil> http://aprs.fi/KG4WSV-12
[16:40] <SpeedEvil> to track
[16:44] <jcoxon> bbl
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[17:29] <sbasuita> Can't we use aprs here in the uk/
[17:37] <SpeedEvil> Problem is ham operation in the air isn't legal.
[17:39] <sbasuita> SpeedEvil, ah right, and I guess it is in the US?
[17:39] <sbasuita> It's just too unbelievably cool ; P
[17:39] <SpeedEvil> yes
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[20:25] <Laurenceb> hello
[20:26] <natrium42> ello
[20:26] <SpeedEvil> hi
[20:27] <Laurenceb> lol @ jacki smith
[20:27] <SpeedEvil> The one bit of news that made me smile till my head nearly fell off today.
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[20:33] <Laurenceb> http://blog.wired.com/cars/2009/03/first-look-of-t.html
[20:33] <natrium42> Laurenceb, let's build an electric car
[20:33] <natrium42> order a bunch of dewalt battery packs with A123 batteries
[20:34] <natrium42> take a chassis of some car
[20:34] <Laurenceb> too heavy
[20:34] <Laurenceb> you really need to start from scratch
[20:35] <natrium42> we will take a japanse car then!
[20:35] <natrium42> they are light & flimsy
[20:35] <RocketBoy> I have only one word to say - tesla
[20:36] <RocketBoy> http://www.teslamotors.com/
[20:36] <Laurenceb> thats what I just linked ;P
[20:36] <natrium42> tesla used an existing chassis for the roadster afaik
[20:36] <Laurenceb> yeah a lotus elise
[20:36] <RocketBoy> yep - tis a beast of a car
[20:36] <Laurenceb> rather light
[20:37] <RocketBoy> not with all those laptop batteries
[20:37] Action: Laurenceb waits for eestor
[20:37] <Laurenceb> sure, but a convensional car is built around the engine
[20:38] <natrium42> we can choose a light chassis
[20:38] <SpeedEvil> Nissan Micra.
[20:38] <natrium42> maybe honda or acura
[20:38] <natrium42> eww
[20:38] <natrium42> how about tata ? :P
[20:39] <SpeedEvil> IIRC some numbers indicated an 80 mile range if you replace the fuel-tank of the above and hte engine weight with batteries
[20:45] <Laurenceb> bbl
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[21:02] <jcoxon> evening all
[21:02] <natrium42> hy jcoxon
[21:02] <natrium42> *hey
[21:03] <jcoxon> hey natrium42
[21:10] <jcoxon> any atlantichalo updates?
[21:15] <RocketBoy> jcoxon: what about using APRS-IS for DL stuff?
[21:16] <jcoxon> to tell the truth we've pretty much got it all working
[21:16] <jcoxon> right now we are just adding some features
[21:17] <jcoxon> as the system we have now allows you to use and freq and any format that fldigi decodes
[21:18] <jcoxon> and -> any
[21:18] <Laurenceb> using aprs would be pretty cool
[21:19] <RocketBoy> I was just thinking for the map display - just convert and fire at a APRS-IS server
[21:20] <jcoxon> is there any advantage to just POSTing it to the tracker?
[21:20] <sbasuita> Has this got anything to do with the up and coming "UKHAS Network"?
[21:20] <RocketBoy> laurence:to be of any real benifit it would have to use ram radio reciving stations hand hence would be on 144MHz
[21:21] <RocketBoy> which is a no-no
[21:21] <Laurenceb> even over the states/canada?
[21:21] <jcoxon> sbasuita, yeah
[21:21] <RocketBoy> yeah thats ok
[21:21] <sbasuita> jcoxon, how long till this will be up? In time for our launch?
[21:21] <Laurenceb> we could have 144 up to some point when we get near uk waters
[21:22] <jcoxon> sbasuita, its working right now
[21:22] <sbasuita> jcoxon, oooh linky?
[21:22] <jcoxon> just needs a flight to test it properly
[21:22] Action: sbasuita has just installed fldigi
[21:22] Action: sbasuita is confused
[21:22] <sbasuita> : P
[21:23] <jcoxon> one sec
[21:23] <RocketBoy> laurenceb: well it would work out to whatever the radio horizen was at JS altitudes
[21:25] <jcoxon> sbasuita, basically it'll go to natrium's tracker in the end
[21:25] <jcoxon> http://spacenear.us/tracker/
[21:26] <jcoxon> you run fldigi and the python client and it reads the logfile and uploads the data to the server
[21:26] <Laurenceb> need to get it working for the next rogallo flight
[21:26] <jcoxon> which parses it, compares it to data coming in from others and posts it onto the map
[21:26] <Laurenceb> unfortunately wifi doesnt reach at churchill
[21:26] <jcoxon> Laurenceb, its working - i used it for Nova 10
[21:26] <jcoxon> but with only one station
[21:26] <Laurenceb> yeah
[21:27] <jcoxon> just need more stations
[21:27] <sbasuita> The idea with fldigi is that you plug your radio output into your sound card?
[21:27] <jcoxon> yes
[21:27] <Laurenceb> well I've got my own php based tracker that will POST to natriums
[21:27] <Laurenceb> but it requires internet
[21:27] <jcoxon> don't they all
[21:28] <jcoxon> whats cool is that the server keeps an eye on those who are logging
[21:28] <jcoxon> so we'll plot them on the map as well
[21:28] <Laurenceb> theres a nice coax to the wifi antenna in my latop... if I could break it out to a sma connector
[21:29] <jcoxon> the DLClient should easily run in the background so if people get the chance next launch they can just run it in the background
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[21:33] <Laurenceb> http://www.radio-electronics.com/info/circuits/diode-rf-attenuator/pin-diode-switch.php
[21:33] <Laurenceb> maybe I could use that
[21:33] <Laurenceb> coax---sma-switch---coax---inbuilt antenna
[21:34] <Laurenceb> keep the sma and switch assembly as small as poss
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[21:37] <Laurenceb> note sure if reflections off the inside of the sma would screw things up
[21:39] <Laurenceb> guess I could go with an sma socket and dangling sma connector to the internal antenna
[21:43] <shellevil> as you approach 0.05 wavelengths or so long, reflections get less important
[21:43] <shellevil> or rather - appear as a simple impedence
[21:43] <Laurenceb> yeah
[21:44] <Laurenceb> do you think it'll work?
[21:44] <shellevil> what freq?
[21:44] <shellevil> oh
[21:44] <shellevil> unsure
[21:44] <Laurenceb> maybe need a SPDT rf switch
[21:47] <Laurenceb> hmm diode switches doesnt look too bad
[21:49] <Laurenceb> or just get a usb adaptor I guess
[21:50] <Laurenceb> the 500mw usb modules on ebay, are they legal?
[21:50] <shellevil> Well...
[21:50] <shellevil> If you connect them through an attenuator, sure!
[21:51] <Laurenceb> they use more power than standard?
[21:51] <shellevil> oh - that.
[21:51] <shellevil> yes, too.
[21:51] <shellevil> http://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view/286911
[21:51] <shellevil> :)
[21:55] <Laurenceb> shellevil !
[21:58] <Laurenceb> http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/USB-Yagi-High-Power-WiFi-antenna-28dBm-for-laptop-PC_W0QQitemZ400039006350QQcmdZViewItemQQptZUK_Computing_Networking_SM?hash=item400039006350&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1683%7C66%3A2%7C65%3A12%7C39%3A2%7C240%3A1318
[21:58] <Laurenceb> is that a scam?
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[22:00] <jcoxon> night all
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[22:00] <RocketBoy> in what sense a scam?
[22:00] <Laurenceb> hmm
[22:00] <shellevil> It is designed to ensure optiomal reception!
[22:01] <Laurenceb> fairdoos
[22:02] <shellevil> +28dBm
[22:02] <shellevil> the graph shows about a 14dB gain
[22:02] <Laurenceb> antenna gain?
[22:02] <Laurenceb> 28dBm is 600mw
[22:02] <shellevil> which is what - 25* gain - or about 1/2 a steradian output angle
[22:03] <Laurenceb> yeah ok
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[22:03] <Laurenceb> so the 28dBm takes antenna gain into account?
[22:03] <RocketBoy> well lets say 14db for the yagi
[22:04] <shellevil> yes
[22:04] <RocketBoy> one would have thought so although it should say dBmi
[22:04] <shellevil> yeah
[22:04] <RocketBoy> or dbmd
[22:05] <Laurenceb> so actual power is 14dBm
[22:05] <shellevil> ish
[22:05] <RocketBoy> probably about that
[22:06] <shellevil> with another 15 or so from the ant
[22:06] <Laurenceb> hmm
[22:06] Action: Laurenceb considers 500mw usb stick with yagi
[22:06] Action: shellevil has 0.8m dish for that.
[22:06] <RocketBoy> so what is the leagal output?
[22:07] <Laurenceb> this is probably an overkill for wifi at churchill
[22:07] <shellevil> IIRC 30mW EIRP
[22:08] <RocketBoy> so 500mW with yagi seems a tad ott
[22:08] <Laurenceb> hmm
[22:08] <Laurenceb> if theres only 10mw or something at the other end theres no point
[22:09] <RocketBoy> yeah - 10mw + yagi
[22:09] <RocketBoy> depending on rx sensitivity at the other end
[22:09] <shellevil> If you're just looking for better reception, often a simple dongle on a stick works well
[22:10] <shellevil> with a long cable
[22:10] <Laurenceb> my laptop supposedly has two antenna in the back of the screen
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[22:13] <RocketBoy> laurenceb: the two ants are for diversity - it will select the best signal from the twp
[22:13] <Laurenceb> yeah
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[22:23] aLeXBrEtOn (n=Alexande@client-80-5-40-149.cht-bng-014.adsl.virginmedia.net) left irc:
[22:40] <Laurenceb> http://englishrussia.com/?p=2370
[22:44] <Laurenceb> "I was distracted by the four women you see in the third photo. They are, from left to right, Sofia, Natasha, Svetlana, and Irina. In the photo you see their usual method of production, which consists of Irina and Svetlana doing the work, under the supervision of Natasha, and watched by Sofia, who doesnt have any technical or scientific training"
[22:44] <Laurenceb> lol
[22:47] <natrium42> yeah, the trolls on that site are epic
[22:48] <natrium42> mahmoud ahmadinejad is the best troll ever
[22:49] <Laurenceb> I like the yogurt
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[22:55] <Laurenceb> http://englishrussia.com/images/begging_cat/1.jpg
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[00:00] --- Mon Mar 30 2009