highaltitude.log.20111209

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[01:00] <natrium42> huhu --> http://stories.citi.com/usc/stories/10/q3/main_landing/default.htm?BTData=C02177F736E6173585C4E46B0BEBEAAA49E928492FFF7F6EFEAC5C2DEF2834B7&BT_TRF=4057&app=UNSOL&app_COL=COLLEGE&sc=46EZF530&sc_COL=4CECU530&m=1000000001W&langId=EN&siteId=CB&B=V&screenID=3124&CMP=PAC~3~111101~BRANDING~STORIES.CITI.COM&ProspectID=F9001400E77B4AD48694BEEA6C28B171
[01:00] <natrium42> which one of you guys did it?
[01:00] <natrium42> (second video)
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[03:36] <natrium42> Laurenceb: check out that ass --> http://i.imgur.com/XX1g6.jpg
[03:44] <anmo> cute ass
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[04:58] Nick change: anmo -> amor
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[09:23] <nosebleedkt_> Hi !
[09:24] <natrium42> Hey !
[09:25] <nosebleedkt_> how is the sun in canada ?
[09:26] <natrium42> i moved to california
[09:26] <natrium42> it's about 14C in the day
[09:26] <natrium42> :P
[09:26] <nosebleedkt_> what?
[09:26] <nosebleedkt_> for ever? or for some days?
[09:27] <natrium42> not forever, but for a while
[09:27] <nosebleedkt_> I need some california love. pa ra pam pam pam
[09:28] <natrium42> :D
[09:28] <natrium42> you should come visit
[09:28] <nosebleedkt_> yeah but im afraid of planes
[09:28] <nosebleedkt_> :(
[09:29] <natrium42> take a steam boat
[09:29] <nosebleedkt_> from greece?
[09:29] <nosebleedkt_> :)
[09:29] <natrium42> eek
[09:29] <natrium42> it's not impossible
[09:29] <natrium42> but more expensive than air travel
[09:29] <nosebleedkt_> I believe that
[09:30] <nosebleedkt_> so are you staying there for the summer too ?
[09:30] <natrium42> most likely
[09:31] <nosebleedkt_> nice, then you can host me ? :P
[09:31] <natrium42> sure, why not
[09:31] <nosebleedkt_> dunno, your girl might not like the idea :P
[09:32] <nosebleedkt_> How much it takes to come there by boat?
[09:32] <nosebleedkt_> from Europes lets say
[09:32] <nosebleedkt_> ( I suppose to be working rather than chatting )
[09:32] <natrium42> my gf is in ukraine :S
[09:33] <natrium42> hmm, google freighter travel
[09:33] <nosebleedkt_> ooh! padrouska!
[09:34] <nosebleedkt_> Well, I like the conversation but it gets far from reality for me right now.
[09:34] <natrium42> http://www.freightercruises.com/voyages.php#transatlantic
[09:34] <nosebleedkt_> but i will have it on the back of my mind that someone can host me in california. would be a dream to come there. I wont stop laughing.
[09:35] <natrium42> :)
[09:35] <natrium42> perhaps i will visit you in greece too
[09:35] <natrium42> i haven't been to greece
[09:36] <nosebleedkt_> lol, be sure that greek islands are far better than california coat. but california got the name :)
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[09:36] <nosebleedkt_> coast*
[09:37] <nosebleedkt_> and we all run for the name !
[09:38] <natrium42> greece has so much history, though
[09:38] <natrium42> gonna catch some sleep, gnite!
[09:38] <nosebleedkt_> gnite!
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[10:26] <Upu> oo someones been playing with spacenear.us
[10:28] <daveake> Wasn't me (this time) :)
[10:29] <Darkside> how so?
[10:29] <Darkside> oh
[10:29] <Darkside> the font is different
[10:33] <Upu> the flight box can expand and collapse
[10:34] <Darkside> so it can
[10:34] <Upu> I think the payloads can scroll now too
[10:35] <daveake> That battery voltage needs a bit more precision
[10:38] <daveake> New laptop has arrived :-). That'll keep me amused for a while.
[10:39] <WillDuckworth> any news on the 'testing' spacenear.us at all? or was i imagining that one from the conference?
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[10:42] <Upu> how do you mean Will ?
[10:43] <Randomskk> WillDuckworth: both the lead developers have been at school/uni since the conference :X
[10:43] <WillDuckworth> i think Daniel and Adam mentioned about there being a separate part for testing peoples' payload json.
[10:43] <WillDuckworth> no excuse Randomskk ;)
[10:44] <Darkside> lol Randomskk
[10:44] <Randomskk> after today I have free time in my evenings again so will try and proritise getting the automatic payload submission and control stuff working
[10:44] <WillDuckworth> i'm impressed with your work as it is
[10:44] <Randomskk> WillDuckworth: to be honest, it hasn't affected DanielRichman, he's done a whole load of work on dl-fldigi
[10:44] <Randomskk> so that it can now upload directly, has a nicer interface, works better, all sorts of improvements
[10:44] <Randomskk> it's just me slacking off so there's not yet a web interface to upload your payload flight docs automatically
[10:44] <Randomskk> but yea, hopefully fairly soon on that front
[10:45] <WillDuckworth> good stuff :)
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[11:08] <costyn> ping Upu
[11:09] <costyn> actually most of you will probably know this, but the guide Upu wrote on connceitng the NTX2 to an Arduino ; I can just test it without connceting an antenna right?
[11:10] <costyn> not gonna fry any circuitry by not using an antenna wire on the NTX2?
[11:11] <Darkside> it should be ok
[11:11] <Darkside> if you want to be nice to the transmitter then put a 50 ohm resistor across the output
[11:12] <Darkside> but the NTX2 can easily dissipate 10mW of reverse power
[11:12] <costyn> ok i'll put the 50ohm there thx!
[11:29] <costyn> kewl, test code works
[11:29] <costyn> now need speaker cable to test dlfldigi
[11:34] <costyn> nice.. looks like it works, getting a waterfall
[11:44] <costyn> now to figure out dlfldigi ... :)
[11:53] <Upu> hey
[11:53] <Upu> it'll be fine I do it all the time
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[12:49] <costyn> w00t
[12:49] <costyn> M6UPU TEST RTTY BEACON
[12:50] <Upu> lol
[12:50] <Upu> you can change the call sign :)
[12:51] <costyn> yea i was just running your test code
[12:51] <Laurenceb> http://www.reactionengines.co.uk/news_nov11.html
[12:51] <Laurenceb> looks exciting
[12:51] <costyn> took a break and then tried it again and rememberd the Rv button thingy
[12:53] <Upu> if you're having to use RV switch your signal wires round
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[12:54] <nick_> Which GPS receiverss do people use for tracking?
[12:54] <costyn> yes did that; trying 600 baud now but getting garbage
[12:54] <Upu> Hi nick_
[12:54] <Upu> a variety
[12:54] <nick_> I saw someone say that the sparkfun one stops itself working above a certain height.
[12:55] <Upu> but mainly uBlox 5&6 based modules
[12:55] <costyn> Upu: i changed it to 600 in your test code and in dlfldigi but no joy; any ideas?
[12:55] <Upu> http://ukhas.org.uk/guides:gps_modules
[12:55] <Upu> yeah it may not do 600 baud
[12:55] <costyn> Upu: ok
[12:56] <Upu> uBLOX 6 NEO-6Q is great , I've done a break out for it too
[12:56] <costyn> Upu: i'm dumb... did 300 in the code and 600 in fldigi
[12:56] <Upu> costyn you can fiddle with the timings
[12:56] <costyn> 300 works nicely
[13:04] <nick_> What does the channel number refer to?
[13:04] <costyn> nick_: number of sattelites it can receive at once
[13:04] <costyn> anything above 12 is pretty much overhead; cause there aren't ever any more than that above your head in the sky
[13:05] <costyn> it's a marketing thing only actually
[13:05] <Darkside> costyn: bull:P
[13:05] <Darkside> i've seen 15 on my payloads
[13:05] <Upu> more is better
[13:05] <Darkside> then again it was at 38km or so
[13:05] <costyn> ok ok... it was a rough estimate :)
[13:06] <costyn> yea you'll have more on the horizon at those alti's
[13:06] <Upu> nick_ try the uBLOX NEO6 module
[13:06] <Upu> I just updated the GPS page to add that to it
[13:06] <Darkside> nick_: oe anything with a ublox chipset in it
[13:08] <costyn> any of those GPSes use Glonass or Galileo (are there any Galileo sat's up yet?)
[13:08] <nick_> How do I interface to them?
[13:08] <Upu> uBLOX 6 supports them not sure if they are up yet
[13:08] <Upu> nick_ generally just a serial connection at 9600 baud
[13:09] <nick_> Looking at http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9436 for example, I'm not sure how I'd physically connect to the thing
[13:09] <Darkside> nick_: theres the DS2523 module too
[13:09] <Darkside> http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9566
[13:09] <Darkside> D2523
[13:10] <Darkside> i've used them in a few payloads
[13:10] <Darkside> has a nicer connector than the GS407
[13:10] <costyn> looks nice
[13:10] <Darkside> thats ublox 5 though, but that doesnt matter
[13:10] <Darkside> it works fine
[13:10] <Upu> be cheaper to make one up
[13:11] <Upu> nick_ ever connected a modem to a PC ?
[13:11] <costyn> nick_: I'm using the GPS Bee: http://www.seeedstudio.com/depot/gps-bee-kit-with-mini-embedded-antenna-p-560.html
[13:11] <nick_> I remember what modems are....
[13:11] <Upu> well like that
[13:11] <Upu> RX to TX and vice versa , open a serial port via some terminal software and watch the GPS spew forth data
[13:12] <Upu> hoever
[13:12] <Upu> GPS = 3.3v
[13:12] <Upu> PC = 5v
[13:12] <Upu> so be careful
[13:13] <nick_> the GPS Bee works fine at altitude?
[13:13] <costyn> nick_: yes
[13:13] <Upu> http://ava.upuaut.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/IMG_0303.jpg
[13:13] <costyn> nick_: check out http://www.timzaman.nl/?p=1886&lang=en for a nice description on using the gps bee
[13:13] <Upu> just a regulator providing 3.3V
[13:14] <Upu> and a UM232R USB->Serial dev board
[13:14] <Upu> open up the com port at 9600 and away you go
[13:19] <nick_> I'm not great at electronics (past plugging some components into breadboards, etc) so a simple interface between a GPS module and an arduino would make sense (since I'm unlikely to break an expensive component that way)
[13:23] <costyn> nick_: well in that case the seeedstudio stalker v2 might be a good option
[13:23] <costyn> if you're looking to log data too
[13:23] <costyn> (it has an SD slot)
[13:24] <costyn> nick_: i'm in the same situation and this setup seemed like a good start
[13:26] <nick_> cool, I'll take a look into it.
[13:26] <nick_> The other day I almost bought the sparkfun gps shield, but then I noticed a comment saying it won't work at altitude.
[13:28] <Upu> I'm quite happy to make you a uBlox 6 eval board up nick_ if you pay me for the parts
[13:29] <costyn> nick_: make sure you get the stalker v2 (not the v1 and not the v328)
[13:31] <nick_> Does anyone else use an arduino as a flight computer?
[13:31] <hibby> loads of folks
[13:31] <Darkside> its a good starting point
[13:32] Action: hibby has some shakey code thrown together at the last minute on github
[13:32] <Darkside> before moving on to making your own boards
[13:32] <hibby> i'd suggest investigating the msp430 for flight computer duties
[13:32] <Upu> I use Arduino on a custom board nick_
[13:32] <Darkside> hibby: first flight dude :P
[13:32] <hibby> lol
[13:32] <Upu> its basically a Arduino Pro 3.3v 8Mhz with GPS, radio etc on it
[13:33] <Darkside> yes msp430 is nice and low power and all, but the arduino dev environment is really nice for the beginner
[13:33] <nick_> Cool.
[13:34] <nick_> I was thinking I'd use an arduino mega as a flight computer, then an uno to run my expt.
[13:34] <hibby> nick_: if you take the chip out the uno board, it'll be much less space consuming and do the same job :)
[13:34] <Upu> Probably don't need mega
[13:34] <Upu> 328 is fine
[13:35] <nick_> Well, I think I need extra serial lines.
[13:35] <Upu> software serial
[13:35] <Darkside> nick_: what for?
[13:35] <hibby> newsoftserial
[13:35] <nick_> Oh, I guess that software serial would work too.
[13:35] <Upu> Ava's board is smaller than Arduino Uno and has radio, chip , pyro circuitry and a GPS unit and antenna on it
[13:36] <Darkside> nick_: what are the peripherals that need serial?
[13:36] <Upu> And still has some space for some headers for random stuff I've not thought of yet
[13:36] <nick_> Experiments.
[13:36] <Darkside> because software serial is a really crap solution
[13:36] <Darkside> and is a really good way to loose data
[13:36] <nick_> So the approximate plan would be that I make the flight computer to do tracking and comms, then some school kids could make a small experiment that I'd launch.
[13:37] <nick_> So the experiment would want to report updates to the flight computer in order to transmit data in flight.
[13:37] <Upu> Someone here just turned up with a Fex Panda II which has 4 UARTS on it apparently
[13:37] <Upu> Fez
[13:37] <Darkside> nick_: use a mega then
[13:37] <nick_> This is why I was thinking of running the flight computer on a mega.
[13:37] <nick_> Since it has 3 hardware serials.
[13:38] <Darkside> if you don't want to miss data, then do it on a mega
[13:38] <Darkside> just make sure that positioning telemetry takes absolute priority
[13:38] <Upu> I only use software serial for debug output
[13:38] <Darkside> have all the other data log to sd card or something
[13:38] <nick_> So I could have serial comms between it and an experiment, it and GPS, and I guess a spare.
[13:38] <nick_> Maybe I could launch two experiments...
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[13:39] <Darkside> nick_: you can use the other one for debug while testing :-)
[13:39] <nick_> yes :)
[13:39] <nick_> If I could launch two experiments at once I'd be really happy, but it really would depend on the masses.
[13:40] <Darkside> just makes sure you get positiong working before you go onto anything else
[13:41] <nick_> Yeah, first step would be just to launch and recover a basic payload.
[13:42] <nick_> Although maybe I'd piggyback some basic measurements on it.
[13:42] <nick_> temperatures, pressures, etc.
[13:42] <Darkside> temp is always good
[13:42] <hibby> pressure and humidity are interesting
[13:42] <Darkside> just stick for DS18B20 temp sensors on there
[13:42] <hibby> they're the shit :)
[13:43] <Darkside> everyone loves them lol
[13:43] <daveake> :)
[13:43] <nick_> Or just a pt100?
[13:43] <costyn> yes i haz them too... very easy to read with the onewire protocol
[13:43] <Upu> everyone loves them because free is good
[13:43] <daveake> lol
[13:43] <daveake> (paid for mine ...)
[13:43] Action: costyn too
[13:44] <Darkside> nick_: with anything analog you're then trlying on the AVRs ADCs
[13:44] Action: Upu hits daveake & costyn with the Maxim samples bat
[13:44] <hibby> they've got a nice library for the ds18b20 too
[13:44] <Darkside> though at some point i do want to fly a thermocouple
[13:44] <costyn> Upu: wut is that... maxim
[13:44] <daveake> ouch
[13:44] <daveake> Upu any advance on where to get H2?
[13:45] <Upu> you can get free samples of Maxim stuff
[13:45] <Upu> daveake try BoC
[13:45] <daveake> Asked at my local BOC place and they don't stock it
[13:45] <Upu> No they don't stock it
[13:45] <Upu> but they can order it in
[13:45] <daveake> Ah, ok
[13:45] <Upu> https://shop.maxim-ic.com/storefront/searchsample.do?menuitem=Sample&event=SampleSearchLoad
[13:46] <costyn> i see
[13:46] <costyn> will check it out later
[13:46] <costyn> gotta go shoppin now... meh
[13:46] <Upu> DS18B20+ Programmable Resolution 1-Wire Digi TO92 Military (-55 deg C to +125 deg C)
[13:46] <zyp> free samples doesn't equal unlimited free parts
[13:46] <Upu> no but should do you for testing/one board
[13:46] <Darkside> dont rely on samples
[13:46] <Darkside> ever
[13:47] <Darkside> they're only $3.80 when you buy 10 from sparkfun
[13:47] <Darkside> so its not that bad
[13:47] <nick_> How much does helium cost for a launch?
[13:47] <daveake> Yeah I got 10
[13:47] <Upu> Depends how much you use
[13:47] <daveake> Depends how much helium .... L cylinder is about £55 and gives you 3.66 cu m
[13:47] <Upu> thats cheap
[13:47] <daveake> Or is that T .. I always forget
[13:47] <Upu> T is > £110 for same amount
[13:48] <Upu> Was it from BoC ?
[13:48] <daveake> Yes. Justamo
[13:48] <Upu> Be having words if you got yours for £55
[13:48] <daveake> Oh, £65. Sorry
[13:48] <Upu> Mine was way more than that
[13:48] <daveake> http://balloonhelium.co.uk/main/pricing
[13:49] <daveake> £65 inc vat for collection
[13:49] <Upu> thanks
[13:49] <daveake> I tried several places and they were cheapest
[13:50] <daveake> They're still listing the Air Products cylinders but they have none
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[13:53] <nick_> How much is needed for a launch?
[13:54] <Upu> depends on size of ballon
[13:54] <Upu> payload wieght
[13:54] <Upu> required ascent rate
[13:54] <nick_> OK.
[13:54] <daveake> whether you burst the first balloon
[13:54] <Upu> ~ 3.5- 5.0 cu m for a 1600g
[13:55] <nick_> How do I work out what I want?
[13:56] <Upu> http://www.cusf.co.uk/calc/
[13:56] <daveake> http://www.cusf.co.uk/calc/
[13:56] <daveake> too slow
[13:56] <Upu> Combine it with http://habhub.org/predict/
[13:56] <Upu> to work out what sort of ascent rate you want
[13:57] <Upu> Hwoyee 1600g's have a tendancy not to burst with < 4.5m/s ascent can float.. I think thats a fair statement but if anyone disagrees
[13:57] <nick_> I'm not sure what to do with balloon mass
[13:57] <Upu> payload mass?
[13:57] <daveake> Well, start with payload mass and decide what sort of flight you want
[13:58] <daveake> Play around with the calculator; you'll soon get an idea
[13:59] <nick_> And these are just standard balloon that can be bought?
[13:59] <daveake> Generally aim for around 5m/s ascent or a bit more. As Upu says try not to get down towards 4m/s unless you want it to float
[13:59] <Upu> yeah
[13:59] <Upu> http://www.randomengineering.co.uk/Random_Aerospace/Balloons.html
[13:59] <Upu> Thats run by Steve 'Rocketboy' Randal who comes on here
[14:00] <nick_> Ah, so now I work out why the mass limit is so low?
[14:01] <gonzo_> worth noting that the balloon figures on habhub are for H2, not He
[14:02] <nick_> Is there any real difference between Hwoyee and kaymount?
[14:02] <daveake> gonzo_ ? Defaults to He here
[14:03] <Upu> nick_ how do you mean so low ?
[14:03] <daveake> nick_ Yes. Hwowowowyeees go higher
[14:03] <nick_> Well, I read that in America that they are limited to ~4kg.
[14:04] <nick_> But the ukhas site says to try and limit yourself to ~1kg.
[14:04] <Upu> there are no limits
[14:04] <daveake> Latter is guidance
[14:04] <Upu> we just recommend the safest option
[14:05] <Upu> I'm sure a well inflated 1600g Hwoyee would be able to get 4kg in the air
[14:05] <nick_> Where the safest option is as light as possible.
[14:05] <daveake> A typical photographic box with camera and video will be up around 1kg
[14:05] <Upu> Safest, highest, least helium
[14:05] <Upu> you'll go higher, use less gas and be safer
[14:05] <Upu> all round win
[14:06] <Upu> also gives you some engineering goals to aim for
[14:06] <gonzo_> sorry, I meant the ukhas balloon data page
[14:07] <nick_> I would like to launch maybe 3kg.
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[14:07] <nick_> I was hoping to launch a few scintillator slabs.
[14:07] <nick_> And maybe a small block of metal.
[14:08] <Upu> personally I wouldn't be comfortable putting that amount up
[14:08] <Darkside> radiation detectors?
[14:08] <nick_> yes
[14:08] <gonzo_> how about multiple launches
[14:08] <Darkside> that have a high voltage across them?
[14:08] <nick_> We're trying to work out how high a voltage we'd need.
[14:09] <Darkside> there was some discussion about how they arc in low pressure
[14:09] <Upu> how about budgetting to go to america :)
[14:09] <Dan-K2VOL> haha
[14:09] <Darkside> i can't remember where i heard it, but the last people to launch radiation detectors had problems
[14:09] <gonzo_> scintillators? what would you use for the light detection? PM tube?
[14:09] <nick_> I think people send up geiger counters, which use a higher voltage that we'd need probably.
[14:10] <nick_> Hopefully APD.
[14:10] <Dan-K2VOL> what in general are you trying to do nick_, sorry I'm arriving late to the conversation
[14:10] <nick_> I'd like to measure the cosmic flux as a function of height.
[14:11] <nick_> Potentially with the worlds most simple particle ID too.
[14:11] <Dan-K2VOL> magnetic flux?
[14:11] <nick_> No, flux of cosmic particles.
[14:11] <nick_> Muons, electrons, pions, kaons, protons, gammas, etc
[14:12] <Dan-K2VOL> so the levels of cosmic radiation
[14:12] <nick_> yes
[14:12] <gonzo_> I've been out of the nucleonics world for a long time now, so not sure of the current state of the art
[14:12] <Dan-K2VOL> I don't think it's ipod-sized
[14:12] <nick_> We wouldn't be state of the art.
[14:13] <Dan-K2VOL> nice experiment, for amateur or academic science?
[14:13] <nick_> Both.
[14:13] <gonzo_> nice, and have some funding for yoru hobby!
[14:13] <Dan-K2VOL> if it's for an academic institution you'll have more resources
[14:14] <nick_> We are professional particle physicists, but this wouldn't necessarily be a professional measurement.
[14:14] <Dan-K2VOL> oh very neat, where are you guys
[14:14] <nick_> It could be a final year undergrad project or something.
[14:14] <nick_> Oxford
[14:14] <gonzo_> no reason not to make the data sientifically sound
[14:14] <gonzo_> c
[14:14] <nick_> Yeah, we'd try to do it well.
[14:14] <nick_> But I'm not sure we'd get a paper we can publish out of it
[14:15] <Dan-K2VOL> so are you in school or wanting an undergrad to do some of the analysis of it?
[14:15] <nick_> I've read a couple of similar papers and it's really serious equipment they launch.
[14:15] <nick_> I'm a grad student.
[14:15] <nick_> I want to do it because I think it would be really cool.
[14:15] <gonzo_> but with careful recording, bit of calibration, someone might be able to use it
[14:15] <nick_> I've pretty much convinced my supervisor it would be cool.
[14:15] <Dan-K2VOL> certainly, but muons and pions?
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[14:16] <nick_> But we need to work out how we might get it funded, who we can use for manpower, etc.
[14:16] <Dan-K2VOL> that sounds like you'd need more than a little scintillator and photodiode
[14:16] <gonzo_> could be an interesting proof of concept
[14:16] <nick_> Most cosmics at ground level are muons.
[14:16] <nick_> Doing a scintillator counter is a very standard undergrad lab experiment.
[14:16] <gonzo_> the tracking network is in pace and free
[14:16] <gonzo_> place
[14:17] <nick_> I tried to think of ways to make it much cooler.
[14:17] <nick_> One idea I had was to launch it into space...
[14:17] <Dan-K2VOL> and the pions?
[14:17] <nick_> You detect them all the same way.
[14:17] <nick_> Just usually pions don't make it all the way to the ground.
[14:17] <Dan-K2VOL> and how do you tell the difference
[14:18] <nick_> Telling the difference is probably not possible between all of them.
[14:18] <nick_> But there are ways you can maybe tell between different ones.
[14:18] <Dan-K2VOL> ah that makes it considerably easier
[14:18] <Dan-K2VOL> I was quite concerned you wanted to launch an ATLAS sized detector or something:-P
[14:19] <nick_> For example you can distinguish He++ from most things since it's doubly charged it will have a bigger signal.
[14:19] <nick_> No.
[14:19] <nick_> I work on ATLAS though.
[14:19] <Dan-K2VOL> well that's very cool work
[14:19] <gonzo_> what material do you use for the scintillator?
[14:19] <nick_> I was thinking to launch something maybe 10cm by 10cm.
[14:19] <Dan-K2VOL> that's very doable
[14:19] <nick_> That's a good question. It's some sort of plastic.
[14:19] <nick_> I couldn't give you all the details off the top of my head of what it actually is though.
[14:20] <Dan-K2VOL> some sort of embedded phosphor isn't it
[14:20] <Dan-K2VOL> they used to stare right into it for shoe fitting x-ray machines
[14:20] <gonzo_> our alpha detectors were perspex disk, but the actual sciltillation material was a powder coating on the disk
[14:21] <gonzo_> never did find out what the powder was
[14:21] <Dan-K2VOL> that does sound like it could be a phosphor
[14:21] <nick_> The stuff is about the density of water though.
[14:21] <gonzo_> then a bloody big PM tube on the end, about 12" long
[14:22] <gonzo_> have a vauge feeling that wax was used for soem systems
[14:22] <nick_> You can get quite small PMTs that would almost definitely do the job.
[14:22] <nick_> That's kinda the standard way. But there are some drawbacks.
[14:22] <nick_> PMTs are quite expensive.
[14:22] <nick_> They also need a high voltage.
[14:23] <nick_> ~kV
[14:23] <gonzo_> at least you are spared the lead castle that we used!
[14:23] <gonzo_> yep, kV +
[14:23] <nick_> Well, smaller ones start maybe 700V
[14:23] <nick_> But yeah.
[14:23] <nick_> APDs however can run at 200V and are cheaper.
[14:24] <nick_> But they have smaller active areas, so you need to guide the light to them better.
[14:24] <gonzo_> what would yopu use for the pulse anaysis? ADC then do the discrimination in SW?
[14:24] <nick_> PDs may be possible with a great preamp.
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[14:24] <nick_> gonzo_: yeah, ADC and then either a hardware or software discrimination trigger.
[14:25] <nick_> Depending on the actual signal.
[14:25] <gonzo_> makes sense. My apps were just looking for specific energies, so used analogue window detectors
[14:25] <nick_> PDs would be great if we can get them to work since we can run off a few volts, but we're not sure our signal wouldn't be swamped by noise and the preamp might cost a lot in man power.
[14:26] <gonzo_> And the HW designer at the time was old school
[14:26] <nick_> I've only seen PD based scintillators used with electrons, which dump all their energy into the scintillator.
[14:26] <Dan-K2VOL> nick_ the UKHAS has some very safe flight guidelines on their website regarding paylaod mass etc. good that you're starting to think about the balloon aspect now. your experiment payload can have to have a weight maximum of two 2.7kg boxes, at least here in the states. I'm blanking this morning if it has to be two boxes in international airspace or all 5.4kg can be in one& anyone else remember?
[14:27] <gonzo_> high dynamic range/low noise preamps are also power hungry
[14:27] <Dan-K2VOL> oh just fly a bare scintillator at night and use a good telescope :-P
[14:27] <nick_> We could definitely make a basic scintillating counter for ~1kg.
[14:28] <nick_> But if we want to do anything a little beyond basic then I think we'd look more like 2kg.
[14:28] <nick_> And, depending on how I could fund this, we might have to carry a second experiment too.
[14:28] <gonzo_> two separate launches on the same day
[14:28] <nick_> I'm looking into outreach funding.
[14:29] <nick_> So helping some schools build some basic experiments to launch too.
[14:29] <nick_> And then maybe my detector could be used as an example for the schools or in test launches.
[14:29] <gonzo_> the CUSF lads have done a lot of this already
[14:30] <gonzo_> saw their presentation on teddy bares in space, a few years ago
[14:30] <nick_> Or, depending on the masses involved maybe we'd send mine on every trip too.
[14:30] <gonzo_> bears
[14:30] <nick_> Yeah, the fact that other people have done similar things helps.
[14:31] <Dan-K2VOL> school could use some things to send, there's lot of school interest in balloon flights, but the ones I've been involved in the teachers really didn't have any idea of what to send up. I was rather disappointed in the science teachers for that
[14:31] <nick_> Yeah.
[14:32] <nick_> I was thinking that we'd plan a year long program and hope with some time and thought that some of the kids could think up cool experiments.
[14:32] <nick_> If not then I've been thinking of some too.
[14:32] <nick_> One cool idea I thought of was looking at the composition of the atmosphere at different heights.
[14:32] <gonzo_> a friend was asked to assist with a school launch recently. Was supprised to find out how much interest there was in this community
[14:33] <gonzo_> but the teachers really are ovewhelmed by all invilved
[14:33] <gonzo_> involved
[14:33] <Dan-K2VOL> yeah I imagine they would be
[14:33] <nick_> Yeah, that's why we'd have a grad student and an academic to handle a lot of the stuff.
[14:33] <Dan-K2VOL> the local spaceport here is doing it nicely, basically the spaceport crew shows up at a school with the balloon, rope and trackers ready to fly, and then ties on the school's experiment box
[14:33] <nick_> Then we'd guide the students through designing and building their experiment payload.
[14:34] <nick_> Maybe throw in an arduino masterclass day at the beginning and have a mini conference at the end.
[14:34] <gonzo_> what they really need is to be handed a telem/tracking system as a unit, with inputs they can just connect to. Simple analogue ports.
[14:34] <nick_> gonzo_: yeah, that's my plan.
[14:35] <nick_> If I can make a flight computer and tell them "connect your daq arduino to it like this and send it messages you want to send back to earth like this..."
[14:35] <nick_> Then we'd handle the tracking and telemetry.
[14:35] <gonzo_> yep, sorry for repeating you. Talking over VNC and there is a hell of a screen update delay
[14:36] <nick_> That's fine. I undersand.
[14:37] <gonzo_> the student satellite projects were totally unprepared for the size and enthusiasm of the amateur radio community, when it came to providing ground stations for their experiments
[14:37] <nick_> If I could ask for money for a student project we'd fund a ground station too.
[14:38] <nick_> If a ground station is a radio tranceiver for a couple of hundred pounds, antenna and a computer.
[14:38] <gonzo_> tis better than having to beg/borrow all the time
[14:38] <Dan-K2VOL> gonzo_ was that underwheling support from amateurs or over
[14:38] <Dan-K2VOL> underwhelming
[14:38] <gonzo_> hehe
[14:38] <nick_> You can ask for a few grand,
[14:39] <gonzo_> one of the groups approached our ansat group for assistance with a downlink tx for their sat. They got not only a space qualified tx, but also a world wide tracking/downlink network
[14:40] <gonzo_> there is a project to formalise all this, using academic stations and amatuers
[14:40] <gonzo_> One of them was trialed on the last atlas launch
[14:41] <nick_> What is that project called?
[14:41] <gonzo_> GENSO
[14:42] <gonzo_> right, suppose I should do some work.... Laters
[14:43] <nick_> Do balloon flights use the same protocols, etc as satelites?
[14:49] <Darkside> no
[14:50] <Darkside> satellites commonly use AX25 downlinks
[14:50] <Darkside> most of us use simple ASCII Telemetry strings
[14:50] <Darkside> mostly human readable too, so data can be extracted even if a packet is corrupt
[14:50] <Darkside> look on the UKHAs wiki
[14:51] <Darkside> heaps of info there
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[14:53] <Darkside> ok 1:30am
[14:53] <Darkside> i'd better sleep...
[14:54] <hibby> lol
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[17:00] Nick change: AndChat| -> NigeyMoby
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[17:21] <mattltm> Hi all :)
[17:24] <kristianpaul> hello
[17:25] <fsphil-laptop> yoyoyo
[17:28] <mattltm> The 2011 Best IoT Open Source Project vote is open and I think the nanode deserves to win. Please read about it and feel free to vote for it :)
[17:28] <mattltm> http://postscapes.com/best-iot-open-source-project-2011
[17:28] <mattltm> :)
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[18:19] <nosebleedKT> what is the link someone here wrote, that presents the things you should take with you when chasing the payload with the chase vehicle ?
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[18:21] <nosebleedKT> cmon someone!
[18:31] <daveake> I don't remember a link, but I could type upa list for you :)
[18:32] <fsphil-laptop> rob h has a list on his site
[18:32] <daveake> Ah
[18:32] <daveake> Saves me the bother then :)
[18:33] <nosebleedKT> where is this?
[18:33] <daveake> http://www.robertharrison.org/icarus/wordpress/28/launch-check-list/
[18:33] <nosebleedKT> aaaaaaaaaaaai
[18:33] <fsphil-laptop> daveake wins 5 points
[18:33] <nosebleedKT> THANK!
[18:34] <daveake> Though he has chocolate listed under "non essentials" .... :p lol
[18:34] <fsphil-laptop> his google foo beats mine. I had it in the copy buffer ready to paste though :p
[18:34] <fsphil-laptop> !!!
[18:34] <fsphil-laptop> but thats... essential
[18:34] <daveake> My point exactly
[18:34] <fsphil-laptop> my launch was powered by twix
[18:34] <daveake> lol
[18:34] <daveake> New label needed for your next payload ... "Powered by Twix"
[18:35] <daveake> First thing I need in the chase car is a drink.
[18:35] <fsphil-laptop> I normally use what's left of the ballast water bottle
[18:36] <daveake> :)
[18:37] <SpeedEvil> http://www.boysstuff.co.uk/extreme-machines/product/the-shit-box/?gclid=CNGpoYLR9awCFQMPfAodD3nsRQ
[18:37] <fsphil-laptop> I'm hoping to do the next launch closer to home, so I can just nip over to a cafe after launch
[18:37] <fsphil-laptop> I'm not sure I want to click on that link SpeedEvil :)
[18:37] <SpeedEvil> Worksafe
[18:37] <daveake> lol
[18:37] <fsphil-laptop> I'm not at work, but I'm still not sure :p
[18:37] <fsphil-laptop> *does it anyway*
[18:38] <fsphil-laptop> aaaaah
[18:38] <fsphil-laptop> "Do you stuff"
[18:39] <daveake> Years ago we needed a new microwave or dishwasher or something else electrical. One of the local white-good stores was "Power Station", so I just typed in www.powerstation.co.uk. A few seconds later I was greeted with what was most obviously a gay men's site lol
[18:39] <fsphil-laptop> eek!
[18:40] <daveake> Fortunately the store (and site) are no more :)
[18:41] <fsphil-laptop> the internet can be a scary place sometimes
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[18:47] <danielsaul> What do people transmit their uplink on, and how do they decode it? FM/SSB? Opamps etc.?
[18:48] <Randomskk> depends on your RX radio module
[18:49] <Randomskk> people have done a variety of things
[18:49] <Randomskk> the radiometrix thing that does RX on 434 has been used by some people (apex, in fact) with FM transmission of prerecorded audio messages from the ground
[18:50] <Randomskk> cusf've used an embedded radio chip that had an RSSI metre and transmitted OOK for serial and just watched rssi to read the data
[18:50] <danielsaul> Yep, we're trying to decide whether to stick with what apexII did, or try something new
[18:50] <fsphil-laptop> ook is a rather spiffy idea
[18:50] <Randomskk> you say that
[18:50] <Randomskk> this was pretty dirty
[18:50] <Matt_soton> its a shame apexIIs launches were too quick to properly test the uplnk
[18:50] <Randomskk> integrating RSSI over time? eww.
[18:50] <Randomskk> but OOK is probably the easiest to decode
[18:51] <danielsaul> Yeah
[18:51] <danielsaul> I think we're going with the NTR2 as we already have a couple lying around
[18:51] <danielsaul> My dream is to have a basic chatbot on the balloon... :D hehe
[18:51] <Matt_soton> the ntr2's data slicers can be used, but i dont know how good they are
[18:52] <danielsaul> Far too many channels open - how do I close a PM window in irssi?
[18:53] <Randomskk> /wc
[18:53] <Randomskk> (short for /window close)
[18:53] <danielsaul> thanks
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[19:18] <SpeedEvil> My god. The kepler conference is awesome.
[19:18] <SpeedEvil> They're going from stellar brightness fluctuations to spin-axis orientation relative to earth.
[19:19] <daveake> Cool
[19:19] <daveake> Have they spotted any little green men yet?:p
[19:20] <SpeedEvil> No.
[19:22] <NigeyS> £50 if you can explain that equation SpeedEvil
[19:23] <SpeedEvil> You mean teh one on screen?
[19:23] <NigeyS> yuhuh
[19:23] <NigeyS> the 1 that looks like hyrogliphs (SP) .. lol
[19:23] <SpeedEvil> That's not actually horribly scary
[19:23] <SpeedEvil> I think
[19:23] <SpeedEvil> It's just using wierd notation
[19:23] <NigeyS> oh
[19:24] <NigeyS> meh the next 1 is even worse :|
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[20:14] Nick change: plate -> shunt
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[20:42] <fsphil-laptop> I'm not launching this weekend, but if I did: http://habhub.org/predict/#!/uuid=1f627ef0c7dc7282ac4abde30c32af7f842cce1b
[20:43] <Zuph> There is one hell of a jetstream this weekend.
[20:43] <Zuph> If we were ready to launch, we'd be over Baikonur in 72 hours.
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[20:43] <fsphil-laptop> it's been over us for a while now, my month long launch window was pretty much all predictions like that
[20:44] <fsphil-laptop> is there launch scheduled anytime soon Zuph?
[20:45] <Zuph> Unfortunately, not for us.
[20:45] <Zuph> January/February is more likely
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[20:49] <fsphil-laptop> not toooo far away
[20:49] <Zuph> hehe
[20:49] <Zuph> That's best case :)
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[21:13] <Lunar_Lander> hello
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[21:27] <Lunar_Lander> hello earthshine
[21:27] <Lunar_Lander> I got a question about your shop if that is OK=
[21:27] <Lunar_Lander> ?
[21:39] <Lunar_Lander> and
[21:39] <Lunar_Lander> http://orbiter-forum.com/showthread.php?t=25355
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[22:15] <Lunar_Lander> is anybody at the keyboards?
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[22:21] <fsphil-laptop> what's a keyboard?
[22:27] <Lunar_Lander> xD the thing you just used
[22:27] <Lunar_Lander> where you hit those square buttons with the letters
[22:28] <fsphil-laptop> letters?
[22:29] <fsphil-laptop> hmm... I've no hab projects to do
[22:30] <Lunar_Lander> yea
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[22:50] <daveake> Nice flight prediction fsphil-laptop. It actually finishes on land ... :p
[22:52] <Lunar_Lander> hey daveake
[22:52] <fsphil-laptop> yea, a mountain
[22:52] <fsphil-laptop> surrounded by other mountains :)
[22:53] <fsphil-laptop> silly scotland, with their amazing landscape
[22:54] <Lunar_Lander> xD
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[22:56] <jcoxon> evening all
[22:56] <daveake> evening
[22:59] <Lunar_Lander> hello jcoxon
[22:59] <Lunar_Lander> how are you?
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[23:02] <jcoxon> not bad thanks Lunar_Lander
[23:03] <Lunar_Lander> yea
[23:03] <Lunar_Lander> I turned 22 today
[23:03] <Lunar_Lander> xD
[23:07] <jcoxon> congrats
[23:07] <Lunar_Lander> thanks :)
[23:10] <fsphil-laptop> happy birthday :) was there cake?
[23:12] <Lunar_Lander> yes! :)
[23:12] <Lunar_Lander> chocolate and tiramisu cake
[23:13] <Lunar_Lander> thanks fsphil-laptop
[23:14] <jcoxon> i'm on call this week - tis a shame as i was hoping to finish a pico payload
[23:14] <Lunar_Lander> oh
[23:14] <Lunar_Lander> and how is Atlas IV?
[23:15] <jcoxon> nothing new has been developed
[23:15] <Lunar_Lander> ah
[23:28] Nick change: shunt -> suga
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[00:00] --- Sat Dec 10 2011