Category Archives: Amateur Radio

Project Space Balloon Launch

Project Space Balloon has a balloon launch planned for this Saturday the 6th July 2013 from Bendigo Victoria.

Hi all,

FYI, our project team is planning to release a high altitude balloon from Bendigo this coming Saturday 6th July 2013 at 11am.

We will have an onboard camera sending images back via SSDV (http://ukhas.org.uk/guides:ssdv), which is basically broken up JPEG with some extra headers.

RTTY will be used for radio transmission.

We do not expect to recover the balloon, and will appreciate any assistance with getting data from the payload along the path, in Victoria, Southern NSW, ACT, and Tas. See attached expected path.

All you need is a radio capable of receiving SSB at 434.650MHz, and a Mac/Windows/Linux computer with sound card input and access to the internet. High gain antenna is highly desirable.

See instructions here: http://projectspaceballoon.net/ssd/

The other details are:

– Frequency 434.650Mhz (+-10Khz), USB

– RTTY with 460Hz shift, 300 baud, 8 bit ASCII, no parity, one stop bit.

– Hardware is a Rev A Raspberry Pi, with a 25mW UHF transmitter module.

– Antenna is a quarter-wave with radials.

– Expected “cruising” altitude is 20km.

You will be able to see the images on your computer if you can receive the RF signal directly.

If internet access is available the images can be uploaded to the internet for others to view.

Tracking (from distributed listeners like yourselves) will be available at http://spacenear.us/tracker Images will be available at http://ssdv.habhub.org

The call sign for tracking and SSDV is PSBPI.

We plan to have someone in #highaltitude chatroom on irc.freenode.net on the day to co-ordinate.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Regards.

Andy VK3YT

Reference:
Project Horus

VK5RLZ 70cm Repeater

As of yesterday the 3 of July 2013 the VK5RLZ 70cm repeater now requires a 91.5Hz CTCSS tone for access it. There is no CTCSS tone on the output only the input, but this may change in the future.

Green drawing pin denotes the location of the repeater at the Elizabeth Water Tower

Update: Project Horus Launch 15/06/2013

This some screen shots put into a video showing PicoHorus-3 flight that was launched approx 1000 ACST the 15th June. This is from my point of view as a listening ground station based on the north side of the Adelaide CBD.

At approx 0800 ACST the 16th June PicoHorus-3 ran out of battery power and stopped broadcasting telemetry and now categories as unknown and lost, but if you happen to find its playload please contact the great people at Project Horus

Quick video showing the reception of Horus from my QTH

Project Horus Launch 15/06/2013

Email that came across letting know that there be a Balloon launch this weekend. Check Spacenear.Us in the morning (15/06/2013 1000hrs ACST) to get the frequency if you like to help with tracking.

Update 14/06/2013 18:44
Confirmed freq is 434.150MHz

Hi all,

This Saturday Mark is going to have another shot at a pico floater launch, though instead of a foil party balloon, he’ll be using a 100g latex balloon.

Launch will be at approx 10am local time.

Mark’s aiming for a <1m/s ascent rate, which should float it at 20km altitude. The float prediction has it floating to the south of Mildura, before continuing along the border towards Wagga Wagga, then on to Sydney. Much like Horus 16, but at about half the altitude.

We’re looking for listeners in both Mildura and Wagga Wagga – if anybody has contacts in these areas, please pass the message on.

The frequency and baud rate of the launch haven’t been decided yet, but the information will be on the http://spacenear.us/tracker/ page at the time of launch.

All the best,

Mark & the Project Horus team.

Project Horus

Air-Stream hosted Foundation Licence Course

Following the many expressions of interest from our members, we have now arranged the weekend 23rd and 24th of March for another Foundation Licence training and examination course. Thanks again go to Paul Hoffman VK5PH for taking the time to organise and host this event.

Location: Parkside Primary School
Date: 23rd & 24th of March 2013
Time: 0900-1700 hrs

For further details and making a booking

EARC Crystal set compitition

Last night the 19th Dec. the EARC had its tech night at The National Military Vehicle Museum at Edinburgh Parks and here are some the images from the night Crystal Receiver judging. The prize was donated by Aztronics which was a solder fume extractor that was won by Chris VK5ZST.

I also like to give a big thanks for Paul VK5VCO who arrange the crystal receiver comp, the prize, and the doing the judging. Also a big thanks to the Military Vehicle Preservation Society (MVPS) for the Museum tour and venue for the crystal set judging. And also big thanks to all that entered comp and turned up for the night.

Enjoy the pics I took from the night

VK5 Local Beacons

If your interested in testing the at accuracy of you your transceiver on 6/2/70/23/SHF there are beacons setup in around Mt Lofty (VK5VF) and the Elizabeth Water Tower (VK5RLZ) which you can listen to and they are on the following frequencies

VK5VF
6m = 53.3200 GPS locked
2m = 144.4500 Crystal locked
700mm = 432.4500 GPS locked

VK5RLZ
230mm = 1296.4520
SHF = 2403.4520
SHF = 3400.4520 proposed
SHF = 5760.4520 proposed
SHF = 10368.4520 proposed
SHF = 24048.4520 proposed

The GPS locked beacons accuracy will be in the order of 1000th of a hertz

Softrock RX Ensemble II HF Receiver build and Quisk Config

Yesterday my Softrock RX Ensemble II HF Receiver arrived from Five Dash Inc. in the US within ten days and was very well packed. Any way like most grown men with a new toy I descided to take the day out and build it, the took me about 15 hours in total. The guide by WB5RVZ is comprehensive and easy enough to follow in a half dozen so steps. I also have a nice box for the Ensemble II RX coming from the KM5H store and it will make it to be a nice looking package.

Here are some pics from the build


Continue reading

SeaSDR_40 and Quisk

My SeaSDR_40 kit arrived from Italy. Last night I finished off building the kit together, the is rather easy to put together and the only real thing to watch out for is the toriod with the primary and secondary windings on it, to soldering it in correctly.

I also got the SeaSDR_40 working with Quisk by only having to make a couple minor alterations to the ~/.quisk_conf.py file.

near the top of the file I changed the hardware import

import quisk_hardware_model as quisk_hardware

to

import quisk_hardware_fixed as quisk_hardware

This will allow you to have frequency shown in Quisk based on the VFO of the SeaSDR_40.

To alter the VFO to that of the SeaSDR_40 change

fixed_vfo_freq = 7056000

to

fixed_vfo_freq = 7080500

All that is left for me to do is buy a metal box to mount the board into with some socket and connectors.