my name is Werner and i like to introduce "Team Ballooino". We are a group of amateur radio enthusiasts located in Eitorf, 25 km east from Bonn. The team was formed in 2013 when we launched the first balloon in the context of a student’s electronics workshop of a local secondary school. Up to now we accomplished three balloon missions, two of them as school projects, so that we can claim to have some experience in high altitude ballooning.
Our team name suggests that most of our payload electronics are based on the popular Arduino MC board platform. The last two missions, which had GPS trackers on board, have been successfully recovered, so we know that our concept will work.
Beneath recovering the payload another challenge is keeping the gross weight of the complete setup (payload + balloon + parachute) below 500 grams. This lightweight concept will keep the cost for balloon and helium low and will meet simplified regulations unless they will not change so soon. (We mention the thread “Regulations for Germany! Need help!” that new european regulations for unmanned balloons are going to be implemented in Germany).
Actually we are trying to reduce the weight and energy consumption, to obtain a faster ascend and prolonged lifetime of the electronics. In April the daylight period will be shorter than in summertime when we normally used to launch, so we want to shorten the flight time without cutting altitude. Also there should be enough remaining energy for the beacon transmitter if it’s necessary to continue the search on the next day. A new construction of the payload container should allow easy access to all operational parts even if a technical problem occurs immediately before launch.
We already had a meeting with the team “Young Firefighters Zons”, where we made a presentation of our last missions results. It's great to meet a motivated young team and to share experiences!
Team Ballooino members are
Werner DH4KAV (payload electronics, contact person to authorities)
Thomas DH1TS (logistics, finance)
Christian DL6KAC (ground control, press releases)
Rudi DJ8RR (container construction)