back to article LOHAN test flight LIVE: All the launch action

As you read this, the Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team is preparing the test flight of our all-new custom rocket motor igniter. We need to know once and for all if we can get a rocket motor to ignite at altitude, following our first pop back in July. That ended with the igniter's E-Match going bang, but with …


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  1. Peter Simpson 1

    Two major engineering events!

    LOHAN test flight and someone's trying to flip some boat in Italy :-)

    Good luck to our intrepid SPB team!

    (the guys with the boat are on their own)

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Perhaps its me, but

    following the link for the tracking map puts Lohan over Huntsville, Alabama.

    1. SteveD

      Re: Perhaps its me, but

      LOHAN is not on the map yet, thats WB8ELK flight and that has not updated in awhile

    2. cookieMonster Silver badge

      Re: Perhaps its me, but

      on the RHS there are a few cars...

      M6RPI_chase (in blue) -> at the end of the section there is a 'Pan To' link - Click it :-)


  3. Ottman001

    Test flight today?

    And there was me thinking I'd get some serious work done today.

  4. paulc

    arghhh blocked at work... :(


  5. SteveD

    BUZZ active

    BUZZ now seems to be active on the site

  6. ItsNotMe

    Keeping up the family traditions...another LOHAN in the news.

    You go girl!!!

    1. Peter Simpson 1

      Re: Keeping up the family traditions...another LOHAN in the news.

      You go girl!!!

      "traveling at 77 mph in a 55 mph zone"

      So, just barely keeping up with traffic flow, then?

  7. Alister

    Balloon launch and pursuit for your viewing pleasure

    One of the prerequisites for a balloon launch is, I believe, a balloon. The clue is in the title...

    So, which bit did the team forget?

  8. jungle_jim


    I saw it go up.

    Congratulations - good job! I will have a few celebratory pints!

  9. Pet Peeve


    I get the reference, but what is ZURG that's already floated off a bit?

  10. John Gamble

    Packet Delivery

    Regarding the pics, are the missing packets lost for good once a new picture is posted, or are the packets for the old pics still in the "send" queue?

    1. Don Jefe

      Re: Packet Delivery

      They aren't lost. Not at all. They've liberated themselves from their oppressive Human masters and they all reassemble in a non-disclosed location; prepared by the brave packets that have gone before them.

  11. Tim Wolfe-Barry

    What are the various circles on the map?

    And why is Buzz stuck at the start?


    1. Pet Peeve

      Re: What are the various circles on the map?

      I think Buzz is the spaceplane (falling, with style), while CHAV is the balloon and mount. Thery're only testing the latter today. Lester, please tell us what the various callsigns are tracking in the future!

    2. daveake

      Re: What are the various circles on the map?

      We had 2 transmitters in each payload (1 main 1 spare) but only 2 receivers on the ground. The backup trackers were ignored during the flight hence appeared to stay at the launch site.

  12. Pet Peeve

    Pressure readings

    For those of you wondering about the pressure reading on CHAV, it's not actually in Pascals like the tracker says, but Hectopascals (hPa). At the current altitude as I write this, it's at 95hPa, or .09 ATM. It's amazing how fast the atmosphere thins out!

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  14. Pet Peeve

    Well, that was a lot of fun to watch live. If you missed the stream, the package came down way up a hill in the middle of nowhere. They got the radio signal long enough to get the exact GPS coordinates, and will be going back for it tomorrow. Ran out of daylight, unfortunately.

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  16. Pirate Dave Silver badge


    Lester - will you guys be streaming video again tomorrow? Today's action was awesome. That's the most fun I've had on the Internet since that guy drove a backhoe across Finland a few years ago.

  17. cookieMonster Silver badge


    A great show, garden shed boffins doing what they do best. Well done to all who provided us with amazing streaming and commentary during the day.... This was WAY better than working :-)

    Thanks !!

  18. Tempest8008

    For those not up on things they have recovered the payload.

    Aside from a bent nose cone everything looks intact.

    Hopefully that means a quick reset and they can send a new balloon up and hopefully reach the appropriate launch height this time.

  19. daveake

    All images are stored on the SD card, which we recovered after the mountain rescue expedition the following day.

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