back to article US alliance strengthens LOHAN imaging arsenal

Watch Video Fans of our Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) project know that we've recently been working on the spaceplane mission's imaging capability, with airborne tests of the budget DBcam and the prototype CENTR Camera four-eyed panoramic beast. Amid all this excitement, we expressed doubts about our GoPro 3, …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Too expensive

    165USD? They're taking the piss. Get half a dozen keychain 808 cams and take them out of the case. There is a hack using a microcontroller to auto-start them when power is applied.

    However if your not paying then you might as well use them.

    1. daveake

      Re: Too expensive

      And wrap them in foil first - the 808 cameras are better at disrupting GPS reception than they are at recording images.

  2. Michael H.F. Wilkinson

    Kudos to David Patterson

    Really nice to see such generosity

  3. Alister Silver badge




    Just curious, why bother with the audio?

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Last Words

      To record the last words of the Hero Playmonaut before he launches himself into the unknown strapped atop a lit firework...

      Playmonaut, we salute you and raise a glass in your honour.

      1. Michael H.F. Wilkinson

        Re: Last Words

        If the heroic playmonaut has a sense of history he will say "Pojechali"

        Also used when raising a glass in Russia

  4. imanidiot Silver badge

    Composites radio transparent??

    Tell that to anyone who's ever tried to install a transponder or other radio equipment into a carbon composite plane. Especially modern high performance gliders use a lot of carbon, which pretty much completely blocks any radio signals. Most require a dual transponder antenna, one mounted on top of the fuselage, one below, to achieve proper signal radiation.

    Also, why buy one of those Gobosh planes when you can get something like this for less: It might be slower, but it'll be a hell of a lot more fun!

    1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

      Re: Composites radio transparent??

      Actually, that does look rather good, in a "prang it and you're dead" sort of way. "Airframe Kit only $48,490!" Bargain!

      1. imanidiot Silver badge

        Re: Composites radio transparent??

        "Actually, that does look rather good, in a "prang it and you're dead" sort of way. "Airframe Kit only $48,490!" Bargain!"

        I highly doubt it's going to be more dangerous than any other light sports aircraft in a prang. Most of them would fold like cardboard. I'd actually prefer not to have a solid engine block in front of me as it allows more "crumplezone".

    2. Don Jefe

      Re: Composites radio transparent??

      Some composites are radio transparent, some are not. Same with resins, some are, and some aren't radio transparent.

      If you don't have access to the spec sheets there are lots of ways to test for radio transparency, but they're complicated and difficult to carry out at home/secret bunker. If you're in doubt just check across the material for continuity with your multimeter. If you've got continuity you've got all sorts of options from there, but at least you've got a good place to start.

      Incidentally, if your composite material is conductive, you need to go back and assess your wiring paths with an eye for situations that can create a ground loop. Things like power and signal wires (anything with much of a voltage differential really) running parallel or very close together or touching are potentially (Ha!) bad. If high differential wires have to cross you want them at 90 degree angles angles at the intersection.

      I don't know why you would need more than one ground in such a small place, but maybe you have reasons. Minimize the number of ground points as well and make certain they are absolutely immobile. A dab of CA never hurt a spaceplane you know.

      Saying the following is probably unnecessary, but I'll say it anyway. If your material is conductive but your resin isn't and you run a screw through the resin, and into the material, you've just created an antenna. Same with your antenna lead if it pierces the material.

      All that to say it's definitely worth testing your materials and making adjustments to internal systems to reflect your findings. If you create a serious enough ground loop it will seriously screw with your signals in direct proportion to the electronics draw, which is almost assuredly going to be when you've attained apogee (because that's how the universe works).

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    808 is not in the same league

    Got my HackHD Sept 2012 way better than an 808 but heavier. 808 is 5 ish g without case, the HackHD is 32g.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: 808 is not in the same league

      Price wise they aren't in the same league, one is 165USD the other can be found for less than 10. Both use omivision sensors (9Mp and 2Mp) so I doubt that for web quality video the difference will be worth the extra,

      And let me ask you, if you were going to send one into near space and there was the possibility it wouldn't come back either in one piece or at all which would you chose?

      1. daveake

        Re: 808 is not in the same league

        I'd not use an 808 for any near-space mission, as the image quality is poor and their EMI is worse.

        There's no cost saving if a cheap device like this ruins the mission by stopping GPS recovers from working.


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