* Posts by SteveD

37 publicly visible posts • joined 21 May 2010

Our second attempt to give LOHAN a good banging: Live tomorrow


If you need help tracking you could try contacting Avila Radio Club, I have the email address. Plus those of a few local Amateurs. Obviously not going to post them here. If you want them contact me direct

LOHAN test flight LIVE: All the launch action


BUZZ active

BUZZ now seems to be active on the spacenear.us site


Re: Perhaps its me, but

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

Syria cuts off internet and mobile communications


Syria allows amateur Radio and is a member of IARU Region 1 along with the UK, The only 2 countries I know of that ban it are North Korea and Yemen, Syria does not Possibly because those in power don't consider "geeks" a threat.

Restaurateur jailed for customer sex profile revenge plan


My brother has an allergy to eggs, he can't eat anything with even a small amount of egg. Not sure if there is an allergy to Olives.

I have found in the UK that waitresses and chefs, go out of their way to help, to the point of a meal not being on the menu being created.. That goes to small cafes also.

If you ask for a food stuff not to be included you expect that it is not

US team poised for second pop at PARIS spaceplane record


Failed the pilots ejected early., the nose fell off again, or Lester's space born laser working, Is this the start of a UK Star Wars attempt, abandoned by the US.

I could send some British horse to make better glue.

But then I would get a queue of scantily clad PETA operatives at my door, Hell


Seem to have made 107,190 with the tracks separating at 106,826

So somewhere between the two was release

Assuming they find the payloads they have got the record


W9MOK-2 is showing as a BeeLine 10, the same tracker as used on the PARIS Balloon. W9MOK is a Tiny Track though.

Good luck with the launch.

And even better luck to Lester armed with the Laser

America mounts attempt to top the Register's world record spaceflight


the tracker on the plane lost lock and was transmitting the default 33333M (109372FT) So at least they can Radio Direction Find it. in case anyone wonders about that


balloon burst at around 87,900ft would have got slightly higher, but not by enough, the plane's tracker did not work, so I don't know yet if it released. PARIS retains the record.


They will be using the same software for tracking as used by PARIS, Their query about the software is how I got the heads up that the flight was happening. For those interested the software is APRSIS32

Readers fret over LOHAN's chilly bits


GPS Tracking

The UHF tracker that was on the plane is low power and light weight. You can however use it with out a licence with a move in frequency. I would suggest changing the LiPo cell on it. it was designed to track rockets so is robust.

The High Power VHF tracker that was on the balloon I still have, and will happily loan for the project, it has the advantage that the Spanish APRS infrastructure will feed it all to the internet for you, you will however need someone with an amateur licence, in the UK 25 multiple choice questions. Am pretty sure you could find a Spanish Amateur interested. You can get chinese vhf/uhf radios for about £25, feed the audio into a laptop with a couple of bits of software and good to go.

Duff Mars probe's flaming shards to rain down mid-January


it will be an early morning visible object from the 18th Dec http://www.heavens-above.com

Amateur balloonists conquer Atlantic


Well done

The tracker used on this flight was the same type as used on the PARIS Balloon a Bigredbee BLGPS 2M HP. A lot of people in the Azores, Spain and Portugal switched APRS frequency to help track the balloon.



Brit balloonist reclaims UK altitude record


Transatlantic Balloon

A balloon took off from California late on the 11th and though not planned is currently most of the way across the atlantic, it's being received by station's in the Azores at present on 144.390MHz. You can watch on http://aprs.fi and search for K6RPT-11. They asking for Southern Spanish stations to listen out for it

A Farewell to Oates: Adios, El Reg


sadly missed

I met John as part of the PARIS project, lovely chap, went out of his way to help me out in Spain, I don't speak spanish. Good luck with the new job

LOHAN spaceplane project starting to shape up nicely



It's not a problem getting hold of a GPS unit that works at over 18km. The Trimble Lassen IQ units used in PARIS are easy to get hold of. The restriction is 18km and 515m/s not or.

The advantage of using APRS on the European 2M frequency, is that other than perhaps final recovery, the reception and tracking is all done by the APRS network. I have a plot showing that PARIS covered most of Spain. (Not sure it got published on the reg)

@Lester. the 2M high power tracker is available should you want to use it.

PARIS pops up in Ripley's Believe It or Not!


The Height of fame

The height of fame for me, better than making the news.

If you are planning another high altitude project, I still have the balloon tracker should you want it

Ofcom slaps down ham botherer


Amateur Radio

There is still a lot of point being an amateur. There are currently some very interesting experiments going on.

And of course we used Amateur Radio in PARIS for the tracking



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just recovered found bottle opener

Well the radio Guy has recovered, I found a bottle opener eventually. For those interested I have grabbed as many news video reports as possible and put them on youtube. Hell it's my 15 mins of fame. I think the confusion about the altitude comes from my local papers' report, they asked how far the plane flew and I said 23km aprox, gave the altitude also but they got confused.

As for Amateurs launching satellites we do, although on commercial rockets. We are working on a satellite to educate school kids, on the fun of science. http://funcube.org.uk. If you want to contribute please do. (i am not part of that team)

I really want to congratulate Lester on the stunning engineering of the plane, the pictures do not show it in its full glory, or the amount of effort Lester put into it. If that does not end up in a museum with Lester's name attached there is no justice.

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My local paper are going to print Jon's excellent photo stitch up. Also have been told it's going out on BBC world.

If Pillinger wants a hand with Beagle 3, he knows who to call.

Reg reader stitches PARIS right up

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Good job Jon

Very nice work Jon, would buy that as a poster. Idea for the reg maybe

PARIS joins the 17-mile-high club

Paris Hilton


Got approached by a chap in the pub last night, who said I was part of NASA I was going to correct him until he added Nerds Above Spanish Airspace

Aircraft bombs may mean end to in-flight Wi-Fi, mobile



Having taken Radio transmitters and gps trackers etc on a recent flights mostly as hand luggage, the only thing I was asked to do was open my laptop. I was expecting to at least get asked what the equipment was.

I had a large Li-Po battery and GPS tracker/transmitter in my hand luggage.

PARIS in 89,000 ft climax

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have plotted the release and landing points onto the APRS system for those interested. looks like the plane flew for around 23km. Sadly the plane GPS only got a lock close to the ground, but at least we managed to get a fix on it and retrieve it.

But it was a maiden voyage, and so many things could have gone wrong, but didn't. The fact that the plane only released at balloon burst turned out to be a bonus

Thanks to the Reg for getting me involved. A fantastic experience, if a little stressful at times.

PARIS nursing mother of all hangovers

Paris Hilton

Plane landing site

For those of you who want to see, the plane landing site is now showing on APRS as an object. Will sort the payload site tomorrow, I have had a long trip back home (12 hours)

And for the person who thinks it's ok to pull personal messages from the APRS system and post them in the comments sections of the Reg, without asking if it was ok, it's not it's bloody rude. And as they were out of context misleading.

PARIS grounded by whipping wind


it's me

Well I will identify myself ex-Emperor Palpatine, Most people would say having a shadow across my face was a good thing (although the Shadows is a different SCI-FI theme). It was very cold and windy on that day unfortunately, the wine glasses were frozen to our hands. The good news is the tracker I had going was received 300 miles away. Play mobile pulled out all the stops and our pilot Chuck has been trained by the best Buzz Lightyear.

Vulture 1 spaceplane launch countdown on hold


Locals great

I don't speak a word of Spanish, but the locals have made a big effort to make me feel welcome,. Love the place.

The plane looks great, it's a master piece of paper plane construction.

Just waiting for the weather

PARIS looking 50/50 for Saturday launch



I must have displeased a Deity at some point. It's almost certain to rain whenever I go anywhere. Perhaps I should hire myself out to drought ridden areas

PARIS furnished with engorgement


What have I got myself into?

Lester has offered to ply me with lots of red wine, Has already got his apparently sober son in a dress. I think the chances are high I won't enjoy the pictures of me on the reg later this month.

PARIS launch go for 23 Oct


The things I do

Well we are all trying to push forward the UK's space science, Even if it means going to Spain to do it. And if the Register has sorted an event to enhance British/Spanish relations, that involves food and red wine, I shall put myself out to help.

New crew pursue ISS



Those in Europe who want to get up early can view both the ISS and Soyuz pass over.

Enter your location on the following site


Vulture 1 GPS test: It did work, honest



It's not new tech I agree. We did get a bit of signal drop out, but that was not unexpected due to the low power we were running. The big problem was that the broadband dongle feeding the web failed to do the job. The flight data arrived at the laptop fine.

Lester did a great job flying the plane, although I did need a couple of pints afterwards.

And thanks to Mark Slyfield for helping out.

Vulture 1 GPS test live at 2pm



Well as said above the test was a success, the GPS to laptop worked as expected. so the Radio link works. Sadly the broadband let us down.

It was after all a test, to find any possible problems.

Lesters flying was fine, although it would have been good to land on the runway, rather than the M5.

Coming soon: Live Vulture 1 GPS tracking test



just a bit more to what lester said. We hope to transmit on 433.950MHz and hope to have at least 100km coverage. We would welcome anyone who can to send to the APRS system to do so. Also reception reports of the APRS and beacon signals.


Camera and transmitters

I will be taking a camera, and what with the transmitters and antenna. No doubt we will be spending the night at her Majesty's pleasure.

We won't be going to the Giraffe Cafe thats for sure

PARIS flashes some radio goodies


GPS etc

The Civilian GPS unit we are using will work fine above 60,000ft. 433.950 may not be the final frequency in use but it will be close.

I am aware of the rules for using Amateur Radio. And APRS.

The GPS payload weighs around 60g