Monthly Archives: August 2014


PS-19 PICO balloon was released on Sat 30/8/2014

Party balloon, 10mW TX

APRS on 145.175Mhz, callsign VK3YT-12
Olivia 8/250 on 434.650Mhz, tracked on SNUS as PS.

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Update #1 4pm 31/8:
Balloon went out of range in Bass Strait, heading towards NZ.
ETA is Tues night.

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PS-18 PICO balloon is scheduled for release on Sunday 24/8/2014 at 8am.

Party balloon, 10mW TX

APRS on 145.175Mhz, callsign VK3YT-12!mt=roadmap&z=9&call=a%2FVK3YT-12

Olivia 8/250 on 434.650Mhz, tracked on SNUS as PS.

Prediction shows the balloon will loop over Tas, VIC and NSW over several days.



PS-16 was released from Melbourne on 12/8/2014, and took a different path from other PS flights: towards Adelaide, South Australia.



10mW TX, APRS on 145.175Mhz, callsign VK3YT-12
Olivia on 434.650Mhz, tracked on as PS.

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As of 5:30pm the balloon was travelling very slowly towards Ararat.

Update #1:

Wow that was the first PS trip to Adelaide from Melbourne, and the furthest west a PS Pico balloon has travelled. It is not very common to see such unusual wind pattern.

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Update #2:

PS-16 went in range Thurs afternoon

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Prediction for the next few days:


Update #3: 7:30am Fri 15/8

PS-16 has done second pass of Adelaide and now will be heading back to Victoria

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Updated prediction:


Update #4: 10:30am Sat 16/8

Looks like there were some changes in the wind pattern, the balloon did another loop around Adelaide

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Update #5: 5:30pm Sat 16/8

The balloon landed and was picked up by Bob VK5FO and Ray VK5RR.

The payload was on the wet grass which killed APRS transmissions, but they did a great job with locating and retrieving the payload, using a combination of DF and software decoding to track the UHF signal. Thanks guys!

Final decoded packet:

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PS-15 is a last minute release from Melbourne, with predicted path to NZ.

This is a non-solar payload, and APRS only.

10mW TX, APRS on 145.175Mhz, callsign VK3YT-9
Will switchover to NZ APRS frequency 144.575Mhz when payload is close to NZ.

199122 trj001

Update #1, 6pm AEST

PS-15 went out of range at 4:56pm AEST.

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Prediction shows the balloon will arrive around 6:30am local time tomorrow.


Update #1, 4:30am AEST

PS-15 arrived in NZ, first packet was received at 6:07:49am local time, 100km from the shoreline at Westport, NZ.

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Range to first iGate ZL2SUN-3 was 200km, after the balloon cleared the Kahurangi national park

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Update #2: Last packet was received at 8:24:03am local time (6:24:03 AEST) 142km from Christchurch.

Temperature was -42 degree Celsius before Sunrise, and climbed to -12 after Sunrise.

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This was the fastest PS balloon trip to NZ so far, from Melbourne to NZ in 19H.
Total travelled distance 2998km
Average speed 157kph

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