Sunday, October 4, 2009

NearSys 09F

NearSys 09F reached an altitude of 79,414 feet. It recovered 112 miles away, further than we were planning. That's because the jet stream was much faster than expected. That along with the traffic jam near the end of the turnpike made for a slightly frustrating recovery. Once we got everyone together, we drove to the last know location (4,000 feet AGL) and figured the near spacecraft drifted another 1/2 mile. Once we got close, we began picking up packets again.

The tracking modules based on the MicroTrak 300's had trouble getting packets to us during the chase. However, the APRS gateways put plenty of packets on the Internet. Um, this calls for some investigation. If you know of someone who can help me analyze the radiation pattern and strength of the transmitter, please let me know.

I'll post more information on Washburn's first near space flight in the next few days. There will be a full report on my website.


  1. I am thinking of adapting a Quadrifilar Helix Antenna(originally designed for spacecraft use) for mobile use. Described as a base station antenna in Oct, 2009 QST. This is a 0 gain circular polarized antenna. If one can then devise a method to temporarily raise 20 or 30 foot could help on the cannot hear near landing site problem.