Amateur balloon circumnavigates northern hemisphere

18:30 Fernando Luiz de Souza 0 Comments

Leo Bodnar, M0XER launched a homemade balloon with a 12g solar powered radio tracker on the 12th of July from near Silverstone in the UK.

It has spent the last 400+ hours circumnavigating the northern hemisphere covering over 25,000km over some of the most remote terrain in the planet.

Using the amateur radio APRS network and our UKHAS network we have tracked its location over Europe, Siberia, a brief sojourn across North Korea before heading out over Japan. From here it briefly entered the States before swinging north into Canada. 

It was heard last night in Greenland by OX3XR who recorded the transmission (Which was subsequently played back by DL7AD). The current predictions have it returning to the UK early tomorrow/Friday.
Leo has utilised some clever techniques storing positions so when its back in radio contact it transmits a log file of previous locations in the comments field of the APRS meaning we can recreate where it’s been, hence the fairly unbroken path (it only stores 5 days worth so where you get a line it had been out of contact).
Anyway it’s a fairly amazing thing he’s done and we are ready to welcome it home. To confirm it’s not just a one off there is a second balloon which is about 12 hours behind it (having taken a much more tortuous path doing loop the loops over Siberia and going to very far reaches of Canada )

Both together :;B-64

If it does reappear B-64 will be transmitting Contestia on 434.500Mhz whilst over the UK/Europe. We welcome listeners in Southern England to have a listen out for it. There is a guide here :

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