Project Horus High altitude balloon project


Launch of Horus 19

On Sunday the 27th of November, we'll be launching Horus 19, carrying Skipping Girl Vinnegar's monkey 'baker' to the edge of space.

Launch will be taking place at around 08:00am local time (ACST), with another opening at 14:30 should we be unable to launch as planned.

We will be flying our regular 70cm RTTY telemetry on 434.650MHz, as well as an APRS payload. AsВ always, we appreciate people's assistance in tracking, if you want to follow the launch online you can do it atВ spacenear.usВ or atВ

Chase & launch teams will be contactable on the day via the VK5RSB and VK5RMB repeaters, as well as in #highaltitude onВ

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Launch of Horus 18

On Sunday the 13th of November we'll be launching Horus 18 at approx 9am local time (ACST).

This launch includes high definition video, as well a number of standard definition video cameras.

Predicted flight path of Horus 18

TelemetryВ wise, we'll be flying our standard 300baud RTTY onВ 434.650MHzВ & an APRS payload. We always appreciate people's assistance in tracking, if you want to follow the launch online you can do it atВ spacenear.usВ or at

Chase & launch teams will be contactable on the day via the VK5RSB and VK5RMB repeaters, as well as in #highaltitude onВ

The predicted flight path should (hopefully) make for an easy recovery.

Update:В Horus 18 was a successful flight! The full writeup is now online.

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Horus 17 successfully recovered

Despite a lower burst altitude than expected, Horus 17 was a successful test of a pico payload.

The payload was recovered shortly after landing near Mannum. Many thanks to those who helped out with tracking and came out today! :-)

Update:В The writeup for Horus 17 is online.

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Pico Launch October 16th, 2011

Unfortunately, predictions for a 35km altitude launch on Sunday would have us landing within the Adelaide metropolitan area (not a good idea!), so we've scrubbed the 4-balloon launch.

Instead we'll be trying a pico launch, with an expected maximum altitude of 20km. The new MicroNut boards allow the creation of these tiny payloads, weighing in at just under 50 grams. The decrease in weight comes at a cost - less insulation. We aim to find out how the MicroNut boards cope with the extremely low temperatures around the tropopause - about -50 degrees C.

We expect to be launching around 10AM CDT on Sunday morning. Any and all help with tracking would be greatly appreciated!

Update: We will be using a 434.075MHzВ telemetry transmitter. Be aware that the frequency will drift quite significantly due to the low temperatures.

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Weekend of launches October 16th, 2011

October 15-16 this year sees the 54th international Scout JOTAВ event taking place.

To coincide with this event, we'd planned a weekend of 4 launches, including high definition video & amateur radio repeaters. The payloads are built, the cars & teams are ready, but at the last minute it looks as though the weather is going to stop us from launching. :-(

There's still a possibility that we may get a launch off the ground if the weather improves, but it looks unlikely that we'll be able to launch the 4 balloons we'd hoped for.

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Horus 16 Launch Announcement

This Sunday (18th of September) we will be launching Horus 16 at around 09:00 am local time (~00:00 UTC). This launch is a test of the new MicroNut payload, and another shot at an altitude record.В We're expecting a peak altitude of 40km, which will give a radio horizon of around 700km.

Horus 16 Flight Prediction

Those wishing to track can can find the Horus payload on 434.075MHz.В As usual, select 'HORUS' from the payload list in dl-fldigi. You can also track it online, as usual.

The current prediction puts the balloon landing around the Lameroo area, so we're in for an interesting chase!

Update: the Horus 16 writeup is now online.

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Marks been busy!

Mark has been keeping himself busy of late putting together new telemetry systems for our payloads. His most recent board 'MicroNut' is an extraordinarily compact GPS tracker & radio transmitter, capable of operating on 70cm/2m RTTY or full blown APRS depending on the radio module installed.

MicroNut board running APRS

Mark also spent some time in the UK recently, where he launched Horus 15.5 - a shot at the amateur ballooning altitude record. Mark's launch reached 40,575 m, currently the second highest record! :D

For all the details, checkout Mark's blog.

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Horus 15 flies today

Apologies for the late announcement - we'll be launching Horus 15 today. Onboard will be HD video, and a re-fly of Mark's HF telemetry payload (as flown in Horus 8).

Those wishing to track can find the Horus payload on the usual 434.650 MHz - to track Mark's HF payload, select 'darkside' in dl-fldigi & tune your radio to 14.080 MHz. Mark's payload is putting out around 700 mW this time around, so should be heard over a good distance!

As usual, you can follow the flight online.

Horus 15 flight prediction

Late edit: Horus 15 flew and was successfully recovered, more details shortly.

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Horus 14: A successful launch

Yesterday saw the successful launch and recovery of Horus 14 - the day went smoothly, a big thanks to all involved for their efforts.

The maximum altitude reached was just over 30km, with the flight going exactly according to predictions.


We'll make the full writeup (including pics and video) available soon! :)

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Horus 14: Launch prediction

We're all set to launch Horus 14 today, predictions are currently looking good.

Horus 14 flight prediction

To follow the flight's progress (including live streaming of the launch), keep your eye on the tracker here. :)

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