ALIEN – ALtitude Imaging Entering Near-space

November 22, 2009

Construction of a Payload

Today, I bring you some photos from our latest get together. We’ve practically finished building the payload; the only thing left to do is create the transmit antenna, gluegun on the UV filter and test it! (Oh, and coat the whole thing in duct-tape). Note: our camera model has changed. Instead of using the Powershot A80 (which broke, the CCD stopped working) we’re now using a Powershot A560, with the Stereo Data Maker variant of CHDK installed on it to make it automatically take photos!

The A560 offers 3.1 extra megapixels, which in today’s world can only be good. However, it takes an SD card instead of the CF we already have, so the CF is going on eBay before we acquire an SD card. Cutting polystyrene without a hot wire cutter proved a slight challenge, but it wasn’t anything a Leatherman and a grindstone couldn’t fix. A titanic step forward has been made on the project as everything materialises into tangible reality as opposed to dreamworld. Once the latex balloon is ordered we can start thinking seriously about launch!


  1. Was this the balloon/camera that made the national news?

    Comment by John Fairweather — April 29, 2010 @ 21:32

  2. No, that was Icarus which is run by Robert Harrison; we know him since he is a member of UKHAS as well.

    We are a team of three GCSE students who are launching our own balloon to take pictures of the curvature of the earth.

    Comment by Daniel Richman — April 30, 2010 @ 14:39

  3. 5/9 Signal to me on Wirral peninsular at 14.43pm sunday having problems decoding telementary not sure of shift etc will keep trying
    good luck and best 73s

    Comment by Gary Cash 2E0LGZ — May 2, 2010 @ 14:45

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