Our May meeting, on Thursday May 4, features Alan Adamson, W7QO, the guy who holds the record for the:
- Longest duration balloon flight (over 200 days)
- Longest distance balloon flight (over 500000 km – which is to the moon and about half way back)
- Most number of circumnavigations – just about to finish 13 and start 14, and still counting
- Lightest trackable payload
- Most number of days of consecutive received reports by a non-satellite system
- What started all this Balloon stuff (for me)
- Overview of the pieces required to join the fun
- Early flight learnings
- Current long duration flights
- How to get involved/started
- What to expect
- Records to be attained
– Alan has more than 30 years of Design, Development, Management, and Delivery of High-Tech communication and security products.
– Designed a variety of microcontroller, ARM based solutions including a frequency agile, fully programmable, RF radio/GPS tracking platform, a 3 axis camera stabilization system, a multi-axis, multi-motor, flight controller, and various small projects targeted at the internet of things environment
– Successful management of an RF consulting business, with focus on rooftop management of RF spectrum, communications technologies, public exposure and RF safety training issues.
– Held engineering and product management positions with BellSouth, BellSouth.com, Hayes Communications, and Symantec.
– 30+ year Holder of an Extra Class Amateur Radio license.
His professional career included working and retiring from BellSouth (before it was AT&T). As a result of his communications background, about 13 years ago he left the world of working for someone else, and started a couple of consulting businesses.
A Different Approach for RF Balloon Flights
Alan chose a different approach by developing his own hardware and software technologies. He was tired of the lack of flexibility surrounding the AVR, and specifically the Arduino platform. At this time the ARM was just starting to take shape and the technology curve vs. cost was dropping dramatically. He switched to the ARM platform then and has never looked back.
He’s designed and developed the following
– an Arduino feature/function/pin compatible STM32F1 and STM32F3 version of what Arduino calls the pro-mini
– a 3 axis gimbal controller for camera stabilization, built on either the STM32F105 or the STM32F405 processor.
– Working for a large West Coast company, he designed and developed the hardware and firmware for a balloon tracking system based upon a satellite modem
– a Silabs Si4463 radio module that can mate to either the Arduino Pro Mini or his ProMini32
The latter is what was used to prove and develop the radio module that he uses on his balloon controller.
W7QO – Atlanta HamFest Speaker – June 3rd, 11:00 AM
We are pleased that Alan will also share his balloon experience at the 11:00 AM forum at our June 3rd HamFest in Jim Miller Park. Alan plans to launch a balloon in the afternoon at the HamFest! You can see the record breaking balloon telemetry and follow along its flight using the tracker at this website.
The February/March edition of the Atlanta Ham has arrived and is available for your immediate enjoyment! Thanks again to David Harden, KJ4CMY, for his continued contribution of articles. Also thanks to Jim Stafford, W4QO, for allowing us to include his “Antenna Observations” article from the recent NFARL newsletter.
Download the newsletter by clicking here now!
This month we have our very own W2NP Chandler Friedman, who is the founder and owner of World Gone Silent, and the Emergency Coordinator for Atlanta ARES. On Thursday, April 6 he’ll be talking about the role that ham radio operators played in the running of last month’s Publix Marathon.
We look forward to seeing members and visitors as we learn about the Amateur Radio Emergency Service and the role they have in assisting our public service partners in Atlanta and Fulton County.
See you at 7:30, The Atlanta Red Cross Center on Monroe Drive in Atlanta. Stop by Cowtippers Restaurant on Piedmont at 6 o’clock to join the pre-meeting meeting – Great Food and Greater Company!
Surprise! The January 2017 edition of the Atlanta Ham has been posted here. If you weren’t expecting one until next month, I’m sorry to disappoint. This year my goal is to make sure this newsletter has an edition every month. If it gets to the first of a month without a newsletter for the previous month, feel free to email me to bug me about it!
Also thanks again to David Harden, KJ4CMY, for continuing to produce the Beginner’s Corner article. If you have an original article that you’d like to have published or would like to write a monthly column, please email me at [email protected] and I’d be happy to publish it.
See you all at the member meeting on Thursday!
February’s Second Sunday event brings back hands-on kit builds with a 40 meter mini CW QRP transmitter. Our new Second Sunday chair, Alan Sellers (KW4MO) has pre-purchased 12 kits at a cost of $8.50. If you would like to reserve one, please contact him at [email protected].
As always, note that we have pre-purchased the kits as a convenience and the purchase of a kit is not required to attend the session; you could buy one directly from a seller on eBay or another online store, or just come by to hang out.
Lastly, if you have soldering equipment please bring it with you.